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Major End Traitoring and Dying


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Okay, so, yesterday there was an antagonist round with a virologist as an antagonist. He created GBS and found ways to infect to infect specific people. It was not airborne and it did not have the capacity to kill the entire station. He infected people through roleplay, for example, he found a character who needed ADHD meds and supplied them with a spiked pill. In the end, roughly 3-5 people died in spectacular fashion. But the station also went to work on finding a cure, to which the antagonist countered. And then, once the station had finally figured out that they had a Trojan horse among their team, he was arrested.

This was reported as murderboning during the round. But I dismissed the case. Here is my reasoning for it:

  • The virus release wasn't just an, "Oops, you're all infected now," -- it required a certain amount of finesse and roleplay to find the means with which to infect people without being overly obvious about it (the ADHD meds, for example);
  • There was roleplay for the rest of the station from it. Unlike with station wide plasma floods or bombings, the station actually had a lot of opportunity to create roleplay from the situation, and they did. This is kind of the main goal of an antagonist: to involve the station in something, a story. And a GBS that kills very specific people in a controlled fashion is something on par with killing someone and leaving the corpse on display.


Let's expand this a little. This is where the first part of the thread's title comes in as well. GBS is effectively a major end traitor item: it has the capacity to affect a lot of people. Bombs, control over the AI, atmos, etcetera, are similar. A lot of the times, we seem to just think that those items should be off-limits to traitors, the end. And that point of view is valid in certain situations, but in others, I think it's very restrictive. If we don't allow traitors to use powerful tools, then everything devolves into a a cycle of: e-sword -> escape -> get arrested/die -> end of traitor's round. What do we think about this? If the more powerful tools are used properly, then why should we stop anyone from using them simply because of the stigma attached to them?

As for how to use them properly, here is what I outlined to JBoy while discussing the same matter over OOC:

There has to be a chance to create roleplay out the deaths and the situation. This rules out most cases of massive plasma fires, bombings, etcetera. They may technically engage the station, but there's no chance to make a story out of it.


The second, somewhat tangental point it raised, is the fact that people dying and being removed from the round is frowned upon. But, why? Okay, I do get some of it. Everyone's here to have fun, and we should act respectful towards that fact. That is to say, enjoyment at the expense of others is not something that's a fantastic idea. (*cough*don't be a dick rule*cough*.) But we should also take into consideration and accept the fact that a certain amount of death, even if round-ending death, is often required to tell a story.

In the little case-study above, this death was the GBS-driven gibbing of 3-5 people. For all intents and purposes, the player characters were indeed removed from the round. (As being revived from a GBS gibbing, while possible, is such a complicated procedure that the chances of someone knowing it are almost non-existent. Plus, there's a bug that stops you from doing it, full stop.) But since those deaths weren't exactly meaningless, I don't think it's something anyone should get fussed about? Death and failure are a rather big parts of SS13, and this is true for even a HRP server.

Am I talking sense, or have I lost it completely, gents?

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When I play a round of SS13 that isn't extended I understand that there's a very real risk my character could die.

The rounds only last 2-3 hours. And deaths in SS13 tend to be interesting (or funny) enough that if I do end up dying I'm likely going to be provided some entertainment through the way in which I die (even if it's just watching the station struggle with the mass-bombing of a griefer).

I've always been glad to be killed, because my character's death adds tension to the round, and allows me to contribute to something greater. And who cares if I can't play that character anymore for an hour or two? I'm playing to create a narrative with other people, not just for myself.

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Guest Marlon Phoenix

The bizarrely hostile attitude towards dying and hostile antagonists is why I tend to only enable antagonist during deadhour. Just last night, I was a changeling Houssam HoP. I picked off 7 crew members, including the HoS. The only mumbling I really received was out of the initial victim because I enacted my plan very early in the round - because I only had 2 hours at most before I had to go.


I didn't just eat them - I gibbed their corpses and made them into -burgers, taking them out of the round. I even had the AI subverted to recognize me with a code-phrase and to prioritize not ever exposing me.

I went at it how I go at all my secret antagonist plans - I lured them into a secluded area, or perhaps sat them down for a "talk", then baton'd them and dragged them into maintenance for a devouring with a quick "So, tell me something about yourself [so I can better pose as you]."

During this whole thing, people were reacting to the murders. There was only a single security officer, the HoS. Medical would report someone suddenly becoming deceased, before that person mysteriously dropped off the sensors. I even fooled Jaylor into thinking the HoS was an enemy, and eventually ate both of them in the armory, and making the arriving EMT's hallucinate to try and slow their cloning as long as possible.


I started doing these things because in low-pop rounds, it's easier to directly involve people and make murders matter.

In rounds of 30+ people, it's very difficult to remain hidden as an antagonist. Every maintenance tunnel is crawling with security or engineers, and everyone is mouthing off some quip or snarky comment about the string of missing persons. Often the only available tools for antagonist that let them involve the whole of the station are these high-collateral high-damage weapon.

It's a symptom of player expectation. Everyone wants to have the antagonist directly interact with them. They need to feel satisfied that the story went how they want it, even in situations where it would make no sense.

In another example, a traitor was caught breaking into the captain's office, and after failing to convince the Captain to let them go, was escorted out to the main bridge doors where 3 security officers were waiting. The antagonist then pulled out an EMP grenade, detonated it, and fled. All three officers were either IPC or had assisted organs, and instantly died hilariously.

Is this intentional murderbone? Is the intention behind the murder one that doesn't follow the consistency of the action?

That's what all these boil down to: intentions and consistency.

Either that or a population of our playerbase become really unrobust and salty in addition to heavy personal investment in their characters.

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People need to man up about dying, I've been lured into traps and killed by lings. I've been dragged out into space and executed. Both of them were done enjoyably so.

It's gotten to the point where I've no clue what to do as a traitor because I might somehow upset someone because they were in my way at the time. Sure, I don't believe in ganking for the sake of ganking, but if killing off someone benefits your personal goals such as raiding tech storage, but having to kill the Engineer because they couldn't just simply give you the ID, then I think it's justified. Hell, even as an Officer I was frowned upon because I decided to taze an individual that was confirmed to be armed and dangerous. I was told that I should have spoken to the man while being in a dark maintenance tunnel, because apparently it's good rp for my character to put his wellbeing /after/ listening to some villainous monologue.

I feel if you're in a life or death situation or if you made the choice to pack heat, to wield a gun. You should make the first shot, always, because that's what your character would do in that given situation.* If an Engineer tries to cry for help while you mug him, shoot him because he's going to give you away. If you encounter someone who's confirmed to be dangerous, don't pussy foot. Because if you get caught by the cops, or you get killed because you made a shitty call, deal with it.

We're roleplaying in a pretty dangerous universe with terrorists, purple space fish and changelings. Not in a Shakespeare-esque play.

'Shall we converse ere we square for our liveth.'

'Forsooth, we should doth that.'

- Ideal Roleplay

* Depends on the character, but if they're armed. They're probably willing to take a life, no?

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It's a symptom of player expectation. Everyone wants to have the antagonist directly interact with them. They need to feel satisfied that the story went how they want it, even in situations where it would make no sense.


This is exactly why people bitching about extended rounds bothers me. Do you know how many antag rounds I play and the only interaction I get is "What was that?" "Oh, someone bombed medical." If we could all enjoy extended then who gives a shit what the antag is doing? Did they ignore you? You got to play in a high stress extended round. Did they engage you? I bet that was a fucking blast, right?

I avoid antags like the plague. I've only had to deal with a few that weren't nuke ops, cause nuke ops tend to fuck everyone's days.

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So the policy on what constitutes as ok extreme traitoring and not ok extreme traitoring hasn't changed, at all? Sorry if I sound like a sarcastic dickish cynic, but this is a discussion we've had several times in the past and it hasn't shown to have changed anything.

If you can justify that your actions as an antagonist, or anybody else, for that matter, led to more interesting situations, and prove that you didn't break the rules... what's the problem?

Yeah, I get it's not fair to have your head lopped off in a sudden throttle of escalation. It can be shitty to die with no anticipation of what's happening. Once you die anyway, there's nothing you can do about it besides whine. From my experience: Whining about dying "unfairly" to the admins just isn't worth it.

Idealistically, a good antag would give everyone an awesome time because they actually interacted with everyone in a fun way or whatever.

Realistically, good antags get dealt the hand they have and at least push towards perfecting their antagonist play, even if it's an impossible goal. They remain to be good sports even if their role is utter suffering for them.

Honestly, nobody can expect to be perfect by themselves, and that expectation should be shared towards others, too. Remember the human behind the poorly detailed 2d pixels.

So yeah, it does make sense. Maybe it's just not as obvious to other people, and it might be our jobs as vets to explain to people more clearly about what we're all about.

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