Age of Conan: Guild Spotlights

Guild Spotlight: Krypteia


Name: Krypteia
Play Orientation: PvP and PvE (likely to play on a PvP server)
Role Playing: We are not an RP guild, but may have RP squads
Guild Size: Large (~100 members) and growing
Time Zone: US servers
Communication: Our Forums and Ventrilo
Guild Hall Thread:
Web Site:

Arakian and Zasheir, the leaders of Krypteia answered my questions for your amusement 😉 Here it is:

What is special about Krypteia?
I think what really differentiates Krypteia is our unique guild structure. Indeed, Krypteia came about because of our complete dissatisfaction with the conventional guild model. We understand that most of us have a small core group of friends (both real-life and in-game) who we spend most of our online time playing and grouping with. We also understand that the realities of MMO gaming are such that to be competitive and have access to certain game content you really need resources and organization that are beyond the means of smaller groups. Consequently, most of us are forced to join the lowest ranks of large anonymous ‘super-guilds,’ probably run by a megalomaniac, in which you’ll have little to no say. Our answer to this was to form Krypteia. Krypteia is made up of small groups of friends (what we call squads – more on those below). Each squad is governed entirely by its own squad leader, and all decisions that affect the guild as a whole are decided upon in assembly with each squad leader getting a number of votes proportional to the number of members in their squad. I think this structure makes Krypteia unique in a lot of ways:

  • The best of both worlds: Krypteia offers all the benefits of inclusion in a large guild, including the ability to engage in large scale PvP and access to endgame content, the benefits and security of well organized and defended cities, a large pool of players to go to for help and advice, internal resource/crafting markets, etc. – While not forcing you to sacrifice the unique identity and character that made your own small guild special.
  • No guild leader will ever tell you what to do, and there are no Byzantine ranks in Krypteia, which too often just channel power to a narrow clique. In Krypteia the only permanent ranks are Squad Leaders and Squad Members. That means the newest squad member has just as much say in the running of the guild (through their squad leader) as the guild leaders!
  • A guild flexible enough to meet all playstyles: Since each of our squads is given the freedom to do their own thing, we can easily accommodate PvP squad, PvE squads, or RP squads. Also, because each of our squads are in full control of their own recruitment, you’ll always be able to play in the same guild as your more casual friends. You’re never going to be kicked for not playing enough, or putting real life ahead of the game.
  • PvP Dominance: We really believe that our squad structure, with small tightly-knit groups who have had years of gaming experience together, is going to be a decisive advantage in large-scale PvP. The ability to break large engagements down into smaller squad skirmishes will give us a major tactical advantage over our enemies.

Krypteia offers all the benefits of inclusion in a large guild, including the ability to engage in large scale PvP and access to endgame content, the benefits and security of well organized and defended cities, a large pool of players to go to for help and advice, internal resource/crafting markets, etc. – While not forcing you to sacrifice the unique identity and character that made your own small guild special.

What servers are you gunning for?
Right now we are leaning towards playing on an extended ruleset PvP server (with PvP extended beyond the Border Kingdoms). However, we’ll have a free vote for server selection once the official list of server types has been released. We also have quite a few members interested in playing on an unofficial RP-PvP server.

Who are the people of the guild?
The guild leaders are Zasheir and myself (Arakian), but the real ‘people’ of the guild are our fantastic guild members. Because of the way we’re set up, this guild is really going to succeed or fail on their efforts. I’m particularly proud of the Squad Leaders we have (Rogarr, Reynard, Headsman, Legeres, Leonides, DoomCleaver, and Dizeez), many of whom have lead successful guilds in the past. I’m a bit awed when I think of the breadth and depth of the leadership experience they represent, and that all of that is going into making this guild the best it can be.

How do you look on interaction with other guilds?
I think one of the best things about Age of Conan so far has been the great community it has drawn. There are a number of guilds I admire, especially some of the early established RP guilds (you know who you are). At the same time, I think it’s a bit early for diplomacy, especially since we’re not certain about the server we’ll be playing on. Besides, I think Krypteia will conduct most of it’s diplomacy via war-tent, and let our blades do the talking 😀

How are you structured socially (ranks, groups…)?
Guild Leaders
We have two guild leaders (Arakian and Zasheir). The redundancy here is to offer some protection against the chance AWOL leadership. The duties of the Guild Leaders are mostly administrative and revolve around maintaining the character and integrity of the guild by ensuring that only quality individuals and squads are accepted into Krypteia. Our job is also to ensure that the guild has all the resources and tools it needs to succeed (Website, Ventrilo, etc.).

Squad Members and Squad Leaders
As discussed above our guild is divided into squads (consisting of 3-10 members), with each squad governed entirely by the Squad Leader. Issues that affect the entire guild (taxation policy, city planning/building, etc.) are decided by vote in a guild assembly, in which each Squad Leader represents their squad. There is no further rank progression within Krypteia, though squad leaders are free to introduce any ranking system they wish to use within their own squad.

Squadless Recruits

Beyond this, recruits who have been accepted into Krypteia without a squad are given the temporary rank of ‘Hypomeiones.’ This is a temporary rank which gives squadless members a chance to find a squad by running pickup groups with established squads or to form one with other squadless members. Once the Hypomeiones member has joined a squad they are considered a fully enfranchised member (or ‘Peer’).

I think Krypteia will conduct most of it’s diplomacy via war-tent, and let our blades do the talking 😀

The Squads concept is a very interesting one, can you further elaborate on that?
The question of what exactly a squad is comes up a lot. We think of a squad as group of 3-10 players who will spend most of their online time grouping and leveling together. If you have group of friends you’re planning on playing Age of Conan with, you’ve got a squad! They’ll be the first people you contact when you log in, and the people you run most group dungeons/instances with. Most of your guild experience will be playing with your squad members. While you can always count on your guild mates to have your back, it’s your squad mates who will, without complaint, run an instance 12-times with you to help you get a sword you want.

It’s also important to note that our squads will get a lot of freedom to do their own thing independent of the guild. Each squad is given a private forum on our boards only accessible to squad members, plus each squad is given their own private ventrilo channel (so you can group in peace with your friends while using ventrilo to talk them privately). We hope to give our squads their own chat channel in game, as well as their own squad tag (which can hopefully appear above their characters head, along with the guild tag).

Are squad sizes capped? If so, can larger squads still apply?
Our squads are currently capped at 10 (which is the largest number of people who can group together in the game, with four commanders). We do this for a number of reasons:

i. So that our squads will be selective in recruitment
ii. So squads aren’t tempted to use mass-recruitment to gain more say in assemblies
iii. So squads remain groups of people who do in fact, group together
iv. So no one individual represents too many people, and can thereby adequately represent the squad

That said, we understand that there are legitimate groups that come in sizes larger than 10. For groups that are larger than 10, we ask that there be at least one ‘Squad Leader’ assigned to represent each ten members in Guild Assemblies.

While many guilds are monarchic, or very hierarchy dependent, Krypteia seems to have a Democratic structure. How does that work in a competitive game such as AoC?
We do understand that there are certain drawbacks to having a democratic guild structure, such as being able to react quickly to developments, and having a tight guild focus. At the same time, we think there are some huge advantages to our guild structure that far outweigh any disadvantages. Because each member will have a say in the running of the guild (through their squad leader) our members will be much more engaged with the guild and aware of the guild and its challenges and goals. Also, because we are not going to be run by a narrow clique, the natural leaders from among our membership will emerge and we will be able to benefit fully from their talents.

To cope with late game challenges as the game progresses, focused divisions will be created (for example PvP or PvE divisions). These divisions would be made up of squads who want to participate and meet the qualifications. Divisions would be run by elected division commanders who have the ability to add and remove squads from a division as well as the ability to recruit squads directly into a division. These divisions might also have more rigid rules regarding play schedules (raiding/training) and so on, but joining the divisions would always be voluntary.[/quote]

What is your take on player cities?
Player cities and battlekeeps are probably two of the things that have us most excited about Age of Conan in Krypteia. We will definitely strive to hold both a PvE city and a PvP Battlekeep.

What is your take on in-game taxes and loot distribution?
We’ve discussed the topic of taxation with the guild, and I think by and large most of our members feel that taxation is the simplest, most efficient, and fairest method for collecting revenue to meet guild expenses. Our precise tax policy will be determined in assembly by squad leaders.

Our loot distribution policy will depend on how drops are handled by the game and will be decided upon in assembly by squad leaders. In the case that we choose to use DKP, web assets to handle the system are already in place.

What excites you most about Age of Conan?
That’s an easy one: PvP! And by PvP I mean skill based PvP. I mean meaningful PvP to defend your own cities. I mean large scale formation PvP. I mean siege PvP and mounted PvP. Is anyone else getting hot, or is it just me?

How are you planning on communicating in-game (raids, sieges etc…)?
We have a VENTRILO server up and running. Each of our squads has a private channel.

What are you looking for in a potential member?
With Krypteia our hope is to create a relaxed and fun community of mature players with whom we can enjoy the game. Our ideal member would understand English, take pride in playing the game well, and at the same time understand that they are playing the game to have fun. We want players who are mature enough to realize that their self-worth is not tied to the progress of some toon they rolled. Because our guild is run by our members, we are also looking for players who will be active in community forums, are self-motivated, and who will take initiative and help run the guild.

And finally, How to apply?
Visit the recruitment section of our forum, and fill out an application in the appropriate section.

Final words
I think many of us (myself included) have spent a lot more time in the pre-launch AoC community then we may end up spending in the game itself. I kind of hope all of that time spent there doesn’t count for nothing when the game launches. If you’re a forum vet, and you see Arakian Sempronius in game, please don’t hesitate to say hi. Maybe we can have a drink and a drunken brawl. 🙂

If you want to bug me with suggestions, questions or you want your Guild to be featured.. Tough tootsy! 😀
Just kidding! I’m always happy to hear from you. I’m at: [email protected]

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