# Are open pvp + full loot SANDBOX mmorpg's still possible?

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What's the best way to look at this? The zoological angle is intuitive, but a real-world ecosystem depends on large numbers and ratios that can be regulated by natural laws. If a bad winter kills 30% of the elk in a forest, those elk don't respawn, and they can't come whine on the forums about the lousy drop rate of digestible material. In order for the player population to grow and shrink in keeping with the popularity of the game, instead of environmental pressures, the metaphor breaks down unless you start thinking about patches and balance changes as the environmental pressures.

In EvE Online, there was a time when ships had to fly a short distance at sub-warp speed before they could activate a warp gate and teleport out of a solar system. A common practice was to sit right at the gate, wait for them to warp in at 15km and kill them before they got in jump range. When the game's warp mechanic was modified to allow warp-in at 0km, those ambush predators effectively went extinct, and were replaced by fast-locking tacklers who would target ships that had jumping into the system rather than those trying to leave. Many long-time pirates were infuriated by this change, but most quickly adapted. I'd say there were more gate campers before teh change, and I'd say that more loot and glory was available for them to share, as well, so that's an example of a change to the game environment influencing the availability of prey and impacting the predator population. Similarly, the "Incursion" type PvE encounter was reduced in value some time last year, drastically reducing the number of high-value PvE ships floating around with their attention focused on something other than their long-range scanners, so the pirates who preyed on them took a big hit there as well, to the point where many were forced to change their play style to survive.

If the game is in constant flux, and a good team of developers is on hand to tweak and poke and meddle with the fundamental game rules in order to gradually find a balance, and the players are entertained enough to stick with the game throughout the process, I think a good game can be had with full loot PvP, but it's a lot of work, throughout the life of the game. The risk of botching it and alienating the whole player base will never go away. Returning to EvE as an example, I played through several patches that I thought broke the game for me. Paradoxically, I was retained due to my strong emotional connection with the most permanent facet of the game, my character skill level. Since skill points (SP) are gained passively over time, there is no "powerlevelling" and my perseverence became its own reward. Even when I found myself penniless, all my ships dust and my bank balance embarrassingly low, I felt pride in having my SP, and was able to find work with corporations who would front me gear and resources in order to gain my service. SP is more a multiplier than anything, since my four-year character might be 10% more effective than a three-year-old, or 50% more effective than a one-year-old. Day-to-day it doesn't define you or dictate your abilities as much as gear or--ideally--player support will, but if you have a massive, expensive command ship, a player who is certified to fly it and also gets a 12% boost to its output is a huge asset.

So give players some core kernel of merit or worth, something that cannot be taken from them but doesn't totally dictate their practical capabilities, so even when they're broke and lonely they don't feel like they're back to square one. Then put just the right emphasis on obtaining and protecting the more ephemeral assets that determine their actual performance, then throw in some vanity items than can be coveted, then playtest, playtest, playtest.

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I'm talking about these sandbox mmorpg's that have open pvp + full loot.. NOT like darkfall online.. that's a pvp mmo.. not sandbox.
PKs (wolfs) need sheep (miners, PvMers etc) to kill.. It's what they enjoy.

<...>

So is there any hope for the niche PK playerbase?

They are still possible. I've played one such project. But before I tell you about it I want to say something about your sheep vs wolfes discussion.

Firstly, gank pvp isn't less honest or more honest than duel pvp. It is just another. Generally, this is just the same "honest duel" pvp with the additional ability to gain tactical advantage over your enemy. This ability is available for both players, so there is nothing dishonest here.

Secondly, almost any pvp in open world becomes gank pvp because there is lots of possibilities to gain tactical advantage over your enemy (compared to duel pvp).

So, let me make an example.

Boring casual mmo with safe PvE and arena duel PvP:
Two guys grind in safe pve areas for months (unacceptably boring for pvp player), than enter small pvp area (arena) and have some boring "honest pvp".

Not boring open-world, single-world, hardcore, pvp, rvr mmo as I played:

I'm a 50 lvl guy and I need to exp in 50 lvl guys area (while lvl cap is 75). There is no teleports so I need to go on feet. First I go through low lvl locations and kill some newbs not attentive enough on my way. Then I go though hi lvl location and avoid pvp with big guys (or try to kill them if I have some mates with me). Then I get into designated location. Lets' count I'm alone. I start grinding and soon notice enemy 50 lvl guy doing the same - grinding. Sure I'm gonna kill him, but how? Straitforward duel pvp with the same lvl guy is 50/50 and I can't risk that much. I wait till proper moment, gain tactical advantage (first shots, controls, backstabs etc) and kill him. Now I'm alone. But I know that this guy will be in 5 minutes here and he knows that I'm here. Roles changed, now I'm a prey. I have to prepare myself for counter-gank. 5 minutes passes. Enemy guy is here. I grind attentively thus destroying his tactical advantage, see hem approaching we fight in same conditions and have duel situation. I defeat him in duel pvp with 50 hp left and go on grinding.
Gank, counter-gank - more complicated than duel, but absolutely honest. Hunter and prey roles can change in milliseconds

Ah, this amazing feel of danger everywhere... you'r on adrenaline even if there are no enemy near you.

Alright, now about a the game. It was I project born from lineage 2 free shard. It was reworked so hard that it can be named independent game (as lineage-based Shaiya online), so no jokes about sh!tty L2 freeshards please

Principles were quite easy. Race vs race (5 races, so 80% of server population are enemies), conquering and control over territories through the system of guarded towns and outposts. Some easy grind (sure no stupid korean grind) and pve activities like bosses, so all people must be outdoors on some pve activities. Monster respawn is long and moster-populated sites are small, so you need to roam over big territory to gain exp. Sure you meet another such guys and if they are from opposite race, you have pvp. You have pvp alot - just exit the town - with lower lvls (bang, bang, bang, dead bodies!), with higher lvls (omg omg I've escaped, I'm alive!), gank type and duel type with your lvls, small group vs small group, one vs small group and vice versa. Ganking a duo a trio of enemies of same lvl alone was the greatest pleasure
Partial drop (no full drop but clothes and arms are kinda disposable, no super clothes or guns giving advantage), ability to steal cash from dead bodies (so keep them in warehouse).

Project I'm speaking about is dead now (well, it isn't shut down but it mutated into second Lineage 2 with all its korean grind and madness), second such project from another russian guys is on the way. But it will fail too coz it is developed by stupid L2 admins.

Main thing I want to say that it isn't that hard to attach a very good pvp gameplay mechanics to old client and server. My examples show that it is absolutely real goal for a good lineage 2 freeshard server team.
The problem is that there are few able guys among l2 server admins (all able guys gone to big companies ).

Maybe I'l make a separate topic about the game I've described here some day... Edited by Reginvalt

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[quote name='aattss' timestamp='1350519875' post='4991291']
Also, we're supposed to be brainstorming ways to make this work, not saying it won't work. At minimum, you should describe why it won't work, and listen to people as they take your advice and see if they can use it to come up with a solution.

Read the thread. Theres a number of solutions, which can collectively be summed up as

'Make the life of a wolf very, very hard'.

However, when you do that wannabe wolves whine that their preferred playstyle of making other paying customers victims isnt being respected.

Wannabe wolves want all the reward, and none of the risk. They want all the benefits of being a sheep when they feel like that, and to be able to put on wolves clothing when they feel like that (note the popularity of "PvE alts" to fund PvP).

So, you either make everyone a wolf - World of Tanks - or you make being a victim voluntary - PvP flags/zones.

Either solution doesnt give wannabe wolves their stream of victims, so they come to threads like this and whine.
[/quote]

Err... you're missing the point. The problem is that we're supposed to brainstorm alternate solutions. Try to think of how to solve those problems or at least provide helpful ideas.

[quote name='aattss' timestamp='1350519875' post='4991291']
At minimum, you should describe why it won't work, and listen to people as they take your advice and see if they can use it to come up with a solution.

No solution will work when your 'wolves' are the same people who will abuse log outs and alternate accounts to avoid any consequences for their actions.
[/quote]

Well, how would you try to solve that? Try to find a way to solve that problem.

We aren't here to say this can't be done. We're here to think and attempt to talk with other people in order to learn more about how and why everything works. We're not here to limit ourselves and our thinking and ideas.

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Just to make it really, really clear, the OP said what he wanted

"PKs (wolfs) need sheep (miners, PvMers etc) to kill.. It's what they enjoy."

In that case, I'd suggest the best solution is for the PKs to be contributing around, say, $10 an hour to each of the PvMers, so the PvMers can be compensated for not doing what they like, which is PvM, so the PKers can do what they like. This might actually be a good idea. PKers : Pay a subscription to unlock the ability to PK. Or buy "PK time" from cash shop to go into PK mode. PvMers : Use the subscription from PKers to entice PvMers to stick their necks out. E.g. drop cash shop credits in loot. Plenty of people will waste time running out to gather cash shop credits for profit. Then PKers can go kill them. #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites Heheh, that's interesting. The wolf could offer a set of items from his inventory to reward the last sheep standing. With prices coming from the PK's own pocket, and the game controlling rewards, cheating should be reduced. Sheeps can subscribe to the man-hunt by talking to the PK, and when the race starts the wolf will be frozen for a few seconds to give sheeps some advantage. #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites The problem is within the concept itself. Who would ever want to be the sheep that is hunted by wolves? The opening post clearly describes that being the wolves should be a PK-role, not only one side of a balanced pvp situation. If the sheep gets a specific role withing the confrontation for example by giving the sheep abilities to escape or making the sheep agree to a hide and seek game, its not the same as if the sheep wants to do something else like mining and is surprisingly ambushed. A PK requires victims, real victims. It also requires the amount of sheeps to be >>> the amount of wolves. Why should a majority of people want to play the sheep for a low number of wolves? I don't think a concept like that would ever work. Maybe it gets more interesting when the wolve is not the topmost of the games food chain. Let's add humans. Example: • Players can kill each other • Killing players give the PK an 'outcast' status ( he becomes the wolve ) • Wolves can't enter cities and use other parts of the game anymore, that keeps the amount of wolves small • Hunting wolves gives a nice reward for humans • Whenever the amount of wolves increase, humans have increased motivation to hunt them down and make the land save again, so sheep can go sheeping again -> PKs can have the 'hunt' and still be a minority in a world of not-PKs. The possibility to play the wolves is "paid" by being the outcast and thus having other disadvantages. #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites I just got my site online at www.topiaonline.com . This game will probably satiate your desire for open PvP / full loot sandbox once it's released. ;-) Contact me at joshrmt@gmail.com if the feature list excites you and you want to stay up to date on the game's progress. #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites The problem is within the concept itself. Who would ever want to be the sheep that is hunted by wolves? <...> 1) Well, there is no PK's in PvP games. They exist in PvE games only. If you speak about griefing players in PvE game, PK is a scum, yeah. If you speak about PvP game where you can put enemy in a prey position gaining tactical advantage - PK is a noble PvPer. 2) About your "nobody wants to bo a sheep". The problem is that there are PvEers and PvPers. PvEers ARE sheep even if they play such game where they can be never killed. Because "being a sheep" means unability or disinclination to protect yourself and your assets from another players. So the main problem for current PvPers that the vast majority of games are created for casuals, PvEers, school kids and so on, and there is no decent pvp in such games - only arenas, battlegrounds and duels, which are just poor excuse compared to free open-world pvp. #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites A) Players engaging in non-consensual PvP ("Wolves") open themselves up to permadeath situations, or at the very least increased corpse looting and loss due to death. Permadeath is interesting. But unfortunately not really viable, and the same goes for all attempts at in-game penalites or debuffs for the attacking PKer. Because PKers can always have another character that is lawful. Jail time, and he can play his farmer, Debuffed for awhile, np.. he can just play his other character. Not allowed to go to town to buy stuff? NP, his other character can do it for him. Players will buy multiple accounts to make this happen, play lawfully untill their character is maxed out and start killing anything that moves just because they can. As a veteran of old UO, Shadowbane and Darkfall ive given this whole thing quite a bit of thought, and I think ive got the solution. The MMO would need to be level based, and have leveling zones all the way to max level that had no PVP in them. Any character can play to max lvl in complete safety. However, progressing at end game would require characters to enter the "wild lands", a lawless territory where they can be attacked by anyone at any time, but the only land where they can progress their character and build towns and cities by pooling their resources. Now before anyone says: Well this is Zone based PVP (alá RvR) all over again, no its not. Because I am actually forcing everyone into the wildlands, IF they want to progress their character, I'm just doing it at a much later lvl then say the moonstone in Moonglow. By the time the player reaches max lvl (lets say lvl 50) they are well versed in the game and probably have a guild behind them, with full knowledge of what awaits them and probably some, if not quite a lot of pvp experience. With the city building system the intention is to move the player into the wildlands as he becomes bound to whatever player town or city he choses to join, making the players emotionally invested in their own areas. Encouraging them to protect them and patrol them, and promote good, yet still non-consensual, pvp. -Exo #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites Permadeath is interesting. But unfortunately not really viable, and the same goes for all attempts at in-game penalites or debuffs for the attacking PKer. /looks at the topic name/There is no PK's in free pvp sandbox games. So there can be no penalty for something which doesn't exist. Permadeath - it is too severe. Because in pvp game you die alot and heavy penalty will interrupt ingame life (ever-lasting battle, coz this is pvp game, better to say) severely. For example there is full loot in EVE, but ships and modules are mostly cheap, and you may die 5-10 times a day The MMO would need to be level based, and have leveling zones all the way to max level that had no PVP in them. Any character can play to max lvl in complete safety. However, progressing at end game would require characters to enter the "wild lands", a lawless territory where they can be attacked by anyone at any time, but the only land where they can progress their character and build towns and cities by pooling their resources. This game is casual and carebear like any other casual mmo. Free PvP game starts from big open world without any carebear hideouts. #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites /looks at the topic name/There is no PK's in free pvp sandbox games. So there can be no penalty for something which doesn't exist. Permadeath - it is too severe. Because in pvp game you die alot and heavy penalty will interrupt ingame life (ever-lasting battle, coz this is pvp game, better to say) severely. For example there is full loot in EVE, but ships and modules are mostly cheap, and you may die 5-10 times a day My point was directed at all the suggestions involving in-game incarceration, or a PK debuff of some sort as a sort of limiting factor to balance the playing field. It wont work, because players have an incentive to find a way around it, and they will. This game is casual and carebear like any other casual mmo. Free PvP game starts from big open world without any carebear hideouts. The point here is trying to create game with open pvp, that would actually work. Full open PvP from the start, would mean that u would die immidietly. There would be someone next to u, as u started the game just killing new players as they entered. Before the game would load u would be dead. Unless u can start the game in different, more random, locations, giving u a few minutes to load and trying to familiarize urself with the game before dying to a roaming group. In this setting there is no character progression, or at the very best an unfair character progression, because those ppl who started the game in pre-launch would have a progression advantage over everyone else. So in a game like that character progression is really just in the way, and might as well be removed or minimalized. The game would also suffer from any advanced combat mechanics, specifically in the player control, and would work a lot better with a much more intuitive combat system then most MMO's, or indeed RPGs. With no character progression, and a focus on intuitive combat mechanics, u might as well forgo the whole idea of an MMO and just make another multiplayer FPS. The point is there has never been an MMO that FOCUSED on world pvp, only MMOs that allowed them, u need to build an MMO around the idea of an open world PvP setting that would work as a whole, not exclude all other features, cuz ud just end up with a shooter really. -Exo #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites *Sigh* this thread again. Forgive me if I get a bit testy, but there's some obvious falsehoods that keep getting repeated. I don't mean to pick on you, Exodus, you're just the last person who repeated some of them. I may say "you" but I mean the people who keep making these arguments despite blatant evidence against them. The point here is trying to create game with open pvp, that would actually work. Full open PvP from the start, would mean that u would die immidietly.There would be someone next to u, as u started the game just killing new players as they entered. Before the game would load u would be dead. Unfortunately this is just patently wrong, and it's not difficult for a full anyone/anywhere pvp game to remedy this. I mean no offense, but it really seems like you haven't investigated the actual mechanics behind the variety of games (past and present) that have had exactly such a system and have not involved dying immediately. Eve Online, for instance, allows you to target someone the moment they enter space in their poor little noobship and instapop them with smarties (that is, kill a nooby the very first second they're in space in the super-high security zone), but this doesn't often happen. Why? Because the game makes it financially silly to do such a thing and, doing so is typically more profitable for the noob (who can respawn and loot your wreckage) than you. Good design mitigates griefing and does not require you to lose anyone/anywhere pvp. In a game with truly open pvp, permadeath and full loot, attacking a noob would be devastating if there were just a few guards around who attacked aggressors (ala Eve's Concord/sentries, or Darkfall's guards). The noob loses the time it took him to load up. The idiot griefer loses all the gear it took him to get to where he was. In this setting there is no character progression, or at the very best an unfair character progression, because those ppl who started the game in pre-launch would have a progression advantage over everyone else.[/quote]Not really. In general, it's not the beta or pre-launch players who lead in character progression, it's those with a lot of extra time on their hands (for instance, I was a GW2 pre-launch player and I still have yet to hit level cap) or those who are more efficient if it's a grind based game. In games without progression, like almost every FPS out there, then players are naturally divided into categories by skill/experience. Neither set up is inherently "unfair." And ironically, it's the pre-launch players who write the guides for all the post-launch players to follow, and by doing so, drastically improve their efficiency. Pre-launchers are actually at a slight disadvantage, because they have to discover everything by trial and error without anyone to tell them "don't bother doing quest X, it takes 16 hrs and gives you 0.2 gold." The point is there has never been an MMO that FOCUSED on world pvp[/quote]Darkfall. Haven and Hearth. Eve. Dear god the dev blogs on Eve go on and on about how integral blowing each-other's faces off is to the economy. And the economy! It's like Adam Smith's wet dream. Stop making these statements, please. Please? #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites U can use me as example thats fine, but understand that I was reffering to the comment made by the poster above me who said "Free PvP game starts from big open world without any carebear hideouts." So u kinda jumped into them middle here. That means Darkfall is out, since it had (No guards) but lightning towers protecting towns, old UO is out, as is Mortal Online and Shadowbane as all of those had guarded beginner zones as well. Eve is different by virtue of its core game mechanics.. which brings me to this.... Unfortunately this is just patently wrong, and it's not difficult for a full anyone/anywhere pvp game to remedy this The key word being REMEDY, like in the example I originally posted two posts up, as I said the idea of an open world PVP needs to be a part of a bigger whole. Eve Online is a game about player politics and large scale sci-fi trade. Darkfall is a game about guild vs guild poltical warfare where owning and siegeing player towns is the core mechanics of the game, world pvp is an incidental, necessary but certainly not primary part of both of these games. Darkfall is also a good example of late comers being utterly useless after the initial push, which is another effect of this mechanic that needs to be handled. (Darkfall made it worse by it skill system though). And when I say that the early players will have an easier time on the server, i mean those that are "hardcore" players, not all of them will be, but those that are will have a benefit no other players can ever match. This is true for all MMOs, even something like wow. Early players get there first, and has an advantage in building their guilds and so on. -Exo #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites Since I am developing a game that is specific to this topic, I figure I would weigh in on my design choices for this genre: The problem with permadeath/open pvp: The problem with most people's thinking on permadeath/pvp is that it's applied to a game that's very similar to 'modern MMORPGs'. They feature long grinds, repetitive game content, lack of 'low level fun', dying due to lag, griefers, etc. It also spawns 'take no risks' gameplay habits. Players will hide in safe areas, fight only low-level creatures, and generally avoid any risk of death. Permadeath can only be successful in games that are designed from the ground up for it. It brings numerous problems to the table that most online games have not solved. As a result, permadeath/pvp often hampers a player's ability to enjoy all of the game's content. The infamous 'rage quit' often occurs as a result of losing a high level character, which damages the overall playerbase and puts a sour taste in the victim's mouth. Solutions I am implementing to overcome the negatives of permadeath: For the most part, any 1 or 2 of the below solutions fall apart without the rest of the features to counter-balance each one. Making a permadeath game fun and rewarding is a careful balancing act. 1. Accept that players are going to die a lot, and reward them for doing so. This is the 'roguelike/realm of the mad god/arcade' solution that is often implemented. When a player dies, give them a 'score' and show them their achievements. Unlock new play styles, encourage them to try new character combinations, and provide new ways to enjoy the game. This will often create a 'okay, just one more time' mindset that will keep a player hooked to try to unlock new things each time they play. Moreover, if a player is scored and put in a 'hall of fame' list, they have some bragging rights and some remembrance of their character that they can show off to their friends even after death. 2. Implement a combat system that allows a character to defend himself in the event of disconnects/lag/AFK. This is one of the trickiest solutions, and not always recommended. Automated combat routines can be a cool feature though, when implemented properly. The idea is that if the player is not entering commands, his character will still continue to perform 'auto combat' routines. These routines could either be designed by the player themself, or by the game's creator. In my own online game, I have provided a scripting language that allows players to fully customize their character's combat routines. In traditional RPGs, this system is relatively easy to implement, though it may never be as smart as a 'real player'. However, for action-based 'twitchy' games, this solution may not work. 3. Design a game world that is equally fun and challenging at 'high level' as it is at 'low level'. Sandboxes are the perfect environment for permadeath games, because they often let the player loose to do anything that they feel like doing in the game. It is important to ensure that there are very few repetitive activities that encourage constant 'grinding'. Huge timesinks that grow a player's character will only infuriate them more so if they end up dying. Moreover, when they create a new character, they should be able to jump back into activities that they WANT to do, rather than repeat activities that they don't want to do. Advancement in the game should be based more on material possessions and 'the way they play their character' rather than 'I killed 1000 orcs'. There should also probably be diminishing returns on the character's growth, so that 'new characters' can close the gap with older characters a lot faster. (but still allow older characters to grow in 'strength' slowly) 4. It's important to encourage the player to still 'take risks'. If the player can advance simply by doing low-risk activities, there is much less incentive for them to take risks that could involve losing their character. There should be plenty of 'high risk' activities in the game that offer the player rewards that are not obtainable through low-risk means. The risk for these tasks should be clear, so that the player feels responsible for their decisions, rather than being punished for unknown random gameplay mechanics. Finally, for players that take these risks, the game should broadcast their achievements to give other players something to aspire to. In other words, high-risk actions should be visible to others. 5. Killing other players should have consequences. However, the consequences should not be so negative that it completely hampers a player's will to fight other players. In a permadeath game, the consequences will often be that if you kill by the sword, you will die by the sword. If you kill other players, chances are that someone will kill you as a result and you will lose your character. Something that I believe works is a 'bounty system', which encourages other players to seek 'murderers' to claim bounties. There could also be bonuses/incentive for a player to create a new character to hunt down and get revenge on his killer. Lastly, everyone in the game should have a fighting chance. It should be possible for groups of players to take down any single player, even if the group are 'newbies' compared to a single veteran player. This will prevent extremely 'high level' players from camping or griefing new players. 6. Losing all of your items should not be a huge deal. One of the games that did this properly was Ultima Online back in it's prime. It hurt to lose all your stuff, but you could be back on your feet within an hour usually. This is because there were diminishing returns on the quality of equipment. The difference between a 'Sword' and a 'Sword of Power' was decent, but you could still kill many things with a plain sword. Rare and awesome equipment should be present in the game, but it should not be so powerful and rare that it is completely demoralizing to lose it. As I said earlier in this paragraph, Ultima Online was an excellent example of the careful balance between items and equipment impacting full-loot gameplay. 7. Recreating a character should take less a minute. They should be able to 'save the template' for the last character to easily get back into the game. They should be able to easily use the same character name and appearance as well. Death may take all of their character's acievements, skills, and property, but it's important that they get back into the game without a click-fest. Moreover, once inside the game, they should not be forced to perform any tedious 'newbie tasks' that actual new players may have undergone. These can be account flags or options to bypass tutorials, newbie quests, and so forth. If you agree on any of my above points, please follow my progress as I develop 'Topia Online' ( http://www.topiaonline.com ). I am exhibiting many of the above examples in this upcoming MMORPG. #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites I think so, and I am currently working on a project to do it right. It will be hard work but I have hope that I can save this niche, wish me luck. #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites In http://topiaonline.w...paces.com/Races, you have Beholder and Mind Flayer which are trademarked by Wizards of the Coast. Are you trying to get your team sued, or will you pay for rights to use them. Anyways, a permadeath style gameplay should minimize levels and focus character progression based upon gear. Gear should be the focus over character levels because it's easier to grind gear by luckily kill another player than to spend time leveling up. Thus, players will be "forced" for form safety groups. Factions will develop. Edited by Platinum_Dragon #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites What you are really talking about is in game murder that gets very close to griefing, if you want to support that kind of "gameplay" you have to find a way to make it fun for the victim Basically you need to: 1) Allow the "Sheep" to choose when to put themselves as risk. (Having free pvp everywhere is a bad idea) 2) Reward the "Sheep" for playing the "Sheep" role, (i.e , putting a non combat oriented character in harms way) 3) Keep the cost of losing small. (Don't mix wow style equipment farming with free loot pvp). 4) Give combat oriented characters a reason to hunt down murderers or protect the "Sheep" in a way that isn't exploitable, (Most bounty systems fail because the murderers tend let their friends kill them for the bounty, you'd need a better system) My suggestions are: 1) Don't have free pvp everywhere, keep the some/half/most areas safe. 2) Make it rewarding to gather resources (a task that shouldn't be possible with a purely combat oriented character) in the pvp zones, (more or higher quality resources) 3) Make it possible for guilds or factions to control land in the pvp zones, (build guardposts, hire npc guards, etc) and fight for resource control, (This pushes the "wolves" towards a bandit ,commando or mercenary role) This is how Dark Souls is set up. When you reverse your hollowing (you play as an undead) and revert to human form, it allows you to summon NPCs or other players for help, kindle your checkpoints so they give you 10 potions instead of 5, and dramatically increases the loot drop rates from enemies. It's always in your benefit to stay in human form. However, it also allows other players to invade your game! That's the risk you take. At any time while you're playing, you can get a message that another player is invading your instance of the world as a black phantom, and they actively hunting you down. You never know who it is, or how powerful they are relative to you. You just tun a corner and there they are standing there glowing red. Then it's a fight to the death. If you lose, then you lose your human form and all your souls. But as usual, you have one chance to go and pick them back up. I think it's a fair risk. The other day someone came into my game, helped me beat a tough boss, and helped me beat an NPC invader, and now I'm using the loot from that as my main gear ever since. staying in human form is a good risk vs reward thing. And if you don't like it, just don't return to human form. I usually bank my humanity items until I need them to upgrade checkpoints anyways, so I'm invisible to random invaders. #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites UO lost approx 30 million dollars because they were poor at creating any kind of solution to the griefing problem over the period of years$10month * 12 month * 5 years * 50000 players (new players continuously dropping out of the game early largely because of griefer issues)

No skill was involved in doing newbie killing, so any idiot could do it with impunity, The only solution the company came up with was duplicating the whole world map to have a PvP allowed one and a PvP blocked one. The 'PvP 'world' was virtually deserted.

The 'wolf vs 'sheep' oriented game doesnt work if there are no 'sheep' (and the person who called them hyenas is close to the truth - but in my opinion they were more immature/mental deficients and the disinterested people who ran the game who facilitated their dim behavior 'idiots').

Real wolves then chase out the PvP-wannabees (the cowardly curs) and virtually noone is left paying.(not a great business model). Edited by wodinoneeye

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I think in summary so far we can say that it's not possible to have popular game if it's full loot and open open pvp.
It's possible to get a small playerbase of sheeps into such a game if you add a lot of good pve features to it and makes it uniue and different to other games.

Like haven and hearth or upcoming salem.. the only mmorpg that is doing well in this genre imo.
It appears they have "a lot" of sheep in that game.
It's still a niche game though with just a microscopical fraction of the amount of players that a consent based pvp system game.
And as soon as someone makes a similar game to h&h or salem but without open pvp or permadeath then they will lose the sheep leaving it with a micro amount of wolfs just who will stop playing soon after as well.

Also it's not true what some people are saying about wannabe wolfs and real wolfs..
as in that wannabe wolfs only hunt sheep but stay away from real wolfs.

They arent really scared about fighting against "real" wolfs.. its just not as fun.
I cant explain why exactly it just gives a much better feeling killing a helpless innocent player whos having so much fun mining ore or killing some mobs.
call it shadenfreude if you want lol

i am looking forward to world of darkness still but damn they are taking their sweet time developing it.
really wonder how that game will turn out.

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I think in summary so far we can say that it's not possible to have popular game if it's full loot and open open pvp.
At the time it was mentioned on the first page, DayZ (full loot, PvE, completely unrestricted PvP, permadeath) had 800K players in alpha. Now it's up to 1.3M players in alpha. At $30 to play, that's about$40M worth of popularity

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[quote name='glhf' timestamp='1353680100' post='5003502']I think in summary so far we can say that it's not possible to have popular game if it's full loot and open open pvp.
At the time it was mentioned on the first page, DayZ (full loot, PvE, completely unrestricted PvP, permadeath) had 800K players in alpha. Now it's up to 1.3M players in alpha. At $30 to play, that's about$40M worth of popularity
[/quote]

I think the distinction people are missing is comparing other kinds of MMOs to MMORPGs. DayZ is actually more of an MMO than most post WoW "MMORPG" games, but its far LESS of an RPG. In fact its not really at all.

No one in DayZ EXPECTS to live for ever, IE make it to level 80 in an MMORPG. And from my understanding there really isn't a leveling experience. I didn't really look into it too deeply.

There is really nothing a week or month old player in DayZ can't do that a 5 year player can do.

Losing everything is much more significant in an RPG game, even if its only gear and not 10% experience drops and what not.

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I think the distinction people are missing is comparing other kinds of MMOs to MMORPGs. DayZ is actually more of an MMO than most post WoW "MMORPG" games, but its far LESS of an RPG. In fact its not really at all.
RPGs are games where you act out the role of a fictional character. Character based naratives often involve "character progression", where the character changes throughout the story. In many RPGs, this is implemented by an XP or "levelling" system. So, XP is a common trope in the RPG genre, but it in no way defines it. What defines it is role play.

For example, Realm of the Mad God is a perma-death MMO with experience/levelling/inventories, but there's no real role playing. Your character makes progress, yes, but the core mechanic is a "bullet hell" game. At no point do you have to act our the role of a character.
DayZ's core mechanic is a survival horror FPS, with character progression via an inventory. However, whenever you encounter another survivor, the game is all about role play. Unlike most FPS games that just let your control your body/arms, it also lets you independently turn your head from your arms, and talk from your character's mouth, which allows for a great deal of acting. Some people choose to role-play as bandits who rob others for essentials before letting them go with their basic gear, others role-play crazed axe murderers, others role-play heroic medics responding to calls for help, others role-play the selfish loner who shoots his new friend in the back for a can of beans, others role-play kidnappers...
Searching for DayZ stories threads brings up so many interesting characters, plots and quests, for a game that's supposedly not about role playing ;)
There is really nothing a week or month old player in DayZ can't do that a 5 year player can do.[/quote]Yes, so basically you can hit the "level cap" in about 12 hours instead of 12 months. That's a somewhat sensible design choice when you're making a perma-death game where the average life expectancy is 1 hour. If it took 12 months to reach the 'level cap' it probably wouldn't be very popular. Edited by Hodgman

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DayZ still provides an example of how it's done right. Just make a level system where you get xp for scavenging instead of normal means, and make it so that leveling has as much as an effect as getting better equipment currently does, and several more tweaks, and it'll satisfy the requirement.

However, that doesn't change the fact that an rpg is not defined by its roleplay.

How brilliant of you. You noticed that the acronym was originally for role-playing game, and then you took role-playing for its literal meaning, and thought that despite the fact that everyone else meant something else when they used the term rpg, that an rpg was all about a mechanic vague enough to define pretty much every game out there.

We all know that when the poster referred to an mmorpg, he wasn't talking about the roleplay. You're just trying to "correct" him. Please, lurk moar. We've already been over this.

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Sinze we have come to conclusion of that it's not possible.

We could venture further into the subject of what kind of pvp system or how to design it so it's "the second best" of open pvp with player looting.
that you could predict to become a popuplar AA mmorpg with sheep and wolf Edited by glhf

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It is very possible, you just can't design your game for the predators and scavengers.

You need to design it for the "prey", they need to see open PvPer and loot loss as a benefit to themselves. Truly controlling territory, increasing the importance of crafting, changing how politics work, and similar. Funnily enough your "prey" gladly ends up more hardcore than predators and scavengers since they're perfectly happy removing banking and safe storage mechanics, living in MMO worlds where they can be attacked while offline, and losing a pretty high level of investment in facilities/equipment rather than just gear.