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  • Skin Betting in Gaming

    Trying to mitigate outside betting by in-game design will destroy a lot of the social interaction. You'd have to limit interaction to a point where one person's acts can't strongly help the other. This is probably detrimental to MMORPGs, or at the very least quite limiting.

    Since the betting is happening out of game, no in-game design can fully prevent it. Even if you fully lock all gameplay down (or make a single-player game), you could create a betting website where people wager their accounts.

    In Star Wars Galaxies, I created a newbie helping program on our server. A big part of it was veteran players donating money/items into a pool, that was then redistributed to the starting players. This sort of perfectly legitimate thing would be the first to be shut down, as it would look very similar to a gambling website's activity (from the data perspective).

    Game betting we aren't happy with should be regulated on the level it is happening at, which is outside of the game. I think going after the websites is a start, or having clear policies that state if your item is find in one of the betting pools, you're risking a permanent ban.
  • : General : Hawaii's Chris Lee: 'Step Up' to Changing Predatory Gaming Practices

    I think Torval's general point is that when it comes to any legislation, the specific language used is important.

    I can subscribe to that. But I don't think they are going to regulate Pac Man on accident. :smiley:
  • : General : Hawaii's Chris Lee: 'Step Up' to Changing Predatory Gaming Practices

    Torval said:
    I'm curious what "similar variable reward mechanism" will encompass. A majority of computer gaming, especially online gaming is driven by variable reward mechanisms gated behind a paywall.

    That is incredibly broad. At any point an assertive administration could interpret and apply that to a broad range of reward mechanics. It's essentially anything that isn't completely deterministic.
    What is an example of a variable reward mechanism linked to a paywall?

    I can think of many variable rewards (RNG essentially), but most of them aren't linked to payments at all (loot drops, procedural dungeon spawns, random quest pool draws).
  • Doomsday Heist Coming Next Week in the Game's 12th Major Update - Grand Theft Auto Online - MMORPG.c

    I love GTA Online. The lobby system kills it a little for me.

    You can get brilliant lobbies, where people either do their thing or clash around objectives as intended. In many cases though, you get either hackers or people who kill you repeatedly only to try piss you off.

    I had good fun playing in private lobbies with friends. But the new content requires a public lobby. Presumably to make it more risk-reward. But to me it just ends up being a lobby lottery.
  • Condition Based Abilities

    This is quite common with healer archetypes, in the form of death prevention. EQ2 had death prevention. It's also incredibly popular in MOBAs (League of Legends, Dota), due to the counter-play.

    The way this works is you give a player a prevention buff. If their health reaches 0 within a certain window, they get a large heal instead. If their health stays above 0, nothing happens. This is interesting in PvP, where the enemy can play around this, intentionally keeping the player with the buff alive.

    On a similar note, Everquest 2 had the Heroic Opportunity system. Each skill you had was associated with a symbol (e.g. chalice, ankh or bow). Some classes lacked specific symbols (chalice would be on healer skills, fire symbol would be on mage skills). A player could then use the Heroic Opportunity skill, which would begin a sequence. If the group then used abilities in a specific order ( ankh -> arrow -> fire), it would trigger a specific buff.

    This tries to reward variation and break up the ability loop, which is a common issue with WoW-style games. The one flaw is the fact that without voice communication, it's extremely difficult to coordinate - you may trigger a Heroic Opportunity, but your group mate is in the middle of an ability sequence that they just complete spontaneously.