Reputation system design

 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    mudlab.org Forum Index -> Design
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
Grem



Joined: 15 May 2005
Posts: 36
Location: Maryland

PostPosted: Fri Jun 10, 2005 2:02 pm    Post subject: Reputation system design Reply with quote

This thread is for discussion regarding 'reputation' systems in online games. This system governs which actions NPCs will choose to bestow upon PCs and other NPCs. Does your MUD have a reputation system? How does it work, and what are the benefits and drawbacks?

A reputation system is commonly used to add value to the NPCs in the world by making them a bit more realistic and not just 'kill targets'. By institution a realistic reputation system, players will think twice before killing Bob the beggar. This system helps keep the city streets clean.

Im in development of a reputation system on my MUD, it works nearly the same as every other online game that has a reputation system. Each NPC is part of a 'guild'. Each NPC has a 'rank' in that guild as well. If you perform negative actions against that NPC, your reputation with that entire guild will decrease. If you perform positive against against the NPC, your reputation with the guild will increase.

Levels of reputation:
100 - The NPCs worship you as their savior.
>80 - The NPCs wave at you as you pass by, and whisper about your great deeds.
>60 - The NPCs offer you goods, shelter, and reduced shop prices.
>40 - The NPCs whisper about your good deeds.
>20 - The NPCs may nod or smile at you at you as you pass by.

<-20 - The NPCs may spit toward you as you walk by.
<-40 - The NPCs will not sell to you, and may bully you.
<-60 - The NPCs will perform negative deeds toward you, and may attack you.
<-80 - The NPCs hate you and attack you on sight.
-100 - The NPCs will devote their life to slaying you, even if they need to hire help.



How the system works:
1. Whenever you do something that will change your reputation, the reputation change will 'cache' to your pfile, but not 'update' until 24 real-life hours have passed. This gives time for the results of your actions to spread throughout the game world. In other words, your actions to the game world will have a 24 hour lag.

2. You can view all your reputations with the 'reputation' command to see how others hate/like you. At first I wasnt going to include this, but I decided that players love to have access to that sort of information. Do your players have access to that information? Screenshot: http://www.epicpermana.com/reputation.png

3. Your 'fame' stat is calculated by the average absolute value of all your reputations. In other words, you gain just as much fame from being 'absolutely hated' by a guild as you do being 'absolutely loved' by another. This allows evil players to become 'infamous'. The fame stat may effect shop prices.



Advantages of the system:
- Players will be careful with whom they kill, because they may anger hundreds of characters at once!
- Players can join the sides of evil NPCs, like the orcs, if they bestow favorable actions on the orcs.
- Players will grow attached to specific guilds of NPCs, and may even attack other players in defense of the guilds.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website AIM Address
Author Message
Silverthorn



Joined: 01 Jun 2005
Posts: 12
Location: Waycross, Georgia, USA

PostPosted: Fri Jun 10, 2005 2:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We actually have already intregrated this into our mudlib. We developed a reputation-based quest system, that allows the player to solve quests they choose as given by the Oracle, but rather than awarding the players with money or experience, we have added in a reputation variable. We are currently saving this reputation flag as a property on the player character itself.

Currently, the reputation allows the shops and pubs throughout the game risk having the player buy or sell goods from them. If a player’s reputation is too evil, a good-minded store will most likely not accept goods from them or even worse, buy them at a very reduced resell cost. Some NPCs even react to a player's reputation up to the point of either nor helping them or attacking them directly.

We are considering to add in the reputation system into combat as well for those NPCs that protect the inner cities (i.e. guards) or are higher citizens in certain towns (i.e. mayor, jailer, sheriff, etc). We have something in place already that posts a sort-of 'wanted' poster (similar to the old Padrone's system of long ago) for killing these higher citizen positions -- that allows players to seek out the killers either directly (if they are both PKers) or through the use of NPC bounty hunters (which will share a profit of the bounty if successful).


-- Silver
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website AIM Address Yahoo Messenger MSN Messenger
Author Message
KaVir



Joined: 11 May 2005
Posts: 565
Location: Munich

PostPosted: Fri Jun 10, 2005 2:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
<-20 - The NPCs may spit toward you as you walk by.
<-40 - The NPCs will not sell to you, and may bully you.


What if I'd got my bad reputation from mercilessly ripping apart members of that guild who'd tried to mess with me? Wouldn't fear be a more appropriate response, with NPCs cowering, running away, or calling for help? The same would be true with a positive reputation - a guild leader who rules with an iron fist should be treated very differently to one who rules with a velvet glove. It might even be worth introducing parallel reputation trees for different things for each guild (e.g., maybe the women adore you while the men fear you, but everyone would at least respect you).

Also, what sort of cross-referencing do you have between guilds? If I perform lots of favours for the Dark Brotherhood, how would their enemies perceive me? If I go around slaughtering the enemies of the Renue Monks, would their reaction to me change? Would it be possible for me to be hero-worshiped by two opposing factions, or would improving my status for one decrease my status with the other?

Other things to consider - are reputations global, or is it possible to have a local reputation? Or is this automatically handled depending on the level of the reputation (so the bigger you are, the more widely you're recognised)? Can you artificially adjust your reputation (publicity campaigns, smear campaigns, spreading rumours, concealing your activities with games of cloak & dagger, etc)? What happens if you eliminate every witness to your crime - does your reputation still change? Is it only active things which affect your reputation, or can passive actions also adjust it (such as refusing to aid a guild member, or standing by and doing nothing while someone is killed)? Is it possible to have multiple reputations for different personas, allowing people to play double-agents, or infiltrating opposing guilds?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Author Message
Grem



Joined: 15 May 2005
Posts: 36
Location: Maryland

PostPosted: Fri Jun 10, 2005 2:53 pm    Post subject: RE: Kavir Reply with quote

Ive considered some of the factors you've stated, Kavir.

Plans:

1. If there are no other NPCs nearby when you deal the killing blow, your reputation will not be adjusted. (UNLESS the NPC is a quest target; you will always get a reputation adjustment if the NPC is a quest target)

2. If you are considerably more powerful than the NPC, and you are hated by them, they will fear you. Only if you are of comparable strength will they taunt or attack you.

3. I had considered guild allies/enemies, but the system would be overcomplicated and a nuisance to players. Besides, I think players should be able to ally to one guild, while being enemies to a guild that guild has allied with.

4. Reputations are 'global' because my game world takes place on a small archipelego of islands. I give 24 real-world hours for your actions to 'spread' across the area.

5. Passive actions wont adjust it, just active actions. Passive actions are very difficult to track.

6. I hadnt considered 'different reputations with different persona', but I will surely allow disguises which will hide all your reputation values from NPCs.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website AIM Address
Author Message
Lindahl



Joined: 29 May 2005
Posts: 56

PostPosted: Fri Jun 10, 2005 3:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Somewhat related are reputations that are more broad and less personal, and tend to give a society biases and prejudices. I've discussed it here.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Author Message
Kithrater



Joined: 29 May 2005
Posts: 6

PostPosted: Sat Jun 11, 2005 12:33 am    Post subject: Re: Reputation system design Reply with quote

What sort of actions are defined as negative, and what sort as positive? Obviously things such as killing, stealing, casting aggressive spells will be seen as negative, but what's the criteria for positive? Casting helpful spells, giving out donations of money, going on generated quests?

If a player knows just how much of a reputation they have, what's to prevent them killing all the NPCs of Guild X that give worthwhile rewards, and then laying out lots of positive actions in a spam/bot-like fashion to the surviving members until their reputation is neutral or positive again, thus invalidating the underlying point of the system (presumably to prevent wholesale slaughter for the sake of rewards from NPCs).
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Author Message
Grem



Joined: 15 May 2005
Posts: 36
Location: Maryland

PostPosted: Sat Jun 11, 2005 12:17 pm    Post subject: RE: Kithrater Reply with quote

Negative: Attacking, stealing, completing quests that damage their society.

Positive: Rescuing, providing goods, completing quests that benefit their society.


Increasing reputation will be much more difficult than losing reputation. Redeeming yourself may be a bit more difficult than 'laying out positive actions' in a spam-bot fashion. You will likely need to complete appropriate quests to regain their favor. The quest difficulty may be directly linked to how much they hate you.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website AIM Address
Author Message
Myrd



Joined: 08 Jun 2005
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Fri Jun 24, 2005 3:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
3. Your 'fame' stat is calculated by the average absolute value of all your reputations. In other words, you gain just as much fame from being 'absolutely hated' by a guild as you do being 'absolutely loved' by another. This allows evil players to become 'infamous'. The fame stat may effect shop prices.


That doesn't work. What if you do lots of things to stay neutral (for example, kill a merchant here, but save another one there) .. keeping your reputation at a balance. Then you should still be famous since you've done all of those things - while your reputation points are near 0.

Perhaps have a separate accumulator that increases every time your reputation changes by the absolute of that amount. That way, if you get +50 rep and then -50 rep more, your fame would still be 100, while your rep would be 0.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    mudlab.org Forum Index -> Design All times are GMT
Page 1 of 1

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum

Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2002 phpBB Group
BBTech Template by © 2003-04 MDesign