[MUD-Dev] Striving for originality

Kwon Ekstrom justice at softhome.net
Thu Jun 6 22:00:56 New Zealand Standard Time 2002


I haven't paid much attention to this thread, but this post caught
my attention (my primary joy as a player being the killing of my
fellow man)

From: <szii at sziisoft.com>
> From: "Matt Chatterley" <matt at eldoops.co.uk>

>> I wonder what the key 'problems' with PvP really are?

>> To me, they seem to be:

>>   1) Newbies getting battered
>>   2) Being able to repeatedly pound or kill the same person, just
>>   because you (the player) don't like them (the player).

Those 2 reasons aren't the problem with pvp, they're a side effect
of a bad pvp social structure.  With a good pvp social structure the
experienced players tend to shield (to an extent) the newbies in
order to keep them as targets in the future (by shield I don't mean
protect them specifically, but rather kill off those who are
particularly abusive to newbies).

As for repeatedly killing the same people, that's an effect of a
small pvp base.

> From my experience, PvP is a problem because a good chunk of
> people don't like the feeling of "being taken advantage of."  That
> goes

Nobody likes to feel taken advantage of... I definitely agree with
that.

> hand in hand with PvP.  People don't like being jumped on CR.
> They hate "wandering mobs" when they're not ready.  People's egos
> are fragile and a prep'd combatent who waylays a person a person
> is almost always GOING TO WIN.  People don't like that.

Depends on the system... generally any decent player can run like
hell and get away (it's alot easier to keep typing in directions
than to track a running opponent)

> In reply:

>   1)  Yes it's a problem.

No it's not a problem.

>   2) Not so much of a problem.  You call in your guild/friends to
>   get them off.

This only works when there are guildmates/friends on  (aka larger player
base) to help.

In my experience, good pkers thrive on action.  In previous threads
someone compared pkers to acheivers, I don't see that.  Pkers are
closer to explorers, they like a challenge, they like to know how to
do things.  They're like an acheiver in the sence that they like to
be able to say "I killed so and so".

Good pkers don't mind being jumped when they're not ready (they're
highly annoyed by it, but it's a fact of life for a pker, get over
it).  To prevent "bad" pker behavior, I find it best if the pkers
themselves enforce the rules.  Generally when I see a pker looting
someone to death or picking on the newbies, I get a few of my
buddies together and wipe him/her out.

The results I've noticed:

  A. Because people don't loot people to nonexistance there's more
  "action" 

  B. Newbies who have pkers leap to their defense when attacked tend
  to return the favor and help defend newbies if/when they acheive
  power.

Pkers are short-term thinkers on the whole... they're looking for
instant gratification.  They'll bitch and moan when there's nobody
on to kill, but they'll run everyone else off if given a chance.
That's why you have to enforce it somehow.  They resent "artificial"
intervention so admin enforced rules will lose respect for you in
the eyes of the players.  Which is why I recommend logging in a pker
and "enforcing" the rules thru a little interaction.

You've got to think about things that affect pkers carefully... as I
said, good pkers are closer to explorers than acheivers.  Once you
introduce something, you can expect them to take advantage of it (if
there is a meaningful advantage to them), which often leads to
abuse.

Case and point, the last "traditional" mud I played a pker on, I was
also a guest admin (actually was a coder there, and made sure they
understood I didn't intend to stay there) where I built up pk (one
of the opposing clans decided they didn't like me... so they went
deadly and tried to kill me).  For a couple of months there was
almost constant pk action it was fun... but not once did I turn loot
on (although it was within my power to) because my clan had alot of
small (decently equipped pkers) and the clan that was trying to kill
us had a few extremely well equipped pkers.  The result of turning
loot on would have killed the other clan.  (We had better pkers on
the whole, and generally twice the number of pkers on as they did).
After I left that mud, the admin who replaced me turned loot on.
Shortly thereafter the good pk died out... why?  Because the players
couldn't help themselves, they looted as much as they could and the
losing side simply quit.

PK is very delicate, and I suggest you have an active pker (a good
one who you've seen in action) run it, or at least be in on
decisions.  It takes alot of work to generate "healthy"
pvp... unless you're going for a spam-kill fest similar to
quake/doom style-games.

-- Kwon J. Ekstrom

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