Jactari > Vanguard > Diplomacy
  1. Tutorial
  2. Levers

Civic diplomacy tutorial

  1. Introduction
  2. Information
  3. Presence and prestige
  4. Consequences of failure
  5. Stations and appearances
  6. Levers


Civic diplomacy is the game of city manipulation.

In civic diplomacy, you will influence the populations of outposts, towns and cities to achieve civic objectives. Once achieved, these civic objectives will benefit everyone in the town in one way or another.

In addition to achieving civic objectives, your presence and prestige will grow, and you will accumulate information that can be traded to information brokers [informants] for personal rewards.

If you wish to learn about civic diplomacy, I will teach you.


In time I will discuss what exactly station is and how presence works with these stations. For now, however, I will send you on a simple task.

Information is one of the rewards you can receive from a civic parley; it is traded to information brokers [informants] for rewards like clothing and coin. Go parley with soldiers (city guards) and crafters (anyone associated with the crafting sphere) to collect some information. You should have enough presence from your “Laced Shirt” to do these parleys.

You have learned several scraps of useful information by engaging in civic diplomacy parleys with the local population.

You probably need more information before you can sell to a lamplighter broker [informant], so hold onto those scraps of information.

In the next part of the tutorial, I will teach you about presence and prestige; two very important stats that a diplomat builds up over the course of their career.

Presence and prestige

As you participate in civic diplomacy, your presence with the people increases. There are eight types of presence to earn, one for each of the stations of people. Remember that I will discuss stations in more detail later.

For now know, every parley will have a presence requirement you must meet before you can begin it.

Prestige, like station, is also earned through parleys, and each city has its own prestige to earn. As you earn prestige, new opportunities, such as writs, will arise in that city.

I will cover presence and prestige with you more in depth at this time. Open up your character sheet and select the Diplomacy tab on the left side. It's the fourth one down, the scroll with the wax seal.

This is your Diplomacy – Equipment interface. This is where you equip your diplomacy clothing. Note that you cannot change your equipment, like your strategy, once you are in a parley.

Mouse over your equipment and notice the presence values given by your clothing. Some items give multiple presence types while others specialize in just one.

The Noble Rod gives you 11 noble presence but substracts five from crafter, domestic, and soldier presence. There are many items in the world with such advantages and penalties.

Your total presence is determined by your clothing and your personal presence added together. All equipment you are wearing adds together in this way.

High presence not only enables you to engage in more prominent parleys, it also determines how influential you are with the people, allowing you to achieve civic objectives more easily.

Prestige, however, is very different from presence. Prestige is earned in only the largest cities through interacting with the people there.

The longer you parley in a city, the higher your prestige there will become.

Prestige gives you access to new diplomacy tasks suchs as writs, embassies and missions. A high prestige might also be necessary for quests as well.

Do not expect to gain either presence or prestige with every parley. Building up such things takes time and effort, but the rewards are worth it.

Also note that with eight presence types and numerous cities across Telon, it will be quite a feat to earn significant amounts in all of them.

This is why clothing is very important. Clothing makes the man, as they say, and this is exactly the case in diplomacy. The right outfit can transform you from a pauper to a prince.

Presence and prestige are your most important statistics. While skill may directly affect the difficulty of a parley, it is presence and prestige that allow you to do the parley in the first place.

Clothing will be an important investment.

In the next lesson we will discuss the consequences of failure in civic diplomacy.

The people of Telon do not take kindly to being manipulated, harassed, threatened or tricked into doing something they don't necessarily want to do.

Consequences of failure

The concept of failure in civic diplomacy is simple. There will be consequences.

The most simple when failing a parley is that the person you just spoke with will not want to talk to you about the same subject again until they cool off. This could take some time.

Another common aspect of failure is a loss of faction. You have a reputation to uphold. Be mindful of that.

Other consequences might include debuffs, or even being attacked, so be aware of what you are doing and know where the exits are.

Take care when engaging in civic diplomacy. You can lose both prestige and city faction when you fail a parley. People can be very harsh to those they feel have insulted them.

Learn to read the mannerisms of your parley opponents. Il they are hostile toward you then it's a good indication that they will probably attack you if you fail to convince them otherwise.

Likewise, trying to bribe a guard may result in some stiff penalties if you fail to win the parley with them.

Simple be aware that there is rarely an easy escape from a parley. It is easy to put your foot in your mooth, but much harder to remove it. Think before you engage an opponent.

As you can see, civic diplomacy is quite a different experience than diplomacy questlines. Civic diplomacy is a medium that enables your efforts to not only benefit yourself, but the other players around you.

In the following tutorials you will learn about civic stations and how they pair with presence, what part a person's race and station has on their strategy; in order to help you pre-plan your own strategies, and all about civic objectives and the importance of cooperation with other diplomats.

Stations and appearances

Each NPC has their own place in society in Telon. They all fit into one of eight categories, which are roughly based on their occupation in life. The eight stations are domestic, soldier, crafter, clergy, merchant, noble, academic, and outsider.

You can usually gather clues about someone's station before you even speak to them from their clothing, titles, and names. For instance, a man named Guard Alanark wearing armor would most likely be a soldier.

I don't understand exactly what an outsider is.

Many of the other stations are self-explanatory. An academic is one who studies histories and intellectual matters, while a clergyman would tend to the spiritual health of the community. A merchant is your typical vendor, while a domestic is your average citizen, your farmer.

An outsider is someone who does not belong in that place. For instance, a traveling Dark Elf in New Targonor would be an outsider, as might be a beggar or a criminal. Not all cities have outsiders, as they can be somewhat rare.

So how does an NPC's station affect me?

An NPC's station can have great affect in civic diplomacy, as it is one factor that determines what sort of affect your efforts will have on a city. The rewards you can expect from winning a parley with an NPC are also determined by their station.

One other aspect to stations is important: NPC decks. When you approach an NPC for a civic parley, their station should tell you something of what you should expect their strategy to be.

What types of decks are based on which stations?

Firstly, remember that this is a general guideline, but you will find it true in many cases.

Soldiers, in general, tend to play their racial expression type plus demand, while crafters and academics usually play their racial expression type plus reason.

Nobles, merchants, and outsiders favor their racial expression type with flattery mixed in, while clergy favor their racial expression with inspire added on.

You mentioned these racial expression. What do you mean?

Each race, as you may have already noticed, favors one expression type and base the bulk of their strategy on it. This is not a hard rule, but is a very widespread guideline.

Your race [lesser giant], for example, favors inspire as an expression type. If you were to engage in a civic parley with a noble of your race, their deck would be composed of inspire and flattery. Whenever you speak of two expression types working together, though, it's good to know that expressions are complimentary.

What do you mean by complimentary expression types?

The four expression types are broken into pairs. These pairs are two that work together well. By that, I mean a card which gives out or takes expression will do so in conjunction with its complimentary color.

Time for an example. demand and inspire are paired, and reason and flattery are paired. Many inspire cards give out both inspire and demand expression to both you and your opponent. Higher level cards will even cost both types of expression to use. Therefore they compliment each other.

How would I use this new information to my advantage?

By combining what you can see about an NPC with what you know about them already, you can gain a good picture of what they are likely to play.

One last example. If you approach a Dwarven clergyman, you already know a bit about their deck. Dwarves are a famous demand race, and since clergy tend to play inspire, this NPC will have a strong demand and inspire deck with cards that compliment both colors well. It would be good to go out and explore what the other races favor for yourself.

Now that you understand stations better, I think it may be time to move on to our next lesson.

Now that I have explained what civic diplomacy does for you, and some terms associated with it, I will teach you about what civic diplomacy can do for everyone.


Every city has a number of levers in it – areas in which you and your allies can work together to change a fundamental characteristic of the city. Every time you win a civic parley, the specific lever connected to that parley increases by one.

For many of these levers, increasing one lever decreases several other levers attached to it. Thus, the city is always changing – diplomats moving the levers up and down.

Gossip with me to learn more about how this works in practice.

Each lever in civic diplomacy is pulled by winning a parley against a specific combination of station and conversation type.

For instance, this conversation/station combination is gossip noble, as I am a noble, and this conversation is a gossip. The name of this combination is “State of the World”.

When you win this parley, you will notice that a lever increase message will be given to you. Gossip levers do not affect any other levers, but convince, incite, interview, and entertain all oppose one another.

When the gossip lever reaches a threshold number, an event will occur in the civic area. The vast majority of these events are a buff that is cast upon every player in the entire city. For instance, “State of the World” will grant every player a new diplomacy card.

The buff remains on the player for a period of time after they leave the city, and this timer is refreshed as long as the lever is still past the threshold. Thus, you can grant everyone a buff, and maintain the lever above the threshold to keep it on them indefinitely.

Each lever decays at a rate measured in minutes. As the lever decays, it will drop below the threshold and the buff will stop being granted to those in the city. Those already with the buff will retain it for a long period of time.

Every lever begins at some point above the zero mark. Working on an opposing lever will eventually push the lever to zero, but it will also decay upwards to its original state. As diplomats stop working in a city, eventually a city will decay to the state it was before.

Not every station has levers associated with it in a city, but as a rule each station present in a city's civic diplomacy will have five different choices – the five different conversation types.

In the next gossip you will do we will discuss the role of opposing levers, and how diplomats in a city can help or hinder one another.

Each lever has up to four opposing levers. Almost always, these opposed levers are the other conversation types for that station.

For instance, entertain domestics is opposed by incite domestics, interview domestics, and convince domestics. You will not see entertain crafters opposed to it, however. Opposed levers are within the same station.

Each conversation type has specific rewards associated with them – each one rewards you with information of specific types, as well as some faction gain and possible other rewards such as items you can sell to a vendor.

Also, civic diplomacy is the primary method in which you gain permanent increases to your presence. The wisest course of action is to plan to form a group to work together on a specific lever. Thus, you will get a benefit to the whole city while you enjoy the rewards of information, faction, and presence granted to you personally.

Most civic benefits are of value to adventurers. Runes, movement increases, regeneration increases and more are freely available to all when diplomats put forth the effort on the appropriate levers. Likewise, all gossips cause the grant of special statements of immediate use.

Crafters will be pleased with interview from all stations, as they bring about skill and attribute increases.

Harvesters can benefit as well, and some city events will occur only in conjunction with one or more levers being in a specific position.

As always, personal benefits will always come to you no matter which lever you work on, but the larger benefits of buffs and events will require you to work together with others in the city. It is advised to form groups to allow swift communication and better coordination.

If you are working on a lever and it does not seem to be moving upward very quickly, there is a good chance another diplomat is working on an opposing lever. This is a good time to contact other diplomats in the city and try to find ways to work together. Especially with the decay of levers, it is not easy for a single diplomat to affect a city.

In the next parley, we will discuss the benefits of high presence in civic diplomacy, and the timescale on which civic moves.

Presence has a profound affect on your ability to affect the levers of a city. Each time you move up a tier of presence, you gain an increase to how many points a lever moves with a single win. High presence diplomats are so well-known that talking to one person is like talking to many!

Since permanent presence gain is tied to civic diplomacy, the incentive to keep working to improve the cities of Telon matches your own personnal incentive to gain presence.

Your personal efforts to increase a lever are not immediately communicated across the city. It can take a minute or two for the fruits of your labors to show up on the city status.

[The following functionality is done through typing /citystatus] City status can be checked at the diplomacy focus point in each city. It is represented by a set of bulletin boards surrounding a tree or pillar. When you click on it, you will see a display detailing the current level of each lever in the city, region, and continent.

The diplomacy focus point is a natural location to meet other diplomats. Forming groups here to spread out and change the city's levers is a natural extension of the adage “many hands make light work”.

The final topic in this tutorial is the consequences of failure. Every civic parley carries two penalties when you fail – a lockout timer, and a moderate faction loss. In general, if you fail to win a parley, you will not be able to speak with the same citizen on any subject for a number of minutes. This is matched with a loss of city faction, prestige faction, or both. Carefully planning your efforts in civic diplomacy will reward you well – it can take many parleys to make up for one loss.

Winning a civic parley (or any parley for that matter) carries a short lockout – the citizen simply does not wish to speak on the exact same subject again for a short time. All other parleys are available on the citizen, however.

Finding places with functional civic diplomacy is easy – simply look for a diplomacy focus point. Cities, outposts, villages – anywhere people live has the potential for civic diplomacy.

This concludes the civic diplomacy tutorial. Your only task now is to pick your city or outpost, gather some friends, and change the world!

Cooperation, [character], is key. It is as easy to harm other diplomats in a city by needlessly moving their levers down as you move yours up. Meeting at the civic diplomacy focus point to form groups or speak with others will make things happen faster!

Remember that when you win a civic parley, you are not just benefiting yourself, but also benefiting the greater community as a whole. Groups of diplomats working in concert can travel the world, changing cities to make crafters, adventurers, traders, and other diplomats more effective.

Diplomats are the social center of Telon, and civic diplomacy is the flag around which all rally. You have the choice and the power to change the world. Will you?