Node governments

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Alpha-1 winner of Mayoral election.[1]

Node governments are chosen from a node's citizenry when a node reaches stage 3 (Village).[2]

Positions within a node's government are attained through titles that grant special access to NPCs in the node.[3]

There are a lot of things that you can strive for within [a node] that grant you that special treatment.[3]Steven Sharif

Node elections

Once a node has reached Village stage there will be a one week cooldown period before node elections begin.[7]

  • This cooldown period allows players to establish citizenship at the village; which may require them to relinquish previous citizenship at another node.[7]
  • Following the initial cooldown, there will be a one week election process, then from that point on, elections will follow a monthly cadence.[7]
  • Node sieges may not be declared for 21 days following a node advancing to Village (stage 3). This does not apply to nodes at higher stages.[8]

The village stage is a unique stage because that's when the government system comes online and all other stages past village there will have already been a cadence for the election system and it will follow that cadence, but after the initial village stage is completed there will be a one week period where players have an opportunity to establish citizenship at the village that also provides for the cooldown time that is- that would be present on players leaving another node to kind of participate in in this particular node leveling up. But that after that one week period then there will be a one-week election process and then from that point moving forward will be the one month cadence that the node experiences elections on.[7]Steven Sharif

Node elections occur on a monthly basis.[7][9]

Node governments and mayors are chosen through different methods according to the node's type.[12][13]

City hall

City hall is a government building within a node.[20]

We want the City Hall to be the place where big decisions are made for each Node. It should be where the “ruling class” comes together and decides what to do (these decisions can quickly make them the “old ruling class” too).

Mayors and node governments use City hall to visualize and control activities within their node. These capabilities will also be available via mobile/web inteface.[4]


Mayors are leaders of a node's government who control the development of that node.[4]

  • Coordinate the transfer of needed supplies with citizens operating caravans.[23]
    • Mayors must communicate what resources are necessary for a particular node then motivate the citizens to fulfill those needs.[23]

Only node citizens may be elected mayor.[10]

You may only ever be a citizen of a single node at a time.[10]Steven Sharif

Mayors gain new powers and responsibilities as their node advances.[13]

Mayoral caravans

Mayoral caravans are launched by Mayors.[25]

Leadership powers

Government officials have wide-ranging leadership powers.[26]

  • Declare war on another node and rally citizens to the cause.[20]
  • Enter into trade agreements.[20]
  • Directing assets.[2]
  • Mayors are able to initiate quest-driven systems that non-citizens can participate in. The mayor can use a portion of the node's treasury or goods as rewards for quest completion. Players will be able to interface with the node to view the quests that are available to them.[29]
  • Governments may be able to choose a node name from a predetermined list.[30][31]

The government has a lot of say in the direction of the nodes development. Directing assets, building projects, tax allocation, defensive ability etc. Players have the ability to not only create these cities, but they have the right of self-governance.[2]

There are levers and dials that are present to both the owners of Castles as well as the elected officials of Nodes that during their administration they have the ability to impact and influence the region around them.[32]Steven Sharif

Guilds do not control nodes.[33][34] Guild leaders (kings and queens) can become mayors of nodes.[10]

  • Guilds hold separate roles in the direction of the node than the roles held by private citizens.[2]
  • Only a certain number of guilds may participate in these roles.[2]
  • Separate guild roles are reserved for small, medium and large guilds.[2]

Guild’s also hold separate roles in the direction of the node, than the roles held by private citizens, and only a certain number of guilds may participate in these roles. Separate guild roles are reserved for Small size guilds, medium size guilds and large size guilds.[2]

Node development

Alpha-1 Village node layout.[35]

Even at the stage 3 development as a village, it's a fairly sizable layout; and part of these layouts include essentially static in-node housing for players to be able to purchase.[35]Steven Sharif

Racial architecture styles in an Alpha-0 village node. Empyrean Elven influence (top). Kaelar Human influence (bottom).[36]

The layout and architecture within a Node’s development area are determined by influential race. For example, a stage 3 Node with the majority of player contribution being Py’rai would have a Py’rai village with Py’rai architecture. Most NPCs would be Py’rai elves, and offer questlines within the Py’rai narrative.[13]Margaret Krohn

Each player’s contributed experience is flagged with their character race and other identifiers. When a Node advances, the race with the highest experience contribution determines the Node’s style and culture. This style and culture change can happen at every Node Stage. For example, if a Node advances to Level 2 - Encampment Stage and 51% of all experience was earned by Ren’Kai players, the Node will be a Level 2 Ren’Kai Node. If that same Node advances to a Level 3 - Village Stage Node, but the Py’Rai contributed 62% of all the experience earned, then the Node will be a Level 3 Py’Rai Node. Cultural influences bring more than just the aesthetic and storyline changes - benefits are granted to the dominant culture within that Node’s Zone of Influence.[37]Margaret Krohn

Node layout and style is determined by several factors:[38]

Some parts are determined by the area it's in. Some parts are determined by the type it is. Some parts are determined by the race it is; and then the rest of it is determined by the mayor.[38]Jeffrey Bard

All nodes whether they're associated with a castle or associated with normal node structure has cultural influences that replicate over to the buildings that are produced and the NPCs that are present.[32]Steven Sharif

There is an attrition mechanic that affects experience and influence to curb a single race from dominating the entire world.[41]

There is an attrition and that attrition on experience and influence is heightened based on the performance of the race in the world. So if all these nodes are Orc nodes then their attrition rate is very high to compete with the cultural establishment of new nodes because they have more influence in the world and a popular opinion is against them in their outlying regions that they do not have influence in.[41]Steven Sharif

Constructible node buildings

Node governments decide the location and types of constructible node buildings to be constructed within sectors of a node.[44][45][46]

These are buildings that the mayor has agency over determining whether or not they should be a constructed project. Constructible buildings can be selected at open plots that are gained as the node advances. If they elect to begin construction of one of these types of buildings- one of which is the marketplace- it'll grant certain trade benefits as well as some stalls that the citizens may participate in.[47]Steven Sharif

When the building types are determined, the community will then need to bring resources into the node (using caravans) and come together to construct the buildings (via quests and the like).[44]

The government decides how to specialize their node. Once they choose certain things they won't be able to choose other things.[44]

Different governments may change the buildings within a node.[44]

And there could be regime change... If somebody doesn't like the fact that a market was built and they want to re-elect a new government next cycle, they can do so... and that market could be destroyed and a new building take its place.[44]

Pre-defined parameters limit the number of buildings at in-node locations.[45]

Node sieges

Node sieges (Pre-alpha footage).[48]

As some areas in the world grow, others will fall. This is the foundation of the living, breathing world that is Ashes of Creation, where players will have the ability to make important decisions that matter in the longevity of an area becoming a city, or whether to siege a rival town. Rise above the ashes, create the world around you, and be a part of the story that unfolds because of your actions and decisions.[37]Margaret Krohn

Node sieges enable players to destroy nodes.[37] This paves the way for new development and access to the locked content in surrounding nodes. Due to this dynamic, political strife and intrigue play an important role in the structure of the world.[49]

Sieging nodes will not be an easy task for the attackers. Cities and metropolises will have a considerable defensive advantage.[49]

If you own a home in a node and you don't want to see that home destroyed, you need to defend that city![50]Steven Sharif

Nodes can delevel based on node atrophy.[37]

Node wars

Node governments may declare war on another node and rally citizens to the cause.[20]

We have conditions that you can set between nodes with regards to either nodes being friendly with each other and acting trade alliances, or they can declare war on nodes similar to how guild wars may function in different games, where those citizens become hostile to each other based on the player government that's elected in the particular node. So those systems all kind of cater to allowing a conflict that's meaningful and that also provides a non-imbalanced relationship between stronger guilds and not as strong guilds.[52]Steven Sharif

Node politics

There won't be a civil war mechanic within nodes but there will be scope for internal political conflicts; such as undermining the current leadership and disrupting trade.[53]

We want consequences to matter and if that person got elected then you need to work within the means of the mechanics to get them unelected.[54]Steven Sharif

Trade agreements

Node governments can enter into trade agreements with other nodes. Each node entering into the agreement can designate caravans with materials to be sent to the other; improving the economy of both nodes. This gives experience to all involved, contributes to the node’s growth and helps to construct buildings.[20]

Mercenary guilds will be a viable way forward for different organizations. I think there will be a lot of business to be had with that; and one of the systems in our trade agreements is creating an escrow for those particular type of arrangements that we're looking into.[55]Steven Sharif

Trade routes

Mayoral caravan launched by a mayor to establish a trade route with another node.[25]

Trade routes in Ashes of Creation refer to.


Mayors/Node governments allocate resources, taxes, and quests to help develop node defenses.[22]

  • Tax money only goes toward funding node development.[59]
  • Taxation rates scale based on when a player joined a node as a citizen. The goal is to exert financial pressure on node populations by making taxes increasingly expensive as nodes advance, rather than putting in place hard population caps.[60]

Parent nodes take a cut of all taxes from the housing and any services that occur within their ZOI.[61]

  • This tax doesn't necessarily impact the individual citizen, because citizen's tax levels are determined by their node, but the node's finances are affected by the taxation levied by its parent nodes.[61]

When a node reaches stage 3 (Village) and a player run government has formed, all player housing will pay taxes.[62]

  • A player's tax charge will be determined by the number of structures built on their plot.[59]

See also


  1. Livestream, 28 March 2020 (1:02:46).
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 MMOGames interview, January 2017
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Livestream, 26 July 2019 (1:20:48).
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Livestream, 17 November 2017 (9:49).
  5. 5.0 5.1 Livestream, 25 July 2020 (1:52:45).
  6. Livestream, 28 March 2020 (1:01:34).
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 Interview, 27 March 2020 (6:03).
  8. steven-mayoral-siege-cooldown.png
  9. Government2.jpg
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 10.3 10.4 10.5 10.6 10.7 steven-kings-and-mayors.png
  11. 11.0 11.1 Interview, 11 May 2018 (50:05).
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 Node series part II – the Metropolis.
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 13.3 Blog - Know Your Nodes - The Basics.
  14. 14.0 14.1 14.2 14.3 Interview, 19 July 2020 (26:54).
  15. gladiators.jpg
  16. Podcast, 11 May 2018 (52:20).
  17. 17.0 17.1 Interview, 27 March 2020 (09:05).
  18. Interview, 27 March 2020 (11:04).
  19. Blog: Creative Director's Letter
  20. 20.0 20.1 20.2 20.3 20.4 20.5 City hall.
  21. Livestream, 12 December 2018 (14:48).
  22. 22.0 22.1 siege equipment.png
  23. 23.0 23.1 Livestream, 30 June 2017 (53:57).
  24. Interview, 20 October 2018 (2:36).
  25. 25.0 25.1 25.2 25.3 25.4 25.5 Video, 15 July 2019 (2:12).
  26. government.jpeg
  27. assassination.jpg
  28. Livestream, 26 June 2020 (59:11).
  29. 29.0 29.1 Interview, 8 July 2020 (1:04:05).
  30. node naming.png
  31. Livestream, 19 May 2017 (36:05).
  32. 32.0 32.1 32.2 Interview, 11 May 2018 (47:27).
  33. Livestream, 19 May 2017 (36:09).
  34. steven guild leader mayor.JPG
  35. 35.0 35.1 Livestream, 26 June 2020 (45:32).
  36. Livestream, 9 February 2018 (33:50).
  37. 37.0 37.1 37.2 37.3 Blog - Know Your Nodes - Advance and Destroy.
  38. 38.0 38.1 38.2 38.3 38.4 38.5 Livestream, 27 September 2018 (53:06).
  39. 39.0 39.1 Interview, 11 May 2018 (54:34).
  40. Livestream, 26 May 2017 (21:23).
  41. 41.0 41.1 Interview, 11 May 2018 (1:00:19).
  42. Livestream, 28 March 2020 (1:16:03).
  43. Video, 23 March 2020 (0:24).
  44. 44.0 44.1 44.2 44.3 44.4 Livestream, 19 May 2017 (33:57).
  45. 45.0 45.1 Livestream, 20 January 2018 (38:17).
  46. Livestream, 8 April 2018 (PM) (51:49).
  47. Interview, 8 July 2020 (55:05).
  48. Video, 4 December 2016 (0:02).
  49. 49.0 49.1 A reactive world - Nodes.
  50. Video, 30 April 2017 (5:31).
  51. 51.0 51.1 Interview, 19 July 2020 (24:34).
  52. Video, 5 April 2018 (41:48).
  53. Livestream, 24 May 2017 (40:50).
  54. 54.0 54.1 Livestream, 28 June 2019 (1:26:14).
  55. Livestream, 8 April 2018 (AM) (18:59).
  56. Livestream, 17 May 2017 (30:53).
  57. Kickstarter - We Just Broke $1,500,000!
  58. Livestream, 28 March 2020 (1:03:38).
  59. 59.0 59.1 Tax spending.png
  60. Interview, 27 March 2020 (0:30).
  61. 61.0 61.1 Interview, 11 May 2018 (57:02).
  62. House Tax.png