I have not played this game yet, so keep in mind guys that I didnt check all features so I am maybe missing something.
My suggestion would be if we want this game to be 100% realistic, to use pigeons as messengers like they have been used in mediveal times.
How would this work:
So if there is Player 1 and he writes message to Player 2, message travels there for some time, lets say 4 min per tile.
This could be ordinary message system and lets call it LVL 1 (horse messangers). Chating with neutral lads
And if you have some guy that is friendly Player 3 and Player 1 are good buddies. And they want better communication so Player 3 allowes Player 1 and reversa to build Dovecotes "pigeon house" In his Castle and now their messages travel 1 min per tile, LVL2.
I hope you all got this, my English is not main language so if you have any more question pls feel free to ask.
I think this would make game more unique. We could have small animation when you send message pigeon or horse traveling and vanish after 1st tile
Thanks for this topic! It's a quite interesting idea and something I've - from a slightly different perspective - also considered for diplomacy. :)
I ended up dropping the idea in general as while it could actually work nicely in a single player environment and could support the vibe and feel of the medieval life we wish to depict, it's a feature that is way too easy (and as being so easy, way too tempting) to be circumvented in a massively multi-player environment. Think about it: opportunists would just choose to discuss their diplomacy outside of the game (ie. on skype, discord, etc), gaining an advantage over rule-abiding players. So it probably wouldn't work for regular communication.
Yet, it's still on the table for diplomatic messages with conditions (ie. declarations, trade agreements, an oath of fealty, etc.). These should be confirmed by all parties involved and as such are only processed at the end of a given tick - like any other game command -, and they can't happen outside the game due to their game-changing behaviour. Here, a delivery time (in ticks) can be set, but it's still a question whether it would ruin UX more than it would add to the vibe.
For this previous reason, in the current designs, this feature can be toggled (ie. on your private worlds, in single player scenarios or "hardcore" MMO servers - by default it's toggled out) and delivery time would be set for message types (acting more like a "grace period" before a treaty would come into effect), rather than generally (what you suggest and which could mimic the limitations of medieval communication channels - pigeons, crows and couriers - better), but it's not hard to tweak it the way you suggested.
I'd be very interested for more response (and your feedback too) on this matter.