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Fradno

A funny way to handle Unique weapons

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You know how in some games, there are one of a kind weapons, with a unique name and usually very powerful.

 

What I plan to do in a future game which I don't have the resources to make right now, is that if a player gets ahold of such a rare weapon, if they are inactive for 10 days, they will lose the weapon, but in it's place, a note will be left behind, allowing them to get the weapon again in two ways which I will mention in a moment.

 

The weapon itself returns to it's original location. If nobody has gotten the weapon again, then the note will just allow the user to attain the weapon more easily, perhaps by showing its location on the map in a dungeon or level{where previously, the user had to look for it} or showing the monster that is now carrying it {said monster will have the boost from the weapon, making them tough to beat, and some these rare weapons multiply the stats of a user, instead of adding, weapons in the game will do either or, but only the rarer weapons can multiply.}

 

And if the weapon was already found by somebody else, then the note allows you to challenge the user for ownership of the weapon. They have 7 days to accept the duel or the weapon returns to it's original location/level. If the duel is accepted, the current user cannot use the weapon in that fight{since these unique weapons are already too powerful.} {If the challenger doesn't show up for the duel by the 7th day, the timer resets for another week.}

 

If the weapon has multiple previous users, then once a duel has been fought for that weapon, the next person in queue would challenge the person for that weapon, so it would be a challenger per week.

 

Although, depending on how many players play this game, the number of unique weapons that exist will be at a % of the total max population to exist.

 

A randomizer taking names from a dictionary will create names for these unique weapons. Something like "Deity name + Weapon type + suffix of some kind" or a random mix of words based on the stats, element, and attributes of the weapon.

 

Example: "Thor's Hammer of Golden Lightning" or "Azure Shield of Samsara". 

 

If too many players are after the same item, say, more than 10 notes exist for a single item, then a similar item will be born in the game via the system detecting this, to ease the load for that weapon. It would be something like "Thor's Hammer of Argent Lightning", which would throw out bluish white lightning, unlike the original, which shoots yellow lightning. Thus those with the note would have the option to search out this similar weapon that is just aesthetically different.

 

The game itself, is a classless game, where you could say, look like a knight, but have the stats of a mage. The way you look wouldn't determine your class, and your character would have an appearance that is highly customizable. There is more to the system, but today, I just want to talk about unique weapons.

 

There are 7 weapon categories. The most mundane and common being "Normal" weapons, which cover things like Short swords, Bucklers, Flintlocks, and other weapons with no special attributes. They add a fixed number to the stats, and have no special attributes. The higher categories have things like elemental attributes, self-repair, growth, and even stat multiplication {or sometimes, will still add a fixed number, but by many times the amount a "Normal" weapon would.

 

The 7th, "Unique" weapons is what I discuss. I do consider naming them "Deity weapons" due to there uniqueness. Although, the 6th category is named as such right now. Since multiple copies of a deity weapon can exist, but it's rarity is still high in comparison to other weapon categories.

 

 

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I've thought a little about unique weapons as well, though I haven't put too much thought into it.

Though mine would be more related to on-going plot events in the game world, and wouldn't be too overpowered, so our needs may differ.

 

Basically, I see these concerns:

A) For plot-related unique items, they should return to the world so the unique items are "in play".

B) If an account is closed, I want the item to immediately return to the world.

C) But if a player is away on family vacation, or has a busy work-week, I don't want him to be punished in-game.

D1) I don't want a player (or guild) to hoard plot-important unique items without actually using them.

D2) This includes hoarding unique plot-important items on alt accounts ("mule" accounts) that might auto-login several times a day.

 

So I wonder if some kind of "weapon unused in combat more than X times in Y days" would be a possible route to go.

Or maybe: "item is unequipped for more than 30% of your logged in time" paired with too much time spent logged out over two weeks.

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A game designer from Blizzard once shared this wisdom with me. Game ideas can usually be placed in three categories.

1. Ideas where the computer has fun
2. Ideas where the game designer has fun
3. Ideas where the player has fun

To clarify what I mean, an example of the computer having fun would be something like a complicated stats/combat system that has lots of interconnected computations that only the computer could understand.

I definitely like some of the elements of your game idea, but many aspects sound like it would be frustrating to the player and sound like you, the designer, are having fun. To me, it would feel very restrictive to have to play just to keep my weapon. Don't punish the player for having a life outside your game. People would make bots/hire others to keep their weapons. I feel like these rare weapons would fall to a small group of people who are very dedicated to the game and quickly become the dominant force in the game.

The idea of unique weapons is cool. I would just modify one aspect of it. Allow the player to hold onto any item indefinitely but only allow them a single unique item. If they find another unique item they like better then they must drop their other unique item before getting the new one. If two or more people want the dropped item then perhaps they could win it in a deathmatch. However, with an MMO you cannot expect everybody who wants the weapon to be online at the same time. So you would have to solve that problem. Edited by HappyCoder

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Servant of the Lord: I see your points, especially D2, which would prove to be problematic, especially if the player only logs in to accept the challenge and then logs off and leaves their bot to on afterwards. As for C, that is true, although, when I mentioned the idea, what I had in mind is that people who play PvP competitively. I guess 2-3 weeks might be a better range. Besides, the category before unique weapons, "Deity" weapons are almost as powerful, although maybe up to 80% of the full power of a Unique weapon.

 

If a player ever faces off with a user of a unique weapon, it might look like the player with the Deity weapon would be at a slight disadvantage against a player with a unique weapon, but techniques and skills play a big enough role to nullify that small gap, although against simple, brute force monsters, the difference is more pronounced. A player can still be competitive with the other weapon categories. Unique is to show that the player is very skilled to have attained it, sort of like a badge.

 

Although, as for D1, it would be unfortunate if an entire team/group/guild hoarded the weapons for themeselves. Although a Unique weapon has had only 1 owner for more than a month, then a similar weapon will appear in the game world in order for another to use it, similar to the over 10 people condition. There might be other conditions as well to ensure such a unique item has others similar to it pop up overtime.

 

HappyCoder: You raise a good point regarding with that wisdom from Blizzard. When I was a player playing an old MMO 9 years ago, I was fascinated to find out that there were super rare weapons in the game world, and even witnessed one in use during a guild war, where a knight barged in with the only sword in the game who's regular hits had splash damage{with a very large radius}, I was left on the side like roadkill along with several others in the guild I was, but I was left really inspired. The funniest part was, I had met the person just before the fight, and they showed me their one of a kind, overpowered sword to me and various other people in the vicinity.

 

Later, I managed to get ahold of a sword that was super rare, but not payed attention to due to a glitch that only showed its drawbacks, the sword secretly gave an immense amount of agility, and I felt special being a "agile" knight when others where tanky.

 

Then I found out about the God weapons, which ahd unique sprites and where immensely powerful, but then it turned out they were only for Game Masters/Employees. But my iniitial thought of them seeded the idea for Unique weapons.

 

Although, I agree, that to some players, such a system would be frustrating, Unique weapons where meant for very active, competitive players who enter tournaments regularly. For people who like to take it easy and don't log on much, they can find a Deity weapon if they wish, which is uncommon rather than rare, and still have a good amount of power.

 

That is why I made the category of Deity weapons, which have none of the conditions Unique weapons hold such as the time limit and challenges. Your idea of the player indefinitely holding the item is sound and sensible. Although, I feel like the original concept has this suspenseful feeling to it, that is what I experienced as a player anyway, when I witnessed that weapon so rare, I knew I could never attain it, but respected the user of it for wielding it and was just left in awe. Maybe I am weird, but it was so epic how he ujust barged in, and swatted groups of us down like flies, leaving a trail of destruction in his wake. {We where three guilds working together in large numbers vs a single guild of 5 people with higher levels and stats, thus the high number of casualties defending the fortress.}

 

Returning to Blizzards philosophy, I can see why they make such fun games.

 

Anyway, to elaborate more on Unique weapons, the person wielding them have to have an active presence in PvP tourneys as I mentioned before, I feel the weapon would be ill-suited for somebody that only fights monsters. I guess I would have to explain the lower categories to give a better perception of Unique weapons.

 

Yeah, about the deathmatch thing, that is why there is a 7 day time frame in which to arrange the challenge.

 

Your posts have been very enlightening regardless, as you mentioned somethings that I hadn't considered at all.

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I like the idea of having super-rare weapons (or other armor, relics, etc) as these kind of priceless artifacts, and that they can be dueled over. I don't especially like the idea that I have to log in on some arbitrary schedule to keep it. Firstly because life happens -- what if I'm under a deadline and stand to lose a client (or worse, a career) over missing it and I just don't have the time; or what if there's a death in the family? I just think its poor design whenever a game demands me to work on its own timelines.

 

If I'm not mistaken, it seems to be the case that this timed return is entirely an artifact of wanting these items to be rare, but also active in the world -- that is, they don't just languish in someone's keep or vanish to eternity when someone leaves the game. I wonder if these problems could be solved by giving ownership of these items to the guild/faction, rather than the individual, perhaps using a tournament to decide who will wield it next -- or if perhaps attaching these buffs you describe to a physical object (and thereby, a concept of ownership) is the wrong approach entirely, for example, perhaps instead you can complete a quest to gain the favor of a god/deity (and perhaps having to attach to a weapon/item of a high-quality), therefore side-stepping ownership of these rare buffs.

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Ravyne: Those are good points, that is why the category below it in rarity, Deity weapons, exist, which can be taken, and kept indefinitely. Unique weapons exist for extremely competitive players and to create intrigue for that weapon class. But then again, maybe it's too controversial?

 

Yes, that is what I was thinking, since the MMO I mentioned, there are probably players that have some super rare item, but never logged back in again when others are seeking such an item to buy or trade.

 

The guild ownership idea is a possible solution and could solve some aspects of this weapon category.

 

I should explain the other weapon classes for more perspective. There are seven in total. Aside from Soul weapons, some of the higher weapon classes may or may not grow in power, depending on the individual weapon.

 

Normal: The most common weapon class. They have a set durability, and eventually wear out and need repair, and they can easily break during a fight from using too many strong techniques in a row. There is more to it but I'll keep it short for now.

 

Soul: This weapon class can only be obtained via forging. It basically takes a piece of the character {Nail clippings, lock of hair, etc.} and a special material, that when combined, will create a weapon that grows with the user. This weapon class has many special properties such as self-repair/regeneration during a fight{although, the speed varies depending on the user and regen technique}. The drawback of this weapon class is that along with the materials used to make it, the other "ingredient" to create this weapon is sacrificing up to half the total amount of your stats. {I'm still tweaking this detail, it might be more like 20% minimum, but still 50% of your stat total.}. The weapon basically is a part of your character, but the stat sacrifice is due to the fact that the weapon grows in proportion to your stats. There is more to this weapon class, which I will go into more detail in a later post.

 

Special: Basically, normal weapons with special traits, such as a short sword imbued with a fire element, or a regular buckler that happens to have a small regen ability for self-repair, but nothing else. These can be gotten a number of ways, and will eventually break from overusage and multiple repairs, just like normal weapons. They are still common enough to be found in the hundreds or thousands, while normal weapons are so abundant, that they can end up being junk to higher players, special weapons can sometimes have some value.

 

Legendary: Has many special traits like a Soul weapon, including growth, but it's completely independent of the user. Thus if somebody with a Soul Weapon finds a legendary that matches their weapon type, they can re-absorb their Soul weapon, get their stats back, and wield this type instead. Some legendary weapons grow, some don't.

 

Mythical: As uncommon as a legendary, but multiplies stats instead of adding to them. Some grow, some don't. But what Mythical weapons do is that they are strong in proportion to the user, thus, if a very weak person wields a Mythical weapon, they won't get much from it, but a very strong player will be immensely more powerful.

 

Deity: These start off immensely powerful, at the highest end that a weapon can be. They don't grow as they are already at the pinnacle of strength for a weapon, plus having many special attributes. Legendary and Mythical weapons can only get to this level of power over time, and only if they are a "growth" type instead of a "static" type.

 

Unique: The weapon class I was speaking of in the topic. These are one of a kind weapons, and just slightly stronger than the Deity class{Maybe I will change that in the final game and make them the same level, but attain their full extra 20% power when against the cpu.} I already explained most of what this class is about. For people that don't really care about getting something unique, they can settle for the Deity class. For example, while the Unique weapon mentioned earlier was "Thor's Hammer", the "Deity" version of it would be "Thunder God's Hammer." and have similar stats, just a different design to the weapon.

 

Anyway, the reason that theres "growth" and "static" weapons is that say, there is a legendary sword called "Dark Sword", most specimens of with stats already higher than the average special weapon, but they will be "static", while some might be slightly weaker than a special weapon, they can grow over time to be up to twice the power of a static version of the weapon. Some legendary weapons have a growth limit that allows them to attain equal power to that of a Deity weapon. 

 

The reason some weapons add, while others multiply, is that both benefit different players. Say same weak player wields a Legendary sword that has a stat total several times their normal stats. Example: Player stat total: 100, Weapon stat total: 900, thus the player now is 10 stronger through addition, while if they found a Mythical that multiplies their stat by x3, they are now only at 300 stat total. Meanwhile, 

 

I'll elaborate more on this game below:

 

+++++++++++++

 

Another thing I want to show, is that the elements in this game aren't just flavor, they have stats as well, here is an example, the minimum stat per minimum unit of that element.

 

Energy{default element):
Power: 12, Speed: 12, Impact: 12
Energy cost: 12

Ki:
Power: 15, Speed: 5, Impact: 15
Energy cost: 12

Magic:
Power: 15, Speed: 15, Impact: 5
Energy cost: 12

Fire:
Power: 34, Speed: 2, Impact: 1
Energy cost: 12.3

Water:
Power: 6, Speed: 5, Impact: 27
Energy cost: 12.6

------
Sound:
Power: 2, Speed: 20, Impact: 10
Energy cost: 10.6

Plasma:
Power: 20, Speed:10, Impact: 2
Energy cost: 10.6


------

Lightning
Power: 18, Speed: 29, Impact: 10
Energy cost: 19

Ice:
Power: 26, Speed: 5, Impact: 26
Energy cost: 19

Rock:
Power: 16, Speed: 3, Impact: 38
Energy cost: 19

-----

Holy:
Power: 48, Speed: 18, Impact: 33
Energy cost: 33

Hex:
Power: 33, Speed: 18, Impact: 48
Energy cost: 33
------

Lit:
Power: 100, Speed: 100, Impact: 0
Energy cost: 64

Obscura
Power: 100 Speed: 0, impact 100
Energy cost: 64

 

 

 

Thus, if you where using a jack of all trades character, you would be able to use Obscura type attacks less times than a fire type attack. If you where a character with a high energy capacity, you would use Obscura abundantly, but since your characters power stat would be low, that 100 power of obscura multiplied off a low stat will not be much. The player would have to think when building around that element. Do they want to take advantage of its high power, raise their power stat, and be a hit and run type character due to their low energy capacity? Perhaps they have put both Power and Energy high enough to use Obscura several times in a row, but now they've become a glass cannon, with defense stats so low, that your offense is literally your only defensive option.

 

This is the nature of the game I'm building. There is no class, you just think how to build your character based on the fighting style you wish you to have.

 

The character customizer will be very flexible. It might have to use an improved version of the technology used in a few games you might not have heard of, where you could "draw" your character, and it would be rendered in 3D. I remember reading several of these games where based off a program called "Teddy", made several years ago.

 

I might use some limited form of it, restricted to individual parts, so things don't go out of control and somebody makes something obscene.

 

Anyway, you are not just limited to a human/humanoid shaped character. This game, you can make your character have four arms, tentacles, no arms, and so on. You can add wings, tail, which will affect what mobility techniques you can use. To demonstrate how this affects your stats, if you have a speed stat of 400, and four arms, each arm would be 100 in speed, if you had two arms, each are 200, you could attain 400 speed with two arms if you two hand your weapon. A weapon's hilt might limit how many arms you can use with it. A one hand sword's hilt value would only allow for a single hand to use it. Two hand sword, two hands, a spear would allow a four arm user to use all four arms to attain their true attack speed value. But the advantage of four arms is that you have the option to wield up to four different weapons,{although, if your using a soul weapon, despite the soul weapon being 50% of your original stat total, that 50% is further divided between the 4, thus each weapon is individually weaker.} Although there is the advantage of extra attacks and so on.

 

I'm still designing this aspect, and trying to decide how complex it can be, within the limits of whats possible right now in 3D. Sure, it might be good to keep it as simple as possible, but I think there is something to having your own fully customized character, colored the way you want them. This may lead to awful things such as people brightly colored in the worst combinations.

 

Because of the high level of customization, the game would have a myriad of unique builds, and no one person would look the same, unless they tried to copy somebody else or intentionally looked the same for guild purposes.

 

Anyway, as you can see, this game is very complex, I've only explained very small parts of it, and it's already turned the post huge. That is why it is a game I'm leaving for when I have the actual resources to do. 

 

As for the weapon types in the game, there are the ones you are familiar with: Sword, Axe, Club, Bow, and so on. But because of the setting of this game, there are things like gloves, gauntlets, amulets, "guns", "Internal", "glass", and several other weapons that you wouldn't see together at the same time.

 

For example, "Guns" can range from Flintlocks with magic ammo, to futuristic "laser" guns{these would be compatible with elements such as energy, plasma, and lightning}.

 

"Internal" are microscopic weapons that modify some aspect of the user to increase their power like a weapon would. For example, if a sword increases your attack power, an "internal" weapon that hardens your skin would act like a shield and gauntlet at once. Another "internal" type might turn the users limb flexible like a whip, allowing them to use whip type techniques without the actual weapon, as well as using the flexible property in certain defense techniques, or even counter techniques such as catching a projectile and rebounding it back. The drawback of these weapons is that they have to be activated to use, otherwise, the person is practically weaponless while it is in-active. There is more to these weapons, but explaining it all would make this post's overall length even bigger.

 

Glass refers to things like Mirrors, Magnifying glass, and telescopes. In other games, these are just useless items, but here, they are weapons. Wher a sword is a weapon that increases kinetic force/physical attacks, glass weapons increase the power of linear energy attacks, such as energy, magic, and lit.} Mirror would be the Shields equivalent, in that while Shields defend/block/deflect physical attacks, Mirrors do so for non-physical attacks.

 

Some weapons might look humorous, such as within the club types, you have wooden club, mace, flail, hammers, and even giant wrenches.

 

The aesthetics of a weapon can range from medieval, to futuristic designs. Variety is a prevailent theme in this game.
 

I do plan to re-organize the type naming convention of weapons. Maybe something like Bludgeon type for all blunt weapons, Edge type for weapons with an edge, even if its a non-cutting sword, and so on. Ability type for internal and similar weapons.

 

I should probably move this portion of the post below the plus line to a separate thread.

 

 

 

Edited by Fradno

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For my tastes, it frankly sounds like the whole design is over-complicated -- which for me is a huge turn-off.

I think a mistake that's easy to make with a 'grand vision' game such as you describe is that you look at games like WOW and start with a presumption that all their accumulated complexity is A) necessary, and B) somehow pre-devined.

In reality, WOW and others became what they are today through their expansions and rebalancing acts over a decade of hard data and player feedback at great scale. That's a very different genesis than trying to lay it all down from the beginning, with only your thoughts and limited feedback to go on. Over-design is usually the bigger risk than underdesign.

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I didn't mean to make it sound over-complicated. Since I have the design, at least to me, it is direct and simple, just a bit extensive. But not as big as you might think. {I haven't ever played WoW, but I did play Warcraft 2 back in the late 90s, and as for MMOs, I have played a few older ones from 10 years ago. I have mostly played games that are action types with a competitive element, such as fighting games or turn based games played with tournaments. An action game I heavily favor, but uses stats like an RPG, is From Software's Armored Core series, which is where I got the inspiration of customization by editing the head, body, and limb parts, as well as colors. Then seeing their application in actual gameplay.} 

 

2 years ago, I was just a dreamer and talker, with nothing more than an extensive design document and some art{although I've been reading on Game Design on websites and books since 1999}. But I have delved into game development in my free time these past 2 years, and now I understand game development more{for example, I learned first hand the difference in performance between unorganized code {which leads to graphical errors and poor performance} while when it's set up efficiently, everything is processed really fast}.

 

The game idea I have isn't really comparable to any game out right now, maybe fragments or an aspect of  an existing game.

 

A 2D representation of the 3D system I want to create should I go the "action/simulation" route for the game's style{the other being more of a simulation/RPG with combat.}

 

The game I speak of, would entail a system similar to AC, but with the ability to exclude certain required parts, as well as being able to adjust part sizes up to a certain point, mechanics that already exists in other games. If it's possible, then I would rather a system similar to "Teddy" be used. {Link to the program} 

 

 

 

 

Although, these are just possible routes with customization. I might end up going the route of the Armored Core series.

 

As for having the player introduced to the game system, there would be a tutorial, demonstrating how your stats affect your characters performance, and some mainstream playstyles pre-made and adjusted for the player to pick. More advanced players will wish to have more control over their stat allocations, so there will be more complicated options for them. But on the surface, it will be presented in an easy to digest manner, so that casual players may just see that much and play the game, and competitive players can fine tune their characters.

 

This game itself, I have working on the design for about 10 years now. When I organize all the information into a final game design document, it should be concise, easy to read and understand.

 

Ok, to give an idea of the different "styles" of play in the game, here is a game I illustrated and used a game engine to build:

http://www.rayburst.net/game/index.html

 

They all perform vastly different. For example, Grafto maxes out speed while keeping some defense and attack power. In contrast, Pif loses speed in favor of high defense and offense, as well as range.Ritrika is fast, but she evens out her agility, max speed, and acceleration, so although she has 1/3rd the top speed of Grafto, her maneuvaribility is top notch, allowing her to make pin drop turns in mid air. Grafto can't change direction while in a burst of speed, putting him at risk should a savvy opponent aim at the right spot. Phreit Nor is more balanced overall, but ranged in attack style. His top speed is the same as Ritrika's, but because he tuned his defense and attack to average, he has low acceleration, thus he is really only able to use half his top speed for dodging.

 

These will be the resulting kind of characters and playstyle from the customization system I mention {as well as their appearance.} except in a 3D environment rather than 2D.

 

If I become impatient, I might make a 2D version of the game, but on a smaller scale, with only simple customization options{, such as changing the RBY of a part, selecting from a set of heads, eyes, hair, ears, I do have the capacity to do it now, since you just have to constrain the x,y positions. But right now, I'm just gonna make small games, until the day arrives where I have the budget to make a prototype in 3D}

 

Also, a visual grid would allow a player to edit the parameters of a character, alongside a stat screen. As in some iterations of AC, all you see are numbers{for me, it's fun, but I know for more casual players, they will just exit the game most likely.}

Edited by Fradno

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What about just resetting the weapon after 10 days (or whatever)? Having to log in feels like a chore, and doesn't ensure the weapon will remain in circulation anyways. If it's gone after 10 days, it's more of a fun reward. Even if the unique weapons are only 10% more powerful, they'll become a requirement for top-level play. With rare weapons that vanish after a time, people will get there moment in the sun but not be perpetually overpowered. It's also a pretty common fantasy trope, powerful artifacts that slip away when most needed...

 

Unique Items also become an interesting element to weave accomplishments around. "Death's Scythe: Greenbeard the Druid once killed 50 dragon's with it. It was wielded by Tzonzar to great effect in the War of the Five Guilds. Codex has possessed the dangerous weapon on five separate occasions, more than any other..."

 

You could even keep some of the mechanisms, where having previously owned the item makes it slightly easier to retrieve it.

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Polama: My original idea was not about having the player log in to keep the weapon, but that if life overtakes him, and he returns a months later, he would have the note in his inventory, and the quest to retrieve his weapon from it's present wielder.

 

I just remembered something, that the idea was partly influenced from reading the Thor and Beta Ray Bill saga from Marvel Comic, if you read it, then you'll understand what part I got the dueling for ownership of the unique weapon from.

 

Anyway, the weapon stays with active, competitive players who are competitive in the online arena. If the game is the players hobby, they keep the weapon.

 

IF a player has e-sports status, then the weapon belongs to them permanently, and in this case, a true duplicate of the weapon may be created in the game world for somebody else to pick.

 

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