Updated: Jan 12
Shane posted a video few hours ago covering the progress on Earth 2 platform, but specifically addressing the coming update around raiding and droids. Watching the video, it gave us a feeling that Earth 2 may be making a conscious effort to pro-actively manage expectations with respect to released features - what they are and what they are not, and repeatedly emphasizing that some of these are just parts of the much larger equation that will eventually become the Earth 2 platform. In our opinion, this has been an area of improvement over the last few communications released by Earth 2 and bodes well for managing user expectations and better perception building.
The full video is posted on Earth 2's YouTube handle (below). However, this article covers the video as comprehensively as possible and allows the information to be available for ready referencing whenever needed.
Edit:- We have updated recent information around Cydroids and Civilians at the end of this article
The article assumes that the reader has basic knowledge about Mentars, Jewels, Ether and Essence and what do they do. Alternatively, please refer to 'How to' section on the Earth 2 website to understand these first before proceeding.
Introduction to first iteration of 4 key Earth 2 game mechanics
Droids, Raiding, P2P Contracts, Civilians form the first of the many key game mechanics for E2V1. However, the current focus is on the first two while we may hear more about the latter 2 in a follow-on video from Earth 2
It's emphasized that these game mechanics are NOT ALL that Earth 2 is, but rather just a start. While these are just the first pieces of gamification within Earth 2, there are several things that remain to be discussed such as - EcoSim, building experiences, internal environments, 3D commercial and retail solutions, trading systems among others.
Raiding and building droids in the web version will not carry animations, these will be seen inside E2V1 rather.
Raiding solves 6 short term problems for Earth 2
Provides active players something to do during the waiting period along the journey to the 3D world
Rewards early and active players
Helps design and implement key game mechanics for the current web page interface, however are also relevant to E2V1, and therefore has long term relevance
Build and test the new backend game engine (calculations happening in the background), which will also be used inside of E2V1 later on. It includes things like - precise tracking of vehicles, power storage and drain, calculating roaming ranges, etc.
Light introduction to behaviors, process flows, core mechanics and ideologies which will be seen in the long term, particularly the EcoSim.
Adds more core utility to digital items that can be earned by owning land inside Earth2 such as Ether, Essence, Jewels, and some new upcoming items such as droids.
Thematically, raiding and all these other features are aimed to keep adding utility to the player owned digital land inside of Earth 2. One such example is Jewels which is P2P traded (with over $2 million worth already traded to date), improves the Ether detection for any given land that is slotted with them, and provides boost to relevant resources present on that land. Similarly, raiding is expected to add more utility to Ether, Essence and Jewels
Background and Lore - Droids
As pop cultures, beliefs and factions emerge within the Metaverse, concentrated mental energies generated from these groups fused together to form something called as Metasprites
Metasprites are incorporeal states of droids loyal to their origin faction's culture, and roam free through the Earth 2 Metaverse as ethereal beings
A mixture of civilizations living in close proximity may inadvertently place pressure on a Metasprite. So once it begins to take shape as a droid, it defects and has no connection/ allegiance to any faction whatsoever preferring to spend its time as a solo but neutral being
The ethereal droids have a powerful connection with Mentars, with whom they communicate, and roam the Metaverse seeking new Mentars.
Despite its desire to roam, it is not unusual for a Metasprite to be captured quite close to where it was formed.
With the use of Essence, these droid forms can be hacked and captured to reveal their binary composition data
With this data available, the Essence and Mentar work together to fuse and amalgamate the Essence into and actual physical droid
In short, you can create a physical droid from a Metasprite by using Essence and with the help of Mentar
As soon as the droid is created, it is automatically tethered to the Mentar with which it shares a special kind of bond
Droids need to be powered using powered cells, especially when being sent out to 'raids'. Power cells are created using Essence, and the droids can only be charged while tethered to a Mentar.
When first created, most droids will only be able to hold a certain amount of Ether, travel at a certain set speed, relocate a certain distance and consume their power cell energy at a certain rate
Jewels can hack into the meta-code of the droid and recode their functions and abilities such as speed, storage and so forth
A droid can only be relocated among the same network of Mentars, as these Mentars create a special connection that exists between Mentars owned by a single player.
When droids are sold (to be discussed later), and once it arrives at the new Mentar it will have to undergo the tethering process where they are recoded to assimilate into the new environment, and form a new relationship with that new Mentar.
Raids for Ether
Droids can be sent to raid neighboring properties of any uncollected ether
Since the droids are at a distance from their own Mentar while raiding, they will use significantly more energy to venture onto enemy land, and follow owner's directions until the very last power cell has been used for scanning and waiting for the chance to hack into the enemy Mentar and capture any Ether (which evaporates from land tiles owned by players and is detected by a Mentar on that land)
Due to slight unstable nature of Ether, Mentars cannot secure the E-ther for the last 24 hours. This unsecured Ether can be raided by enemy droids
Droids follow owner's orders and depend on the owner's strategies to maximize raiding outcome
There can be multiple droids at a Mentar at any given time. Each droid will have equal chance of obtaining Ether at the time it's unsecured. Some droids may miss out if the competition is too high (similar to the staking idea)
This applies especially for droids raiding on large properties where a large quantity of ether is released, that would attract more participants trying to raid that property
While currently detected Ether vanishes in 48 hours, Ether left uncollected post 24 hours will be available for raiding to other players (droids)
This is expected to become difficult over time, but in the beginning every player will be able to defend against raiding by collecting their Ether within the first 24 hours of it evaporating from a property
The entire raiding game mechanics will migrate into E2V1. A droid inside E2V1 will be a flyable 3D model but its the same droid a user creates now. A separate video this month will showcase the potential look and feel of raiding/ droids inside E2V1.
Numbers/costs shown may not be final and some could be just for representational purpose
Raid button - Opens up a list of their properties. You need to own a property with a Mentar to participate in raiding, and would have already built droid(s) and tethered to that property from where you are initiating the raid (see a previous section herein for info on building droids).
Dispense all button - Shows how many of your droids are sitting in your property with Ether in their respective storage compartments ready to dispense that ether back into your Mentars and back into your balance.
Border colors of property list - Related to upcoming P2P contract system (more to be explained later). It's purpose is to differentiate which property is under your control as the owner, which properties are under other player's control even when you own the property or which properties are under your control even as they belong to another user.
When you click a property - Displays property stats such as - number of droids dispensing ether, number of droids full of Ether, how many droids being built on your property, how many droids are tethered to the property, number of droids raiding, number of idle droids, how many droids have run out of power. You can also relocate droids to other properties subject to some limitations.
Each stat has their internal drop-downs with relevant details
Users can start to build droids by selecting how many droids to build. Building droids costs essence and build time. Number of droids available for build will depend on the size of that property:- e.g.:- 750 tile property allows maximum10 droids, and the limit reduces gradually for smaller plots.
For example, here it shows it takes one day to build one droid.
There is an option to pre-power droids as well. Droids need power to be able to do anything. Selecting the pre-power option allows powering up of droids while they are built thus saving time. One reason for such a mechanism is that during P2P contracting, in the first iteration the contracted player will have limited capability to be able to spend the essence of the owner, as a protection mechanism. So in the beginning, owners will have to at least build all the droids on their properties before another player can take over a contract to start operating on the property.
If you select the pre-power option, it will show the Essence cost it will take to enable it...and thus 'Essence is Power'
Essence is retrievable when you de-power your droid.
This process of building droids is the 'easy process' available to early active users. Once the EcoSim is launched, there will be different steps that will be required for building droids. All droids built in the current web version of Earth 2 will be usable inside E2V1 as well.
It will be possible to build different types of droids which will have different rarities. The user will only know which kind of Metasprite the Mentar has managed to capture and what rarity is assigned to a droid only after the droid is completely built. Currently, over 30 such droid designs have been designed by the Earth 2 team. While later on different types of droids may serve different purposes, currently all droids will have same functionality esp. as far as raiding is concerned.
This option allows players to relocate droids between their own Mentar properties, and based on some restrictions. Clicking this button will show all the droids on that property and their respective status, and a droid must be idle for it to be relocated. Here we can also see the stats of each droid - how fast it can move, amount of ether it's carrying, power available, its potential range, how economical that droid is which is influenced by how the jewels have been slotted onto the droid and some other things.
After selecting the droid the player wants to relocate, it shows which properties are available for relocation. For example, in the image below, it shows that the Banana island property is 1000 km away, has a max capacity of 10 droids, has 6 droids at the moment while 2 are incoming
Once selected which property to relocate, the droid is going to begin its journey to relocate and then tethering to the new Mentar on the destination property
You can power droids or depower them
On clicking, it shows list of droids on that property that are not powered currently. Player can select droids to power or de-power and we can see the corresponding Essence cost or retrieval available.
Player can select the droids to be sent on a raid. Raiding consumes more power compared to relocating a droid and therefore the range of a droid for raiding is lower comparatively to that of relocating it to a similar distance.
Once a droid is selected, select the property you want to raid. For the first raid, you can go to the map and select which property you want to raid. Once a property is raided, you can add it to your 'favorites' list or access it from the 'recent' list to be able to re-raid it easily. It also shows the distance of the properties that can be raided.
Droid Insights System
This system is a useful tool that presents the player with raid related statistics and trends that can help strategize and plan their gameplay.
Insights interface is available via the 'Raid Management' section. Insights is an unlockable feature and is available for properties and tethered droids. Under properties the player can see the list of properties that have unlocked this insights functionality.
The player can also view a list of droids tethered to the property
Droids insights contains 5 sections such as - power stats, performance history, success rate, properties that have raided and a comparison against the player's highest performing droids.
While the power stats (first section) depend on the Jewels slotted, the droid's performance history (second section) provides a visual representation of the raids performed over time and the Ether obtained either from 'all raids' or from only the 'successful raids' which resulted in at least some Ether collected by the droid from the raid.
There are other overlays available as well, such as relocations, upgrades/ downgrades (basis jewel slotting/ unslotting).
The third section tells us about the droid's success rates and what % of its raids were successful in gathering any Ether. Other useful information is also available in this section
The 4th section displays properties the droid has raided. Players can select whether they wish to view the properties they have raided the most or properties they have gained the most Ether from via the filter in top-left corner. The information is presented as a multi-layered interactable pie chart.
The 5th and final section compares the best performing droids of the player with the droid currently selected. This comparison can be made basis Ether collected or successful raids.
Property's insights will contain 5 different sections - an overview, a statistical comparison, graphical display of raided properties, a pie chart depicting the Ether contribution of its tethered droids, and a graphical display of property's raids.
A property's overview shows information pertaining to the droids and raiding performance by droids from that property
The statistical comparison is an interactive line graph that illustrates the property's daily obtained Ether or success rate over time
The graphical display of raided properties allows the player to compare their raided properties against each other and determine how profitable each property is
Players can also see how much Ether each droid has collected
The final section shows all the raids they have from the selected properties. This could help players understand the competition at the said property from other players' droids.
The droid management section helps a player analyze and micromanage their entire droid fleet whether by accessing droids directly or by filtering out particular droids on certain properties. Droid management is accessible via Raid management section.
Here each listed droid has 4 of its power stats displayed - speed, ether hold capacity, energy efficiency and number of jewels slotted. The droid build date is also shown, while for new built droids a 'new' tag is shown. The droid build date could be important over time.
On selecting a droid, its general information is displayed on the right hand side of the list
Droid Jewel Slotting
The droid jewel slotting is accessible by selecting the Jewel inventory tab within the droid card of the selected droid. This will open the droid's slotting feature. The quality, quantity and combination of jewel slotted into each droid can significantly improve the effectiveness of the droid's abilities during raid missions. These include - droid's speed, max ether hold capacity, max relocation, raiding travel range and energy efficiency.
The jewel slotting on droids works similar to property slotting using the same drag-and-drop mechanism. Different jewels impact different stats.
Droid Basic Stats
Droids are little less than the size of a small car and number of power cell sockets determine how many power cells a droid can hold and therefore its base performance. Also, the size of the power cell determines how much essence is required to charge that power cell and ultimately determines how long that power cell can last. In a scenario, where the droid runs out of power before it makes back to its base the only way it can get back is via the Mentar which pulls it back very very slowly, almost at a snail's pace.
Most other stats here are discussed above earlier and are self explanatory.
While not straight-forward by any means, the understanding of insights and droid management system will mean more profitable raids and efficient droid management
Shane adds that things will become Harder and Riskier:-
We can expect more direct PvP like intercepting other player's droids, distill ether, ability to defend against other player attacks and other interesting additions yet to be revealed.
Jewels will be harder to collect
For larger accounts (more properties), first iteration of raiding will be too time consuming and thus can use this initial time as a learning curve on how the mechanics will work. Later, once civilians and P2P contracts are released will make life easier for larger accounts.
Earth 2 Gradually building towards Pre-Alpha E2V1
E2V1 Sometime in 2023
Initial focus on showing game mechanics such as raiding inside E2V1 in real-time
This will be followed-up by player avatars inside E2V1
The resulting world being almost like an RTS game you can jump into as First person
Further additions include gameplay to explore, loot, PvE, etc.
E2V1 will be massive and expansive
Scratched only the surface even as Earth 2 is building multiple other systems at the back-end related to Raiding, EcoSim, Logistics & Transport and Trading
Final comments from Shane
Want to release game mechanics that are directly related to long term goals of Earth 2 the platform, and specifically having direct and relevant use inside the 3D world E2V1.
Droids and raiding only a part of what the new team has designed so far, and more will be revealed in coming months
Amazing team around that gets things done, which is very refreshing. Have different phase dev design teams, all working closer together than ever.
Looking forward to release footage of E2V1 showing some of the cool progress and how phase 2.5 is coming together.
================================================================ ADDED UPDATES
Jewel Boost for Droids
Do you think the Brilliants effect is looking strange? It is not a typo! Expect to uncover new effects never experienced before! With the right conditions COPY will show just some of the additional power Brilliants hold! Over time, Brilliants will receive more additional powers and special abilities given they are the rarest form of Jewel on Earth 2!
RAIDING & CYDROIDS GUIDE OVERVIEW
Properties of 4 tiles or larger with an existing Mentar can build Cydroids and launch Raids on other properties nearby with the objective of gaining E-ther that has become unstable due to not been collected within a 24-hour period after it spawned
Players can build Cydroids for 2.5 Essence each and a default build time of 24 hours. Cydroids are tethered to a Mentar during the build time.
There are over 35 different types of Metasprites a Mentar could capture to build into Cydroids, grouped with different levels of rarity. The type of Cydroid will only be visible once the Cydroid build is complete.
Cydroids will have a default Raiding distance of 1km and a default speed of 20km/h
Cydroids require a Power Cell to operate. Power Cells are currently located inside the Cydroid but will later be a separate standalone unit.
Power Cells require Essence to be Powered and operational. Cydroids will require 5 Essence to be powered which is fully regainable (see point 7).
All Essence used to Power a Power Cell can be 100% recovered by the Player if they Depower the Power Cell in a fully charged state.
At present you only need a Mentar and time to recharge the Power Cell inside your Cydroid. You do not need Essence to recharge the Power Cell inside the Cydroid.
Once your Cydroid is Powered, you can send your Cydroid to Raid a property that is within raiding range and it will scan that property for any unstable E-ther as long as it has enough Power to do so
If the Cydroid is unsuccessful in collecting E-ther, it will return back to the Mentar it was sent from
If the Cydroid is successful, it will collect as much E-ther as it can hold or has enough energy left to collect and return back to the Mentar it was sent from. The default storage bay on a Cydroid will hold 3 E-ther.
If there is more than one Cydroid scanning on the same property when unstable E-ther becomes available, they will split the E-ther loot evenly
The smallest particle of collectable E-ther is 0.01, therefore, if there are multiple Cydroids simultaneously present at the time E-ther becomes unstable and an even split is impossible, a random algorithm will determine which Cydroids win the available loot
When a Cydroid returns to the Mentar, it will become available to dispense any E-ther it has collected and stored in its storage bay. Cydroids may raid again without Dispensing E-ther but this may reduce the amount of E-ther they can collect if their raid is successful. The default time to dispense E-ther is 30 seconds per 0.01 E-ther.
A Cydroid can only be recharged at the Mentar. If a Cydroid runs out of power at any point during a Raid, the tethered connection with the Mentar will allow the Mentar to use this connection to pull the Cydroid back, albeit at an extremely slow pace
A Cydroid can be relocated between inter-networked Mentars (Mentars that belong to the same Player)
Travel between inter-networked Mentars requires less Power than Raiding, therefore Cydroids can travel longer distances to relocate. The default relocation Range for a Cydroid is 300 km
Cydroids need to re-Tether to a Mentar once they relocate in order to sync with the force and knowledge of the Mentar as part of their preparation to Raid in that area
Cydroids have numerous different energy consumption states that drain different amounts of Power cell charge. These states are: Idle, Recharging, Dispensing E-ther, Scanning, Collecting, Travelling to a Raid, and Relocating between Mentars.
Cydroids can be slotted with various types of Jewels to give them various types of Boosts across most of their various attributes
Civilians - Quick Guide
Civilians will help automate the operation of various Raiding tasks from the Mentar, removing the requirement of the Player to carry out each task manually
In the near future Civilians will be synthesizable via the Mentar on properties of 4 or more tiles and above using E-ther.
Civilians will require 20 E-ther to be synthesized
The Mentar picks up transmissions of DNA which are diverted to the Synthesis Chamber inside the Mentar and fused with the E-ther to create 1 Civilian over a period of 24 hours
There are initially 3 different factions, each with 5 civilian characters
Civilians will have different levels of rarity. The type of Civilian synthesized will only be known once the synthesizing process is complete.
Civilians are always synthesized in the same order based on their default profession. That order is Data Analyst, Cydroid Technician, E-ther Dispenser (Reckoner), Raid Commander and Cydroid Pilot.
The Data Analyst will unlock Raid Insights for the Property on which they reside and the Cydroids tethered to that Property.
The Cydroid Technician can automatically recharge any idle Cydroids inside the Mentar.
The E-ther Reckoner can automatically dispense any Cydroids carrying E-ther in their storage.
The Raid Commander can send Cydroids to automatically re-raid properties.
The Cydroid Pilot will be able to fly Cydroids on special types of missions with various objectives.
The above high-level summary was a quick and easy introduction into what Raiding is, what Cydroids do and how Civilians will fit into the mechanics. In the future we plan to allow Players to trade their Cydroids and Civilians for E$ on an open marketplace, much like we do for Jewels and HoloBuildings. For those of you who would like to read more details, some of which are already covered above, please feel free to read on!
FURTHER BACKGROUND ON RAIDING, CYDROIDS and CIVILIANS In the current Earth 2, E-ther is considered a valuable resource – a resource that can be transformed into Essence, the currency representing power within our metaverse, and a resource that will be able to create virtual life. Raiding is a feature that enables players to rely on tactics and strategy to benefit from inactive players and take E-ther that they fail to collect in time. The overall concept of raiding relies almost entirely on one of Earth 2’s upcoming features – Cydroids.
Cydroids are semi-sentient machines that are created by the Mentar. They are constructed from the likeness of Metasprites, which are ethereal beings that roam the lands of Earth 2. This is because the Mentar essentially uses the Metasprites as a blueprint for the construction of the sprite’s physical Essence-based form. Once its Cydroid body has been fully manufactured, the meta-sprite is able to reside within its new form and implement a range of unique and useful abilities. Metasprites appear to have an unexplainable connection to Mentars, which give Cydroids the unique ability to hack into a Mentar to detect E-ther on a property. An important thing to note is that Cydroids can only detect E-ther on a property if it evaporated at the start of the previous E-ther production cycle. After being constructed at a Mentar, Cydroids are ‘tethered’ to that Mentar. While at the Mentar, each Cydroid is able to recharge, go on a raid, and dispense E-ther. Each Cydroid also has the ability to relocate a certain distance, and tether to other Mentars that the player may own. Additionally, Mentars appear to have different capabilities for supporting Cydroids depending on the size of their properties – a Mentar on a property with less than 4 tiles cannot support any Cydroids, and one on a property of 750 tiles can support 10.
The capabilities of Cydroids essentially allows players to build Cydroids on their properties and initiate raids on nearby enemy properties, taking E-ther from all targeted players that fail to collect their E-ther in time. Players who have built Cydroids will thus be able to treat the world as a chess board and strategically maneuver fleets of Cydroids to skyrocket the rate at which they obtain E-ther.
There are many types and appearances for Cydroids within Earth 2, determined by the ‘skin’ of the Cydroid that is crafted. Not much is known yet about the differences between the Cydroid skins – except from looking cooler than others. As more features start to be included in Earth 2, be prepared to find out that your plain looking Cydroid is actually classified as an interceptor or your classy gold Cydroid is an exploration Cydroid! Whilst current Cydroids are only fixated on the raiding system, there is much more functionality to be implemented in the future, both as expansions on raiding itself, and as an introduction into PvP and other features relevant to open world exploration.
The second feature relevant to raiding are Civilians. Civilians are synthesized lifeforms whose sole purpose is seemingly to obey and serve the player by carrying out tasks assigned to them. In the initial release of the raiding feature, there will be a maximum of 5 civilians per property. These properties will require a minimum of 4 tiles if they are to be populated by civilians. The tasks in question heavily depend on the occupation assigned to each civilian which will currently be determined by the order in which the civilians are synthesized on a property. For example, the first civilian synthesized on a property will always be allocated the data analyst position. These occupations are:
Depending on the occupation of the civilians, they will be able to unlock certain raid related features such as providing raid insights, auto-raids and more. This only marks the beginning of civilian utility, and as more gameplay features are released, there will surely be a higher demand and opportunity to automate various additional tasks that come with land ownership. Players should not grow too accustomed to managing only 5 civilians, especially as these new features are only scratching the surface of what’s to come. Civilians also belong to a range of different factions each with their own unique cultures, beliefs and aesthetics. For the time being, it appears that civilians have no meaningful recollection of being associated with these factions. It is assumed that the loyalty of Civilians to their owners and their properties will never waver, and they can be relied on by the player to carry out their appointed tasks dutifully.