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Power-Gaming


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This has been on my mind for a while and I wanted to open it up for discussion and see how other people feel about it. I would like to learn from other people's thoughts and opinions.

I have been noticing a lot of power-gaming situations happening lately. ARMA mechanics being what they are and role-playing being the beast that it is, sometimes it can be necessary and fun to take creative license in order to give interesting role-play to others.

The problems begin when people start to feel they are forced into a situation for which they have no reasonable escape, being tied to trees, having body parts cut off, etc.

I was taught by the Watchers to try my best to role-play through any situation that is thrown at me without breaking character, no matter how good or bad, even if rules were being broken.

I still try to do this, but after some recent experiences I have encountered I have been trying to be more responsible, not only my own role-play but the role-play I give to others.

These are my unspoken rules that I am trying to stick to:

1. If you are in a position of dominance over a person in a roleplay-scenario. Ask OOC before doing something to a person that might cause permanent bodily harm or cosmetic changes to their character.

2. Ask permission before performing an action that limits the movement of another character or at least give them a reasonable amount of time to respond with a way to counter-act your action.

EX: Jon Doe ATTEMPTS to tie Jim Smith to a tree. (Make the action last 10 seconds so they can break free or protest this action if they choose.)

3. If you are in a position of submission and someone tries doing something to your character that you don't agree with, speak up OOC and let them know. Don't let it keep going if you are upset with what is happening. (Thank you for teaching me this Tante.)

3b. Don't abuse rule 3 by trying to get out of role-play scenarios that are reasonable.

4. After an intense role-play session with someone (even if no one was robbed, initiated on or harmed), try to check in with them and make sure they felt alright with everything that happened.

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  • Legend

I once wrote this and I support the guide from kharmasutra

I will give you an example to show you what is powergaming:

1. "Forces Terra down to the ground" = Powergaming, I am forcefully being held down

In this case I have no chance to react on it.

2. "Attempts to force Terra Down" = Not powergaming, I am attempting to force someone down

In this case I can act on it and try to get free.

You cannot 100% force something onto someone = Powergaming.

You need to give the other party some room to move. As in real life, if you got held down, you would struggle and attempt to get free.

Its up to the opposing party whether they wish to get held down and Roleplay that situation out, however you still cannot force it on them.

We don't allow Powergaming as it is unfair against others players.

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Guest John Le Bear

Going to be honest here. I believe this to be a terrible idea. Going OOC in my opinion is absolutely horrible, especially when there is little reason to do so.

If someone wants to harm my character, permanently scar them, then they can, I have no problem with that, it would make for interesting roleplay. What I dont want them to do is have them ask OOC if they are allowed to. Them are supposed to be the dominant ones in the situation, so asking me OOC breaks that dominance and the immersion.

Your second point makes little sense to me if im honest. If you are going to tie someone to a tree, you will be in a position of dominance, so they would be in no opportunity to break free with in 10 seconds of you doing so. You would easily notice and you would punish them for doing it, possibly even kill them depending on your reason for capture. The only time I can see it okay for a hostage to break free from being tied up, is when there is an opportunity, either the men guarding you have came under attack giving you time to escape safely, or there are few men guarding you and none of them are watching you closely. However, if its not like this, you cant just go *breaks free of the binds* (obviously what you type would vary, this is for arguments sake), as your captors would most likely be watching you and would stop you before you even broke out.

Your third point is something I really hate people doing. Nothing I hate more when im banditing and someone breaks character to tell me I am breaking the rules and I need to stop, only for them to realize after a discussion in teamspeak that they were in fact incorrect and just ruined a perfectly good roleplay situation. If you are unhappy with what is happening in game, deal with it IC, do not take it to an OOC level. If whats happening to you is rule breaking, then let the situation play out, then report it. You never know, what is happening could actually be legit.

Your fourth point, is something I like to see happening, so +1 to that. Nothing better than discussing what has just happened IG, helps to keep a healthy OOC relationship with people.

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  • Legend

Actually, I think it is totally ok if you go OOC in a situation you dont like, if you do it the way we always want it, which would be in Text and text only.

You have to make sure that your victim enjoys the Rp with you too.

You have to care.

Only because you like what you do to someone, dont mean the other one is enjoying it too. You have to make sure that you dont cross a line and that you do not offend someone with your actions.

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Guest John Le Bear

I once wrote this and I support the guide from kharmasutra

I will give you an example to show you what is powergaming:

1. "Forces Terra down to the ground" = Powergaming, I am forcefully being held down

In this case I have no chance to react on it.

2. "Attempts to force Terra Down" = Not powergaming, I am attempting to force someone down

In this case I can act on it and try to get free.

You cannot 100% force something onto someone = Powergaming.

You need to give the other party some room to move. As in real life, if you got held down, you would struggle and attempt to get free.

Its up to the opposing party whether they wish to get held down and Roleplay that situation out, however you still cannot force it on them.

We don't allow Powergaming as it is unfair against others players.

Just stating "Forces Terra down to the ground" is not necessarily powergaming. It all depends on the situation. Lets say you have been taken captive, you are alone, unarmed and surround by a ten men. One of the men comes over and forces you to the ground, in no way would you be in a position to resit that action, so writing "Forces Terra down to the ground" wouldn't be powergaming. If you were stupid enough to resist you would either end up dead or forcefully beaten to the ground until you cant get back up. If I was roleplaying with a hostage and I tried to throw them to the ground and the tried to fight back, I would probably kill them if they were little/no value to me.

Although, if the situation was entirely different, then the captors need to watch what they say. If you were alone with one person, and they wrote "Forces Terra down to the ground", it wouldn't be okay, it would be powergaming, as chances are you are in a position of fighting back and should be given the opportunity to do so.

Just remember, things are not always so black and white.

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  • Legend

If you would hold me down with ONE guy, of course I would try to get free, even 10 are around me. If you hold me down with two or three? I wouldnt have a change of course.

And reading your post, I think you know exactly what I tried to say.

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Guest John Le Bear

Actually, I think it is totally ok if you go OOC in a situation you dont like, if you do it the way we always want it, which would be in Text and text only.

You have to make sure that your victim enjoys the Rp with you too.

You have to care.

Only because you like what you do to someone, dont mean the other one is enjoying it too. You have to make sure that you dont cross a line and that you do not offend someone with your actions.

I understand that, but I have been on both sides during these situations, even if the roleplay is not that good, I dont mind too much, as long as they try. But going OOC to inform me of what they want to do to me seems rather silly in my opinion, even if it is just through text. Everyone playing here should understand the rules, so everything that happens in game should be legitimate. Though sometimes its not, hence why we have a report section on the forums.

Personally, I would much rather make a report and/or talk it out with the people after the situation is over, not just interrupt the situation with OOC and ask someone to stop what they are doing because it offends me. But thats just me I guess. I prefer to try and keep the roleplay going, no matter the situation (though OOC may be needed on occasion if there are OOC issues preventing people from playing or there is trolling involved).

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  • MVP

If someone wants to harm my character, permanently scar them, then they can, I have no problem with that, it would make for interesting roleplay. What I dont want them to do is have them ask OOC if they are allowed to. Them are supposed to be the dominant ones in the situation, so asking me OOC breaks that dominance and the immersion.

You may have no problem with your character being maimed, but many people do. What happens when your character has his tongue cut out? Will you roleplay a mute from then on? Some may, however most who haven't planned such a drastic change to their roleplay will not enjoy this. Obviously, that is an extreme case. But it serves my point. Maiming and disfigurement is literally forcing roleplay. Consent should always be sought when approaching something like this.

Your second point makes little sense to me if im honest. If you are going to tie someone to a tree, you will be in a position of dominance, so they would be in no opportunity to break free with in 10 seconds of you doing so. You would easily notice and you would punish them for doing it, possibly even kill them depending on your reason for capture. The only time I can see it okay for a hostage to break free from being tied up, is when there is an opportunity, either the men guarding you have came under attack giving you time to escape safely, or there are few men guarding you and none of them are watching you closely. However, if its not like this, you cant just go *breaks free of the binds* (obviously what you type would vary, this is for arguments sake), as your captors would most likely be watching you and would stop you before you even broke out.

I think here, the act of tying is the powergaming. If the person has no chance to react to someone trying to tie them to a tree, then powergaming is a concern.

Your third point is something I really hate people doing. Nothing I hate more when im banditing and someone breaks character to tell me I am breaking the rules and I need to stop, only for them to realize after a discussion in teamspeak that they were in fact incorrect and just ruined a perfectly good roleplay situation. If you are unhappy with what is happening in game, deal with it IC, do not take it to an OOC level. If whats happening to you is rule breaking, then let the situation play out, then report it. You never know, what is happening could actually be legit.

I think you miss this point slightly. It isn't about bringing attention to rulebreaks so much. I think it is more about letting someone know that you are uncomfortable OOC about the direction the roleplay is going. For various reasons. As Kharma said, she usually attempts to roleplay regardless of rules being broken or lines being crossed by the other party. However, there needs to be a line somewhere. At some point the offending party needs to be made aware of the negative effect their actions are having.

I understand the frustration of having people go OOC unnecessarily, however I don't think the points Kharma brings up would be classed as such.

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  • Legend

I know what you mean and I understand that, that´s why I like the idea of looking after someone AFTER such an situation.

I do this alot, not only in hostage-situations.

Try to talk to each other to improve.

I was on both sides too and I had good and bad experiences. Of course you should always play as good as possible in a situation like beeing a hostage, getting tortured.

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Guest John Le Bear

If you would hold me down with ONE guy, of course I would try to get free, even 10 are around me. If you hold me down with two or three? I wouldnt have a change of course.

And reading your post, I think you know exactly what I tried to say.

Honestly, try to escape when surrounded by ten guys and you wont be walking away from the situation. You will be either crawling or dead. Fighting back in such a situation is just not valuing your characters life.

But as I have said, it all depends on the situation. I personally, just avoid writing things that may conflict with power gaming. If I want someone to sit on the ground I will ask them to do so, not force them by hand (as in trying it to force them). If they don't bother, I will ask them at gun point. If they fail again I will make them sit by breaking their legs.

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  • Legend

If you would hold me down with ONE guy, of course I would try to get free, even 10 are around me. If you hold me down with two or three? I wouldnt have a change of course.

And reading your post, I think you know exactly what I tried to say.

Honestly, try to escape when surrounded by ten guys and you wont be walking away from the situation. You will be either crawling or dead. Fighting back in such a situation is just not valuing your characters life.

But as I have said, it all depends on the situation. I personally, just avoid writing things that may conflict with power gaming. If I want someone to sit on the ground I will ask them to do so, not force them by hand (as in trying it to force them). If they don't bother, I will ask them at gun point. If they fail again I will make them sit by breaking their legs.

Let me get this clear because I guess it was worded badly.

If you would hold me down with ONE guy, of course I would try to FIGHT TO GET THE HANDS OFF OF ME, even 10 are around me. If you hold me down with two or three? I wouldnt have a change of course.

It´s not about to get free and get away. It´s roleplay. I wouldnt hold still till enough guys are holding me down.

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This is why I wanted to talk about this. I was taught not to go out of character and just follow through with role-play no matter what happens.

Now I am trying to play a dominant character and I want to respect people's boundries while still giving them some dark and creative role-play.

It's good to hear both sides.

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Guest John Le Bear

If someone wants to harm my character, permanently scar them, then they can, I have no problem with that, it would make for interesting roleplay. What I dont want them to do is have them ask OOC if they are allowed to. Them are supposed to be the dominant ones in the situation, so asking me OOC breaks that dominance and the immersion.

You may have no problem with your character being maimed, but many people do. What happens when your character has his tongue cut out? Will you roleplay a mute from then on? Some may, however most who haven't planned such a drastic change to their roleplay will not enjoy this.

No, I will roleplay out the situation, then talk to the people OOC after the event and explain that what they did was not okay, telling them that I will be disregarding my tougne being removed, however the rest of the situation would be okay to reference in future encounters if it didnt conflict with me.

There is no need to stop a situation during RP, enjoy it then sort it out after when rules may have been broken.

Your second point makes little sense to me if im honest. If you are going to tie someone to a tree, you will be in a position of dominance, so they would be in no opportunity to break free with in 10 seconds of you doing so. You would easily notice and you would punish them for doing it, possibly even kill them depending on your reason for capture. The only time I can see it okay for a hostage to break free from being tied up, is when there is an opportunity, either the men guarding you have came under attack giving you time to escape safely, or there are few men guarding you and none of them are watching you closely. However, if its not like this, you cant just go *breaks free of the binds* (obviously what you type would vary, this is for arguments sake), as your captors would most likely be watching you and would stop you before you even broke out.

I think here, the act of tying is the powergaming. If the person has no chance to react to someone trying to tie them to a tree, then powergaming is a concern.

If someone is in no position to react to something without significant consequences, then they shouldnt react, simple. If I was tying someone up, they resisted, so I shoot them. I imagine people would make a report and/or complain that I killed them for no reason, when in reality, they just were not valuing their characters life.

Your third point is something I really hate people doing. Nothing I hate more when im banditing and someone breaks character to tell me I am breaking the rules and I need to stop, only for them to realize after a discussion in teamspeak that they were in fact incorrect and just ruined a perfectly good roleplay situation. If you are unhappy with what is happening in game, deal with it IC, do not take it to an OOC level. If whats happening to you is rule breaking, then let the situation play out, then report it. You never know, what is happening could actually be legit.

I think you miss this point slightly. It isn't about bringing attention to rulebreaks so much. I think it is more about letting someone know that you are uncomfortable OOC about the direction the roleplay is going. For various reasons. As Kharma said, she usually attempts to roleplay regardless of rules being broken or lines being crossed by the other party. However, there needs to be a line somewhere. At some point the offending party needs to be made aware of the negative effect their actions are having.

I understand the frustration of having people go OOC unnecessarily, however I don't think the points Kharma brings up would be classed as such.

If you have problems with an event, discuss it after on teamspeak or the forums, dont interrupt the whole situation IG. Sure, you could be uncomfortable, offeneded, or anything really, but its all RP, let it play out and try to enjoy it, then discuss any problems after.


Let me get this clear because I guess it was worded badly.

If you would hold me down with ONE guy, of course I would try to FIGHT TO GET THE HANDS OFF OF ME, even 10 are around me. If you hold me down with two or three? I wouldnt have a change of course.

It´s not about to get free and get away. It´s roleplay. I wouldnt hold still till enough guys are holding me down.

That makes sense now. I agree that if you are only struggling, not making a full on attempt to break free, then sure, you would be able to do that. However, it would really depend on the situation, if your captors have no use with you, but just kept you alive for the sake of not killing someone for no reason, then struggling when they are trying to hold you down will probably make you a pain for them, resulting in them killing you. So in the end, you would end up dead, which would be no value for your characters life.

When it comes to situations like these, everyone needs to be really careful with what they say/do as it easily can conflict with other rules, not just powergaming.

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  • MVP

-snip-

It comes down to this. If someone feels uncomfortable in an OOC way, they have the right to let the offending party know. I will never encourage someone to push through with RP they feel uncomfortable with or are offended by. We play this game for enjoyment.

I'm not talking about things like anger over losing gear, but genuine discomfort.

Powergaming is situational (word? probably not), however an easy way to look at it is this. If you are forcing the person to do something and they are powerless to resist, then it is powergaming. If they have no choice, it is powergaming.

Value for life is irrelevant. If your RP forces anything, on anybody, then it is powergaming. Considerations of valuing life come from the ability to resist; if that ability is taken, it is powergaming.

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Guest John Le Bear

-snip-

It comes down to this. If someone feels uncomfortable in an OOC way, they have the right to let the offending party know. I will never encourage someone to push through with RP they feel uncomfortable with or are offended by. We play this game for enjoyment.

I'm not talking about things like anger over losing gear, but genuine discomfort.

Powergaming is situational (word? probably not), however an easy way to look at it is this. If you are forcing the person to do something and they are powerless to resist, then it is powergaming. If they have no choice, it is powergaming.

Value for life is irrelevant. If your RP forces anything, on anybody, then it is powergaming. Considerations of valuing life come from the ability to resist, if that ability is taken, it is powergaming.

I disagree, things are not that simple, at all.

Lets apply that logic to a situation. I am taken captive, trapped in a building (with no possible exit) and told to sit down, I refuse, they then tell me I have ten seconds to sit down or they will kill me. I can either sit or I die. According to your logic, that would be power gaming as I would be powerless to resit.

I like to look at powergaming this way, if you are in no position to realistically resist to what someone has tried to do to you, then let it happen. When it comes to situations where people are forcing you to do things, value for life is relevant, as if someone writes *forces John to the ground* (when im in no position to fight back), then I should just drop to the ground. Sure I could just stand there and tell them OOC that they are powergaming, then what? They write *Attempts to force John to the ground*. Now I have two choices, go to the ground or fight back. Lets say I fight back, I piss my captors off and they kill me. So if they wrote *Attempts to force John to the ground* OR *forces John to the ground* it doesnt matter, as essentially they both have the same outcome, so you should just accept what was wrote originally and let it happen, then talk to your captors on TS or the forums after to explain what they did wrong, thus avoiding the OOC in game that in this situation, would be unnecessary.

But obviously, as you said, powergaming is situational (pretty sure this is a word...I think), the situation we are talking above is largely different to if someone randomly walks up to me and writes *Slits John's throat, killing him*.

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  • MVP

Lets apply that logic to a situation. I am taken captive, trapped in a building (with no possible exit) and told to sit down, I refuse, they then tell me I have ten seconds to sit down or they will kill me. I can either sit or I die. According to your logic, that would be power gaming as I would be powerless to resit.

Not powergaming at all. In this case the victim always has the ability to resist. They may die in the process, but they at least have the ability.

I like to look at powergaming this way, if you are in no position to realistically resist to what someone has tried to do to you, then let it happen. When it comes to situations where people are forcing you to do things, value for life is relevant, as if someone writes *forces John to the ground* (when im in no position to fight back), then I should just drop to the ground. Sure I could just stand there and tell them OOC that they are powergaming, then what? They write *Attempts to force John to the ground*. Now I have two choices, go to the ground or fight back. Lets say I fight back, I piss my captors off and they kill me. So if they wrote *Attempts to force John to the ground* OR *forces John to the ground* it doesnt matter, as essentially they both have the same outcome, so you should just accept what was wrote originally and let it happen, then talk to your captors on TS or the forums after to explain what they did wrong, thus avoiding the OOC in game that in this situation, would be unnecessary.

*Attempts to force John to the ground* gives you the ability to fight back. - not powergaming.

*Forces John to the ground* Gives no chance of resistance. - powergaming.

The actions afterwards are irrelevant. Sure the captives may take offence and kill the person resisting, but the victim has at least had a chance to react.

Powergaming relates to the action. Not the consequences of the victim's reaction. Killing someone for non compliance is irrelevant. Forcing the victim into an action where resistance is impossible is.

In most hardcore roleplaying games, dice would be used. Easy rolls for likely actions, rare rolls for unlikely. We don't have that mechanic unfortunately. As a result, we can't force roleplay on people.

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  • Emerald

tumblr_m81efoicir1r927dro1_500-gif-300x168.jpg

On another note that can be directly lead from this "attempts" thing and the ability to resist, there is no direct rule against "godmodding", only "powergaming", and even that is used in a wrong context since "powergaming" isn't what it actually is in the rules and what is described in the rules is one part of godmodding. Where did that definition even come from?

So yes people are able to resist every action without the other party able to do anything to prevent that. Oh and did I already say that your "powergaming" really is "godmodding"?

And I actually back this claim with an excelent piece of writing by someone in RPG-directory.

Godmodding, Metagaming and Powerplaying

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I think the whole point of this is giving the victim an opportunity to roleplay as well. I don't think it has anything to do with getting away, it's just to spice up the roleplay. Not allowing your victim to do that is powergaming and is no fun for them. While it may be fine with you, a lot of people don't enjoy being "forced" into a situation without having fun themselves.


-gif-

I love that movie. The Princess Bride or whatever? Don't remember the name, but I love it nonetheless.

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  • MVP

tumblr_m81efoicir1r927dro1_500-gif-300x168.jpg

On another note that can be directly lead from this "attempts" thing and the ability to resist, there is no direct rule against "godmodding", only "powergaming", and even that is used in a wrong context since "powergaming" isn't what it actually is in the rules and what is described in the rules is one part of godmodding. Where did that definition even come from?

So yes people are able to resist every action without the other party able to do anything to prevent that. Oh and did I already say that your "powergaming" really is "godmodding"?

And I actually back this claim with an excelent piece of writing by someone in RPG-directory.

Godmodding, Metagaming and Powerplaying

Meh, Multiple sources contradict each other when it comes to the terms. Most of the time they also overlap in some way. Then, different communities use different vocabularies. We have been using the term 'powergaming' for this sort of thing since I have been part of the community. Either way, the technicalities of the name don't alter the discussion.

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  • Emerald

I once wrote this and I support the guide from kharmasutra

I will give you an example to show you what is powergaming:

1. "Forces Terra down to the ground" = Powergaming, I am forcefully being held down

In this case I have no chance to react on it.

2. "Attempts to force Terra Down" = Not powergaming, I am attempting to force someone down

In this case I can act on it and try to get free.

You cannot 100% force something onto someone = Powergaming.

You need to give the other party some room to move. As in real life, if you got held down, you would struggle and attempt to get free.

Its up to the opposing party whether they wish to get held down and Roleplay that situation out, however you still cannot force it on them.

We don't allow Powergaming as it is unfair against others players.

And I already dispelled this idiotic notion that every action that in some way interferes with another character has to be preempted with a question of "hello sir can i do this?":

http://www.dayzrp.com/t-powergaming-and-you

If you disagree with what is happening to your character and think they should be able to resist, then counter-emote. Someone roleplays tying you to a tree? Say "*John wiggles around, trying to prevent his captors to tie him to the tree.*" Instead of always thinking of the rules and OOC shit when things aren't going your way, ROLEPLAY BACK.

This isn't all that hard people.


*Forces John to the ground* Gives no chance of resistance. - powergaming.

What, pray tell, prevents you from saying

*Pushes back against Peter, resisting from being forced down.*

????

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The problems begin when people start to feel they are forced into a situation for which they have no reasonable escape.

-Snip-

We came to your TS to ask about all this, if you wanted us to know about all this you could of came to us before posting. To me it seems like your trying to bash us with this post. I tried my best with the roleplay i'm sorry you did not enjoy it.

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  • Emerald

-snip-

It's one thing if you have that window, but sometimes it is robbed from you. Like "This is done." as opposed to "I attempt to do this."

The initiator will often present a "I cut your wrist," leaving you with the response of "but.... nuh uh!"


The problems begin when people start to feel they are forced into a situation for which they have no reasonable escape.

-Snip-

We came to your TS to ask about all this, if you wanted us to know about all this you could of came to us before posting. To me it seems like your trying to bash us with this post. I tried my best with the roleplay i'm sorry you did not enjoy it.

Again, I had to collect my thoughts. I was upset, tried discussing it with you, and it was only frustrating me further.

I have no issue with the attitude. That I admire. The scene, however, was just approached in a way that I try to avidly avoid.

EDIT: I'm calm enough to re-approach this in Teamspeak, if you'd like.

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