Game Mechanics =/= Lore/RP


(Nomistrav) #1

I don’t think it should require a Dev to say this, but there are certain things that occur in the game that I’m pretty sure we can look at with suspension of disbelief. There are so many instances of people saying “well ‘x’ is impossible because ‘y’ game mechanic”. I don’t think anyone seriously believes that Kruul is operating dozens of clones at once with a seemingly infinite amount of security personnel to safeguard equally multi-cloned damsels that he has kidnapped? In fact, I believe it has been said at one point or another that missions are explicitly non-canon because of this.

That in mind, I personally think it should be inferred that not everything that occurs in the game is going to be “canon”, so to speak. Hand-waving someone’s RP or interpretation of lore as “impossible” because a game mechanic exists that would otherwise prevent it, to me, sounds a bit RP-police-y at best and pedantic at worst. I feel this is particularly true with game mechanics devised around a player’s experience and quality of life AS a player.

The only reason I bring this up is because there seems to be a rash of it as of late. It feels like, lately, a lot of people are shuttering lore discussions and role-play using game mechanics as some trump card. It can be really difficult to try and have a civilized discussion after that because game mechanics are factual and you can’t argue against their existence. It really doesn’t feel good to suddenly be debating a game mechanic in-character. It feels akin to arguing against physics. Worse than arguing about it in-character is being unable to break character and clarify your perspective.

I just wanted to bring it to the table for discussion here because it’s gotten really disruptive at times.


(Makoto Priano) #2

So, without necessarily knowing the cases you’re citing, it’s one of those things where we sort of have to play the, “how does this reconcile?” card.

Like, some things we know are absolutely a product of game mechanics, and need to be handwaved a little bit to be sensible, like missions, or CCP’s limited resources meaning all Jove Observatories degrade in the same shape at the same time, or… so on.

At the same time, I would say that a good faith effort to keep one’s world-building compliant with existing lore and mechanics is ideal, even though a bit of handwavium for the sake of a good story isn’t an unreasonable thing.

So, eh. Ultimately, do what you have fun with. vOv


(Evi Polevhia) #3

There’s a lot of things that happen in game that can be assumed to happen, in my opinion you just have to handwave scale a bit every now and then.

Handwave scale in two directions actually.

On the one hand, things like missions and ratting. Yeah I think Kruul is a notorious pirate who probably gets dumpstered by new pilots. And I think that in setting that has happened. But more like once a month or so. Not a hundred times a day. And things like ratting I think are fair to say happen but if they were done at the rate we seen now it’d be ridiculous. A single Capsuleer wipes out a whole fleet in a Haven in null in a few minutes every day. Multiplied by how many are ratting in null this way. It’s absurd. So that stuff I think is fair to say occurs, just less so than it shows in game.

On the other hand you have things like Empire fleet sizes. Nation alone has thousands and tens of thousands of Revenants alone. Active, piloted, Revenants. Even still, the Empires themselves dwarf pirate fleets. Even the smallest among them would have thousands of titans. Hell to build those old crazybig Titan 2.0’s, the Amarr strip mined a moon to the point of geologic disaster. Capsuleer moon mining is just pecking at the surface. But having tens of thousands of empire ships on grid for a big engagement is just not feasible. Biggest I’ve seen is a couple dozen versus a couple dozen (Battle of Caldari Prime).

Sorta rambled a bit but yeah. I think the game is fine as far as game mechanics=lore, we just have to adjust for scale where reasonable.


(Keno Skir) #4

It kinda sounds like you want to have your cake and eat it as well. If you’re going to pretend to be a fictitious character, you sort of have to go along with the fictitious world that character is supposed to exist within. I can see what you mean about Kruul but doesn’t that sort of thing come with the territory (imagination land)? I’m a bit interested in what makes people do this sort of thing to begin with.


(Teinyhr) #5

When this topic has been brought up in roddit (pls), twitter, slack, etc. I believe the standard Dev/ISD response is that many things are kept vague for the express reason that players are free to come up with stuff themselves - and if the devs notice it and like it, they’ll run with it. The amount of lore and events added to the game this way is, to my understanding, surprisingly big list even though I can’t off the top of my head think of a particular example.

So slapping people with game mechanics as gospel is at times counterproductive, but on the other hand, there are things that are just too absurd to believe also. It’s all in the delivery, I think. And sad as it is, street cred - some “nobody” newbie claiming outlandish things won’t be taken as seriously as someone who has been around for years and contributed extensively before.


(Nana Skalski) #6

Game mechanics<RP
Just think about it. Not everythin is and will be in game because it would be just stupid, like ships crashing into stations, and there was one case in lore when that happened!


(Nico Boru) #7

Bumping in game is a mech. Bumping in lore is a crash. Kruul is a 99 to the nth power space bard telling a story to any who will show up and listen.


(Teinyhr) #8

IIRC Bumping has a lore explanation, something something shields are like magnets, they repel each other, Malkalen was only possible because the station shields were sabotaged.


(Utari Onzo) #9

This has less to do with the appropriate comments posted here about scale, suspension of disbelief as well as common sense and more about the ever increasing desire of late to make RP a competetive point winning sport. OP, it’s a bit of a minefield but you just have to walk carefully and strike the right tone with the right people.


(Tavin Aikisen) #10

I like to focus on the positive and how the game mechanics does equate to lore because EVE is very unique in the freedom it affords.

For example: you run into a capsuleer named something inconsistent such as “RatSlayerAlt215” of the corporation “Oceania Timezone United”. We’ve got a combination of real-world references as well as very irrational, almost meta naming conventions. Is it consistent with what we see in the lore? Not really. Is it justified by game mechanics and lore? Yes! The NEOCOM as well as the lore allows for this sort of lack of effort. In-fact we even have a chronicle which talks about the lengths capsuleers go to confuse, intimidate, deceive and otherwise interact with others.

Game mechanics can be a little restrictive. But they aren’t a terrible constraint. I’d prefer them, with a pinch of flexibility, than nothing else.


(Umbre Fallenstar) #11

to add on the matter, it IS said a multiple time in the lore that capsuleers are often crazy in one way or the another.
Even speaking of the game as a game when inside character can be “lore friendly”, some even proposed IC that the cluster is in fact flat ^^

It’s also true that CCP (as long as I played at least) seemed to always put some effort in the lore explanation of game mechanics, even if it lead to some far stretched things ^^

Compared to all the other mmo I’ve played, it’s a really cool thing :slight_smile:


(system) #12

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