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To Keen: the main reason people quit this game in the past and in the future

Discussion in 'General' started by lightzy, Mar 25, 2019.

  1. lightzy Trainee Engineer

    Messages:
    4
    One word: Griefing.

    This game is a griefer's wet dream.
    By design, the game favors the griefer in every possible way.

    1) Destroying anything in space is easy regardless of defenses because you just accelerate something to top-speed at the target, and there is NOTHING THE TARGET CAN DO TO DEFEND. Even if turrets destroy critical systems, the mass of the bullet will ultimately reach the target as there is nothing to decelerate it and with a few such cheap launches you will destroy anything easily.
    (Possible solutions: 1) Autopilot, to allow craft to slowly move around while the player is logged off, automatically avoiding planets and collisions, 2) kinetic shield block, very clearly labled and explained to the player, using the model of gravity generator to project a field around the GRID (not from the block) that halts all kinetic motion entirely, thus preventing grids from colliding. But then, only the autopilot is a real solution I think)

    2) Destroying anything on planets is risk-free as well, you can just drill under it and buzzsaw or bomb it in seconds, or you can fly above it and drop something heavy on top. Again, there is absolutely nothing that can be done to prevent this, even if the defender is actually online at the time (no idea how to solve this except for making it impossible to grind down armor blocks built by other players. But even then u could bomb them...)

    3) You can respawn endlessly with no delay right next to a target, drain its limited ammo etc. Now possible even with just a small-grid ship with a survivalkit, so griefing has been made easier than ever.

    If keen don't take care of this, the game's online community will die out again. I guarantee it...
    some friends I was playing with now have quit because someone destroyed everything they built. Just left the game. Sent me this sad steam PM, "All my stuff was destroyed so I don't think I'll be logging on anymore". This is particularly sad because the more a player invested in the game, the more likely he is to quit once all that investment is destroyed overnight.
    It is generally what happens in this case, gradually thinning out the player base until the servers remain abandoned, as was the case with the previous version. Right now there's a resurgence because of the new patch but it will end the same.

    I also know this from the previous version because I was a prime griefer. If u let a player build a massive warship he'll naturally want to use it, so I roamed the server in search of things to destroy for the fun of it, and I personally had a hand in people quitting the game after the work of possibly weeks was destroyed overnight, and now I have been on the receiving end and have also gone "fuck this" and quit.
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2019
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  2. mojomann71 Senior Engineer

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    1,774
    You were / are a griefer, but you are gonna come here and complain???? gtfo
     
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  3. lightzy Trainee Engineer

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    4
    Do Keen moderators usually allow trolls to attack posters personally and tell them to get the fuck out, completely avoiding the issue of discussion or any kind of adult approach?

    Is there a moderator on this board to keep trolls out please?
     
  4. Cyber Cheese Apprentice Engineer

    Messages:
    457
    I agree that this is a problem in vanilla, at least to the extent a server does not want this behavior.

    1) There is an autopilot that can do what you are describing. However, most big servers use some form of optimization that "conceals" grids, thus breaking autopilot while players are not nearby.

    2) There are several flavors of offline protection mods that I think should be vanilla options for servers that want to dissuade the conduct you describe. These mods basically make a grid invulnerable while its owner is offline. For example, this one works based on faction, can be set to work only for large enough grids, and can have a countdown after log off to avoid abuse.

    3) Neither of these solve the danger of ramming in combat. I think it is somewhat balanced for ship to ship, but I agree stations can too easily fall prey to spawn ships or just cheap ships. There are several flavors of combat shield mod, but those are too scifi for vanilla, in my opinion, and most of the time it is cost-prohibitive to have them powered for a station indefinitely. I think Keen should implement options like concrete that are extremely heavy, but allow stations to realistically survive rams. (Ships can be expected to dodge.) Another alternative would be to have a vanilla heavy mass driver, and make it too heavy and slow to hit targets that are dodging it--but with enough mass and damage to stop station rammers.
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2019
  5. lightzy Trainee Engineer

    Messages:
    4
    I would hope some cunning solution can be found that isn't as 'gamey' as simply making whole grids invulnerable, but I'm not sure what it would be.
    It would be taking the game out of the game, since then u'll have nothing to do with all the weaponry the game gives u.

    On the official servers griefing is a plague. Because the game design encourages and supports it. I think it would be best if the design of the game made attacking something a serious expenditure of resources and time.
    I don't have any great ideas though.

    I think an autopilot function for ships is crucial as anti-griefing, that a block that reduces all speed of all grids next to the grid it's installed on to 0 (kinetic shield) would be awesome, and for ground-based stuff I honestly have no idea.
    People just join the game, built beautiful stuff over a few days, have it all destroyed overnight and quit
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2019
  6. Cyber Cheese Apprentice Engineer

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    457
    Autopilot is in vanilla, as I mentioned above.
     
  7. Sarekh Senior Engineer

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    1,175
    Hahahahaha, gold!

    Comes in, tells everyone how he's been a prime griefer, want solutions to his problem and reacts pissed when being called out. Got a solution right there for you, friend: stop griefing. Problem solved.
     
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  8. Spaceman Spiff Senior Engineer

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    1,485
    This is highly entertaining. :munch:
     
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  9. Soup Toaster Apprentice Engineer

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    192
    Space Engineers seems like an incredible online game and I've watched very happily as it has made so much progress over the years.

    I've never played a single minute online because of this. When it's so easy to have your work destroyed, frankly it just seems pointless. In my opinion they need to have blocks in vanilla game that allow for different levels of "safe" or "dangerous" systems as set up by the server admin. Set up a server where anything goes, fine, players to blast each other to bits at will. No problem. Set up a server where your base is made invulnerable by some kind of shield and you are 100% safe, again sure no problem. It's about player choice. If some want chaos, let them have chaos. If others want safety and cooperation, let them have that too.
     
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  10. Morloc Apprentice Engineer

    Messages:
    256
    Gravity deflectors would probably work to stop mass weapons if you could turn up their power sufficiently (and have sufficient power to keep them running). They might even fail now and then if the projectile was particularly precisely targeted. Not sure how you could explain Gatling rounds and missiles not being deflected, but, well... "SpaCe!"


    -Morloc
     
  11. Calaban Junior Engineer

    Messages:
    907
    Griefing in this game is bad and painful because it amounts to this:

    A chess game is started. Both players are invested in the deployment and future plans/moves/ploys. They sat down and are committed to playing the game. its been going on for a while now,and it is going to be interesting and great things are in the future. bright plans to-

    Annnnnd some troll walks up and flips the table.

    Then even- worse, New players are learning the game, figuring out knight and rook mechanics, opening ploys and how to star-

    Annnnnd some troll walks up and flips the table.

    .. soon no one bothers to plays chess anymore. Here there be table flippers, who somehow think "we should get to play the way we want"

    A chess board is setup in a corner, it is announced a new game will be played there (broadcasts/gps). the Trolls gather in the shadows, eager for their moment.

    Sure the Trolls think its all funny- but who cares about acknowledging their version of sociopathy.

    Only in Space Engineers its days/weeks of commitment, not just minutes of a board game.

    Realistically the only real option is active admins, who keep up on the events in their worlds, and are on the lookout for players and ships that reveal that mindset of:
    "the game lets me have guns. so.. RIGHT NOW EVERY SINGLE BUILD POINT GOING TO MORE GUNS MOAR GUNS! GUNS! NOW NOW NOW! -because I MUST be perceived as a badass! -and besides, what other way is there to play multiplayer?"
    Such ships and build plans are easy to spot as an admin, and are easily pruned before getting too cancerous to the community.
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2019
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  12. Roxette Senior Engineer

    Messages:
    1,399
    Exactly. Choose a server carefully, and you'll probably avoid all the problems of griefers, and if you are unlucky, the admin will help recover from the incident. The way Keen's own servers are set up as honeypots for griefers is great, it keeps more of them away from the servers that are worth playing on :D
     
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  13. FoolishOwl Junior Engineer

    Messages:
    510
    As far as I can make out, the fundamental design principle of Space Engineers is to use blocks as a medium for tracking how an object deforms: that is, how it comes apart in an explosion. So they've always had a bias towards facilitating destruction.

    And, of course, if a player can bypass barriers, it's difficult to defend against them; there's always going to be a blind spot or weak point in a defensive grid. (This is why CRPG designers tend to drop things like magical teleportation, flying, or passing through walls, even when earlier games in a series included them, or when they're based on tabletop games that have them.) Only a player could recognize another player doing something they didn't anticipate, and respond to it.

    I'm not sure how that could be fixed: locking a player's structures down so they can't be damaged by another player when the owning player is offline? There'd probably be some creative way found to abuse that, however.

    I'd just avoid public servers if I wanted to build anything that wasn't trivial.
     
  14. mojomann71 Senior Engineer

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    1,774
    @lightzy I guess being a griefer you are now seeing all the "fun" you made for everyone else, so I feel no pity and no remorse for making you feel attacked.
     
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  15. Spaceman Spiff Senior Engineer

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    1,485
    I've only played multiplayer a couple times. It was a lot of fun, but those guys are no longer playing. That was a chance encounter. I have no idea how to go about selecting a server, so I just don't do it.
     
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  16. Stardriver907 Master Engineer

    Messages:
    3,077
    This griefing reminds me of the early days of home computers. Before the internet we would dial up BBSs to get games to play. Back then people we called "hackers" would write programs that would mess with our computers that became known as viruses. These programs were written by people that often had just a bit more knowledge than the average person, yet felt formidable because they knew stuff many people didn't. They placed these files on other people's BBSs and claimed that the unsuspecting people that downloaded and ran the virus deserved having their computer reduced to a paperweight because if they had a computer they were supposed to know how fix it. This is the mentality behind people that log on to servers for the express purpose of destroying anything not actively defended. If your stuff gets destroyed, you deserve that.

    The real "grief" comes from the fact that anything you do to restrict griefers restricts everyone. The only real solutions are constant monitoring by the admin and players being realistic about believing their stuff will remain untouched after they log off and go to bed.

    It's so easy for someone to go out and rent a server, put SE on it, invite the community, and then let it run. They're so surprised when a week later they check in and no one is there.

    This is not Keen's fault. There is no software solution (unless GoodAI comes up with one ;)). Frankly, a lot of the reasons people quit playing SE have more to do with their lack of patience and understanding than something Keen did or should have done, especially considering that the game wasn't intended to be a multiplayer game played on a server.

    One thing I remember about playing in a public sandbox was that you never left anything there when you left that you weren't prepared to lose.
     
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  17. Cyber Cheese Apprentice Engineer

    Messages:
    457
    It is tragic that you have not even tried, because what you describe is already the state of the game.

    Many servers disable PvP entirely. Others implement a (vanilla) safe zone, so there is a divided world where some people can go and be safe, but elsewhere is PvP wilderness. Many servers use mods, such as those I listed above, to ensure there is no way to attack offline players.

    And finally, there are servers like the one I play, which is more like Keen's servers and has no PvP restrictions. Despite the condescension shown in this thread, many players on www.fountaincore.com build ships, bases, etc. and they survive to get them blown up "consensually" in PvP hotspots.

    Edit: Obviously the gameplay is quite different when you expect to fight all the time, but it is still a real game, not just flipping the chess board. Here are some recent fights from my favorite server:



    https://streamable.com/qwshb
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2019
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  18. Calaban Junior Engineer

    Messages:
    907
    It is flipping the chessboard (analogy) when a player starts off in a server, gets a few days worth of progress in and.. oops- well that time all counted for nothing- as he now has to start back at square zero with a landing pod, because someone has to prove.. well... i really dont know what theyre trying to prove.. by showing up in a WallOfTurrets that took weeks to build and wiping out specifically anyone found with clearly less time in the game than they had (they avoid a prepared opponent)

    quite a bit different behavior than consensual pvp.. in case that wasnt clear before.

    So add the video link where you logged in.. to a respawn screen. you spend 2 hours flying to your base gps, to find it a smoking crater. you werent even there. you have nothing now, and start over. That, sir- is the flipped chess board
     
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  19. Stardriver907 Master Engineer

    Messages:
    3,077
    So, I believe what we're talking about here is this"
    I don't think that's the main reason but it's Top 5 material. I think one of SE's problems was that the second there was multiplayer it showed up on servers, which allowed so many people to experience first hand how much multiplayer sucked. Even today I personally am reluctant to run an SE server on a 24/7 basis unless I had two people I could trust to be present when I couldn't be.

    The closest thing to a software solution I can think of is the safe zone. The only problem I have with it is that it creates a spot where all the activity is going to happen and that will affect performance.

    Everything that you build on a server should be blueprinted and saved somewhere safe so that when you get to the smoking crater, whatever was there could be replaced and you could just carry on. If griefers were aware that all that time spent on total destruction could be quickly undone and they would be identified and banned, that might discourage some of it. Point is if I could get things restored I wouldn't be so upset and maybe wouldn't quit the game because of what happened to me online.
     
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  20. Spaceman Spiff Senior Engineer

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    1,485
    Always with the negative waves, Moriarty!
     
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  21. Roxette Senior Engineer

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    1,399
    Griefers ceased to be a serious threat once the world became more than a twenty kilometre sided cube with 7 asteroids in the middle ... except to those foolish enough to be on one of the planets or moons, where they were sitting ducks. But now, Keen made their life so much more simple by having them spawn within a few minutes spacesuit flight of your base, with an easy method of locating it. I actually think this was all part of Keen's plan to "improve multiplayer performance" by allowing the griefers to seek and destroy all the serious players' shit before they actually had time to wade through the bog of the 'progression system' and collect the resources to build anything big enough to impact server performance :>
     
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  22. Spaceman Spiff Senior Engineer

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    1,485
    @Roxette, why don't you quit beating around the bush and tell us what you really think? ;)
     
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  23. Benokt Apprentice Engineer

    Messages:
    142
    @Roxette Basically just outlined the main reason griefing has become so much worse, especially in official servers. The usual way to avoid griefers has always been to just park yourself in the endless void and hope that your opponent doesn't have a lifetime to spend combing the desert, and yet Keen decided to up and remove this small reassurance.

    To quote (and/or plug) https://support.keenswh.com/spaceen...ervers-spawn-far-far-too-close-to-one-another

    - Newly spawned players spend a few hours puttering about in their blue lollipop, maybe set up a proper refinery or assembler, log off for the night, and rejoin to the spawn screen, their work erased in minutes. Just by patrolling the few small asteroid clusters near my own spawnpoint in NA9 I was able to find a dozen starter ships in varying states of disrepair.

    - Veterans log on one day to find their days of work missing, all because someone, unintentionally or intentionally, got a lucky spawn. Defenses (except for straight-up safe zones) are a non-issue and always have been against determined players, and the tiny spawn distance allows for easy and repeated ramming attacks and ammo depletion.

    - Beacons and antennae are suicide, guaranteed to attract a raid within the hour.

    - The effects of frequent raids are exacerbated by the significant nerf to asteroid resource spawns, making recovery take orders of magnitude longer while still not guaranteeing a modicum of safety.
     
  24. Soup Toaster Apprentice Engineer

    Messages:
    192
    After thinking about it for a while there is really only two options: troll the players who are trying to do something, or troll the players trying to destroy something. We have the first, so perhaps Keen should try the second now.

    All it would require is that players can add a shield block to a stationary grid that makes everything the player owns within the spherical area of effect invulnerable, blocks and voxels. Within it's area of effect any blocks built by someone else slowly disassemble to nothing if the player is offline. While the player is offline their grid becomes inert except that it keeps track of power. If the grid runs out of power, the shield turns off and it's fair game. If the player that owns the grid doesn't log on within a certain time period (a few days?), again the shield shuts off and it's fair game. As long as the player remains active on the server this one spot of theirs will remain safe. The size of the shields AoE can be adjusted to increase or decrease power usage.

    Then the problem is griefers waiting to ambush players when they come back, so they can blow their ships to pieces the second they leave their base. That just requires another type of shield block for ships, which increases the durability of all connected blocks against weapons fire or block impacts. Increase the durability by, say, 1000 times. So yeah, if a griefer wants to spend 20 minutes, 500 rockets and 100,000 rounds of turret ammo to take out your small block mining ship then they can go ahead and do that.

    The other problem seems to be player spawning. That's something that Keen should be able to fix easily, and hopefully they will do so soon as it seems like an absolute deal-breaker for many.

    You can either let griefers troll players, or players troll griefers. Either way, one group is going to get angry. Maybe it's time to try pissing off the people trying to RUIN the fun, instead of the people just trying to HAVE fun?
     
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  25. Calaban Junior Engineer

    Messages:
    907
    The thing about trolling trolls, is that they're so predictable.

    Once, fed up with the organized pirate factions dominating a server, I set up a bogus antenna transmitting 50km on the moon "Plat. Mine- Defended! Stay away" in a beefy looking heavy armor bunker.. on literally nothing at all.

    All around it in nooks and crannys were little turret battery drops. about 16 of them some gatlings, some missile, nestled in the little craters in the area.
    Inside the bunker, was an LCD screen that read simply "Yeah, nothing here at ALL" There was a sensor/warhead under the floor, giving them time enough to read it before it all went boom.

    So eventually the antenna winked off. I snuck by to visit. wreckage all over the crater floor. ships, fighters, spawnships (this was back in yellowbus days) burning all around. in the center was a large crater, with a large grid ship collapsed into it. on fire. no one seemed to be around to pick at the salvage anymore.

    I seriously hope they all wasted a whole lot of time, sweat, tears, and effort on that spot. Maybe they had action movie shootemup fun throughout it all, but I doubt it. Because they didnt get to ruin anything meaningful in the end.



    Nowadays I fly around with a "Cry Baby, CRY!" decoy dropper on all my large ships (Serenity inspired). its a small rotor head, with antenna, mini batteries, and an lcd saying Cry, Baby. CRY! in big pink letters. I just detach them with the antenna saying something like "Landing Pod Mk I" or the ever popular "Antenna 2" here and there, for those who do nothing but creep on active signals. I like to think a lot of their time gets wasted. On nothing but a taunt.

    ..but I'm not bitter. I'm clever. There are indeed many ways to Metagame a Griefer.
     
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  26. Cyber Cheese Apprentice Engineer

    Messages:
    457
    In the event someone is looking for a short term solution to this particular "feature," there is also a mod to put space spawns at 150k from center instead: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=1684792507
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  27. ObjectZero Apprentice Engineer

    Messages:
    361
    Last time I did MP was back before planets and the MP update was done. I remember setting up a temp server for the free to try day they had for the game. It was like watching chaos. Starter ships just flying around crashing in to things all the time.

    But back then all you needed to do like others have pointed out was hide in the void of space. It was pretty normal to just let your ship drift about at random, just so it wasn't an easy target. Just about anyone looking to take or trash someone else stuff was looking for something sitting still in space. But it was fun to make trap ships.
     
  28. Ronin1973 Master Engineer

    Messages:
    4,801
    Distance. It's the solution to griefers. When you land your lollipop, your first goal should be to get it as far away from baby seal clubbing spawn zone as fast as possible. The lollipop includes atmospheric thrusters. You just need to add a remote block and a gyroscope and you can fly it far, far away. Or you can set up shop wherever it lands and get clubbed to death in 24 hours. Finding your lander means doubling your starting supplies to another player.

    Once you're off the planet, the area immediately around the planet is so vast, that exploring it is very time consuming. Trolls aren't willing to put in that much work. It's very easy to miss a player who has hidden his/her assets inside of an asteroid or even a small outpost hidden on the surface of an asteroid. Asteroid clusters allow for a distributed defense. You can also stash supplies elsewhere on the map. A large cargo container and a fully charged battery will last for weeks before running out of energy.

    You have to outsmart griefers and trolls. Or you can simply set-up shop out in the open and wait to get trolled.
     
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  29. Stardriver907 Master Engineer

    Messages:
    3,077
    On the one hand I feel like server admins should feel obligated to be vigilant and actively detect and remove griefers. On the other hand I feel like players that leave their stuff protected only by auto-turrets for hours or more at a time are asking for trouble. This is actually the thing about SE that most reflects real life. There's bad people out there and the cops can't be everywhere.

    We all know how this works. Griefers are not likely to show up if someone is around. Their pleasure comes from the destruction of someone else's work and the knowledge that they will be long gone by the time that person returns. It's the getting away with it that is most satisfying. I recall the antics of Goon Squad which openly griefed players as a "public service", meaning that they helped expose the weaknesses of servers.

    I don't know what the ultimate answer is. I personally intend to run my server only when it can be monitored by an actual person. Otherwise it goes offline. Because I live in the Alaska time zone, I suspect I will be awake and available during what constitutes the "wee hours" when players go to bed and their property would be at their highest risk. I also toyed with the idea of requiring everyone on the server to live stream their session on Twitch, mostly for the opportunity to have a recording of activity from a perspective other than mine but also as a possible deterrence to griefing.

    Only other viable alternative is to turn on Permanent Death.
     
  30. Calaban Junior Engineer

    Messages:
    907
    Unfortunately, most of this survival wisdom went out the window this last update.
    (Talking official keen, 100% vanilla servers)
    Unfortunately, for those not yet aware, the "baby seal clubbing zone" has been moved to within 4km of another active player. Even one in deep space trying to get "anonymous distance"- that distance is reduced to 4km, and a slavering savage is spawned just outside of render range. millions of km from nowhere does not so much anymore.

    the big BIG problem with this mechanic is, after he kamikaze's all you have worked up to, he gets to immediately respawn again within 4km ("stuck" to initial player/region), with a last body location marker already setup for him. and do it all again. and again. and again until there is nothing left of your chess board (are you reading this, KSH?)

    And thats just stupid. A respawn timer of 45 minutes minimum should be instituted. That means: if you spawn in a fresh starter ship- you better not wreck it for 45 minutes, or youll be waiting with nothing to do. that alone will kill the "heres a fresh new 40 ton ship" immediately replaced abuse.
     
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