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Avlis policy on: Metagaming, Powergaming and Exploiting

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Avlis policy on: Metagaming, Powergaming and Exploiting

PostAuthor: Heronimous Fox » Tue Sep 09, 2003 1:19 pm

The team on Avlis is frequently asked about these, what they mean, what can and should nt be done on avlis. Even to the point that PC?s are asking DM?s to remove exp?s because they worried that they got them via an exploit.

What we will try to explain here is our definition of these three terms, explain them as far as possible as well as give examples of each type of behavior. We will also try and explain when each is acceptable and when it isn?t.

Metagaming

Metagaming is simply another term for using out of character (OOC)information rather than just the in character (IC) information your character has learnt whilst you are playing him. The term loosely means ?Game with in a Game? in the case of Avlis this means the game of Never Winter Nights (NWN) within the game of Avlis.

Avlis is in many ways a game unto itself. It?s derived from a long running pen and paper (PnP) D&D Campaign world, with it?s own set of rules and history. When playing on Avlis things work differently than in standard NWN, like death, treasure, experience gain, ect.

Metagaming is when you think more about the way NWN works then how Avlis works. Or OOC vs IC.

Picking stats, skills, feats, and so on are all examples of metagaming. When you level up, you again are metagaming, because you pick skills, feats, and so on. There can be IC reasons for what you decide, such as muticlassing because of something that happened to your character, say he now lives in the woods so you think he will develop ranger skills. But most character development is done though metagaming but this not always bad.

But it can be a bad thing, if it?s done in a way that harms or effects other PC?s. The best example of this, being the whole 'floating name' issues, that has been discussed and argued over on the avlis boards many times. The floating name is completely OOC information, and using it to identify someone you don?t really know or couldn?t identify normally is considered a ?sin? on Avlis.

Some examples of both good and bad Metagaming or OOC behavior; (these aren?t hard and fast rules, just examples of the type of behavior so you can judge if what your doing is acceptable or not.)

Good:
* Increasing your Int/Wis/Cha score so you can cast higher level spells.
* Taking levels of another class, for IC reasons. (i.e. you had a religious experience and decide to take levels as a cleric.)
* Increasing a stat, that isn?t of primary use for your class, to qualify for feats that are useful to you. (i.e. Increasing Int to 13 so you can get improved knockdown)
* Taking a feat, not for the sake of the feat, but for other feats you can now qualify for.
* Using the floating name to identify someone you know well, but whose avatar looks like other PC?s.
* Using the Player list, to see if a friend is online at the time.
* Using the examine option to read the bio someone has put in there.

Bad:
* Taking levels of another class with no logical IC reason for doing so.(i.e. Your PC isn?t religious, but want to be able to cast buffs (protective spells like stoneskin) so you take levels as a cleric.)
* Cancelling out of a level up process to get a better HP roll.
* Using the floating name to identify someone you?ve never met before.
* Using the Player list, to see if PC you want to attack is online at the time.
* Using the examine option, to see what buffs someone has or what level they are.
* Using Tells to share IC information.

Powergaming

Powergaming is the middle ground of the three things. Almost all forms of powergaming are frowned on, here on Avlis, but powergaming isn?t normally enough in of itself to get you banned from Avlis. Extensive powergaming may do that, but you would have to do it a lot before it becomes an issue. However if you?re busy powergaming, it?s likely you?ll miss out on opportunities to roleplay, which is the focus of Avlis.

Powergaming is generally defined as doing things for purely OOC reasons, mechanical advantages, or in game actions that are done to increase the power of your character, that makes no IC sense. It?s related to metagaming because your approaching your character from the stand point of how to make her more powerful, rather then as a someone growing a character based on events that happen to her. Like metagaming, powergaming isn?t always bad, it?s frowned on most of the time on Avlis, but there are a few cases where it could be over looked, or even approved of. These however are rare cases, normally reserved for low level characters. (i.e. level 1-3)

Some examples of acceptable, and unacceptable powergaming actions. (Again these aren?t hard and fast rules, just examples)

Acceptable:
* Doing low level quests over and over again, to get your PC past the first few levels. Like a Fedex quest, or the firebeetle quest. (Doing a quest more then once isn?t powergaming. But a mid to high level doing it like 10 times a night is.)
* Hanging out in one area to kill monsters or other NPC?s over and over again, at low levels, to complete quests or gain some money.
* Going back into a area you cleared out, or respawning something you just killed, to get the final 50exp?s you need to level up, when you should have been in bed an hour ago.

Unacceptable:
* Taking a single level in a class, because of some benefit you get for having that class. (i.e. 1/19 Paladin/Sorcerer. Or taking a single level of Rogue, for the ability to pick higher then DC25 locks)
* Finding an area that allows you to make a lot of exp?s rather quickly, then spending several hours every day there, for no other reason then to gain a lot of exp?s quickly. (There?s nothing wrong with monster hunting, or spending several hours doing it. It?s only when you stay in the same area for hours that there?s a problem.)
* Going to an area to kill NPC?s or grab loot that would be against your characters beliefs in some way. (i.e. A paladin breaking into houses, or a dwarf looting a religeous area sacred to dwarves)
* Rushing off the moment the server restarts to kill NPC?s or open chests that you know drop good loot.
* Towing, taking lower level PC?s with you in your party to reduce the average party level, for no other reason than to get more exp?s for yourself.
* Spending every moment you are on Avlis, killing monsters and gathering loot. (Again killing monsters and gathering loot, isn?t bad. But if that?s all you do, then there?s a problem)
* Having a really low score in one stat, so you can have a really high score in a different one. But not playing as if you had that really low score. (i.e. Having a 8 wisdom and charisma but acting as if you had a avg score in both)

Exploiting

Exploiting, is in many ways, the same thing as cheating. It is the practice of doing something you know you shouldn?t be able to and then repeating it as many times as you can. In nearly every case exploiting, involves a bug of some sort, be it one created by the Avlis staff, or one from Bioware. Anyone found exploiting, will be put on the watch list, and is likely to be banned from playing on Avlis.

If you ever find yourself thinking ?That seemed way too easy for what I got? or ?Odd! He already gave me a reward? because you got a reward you didn?t earn, then it?s likely you found something that could be exploited. We try very hard to make sure that the rewards you get are fitting to what you did. A different form of exploiting is using a trick to avoid something really bad happening. In either case you are doing something that shouldn?t be able to happen, to benefit you in some way.

There is one and only one case where doing something you think is an exploit, is acceptable, and it will be clear to us if you?re doing this or not. That is testing something you think might be an exploit, to make sure what you think just happened, did in fact happen. Provided you only do it that one more time, and report it, then you won?t be punished for exploiting. However a DM may still take what ever you got from it away from you. It?s important to note that if you had benefited from something you think may be a bug, doesn?t mean you?re guilty of exploiting. It?s when you keep doing it, over and over again, that you?re guilty of exploiting. If you run across something that you think might be a bug, please report it so we can fix what ever is wrong.

Some examples of exploiting.
* Hitting 'escape' and quitting the game, when you?re at negative hit points, to avoid dying and going to the after life.
* Giving a NPC a quest item, then finding you have the option of giving it to him again, even though you don?t have it any longer.
* Dying, and having someone grab your gear, then crashing the server so you can come back before your character is saved, so you have all your gear back, but your friend still has everything he grabbed off your corpse.
* Logging in with a character that doesn?t belong to you. (It can happen by accident, but you need to quit as soon as you realize your not using one of your characters)
* Giving all your gear to a friend, or leaving it in a chest, then logging into a different world, and coming back to Avlis via a portal, so you have all your gear, plus copies of it in your chest or with your friend.
* Finding a chest that spawns in an item that should never be there (i.e. +3 flaming long sword), and going to it every chance you get.
* Collecting the reward for a quest you never actually finished, or even started. But because of a bug in the dialog you can collect the reward anyway.
* Getting into a really bad situation, and logging out rather then sticking around to take what?s coming to you. (i.e. surrounded by a bunch of really tough NPC?s you know will be able to kill you).
* Logging out, then logging back in again, to restore your lost hp?s and spells.
* Finding an item needed to complete a quest, you were given some place else, logging out and logging into that server to finish the quest, rather then walking there.
* Finding out that by doing X, Y, and Z, or because of some server glitch you become invincible, then running around and killing NPC?s you would normally never stand a chance against.
* Asking high level PC?s to take you places you have no place being, then hanging way back so you can get massive amounts of exp?s with doing no real work.
* Asking low level PC?s to go with you to places they have no place being, then having them hang way back so you can get a massive amount more exp?s then you should normally.
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PostAuthor: choraldances » Mon Mar 01, 2004 6:57 pm

What to do when your items dupe?

1) Report to staff@avlis.org of the exact situation that the items are duped.
2) Dump all duped item in a trash can, or ask a DM to help you if a DM is on line.

Simple as that.

Anyone caught duping and using these items in any way, will be subject to disciplinary actions.

-Avlis DM's
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PostAuthor: Vergilius » Tue May 10, 2005 4:13 am

We've noticed an increasingly disturbing trend lately concerning Roleplay in the community and therefore the team has saw fit to bump this thread as a reminder of what constitutes acceptible and unacceptible playing behavior.

This is worth a reread, even if you're an upstanding citizen.

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PostAuthor: choraldances » Mon May 23, 2005 6:39 pm

Metagaming is simply another term for using out of character (OOC)information rather than just the in character (IC) information your character has learnt whilst you are playing him.


please remember this, this not only happens in the boards, in IRC, but also happens in game through party chats and tells. you can be banned for this.
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PostAuthor: Orleron » Thu Jun 16, 2005 10:48 pm

This is the procedure that DM's on Avlis follow when observing a metagamer/powergamer. We have tried to follow this policy, thereabouts, for years now, but it has never been written down until now.

Remember, this is a policy, not a negotiation:

Avlis DM Rules wrote:
If you see someone powergaming or metagaming, do the following:

1) Make sure you observe the player long enough to be certain. Make sure this is something on the order of an hour or two, rather than a minute or two, minimum.

2) Send a PM to the player with the following format:

Hello,

This is just a quick note to let you know that some of your actions on our servers might be interpreted as (metagaming/powergaming).

In an effort to make sure we are not treating you unfairly, we would like to first notify and warn you, and then offer you some time to explain your actions if you wish.

You were observed performing (insert actions here).

Please PM me or email me back as soon as you are willing and able.

Players who are caught chronically powergaming or metagaming may see IC consequences for their actions, such as looting by monsters or response by the world against their PC. We would like to resolve this issue way before that happens.

Thank you.

Sincerely,

(name)



3) As soon as you send that PM, enter the person into the watchlist.


4) If the person explains themselves and is absolved, post in the watchlist that you are satisfied with their reply and that all is well.

5) If the argument goes on, post a record of it in the thread.

6) If time goes by and the person is STILL doing these actions, take IC steps to solve the issue:

a) Upgrade their monsters spawns if powergaming.

b) Manually control IC actions of the world to respond to their metagaming.

c) If monsters kill the powergamer, and the monsters are sentient, have the monsters loot an item or two at random from the corpse.


7) No further explanation is necessary. The person may be put onto your ignore list.

"Truth has no form."
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PostAuthor: Jedisniper » Wed Jun 06, 2007 1:06 am

*Bumps*

It's a good idea to re-read the rules every now and then.

I'd also like to point out this particular one:
* Getting into a really bad situation, and logging out rather then sticking around to take what's coming to you. (i.e. surrounded by a bunch of really tough NPC?s you know will be able to kill you).


And as a wise man once said above:
Vergilius wrote:This is worth a reread, even if you're an upstanding citizen.


Game on!

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PostAuthor: Aeveras » Tue Jun 26, 2007 6:59 pm

Powergaming wrote:Unacceptable:
* Taking a single level in a class, because of some benefit you get for having that class. (i.e. 1/19 Paladin/Sorcerer. Or taking a single level of Rogue, for the ability to pick higher then DC25 locks)


For the love of all that is holy, don't do this for any reason whatsoever. I mean it.

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Re: Avlis policy on: Metagaming, Powergaming and Exploiting

PostAuthor: MadK@ » Mon Nov 08, 2010 3:28 pm

There is some unfortunate bugs in the system at the moment, one of them is resting. We are working to fix this bug asap but until then...

Abusing this bug will carry the same consequences mentioned above under exploiting.

Intended resting intervals should be 16 min, fair enough there will be some leeway but if you are running to rest every 4 minutes you are obviously breaking the rules.
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Re: Avlis policy on: Metagaming, Powergaming and Exploiting

PostAuthor: Speedracer » Mon Nov 08, 2010 7:37 pm

what about when artifacing? should I wait the required 20 minutes between rests to recharge my spells so I can scribe scrolls even though I am inside player housing and not doing anything else?

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Re: Avlis policy on: Metagaming, Powergaming and Exploiting

PostAuthor: MadK@ » Mon Nov 08, 2010 8:22 pm

You should wait what it would normally take between rests. Which is 16 minutes (amended)
Note this does not count for low level characters who can rest for free up to level 3
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Re: Avlis policy on: Metagaming, Powergaming and Exploiting

PostAuthor: MadK@ » Mon Nov 29, 2010 3:31 pm

I am sad I need to bump these rules again.

If you come across something in game that seems too good to be true, then it probably is.
Take a moment and if there is that glimmer of doubt that pulls at the 'ol common sense strings then it is time to ask the team or report the possible issue.

Game On.
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