What are the inner territories? Well, they are they entire current map. Within these territories homesteads provide a safe zone, and wars can be declined. There is still full loot PVP available off deed, basically, everything works as it currently works. The purpose of the inner territories it to provide an area that allows for new players to safely train, and gives pacifist clans a place to build, prosper, and not have to worry about their entire town being burned down around them by the "U Mad Bro?" tribe.
This is all the expansion territory yet to be added. In these outer territories, homesteads no longer provide a safe zone, the no longer disallow encroachment the only thing a homestead provides is a spawn point and the ability to terraform, making them a good place to build your ultimate fortress, that give you a heavy advantage as a defender.
However the enemy just can't come in and burn your fort down around you at any given time of day. Otherwise everyone would log in each and every morning to find a pile of ashes that once was their fort. Tribes set a "siege time" this sets the time of day that their territory can be sieged, and this time can only be changed once every two weeks. An enemy tribe can then declare a siege on an enemy fortress that will "go live" at that clan's siege time an minimum of 24 hours after the siege is declared. This is to avoid American Cowboy Squad, from sieging the French Wine Drinker's Association during the hours when all the American are on, the French are off at work or in bed. etc. If you want to take someone's fort, you have to take it during their prime time.
When a siege goes live, all structures in the enemy fort can be destroyed, and if the enemies can hold position around the enemies totem for 10 minutes, the defender loses the siege and the attacker may either destroy the totem or convert it to their totem and the defender must wait six hours to place again. If they simply wish to bust down your walls and make off with your storage bins on their back though, they don't need to worry about totem control.
So why would anyone live in the outer territories other than people who simply enjoy pain and suffering? Because ALL rare resources are found in the outer territories. What are rare resources? Well things like salt peter and sulfur for black powder used in primitive firearms and grenades. Rare plants used to make the most powerful healing agents. Coal for fueling furnaces and forging steel. Gold and gems used in adorning the most expensive armors, and items used in dye. The most dangerous animals in the game that yield some very unique and rewarding items when killed, or make insanely good pets when tamed. New scavenging items not found in the inner territories.
While some of these like the animals and foraging/scavenging items would be spread all throughout the outer territories just making them a better place in general to live, others like components for black powder, coal, gold, gems, etc. Would be found in rare deposits scattered throughout the outer territories. These rare deposits would give tribes a reason to fight over land. A location would not only be good because it has a good view, is close to water, or has flat, easily terraformed land that provides no natural cover for attackers, it might sit on a sulfur deposit with saltpeter nearby. Allowing the tribe who controls it to make black powder for muskets to either hoard or trade.
New Totem System
Finally with all of this, I think a new totem system would really lend itself to this idea. While the numbers are very changeable based on what people, especially the devs, feel is reasonable here is how it would work. Tribes, are no longer bound to their totems. While all members of a homestead belong to the same tribe, all members of a tribe do not need to belong to the same homestead.
However this does not mean a twenty man tribe can have twenty different totems. Each tribe has a main totem. This main totem must have at least ten members belonging to it at any given time, in order for the tribe to maintain additional totems. Each additional totem must have a minimum of five members at all times.
Why is this important? Well because it adds a new element of strategy to the outer territories and makes it so clans don't have to throw their fresh recruits straight into the outer territories.
I'll use my own tribe as an example. I'm running Great Legionnaires, and (in this scenario) we have about 24 members. Our main objective is to help and protect new players so we have our main totem, Fort Eldaria, smack dab in the middle of the inner territories. From here we can patrol the inner territories for griefers, help teach newbs the game, and give our new recruits a place to train up. But we love our guns. And living in the inner territories we have no access to gunpowder. However our allies the Honor Guard are maintaining a base on a salt peter deposit in the outer territories, and need some help defending this base, and could use someone to help protect the sulfur deposit across the river. So we split off five or six of our members from Fort Eldaria and form Fort Tharak. Fort Tharak defends the sulfur deposit and provides us with a base from where we can help assist our allies. With our allies help, we now have access to salt peter and sulfur, and can now fire more than caps from our guns, but we are STILL maintaining our base in the inner territories which is still safe from siege. We also still have enough members that when we take down the "U Mad Bro?" tribe in a siege, we could bind another 6 member to their totem and take over their fort with it's gold deposit.
Now I'm sure some people are thinking. Well if you can maintain an totem in the inner territories and the outer territories you'll just move all your resources from the outer territories into the inner territories as you build them up. Well yes, thats exactly what I would do. But that also means those resources are vulnerable to attack all the way up until we get them back to fort Eldaria, meaning you now have supply convoys to raid.
I realize this topic is very long so I think anyone who took the time to read it in it's entirety. I hope you can see how this idea would enliven this game and promote PVP, while keeping things easy enough on people to hopefully prevent some rage quits, and enhance the game for both new and old players.
Feel free to leave comments or suggestions.