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 Post subject: Server FAQ
PostPosted: August 8th, 2015, 2:16 am 
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Joined: May 30th, 2015, 5:52 pm
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This is the official FAQ for the Mercurian Empire, containing answers to our most common questions.



What is Hermertia?
Hermertia, or The Mercurian Empire, is a vanilla lore-rpg survival server in which players work together to create buildings and lore of unmatched proportions. Started in 2010 as a survival island for a small group of friends, the population of the server began to grow as new players joined and began building. Towns, cities, and eventually great Kingdoms, each with their own storied history, spread across the lands. That world, 20k by 20k blocks, grew into the lands of Hermertia: a vast society that depended on commerce and community to accomplish great things.

However, change was in the air. After 4 years, over 300 years of in-game history, the Mercurian Empire began a decline. Known today as The Unravelling, spreading conflict across Hermertia culminated in a great voyage to discover the truth behind tales of a vast new landmass, waiting to be explored. Years later, New Hermertia was first discovered by the Imperial Fleets: a vast world of 85k by 65k blocks, it allowed expansion never before dreamed of. Today, the Mercurian Empire exists as both Old and New Hermertia: with great cities and history and yet more unclaimed land to be settled, the future lies before us.

Hermertia is a lore-rpg server. What does "lore-rpg" mean?
Hermertia is labelled as lore-rpg due to its unique gameplay. Within the server, each player creates a character that lives, ages, and dies; they have their unique history and family line. Kindoms exist which have kings or queens and ranks of nobility under them, and buildings are created for the benefit of the population, such as bakeries or taverns. However, in other aspects Hermertia differs from the typical rpg experience. As this is a completely vanilla survival server, everything is made from the resources around you. Progress can be slow, and conflict is rare; much more prominent is commerce and community as individuals work together on massive projects such as our Imperial City. Everything that occurs in-game is history, recorded in our library. Hermertia follows established legal processes and contains a wide variety of belief systems. Hermertia is a unique experience that aims to create history from our in-game experiences through diplomacy, trade, and friendship.

Does Hermertia Use Mods or Plugins?
As a vanilla survival server, Hermertia makes use of as few plugins as possible in order to remain compatible with our lore and preserve our survival experience. As of this time there are only two non-vanilla features used in Hermertia: a jail plugin which allows us to conduct trials and imprison the guilty, and the command /give in order to spawn in villager eggs which we use to simulate population.

If I die in-game, does my character die?
As an rpg-based server, lore deaths do happen: generally, characters cannot live much past 150 years of age. The player can determine whether or not they wish their death to be a “lore” death or not; characters can die through a forum announcement or through an in-game death. This also means that you choose when you character dies, so that every death in-game is not the death of your character.

Is there a time commitment I need to follow?
No, there is no set time commitment; it is entirely up to you to decide how much time you wish to dedicate to Hermertia. With that said, however, time commitment generally increases in relation to rank; Dukes, with their greater responsibilities, are generally expected to be more active than serfs, for example.

How is time measured in Hermertia?
In Minecraft, days are 20 minutes long and years, 365 days, are just over 5 days in real life. As both these periods are too short to be worth calculating, Hermertia makes use of the Mercannum system. One mercannum is a period of 1 month in real life, analogous to approximately 6 years in Minecraft. A collection of 12 mercanums is an Era, 1 year in real life and approximately 72 years in Minecraft.
Eras fit inside larger blocks of time called Cycles. Cycles are blocks of time with no defined beginning or ending; the passing of cycles is often determined by major political events or upheavals that have wide-ranging effects of Hermertia.
In writing: The great war of the Chaos Orc broke out in 08|02 in the Cycle of the Owl. Or: The great war of the Chaos Orc broke out in the 8th Mercannum of the 2nd era of the Cycle of the Owl.


What are the ranks of Hermertia?
All new applicants to Hermertia, once accepted, begin as a Serf: a member of Hermertia who has not yet reached a noble rank. They generally begin under a liege of a current kingdom or duchy, and prove their commitment and dedication to a long-term community by building a County – a fairly small area of land containing villages, academic institutions, religious institutions, or many other buildings. Once their liege deems they have proven their readiness to advance to the ranks of the nobility, they may be promoted to Count.

Counts are the lifeblood of Hermertia: generally the most numerous, they are lords of a single or a collection of small holdings, counties. Counts work both under kingdoms and duchies and independently to create prosperous towns and fill the lands with development; they have proven their commitment to helping Hermertia grow. When a Count has worked long enough to develop multiple counties, they may be promoted to Duke, either through a vote (in the case of an independent count) or at their liege’s discretion.

Dukes are the lords of duchies, collections of 3-10 counties that form a major political entity in their regions. They oversee the running of large areas and may have counts and serfs working under them. Dukes are responsible for a variety of matters in Hermertian society, including representing the wishes of their kings and welcoming new players. They are a major force in Imperial diplomacy, and sit in their legislative house, the House of Dukes, which can vote on bills and bring legislation to the attention of the Council of the Crowned.

Kings and Queens are the rulers of Hermertia’s great Kingdoms, collections of 3-10 duchies. They sit on the Council of the Crowned, the highest authority of the land which votes on the passage of new legislation and allows applicants into Hermertia.

Does a rank of Serf mean I’m a slave?
No. As a serf, newcomers to Hermertia are afforded the full legal protections and responsibilities of a member of the Mercurian Empire. This rank simply states that you have not yet had the opportunity to spend a great deal of time in Hermertia; with hard work and commitment, you will not need to be a serf for a long time if you don’t want to be.

How long does it take to advance to the next rank?
This isn’t a straightforward question to answer, as it is greatly dependant on personal time commitment and ambition. Generally, hard work can see a serf advance to Count in perhaps a month of two, for example, but it is a mistake to seek a higher rank for the rank’s sake. Far more important than the rank is the journey to it: it is better to spend a number of months creating an impressive duchy you are proud to show off to the community than to achieve the rank earlier but have less to show for it. In most cases, activity and commitment counts for more than the colour of your name.

Can anyone become a King or a Queen?
The road to King is a long one: members of the community who reach it have proven themselves to be dedicated to the long-tern values of Hermertia and worked for mercannums building a Kingdom. But with that said, feel free to set your sights on a crown! Kings are generally the most active players with the most responsibilities, and their time commitment to Hermertia should reflect that; on the other hand, if you believe you have what it takes to become a member of the Council of the Crowned, go for it.

What are vassals and lieges?
A vassal is someone who works inside someone else’s lands, working under them and creating smaller holdings inside of a larger one. That someone else is their liege, a noble of a higher rank who owns a lands which encompass their vassal’s smaller holdings. A Count may be the vassal of a Duke, for example, and build up a county inside of the Duke’s larger duchy.

Laws and Conflicts:

What is the legal structure of Hermertia?
Residents of the Mercurian Empire follow Organic Law, a product of our unique political system which allows for the representation of all members of Hermertia while according rights and powers by noble rank. The full text of our laws is included in our constitution, the Indoles Carta, which is currently being rewritten before being approved by our two legislative bodies, the House of Dukes and the Council of the Crowned.
Hemertia’s legislative system is centered around these two bodies, both intended to represent the interests of Hermertia while having unique roles. The Council of the Crowned, a body made up of Hermertia’s Kings and Queens, introduces and votes on legislation, promotes independant nobles to higher ranks, and allows applicants into Hermertia. The House of Dukes, a larger body containing the Dukes of Hermertia, can introduce bills to bring legislation before the Council, veto legislation, and vote on applications.

Are wars legal?
Yes, wars are legal and in the early days of Hermertia were common – great kingdoms were born and identities forged from the fires of conflict. Today, wars are still legal but are much rarer; disputes are almost always settled through international diplomacy rather than by sword. Our system works to encourage growth through trade and economic prosperity rather than hostile expansion, and international reputations reflect that. Wars have continued to occur in recent times, though today more are ‘gentleman’s wars’ where the parties agree to abide by rules and often suffer no permanent concessions.

Can I be punished for something I didn’t know was illegal?
In Hermertia, as in real life, ignorance of the law is no excuse. You will most likely not find yourself in a situation where you’re not sure if what you’re doing is illegal, as it’s generally pretty clear-cut: anything that breaks our vanilla survival balance or is willfully destructive is typically not allowed. This includes the use of duping bugs and client-side hacking, in addition to in-game crimes such as theft or griefing. Beyond that, if you’re not sure, ask!

Are duping, x-ray, or client-side mods or hacks allowed?
No; in order to preserve our vanilla experience and ensure that our world remains fair, the intentional use of any bugs or glitches, such as duping, that break our survival balance is against the law, as is the use of outside tools such as x-ray texture packs or client-side mods.

Applying to Hemertia:

How do I apply to Hermertia?
The first step is to create a forums account; this will enable you to post on the forums and create an application. Click on register at the top of the forums, and fill out the relevant information. Once your account is activated, you can create an application, though we recommend you take some time to browse around the forums first, in order to get a sense of our history and the workings of the Mercurian Empire. Hint: applications are always made more impressive when you can demonstrate some knowledge of Hermertia: it shows you have an interest and a commitment to learning more about us.
When you’re ready, take a look at the Applications subforum: this is where you can ask questions and create your application. Read through our Applicant introduction (viewtopic.php?f=13&t=58), and then create your application. Good luck!

What makes a good application?
A good application includes four main elements:

1. Tell us a bit about yourself. There’s no need to go into personal specifics, but we would like to get an idea of why you want to join Hermertia. What was it about us that first interested you? Why would you like to be a part of our unique style of gameplay, and what do you hope to take out of it? Where did you hear about us? This helps to give us a bit of background on you, and to let us see if you’ve found what you’re looking for in Hermertia.

2. Tell us a bit about your goals in Hermertia. Once you are accepted into Hermertia, what is your plan? Would you want to work under a liege, or set off on your own? Would you be interested in pursuing work as a trader, or an explorer, or a historian? The options in our world our vast; tell us which ones you would like to take advantage of.

3. Tell us about any skills or talents that you would like to employ in Hermertia. Are you skilled in redstone engineering? Do you like to farm? Do you have an eye for building? Let us know about anything you want to mention but haven’t yet; it will help us – and especially prospective lieges - learn more about you. Including any past pictures of builds here is helpful too.

4. Tell us your thoughts on some early lore. Your lore is, in effect, your backstory: when your character arrives in Hermertia, he or she will need a past. This doesen’t need to be perfect or complete by any means, but sharing with us the beginnings of some lore that is both interesting and compatible with our own lore is a sure way to round out an impressive application.

Not sure where to start with crafting some lore? Try using these questions as jumping-off points:
Where are you from? How did you find yourself at the gates of Hermertia?
What is your race?
How old are you? Do you have a family?
Do you have a profession?
What is you and/or your peoples’ culture?
Are you religious?
And many more.

Things to avoid in creating your lore:
Don’t copy or slightly alter the plot from a well-known movie, TV show, videogame, etc. These are predictable and repetitive, and are less interesting by far than an original lore you create.
Don’t create a race, a character, or a history that is incompatible with or actively contradicts our lore. These are disruptive and just don’t mesh with the word and the lore we have created; past examples have included immortal characters, god-like races, and living trees. If you’re not sure about whether something is compatible with our lore or not, write it down anyway; as your application progresses, the community works together to ‘massage’ every applicant’s lore into our pre-existing history.

How does my application get approved?
After you have created your first application post, members of the community will ask you questions; over time, as we learn more about you, you will be given votes by Hermertia’s Kings and Queens. To be approved, an application requires either 4 Kingly and Queenly votes, or 3 of their votes and a bill passed by the House of Dukes.

Can I start out independently and create my own lands?
Once an applicant has achieved the required votes, their last step is in choosing a liege to start out under; this means that you won’t be able to begin independently. As per tradition, all new serfs begin under a liege to have the opportunity to create a first county and prove their commitment to the values of Hermertia. Once you have achieved the required votes, prospective lieges will make offers; you are encouraged not to take the first one that comes, but to consider each and choose the one you think may best benefit you.

Connecting with Others:

Got a mic? Log on to Discord!
Discord is a voice chat program that is easy to install and allows you to talk with other residents of Hermertia. If you don’t have a mic or don’t feel like talking, not to worry; log on and have a listen! PM one of the members of the community to get the Discord server information.

Wysterian Labourer's Council
Currently Holding Stewardship of Wysteria

Minister for Applications and Settlement
Forums Administrator

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