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Great work. Very nice to see the progress and that you're hitting your milestones.

Keep up the good work guys.

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Excellent job.

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Mbando wrote:

Gah, Zimbardo. What a grotesque hack--he's literally the opposite of science. "Oh Hai guys I am going to ask privileged children at Standord to pretend they are prison guards/prisoners to find out about prison guards/prisoners. Oh wait wut this isn't naturalistic empirical work and is worthless (plus unethical)? Oh then really wut I was doing was exposing evil."

I mean seriously, this guy has been flogging this nonsense for decades, making money out of telling people anecdotes they want to hear ("Who know what eveil lurks in the hearts of men? Zimbardo knows!").

You don't get to pick your data arbitrarily in science. You do pick your data, collection method, analytical methods, etc., but it can't be just random, arbitrary cherry-picking: "Humans are fundamentally evil...umm...let me see...right there, Abu Ghraib!" What is the scientifically plausible reason for taking detention facility A, which used EIT and had amateur custodians who violated civil rights of detainees as data, but NOT taking detention facility B, which used coffee and skittles (literally) for interrogations? There could be a reason, but absent a well articulated data selection rationale, I'm left with "cherry-picking to get confirmatory evidence."

Ultimately Zimbardo's work is worthless in a scientific sense because he makes unsupported generalizable claims. If he wanted to pick out Abu Ghraib and do qualitative analysis, to understand with precision what happened there so as to gain portable insights, ok great. But don't cherry pick one example, ignore all the counter-examples, generalize broadly, and then pretend that's science.

Anyways, with regard to PFO, if we wanted to think through anonymous (or at least mediated) on-line behavior:

1) We can't compare unlike things. Real life social interactions that have life-stakes are fundamentally unlike online interactions. Getting shot and killed in Day Z doesn't tell you beans about how people would interact in civil crisis because it's a friggin' computer...

The point is real though. The less you associate the set of pixels on your screen with another actual person, the less likely you are to be concerned with their emotional well-being or be considerate of them in any way.

The internet is rife with this, most of the lovely denizens of 4chan rarely treat others in real life with quite the same 'venom'.

The question of how to combat that in PFO is, I would have thought, a fair one. The tricky bit is where to draw the lines on unacceptable behaviour, especially when you are encouraging half your playerbase to take an 'evil' role.

As someone intending to play the bad guys, this is something I'm mindful of. And I think it's fair for people to be concerned. As to how effective a measure reputation will prove to be, until you trial it in-game I suggest it's pointless to worry overmuch.

What is more likely to curtail it however is a strong community who is, for the most part, united against griefing in general.

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Bluddwolf wrote:
The OP forgot to include Trade and Market manipulation.
Southraven wrote:
So to is Crafting, and it's attached games of Economics.

I think you'll find I didn't. ;) I just glossed over it as it will no doubt attract plenty of attention all its own :)

Goblin Squad Member

In Australia it's known as "Kill the dill with the pill".

It was quite a lot of fun ;)

As for the conversational side of things, its determined by a number of factors. The crowd-forging going on here on the forums will be little to no similarity how some guilds determine their directions internally, and none of this would be the same to how GW themselves come to their oen decisions.

It's one massive continuous conversation, going on in dozens of directions in different groups in different ways. Consensus is possible, but I expect it to be somewhat rare.

Goblin Squad Member

I'm interested to know more of GW's plans regarding activities that fall outside what's already been discussed.

Combat, whether it be PVE or PVP is a given and is a staple of MMO's.

So to is Crafting, and it's attached games of Economics.

Nation building is an announced element also, though a little further down the track.

What I'm thinking of is a little more esoteric, and could I guess, in parts be accused of falling into Themepark gameplay elements. To which I would counter yes they could be, but it would depend how there were implemented.

This fourth category is one I feel has been traditionally somewhat overlooked in MMO's, although some have had a few elements thereof, but none had all. I'll call it 'adventuring' elements and see what you think.

These elements are focused on giving players things to do outside of combat and crafting. So far I have: Exploration and Map Making, Thievery and traps, Magical Research, Religious Duties, Cultural Developments and Challenges of Strength.

Let me break them down further :

Exploration and Map Making - For players who choose to specialise in the outdoors and associated skills. It's difficult to really refelect how this works in a game unless you can in some way restrict players visibilty of the whole world, allow for a very real possibility of getting lost. It could be refelected by penalties to actions (or bonuse to the outdoorsman, the effect is the same) for operating in wild country. Perhaps monsters have smaller aggro radiuses to the woodsman, perhaps archery penalties are decreased, and the ability to actually create maps of your travels would all be ways of giving some advantage to our outdoor friendly friends and maybe lead to their discovery of hidden glens and crevices atht others missed. (This is also something that could be applicable to streetwise cityfolk in crowded streets and some dwarves in the darker dungeons of the River Kingdoms.)

Thievery and Traps - For the stealthier brethren perhaps there is just that little bit more to be found than the average adventurer can find. A keen eye, some quick wits and nimble fingers can access things no-one else can. This can be applicable in almost any situation. Hidden rooms unnearthed, dastardly traps avoided, and acrobatic skills emply to reach places others cannot. Essentially this looks at enabling ways for the Bards and Rogue inclined builds to have more to do than just be "dps and buffing".

Magical Research - For the more mystically inclined, perhaps there are certain things that cannot be discovered just by adventuring. Perhaps some arcane knowledge can only be unlocked through diligent experimentation and research. Golems built, spell effects discovered, strange portals opened to other planes of existence where all kinds of unique knowledge can be found. This looks to give magic inclined players some interesting ways to uncover lost knowledge. Unlocking gateways, finding lost tomes tucked away in old libraries, understanding more about that weird tube you just found in the liches lair.

Religious Duties - For the faithful, the Gods require many things to be raised in their estimation. Converting the common folk, uncovering lost religious artifacts, guarding places of great sanctity, confronting and purging the enemies of the other faiths. While the tenets of every being worshipped is different, all require certain acts be performed to ensure the ongoing spreading of the word. The paladin/cleric/monk/druid styles can all be represented here, giving them duties they can choose to perform outside of the hack'n'slash healbot roles we're all used to.

Cultural Developments - For the more artistically inclined, perhaps the populace is in need of culture. Songs can be written, works of art made, great deeds turned into epic odes, new interpretations, forms and styles are always waiting to be found. Perhaps a noble adventurer could yet uncover the next great wave of inspiration? Bard types especially would like this, and it can give players a very different and unusual way to contribute to the MMO.

Challenges of Strength - For the warrior/barbarian combat is mostly all, but the call of the great Black Knight/Dragon/Troll that rampages through the land can land to greater renown, and maybe a unique fighting talent or two learned in the process.

So as you can see I'm looking at ways of making progression a little more spicey and unpredicatble.

They key as I see it to making this work, is an element of randomality, otherwise it will be all over "" shortly after each element is located. That's a fair bit of work and I can see Ryan and his fellows declaring 'Southraven, you're Mad!' Which is true. However I'm still interested to know your thoughts on how feasible this might be, and if any of it actually interested you or is something you might like to see. Or can you think of any more?

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Ryan is hitting the nail on the head with that one. The absolute key to immersion and continuing investment in any MMO is the social tools available through a Guild/Company/Corporation.

If I find a group of like-minded people and get into what I am doing, I am far more likely to stick around.

Its why GW2 kind of failed for me. It's a nice game, but nothing ever really compelled me to interact with others. I could have forced the issue and been more social myself, but it just never really seemed necessary. So I hit max level, ran out of immediate things to do, and quit.

If Pathfinder should aim to do anything, it is to continuously give players reasons to talk to each other. And it seems they are taking this path and it pleases me greatly.

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Nihimon wrote:

I'm sure I have KS notifications turned on, and that I don't have a rule deleting them.

I made the mistake of tying my KS account to Facebook, and it's probably a setting there. I'm afraid to de-link them while the KS is still active.

They're definitely coming in Nih. The most recent one was Update #44 on the 14th of March. I'm pretty comfortable though that given the sheer volume of your contribution to the forums you really should just get it all regardless. :)

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Sorry but if you want to play a MOBA while playing PFO I suggest buying a second monitor and run LoL or DoTA on it.

It's not going to happen here, nor should it.

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Valandur wrote:
Marketing suits? Which site did you mean to post this on? :p. GW, unless I'm very mistaken, has no dedicated marketing people.

Actually Ryan's job at CCP was as head of Marketing. He's the marketing guy, it may not be his official title, but he is.

Goblin Squad Member

An extremely interesting blog. Combat is the sauce for a nice MMO dish. I am overall in favour of everything you posted, granularity is interesting, the keyword system is inspired and I like the concepts of strategy.

I do have a couple of quick questions though.

a) Given the six-second rounds and the predictable nature of no miss/no crit, how long do you envisage a standard combat actually taking? Whilst obviously no-one is a huge fan of being blicked, similarly fights averaging longer than 2 minutes can quickly become tedious. Do you have any ball-park figures on this?

b) I'm Australian, and as such typically have to play with a latency in the 200ms+ range. Given the focus on timing, how do you see someone on a distant connection faring?

c) As a prospective Rogue, how does backstabbing fit into this?

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If you asked me to pick someone from the GW Community to be that guy, he would be the number one name in my mind.

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avari3 wrote:
CBDunkerson wrote:
avari3 wrote:
Why would you play an alt? Your main gains the skills at the same rate and probably has already gained a few points in the ability score. There is no incentive to play an alt except alignment/reputation. Bad, Bad, bad trend to promote.

There is clearly some kind of disconnect here.

The reasons to play an alt seem fairly obvious... you can have a fighter alt and a wizard alt. Or a gatherer alt and a crafter alt. Or whatever other variations. Given that there are going to be multiple 'classes' and it will take ~2.5 years to 'master' each class it seems obvious that people will play alts to have access to more classes. Just like any other game.

Yeah, if you pay $45/month to train 3 at a time. Alt's are now purely the domain of players who are spending $30+ every month to have two training simultaneously all the time.

Sorry, but that's too much for a video game. Give me a reason to level an alt an occasionally level them simultaneously and I will do it. I get bored playing the same character every day for a year.

Wait 3 alts? What? There are hundreds of reasons to level an alt in this game. I really just do not understand what your issue here is. You seem to be just flat out ignoring the reasons, or completely misunderstanding how the system works.

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avari3 wrote:
Southraven wrote:

No your main gains XP at the same rate. That is not the same thing as gaining skills. XP is spent, at the players discretion on skills. Alt A does not, and probably never will, spend those points on the same skills.

Yes but why bother with an alt? Your main (a fighter type) already has int 11 because you put in some lore skills. Why start an alt wizard at Int 10? Put it on your fighter!

Because each character's pools are unique. We're not talking a shared resource here.

Alt A gains 5000xp and so does Alt B.

If I spend all my Alt A points on a build of fighter, why on earth would I not look to do something completely different on Alt B?

You seem to be labouring under the misconception that certain skills are 'Must Have' for every character, but I see nothing in the game design that suggests that is the case. In point of fact, a fighter who uses lore skills in game is directly sacrificing his potential, as equipping a lore skill, and moving out of fighter based skills, reduces his fighting effectiveness. The mage alt has no such penalty, as the lore skils fall within his domain.

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avari3 wrote:
Southraven wrote:

2. This point baffles me. Progression along a full class path takes two and a half years (approximately). If my main is a Neutral Evil Rogue Aristocrat, my alt can be.. well literally anything else. If you're taking the long term view that they all get all the skills eventually, you are talking a DECADE of real time. During that time your two characters can and probably will be ridiculously varied, and with the sheer number of options in terms of class, alignment, and training options, even after a decade they could well be radically different.

There is zero reason to put the barb rage skills on an alt instead of the NE rogue. In the old system you did it because the alt has higher strength and trained it faster.

The old system is exactly the system EVE Online uses, and it relegates stats to a planning tool and nothing more. I personally like this new system, it means decisions can be made far more dynamically and gives me a lot more freedom to adjust my characters on the fly as the game evolves.

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avari3 wrote:
CBDunkerson wrote:

avari3, between the 'everyone a clone at the start' and 'everyone a clone at the end' states you describe there IS that ~20 to 30 YEAR interval which you are overlooking. Plenty of room for a 'destiny twin' to develop completely different skills/classes. Indeed, between the two characters you might be able to master everything in a MERE decade... which is far longer than I've played any other MMO.

That said, I agree there should be more initial diversification. I'm ok with the 'all clones in the end' state given that it is so far in the future that there is plenty of time to fix the problem if it starts to look like the game will remain popular for more than two decades.

Why would you play an alt? Your main gains the skills at the same rate and probably has already gained a few points in the ability score. There is no incentive to play an alt except alignment/reputation. Bad, Bad, bad trend to promote.

No your main gains XP at the same rate. That is not the same thing as gaining skills. XP is spent, at the players discretion on skills. Alt A does not, and probably never will, spend those points on the same skills.

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avari3 wrote:

I've slept on it and now I hate the ability scores even more.

1. In the old system it was always assumed that a character could increase ability scores over time, so mistakes could be erased eventually.

2. The new system UTTERLY & COMPLETELY terminates any incentive whatsoever for an alt. In the old system you would at least roll one "destiny's twin" alt who had the ability scores the main was lacking in. Under this system the only reason to start an alt is alignment issues and last I checked that's exactly what we don't want, people using alts to fudge the alignment system.

This system gives us vanilla clones at 1st level and raging/arcane archer/ time stop superhero clones at high level. This blog was supposed to be about tweaking the rules from EVE to something more fantasy, but this clearly goes very far away from everything Pathfinder/D&D and is much more suited to sci-fi where everyone actually is a clone (Fallen Earth).

1. They still do. As you increase skills relating to a stat it slowly increases.

2. This point baffles me. Progression along a full class path takes two and a half years (approximately). If my main is a Neutral Evil Rogue Aristocrat, my alt can be.. well literally anything else. If you're taking the long term view that they all get all the skills eventually, you are talking a DECADE of real time. During that time your two characters can and probably will be ridiculously varied, and with the sheer number of options in terms of class, alignment, and training options, even after a decade they could well be radically different.

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Dakcenturi wrote:
Southraven wrote:
Good vs Evil - Again you simply predetermine a list of legitimate in-game possibilities that can raise or lower the good/evil alignment axis. They can and should have different options as Lee pointed out when it comes to settlements but the important thing here is that both be viewed (in terms of the meta-game) as viable alternatives. Necromancy is evil, that's fine, you become more and more evil and good players can legitimately shun or try to attack you. Champions of good do the same. These actions by a player says "I invite the contest" and this leaves the decision in the players hands and remains a role-playing opportunity.

Agree with your post except that you are first saying alignment shouldn't be affected by game mechanics but then go on to say it should be related to game mechanics. What I've been saying all along is killing another person is evil whether you do it for a good reason or not. It may be less evil evil because it is justified, but it is still evil.

Again quoting Pathfinders specific definitions of evil & good.


Good implies altruism, respect for life, and a concern for the dignity of sentient beings. Good characters make personal sacrifices to help others.

Evil implies hurting, oppressing, and killing others. Some evil creatures simply have no compassion for others and kill without qualms if doing so is convenient. Others actively pursue evil, killing for sport or out of duty to some evil deity or master.

I'm not saying a LG paladin should auto jump to CE for killing an evil character, I am saying that a LG paladin should become slightly less good and have to make up for killing someone by doing other good.

Actually pretty easy to fix I think. When an enemy is defeated you give an option, kill or subdue. Both mechanically have similar results. One is deemed a good action, the other evil and it becomes a player decision.

I should have clarified also, I tend to think of the mechanics of games as two types. Met-game mechanics (such as attempting to control player behaviour) should not directly affect a player unless they themselves break a rule.

In-game mechanics such as alignment do affect a character, but in a way that they choose to to supplement their character.

Goblin Squad Member

To be honest, I genuinely believe the answer is staring us in the face on this. And indeed, Lee's excellent post on city reputations has kind of made it apparent to me.

Reputation should be the mechanic for attacking/griefing/being a jerk. This works well, is a meta-stat more for game policing and enforcement and hopefully 99% of the population will never really even know its there, as it will have little or no impact on them. Perhaps it is something that could start at 100% and then trend downwards as the reports flow in. It could also be something that 'very slowly' regenerates, allowing someone who started off being a ganking pain in the butt, a chance to redeem themselves and eventually re-join the community. It's essentially self-imposed jail-time. Oddly this means much less work for you guys, as the its the players own actions and interactions with others that lead to this.

Low reputation players get less access to resources and are gradually bled dry as they go lower and lower. This works just fine for me. Players should be able to nominate an attacker with a reputation hit as part of the 'death curse' mechanic. Someone killing noobs will have no rep real quick. Bounty options and death cursing would make this even less attractive.

Alignment itself should not have any mechanics associated with one way or another that directly affect players.

Law vs Chaos - It can be lowered to Chaotic through in-game actions, such as robbing, stealing, spying, trespassing, declaring war constantly with lawful entities or any other breaking of the rules set by a chartered company in their hex. It could be raised by joining a city guard, adhering to contracts, performing actions for Lawful dieties etc.

The outcome of this becomes how companies would then accept you or be willing to deal with you, but remains a) as a player role-playing opportunity and b) gives players with non-griefing chaotic tendencies a chance to play legitimately within the Out-Of-Game rules of Pathfinder Online.

Good vs Evil - Again you simply predetermine a list of legitimate in-game possibilities that can raise or lower the good/evil alignment axis. They can and should have different options as Lee pointed out when it comes to settlements but the important thing here is that both be viewed (in terms of the meta-game) as viable alternatives. Necromancy is evil, that's fine, you become more and more evil and good players can legitimately shun or try to attack you. Champions of good do the same. These actions by a player says "I invite the contest" and this leaves the decision in the players hands and remains a role-playing opportunity.

This means a genuine thieves guild of scum and villainy (and they do exist) could still actually function within the game as mercenaries, raging barbarian hordes can still work, and paladins can still go out and hunt their natural arch foes.

So what does this mean? You have two mechanics, alignment to generate role-playing and legitimate pvp systems between players, and reputation as a meta-mechanic to assist in controlling out-of-control player behaviour.

Goblin Squad Member

Alignment should be a role-playing and story-telling device. It has nothing to do with real life players misbehaving.

Please reconsider using alignment as a punishment system, as you are punishing half (well the way things are going more like 10%) of your playerbase for doing nothing more wrong than selecting an option during the character creation process.

One other thought, how on earth does a Chaotic Good society even function using this system?

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Stephen Cheney wrote:
Valandur wrote:

It would be beneficial for us to know how long the Heinous flag lasts provided no further heinous actions are committed. If nothing else, just a general idea would help.

If its just something that will drop off after 15 mins, or if it persists for days will make a big difference.

Minutes, maybe even only seconds, not days.

For undead, it's likely to just be the time it takes to summon the undead (maybe plus a little bit if the summoning time is really quick). By the time you can be like, "What? THESE undead, Mr. Paladin? I got these as a bequest from my grandfather. A terrible act, of course, but it seems like wasting them would be an even greater crime!" then the opponent is on shakier moral ground.

It'd probably vary for other stuff, and it's up for debate regardless. Guiding rule would probably be if you're clearly in the process of doing something awful and any LG court in the world would consider it open and shut, then you'd get it, but if you've put any reasonable doubt in between you and the act, you only have to worry about it if you did it somewhere where it also got you the Criminal flag.

Thanks for the reply Stephen, it is good to get a sense of how you guys are approaching these issues.

It's obviously an uphill battle for us evil folks though. Alexander sums up the mentality, it's not griefing if good kills evil because they're supposed to.

You're not 'supposed' to grief anyone. Players with Good alignments will though, all the time. And they'll hide behind the veil of self-righteousness as they do it. I don't intend to participate in a race to the bottom myself, but I acknowledge others will.

It must be tough planning for this stuff. I'm very glad you're trying though.

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Nihimon wrote:
I like it, but I've been pushing to have large NPC armies move - very slowly - across the map to assist in Settlement Sieges.

An interesting idea. Would you be able to harass said army as it travelled, trying to thin their numbers?

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Nihimon wrote:
Choosing to Block another character could apply the Attacker Flag...

It took me precisely three seconds to think, if I run into an AFK player I can force the attacker flag onto him and kill him ;)

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Nihimon wrote:
Fiendish wrote:
If it's such a pain in the ass that you'll be constantly ganked, as you are unsafe anywhere even at home, then why bother?

First, why wouldn't you be safe at home? Surely you're not living in a Settlement with other players who are going to kill you for doing whatever it is you're doing. If so, then you should consider finding a new home.... perhaps Shadow-Haven.

Second, that fear of being constantly ganked is the exact fear that generally Good-aligned Merchants and Crafters are already living with.

Finally, Evil has always had the advantage of being free to kill the Good guy and take all his stuff without worrying about their conscience. Good needs the Flags in order to justify their actions.

Really, all these Flags do is level the playing field so that Evil isn't the only threat.

A somewhat valid point Nihimon, I see where you are coming from. However not attacking first is something a 'roleplayer' would do. A 'griefer' has no such limitation. You will find plenty of good people attacking first, because they simply don't care about the alignment factor, or think they can go save some orphans afterwards to regain their lost alignment.

Which again draws us back to the mechanics of how alignment will actually work.

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Stephen Cheney wrote:

There will absolutely be Stealth.

As Ryan pointed out, we just can't put any of the calculations on the client, it'll all have to be server-based. We'd like to do some more granular things with it than is normal for MMOs, but we need to get deeper into our server tech to work out what's possible.

As a prospective thief, thanks Stephen, I very much appreciate the effort you guys seem to be making (even if I sound a little shrieky at times!)

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Vath Valorren wrote:

Please let us suspend philosophizing for a moment, and remember this is an MMO that will function based on rules.

As a Player, choosing alignment is meaningless unless there are rules involved, and consequences for breaking rules/following rules. The rules will be in place before your character is created, and it looks like we can see the rules beginning with pvp flags, "heinous" flags, and such, prohibiting certain activities.

I assume there will be NPC settlements in game, probably racial settlements, and potentially known landmarks and cities that exist in the River Kingdoms. Eventually, we will also have Player settlements. Both of these types will have rules programmed into them (hex by hex?), that are based on the culture and laws of the folks who live there. Also, players will probably have some starting location (based on race, and preferred alignment?).

A player can claim all day long to be Lawful Good or Lawful Evil, but they will start off as the alignment of their starting area. If you can start off in a Lawful Evil settlement, then that settlement should have rules to reflect that. By that same token, I would not expect to see a Necromancer guild in a "good" aligned NPC settlement. (I have to say that by definition, most good cities would frown on raising the dead)

Idea #1: I propose that alignment is tied to location, and each player's ability/tendency to conform to the rules for that location.

Idea #2: We should have NPC settlements of all alignments (what would an Evil settlement look like?)

Idea #3: Players can set the rules for their own settlements (based on set guidelines from the NPC settlements, and the ability to pick and choose "rules")

Just ideas, would love to see some feedback.

Ideas 2 and 3 are already stated as being in the game (although not necessarily at launch). Player run cities will determine their own laws and can dictate rules of engagement and conduct in their hex. Whether they can enforce them is another thing entirely.

The three starting locations will all be weighted to either good, neutral or evil and have different aspects, advantages, disadvantages and laws as a result.

Player alignment itself, and option 1, is where most of this discussion is coming from, as it is not very clearly defined as to how it will work in game. There have been some nebulous statements but nothing I would define as concrete. This may be because GW themselves don't know yet, or they do know but haven't mentioned it yet.

And it's the mechanics of how these alignments will work that we need to know. As it can greatly impact on a players daily life.

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Elorebaen wrote:

Just a quick comment, as I am more forest than trees with regards to the design.

This discussion should be against the backdrop of actual real world MMO experience. We are not talking about esoteric descriptions of alignments that one can have in the context of a PnP game. We are talking about actual mechanical elements that address some common and not so common situations in actual MMO experience. Seems like the alignment-related discussions always seem to go off the rails when we start thinking of the alignments in the abstract. Ryan has been fairly clear with regard to non-abstractness of alignments in PFO.

Just a thought =)

I completely concur with this. This is intended to be a question of mechanics and what seems, at face value anyway, to be a stacking of the deck to one side of the fence.

It probably isn't, there is probably more to this than we see, but it really needs someone from GW to say something on the matter to help clear it up.

Goblin Squad Member

Imbicatus wrote:

There will be no classes, but you DO get benefits for sticking to a specific group of class skills to match the PnP classes. They are not using the rules and classes of the game, but they are clearly trying to capture the *feel* of the game.

While I don't like stealth being not useful in the game, I don't think it makes playing a rogue useless. You still have access to the highest burst damage in the game thanks to sneak attack. You can still apply sneak attack reliably without stealth due to flanking and feinting. Rogues will still likely have more varied skills than anyone not focusing on crafting. They are still going to be the only ones who are capable of disarming traps in dungeons.

That said, I hope they can find a way to keep stealth in the game even in the face of cheaters. But you can make a very effective rogue in PnP without one rank in Hide. You should be able to do the same in PFO.

Whilst your point is reasonable, the pidgeonholing of rogue into "high burst dps class" annoys the heck out of me. I don't want to play a 'high dps' build. I want to roleplay a thief.

This kind of number-crunching meta-gaming is what has absolutely driven the 'rpg' from mmorpg's. It has gone from characters to numbers. And that is something I desperately hope Paizo and GW are striving to correct.

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Kosten07 wrote:

How about this?

Give players a surrender option, and the bandits can "loot" the player as if he was dead however the player moves on with the knowledge he was just robbed but the bandit thankfully left him alive.

Maybe unflag the player that surrendered from PvP for five minutes to give him time to flee?

You can have flavors of bandits who will butcher anyone they come across or have the one who allow their prey the chance to surrender without bloodshed.

Or even if the bandit is forced to bleed their prey with some hard lumps the victim can "surrender".

I can see this opening a lot of role playing opportunities.

A bounty could be placed for the thief but it can't be renewed forever because he isn't a murderer.

Just thinking outside the box. This would probably make everything more complicated than it needs to be.

I am fine with a 'surrender' mechanic. But again, it focuses on banditry alone.

I don't even want to be a bandit.

If I play a thief I want to break into buildings, dodge guards, pick locks and steal the plans you have for a new super-catapault. Or cross the moat, into the tallest tower and kidnap the maiden. Or steal the records to bribe a powerful merchant who has been gaming the system. there is so much more to thievery than just mugging someone in a remote location!

An evil cleric should be converting people to his cause! Desecrating holy temples, corrupting the weak!

An evil wizard could not have any interest at all in conquest, but just be focused on creating the 'perfect' abomination. Or trapping souls to power his magical constructs.

An evil warrior could still want to be the greatest swordsman in the land, so he hunts down any perceived as his competition and demands a duel to the death. Or just plain holds up a bridge and yell "None shall pass!"

It's not always about conquest, and its not always about stealing. At least it shouldn't be, it can be so much more fun, for myself AND yourself.

Goblin Squad Member

Am I The Only One? wrote:
Southraven wrote:

Unless you're intending to include a "Paragon" tag for someone so sickeningly good to also be a valid target it just seems to be the developers actively choosing Good aligned companies as their 'side' in any war.

Humanity has chosen Good as its side in most any war.

So really, what's the question?

Any civilization that expects to survive, even a virtual one, must enforce cooperation and some level of civility. A player choosing to do rotten crap to everybody in such a virtual reality is intentionally kicking that model in the balls for his own selfish fun and gain.

You know what we do to players who act this way at the table? We kick them out. Do you know what we do to people in real life who act this way? At the very least we ostracize them socially. At the worst, depending on the crime, they are executed.

It boggles my mind that people continue to argue for the "right" to have whatever they want and to do whatever they want, not only just at the expense of everybody else, but intentionally intending to hurt everybody else just to get a little jolly out of life.

Seriously, a tag is the least of your worries if this is what you need to get off in the world.

You are confusing 'playing an evil character' with 'griefing other players'. I have this conversation almost every thread this comes up.

And you're being kind of nasty about it as well.

Summoning undead in a virtual world is a means to achieve power. A ranger summoning a horde of woodland creatures to aid him is exactly the same mechanic, but one is deemed evil and the other is good. One is punished in game and the other is not. Why? These are artificial constructs in an artificial world. That raising undead is, in the game world of Golarian, labelled evil. That is fine. That the online version comes complete with an a big flashing "Hey this guy over here did something evil!" when there is no actual way a normal player could know about it, is not fine as far as I am concerned.

I opened my post by saying I completely agree with the anti-griefing mechanics. I do not want to grief people, and I can assure you there will be plenty of griefers with a nice shiny "Good" sticker over their head.

Please look past in game appellations and recognise what I am talking about here is game balance, not a griefing tool.

Goblin Squad Member

AvenaOats wrote:

I think there's a lot to untangle here.

Setting out what we roughly know:

1. Order-Chaos axis = primary player-player alignment system
2. Good-Evil axis = primary player-npc alignment axis
3. Reputation = Additional system for players to rate interactions
4. Flag system = (1) action taken (2) person affected (3) area/status context of flagged action.

I think this blog is talking primarily about the flag system which is a "temporary marker" for recent actions and/or an alignment point or added/docked or two. I also guess the flag system is being highlighted to reassure against random player killing/griefing. IE recent discussions you can see people suggest if you allow open world pvp and looting then bedlam 24/7 ensues. But with a flagging system that suggests a lot more caveats to these actions especially if players are organised and allied.

To reassess: If all 3: of the above 1-3 are bad that means various flags and alignment shifts have occurred to warrant a "neon sign" that says this PC is severely chaotic-evil infamous reputation. Whether that player is RP'ing CE scum or is CE scum - I think my sword will provide answers before questions are asked!

I think "Heinous" is an evil marker: Ie slaves/undead are a short-cut to cheap labour and all the bad actions are simply finding expedient and morally dubious options to advance at the cost of other players etc??

/food for thought, *rambles on some more*

You're quite correct and I am absolutely certain part of the issue here is that we don't have all the information. Thus my question to Ryan. I'm hoping he's not taking it as facetious line of questioning as it's not intended to be.

I'm curious about the good/evil thing only applying to NPC's though, where did you get that impression from?

Goblin Squad Member

Aeioun Plainsweed wrote:

From blog:

Heinous: Certain incredibly evil actions (like raising undead or using slaves in a construction project) may briefly flag a character with the Heinous flag. These actions are universally considered wrong, and other players are not punished for attempting to stop another player from doing these things.

A brief flag for the most evil persons in the universe. I think it's agreeable. This can be a nice thing in the battle field, when people see the "necromancer" flag and know they have to take him down quickly cause he is the most evil person in the universe and probably the leader of "bad guys"

I would be fine with it, if there was a corresponding flag for someone who summoned angels or saved orphans. The point is no so much that the flag exists, but that it only affects one single alignment.

Evil has a lot of things going against it already in this game. Why do they need more?

Goblin Squad Member

Neadenil Edam wrote:

There is a lot of angst about what characters will be viable.

I think its important to realise this will be a beta.

Whilst clearly many hope their beta character may carry through to give them a head start in the real game there is no guarantee this will happen. A beta is just that and substantial changes may yet take place.

The PFO Live Beta is a paid event, meaning progress and characters will be saved and usable after the main launch. This has already been promised as part of the Kickstarter early access privileges.

The beta part certainly does mean things can and will change, and I guess some progress could be lost or changes if skills you have trained in receive substantial overhauls or are removed, but that's just par for the course.

Goblin Squad Member

It would be nice, but this is one of those 'technical' issues which they may not have any say in. Game performance always dictates this, so it really depends on how robust the Unity engine is on handling it.

Goblin Squad Member

Ryan's words on the subject

Which basically says "Hackers make this too hard to implement"

Goblin Squad Member

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Blaeringr wrote:
Onishi wrote:
Ludy wrote:
The more grief you cause, the worse your alignment, and eventually you'll only be able to access the worst sort of Settlement. That will have a direct influence on your character's relative power vs. other characters of a similar age.

If you ask me that is pretty clearly saying CE settlements are by definition "the worst sort of settlement", and as a result CE characters will have the lowest relative power.

If he used wording to imply "Different", IE evil clerics channel negative energy, good ones channel healing. Evil characters don't get access to X, but good characters don't get access to Y. I would be 100% for it.

Of course there is one possible meaning that could be different. If he means being known for being griefers, IE being the most hated specifically, meant your settlement is likely to be under constant attack, thus you would be unlikely to develop it's training before being torn down, this I could get behind and agree with. But that wouldn't be directly tied to alignment.

Ryan gave an example of working around this though. In the whole discussion over what territory bounties could be issued in he talked about players with bandit characters using other characters that could access better settlements safely stocking up the bandits' hideout with better gear.

More importantly, why is banditry the only definition of 'roleplaying evil' that they seem to have?

Goblin Squad Member

Alexander_Damocles wrote:
-Markus- wrote:
Nihimon wrote:

Utterly fantastic!

It's also very nice to have confirmation that raising undead is still an "incredibly evil" act :)

If you are neutral and raise undead, it should not be considered an evil act. Disturbing a grave is not inherently evil, especially if your religion does not consider it to be so. Undead can be used for lots of good reasons, and while the undead themselves should share your alignment they should not be considered innately evil.

I would love to have a skeletal mining crew for example.

Animate Dead and its ilk all carry the Evil descriptor. That means they are defined as evil, and do effect people's alignment. That is how the Pantheon of Golarion feels about it, and mortals disagreeing doesn't change that fact.

Which is fine. What's not fine is everyone magically just "knowing about it" as soon as you see them

Goblin Squad Member

Nihimon wrote:
Ryan's explanation

Thanks Nihimon, you are the encyclopedia of the forums!

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shadowmage75 wrote:
seriously?! I know this is about a game, but are you really b@@+*ing about not being able to be EVIL. Like it's some life choice like 'engineer' or 'marathon runner'. Evil represents everything foul and reprehensible about the human condition. It's a concept as much as a descriptor, and you WANT to play it? You're angry with the developers because they make being evil unpleasant?

Yes seriously.

Well ok, it's a game, not a life choice. And whether its good and evil, red or blue, black or white, I would like the sides to be fair. That is what I am asking about.

And like it or not, it is, currently, a choice. It's been an available choice since Basic Dungeons and Dragons. What's hard to understand about that?

Goblin Squad Member

IronVanguard wrote:
Last I heard it, it's mainly chaotic that weakens settlements, and makes it harder to get good training buildings or some such, not evil. That and on a few other points, either I'm confused or a lot of people are confusing chaotic with evil.

There are three primary starting settlements, one evil, one neutral and one good.

The evil one will not have trainers of the same quality of the other two was how I was led to understand it working. However I cannot find the original reference to it so if someone can and I'm wrong I'll happily cede that point.

Goblin Squad Member

Aleron wrote:

Where is the discussion on stealth 'being too hard'? I hadn't seen that posted anywhere and am curious. Link if possible please.

My understanding of it is that since evil has so many more freedoms and is so much easier there are consequences to it. From my reading the heinous tag is only for the really truly evil stuff so I doubt most evil characters would be getting slapped with it too often.

Some discussion of stealth is located here :

The original dicsussions were some time ago, and I haven't completely searched that thread to see if Ryan's final comments are in that one, but they are certainly discussing the fallout of said comments there.

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Alright so first off, I completely understand that the tag system is primarily to stop griefers from making everyone's life hell. I am all for this.

My problem is the Heinous Tag.

I'm really not sure what you guys are thinking with regards to Evil being an actual viable option in this game. You've mentioned already that training will be harder. Now you're providing a glowing neon sign for everyone to see "Hey check out how evil this guy is!" for absolutely no in-game reason. And then giving everyone a free shot at him.

Unless you're intending to include a "Paragon" tag for someone so sickeningly good to also be a valid target it just seems to be the developers actively choosing Good aligned companies as their 'side' in any war.

Now I may be jumping the gun here, but so far you've said very little other than negative things for people wanting to play the side of evil. Even some terminology when discussing alignments has suggested evil is a bbad thing to have happen to your character. 'You get hit with an alignment penalty'. Penalty? So falling to evil is a bad thing and is to be discouraged? In fact if anything you almost seem to be trying to artificially limit how many people do by placing multiple roadblocks in our way. If that's the case why even have 'Evil' alignments in the game at all?

There's apparently not going to be any stealth mechanics because it's too hard, so classic evil thievery or spying is out, necromancy and demonology now generates an 'auto flag for death' and on top of all this, we have a harder time training for skills?

It seems that you've decided evil people should be bandits who rob caravans and that's all. Which seems to be so frustratingly limiting as to not be attractive at all. If I am wrong and you have all kinds of crazy fun ideas for evil players I would love to hear them, and you may not intend this at all, but right now the message seems to be "Go good or go home."

There's been a number of fiercely contested topics on this subject, across the forums and back again. This is not a thread where I want to rehash those arguments with players, this a serious question to Ryan and his crew, do you envisage that people playing evil characters are detrimental to the game and should be discouraged? And if so why keep them? And if not, why are you making their lives so hard comparably to good players?

Goblin Squad Member

GrumpyMel, you have confused me sir.

Did you mean Darsch and not Bluddwolf? Or have I missed where Bluddwolf was commenting on TEO internal communications?

Goblin Squad Member

This treaty is is of no concern to me, nor would I be part of it.

What is interesting is that The Empyrean Order is going out of its way to ensure that Goonswarm targets them first and foremost. Saying things like "We are the enforcers of good" and "We are the biggest guild in PFO" is just red rags to a bull for them.

You're not the biggest guild, they are. They're just not here yet.

That being said, if TEO can get itself organised, the fighting could be the stuff of legends. Maybe you could finally do what no-one else in any game anywhere ever has managed. Maybe you could finally stop the Goonswarm.

It will be interesting.

Goblin Squad Member

There is an implication, although I don't think it's ever been said outright, that crafting skills will form their own 'paths'. So by selecting crafting abilities you are effectively multi-classing and taking the penalties of time associated with that.

I say this based on the wording of the Destiny's Twin reward in the Kickstarter

"As a special feature of Adventurer accounts, you'll be able to have two characters training skills at the same time! While one character is learning how to master the martial arts and gain renown as a warrior, your other character can be learning the intricacies of the crafting system and earning a name as an industrial powerhouse"

While I guess you could do this at once, the implication is that the 'crafting alt' would normally be a completely separate character

Goblin Squad Member

Andius wrote:

Really? Name the group and find the quote.

I have stated we will mercilessly wipe out griefers (Who I define as people who's primary objective is to ruin the experience of others. Characterized by targeting out newbs, abuse of game mechanics and EXCESSIVE RPKing.) I have never stated I will wipe out every organization that refers to itself as evil. Infact I have extended meta-game welcome to many of the "evil" organization of this community. As JUST stated I will only wipe out organizations that harm the community.

Examine the difference between The Bloody Hand and Goon Swarn, and examine what I plan to do about each of them. Then think about that for a bit before you make another comment like this.

Now out of character...

Paizo will have out of game penalties and mechanics for dealing with griefing. You certainly have made it known you plan to be GW's knight in the field, which I have mixed feelings about, as I have no idea who you are, how impartial you actually are, and whether or not you will yourself, eventually become something of a despot.

You do come off as somewhat aggressive and a little bit self-righteous in your posting. I'm not going to judge you on that, I can't speak for your intentions and I certainly am not looking for conflict here. What I am looking for, is a chance to have fun, testing my wits and skills against other players. In game we may never cross paths, and I wish you and Darth_Panic an enjoyable time.

Goblin Squad Member

Andius wrote:

Really? Name the group and find the quote.

I have stated we will mercilessly wipe out griefers (Who I define as people who's primary objective is to ruin the experience of others. Characterized by targeting out newbs, abuse of game mechanics and EXCESSIVE RPKing.) I have never stated I will wipe out every organization that refers to itself as evil. Infact I have extended meta-game welcome to many of the "evil" organization of this community. As JUST stated I will only wipe out organizations that harm the community.

Examine the difference between The Bloody Hand and Goon Swarn, and examine what I plan to do about each of them. Then think about that for a bit before you make another comment like this.

[IC]Judge, jury and executioner. You really should be Lawful Evil Andius. I see you in the role of the benevolent dictator, iron fist stamping out whatever you judge today to be incorrect behaviour!

I love it. I will be there the day you fall to my masters and offer yourself up to them joyously, weeping at the beauty of evil ;) [/IC]

Goblin Squad Member

Darth_Panic wrote:

oh Trust me Mr Andius I'm a pragmatist!

Then you understand that regardless of a label of 'good' or 'evil' there will be conflict.

Darth_Panic wrote:

I know we will be a small force, and I would greatly enjoy being part of a greater Alliance. Actually, we have already checked out the big guilds and which will be closer to our ingame philosophy.

And already you adapt. This is good, surely you don't want the magic 'I Win' button, surely you wish to overcome challenges and snatch victory from the jaws of defeat like the heroes of old! If you defeat a worthy foe, surely it is a greater victory.

Darth_Panic wrote:

However, as I pointed out, the game is 1,5 year AWAY and instead of forming alliances I'm rushed into them - because someone is bullying us?
I said it already: if such is the case from now on, then I won't even bother with alliances, I'll wave goodbye and take my guild with it.

Considering the game is indeed, as you say, 1 and a half years away, how can a single forum post bully you into action now? That's a year and a half to build allegiances, negotiate, learn, and instead you would walk away because of one 'vaguely' aggressive post that may or may not ever actually result in any in-game interaction at all. Steel needs to be tempered, this is a chance to light the fires of your belly and an impetus to be better! How can you pass an opportunity like that?

Goblin Squad Member

This conversation is representative of the problems of role-playing 'evil' in a video game (or at all really).

Where is the line between 'role-playing' and 'being a jerk'?

Is it griefing if you repeatedly raid a player's caravans as he tries to send goods to a town your guild is besieging?

Is it griefing if you steal resources of a player because of no other reason than the opportunity was there and it was of benefit to you?

To properly roleplay evil against good players you do have to be at least a little 'adversarial'. In tabletops the GM always lets the players win eventually (unless he's a mean GM). In an MMO the only decider of who wins is who got the killing blow.

People who are playing good aligned guilds have certainly made no hesitation in stating they will 'hunt down and wipe out' evil players and are applauded. (Intriguingly they seem to be indicating they will be doing this right off the bat, regardless of whether or not the evil player has actually done anything to them. How.. 'good' of them...)

Evil players who do the same are accused of bullying and griefing.

I would like to play an evil character, and yes if necessary that would mean assassinating, stealing, opposing, ambushing, threatening, intimidating, whatever was appropriate (in the context of the game and my character). I would not mindlessly grief people, or roam aimlessly slaughtering. But if an opportunity to ambush and waylay came up, because of carelessness or poor planning, why should I not be able to play the character I intend?

I don't say any of this to be a jerk, I'm not out to ruin anyone else's fun, but unless we can allowed to be at least 'somewhat' evil, then there is no point in having them at all.

There'll still be conflict regardless, and people will accuse people of being jerks regardless of what alignment tag their character has.

Goblin Squad Member

NeoWolfen wrote:

Oh look the PVP monkeys are pontificating and threatening the soloers.. nice to see nothing changes whatever the MMO.

May be hard to believe but just because you CAN destroy someones buildings doesnt mean everyone WILL for no reason at all other than because they are there.

Also I think you'll find in any mmo MOST guilds are smaller guilds onsisiting of a half dozen or less people and thats PERFECTLY okay.

Have you considered the possibility he is 'role-playing' in an effort to drum up some support for his planned guild?

I know it's almost a completely lost art in MMO's but really, he has hardly said anything offensive.

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