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RPR Archive The Think-Tank: NSWRPF Flagship Planning and Discussion Thread

Discussion in 'Role Playing Resource Archive' started by Kalio_Dynkos, Mar 16, 2008.

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  1. Kalio_Dynkos Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 17, 2004
    star 4
    My fellow players we stand on the first leg of a great adventure. That may sound ominous, grandiose or down-right corny, but all the same there it is. For about a week, discussion has been heavy regarding the creation of a Flagship RPG for the NSWRPF.

    This Community project has heard a lot of voices and hopefully we'll hear more before this is completed. Under the direction of our mod, Imperial_Hammer, this idea was offered in the "Transition" thread as one of his personal goals to boost the NSWRPF traffic and community. By the imagination of the fine people of the RPF Resource thread, it's grown into a viable opportunity. Hence, the discussion evolved beyond the "Transition" thread and we have a beginning - an idea.

    And to quote a wise man, "The beginning is the most important part of the work" - Plato, Greek Philosopher

    We have struck that point already for we have an idea, interested parties, a GM Management Structure, a basic plot and the support of our Mod.

    To quote another wise man, "First comes thought; then organization of that thought, into ideas and plans; then transformation of those plans into reality. The beginning, as you will observe, is in your imagination." Napoleon Hill, author

    Friends, we are at Step 2 of a long list of steps. Were we to number our steps from beginning to end, we'd liking strike higher than we can count. :p So, to create something in organization is key. Beginning is easy. Continuing is hard.

    Charter of the Flagship NSWRPF Think-Tank
    - Complete a solidified, structured game within a short period of time through community involvement, discussion, and team-work. (Easy-peasy).
    - Seek to raise and uphold the standards of roleplaying within the Roleplaying Forum as a whole by creating a game to serve as a definitive model.
    - Hear many voices of those that care. No one man/woman is more important here. The Think-tank is building the community a game that will enliven and entertain.
    - Build a world unique and powerful unto itself that will grant the greatest amount of people Roleplaying in a community-based atmosphere.

    I should think, to recall something from the thread (as I'm sure we'll do a lot of), I have hoped that in doing the above, we will also encourage the Cardinal Rules of a Non-Star Wars Flagship.

    ----- Cardinal Rules of a Non-Star Wars Flagship
    --------- Character Development
    --------- Action
    --------- Style (by which I mean IC/OOC/Tags/style/etc.)
    --------- Interaction

    But, Euripides has wise words for us Creators. "A bad beginning makes a bad ending."

    I think, first and foremost, we all understand that this game has no choice but to succeed. Were it to fail, would be a stigma to the entire NSWRPF. In this discussion, we've seen what I expect to be a multitude of people that are either very interested in having a hand in the GM-Team that will run this monster of a game or, at least, be very interested in being one the players. Perhaps both.

    That all being said, here is what we have thus far.

    The Game

    As mentioned by two gamers, we would have to appease and interest the greatest amount of people to make this Flagship work. One RPer went as far to say that it will never get off the ground because TF.N is generally a Star Wars Board with Star Wars fans.

    Then the game idea was suggested.

    A single planet exists somewhere out there - presumably in our Universe. A super-alien race has "rescued", eons ago, a number of unique civilizations and placed them on a planet. Why they were "rescued" and why they are here is not worked out yet and certainly will not be known to the inhabitants of the planet. Nor are they aware of the co-habitation they share on the planet, as each civilization has been carefully "locked-in" to their environment.

    Each civilization has been ripped from fiction and grouped by genre. Characters from each genre live in isolated "cities" or "civilizations" unique to their background. In a fantasy civilization, for example, wizards, goblins, hobbits, ogres, fairie
  2. Yuul_Shamar Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 3, 2004
    star 4
    Once again, I like what I see. May I ask what 'worlds' will be in the poll?

    Personally the three i would like to see us end up with is the 'earth' one, the 'fantasy' one, and the 'horror'/ dark one.
  3. Kalio_Dynkos Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 17, 2004
    star 4
    Those seem the consensus around here, as well.

    What is actually in the poll hasn't been decided yet. I_H asked what the poll would be about and I laid out, very quickly, 7 or 8 possibilities for people to choose from. These were Horror, Fanasty, Science Fiction, Romance, Earth-fiction, War/military, and Superhero. It was to give him an idea of what had been discussed so we can change that list if we'd like.

    I feel once we've decided on the scope, how many worlds, we can get that poll out and get a lot of people to tell us what they want - allowing them to choose three. Then we go from there, creating the three most popular.
  4. darth_nemisis Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 15, 2004
    star 6
    Yeah, I am definitely liking this.

    So, each world/genre has different characters from different shows, etc. right? For example, in fantasy a player could be a character from the Harry Potter world, and then another character could be someone from the Heroes world. That's how I am understanding it, is that correct?
  5. SephyCloneNo15 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 9, 2005
    star 5
    St. Edit: Edited to remove language in possible violation of TOS. Albeit that all such language is mine, from quotes made offsite.

    Okay, my main problem, and the main difference between your idea here and the one that has germinated over at Dreamwrights, is the logical issue of everyone being on one planet. It simply defies any logical look at human development that a civilization of people from any time period would contentedly sit in one place and not be curious about the world around them and not let that curiosity break down any barriers artificially emplaced by a superior race. If anything, the artificial barriers would encourage us with the knowledge that beyond the barricade there is a world we long to see, to paraphrase Les Miserables.

    Thus, I present to you the Dreamwrights solution: The Nexus.

    (quoting relevant Dreamwrights Inc. posts only, not taking the time to edit the posts. Probably not even gonna have time to get all the posts from Dreamwrights I'd like before I have to leave for class...)

  6. Hammurabi Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 14, 2007
    star 4
    Okay, this is a lot of info to look at all at one time. But I've got a couple thoughts already.

    1. On limiting travel: With things set up as they are already, I think any further limits on travel would probably be detrimental. We've established that only high-class characters will have consistent access to Nexus travel, as there will be institutions managing the main portals. And the 'random travel' doesn't rely as heavily on set limits, as it's essentially up to the GM when and where these portals occur. So there isn't any reliable, easy way to travel between worlds. Besides, what would the point be in limiting travel? I imagine it would only constrict and frustrate players. If we really have to add another disincentive, I strongly disagree with establishing an inflexible maximum limit. I don't think a set rule like that can really accommodate for RP that's the least bit spontaneous. So if we really want to discourage travelers, it might work better to have travel be exhausting and/or sickening and/or dangerous.



    2. I'm liking the three worlds we have right now. What we have left to do is define them. The Modern/Superhero world seems (to me at least) to fit perfectly in New York City. It's not only an iconic modern city, it's also the iconic superhero town.

    The others are much harder to place; fantasy is pretty broad, and the combination of Victorian horror/steampunk with the wild west complicates things a little. London is without a doubt the iconic Victorian city, and I think it (or an equivalent) should be the center of the Steampunk/Cowboy world. The problem this creates, or course, is that London isn't surrounded by the sort of Western landscape we would need. The easiest solution would simply be to put London in Texas and call it a fix, but that certainly wouldn't be the cleanest way of handling things. So my proposal dates back to an idea that was mentioned, but dismissed: post-apocalyptic. Now, I understand the reasoning with which we rejected the post-apocalyptic idea earlier, and I don't think this would be the typical post-apocalyptic world. I feel like the apocalypse should be at least a century in the past, which gives time for the steampunk recovery to occur but leaves some of the lasting effects to occur. The timing would place us in the midst of a sort of steam-powered renaissance/golden age, a society that's somewhat prosperous despite the wounds of its past. And I feel like the remnants of the apocalypse do nothing but add to the setting. As I've already stated, the ecological damage means we get a more Western setting. We also get radioactivity and the possibility of mutants, which definitely adds to our horror mentality. And I can see there being a bit of a lingering zombie problem. I mean, the steampunk civilization has more or less overcome the zombie problem, but there's the possibility of having a few leftover, along with the fear of another zombie epidemic.



    3. Balance - The topic has already come up, with various solutions proposed for balancing three totally different factions. However, I don't think we need to disable anybody's powers or limit what they can transport or anything like that. For the most part, I think the GMs will be able to balance out the factions to a certain extent, but I currently don't see them being terribly unbalanced. The Fantasy realm gets magic, but they're also technologically weakest. Steampunk has a pretty solid blend of tech and magic, but they have more problems (ie werewolves, vampires, etc) to balance them out. And of the three, Modern is probably the most technologically advanced, but they've got no magic of any sort and are mostly bound by the laws of reality (at one point, we'll have to determine what kinds of superpowers are allowed). To make up for that fact, they've also got the modern military, complete with nuclear weaponry (though some constraints would have to exist - the Modern world won't be able to just bomb their rivals to hell).

    We also need to consider other factors to distinguish the three realms. The first one that
  7. Darth_Vaders_cousin Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 12, 2004
    star 5
    Well I feel like an ass for not seeing this before and more over not check Dreamwrights enough.

    So While I'm still catching up on my reading, I'd like to make a few points regarding Hams last post.

    I'm liking your steam punk idea because I can see that working alot of ways, and it incorporates two of my favorite genres. Another element you failed to mention that could be added into it however is the Religious aspect. The Church, or churches, could center some order, bring hope to survivors and helping combat the monsters (Vampires and what not). It would still be the most disorderly of the three, but it would have at least a little stability. By bringing this in, you would open a variety of new character classes (ie. Priest, Exorcist, Missionary, Monk) as well, giving more playability to everyone. You could even incorporate a church-based police force.

    As for the Fantasy portion, conflict really isn't that hard to find. Dark Cults are easy to trump up, and lets not forget about dragons and such. I assume we'll be seeing some of the beasts and races like those seen in LotR or even some Elderscrolls classes. Of course you would then have the problem of recurring monsters in both the steampunk and medieval worlds so a bit of restrictions could be imparted to cease repetitive play.



  8. darth_nemisis Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 15, 2004
    star 6
    I like what you guys worked on at the Dreamworks. Good stuff.

    With things set up as they are already, I think any further limits on travel would probably be detrimental.

    I agree. I think with too many limitations it could take a little away from the fun factor in the game.

    I am not sure if I agree with limiting what people can do when they cross worlds. It seems as though, if you make, say a character not be able to use their powers, then when they go over to another world, they're helpless and would be an easy target; an easy kill. Then, all that hard work with that character would be for nothing. Of course, there may be other events other than getting attacked by unknown creatures/people at other worlds, but that could be a problem.

    Hammurabi, I am a bit confused as to what you are talking about with the cities. With the introduction of this Nexus, I assumed each genre would be on different world/planet. Or am I taking that wrong?

    The last thing I have to say is that I am not sure about this steampunk/western genre. First of all, I have never really read anything from this genre, or heard of steampunk :p. What sorts of characters could there be? I just assume that another genre, such as a dark world, would be better, and more fun. It'd be kind of like the Dark Side of the Star Wars universe. That's just my opinion, though.

    Sorry for not posting more. :(
  9. Hammurabi Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 14, 2007
    star 4
    Good ideas all around. Of the three, I'm probably least familiar with Fantasy, especially in comparison to the genre's popularity. The Dark Cult idea is very good. Beasts are also worthwhile, but they're not really an organized threat. And I almost forgot to mention this, but the religious dynamic is a great idea for the Horror world. Works out rather nicely. However, it highlights a problem with the Dark Cult idea in the Fantasy world - it could be too similar to the Horror world.

    Well, theoretically we will have three planets. But if we used the entire surface of every planet, I think we'd find ourselves with way too much on our hands. We've got to limit ourselves, and I think it's important that each realm have a central city. The outlying area is also very important, but again, we'd only get so far from the center of action. We could eventually expand outside the central area, or have subplots in other regions. However, (especially in the beginning when we're trying to get this on its feet) I think we have to keep things more focused.

    Well, it's probably the most unusual world of the three. I'll admit, it wouldn't have the same sort of easy appeal that Modern and Fantastical settings would have. To counter that, it has become a sort of amalgam of various genres: you've already stated Steampunk and Western, but there's also Gothic Horror, Postapocalyptic, and Victorian England. The Gothic Horror was the first idea in the mix, and I'm not sure what you mean by 'dark world', but I think Gothic Horror + Postapocalyptic sounds pretty good. I mean, I don't think an 'evil' (Sith-esque, as you seem to be indicating) world would work out as well, because there are going to be conflicts not just between the worlds, but also within each individual world. Of course, I'm not entirely sure on that, I guess it's a matter we'd have to discuss. But if this were just a battle between three black-and-white sides, I think it'd get pretty boring.

    Anyways, you're right on some counts. This is probably going to be the most difficult world to work with, as it's less unified and none of the individual settings are as compelling as Modern or Fantasy. But taken as a whole, I think the Gothic-Postapocalyptic-Western-Steampunk-Horror world is possibly the most compelling. At the very least, I find it interesting.
  10. DarthXan318 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2002
    star 6
    With the three worlds we're starting out with (magic, steampunk, modern), balance isn't so much of a problem because there's a clear sense of magic vs technology, you're right. But I was more thinking it might be a problem if say we had a Wild West world of cowboys and stuff, or a sci-fi world of super advanced technology - both present different problems regarding balance.

    And yes, we'd have to limit superpowers in some fashion.


    More posts from Dreamwrights:

    Magic



    Steampunk


  11. SephyCloneNo15 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 9, 2005
    star 5
    This (!) is exactly the sorts of locales we need in the flagship, especially once it branches out: We need the individual parts to be fun and fleshed out enough that they would make good games on their own, even without the overarching structure and setting of the flagship game.

    Edit: Lots to read. Didn't realize my post had already been quoted. :p
  12. Darth_Vaders_cousin Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 12, 2004
    star 5
    I don't recall who created it, but a while back (Maybe a year) there was a Steampunk/Western game that lasted for a while (considering it was a western game and we all know their undesirable track record despite everyone loving them when they are around) and was rather well received.

    One think I think would be good to add to the Gothic-Postapocalyptic-Western-Steampunk-Horror (Henceforth known as GPWSH) that might also appeal a bit more to you Nem, is something I feel would really tie the world together.

    I think it is the general consensus that, of the three worlds, the GPWSH is going to be the darkest of the lot, so why not make it dark literally. Fall-out from the Apocalypse, perpetual rain created by the ridiculous amounts of steam being pumped into the atmosphere, how ever you want to force it in, lets have the world, or at least a good portion of it, locked into a perpetual darkness and generally rainy/foggy atmosphere.
  13. DarthXan318 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2002
    star 6
    Bah, Seph and I are having an edit war. :p
  14. Hammurabi Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 14, 2007
    star 4
    My main worry about separating the assorted 'Dark' groups is that they might not have enough support to stand on their own. It's already been stated that Steampunk's appeal is somewhat limited, and I think the same goes for just about every subgenre in our 'Dark' setting, including Gothic Horror and Westerns. It might be helpful to have a poll - see how most of our fellow RPers feel about all this. I'm not sure whether or not we would include Modern and Fantasy. On one hand, they're pretty much set in stone. But at the same time, it'd be helpful to see how the other categories stack up against them. Personally, I'd favor their inclusion. So that'd make the options:

    Modern World
    Fantasy
    Steampunk
    Gothic Horror
    Postapocalyptic
    Western
    Science Fiction
    Other

    Though I'm not sure about Sci-Fi. I'm in favor of adding it later if we get the chance, and I've already thought of a decent way to do it: a rising civilization is branching out into the stars and comes across the three Nexus worlds. That way, the technological advantages are made up for by the fact that they're essentially a colonial power, and don't really have a home base.


    Moving back to our Dark World discussion, I'd like to get that poll going. That said, I don't really want to take anything away from Sephy here, who's already got an excellent, well-thought-out opening post. I can't really look at it right now (at this point, the both of you have edited it out... [face_laugh]), but there's plenty of great ideas. You've got details and a very solid definition of the world in question, which is more than anybody else has yet for any of the worlds. If there's any flaw, however, it'd be that the world isn't unified. There's a line drawn down the map separating the Steampunk from the Gothic Horror. That said, I feel like we could make a pretty good combination of both of ideas, if you're willing. I'm certainly willing - you've got some precious details, and I don't. Of course, it might just be best to wait until we get a poll running.

    And good call, DVC, on the actual darkness of the world. Sephy hinted at that sort of thing, but I hadn't thought of it yet.
  15. darth_nemisis Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 15, 2004
    star 6
    Ah, okay, that clears it up a bit for me.

    Well, by dark world, I pretty much meant what you said. Not quite Sith-esque, but they would be viewed as how the Sith would be viewed in the SW galaxy; kind of like the bad guys of the genre. I guess a poll would be good.

    Where is LSA when you need him? :p
  16. Darth_Vaders_cousin Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 12, 2004
    star 5
    Well first off, I cast my vote for Western just cause that's the easiest genre for me.

    But I'm still liking the combination idea. It's concepts are all so close together that they can be combined nearly seamlessly, and I for one would be honored to Co-GM the thread and chime in my ideas from time to time. I mean, seriously, for the first time in a long time I can actually envision this world in my head, sword wielding cowboys leaping from horseback to lock into mortal...or more accurately Immortal...combat with different beings of the night.

    The Church's bounty hunter riding into the darkness with a rosary hanging from the butt of each pistol, hunting down demons and vampires and werewolves and even outlaws. Steam cars and trains inhabit the streets of the partially rebuilt capital city. People returning to more primitive ways of life because the perpetual darkness kills crops. The Pope flying around the sky in a blimp. Mutant people (ala I Am Legend) and animals running around, killing on site.

    The constant struggle of the Church to rebuild the world while the creatures and mutants pick at it from the outskirts.

    Of course, that's just what I see.
  17. SephyCloneNo15 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 9, 2005
    star 5
    Well, quite simply, you'll have exactly the same divide if they're separated by miles on a map as you will if they're separated by a trip through the Nexus. I'm not saying by any means that we should scrap them, just that the only 'easy' solution to the problem is to make the worlds that may not have quite the highest appeal as good as possible. Heck, beyond as good as possible. The only solution to low attendance is to make them better and more attractive, and there's no quick solution to that. You can't divide or combine them to solve it. If you have two unattractive areas to RP in in one thread, you don't have a better thread, you just have a bunch of GM-interaction in two spots in the same thread instead of two separate threads.
  18. Jango10 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 22, 2002
    star 5
    It seems that everyone has already agreed with the same world different countries idea, but what if we have a the same world, but each thread/genre takes place in a different time period.

    So instead just traveling country to country, travel between societies would involve time travel. That means in order to travel, the society would have to either (A)invent a time machine or (B)discover a natural time nexus.


    EDIT: Never mind, it seems they have decided on something similar to this.
  19. Darth_Vaders_cousin Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 12, 2004
    star 5
    I thought we were going with the Nexus thing...
  20. DarthXan318 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2002
    star 6
    I really like the Nexus idea because

    (1) it's a plausible way to link all the worlds
    (2) it opens up some cool storylines regarding the Nexus Keepers... and if we go down that path, also gives us a cool mystery story along the lines of "Why are gates to the Nexus suddenly randomly opening up?"
  21. darth_nemisis Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 15, 2004
    star 6
    Yeah, I think I would rather do the Nexus thing as well.
  22. LightWarden Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 11, 2001
    star 4
    I'm going to have to side with the "multiple worlds= gimmick that can approach death" group. I don't really see the point in having more than one world for the sake of having intrepid explorers going "oh, this is novel". Then again, I haven't really played BESM 3rd edition much.

    Look at the categories we seem to have come up with:

    -Horror
    -Fanasty
    -Science Fiction
    -Romance
    -Earth-fiction
    -War/military
    -Superhero

    Edit: And refreshing the thread while writing this brings back...
    -Modern World
    -Fantasy
    -Steampunk
    -Gothic Horror
    -Postapocalyptic
    -Western
    -Science Fiction
    -Other

    If you divide planets up based on weird genres, you are going to get some really silly stuff. I can do any and all of these with any world (or galaxy) I please. Shuffling players around based on this is really, really, really gimmicky (Romance players to the left, struggle for humanity's existence to the right please). This is not a viable campaign setting, this is a theme park.

    While Stone Soup projects can be entertaining, they have a strange habit of derailing themselves by being pulled in every direction to try to please everyone they can. This doesn't always work out (too many cooks/generals, you know the adage). It's probably better to have a central vision/skeleton/wagon train for everyone to see if they can fit in the elements they like, while discarding the things that don't work.

    Personally, I'm in favor of one world, because I think that multiple planets in the same system loses a bit of its appeal once you access the mystical artefact known as a "telescope". You could do something with multiple worlds on multiple dimensions/planes/whatever, but that's not exactly unused. I myself have mixed feelings about the whole *FWOOSH* "Where am I?" thing.

    Figure out an underlying ideal or iconic image or something. You can fit a surprising amount of variety (albeit strange) into a setting if you're willing to figure out how it grew there to begin with. Start with a series of assumptions about your world (ex: average level of technology, types of beings, status of supernatural with types if the answer is yes, sources of power, distribution of power, lay of the land, natural barriers, etc.)

    If you guys want to go with multiple worlds, there's nothing I can do to stop you, it's just that as-is, I don't think it's a particularly elegant form of game design. You can't maintain the "oo, a mystery" thing indefinitely, so it's eventually going to die down to either a situation wherein it's extremely rare, and there are hidden gateways to other doors, or the opposite where it's extremely common and just like taking a train, though it's a train that leaves you with a feeling of vomited out of your own mouth or something, or perhaps a system wherein cross-planar travel is limited to those of a certain level of power.
  23. Hammurabi Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 14, 2007
    star 4
    I don't think that's true at all. A trip through the Nexus means they're in entirely separate universes, independent realms that developed without any interaction with the other. A measure of miles is nothing. I travel miles every day to get to school. It's a divide, sure. But it's not a divide between universes. Besides, I'm not talking about creating a Realm in which we've got neatly divided districts - a steampunk district, a cowboy district, a Gothic district, a postapocalyptic district... What I'm talking about is an organic fusion of genres. Now, we'll certainly see some divides (it's hard to merge steampunk and cowboy, as they rely on different geographical areas), but we'll also see unity. Quite a bit of it, really. If this didn't work out in a unified fashion, I wouldn't be proposing it. I'm not talking about throwing all these elements together simply because they can't stand on their own. The fact is they go together with some strange and beautiful synergy that I never expecting to find. DVC put some excellent details out there, I mean, I wouldn't have expected us to be able to mix all this stuff together like that, but somehow it works out.

    EDIT: When I started this post, LightWarden's wasn't up yet. But he brings up some interesting points, some of which I feel are very true. Expect a full response from me soon, but just to update LightWarden for now: we're looking at three worlds. The first is a modern-day Earth, centered around New York City. It's the most realistic world, but it's not 100% reality - we've got superheroes, though I'm not sure what else is allowed. The second world is a fantasy world, which we really haven't discussed much yet. The third is the one we're currently discussing, and will be a mix of various elements, potentially including Gothic Horror, Westerns, Steampunk, and Postapocalyptic fiction.
  24. Darth_Vaders_cousin Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 12, 2004
    star 5
    Ok, now I'm confused and we all need to get on the same page. Unfortunately I have no idea what anyone is talking about now so someone try and explain if you would.
  25. Hammurabi Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 14, 2007
    star 4
    Okay, DVC, right now Sephy and I are discussing the Dark world, and LightWarden just raised the question of whether we should be doing this in a 'multiple worlds' scenario.

    And I think his points are valid: the 'multiple worlds' thing is generally pretty clunky. However, it seems to have been decided before I ever joined the discussion. And it does have its merits; it allows for a variety of settings for players to select. And we're trying to avoid the general clunkiness by creating some fairly interesting, dynamic worlds, each possessing its own internal conflicts. The external interaction between the worlds will probably remain somewhat low, especially early on.

    Anyways, I'm going to bed. G'night everyone.
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