The Daily Grind: Would you play an MMO with antagonistic GMs?

    
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Whenever we’re reminiscing about the glory days of MMOs, we invariably bring up the prevalence of events and GMs in those classic games. What we sometimes forget to mention, however, is that not all of the events were nice. For every wedding I saw a benevolent GM officiate in EverQuest, for example, I saw four Verant reps rampaging around as Sand Giants, stomping on newbies in Oasis, provoking more elite characters to come to the rescue.

That’s the topic on the mind of Kickstarter donor Xijit, who’s written in to ask,

Would you play a game with antagonistic GMs? That is to say, GMs who log in with maxed-out characters and start PK-ing people until enough players ganged up to bring them down? Or GMs who take other actions that negatively affect the playerbase?

If those sorts of events happened today with actual GMs behind them, I suspect, the greater MMO playerbase would flip out. We might love events, but there’s something fundamentally unfair about being attacked by the gamemaster (especially in a game with experience loss!). At the same time, isn’t it better to have live events against devs or GMs than just repetitive, automated ones?

Would you play an MMO with antagonistic GMs?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!
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DrowNoble
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DrowNoble

Uncaring antagonistic GMs?  Sure millions play a game like that, it’s called World of Warcraft. :)

Seriously though, if it was a rare occurrence, like once a month in a single area I probably wouldn’t care.  If it happened where I was I’d just get up and leave or logout to another character.  If it was often and widespread, I’d quit the game entirely.  It shows malice, if they are deliberate in their harassing lower level players, or incompetence if they don’t understand that ganking players is not something players enjoy.

Geering
Guest
Geering

I would play the hell out of an MMO with antagonistic Devs/GMs *IF* they could take it as good as they give.

That is to say, assholes in charge who wouldn’t whine, cry, throw a tantrum & ban or otherwise punish players whenever they get their asses handed to them.

Being antagonistic in & of itself isn’t a problem as far as I’m concerned. What matters to me is if they’re good sports or not. Unfortunately, people who are really good sports seem to be a rare breed. But I’d sure love an MMO like that with that single condition.

dorn2
Guest
dorn2

I played an MMO with antagonistic devs.  It’s called WoW.

daoist
Guest
daoist

As it is with many things, this is not a completely new idea. The early years of UO had a large population of PK types with day jobs at Origin. 

I would definitely play a game with both GM and Player antagonists as long as the role was adequately policed. Conflict against human opponents is infinitely more interesting that interacting with AI.

Mimiros
Guest
Mimiros

schmidtcapela I can imagine that you’d be really fun at parties.

Mimiros
Guest
Mimiros

I would pay money to participate in an mmo that featured this. Anything to shake up crusty players that just want to do their same boring routine.

dewdodu
Guest
dewdodu

We had something like that in Vanilla Wow but it wasn’t GMs going around and stomping newbies, it was something people did around level 30-40ish area, would lead to massive muti-guild fights. It was fun for the Higher level people but was an absolutely nightmare for lowbies as this was at least tri-daily around Tarren Mill and the Arathi hills, not to mention the crazy lag that would ensue. A especially really nasty instance when one side gather together a large group of rogues and druid, spawning camping both corpse and graveyards.

I would love if it was specifically aimed at level cap characters with options, knowledge, and connections leaving the lower level players alone.

camelotcrusade
Guest
camelotcrusade

Serrenity  I’m very risk averse when it comes to putting my entertainment in the hands of other players.  As you can imagine I therefore do not PVP and I certainly wouldn’t do it with the authorities.

Xijit
Guest
Xijit

sray155 
No, I carefully picked “antagonistic” … not “griefing,” not “abusive,” not “challenging,” not “combative.”

An-Tag-O-Nistic: 
GM’s that go out and stir up the players by joining into faction battles and start leading players against the other side.

GM’s that drop into the middle of some guild’s power leveling session and start murdering people.

GM’s that spawn high level mobs into a starter area and force more experienced to defend noobs while they level.

Sometimes there would be rewards in it like high level loot or titles for taking a GM down, other times all you would get is the fight of your life as you try to road block an nearly un-killabe GM from raiding your player built fortress and burning it to the ground.

Most of this sounds like “cheating” and abuse of the player base, even to me, but almost all of that could be coded into the game with NPC’s and no one would bat an eye … and every one of them is something that developers let players do to each other.

Xijit
Guest
Xijit

The main inspiration for this question comes from Atlantica online:

There were daily / weekly events where the Developers would log in from Korea, set up a medium stat party build, and then list themselves in the open PvP queue … when / if a player beat them, the whole server got a buff.

Eventually this transitioned into it just being the GM’s running it instead of the Korean Developers, but still …

On top of which, the GM’s would make a spectacle out of killing bots & occasionally instigating a forced PvP battle between a bot and the player who reported them (so you could kill them yourself).

…. eventually things did kind of get out of hand with the GM’s antagonism & support of nations griefing each other, but it was an interesting experience to have a game’s GM’s actively engaged with the game and not as white knights or care bears.