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sinij
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on: March 07, 2007, 12:43:46 PM

PvP design 101

1) Even out playing field – standard gear/level/skills/whatever should be accessible to everyone in reasonable time. Call this ‘golden standard’, make sure its good enough to compete with whatever ‘best’ you put into the game and make sure nobody can be kept from reaching it.

2) Aim for skill based PvP – you should give players enough options and enough template diversity to avoid cookie-cutter templates and predictable fights. PvP should be about paying attention to what is going on and reacting accordingly as oppose to mashing the same 3 buttons in specific order every time. There should be no ‘best way to fight’, just good counters to your opponent’s attacks.

3) Slow it down – ideal fight should last at least 15-20 seconds and should consist of at least 5-6 individual actions. You should give enough time to act and react so less-than-ideal connection of 150-200ms can compete.

4) Limit effects of focus fire – you will have group warfare in your game and people will get focus fired. If you don’t take steps to prevent it from being instadeath your group warfare will be lousy regardless of how great your 1v1. Good methods to limit focus fire are – short invulnerabilities, damage feedback powers, maximum damage rate or damage saturation, friendly fire and splash damage, collision and line of sight. Bad methods - removal of targeting and assist, forced or sticky targeting.

5) Add objectives to fight over – if it is going to be turf wars make sure turf has something desirable. Create few very desirable and tons of less desirable objects to control and make holding more than few highly problematic, this way more groups get a chance at ‘controlling’ something, not just best few.

6) Add effective power reach. Make sure that distance matters and adds logistical complications. You should be able to ‘pick up and leave’ and move away from ‘lost cause’ situation and end up out of reach. Don’t ever implement instant travel or effective teleportation or summon abilities. It should be very difficult to move anything but a small group over large distances.

7) Limit how much you can lose if you keep losing. String of bad losses should never put you into situation where you can’t realistically win again.

8) Soft-cap effective maximum size of any given group of players – make sure that bigger is better but up to a point and make sure that this limit takes population into the account and dictates that there will be a number of different groups on any given server regardless of population.

9) Don’t instance – unpredictability of who will show up to any fight is what makes politics important. It puts checks in place on guilds that now have to consider use of their influence and power or face bad odds. It limits 'poor sportsmanship' guilds in what they can do alone.

10) Make sure individual effort always matter and that it is possible to solo at all times. You should not be always forced to group to enjoy PvP, so design solo objectives and/or ways to solo. Good way to do it is via stealth classes.

11) Segregate PvP+ and PvP-, there should be no PvP- players around PvP fights - it leads to all sorts of bad things.

12) Always remove player from the area after death, there should be no reason whatsoever to linger or come back once fight is done. This will greatly limit all negative post-fight interaction. You do need to have in-game channels for communication, but not trash talking.

13) Start everyone able to contribute to fighting, even if it is support or mop-up roles

Heroes and followers

Heroes and followers, permadeath idea

Following is my idea for incorporating permanent death into PvP mmorpg while minimizing its negative effects.

* Permadeath good, bad and ugly *

I am a big fan of permadeath, in MUDs it added very serious consequences to escalating conflict and often added unprecedented depth to politics. If done right it also made recovery for losers much easier, if you did good job fighting but still lost winners are not that much better off than you.

Permadeath also has plenty of negative consequences – people generally too attached to their characters and will avoid fighting unless absolutely necessary, not something you want in PvP game. Additionally permadeath makes it necessary to minimize advancement curve or risk permanent domination by small group of surviving characters that can no longer be practically challenged.

* How it can work, or The Idea *

Have you seen movie Troy or ever read Greek mythology? To me that how epic fights should feel – evenly matched armies following different heroes, where two heroes end up fighting each with fight’s balance depending on outcome of this fight… While many PvP fights are fun they just lack this epic feeling. Also how can you let someone play hero and expect rest of the players to be content with filling secondary roles? Here is how…

Put in permadeath *only* for powerful champion characters, called heros…

Each guild of sufficient size and sufficient game standing (assets, levels, reputation or anything else that measures guild advancement) can undergo expensive and time consuming process of creating a brand new hero to join their ranks. All guilds are limited to only one hero,  in any nation composed of multiple guilds only dominant guild can have a hero.

*Hero is a significantly more powerful character when compared to regular player that can grant considerable bonuses to all regular players from the same nation around him. Downside is that hero can permanently die if slain in a PvP fight.*

When hero defeated in any fight he/she gets knocked out but instead of respawning like regular players they stay down until revived or finished off (causing permadeath). Only players can finish hero off and it is not instant or automatic action, this way if hero is defeated in a PvP fight he/she is not automatically lost. 

I believe this will give more epic feeling to fights, it will also add something to lose for both attackers and defenders in any serious battle. If you fight an army with a hero but lack one of your own it should not be automatic loss, but result in an uphill battle, making hero presense in any serious fight a norm.

Hero should be hard to kill but by no means invincible to regular players, so you should rarely see hero used without serious backing due to significant time and resources invested into creating one. Heros should have very shallow advancement curve, your brand new hero will be slightly weaker than fully developed one but only in strength of effects on your followers, meaning maxed out hero will provide more benefits to followers.

Heros can advance only by participating in PvP fights. This will make sure that no 'grinding to max level' is possible.

Eternity is a very long time, especially towards the end.
Nebu
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Reply #1 on: March 07, 2007, 02:30:23 PM

2) Aim for skill based PvP – you should give players enough options and enough template diversity to avoid cookie-cutter templates and predictable fights. PvP should be about paying attention to what is going on and reacting accordingly as oppose to mashing the same 3 buttons in specific order every time. There should be no ‘best way to fight’, just good counters to your opponent’s attacks.

3) Slow it down – ideal fight should last at least 15-20 seconds and should consist of at least 5-6 individual actions. You should give enough time to act and react so less-than-ideal connection of 150-200ms can compete.

I don't see how these two can coexist.  A 20s fight seems WAY too brief to adequately counter attacks using a varied skill system.  Skill should be a balanced combination of twitch, situational awareness, and strategy.  Think about a fight between two seasoned fencers.  It could be considerably longer.  Too long is also a problem, so finding a compromise between dying in 20s and 5 min fights would have to be found.  DAoC started with the former and has now evolved to the latter.  The long fights now just result in frustration due to adds or being zerged.  I think something between 1-3 mins for a fight is about right for a 1v1.  For group vs. group or zerg vs. zerg I'd like to see fights last longer. 8v8 fights in DAoC now last on the order of 5-6 mins and can be very entertaining and as much about twitch skill as they are the strategy of overcoming short-term setbacks.

I think most people would agree with at least the core concepts presented in the rest of your ideas.  I'd like to see it pulled off. 
« Last Edit: March 07, 2007, 02:32:43 PM by Nebu »

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Krakrok
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Reply #2 on: March 07, 2007, 04:49:57 PM


I think your hero idea may be too extreme. EVE already has something similar with Titans or command ships and leadership skills. Titans take a lot of time to build, are expensive, and have one shot kill everyone weapons but they keep getting killed while the player isn't even online (metagaming). The other part is the leadership skills where my skills give bonuses to the group but if I get sploded and leave the system no more bonuses.

I'd go with something more accessable like the leader of the current group/gang gives out bonuses if you stick near him or he gets buff spells he can cast. More on the modal of the heroes in WC3, Warlords Battlecry, and Savage.

pxib
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Reply #3 on: March 08, 2007, 12:00:32 PM

I'll put this here, where nobody will read it, rather than in the Guild Wars forum (where nobody will read it).

Something must be done to make sure no individual player loses all the time in PvP. A game that cannot guarantee at least the chance of a win from time to time will simply disgust the losers, and a game which leads to much less than one win every three games will start to drive players away. It's just not fun to get squashed every time you get in a fight.

I've been bad at MMOG PvP for a long time, and unlike some folks who suck at it I love the promise it displays... but I'm getting pretty close to giving up on it as a concept. In a massively multiplayer environment skill levels will necessarily vary considerably more than they do at home. A "friendly game" of Soul Caliber is not like going to the arcade. There is no guarantee that you'll have fun unless you think losing constantly is a chance for improvement. Those two guys kicking everybody's ass will continue to do so until you all run out of quarters.

That's probably a waste of quarters, kids. Go home and play with your friends on the Playstation.

If you happen to be the best kids at the arcade you really get to impress the rest, but everybody else is basically there to watch... whether they pay for a fight with you or not. If I'm paying... and I'm paying to play any MMOG (even Guild Wars got $120 out of me) I expect to have a good time.

Losing all the time just makes me wonder why I wasted that cash in the first place.

sinij
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Reply #4 on: March 08, 2007, 01:28:57 PM

Quote
Something must be done to make sure no individual player loses all the time in PvP. 

The only way I see it happening is to give good player incentive to use cannon fodder in bigger fights. This way if you bad player you still get to play a role in good player's victories. But this leads to zergs... I think its better to give ability to meaningfully contribute than try to give a chance (inevitably random) to win.

Eternity is a very long time, especially towards the end.
Xilren's Twin
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Reply #5 on: March 08, 2007, 03:16:57 PM

Quote
Something must be done to make sure no individual player loses all the time in PvP. 

The only way I see it happening is to give good player incentive to use cannon fodder in bigger fights. This way if you bad player you still get to play a role in good player's victories. But this leads to zergs... I think its better to give ability to meaningfully contribute than try to give a chance (inevitably random) to win.

Not neccessarily.  One way you could approach this is by making sure you have varying TYPES of pvp available in the same overall worldspace.  For example, taking the SWG world, you could have the FPS style single avatar control ground combat, real time space combat via fighters, but also have a more strategic turn based game for say espionage (hacking into a system), or creature handler areana combat (squad base rts like), or even turn based card and other games (casino's, influence peddling),and rythm games (musicians, dancers).

Oddly enough, the leading examples of this were SWG itself with it;s bolt on space module for ship combat, and Vanguard with it's card based diplomacy game.  Not exactly the level of quality we all want but a step at least.

People need to stop thinking of pvp as limited to one on one FP ground combat using the same engine and options that there are in pve combat model.  You've got a whole worldspace; feel free to fill it with multiple game system that are actually different.

"..but I'm by no means normal." - Schild
tazelbain
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tazelbain


Reply #6 on: March 08, 2007, 04:26:08 PM

90% of everything is crap, so 90% of players are crap.
Lets server have 3600 players concurrent, so their are 360 good players
Lets say it takes a group 6 to take an objective, that's 60 good groups.
Lets say it no one team has more than a third of the players, so max any one team can field is 20 groups.
Therefore the game needs to always have a number active objectives inexcess of 20.
That way no matter what, the biggest team with the best groups can't cover all the objectives and there is room for the crap groups to succeed. 

"Me am play gods"
Kail
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Reply #7 on: March 08, 2007, 04:27:25 PM


1) Even out playing field – standard gear/level/skills/whatever should be accessible to everyone in reasonable time. Call this ‘golden standard’, make sure its good enough to compete with whatever ‘best’ you put into the game and make sure nobody can be kept from reaching it.

(snip...)

If you fight an army with a hero but lack one of your own it should not be automatic loss, but result in an uphill battle, making hero presense in any serious fight a norm.

Hero should be hard to kill but by no means invincible to regular players, so you should rarely see hero used without serious backing due to significant time and resources invested into creating one.

These two points seem to contradict each other, to me.  We're taking out grinding, because (presumably) it's unfun and unbalancing, but then we put in another system where you have to grind resources to build some guild uberunit?  That actually seems a bit worse, to me (at least in most current MMOs, my grinding has some immediate benefit to me, personally, rather than all my resources going to my guild leader's best buddy).  It also seems to go explicitly against the concept that "nobody can be kept from reaching" a competitive level of power; if I can't afford one of these expensive hero guys for my guild, it sounds like I'm going to get creamed.
sinij
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Reply #8 on: March 09, 2007, 10:00:53 AM

Why do you think resources can't be acquired through PvP and land control or crafting and controlling NPC shops? For example, you build a farm and you put 3 farmer NPCs into it, they generate food resource until killed by your enemy. You PvP and as long as you maintain some control of your land you get resources, better control more resources. Alternatively you can raid your enemies and steal some of their resources.


 Hero should be 'standard equipment' in nation fight, we can't punish individuals for losses but some loss should occur or large fights will be meaningless unless asset destruction is involved.

Eternity is a very long time, especially towards the end.
Rithrin
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Reply #9 on: March 09, 2007, 12:10:28 PM

It would depend on exactly how powerful these Hero people are. Sinij mentioned that Heroes wouldn't be completely invulnerable to the other players, which makes it sound like the "standard" can still compete with the "best". The main point of them would be for the bonuses to the rest of the players.

That said, for some reason I don't think Heroes would add the kind of epicness you desire. There are movies with epic combat, but do not involve one main character taking on all comers. What makes a big battle more epic, imo, is duration of the fight, number of combatants involved, and the fighting system. Sieges and battles lasted a long time and that gives people the ability to think, but I'm also talking about the individual fighting. Set up fights like modern day fencing matches or ARMA sparring. Two players lock onto eachother and focus on very little else. Whoever is the fastest (determined by some kind of stat or situational) gets the first action. Make it almost like a card game where each player, dependant on his skill setup and weapon type, gets a set of options for each combat situation. So player one who went first would get presented with the option to (I'm not creative with names here, bear with me) "Sideswipe", "Lunge", "Overhead Strike", "Feint, Then Trip", and other such things. He chooses Sideswipe, now player two who is defending, again depending on his skillset and whatnot, gets the option to "Sideparry", "Dodge", "Intercept", "Shield Block", etc and chooses to sideparry. It goes back and forth with lots of parrying, dodging, blocking, until someone finally gets presented with a situation in which his set of cards can't handle. Each one of the cards someone uses will have different values on them, increasing or decreasing some situational pools called Footing, Positioning, Advantage, Distance, and others I can't really think of right now. Some cards require you to have better Footing before you can use them, or requiring you to have the Advantage. Each weapon type and fighting style will give its own set of cards as well as the way the rest of the character is set up, and will utilize different situational pools (Example, using a big two-handed sword your cards will have the most/best options if you can keep your Distance large, as big weapons are never good when you're right next to someone, and if you keep a high Advantage. Whereas something like two-weapon fighting will have access to its best cards when you have a high Footing and Positioning advantage over your opponent). If you set it up this way, it will have lots of players skill involved... you have to know your skills, and I mean know your skills, because when and what you execute will be the foundation for the rest of the moves you can make. If you run across someone who ebayed their character, even if its an elite character reknowned as Lord Pwnage, you'll be able to defeat him if you know what you're doing. As long as you know your skills and know where his skills are at their best, you'll be able to deny him Footing, Positioning, or whatever he needs and take him down.

This also would solve the issue of the high level players completely destroying everything in their path. Getting to higher levels will afford you some new cards, which means you may find a way out of a couple situations which you wouldn't have been able to before or will allow you to smash even harder once you get you gain the Footing, Advtange, etc that you need. For instance, using my previous situation, when someone attacks you with Sideswipe, you'll not only have Sideparry, Dodge, Block as your abilities, you'll now have "Block, Then Repost" or "Feint Parry, Then Dodge" or something, and each will add different things to your situational pools as well as change what kind of reactions your opponent can make. It will get the point across that you're becoming a skilled and powerful fighter, but what it will never do is make the playing field uneven. You've been playing for five years and have a maxxed out Halberdier, but some guy who just joined today managed to get rid of your Distance advantage and is now up in your face with a sword? You're not going to make it out alive. New players can always contribute. Always.

It allows for terrain and weather pentalies/bonuses. You need lots of room to fight with your big weapon, but are crammed in an awkwardly small corridor? Good luck getting full bonuses from your swings (As in, they won't contribute as much Footing, Positioning, etc and some cards may be disabled due to being crowded). Muddy ground making Footing and Positioning harder, if not impossible, to gain and again possibly disabling some cards.

Hell, this sort of a thing will even help PvE. If the developers want to give a certain group of mobs, like elite guards of some temple or seasoned gladiators, better fighting skill then they can do this and actually make it more of a challenge than "x2 hp, x2 ac, call them elites". They'll give those NPCs better cards, and it'll instantly and legitimately make it more challenging for PCs to fight them. While the strategy of removing Footwork and then going in for a Lunge finished off the lesser guards, these elite ones have a card that allows them to block in that situation and now the PCs will have to think of a new way to defeat them.

Anyways, I'd type more but I have to go. Obviously a system like this would need a ton of finetuning and working on, but if its the core of your game then you'll have a lot of resources to commit to it.

Edit: Totally forgot, the entire point of this is to make a battle between players (and subsequently mobs) and actual battle of wits and strategy while removing the sparkly button spamming fluff that doesn't actually need to be there. It opens up combat to more players and so provides more challenging opponents for players. And you'll never have a moment where you say, "Damn, that guy just rolled me and there was nothing I could do!" and instead you'll be saying something like, "Damn, if I had managed to lure that dual-weilding maniac into the slippery mud, he wouldn't have been able to deny me Distance like he did!". You should always be looking for potentional advantage vs. disadvantage tradeoffs. And always needing to make decisions. And each decision should count.
« Last Edit: March 09, 2007, 12:30:53 PM by Rithrin »

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Krakrok
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Reply #10 on: March 09, 2007, 08:11:04 PM

The only way I see it happening is to give good player incentive to use cannon fodder in bigger fights. This way if you bad player you still get to play a role in good player's victories. But this leads to zergs... I think its better to give ability to meaningfully contribute than try to give a chance (inevitably random) to win.

Star Wars Battlefront somewhat solved this by having the option to have bots (NPCs) on your side. You get an epic feeling without so many players being fodder.

Also, support roles solve some of the "losing every time". Planetside, Eve, and Guild Wars all have them.

Lastly, I still think something like having players control a group of NPCs might be interesting. MMOG Total War where each player gets a group of units to control and if even one man from it survives you can build it back up again.

koboshi
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Camping is a legitimate strategy.


Reply #11 on: March 11, 2007, 03:59:18 PM

Permadeath also has plenty of negative consequences – people generally too attached to their characters and will avoid fighting unless absolutely necessary, not something you want in PvP game.
  Isn’t this precisely what we want?  The main issue plaguing an open PVP world is the idea that there will be rampant player killers running around with impunity.  With Permadeath there are two factors which would drive down the incidence of PKers, first the death of even one character would elicit real outrage against the player killer, secondly killing a player killer means that that player has been effectively stopped and not simply deterred or delayed.  Suddenly the idea of police forces seems reasonable.  Players would be more likely to see the value in a police officer who could effectively eliminate criminals.  Permadeath could also mean having police would really mean something more than blues and reds playing what amounts to an RvR battle.  As long as PVP deaths carry no weight PKers have nothing counterbalancing their homicidal tendencies.

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KallDrexx
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Reply #12 on: March 12, 2007, 01:53:01 PM

  Isn’t this precisely what we want?  The main issue plaguing an open PVP world is the idea that there will be rampant player killers running around with impunity.  With Permadeath there are two factors which would drive down the incidence of PKers, first the death of even one character would elicit real outrage against the player killer, secondly killing a player killer means that that player has been effectively stopped and not simply deterred or delayed.  Suddenly the idea of police forces seems reasonable.  Players would be more likely to see the value in a police officer who could effectively eliminate criminals.  Permadeath could also mean having police would really mean something more than blues and reds playing what amounts to an RvR battle.  As long as PVP deaths carry no weight PKers have nothing counterbalancing their homicidal tendencies.


Problem is it causes people to quit when they were killed instead of try again.  It's one of those things that is good in theory but not good in practice.  Hell, Shadowbane wasn't even permadeath but a lot of people couldn't handle losing everything they worked for.  They quit instead of building up their guild again to the power it once was.
Xilren's Twin
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Reply #13 on: March 12, 2007, 02:40:02 PM

The main issue plaguing an open PVP world is the idea that there will be rampant player killers running around with impunity.  With Permadeath there are two factors which would drive down the incidence of PKers, first the death of even one character would elicit real outrage against the player killer,

Um, that's the exact reason a lot of them do it.  See griefing.  PK'er generally don't care about their characters and it would be typical for a single PK to cause at least several normal player deaths (or lots) before any "police force" caught up to them.  Then they just create another throwaway character and repeat.

Quote
secondly killing a player killer means that that player has been effectively stopped and not simply deterred or delayed.  Suddenly the idea of police forces seems reasonable.  Players would be more likely to see the value in a police officer who could effectively eliminate criminals.  Permadeath could also mean having police would really mean something more than blues and reds playing what amounts to an RvR battle.  As long as PVP deaths carry no weight PKers have nothing counterbalancing their homicidal tendencies.

I really don't think you've thought this through.  Pk'er don't care about their characters; they are just a means to an end.  So introducing a measure which punishes people who do care about their characters, like permadeath, actually makes the ground much more fertile for Pk's, not give them a disincentive to play.  And player police has always been and will always be unworkable unless the game design is built around making it much much easier to catch and kill "reds" than be one, and I am highly dubious until shown such a system.

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Alkiera
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The best part of SWG was the easy account cancellation process.


Reply #14 on: March 12, 2007, 03:14:58 PM

  Isn’t this precisely what we want?  The main issue plaguing an open PVP world is the idea that there will be rampant player killers running around with impunity.  With Permadeath there are two factors which would drive down the incidence of PKers, first the death of even one character would elicit real outrage against the player killer, secondly killing a player killer means that that player has been effectively stopped and not simply deterred or delayed.  Suddenly the idea of police forces seems reasonable.  Players would be more likely to see the value in a police officer who could effectively eliminate criminals.  Permadeath could also mean having police would really mean something more than blues and reds playing what amounts to an RvR battle.  As long as PVP deaths carry no weight PKers have nothing counterbalancing their homicidal tendencies.


Problem is it causes people to quit when they were killed instead of try again.  It's one of those things that is good in theory but not good in practice.  Hell, Shadowbane wasn't even permadeath but a lot of people couldn't handle losing everything they worked for.  They quit instead of building up their guild again to the power it once was.

In large part because it takes so long to get to the 'fun' again.  Even in SB, which reportedly had such great easy leveling, getting back to R6 and farming money to get your guild built back to having a city was such a drag, people didn't want to do it again.

In a game where 'the grind' to get a useful character is less* the 'well, I'll just quit' tendancy isn't so strong.  Also, fights should tend to end like duels in WoW... with the loser at 1 hp, on his knees, at the mercy of his attacker.  At that point they can demand money, items, fealty, whatever.  And still have the option to just knock them out cold (say force-quits them, and looks just like being killed to the person being KO'd... so you have to re-log in to find out what happened; maybe a dream sequence upon logon if you're just KO'd, if it hasn't been very long, so you don't wake back up almost immediately.)   If you're killed, you have to rebuild your character, but it shouldn't be anything like 'level to 60/70/100/250' or whatever.

Permadeath is not compatible with DIKU at all.  IMO, PvP isn't very compatible with DIKU, given the inherent imbalance associated with 'levels'.  WoW could be the same game, if they started everyone with the same set of powers, (say their level-cap set), and made the whole game not about gaining exp, but about the storylines/equipment; work talent points in there somehow too.  Mobs wouldn't get any hard, really, aside from elites and the like.  Or maybe they would vary, but only +/- 3 levels or so.  Implement 'same family name' to prevent creation of one-time grief characters, and you're golden, IMO.

--
Alkiera

(*) I'm saying there should be some option to start at 'functional', but not neccesarily ideal.  In WoW, say you died with permadeath, but got to restart at the level cap with reasonable equipment, but had to quest to get your talent points back.  Max 20-25% improvement from reincarnation to being competitive as far as character progression goes.  Admittedly, in WoW, gear is half or more of your strength, but I'd opt for less; a 'low magic' type setting.  On top of being more rare, magic items would be harder to interpret, and on-character storage place less... no 'I killed 100 bad guys, here are all their suits of plate mail,' nonsense.

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KallDrexx
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Reply #15 on: March 12, 2007, 03:59:59 PM

Those two concepts don't work together though.  In order for Permadeath to be effective as you said, you must be attached to your character (and thus it must take some time to build him up).  If there is no grind, then I have no attachmenet at all to my characters and I really don't care if I have been killed, because I will be back in the next day. 

Lets take GW for example.  I can create all the level 20s I can.  Lets say everytime I lose or get killed (whatever your preference) that character is deleted.  I don't care, because I can just create another one with minimal effort.  It won't effect me at all but be a minor nuincance. 

If you want perma-death to be meaningful, you have to find a way to have your players be emotionally attached to their characters.  In order to get people to be attached to their characters they usually have to play that character for a certain amount of time. 
koboshi
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Camping is a legitimate strategy.


Reply #16 on: March 12, 2007, 05:34:39 PM

  OK a tweak to the classic idea then, instead of PKers being flagged as red they are flagged as mortal.  Meaning that if you kill, you face permadeath when you die.  Kind of like kicking PKers out of eden.  (It might even be interesting to keep their status a secret, at least to other players, like a curse or a scarlet letter)  Non-PKers who are killed will have some death costs, exp, items, whatever, but they will not lose their character as long as they don't spill blood.  Then you get to keep the long investment characters because the farmers and crafters won't be faced with total loss, while PKers are constantly reset to zero.  Of course there would still have to be the normal flagging rules, if someone attacks you first you don't get permadeath flagged if you kill them, PvP zones don't cause flags, etc.. 

  And yea, police need to be coded into games if your going to have the sort of freedom that open PvP (aka the only PvP where PKing can happen) brings to a game.  Why bounty hunter classes aren't a devs best anti pk tool is beyond me.  "hey bob, we've got a pker. do you want me to ban him?" "naw, just put a bounty on him and see if that clears up the problem." and bam every domino, dog, and fett starts tracking the bastard.

  full disclosure: I'm not a PKer, or even a PvPer, I'm a crafter/explorer and yet if I could play in a responsible open PvP server I would. The trick is giving the players the ability to exercise limitless freedom but making it a really bad idea to.

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Hey, where do you keep that gun?
-None of your damn business, Sam.
-Shall we dance?
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Reply #17 on: March 12, 2007, 09:01:11 PM

  Isn’t this precisely what we want?  The main issue plaguing an open PVP world is the idea that there will be rampant player killers running around with impunity. 

Homicidal tendencies? Rampant player killers? Let it go, this isn't 99, time to move on. Go play bash monsters, nobody forces you to participate or even wants you around their PvP.

As to answer your question - no that not what we want. Considering that PvPers want to PvP (I know would would have guessed?) making expected outcome of PvP fight (someone loses by design) punishing is not a good idea. Only most hardcore and most successful PvPers will be able to sustain momentum, rest will have no chance.

As to self-policing? SB and UO proved, might make it right. It will happen only if dominant group sees it as worth-while.

Eternity is a very long time, especially towards the end.
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Reply #18 on: March 12, 2007, 10:04:13 PM

stuff

UO showed us that all that happens with this kind of system is they bring an alt with them that deals the final blow.

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Camping is a legitimate strategy.


Reply #19 on: March 13, 2007, 07:51:13 AM

Go play bash monsters, nobody forces you to participate or even wants you around their PvP.
  Actually you do want me around your PvP, that is, unless you want your Pvp to be a niche game with no general appeal.  While that is arguably a valid stance, it's not really interesting, anyone can make a PvP game for PvPers.  It's making a PvP game that everyone else wants to play that's difficult.
As to answer your question - no that not what we want. Considering that PvPers want to PvP (I know would would have guessed?) making expected outcome of PvP fight (someone loses by design) punishing is not a good idea. Only most hardcore and most successful PvPers will be able to sustain momentum, rest will have no chance.
  Hence my second post where I answered all of these points.  Read before posting.
As to self-policing? SB and UO proved, might make it right. It will happen only if dominant group sees it as worth-while.
  The dominant group in any MMOG are the developers and CS, they are the only legitimately responsible group, they must take the lead roll.  I'm not advocating self policing but rather that people could play as police if you made the gameplay of that role fun.

-We must teach them Max!
Hey, where do you keep that gun?
-None of your damn business, Sam.
-Shall we dance?
-Lets!
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Reply #20 on: March 13, 2007, 08:11:45 AM

Quote
Actually you do want me around your PvP

Trust me, I don't. Go bash monsters. Look at rule #11 and stay the fuck away from my PvP, by design.
« Last Edit: March 13, 2007, 08:14:04 AM by sinij »

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Reply #21 on: March 13, 2007, 10:24:44 AM

The dominant group in any MMOG are the developers and CS, they are the only legitimately responsible group, they must take the lead roll.  I'm not advocating self policing but rather that people could play as police if you made the gameplay of that role fun.

Developers have virtually no control of how players choose to use rules of the game, they can only change rules. There is no 100% way to remove PKing other than to remove an ability to attack other players. So why bother with convoluted rules that don't appeal to PvPers and don't always protect PvEers?

If you don't have PvP - well your problem with PKs is solved. If you do, well why place PvE anywhere near PvP and worry about possible ways to limit effect of one on another when you can just separate them?

Policing and ideas of this sort approach problem from wrong direction. If there are no victims, meaning everyone involved is aware or ought to be aware of risks involved, there are no criminals and no need to police.

Permadeath should be approached only from 'does it make PvP better' angle. Thats it. There is no reason to even consider other aspects.

Eternity is a very long time, especially towards the end.
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Reply #22 on: March 13, 2007, 03:15:17 PM

The way SB was structured, it was impossible to rebuild after your city were burned down. There was no place you could go outside your enemies reach. In Eve, 2 thing mainly make it better: strong economy in the safe areas and the game space is too its fricking big. Even so, its a monumental task just with morale issues alone.

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Camping is a legitimate strategy.


Reply #23 on: March 14, 2007, 11:34:54 AM

Trust me, I don't. Go bash monsters. Look at rule #11 and stay the fuck away from my PvP, by design.
  I read your rules; go play Guild Wars, stfu, and stop acting like you have some new angle on PvP.  The only interesting bit of you post was the permadeath, and that's all I want to talk about.
Developers have virtually no control of how players choose to use rules of the game, they can only change rules. There is no 100% way to remove PKing other than to remove an ability to attack other players. So why bother with convoluted rules that don't appeal to PvPers and don't always protect PvEers?
  Because I think that PKing should be in games.  When all else fails, and you have no further recourse, you should have the option to kill the bastard.  What I don't want is the rampant part, when people PK cause there bored, or PK because killing level one newbs will get them their next level faster than killing mobs.
Policing and ideas of this sort approach problem from wrong direction. If there are no victims, meaning everyone involved is aware or ought to be aware of risks involved, there are no criminals and no need to police.
  I understand where your coming from, if PvP and PvE are segregated, then you are right, however if as I contend, there is a system where open PvP could live in harmony with PvE then cops would be nice to have, if not necessary.  If you have too lofty an idea of police ethics then instead think of mafia enforcers, they keep their streets safe... enough.  The point is to allow for retribution in a just form (even if all we can hope for right now is an eye for an eye) because that allows for a new level of PvP gameplay for PvPers, and less opportunity for the rampant PKers.
Permadeath should be approached only from 'does it make PvP better' angle. Thats it. There is no reason to even consider other aspects.
I disagree with what you said.

-We must teach them Max!
Hey, where do you keep that gun?
-None of your damn business, Sam.
-Shall we dance?
-Lets!
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Reply #24 on: March 14, 2007, 12:56:13 PM

I think putting PKing into otherwise non-PvP game is Bad Idea - getting PKed doesn't appeal to non-PvP players and being restricted as to who you can PK doesn't appeal to PvPers. Still if you insist on doing it there should be no penalties to death whatsoever.

As to permadeath idea in my original post - its equivalent to asset destruction in large guild vs. guild combat only assets are 'hero' characters that can die. I don't think it will work if there are no 'large guild vs. guild combat' in your game.

Quote
I read your rules; go play Guild Wars, stfu, and stop acting like you have some new angle on PvP.

Good, maybe mmorpg developers will read them as well. For some reason these basic rules are still not common knowledge and not clearly understood. I don't act "like you have some new angle", I just think PvE and PvP playstyles don't mix and there is no good reason to mix them. What little PvP PvEers want to do can be instanced away and what little PvE PvPers want to can be channeled into crafting/gathering/hunting.
« Last Edit: March 14, 2007, 01:03:16 PM by sinij »

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Reply #25 on: March 14, 2007, 01:49:48 PM

There are reasons to have PvE in a PvP game.  I don't think the two are totally mutual exclusive by any means.  It's just a delicate balance to make it work effectively (and has to adhere to the goals of the game). 
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Reply #26 on: March 17, 2007, 02:06:45 AM

Almost everything you mentioned sounds like oldschool UO to me.
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Reply #27 on: March 17, 2007, 02:11:48 AM

Something must be done to make sure no individual player loses all the time in PvP.

That is just a terrible idea; fucking lame.  Might as well just roll some dice.  If a player doesn't want to lose all the time in PvP, he needs to improve his game. 

You also need to think  about what "lose" means.  If  I fight 1 to 5 odds and my team manages to kill a few before dying, I consider that a victory, but the tards who had the 5x advantage probably consider it a victory too.  Everybody wins!
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Reply #28 on: March 17, 2007, 11:15:00 AM

If a player doesn't want to lose all the time in PvP, he needs to improve his game.
In a sport where players compete for fun, absolutely. When players fork over the cash to buy a game and then are expected to pay a fee for the priveledge of playing, they will not be satisfied with a string of crushing losses. The game will not keep them playing long enough to improve or inspire much positive word-of-mouth advertising. On the other hand...

Quote from: Ibid.
You also need to think  about what "lose" means.  If  I fight 1 to 5 odds and my team manages to kill a few before dying, I consider that a victory, but the tards who had the 5x advantage probably consider it a victory too.

...this is absolutely true. I frequently felt "victory" in Planetside knowing that my futile actions served to distract the enemy from more important goals. If I can see that my actions had a positive purpose, it wasn't a loss. Also, every once in a while in the Guild Wars Random Arena, one or two players would drop out and it was satisfying to fight well against slightly overwhelming odds, win or lose. So long as players see some positive side to throwing their lives away, they will continue to play. Not every loss is either meaningless or hopeless.

Avoiding meaningless losses is still a design challenge, and one which I have seen little progress towards in recent games.
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Reply #29 on: March 19, 2007, 08:17:23 AM

Developers have virtually no control of how players choose to use rules of the game, they can only change rules. There is no 100% way to remove PKing other than to remove an ability to attack other players. So why bother with convoluted rules that don't appeal to PvPers and don't always protect PvEers?

If you don't have PvP - well your problem with PKs is solved. If you do, well why place PvE anywhere near PvP and worry about possible ways to limit effect of one on another when you can just separate them?

Policing and ideas of this sort approach problem from wrong direction. If there are no victims, meaning everyone involved is aware or ought to be aware of risks involved, there are no criminals and no need to police.

Jesus, my fucking irony meter just exploded.  Sinij has invented Trammel.

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Reply #30 on: March 19, 2007, 10:00:39 AM

If a player doesn't want to lose all the time in PvP, he needs to improve his game.
In a sport where players compete for fun, absolutely. When players fork over the cash to buy a game and then are expected to pay a fee for the priveledge of playing, they will not be satisfied with a string of crushing losses. The game will not keep them playing long enough to improve or inspire much positive word-of-mouth advertising.

That must be why Counter-Strike isn't successful. 

Oh wait, it is.

(Okay, the "paying a fee for playing" part is a difference.  But if anything I'd expect the fee to KEEP people playing, at least until the subscription runs out, so they can "get their money's worth".)

"Nice attempted blast about my "drinking".  I do enjoy a nice cuppa, but that is because I am a bon vivant of gregarious nature and cheery disposition." - Ab
pxib
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Reply #31 on: March 19, 2007, 10:48:48 AM

Counterstrike is a sport people play for fun. I suck at Counterstrike, but I play it. When I lose over and over again I stop playing... but since I never have to pay a subscription fee I occasionally hop back in to try again. Most of the folks playing counterstrike suck at least as much as I do, and from time to time my meager skillz triumph. That's all it takes to keep me playing until a few capable players remind me why I stopped last time.

I invest nothing. Guild Wars worked the same way until the folks who sucked more than me all quit and my meager skills just didn't cut it anymore, but I imagine I'll still log on and play a bit from time to time. I've got nothing to lose.

I have never resubscribed to Ultima Online, Dark Age of Camelot, Shadowbane, or World of Warcraft. I left every single one of them because I was sick of paying to be constantly flattened in PvP.
(Okay, the "paying a fee for playing" part is a difference.  But if anything I'd expect the fee to KEEP people playing, at least until the subscription runs out, so they can "get their money's worth".)
Indeed it did, and until the subscription was over I'd keep coming back (just like the non-fee games) because I knew I'd never play again once it was over. I don't think this is in a MMOG company's best interest. Here's a player who continues to use bandwidth, constantly rants about how much he hates the game, but feels obligated to stick around and chat with his friends until he's kicked off. This is why free trials ought to be short term affairs. If somebody doesn't like the game and hasn't paid for it, they need to be shuffled off ASAP.

MMOGs turn me into a preacher of doom, attempting to convert the poor fools who love the game from their misguided ways.

From the content of this site I'd imagine that is not an uncommon affliction.

Hell hath no fury like a consumer scorned.
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Reply #32 on: March 19, 2007, 10:59:03 AM

Counterstrike is a sport people play for fun.

Is this discussion even worth having if we're operating from the assumption that people don't play MMOGs for fun and never will?

"Nice attempted blast about my "drinking".  I do enjoy a nice cuppa, but that is because I am a bon vivant of gregarious nature and cheery disposition." - Ab
sinij
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Reply #33 on: March 19, 2007, 01:32:13 PM

On individual level I just don't see a way how to let unwashed masses win and still keep victory a meaningful event instead of a dice roll. This problem will only further compound if you throw some PvE people in the mix that are not at all prepared to rapidly changing environment of PvP.

Perhaps we can define more victory conditions, so for any given fight there are more goals that can be considered victory by players. Maybe if players can say 'we lost that fight but....' where '....' can be large number of things so perhaps they will not feel it was defeat. Make 'clean win' a very difficult thing to archive, so losers can also get some satisfaction of knowing they archived something in that fight.

PvE has it easy - you can let players win all the time, after all mobs don't mind. In PvP someone *has* to lose and they do mind.
« Last Edit: March 19, 2007, 01:39:24 PM by sinij »

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pxib
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Reply #34 on: March 19, 2007, 04:12:05 PM

Is this discussion even worth having if we're operating from the assumption that people don't play MMOGs for fun and never will?
Absolutely. We can try to decide whether PvP is the best way to turn them into customers willing to pay monthly for a long-term service.. I'm proposing that, in its current state, its absolutely not. There is more game loyalty to be gained by fostering cooperative rather than competative relationships. I believe people are willing to pay more, and pay longer, to support companions than they are willing to pay to struggle against rivals. Cooperation within teams and competition between teams has temporarily blurred this distinction in mainstream games.

I hear a lot of support to the idea that a game ought to be fun from the moment a player starts playing. If PvP is a central game dynamic, then losing either need to be fun or infrequent. These are both extremely challenging to pull of without making PvP meaningless. If they players don't get some positive feedback during their free month they're going to leave. Without monthly fees, the development costs of a MMOG would have been better invested in some new non-subscription game. A Mount & Blade version of Counterstrike, maybe.
PvE has it easy - you can let players win all the time, after all mobs don't mind. In PvP someone *has* to lose and they do mind.
Yes. Everybody seems generally agreed that we can't make losing less frequent without making winning less meaningful. If somebody has to lose, how do we make losing fun both in the skirmish and the war?
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