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[Policy] Enforce Voice/Face Recognition a bit more [Existing Policy - Binned]


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I thought about this for a while, and I can't think of any way that this could be mechanically enforced, so I'll make it a recommendation on roleplaying rules instead.


It's bugging me when people recognize the name of everyone by their voice and face, even when they're an intruder antagonist or are a voice of a character who doesn't exist via voice mimicry, or who the person identifying them has never met.


Yes, I know it's easy to just read the name on the screen, but how would you just know that is their name? It's not feasible that everyone knows the names and voices of every crewmember on a constantly changing workforce at round start. Maybe in the department you're in would be a reasonable limit.


AI and synths are particularly bad about this and voices on the radio. I've heard so many excuses like 'it was coded into their radio transmission' to explain how they know "Ethar' is the name of the mercenary Ether that the synth's player couldn't spell, who just spoke on the radio for the first time in the round.


This would create interesting scenarios where you have to describe someone based on their physical features, which is a lot more involving than running around until you see someone whose name is the one you're looking for when you hover your cursor over them. People have an opportunity to change clothing and hair and not be instantly caught because their name is still Bobert Bobby, the assistant traitor who was spotted breaking into maintenance by a doctor from across the room, after which he immediately ran away, and the doctor never saw more than the back of their head and a glimpse of their face.


Basically, unless you're actually interacting with someone in close proximity, and they are wearing an ID, you should not be able to identify them with perfect accuracy on your first meeting, unless I suppose you share a department. Get to know your coworkers instead of relying on assumptions of recognition.


I'm also not sure at what point it was presumed that synths can recognize the name of anyone talking on comms by [insert vague technobabble], but that shit should stop too. Faces of crewmembers, I can see. They have a database to work with on that.

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This would be really hard to enforce mechanically. I guess the only way would be to make everyone show up as 'Unknown' unless examined while they have their ID visible from a certain distance. But that doesn't cover AI or people who introduce themselves.


It would be much easier to just adjust what the rules consider 'metagaming', and enforce it via admins, much like how we expect people not to shriek "AI MALF" the second they see a dark blue APC or 'WIZARD IN THE BAR" because some guy in a gentleman's suit and hat appeared in a cloud of smoke.


The AI announcing "Officer is being attacked by unknown intruder in engineering"serves the point just as well as 'Officer Jenkins is being attacked by intruder Ether in engineering."


The AI recognition tree should roughly work like this

-Someone is on the radio

-Can you track this person?

-If yes, can you see their face? (If their face is concealed, you should still be able to identify their ID's job designation by activating your sechud if you have one)

-If yes, are they on the crew manifest?

-If Yes, then you can assume you know who they are.


If any of those were 'no', then you cannot immediately identify the person talking on the radio, unless you have previously spoken to them and they identified themselves.

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But what if my character knows your character but OOC you don't remember my character and your character interacting? So when my character goes up to yours and says, "Hey Kaed McKaed", you might say I was metagaming.


Then it becomes a he said, she said scenario as there's no way to prove it either way. Not saying it's a bad idea, I just don't know how it could be realistically enforced.

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But what if my character knows your character but OOC you don't remember my character and your character interacting? So when my character goes up to yours and says, "Hey Kaed McKaed", you might say I was metagaming.


Then it becomes a he said, she said scenario as there's no way to prove it either way. Not saying it's a bad idea, I just don't know how it could be realistically enforced.

 

Yeah, that's a tough one, especially since antag rounds are common and considered to be noncanon. I would say everyone is assumed to not know anyone else outside of department unless you are IC friends. "I met them once three weeks ago in a round, I can't remember if it was an antag round or not though, guh."


Additionally, if you walked up to this theoretical Kaed McKaed and said greeted him, he'd have his ID on probably (which you could verify with a glance), and the point is moot.

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I actually thought of a stupid mechanical idea. How about you don't recognize anyone's voice over the radio unless you examine the individual speaking over it in person, and it corrects the voice for the rest of the round?


Granted that would be imaginably griefy but I figure it's a fun idea.

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I actually thought of a stupid mechanical idea. How about you don't recognize anyone's voice over the radio unless you examine the individual speaking over it in person, and it corrects the voice for the rest of the round?


Granted that would be imaginably griefy but I figure it's a fun idea.

 

I had an idea like this, but it would be cross rounds now that we have semi permanent character slots, I think it may be feasible (maybe even get to name them whatever you want to, though that could be abused.)

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I feel like this would need to also have a whitelist sort of thing. For people you know well IC, so they're auto-recognized at round start and you always see their name on the radio.


It might also need to be paired with descriptors that can be applied to unknown voices, like . So, you see masculine unathi voice says, "What iss with thiss radio?" These are automatically applied based on your character, but voice mimicry would have to have a way to falsify that too.


The concept of self-designating something to put to a voice could also work, allowing you to click on an unidentified voice and designate it as something (Unathi Intruder A), though their name still exists and it will sync up if you manage to see them and hear them talk off-radio?


It's a difficult prospect to enforce mechanically.

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But what would the rules be and how would that be enforced?

 

Uhm, I already discussed this earlier in the thread, but I guess I can run through it again. This is roughly what I would consider acceptable, non-metagamey realism.


-Don't identify the names of people over radio outside your department, unless you're friends with them or they've told you.

-Don't recognize people's identity in person unless you've been in close proximity and been able to see their ID or something, unless you have a reason to previously know them well

-Take into account distance and environmental aspects. If you see a mercenary from the other side of a dim maintenance tunnel, through a closed airlock, you should probably only be able to discern 'some guy in a red hardsuit is over there', not "HEPHAESTUS INDUSTRIES COMMANDOS IN SCIENCE MAINT SEC HELP", regardless of if their ID actually says they are a Hephaestus Industries Commando"

-AI (and synths) cannot recognize voices and names instantly over the radio. They can recognize faces immediately though, if they center their camera on someone and they are not wearing a mask. Borg can read ID cards at close proximity, but AI cannot read ID cards, only faces, clothing, body features, and the job tag that shows up on SecHUD. (though maybe add a feature that lets AI see an ID you use on a camera, similar to papers?)

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But what would the rules be and how would that be enforced?

 

Uhm, I already discussed this earlier in the thread, but I guess I can run through it again. This is roughly what I would consider acceptable, non-metagamey realism.


-Don't identify the names of people over radio outside your department, unless you're friends with them or they've told you.

-Don't recognize people's identity in person unless you've been in close proximity and been able to see their ID or something, unless you have a reason to previously know them well

-Take into account distance and environmental aspects. If you see a mercenary from the other side of a dim maintenance tunnel, through a closed airlock, you should probably only be able to discern 'some guy in a red hardsuit is over there', not "HEPHAESTUS INDUSTRIES COMMANDOS IN SCIENCE MAINT SEC HELP", regardless of if their ID actually says they are a Hephaestus Industries Commando"

-AI (and synths) cannot recognize voices and names instantly over the radio. They can recognize faces immediately though, if they center their camera on someone and they are not wearing a mask. Borg can read ID cards at close proximity, but AI cannot read ID cards, only faces, clothing, body features, and the job tag that shows up on SecHUD. (though maybe add a feature that lets AI see an ID you use on a camera, similar to papers?)

 

-It's a fair assumption all of the co-workers are well acquainted with one another. It's a part of the game to call each other by name unless there are other circumstances such as voice changers. You're not going to break this habit very easily by yourself, neither is the staff team.

-Again, a habit that will be difficult to break. This is a third person top-down game, not a 1st person one.

-Most people already abide by that principle. Those that don't are typically metagaming anyway.

-Yes they can, people wearing IDs give electronic readouts to synthetics. How do you think SecHUDs and medical HUDs work? The AI can enable both. They're directly wired to the telecommunications system and can show for themselves in-game what individuals said something, what their species is, and what language they were speaking in addition to the message spoken. This console can be found and used by any individual in the game to infer who's speaking over comms. Take the following image as an example from Fallout which operates on the same principles when it comes to identification recognition.

 

5fd4028e43e3717db7b57bf8a35f9552.jpg.


Again, though, why are you telling staff to do what they're already doing as part of our policy? Writing new rules merely junks up the rule page with subtle nuances of roleplay that aren't worth clogging up an already expansive document. As a community member, it is your responsibility to report rule violations straight away or we assume they're not happening or it's fine by you. We have never made it a point to be proactive when it comes to IC nuance cases and slapping people about for it. We take OOC issues more seriously when it comes to being proactive but as part of our policy we attempt to interfere as little with roleplay as possible. As personal testimony you're usually the last person that I can think of to be adminhelping about these sorts of things, but you never practice what you preach. Why?

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-It's a fair assumption all of the co-workers are well acquainted with one another. It's a part of the game to call each other by name unless there are other circumstances such as voice changers. You're not going to break this habit very easily by yourself, neither is the staff team.

-Again, a habit that will be difficult to break. This is a third person top-down game, not a 1st person one.

-Most people already abide by that principle. Those that don't are typically metagaming anyway.

-Yes they can, people wearing IDs give electronic readouts to synthetics. How do you think SecHUDs and medical HUDs work? The AI can enable both. They're directly wired to the telecommunications system and can show for themselves in-game what individuals said something, what their species is, and what language they were speaking in addition to the message spoken. This console can be found and used by any individual in the game to infer who's speaking over comms. Take the following image as an example from Fallout which operates on the same principles when it comes to identification recognition.


[scrubbed]


Again, though, why are you telling staff to do what they're already doing as part of our policy? Writing new rules merely junks up the rule page with subtle nuances of roleplay that aren't worth clogging up an already expansive document. As a community member, it is your responsibility to report rule violations straight away or we assume they're not happening or it's fine by you. We have never made it a point to be proactive when it comes to IC nuance cases and slapping people about for it. We take OOC issues more seriously when it comes to being proactive but as part of our policy we attempt to interfere as little with roleplay as possible. As personal testimony you're usually the last person that I can think of to be adminhelping about these sorts of things, but you never practice what you preach. Why?

 

-No, it's not. I do not know the names and voices of every person at my place of work. I would presume few people do, because you don't interact with everyone at your workplace regularly, especially in a workplace that has distinct departments that most people are not allowed to access the entirety of at will. I'm also recommending this be enforced for reasons such as 'fake names' showing up on voice changers being immediately recognized. Bob Bobert doesn't exist, how does everyone immediately recognize his voice when it shows up on the radio due to voice mimicry mechanics? If that doesn't make sense, why instantly would recognizing any other strange voice make sense?

-There were a lot of behaviors that had to be beaten out of people when we created the server rules, like shrieking AI MALF over comms the second a dark blue APC shows up. And yet, here we are now, and hardly anyone does that now. "it's difficult' is not a reason to dismiss an idea.

-That's a fair point, and I'll concede the ID thing for AI.

-The staff is NOT doing this, or if they are, it is not happening consistently. Not even a week ago I had that specific example happen about someone shrieking in all caps that Hephaestus Industries Commandos were in command maint after spotting us through a doorway in a dimly lit maintenance. I ahelped it then, and was just given a shrug by the moderator who replied. I was told he could see it on their ID so it was valid. It was, in fact, the very inspiration for this thread.


What personal testimony are you looking at exactly? This conjecture of yours doesn't seem to have any grounding in what I seem to remember doing on server. I frequently ahelp things I think are shitty metagaming and am told to deal with it. I also don't think, even if you are correct, that my behavior on server has anything to do with the validity of this suggestion. This is a frequent topic I see you make on suggestions, trying to dismiss them on the basis that the suggester is somehow hypocritical or barely plays on the server. What the crap does that have to do with the actual content of the suggestion? Stop doing this, Delta. Attacking a person to devalue their ideas is one of the most basic logical fallacies.

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Guest Marlon Phoenix

I agree with the spirit of the OP, and the standards can be upheld, but I also feel that there are way too many circumstances in which judgement on this would be arbitrary.


Identifying someone on the radio is an intended feature - I think that's why we have voice changing masks that let you spoof people over the radio. For all mechanical purposes the radio logs who's talking in both the actual chat bar as well as when you go to search the radio history in t-comms transcripts.


Asking people to not recognize the voice is nice.


In person, I can only suggest that if it's dark enough, someone with an ID is marked as 'unknown' until you shine a flashlight on them or get night vision. That's probably the only method by which to not immeasurably cause havoc.

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-No, it's not. I do not know the names and voices of every person at my place of work. I would presume few people do, because you don't interact with everyone at your workplace regularly, especially in a workplace that has distinct departments that most people are not allowed to access the entirety of at will. I'm also recommending this be enforced for reasons such as 'fake names' showing up on voice changers being immediately recognized. Bob Bobert doesn't exist, how does everyone immediately recognize his voice when it shows up on the radio due to voice mimicry mechanics? If that doesn't make sense, why instantly would recognizing any other strange voice make sense?

-There were a lot of behaviors that had to be beaten out of people when we created the server rules, like shrieking AI MALF over comms the second a dark blue APC shows up. And yet, here we are now, and hardly anyone does that now. "it's difficult' is not a reason to dismiss an idea.

-That's a fair point, and I'll concede the ID thing for AI.

-The staff is NOT doing this, or if they are, it is not happening consistently. Not even a week ago I had that specific example happen about someone shrieking in all caps that Hephaestus Industries Commandos were in command maint after spotting us through a doorway in a dimly lit maintenance. I ahelped it then, and was just given a shrug by the moderator who replied. I was told he could see it on their ID so it was valid. It was, in fact, the very inspiration for this thread.

 

-I do. It's my own irl job to be familiar with who I work with for the ease of communication. As I said, good luck getting people to kick the old habit. I made an earlier suggestion about the unknown name filters until examining them and it saves across the two characters til the end of time. You said you didn't want this mechanically enforced, so whatever.

-At threat of a ban, because metagaming is obviously bad no matter what server you're on. Calling someone by their name instead of "that engineer" is hardly on the level of toxic behavior that screaming the ai is rogue exists upon.

-OK.

-Name the staff member that allowed this in its own complaint and I'll see to it personally that whoever was apathetic about the whole thing gets chewed out. That's ridiculous for a staff member to not bother investigating. That's not the standard we uphold.

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Guest Marlon Phoenix

i forget the last name of my supervisor sometimes

I dont know the names of anyone at work outside my department other than 2 people I am friends with

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It's something we do try to enforce albeit perhaps not as much as we'd like to. We've actually recently had a discussion about this recently with emphasis on being more severe and proactive to it. We do encourage people to ahelp instances where people this occurs. I believe enforcing this mechanically would open up a lot problems as Ron highlighted.


Generally I'm against adding more rules as pretty much everything is covered already, either by specifics or in spirit.


Do forgive me if I somehow missed it. But aside from raising awareness and being more active in policing this sort of behavior, is there anything else you propose?


On a side note. Could you send me the details of that encounter privately Kaed? I'd like to look into it.

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I'd like to point out that every single person who has commented on this so far has been staff and/or had 100+ forum comments. I'm inferring from this that it is something that the more serious and permanent part of the community wants. As a relative new player (3months SS13 and 2 months Aurora) I'd like to weigh in here.


Soft enforcement of this (i.e. RP rules) would be really hard for new players. Few can specifically say what the rules are, far from everyone have read and thought about the rules in depth and some haven't even looked at them and just go by their gut. I don't have statistics or anything, but I'm fairly certain a huge part of the new members of the community (the ones who decide to stay here, not the randoms who pass through) have come from another server (myself from TG). Maybe it's just me but accessibility for new players is quite important to me, I don't want this to turn into a ghost-town or the exact same people all the time. This kind of rule would probably infuriate new players quite a bit when they get talked to an admin for knowing someone's name they shouldn't have because of RP rules when they are used to just hovering with the mouse over a player to learn the name.


Also I foresee the OOC shitstorm over an antag player going ballistic because "I was wearing a breath mask and had a cowboy hat on and you weren't close to me and the nearest light was busted so the light level was slightly lower! You couldn't have known it was me ICly and you are metagaming you bastard reeeeeeeee!"


Hard enforcement of this (i.e. coded game mechanics such as not being able to see names/roles when hovering over/examining people) would make this a clusterfuck of:

"A: Who are you? B: I'm your long time friend and colleague, don't you recognize me? A: you are wearing a fedora so no."

"C: Ohh hey X, you work as Y now? D: Ehh... I always have... who the fuck are you?.. C: Ohh sorry, I thought you were someone else because of the hairstyle"


Pretty please reconsider this and if you do decide to do something, please keep it small.

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  • 1 month later...

Idea to enforce this problem mechanically: at the roundstart EVERYONE's voices show up as unknown (or something like male, female, etc.). You can change the descriptor of any person's voice yourself, maybe via a button near their name (i.e. Unknown says: "hi, i'd like to get me some donuts"; >Shift click to examine; >Look at the id "John Donger (Assistant)"; >Click the rename button near his message in the chat; >Rename them to John Donger; >Now their voice shows up as John Donger)

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Idea to enforce this problem mechanically: at the roundstart EVERYONE's voices show up as unknown (or something like male, female, etc.). You can change the descriptor of any person's voice yourself, maybe via a button near their name (i.e. Unknown says: "hi, i'd like to get me some donuts"; >Shift click to examine; >Look at the id "John Donger (Assistant)"; >Click the rename button near his message in the chat; >Rename them to John Donger; >Now their voice shows up as John Donger)

This sounds very annoying to do every single round for every single person manually.

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You work on a small facility with the same 250-500 individuals again and again and again daily, you ride the same shuttles over, and back, you drink at the same bars and most of you will also live on the Odin together. Most people know one another by default because of this. I don't like this idea, it's a game.

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Idea to enforce this problem mechanically: at the roundstart EVERYONE's voices show up as unknown (or something like male, female, etc.). You can change the descriptor of any person's voice yourself, maybe via a button near their name (i.e. Unknown says: "hi, i'd like to get me some donuts"; >Shift click to examine; >Look at the id "John Donger (Assistant)"; >Click the rename button near his message in the chat; >Rename them to John Donger; >Now their voice shows up as John Donger)

This sounds very annoying to do every single round for every single person manually.

 

It's insanely annoying of a concept, and leads to problems where because of how it would work mechanically in a text based game, if 3 people were talking at once you wouldn't know who said what. Even worse with radio comms


I don't need to know people to be able to at least follow a conversation.


There really is no way to mechanically enforce this sort of thing that doesn't either break communication as a concept, or just result in some silly system where you have to be super mindful not to accidentally metagame (Such as giving each player an "alias" at round start for radio you ahve to discover).


The other thing, face recognition, arguably makes even less sense. You work at a place long enough, you recognize people quite easily. I can still remember the faces of around 100 people who shopped at the store I cashiered for, and the interaction with them was nothing more than "Your total is $63.21. Your change is $2.79. Have a nice day". One could argue you wouldn't know their name just their basic description, to which I'd reply that we are playing a 2d spaceman game where physical description (not counting examine, which can be hard if they are moving) is 10 blurry pixels and if you're lucky a hat.


The concept just stinks of mechanics for mechanics sake.


The only thing that needs to be said is instead that people need to perhaps be less good at recognizing others in a crisis situation, like when attacked. But that's something that can be solved with some gentle nudging and RP standards, not upending the entire game experience with overly labyrinth mechanics that ignore the limitations of the medium. And that's already something that takes car of itself already, with things like "Who attacked you" "I think it was the chef?".


However, if I was to play devil's advocate and suggest a mechanic that would help in these regards, perhaps culling the message log would be a good step? So you don't have a perfect log of what everyone said the entire 2 hour round. Maybe after say 5 minutes or so messages drop off, so if you can;t remember who it was, well, you can't remember.

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