Anti-Aliased: Don't make roleplaying servers if you can't handle it pt. 2


...and totally doesn't want to enforce the rules.

The roleplayers are roleplaying in the streets, until a naked guy runs by and starts dancing suggestively in front of the guild's princess, singing the latest song by Kanye West. The guild begins to furiously slam the GM button, still trying to go on with their improvisational acting scene, but finding it extremely difficult to do so when something is so obviously breaking the scene into 10,000,000 pieces.

The GM comes down on his magical wings, looks at the situation and says, "Sorry, he's not saying anything that's covered in our harassment section. He's not saying anything that is considered offensive. He can dance naked all he wants," and then leaves with fair wishes to all while the roleplaying guild stands there, slack jawed and completely confused as to what just happened, while Kanye West is sung loudly in the background.

Yet the solution isn't hard, and ultimately benefits you, the developer, in the end

Roleplayers get frustrated by this seemingly simple stuff. It makes us wonder why you even bother to make these servers, when they are completely the same as the normal servers.

We get it, your support team doesn't want to ban anyone because that's "bad business." That guy who's griefing everyone is still paying the 15 dollars that you want, so you'd rather keep your mitts off of the paying customer.

"But no one wants to hear that. No one wants to push the ban button. Yet the solution isn't some magical means, and it's something that would work wonderfully when implemented -- localized bans."

Here's a loud wake up call guys -- MMOs are a service, not a one-time purchase. We keep saying that, yet somehow no one seems to realize it on a business level. By letting this guy go, you're angering about 20 other customers, and potentially losing more money in the process. You let this one guy go, you lose 5 other subscriptions. What's better, 1 person being forcibly asked to leave, or 5 people leaving of their own accord and spreading a unsatisfied opinion to their friends?

But no one wants to hear that. No one wants to push the ban button. Yet the solution isn't some magical means, and it's something that would work wonderfully when implemented -- localized bans.

If you have a guy who is seriously griefing a roleplaying server and violating the rules of that world, then ban him from just that server. If he complains, tell him he's got 20+ servers to choose from. If he complains that he lost his character, then transfer his character to a new server. Your roleplayers don't have to deal with him, they stay happy in their own little world, the griefer gets to keep his stuff, you get to keep your money, and literally everybody wins.

If that's the way things swung, roleplaying worlds would probably much more tolerable. Support people will probably feel that pulling a ban on someone being a jerk is more justified, as they're not removing them from the system entirely. All of the people interested in roleplaying now have an environment to do so, and they start spreading word to their friends that finally, a support staff has stood up for roleplaying. Maybe roleplaying wouldn't be waning if the players who did it felt supported in their endeavors?

Now if only I could do something about people who roleplay vampires...


Colin Brennan is the weekly writer of Anti-Aliased who does "teh arpeez." When he's not writing here for Massively, he's rambling on his personal blog, The Experience Curve. If you want to message him, send him an e-mail at colin.brennan AT weblogsinc DOT com. You can also follow him on Twitter through Massively, or through his personal feed.
This article was originally published on Massively.