Originally Posted by Whistlingleaf
Can you expound on Civic Diplo a bit ? Is that different from what I've been doing ? Where to start to get the crafter buffs ? etc ?
(I've stayed in Melakia and just doing the Gnome quests and hit 31 Diplo so far...)
Right now you are doing your newbie quests. Those should take you to about skill 40. At that point you can start civic diplomacy. There should be a civic diplomacy trainer in Mekalia that will teach you abou civic diplomacy.
Basically, you parley with any NPC that has a civic diplomacy option. There are no civic quests beyond the tutorials, though there are other post newbie quests that require varying levels of presence. (check the vgtact.com wiki)
NPCs are divided into 8 different stations: domestic, soldier, noble, academic, clergy, craftsmen, merchant and outsider. Most civic NPCs require 5 presence in whatever station they represent in order to parley with them. You should have atleast a shirt from your newbie quests that give you soldier and crafter presence, and the civic trainer will give you a rod that has noble presence.
Each time you win a parley against a civic NPC, you earn a small amount of presence and skill. It normally takes between 6 and 12 wins against the same station to earn a point of presence with that station. The variance is based on your margin of victory vs the NPCs. Skill point variance will be based on your current skill level, as well as the level of the NPCs you are parleying with. The higher you get, the slower you gain skill. The higher the NPC is compared to your level, the faster you will gain skill.
Each time you win a parley against a civic NPC, you will raise a "lever" and potentially lower other levers. A lever is just a counter associated with each combination of station and conversation type (ie. soldier incite, domestic gossip, etc.). Most levers start at 10 as their natural state. When your presence is low with the station you are parleying with, you will only move the levers by 1 per parley. At 75 presence, you become "known" with that station and can move the levers by 2 per parley.
For most levers, when you get them to 40, you activate the buff associated with that lever. IIRC, all crafter buffs are attached to interview conversations. Any time you win a parley and raise a lever, you may lower other levers. For example, raising Soldier Interview will lower Soldier Convince and Soldier Incite. Levers always opposed each other within the same station. So soldier conversations will oppose each other, noble conversation will oppose other noble conversations. The only conversation type that doesn't oppose anything is gossips. This is important to know because there may be other diplomats in the city trying to raise levers that are in opposition to what you are doing.
Once you trigger a buff, that buff will be given to everyone within the city. The duration of all buffs is 1 hour, but as long as the lever stays at 40+ and you remain in the city, the buff will constantly be refreshed so that it won't drop below 1 hour. If you leave the city or the lever falls below 40, then the duration of the buff will start counting down.
Another aspect of civic diplomacy is the rewards. Entertain parleys give vendor trash mostly, though tier 2 npcs (skill 125-200) have a chance to give recipes for crafted diplomacy gear. All other conversation types have a chance to give information as a reward. This information can be turned in to Informant NPCs for a chance at gear that will have varying amounts of presence.
There are 3 rarities of information: Hearsay, Rumor and Evidence. Hearsay is the most common and Evidence the least common. Evidence will give you a chance at the highest rewards within a tier.
There are 5 tiers of information: Crude, Significant, Essential, Vital and Unequalled, from lowest to highest. The NPC skill levels associated with the tiers of information are:
50 - 100 Crude
125 - 200 Significant
225 - 300 Essential
325 - 400 Vital
425 - 500 Unequalled
Currently, tier 4 and 5 gear is not in the game (except for a few tier 4 quest items).
There are 4 types of information: Arcana, Plots, Trends and Blackmail. Each type has a different Informant NPC associated with it and gives different types of rewards. For example, Arcana informants give out shirts and belts, while Blackmail gives gloves and necklaces.
Each conversation type has a primary and secondary information type associated with it. Convince parleys are most likely to give Arcana info, and a little less likely to give Plots info. Convinces will never give Trends or Blackmail. The full breakdown is like this:
Conversation Type Primary Secondary
Convince Arcana Plots
Incite Trends Arcana
Gossip Blackmail Trends
Interview Plots Blackmail
I think that's everything
You can find all this information at the vgtact wiki and the ingame tutorials. Voices of Kaerellun NPCs also give out diplomacy glossaries that will help if you are getting stuck on the terminology.