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Neutral Characters and the crime rate: What's the point?


ChromaticDeath

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56 minutes ago, Fancy Toothpaste said:

I've been playing the server since August of 2019; back when it took thirty minutes just to load into the game and the sync was so bad you'd be seeing cars teleporting down the street like some kind of glitch in the matrix. I remember that while loading into the server, we had to hold SHIFT+TAB to bring up the Steam overlay just so the game would finish loading. When I started playing there weren't even 300 people to rub together at peak hours, and there was usually only one business open at a time.

Yet, I enjoyed the experience of playing GTA:W in spite of these technical hiccups, because there was plenty of good, and interesting roleplay to go around. There was always the promise that those technical issues would be ironed out in the future; the promise that the server would age like fine wine, and get better with more time and development. I'm sorry to say that even with all the technical advancements GTA:W has made when it comes to features, they forgot to improve the one feature that drew me to this server in the first place: The quality of roleplay.

I'm not trying to make false equivocations to "the good ol' days" or try to impose that things were perfect then. Every era in a server has its problems, but with so many poorly thought out decisions, I'm forced to conclude that this server is lowering its standards to attract the largest player base possible; conflating quantity with quality.

The IC population portrayal was decided at a time when I was engaged heavily in Illegal RP, and it's honestly one of the worst decisions this staff team has ever stuck to. It was a safeguard for poor robbery RP, and extremely public shootings to flourish, with protections being handed out to police stations and government buildings while ignoring the many other 'monkeys in the middle. It was a license to steal.

This server feels more and more like a Cops Vs. Robbers plus victims server every day. Those appear to be the three roles: a cop, a robber, or a victim of senseless violence. Many Illegal RPers simply see civilian RPers as cash registers to be wrung. They see their businesses as piggie banks. The only way for civilian RPers to stop themselves from being constant victims is to limit themselves to wherever is “safe”. I’ve read reports of characters being kidnapped and murdered as to not leave witnesses, forced to jump off cliffs, beaten for not having “good loot” on them, killed for “snitching” by simply reporting the incident to police, and so on.

I imagine this drastic shift in quality is because of several reasons: The IC population portrayal enables poor roleplay to flourish anywhere and everywhere, the laughably lenient administrative punishments that fail to teach repeat rule-breakers the error of their actions, and in-fact just teach them to be smarter when covering up their rule-breaking activity, and the existence of RPQM which has resulted in people almost never being punished for their questionable portrayal during rulebreaking situations, as that is now a “RPQM concern”; as though we don’t all play on the same server and roleplay quality isn’t all of our concerns.

There is no one-sized fits all solution to this issue. I wish it was that simple. Everyone talking about bringing the Park Rangers into Los Santos is missing the scope of the issue. Nearly everyone I’ve spoken to regardless of the type of roleplay they engage in seems to agree that the server is regressing in its quality. When you foster an environment that attracts and caters to poor roleplayers, you, in turn, repel good roleplayers from entering or immersing themselves in the community. Everyone who plays GTA:W has to lower their standards of roleplay to the standards presented by the server in order to enjoy it. With such a large and dedicated player base, the server should be raising their standards, not becoming a victim of them.
 

 

As always, you are able to summarize the situation very well. 

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4 minutes ago, Blackbird said:

Civ RP is what, even? Like OP said, clubbing and that's it. Any other original idea needs to go through a lot of talking with staff with little to no expectation and a trial and error phase.

 

Even just random stuff meets the same fate. Almost every bike ride I go on with my civilian character results in being slammed off my bike by an airport lease vehicle and /arobbed. That's just how it's been for the last while though and I don't see it changing

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4 minutes ago, Sush said:

 

Even just random stuff meets the same fate. Almost every bike ride I go on with my civilian character results in being slammed off my bike by an airport lease vehicle and /arobbed. That's just how it's been for the last while though and I don't see it changing


I always keep a Castle Doctrine sign at my property and I stay well within what I'd consider the American stereotype of 'ARMED'. I once aimed a firearm at two Davis dwellers up in Sandy Shores and they drove off scared after scouting my property off - only for not even 2 minutes later, I find myself getting shot at from a pistol... WITHIN MY PROPERTY ON MY PORCH from a roof a block away. I reported the individuals and came to find the following:

They were NOT in the wrong because I aimed a firearm first. They DIDN'T roleplay fear because they "didn't see the gun".
CAN be ajailed for Deathmatching for ICly protecting my own property. When that makes absolutely no sense, and someone breaking into a property that has several signs pretty much implicating "YOU'RE GONNA DIE IF YOU GET IN WHEN UNWANTED" serves as a very adamant warning. If players in Davis can outright gun down 'opposition' - nothing stops me from labelling trespassers as rightful opposition. Knowing this server, you don't break into properties unarmed, so I sure as hell won't give them a warning.

This goes to show even us as regular civs get pushed the fuck down from any out of the box or uncommon concept that doesn't fortune, favor or make sense to the mainly-European staff trying to run an American-based roleplay server. Heck, even I as a European find some actions taken absolutely abhorrent and outright disgraceful - be they from staff or the common joe alike. The server needs a big eye opener to EVERYONE.

It keeps going this path, and I have the sad belief that in 2-3 months we're gonna be losing A LOT of players. Then what, what's the Senior Administrator going to moderate besides the cat gifs on Discord? Who's staff going to complain to about not wanting to do the job they VOLUNTEERED for during the holidays?

Play stupid games, get stupid prizes. “If, by the instrument of governmental power, a people is being led toward it’s destruction, then rebellion is not only the right of every member of such people, it is their duty.”

The players are complaining more than enough this past year - if unchecked, they'll rebel and move along.

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1 hour ago, Fancy Toothpaste said:

I've been playing the server since August of 2019; back when it took thirty minutes just to load into the game and the sync was so bad you'd be seeing cars teleporting down the street like some kind of glitch in the matrix. I remember that while loading into the server, we had to hold SHIFT+TAB to bring up the Steam overlay just so the game would finish loading. When I started playing there weren't even 300 people to rub together at peak hours, and there was usually only one business open at a time.

Yet, I enjoyed the experience of playing GTA:W in spite of these technical hiccups, because there was plenty of good, and interesting roleplay to go around. There was always the promise that those technical issues would be ironed out in the future; the promise that the server would age like fine wine, and get better with more time and development. I'm sorry to say that even with all the technical advancements GTA:W has made when it comes to features, they forgot to improve the one feature that drew me to this server in the first place: The quality of roleplay.

I'm not trying to make false equivocations to "the good ol' days" or try to impose that things were perfect then. Every era in a server has its problems, but with so many poorly thought out decisions, I'm forced to conclude that this server is lowering its standards to attract the largest player base possible; conflating quantity with quality.

The IC population portrayal was decided at a time when I was engaged heavily in Illegal RP, and it's honestly one of the worst decisions this staff team has ever stuck to. It was a safeguard for poor robbery RP, and extremely public shootings to flourish, with protections being handed out to police stations and government buildings while ignoring the many other 'monkeys in the middle. It was a license to steal.

This server feels more and more like a Cops Vs. Robbers plus victims server every day. Those appear to be the three roles: a cop, a robber, or a victim of senseless violence. Many Illegal RPers simply see civilian RPers as cash registers to be wrung. They see their businesses as piggie banks. The only way for civilian RPers to stop themselves from being constant victims is to limit themselves to wherever is “safe”. I’ve read reports of characters being kidnapped and murdered as to not leave witnesses, forced to jump off cliffs, beaten for not having “good loot” on them, killed for “snitching” by simply reporting the incident to police, and so on.

I imagine this drastic shift in quality is because of several reasons: The IC population portrayal enables poor roleplay to flourish anywhere and everywhere, the laughably lenient administrative punishments that fail to teach repeat rule-breakers the error of their actions, and in-fact just teach them to be smarter when covering up their rule-breaking activity, and the existence of RPQM which has resulted in people almost never being punished for their questionable portrayal during rulebreaking situations, as that is now a “RPQM concern”; as though we don’t all play on the same server and roleplay quality isn’t all of our concerns.

There is no one-sized fits all solution to this issue. I wish it was that simple. Everyone talking about bringing the Park Rangers into Los Santos is missing the scope of the issue. Nearly everyone I’ve spoken to regardless of the type of roleplay they engage in seems to agree that the server is regressing in its quality. When you foster an environment that attracts and caters to poor roleplayers, you, in turn, repel good roleplayers from entering or immersing themselves in the community. Everyone who plays GTA:W has to lower their standards of roleplay to the standards presented by the server in order to enjoy it. With such a large and dedicated player base, the server should be raising their standards, not becoming a victim of them.
 

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1 hour ago, Fancy Toothpaste said:

...

 

This is very, very, very true. Most of us have been noticing that and it's honestly depressing to see - how it started versus how it's going. Don't get me wrong, the server's doing extremely well compared to most other role-play servers that have ever existed (to my knowledge), but it's regressing. Day by day, the standards are being lowered when, in fact, they should be raised. The "learning community" aspect has been grossly misinterpreted - instead of encouraging heavy role-play, we're encouraging low-quality role-play; we're turning into a community for noobs (or rule-breakers, since the former actually learn).

 

And I honestly don't know why this happens - why are these issues never being addressed? They're extremely well-known, everyone keeps complaining about them, they're ever-present, they've been happening for a very long time, yet they're never being addressed, they're the elephant in the room - the unrealistic amount of robberies, the waiting times for everything, player reports, the RPQM issues, unrealistic characters, trucking, looting, quitting to avoid role-playing, powergaming and metagaming and all of the rest.

 

Everyone knows the issues, everyone knows they're issues, yet no one does anything about them. It truly ruins the experience for lots of people.

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The cold reality is that the crime rates on this server will never be realistic. Yes, we will have a crime rate worse than whatever third world country you want to bring up because this is indeed a game server based on GTA. No one thinks about the crime rate before they commit a crime ic or ooc. People who do stupid shit like chain rob in mirror park aren’t actually on this server to roleplay and don’t represent illegal roleplayers. 90 percent of the  shit tier criminals you interact with are not apart of an official illegal faction or even unofficial group. 
 

With that being said, many people on these threads greatly exaggerate issues. Many people say they get robbed on a near daily basis while some people (including myself) can count on one hand the time they’ve been robbed in the last year. While I do consider random robberies in peoples back yards and in rich areas to be horrible rp, it’s not exactly unheard of as it’s a major issue in irl Los Angeles right now.

https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/local-news/crimes-los-angeles-rush-for-bullet-proof-cars-rolex-replicas-safe-rooms-1235062227/amp/


https://www.hotnewhiphop.com/lapd-detective-tells-people-to-stay-away-from-la-compares-city-to-the-purge-news.144313.html?_amp

 

https://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2021/11/25/5-arrested-for-armed-street-robberies-in-beverly-hills/?amp

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1 minute ago, voucher said:

The cold reality is that the crime rates on this server will never be realistic. Yes, we will have a crime rate worse than whatever third world country you want to bring up because this is indeed a game server based on GTA. No one thinks about the crime rate before they commit a crime ic or ooc. People who do stupid shit like chain rob in mirror park aren’t actually on this server to roleplay and don’t represent illegal roleplayers. 90 percent of the  shit tier criminals you interact with are not apart of an official illegal faction or even unofficial group. 
 

With that being said, many people on these threads greatly exaggerate issues. Many people say they get robbed on a near daily basis while some people (including myself) can count on one hand the time they’ve been robbed in the last year. While I do consider random robberies in peoples back yards and in rich areas to be horrible rp, it’s not exactly unheard of as it’s a major issue in irl Los Angeles right now.

https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/local-news/crimes-los-angeles-rush-for-bullet-proof-cars-rolex-replicas-safe-rooms-1235062227/amp/


https://www.hotnewhiphop.com/lapd-detective-tells-people-to-stay-away-from-la-compares-city-to-the-purge-news.144313.html?_amp

 

https://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2021/11/25/5-arrested-for-armed-street-robberies-in-beverly-hills/?amp

 

It depends greatly on your character. Just on my civilian char I was robbed twice yesterday; one of the times resulted in my execution because I didn't have any items on me to loot even though I gave them my car and everything. If you have a female civilian character you essentially just exist to be robbed if you go outside an interior for more than 15 minutes at a time. Since the start of December the character I'm talking about has been robbed in excess of 20 times which would be whatever if it was actually about RP but it isn't.

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All I can really say is... civilians DO walk in groups, in real life, to prevent themselves from being robbed or kidnapped, especially if they're in a crime-filled city. It's normal to walk in groups in these cases.

As a person that has RP'd both illegal and "civilian/middle", with even illegal characters being in the middle? I've seen no advantages against me on either side. If anything, they seem realistically portrayed.

Gangs roll in groups to have an advantage over others. To counter that, civilians also roll in groups to protect themselves. The same applies to Law enforcement when they request for back-up.

I'm only addressing one point made in the post, really.

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People are way too obsessed with realism. It's a roleplay server and of course the crime rate will always be way higher than most real life places because that's a lot of people's fun. The issue, as mentioned, is always the poor quality of roleplay for the crimes being committed. I think teams like IFM need to be way more proactive in controlling these groups and factions that come out the gate engaging in shit roleplay, but they aren't because they're really understaffed with only a handful of members in IFM for the server's population. Admin punishments are also CRAZY lax to what they used to be. People brazenly and knowingly breaking rules get off with minor ajails instead of bans, I could have sworn when I joined the server admins were dishing out bans left and right to people just not being up to server standard. (Ofc what that standard is is super vague, especially now.)  Bad 'illegal' rpers do paint the rest in a bad light, just like robo-cops paint a lot of leos in a bad light. There are plenty of good factions out there but the ones that are shit drag the rest down and spoil the bunch.

 

As for 'civilian' rp in general? I always hated the lines being so rigid with 'legal' and 'illegal' characters. As if a criminal can't have a normal job, or a lawyer can't bend the law occasionally. This divide only creates an us vs. them mentality among players, and in my experience, I've seen 'legal' characters think they're actually policing the server from real criminals and criminals who larp as gang bangers like their characters are. Civilians are caught in the middle and often considered to be 'mallrats' because the only thing they can do is go clubbing and jack off over their cars or something. But that being said my advice to people wanting to be a civilian is not to think of it as black and white, that if you're not calling the cops instantly to report someone selling drugs, or do something a little bit outside the law, that you're no longer 'good' or any less of a 'civilian'. 

 

If members of my faction went around robbing random people on the street, they'd quickly find themselves being kicked (because these are the same types to be driving sports bikes around and other shit because it's the meta to get away quickly). I don't think robbing entirely random people in the spur of the moment ever creates good or memorable rp for anyone, and the best RP experiences come from slow build ups to create more of a story. A lot of robberies are just rushed because ofc, the robber doesn't want to get caught, and the person being robbed just wants it to be over.

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12 minutes ago, nwah_ said:

if members of my faction went around robbing random people on the street, they'd quickly find themselves being kicked (because these are the same types to be driving sports bikes around and other shit because it's the meta to get away quickly). I don't think robbing entirely random people in the spur of the moment ever creates good or memorable rp for anyone, and the best RP experiences come from slow build ups to create more of a story. A lot of robberies are just rushed because ofc, the robber doesn't want to get caught, and the person being robbed just wants it to be over.

Honestly, these run and gun shitrobberies are nothing but a nuisance, theres no enjoyment or developing done, after the quick bang and run you usually just go meh and move on because its so bland and god damn boring and creates nothing of value

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