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The problem with lack of unrolls

Heya!

So I had the bad luck of running into becoming a victim of a bit of meta. Intentionally or not, once I was able to stop the scene with quick XHELP, but on another occasion, my character was killed before I could even think of xhelping. It happens, it's RP game, meta will occur for one reason or another. Nothing new there.

The question is - once it's found that what happened is meta - how to undo the damage? There is also a matter of how to deal with the person who did the meta, but that's not something I will be getting into here, really not my area of interest.

Also please correct me, as most of you have been playing this a lot longer than I am, so my perspective and view is highly limited.

There are generally two main ways of handling this situation that I know off:

1. Roll with it.

The current sindome approach of the victim just having to deal with it, especially if your PC was killed as a result (code doesn't allow resurrection). I was offered grace in the form of a corpse clone.

This approach has a massive downside; as while the offender (I use offender and vic [the victim] strictly in technical terms, not trying to assign blame and assume that all meta is intentional, etc.) may get punished, they still achieved their goal and the victim has to deal with it. This is extremely frustrating if as a result, you lose not only gear/flash/whatever but also some critical RP, and not because you were killed fair and square, or you've made a mistake or anything like that. But because of someone else OOC mistake, you are being punished, and that outright sucks.

2. Rollback.

Now, this is IMO the ideal solution from the perspective of the vic. The situation should've have happened, so it gets unrolled. It still will leave a bit of bad taste in your mouth; dealing with meta always does, no matter of how it gets handled or resolved. But unlike the "roll with it" approach, the victim does not get any punishment for what was not his fault.

Rollback has a significant issue - sindome is a fast-paced game, and usually, right after killing someone SIC goes off to announce/taunt/whatever, the loot gets distributed, etc. A lot of stuff happens quickly, so unroll is problematic. It would require doing OOC shouts, system messages, notes I don't know what else. It's a lot of work!

But I am going to say that it's way worth it. Not only because it sends a visible message across the player base that this is what happened, and then players can pass along the message through "OOC" if someone missed it initially, but mentions said RP event. Which generally will be a small number, as everyone can receive a system message, even if only at login, to ignore said fact as it was reverted.

It is noisy, it is a bit obstructive, but it prevents one vital thing - double punishing the victim. There is very little that is as determinantal to the spirit of players to have to deal with results of someone's actions that were not kosher. And it also lights a little bulb in your brain that, well, sure, they maybe got punished, but for me, this result is just awful. Way worse than what they got (more so as we don't know if/what they got) so maybe I will do that myself, to get even.

By similar note, the offender may feel bad about it, accidental or intentional meta, but in the end, this achieved their character goal. May have consequences, may have not, but you were successful. The vic knows it too, and that is some extremely disgusting taste to have in the mouth when going out to RP with those players again.

So in closing maybe this is something to reconsider. Perhaps even the offender, if not 100% sure, help before spreading the news to everyone who will listen. To be sure that it's all up-to-par, and if not so, it can be swiftly rolled back, with minimal impact on everyone. I believe that this would lead to a better experience for everyone, especially in the long run.

As far as I know, GMs are very strict about meta abuse. They do investigate, verify, and deliver punishments when necessary. I believe in some circumstances they instruct players to forget data obtained.

Will let someone more knowledgeable than myself confirm that, though.

My thoughts as a Player:

I think I get where you are coming from. Retconning is something that I've seen done a lot with tabletop groups I've RPed with. And if someone can do meta things over and over and over again with no improvement and no consequences, the could take advantage. But I personally feel that Sindome is a unique beast. It's not a RPG among a small group of friends and it's not a MMORPG where everything that you can possible make happen is considered fair game.

With scores of players on sometimes, news of an event can spread fast. Sometimes the character that hear about a thing log off before a call can be made so it's impossible to check with them. Maybe when they log back in the GM(s) that happen to be available is busy with other things and doesn't notice until the PC has already spread news even further.

And I am 100% against an OOC shout because this will put IC info into other player's hands that they shouldn't have and it will not at all ensure that everyone involved will be reached. I find that in a majority of cases a retcon is just not feasible in Sindome.

To me it's about expectations. When I xhelp to tell the GMs that I suspect meta or small world behavior, I am not expecting confirmation or recompense or punishment. I do it so the GMs have more visibility and can work with the issue. I personally will assume that what happened happened and move on.

I do hope that the GMs will look into it and, if needed, educate the other players involved. If it is a continued theme for a specific player, I would hope more is done so that the player can not simply ignore GM guidance forever and negatively impact the game for the rest of us. I doubt staff wants that either though.

I also hope that staff makes a solid effort to help other players learn because I know I have slipped up here before (and will again most likely) and appreciated that staff helped me to learn better. Sindome did not come naturally to me. I had played a lot of very open tabletop RPGs that were story focused and I had played some grindy PvE and raid focused RPGs on the computer but neither prepared me for Sindome. Other players and staff did by being patient and helping me learn. I want others to get the same.

End of the day, I don't expect to get a retcon or to get a judgement or to get my flash back or my gear back or my UE back when I let staff know that I suspect a player was meta or small worlded. I just report it, move on and hope that my report will help the community improve. Hell, it's rarely even possible for a player to even know if something was meta or not given their limited vision!

You can all call me a digital hippy now. :)

as someone who has had something they did retconned and also rolled with I just want to add in that retcons were more frustrating for me than roll with its because I basically wasted my time doing something that didn't happen, while when the staff told me to roll with it there was at least an ic event that transpired that I was able to tell my associates boss coworkers etc about
My thoughts as a GM:

Retconning is rarely an option but we do take reports of suspected meta or small world behavior seriously and look into every case. And it's never black and white.

90% of the time each side believes that they have good reasons why it was or was not meta. Often, both sides have reasonable points. A lot has to be considered based on the very specific circumstances involved. And no matter what we opt to do, we will likely leave one party or the other (or even both) feeling unsatisfied.

Honestly, in my opinion, dealing with issues around meta and small worlding is the most thankless and draining aspect of being a GM. As soon as a report comes in we know that there is a very good chance that nobody will leave happy and we will walk away from the situation demoralized. But we still do our very best to work things out for everyone.

I personally prefer to treat every report as an opportunity for all parties (GMs included) to learn and improve. My goal is to ferret out the misconceptions and make sure people are on the same page (as much I can manage at least). Very rarely do we have cases where a player was just trying to get away with bad play so I don't like to go into these things with the intent of 'punishing' someone.

If we feel someone is a repeat offender, we will need to start watching them closer. Note things in greater detail. Do some research on what's happened in the past. Then we can bring this to the Seniors and possibly to a vote as to what OOC punishment should be administered. This is some serious juju and can result in losing or removing community members. This not something I will initiate lightly.

As a side note, I also have to point out that there are limits to what we will or even should share with you as a player. Especially when it comes to IC info about how it was done or who was involved. Sharing that info is not fair to the other players involved and I refuse to do it unless I am specifically ordered to by a senior staff member. So demanding this kind of information will just leave you feeling more frustrated when you hear my inevitable no and seldom does anyone any good. Please keep that in mind.

I’ve been “meta’d” on so many times that it’s lost it’s sting.

I’m sure I’ve also accidentally done the same in many cases, though I make the conscious effort not to, so I get it.

As long as you’re not sharing my @stats on your discord and Facebook groups with your pals Or intentionally trying to circumvent the rules to screw me over, I honestly won’t be too bothered by it that a simple nudge from local ooc or staff should really be the end of it for both parties.

It’s a game, and everyone is human (except for that one that claims to be an Android) and we all fuck up. No sense in trying to undo it, especially in scenarios where the entire game is privy to what happened. Live and learn, just my opinion.

Heya!

Thanks for all the replies, highly appreciated! I am not going to try to get into specifics, as obviously they go from one case to another. The reason I've created this topic for is strictly for the matter of rolling back when major damage occurs as a result of something that shouldn't happen.

And sadly when you are on the receiving end of that, I am not sure what is there to learn that incident, besides that if someone annoys you enough, a bit of meta is "ok" and even seemingly expected? Not trying to twist anyone words here, just what sentiment I get from a few of the posts - my personal feelings. Not sure what another lesson is there to draw from it.

Heya!

Thanks for all the replies, highly appreciated! I am not going to try to get into specifics, as obviously they go from one case to another. The reason I've created this topic for is strictly for the matter of rolling back when major damage occurs as a result of something that shouldn't happen.

And sadly when you are on the receiving end of that, I am not sure what is there to learn that incident, besides that if someone annoys you enough, a bit of meta is "ok" and even seemingly expected? Not trying to twist anyone words here, just what sentiment I get from a few of the posts - my personal feelings. Not sure what another lesson is there to draw from it.

It all changes from situation to situation.

Most people act in good faith. For example, let’s say I kill you when you are disguised because someone else “confirmed” your identity or something, find an e-note with top secret data and go blah all of it’s content over the grid and SIC and there are no GM’s active to hear your complaint?

In a ton of cases things just get past being containable and able to easily rollback.

You say that it changes from one situation to another, but then if you are in a position where it would be possible to unroll, it still is generally not going to happen as the approach is to just deal with it. I get that there will be spots where it can't happen, plain as day, but when it was kept quiet and limited, rollback is still not an option. And that's the issue.
You say that it changes from one situation to another, but then if you are in a position where it would be possible to unroll, it still is generally not going to happen as the approach is to just deal with it. I get that there will be spots where it can't happen, plain as day, but when it was kept quiet and limited, rollback is still not an option. And that's the issue.
Rollbacks and retcons are still sometimes made. I think your view of "major damage" just is different from staff and other players.
They happen, but what I’m saying is 9/10 it’s usually more trouble than what it’s worth. Speaking from experience.
I cannot echo Grizzly's sentiment enough here. I've seen rollbacks done many times. They're a disaster and tend to make everything worse.

For some context, I had a PC who was permed after being beaten up by an NPC who he had grappled and strapped to an operating table due to a bug. Was that component of the events leading up to his perm shitty? Sure. However, the RP the resulted in his perm before and after that event were epic. Possibly one of the best endings for a character I've ever had.

The longer you play SD, the more likely you'll run into some really shitty scenarios. Whether it's meta, random fucks up, or whatever. It's about telling the collective story though - not just yours. Sometimes you have to take one on the chin to keep that story moving. When that happens xhelp, take a deep breathe and move on. I know it's not ideal but I promise you you'll get more out of the game for it.