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Should we remove loyalty implants in Captain/HoS/IAA roles?


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I believe historically, the main reason why loyalty implants exist in these roles is to make them immune to flash-nonRP-rev conversions, as well as (?) ensuring the most trusted and powerful roles cannot by default become traitors (I might be wrong here).

They were given another Heavy-RP purpose, which is to serve as a hard limit to prevent these roles from acting in certain un-leaderly or un-corporate ways. However, I've lately been wondering exactly how much of a boon this limit is to the general health of the server, in comparison to how much it can stifle the choices the people in these roles can take.

For example, there's a few captains and HoSes that lost their cool in very awesome and justified ways, only to have player complaints made about them because "it doesn't respect their loyalty implant", even if the roleplay they brought to the round was universally accepted as fun (save for the part where it "broke the lore/their character").

Aren't the sort of behaviors loyalty implants trying to prevent behaviors that are already examined and discouraged by the higher RP standards that heads (and IAAs) are held up to? If so, doesn't that make loyalty implants a superfluous and restrictive limit we might be better doing away with?

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The IC purpose of loyalty implants is so that you act in Nanotrasen's interests. If an HoS/Captain lose their cool in a way, but are still acting within bounds and in NT's interests, then there's no point in filing a complaint because the person is still sticking to character, and the limit that being HoS/Captain brings. I don't want to say that the complaint is futile because that'll send a negative message about complaints, but if the HoS is putting his life at risk in order to protect NT assets & interests, then that's fine, within character, and acting out the implant.

For example, there are four nuclear operatives and 5 officers + 1 warden on-station. If one of the operatives is taken down, their equipment is secured, etc. then the HoS should probably (by NT interests) stay somewhere safe, like the bridge (since the Warden has armory access and the HoS needs to make sure the others heads of staff are safe), and coordinate Security from there because to go hunting for the operatives is risking his/her life unnecessarily and not in NT's interests because it's like cutting the head off of the snake in the case of death. Now though, if there's four operatives and an officer is shot while another one is undergoing surgery, then it WOULD be in NT's interests for you to either push for an ERT request or help your officers repel the intruders because of a lack of manpower. The captain could do the same if they have sufficient weapons training, but the same thing sticks for both of them: Do not do it unnecessarily perilously such as going alone.

In conclusion, I believe the loyalty implant is serving its purpose of making implanted heads of staff think twice on "Is this helping the station?" both OOC'ly and IC'ly because an HoS or Captain losing their gear can spell disaster for the station in both OOC and IC terms; as such, I personally don't believe in removing the implant from HoS/Captains.

As for IAAs, I'm iffy about this. If they don't have one, then they can have friends, be biased, and all around be a nuisance to specific people because they annoyed one of their friends. This could lead to some interesting RP, I'd admit, but I'm more worried about something drastic like somebody getting demoted because the IAA managed to convince a head of staff, but the person didn't really do something bad. On the other hand, a loyalty implanted IAA doesn't really stop you from having a social life (as everybody seems to believe). I always believed that loyalty implants have a varying effect from (at least) making you have NT's interests in mind to being a drone to NT (at most). An IAA having friends on the station doesn't stop them from doing their job because at the end of the day, during an investigation, NT's interests are on the brain, and stop bias. Go drink (in moderation because it's not in NT's interests to get shitfaced), go converse with your friend in atmospherics (until there's a complaint that needs to be filed), but keep in mind to just have a look around every now and then to make sure SOP is being followed. You're not a drone! You're still you! You love (NANOTRASEN) talking to people? That's fine. You love (PLASMA) having a walk around the station instead of being cooped up in your office like you think you're supposed to? That's fine too! Just don't forget you have a job to do, and that you have to keep NT's interests in mind.

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I do not think a lot of HoSes put that much thought into their situation (trying to stay out of harm's way to remain effective), and the implants only work as far as the specific HoS/Captain/player believes they are protecting NT's interests.

A good HoS or captain player should be looking out for NanoTrasen's interests implant or not, because they realistically wouldn't have been promoted to that position otherwise. What the implant does is limit these cool moments where captains/HoS might willingly choose to disobey orders due to personal convictions and beliefs, and it takes out a lot of potential for "human vs corporate" drama as the people in charge are basically forced to act like mindless drones through an edgy brainwashing system.

As for the IAAs, I threw them in because they're worth the discussion too, but I'm perfectly fine with them keeping the implants. Most of their role was built around being cold, obedient, and putting full priority in ensuring NT rules are being enforced, while the captain and HoS roles are not so much about that.

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Guest Marlon Phoenix

The implant, as it stands, is something I've come to dislike.

We are a high-RP server; the examples Tish provides of corruption in the IA can still be responded with character complaints, incident reports, or admin intervention.We have super sensitive jobs IRL of which the employees are loyal, without IRL loyalty implants.

It removes from RP more than it gives, and IC creativity is met with OOC punishment because "implant", so HoS or Captains, Wardens or IA's can never, ever do anything antagonistic or "not within NT's interests" without threat of OOC retaliation.

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...the implants only work as far as the specific HoS/Captain/player believes they are protecting NT's interests.

...captains/HoS might willingly choose to disobey orders due to personal convictions and beliefs


That can be done even with an implant, Frances. CC may order something, but you might not perceive it as protecting NT's interests. That's where you disobey orders, but under your own belief of NT interests. We can take Elena's situation where there was an unknown lifeform on board that committed murder and could use their whole body as a weapon. CC ordered it to be contained, but Elena was probably thinking "I can contain it if it's dead, protect station personnel, the station, and NT's interests are safe." Also, once again, they're not forced to act like mindless drones. "Keep NT's interests in mind" is totally different from "I love < NANOTRASEN >. I love < PLASMA >." One being where you still have your own willpower, freedom of choice, and the other being a mindless drone, get me?

Also, yeah, we pretty much have the same thought train for IAA's role, Frances.

Jackboot: I've only punished one whitelistee so far for doing something against implant, and that captain gave a really jumpy non-sec Tajaran an energy pistol before walking along his merry way; said Tajaran then sparked a massive firefight in starboard primary after the shuttle docked. I personally don't see how loyalty implant removes from RP when I've only had one case of needing to punish an implantee for doing something horrendous that led to massive rule fractures from 5+ people. Apologies if I'm not seeing your point, but I personally don't see how the implant is removing RP.

Also, as a note, Wardens aren't implanted. Only HoS, Captain, and IAA require loyalty implantation.

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As a pretty regular primarily IAA character, i think the implant can ADD to the RP just as much as it can deduce. And if this goes through we might see more IAA's but i'll request i still retain mine. Playing IAA is unlike playing any other role on the station specifically because of the implant. You aren't supposed to make friends, you are supposed to remain unbiased, no matter how much you detest someone. Having an implant doesn't make you a drone. your can still have feelings, and you can even try to go and make friends, but the implant forces you to act in a certain manner. it makes you second guess every decision and affect your psyche on a very deep level. It's literally impossible to not make connections, start to respect or admire someone, or be unbiased when you remember past grudges and wrongdoings. This doesn't mean you can't have any feelings, it just means that in the end your feelings don't matter one bit. even if you don't want to, even if you might lose a friend, or be physically abused for following Central's orders (as i was in multiple Mutiny rounds when you become the only advocate for burning people), you HAVE to do it. Tell me that can't make interesting RP.

All IAA treat their Implants differently, and that's a good thing. you can justify the variations with a lot of ways (such as just different models). IAA that reduce their implant's purpose to "keep NT's interests going" shouldn't be reprimanded IMO(as long as the things they do are in moderation). And IAA that are prevented from even lying should still be available to play, after all, you won't be able to act that way against your own will in any other job.

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That can be done even with an implant, Frances. CC may order something, but you might not perceive it as protecting NT's interests. That's where you disobey orders, but under your own belief of NT interests.


Apologies if I'm not seeing your point, but I personally don't see how the implant is removing RP.

Good point. However, I actually think that NT's interests have some very clear limit, and as long as staff/events/lore keeps playing NT as an affably evil corporation, it would be pretty easy for a NT higher-up to order a captain to sacrifice the station or some of its personnel for the "greater good of NanoTrasen as a whole". Some orders, like being asked to do everything the station humanly can to keep a changeling alive (so they can be studied), are very hard to argue against from a "look out for NT's interests" perspective. And there is no moral event horizon possible here; characters are forced to protect NanoTrasen to the end, without a chance to change their mind, or openly rebel against the corporation.

Yes, captains/HoSes are still allowed some leeway in how they RP things (Drew justified the very law-breaking beating of Jason Sanders by his HoS as "the HoS looking out for the better interests of the station against the inefficiency of higher-ups"), and overall it is not an irredeemably strong argument, but the counterpoint to that is that I don't exactly see why someone would be for loyalty implants.

What is their OOC purpose? To make HoS and captain players weigh their actions before committing them? This is something they should already be doing.

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LI were better back when they were "slavery" devices. You'd have to follow orders given to you with all your effort. However, if you could think of a loophole in your brain, you could trick the implant and foil the intentions of whoever implanted you.

However, we're at a problem where the person with the implant IS the one giving orders. That doesn't really work. What's the point of giving them an implant, then? So that they don't go against regulations? If the HoS, Cap, and IAA are completely bound to NT, that means they should never be put in a situation where they'd be arrested, right? But they're "not above the law", so that just makes it weird...

Honestly, the implants just make the roles less fun. They were put in to make sec/heads immune to rev rounds, back where we could just flash someone and then lol down with NT. Now they're meant to...stop chucklefucking behavior? All three of those positions require immense amount of training, lorewise. Screening, too. Only the finest can (read: should) be these roles. There doesn't need to be an excuse to bwoink them or point fingers at them whenever they do something silly; They shouldn't be in the first place.

Then there's the whole "NT's interests". What are those, exactly? Because I'm pretty sure in 90% of the situations you can get tossed in, NT's interests are already being preserved. Doing your job is enough to preserve NT's interests. Unless they're very clearly and explicitly explained somewhere, I don't think we should be using "NT's interests" as a basis for anything. (we don't even know if they're good or evil or neutral or anything)

Not having implants gives more freedom for players in these rolls. Instead of "The HoS is definately on our side because he's implanted", there's either "The HoS is on our side because he's a good, professional employee and a trustworthy individual" or "The HoS is really, really fucking shifty...", and I honestly think having to decide for yourself rather automatically assuming he's pure is the better option.

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I've had good experiences on certain other servers that removed the default loyalty implants. Up too and including an ad-hoc mutiny/revolution round during a traitor round, sparked by the HOS and CMO.

I personally would not feel the slightest twinge of regret or guilt to see loyalty implants for Cap/HOS go the way of the dodo.

Oh right, having the Captain and the HOS implanted also blunts the fear and horror that one should probably be feeling with such a fundamental violation of human rights. Loyalty implants literally forcibly change your brain.

Think about it for a second. If such an object existed in real life you could be forcibly implanted, and then be forced to brutally murder your loved ones and display their bodies in front of the nearest mall and not feel even the slightest twinge of guilt, at the most extreme level. While NT implants are not that extreme, they still alter your mind and are FUCKING TERRIFYING.

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Honestly, the implants just make the roles less fun.


This is the crux of the issue. I've made my opinion clear in this thread, but to sum up the important bits in a tl;dr version:


  1. The ability of a captain to maintain a firm grip on his crew should not come from OOC reassurance that he cannot be selected as an antagonist, but from leadership qualities that the individual character can exhibit. This is not the case at present.
  2. Loyalty implants are a de facto "end conflict" button, especially since paperwork isn't followed to the letter and there are no repercussions since the presence of a traitor makes the round non-canon.

We can still keep these roles from being selected as antagonists from the round start without using a Deus Ex Implant. Just like we have age and race requirements for various head roles, we can also stipulate lack of criminal history and affiliation with terrorist organizations for Captain and Head of Security roles.

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