Org Profile: The Horologion Library
(Citizen Star News/Crusty Collins) - 2014-10-03 - Never heard of 'The Horologion Library'? They've been around for centuries, recording history - at least that's their in-game lore. In truth, they are not only an order of hooded monks that observe the universe, they are intelligence gatherers with the main goals of chronicling the goings-on of the PU, undertaking or assisting in scientific expeditions and expanding knowledge. Naturally, members are expected to have a certain air of dignity and adhere to their societal standards of fairness, professionalism, and non-violence. We quote the Librarian: "Essentially, we just want to be represented well in the PU, so no piracy or baby killing or planet destruction or arson."
Citizen Star News (CSN): What inspired you to found The Horologion Library?
The Librarian: The archivists and I, originally discovered Star Citizen through Chris Robert's support of 'Kingdom Come: Deliverance', a game of which we were already staunch supporters. We're all pretty avid D&D fans so when we decided to transition into Star Citizen we decided that, if we were going to create our own organization in this futuristic Sci-Fi setting, we wanted to bring some of the familiar flair of the historical setting of Kingdom Come with us. So as a result, much of our organization's aesthetic identity is based around the idea of old monastic orders. Inspired by the idea that monks would keep archives of information, we wanted to build an organization that would do something similar.
We would avoid conflict and avoid making ourselves stand out and just watch, listen, and record events. But after about a month or two of being exposed to the Star Citizen community and all the different possible activities being offered by the game, we realized that we'd probably work much better as a guild that promotes scholarly activity and research. So while our original goal of chronicling the goings-on of the universe remains, we now have a more public face as academics and mediators.
The Horologion Library is to serve as a record of events [...] and the promotion of scholarly activities [...] our research database and historical archives will be available to all members who wish to perform research in the persistent universe.
CSN: How do you plan to build the organization as the game draws closer to launch? Do you prepare in any special way for the PU?
The Librarian: We're [...] working on building friendly relations with other organizations that share similar outlooks and [are] keeping an eye out for potential positions on science expeditions in the persistent universe. Eventually we will require good standing with these guilds in order to find employment and share in scholastic opportunity. I personally am usually on the look-out for new members. I take time to scan through the "Looking for an Organization" thread and make sure to send personalized messages to anyone who seems like they'd enjoy our line of work. That aside, I try to keep my eyes on the ebb and flow of political relationships between the larger guilds because it is highly probable that they will be the real movers and shakers once the universe launches. I anticipate chaos for the first few weeks as the larger predators carve out their slices of the PU.
CSN: What are your thoughts on how the organization is actually going to work? What concrete gaming activities do you have in mind?
The Librarian: Once we built up a sizable base of funds and equipment, we plan to get out onto the frontier and start making our name as explorers. We created this guild on the understanding that the lore of the universe would grow as the universe goes on and I can think of no higher honor than having one of our members discover a new star system and become part of the universe's history. In the mean time, we'll focus our activities on building inter-guild relations, information gathering, observing events, and offering our services as political mediators.
Our intentions once we are up and running are simple. The Library will act as a hub for operations being run by its members. We will provide a network of connections for our scholars to work with other orgs if willing and provide our services to other orgs at cost. Each member is free to explore the universe at their leisure, occasionally sending back reports of their discoveries (i.e. mapping data, event logs, captain's journals, etc.) to be chronicled in the archive. If they wish to set up an "official expedition" as a "Scholar of The Horologion Library" then they will contact Library staff and put forward a proposal for a research expedition, detailing their supply needs and staffing requirements. Library staff will review this application and determine whether or not to approve it. If approved The Library will provide assistance in the form of research assistants, funds, and supplies with the understanding that the scholar will provide a cut of any profits gained by the expedition to the Library. The scholar will be acting as a representative of The Library and will be held to our societal standards of fairness, professionalism, and non-violence.
CSN: While you are a role-playing organization (and do encourage role-play), you let non-role-players join. Do you have experience with such a mixture of players and how will you handle their interaction?
The Librarian: I've been a Dungeon Master (DM) for over 8 years and in that time, I've dealt with players across the spectrum. Some of them are very comfortable getting into character while others find it almost impossible. So I know that being in character all the time is not something that everyone can do which is why we encourage role-playing, but we cannot make it mandatory. Either way, the operational structure of The Library is built in such a way that members don't have to interact with each other if they don't want to. They can work together if it suits them or never interact with anyone else besides the Library staff. As a DM, I've realized that the amount of role-playing input by any specific person is not as important as the ongoing role-play of the organization as a whole. So, it will be the responsibility of the Library staff to present the findings of its non-role-playing members within the lore of the organization. This will allow more serious role-players a way to stick to their role without needing to break character, while not putting too much pressure on the less inclined members.
CSN: You allow multi-org membership with the following requirement:
...we only ask that the [...] scholar [...] send progress reports to our database with research notes and applicable discoveries.
How is this supposed to work with orgs like the 'Linux Users Group', 'Auxilium', 'Operation Pitchfork' or purely social/friends orgs?
The Librarian: What we mean when we say "progress reports" is that Library staff cannot be everywhere at once, so we will rely on our members to be our eyes and ears in the PU. So, if a member of our organization is also a member of Operation Pitchfork and the Library sends out a request for a progress report, it's simply our way of saying in-character "How are things going out there? Are the Vanduul winning? Are we making any progress on the frontlines? Are things as bad as the rumors?" By no means are we asking for confidential insider information. We simply ask as a way of keeping up on current events for our archives. With Auxilium for example, we would inquire about how frequently they have to perform rescues in a certain sector in order to determine how heavy pirate activity is. Even the members of more private social guilds always have the chance of stumbling upon something yet undiscovered or an ongoing event that they feel should be recorded in the archive.
CSN: Would you mind sharing a bit about your plans & ideas for your own in-game character?
The Librarian: Sure. My character is The Librarian which is the position held by the "leader" of The Horologion Library. His position is equivalent to what would be the most senior member of the monastery or abbey that The Library was inspired by. I imagine something like an abbot or an archbishop. Besides being in charge of administrative clerical duties, the Librarian is also responsible for the management of the Archivists who help him manage the archive, being the public symbol of The Library, and officiating the promotion/demotion of Library scholars. When we were discussing naming conventions for The Librarian we decided that, since in-game avatars could die, making one Librarian that lasts forever was impossible. So we've chosen a system where each time a Librarian died, the new avatar would take his place as his "successor". With this concept in mind, we decided that each Librarian character would forsake his surname and take on a Papal styled title, but using a [star] constellation instead of a saint.
My first Librarian character will be the Loresage Eins, Librarian Cygnus IV (with the "IV" being a randomly determined number to try and give the illusion of a very long history to our organization.) What I want from this Librarian is for him to be a seasoned veteran at his job. He's getting on in years, wizened, and traditional. He is a peace-loving man, but he understands that sometimes fighting is necessary when you need to defend your ideals. He chooses to do battle with wits and information rather than guns and ships. I want him to be a character that other players within The Library and from outside guilds can come to respect. I think though that his successor will be someone slightly younger and more progressive; but we'll have to see how his story plays out first.
CSN: What could CIG do for you to help you be successful? What do you need in the Star Citizen 'verse?
The Librarian: From a clerical standpoint I can think of nothing more important than personal organization boards. Simply some place for our members to gather and talk amongst each other. Having a meeting place on the forum besides the guild topic in which to exchange our ideas will definitely benefit us. It will also help if org leaders would be able to privatize certain parts of these boards for non-public viewing.
As for things in the PU, I've always advocated for any universe activities that involve exploration (both in space and planet side), archeological activities, and anything about discovering and cataloging new species of flora and fauna.
On a personal level, I'd like to see some kind of robes or hooded coat option so that we can really look the part of monks and well developed character customization. Nothing kills role-play faster than everyone having the same face. Also...facial hair would be cool.