As you look to develop RotS, what games have inspired you in the past, and why? Voyage Century Online? Civilization?
I must be honest, I have been gaming since around the early eighties, so that's around 40 years now (shocking if I think about it!). I have played and loved so many games that I think any inspiration is based on that whole evolution of games.
Maybe it started even earlier, playing complex war strategy boardgames. And reading history books and novels. And watching great films. It inspired a need to write myself, tell stories, and if the design of Rulers of the Sea is about anything, it is about telling stories.
So without even looking at particular games, I think the most appealing thing for me, and probably for many people that like this game design. is telling a story. The most powerful thing a human being can do. History has the best stories, because they are realistic, based on true events, and yet so often full of wonder, amazing feats, dark and astounding events. Our own story, that of the ancestors that define us.
So the games I have enjoyed the most in my life were the games that allowed for story-telling. Games that not just tell a linear story, although that can be nice, but games that allow you to make your own characters, your own story, platforms that enable you to tell it. And if there is unexpected interaction, unpredictable events, that shapes your story up so much better. It tells it own wonderful and tragic story, and for every minute you play, you get to discover what it is.
So although they have very little to do with the design of Rulers of the Sea, I think single player games like the Elder Scroll or Fallout series, that allowed for a non-linear story line and free character creation, had the greatest appeal to me. The Rockstar games like RDR or GTA are great to play too, but I enjoy them less because ultimately the events are set, the story is linear, and the characters you play are not free. They are less re-playable.
When you look at multi-player it is different. I find everything repetitive a bore very quickly. Life is too short. So FPS games are fun for a bit, but as the goal of those games is pretty simple, and everyone is busy doing the same thing, the experience grows tiresome pretty quickly for me. MMO games that make you do unpleasant and lengthy things just to get to a reasonable level to matter, the grind, is a mechanic that is lost on me. I have done it in the past, but there is always a point where I wake up from it and ask myself: why am I doing this? I think these are all design flaws. It is often based on the psychological premise of the dopamine effect of suspended reward. It is true that you can manipulate and addict a brain like that, but it is ultimately an unrewarding and hollow experience. It is as if the designers have forgotten that we used to play games for the pure fun of it. Because we want to tell a story.
That's all a very personal opinion of course. But the design of Rulers of the Sea is very much a story tellers design, and the idea of the game is that we can ignore all the clever manipulative engagement and reward mechanics, because our rare breed of fans will not be too impressed by that. They want to tell a story, that is what matters to them, and the better we enable that, the happier they will be.
So as to other games, there have been so many that had something inspiring, but to name a few:
I once heard of the launch of a 'game' called Second Life, a long time ago. I didn't get how just a world without any game element could work. So I had to see it. And I saw it worked. People just wanted to hang out, build their own things, on their own land, run a business, invent a career, create, and share it. Some made a game out of it, others an experience. I have roamed that world in the first years, just exploring, and I have seen some of the most amazing things there. That really stuck with me. I haven't seen it for more than a decade, but a year ago to my surprise I looked into it for research, and saw it was still thriving after almost two decades, with a subscriber number that would certainly be enough to keep Rulers of the Sea going. Such a simple concept, not even a game, just a platform to create. I always remembered that, it's completely outside the box and it works.
I once discovered Mount & Blade. It looked a bit amateurish on the outside, the graphics didn't look that great even in the day, a bit clunky, but the reviews led me to give it a try. This production from a small Turkish (!) studio turned out to be a pretty brilliant design, and later turned out to be a haven for modders too. There is hardly any story content. It's a world of medieval kingdoms and npc lords. A strategic map and town maps. You start as a nobody, and as you increase in skills, you can grow to command men, become a noble, marry a lady, serve a kingdom and gain lands, even become king yourself. And battles took place on a battlemap, where you could fight next to your soldiers you commanded. In the field or in sieges. I thought that was brilliant, and it was the inspiration for the land battle mechanics of the design. But the great thing of this game was the story it let you tell.
I will continue with other examples of great games that were an inspiration later, it's way too late to continue now. But it's a fun topic.
If you hadn't guessed yet, I'm the game designer. Ask me anything, that's what I'm here for!
March 1, 2020
The following definitions apply to these Terms and Conditions of Administration:
a) “STAK DG”: Stichting Administratiekantoor Deadeye Games (being Deadeye Games Foundation Trust Office), with its registered office in The Hague, the Netherlands and registered with the Chamber of Commerce under number 76228029;
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Deadeye Games B.V. is a private company with limited liability and incorporated under the laws of the Netherlands, having its registered office in The Hague and its principal place of business at XX . Deadeye Games is the developer of the RotS game. Deadeye Games B.V. is sometimes also referred to as “Deadeye Games”; “we”, “us” or “our”.
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Welcome to the Rulers of the Sea (hereinafter referred to as “RotS”) Support Community Terms and Guidelines (the “Community Terms”).
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Deadeye Games B.V. is a private company with limited liability and incorporated under the laws of the Netherlands, having its registered office in The Hague and its principal place of business at XX. Deadeye Games is the developer of the RotS game. Deadeye Games B.V. is sometimes also referred to as “Deadeye Games”; “we”, “us” or “our”.
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Thank you for using Rulers of the Sea. At Rulers of the Sea, we want to give you the best possible gaming experience to ensure that you enjoy our service today, tomorrow, and in the future. To do this we need to understand your gaming habits so we can deliver an exceptional service specifically for you. That said, your privacy and the security of your Personal Data is, and will always be, enormously important to us. So, we want to transparently explain how and why we gather, store, share and use your Personal Data – as well as outline the controls and choices you have around when and how you choose to share your Personal Data.
This Policy sets out the essential details relating to your Personal Data relationship with Deadeye Games B.V., a private company with limited liability and existing under the laws of the Netherlands, having its registered office in The Hague and its principal place of business at XX and developer of the Rulers of the Sea game. The Policy applies to all Rulers of the Sea Services and any associated Services. The terms governing your use of the Rulers of the Sea Services are defined in our Terms of Services (the “Terms of Services”).
From time to time, we may develop new or offer additional Services. If the introduction of these new or additional Services results in any change to the way we collect or process your Personal Data we will provide you with more information and additional terms or policies. Unless stated otherwise when we introduce these new or additional services, they will be subject to this Policy.
The aim of this Policy is to:
We hope this helps you to understand our privacy commitments to you. For information on how to contact us if you ever have any questions or concerns, please see the ‘How to Contact Us’ Section 15 below. Alternatively, if you do not agree with the content of this Policy, then please remember it is your choice whether you want to use the Rulers of the Sea Services.
“Personal Data” is Data that we have collected from you that identifies you, or which, in conjunction with other data that is in our possession, or is likely to come into our possession, may be used to identify you.
“Non-Personal Data”, is information that we have collected from you which cannot be used to identify you.
You may be aware that European Union law, called the General Data Protection Regulation or “GDPR” gives certain rights to individuals in relation to their Personal Data. Accordingly, we have implemented additional transparency and access controls in our Privacy Center to help users take advantage of those rights. As available and except as limited under applicable law, the rights afforded to individuals are:
In order to enable you to exercise these rights with ease and to record your preferences in relation to how Deadeye Games BV uses your Personal Data, we provide you with access to the following settings via your Account Settings page:
The Privacy Center puts you in control of how Rulers of the Sea processes your Personal Data. It provides you with information about what happens if you adjust your settings on your Account Settings page and how to opt out of receiving certain messages from Deadeye Games BV and/or Rulers of the Sea. If we send you electronic marketing messages based on your consent or as otherwise permitted by applicable law, you may, at any time, respectively withdraw such consent or declare your objection (“opt-out”) at no cost. The electronic marketing messages you receive from Deadeye Games BV and/or Rulers of the Sea (e.g. those sent via email) also will include an opt-out mechanism within the message itself (e.g. an unsubscribe link in the emails we send to you).
If you have any questions about your privacy, your rights, or how to exercise them, please contact our Data Protection Officer using the ‘Contact Us’ form on the Privacy Center. We will respond to your request within a reasonable period of time upon verification of your identity. If you are unhappy with the way we are using your Personal Data you can also contact and are free to lodge a complaint with the Dutch Data Protection Authority (Autoriteit Persoongegevens) or your local Data Protection Authority.
We process your Personal Data in the following ways:
Through your use of the Rulers of the Sea Services – when you use the Rulers of the Sea Services, we collect Personal Data about your use of the Rulers of the Sea Services such as your email address, date of birth, gender and country;
Personal Data collected that enables us to provide you with additional features/functionalities – from time to time, you also may provide us with additional Personal Data or give us your permission to collect additional Personal Data e.g. to provide you with more features or functionalities. As described further below (see Voluntary Data), we will not collect photos, precise mobile device location, voice data, or contacts from your device without your prior consent. You always will have the option to change your mind and withdraw your consent at any time.
In general, we use log files to monitor traffic on our Website and to troubleshoot technical problems. In the event of user abuse of our Website, we may block certain IP addresses.
We (will) use anonymised and aggregated information to optimize your experience of the Rulers of the Sea Services but also for purposes that include testing our IT systems, research, data analysis, creating marketing and promotion models, improving the Rulers of the Sea Services, and developing new features and functionality within the Rulers of the Sea Services.
In addition to Sections 5.1 and 5.2, if we reasonably suspect that any of the Rulers of the Sea Services or your Account is being or has been misused, including without limitation, by virtue of any:
Deadeye Games B.V. may collect further Personal Data and Non-Personal Data to verify or refute such suspicions within the limits of applicable law and taking into account your reasonable data protection interests. We will use this Data to comply with applicable law and enforce our rights under civil and penal law against the respective users.
Optionally you may choose to send crash reports or contact Customer Support for any technical and commercial issues.
In addition to the data collected in Sections 5.1 to 5.3 above, the data provided by you may include:
The collection of the data set out in this Section 5.4 is not mandatory. However, we might not be able to fix bugs or handle the technical and commercial issues you have without this data. For legal reasons this information will be stored as long as your account remains open and for the applicable statues of limitations thereafter.
We have set out in the tables below the categories of Personal Data we collect and process about you:
|Categories of Personal Data||Description of category|
|Account Registration Data and Commercial transaction||This is the Personal Data that is provided by you or collected by us to enable you to sign up for and use the Rulers of the Sea Services. This includes your email address, date of birth, gender and country.|
Some of the Personal Data we will ask you to provide is required in order to create your account such as account ID, login ID, display name, password, community moniker, user handle, and referral code. You also have the option to provide us with some additional Personal Data in order to make your account more personalized such as birth date.
The exact Personal Data we will collect depends on the type of Rulers of the Sea Services you sign up for (paid or non-paid).
Personal data collected through your use of the Rulers of the Sea Services
|Categories of Personal Data||Description of category|
|Rulers of the Sea Service Usage Data||This is the Personal Data that is collected about you when you are using the Rulers of the Sea Services – this may include:|
|Categories of Personal Data||Description of category|
|Voluntary Mobile Data||In addition to the mobile data we collect to provide you with the Rulers of the Sea Services (outlined above), you also have the option to give us your consent to collect additional Personal Data from your (mobile) device to provide you with features/functionalities that will enhance your Rulers of the Sea Services experiences.|
We will not access any of the Personal Data listed below without first obtaining your consent:
|Payment Data||We may collect such Personal Data if you sign up for a Trial or purchase any of our Paid Subscriptions (as defined in the Terms of Services) or make other purchases through the Rulers of the Sea Services. The exact personal data collected will vary depending on the payment method (e.g. direct via your mobile phone carrier or by invoice) but will include information such as:|
|Marketing Data||This Personal Data is used to enable Deadeye Games B.V. (and our partners / service providers) to send you marketing communications either:|
You can find out more about the Personal Data collected and the controls you have in relation to the marketing communications you receive via the Privacy Center.
When you use or interact with the Rulers of the Sea Services, we use a variety of technologies to process the personal data we collect about you for various reasons. We have set out in the table below the reasons why we process your personal data, the associated legal bases we rely upon to legally permit us to process your personal data, and the categories of personal data (identified in Section 6 ‘What personal data do we collect from you?’) used for these purposes:
|Description of why Rulers of the Sea processes your Personal Data (‘processing purpose’)||Legal Basis for the processing purpose||Categories of Personal Data used by Rulers of the Sea for the processing purpose|
|To provide, personalize, and improve your experience with the Rulers of the Sea Service and other services and products provided by Deadeye Games B.V., for example by providing customized, personalized, or localized content, features, and advertising on or outside of the Rulers of the Sea Services (including for third party products and services).|
|To understand how you access and use the Rulers of the Sea Services to ensure technical functionality of the Rulers of the Sea Services, develop new products and services, and analyse your use of the Rulers of the Sea Services, including your interaction with applications, advertising, products, and services that are made available, linked to, or offered through the Rulers of the Sea Services.|
|To communicate with you for Rulers of the Sea Services-related purposes.|
|To process your payment to prevent or detect fraud including fraudulent payments and fraudulent use of the Rulers of the Sea Service.|
|To communicate with you, either directly or through one of our partners, for:|
via emails, notifications, or other messages, consistent with any permissions you may have communicated to us (e.g., through your Account Settings page).
|To provide you with features, information, advertising, or other content which is based on your specific location.|
If you require further information about the balancing test that Rulers of the Sea has undertaken to justify its reliance on the legitimate interest legal basis under GDPR, please see Section 15 ‘How to contact us’ for further details on how to contact us.
The following Personal Data will always be publicly available on the Rulers of the Sea Services: your ID and/or username and potentially a profile picture.
The following personal data will only be shared with the categories of recipients outlined in the table below if:
|Categories of Recipients||Reason for sharing|
|Support Community||When you register for Rulers of the Sea Support Account on the Rulers of the Sea Support Community, we will ask you to create a specific Rulers of the Sea Support Community username. This will be publicly displayed to anyone who accesses the Rulers of the Sea Support Community along with any questions or comments you post.|
|Your Rulers of the Sea Followers||There also may be times when you want us to share certain Service Usage Data, specifically information about your use of Rulers of the Sea, with other Rulers of the Sea users known as ‘Your Rulers of the Sea Followers’.|
Learn more about how to manage notifications, your publicly available information, and what you share with others in the ‘Your rights and your preferences: Giving you choice and control’ Section 4 of this Policy and on the Privacy Center.
|Categories of Recipients||Reason for sharing|
|Service Providers and Others||We may use technical service providers which operate the technical infrastructure that we need to provide the Rulers of the Sea Services; in particular providers which host, store, manage, and maintain the Rulers of the Sea application.|
We may use technical service providers to help us communicate with you, as described in Section 7 of this Policy.
We use marketing (and advertising partners) to show you more tailored content, or to help us understand your use of the Rulers of the Sea Services, to provide you with a better experience. We also may share Personal Data with certain marketing and advertising partners to send you promotional communications about Rulers of the Sea.
|Rulers of the Sea Partners||We might share your Personal Data in a pseudonymised format with marketing partners who help us with promotional efforts and with advertisers that allow us to offer a free service.|
|Academic Researchers||We may share your Personal Data for activities such as statistical analysis and academic study but only in a pseudonymised format.|
|Other Rulers of the Sea Group Companies||We might share your Personal Data with other Deadeye Games B.V. Group Companies to carry out our daily business operations and to enable us to maintain and provide the Rulers of the Sea Services to you.|
|Law Enforcement and Data Protection Authorities||We will share your Personal Data when we in good faith believe it is necessary for us to do so in order to comply with a legal obligation under applicable law, or respond to valid legal process, such as a search warrant, a court order, or a subpoena.|
We also will share your personal data where we in good faith believe that it is necessary for the purpose of our own, or a third party’s legitimate interest relating to national security, law enforcement, litigation, criminal investigation, protecting the safety of any person, or to prevent death or imminent bodily harm, provided that we deem that such interest is not overridden by your interests or fundamental rights and freedoms requiring the protection of your Personal Data.
We keep your Personal Data only as long as necessary to provide you with the Rulers of the Sea Service and for legitimate and essential business purposes, such as maintaining the performance of the Deadeye Games Services, making data-driven business decisions about new features and offerings, complying with our legal obligations, and resolving disputes. We keep some of your Personal Data for as long as you are a user of the game.
If you request, we will delete or anonymise your Personal Data so that it no longer identifies you, unless, we are legally allowed or required to maintain certain Personal Data, including situations such as the following:
Deadeye Games B.V. might share your Personal Data globally with other companies in the Deadeye Games B.V. Group in order to carry out the activities specified in this Policy. Deadeye Games B.V. may also subcontract processing to, or share your Personal Data with, third parties located in countries other than your home country. Your personal data, therefore, may be subject to privacy laws that are different from those in your country of residence.
Personal Data collected within the European Union and Switzerland may, for example, be transferred to and processed by third parties located in a country outside of the European Union and Switzerland. In such instances Deadeye Games B.V. will ensure that the transfer of your Personal Data is carried out in accordance with applicable privacy laws and, in particular, that appropriate contractual, technical, and organizational measures are in place such as the Standard Contractual Clauses approved by the EU Commission.
For further details of the security measures we use to protect your Personal Data, please see the ‘Keeping your personal data safe’ Section 12 of this Policy.
We may display advertisements from third parties and other content that links to third-party websites. We cannot control or be held responsible for third parties’ privacy practices and content. If you click on a third-party advertisement or link, please understand that you are leaving the Rulers of the Sea Service and any Personal Data you provide will not be covered by this Policy. Please read their privacy policies to find out how they collect process and protect your Personal Data.
We are committed to protecting our users’ Personal Data. We implement appropriate technical and organisational measures to help protect the security of your Personal Data; however, please note that no system is ever completely secure. We have implemented various policies including pseudonymisation, encryption, access, and retention policies to guard against unauthorized access and unnecessary retention of Personal Data in our systems.
Your password protects your user account, so we encourage you to use a unique and strong password, limit access to your computer and browser, and log out after having used the Rulers of the Sea Services.
The Rulers of the Sea Services are not directed to children under the age of 13 years. However, in some countries, stricter age limits may apply under local law. Please see our Terms of Services for further details.
We do not knowingly collect Personal Data from children under 13 years or under the applicable age limit (the “Age Limit”). If you are under the Age Limit, please do not use the Rulers of the Sea Services, and do not provide any Personal Data to us.
If you are a parent of a child under the Age Limit and become aware that your child has provided Personal Data to Rulers of the Sea, please contact us using the form on the Privacy Center, and you may request exercise of your applicable rights detailed in the ‘Your rights and your preferences: Giving you choice and control’ Section 4 of this Policy.
If we learn that we have collected the Personal Data of a child under the age of 13 years, we will take reasonable steps to delete the Personal Data. This may require us to delete the Rulers of the Sea account for that child.
We will occasionally update this Policy. When we make material updates to this Policy, we will provide you with prominent notice as appropriate under the circumstances, e.g., by displaying a prominent notice within the Rulers of the Sea Services or by sending you an email.
Please, therefore, make sure you read any such notice carefully. Annually this Policy will be reviewed for accuracy and changes in GDPR. If no material changes are made, you will not be notified.
If you want to find out more about this Policy and how Deadeye Games B.V. uses your Personal Data, please visit the Privacy Center on RulersoftheSea.com to find out more.
Deadeye Games BV is the data processor for the purposes of the personal data processed under this Policy.