Monday, July 9, 2012

[Design] My Ideal MMO: Part 4 - PvP

My Ideal MMO:

Player vs Player:
For this game, there would be both PvP and PvE servers.  However unlike most MMO's, they would be vastly different and most PvP oriented players would probably still want a character on a PvE server as well.  PvP in this game is BRUTAL.  Your decision to kill another player comes at a high cost, but with high benefit.  At any time, any player can choose to turn on his PvP toggle (so that you don't accidentally kill people unintended) and kill another player or engage in PvP combat.  [For clarification, this toggle only affects YOUR spells, others can still target you at any point.]

First, I'll talk about the evil/good system.  I imagine a sort of system that has a bar going from good to evil.  Killing another player that is either neutral or good will immediately flag you with a PvP flag and a PK flag and put your alignment into the evil sector.  A PK flag indicates you have killed a player and you can be killed with no PK penalty to the assailant.  PK flags would last a minimum of 1 hour of in game time and as you repeat PKing people, the time you are flagged for as a PKer goes up.  People who PK all the time would be perma flagged in this way.

If you are aligned to good, you keep a third/half your items/armor when you die and receive no penalty for killing players aligned to evil and flagged as a PKer.  Most players who don't go around killing newbs will be aligned to good.

If you run around and kill people, you will very quickly be aligned to a very evil state.  Being flagged as a PKer means you will drop all your items when you die, people who kill you receive no penalty for killing you, and you are unable to talk to NPCs in a "Good" aligned town.  [I'll get to this in a minute].

Evil players (according to the story) would be those fallen empowered ones who forsook Zoan and now follow Daemonica.  They use their powers to kill other empowered ones and take their items.

There would be many benefits to PKing such as a potential for mass amounts of loot, lots of experience for player kills and rare items they may be carrying.  However, you risk a lot trying to kill them.  You put all of your own items at risk and it's a dangerous thing to mark yourself as a PKer and align yourself evil.

Players who align themselves either good or evil are only able to enter towns of that alignment.  Perhaps there could be neutral players who can enter both, but as players flagged themselves as PKers they would have to flee the main cities and congregate elsewhere and build their own city.

When they got to a field, instead of a servant of Zoan, a servant of Daemonica would let you buy land/get quests/build your city, etc.  In these PvP realms, there would be a less emphasis on demon invasions (which I'll detail in post 5) and more of an emphasis on "evil players" vs "good players".  Structure and "Laws" would have to form in these 'Evil' towns in order to ensure that PKer players don't just kill other PKers cause they can.  Community and a form of order would have to evolve in order for the Evil towns to not get decimated by the Good ones.

In this way there would be no set factions, but two factions would evolve, only, you get to choose which side you want to be on!  Also, there would be ways to get your alignment back to good if you had become evil.  Such as a long quest chain or something like that.

Since there are heavy negatives to being a PKer there would be hesitation for a player and a moral decision to slay another player.  You would be ostracized from your own society and cast out to join with the dark side of the game.  Also I imagine specialized PK groups and guild forming as well as Bounty Hunters (players specialized in finding and killing PKers).

This kind of free form PvP would be a rude awakening to people who think they like PvP.  Which is why I said that even PvP die-hards would want to have a PvE character as well to experience the more passive, fun side of the game.

And this is why I said, my game would probably not be insta-popular (at least in regards to PvP).  But the PvE should also be fun enough and engaging enough to draw in the casual players as well.  Especially the crafting / town building side of it.

All in all, this kind of PvP system thrown into an MMO makes you sit on the edge of your seat, never knowing if another player is lurking in the forest.  It would make hunting parties a priority for safety in numbers.  The game would evolve around this intense free form PvP into, in my opinion, one of the most fun and engaging PvP systems out there.

Also, as far as balancing issues go:  If there is a heavy evil to light ratio or vice versa, the weak faction could be given a moderate buff to PvP combat (not game breaking, but enough to make people want to swap sides).  It's probably a large topic to debate about, but I am sure with a free form faction system, there are plenty of ways to balance it out.

Well, that's my post on PvP for My Ideal MMO.

Stay tuned for the last post about end game content and how that fits into this world that we've been creating so far.


Post 5:


  1. The whole Good vs Evil sounds incredibly boring. There shouldn't be "sides", just a reputation system, maybe titles as well. For example, if I heavily PK (over X amount of PKs) I might earn a certain title which will alert other players of my reputation. Or, if you were to stick with the Good vs Evil system it would have to be more balanced. I also don't see how a bunch of Evil Aligned players would stick together, if they normally PK why would they hang around other players? A guild system might fix that, though.

    1. The idea is that you have to be penalized for PKing, if you don't have sides, then you would PK someone, and then you have no where to go and you just get killed over and over by the other players, that doesn't facilitate PvP, it actually discourages it. And if you don't punish pkers, everyone would just gank a person now and then and take their armor. That sucks if there is no penalty for that. But if they are the enemy now because of it, you can find them and kill them back.

      Evil aligned players would HAVE to stick together because they would have no where else to go. Just because they are evil/pkers doesn't mean they can't live together in a city.

      It's the reason gangs exist, and what not, society would evolve around their brutality, and they would create their own society apart from the good aligned players. The evil towns would have to have a sort of rule system develop in order to keep from killing each other. Such players would be outcasted from towns by the other players and really have no where to go. This would evolve into a free form societal system and I don't see how that's boring ^_^.

      Free ganking with no penalty seems boring to me.