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Old 09-23-2004, 03:18 AM   #1
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I play Avendar: The Crucible of Legends which has restricted player killing.  I am not so sure I really like that concept but I am also not sure that a mud based on a ROM derivative can get away from it.  I find myself strongly disliking the unreasonable protection allowed to low level character who in turn act much more aggressively than they should.  Open PK makes sense to me and my time spent on Armageddon was extremely enjoyable.

Would taking out relative levels factors from the combat equations work or simply make matters more confusing? Do not get me wrong I love the game just curious as to where the majority of players and Immortals stand with respect to PK.

Psektos aka Cawaell.
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Old 09-23-2004, 02:03 PM   #2
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Ultimately systems that restrict PK do so for the following reasons:

1] to protect newbies to the game who may not have adequately developed defensive skills.  Every game need a steady stream of new players to survive in the long run, and getting PK'd with no chance of defending yourself is a powerful reason to quit a game.
2] to protect players somewhat from being griefed.   Getting killed over and over again without provocation is no fun.

Ultimately griefing in general (PK or not) is a social problem,  and the solution is much like preventing harassment in the real world.  You must provide social consequences.  There are a number of games that have essentially solved the problem in this fashion.  Achaea, Dragon Realms, and Evarn come to mind.  

Simple code systems alone cannot solve PK, you have to address the social aspect as well.
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Old 09-23-2004, 02:51 PM   #3
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Almost every game has restrictions to PK, they're just not coded. You realize that you can't kill the person 30 levels higher than you, so you don't. Even in Arm there are restrictions. If you kill X noble, you yourself will be hunted down by enough people that you will die, so you don't attempt it.

I agree, the social aspect is a very large part of it. You have to put people in the appropriate mindset. This mindset is often that their actions have consequences. This is often lost in the responsibility sink that is the internet, and must be enforced much more stringently than in real life. This can be done by having nasty, coded cityguards that throw you in jail and/or beat you up, or a policing clan that follows up on murders.

With a system like this, a level-based enforcement becomes much less necessary. As long as the police/cityguards/army remain a sufficient annoyance to even the highest-level players, murderers will think twice before PKing, and thus, PK will actually mean something.

I come from an RP required place, so my views on PK itself aren't very helpful, as we've only had half a dozen or so direct one-on-one murders since our inception. It basically works the same way as a normal medieval society: you kill, and you're hunted down by the law and put on display as you yourself are killed. Having permdeath doesn't hurt, I suppose.
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Old 09-23-2004, 03:18 PM   #4
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I also agree with the idea of PK restrictions. I myself run a full-pk Mud, where the only interactions players have is usually in order to kill eachother, and if it's not, it involves trying to kill someone else. Still, under certain conditions, players have a pk protection.

Newbies, for example, have full protection for the first 5 hours of play.
Players who somehow lost their link, unless they obviously did it on purpose, are protected.
And it is also discouraged to attack players multiple times in a certain timeframe by having the players not gain score for it.

However, the newbie and linkdead protections aren't coded. Why? Well it's simple - abuse. People would see coded protection as an opportunity to create new characters for the purpose of spying or annoying people, and be invincible. Or go linkdead the moment they are attacked. That's why these rules remain as rules and not coded protections.

So in summary, my opinion is that PK rules should be rules, unless they are extremely firm and un-abusable, in which case they can be coded... but from my experience with people - they always find a way to abuse things, so let a human being decide.
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Old 09-23-2004, 03:35 PM   #5
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Personally, I think restrictions - social or otherwise - are just common sense if it's an RP game.

Age of Reptiles taught me that; if there are no - or few - restrictions of any kind on PK, then feuds are far too prone to getting out of hand and decimating the whole MU*.
There's a self-imposed ban on PK if it's avoidable at AoR now; we've seen how bad things can get if there isn't such a restriction and we'd rather avoid going down a route that enevitably frustrates and drives everyone away.

Yes, we have conflicts all the time; it's part of the nature of the MU*. But we try to resolve them without PK.
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Old 09-23-2004, 04:14 PM   #6
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Any and every good PK mud, has to have some sort of restrictions, if it didnt, no player would reach a high level, they would give up and quit.

I find that on my mud, most players get upset about the protection I have installed, which is that you can not be attacked, or attack another player outside an arena, under five hours and not in a clan.

This is to help new players adjust to the game, without fear of being killed over and over, and able to learn.

Of course, this is all just for me, others may see it in a diff. light. But hey, fun times either way, becides, we all want someone with a little more knowledge of the game to fight, otherwise why do it?

Kinni - Owner/Coder/ect. Of Mayhem.
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Old 09-23-2004, 05:13 PM   #7
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In an RP mud, giving newbs a magical protection against people of high levels just makes no sense at all (though having levels on an RP mud is just stupid anyway). Since RP governs interactions between people, PK restrictions aren't really needed. You usually have to **** people off for them to kill you (or be in the wrong place at the wrong time like in a war, mugged by bandits...) and people who **** others off without being able to back it up through fighting skill, hired protection, or politcal power, generally die pretty quickly.

In an RPI, killing a PC is just like killing an NPC (assuming the NPC isn't like an animal or something) so there really isn't a need to pose restrictions on PK other than that it has to be feasible RP-wise for your char to do it.
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Old 09-23-2004, 05:45 PM   #8
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We have a system where the player has a choice of becoming a Pkiller, by registering as such. You can only attack and kill other registered Pkillers, all others are auto-protected by the code.  

You also cannot register before level 9. Apart from that there are no level restrictions,  a level 50 player can attack a level 10 and vice versa. (The reason for this is that with our remort system a level 10, tier 4, multiple remort might stand a pretty good chance against a first remort level 50).

Our reason for choosing this system is the same as most others already have stated; to protect new players against the occasional rogue pkillers who seem to think that killing defenceless newbies is fun. But we also have it to protect those of the players who prefer to explore and pursue the quests in peace, without having to watch their back all the time.

Sure thare have been incidents at times with cocky newbies who think they can verbally taunt the older players just because they are protected by the PK code. But those who are foolish enough to do this never seem last very long in the game. It's hard enough to advance in a new game without getting yourself a lot of enemies among the established players. Newbies that act like jerks usually don't get any help from the older players, nobody wants to group with them, and they get ridiculed over gossip. And if they are foolish enough to go PK at a low level, the other pkillers will remember their past, and give them a pretty hard time.

Things like that are usually best sorted out by the players themselves.
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Old 09-23-2004, 06:11 PM   #9
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First, let me explain my definition of restrictions: Some form of stated rule(s), that is enforced, either coded or verbally, by the administration of the game.

With that - I agree with dragon master. If you are trying for a Role Playing game of any depth, having restrictions on PKing by the admin just ruins the focus from the beginning. If your game truly is RP - then let your players and your RP handle it. The players will be able to handle it better anyways - since they are the ones that drive and fous the RP in a game.

As a side note, Wik - Most medivel law systems were very corrupt, and coudln't be trusted. It usually worked out that he with the most money got whatever he wanted from the "law". The system everyone is talking about more closely resembles modern law systems - were the citizens have some degree of responsibility to each other, and MOST law officials can be MOSTLY trusted to provide safety and protection for everyone.
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Old 09-23-2004, 06:50 PM   #10
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The answer to this question really comes down to:

Do you want players on your mud to be killing each other as a matter of course?

If the answer is yes, you want to institute some form of restricted PK. I'll come back to what I mean by that.

If the answer is no, you either want no PK whatsoever, or totally open PK. A mud like Armageddon is a good example of the former... it's very possible for players to kill each other, but due to the way the game is set up, it's not a matter of course either. It would never be typical in a game like that to kill another player every time you logon.

It all depends on what kind of game you want to make, and that's not about RP or no-RP, despite how some would like it to be so. If your game is meant to chiefly be about the conflict of the players vs. their environment, then picking one of the stances that discourages PK makes sense. If your game is chiefly meant to be about the conflict of players vs each other, then picking one of the stances that encourages PK makes sense.

More on the idea of restricted PK: unless you've created a game where all characters are always roughly equal in power, a form of restricted PK that keeps players only fighting other players roughly equivalent in power makes sense. It's easy to scheme up reasons why this isn't pure RP stupidity if you're of a mind to when worldbuilding... perhaps the gods themselves decree that this is the way things simply work for those born under the proper auspices to grow to be heroes.

One option that's never particularly made much sense to me is the 'willingly flag yourself PKable or not' version. I imagine the PK in such games must be very difficult to balance -- what if I'm flagged PKable so I can hunt, but my five best friends are flagged unPKable and follow me around healing me, scouting my enemies for me, and passing me gear when I need it? How do you make such a thing fair and competitive?
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Old 09-23-2004, 11:54 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by
what if I'm flagged PKable so I can hunt, but my five best friends are flagged unPKable and follow me around healing me, scouting my enemies for me, and passing me gear when I need it? How do you make such a thing fair and competitive?
I would agree with this sentiment. Any system of purely coded PK enforcement rules is going to have loopholes. Even things like automated justice systems that have previously been mentioned can and have been exploited for greifing purposes. Even games which physically don't allow PK still often have loopholes to grief and kill other players. (healing a mob they are fighting, training mobs onto them, etc).

The best solutions I've seen for PK restriction are muds that have a player run government. Sure, you can break the law and kill some random newbie, but you will be hunted down and pay some serious penalties for doing so, possibly being jailed for a certain significant amount of real-time, loseing face with your guild and possibly being kicked out or demoted, or being banished from the city the crime occured in on pain of death.
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Old 09-26-2004, 10:09 PM   #12
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I have found that the best way in a PK MU* to limit the needless (not the context here is a MU* where there is unlimited PK, but it has RP reasons/consequences) was to remove a lot of the benefit for killing as a function of the difference of the players ability (to keep the example simple - we'll just use levels)

[code] exp = normalExp * ( 1 / ( 2 ^ abs( killer.level - victim.level ) );[/quote]

there are still killings of newbies, but they tend to be for RP reasons (A lot of the killing is a racial thing, some races will go out of their way to kill others) There are still same race (same ideaology sometimes, there are people of certain races working for the other team - but they do not stay hidden agents for long if they go around killing at random) but the city guards/soldiers tend to take a dim view of murder

With the benefits removed for a lot of the "unfair" killing there was a drop off in pointless murders
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