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I honestly don't think Marks being Open PK matters anymore. I'm not sure what purpose removing it serves either, to be frank.
The original reason was so that if I have a contract on me, I can attack whatever Mark I want to try and void it because I don't know which Mark actually holds the contract. Avoid the whole "why are you attacking me" "Someone has a contract out on me" "well its not me" etc etc.
I think there's some good dialogue here.
While I can see the point behind removing open pk from marks, it's not going to matter when the mark goes to kill someone and then a bunch of allies earring in, or that in-room defend (which they can- no complaint there). The recourse of those actions is that the mark now can go kill them later, and so on and so forth.
That said, there's no real deterrent to groups to just gank marks when contracts have been claimed. Hell, there's rarely a deterrent other than opportunity cost to not kill marks who join just for padding a pk count.
That said, there are (what I feel) a lot of compounding issues with the current mark system. I think that it's actually easier to complete a contract than to complete a bounty with the caveat that is the removal at death at the target's hands. I'm not sure this should change, and I'm not sure what ought to be altered, honestly.
I appreciate the rapid alterations in response to the dialogue and hope that any further ideas warrant review, but honestly, I don't see the real need to be a mark for anything other than RP reasons. Perhaps there could be some sort of new mechanics that reward marks, or useful abilities and items that are gathered by participation?
I think @Atalkez made a great point with the dilution of mark identity. Maybe champions could get a special message when they take a contract?
A wave of anticipation hits you as you realize that you are the new prey of insert_mark_name.
idk, ignore the low effort suggestion. The point is there could be minor QoL changes that may make marks cool enough to warrant fixing some of the deeper issues because as it stands, I don't really see a reason to participate other than your own created roleplay.
Isn't your own created roleplay "the only reason" to play Achaea at all though?
That is not to say Marks don't have issues, as Eryl, Atalkez, etc have laid bare some of them.
@Caelan While 'created' roleplay should 100% be encouraged and is reliant on the player, that is not to say that additional outlets/inlets should be dismissed.
I think my point is that small things (especially in Achaea) can really help cultivate immersive experiences, no?
Slightly related, but what was the thought process behind bounties not being cancelled on death the same way that Mark Contracts do?
@Sobriquet could easily be the timeframe. Bounties you get only 7 RL days, whereas contracts can be active for several weeks due to the decay criteria (Though I could be outdated if they recently made changes to decay times, I'm going off the helpfile).
I like how with contracts you get to attack the Mark but that's meaningless since you don't know who has contracts on you.
I don't remember if bounties in CONTRACTS command shows you who has the bounty, so may apply there too.
It's just a recipe for circular hiring and/or issues, especially in a game where you can block communication with people. I know often it's not an issue because the person will just tell you, but that's barely half the time. The other half it's a complete crapshoot.
It wouldn't fix all the issues, but one simple improvement would just be to show a contract on Contracts only after the Mark has attacked you. Optionally also send the target a message upon first attack, "revealing" the contract and Mark.
Essentially this gives you the anonymity mechanic all the way up until the first attack, but from then on it is disclosed to the target.
This would surely eliminate a ton of confusion and circular hiring / issues.
Shecks leaps out of the shadows and backstabs you!
A contract upon your life has been revealed!
You receive message: A contract upon your life, placed by Amranu, has been revealed! Check Contracts for more details.
I like revealing contracts on the first hit a lot, actually. I didn't know I needed that before I saw the example of it.
If my a contract is revealed on hit, there would be cases where, as a mark, I would be more inclined to not engage with my team during particular fights specifically so I don’t have to reveal a mark contract. For all of the targets who rarely leave a guard stack, there’s another target who leaves guard stacks a lot, but only in the company of a raid/fight team.
Ultimately, you have to remember that the mark NEEDS THE ADVANTAGE or the system doesn’t serve its purpose as well (offering an avenue for retribution for people who don’t/can’t fight). If you were hired on, it’s because YOU DID SOMETHING WRONG. You don’t deserve any sort of advantage in the situation because YOU are the one CAUSED the situation.
Frankly, if you don’t like being hired on, don’t do shit to GET hired on.
Oh, and since I only ever comment to disagree with a particular person, I’ll point out that I’m using a GENERAL “you,” not a SPECIFIC “you.”
But that's not always the case with people hiring for random shit all the time
Ivory should announce on first hit and Assassin shouldn't.
I disagree. I know who all the marks are generally at a given time. I know who hits me. If you hit me first, or snipe me mid-raid- I notice (generally). Then the 'advantage of surprise' is lost.
I fail to see how certain verification removes the advantage, given there generally isn't one after the first strike anyways. I would actually go so far as to suggest this might actually be beneficial for marks since then they won't be hired on or whatnot unnecessarily in certain cases.
To clarify, this is the opinion behind the player Astarod, and those that agree with him explicitly or implicitly, not inclusive of those who disagree with him, explicitly or implicitly.
@Sobriquet, as mentioned before, there is already a recourse for people who hire for reasons that aren’t valid. Issue them! If we want false hires to stop, we have to be a part of the policing and not be afraid to point out the offenders.
@Astarod, you are either purposefully glazing over my argument and responding to a situation I did not present, or you are doing it on purpose in an attempt to troll. I lost the ability to tell when it concerns you a long time ago.
That is not what I wrote. I wrote that I would inclined to sit out of an group engagement if I there is a large enough chance that my contract target does not die as to specifically not give away my target. I’m not talking about situations where I am picking someone off while they’re fighting someone else. I’m talking about sitting out of a “my guys versus your guys fight.
I’d like to also point out that most of the “marks are bad I don’t like them” comments are coming from people who have a very stark history of either abusing the mark system themselves or doing things to other players that gets them hired on. This is important because it makes the arguments feel more of a “this would make MY experience more fun” instead of a “this would make EVERYONE’S experience more fun” sort of situation. I will be frank in saying that I’m viewing most of these arguments through the lens of “how could this change be abused by someone wanting to circumvent IC repercussions for being a douchebag.”
Again, I will state: if you have such a horrible time interacting with the mark system, stop doing things that people can hire on you for. The mark system is not just an avenue for marks to get PK; it is a means of obtaining IC resolution in a situation where you would otherwise have no recourse for whatever reason. At no point am I going to consider making it easier for a target to figure out who their mark, making it easier for a target to escape a mark, or making it easier for a target to kill a mark. The target does not deserve special treatment. Instead, the target deserves to be at a DISADVANTAGE because, say it with me, THE TARGET OF A CONTRACT BROKE A RULE AND IS GETTING PUNISHED.
Issues are a poor recourse for multiple reasons, especially for this - because the issue is that *you don't know* if attacks are legal until after the fact, as well as the fact that you end up dealing with a massive inconvenience and all you get back is a "sorry" note from the admin effectively (best case scenario a few iotas of experience).
So if I'm attacked by 3 marks, I should just issue all 3, and see what happens?
@Eryl The only thing you've said that I disagree with is that the target of a contract has broken a rule. I got targeted by a contract because I offended someone, issued it, and lost the issie because it is valid to submit a contract because someone was offended by something you said or did.
However, given that I've only ever been targeted by that one contract (which is odd, because I've offended a lot more than one person) I kind of agree that the target shouldn't be told who has their contract. Even as a mostly non-combatant, trying to figure out who has a bounty or contract on me makes it more interesting and fun, at least to me. I like that bit of suspense.
@Shecks, your experience with issues and my experience with issues are vastly different. I have a very positive relationship with issues and have experienced multiple instances in where behavior that is not condoned was punished. I also have never lost an issue I feel I deserved to not lose, including those that have been filed against me.
And yes, I do view issues filed against me and retracted by the issuing party after my reply as the system working. It's always a good thing when people have a chance to admit they were wrong.
Edit: @Argwin, if your issue was not upheld, that means the interaction you had with that person was notable enough that it gave that person a roleplay-entrenched reason to attack you. Your issue was most likely not upheld because you had a means of seeking IC retribution instead. Most issues like this are not upheld because you are supposed to try to work it out in character first (like hiring on them because they attacked you for offending them). Only after that should you issue the person. If your contract on them results on them attacking you again (or issuing you), then you should issue them (and if they issued you, their issue will not be upheld if you are honest in your reply).
@Farrah attacked me on clouds today and I was like ooooh goodie Farrah has a contract on me. Since, at least in my case, Farrah has never attacked me at a later date for attacking her. So I just assumed @Sobriquet hired out on me again (he had 2, maybe 3(?) good reasons to hire on me) So I spent like 4 hours trying to get a killing blow on her. Finally got the killing blow, no contract, well poop. So just something to consider. If you kill a mark who could have a contract on you, i.e. not citymate/housemate ect. the denizen head of the opposite org will tell you who has a contract on you.
Bob hires on me for ganking him.
Bob hires an ivory mark.
Sally gets the contract.
I kill Janet(a member of the ivory mark) in city defence.
The Grandmaster of the Quisalis mark tells me, "As a reward for killing a member of the ivory mark, Sally has a contract on your life."
@Eryl ah, not everything I'm posting is in direct relation to you or my personal experiences regarding the mark system. This is supposedly a discussion to bring about ideas concerning possible alterations for the benefit of marks/mark system, and I commented on one. I don't need to convince you of anything, nor do I particularly feel it is necessary to do so to enact change.
I simply disagree that surprise is an advantage after someone engages in group conflict with them anyways. Plenty of successful 'assassinations' are acquired through raids (because that's how you get the people who hide), therefore I do not see why they'd be treated differently. I proposed a "PRO" aspect of this, which would be fewer illegal hires on marks (As a few have stated), and a supposed "CON" would be the loss of the element of surprise.
Not all contracts are for rule-breakers either. That's simply not true. I also don't think anyone is villanizing marks, other than saying they deserve more rewards for being marks since the payout is bad.
@Endryn I'm not sure that's particularly fair to the marks, though. In some cases, someone won't even have a chance to strike you before their cover is blown, and weaker marks will get targeted for this to be in effect which doesn't promote anyone to try the system IMO.
There's a very big assumption being made by people supporting the current system, and it's that all contracts are valid. That's a very bad assumption to make, even if, theoretically, you personally have never made a mistake on hiring. Even if you're a saint who never makes mistakes, other people certainly do.
So then you end up in a situation where you have one, if not multiple, marks coming after you for illegitimate reasons, and often reasons you are not even aware of (for example, me getting hired on by a newbie for an emote a week ago, which I didn't know about until after I killed the mark).
In most cases, the mark doesn't even know either, nor is the system designed for them to supposedly have to care. It also doesn't help that the mark, or the hirer, has no obligation to be honest, and very well may be on Ignore for perfectly good reasons.
In cases like these, which are very frequent, the target has two options: 1) Do nothing about it and ignore illegitimate contracts, or 2) Issue.
The problem I ran into actually was that I actually DID issue about this, and said "I'm being attacked by a mark and don't know why. I don't know who hired, and neither does the mark, so I don't know who to file the issue with to ask the question, so could you please look into it and see what's going on?" and Admin response was "we don't rule on hypotheticals, please file an issue with the person directly". I filed another issue me back repeating the fact that I don't know who hired, and got exactly the same copy/pasted answer a second time.
So what, I just have to deal with having multiple marks chasing me around for days, die (or win), then later issue just to have the admin give the person a slap on the wrist and warn them to stop hiring for nonsensical reasons?
This isn't an edge case, this happens all the time.
There are good reasons for the system to work the way it currently works. There are many reasons it should work differently. Surely there are solutions out there that are better though, without going to either extreme. I'm simply saying we could find those, and give them a try. My suggestion above (have it announced and visible on Contracts after first attack, which still leaves the Mark with advantage of surprise attack, just not for repeated surprise attacks) is such a middle ground, but there are other things that could be done too.
Also, none of this specific topic addresses the many other issues with the mark system, such as the fact that there is almost no reason to actually be a mark other than the honors line, as there is virtually no incentive, and massive drawbacks, compared to just using bounties or non-Mark assassination contracts.
In fact, bounties have almost come full circle to what the old mark system used to be in the first place, just without the requirement to actually be a Mark. You know who you're hiring on, the target gets informed, you know which Mark has the contract (via city logs), and you don't even have to worry about the mark dying as the contract stays live until it's successful. Since virtually every PvP active player is on the bounty board at all times, it's a trifle to just go claim the bounty and go kill someone.
in other words, the bounty system is basically the old mark system, but improved, and the current mark system is just pointless. It's effectively the same thing as being Dauntless - another feature almost nobody uses as there is no benefit to it whatsoever other than bragging rights. Hell I have the Dauntless artefact (no gold cost or expiration) and I don't even use it because when I did, I found myself getting 3v1'd or 4v1'd by Hashan auto-bot squads 'round the clock, and wasn't interested in forming my own little Qashar groupie squad to retaliate, so I just left. Maybe if there was literally any benefit to staying Mark/Dauntless to counter that, I'd reconsider, but the honors line saying I'm Dauntless is not worth not being able to do literally anything that I can't do on a guard stack.
In the old Mark system, if people hired illegitimately, it wasn't a problem. Attacks from a Mark were considered identical to attacks from the hirer themselves. If a Mark attacks me for an illegal contract, then I kill the person who hired them.
This was the balance to illegal hiring before, but now that is gone, in favor of calling that "circular". Well... yeah. It should be circular. If you hire someone to kill me and you don't have a damn good reason, then that should circle back to you. It should only come to issues when one or both of the people give up on IC resolution. Now, however, you aren't even allowed to attempt IC resolution - your only option is to issue, or to ignore it. This new rule (coupled with the anonymity aspect which prevents you from even attempting IC resolution) breaks that path of IG resolution entirely, and leans entirely on Issues to resolve every single thing, which is simply a terrible system IMO.
@Eryl Nope, it went exactly the way I described it. I offended someone, they hired against me, after I got killed I Issued because it didn't seem like a valid hire to me, the response was 'offending someone is a valid reason to be hired on' If the response had been that I didn't seek IC resolution first it would still be a good example to prove my point though - not all contracts involve someone breaking a rule. (Unless offending someone is breaking a rule, in which case we are all screwed!)
@Argwin If something is a valid reason to go and attack someone (offending/insulting someone is), then it's also a valid reason to hire on someone. That's been a ruling for as long as I can remember.
Of course, not everyone is petty enough to hire on/attack you because you called them an asshat (or whatever), but it's valid.
Disappearing from Achaea for now. See you, space cowboy.
smileyface#8048 if you wanna chat.
@Eryl I agree in principle with a lot of what you've said from an RP standpoint, but from a practical standpoint it doesn't always stack up.
An example from my own experience:
We are raiding Cyrene, Mizik is in and sniping me. A Cyrene City enemy in the city defending? I've done nothing to warrant an attack from him and nothing to warrant a contract. Given that situation I can hire on Mizik for the attack (Or issue, I guess). We finish the raid, I get back to Hashan. I've had no message, no contact from Mizik (Understandably in his role) or a message from someone who might hire on me. I can, here, act totally in good faith within the game rules and hire on Mizik for that attack... and I'd be wrong, opening up even further attacks from him and muddying the situation.
So, I semi-broke Character, asked him about the attack, had a conversation about a contract and stood still for him to kill me to find out who it was. It was an illegal contract and I won the issue.
If you can't see how that whole thing is wrong and a poor game experience, then we must be viewing Achaea very differently.
Just have your char lay down and die (an entirely IC action), to see whether or not a contract was illegally put out (blurring the lines of IC/OOC), so that you can see whether or not it's something you should issue over (100% OOC).
Yeah great mechanic.
@Saonji - agreed, at least post-issue response agreed. My point was, again, that not all contracts happen because someone broke a rule, which was Eryl's assertion.
Yeah @Sobriquet that's pretty similar to my anecdote except I actually fought the mark (because why not, the outcome doesn't affect the issue).
I just (prepares for the backlash) really hate issuing and being issued as well, and don't appreciate issuing being the ONLY recourse that's even permitted by game rules when people hire for bad reasons.
That doesn't mean I want to go around killing newbies who made a mistake either - there are other ways to deal with these things IG and IC without a seasoned fighter (me) filing an issue against a newbie who I know very well probably just doesn't know the rules.
I want to stress that these aren't edge cases, it's probably half of the contracts I see hired on me and almost all of the issues in both directions. It's just silly not to know if attacks on you are legal or not until after you're dead - and not all marks are willing to talk with you like Mizik did in your case (noting he still killed you anyways...).
Having admin reply that they're not even willing to look at it until AFTER you die (or kill the mark) doesn't help either. This ignores the reality of all the side effects of knowing you have marks hunting for you during the time between hiring and completion of the contract. Like best case I get back the .2% from a death but what about the 20% we couldn't get due to not being able to bash?
I'm starting to prefer the old PK rules too. Hell I asked on our discord earlier if people can hire on you for blocking an exit and I got a 50/50 split on answers, with a few extra "it depends on their feelings" type answers thrown in. I still don't even know the correct answer, and admin ofc "won't rule on hypotheticals" so the only way to find out is to issue people? Same true for emotes (one guy got hired on for slap emote). Seems like a recipe for a lot of stupid issues which sucks for everyone involved, I including admin.
FYI, they do look at contracts.
@Saonji only if you know who hired the mark. That's the main problem with the anonymity that multiple people keep trying to explain.
I had exactly this happen but they wouldn't do what they did for you because I had no idea who hired.