Proposal: Castle Guards (updated; formerly proposed as Team Troops)

EDIT by PGDave - I’m adding in the latest proposal here at the top so it is easier to find. The first 67 posts in this thread deal with the original proposal and posts below; post 68 and later are probably in response to this updated version of the proposal.

☆ Castle Guards

Currently many of us are paralyzed by the fact that our troops serve a dual purpose – attack and defense. This weighs on every attack we consider … will this leave my team unable to defend its land? The goal is to mitigate this issue by separating these roles and giving players a guilt-free path to take the fight to their enemies! This is complementary to the broader Atlas World War Season. Without further ado, here is the proposed draft (subject to change, as always):

Castle guards …

  • can be hired by the Marshal using team glory (like team medals being used to declare war).
  • belong to the castle (forever).
  • cannot be moved or transferred (they are lost if upkeep isn’t paid).
  • are defended by an NPC base whose level depends on the fort level (level 12 fort = level 500 base).

Personal troops …

  • can be loaded onto your Primarch when it is at your home castle.
  • are no longer attached to any garrison
    • new troops not placed on your Primarch will go into inventory (fiction: mill about your home base)
    • troops in your inventory cannot be attacked
    • troops cannot be transferred to inventory (once loaded on a Primarch)

Related Tweaks

  • If a Primach is trapped, then it no longer prevents the aggressor from directly attacking the (likely weaker) Garrison.


When this is released, team glory will be retroactively granted. Event shields will be up to give teams some time to use their team glory to hire castle guards.

Panda’s original post (thanks for inspiring all this … also thanks to Gox and others who proposed other similar ideas in the past and helped get us this far!):

What about for every troop trained, NOT bought, an extra is given to the team. This can be added to whatever garrison is designated? Possibly these troops could be transferred to another teammate? But overall I think the addition of more troops rewarded through activity would help a lot to offset the current stagnation.


I like this. Maybe like team troops automatically going to the garrison, level maybe linked to Fort level?

This might also get people to feel more free and willing to attack. Troops at this stage is just to expensive to really play the game to its full extent because everything is connected to troops and not everyone wants to buy Troops just to stomp over smaller teams.

If you have a safety net to help protect your islands maybe you’ll be more willing to travel…


This is pretty interesting. I wonder if only these new “team troops” should be able to defend the garrison. Individual players would still have troops on the garrison, but they could be safe from attack there.

How did you envision team troops being used?

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I see a few possible outcomes. If they can only defend the garrison, then possibly people can then use their other troops more freely to attack. However, if you make them transferable then this adds a more strategic deployment of them to either attack OR defend.

I would love to see some ideas on it but there could possibly be some interaction on this from the “Marshall” position? They could be in charge of dispersal/allocation of all of the “team troops” for their island?

There’s definitely a certain allure to having some agency to deploy them at will, but I also wonder if there’s some advantage to having them completely unmovable – so defense is primarily reliant on these team troops, and players are more free to use their own troops offensively.

That said, there would still be some pull to “save” your personal troops to attack someone trying to attack your castle. Maybe we could address this by making attacks from your Primarch pull exclusively from your team troops when protecting a castle your team owns (similar to our current “backfill” system but removing the risk to your own troops). So your own troops would only fight when you transport them to a foreign place (though presumably they could still be used defensively … e.g., to go fight off an enemy at an ally’s castle … but maybe that’s less of a concern, or maybe the ally’s team troops should be used in that case too to close this “loophole”).

I think that would work if you gave them the option? Pull from Team Troop Pool OR from personal? If not, then what happens to all the personal ones?

The biggest things I hope this would address would be to slightly reduce the “value” of troops so that people could play more freely without tying it to expenditure but I would want to see an outcome that promotes attacking as well.

I’m enamored with personal troops being purely offensive.

  1. Each troop you train or revive also adds one team troop to your home castle’s garrison*.
  2. Team troops cannot be moved or transferred.
  3. Personal troops (the troops you train) can be loaded onto your Primarchs from your home** castle (wherever that may be). They are no longer attached to any particular garrison***.
  4. If your Primarch is attacked at an allied castle, it will fight with team troops only as long as team troops exist. If no team troops are present (e.g., your Primarch is in hostile territory or all team troops have been killed), then your Primarch will fight with your personal troops which you loaded on it until it dies.
  5. Glory is only earned when your personal troops fight.
  6. The team troops will be defended by one team member’s base as designated by the Marshal. Each team member’s base can only be designated to defend one castle. Their home must be at that castle. If the player changes their home, the castle will be defended by an easy invader base until the Marshal designates a new base.


* Team troops permanently belong to the team. They do not swap teams if the player who “trained” them switches teams.
* Maybe we should call them “castle troops” instead of team troops.
* 1 team troop per 1 personal troop is just a placeholder amount for now. The ideal ratio might be a bit different, and will probably be tuned over time.
** Maybe your personal troops should still be attached to a particular castle. But if that was the case, we’d have to teleport them out when the castle is lost (since personal troops do not defend castles … only team troops).
*** Note that personal troops which are not deployed on your Primarch are unable to be attacked.

More notes

  • Conquering - Same as before – to conquer a castle, a team needs to wipe out the garrison AND all enemy Primarchs at the castle.
  • Your personal troops will not show up in any garrison. They’ll behave more like gold – they’ll just be chilling out on your home base. Probably not in your storage hut like the gold (haha) but you know, milling around your personal base.
  • Clearly there needs to be some migration to this. We can’t have all teams with zero team troops! Every team will roughly start with team troops equal in number to their current number of personal troops. Dsitributed into the teams’ castles in roughly the same proportion that teams currently have troops distributed across their garrisons. So they won’t be empty at the start.

Open Questions

  • What about teams which have no castles? Perhaps no team troops accrue if you build troops at a safe zone castle. Strong incentive to get a castle for your team, from an alliance mate if necessary.
  • EDIT: No revive for team troops. See post below for why (tl;dr balance & simplicity). The Marshal probably needs to be able to revive team troops, like personal troops? The gold cost for this is easy (same as reviving personal troops) but the time and hat costs are less clear … not sure what to do with those yet.
  • EDIT: Scrapped the cap idea. I think it’s hard to communicate / overly complex, and could possibly destabilize the personal : team troop balance. Up to 17,280 hats worth per day (or up to double that with maximum Tower team bonuses).


  • Added “open questions” section
  • Refined the migration step (awarding team troops & positioning them when this proposed feature rolls out)
  • Clarified personal troops “location”
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The are currently moveable now so should not be a problem.

The only problem I would see with this could possibly be the economic implications.

What if there are more then 50 islands owned? Or does this indirectly help reduce land ownership?

This might tie into land ownership as well?

Does there need to be one? And do these troops need to be reviveable? Perhaps make the first step of adding Castle Troops and then see the effect on the environment and if it goes smoothly transition into them being reviveable?

Then some castles will have no player assigned to defend them … and be assigned an invader base to defend it (i.e., not much of a challenge). I imagine that it will increase the difficulty of owning a very, very large amount of land.

Good point, perhaps there doesn’t need to be a hat cost for team troop revives. There definitely needs to be some sort of time cost, if we allow team troop revives, because nobody wants the enemy reviving their garrison troops instantly as they fight. It’s probably simplest to just not allow team troops to be revived. My primary concern is that this could lead to an imbalance between team troops and personal troops … though on further thought I think I’ve changed my mind (reviving team troops would actually make team troops more prominent … because dead personal troop + revive ==> +1 personal and +1 team troops … while one dead team troop + revive ==> +1 team troop only). However, it’s probably a bit more complicated than this because team troops will be exclusively used on defense, and defenders tend to lose worse than 1:1 and so team troops will probably get wiped out a bit faster. Of course team droops only die to personal troops … while personal troops die to both personal and team troops … anyway, probably need to try to model how it would play out over using past data. The most obvious way to tune this would be to tweak how many team troops your team gets for each personal troop you train/revive (e.g., maybe the magic number is 0.5 team troops per 1.0 personal troops, or 1.5 or … TBD).

There needs to be some sort of cooldown or this will be abused very easily… what ever castle is currently being attacked can be set as the home of the team’s strongest base, making it the defender for all attacks. The ONLY way attackers could avoid this is to attack on many fronts at once, splitting their forces and making themselves too weak to capture any of the cities.

Maybe don’t require it to be a “home” since players tactically move their home a lot some days, but simply make it so the Marshal Can only change the city assigned to any single player once a day (similar to how the team leader can only change the player assigned to a city job once per day)… note that I said “only change the city assigned to a player once per day.”

Oh yes, definitely. Maybe 24hr or even 48hr cooldown on swapping.

The “home” thing is probably overkill, like you mentioned.

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Can we have a conversion mechanic when teams get their first castle (or when they go from no castle to 1 or more castles - to convert personal troops to team troops?

Or else Day 1 will be a bloodbath when all the islands suddenly have 1k team troops alone to defend them

Just a thought… seems like there should be a small cost in gold to “pay” standing castle troops… if there isn’t enough gold to pay them, then some would disband.

Seems like a good way to set a practical cap on troops without having to just arbitrarily assign one… otherwise wouldn’t castle troop counts get ridiculously huge for some teams?

Don’t all teams build at roughly the same rate? If not you are just getting troops, that you cannot technically “use”, and then they are just going to possibly be disbanded?

I’m talking about applying an infrastructure cost to simulate the real cost of maintaining a standing army.

And no, not all teams build ast the same rate, thanks to bullhorns and gold that people can claim from the bazaar.

Without some kind limiting factor, a team could have over a million castle troops in ten days without much extra effort, making it less and less likely that anyone could ever challenge a base of that magnitude.

True, that is a good point. But then if we go with the real army scenario. All things are “fair”, they should never implement any kind of restrictions on who gets hit? Because that is how real armies work.

Have you seen the relative cost and ROI on this? It does not change as much as I think you are letting on.

Possibly if they never engaged in any kind of battle. But once again that is at the discretion of the attacker, back to the real army.

There could probably be some sort of factor but you are getting the cost of the original troops plus this, so getting taxed twice? Additionally, attack should freely increase, as there are more “offensive” troops?

Maybe, but castle troops will probably be easier to get favorable kill ratios on say than a taunter or rusher who traps you. I think this is in the “wait and see” column … and perhaps later tie upkeep costs to castle troops present.

I guess it will need some testing. Seems like a change of this magnitude very much favors the defenders. Maybe attackers should be able to blockade a base so they can’t keep receiving fresh troops any time the defending team wants to transfer them.

I think this is a pretty good idea, I would like to see it where if a base is getting attacked more of its infrastructure is shut down…that way it cannot be as easily ignored :slight_smile:

You can still bring Primarchs but maybe not be able to summon new troops?