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Clan Lord
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Clan Lord FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

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What is Clan Lord?

Clan Lord is a massively multiplayer cooperative online fantasy RPG that takes place in a persistent world.

Whoa! That’s a lot of buzzwords! What does that all mean?

Massively multiplayer — The current lingo for games that let you have more than about 30 people playing the game at once.

Cooperative — This is a game where, in general, the players work together to play the game. By cooperating in the game, players can work to overcome much tougher obstacles and advance faster within the game world.

Online — You play this game over the Internet, by logging into a central server.

Fantasy RPG — This stands for fantasy role-playing game. That means it’s a game set in a fantasy (read: medieval technology with magic) world where each person creates a character to play in that world. The way that character interacts with other players in the fantasy world is called “role-playing.”

Persistent world — This means that the world you play in isn’t reset when everyone logs off. The world sticks around and your character is saved.

What type of computer do I need to run Clan Lord?

Clan Lord currently runs on Apple Macintosh and Microsoft Windows computers. The requirements are that you have at least Mac OS X (10.4 or above) or Windows 2000, a 28.8 kbps Internet connection, and a sense of adventure.

Where can I download the software for Clan Lord?

From the main page of this website.


Making a Character

How do I make a new character?

Run Clan Lord and choose “Character Manager” from the File menu.

When it asks for “character name,” should I just type in my own name?

You could, but why would you want to role-play yourself? Your name represents who you are in real life. But Clan Lord is a role-playing game, where you take on the role of a character living in a fantasy world. You might want to read the section of this FAQ on the background of the characters. Pick yourself a neat fantasy name like “Tethlatori” or “Braveheart.”

How do I choose my race?

When you come into the game, you don’t have to choose your race right away. Your character will be represented by a cloaked, non-descript form. This gives you a chance to explore the game somewhat, before shedding the cloak and “revealing” your race. To choose your race, just bump into one of the “picture changers.” They are in the Town Hall.

Why aren’t there any decisions when I make a new character?

In Clan Lord, the general principle is that all characters start off nearly the same and as they gain experience they become more defined. This is the opposite of most other online RPG’s where characters start off very different, but everyone ends up the same at high levels. We think specialization is cool, and want people of high levels to be very different from each other. As you go up in levels, you’ll find more and more decisions to make. There is one VERY important decision to make, though it might not be obvious.

What do you mean “VERY important decision?” I didn’t see any dialog boxes or menus items about it.

The most important decision you make when making a new character is figuring out who the character IS in this fantasy world. Your character didn’t grow up in a world of computers and automobiles, and shouldn’t wander around the world talking about such things.

Pick a simple personality trait for your character and play the character accordingly. Some sample traits are: honest, conniving, slow-witted, immature, innocent, joker, etc. When people talk to your character, try to get your character’s personality across to them without actually having to tell them. That’s role-playing at its simplest.


Character Histories

How did my character get to be on this island?

You’ve probably been exiled from the Western Continent, Shan Deral, by the Mad Emperor Mobius, and have eventually found your way to Puddleby, a village of exiles in the Lok Groton island chain.

How do I know what happened to my character?

You invent your own history — it’s roleplaying. Make up a reason for why you were exiled. The history of your character, and your motivations, are totally up to you. If you do a good job, people will have much respect for you, and you’ll stand out in the game world. If your background is silly or nonsensical then people will tend to not take you too seriously.

Is there a way I can let other people know what my history is?

Yes, two ways. One is the same way you’d relate your history in real life: you tell it to your friends. Second, you can make up a web page about your character, and whisper the URL to people in the game.


In Character

What is meant by playing “in character?”

When you’re playing the game, you are playing a fictional character who lacks your experiences. When deciding how your character reacts to another person in the game, or deals with a situation, you have to put yourself in the position of your character. If your character gets killed by a tough monster, you shouldn’t say “This game has tough monsters!” What game would your character be talking about?

As far as your character knows, he is in the world he grew up in — although probably in a rather more dangerous neighborhood than his pre-exile home. Your character shouldn’t talk about the world as a game.

Playing in character is learning to look at things through the limited experience of your character’s eyes. Wandering around telling people your homepage URL, or asking how much RAM their computer has, is called “being Out Of Character,” or OOC. The exception to this is whispering. If you simply must “break character” then use the /whisper command to whisper an OOC comment to someone.


“Evil” in Clan Lord

I want my character to be evil and bad. What can I get away with?

In Clan Lord, we want a cooperative atmosphere to pervade in the world. In general, you’ll find life very difficult as an “evil” character. Not impossible, but difficult.

What does that mean? Can I kill other players?

There are “arenas” where duels may be fought, as well as an area of the world known as “The Badlands” where entire clans may wage war on each other. If someone enters an arena with you, or if you can get them to follow you to the Badlands, then you can fight them.

What if I want to play a character whose only goal is to kill players? Isn’t that going to be tough if I have to get their consent each time?

Yes, it’s going to be very tough. Go play Quake or Myth. You can kill all the people you want in those. After you get it out of your system, come back and play Clan Lord. :)

If I can’t kill people without their consent, how can I play an evil character?

This is a role-playing game — role-play an evil character! If you think about it, you can come up with something. Often people love role-playing with an evil character.

Try whispering to them beforehand and set up a “scene” to be played out. This scene could end with a duel or battle in the Badlands. Not all evil characters have to kill people, of course. You could play a healer who likes to watch people die while commenting on their observed pain, or a cleric who claims to get her powers from a dark deity.

Am I at least going to be able to steal stuff?

Right now, you can’t steal anything.

What other ways are there for my character to act evil?

Use your own ingenuity! You can surely come up with something. Remember that misinformation can be very effective.


The World of Clan Lord

What’s the world like?

Clan Lord is set in a fantasy world with evil monsters, sword-wielding heroes, and life-giving magical healers. There are no guns, computers, cars, or telephones.

The known world consists of a large land-mass known as “The Western Continent,” along with many islands. A particular chain of volcanic islands, some two weeks’ sailing east of the Western Continent, is called the “Lok’Groton Islands” — that’s where new characters start off. Historians believe there to be another continent far to the east of the islands. A great exodus was said to have happened where all the people of the Eastern Continent fled away from it, perhaps landing on the Western continent and the island chain.

The nations of the Western continent are all ruled by one incredibly powerful individual, the Emperor Mobius. Mobius rules what he calls “The Ascendancy.” Many nations chafe over his rule, but are loathe to see their armies destroyed by the Emperor’s invincible Dark Sentinels.

Several hundred years ago when the Emperor formed the Ascendancy, he established the so-called Compact of the Ascendancy. In this Compact, the Emperor proclaimed that all nations would henceforth cease any behavior that might jeopardize the Ascendancy’s stability and well-being. To this end, he created a group named “The Defenders of the Compact” who would seek out people or things that, in his opinion, could destabilize the Ascendancy. The highest ranking members of this group are the Inquisitors: trained in both magical and scholarly arts, they travel the continent, enacting the Emperor’s will and making sure the Compact is upheld.

When this Compact was put into place long ago, some nations benefited from his policies, and many thought of the Utopia the Emperor described as being possible. As time passed, however, the Emperor became more and more withdrawn and self-absorbed. His word and the Compact were Law, and there were no exceptions. The Inquisitors ruthlessly enacted the letter of the law and never made exceptions for circumstance.

One of the more interesting parts of the Compact made killing another member of the Ascendancy the highest crime, even for the Inquisitors. This fact created a problem, in that it limited the Inquisitors’ options in dealing with those they saw as a threat to the Compact. The policy they decided upon was to exile all of those deemed destabilizing to the Emperor’s vision of Utopia.

It eventually became clear that the Emperor’s vision of Utopia was much different than any sane being’s vision of perfection. The Emperor’s Utopia was one of stagnation, where no new ideas were sought and where the status quo was mandatory. Many of the people that the Emperor exiled (in addition to the usual assortment of thieves and scoundrels) were brilliant scholars and mages.

The Lok’Groton island chain is significant because that is where the Emperor and his Inquisitors send the dissidents.

Does the world have a story?

The world has a past, present, and future that we’ve developed. Only the broadest of changes to the world will be felt by the casual players, but for those that wish to get more involved, they’ll have the opportunity to affect the story of the world as it unravels.

What kind of things are going to happen in the future?

Much of our story is tied to our development of the technology that runs the Clan Lord world. As the technology grows, the world will grow. The island chain that people start out on will be tiny compared to what will be discovered later on.

The Emperor sounds very oppressive; how can I free my character’s nation from his reign?

Many nations have been trying to do just that for quite some time, with no success. On the other hand, many believe that the Emperor’s current state of apathy will gradually make him more vulnerable. Nowadays he participates very little in the decision-making of the Ascendancy. To overcome the Emperor, though, you must first deal with his Inquisitors and his army of Dark Sentinels. But who knows? In the far future of Clan Lord, maybe someone will figure out a way to do this.

Huh? What’s that supposed to mean?

In our outline for the future, it’s possible that information may be uncovered in a new area that might allow someone to set about the downfall of the Emperor.


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