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Singularity

Aberrant: 2011 - OpNet - 2008: Experience

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All of us have ideas for a character advancement system for the OpNet - 2008 proposal. Here's what I've got so far:

,,
Quote:
Originally posted by Singularity:

1. I share Ashnod's concerns about experience being granted for the quantity of posts; while there is some merit in rewarding work being put into a character, the potential of unnecessary or repetative posts being used just to increase a character's experience pool is too great for me. Experience for every post is just too open for abuse; perhaps one experience per month for posting a story or an interactive piece would be a better way to encourage interaction without leaving a door for abuse.

2. Talking about rewarding experience in an arbitrated situation is premature; there has been no discussion nor any agreement on any methods of arbitration to be used. If someone had the option to never use arbitration, it would be rather unfair to reward those who use the system over those who don't. Especially in the case of discretionary awards.

EDIT: I forgot to add my opinion regarding Quantum 6 and Chrysalis. I am of the opinion that Chrysalis should not provide characters the opportunity to achieve Quantum 6 earlier. One major reason against this is I do not want to reward any particular affiliation within Aberrant.

Thoughts?

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Flat exp for time spent. No bonus for spamming the site with garbage posts. No bonus for bunches and bunches of little social stories that serve no other purpose than a virtual coffeklatch.

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If you award experience for arbitrated interaction, be it combat or noncombat, one XP should be awarded to each player. I'm not talking about short little stories where one player has his character punch another and the get XP for it, but an extended interaction.

If you write a piece of fiction in which arbitration was used, you will get the XP. This fiction would have to be several posts long and actually be a story.

Also for epic pieces of fiction, I believe that more XP could be awarded.

Too few XP, which means players' see minimal advancement, may be a disincentive to many people. They may just sit on their character and accrue XP, and not write anything. Awarding XP in arbitration in extended arbitration may force more interaction among characters on a variety of levels.

I do think XP awards per week also need to be included though.

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If an arbitration system is used (voluntary or involuntary), I cannot support experience being used to reward the use of arbitration. :

  • In the case of a voluntary system, players who chose not to use arbitration for any number of reasons would be penalized for their choices.
  • "PC Killer" characters will be rewarded through experience when they hunt down vulnerable characters and will be encouraged to do it again while simultaneously gain power for such abusive behavior. More simply, it would be a problem that feeds of itself to get worse and worse.
  • Sphinx-type characters or other characters (or even writers/players :P ) who are skilled at resolving situations without the need for arbitration will be penalized for their abilities to do so.
  • To reward interaction, there should be experience granted to all interactions, not just those using arbitration (if arbitration is voluntary).

I understand your personal support of arbitration, Rat, but I feel that the whole of OpNet - 2008 does not need a mechanical reward for such a thing. Especially if arbitration is voluntary; it would be inequitable to those who choose not to use arbitration while simultaneously marginalizing (if not belittling or punishing) said persons.

Again, rewarding all interactions in general may be a good idea and fair. Rewarding only a select and optional version of it is neither in my opinion.

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Option #1:

3 exp per month

No other awards.

Option #2:

2 exp per month

Various Awards...

IMHO one of the hard parts of option #2 is going to be keeping track of the awards. No awards is easy, just take the date of arival and do the math.

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Arbitration would be one way to earn XP. Of course other interactions could earn XP as well. The difficulty is:

-How do we determine what factors are responsible for XP?

-What incentives are there for character interaction?

-Who decides what is worthy for XP?

As for 'PC Killers':

-Such behavior should be frowned upon, and abuse will not get you additional XP.

-A group can be formed to hunt down and deal with a 'PC Killer'.

If someone wants to play a 'Sphinx' type character because they don't like the process of arbitration, can play in the 2016 universe. Nothing says you can't play a 'Sphinx' character, but the 2008 world is going to have a different 'feel' to it, and you may find yourself left behind.

My reasons for involuntary arbitration is this:

-2008 is not going to be a cooperative world like 2016.

-Arbitration may be the only thing that makes the 2008 world function. Without it, people may be able to advance without actually earning advancement. Some people could do 'creative writing' and get experience, while others risk their characters for XP. Is that fair to those who use arbitration and leave their characters to some element of chance? After all, success is not known or assured when using a referee.

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WR, I also cannot support an experience reward for arbritration. It becomes a tool for getting a cheap experience point; just have a buddy arbitrate for you and another buddy, and you both get rewarded for it. It is a system that is rife for abuse.

Also, you have players who won't want to use the system, and then you're punishing them for working things out on their own. The arbitration is supposed to be for cases when people cannot agree agmonst themselves, and it should not be rewarded, in my opinion. It means that a group of people have been unable to communicate effectively to resolve things on their own.

I agree that additional awards may be gathered for good stories. I suggest that five people not involved in the story have to step forward and say it's worth of an additional award, and the writers get get an additional point. This encourages quality story-telling and writing, though the story quality should be stressed over writing.

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Quote:
Originally posted by The White Rat:
My reasons for involuntary arbitration is this:
-2008 is not going to be a cooperative world like 2016.
-Arbitration may be the only thing that makes the 2008 world function. Without it, people may be able to advance without actually earning advancement. Some people could do 'creative writing' and get experience, while others risk their characters for XP. Is that fair to those who use arbitration and leave their characters to some element of chance? After all, success is not known or assured when using a referee.
Not to nitpick, especially considering you were replying to me, but your first item appears to be rather presumptive on your part (I, for one, do not believe OpNet - 2008 will be a noncooperative world and others have agreed) and your second item may be too closely linked to the Arbitration thread that already exists. I know this idea is important to you, but the topics were separated with the interest of a coherent discussion. Advocacy of involuntary arbitration would be better used in the Arbitration thread.

Quote:
If someone wants to play a 'Sphinx' type character because they don't like the process of arbitration, can play in the 2016 universe. Nothing says you can't play a 'Sphinx' character, but the 2008 world is going to have a different 'feel' to it, and you may find yourself left behind.
Additionally, I would say that this is appears to be quite presumptive as well as broadly reaching. I find it quite unlikely and extreme to say that an entire character type found throughout the Aberrant canon world (especially one that has an entire section of at least one sourcebook dedicated to them) doesn't meet the "feel" of a section that has yet to be completed.


As for things regarding this thread:
Quote:
Originally posted by The White Rat:
As for 'PC Killers':
-Such behavior should be frowned upon, and abuse will not get you additional XP.
-A group can be formed to hunt down and deal with a 'PC Killer'.
I am of the mind of "nipping it in the bud" when it comes to destructive permutations. Better to curtail or not encourage behavior that could adversely affect the entire population (or a sizeable majority) instead of giving a mixed signal allowing one to abuse the "spirit of the law" through the "letter of the law."

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Fair analysis Carver, but let me ask you this: Is it any less abusive to have you and a buddy write a piece of fiction in which the outcome is predetermined and expect an experience award?

At least with arbitration there is an attempt at having an objective mediator. Without a mediator, experience awards become meaningless. Everything takes on a feel-good, touchy-feeley atmosphere in which everyone can have their cake and eat it too. No risk, all the reward.

Don't we already have a place where this interaction takes place? Like the 2016 realm.

Not all of us want sit around and write play- nice fiction, all the time. Some of us, and I am speaking for myself, want something that feels more like a game sometimes. Why would you object to that? You don't have to participate.

Quote:
The arbitration is supposed to be for cases when people cannot agree agmonst themselves, and it should not be rewarded, in my opinion. It means that a group of people have been unable to communicate effectively to resolve things on their own.

Communicating effectively in the 2008 world is a cop-out. Frankly, it is an unreal expectation in a game-like environment. All it means is that you want to avoid conflict in a world where conflict is part of the norm.

I repeat The 2008 needs to be radically different from the 2016 world.

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Sing: The topic moved to arbitration as it relates to XP awards. Is the topic supposed to move to the arbitration thread every time arbitration is mentioned?

I may not have the book you are speaking of, because I don't remember seeing anything about 'Sphinxs' in any of my books.

So, if this is going to be run just like the 2016 world, XP will be awarded based on a subjective measure. I'll get 2 XP per week + whatever I think I deserve. Even better, I'll get some friends to award me even more. Screw objectivity, it shouldn't really exist anyways.

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Quote:
Originally posted by The White Rat:
Fair analysis Carver, but let me ask you this: Is it any less abusive to have you and a buddy write a piece of fiction in which the outcome is predetermined and expect an experience award?
How can telling a compelling story be abusive? I think you're under some very mistaken impressions about the purpose of the 2008 board. I'll touch on those points below.

Quote:
Originally posted by The White Rat:
At least with arbitration there is an attempt at having an objective mediator. Without a mediator, experience awards become meaningless. Everything takes on a feel-good, touchy-feeley atmosphere in which everyone can have their cake and eat it too. No risk, all the reward.
Don't we already have a place where this interaction takes place? Like the 2016 realm.
Actually, the 2 experience per week are supposed to keep everyone even, not award them for interaction. Interaction should not be forced for reward, or else you have people who fall behind when real-life intervenes. And contrary to your opinion, not all the fictions are touchy-feely; indeed, many end poorly for the character in question.

Quote:
Originally posted by The White Rat:
Not all of us want sit around and write play- nice fiction, all the time. Some of us, and I am speaking for myself, want something that feels more like a game sometimes. Why would you object to that? You don't have to participate.
And I'll point out that you're participating on the 2016 boards. If you want a game, get into a game. This is not a game, and not in the least because we don't have story-tellers. No one guides or directs us - heck, Live-Action RP has more structure than this place does.

You're correct that I don't have to participate, and if your vision of the board is the one adopted, I won't.

Quote:
Originally posted by The White Rat:
Communicating effectively in the 2008 world is a cop-out. Frankly, it is an unreal expectation in a game-like environment. All it means is that you want to avoid conflict in a world where conflict is part of the norm.

I repeat The 2008 needs to be radically different from the 2016 world.
And why does it have to be so very different? The rigid experience increase and set 30 nova points at the start is very different from the way 2016 is run. Why do we need to diviate any further, other than to please your desire for a PVP, play-by-post game? And if that's what we want, then why don't we elect an ST, and have a 2008 play-by-post game?

I see the following potential for abuse:

-Player 1 wants another experience point. He goes to Player 2, who also wants the same thing. They come to a "sticky point" that they feel would work for arbitration. One of them goes to an arbitrator, who steps in and supervises the "disagreement." Both get extra experience.

You have yet to address my concern on this issue. Please do so.

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Quote:
Originally posted by The White Rat:
Sing: The topic moved to arbitration as it relates to XP awards. Is the topic supposed to move to the arbitration thread every time arbitration is mentioned?
No, I just feel that arguments meant to support an opinion regarding arbitration need to stay in the Arbitration thread and arguments meant to support an opinion regarding experience need to say in the Experience thread, nothing more.

Quote:
I may not have the book you are speaking of, because I don't remember seeing anything about 'Sphinxs' in any of my books.
The primary book to which I was referring is Brainwaves and it's available for free at this website in PDF format. It was developed by the White Wolf staff and we lucked out in being able to distribute it.

Quote:
So, if this is going to be run just like the 2016 world, XP will be awarded based on a subjective measure. I'll get 2 XP per week + whatever I think I deserve. Even better, I'll get some friends to award me even more. Screw objectivity, it shouldn't really exist anyways.
Heh, objectivity is a goal of mine in regards to this; would you expect nothing less than an objective system with a painstaking rule-writing process from someone working in law? :P Not to be slow, but I'm not seeing any advocacy for subjective awards of experience. wink

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Sylvian: it is not enough to just go to arbitration to get the experience, you would have to write a fiction that revolves around the outcome of the ST/arbitrator moderated conflict. This also includes literary tools like setting, mood, theme, and protagonist/antagonist interaction. The story still needs to be written. It will just have an element of uncertainty for the authors. Hence a game like feel.

I don't see why having an element of chance and gamesmanship skill is so threatening? Is it not enough to already have one realm that is pure story board fiction. Do all of them have to be like that? Is there no room on N! to accommodate those who have different tastes?

The reason why extra XP should be awarded for an arbitrated fiction, is that it provides incentive for everyone to place their characters in uncertain positions. It is like capitalism, no risk=no reward. If you are that averse to risk, then you won't advance as quickly. You take more chances, you reap the benefits. Nothing has ever been gained in the real world by 'playing it safe'. If you do something truly outrageous or brilliant, and you succeed, shouldn't you get the benefit?

As for 'real life problems'. When they happen, you can ask the board for XP based on the circumstances and length of the real life situation.

In Aberrant, elites tend to gain power at a greater rate precisely because they use their powers more often.

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Quote:
Originally posted by The White Rat:
Sylvian: it is not enough to just go to arbitration to get the experience, you would have to write a fiction that revolves around the outcome of the ST/arbitrator moderated conflict. This also includes literary tools like setting, mood, theme, and protagonist/antagonist interaction. The story still needs to be written. It will just have an element of uncertainty for the authors. Hence a game like feel.
What you're describing is a play by post game, and it should have a game-like feel; it's a game. This is not. It's telling stories, using character sheets to help set guidelines for the characters.

Quote:
Originally posted by The White Rat:
I don't see why having an element of chance and gamesmanship skill is so threatening? Is it not enough to already have one realm that is pure story board fiction. Do all of them have to be like that? Is there no room on N! to accommodate those who have different tastes?
We already have that; there are two games currently run by STs that operate from this board. Perhaps you should petition the ST's of those games to see if they have room for you.

Quote:
Originally posted by The White Rat:
The reason why extra XP should be awarded for an arbitrated fiction, is that it provides incentive for everyone to place their characters in uncertain positions. It is like capitalism, no risk=no reward. If you are that averse to risk, then you won't advance as quickly. You take more chances, you reap the benefits. Nothing has ever been gained in the real world by 'playing it safe'. If you do something truly outrageous or brilliant, and you succeed, shouldn't you get the benefit?
You don't seem to understand the potential for abuse here. And none of what you said has addressed the concern I stated above. Heck, using the one-sided arbitration call with xp gain, you could have a character start a story with another, weaker character, attack them, force arbitration and get awarded for trapping them. How would you suggest dealing with these abuses as well?

Please address these concerns directly, or I will have to assume that you have no answer to them, and they will remain HUGE holes in your plans for the 2008 board.

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Quote:
Originally posted by The White Rat:
If you do something truly outrageous or brilliant, and you succeed, shouldn't you get the benefit?
Those are completely subjective descriptions. What you may think is brilliant or outrageous I may think is pedestrian and boring.

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Quote:
This is not. It's telling stories, using character sheets to help set guidelines for the characters
We already have this format in the 2016 world.

Quote:
We already have that; there are two games currently run by STs that operate from this board. Perhaps you should petition the ST's of those games to see if they have room for you.
Where?

Quote:
You don't seem to understand the potential for abuse here. And none of what you said has addressed the concern I stated above. Heck, using the one-sided arbitration call with xp gain, you could have a character start a story with another, weaker character, attack them, force arbitration and get awarded for trapping them. How would you suggest dealing with these abuses as well?
While I see the problem with this situation, I think that it can be lessened with a power ranking system. If you attack a significantly weaker player, who you can defeat easily, you receive no XP because there is no challenge. That would be a disincentive.
Also, if you make a habit of just killing weaker characters, the other players can then choose whether to become involved. Curb abuse by laying groundrules that everyone is satisfied with.

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Access, if that is the case, we can just write a fic once in a while and still reap the benefits. There needs to be some sort of incentive to contribute to the boards.

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So let's give EXP for people who go around starting trouble! Good RPing? Bah, that doesn't mean anything. Just be a jerk how goes around messing with people and in no wat really contributing to anything and you'll advance faster allowing you to do it more and more! Wooo!

Awarding exp on the basis of conflict/combat alone is not a good game. What games do that? Hack and slash games. The rest, like White Wolf games give exp for good RP, Overcoming obsticles, lessons learned and so on. NOT combat/conflict just for the sake of it.

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Quote:
Originally posted by David 'Dr. Troll' Smith:
Option #1:
3 exp per month
No other awards.

Option #2:
2 exp per month
Various Awards...
I think we need to address the various award types separately. Some people would agree to an award vote; others a reward for arbitration. Both would vote for Option #2, but oppose the other type of award enough to actually voted for #1.

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Option #1:

Set exp per month (3?)

NO Award for Arbitrated encounters.

No Award for num of posts.

Option #2:

Set exp per month (2?)

Award for Arbitrated encounters.

No Award for num of posts.

Option #3:

Set exp per month (1?)

Award for Arbitrated encounters.

Award exp per set num of posts (1 for 10?).

Option #4:

Set exp per month (1?)

NO Award for Arbitrated encounters.

Award exp per set num of posts (1 for 10?).

Note that after we figure out which way we want to go we can figure out how much.

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Quote:
The rest, like White Wolf games give exp for good RP, Overcoming obstacles, lessons learned and so on.
Stella: These are the things I am talking about being arbitrated, not just combat. There are many more aspects of the game, but anytime two or more characters interact in such a way that the outcome/success is not certain, a moderator could be used. Of course if both players trust one another to be honest, a moderator would not be necessary.

Dr. T: I think three XP per month is a bit low. That equates to 36 XP in a year. I could play one TT game a month, for a year, and have twice the number of XP. I would expend at least as much time and effort here per week as I would once a month in a TT setting. Why would I accrue XP here at a pace that is minimal for the effort involved?

I would suggest a weekly award of 2 xp, with more for the number of posts ~1:10. Also an additional XP could be awarded at the completion of a fiction. That gives a yearly total of at least 104 XP/year.

Also, If a player has multiple characters, only those characters posting can get the XP each week. This will stop people from having 4 characters and only using one of them, while the other three get XP.

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Quote:
Originally posted by The White Rat:
Access, if that is the case, we can just write a fic once in a while and still reap the benefits. There needs to be some sort of incentive to contribute to the boards.
There is. If you don't contribute people won't interact with you and you might as well be sitting alone in a room.

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Quote:
Originally posted by David 'Dr. Troll' Smith:
Option #1:
Set exp per month (3?)
NO Award for Arbitrated encounters.
No Award for num of posts.

Option #2:
Set exp per month (2?)
Award for Arbitrated encounters.
No Award for num of posts.

Option #3:
Set exp per month (1?)
Award for Arbitrated encounters.
Award exp per set num of posts (1 for 10?).

Option #4:
Set exp per month (1?)
NO Award for Arbitrated encounters.
Award exp per set num of posts (1 for 10?).

Note that after we figure out which way we want to go we can figure out how much.
And Option #5:
Set exp per month (2?)
NO award for arbitration or quantity of posts
Award vote by other members of the 2008 board

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Troll, I appreciate the initiative and it's a good idea, however I believe we need to wait on a poll with those options because there has yet to be a decision regarding the availability and/or use of arbitration and a decision in here could severely limit the the discussion/options in the Arbitration thread.

Hence, since a consensus might be closer in the Arbitration thread (check the other thread in a bit), a poll in here with such options is a little early.

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The drive for a new 2008 site was so that we could have a place for lower level characters to play around without the whole "ants treading in the giant's garden" feel.

High exp and/or exp based on participation will cut that possibility short quickly.

Exp should be low and across the board normal. Otherwise we end up with Flicker and Sandcaster playing with Procyon and Ultimax again in short order.

If you want to pump a newbie character through the roof, then start them in 2016 and use the exp setup you'd like for your own character.

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Assuming you start with no Mega attributes, it would cost 99XP to raise all of them to Mega 2. However, due to the increased cost getting to 3 in everything would cost 90 more XP. Mega 4 costs 135 for every attribute, and finally Mega 5 would cost 180 XP. That is a total of 504 XP.

If is spent all my XP on just Attributes, I would need 5 years to get every stat to Mega-5.

Also, be aware that to get to Mega 5, you need a Quantum minimum of 4

Quantum is even more expensive. If I start at Q3, it would cost me 56 XP to get to 5.

To get a level 3 power from 3 pips to 4, would cost 21 Xp. It would take 7 months to raise that power one dot. It would take another 9 months to get that power to level 5.

To get a character to Pax's Level would take ten years if you received 100 XP per year.

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Quote:
If is spent all my XP on just Attributes, I would need 5 years to get every stat to Mega-5.
This kind of proves my point. You become absurdly powerful long before you reach that point and even this assume extremely unefficent expenditures. Assuming the PC specializes in something (say combat or social), he can "mature" much more quickly.

Quote:
To get a character to Pax's Level would take ten years if you received 100 XP per year.
Assume he started with Q5. Going to Q6 takes 40 exp (this board doesn’t allow Q7).

For an extremely off hand calculation, assume he starts with one dot each of… Flight, Hyperflight, TK, Mega-Strength & Dex & Stam

Taking each of the powers up to 4 dots and Mastery costs (3 x 45) => 135
Taking the Mega-Stats up to 5, 5, & 4 would cost 50+50+30 => 130
I’ll assume 50 exp for various enhancements and other lesser Megas.
I’ll also assume 30 exp for various skills.

Total = 40 + 135 + 130 + 50 + 30 => 385
That’s 4 years...
Granted, this doesn't give him everything, but it also assumes grossly unefficent purchases, like that fourth dot in TK+Mastery. Drop two dots off the end of that (and flight) and use the saving to buy a few dots of ForceField + Mastery and INV:Physical+Mastery.

The power Kinetic Energy is poorly written in that it doesn’t use existing mechanics and would require way too much effort to make it useful, and I don’t think we’ve ever seen him use it so I won’t bother with it.

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While I will give you that it may not take ten years to reach Pax's level at 2XP per week, it would with 3 XP per month. Many of us would like to be able to see our characters progress to that power level, but I think ten years is too long for this sort of format.

I look at XP accrual and compare it to how much XP would be earned if we were playing a TT game. If you played one session a week for a year, how much XP could you earn? Considering you get one automatic XP for just playing, that would be a minimum of 52 XP a year. I think the designers of Aberrant planned for characters to reach Pax like powers, in 3-5 years of constant play.

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Quote:
Originally posted by The White Rat:
I think the designers of Aberrant planned for characters to reach Pax like powers, in 3-5 years of constant play.
I know it's a little off-topic of me, but the last thing in White Wolf's mind when it comes to character progression is PCs reaching a level capable of challenging the "super NPCs." It's a well known and long lamented trait here at N!Prime in regards to both the Aeonverse and the World of Darkness.

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With too little XP I fear that the characters may stagnate. Also, I believe most people will only make a few posts each month if it is flat. Essentially, they get paid even if they don't participate. Why should someone who makes frequent posts earn less xp? If you play the TT version once a month, should your character earn the same XP as someone, who plays once a week? Of course not, your character is going to be more powerful.

That is why they are called EXPERIENCE points. The more you use your character and their powers, the more experienced they become.

I think the concern about over powered characters in 2016 was a result of characters being created uber-powerful, as well as not having character sheets which clearly delineated their abilities. Also, players could give themselves whatever XP they wanted to suit their wishes.

There is a difference between a character with 100 XP and 100 NP. The power difference between a 200 XP nova and a beginning 30 NP nova are not as great as they would seem. The difference between a beginning 30 NP nova and a 100 NP Nova however are.

Worrying about whether new incoming players will complain over a 100 or 200 XP point difference is of concern. But if the rules to gain the XP are clearly defined, complaints will be minimal. Besides, most players start another character at some point, so there will always be a balance of low, middle and high XP characters. There will not be the huge imbalance that is seen in the 2016 setting, even if characters gain XP at a moderate rate.

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Quote:
Originally posted by The White Rat:
With too little XP I fear that the characters may stagnate. Also, I believe most people will only make a few posts each month if it is flat. Essentially, they get paid even if they don't participate. Why should someone who makes frequent posts earn less xp? If you play the TT version once a month, should your character earn the same XP as someone, who plays once a week? Of course not, your character is going to be more powerful.
WR, one thing you don't seem to understand is that interaction and role-playing has driven the fictions on the 2016 board. There is no reason that trend shouldn't continue in the 2008 board.

I don't think you do understand the difference between a 30 point, starting nova and a 200 experience point nova. Assuming that you compare that nova at the start of their career, and then the same nova 200 experience points later, you are going to see quite a bit of difference. Are you going to see the same power if that character is 200 nova points? Of course not.

But 2008 isn't about gaining uber powers. It's about characters, not about being powerful or matching Pax. It's about a fair playing field. If you want to play something else, here are the online games here:

Aberrant: Zero - a 2008 Aberrant Project Utopian game

Adventure!: Heroes of Our Time - an Adventure game

Occasionally, we have other off-site Play-by-Post games announce themselves here.

Quote:
Originally posted by The White Rat:
Worrying about whether new incoming players will complain over a 100 or 200 XP point difference is of concern. But if the rules to gain the XP are clearly defined, complaints will be minimal. Besides, most players start another character at some point, so there will always be a balance of low, middle and high XP characters. There will not be the huge imbalance that is seen in the 2016 setting, even if characters gain XP at a moderate rate.
All the more reason to embrace a flat rate. This is the fairest way to ensure no complaints from new players. Don't forget - with the arbitrator rules you want we'll have risk of death and character attrition. They'll have to start over as a new character, and will have lost all their effort. At least a flat rate ensures that all they've lost is time, as opposed to effort and possible risk rewards.

And you still haven't addressed my concerns about abuses that I laid out above.

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About abuses: Seriously people, we're a small community. Small enough and with enough general common sense that we can spot and judge abuses on a case-by-case basis. And another, it's completely realistic for a character that goes around just generally abusing other characters will be hunted down by all kinds of factions and law enforcement. I just don't see the space for abuse that some people do.

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