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DanseMacabre

Remove Security 2

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Because the last thread went nowhere. There seems to be this persistent mindset a minority within the community possesses, one which states “Security is bad and ruins everything”, to paraphrase. There is also a more prevalent us vs. them mindset that exists between traditional security players and people who don’t really touch the department. Please discuss and debate the merits of removing security here, so this talk isn’t just relegated to the occasional appearance in the discord. Thanks.

Edited by DanseMacabre
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3 minutes ago, KingOfThePing said:

Not sure if this is a serious suggestion. If it is I dont know what to say, if it isn't then this is the wrong subforum

Well, it isn’t necessarily a non-serious suggestion. I, personally, don’t believe in it very much. However, time and time again I do see people make the case that security is a net detriment to the server and we’d all be better off removing it. To be frank, I made this thread so those discussions aren’t just kept in the discord. Consider this a brainstorming or a discussion thread.

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From the forum rules:

Quote

The reasoning behind a suggestion should be elaborated upon in the initial post to a reasonable extent.

If you dont have any interest to actually remove security and just want to discuss it with the wider community, the suggestion forum is the wrong place.
Therefore moving it to general

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So, when it comes to the opinion that "Security is bad and fucks up everything it touches" I think that's actually held by a minority, but I think that atleast half, if not more, of the playerbase has an opinion ranging from Mild Dislike to Outright distrust/hatred of the department and it's players. I also think there's both an IC and OOC dislike for the department, but like most things they can somewhat bleed together, so for now unless it's requested I'ma just focus on the OOC dislike.

To start, I think a big reason for the OOC dislike is how difficult it is to differentiate IC actions from OOC thoughts. I think this is a problem with literally every department, but it is augmented by the prevalent type of characters I personally see in security and what I see in D-Chat or post-round OOC. When a character is making fun or you, or your species, or your department IC'ly, then you see the player doing in OOC'ly as well it becomes very difficult to say "Oh, it's just an IC action ignore it." I think everyone does something similar just based off how you have to actually /play/ your character so OFC a part of you is going to be in them no matter what happens, but again, it's amplified by the type of characters I see in security.

Getting to that, a majority of security characters just seem to either be very rude/verging on just being an asshole, even if the company that character is from is famed spur wide for excellent customer service or professionalism. This, combined with how difficult it can be for anyone in any department to differentiate OOC and IC thoughts/acts, makes it so that alot of people think security players are like that OOC'ly as well.(I've said things similar to that when I was super salty in D-Chat or LOOC)  There was even a round recently where in medical we had a short conversation that was basically "Yea, now I realize why people dislike security so much" after an interaction with a couple characters. 

Onto their interaction with antags, I think I should touch on is powergaming/validhunting. The powergaming from security that I've seen as an antag or observer is way to high, ranging from ordering loads of guns from cargo when crew aren't even being attacked and the armory not emptied yet, to asking for an ERT with the entire department still up. If a merc team got on station, RP'd for ten to twenty minutes, failing to reach an agreement,  and just ordered a bunch of bullpups and better armor with the cargo console after security said they'd fight them, it would be an instant ahelp and the mercs would be told to knock it off. In the same vein, it get's super annoying for antags when they try to do a peacemerc gimmick, the example I'm using is an SCC inspection/review of the Aurora from a couple days ago, and they're second guessed from literally the start. I remember sending the announcement and the FIRST THING I see in the security channel is "Why is the SCC coming here? Should we trust them?" and NGL it pissed me the ever loving shit off, especially because we had an argument in AOOC right before as to if we should even attempt a peacemerc because "Security is just going to find the smallest excuse to valid us and I really don't wanna die". That's relatively small, but I've seen things like secondguessing if the HoS is actually the HoS, shooting hostages just to try and get the antags, etc. It gets very tiring seeing 'Oh, let's fax for conformation for something that is totally in line with NT's policies', or just secondguessing a CC announcement/possibly CC officals(Unless it's really obvious like a CCIAA with a toolbelt and googles instead of a suit)

To expand but more minor, validhunting doesn't just apply to antags. I remember a round where a glitch caused some K'ios to phase through a solid window and accidently kill someone. Security arrested everyone involved and spent the next hour trying to prove it was an IC mistake and not an OOC glitch, with things such as "If the windows were borosilicate it wouldn't have phased through! That's why xenobotany has those windows"(even after the CE said that was dumb and the windows were borosilicate because of fires) and again, it get's really fucking annoying seeing and dealing with it. 

And last but not least, the difference in action between canon and non-canon rounds is super obvious. This is relatively minor, but oh my god is it annoying seeing how situations are approached differently during events and then during regular secret rounds by security. I think this was highlighted best during the first incursion event with the "Inspection" of the Aurora by Sol, where, a crewmember was murdered, a gun was pointed at the captain, multiple crewmembers were beaten badly, and there was no engagement by security, even once the ERT was called(though they fled I think nearly directly after). Also to mention, I have no idea if the HoS or Captain or all of security were told not to start a fight by the event runners and admins, and if so then I'm sorry, this is just the opinion of someone who was on the outside. I'm sure there's an explanation, but I think it is almost impossible to say that it doesn't look bad/lousy. Especially because then again during the incursion there was a gimmick that was pretty much the same, and because it was a non-canon random event a firefight started and went throughout the whole station. 

I want to end saying that I don't think security should be removed, it fills a unique and sometimes enjoyable niche to find RP with our server, but how it is currently it's very hard to say 'Yea, I like that department as a whole.' Maybe I'm the only one who thinks this, and this is just my salty ranting, but I'm willing to bet I'm not given the amount of arguments in discord that you made a fourm thread specifically for it. I may add some suggestions later on how to fix it, I can think of ones for both antags and security, the two biggest being, if security actually attempts to deescalate, maybe do it for once? and how security appears to outsiders with their actions, both with crew and antags. And thanks if you actually read through this whole thing, apologies for any spelling mistakes or grammer issues. If you have any questions I'll try my best to respond if you put them here!

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A lot of the mentality seems to stem from Security's natural appeal to certain players whose only real purpose is to kill valids, abuse crew, and exercise non-existent authority that they wouldn't have elsewhere. Power trippers. Like anything else in life while the majority of Security's playerbase doesn't fit these stereotypes the continued existence of a handful of problem officers has a way of souring the entire department's image. People have the tendency to better remember the negatives than the positives, meaning that while most people might not skirt the edge it unfortunately makes everyone else guilty by association in the minds of a few seriously pissed off people who don't who enjoy having their boats rocked.

Not to mention the tendency for Security to dominate and shut down gimmicks for everyone besides themselves during rounds instead of just taking the back seat and letting others have fun too, within reason. No one expects to let armed pirates or a kill squad hang out in the bar. It's well and good that the department is meant to "protect the station from outside threats" but permabrigging the peace-wizard twenty minutes into the round to chair RP alone with them while the rest of the players stare at a wall is and always will be lame as shit. We all play this game to roleplay, it isn't selfish to want to be involved too.

I don't think we should remove Security. My thoughts are that their "departmental culture" is busted. We have too many burned out, bitter players who've tried being Officer Friendly and gotten shafted for it so they move away from using words and run towards what they know for a fact works - Bullets. It's not just a Security problem, it's an antagonist problem too. We see people shutting down gimmicks before they even have a chance to get off the ground because they're tired of getting played by bad faith antags and fragbrains and it ruins the vibe for everyone caught in between.

Inb4 "seethe cope seethe seethe shut up you don't know what you're talking about non-sec player go back to the kitchen"

Edited by UncleJo
Un-mincing words
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41 minutes ago, Triogenix said:

And last but not least, the difference in action between canon and non-canon rounds is super obvious. This is relatively minor, but oh my god is it annoying seeing how situations are approached differently during events and then during regular secret rounds by security. I think this was highlighted best during the first incursion event with the "Inspection" of the Aurora by Sol, where, a crewmember was murdered, a gun was pointed at the captain, multiple crewmembers were beaten badly, and there was no engagement by security, even once the ERT was called(though they fled I think nearly directly after). Also to mention, I have no idea if the HoS or Captain or all of security were told not to start a fight by the event runners and admins, and if so then I'm sorry, this is just the opinion of someone who was on the outside. I'm sure there's an explanation, but I think it is almost impossible to say that it doesn't look bad/lousy. Especially because then again during the incursion there was a gimmick that was pretty much the same, and because it was a non-canon random event a firefight started and went throughout the whole station. 

I really hate to see this used as an example as to the misbehavior of the security department, because it's really unfair. Let me point out that during this event, security was outgunned and outnumbered. There were seven Solarian inspectors: of those seven, six had extremely good hardsuits - the solarian military hardsuit is one of the best in the game - with those hardsuits being equipped with pulse carbine modules. The marines themselves also had potent ballistic weapons, and other hardsuit modules (like the chemdispensor). If you want to see what I mean, boot up a private server and set your human outfit to admin -> event -> heavy solarian marine. If security tried to force an engagement during this round without tons of cargo gear, they'd have been wiped- all of those characters would've been canonically killed. As it were, security was gearing up to fight the marines. They just left before they could. This was not a Solarian merc team - this was a squad of people using admin-only gear. I don't think it's fair to claim that there exists some disparity in security behaviors that is clearly demonstrated by this example, because if this was a non-canon round, I still doubt security would've engaged.

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So, I still need to figure out how to quote, but for now I'ma just respond like this

I think I touched on this minorly in my original post, saying that there was an explanation to why they didn't engage, but that was probably not enough. If there was no reasoning behind it, I think first) there would have been a player complaint and second) more people would be mentioning it. That being said, at the level some people(including myself) understood, it fell under a misbehavior, and was another minor reason alot of people tend to dislike security OOC'ly. I think the tldr was that it looks bad, and is perceived as bad by alot of people, even if in reality is was not bad. I meant to comment on the perception I, and atleast five other people had of the event, not what really happened. Apologies if that did not come through clearly. I think that's partially my fault given I was kinda salty/worked up at that point in what I was writing, but, again, to end off, it was meant to be perceptions and how it looked from an outside perspective, and how that influences peoples opinions of security as a department, not what really happened.

Edited by Triogenix
Changed a couple words to make it flow slightly better
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Security serves as a counterbalance to antagonists (And antagonistic behaviour). It is pretty much their only function. It is their purpose to shut down antags and restore round conditions to extended. The exceptions being peace gimmicks, non-violent confrontations and what have you.

If we were to remove security outright, the balance of power would be skewed so hard that every antag round would probably spiral into a shitfest relatively quickly. How many times have people bitched and moaned in deadchat over antags getting absolute control for reason such as "lmao sec only had like 1 guy, fucking shit antags amirite??" And it would turn into that every round. The powerhungry players would just roll antags instead and roam literally unopposed.

Im not saying there arent issues with security at times, but removing the entire department is just bad juju.

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To piggyback off of prate, security has already been so heavily nerfed that there are currently times when security could get stomped easily, such as merc rounds where the mercs just roll in guns blazing, as they easily outgun security. Removing it would just cause rounds to spiral.

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I've noticed a lot of the anti-Security people are the kind who get upset when they're not given priority, both as an antagonist and as crew. It's often the type of people who dislike being shut down (typically when doing something stupid), and instead of adapting to overcome this obstacle, they internalize it as form of OOC repression against either them specifically or "everyone like me".

I'm quite familiar with shitcurity. It exists, it is often undeniable at times, but it is usually specifically contained to 'problem characters' such as exceedingly unprofessional and/or unrealistic characters (or sometimes just new players, I try not to judge those). Rarely does it extend to a culture unless 'problem people' are left to be and their behaviour is eventually normalized in some sense, but this issue extends to every department (I can think of negative stereotypical eras for all of them, excepting perhaps Service) and doesn't tend to be resolved until the players leave, are banned or remediate themselves.

Additionally, over the years I've seen the highs and lows of all departments and that includes Security. At it's lows where it was mechanically repressed, it often invited validhunting and immersion-breaking militia behaviours from crew (In my early years specifically, Engineers were the bane of antagonists) and often led to excessive use of ERTs. At it's highs, it developed a curiously potent knack for tactics and teamwork that would shut down antagonists who themselves weren't particularly robust, leading to either calls for nerfs (How Aurora responds to it) or excessive staff repression (How Bay responded to it). I often made a point of playing all manner of antagonist roles during both periods and what I can tell you is that the highs shape boys into men, and the lows just lead to very trivial antagonist dominance that has to be countered by the likes of the ERT. The trick is to finding a good balance where Security is competent, reliable and trustworthy - but not excessive that it can trivially dominate even the strongest roles (Mercs, Wizards and so forth).

One note of concern, on the in-character perspective. The current pre-NBT setting is a Corporate station in Corporate-dominated space that has a ridiculous record for being targeted - in RECENT times - by all manner of groups, from mere pirates (The event that introduced the TCFL) to Skrellian Tups (Warbling) to a significant remnant of the Solarian Navy (KotW) and more that I can't be assed to list. This ultimately doesn't contribute to any atmosphere of 'this station shouldn't need such heavy Security', quite to the contrary, I would be terrified to be working at this infamous station.

Summary/tl;dr: NBT may help resolve any issue present, but there's no guarantee, and if it doesn't - all I can advise is that instead of blaming departments, we blame the particular characters (On their repeated behaviours alone - stop stereotyping characters based on their choice of hair or skin you fucking clowns).

Edited by Carver
Separating the final sentence into a summary/tl;dr because I expect you'll gloss over the rest.
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Sec is honestly, genuinely fun for most when played right. the trouble is that lots of players are in the wrong. It feels too frequent that we see sec act overtly violently if not outright sadistic for no reason other than valids. 

I'd rather not have sec as a department removed, but for anyone who mains cargo, service or science. I think people can agree that the majority of the rounds feel like extended with an increased chance of the parade-act that is the heroic security team and their fight for justice against the filthy antagonist entering your department for a minute or two.

If people really think that other departments are fun, good for them. But there is an obvious reason why on most non-extended rounds, the only department that gets fully staffed is security.

Being more involved in the event taking place on the station is just way way more fun than digging a hole, or making a nice soufflé. Despite multiple efforts to make it easier for players to get involved in a round in a meaningful way [science making shit, hydroponics growing medicine and food, cargo ordering things to help shit happen, and the bar serving as a social-gathering spot for events to initiate], nobody has any reason to be involved or tactful in an the antagonist's actions, more or less because they are meant to be afraid for their life. 

I think I'm rambling, cause I'm a bit of a fence sitter on this topic... But my main point is that most departments have the capacity to counter-balance antagonists. Better than security in some cases. But security is the only department that gets valids. And as a result, no other department is urged to do anything except for security, if they did it would spoil the round.

 

My recommendation would be to increase the ability for departments to have valids. Introduce the concept of 'a crewmember's arrest' if you need to. Nothing too overboard, murdering someone should still get their character banned and all that, but just open the window for people to do stuff.

Heck, have implants for some Eridani businessmen designed to suppress fear, prescribed as the result of pissing themselves at the prospect of getting fired, and use that as an excuse for people doing dumb things that have them chasing after antagonists and probably dying.

Edited by Aphelion
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The issue isn't sec but antags pretty much all being geared towards combat, and sec is the combat department. 

If antags were geared towards busting power lines and damaging station infrastructure then we'd be here talking about the "issues with engineering" and how we need to give everyone a little bit of engineering skill so they can get involved when the antags vent the main hall and shut off the engine for the Xth time.

The only real solution is to introduce non-combat antags, however that may be.

Edited by Zundy
Autocorrect changed "geared" to "heated". Pretty based but didn't make sense.
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41 minutes ago, Zundy said:

The only real solution is to introduce non-combat antags, however that may be.

People have a strange confliction towards non-combative antagonists, both group and solo. Wish they didn't, I deeply enjoy playing the more manipulative type of traitor or group-head who doesn't explicitly bait Security by breaking regulations.

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1 hour ago, Zundy said:

The only real solution is to introduce non-combat antags, however that may be.

I kinda agree, but also it's hard to do that with SS13, since a huge appeal of it is the bloat in mechanics relating to violence, pain, and horrible ways to die. RP is fun, but exploiting these things is why combat is so successfully fun, usually.

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In lieu of actually banning the validhunters, oldguard who toe the line of admin action, and people who use sec to get their authority boners/cop roleplay, which I'd prefer, I'm pretty much of the same mind as unclejo.

14 hours ago, Zelmana said:

If we remove security, what will the devs do?

They're insistent on removal of security via death by a thousand papercuts.

half /sarcsm

I'll finally be able to add in fun features without having to run every idea through the filter of "How will security and the types of players who gravitate towards it take this and abuse it?"

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Not much else to say that hasn't already been said. As it stands today I don't really see any major issues with any department, that includes security. I think adding in antags that focus less on combat is the best solution, shifting the focus to research or engineering - possibly others depending on creativity. What I dislike however is antags that just try to be assistant+, doing nothing but walking around the station and chatting to people.

SS13 is at its best, in my opinion, when there are problems to solve in creative ways and that require teamwork. 

3 hours ago, Doxxmedearly said:

I'll finally be able to add in fun features without having to run every idea through the filter of "How will security and the types of players who gravitate towards it take this and abuse it?"

If a feature can be abused, it probably will. Doesn't matter if it's by sec or by the janitor :)

Edited by Rushodan
Still getting better from my eye surgery, mistyped some things due to blurrrrrr
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Security as a department offers gameplay on both extremes of the scale. In extended or low-intensity rounds, you might as well not exist from a gameplay perspective, but the amount of stuff you can (or have to) do slowly creeps up with the amount of bad stuff happening. The sweet spots are when you have literally nothing to do, because you can chairRP in the bar or whatever, or when you have something antag-related that's actually engaging to pursue. This essentially writes off a ton of stuff like random welderbombs, ninjas stealing the spare at 00:30, corrupt form wizards, and more or less anything related to malf AI, because all of those are things that you tend to get agitated into trying to deal with while having no way of actually doing anything about it.

This doesn't really tend to happen to any other department -- nobody starts yelling at paramedics for not being able to go and locate someone dying somewhere on the station with no sensors or GPS -- but when you have pressure being put on you from multiple angles to do something about the bad thing happening and you can't actually stop the bad thing unless the bad thing basically lets itself get caught, it can get very old very quick. You also have a dynamic where a portion of the playerbase holds two very opposite views on security in parallel and without a shred of irony -- the idea that security is monopolising all of the interesting antag behaviour while simultaneously being expected to teleport to medical on command to deal with the latest group of raiders who've walked down virology stairs and interrupted the roleplay session in reception.

I feel like a lot of the non-security playerbase wants to have their cake and eat it too regarding antagonist behaviour -- security is expected to get the 'shitters' into the brig (or deadchat) ASAP to appease people who'd rather not be disturbed pursuing their quieter extended roleplay moments, but those selfsame people will turn around a little later and start pointing fingers when more 'interesting' antagonism (which is subjective anyway) is interrupted by often-realistic consequences.

In any case, all this thread is doing so far is showing that people are shit at debating this kind of thing in good faith. Being criticised for not engaging event characters with admin-level gear on a canon event round is one thing (yeah, let me just essentially permakill my character while bending over backwards to the doublethink here -- security monopolises antag/event stuff too often except when I think they should push things into a gunfight ASAP, in which case how dare you not do your job???), but when any and all arguments regarding security eventually get boiled down in some respect to the same vague, passive-aggressive accusations of the entire department's being bullies in some way or another it really does make you think.

tl;dr I don't know who Carver is but his post has all the hot takes you need, read it instead

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23 hours ago, Triogenix said:

And last but not least, the difference in action between canon and non-canon rounds is super obvious. This is relatively minor, but oh my god is it annoying seeing how situations are approached differently during events and then during regular secret rounds by security. I think this was highlighted best during the first incursion event with the "Inspection" of the Aurora by Sol, where, a crewmember was murdered, a gun was pointed at the captain, multiple crewmembers were beaten badly, and there was no engagement by security, even once the ERT was called(though they fled I think nearly directly after). Also to mention, I have no idea if the HoS or Captain or all of security were told not to start a fight by the event runners and admins, and if so then I'm sorry, this is just the opinion of someone who was on the outside. I'm sure there's an explanation, but I think it is almost impossible to say that it doesn't look bad/lousy. Especially because then again during the incursion there was a gimmick that was pretty much the same, and because it was a non-canon random event a firefight started and went throughout the whole station. 

Putting aside everything that has already been said about the event being done with admin-spawned gear that was impossible to fight, I was the Head of Security, and that character had no intention of killing soldiers of his home country, much less getting his entire team slaughtered by trying to repel the military force that had them outnumbered and outgunned. This was an IC decision, not just because we'd be PK'd, but it would've happened in a merc round if a similar instance occurred. We were actually getting security ready to fight, but in a covert manner, not overtly charging in guns blazing to our deaths. This was really more of a poorly-run event than anything.

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