Personal caravans

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Personal (Self-directed/player driven) caravans are initiated by the player, who essentially "becomes the caravan". These are land-based and water-based (naval caravans) that the player drives and directs.[1][2]

Personal caravan initiation

Personal caravans are initiated from a caravanserai building at a Village (stage 3) node or higher.[4][5]


Alpha-1 early preview roading.[8]

Our road system in-game is essentially driven by pre-placed routes that lead to this main artery of what was once the ancient highway system of Verra; and from there there are roads that become exposed when nodes advance; and we call those veins. They come off the main artery and then as nodes advance there are points of interest as Jeff was discussing earlier. These POIs that exist around the world and some of them share coverage with multiple nodes, but depending on which node advances to the stage that activates the point of interest it'll create these capillary roads so to speak that then stem off of the node itself. So you go from the main artery ancient road that's large- that kind of runs through different zones and whatnot- and that breaks down into the veins that lead to the specific encampments and villages and towns that then spawn off separate capillaries that lead to the points of interest in these areas that are hunting grounds. Those are not exposed initially and they come online as players advance the world.[9]Steven Sharif

Roads adjusting to adjacent node progression.[10]

As nodes advance, these pre-laid road spots that exist connecting every possible route between certain node structures is going to adjust and adapt, both its material presentation, the type of roadwork that's present: It'll move from dirt road type, to perhaps a brick road, to perhaps some super ornate beautiful metropolis style road that will adjust around the world according to how these node structures begin to populate and advance.[10]Steven Sharif

Roads in Verra are both pre-generated and player influenced.[9]

  • The largest roads are referred to as arteries. These are remnants of what was once the ancient highway system of Verra.[9]
  • As nodes advance smaller roads, referred to as veins, connect the arteries to the nodes.[9]
    • Roads will upgrade as nodes advance. Different roads will dictate the speed and type of caravan required (off road vs on road).[11]
  • Depending on the stages of node advancement, capillary roads will stem off the node to connect to points of interest.[9]
  • Roads or pathways are not worn into the landscape by repeated traffic over the same area.[9]

Different seasons and events may affect access to various roads.[12][13][14][15]

  • Pathways that are open during summer may be closed during winter.[12][15]
  • Seasonal affects may cause obstacles or blockages to the transit of goods via caravan.[12][13][14][16]
    • Some events may cause specific roadways to be blocked off.[13]
    • Obstacles may present barriers on roads that players must remove to allow transit of goods.[12][15]
  • Water turning to ice in winter, enabling players to walk over the water but blocking access to what is underneath.[15]
    • Ice will make roads bumpy and slippery.[17]

Underrealm routes will open or close dynamically (based on node states).[18]

  • The location of Underrealm entrances throughout the world is focused around natural geographic choke-points that exist above ground. This provides alternate subterranean routes that can be used by caravans, raids, and other player activities.[19][18]
  • Not all entrances to the Underrealm will be open at the same time. This can shift dynamically (based on node states) that cause different routes to open up, which may be more or less advantageous than other routes.[18]

Freeholds may not be placed in close proximity to roads.[20]

Caravan PvP

Caravan PvP in Alpha-1.[21]

You won't be able to see inside specifically but as part of the caravan structure itself there will be little hints as to what the the cargo is. So for example if you've seen some of our recent footage with caravans you kind of see sitting on top of the caravan there's some gold or some silver or some iron.[22]Steven Sharif

Caravans create an open PvP zone that flags players for combat (purple).[23]

  • Players will not be able to see the exact contents of a caravan before they decide to attack or defend, however there will be some visual hints to the cargo of the caravan, such as gold, silver, or iron visible on top of the caravan.[22]
  • Players will be able to state their intentions to attack, defend or ignore via a user interface window.[24][25][26]
    • The proximity that the UI window appears is determined by the player's performance as either a defender or an attacker in previous raids.[24]
  • A group will be required to successfully attack a caravan.[27][28]
  • Basic attacks will not slow caravans, but certain items, attacks, or status effects can slow or block caravans.[29]
  • A caravan will persist in the world for a period of 5 to 10 minutes from the time its owner logs out or is disconnected from the server.[30]
  • Each caravan is its own bespoke event. Players can't participate in more than one caravan event at a time, but running decoy caravans is a valid tactic.[31]
It's still intended from a design standpoint to be a window that is presented to the player based on proximity; and that proximity it can be greater depending on your performance as either a defender or an attacker in previous raids.[24]Steven Sharif

There will be incentives and risks for both caravan attackers and defenders.[32][33] These will be tested and refined during the alpha and beta testing phases.[34]

There is a level of risk that comes with the attacker. We have progression paths that exist for bandits and that exists for defenders; and if you choose to opt into a caravan attack- you sign up for that attack and you fail that attack- it is detrimental to your path of progression down the bandit area. That's one thing: Two is of course you have gear decay. You have degradation that can be suffered if you die. That is a cost. And then you also have a reputation; and if your reputation precedes you when you want to transit goods across the world; and you see somebody who's doing it and you want to participate as a defender or a participant, they might say hey screw you, you were just murdering my people last week and I saw that you're like on the top of the bandit list for killing caravans. So it has repercussions in the sense that it locks you out of certain player groups. It provides decay to your armor. It has deleterious effects on your progression, and the attacking- and the bandit progression of caravan attacks or defense.[32]Steven Sharif
  • A quest system will track a player's successful or failed defenses and attacks. This will provide rewards that scale up over time based on the player's history.[32][33][34]
  • Other incentives and risks are social and are created (informally) between players.[32][34]
The caravan defender role is going to have its own progression questing and rewards associated with it that are going to attract a certain subset of players and then you know vice-versa wise we're going to have incentives that appeal to the more highway brigand type players; and you know you might not always be on one side or the other: that might change depending on what your interests are in the at the time. But obviously you know those types of systems need to have robust you know consequential type rewards and benefits associated with them in order to compel the player; and that's something obviously we're going to test in alphas and betas and see how performant it is in actually attracting players to participate and make sure it's not just one-sided so-to-speak.[34]Steven Sharif

Mercenary NPCs

Mercenary NPCs can be hired to participate in objective-based situations.[37][38][39]

  • Varying tiers of mercenary NPCs may be unlocked based on the investment made in their progression. Highest tier NPC mercenaries are referred to as heros.[40][41][37][38]
  • Players can assign mercenary NPCs, but won't micromanage them, in a similar manner to pets.[39]
There are mercenary NPCs that can be assigned to players. We've discussed about that before and those will follow generically... a kind of pet system even you know adopted majority of the pet system with the added bonus of kind of objective based points of interest that you can assign them to. But we don't want to inundate the field with these mercenaries they'll be kind of few and far between. They'll be assigned specifically like let's say for example you know as the mayor of a node during a siege you'll be able to assign these two specific players that are citizens within your node and then they'll have those they'll spawn during the during the node siege; or vice versa and the castle siege you know guild leaders can assign mercenaries that are available based on the progress of those subsidiary nodes around the castle siege whether or not you have those available to your defense or your attack.[39]Steven Sharif

Caravan destruction

If a caravan is destroyed (becomes a wreckage) it will drop a portion of the goods it was transporting.[27][42][43] The remainder of the caravan's goods are sunk (lost) when the caravan is destroyed.[44]

The caravan becomes a wreckage upon destruction and that wreckage is an interfaceable item that players can come up to and they can receive certificates for a portion of the goods inside the caravan. Now the idea with that certificate is that it must be taken back to the point of origin, or at least a region within that point of origin. We'll see about that last part because there's a few things I want to test in the Alpha from a gameability standpoint. The reason why for this is because what might happen is you may have some type of collaboration within a guild to kind of game that system. Hey I'm gonna reach this caravan just to the border of the region and then we're all destroy it, collect the goods and take it to you know that region's warehouse; and have to skip out on the last half of the way. So it must successfully reach its destination before the goods can be considered a part of that region.[43]Steven Sharif
  • Anyone may loot the caravan's wreckage.[44]
  • Caravan components may also drop when a caravan is destroyed. These components may be salvageable by the caravan owner or by other players, in the case of high grade components.[45]
  • Caravans drop certificates for heavy goods that are redeemable at the origin node for a portion of the goods.[46][43]
Q: What is the reason for requiring the destruction of a caravan by the attackers as opposed to the attackers gaining possession of the caravan?
A: With caravans we really want to emphasize this idea of not necessarily stealing the vehicle, but being forced to achieve victory through destruction; and when you do you then have the logistical issue of how you're going to transport those goods on your own rather than servicing the transport of that by just hijacking.[47]Steven Sharif

Caravan types

There are different types of Caravans in Ashes of Creation.[2][49]

The caravan system is another very big part of the node system. They are the main driver of economic activity and there is a bunch of different types of caravan.[49]Jeffrey Bard

See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Livestream, April 30, 2020 (58:05).
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Livestream, July 28, 2017 (19:43).
  3. caravan-driver.png
  4. 4.0 4.1 Livestream, August 26, 2022 (1:20:17).
  5. 5.0 5.1 Livestream, July 29, 2022 (3:21).
  6. 6.0 6.1 personal caravan launch points.png
  7. 7.0 7.1 Livestream, 2018-04-8 (AM) (15:46).
  8. Livestream, January 29, 2021 (55:44).
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 9.4 9.5 Livestream, January 29, 2021 (1:13:04).
  10. 10.0 10.1 Livestream, January 28, 2022 (33:25).
  11. Livestream, February 9, 2018 (45:48).
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 Video, May 27, 2022 (15:50).
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 Podcast, April 11, 2021 (23:36).
  14. 14.0 14.1 Livestream, June 26, 2020 (1:29:06).
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 15.3 Livestream, May 8, 2017 (20:27).
  16. Our immersive world - Environments.
  17. frosty-roads.png
  18. 18.0 18.1 18.2 Livestream, October 30, 2020 (1:19:13).
  19. Livestream, August 26, 2022 (53:26).
  20. Livestream, May 19, 2017 (32:23).
  21. Livestream, March 28, 2020 (1:27:28).
  22. 22.0 22.1 22.2 Livestream, January 29, 2021 (1:25:14).
  23. caravan zone.png
  24. 24.0 24.1 24.2 Interview, March 27, 2020 (16:19).
  25. caravan UI.png
  26. Livestream, May 22, 2017 (40:40).
  27. 27.0 27.1 Livestream, May 15, 2017 (45:20).
  28. Livestream, May 22, 2017 (40:41).
  29. Livestream, April 28, 2023 (1:21:29).
  30. Livestream, July 25, 2020 (55:32).
  31. Livestream, October 28, 2022 (1:36:10).
  32. 32.0 32.1 32.2 32.3 32.4 32.5 Livestream, June 30, 2022 (1:14:52).
  33. 33.0 33.1 33.2 33.3 Livestream, August 27, 2021 (1:22:56).
  34. 34.0 34.1 34.2 34.3 Livestream, February 26, 2021 (1:16:21).
  35. Livestream, December 22, 2020 (1:13:51).
  36. flagging.jpg
  37. 37.0 37.1 37.2 Livestream, August 28, 2020 (1:41:24).
  38. 38.0 38.1 38.2 Livestream, June 26, 2020 (59:11).
  39. 39.0 39.1 39.2 39.3 Livestream, November 22, 2019 (1:14:23).
  40. 40.0 40.1 40.2 Livestream, May 27, 2022 (1:18:09).
  41. 41.0 41.1 41.2 Livestream, April 30, 2021 (1:01:10).
  42. Livestream, December 15, 2017 (1:04:25).
  43. 43.0 43.1 43.2 Interview, April 15, 2019 (26:59).
  44. 44.0 44.1 Livestream, April 30, 2021 (1:04:23).
  45. Interview, April 15, 2019 (28:28).
  46. Certificates.jpg
  47. Livestream, September 30, 2022 (1:17:13).
  48. Ashes of Creation Store: Ramstone Hauler.
  49. 49.0 49.1 49.2 Video, July 15, 2019 (2:12).