Spam Spam Spam Humbug: Episode 54 – What Kind of Bad Behaviour Should Be Allowed in Games?

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We take a look at some of the different ways players behave badly in MMORPGs and multiplayer games. Specific examples include, but aren’t limited to:

  • Griefing in Ultima Online
  • Griefing in Shroud of the Avatar (e.g. fake Hospitallers luring new players into PVP zones)
  • Item renaming “scams” in Shroud of the Avatar & third-party lot sales being reversed
  • Allowing third-party content into a game (e.g. the radio stations in Shroud of the Avatar’s aether vibration items)
  • Cheating
  • Exploiting game systems/breaking the game

And it probably won’t come as a surprise to hear that we don’t think that the solution to every single problem is to punish players; there are even creative solutions for dealing with cheaters that don’t involve banning them from a game entirely. Sometimes, the source of the problem is mistakes made by the developer, or miscommunication about the sort of game that is being developed; if players are simply making use of extant systems in ways that are completely legitimate, but outside the intent of the developers, should they be punished for that?

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