Case for persistent player presence and in-world apartments

Bob Dobbs

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#1
Brief: A series of interlocking suggestions for persistent player presence (player character is always in-game even if the player is offline) and how this facilitates a new way of looking at apartment functionality (in-world, not instanced).

I try not to go into too many assumptions of gameplay mechanics and there may very well be more or less obvious holes in this that others can point out, for example in how some things may be incompatible with the way Mankind Reborn is currently proposed to work.

Also I have really not taken into consideration what this will mean technically engine/netcode-side, but I'm confident enough that this could work given a particular approach.

Please bear with me as I lay this out:

Persistent Player Presence

  • Full player persistence. If a player logs out his character stays put in-game.
  • Death occurs either by actively being killed by another player or AI controlled creature, or from exhaustion from being inactive too long a period.
  • Players can effectively log off safely in locations where they are protected, such as in their apartment, hotel room or in a pod facility (more on this below)
  • Emergency disconnects allowed. Player can initiate an emergency disconnect at will when the need arise to log-off as soon as possible.
    The player will then be able to log off without waiting. The player character will experience a countdown, when that countdown has been reached the player character will be automatically brought to a cloning facility where the player character can safely stay put until the player logs on again. Next log in will give a higher penalty than normal death (money-wise or via other punitive means such as less effective implants etc.) but the player character will have all inventory left.

Apartment Complexes, Hotels and Pod Facilities
  • All apartments, hotels rooms and pods are physical locations present in the game space and not instanced.
  • In-world locations such as this will give more value to physical space in the game as well as potentially another factor to drive the economy

Three types of living quarters in the game:
  1. Apartments
    • Apartments are seen in general as luxury items of sorts. Smaller closet sized apartments are not extremely expensive, but the prices rise fast the bigger they are.
    • Comes in ranges between closet sized to penthouse suites.
    • Players can either rent or choose to buy out an apartment from the facility (apartment complex) owner but still have to pay rent to some extent.
    • Only invited members can enter an apartment (forcefield/invisible wall) unless set to public.
    • Apartments are zoned so that no chat goes outside.
    • Storage is effectively limitless/very large
  2. Hotels
    • Hotels litter from back alleys to high streets and come in many varieties, from small stink holes to luxurious hotel rooms.
    • Hotel rooms allow for temporary shelter when needing to go offline fast.
    • Perfect location for conducting business away from others with medium security.
    • Government entities/owners can forcefully enter the hotel room, other players can hack into it (hacking hotel rooms takes considerably more effort/time than with pods).
    • Costs a lot more than pods (see below) in general and are leased only short term.
    • Few hotel rooms with extreme luxury (spacious etc.) are available and pricey.
    • Storage is large to medium, allows for a fair amount of items.
  3. Pods
    • Pods are located in pod facilities, these facilities can contain all from a few pods, dozens and up to the hundred.
    • Pod facilities are owned by individual players, corporations, factions etc. and the pods are rented by players.
    • As pods come in abundance they are very cheap to rent (depends on faction allegiance and other parameters adjustable by owners).
    • Pods consist of only a bed and storage space. Come with varying sizes of storage areas.
    • Pods are the most common safe areas for players and effectively acts as a quick and dirty way to log-off safely pretty much everywhere, as long as you can physically reach and pay for the pod.
    • Pods can be broken into by other players (hacking), leaving security up to pod facility owners.
    • Facility owners can open pods at will.
    • Some pod facilities have only direct access to pods while others have market places, usually maintained by the owner of the pod facility.
    • Some factions have their own pod facilities for use by their employees only, but there are also mixed pod facilities that are used by less law-abiding factions/others.
    • New players are assigned pods at low rent by default.
    • Storage is very small to smallish, just storage for essentials.
    • Additional storage can be bought from pod facility owners with rent going to said owners.

Starter pods
  • Government factions members are assigned to faction specific pod facilities.
  • Corporation factions members are assigned to faction specific pod facilities.
  • Criminal faction faction members are assigned a pod in a general pod facility.
  • Mercenary faction members are assigned a pod in a general pod facility.
  • Civilian/other generic factions are assigned to general pod facilities as well.
 
Jun 2, 2017
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#2
Two issues I see with this. One is with offline ganking, and the other is that it sort of punishes players who can't play as often. While it'd be neat to have for those people who can invest a fuckload of time into playing, a lot of people have real life obligations and needing to go to an apartment is a hassle, and punishes people for IRL situations.
 
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#3
ok bob

there are bad/misguided suggestions

and then there are stupid suggestions

and then there are the what the fuck possessed you into thinking this was even remotely close to being something that would ever work in any game or situation suggestions

apartment things are pretty cool ideas though
 
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#5
Cant imagine the work the servers has to handle
 

Bob Dobbs

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#6
NoahKirchner post_id=116 time=1496498890 user_id=80 said:
Two issues I see with this. One is with offline ganking, and the other is that it sort of punishes players who can't play as often. While it'd be neat to have for those people who can invest a fuckload of time into playing, a lot of people have real life obligations and needing to go to an apartment is a hassle, and punishes people for IRL situations.
Fair potential issues to point out, for sure.

Offline ganking would be a thing, I agree. How much of a bad deal that would be for the individual player I feel is up to which extent this mechanic would be implemented. If there are pods pretty much around every corner, chances are players will be able to go offline somewhat securely and without too much forethought at least. Furthermore if the player has an apartment this would effectively guarantee no offline ganking, as only the player owning the apartment would be allowed in it along with specifically allowed players. My point being that offline ganking could be a thing that isn't plain awful, just a possibility for something bad to happen seldom enough but with consequences that can be another incentive for players to organise socially. I'm not saying this idea isn't full of holes, just that there may be some ways around it, making it interesting and practical.

Another thing I maybe can be more clear about in my suggestion is that players that logs-off in an apartment can be offline indefinitely (until he can no longer pay rent automatically due to no further funds at least), i.e. without dying from exhaustion. This might mitigate the potential issue of punishing players for not being able to play very often.
ChexGuy post_id=118 time=1496499206 user_id=64 said:
ok bob

there are bad/misguided suggestions

and then there are stupid suggestions

and then there are the what the fuck possessed you into thinking this was even remotely close to being something that would ever work in any game or situation suggestions

apartment things are pretty cool ideas though
Okay, friend. I can appreciate the honesty. The persistent player presence might honestly be a bat-shit crazy idea, but I for one can't tell that with any degree of certainty without really exploring all the potential things that can be done to mitigate any potential issues with it. It all boils down to me loving the thought of as much player peristence as possible, even if you are not actively there to partake in what is happening. Call me crazy, but if it's at least remotely possible I'm willing to further explore the idea at least.

The player persistence can be seen as entirely separate from the apartments suggestion of course. I would love to discuss that idea (apartments/hotels/pods) all on its own as well. As I've thought of this thus far at least the player persistance is a way to further define an actual, real, difference between the various types of locations you can rent/own. There might be something more interesting and practical to throw in the mix to further define the different types and get rid of the idea of persistent player presence, if there's any ideas out there I'd love to hear them. That and room size, storage space and security in various forms is about the only real difference I can think of as of this time.
[quote="Sir Blood Buske" post_id=119 time=1496501742 user_id=2]
I do like the idea of apartments you can visit in world.
[/quote]
If there's anything I would prefer to be taken into consideration of the suggestions that I made above, it would be the in-world apartments idea. If possible, that would be really interesting, even if there's just varying sizes of apartments and no system such as hotels/pods. The idea just feels so much more lively and real than instanced apartments.
 
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#7
While I can understand where this is coming from. I dislike this idea for one reason: it sounds more like a annoyance then something that adds a lot to the game. When I want to stay up later even though I have to work tomorrow to finish that FB I dont want to have to go trough two loading screens (to get on the colony my appartment is on and in the appartment itself) before I can log of safely. I'd much rather see a system where logging in and out in your appartment gives you a certain bonus. To get killed and lose my gear because I forgot the time and had to go to the dentist and did not have the time to get to a safe spot to log of is not fun, it doesnt add anything besides frustration. It just seems like a lot of work and server stress for something, that in my eyes, adds very little to the game.
 

Bob Dobbs

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#8
Robo post_id=159 time=1496651535 user_id=77 said:
While I can understand where this is coming from. I dislike this idea for one reason: it sounds more like a annoyance then something that adds a lot to the game. When I want to stay up later even though I have to work tomorrow to finish that FB I dont want to have to go trough two loading screens (to get on the colony my appartment is on and in the appartment itself) before I can log of safely. I'd much rather see a system where logging in and out in your appartment gives you a certain bonus. To get killed and lose my gear because I forgot the time and had to go to the dentist and did not have the time to get to a safe spot to log of is not fun, it doesnt add anything besides frustration. It just seems like a lot of work and server stress for something, that in my eyes, adds very little to the game.
You make good points. A bonus for logging out in apartments/hotels/pods instead of the player character always being in-game could very well work perfectly as a way of making the locations more useful and meaningful. I like it!
 
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#9
I would propose to approach this differently.
No death from exhaustion (you introduce it to get rid of sleeping players scattered around everywhere, don't you?).
Instead player character simply dissapears after 6-12 hours of lying on the ground where it was left. If player wasn't killed in this time then he is lucky and suffers no punishment in form of ganking. The same happens with the apartment -- after 6-12 hours of players absence his apartment "logs off" itself -- it becomes inaccessible and noone can break into it.
Also when player logs in after his character dissapeared, his character should appear not where he logged off, but in his apartments.