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The Beatnik Box

Examining the concepts behind "meaningful play."

Author: Beatnik59

Free-for-All PvP: What are You Willing to Do for It?

Posted by Beatnik59 Saturday July 5 2008 at 9:25PM
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Okay you PKers, you griefers, you 8v8ers,  you realize that your PvP sucks today.  I feel for you.  Now I don't consider myself a hardcore gangsta ganka like you all, but I like a good open-world PvP rush every now and then.

But here's the thing that we've forgotten: the game has got to be more than PvP to make it a good PvP game.  In other words, you aren't going to have the sort of PvP you want and need without giving roleplayers something in the game, crafter/industrialist types something, the explorer-types something, the enchanter/buffers something, and the social-types something.

In other words, the game--and everyone in the game--needs to make the game a worthwhile place for everyone to be.  This is even more important when we talk about FFA PvP with or without full looting.  Because if nobody is going to respect anybody else's playstyle, there's no reason for players to subject themselves to your ganks.

See, I suspect that the reason PvP got hammered in recent years is because PvPers saw no use for things that weren't PvP related.  In other words, they didn't play in character, they used scripts, bots, and multiboxes, and the only characters they interacted with outside of their guild were at the tips of their swords.  In short, they didn't play to make the game work, but only played to make the game work for them and their guilds.

Now of course, there is no rule that requires anyone to roleplay, refrain from unattended bot use, and type to people using /say instead of sticking with the T/S and Vent set.  Then again, there's no rule that publishers have to give us FFA PvP.  So I guess I'm asking you PvP folks what you are willing to do to make a FFA PvP game work?  Or rather, what are you willing to do in order to get a FFA PvP game?

Are you willing to refrain from unattended bot and script use?  In other words, are you going to forego your buffs and enchants on demand in order to help make the game work for the enchanters and buffers?  If not, why should the enchanters and buffers support your FFA PvP?

Are you willing to engage in light roleplay when in town or in taverns and homes?  Now we aren't talking about "thee" and "thou," but are you going to at least make the attempt to make your responses something immersive rather than "me and my high school buddies were grinding and getting drunk at our should have heard what we did over Teamspeak?"  If not, then why should the roleplayers support your FFA PvP?

Are you willing to interact with people outside your guilds, participate in town life, and help out strangers?  If not, then why should people outside your guild, the people trying to build the server community, and the strangers support your FFA PvP?

Because in my experience, the PKers were some of the biggest violators of the spirit of the game, and the suspension of disbelief in the UO, AC1, DAoC, and Pre-CU SWG days.  They ran bots, powerground, outright refused to engage in any "IC" play, and didn't have any dealings with anybody outside of their guild.

In other words, the PKers were like loggers felling trees left and right without ever replenishing the forest.  Eventually, not too many trees were left, and the wardens (the publishers) started placing restrictions on logging.  That's what happens when we assert our right to clear cut everything in sight.

So how do we replenish the soil?  We have to do things that we don't ordinarily do, or aren't comfortable with, so that all the other folks have reasons to stay.  That means everybody makes the attempt to maintain the suspension of disbelief, which means trying to stay "IC" as much as possible.  That means not marginalizing other professions by using bots and scripts.  That means participating in the server community more than simply participating in PvP.

And why am I asking you PKers to do this?  Because you are asking other players to do things they don't like to make your game better (PvP), and with FFA PvP with full looting, you are asking them to tolerate an awful lot for the sake of your enjoyment.  Therefore, it seems only fair that we PKers be just as tolerant for the sake of our victims' fun.

We have forgotten that, not only as PKers, but as gamers generally.

_Seeker writes:

HA! You've got to think sustainably in this day and age. :P

Sat Jul 05 2008 11:27PM Report
n00bit writes:

I suppose I've never really looked at it that way before. Next time I see some player out harvesting a plant, I'll be sure to roleplay a bit.

Me: Greetings, kind sir!

Him: Ni hao?

Me: You're not doubt thinking to yourself "who is this magnificent beast that has graced me with his presence?". I can answer that question for you!

Him: You no harvest plant!

Me: That's right, I'm the great Fahadius!

Him: You wan buy gold? $17/10g!

And then I'd kill him

...damned gold farmers

Sun Jul 06 2008 12:33AM Report
sifudoja writes:

I hear ya Beatnik.

I've been thinking alot lately about things very much along the lines of what you are saying here. PVP and "gankers" are a really good example of these thoughts for me.

PKers are usually not looking for fun competition or sport, they usually just have pride issues and feel the need to "pwn" someone to get the feeling of pride they can't get elsewhere, or simply enjoy pissing other people off. This is what i have gathered from my experiences anyways.

I love to pvp when i'm in the mood, for the sport of it, and also would rather play on a ffa-pvp server than a pve server so that i at least have the option of killing someone when they piss me off, but i get no enjoyment from being hunted and camped by a group of people who i would rather not ever interact with at any point in my life, and them talking shit and trying to annoy me the whole time as well. At this point the people i hate are having fun at my expense, while i experience gameplay that i never wanted, simply because i'm on a pvp server and have consented to pvp combat.

That probably isn't the best example of what i mean, but my point is, i just don't like most people playing these games, and do not enjoy being content for other peoples enjoyment, while paying to do so. And with these games becoming mainstream, the number of those type of people playing the same games i play rises and rises.

Not only that, but they are becoming the majority, so not only do i have to share a game world with them, but the companies are more likely to cater to them since they bring money with them, and end up making the game even less enjoyable for me so that the people who get a kick out of giving me a hard time have more opportunity to do so.

The pvp example isn't the best one to represent how i feel, but i think i understand what you were saying also. Sadly though, expecting other people to meet you halfway is like expecting to win the lottery someday if you play enough. It could happen, but it won't.

Most people won't sacrifice a damn thing for a total stranger, unless they are forced to in some way. Well, jerks anyways, and most people on the internet ARE jerks, lol.

It's similar to the arguement i have seen in every mmo forum prior to release about solo vs group content. People who lean toward a solo gameplay style want to see that there is content for all gameplay styles so that they have the freedom to play how they want and do what the feel like doing, when they feel like it. While the jerks demand that there is no solo content, that way everyone is forced to group with thier punk asses regardless of how much you can't stand them.

Lately, i'm just sick of sharing a game world with people who i don't like or get along with, they ruin the game for me, and even though my love for MMOs will probably never die, i've been seriously considering retiring from MMOs completely. I just wish singleplayer games were better, there were more of them, and they could somehow last for years the way MMOs can/do.

Right now i'm looking forward to Fable 2, and i wish more companies would take a few steps back and start making great games, then add multiplayer features the way they used to. I think the whole massively-multiplayer thing has died for me, i would rather play a really good rpg with a handful of friends than share a world with millions of people who bring me more stress than fun while i pay monthly fees to get it.

The only people i meet in mmos anymore are just looking for a guild to leech off to get raid loot, or griefers hoping to find someone to piss off. Do i really need to be on a server with thousands of those? Sure massive siege battles and all that sound great, but i haven't seen much of that yet anyways. What it comes down to is just having tons of other people hogging the content and getting on my nerves when they have the chance. And most MMOs have a very distorted sort of competition which is nothing like i expected and hoped for for the past 15 years, which is why i play games like COD4 alot, those games are more sporting and the competition is much more pure and rewarding, except for all the hackers.

Maybe i'm just jaded by a few years of disappointing mmos and have lost touch with the elements that made me fall in lovewith mmos  to begin with.

Maybe the past few weeks in AoC trying to get my Conq to 80 in a tiny guild, with few friends so far, playing mostly solo (which i usually don't mind in other games) hasn't been the best experience, and being the latest experience i have had it is also the freshest in mind.

Or maybe i never loved the massively-multiplayer element to begin with, and just enjoyed certain rpgs that just happen to also be mmos.

Sun Jul 06 2008 7:09AM Report writes:
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