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Fire Snakes

Robb Smith's page

Pathfinder Society Member. 329 posts. No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 4 Pathfinder Society characters.


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As was stated initially, it works fine RAW. My contention is that it is unnecessarily punitive to interpret it in this manner.

Look. One of the most important abilities of a GM is to be able to take and separate the "flavor" from the "actual crunch". What we have is a contention between an ambiguous rule and an non-relevant class ability flavor description. Failing to take this simple limitation of all human language into account would lead to the Core Rulebook being a mathematical textbook of several hundred thousand pages, attempting to describe and codify all the properties of the known universe. Then, you would add probably another several hundreds of thousands of pages describing how imaginary things modify those properties. It would require doctorate degrees in all the natural science disiplines to understand and use.

Instead, we get something practical. Something that occasionally has vagueries, inconsistencies, and odd interactions. The GM's job is to learn to interpret these in a fair way to the players.

So yes, by RAW Corrupt Water can absolutely ruin an alchemist's bombs. And every single Fireball that is cast reduces the planet to a charred, lifeless husk floating in space, because it ignites all combustible objects in the area and you can make the argument that the atmosphere is combustible when exposed to enough heat.

blahpers wrote:
If the alchemist's alchemy lab/supplies fails its save, they'd be spoiled too, same as if a caster's spell component pouch caught fire. The catalysts that the alchemist is presumed by the text to have mixed that morning should get their own saves. No biggie, go buy or craft a new lab. Would you say that a wizard's spell component pouch is off-limits when they roll a 1 on their fireball save?

On the first point, I see nothing in the alchemy lab description that makes mention of any liquids or chemicals. The caster's spell component pouch is not off limits, but protected by a nearly impervious shield of "statistical improbability." The wizard first needs to roll a one. The wizard then needs to have only 3 total possessions that fall into the 9 categories of items above "anything else". They then need to randomize between that and every other item they possess on their person. After all of those the attack still needs to deal sufficient damage to bypass object hardness and hit points (at this point it's probably almost a sure thing, but still a possibility it fails). That's quite a far cry from "Make a DC <x> save or you can't use bombs today. Or extracts. Or mutagens. Or poisons. Or anything else you may have crafted. You can probably poke it with a dagger though... well, as long as it's magic I suppose."

As for normally untracked resources suddenly mattering, well, yeah, that happens. I don't require my players to track how much food or water they carry or consume when in town, leaving that to cost of living, but if they get teleported to a desert or another plane then it sure as salamanders matters then.

Substantial difference. We are talking about an untracked resource used by a class to fuel a class ability that they can create an undefinied number of, that the very rules themselves "hand waive" within the description. The very rules that define how the ability functions basically say, in more flowery language, "ignore how this actually works."

Your comparison between an "untracked" resource that the players should be cognizent of - their need to eat and drink to live - to a tiny subsection of ability description that describes the valueless, meaningless material component of "liquid catalyst" required to use a class feature, is not a valid counterpoint to me. If your players aren't writing rations on their character sheet, especially player characters who should always be living under the assumption they may get called to action on the drop of a hat, they are willingly (and foolishly) making a decision to not carry around any spare resources that they have a reasonable expectation may come into play in a game. Stripping an alchemist of untracked bomb catalyst when it has never, ever been called into play by the DM, player, or the rules themselves is something that is an unrealistic expectation.

That is why it is an unfair GM call. Bomb catalyst is something that would never be discussed in an actual game in any meaningful capacity. It's something that only gets discussed here, on these forums, as something to turn into a weapon to blindside players who have never been given any reason to think it is something they should have any consideration for whatsoever.

Do the BT’s ‘fall’ into the pit? Or do they stay level with the original height of the ground. Note that the description of create pit includes: “the pit has no weight and does not otherwise displace the original underlying material.”

In the example provided, the tentacles remain in place at the casted height. The rules for spread make no mention of the affected area being recalculated if the environment it is cast into changes. This is later reinforced with the sentence If the spell affects an area, then the spell stays with that area for its duration. The tentacles are anchored into the ground underneath the plane of the created extradimensional space.

If BT’s stay level with the original ground height, do they ‘extend’ downwards into the pit per the spell effect radius?

GM's interpretation. I would rule since the tentacles emerge from underneath the extradimensional space, which is a one way portal, the answer is "no". It would be a GM call if they could bend down and reach into the pit.

Will A (grappled) actually need to make a reflex save to fall, since he is grappled by BT? Or does he stay stuck above the pit?

My reading of the RAW leads me to this conclusion: The rules for grapple state that you cannot move. However, falling is not moving, it is involuntary movement being effected on your character.

Since the tentacles cannot move (as established above), the character falls into the pit through involuntary movement. The tentacles are unable to remain adjacent, and as such the grapple immediately fails.

If party member B fails his reflex save, does he need to immediately save against BT, as he is ‘shunted’ to edge of the pit (where BT is?)

Yes. He enters the area of effect (albeit unwillingly) and is immediately attacked. "Entering" is a harsher form of "moves into".

If B fails his save and is knocked prone at the bottom, is he immediately grappled by BT?

In my interpretation, no, as the tentacles do not extend into the pit.

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Sure, by RAW you can absolutely use this sentence to strip your alchemist player of every single class feature that they have.

However -

There is no limit to how much catalyst an alchemist can create or have available, only to how much they can infuse with magic and use in a day. If you don't make your alchemist write down how much catalyst they are preparing and have available, you are very much taking RAW vs. Ability descriptions too far.

It is an unfair GM call to take a normally untracked resource like bomb catalyst and suddenly change it into something that matters in the game. This would be just like suddenly asking your spellcasters if they have bat guano written on their character sheet after years of using the "spell component pouches count as having everything" rule.


Can you please cancel the subscriptions and if possible, the pending June order. No issues, just some cash flow problems at the moment.

Combat expertise is as it has always been, a feat and stat tax to block access to higher tier, more useful feats. The stat req of 13 INT is no different than 13 DEX for the dodge tree or 13 STR for the power attack tree. It is of marginal use, but is by no means devoid of value nor is it in need of "fixing".

Cause fighters need another dump stat, amirite?

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Well Ryan, I must say that I honestly wish you the best of luck in your endeavor. Unfortunately however, as I've stated earlier in this thread, "Some scars never fade", and the entire concept of PVP looting is anathema to me.

Regardless of what's lootable, how small of a value it may be, or how easily replaceable it is, it is still my time being wasted. I'll agree with you that it adds value to PVP, but the problem is that it adds value to meaningless PVP. It creates an entire culture of "I'm going to kill you for your stuff." It reduces heroes to the same status as mobs - Kill them to see what drops off the random loot chart.

There is no such thing as "high value items" with these sort of systems, because the highest value items become the ones that people aren't afraid to lose. Anything higher then that becomes relegated to the status of stash-bait or "look at my sweet collection of magic items I'll never use because I might drop them if someone ganks me or I die'.

I also think that your policy regarding Chaotic Evil players is interesting, but I am relatively sure that the policy of crippling their character development is going to either have to be toned back to the point of meaninglessness or you will find no one for your Lawful Good players to wage war against.

Unfortunately, I am a man of my word. As expressed earlier in the thread, PVP looting is a subject on which I have no room for negotiation or compromise. It is a shame, because while I'm sure that while you probably consider me a royal pain in the behind, I appear to have been one of the few people here that isn't just a yes man, and wasn't afraid to step up and challenge you. I wish I could have remained here to do so, personally I feel a stronger and better game is forged from the fires of contention, argument, and debate then a dozen people telling you that every single decision is the best one ever - for that small subset of people.

While I fully understand that on a whole it is a meaningless and token gesture, I also cannot in good conscience spend my hard earned money on something that I do not fully support. So it is with a heavy heart that I have just completed cancelling my pledge.

I wish you and your team the best of luck, and I hope the game is successful for what you envision it to be. But for me, it seems that you are making a PVP game with some Pathfinder, and not a Pathfinder game with some PVP. And, as you stated "Not everyone is going to like the game." Trust me, I wanted to like it.


Jameow wrote:
Robb Smith wrote:

So now what I'm hearing, in addition to my long list of other things to put me on the fence, is that victory in PVP will be based on gear/training, and not skill?

It will be based on player skill still, as the gap between newbie and veteran is not that great. A group of newbies is supposed to he able to take on a more advanced character. Or at least survive the encounter.

Right, that's what I'm saying. With Shephen and Lee's video talking about the diminished power curve, but then Ryan's statements that "if your settlement sucks, you suck"... well, if your settlement sucking means you don't get access to gear/training?

A Chaotic Evil player is probably going to be PVPing a large portion of the time. If the skill they develop by doing so doesn't allow them to easily outclass Lawful Good characters, I am coming to the natural conclusion that this must be because of what they lack: Training and Gear.

So now what I'm hearing, in addition to my long list of other things to put me on the fence, is that victory in PVP will be based on gear/training, and not skill? And the main reason Chaotic Evil characters will start to "suck" is because they won't have access to these things as readily, or at all?

That's not risk and reward, that's adding a grind curve to being a jerk.

"Finally got that last training I think I need, time to go start butchering some newbs!"

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Thanks for the support Morgen, Berik, Vjek, and others. I do appreciate others being willing to step up and toe the line with me on this one. I do feel that those of us with this mindset are heavily underrepresented here, probably due to having been driven off in the past.

And to Jameow, I know that we don't agree 100% on this, but I appreciate you being at least able to step over the line here with us for a little bit and say "you know. From this side of the line, it doesn't really make sense."

To those of you out there lurking who here who are perhaps shy, don't want the exposure, or don't enjoy confrontation, you're welcome to send me private messages and I'll be happy to represent you as well. Or, as an alternative, you can just favorite this post.

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Just want to confirm that you were talking CCP, the company who, just last year, had their CEO come out and apologize for not listening to their fans telling them that things that were put into or taken out of the game were horrible ideas?

The company whose CEO made this statement?

Hilmar Veigar Pétursson, CEO wrote:

Somewhere along the way, I began taking success for granted. As hubris set in, I became less inclined to listen to pleas for caution. Red flags raised by very smart people both at CCP and in the community went unheeded because of my stubborn refusal to allow adversity to gain purchase on our plans. Mistakes, even when they were acknowledged, often went unanalyzed, leaving the door open for them to be repeated.

Just want to make sure we're talking about the same thing.

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Psyblade wrote:
yes, but that means they have to pay for 2 accounts. But I am getting to a point where i am going to try and give up with this whole argument. There will always people who will want no risk and all the rewards (like in a themepark) and don't want to work for it.

You're missing the entire POINT. The point is that you say there's risk and reward. What I am demonstrating to you is with either minimal effort or a tiny amount of additional resource expenditure, practically every punishment that has been extoled is MEANINGLESS.


It is a pointless discussion and as said before, you will lose loot when you die in this game. So either suck it up and sign up for the kickstarter to see how it is, find friends to play with or just leave.

No company has ever gained any useful data during the design process by having a select group of fanboys tell them how awesome all their ideas are and how this is gonna be the "best game ever!". They learn valuable information by people like me coming here and telling them why certain ideas are trash and why they will not be appealing to large subsections of the market. There are ENTIRELY TOO MANY Eve supporters on this board and not enough contradicting voices that will give this game any sort of chance to evolve beyond anything but Eve 2: Now With Swords.

And, in case you haven't read numerous posts, I've been signed up since the first hour it went up. I'm determining if I'm staying pledged or not.

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Psyblade wrote:
As an example with eve. you have the pirates, they are people who gank in lowsec where they prey on the miners, unaware rat-ers etc. If lucky they get the gank, they get some items. The result after a while will be they can no longer enter the hi-sec areas anymore. If you have -3 you will be attacked by patrols (and they will slow/stun (web) you so you cannot get away and proceed to kill you. The result after a while will be that they are limited to the low sec or nul sec areas. They cannot have access to the items that are being sold in the hi-sec locations, and those prices are most of the times half of what they are in low-sec and sometimes even more expensive in nul-sec. So they will have to work harder to get their money to buy the...

Or you just do what the smart eve players do and get a second account. That solves that problem pretty quick, doesn't it?

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Psyblade wrote:
in a sandbox game you, the player and all the other players around, are the storyteller and the characters in the game and thus you can make your own story and actions that will impact the game. So if there are people that want to go out and play bandit, it is their right. In regards of that they should get a reward for their actions. And they will get punishment as well. Same goes for good players, they won't be able to go out and pk right away and will have to wait till they get attacked.

So, what is the risk/reward to the party? Losing everything they have and everything they've gained over the past 3 hours, and their reward is getting to keep everything they've already earned by exposing themselves to a ton of risk.

And the risk/reward to the PK? They either get free stuff, some of it likely to be good since they did just come out of a dungeon. The risk is one dagger.

Yeah, seems fair.

Elorebaen wrote:

- Another way, would be to heal up before leaving.
- Another way, would be to scout ahead before leaving.
- Another way, would be to consider the potential for danger after leaving the dungeon as part of the adventure.
- Another way, would be to...

Not enough of the game mechanics are known, so I somewhat have to fall back on unrealistic PNP rules to illustrate the point.

~XxX~SephirothPKMaster~XxX~ was more satire than anything.

Psyblade wrote:

*sighs* It feels like beating against a wall over and over... no matter what is being said and done or offered as an olive branch people will always complain about pvp, loot drops etc.

But if you feel like you want to play pvp, risk free and without the loss of items, a themepark MMO is for you. Not a sandbox MMO.

If it feels like you're beating your head against a wall, it's because you are. I've stopped listening to people telling me I want a theme park instead of a sandbox MMO a long time ago, because you have no idea what I want in a game, and no one has even taken 5 seconds to bother asking.

Elorebaen wrote:
*grins at Robb* or an epic story that was not complete upon leaving cave, but also involved the exciting and dangerous journey back to town. Why should the epic adventure end at the cave mouth?!

My point, Elorebaen, was to demonstrate the kind of unfun behavior that occurs when PVP looting is a factor. All of your examples provided, in a PnP game, would be a pretty clear violation of the Social Contract I was referring to.

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Valkenr wrote:

Yet another example of poor planning by the party/person. You shouldn't be seeking encounters that leave you battered with no way to heal, and if you see one your choices are to run or gamble.

There is a play style change that has to happen to swap from PvE heavy themeparks to body looting sandboxes. You have to plan ahead, and just because you can do something, or can buy something, doesn't mean you should do it or buy it.

You're absolutely right. Dungeons are never perhaps a little tougher then what you planned on. As a contingency, what I should have done is hired a guard to sit outside the dungeon and wait while the rest of us went down through the dungeon and had fun for 3 hours or so, so we could come back up loaded with treasure and tell them how awesome it was. Then they could tell us about all the fun they had standing there, doing some more standing, doing a little more standing, and then telling us that they think they saw an eagle.

Then, in case the guard got jumped, I should have hired a a guard for my guard, to be engaged only if the guard got attacked.

Or I could camp in the dungeon, neglecting the fact that to be an MMO, the game would need things like respawn mechanics.

So, let's sit down and map out the 50 people you think should need to be involved for 4 of us to explore a dungeon and not get murdered, and see how much of a chore we can make the game into instead of fun.

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Yup. There's nothing a GM can truly do to prevent players from making absolutely stupid decisions and getting thrashed/killed accordingly. There are limits to plausibility involved. The best GMs have you limping out of the cave after hours of adventure with everyone at like, 4 hitpoints, no spells remaining, with a fair amount of treasure, and stories to share back in town.

And then ~XxX~SephirothPKMaster~XxX~ jumps you naked wearing nothing but a dagger, murders you, and takes your stuff and leaves the rest to rot in the wilderness. EPIC ADVENTURE HAD BY ALL!

avari3 wrote:
Jameow wrote:
The main reason I brought the topic up was for training purposes, not duels for sport.
I'm with you. There must be a mechanic for practicing PvP.

Agree completely. Adding wholescale, open PVP with no mechanic to even learn to defend yourself is a recipe for disaster.

And hey, I think we all agreed with each other for once! First time for everything.

And how would that be radically different if the goblins picked the fight with the PCs?

I want to take a moment as a brief aside to talk about the "Social Contract" between Players and GMs in Pencil and Paper games for a moment, because people don't seem to understand it.

There is a social contract in P&P games between the GM and the players, and that contract states that ultimately, the players are supposed to win. This social contract exists for many reasons, first and foremost is because the GM has unlimited access to money, resources, and monsters that they can will into existence by saying "There's an <X> in the room", where <x> is anything.

There aren't any rules for this really, so all that exists is this said social contract. The GM's job is to *challenge* the players without killing them. Yes, sometimes the players make bad decisions and die, but the GM does not go out of their way to kill the players.

So the answer to your question, Decius, is "That wouldn't happen", because it's a violation of the Social Contract. If the players were getting their collective butts kicked by the goblins because they were attacked instead of being the attackers, then that Head Goblin druid just wouldn't show up, and the players would never know.

I know that probably doesn't make a lot of sense if you don't play a lot of P&P games, but it's also one of the reasons why it's nearly impossible to compare P&P gaming to MMO gaming. In an MMO, if that monster is there and you aggro it, you're going to get stomped. In P&P, it's a Shroedinger's Goblin, and it simultaneously exists and doesn't exist based on whether or not it will murder the PCs.

Drakahn wrote:

Well, if the kickstarter succeeds we're supposed to see the beta early-mid 2014 and the release early 2015. Without the million, they still plan to release to the general public in 2016. That means 4 years at the most. Obviously delays can happen, but to claim the game isn't even going to be developed for 4-5 years is WAY off target.

Sorry, meant to say "released" - The forums here are *REALLY* PVP centric, so I have to move quickly between posts to keep up with all the different attacks to my viewpoints.

Ravening wrote:
A bunch of stuff that details a beautiful vision of a fully produced game assuming everything that has ever been said in a blog post ends up being implementable, functional, and viable in the game.

Look, Raven. I get what you're trying to say, and that's a beautiful vision of what things *could be* like.

But we're talking about a game that is what, in current plans, 4 or 5 years away from being developed?

You cannot take blog posts as being gospel. I can't think of a single game that didn't have features dropped because they just ended up being unworkable, unfun, or didn't work as planned.

I can't debate against an idealized vision of the future viewed through rose-colored glasses. It might be like what you're saying, or it might turn out to be completely different. Lots of things change in 4 years.

About the only thing I can say about what you've described is it sounds a lot like a sitting duck scenario.

Drakhan Valane wrote:
One of my favorite PnP sessions recently was one where the DM had a staged encounter. We picked a fight with a group of goblins. Easy enough. A few rounds in, the goblin hounds that heard the cries and din of battle ran in. Shortly after that, the head goblin druid came in from the brush as he was investigating the noise himself. That was a tough battle and nearly got us killed. I don't see how my story is that different from the PvP scenario you describe.
Robb Smith wrote:
In PVE, I control some of the risk.

You chose to fight the goblins. Not the other way around.

Valkenr wrote:

In your miner example. Those miners deserve to lose all their stuff, because they should have had guards with them.

Yes, I am certain there will be a sizable portion of the player base who wants to stand around in case something happens while people mine.

At least there's one thing that's becoming rather clear from these discussions, and that is that I think GoblinWorks needs to be very clear, blunt, and direct about whether they are making a PVP Game that involves some Pathfinder, or a Pathfinder game that involves some PVP. If the entire point of this game is to create "meaningful human interactions" by constant exposure to PVP, then I fail to see what the game has to do with pathfinder outside of vague ties to the setting.

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Psyblade wrote:

With the risk of being blunt, insulting and god knows what else, I am going to post this.

What you want is basically the following:

A sandbox MMO, where you have your themepark mixed into it, with your raiding and no loss of items if you mess up.

No, being equally blunt in return, what I want is Pathfinder Online, not Eve 2: Now with swords.

You'll also notice that I haven't commented at all on the PVE portion, have I?

That's because I don't mind it as much.

In PVE, I control some of the risk. In PVE, I can pretty much run away from situations out of my control (if you run in PVP, the ganker just assumes it's because you have a real reason to run and will pursue you till the ends of the earth.) In PVE, I'm usually the one initiating the combat on my terms, not getting jumped while I'm at half health fighting 2 or 3 monsters. I have access to at least SOME FORM of risk-mitigation.

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Valkenr wrote:

The only people losing anything substantial will be those that aren't thinking and playing with more expensive stuff than they can afford to replace.


Does your frustration come from losing your stuff, or somebody getting a reward for besting you in combat?

The frustration of losing stuff, and in addition, losing even MORE TIME replacing said stuff, from someone who is required to put nothing of significance on the line for the chance to take said stuff.

MicMan wrote:

@Robb: And here is where you are wrong.

It adds risk to PvP where else there would be none.

If you go and mine some precious ore for your guild and you run the risk of being killed and loose this forces you to bring protection or face the risk. It gives bodyguards something to do it forces you to be part of the community while in the other way you would only shrug and run again, hoping to get through this time.

World of a difference.

Yes, and again, it forces an undue burden of the risk onto the party that *doesn't even want to participate*. The person who wants to PVP puts all their stuff in a stash, grabs some throwaway gear, and goes out and initiates combat. The other person has no recourse but to have the high value item on them. It is win/win for the PVP initiator and lose/lose for the victim.

I know very well how this works. You grab your throwaway gear, minimalist reagents, and go murder some miners to get their ore. When you get it, you go stash it so they can't ever get it it back, and repeat the process. If you die, who cares, you grab another set of throwaway gear and go repeat the process. If PK hunters come, you just move somewhere else.

It's a dog/cat/mouse game that has zero positive benefit for the mouse. No one wants to be the mouse.

MicMan, what point are you trying to make? I have already said numerous times, heck, I've even said it on *THIS PAGE OF THIS THREAD*, that I am not that opposed to PVP being in the game. I will not, however, play a game with PVP looting. That's off the table for me. It adds nothing to the game but frustration.

DeciusBrutus wrote:

Why does the decision to allow looting require that the expected value of random killing and looting be positive? UO balanced that poorly, both in low costs and high rewards.

If the expected value of random looting as a behavior is negative, random looters will go bankrupt no matter how effective they are.

Decius: If the expected value of random looting as a behavior is negative, then why bother even having it in the game? At that point there is no value added to the game by having that as a feature.

AvenaOats wrote:
That's a shame Robb, I was hoping my bandit would draw swords with you in game: "He MUST be carrying something valuable to fear being robbed so much!" I joke, in poor taste perhaps. :)

Sorry Avena. UO left this scar on me, and this one is never gonna fade. There's tons of things, absolutely *tons* of things, I'm willing to give a second chance, but this one's absolutely off the table for me. And out there in somewhere, I have dozens of scar-brothers who are silently nodding and thinking "Amen, brother. Preach it." PVP looting is the reason why I won't play Eve, and it is pretty much sounding like it's going to be the reason I won't play PFO.


Ryan Dancey wrote:

@All - what is lootable and how that system will work is very much on the drawing board. In fact, based on a diagram I saw in a conference room today, I think literally. :)

If "how the system will work" is "on the drawing board", then the time for those of my opinion to express our extreme distaste, to the point of it being the end of consideration of this game, is right now.

If "what is lootable" is on the drawing board, then "nothing is lootable" still exists well within the scope of possible outcomes.

So basically, I guess where I'm at for right now is I'm going to give someone who speaks for the company and isn't just quoting blog posts like gospel a day or so to have a chance to respond. I know these sort of things take a certain amount of "PR Spin" before people just blast them out. If the answer isn't amiable to me, then I will be left with no recourse but to assume as many say, that this game "isn't the game for me", because it's apparently being built as a game that is designed to actively encourage "accepted forms of grief".

And yes, no matter how much people are going to argue with me, I consider killing someone for no reason other then to take a chance at rolling the dice for the items on their corpse one of the highest forms of grief even possible. It is me losing potentially hours of my time because the system in place downgraded my character to the same status as a mob - "kill it and see if it drops any loot." That is not "fun". It is not "meaningful interaction". That is /quit unsubscribe.

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MicMan wrote:
Robb Smith wrote:
For every method of hurting evil characters they come up with, players will probably find 2 or 3 ways around it...
Sorry, Robb, you contrary for the sake of contrariness.

No, I've just been to the rodeo more than once. You're completely naive if you think that players aren't going to easily find ways around the detriments for being evil. Some of them are detectable and fixable. Many are damn near undetectable.

I am not really that opposed to PVP being in the game. I have expressed my concern as I personally feel that it does not enhance the game, but rather detracts from it, but that is neither here nor there.

Where I draw my line in the sand on this subject, however, is PVP looting. PVP looting except as a punishment for the worst of the worst criminals will, simply put, not be a part of any game I play. There will be no conversation about it, there will be no negotiation about it, and there will be no concession on it. Trying to convince me that I'm wrong and you're right is a complete waste of your breath. Trying to expound the value of how "players being monsters with random drops enhances meaningful interaction" will fall on deaf ears. Trying to detail an elaborate system of "oh, but if you're good, you only have a small chance of losing certain slots..." will be said to my back as I walk away from the table. Nothing about how this game plays, operates, or is different than "theme park" MMOs can possibly justify the frustration of losing your hard earned items to a ganker. Period.

If PVP looting is in, I am out. And I don't claim to speak for the all the PvE players of the world, but on this subject, I feel pretty comfortable speaking for at least half, if not more, who are coming with me. Even my most diehard PVP loving friend, the one who always wants to play on PVP servers, always wants to run battlegrounds, and you couldn't hold back from attacking an opposing faction player with a +5 Adamantine Chain gave me the response of "ewww." when I told him about PVP loot.

Ryan talks about the "scars of UO". Well, to that I say "Some scars never fade." This is one of them. I've played a lot of MMO's in my day, and I never thought a company would be .... well, I won't say it, cause I have nothing nice to say.

As one poster so eloquently put, "I am not paying to be someone elses content". I don't think that's a fair statement, because really in an MMO, that is what we're paying for. However:
I am not paying to be someone else's farming mule,
I am not paying to be someone else's gatherer,
and I am not paying to be someone's elite mob that might drop a rare item that I happened to be holding to MY detriment.

Jhofre Vascari wrote:

Tetrix wrote:

My real concern with PvP is how do you combat the circumvention of the downside of being evil.

I'm not sure what you mean by that

For every method of hurting evil characters they come up with, players will probably find 2 or 3 ways around it. Worst of all, the best and most effective way o get around a lot of them (not being welcome in towns, etc) is beneficial for the company - which is buying and maintaining a second account.

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Jameow wrote:
There is, because it will impact on your ability to interact with others, and since you cant rely on looting for equipment, it could be quite difficult to maintain your character considering the pressure on it from bounties, hunting by others and inability to use many towns and services, and your alignment and reputation affecting those you associate with you, which means if you're a douche, you'll bring others down with you, so you'll be in a constant struggle against better resourced opponents that way

Look, you have to understand that our problem is not with the 20, 30, 50, or even 80% of PVP players that act with some decorum or sense of honor, here. Our problem is with the 20% of them that are scum-sucking bottom feeders that give the entire PVP concept and population a bad name. Many of them playing in methods that are, from everything we've gotten so far, not truly "griefers" - they're just a-holes.

This 20% is the group that really ruin the experience for us. The kind that don't care about the game, reputation, etc. They just want to play quake with swords, ruin other people's day, and take your stuff. They don't care if it's a +5 Vorpal sword or a stack of iron. It was yours, now it's theirs, and they know that you're going to be irritated at losing it, and that's all they care about. They don't care about not being able to use towns, all that means to them is they have to level up to a point they're comfortable with and then be jerks to people as they pass through while dodging people better then them (problem is, with the reduced power curve that lee and Stephen spoke about, that's less of an issue).

But the biggest thing is this 20% of people who are a-holes are also the ones who are pretty much PVPing all day long. This means that they usually have skill levels that allow them to defeat 2 or 3 people who do not have interest in PVPing all day long. Don't believe it? Go play wow. It's pretty easy in battlegrounds to tell who is from the PVP servers and who is from the PVE servers. The PVE players are the ones sitting with one sapped while the rogue is killing their friend, before they vanish to kill the one that's sapped, usually while shouting "kek kek kek" over and over. (that's LOL after faction-garbling.)

This is the 20% that we PVE-focused don't want to be forced to endure. Most of us don't really have any opposition to the grand plans of people like Andius and the fact he wants to kill these people, or the whole concepts of faction warfare and etc. That whole concept is *fine* with us.

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Jameow wrote:

How would they even KNOW you had an ultra rare drop? If it's an ultra rare, you WOULDN'T expect them to have it even if they DID kill the thing you get it from.

They can kill you and try, but even if you have it, chances are they STILL won't get it. It's not a very STRONG incentive to lower your reputation, you'd be better off raiding a factional enemy's resources and using them to trade for the rare you want :P

And if you're reputation's already shot, there's little reason not to try, is there?

That's the problem.

or we can exclude any non-perfect group as not counting because they succeeded using the tactics best suited to their capabilities instead of the preset formula most players used.

Depends on if you can you think of any parties comprised of selections of 2nd tier classes that can "take all comers" that don't rely on having 4+ members of the same class exploiting very specific abilities of their class against a very limited selection of monsters that consistently, not occasionally, outperform "classic style" groups.

"<x>" burn parties were common in FFXI and were more successful then conventional groups, but when this phenomenon started it was heavily frowned upon by the playerbase and Square.

The end result of this is worse than having a trinity setup. Instead of having a trinity, you end up with players who all gravitate towards the handful of classes that can participate in these types of groups. Trying to find a DPS that wasn't a Samurai or Black Mage or finding a group as a DPS class other than Samurai or Black Mage in FFXI was an exercise in frustration towards my end of playing that game.

Akanaaz wrote:
Why are his last points blind assumptions? There are numerous open pvp games that have guilds who protect new players/new guilds. I can see PFO being even more into that with how many RP'ers are likely to pick up the game.

That is about the only thing he said that was not a blind assumption.

And based on my personal experiences, I have found that within my circles of friends and acquaintances, PVP is a massive turn-off for the roleplaying crowd. The heaviest roleplayers in my circle are also the ones most dead-set against playing on PVP enabled servers.


Are you sure they would get multiple attempts? Are corpse runs for sure included or do you resurrect at a bind point? Are bind points allowed to be bandit hideouts? Too many unknowns right now to just make the assumptions you are making. If your bind point is far away, the caravan will be gone. If you are doing corpse runs, the caravan may still be gone. Do you know where they are going? Are they going to divert to a nearby settlement now to cure their critical wounds? Too many unknowns to just claim what you are claiming.

Even if every single point you make is true, does the risk/reward for the bandits equal the risk/reward for the merchant? I'm going to have to stick with "no" for this.

Akanaaz wrote:
I have not read of too many fantasy merchants who didn't travel with some sort of escort, unless they were into really naughty things. And yes, in most civil countries merchants are not attacked very often. Their establishments are still robbed fairly frequently, but that is beside the point.

The point I am trying to make is that you don't get to make potentially 3 or even 4 attempts against what could be the same caravan.

If they are not high enough to substantiate that, then why is everyone so concerned? If that cargo really isn't valuable and can be replaced in a couple days, then why the fuss about people attacking and taking it? Why would anyone but a small amount of ornery people be doing this if the reward isn't high enough to be worth losing alignment/reputation and possibly items from their own inventory if they fail?

There's a substantial difference in margins to be considered between making/transporting/selling goods and "taking them for free". The cost of losing the goods to the merchant is all the costs required to make them. The cost of the bandits failing to get the caravan is nothing. So you're comparing tons of risk for a moderate reward to zero risk for a massive reward. It's a pretty no-brainer which side gets the better end of that stick.

Psyblade wrote:

@Robb Smith

First point: Yes I know that the PnP characters are suposed to be heroes, but the players in the PFO world are going to be the same, they will be explorers, tacticians, warriors and sages. And when they go explore and run into a rampaging dragon they might die, lose their gear as well (because let's be fair, in PFO you will lose your gear in PvE as well). This is the same in PnP if you pick the wrong fight and you can die, your gear might be saved by your friends (or not if they had to run) and they can put a rez spell on you. I am sure most GM's will be nice enough to say here is your gear, but what if you didn't have a GM like that and you had to start all over. Would you still be playing your game then? I am sure you would quit if that would be the 3rd time.

It's completely different. If you have a party of 4 12th level characters, you do not get attacked by 30 12th level NPCs. That occuring would mean your DM was intentionally just trying to kill your side. That interaction just wouldn't occur in PnP, there's no comparison that can be made.

Now imagine your GM starting say a Kingmaker campaign and warns everyone he will be doing it with 2 other groups and they will be on a different point of the map starting. Eventually it will clash, you think that is going to be a friendly tea party and everyone goes their own merry way? I would hope not and I would hope it would lead to suspension, diplomacy and skills of the player to come out on top. This is the same setting for PFO.

Again, an interesting idea, and one that has been thrown around in conversation many times, but not one that happens in reality. After months of investment, what happens to the second group? "Thanks for your time, everyone. Your game is now over, you lose. Thanks for wasting months of your life".

It just would not happen.

The later points I'm not even going to address, because they contain what are frankly blind assumptions about how the game will operate.

Akanaaz wrote:
And that is why successful merchants will do as real merchants do, and hire protection, use routes that pass through heavily patrolled lawful good areas and not move too many expensive goods at once. Mix your loads so that only a few extremely valuable items...

In fairness, we're talking about a fantasy world here. Fedex trucks do not get randomly attacked by bandits, and in the real world you do not just respawn when you die. Most of the "risks" to moving a caravan in PFO would not apply to moving a caravan in the real world, because in the real world, if someone shoots you with an arrow, you either die from the wound or die slowly from the resulting infection.

Having 3 or 4 armed and armored guards with a caravan would have likely been an ample deterrent for the real world, because most people aren't willing to risk their lives over some silk and spices unless they're completely desperate. In PFO, you respawn and try four more times and hope one of them you get lucky, and then boom, you're rich, they're poor.

And, being pretty blunt, the margins on craftable items cannot possibly be high enough to substantiate the sort of effort you're referring to, or the economy will absolutely explode with inflation.

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Psyblade wrote:
Okay, so let's put it in RPG terms, how would you handle it then? How would you in a PnP RPG handle the things? Don't get me wrong, I don't want to pick a fight. But I feel what you want is a single player game with content you can handle, or just a themepark MMO.

It's a difficult comparison to make because in PNP games, you do not get rushed by 30 monsters of equal skill level to the players trying to take your stuff. Not unless your DM is a railroading jerk and intends for the things to get stolen. PnP characters are also just "better" than their surroundings.

We are handing out options to people who are afraid to lose items with solutions. We tell people to try the game and see how it feels and what happens and how you will be protected. I know that if you were in my charter and you had those items to be moved, the charter would step up and help you move them to where you want. Or if you died would help you get your gear back (if not in stock already so you could just grab it) etc.

Here's my point, Psy. You have a large group of people who are on the fence about PVP being in the game *at all*, and now you are also adding the "poison pill" of losing their hard-won equipment to the mix. Das is nicht gut.

People are now coming back with the argument "oh, it's only certain slots if you're not a criminal, and the items are easily replaceable." Well, if that is the case, then it's just another inconvenience added on top of the pile of inconvenience that the Anti-PVP crowd is already opposed to, so why bother adding such a divisive element?

However, if you only want to play lonewolf and not willing to interact with other people in regards of a charter or the game. I will never be able to convince you then to widen your horizon and try something new, and that is a shame :(

And what I fail to understand is the reason people keep coming back with people wanting a single player game just because they don't want to join some massive guild or alliance to guarantee protection.

I want to play the game, I want to play the game with friends, but I am an introvert - I prefer a smaller circle of close friends to a large group of people I hardly know. Just because I don't want to be in a guild of 500 doesn't mean I don't want to play with, say, 30 close friends, who may or may not all be online when I need to do things.

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Nihimon wrote:
Robb Smith wrote:
I am saying that the act of setting up a contract like that is broadcasting to the entire population that you are doing something at that place and time that is worthwhile to attempt to steal.
I may be wrong, but I believe you have to accept the Contract before you learn anything more than the time.

OK, I accept the contract, tell my friends, and then we rob it in the wilderness.

That's still not griefing. It's being a lying scum-sucker.

I believe what Ryan is referring to, Nihimon, is setting up a contract saying there's a caravan that needs guarding, and then when the time comes instead of a caravan, there's a huge group of PVPers waiting to kill people and take their stuff. That's what "luring people out to kill them with a contract." would mean to me.

Edit: And also what your quote says. "Luring people into an ambush" is bad. It says nothing about using information gained from a contract to *set up* an ambush.

Artanthos wrote:

I used to LMAO in EQ when my group of second tier classes smoked top tier groups in terms of performance.

Warrior/Chanter/Cleric/Zerker x2/Wizard < Magician x5, Shaman. Magician was considered second tier dps and most groups only invited a shaman for buffs.

You are talking about an extremely specialized group of characters that only functions because you can summon 5 tank-based pets to spread damage around, while the mages sit in the back and nuke. Substitute ANY OTHER 2nd tier class besides Magician(or Necromancer, since the mechanic is the same) and that group wipes on the first pull.

I'd like to think it's also pretty well known that +HP buffs in EQ were completely overpowered when utilized on pets. I think all die-hard MMO vets of that time period know about the legend of the nerfwalker.

Seriously man, I want to cut you some slack but you're going to need to come up with a waaaay better example of "2nd tier classes outperforming 1st tier classes" to make any sort of argument on that. Or did you just assume I wouldn't know enough about EQ to call you out on it?

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Nihimon wrote:
Robb Smith wrote:
... I need a guard. Please be at this place... to gank me...

I haven't read the entire thread, but this jumped out at me.

Ryan has made it explicitly clear that using Contracts to lure people out in order to kill them will be considered Griefing, and will be dealt with swiftly and harshly.

I'm not talking about that at all. I am saying that the act of setting up a contract like that is broadcasting to the entire population that you are doing something at that place and time that is worthwhile to attempt to steal.

Setting up a contract requesting a guard would be like the bank posting it's armored car schedule on the door.

If showing up at the caravan that requested a guard to rob it instead of guard is griefing, then everyone will just set up a guard contract and use that as insurance.

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I am not opposed to a separate loot table. If it's actually taking my stuff, I'm out.


and you see more PvP because there is no reason not to constantly attack the same player

Except for all of the other penalties?

SirUrza wrote:
Robb Smith wrote:
SirUrza wrote:
Really.. hmm. Seems like a good way to have players miss out on getting their stuff.

It's a pretty standard practice with Kickstarter. After the kickstarter ends, the company will contact you with a link to a pledge manager to allocate your additional money (and sometimes give you one last shot at increasing your pledge amount)

Well here's hoping I don't miss it. :P

Just make sure your email is up to date. I think I got about 40 emails from Reaper after their kickstarted ended with info and updates about the manager.

Yes, but again, playing devils advocate: How is the player going to know? I means sure, over time yes, eventually certain names might get to be well known, but are you really going to spend a bunch of time after you get killed excluding and including certain people? Unlikely. You just want the bastard dead and will be happy to hear they are.

My suspicion is Exploitus would have an amazing reputation score.

SirUrza wrote:
Really.. hmm. Seems like a good way to have players miss out on getting their stuff.

It's a pretty standard practice with Kickstarter. After the kickstarter ends, the company will contact you with a link to a pledge manager to allocate your additional money (and sometimes give you one last shot at increasing your pledge amount)

Jameow wrote:
Robb Smith wrote:
Jameow wrote:
But the thing is most of your items can't be looted, and they get no control over what they can loot, so if they kill you for those rare ores you just harvested, chances are they STILL won't get them. Which makes it far less reliable to kill players for stuff, particularly since the kind of stuff you can loot is the stuff that's already on the mass market.

Playing devils advocate here, I argue that that just gives them incentive to kill you over and over again until you DO drop what they want.

The advantage of the system and bounties as it stands is that you'd shove a bounty on them, then you'd go back to town when you rez to re-equip yourself, chances are there will be SOMEONE around who'd want the contract. The guy who killed you would not be very smart to be hanging around your corpse where they're most likely to be hunted. PArticularly if they killed you more than once. Since they actually CAN lose more than you, they'd be better off going somewhere else. The risk vs reward balance is no longer in their favor.

If they really want the resource, it actually would be more efficient to gather it themselves than to try and attack you for it.

Without going into too much about the bounty system, let's just say there are probably a solid dozen ways to exploit it that are nearly impossible to prove in a substantial way.

"Oh no, it's the dreaded hunter of my guild, Exploitus! I had better put a minimum amount of effort into defending myself while he kills me and claims the bounty, I certainly hope that he doesn't loot me like usual when he kills me."

I mean, heck. Exploitus may not even BE an exploiter. He may just like to hunt people from that guild and not loot their bodies to minimize retaliation. It could be a legitimate case that there is no spoken collaboration and it's just a gentleman's agreement to not go to war against him, because he just collects bounties (at no detriment to the guild) and doesn't loot bodies.

Jameow wrote:
But the thing is most of your items can't be looted, and they get no control over what they can loot, so if they kill you for those rare ores you just harvested, chances are they STILL won't get them. Which makes it far less reliable to kill players for stuff, particularly since the kind of stuff you can loot is the stuff that's already on the mass market.

Playing devils advocate here, I argue that that just gives them incentive to kill you over and over again until you DO drop what they want.

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