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Ways of forcing players to play together without risk of getting griefed?


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#1 glhf   Banned   -  Reputation: -585

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 01:28 PM

This can be in a multiplayer game or an mmo.

If you force 2 or more players to play in a team with each other, What are ways to prevent griefing?
I see it a lot on many games that force players to team, Like for example even WoW battlegrounds.. players join them just to troll or stand around semi-afk.. talking and stuff.
Or in bloodline champions joining a game and just running around waiting for team members to die and then try and try and run away and survive as long as possible from enemies forcing team members to wait bored.. or join and help the enemy by distrupting team members abilities or any other griefing technique.
Left 4 Dead too where you're 4 persons forced to play together... One of your team members gets grabbed and you can be like "i dont need you lol" and leave him to die... rambo players who just run in and suicide.
I mean I can make an endless list for an endless list of games how ways you can grief in teams you were forced to play in.


I think it might not be possible?
And only thing they can do to make it less destructive when you get griefed is to make the game as casual as possible... no penalties for losing.. just small almost meaningless rewards for winning.. just some fun gameplay you can get into and be done with in a few mins.

but Im a fan of games that have more depth and meaning to it..

So some food for thought..
lets brainstorm anyone thats interested in this topic!

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#2 JonBMN   Members   -  Reputation: 701

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 01:55 PM

Your on the right track, but an example for a left 4 dead grief blocker would be not letting each other get more than 20 feet away from each other. When it comes to griefing though, its really all about the people your playing with. I think the one sure fire way to not get griefed is develop a community of your friends IE gamers you like to play with, and make it so you really only play with them. I know this can be hard due to meeting the right people online, but its really whether or not people are going to be assholes or not.

#3 Mito   Members   -  Reputation: 816

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 01:57 PM

just send every player that start to do those things back to the start of the game.

be radical.

your team can't won if one member is left to die.

if you mess up with your team, them you are out.

just be radical.

#4 Matias Goldberg   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 3007

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 03:39 PM

You'll find this article very interesting (particularly the 'Journey Apologise Thread')

Edit: The point to extract from the article is that you can't expect your players not to act like jerks if the game itself induces them in a virtual world where they act like a jerk all the time.

Edited by Matias Goldberg, 13 July 2012 - 03:43 PM.


#5 Platinum_Dragon   Members   -  Reputation: 162

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 05:22 PM

I consider free riding a form of griefing. Thus, in my definition, multiplayer cannot get rid of griefing, unless all players are exactly at the same skill level.
I use QueryPerformanceFrequency(), and the result averages to 8 nanoseconds or about 13 cpu cycles (1.66GHz CPU). Is that reasonable?
I though that the assembly equivalent to accessing unaligned data would be something similar to this order:
  • move
  • mask
  • shift
  • move
  • mask
  • shift
  • or
So it seems reasonable to say that it takes 14 cycles for unaligned data since we'll have to do the series of instructions once to access and once to assign?

#6 SIC Games   Members   -  Reputation: 488

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 05:41 PM

This thread is so true! I never played WOW or Left 4 Dead but I can sympathize. I would discuss to the team of a idea of bringing a reward and punishment system for not helping your friends in battle. However, in a program it doesn't realize who or what anyone is doing. So, the person being attacked would have to send out a Distress state. If he's in distress then who ever is available saves them - get's say 20 points experience or whatever reward you offer. Or...if you wanna be a pain int he arse then you could say Failed Mission then this will surely have them go, "Oh, I'm suppose to help my friends? Damn! Okay!" Cause everyone wants to beat the game, right?

So, while in a Distress State - log out who's attacking who, log who's the attacker and check to see if anyone's firing at attacker. If not and team mate dies, then punish them. I'm pretty sure it wouldn't be fend for yourself if a loved ones were being attacked, right? This is the same moral principle that would apply. Team is like family - treat your team right and they'll treat you well. So, say if the player helped out then the other team member could say, "Thanks man, I owe you!" Law of Reciprocation. (I scratch your back, scratch mine kind of thnig). Get it? Anyways, if this helps then cool!

Game Engine's WIP Videos - http://www.youtube.com/sicgames88


#7 tim_shea   Members   -  Reputation: 460

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 09:10 PM

Cause everyone wants to beat the game, right?

Nope. In fact, most of the time if a person is causing trouble for their teammates, doing stupid things, or intentionally not contributing it's exactly because they simply don't care very much what the outcome is.

I think it might not be possible?
And only thing they can do to make it less destructive when you get griefed is to make the game as casual as possible... no penalties for losing.. just small almost meaningless rewards for winning.. just some fun gameplay you can get into and be done with in a few mins.

I think this is exactly the wrong idea. Players will mess around more the less consequence and interest the game maintains. A fairly slow paced game like WoW is not going to keep a player's attention all the time, so you'll inevitably have people playing games inside the game. The highly repetitive nature of WoW doesn't help. I would guess that it applies less so to Left 4 Dead, but it's much the same thing. L4D was awesome, scary, and intense the first (and perhaps second) play through each level, but by the time you've played each level 5 or 6 times, they get a bit mundane (personally, I think this is because of the linearity). Cue the griefers.
My suggestion would be, if you're really worried about people not taking your game seriously, eliminate unnecessary repetition, and produce more exciting content. When a player is having a great time, their much less likely to try and ruin someone else's.

#8 glhf   Banned   -  Reputation: -585

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 07:18 AM


Cause everyone wants to beat the game, right?

Nope. In fact, most of the time if a person is causing trouble for their teammates, doing stupid things, or intentionally not contributing it's exactly because they simply don't care very much what the outcome is.

I think it might not be possible?
And only thing they can do to make it less destructive when you get griefed is to make the game as casual as possible... no penalties for losing.. just small almost meaningless rewards for winning.. just some fun gameplay you can get into and be done with in a few mins.

I think this is exactly the wrong idea. Players will mess around more the less consequence and interest the game maintains. A fairly slow paced game like WoW is not going to keep a player's attention all the time, so you'll inevitably have people playing games inside the game. The highly repetitive nature of WoW doesn't help. I would guess that it applies less so to Left 4 Dead, but it's much the same thing. L4D was awesome, scary, and intense the first (and perhaps second) play through each level, but by the time you've played each level 5 or 6 times, they get a bit mundane (personally, I think this is because of the linearity). Cue the griefers.
My suggestion would be, if you're really worried about people not taking your game seriously, eliminate unnecessary repetition, and produce more exciting content. When a player is having a great time, their much less likely to try and ruin someone else's.


I don't agree becuase as u said... griefers are not playing to win... they enjoy ruining others fun.
So if you add death penalties to the game.. the griefers will be able to do even more harm by sabotaging the team.
And this would be too much harm for the normal players to keep playing.. because there's nothing they could do then to stop dying constantly because of griefers and losing their progress.
Even players that enjoy death penalties would probably quit just because there's nothing they can do about it.. they get automatically teamed with a griefer... now they die.

Thats why I think it needs to be very casual game where the victim of griefers can just say "that asshole... oh well *shrug* next game, hopefully no griefer this time"

Edited by glhf, 14 July 2012 - 07:19 AM.


#9 Waterlimon   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2368

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 09:33 AM

Griefers dont usually do it to ruin the fun of others but rather to have more fun for themselves or see what happens when they do something which they cant do without hurting others.


So dont give everyone explosives and instruct them to build a fragile bridge to the other side of the river.


You could make griefers a part of the game. Make it possible to lets say lock up players somewhere so if someone is being destructive, the team can throw him in a room and lock it and have fun shooting at his legs through a window. They could also take his equipment so losing a player wouldnt be as harmful to the team. And a way for people to see how someone has been doing in his last games, so if its a plain obvious griefer he can be locked up from the start (if someone is locked up/without equipment, the "mark" in his data saying he hasnt done a thing to help the team should slowly disappear)


For example, there could be a points used/points earned thing in every players stats.

If they play normally, they receive gear (adds to points used), and then do stuff which earns them points.

If someone has been griefing (low points earned, high used), people will start locking him up from the start. The player should throw his equipment away (or the other players take it to prevent him from escaping or something), which makes the used points unused again (the points he used to get the gear when the game started). That way he wont keep earning nor using points, and the earned/used points data should approach 0 over time, so after a while he will just look like a normal newbie and can start playing normally again.

Waterlimon (imagine this is handwritten please)


#10 Legendre   Members   -  Reputation: 963

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 09:39 AM

IMHO forcing players to play together is not good game design. Most of the time, the team is better off having a leader. But it is no fun being a follower. This can be in the working world where employees usually hate their job because they feel like drones without free will while entrepreneurs love their work because they get to lead and innovate.

I am not sure why games like Counterstrike and DOTA works. Personally I had a lot of problem playing them because it always degenerates into a well organized 5 player team with a good leader dominating everyone else. However, since these essentially "forces" players to play together in the same team, it might be useful for you to see how they do it.

Edited by Legendre, 14 July 2012 - 09:40 AM.


#11 Wiggin   Members   -  Reputation: 374

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 09:49 AM

I've played a lot of HON, which has a solution of sorts - if you're good enough at the game, your automatic rating will increase, and the game will give you team mates who also have high ratings, none of which can be griefers, or their rating would be lower.

If you're new to the game however, you will start off with a low rating and be grouped up with griefers, so... it's a double edged sword.

#12 Mratthew   Members   -  Reputation: 1493

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 11:24 AM

Its the most fun to be a griefer if you can bug other players and be good at the game to boot. So design the game to accommodate these players but not encourage their play style. Encourage proper teamplay gameplay style with perks and incentives for good team play (keeping each other alive).

In a team deathmatch, ensure players on the same side can "team up" to accomplish goals together separate from griefers on their side. Make failure personal and accomplishments shared amongst those that have accomplished it. In combat the first goal should always be survival. As a team, it should be designed that players can survive longer when they're taking care of each other. A player should never feel underfoot even if they're trying to be. Griefers will fail at survival first if the game design relies on team play since their lone wolf game play style isn't designed to succeed. It shouldn't be fun to be a griefer.

To boot, make it easy for players to teach griefers to play well. Tactical requests should exist in every team/co-op game. The ping system is dated and useless. A player should be able to choose another player(s) on their side and issue a basic tactical requests (waypoint location, engage target, retreat or aggro suppression). Positive reinforcement like incentives for success (success and incentive decided by the player) encourage "proper gameplay" while not reprimanding someone for deciding how they want to have fun. A basic ignore system (like chat ignore) to deal with tactical spammers should do the trick. You don't need to choose a leader you need the choice of following good leadership.

#13 w00tf0rfr00t   Members   -  Reputation: 159

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 12:55 PM

An important thing to keep in mind is that griefing can be very difficult to define. Your description of "rambo players" is a perfect example of this, as skilled players will appear very rambo-esque to the less experienced. In L4D, one of my friends and I would often blitz to the end of a level, trying to not stop for anything. We won tons of games doing this, but unfortunately our other friends thought we were griefing because they couldn't keep up. One might assume that we were abandoning them, yet somehow both of us always made it to the safehouse together. We definitely helped eachother, it was just too fast paced for others to handle. With this in mind, I would be careful about automatic anti-grief systems as they can actually punish your skilled, hardcore players. Alienating them is a huge mistake.

#14 glhf   Banned   -  Reputation: -585

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 01:11 PM

An important thing to keep in mind is that griefing can be very difficult to define. Your description of "rambo players" is a perfect example of this, as skilled players will appear very rambo-esque to the less experienced. In L4D, one of my friends and I would often blitz to the end of a level, trying to not stop for anything. We won tons of games doing this, but unfortunately our other friends thought we were griefing because they couldn't keep up. One might assume that we were abandoning them, yet somehow both of us always made it to the safehouse together. We definitely helped eachother, it was just too fast paced for others to handle. With this in mind, I would be careful about automatic anti-grief systems as they can actually punish your skilled, hardcore players. Alienating them is a huge mistake.


Well, a team is only as strong as the weakest link.
As the saying goes :D

So you really should of cut the pace down and helped the weaker members.. thats what a team is.
It's another issue tho about getting teamed with equally skilled players.

#15 n00b0dy   Members   -  Reputation: 103

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 02:45 PM

Hi, i have the ABSOLUTE IDEA that can make all games GRIEF IMMUNE.

Bot multiplaying :

Forbid player from playing a multiplaying game, instead a bot is made that inpersonates the player,
the bot learns slowly by watching the player, and starts using the same moveset,
a heristic function could allow extracting the player goals, to allow behaving like him.

For example the player in his seperate machine is satan that has killed everyone, but
on the machines of all other players he is a kind loving person that helps everyone like jesus.

The bot will be immune to all behaviors that are considered griefing or not prethought by the programmers
and thus wont learn them.

There you go, you have your grief immune game.

Bot Battle efficiency: ( Symbol "->" : Pwn )

Hardcoded bots -> Humans -> Human emulating bots.

Hardcoded bots always play better than humans because they know all game rules and have 0 lag, thus they are gods.
Human emulating bots follow a flawed algorithm that a flawed human taught it (Only bots can play perfect).

Advantages:
1) Unlimited amount of players. Can clone same bot.
2) They are still living organisms, its like your dog, it cannot talk to you, but it can play with you,
and do some predefined commands.

Disadvantages:
1) Poor chat dictionary, bots would only be apply to communicate with 5-10 icons (happy, i help you, need help, i leave).

How will infuence the gameplay ? will it make it funnier ?

Edited by n00b0dy, 14 July 2012 - 02:48 PM.


#16 Mratthew   Members   -  Reputation: 1493

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Posted 15 July 2012 - 11:52 AM

One might assume that we were abandoning them, yet somehow both of us always made it to the safehouse together. We definitely helped eachother, it was just too fast paced for others to handle. With this in mind, I would be careful about automatic anti-grief systems as they can actually punish your skilled, hardcore players. Alienating them is a huge mistake.


Your talking about specifically co-op gaming with L4D. Or the comp stomp in other games. What you're describing is classic griefing gameplay, you are suppose to work as a team to accomplish a goal. You are dropping the rest of the team under the assumption that you're "higher skill" (chosen tactic to win) is more important then the experience of the players your suppose to be playing with.

The focus of the design I'm talking about discourages this because the type of gameplay your describing is exactly what ruins a co-opertive gaming experience. Play the single player game if you have no interest in enjoying playing with others. The game clearly isn't designed to encourage you to show other players this "better way to play" (the tactic of running to the end) and thats the flaw of the game not you. If it had a simple waypoint system like I suggested you could simply place the waypoint for the other players and enjoy the game the way you suggest. Showing others that this is a superior way to play. Leading by example. Because other players could see your persistent stats of this "better way to play" from past games and you can earn the respect of other players. Giving them a reason to follow you.

I'm not discouraging a skilled player from team play, they're should always be a good sharp shooter in a team but they should be sighting threats and clearing priority targets. Good tactical players should be issuing targets to their team and moving the team safely to the waypoint, using cover, suppression, flanking and prioritizing threats. Good operational player should be able to create objective waypoints to obtain victory in the mission goal (if the game doesn't handle this) and a good strategist should be able to take account for the resources at hand and being obtained and use them as efficiently as possible, allocating them (as weapons, tools, etc) between the groups and creating goals for the teams to achieve (again if the game doesn't handle this already). The last tier is the peoples that populate the game, they should be the defining factor as to why the fighting is happening in the first place and technically could be player driven as well (in an ungodly complex game) these peoples could decide on goals for the strategist to achieve. Every group of players in a game can have a good structure, it should be up to the players to quickly define that structure and achieve the game's goals.

"Authority should be defined by the people that govern it and not by the threat of force." -Barbie, Toy Story 3

#17 w00tf0rfr00t   Members   -  Reputation: 159

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Posted 15 July 2012 - 07:04 PM

What you're describing is classic griefing gameplay, you are suppose to work as a team to accomplish a goal. You are dropping the rest of the team under the assumption that you're "higher skill" (chosen tactic to win) is more important then the experience of the players your suppose to be playing with.


But that is not true, as we clearly defined in this topic that griefers don't play to win. We had a winning strategy, just not one that everyone was competent at. Until you consider a wider array of possible ways to play your game (and not to mention, agree on a definition of griefing), designing a way to prevent griefing will either be impossible, counter-productive, and/or impact your target audience.

#18 jefferytitan   Members   -  Reputation: 1679

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Posted 15 July 2012 - 10:19 PM

Winning ruthlessly is totally different to griefing. Griefing comes under Byzantine game theory and is a very hard problem. Often griefers don't care if they suffer as a result of their own mischief. I've read of classic griefing situations where griefers passively protested by forming a human wall in a no-PvP area, or intentionally strengthened monsters, or a tutorial guide trapped his noobs in an area full of dragons, or used replicating monsters to crash a server. Their winning scenario can be entirely outside the game, so very hard to counter. Also griefers have been known to use anti-griefing rules against innocents, e.g. making themselves look like the aggrieved party. It's like hacking. Unless you allow people to do basically nothing, there will always be holes. Now detecting them quickly, auditing well enough to track and undo their actions, etc... that may be worthwhile investigating.

#19 Mratthew   Members   -  Reputation: 1493

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Posted 16 July 2012 - 12:35 AM

Thanks Jeffertitan. I think the only way to accomplish this is to make failing at the game leave a player in a lesser state of responsibility toward achieving the win condition. Keeping a weak player in a state of being weak unless the weak player chooses to seek help and work towards being better. For example, if players are fighting a comp stomp style game and a player is griefing, the offer for other players to help would be turned down, a weak player may turn it down as well unless they understand that their character can be more effective because of accepting help. The key to making this work is to temporarily remove some of the control from the weak player after they agree to this help, like reducing them to a rail shooter with tactically bot controlled movement, maybe auto-aiming targets, or placing them in a spectator only type role with the responsibility of gathering intelligence for the rest of the team. I might give the character boosts as well to keep them alive longer to accomplish more. The change needs to be visually obvious in PVP situations but it still applies. This helps to weed out the newbs from the greifing.

AI coded to target the weak helps to encourage the team to work together and in PVP, weak players can be made more apparent for enemies to target as well. This weeding out the weak method ensures griefers are targeted for straying from the herd, if you will.

Player allocated incentives are important to encourage the community of gamers to handle "what is proper gameplay" themselves. Instead of focusing on players chastising other players (reporting,etc) , we should focus on giving players tools to bring them together. While in the background the game is designed to shake out those that aim to ruin the experience. I think most importantly a game is defined by how it handles a griefer once its been identified.

I'm thinking public display of gamer skill, put the griefer alone in a survival mode match and allow for "active spectators". Maybe let other players spend persistent score points on arming the waves of AI. Or even having players deployed in the waves along side the AI characters. Its fun, if a player is falsely accused its not a big deal and spectating games is getting to be a pretty big deal.

#20 Caldenfor   Members   -  Reputation: 323

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 10:37 PM

Remove griefing from the equation as much as possible, don't try to work around it.


*EDIT*
Oh, the -1 probably wanted me to solve the issues as well.

The issue I have that needs to be addressed is in regards to the MMO portion of the discussion, as multiplayer is certainly quite different.

Scenarios/Battlegrounds: Why rely on them? Is it because you don't feel you can include enjoyable PvP game aspects without them? If you remove them from your plans you instantly remove the capability to grief within them, either through lack of activity or actual ruining of fun.

What do you do instead? Provide an open world experience where the players can interact in various ways, but not in a FFA PvP atmosphere. FFA PvP is a bad idea for an MMO in our current development world.

"But that kills realism! If I see someone I want to be able to kill them." :: Seriously? It is a game. There needs to be restrictions put into place to ensure the enjoyable aspects of a game. There are several different ways to handle player interaction in an open world environment other than FFA PvP. There is the RvR system established by Dark Age of Camelot which can only truly work if PvP lands and PvE lands are almost always separated, potential for realm invasions is too cool to ignore completely. There are simple faction systems. You could rely on Guild vs Guild combat rather than larger factions if you so choose, but for me the solution is a combination of several different mechanics blended to make an enjoyable, yet still risky game world.

For the solution I have in mind I would prefer to save the details for dedicated teams that would see it through to completion. An evolution from Ultima Online without the FFA PvP problems. Being able to steal is a must for the solution to thrive.

Edited by Caldenfor, 19 July 2012 - 07:57 AM.





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