Author Topic: Abusive Players?  (Read 1469 times)

Medron Pryde

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Abusive Players?
« Topic Start: October 11, 2018, 08:22:55 AM »
I was scrolling down on my family page today and saw an old message from the developers

"Adventurers No Longer Using Scrolls
Adventurers have been blocked from using scrolls for the foreseeable future due to players abusively using adventurers as weapons of war scroll-bombs. They may be restored in the future when significant changes are made to their operation, but that is not a priority in light of the recently posted development roadmap."

I think this an unnecessarily prejudicial statement for the developers to be using against the players.  Now you obviously decided to change the rules.  That is fine.  It is your job to add options or take options away if you feel they improve or hurt gameplay.  That is what you all volunteered for.

But what we have here is a case of one group of players doing exactly what has been done for years.  They used adventurers to cast scrolls.  It's been done against the daimons, the monsters, the undead, and other player realms in the past.

The only difference is that this time the group of players targeted by the adventurer-cast scrolls complained to the devs, and the devs stepped in to undue the damage so the targeted players could arrest and kill the adventurers used in the attack.

And then the devs blamed the players playing the adventurers for this and charged them with abusing the rules.  I think that is a bridge too far and is unnecessarily antagonistic towards the player base.  I think such statements have no place in the official announcements of the game and would request that the announcement on the matter be moderated to remove any charges of abuse for what was a simple case of doing what was allowed and done in the past under many similar circumstances.

The devs already punished the players by allowing their characters to be executed.  I think then accusing the players of abusing the rules is simply a matter of adding insult to injury and should be avoided.

Wimpie

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Re: Abusive Players?
« Reply #1: October 11, 2018, 09:26:20 AM »
Admins*, not devs.
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Medron Pryde

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Re: Abusive Players?
« Reply #2: October 11, 2018, 09:33:00 AM »
Thank you for the correction.

I sometimes get confused on which exact term is right because we use them all here.  ;)

Wimpie

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Re: Abusive Players?
« Reply #3: October 11, 2018, 11:57:06 AM »
Not a problem, it's semantics.

I'm sure those who took the decision will be able to explain you better than I would be.
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Anaris

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Re: Abusive Players?
« Reply #4: October 11, 2018, 01:45:47 PM »
There is a qualitative difference between adventurers occasionally using scrolls for things, and loading up a bunch of adventurers with dozens of scrolls and sending them to literally destroy a struggling realm with no possibility of response or counterplay.

There are many things within the game, as in real life, that, done in a moderate manner, are fine, but when taken to an extreme, would be considered abusive. This is not a contradiction or hypocrisy.
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PolarRaven

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Re: Abusive Players?
« Reply #5: October 11, 2018, 07:03:24 PM »
Though I was not involved in the incident in any way, I too feel that it was dealt with poorly.
If the incident was something that should not have been possible, the entire incident should have been reversed.
By reversing only certain parts (reviving Bara'Khur) and allowing some players to be punished (characters executed), the powers that be give the impression that there was actual INTENT to abuse the game mechanics. 

Maybe there was actual intent to abuse the game, but I can't say for sure that there was or was not.

Players are encouraged to work together in the game.  (from the sign in page - "BattleMaster is a team-oriented...")
There are several guilds (some of these have been around for a very long time) that encourage advies to work together with nobles and each other.
Most scrolls come from advy characters.  Advies have been able to cast scrolls for a long time.  I believe that every realm has had to deal with advies casting scrolls in their realm to stir up trouble.

So, a group of players got together in their guild, consisting of nobles and advies, and decided, for IC reasons, to formulate a co-ordinated attack on a single realm.  Was this fair? 
No.  But then, war is hardly ever fair.

There is no realm on BT that is NOT struggling to survive at this time. 
Many realms can not even raise the CS needed to deal with even one of the larger rogue units, let alone multiple units of rogues.

Would it have been acceptable if the attacks were spread out over several days to allow for response or counterplay (with likely the same results)?
Would it have been acceptable if Priests or infiltrators were used for the attack instead of advies?
Would it have been acceptable if every other realm on the continent decided to gather together to make a co-ordinated attack with the intent of literally destroying a struggling realm?  What possible response or counterplay could the struggling possibly offer to this?

The advy attack on Bara'Khur was certainly not fair, but was it an intentional abuse of the game mechanics?


MTYL

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Re: Abusive Players?
« Reply #6: October 11, 2018, 07:37:07 PM »
 It's a pvp game. Realms get destroyed. If they bring an explicitely evil religion and intentionally piss off the entire continent - they are kind of asking for it. And not a metaphore of "asking for it", but literally I can't see any other reason for such action other than inviting some extreme pvp.
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Medron Pryde

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Re: Abusive Players?
« Reply #7: October 12, 2018, 08:40:51 AM »
I'll note again...those tactics have been used for years.

Were they always popular?  No.  The East Continent recently went through a long situation of a single adventurer using a portal to ask that all the defending walls of a nation be removed and their best recruiting centers be destroyed.  The request was granted in minutes.  Possibly hours, but I remember it as minutes.  That did start up a general disagreement in the player base about the magic game on EC being...ahem...too game changing.  And an answering portal was called up specifically to lower magic in the EC.  That portal was just closed today with an event that seemingly removed magic from the island and attacked adventurers carrying portal stones and seemingly erasing them from the island.  The stones.  Not the adventurers.  I think that is good for the game, and agree that EC should be a low to no magic area.  It is ironic that it is the only island with elves, but....such ironies can build more fun.  hehehe.

Throughout all of this, BT was noted as the island where high magic SHOULD be allowed, considering its experiences with invasions and the like.  I remember when adventurers were first introduced, and from that time until now I have seen adventurers use scrolls against monsters, undead, daimons, and other players.  This has never once been questioned by anyone as an abuse of the rules.  It was the way the game played.

I can't even count the number of times I've seen adventurers use scrolls to wipe out monsters, undead, or daimons as noble-led units charged in to fight the survivors of their attack.  And in wars between player realms, they've often moved in just before the fight to use scrolls in support of their nation, religion, or guild.

Now what we had here was one city seceding from an allied realm and then adopting a religion following the Daimons, the single biggest baddest bad guys ever seen on Beluaterra.  Every single Daimon-worshiping religion has been wiped out.  I say this as the player of the noble who is the head of the primary anti-Daimon religion.  And she has seen every single Daimon invasion.  She's old.  She's REALLY old.  She's one of the older characters in the game.  And she's seen multiple Daimon-worshiping religions rise up and she's seen every single one of them torn down again.

So she got information from members of a guild offshoot of the religion saying these people were daimon worshipers.  She traveled over to one of their temples, read their mission statement, and the basic tenants of their religion, and agreed that qualified as daimon worship.  So she declared them evil and went back home to continue tending to her city.

At which time the guild offshoot in question mounted probably the most successful scroll attack I've ever seen.  Number one.  They played me.  I love it that they did.  They knew a hot button issue for my character and they PRESSED it.  Then they waited for me to respond, which I did pretty quick.  Not because I knew they had plans.  Oh no.  I had no clue.  I just happened to have full hours and the ability to travel their pretty much immediately.  Remember.  Priest.  They can be quick on their feet.  Hehehe.  And then the guild offshoot did what I've seen before.  They sent out adventurers with scrolls to smash and rend.  As I said, I think it's the most successful such attack I've seen.  Not the only by any means.  In previous cases it's usually been across a broader front over multiple regions as nations were fighting on the fields or defending or maintaining takeovers.

In this case it was a focused attack on a secessionist nation  reduced to a single city following a Pro-Daimon religion.  From what I hear, it was rather devastating.  Of course, considering every nation on BT had declared war on them before the invasion started due to their secession in the first place meant they probably would have been promptly dealt with long ago.  If the new invasion hadn't started up that is.  *shrugs*

So...this was a totally in character conflict, initiated by the actions of the target nation in question.  And the attack was conducted via tactics that have been in use for years across multiple continents.  Was it the best example I think I've seen of those tactics?  Yes.  I think it was.  But that was merely because players have spent years practicing them and have gotten better with them over time.

There was no abuse of the rules, and charging players with being abusive is simply wrong.

Once again, if you want to change the rules to make that not happen again, that is your prerogative.  But please do not accuse the players of abusing the rules when they were simply acting in good faith and using the tools you gave them to play with.

De-Legro

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Re: Abusive Players?
« Reply #8: October 15, 2018, 12:50:02 AM »
Might just be me, but my noble opinion is that such "adventures" should be hunted down and destroyed. What right thinking noble wants a peasant to wield such power?
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Medron Pryde

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Re: Abusive Players?
« Reply #9: October 15, 2018, 03:03:42 AM »
And as a noble, you would have the right to make that decision and enact it on your own.

De-Legro

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Re: Abusive Players?
« Reply #10: October 15, 2018, 03:23:42 AM »
And as a noble, you would have the right to make that decision and enact it on your own.

No really? Who would have guessed.
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Gildre

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Re: Abusive Players?
« Reply #11: October 15, 2018, 06:45:51 PM »
I have always been a staunch supporter of the Devs and Admins. They work hard and give up a lot of their personal free time.

This BT business though... it doesn't sit very well with me. For two reasons.

1) In my experience, there has always been a hard line in the sand for reversing events. Even for bugs. You lost your gold due to a bug? Ok, bug is fixed, but you don't get your gold back. Everything has always carried on forward.

2) To my knowledge of the event, it seems to lack any "abusive" element. Abuse of the game, to me, is when you click on your Family page link, and 1000 gold appears in your family wealth, so you click it 47 times until you are maxed out, invest in all the regions of all your characters, and then click it 47 more times.

Please correct me if I am wrong, but a group of nobles got together, gave a bunch of scrolls to a bunch of Adventurers, told them to unleash hell on Bara'Khur, and then watched the fireworks? I fail to see where the "abuse" was.

Did we discover something that is terribly over powered? Of course, and we should take steps to ratify that. However, the players involved did nothing wrong.

What is the answer here? There isn't one. It is a catch-22. Something has already been reversed. Can't very well reverse it again. That would be silly.

I am just curious as to why there was such heavy handed intervention, when that isn't how things are normally done.
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PolarRaven

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Re: Abusive Players?
« Reply #12: October 15, 2018, 07:26:17 PM »
There is a qualitative difference between adventurers occasionally using scrolls for things, and loading up a bunch of adventurers with dozens of scrolls and sending them to literally destroy a struggling realm with no possibility of response or counterplay.

There are many things within the game, as in real life, that, done in a moderate manner, are fine, but when taken to an extreme, would be considered abusive. This is not a contradiction or hypocrisy.
Angband has just fallen to the constant massive rogue attacks.  The above quote could be read:

"There is a quantitative difference between rogues occasionally spawning to add spice to the game, and cranking up the spawning rates to drown out and literally destroy struggling realms with basically no possibility of response or counterplay..."

Bluelake

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Re: Abusive Players?
« Reply #13: October 16, 2018, 04:09:23 PM »
From a few days ago:
Quote
October 2018 Recent Changes
Major Changes
Make adventurers able to cast spells from scrolls, but at greatly increased difficulty

So, it was temporary, to make the game more balanced.
Today is Thank Wimpie for Being an Awesome Dev Day. Give Wimpie some gratitude for his constant bugfixing, pestering of admins to get things done, and general Wimpieness.

Medron Pryde

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Re: Abusive Players?
« Reply #14: October 18, 2018, 09:01:16 AM »
Yes, I did see that, and thank the devs for making the change.

I haven't tried using scrolls with my adventurer since this change back so don't know how much different it will feel, but thank you for returning the option, with limitations and modifications.

My primary issue is in the tone of the original announcement in suggesting that some players were being abusive.  I find that to be unnecessarily prejudicial and antagonistic to the players on the part of the admins, and believe it should be moderated to reflect a more balanced and neutral tone to reflect the position I believe the admins should take.