Sunday, July 25, 2021

Proposal: Which Witch is Which

Timed out and failed, 2 votes to 3.

Adminned at 27 Jul 2021 09:48:24 UTC

In the rule Richardo’s Journey, change

Witching Hour is a publicly tracked date and time. When Richardo von Nestor or a Vampire Lord Winds the Clock, they take the current time, add 24 hours, roll a DICE24 and add the resulting number in hours, and that becomes the new Witching Hour. Whenever the Crypt Settles, Richardo von Nestor Winds the Clock. If the current time is after Witching Hour, the Organ is Playing. Otherwise the Organ is not Playing. While the Organ is Playing, no Power Actions may be performed.


Witching Hour is a date and time that is privately tracked by Richardo von Nestor.

There is a variable called the Organ, which may be Playing or Not Playing, and which defaults to Not Playing. If the current time is after Witching Hour, Richardo von Nestor may set the Organ is Playing. While the Organ is Playing, no Power Actions may be performed.

When Richardo von Nestor Winds the Clock, they take the current time, add 24 hours, roll a DICE24 and add the resulting number in hours, and that becomes the new Witching Hour. Whenever the Crypt Settles, Richardo von Nestor sets the Organ to Not Playing and Winds the Clock.

As a Power Action with a cost of 0, a Vampire Lord may Observe the Mansion. When a Vampire Lord Observes the Manion they must spend between 1 and 3 Puissance and then privately notify Richardo von Nestor of their Observing the Manion action. When Richardo von Nestor is notified of a Vampire Lord’s Observing the Mansion Action, he must respond based on how much Puissance the Vampire Lord spent carrying that Action out; if 1 Puissance was spent he should provide a 12hour period in which Witching Hour occurs; if 2 Puissance was spent he should provide an 6 hour period in which Witching Hour occurs; if 3 Puissance was spent he should give the exact time of Witching Hour.

Add a new Special Case rule called Private Communications [Active], with the following text:

Private messages may also be sent via Slack.



25-07-2021 10:04:27 UTC

The Special Case rule should be “private messages to the Richardo von Nestor” (“the” because this will survive the dynasty and needs to make sense after keyword substitution); otherwise you’re effectively forcing everyone onto the Slack for a dynasty.

1 Puissance Observation is completely useless because Witching Hour is limited to a 24-hour period anyway, and the 8-hour version has a lot of Emperor discretion in whether you orient the time period to the start or end of the range. I suspect that just simplifying it to an “exact time” action is the way to go.

I do worry that a lot of this will come down to “guess when Josh wakes up”, though (although that version is nonetheless better than a “reverse everything that was late” version).


25-07-2021 10:22:21 UTC

Also, Special Case rules don’t need a “While this rule is active”.

Josh: he/they

25-07-2021 10:52:22 UTC

The special case rule doesn’t force people onto slack; private messages can still be sent via DM. The regular Private Message appendix entry isn’t overwritten.

Josh: he/they

25-07-2021 10:54:47 UTC

Have tweaked the Observation costs and rewards.

Kevan: City he/him

25-07-2021 13:18:40 UTC

“Guess when Josh wakes up” does loom a bit large here (with a fun UK-specific subgame of “get up slightly earlier than Josh”), if maybe a third of Witching Hours are going to occur when he’s asleep. It is an improvement on the current system, though.

Josh: he/they

25-07-2021 13:45:06 UTC

I’d be open to suggestions of how we can land Witching Hour in a collectively intelligible range. What about if we connected data on which hours historically attracted the most activity (comments, posts) and weighed the witching hour calculation by that?

(Tongue in check… But only slightly)

Clucky: he/him

25-07-2021 13:49:00 UTC

I feel like this this greatly advantages people in Josh’s time zones. It also puts weird pressure on Josh to turn on the organ whenever possible.

Brendan: he/him

25-07-2021 14:25:14 UTC

Josh does love to pressure Josh.


25-07-2021 17:35:03 UTC

@Josh: it forces people onto Slack if there’s any rule that might require them to be able to receive private messages. That doesn’t apply to people other than the Emperor this dynasty, but could matter in future dynasties.

Josh: he/they

25-07-2021 18:12:04 UTC

I don’t think that you can send a message on slack to someone who’s not there, so the sender would not have substantively succeeded in sending it under those circumstances without using the EE PM system.

Clucky: he/him

25-07-2021 18:35:49 UTC

we can always fix it in future dynasties but I think its a fair point. Someone might have a slack account but not actively use it. I also think there are timing considerations to worry about when allowing stuff on slack but I guess can deal with that if we get a dynasty where that is a problem?

Kevan: City he/him

25-07-2021 19:06:30 UTC

An actual dynastic rule of “when the Emperor has to formally notify a player of something important in private, they can do that through a Slack or EE private message, their choice” would get some pushback, I think, so a Special Case rule should probably be a bit more explicit about that, and maybe even be [Rare].

Clucky: he/him

26-07-2021 00:35:29 UTC


Ultimately two main reasons I’m against this:

1) The “guaranteed” time to get your moves in is always gonna be 24 hours after Josh posts. Josh will often be able to do his posts well before I’m up in the mornings. Which means to be safe I’ll always need to get my moves in before going to bed and others will always have plenty of time to counter.

2) Even if I were to nail down the actual witching hour, timezones still play a big factor a disadvantage. Witching hour being at 2:00:00 AM UTC isn’t really any different than witching hour being at 7:00:00 AM UTC cause Josh isn’t gonna be online to start the organ before then.

I think the proper fix is twofold:

1) Instead of doing 24 + D24, do something like 12 + D24 + D24. The first 12 + D24 is publicly announced. The second D24 is kept secret by Josh.

2) Any moves made after witching hour are automatically reverted when Richardo enters the crypt.

That way, doesn’t matter when Josh does a run its still completely random both when he might next enter the crypt, no timezone is gonna be at advantage. And if you do deduce that he’s entering at 2:00:00 UTC and are in a timezone where you can take advantage of that information great, you actually can do so.


26-07-2021 11:48:45 UTC


Brendan: he/him

26-07-2021 16:14:14 UTC


Kevan: City he/him

27-07-2021 08:44:12 UTC

This is certainly better than the current “rush to perform non-build actions at 23:59”, but tactically that clock is currently set to lunchtime BST and there’s maybe only one or two turns left in the game.