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trapdoor

All fantasy RPG's and alignment

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Wether it be MMO's, singleplayer RPG's or some other form of multiplayer, I've always wondered about alignment. While most classes / races don't matter so much about alignment, some do. Such as Paladin. I will use Paladin (or monk) as they are the best example of what I mean. Their alignment is lawful good. It is not possible in the true DnD world for a Paladin to be evil or unlawful. Should they go down that path, they cease to be Paladins and lose all respective abilities. In a singleplayer game, it is somewhat possible to control this. It is built into the engine. But what about multiplayer. (I don't care if it's just simple multiplayer like Diablo or if it's MMO like Everquest or World of Warcraft). From a DnD point of view, you can't have Paladins running around killing everything they see and quite often mocking their enemies. They are supposed to be Knights of Light, even though they may be a little stuck up about it. But the problem comes in as to how to check if a pally is being "mean". GM's will be much more busy with catching cheaters and responding to bug reports than to chase after pallies being mean. So the question comes in (I won't forget to ask this time), how do you check or ensure that pallies play right? Now I want to make sure that people get the right idea. I don't want a game where the GM's or server admins will slap the wrist of any naughty pally. I want it to be more server based and make it look like the Light the Paladins worship has turned its back on the Paladins as a direct result of their own forsaking the light.

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Have a series of massive quests in which a character can become a paladin, or they can become an evil version of a paladin (whatever that might be). But make the quest teach the player. Because you can't force a player to be good or evil they have to choose it. You could however have them do quests that show them what a paladin is supposed to do. If they don't do it too bad.

If all else fails punish the player by using some higher power that will hurt their paladin powers. Since paladins are holy, doing something like killing small animals for fun in a game would hurt them. This could be hard to implement, or you could use faction based gameplay like WoW uses. Paladins are on the good side and such.

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How about using ‘Class Points’??

These points will decide how much of a paladin you are.

Example: Doing any action/quest that shows loyalty to the specific class will gain class points for that class and also loss points for other classes that defies the current class (like: QUEST #32 -> +2 PLD, +1 WAR, -2 THF, -5 DRK, etc…)

What do these have to do with class performance? Well, I really don’t think it’s a good idea to decrease the performance of the player’s PLD depending on the class point. But as a reward (or penalty) a major skill may be available or not depending on how many points you have.

So you can be a bad PLD, but as a penalty you won’t be able to use (from the top of my head) a powerful skill that increases your DEF 3 times for 3 mins. Of course, you can live without this skill. You can still kill and join teams and even be a good tank. But having the higher skills would make life a little bit easier :)

Just a thought.

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If you're playing a game where people call paladins "pallies", then there is no hope of enforcing roleplaying. You seem to be basing your complaint on WoW. Nearly everyone in WoW knows that paladins are supposed to be holy warriors, but nobody cares. They just want to pwn hordes and lol. The amount of GMs that would need to be hired to enforce proper roleplaying in the chat channels is unimaginable.

Roleplay enforcement only works in small-scale games, like pen&paper or Reasonably Sized Multiplayer Online RPG's (RSMORPG's) like Neverwinter Nights.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
personally, id just give the mods the ability to remove a paladins ability for a month, if that happened often enough, I doubt you would find many mean paladins ^.^

there gift of light is supplosly given by the 'god's', they should be free to remove it at will

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NeverWinter Nights handles this by tracking a character's actions. A lawful-good character starts with a number of lawful "points" and a number of good "points". If your character then runs around stealing items from people's homes, you lose lawful points. If you get below a certain number of points, you become neutral. Further loss of points moves you towards chaotic.

The same goes for evil/neutral/good. If you kill a good player/npc without provocation, you lose good points. Lose too many points, and you find yourself evil.

Similarly, certain actions can add lawful or good points.

Also, certain quests can add/subtract points.

If your alignment reaches a point outside that allowed for your class, you can no longer progress in that class.

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It would be almost as easy to do this in multiplayer games as single player. Every action in the game, be it between a single player and NPCs, or between players and other players can be detected and checked by the engine ... so when you "initiate combat" with an opponent (of any sort), it can adjust whatever values it tracks appropriatly (for instance if opponent is "neutral" it can raise your "aggresiveness / cruelty" factor or if they are highly evil it can increase your "crusader of light" rating. Likewise if your game supports loot choices, it can track the value of all loot the palidin earns, and then when the visit the town it could give them like 1 hour to tithe appropriately or suffer the consequences. Likewise giving money to "good" allies could aid your ratings, but trading with "bad" people could hurt your purity. Etc.. of course you can be as heavy or light handed in these effects and details as you want.

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As others have said, yes, it's easy to mark certain interactions with NPCs as "evil" and hit the paladin with evil points because of that. But I think the original poster knows that, and is questioning how to stop paladins from talking smack to other players in an online game and stop them from just acting like asshats all the time, as many MMO players are fond of doing. There isn't a way to do this. You could try and have the profanity filter pick up every time the paladin says "lolz ur ghey f4g" and hit him with an evil point, but then paladins will just start saying "lolz ur ghaye ph4g" instead. I believe what the original poster is looking for is a way to enforce a certain amount of actual human decency towards other people in an MMO, which currently there is no algorithm for. That's why GM's exist.

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I believe what the OP is looking for is ways to assess and respond to complex in game actions in a multiplayer enviroment WITHOUT the use of GMs, and with rules that seem correct to the game and not just punishment for enforcement of arbitrary rules.

The key to doing it I think is not any change from the conventional single-player engine method of accessing and responding to situations as detected and programmed for by the engine. I think the key is just getting smarter and smarter assesment and response systems in place, things that can handle many of the common "gray" area of multiplayer games ...

truthfully I think it would be easy for a paladin, but hard for the general case ... why? because a paladin is SO rigidly controlled that you can assess most actions fairly easily and ridgidly (attacking a good person because they insulted your mother is not acceptable paladin behavior ... dealing with an evil player because he offers you good is not acceptable paladin behavior ...) and when in doubt the game offers things like "detect evil" "detect good" that can be used by the player to make choices that arent't obvious. Heck you can even provide a "Pray for Guidance" feature the paladins could use to get help. Either something where they click on target and pray for guidance and it accesses common actions and tells them how the god might feel about them ... or a google like system where you "pray for guidance" ... on "Grektar trade orb of light" and it searches for hits and their associated "good/evil" values. Obviously hard to implement, but getting easier all the time.

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Firstly, should I enforce such strict paladin playing, I would also have such races where the opposite is the case. Say for undead / vampire / lycan, if you go kindly upon any character without the reason of "boredom was preventing you" then you'd be labeled a sympathizer. But anyway.

I had this idea where volunteers who will be chosen as from those who take the game way too seriously, can vouche as a "council" or maybe the light themselves. It was always a goal of mine to give the player something to do with there's nothing to do. such as travelling or if they dont' feel like doing anything etc. Maybe they can do it as a power trip.


I think there's a lot that can be captured by the engine, but stuff such as chat is much more difficult. Even still, there are situations where the right thing to do may not be to help or attack. There might be a bigger distress or enemy to vanquish than what is posed right infront of them.

Knocking good points off for attacking a lower level for no reason or whatever. Even still, I can see how it's going to be extremely complicated.

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