[MUD-Dev] Character Restraint & Capture (bounty hunting)

Jester jester at futuremmorpg.org
Wed Feb 25 09:32:50 New Zealand Daylight Time 2004

Brian wrote:
> On Wed, 18 Feb 2004 21:37:16 -0000, Jester wrote:

>> 1. After a character is resurrected they can choose to go along
>> to the judicial court and place a bounty (paid up front) on their
>> killer.

> If it's non-consensual PvP, why should someone have to pay?  If
> you're a newbie and just got PKed by a high level griefer, how can
> you possibly afford to pay a bounty?

> Instead, simply allow them to "report them to the authorities"
> which then automatically generates a bounty.

This presumes a fixed bounty... if the player is permitted to set
the bounty (by paying for it up front) they know that the Pker will
be paying X times more in fines, the more they can afford the more
the Pker suffers when it's time to pay the fine :) and with a
suitably long period in which to 'report' the crime, even newbies
could save up enough for a small bounty.

A Pker killing a wealthy merchant could find himself completely
bankrupted by the level of fine when caught.

>> 3. When they find them they use their skills to subdue and
>> capture the killer

> Ehhh...I don't like that, because there's a chance that a
> competent PK -- or PK guild -- will simply kill the bounty hunters
> chasing after them.

What you cant do by brute force, do by guile, no one ever said
bounty hunting wasn't without it's risks. The skills of the
profession will be suited to doing the task in a variety of ways.

>> 5. The prisoner is then given access to their inventory/bank and
>> must raise enough cash to pay their fine (original bounty *
>> [modifier])

> Too much interaction.  Every time you give the target a choice or
> enforced action, they'll find a way to game it.  Personally I
> would have the result be a fine, with garnishment of loot
> (automatically) to go into the funds of the victim, bounty hunter
> and city.

Players become very attached to items, especially if they are rare,
unique or if they were quested for.

Just talking everything they have is going to be universally
unpopular if the player looses very personal items, I would much
rather give them the chance to avoid that by selling other items or
by empting their account of cash to meet the fine first.

The system is not about making PKing unfeasible but about risk and

>> 6. If the prisoner cannot pay then they will be jailed for a
>> period related to the amount of fine outstanding, or until
>> someone bails them out.

> Too frustrating for the target.

The target KNEW this was a consequence as they made the CHOICE to PK
another player. Don't do the crime if you don't want the (jail) time

The only alternative is just to fine them whatever they have and let
them go. If they keep the minimum of valuables on them and donkey
the rest to another character they could get off virtually free!

> However, I would be leery of victim restitution, since the reward
> system now starts getting to the point where someone might game
> the system

Well there are only two variables to play with:

  The bounty [B] & The city set modifier [M] and the formulae is B *
  M = Fine

The initial bounty is paid for up front by the player and held by
the city until capture, so the bounty hunter always gets paid for
doing his job.

The victim always gets their initial bounty * 3 back or 100% of what
the Killer has if it is less than that.

Presuming the killer had more than B * 3 the city then takes it's

Some cities may punish PKers more harshly by setting M at a higher

The only safeguard we need is a cap on M so that cities do not make
huge profits out of it (possibly *9)

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