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Research

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Glider Front

Research in Chronicles of Elyria is a process of trial and error that is integrated into the every-day act of crafting. After reaching the Expert level in crafting a certain item, creators have the option to research and study some aspect of the item by spending additional resources each time they forge it (see Technology). Through this, players can discover new components to improve the item, such as make a blade stronger, armor lighter or more flexible, or even develop a way to help livestock live longer. The percent chance of solving a specific problem is based on the amount of research the crafter, and others, have contributed to solving the problem. Some problems require more research than others and players won’t know how much is required or how far along they are.[1]

Researching, Production and Risk[edit | edit source]

Glider Back

After a player is sufficiently experienced in crafting a particular item, a slider will appear in their crafting UI which allows them to dedicate resources in order to improve the item. "Quality" will be at the slider's center, "Research" will be at one end while "Production" will be at the other. The slider will not only affect how many resources are used, but will also affect whether or not the research has the potential to discover something, how much fatigue the crafter has after crafting an item, and how severe the risk of failure. The farther the slider is towards "Research" the greater the chance for discovery, and the farther the slider is towards "Production" the less fatigue the player will suffer and the faster the item will be crafted; however, regardless of which direction the slider goes, either option will still cost more resources and increase risk of development.

A telescope

The farther the slider is, the higher the risk becomes that the player is working outside of their physical and mental capabilities. Each time they elect to move the slider, they are risking the destruction of their resources, tools, shop, injury to their person or even death.

Research Triggers[edit | edit source]

Innovation in Chronicles of Elyria is similar to how innovation occurs in real life: as a result of effort to solve a specific problem. At the same time, new ideas and technology happen due to curiosity, experimentation, trial, and effort. Any time you move the Research vs. Production slider towards “Research” a UI is presented with a list of of problems to solve or things you’d like to investigate related to the item you’re creating. This list is dynamic and changes based on several different triggers:

Event-Driven Triggers: You may have the option to research new technology based on changing world state such as the advancement of the story or going to war with another kingdom.

Skill & Mastery-Driven Triggers: If a researcher has specific skills to a certain mastery, the synergy between the different skills may provide additional research opportunities. For example, achieving mastery in certain carpentry and tailoring skills may provide the opportunity to research interesting new technologies.

Resource-Driven Triggers: Having multiple resources in your inventory that can be combined together in new and unique ways can often allow specific research opportunities. For example, if you’ve got copper and tin ore in your inventory and attempt to make a copper bar, you may be able to research bronze.      

Location-Driven Triggers: Some technologies require characters to be in specific locations in order to research them. This makes sense intuitively. After all, it doesn't really make sense for someone who's land-locked to be researching boat-making.

Guilds and Educational Institutions[edit | edit source]

While individuals can research on their own, doing so in a guild or educational institution will be much easier as they normally have access to capital out of the reach of most players' budgets.

Schools often have crafting stations, which allow for safer research, while guilds have the same to allow for safer mass-production. If you research within a guild or school, your ability to discover something is not only based on the time you’ve spent in research, but also the time everyone else in your guild or school has spent in the same research, which can dramatically increase chance of success.

There is however, one trade off: when perform research on the equipment of an organization (Guild or School), entrepreneurs implicitly agree to share all discoveries you make with the institution. The effect can vary depending on the type of institution: if you make a discovery in a school, then the school will turn around and make the information available to everyone, while a Guild will often go and patent the technology to grant them exclusive rights to the new knowledge.

Patents[edit | edit source]

Patents are implicit contracts between the kingdom and the potential patentee. The contract prevents others from using the new technology. These contracts prevent others from crafting an item or processing a resource without breaking a patent law. However, others may still do it if they know how and it’s up to the individual to enforce the implicit contract. This necessitates the enforcement of the contract lie solely on the pursuant of the patent.  

Patents grant the owner exclusive rights to craft the technology for a period of three real-world weeks, which can be extended for another three weeks, albeit at extreme costs. Following the full six-week period or in the case of the patent owner not pursuing an extension, the technology enters public domain.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Walsh, Jeromy "Caspian". Developer Journal #13 : Research and Technology. Design Journals - Chronicles of Elyria
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