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Eve and griefing (again)
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Poo Bear
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2011 12:08 pm    Post subject: Eve and griefing (again) Reply with quote

Just read an interview with the leader of a 6000 member strong griefer guild dedicated to disrupting the order within the game by any means necessary. Eve sounds so intriguing, I hope one day to find something with a more approachable learning curve and less of a time sync, but similar themes - probably impossible. The one saving grace here is that Eve have partitioned the world in two, so the majority of people can stay in a secure area. These 'normal' players are essential for the griefers to feed on and essential to keep the game going. It's a fine balance, if the griefers get too much access to normal players then they can make the experience so bad that people just leave and new ones stop joining. Eve is the only game I've heard of with a good mix of normal players and griefers that hasn't self destructed. It must be terrifying when a normal player gets a 'hello, can I be your friend?' message Wink

I think there are two types of griefer:

1. people who want the thrill of screwing with another human's life without the consequences. These are classic school bullies. Not good.

2. people who want to make the game more gritty and realistic, they are trying to play a different game, their game. That means they have to exploit and abuse other players to do it (within the rules of play). The ideal scenario for them is their victims band together and become similarly minded players who came after them for revenge. Provided things simmer nicely and don't over boil, you have a game that is potentially infinitely more addictive and emotionally effective than it was ever envisioned to be.

Of course the problem is, both 1+2 player types end up ruining the game for the majority of their victims. It really does feel like being back at school when the bullies show up. It sounds like Eve has the balance right, new players know well in advance that the game is wild, they know they have somewhere safe to play and they know anyone they meet is potentially a spy. Some people find CCPs repeated verification that griefing is allowed to be confusing, but I think it makes perfect sense, they are ensuring all new players understand what they are getting into.

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Grammar Police
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2011 1:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd like to point out that just because you're in a high security zone in Eve doesn't make you safe - you can still be attacked, it's just that NPC ships will come and pwn you in short order. But it's still possible to destroy a victim's ship in that time (and if you're lucky/unlucky, depending on whether you're the griefer or the griefee), pod them. They don't mind losing a ship or two, since you can put together a ship which will easily destroy noob ships for not too much money, and some of their bigger kills pay for these ships.

It's also possible to do a decent amount of griefing without losing ships by preying on someone new's lack of knowledge. One I've seen more than once is when someone is can mining (mining, but instead of leaving the asteroids and dropping off your ore at a station when your ship gets full, you just eject it into space - it stays in a cargo pod, and most new people don't have locked ones), the griefer opens the can (doesn't necessarily take anything), this makes it so that whoever owned the can can attack the griefer without NPC intervention - but as soon as they do so, the griefer can defend himself freely, and is generally more than happy to do so. Or on someone with even less knowledge, the griefer can have a can in space, wait for someone to open it, then attack them.

I can offer a few tips, to try to avoid a few of the more common scams/griefs (I didn't play for too long, so I don't know too many):
    Don't attack someone just because you have the right to. They might like innocent, but trust me, they're not. If you're can mining and someone starts stealing your ore, go somewhere else or come back later.
    Cargo delivery contracts can earn you some money - before you accept one, make sure that it goes to an NPC station (not player owned, as they can lock you out so that it's impossible to deliver there, but they still have your deposit) and that the route doesn't go through any low security zones (while you're at it, try to go a route slightly longer than the shortest, there's less likely to be an ambush).
    Don't follow someone you don't know - they could very easily be leading you to an ambush.
    If you do get involved in a fight, just run (or fly - you get the idea). Sure, you can lock weapons and fire them, but they probably won't have too much effect. Even if you're being webbed and warp disrupted, you're still more likely to get away than you are to beat them (though at that stage I wouldn't give either favourable odds).
    This doesn't just apply to griefing, but in general: don't fly anything you can't afford to lose. It's probably not a good idea to go around in a tech 2 battleship with all the best gear, if buying it bankrupts you and your only other ship is a destroyer or something (insurance helps, but very rarely does it come close to covering the cost of the whole ship).

Part of the problem (as I see it) is that there's such a big gap between new players and experienced players, and it just keeps getting bigger. Look at WoW - the best someone can get is level 85 and having the best armour and weapons in the game - which anyone can get to in time, even newbies. Now look at Eve - not only do experienced people have more skills trained (I don't know if there's anyone who'd have every skill trained to max), but they're generally rich, and just keep getting richer. That means that they can fly and buy better stuff than you, and by the time you can get that? They'll be able to get something better.

Now I haven't played too much Eve (roughly four months), so obviously I don't know everything. And although I wasn't happy about griefing, I stopped playing more because I got bored of the only activity I could do in reasonable safety (missions... each pocket of enemies is generated for a mission, but if someone wants to find you they can scan for you and get to you, it's just not common). Yet for some reason I don't find doing dungeons in WoW (hate PvP, except AV) boring. Oh well.
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Poo Bear
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2011 2:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Another comment from that article, 80% of people play in the safe zone PVE. Some of those are mule characters, but still, it's an awful lot of 'normal' people just playing the game, minding their own business, trying to have fun.

It seems to me that most people play MMOs because they've heard stories about cut throat griefing in Eve or raid dungeons in WoW or inter-faction war in Warhammer Online, etc. It's fun to explore and grind through some NPC quests collecting rat pelts, not amazing, but OK. Yet, in every single game the vast majority of people are just grinding through the PVE and never get to the so-called good stuff, but still have fun anyway.

I suppose its time commitment, being in a guild is essential to play any MMO at a high level and guilds soak up time. A good percentage of that time goes because you aren't the right level yet, or don't have the correct gear, or aren't in the correct location. The people who do put in that time and have made it to the famed 'good stuff' probably don't understand why anyone would just play the basic game. Hence not understanding why their victims aren't more willing to get into the spirit of the 'meta game'.

I suppose the holy grail would be an mmo that accelerates you into faction wars, spying, intrigue, territorial battles, etc without the huge time sync.

So you want Eve, but 10x simpler, skills easily maxed out in a few hours, any gear you like attainable in a few hours. So a player can go up against any other individual after just a couple of weeks of playing. The long term goals then become ownership of space with the decider being the number of player's you can wield on your side and their understanding of tactics and strategy. Sounds a bit like Magic when they restrict tournaments to fixed pre-designed decks.
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