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Designing a MMORPG Feedback System

Zonk posted more than 8 years ago | from the yes-please dept.

Role Playing (Games) 86

Gamasutra is running one of their highly enjoyable 'soapbox' pieces, looking at possible ways you could implement a feedback or ranking system for Massively Multiplayer Online Game players. From the article: "When playing an MMORPG, I should be able to give a positive, neutral, or negative rating to anyone who has been in my group for more than thirty minutes. Negative ratings could be characterized via a multiple-choice list of common gripes (i.e. 'loot theft', 'abusive language', etc) -- a feature now built into the Xbox Live feedback system. However, it isn't clear that a good feedback system requires this level of depth; there's an argument to be made for simplifying the process as much as possible."

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86 comments

Sliding Scale (3, Interesting)

biocute (936687) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629631)

Just a Slashdot-style moderation system, where a player can be modded up and down (one vote per person, which can be up/neutral/down) according to that player's action.

These mods will "expire" after a couple of days so that players can start a new leaf.

Re:Sliding Scale (1)

amazon10x (737466) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629767)

I see no reason why a slashdot-style system couldn't be implemented. Just give people moderation points that can be applied to other players. After a certain amount of time these points would expire if they weren't used. Of course, metamoderation would also have to be implemented but that would be trickier. You can't just have everyone metamod because people would be metamodding mods on people they have never played with. They would have to set it up so metamods would only be given in such a way that people wouldn't be modding a mod on someone which they've never even seen.

Slashdot is a MMORPG (1)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629634)

Karma is king.

Sorry for noob question... (1)

JackDW (904211) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629748)

How do I level up?

Re:Sorry for noob question... (1)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629781)

Get enough Karma and you'll automatically post at +2.

N00b. :-P

Re:Sorry for noob question... (0, Troll)

JackDW (904211) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629823)

Argh I hate level grinding.

Oh well, here goes.

Google used to be good, but now they are Evil. Not quite as evil as Microsoft, though! They are extremely evil! But Apple are great. They can do no wrong! Even their DRM is brilliant! In Soviet Russia, I could think of something funny to say.

Re:Sorry for noob question... (1)

Jaruzel (804522) | more than 8 years ago | (#14633421)

This guy isn't trolling, can someone please mod him at the very least off topic?

This is a classic case of being modded out of context :(

-Jar.

Re:Sorry for noob question... (1)

JackDW (904211) | more than 8 years ago | (#14634085)

Troll!? You mean I actually have to contribute something?? This is harder than it looks.

Re:Sorry for noob question... (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629844)

Or you can be like CmdrTaco and automagically post at +3

Re:Sorry for noob question... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14631510)

The downside to that is that you tend to repeat yourself a lot.

decent idea... (4, Informative)

HTL2001 (836298) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629637)

well the problem with most rating systems used is that they could be abused... this sounds good though, since you would need to be in a party for a while...

FYI - this was tried in Ragnarok Online but it was taken off due to abuse. People would pay (in game) money for positive points, and you'd have people who would stalk you and give negatives at every opertunity. You could only give 1 point per day, but it was still abused by people having multiple characters on one account or multiple accounts. It opened people up to a lot of threats as well, as a planned implementation of the system would have been more chance to drop equipment when you died.

Re:decent idea... (1)

thelost (808451) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630207)

don't underestimate peoples desire to slander off others. If someone has multiple characters it's easy to relog with a character your victim doesn't know, join their party, spend the prerequisite time with them and then give them a black mark. Then rinse, wash and repeat. One thing I've seen great evidence of is that when people want to they can be extremely malicious which is why I think a system like that, at least in an MMORPG would not work.

Re:decent idea... (1)

HTL2001 (836298) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630212)

Hate to reply to myself, but there's one more thing.

Retaliation.

If you're out in a field leveling, you know who just marked you down for dumping something on you/kill stealing/etc.
While your negative point to that person is justified, that person can just fire back at you with a negative. Roughly the equivalent (though not as severe) of telling a criminal who turned you in and where you live... it wouldn't exactly encourage you to use that end of the system.

Re:decent idea... (1)

kpang (860416) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630298)

Agreed. When it comes to online games, people become very competitive and opportunistic. In almost any MMORPG, I'd say implementing a feature like this would result in the following:

1. Players paying in-game or real life money for positive points
2. Griefers who throw around negative ratings for the hell of it
3. Large guilds / clans that will dilute the meaning of the ratings by boosting their members up while boosting rival members down
4. Large guilds / clans gaining way too much influence in the game as the threat of being "blacklisted" looms larger.

Re:decent idea... (1)

Kuvter (882697) | more than 8 years ago | (#14632406)

I play Maple Story (www.mapleglobal.com/ ,sadly site aka the download of the game is only IE supported) and they do this with Fame. Later on in the game however you need fame to do certain quests and wear certain armour.

Pros of this system: You have to wait till lvl 15 to fame or defame. Meaning a person couldn't easily create multiple characters just to fame or defame someone. Additionally you can only have 3 characters on any given server. So even if they did get them all up to lvl you could only do it 3 times. Oh you can only fame/defame once a day. Additionally you can only fame somoene's account once a month. Meaning if I fame my friend; I can't fame them again for another month.

Cons of htis system: People by fame or pay to defame. Additionally there is no SAFE way to do even that. If you pay someone 5k to fame you then can just leave. If you get famed firt additionally you could just leave them and not pay. There is no punishment either way, besides remembering them and defaming them later. Problem is if you just famed them and they left. That means you have to wait a month to defame them. No a good thing is working against you. Additionally this only puts them back where they where in the first place.

This just is counter productive. It makes it more realistic to the world where you can get scammed, the only problem is the lack of police. This just makes everyone worry about getting scammed. Additionally though if you do fame and get paid you're that much happier, but I don't think it counterdicts the times that you get scammed.

Personally I've come to just buy the fame. I don't scam, and because of this I make them fame me first or tell them no thanks. If I'm in a giving mood I'll make a deal to play half first. Once I got scammed for that half and stoped that policy for a while. Everyone however that eventually decides to fame me is happy and typically says, so others can read, (paraphrased)"Wow I actually got paid". This helps me as others now fame me.

Yes the system gets abused, but it also creats and interesting market economy. It's like fame is a lotto ticket, just with higher odds. ~Wayne

Interesting? Insightful? (1)

TooCynical (323240) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629658)

"I understand concerns that a reputation system might drive away paying customers who get bad ratings..."

Has bad Karma ever driven a Slashdotter away?? These types of community style initiatives usually work out pretty well and generally add to value to the experience but I don't think it would drive me over the pay/don't pay edge. :o)

Re:Interesting? Insightful? (1)

thelost (808451) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629925)

that's not so. Think about the difference between /. and a MMORPG. If a guy has bad karma on /. then so what, it's just a forum and it's a place for chucking mud and stick and stones; However if a guy has a bad rating in an MMORPG then it becomes impossible to group, whether the rating is deserved or not. So if people find a way to manipulate ratings and attack someone in that manner then it ends up detracting massively from the victims playing experience.

Re:Interesting? Insightful? (1)

Daengbo (523424) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630988)

That's why you need a special clan just for these low-rated, socially unacceptable characters. Let's call it Tri-Lam, eh?

But what does Slashdot karma affect? (1)

kale77in (703316) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630868)

Slashdot karma has no particular affect on my enjoyment of the website.

If I'm playing a game, and I have a red flashing light over my head that says "LOOT THIEF", that, however, will impact my opportunities within the game, and my enjoyment of it -- especially if I'm paying money for the privilege.

The problem is that no part of a game 'regulates' gameplay, as if from heaven -- it only changes the nature of the game being played. Lots of people will be delighted to discover the "apportioning blame" sub-game ('tag' would be the basic archetype).

I doubt it could work. (3, Insightful)

JoeD (12073) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629664)

Any such player-run system would be too easy to abuse. If you put restrictions in place to prevent the abuse, people will game their way around them.

For example, a guild could have all of its members give each other high ratings. Or they could band together to give poor ratings to someone that pisses them off.

Collaborative Filtering (2, Interesting)

santiago (42242) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629868)

The key, then is to not give out absolute ratings, but rather relative ones. The rating you personally see for people you haven't rated yourself should be based on how they're rated by people you yourself have rated highly. This goes a long way towards preventing abuse by effectively negating the ratings assigned by people you don't like.

Re:I doubt it could work. (2, Interesting)

jchenx (267053) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630140)

No one said that making a non-abusable feedback system was easy. :)

One easy way to prevent the "mob mentality" is to check to see what affiliations/connections people have when they rate a person. If I'm an asshole, I'm probably going to be an asshole to everyone, NOT just one guild. So theoretically, I should be getting negative feedback from a wide, diverse group of people. The same applies if I'm a nice guy.

So, if a guild tries to work together to boost each other's ratings, or tank someone else's, the feedback system should be able to see the correlation. After a while, the Nth feedback from a person of the same guild as the N-1th feedback, doesn't do anything to the person's rating anymore.

The only problem I see is that some people might be an asshole ONLY to a specific guild. The feedback system would break down here. But that's where you now rely on regular group communication. Guilds can establish their own guild specific blacklists or friend lists. Or better yet, have a guild-level feedback/reputation system. "Captain Jack is friendly to everyone, but really hates the PuzzlePirates guild and their members."

Re:I doubt it could work. (1)

typidemon (729497) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630633)

Has any MMOG made any system that can't be abused?

Re:I doubt it could work. (1)

jchenx (267053) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630667)

Not that I'm aware of, or probably more likely ... the MMOG isn't popular enough. There are plenty of games that don't have the griefer problem that's prevalent in WoW. By many personal accounts, the EQ2 playerbase is more "mature", probably since it's no where as popular as WoW. Then again, when I was playing the first EQ and THAT was the big hit game, there were plenty of griefers there too. Same with UO when it first released.

Arguably there is feedback/moderation system that can't be abused. We all know that the /. system isn't perfect. Yet it's "good enough" for most people. We don't even have that for WoW, because it doesn't really have a system to begin with.

Didn't we just discuss this? (2, Interesting)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629685)

Now that you mention it, I do believe we did [slashdot.org] .

The result of the conversation was that a rank system could be implemented similar to that of the Military ranks. Rather than working your way up some sort of point system, you'd get your promotions directly from your CO. (That's Commanding Officer for those of you who aren't familiar with the term.) High ranks would be seeded by the "Admiralty" (i.e. The people running the game), thus kicking things off. And if you really don't want to follow the whole rank system, you can always privateer.

At least, it seems to work in the context of Star Trek and military SciFi. YMMV elsewhere. :-)

"feedback" in RPG's out of character? (3, Insightful)

alkaloids (739233) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629693)

I play Gemstone, an older (to put it lightly) text-based MMORPG. In it, someone's "popularity" or whatever comes from interacting with other characters etc. Having a game mechanic to tell you if someone was a jerk to someone else seems very very strange, and would definetly be out of character. So, for "role playing" games I don't feel like that is something that's useful or good. On the other hand, if the game has on objective, and you are trying to "win" WoW or whatever, I guess having that feedback system could save you time and frustration. I guess one way to rationalize this in character is to have some little cottage where you would go in and greet a jolly fat man in a little red suit who keeps track of who's "naughty" or "nice".

Re:"feedback" in RPG's out of character? (1)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629749)

I play Gemstone, an older (to put it lightly) text-based MMORPG.

Dude. That's a MUD, not an MMORPG. I know the basic concept is the same, but the two *are* considered to be quite different.

Re:"feedback" in RPG's out of character? (1)

slashrogue (775436) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629903)

As a veteran of GemStone (11 years at this point, I think) I can say that game is much more about cliques and social circles for your "standing." MMORPGs are really only MMOGs for the most part, with some exceptions here and there by outstanding players. In those games, having a ranking system only slightly rationalized (or not at all) would be an improvement regardless, at least when you're dealing with pick-up groups for raids and you're dealing with total strangers.

Re:"feedback" in RPG's out of character? (1)

thelost (808451) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629992)

having another Reputation grind in WoW is definately not what we need. Especially with the kind of elitism and backstabbing that goes on. Also there is another element to this, which is that a rating system is only useful if you don't know someone. On the average WoW server where the population is well established most people know each other or or at least know peoples reputations. This is because it's an immersive world rather than a a single purpose based game like Quake. In either case we don't need ebay style ratings to tell us whether someone is an angel or a bastard, that's what chat is for!

Bad idea (1)

Jakuta (643082) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629721)

Yes its a way to keep track of the people who play but also it builds up a stigma that a big red X shall be assigned to me by anyone who is unhappy with my performance... and what is the life cycle of such an X and the what if the good fairy comes by and gives you a + for whatever reason, which do I believe and then what about the entire lables thing.. Isn't that what we are trying to get away from in the digital realms? Away from lables and classifications... man sounds like school and citizenship. Class clowns were notorious for bad citizenship but a hoot to watch!

Re:Bad idea (1)

jchenx (267053) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629789)

Try playing any online game (not just MMORPGs). I guarantee that it won't take long before you run into asshats that ruin your game experience in some way.

Is it a bad label? A stigma of some sorts? Absolutely! But that's what you get for being the jerk, the griefer, etc.

As for "class clowns", there are ways to be entertaining without ruining the game experience for people. Such a feedback system would, hopefully, separate those that we don't mind seeing (the silly "class clown" types) versus the asshole who thinks shooting their teammates in the back constantly is "funny".

Won't work (4, Insightful)

dc29A (636871) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629740)

I should be able to give a positive, neutral, or negative rating to anyone who has been in my group for more than thirty minutes

Hypothetical situation. I form a group, recruit people who want to do (insert dungeon here). Halfway through the run I realize one of the member is incompetent. I remove him and flag him "incompetent". Out of spite he returns the favor and flags me something negative. Yet I've only done what was best for the success of the run, I wasn't using abusive language, I didn't do anything wrong.

Another problem is when there are games where you can reach max level fast. Blacklist the assholes all you want, they will remake as different characters. UO murderer system is perfect example where griefers would level throwaway characters and PK until they got caught. Rinse, repeat.

Another problem is with raid guilds. From experience, raid guilds will recruit the biggest assholes on the server under two condition: They obey the raid leaders and have insanely high play time. Raid guilds don't care if you are an asshole. They care only if you can contribute to their success.

Re:Won't work (1)

Saige (53303) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629815)

Hypothetical situation. I form a group, recruit people who want to do (insert dungeon here). Halfway through the run I realize one of the member is incompetent. I remove him and flag him "incompetent". Out of spite he returns the favor and flags me something negative. Yet I've only done what was best for the success of the run, I wasn't using abusive language, I didn't do anything wrong.

Your entire group gives him bad feedback. He gives the entire group bad feedback. You each have 1 bad feedback. He has a lot more. He still loses out in the end, and unless you're regularly an idiot, you have so little that it doesn't really affect things.

This part of the equation isn't really a problem. Yeah, people can and will reciprocate, but they can't affect a single person that much, but can be hit by collective bad feedback if they deserve it.

Re:Won't work (1)

Minwee (522556) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630247)

Your entire group gives him bad feedback. He gives the entire group bad feedback.

...and then the twit whom you kicked from the group not only gives you bad feedback, he logs on with his brother's account to give you bad feedback, then runs off to his favourite forum to explain in detail how you kicked him from your group because you wanted to get all the loot for yourself and he had rolled higher than you, and begs everyone he knows to slap you with bad feedback too...

And it just goes on from there.

There are two things that are infinite. The Universe and the stupidity of online gamers. And I'm not sure about the Universe.

Re:Won't work (1)

Swanktastic (109747) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630612)

Consider then how you determine what you believe about someone in the real world. I imagine it's a function of many different pieces of information you know about the individual all rolled up via some crazy black box methodology (your brain) into some sort of personal judgement. Psychologists have done quite a bit of work on how people categorize others- esp. with respect to the "In my tribe" vs. "Not in my tribe." The question is not "can we do it," but rather what's the benefit and what's the cost? The more complex the system, theoretically the better, but the more computing power it would require.

Suppose I started with a simple averaged the postive-negative opinions of my friends and my friends-of-friends. I'd guess it would be a great start to meet people with outlooks/objectives similar to mine. Granted, it would be more challenging to label someone as a "ninja-looter" due to lack of interactions and data points, but at least it's a start...

I think the real criticism with any of these systems in the article is that individuals' personas don't necessarily fall into Good-Bad rankings, but rather tend to look like some sort of multi-dimensional combination of axes (Liberal/Conservative, Bookish/Down-to-Earth, Interest-in-Socializing/Interest-in-Achievements). I'm not interested as much in eliminating the jerks as I am in finding mature, clever, laid-back players. Those are MY interests, but they don't align well with a universal GOOD/BAD score. My guild tends to have a lot of married couples in it, because people just happen to migrate towards others with similar personalities. This has happened over a LONG time though. To the extent that this could be accelerated, I'd be exstatic. It's easy to shoot down every idea with a reason why X or Y doesn't work, but if everyone did that, we'd still be throwing rocks at Mastodons and grubbing around in the dirt for tasty roots.

Re:Won't work (1)

Saige (53303) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630703)

Well, one of the ways to avoid such things is to use systems like the article mentions, or like Xbox Live has - you can't just give feedback on anyone out there. The article limits it to someone who's been in your group for X amount of time, and XBL requires you to have played against someone online. This all the begging and pleading of some idiot to his friends to give you bad feedback isn't going to work, since they aren't allowed to do it just because they know your name.

If they have a good enough memory, perhaps they can get you later to do it, but likely it's not worth the trouble over a single piece feedback that, by itself, won't do anything.

Easy solution.... (1)

kg4czo (516374) | more than 8 years ago | (#14633167)

A safegard against this kind of behaviour is easy. Set it to where they have to be grouped with you for a period of say, 15 rl minutes, before they can give feedback. Since most raids take MUCH longer, it could be a deturrent. You can also set a threshold to 1 rating per day, per account. In other words, you may not leave more than 1 feedback for a particular account, on a particular account. On top of that, when someone is kicked from a raid/group/party/whatever, the leader may then be presented with the option of leaving feedback, and the leader and group be exempt from being rated buy the kicked member (e.g. if you are kicked, you may not leave feedback for the group experience. Of course, in order to be fair about it, you can't let the whole group gang up and rate the kicked player negativey, so the only rating that player gets is from the leader.

I think that would help keep the revenge rating to a minimum.

Re:Won't work (1)

Jurph (16396) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629856)

If that's the case, and someone is only participating in raids, then they should have a high community rating, shouldn't they? I mean, I don't really want someone critiquing the way my language "sings" on Slashdot - I write to make a point, and then submit. If I'm writing poetry, I do it on a different system (like Everything2.com) and get rated on my poetry there.

MMORPGs aren't just about your goals. They're about shared goals.

If someone wants to be an asshole, but can curb his anti-social behavior to participate in raids, then isn't he a functioning member of the MMORPG society? If there were an Azeroth Division of Revenue, don't you think he probably contributes just as much to the "local economy" -- if not more -- than your character?

Think about it like this: running a small raid with you is like getting a pizza from the neighborhood joint; but running big raids with him is just ordering eight pizzas from one of the big chains. Both are valid ways to get pizza, but both are different experiences. You know what you're getting with each one, and you know which one will have better service, better flavor, and better efficiency and value.

Violation specific feedback (3, Interesting)

Otonotachibana (826415) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629742)

One of my gripes with WoW is the inability to quickly flag someone as a gold-seller, user of inappropriate language (sexist, homophobic, racist, etc.), exploiters, etc.

Too often will I receive a whisper from a character trying have me visit a gold for $ site. I will report them but the process is not stream-lined, it takes a few minutes. If multiple people could quickly flag this character as a gold-seller then blizzard reps would be able to investigate and perma-ban the most abusive accounts.

Re:Violation specific feedback (1)

amazon10x (737466) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629841)

The easier they make it the more abuse it will have. If someone just click a button and it reports then abuse will go up. When someone has to fill out forms for 2 minutes then abuse gets cut down because people don't want to waste all that time.

Re:Violation specific feedback (1)

Otonotachibana (826415) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630064)

I agree with your comment. Reports of abuse would go up with a click-to-report system. The benefits would be that a blizzard database could rank the most-abusive individuals. Blizzard reps would take a look at the suspected individual's whispers. If there was specific evidence of abuse the individual would be subject to punishment per blizzard's rules. This system would target the most damaging members of the WoW community rather than have the blizzard reps read through page after page of GM tickets (which is the unfortunate situation now).

Re:Violation specific feedback (1)

thelost (808451) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629901)

the problem stems though from the poor game masters that blizzard employs and their policy towards gold selling. If a certain character was flagged by dozens of people as a gold-seller it would make fuck all difference to a GM because it's simply not important to them. they don't care. I say this because every single thing that is said, whether /tells or in general chat is logged. If it was in Blizzs interest to stop gold sellers they would. They simply don't have the capacity to stop the gold sellers either, so it's another problem swept under the carpet, like teleports, hacks, pvp bullshit ect ect.

Re:Violation specific feedback (1)

slashrogue (775436) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629924)

The problem is griefing someone unfairly in such a manner. A company like Blizzard doesn't have the manpower to resolve everything on the spot when it happens. It could work for smaller games, possibly, but even then it seems risky... you put checks here and balances there and eventually there's so much back and forth you might as well not bother implementing any of it.

I think it sucks (1)

grazzy (56382) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629792)

Especially the fucking rule about abusive language. It's lame.

Re:I think it sucks (1)

sherpajohn (113531) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629867)

You must be one of the players who characterizes anything they do not like by calling it "gay".

Re:I think it sucks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14630249)

Fucking gay fagot.

Re:I think it sucks (1)

grazzy (56382) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630321)

No.

I just dont like rules about what I can write and what I cannot. Ofcourse, I should choose my friends accordingly, but I really dislike hypocrites that think it's better to kill civilians in iraq than to use a word.

there is a feedback system... (1)

thelost (808451) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629831)

it's called /yell in Ironforge. Seriously though, A MMORPG is such because it's an immersive world where people not only quest for 'phat lewtz' but spend a good amount of time sitting around, idling and chatting. I don't need a feedback system to tell me that X is a ninja or that Y is an excellent healer or tank that I would be happy to have in my party, I know from experience and communication. Jeez it almost sounds like handing out gold stars.

Plus a system like that is open to massive abuse, especially when you put it into the hands of a bunch of 14 year old boys who decide that they don't like a particular player. Sounds like another shitty rep grind. no bloody way.

Re:there is a feedback system... (1)

jchenx (267053) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630036)

it's called /yell in Ironforge. Seriously though, A MMORPG is such because it's an immersive world where people not only quest for 'phat lewtz' but spend a good amount of time sitting around, idling and chatting. I don't need a feedback system to tell me that X is a ninja or that Y is an excellent healer or tank that I would be happy to have in my party, I know from experience and communication. Jeez it almost sounds like handing out gold stars.

The problem is that AFTER THE FACT, you will find out that X is a ninja or Y is a horrible group player. You might have wasted several hours just to find that out. Okay, so now you place that person on your blacklist, but by then the damage has already been done. Most loot ninjas thrive on the fact that there are always new people to take advantage of, that have never heard of their reputation. That's because in most games (WoW-included), there is no permanent feedback-type system. Sure, I can ask in General Chat, "Is so-and-so a ninja? He asked me to group with him.", but that's obviously time consuming and probably won't be useful (people he ninja-ed before may not be online or in IF at the time).

What I have seen is that some folks start publishing their own blacklists and making them available, either on WoW forums, guild websites, etc. The problem now is that it essentially becomes an unmoderated popularity contest, pitting one person's word against another. What if you AREN'T a ninja, but some asshole in a prominent guild thinks you are?

I think it'd be much better to have the feedback system built into the system from the beginning. Make it solid, not abusable, and broad.

Plus a system like that is open to massive abuse, especially when you put it into the hands of a bunch of 14 year old boys who decide that they don't like a particular player. Sounds like another shitty rep grind. no bloody way.

If you read TFA, they talk about ways to prevent 14-year old boys from "gaming" the system. Obviously any feedback system has to be solid enough so that IT isn't being abused either. That is definately not an easy task, which is probably why we haven't seen anything like this in an MMO yet.

Re:there is a feedback system... (1)

thelost (808451) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630167)

I've been playing on my WoW server for a year now with no transfers so the community is well established. Obviously PUGs aren't that common now as most people are guilded but in the instances where I don't do guild runs the PUGS I do are hand picked people I know are good at their roles. This comes about through knowing the community I'm part of. Any ninja's on the server are pretty well known and are pretty much avoided; If some poor PUG is unlucky enough to pick up a ninja then what they learn from that experience is in my opinion quite valuable anyhow. A burning rite of passage if you will. I simply feel that giving people ticks or minuses like school records detracts from the immersiveness of the experience. Also on a more personal note if another rep grind was added to WoW I think my feet would probably drop off in disgust! And people always, always find a way to abuse a system like that. I know from personal experience, having seen guilds cascade MC, abuse the PvP honour system, afk out of BG. There is no system that a company can build that can't be exploited. Word of mouth is king. It might not be the most reliable form of recommendation, it is of course open to abuse and lies and one persons word against another, but that's life.

Re:there is a feedback system... (1)

jchenx (267053) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630350)

Well see, that's the thing. You play in a community that's been well-established (no transfers). Not every server is like that. You also mention that, since you know the community, you know who to pick when doing PUGs, etc. It's very much a rite of passage, and one that I can understand, but that doesn't make it any better to the victim of a ninja or griefer. Not everyone has the benefits that you do. Plus, the goal is to come up with a system such that even new users can benefit from.

I'm not trying to argue that MMORPGs and other online games NEED a feedback system, otherwise they are doomed to fail. But I'm an engineer and this is /. and it's interesting to try to improve upon things. Who knows ... maybe some genius will figure it all out and implement it in the next big MMO. Then 10 years later, we'll all be wondering how we ever survived without a system (and doing thought exercises on the "next big improvement").

I certainly know a lot of people complained about travel systems with EQ. A lot of people claimed, at the time, that there's no NEED to improve travel. The world SHOULD be huge and difficult to get around. Then WoW comes along and (arguably) revolutionizes MMORPG travel with easy-to-use flight paths all around the world. Now I find it very hard to go back to earlier MMOs that don't have it. (Some folks may not like this change, but I gather their numbers are much smaller than those who do)

Re:there is a feedback system... (1)

thelost (808451) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630793)

there is definately room for improvement, in that I agree with you. However I feel that the improvements I'd like to see the most are not technological but social, including how social interaction takes place in these worlds and the importance of players moderating theirselves more closely. What spoils any MMORPG the most for me is the childish and inane chatter in general. In that respect I would be very happy to see an MMO with a minimum age requirement. Like I've said before, I think any rating system will be abused, whatever protections are put in place. However as that's my main gripe I'll ignore that problem for now and think about it in a different way. I can imagine a system of Karma in WoW for instance, that effects for instance loot drops, Money drops and faction. Say for instance I play nice, I get a good rating from other players, in the long this means that on average rarer loot drops, more money drops per mob etc. Of course this would have to be balanced in a reasonable way, but it is an exciting idea. It might also help with rep grinding. Say for instance I get a good rating from player X and player X happens to be aligned with a given faction (e.g. revered/exhalted), it goes in turn that if that player approves of me, then that faction also does. This converts into a rep bonus when grinding, making the grind shorter. OK so I guess now I'm thinking about it there are some things about the idea that I do like, however I do think it's still untenable from a practical point of view, as I've seen without a doubt that if people are good at anything it's finding loopholes. e.g. now that there is a deserter debuff in battlegrounds in WoW rather than AFK'ing out people are just sitting and waiting for the other side to win as quickly as possible. This kind of abuse of game mechanics should be punishable but nothing happens. I guess when a system gets to a certain point of complexity where you can no longer predict all the outcomes this is what happens.

Re:there is a feedback system... (1)

jchenx (267053) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630874)

there is definately room for improvement, in that I agree with you. However I feel that the improvements I'd like to see the most are not technological but social, including how social interaction takes place in these worlds and the importance of players moderating theirselves more closely. What spoils any MMORPG the most for me is the childish and inane chatter in general. In that respect I would be very happy to see an MMO with a minimum age requirement.

I've very much for reducing stupid-talk in General Chat. I don't think a minimum age requirement is the right way, though, since there are a lot of mature children, and a lot of immature adults. But if General Chat were smart enough to weed out all of the stupid banter that goes on between "kids" (especially on an RP server, for example), that alone would be wonderful.

Because it worked so well for ebay (2, Funny)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629885)

"A++++++++++, great raider. Would group with him again."

"Perfect, now hand over the Scimitar of the Wolf, or my whole guild will give you retaliatory feedback."

Not just for MMORPGs (1)

jchenx (267053) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629932)

Any company that is able to guarantee a favorable experience in an online game is going to make a lot of money. It's not just MMORPGs that need this, but FPS titles as well. How many times have you played a team-based FPS (like Counter-Strike), only to run into some asshole who thinks that shooting you in the back constantly is "funny"? Many games have tried changing the game mechanic to prevent this from happening (for example, if you cause enough team kills, you get booted from the server), but a lot of those mechanics can be gamed. Or it doesn't do anything about the fact that you had to be TKed three times before the griefer got booted, etc.

Much of the problem comes from the fact that griefers find entertainment in doing the griefing. I happen to know someone who regularly did this in Battlefield games. I asked him, "Why are you such an asshole in the game?" His answer was because he's not very good at them, but he just finds it hilarious the feedback/anger he gets from those he griefs. I've seen the same thing in WoW, where notorious spawn campers, who feed on lower level newbies, delight in the grief that they cause and will even post screenshots on a website of their "conquests".

I've always thought that the Slashdot moderation system is a good start for such a feedback mechanism in games. Obviously, though, it needs a lot of extra work to make it appropriate for a game (and TFA brings up many good points). Better yet, some company needs to be able to make it an overall game service that can be used across a broad spectrum of games. If you're an asshole in one game, you're probably going to be an asshole in another game. If not, then hopefully it's a deterrent that if you like game X, you can't be an asshole in game Y since it'll affect your karma/rating.

You can even extend it beyond just "I don't want to play with griefers". I know role playing enthusiasts would like to be able to rate folks as a "good RPer" or a "bad RPer", so they know who to RP with. Or perhaps ratings like, "Good at PvP" versus "Bad at PvP". (I know plenty of folks who I'd love to group with, when tackling regular monsters/dungeons in WoW, but I know they're horrible when it comes to actual PvP combat ... and vice versa)

I, for one, would gladly pay for such a service, and I'm sure I'm not alone. Of course, there'd be a huge backlash from those folks who ARE the assholes to begin with, and also from folks who are generally good players, but object to having labels being slapped on them and being rated constantly (much like the popularity contest that is high school).

Re:Not just for MMORPGs (1)

typidemon (729497) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630677)

How many times have you played a team-based FPS (like Counter-Strike), only to run into some asshole who thinks that shooting you in the back constantly is "funny"?

In my quake/tribes days I used to get booted and banned from servers because they thought I was using bots. Your vision isn't flawless.

Re:Not just for MMORPGs (1)

jchenx (267053) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630747)

Are you trolling or something? Obviously any feedback/rating system has to take into account things like false positives (maybe the guy really IS that good) or revenge scenarios (griefers trying to abuse feedback systems themselves).

You probably got booted from the server because some jerk admin thought you were using a bot, even though you weren't. But if you put some software in front that does the detection, a la Punkbuster, then you don't have to worry about things like jerk admins. If you still get booted, then you run to Punkbuster forums with a complaint and try to get it fixed.

<rant>
Sometimes it seems like your average /.-er is just content with pointing out one potential flaw in any given system, then claiming the whole thing is just bunk. I thought most of us were geeks and engineers. We should be able to see beyond single failures and instead, try to find ways to fix things or build a better design, rather than just tear down an entire premise with a one-line quote and a "it won't work n00b" comment.
</rant>

Re:Not just for MMORPGs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14631938)

Sometimes it seems like your average /.-er is just content with pointing out one potential flaw in any given system, then claiming the whole thing is just bunk. I thought most of us were geeks and engineers. We should be able to see beyond single failures and instead, try to find ways to fix things or build a better design, rather than just tear down an entire premise with a one-line quote and a "it won't work n00b" comment.

But we're pedants and we like it! That won't work, you n00b.

Fable anyone? (2, Interesting)

The Rabid Panda (951579) | more than 8 years ago | (#14629945)

What about a system like Fable had? Not necessarily changing your appearance, but your fame (or infamy) was automatically calculated by the game, and NPC's react differently based on your deeds. Say the system is based on points; playing all the way through cooperatively in a quest gave so many positive, healing teammates, etc. On the flip-side, ninjalooting etc. would be caught by the game mechanic and weighed accordingly. This "karma" system would be automatic and players could say, view a few stats about a player's reputation, without any necessary player input. And then there would always be the opportunity for a player to redeem their poor reputation.

Re:Fable anyone? (1)

Minwee (522556) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630327)

If activities like ninjalooting could be caught automatically by the game, then why not simply disallow them?

All that that kind of system would do is encourage players to rip off their teammates, knowing that it is allowed by the game and that it only costs them a handful of "dishonour" points which can be easily worked off by a couple hours of two-boxing and healing your other character.

Re:Fable anyone? (1)

The Rabid Panda (951579) | more than 8 years ago | (#14631689)

Because the ultimate idea of any MMORPG is immersion. Limiting the ability of any player to do as they will (within reason) will make the game less desirable.

As for working off their rep, that could be handled in such a way that the cost/benefit is either dead even or slightly against really undesirable acts. Then they would be MUCH less likely to loot, but the possibility still exists.

People will alway loot, cheat and PK. BUT, if it becomes a lot less desirable to do so just because it was easy, I think there will be a much better RPing experience in the MMOG's.

Re:Fable anyone? (1)

Minwee (522556) | more than 8 years ago | (#14632088)

Richard Garriot once told a story about the early days of Ultima Online. I can't find the original source, but it went something like this.

He was wandering around the world as Lord British when he saw someone robbing another character. He promptly used his godlike powers to freeze the thief, demanded that he return what he had taken and gave him a lecture about not stealing. As soon as he let him go, the thief stole something again and ran off.

When he confronted the thief over why he had continued to steal after being told not to be the designer of the game itself, the thief explained that he was role playing a character who stole. He had role played being caught by the authorities, role played lying about not doing it again, and then role played getting away.

The lesson for Garriot was that his world had taken on a life of its own and that he didn't own it any more.

The other lesson is one that guides the actions of every online game today. To the players, anything not expressly forbidden by the game engine is allowed. Anything that the game engine detects but doesn't prevent you from doing is encouraged.

In my opinion having the game allow antisocial behaviour but try to punish it will only send the message that being a jerk is encouraged by the game. Just look at Lineage II for an example of that. The other problem is that once the "rules" of behaviour are known, people will try to find ways around them. For example if "Kill Stealing", the practice of letting another character "pull" a rare or valuable mob and then killing it to take the experience and loot for yourself, were outlawed, then you can be sure that someone is going to start pulling mobs, "tagging" them just enough to have the game declare them as "his", and then run trains of them over other players, trying to force them to "steal" his mobs.

Any human observer who watched that would know just who was causing the problem and whom to punish but an automatic system can easily be tricked into making the wrong call. Adding more rules to the system only means there are more opportunities for the players you are trying to control to twist it and use it against you.

Re:Fable anyone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14635131)

Because ninjalooting can sometimes be funny. And you should be able to do whatever you like in a game. After all, you paid for it. In Battlefield 2 for example, you are assumed to play to gain points, but that's not an obligation. When i bought the game I didn't have to promise to play in a certain way. So what if you decide to quit playing after an hour and just knife your teamleader in the face just for fun ? The same goes for ninjalooting, it's hilarious to pull it off, and rpg lack humor anyway usually.

Re:Fable anyone? (1)

Minwee (522556) | more than 8 years ago | (#14636475)

If that's your stance on grief play then there's really no point in having a feedback system at all.

Identity verification (2, Insightful)

Ruprecht the Monkeyb (680597) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630026)

None of this will matter until there are real consequences to anti-social behavior. That requires a couple things. First, you need the people running the game to care enough to *publicly* boot people for being asshats on a regular basis. Secondly, once that is done, you need a way to prevent the asshat from just opening another account or creating another character.

I've thought for a long time what the MM market needed was a third-party identity broker. Call it 'Good Guys, Inc'. You apply for a GGI account. GGI does a check, verifies you are who you say you are, address, SSN, whatever, and issues you a GGI #.

You buy Worlds of Evercrack, and enter the CD key that came with the game into your GGI account. You login to a GGI-enabled game server, and it uses the gamekey to lookup your GGI account and verifies that that key belongs to a member in good standing. Or, if you've been banned (from that game, or anther game, or whatever they want to check), it boots you or forces you to play on a server comprised of other asshats.

Not infallible, but maybe if it booted the jerks (and ninja-looters, and bots, and pro farmers) from not only that game, but potentially other games that used the service as well, things might start to improve. Or at least segregate the people who want to play the game from those that want to beat up on other players.

Re:Identity verification (2, Funny)

Minwee (522556) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630365)

The obvious problem is one of accountability.

"Hi, Welcome to the Asshattery server, a GGI-positive shart of the Generiquest game. Since you're new here, here are a few rules:

"First, don't be a dick. You'd think that you would know that, but sometimes we have to explain things.

"Second, look for anyone with the <Uberguild> tag over their heads. These people are your gods. Not doing exactly what they say, be it leaving your current campsite, loaning them all the gold in your pockets without asking for repayment, or dancing naked on top of the nearest mailbox because they are bored, will lead to every single member of Uberguild filing a report against you on the GGI service. You will be instantly banned from this and any other game you may ever wish to play at any time in the future, with no hope of recourse.

"Third, don't even bother trying to complain to GGI about rule number 2. The person who handles complaints there just so happens to be the guildmaster of one of the guilds here. I'll let you guess which one.

"Fourth, of course, is to enjoy your stay."

Re:Identity verification (1)

PhilHibbs (4537) | more than 8 years ago | (#14633655)

None of this will matter until there are real consequences to anti-social behavior. That requires a couple things. First, you need the people running the game to care enough to *publicly* boot people for being asshats on a regular basis.

So you favour a game in which the characters are not allowed to behave like real people?

I don't think it would work... (1)

code-e255 (670104) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630093)

Feedback systems can always be exploited in some way. Nobody would want to give feedback, even if the a$$hole in the group deserves it, in fear of getting negative feedback in return. You'd have every player ask for positive feedback after every dungeon run, which would be annoying, and it would be hard to say "you did alright, but not quite good enough to deserve a positive rating" to mediocre players you got along, but didn't really have a great time, with. Honestly evaluating people may offend them.

eBay's simpler than a social game. On eBay, you're happy if you get your stuff in the mailbox on time, or if the buyer pays you prompty - that's more or less all there's too the interaction. In a MMORPG, there are way more variables which make up how happy you are with somebody, and so the scale is much finer. If you'd keep the MMORPG feedback system simple (with, say, negative, neutral, and positive), then everyone will expect positive feedback (like on eBay), and the system wouldn't give much indication as to how good (skilled, polite, helpful etc.) the players really are. Make it too complex, and you'll have the problem with players getting pissed off at not getting MAX/MAX points at the end of every group. Also, you'd probably end up having guilds unbiasly give each other feedback, as somebody else already said...

A system like this could be helpful. People would know and remember who the ninja looters are, but it could also be abused (false "ninjalooter!!" accusations could be made" - although maybe this could be solved like on eBay, with a function for being able to comment on some feedback one has received to defend ones self against such false accusations). In the end, word of mouth of who the nice guys and bad guys are usually gets around, although not to everyone and not very quickly.

Developing a feedback system is probably viewed as merely a nice little bonus feature by developers, and thus isn't something MMORPGs have. It's hard to predict how well such a system will perform and how useful it really will be in practice, so implementing it is a bit risky.

Re:I don't think it would work... (1)

jchenx (267053) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630258)

Feedback systems can always be exploited in some way. Nobody would want to give feedback, even if the a$$hole in the group deserves it, in fear of getting negative feedback in return. You'd have every player ask for positive feedback after every dungeon run, which would be annoying, and it would be hard to say "you did alright, but not quite good enough to deserve a positive rating" to mediocre players you got along, but didn't really have a great time, with. Honestly evaluating people may offend them.

Wouldn't the feedback system be anonymous? You wouldn't REALLY know if someone gave you bad feedback, so you wouldn't know who to seek revenge on. Even if it was very apparent (the entire group kicks out player X), you'd have to build the system to expect some revenge aspect to be in play. Player X is going to get 5 negative feedbacks, one from each player. But he can only dish out 1 negative feedback to each of the other players. (You can also limit the number of negative feedback you can provide in a given time)

Basically you'd have to make it so that people aren't afraid of getting ONE negative feedback. If you're truly an asshole, you're going to be that way over a long period of time, to many people. If you just had a bad day and pissed off a few people, that shouldn't tank your reputation for the remainder of the game.

The main problem I see is that the beginning game will still be griefable, as it takes time to accumulate the negative feedback. I think that's acceptable (to a degree). Besides, you have to take into account people that are new to the game, don't know quite what they're doing, etc. But by the middle to end-game, where people spend most of their time, you should be fairly assured that you WON'T run into those asshats anymore.

If someone wants to play nice guy all the way until the end and THEN start ninja-ing like crazy, then hopefully your feedback system can accomodate somehow.

Eve Online (2, Informative)

Odin_Tiger (585113) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630538)

Once again, I brink up Eve Online on a subject under games...I swear I don't work for them, tho. :P
They have two great means of this. 1, players can set standings for how they view any player, corporation (think guild), alliance, faction, or what have you. The can rate some(one/thing) on a scale of -10 to +10. At any time you can look at another character's standings to see what PC's, NPC's, Corps, factions, alliances, etc., like or dislike them. Also, committing illegal acts in secure / semi-secure space results in a decreased standing with Concorde (NPC Police), which gives a highlight to their nick. Eventually, if that standing gets too low, the police will shoot on sight if the person is found in too high a security zone, depending on how bad the standing is.
The second way that you can deal with people you don't like is with bounties. If you've got the dough, you can place a bounty on somebody's head and it will be visible to all players that they are wanted. If they have good (or not horrible, at least) standing with Concorde, shooting them will still be illegal in secure space, but for the right price...well, you get the idea. You would think that this feature would be heavily abused, but in fact it's not. It's not especially difficult to get a bounty off your head (just have somebody kill you...note however that clones get expensive, so it's only worth it if the bounty is higher than the cost of your clone), but it is still a moderately effective tool.
Another interesting note is that some have mentioned loot thieves. As of last expansion, if you loot something from somebody else's kill, they have kill rights on you for the next hour, regardless of security level. And last of note, unless you are in the most secure (and therefore, least profitable / exciting) sectors, it is not overly difficult for somebody to kill you if you piss of the wrong person. Oh, and did I mention PC corps can declare war on each other, and thereafter kill opposing corp members, regardless of security level? Mmmyesh. All in all, the game deals beautifully with asshats.

Re:Eve Online (1)

NateE (247273) | more than 8 years ago | (#14630805)

I'd have to agree that Eve Online takes more of the correct approach to ranking/feedback. How you play the game should generate consequences from the game. Ranking/feedback needs to be part of the gameplay not an out-of-character survey.

If you piss people off repeatedly then it should show on your character somehow. You have lots of scars and a broken nose. Your ship is all beat-up and shoddy looking showing that merchants don't like you.

It would never be reliable (1)

garylian (870843) | more than 8 years ago | (#14631178)

Basically, different people think different things are good and/or bad in another person's playstyle.

Examples:

You are a person that likes to take their time going through a dungeon/instance/raid. You want to be thorough. However, you aren't able to find a group with your regular friends, so you do (oh, the horrors!) a PUG. The people you get stuck with are of the OMGZERS HURRY UP! mode. You stay with them, because you don't want to get a horrible score for leaving too early. Your play styles clash too much for it to be a friendly group, and 5 other people give you a negative rating.

You are in a group, and you normally play a laid back style. Your wife is sick, but is letting you play. You get in a group, and an hour into the session with a PUG, you wife tells you she is really ill, and wants to go to the hospital. Half the group is adult and understands. The other half gives you a negative mark for leaving before it is over.

You are playing a game that allows PvP. Your party encounters some griefers that manage to kill you all after you had gotten along easily for the last hour. The other party members want to gank back right away, but you want to finish the mission. They rate you all negatively.

3 examples, all possible. There are hundreds more. And most folks just aren't capable of giving an honest opinion. Some 14yr old little pissant isn't going to care that your wife is pregnant and about to have the baby a month earlier than expected. You ruined their gaming experience by having the audacity to have a family emergency. They are going to rate you negatively.

Also, you could stack the ballot box, in effect. Don't like another player? Get friends to group with that person, and slam them.

Lastly, people can and will create griefer toons. Most games allow some levelling to be done solo, if not all. In WoW, I could solo a druid or other toon to lvl 10 in less than 6 hours. I can hit 20 in less than 20 hours. I can then go about with that character and make other players live's miserable. Then delete the toon and start again. Too much rep on that server? Pick another one.

I don't see it working. It's too easy to change your identity. And there's no way I want other folks knowing my account name. They don't need it, but if they get it, someone will eventually attempt to hack your account.

Word of mouth on the forums works. Heck my WoW realm forum was full of "This person is a ninja-looter" threads, and people started to keep list of confirmed ninja-looters. And all it would take is one group all saying "Toon A ninja-looted", and even if the lied, you were now blackballed.

So, why bother giving another avenue to grief, cause problems, and the like?

Sims Cartel? (1)

Chrondeath (757612) | more than 8 years ago | (#14631317)

Wasn't this tried in The Sims Online, where it resulted in the community being run by a mafia of players coercing people into following their orders through threats of negative feedback?

Tough, very tough (1)

Tom (822) | more than 8 years ago | (#14633427)

I've been running an online game for five years now (see .sig). During that time I've experimented with several feedback systems.

None of them work as they should. The problem is that there is too much abuse in the system. People who want to game a system will always find a way to do so, and it is very hard to design a system that is resilient against that.

Simple example: Everyone can give everyone else a score from 0 (worst) to 10 (best).

Theory: While there are jerks who give bullshit scores, it will average out.

Real life: Most people won't care enough, even if it's just one click. The jerks will dominate the system because if the "fair" average is 5, and one jerk gives you 0, it takes five scores of 6 to counter that. Since jerks are active and normal people are lazy, your chances of getting those five scores are lower than your chances of getting another 0.

Same with more refined system. I had a system that didn't use scores but keywords like "reliable", "cheater", etc. running for a while. That, too, was abused. People were labeled "cheater" not because they were actually suspected of cheating, but because some jerks didn't like what they did. Heck, several of the game designers were labeled cheaters.

It's a really, really difficult problem. Trust flow systems are the only thing I believe would work, but they give a very subjective view (essentially what your friends think of someone) and a lot of people don't really understand them so coding and interface that everyone can use is another tough problem. Aside from the fact that the entire area is pretty much in beta stage still and there's very few code available, so unless you're a math and coding wizard and can create your own trust flow system, that's not something really available right now.

At the moment, what I do is having no system. I rely on the human beings in the game to be able to handle things themselves, using their brains as tools that are infinitly better than anything I could ever code.

Re:Tough, very tough (1)

Tom (822) | more than 8 years ago | (#14633455)

At the moment, what I do is having no system.

Actually, I do have something, but it's not a ranking system even close to what's discussed in the article. Anyways, here's how it works:

Players can give "medals" to other players for positive things only. There are no negative marks. This removes the incentive for griefers because there's nothing bad they can do to anyone.

The ability to give out medals depends on the number of medals you've received, so only people judged "good" by other people can give out medals.

This can still be gamed by clans who give medals only to other clan members. But due to a dropoff, the clan still requires an influx of medals from outside in order to keep it up, so unless at least one of them actually is a good player, it won't work.

I don't yet judge the system a success. The dropoff is too high, resulting in the need for a constant creation of new medals, usually done by me raising the number of medals certain people I trust can give out (but not the number they received). But I don't want to lower the dropoff, or it becomes too easy to game the system.

there is such a system in WOW. (1)

allforcarrie (901516) | more than 8 years ago | (#14633757)

in wow ther is a freind list and an ignore list.. people you dont like go on the ignore list... its that simple.

original EQ did okay by itself (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14634132)

I thought it a bit interesting to compare this to how things worked out in EQ.

When EQ first opened, i noticed alot of jerks, and i wrote their names down. As i levelled up, these jerks all dropped out.

You see, you needed to be in a group. And if someone asked to be in a group, and someone didn't like them, they weren't let in. Deprived of levelling opportunities, they dropped out.

By the time you were in the 40's (this was when the max was 50), even being in the wrong guild would be enough to black flag you. Our guild would watch an applicant (grouping with them while playing an unguilded alt), to see if they were friendly.

This all grew from the 'forced grouping' that EQ had. The more solo friendly a game is, the more jerks you will find in the game.
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