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Hivenet is bad


Bedshaped

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I'm curious real quick. What is this opinion based on, beyond a basic overview of it?


Have there been cases where hivenet has ruined antag stuff?

Have there been any cases where the presence of it has granted an outright and clear advantage that is unfair?

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I'm willing to limit hivenet should limitations be required. That said, I won't really base these requirements on hypotheticals - if hivenet is proven to be an issue in a demonstrated scenario then I will consider a means to balance it to scenarios of a similar nature. That said, as far as I know hivenet has caused no issues since its implementation.


As to limitations, a range limitation is not one I will consider. There are more preferable alternatives.


Finally, as others have said, hivenet provides absolutely no access to binary for a Vaurca.


Post-finally, perhaps it would be constructive to know why you think this way - is it tied to a specific in game event, or what?

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I didn't realise the extent of it before I played AI today, so it's pretty much a cursory reading:


Bound synthetics have to listen to it constantly and it's hyper-annoying.


It gives Vaurca an incredibly overpowered advantage.


It doesn't appear to make lore-sense (up to a loremaster). This part bugs (:B) me the most; what mechanisms can a bug use to have conversations with another bug an unlimited distance away? I would expect hiveminds, are more about conveying feelings or simple directives; not so much about having entire conversations about the goings on in the station.

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Well considering we have neural sockets jammed in our head exclusively for the purpose of hivenet, and a relay on Tau Ceti, it'd make sense.

It isn't even that big of an advantage, it's no worse than a headset. We don't even really use it to 'ruin antag plans' or anything, mostly just banter.

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They ain't bugs, though. They space bugs. From space. With cybernetics and shit.


Also, there is obviously a thing to be made for the potential for metagame. However, that potential is restricted primarily by low numbers of Vaurca in round (usually only two per round, maybe three). In order for us to remove or nerf hivenet, I'd need to see that potential actually being applied in a tangible fashion.

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Guest Marlon Phoenix

This thread is hilarious. We've gone from rallying against it to wanting to give it to the rest of the crew. :D


Hivenet has been in the works for awhile, thanks to Lordfowl. It was originally pitched by me way back around last month. It's also been foreshadowed several times by news articles for the mendell bugle.


It acts like an internal radio headset. The AI can listen in on it, so assuming no synthetic antags the AI or borgs can alert the rest of the crew ASAP if they hear shenanigans, but not vice-versa. You can get one as a human if you get an implant and surgically implant it in your head. I don't know why you would do that, since the Vaurca probably would not appreciate it.


Eventually the Skrell are going to get a similar feature but it will be a 1 on 1 communication system rather than a hivemind.

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All I really want is a way for the AI to mute it

 

This seems reasonable, since afaik the AI can mute any other channel by turning off the intercoms around its core

 

No. AI have a magical captain level headset built into them that they can't take off and toggle channels for, as far as I am aware. The intercoms next to them serve a different purpose.


Unless I am missing something, fixing that might be an idea.

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All I really want is a way for the AI to mute it

 

This seems reasonable, since afaik the AI can mute any other channel by turning off the intercoms around its core

 

Uh, that isn't how you mute a channel. You do it through tcomms.


Either scripting, or by hardcore disabling equipment. Which would lead into making hivenet potentially being linked or bounced through tcomms. Makes sense since the Vaurca nodes are a butt long distance away.

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Unless the race has extreme mechanical adjustments to it in the form of outlined expectations of behavior such as the AI and its cyborgs, then no one should ever have the ability to communicate with each other from across the station that cannot be logged by telecommunications.


Changelings and xenos don't count, as they're biologically interconnected within an actual hivemind. Vaurca may be literal ants, but it hardly makes sense as to how they maintain a psychic network with each other so far away from the main hive. Especially when many Vaurca are not a part of the same Hive, it doesn't make much sense as to how they'd be able to work together and communicate with each other on the station level.


It's not a matter of whether people will metagame or not with this and if we have a trust in our playerbase to do the right thing or not, what is important is the balance and design of this.


Hivenet does not contribute well to either.


No one should be that powerful in-game for little risk or return.


If the AI fucks up, it gets an emitter set-up pointed at its core. If the borgs fuck up, they all get blown up at the cyborg control console.


I highly doubt every single character is xenobiologically informed enough to know the Vaurca have a communication network almost entirely similar to binary. The Vaurca do not have any outstanding tradeoffs to warrant being rewarded a private rip-off network of binary.

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Unless the race has extreme mechanical adjustments to it in the form of outlined expectations of behavior such as the AI and its cyborgs, then no one should ever have the ability to communicate with each other from across the station that cannot be logged by telecommunications.

The AI is the one logging it and keeping track of it. And there are expectations for it.

 

Changelings and xenos don't count, as they're biologically interconnected within an actual hivemind. Vaurca may be literal ants, but it hardly makes sense as to how they maintain a psychic network with each other so far away from the main hive. Especially when many Vaurca are not a part of the same Hive, it doesn't make much sense as to how they'd be able to work together and communicate with each other on the station level.

They have a relay in Tau Ceti, and it's bounced through our tcomms.

 

It's not a matter of whether people will metagame or not with this and if we have a trust in our playerbase to do the right thing or not, what is important is the balance and design of this.

Yes it is a matter of if the players are trusted with it. We've done pretty well so far.

 

Hivenet does not contribute well to either.

Contribute well to what?

 

No one should be that powerful in-game for little risk or return.

What's so powerful about it, in practice? No hypotheticals.

 

If the AI fucks up, it gets an emitter set-up pointed at its core. If the borgs fuck up, they all get blown up at the cyborg control console.

Even though I don't like this attitude, can't you just shoot or arrest vaurca? Does hivenet just render us immune to bullets now?

 

I highly doubt every single character is xenobiologically informed enough to know the Vaurca have a communication network almost entirely similar to binary. The Vaurca do not have any outstanding tradeoffs to warrant being rewarded a private rip-off network of binary.

How is character knowledge of it relevant?

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I highly doubt every single character is xenobiologically informed enough to know the Vaurca have a communication network almost entirely similar to binary. The Vaurca do not have any outstanding tradeoffs to warrant being rewarded a private rip-off network of binary.

 

Except, you know, that EMP half-kills them, people treat them like shit, flashes can permanently blind them, they take more damage from lasers, they can't wear gloves or helmets, they don't heal...


But, you know.


Yeah, aside from those they have no weaknesses and this completely unbalances them. :roll:


This whole thread is basically another case of 'AAAAH SOMETHING IS DIFFERENT AND POTENTIALLY EXPLOITABLE CUT IT NOW WAAH"

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Contribute well to what?

 

Balance or design. It doesn't contribute well to either.

 

What's so powerful about it, in practice? No hypotheticals.

 

Ease of information. Being able to know what's happening to another Vaurca through another means of communication that almost no other race can functionally utilize without R&D fuckery is pretty huge. You can imagine how many situations this will apply to, rather than what it could. A Vaurca will eventually be a target of an antagonist's plans, but not before a cry for help goes out and then the AI+the entirety of the Vaurcese station population gets wind of it.


That's why it'll lead to some issues. It's more than just the Vaurca being able to use it, it's that the AI can end up utilizing this information and going full validhuntOS on the poor SOB that just so happened to pick the wrong kind of target. Vaurca may be whitelisted, AI is not.

 

Even though I don't like this attitude, can't you just shoot or arrest vaurca? Does hivenet just render us immune to bullets now?

 

Shooting Vaurca should not be the solution to hivenet.

 

How is character knowledge of it relevant?

 

Because a character may not use knowledge external to what the character knows, as it is listed in the rules. People will have to RP that they don't know what a hivenet is on the basis of not being a xenobiologist and knowing the functions of an alien.



 

Also, Kaed, if I may:

 

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I absolve you of your sins but you are not permitted to be salty in this discussion, there is little reason to be salty over people disagreeing with you.

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complaints that Kaed is being snide

 

If I seem rude, it's because I think this topic is largely produced by reactionary paranoia towards something new and significantly different from normal racial loadouts. Nearly every argument against hivespeak here involves wild, alarmist speculation that involves either people being shitlers, or being ignorant baboons who don't know how other races work. I don't imagine the idea that 'hey, vaurca are all semi-telepathic' is such an outrageous concept in a sci-fi future setting that Urist McGreytide will be unable to wrap his poor, dense brain around it. It has a large amount of available oversight by synethics, a number of counters and intercepts that, say, lingspeak does not have.


Additionally, almost no one plays vaurca. I am all for giving them an interesting mechanic and telling the random tator who managed to get caught because he can't be bothered to understand the abilities of the species he is trying to attack that he can 'git gud'. It is essentially no different from trying to hold a borg unit hostage and telling it to not call for help over the radio, but oops, it has binary. And synthetics are not even whitelisted, and far more commonly played.


Failing is a learning experience, and when something new is introduced, yes, there are going to be people unaware of the new stuff that get caught off guard by it.


That is not a reason to remove the feature, it is a reason for people to start learning all the features of the game.

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If I seem rude, it's because I think this topic is largely produced by reactionary paranoia towards something new and significantly different from normal racial loadouts.

 

There's a thing called developmental restraint. Giving Vaurca a psychic network to themselves for no real justifiable reason than "it'd be cool, no one has ever done that" is not a restrained nor reasonable decision.


"But why not!" is not an argument for keeping it and maintaining racial differences, then, if you want to argue that the game should not be equally fair for everyone.


A game's not fun for anyone if you intentionally fill one playstyle with power and give distribute nothing to anyone else in the same motion.

 

Nearly every argument against hivespeak here involves wild, alarmist speculation that involves either people being shitlers, or being ignorant baboons who don't know how other races work. I don't imagine the idea that 'hey, vaurca are all semi-telepathic' is such an outrageous concept in a sci-fi future setting that Urist McGreytide will be unable to wrap his poor, dense brain around it. It has a large amount of available oversight by synethics, a number of counters and intercepts that, say, lingspeak does not have.

 

You're making such a wonderful case by utilizing strawmans and personally insulting your argumentative opponents. I really do want to continue listening to your radicalized and emotionally upset-sounding opinions, as they bring intense intellectual discussion to the table. I am sure that the lore team is very much appreciative of you being such a splendid representative of lore writing.

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