KitCat223 Posted April 25 Share Posted April 25 I'm going to preface this by saying I'll include a TL;DR at the bottom. My point of view on this topic comes from someone who has been playing RP games and servers for many years. GMOD, a game capable of similar RP levels, and requiring similar rules, is a game I have over 9,000 hours on, and have staffed many servers for in both low and high positions. I hope that this can give some credibility to my words as you read forward. Firstly I want to talk about the lengths of bans, then I'll talk about the types of bans that can happen, and finally I'll talk about some of the requirements to get unbanned. I'll also talk a bit about staff accountability. Going through the ban appeals page on the forums, it's clear to see the default type of ban is a permeant one. Easily the majority of appeals are for permanent bans, often for seemingly insignificant rule breaks. For a first time offender, unless they break a rule that is zero tolerance, or they catastrophically derailed a round for the whole station or a department, a perma ban should NEVER be used. I'm not only talking about game bans, but role bans as well. To make the default ban a perma ban only serves to drive players away from the server, and thus the game. Bans shouldn't even be the first thing an admin thinks to give out when a player breaks the rules. Admins should instead opt to leave warnings on a players account, leaving a record of if they break a rule and had to speak to an admin, and then if the player has warns, escalate to a ban, and then if the player has bans escalate to a perma ban. Making the default type of punishment a ban makes the players feel frustrated and like they've been treated unfairly. That basically covers bans in general, next I want to talk a bit about role banning. It's one thing if someone is intentionally causing trouble on a role, to ban them immediately, maybe even permanently from the role. That being said, if a player genuinely makes a mistake that doesn't affect the rest of the station or their department, they shouldn't be immediately banned, or perma banned from the role. They should be talked to, and warned not to do it again. Quick side note on the rules regarding IC things like heads not being able to give away or trade high risk items. While I agree that they shouldn't just be giving their stuff out, I think it's counter productive for the server to say they can NEVER do it. In real life there are plenty of corrupt officials out there. Who is to say you can't buy off a head for some of their gear IC? It's a LOW RP server not a NO RP server. Even if something like this does happen and it breaks the rules, the player shouldn't get banned, much less perma banned for doing something IC that caused no harm to the station. They should be warned by staff first to not do it again. Moving on, let's talk about the way staff use bans. Staff seem to like to use perma bans as a way to force players onto the forums to talk to them if they broke a rule and left before staff could talk to them. While I think that with the way the game is set up this is a necessary evil, even then the ban shouldn't be permanant. It should only be as long as the rule broken and the players punishment history reasonably allow. That is basically my rant on ban lengths finished. You may argue that the server doesn't have the staff to give leeway when a player breaks the rules, but my response to that is that that is BS. The staffs job is to make the game fun and enjoyable for the players, all the players. That includes players who may have broken a rule. It's unfair and unreasonable to perma ban a player by default because it's too much trouble to deal with otherwise. Next I want to talk about one of the requirements I have seen commonly used for a player to be unbanned. Regularly, a requirement to get unbanned is "a voucher of good behavior from another server". Firstly, in case anyone hasn't noticed, unless you speak Russian you wont be getting that voucher. There are no regularly active English speaking servers outside of the official servers. Secondly, let's look at this from the players point of view. Say you go play another server long enough to be decently well known, and known to have "good behavior". Why would you want to come back to this server in the first place once you achieve that on another server? Thirdly lets look at this from the point of view from a server giving this voucher. As soon as you give this voucher you will be losing what is probably a regular player to another server. Who would want to do that? Even if a player has good behavior no server would want to give them the voucher for fear of losing them as a player. This requirement seems to be arbitrarily placed as a requirement to be unbanned based on an admins discretion for no good reason. Today, a ban appeal was posted on the forums for a ban that took place a year ago. This ban was permanent. You know what unforgiveable crime this player committed? A player in his round had been shrunk, and while the round was in progress he posted a photo of it to the forums. This picture contained no useful information about the round, or potentially game altering information. Despite this, the player was banned permanently, for a crime that literally hurt nobody and caused no damage to the server. Within an hour of him posting it, the admin who banned him denied the appeal for the reason he didn't have a voucher of good behavior from another server. Utterly ridiculous. This unusual addition to being unbanned is completely cruel and unnecessary. The point of a ban is to remove a player from the game so they can think about what they did wrong. It's essentially a time out. Having a requirement that forces the player to play other servers does two things. Currently when there ARE NO OTHER SERVERS, it just makes the player stop playing the game. I shouldn't need to explain how for a game in alpha that isn't well known this is not a good outcome. Secondly, once the game gets popular enough to have other servers it will simply drive players to those other servers. This punishment is a great way to get people to stop playing on your server. If that is what the server management and staff team wish for then don't change it. Finally, I want to talk a bit about staff accountability. There is none. It seems staff are regularly handing out punishments without talking to the one being punished according to a number of ban appeals on the forums. Now, it's one thing if a player leaves before a staff member has the chance to talk to them. In that case there is nothing the staff can do but punish them without talking to them. That being said, I know from personal experience staff will ban a player, either game or role ban, without talking to them, even if they have the chance to. If a staff chooses to punish a player without talking to them even if they have the chance, unless that player needs to be removed from the game immediately for a valid reason, the punishment should always be removed. Staff have a responsibility to talk to and make a punished player know what they did wrong. Imagine if you could be arrested in real life and the police never told you why. Next, a banning staff should never have the ability to deny a ban appeal. It doesn't matter why a person was banned, a banning staff member will always have bias against them even if unintentional. It should be left to the rest of the staff to determine if the player should be unbanned or not. The point of these complaints isn't to shit on the staff. It's to make a more fair and reliable form for the servers rules to be governed. That's the end of my long rant, I hope you take some time to consider what I've said here, and I hope even more the staff seriously reconsider how harsh they punish players on the server. TL;DR Permanent bans are far to overused by the staff and should be cut down as much as possible. Rules regarding in character actions should be changed or taken on a case by case basis in order to allow for more fluid IC gameplay. Remember it's a LOW RP server not a NO RP. Requiring a player to get a voucher from another server in order to get unbanned not only serves no real purpose, but is cruel and actively pushes players away from the server/game. Finally, staff should be more accountable with talking to rule breakers in game and should not interfere with ban appeals regarding those they banned. I'll also be posting this to the discord for a more liquid discussion. 1 Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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