Darkfall Online Etiquette Tips
MMORPG.com Darkfall Correspondent Kelly Price writes this helful guide to the sometimes bizarre etiquette of the brutal sandbox PvP MMO, Darkfall Online.
Well here we are again, folks, at the precipice of a new and exciting cliff known as Darkfall Online. But this cliff is a lot steeper and much scarier than previous ones we've encountered, not to mention the fact that you cannot see the end at all. This game is very different from any other MMO out there, which means new rules and new a new skill set for player survival. And so, before the vast multitudes of stampeding noobs take the plunge, I would like to take some time to talk about etiquette in the world of Agon.
Since survival is tied to how you (or how you don't) interact with people, let us begin there. Darkfall is a PvP game. You will not find the same old rules of decorum here. Some would say that etiquette is nonexistant in a PvP game such as this, everyone is allowed to be a bastard, and it's a true dog eat dog world out there. To some extent this is true, but I tend to believe that, even in a game as "hardcore" as Darkfall, there is still a need for a special kind of etiquette to ensure one's survival. One thing is for sure, though: be prepared for some intense culture shock.
I am not here to put forth arbitrary or self-righteous rules that would undermine the hardcore-PvP-sandbox nature of the game. Yes, you will get PK'd relentlessly (there is a "Gank" skill for heaven's sake!), you will lose hours of farming at someone's whim, you will be chased for half an hour even though you have no gear/gold to be stolen, you will be witness to incredibly vulgar player names and conversation, and you will most definitely be cheated out of that awesome loot you worked so hard for, and to top it off, this is all allowed by the mechanics of the game! So no, you shouldn't "ask nicely before you loot a corpse," and no, don't bother "stepping back to allow Player 1 to take that harvesting node," and most definitely don't "rez the poor guy right who died next to you." Chances are that corpse will be looted faster than you can utter a single syllable, the innocent harvester will whip out his polearm and PK you, and the "poor guy" will just kill you later when you are at low health.
The only true rule I believe that applies to this game is what I will call the 'Golden Rule of Darkfall' (took me hours to think of that title!). "Treat others as you would expect them to treat you (and expect bad things!)" Once you learn this, you will game happier and safer.
But since you are now whining that I didn't go over the other various (common sense) rules of MMO Ettiquette, I will now rehash them for your enjoyment:
- As in any other game, please do not spam channels for help or any other reason. If someone didn't answer you the first or second time, they aren't going to answer after the 900th time. Also, people will probably not answer you if it is obvious you put forth no effort to figure out the answer for yourself. (In fact, in this game you can and will get PK'd, and quite possibly griefed, for idiocy such as this.) But don't feel slighted or frustrated if nobody answers; it probably means no one else knows the answer either.
- Don't ask questions like "Where do you guys farm gold around here?" or "What's the best money-maker?" because you can bet someone will either A. lead you to certain doom in a guise of good-will, or B. you will be told in a strongly-worded fashion to return to a particularly popular MMO of the low-polygonal variety.
- Public chat is not /shout or /say. Generally it is reserved for matters that require immediate attention (for example, "Group of 6 Ork PKers west of Monkfiedl!") or perhaps a brief snarky comment directed at that jerk who stole your gear. Also, if you speak in public chat you are letting everyone in your area/chunk know you are there. Yelling "Mirdain looking for group at troll camp!" actually gets interpreted as "defenseless little noob, possibly with gear and loot in his backpack, looking for the nearest alfar to eat his soul!" In other words, be smart and keep your mouth shut.
- The pure freedom this game allows will without doubt draw a few immature self-righteous idiots that will claim they have the right be to total bastards, proclaiming "I am just being me!" Well, there is no excuse, even in Darkfall, for being a cruel and shameless bastard. Have fun, but please don't drag down the rest of the server by spamming chat with infantile behavior. (We don't care that your ping is "over 9000!!1!1!") If you just have to 'be yourself,' be yourself by yourself, please.
- Never ever accept a blind party invite. Period. On the flip side, never send out even a well-intentioned blind party invite. In either case you will probably die.
- Don't get angry, get even. Nothing is worse than seeing someone complain because they were killed. To be honest everyone shares your pain, but they don't care to hear your vent-fest... or they will enjoy the taste of your tears. There is a place for venting, it's called clan chat (even there they will probably get tired of it).
- The /ignore command is your saving grace if you just can't handle someone. Don't sink to their level by giving in to the urge to get in the last word. It will just make you look more ridiculous than your adversary. (But make sure to mark them down on your KoS list!)
Simply knowing the "culture" of Darkfall is not enough. There are many things that newbies will have to learn to survive, and it is quite a steep learning curve... or cliff! (*nudge nudge* See what I did there?) In the next part, I will outline what I believe are the most important, and perhaps less-known, guidelines for survival in Agon.