Kill stealing

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In multiplayer video games, particularly in MOBAs, first-person shooters, MMORPGs and MUDs, kill stealing is the practice of obtaining credit for killing an enemy, when another player has put more effort into the kill. This usually happens when a game only keeps track of which player defeats an enemy, leading to the so called last-hitting mechanics. If one player whittles down some enemy's health points, but a different player eventually finishes the enemy off, this second player might obtain all of the loot or experience points from the enemy. [1] Kill stealing is common when the rewards for finishing enemies off is highly desired within the game.

A multiplayer video game is a video game in which more than one person can play in the same game environment at the same time, either locally or over the internet. During its early history, video games were often single-player-only activities, putting the player against pre-programmed challenges or AI-controlled opponents, which lack the flexibility of human thought. Multiplayer games allow players interaction with other individuals in partnership, competition or rivalry, providing them with social communication absent from single-player games. In multiplayer games, players may compete against one or more human contestants, work cooperatively with a human partner to achieve a common goal, supervise other players' activity, co-op. Multiplayer games usually require players to share the resources of a single game system or use networking technology to play together over a greater distance.

First-person shooter Action video game genre

First-person shooter (FPS) is a video game genre centered around gun and other weapon-based combat in a first-person perspective; that is, the player experiences the action through the eyes of the protagonist. The genre shares common traits with other shooter games, which in turn makes it fall under the heading action game. Since the genre's inception, advanced 3D and pseudo-3D graphics have challenged hardware development, and multiplayer gaming has been integral.

A MUD is a multiplayer real-time virtual world, usually text-based. MUDs combine elements of role-playing games, hack and slash, player versus player, interactive fiction, and online chat. Players can read or view descriptions of rooms, objects, other players, non-player characters, and actions performed in the virtual world. Players typically interact with each other and the world by typing commands that resemble a natural language.

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Some players feel that kill stealing is a dishonorable practice. [2] A good faith attempt to secure a kill on an enemy that might otherwise have gotten away can sometimes be perceived as a kill steal if the other player believes the kill was already certain.

Overview

There are two main causes for kill stealing: the desire for the reward and the desire to cause other players grief. Kill stealing is predominantly done to gain the rewards from a kill. Griefers kill steal as only one of their tactics in annoying other players. [3] However, there are side-reasons towards kill stealing, with a few being unintentional, i.e. killing an enemy with low player HP, and then killing another enemy - in a panic - which is being dealt by someone else.

A griefer or bad faith player is a player in a multiplayer video game who deliberately irritates and harasses other players within the game (trolling), using aspects of the game in unintended ways. A griefer derives pleasure primarily or exclusively from the act of annoying other users, and as such is a particular nuisance in online gaming communities, since griefers often cannot be deterred by penalties related to in-game goals. This creates a strong division between griefing and cheating, since cheating is done with intent of winning the game and thus is discouraged by in-game penalties.

Complaints of kill stealing are sometimes heard in online first-person shooters. In most of these games, the credit for a kill goes to the player who deals the killing shot. Players usually ignore complaints of kill stealing in FPSs because the rewards are less significant and because these games move much faster (i.e., it was probably accidental). Furthermore, in FPS combat, players are usually either allies (in which case the kill's credit going to one player or another has no in-game meaning beyond ego) or in direct enmity with one another (providing both a justification for cutthroat tactics, and a generally immediate means of redress). Kill stealing can sometimes specifically refer to the disruption of a particularly "interesting" kill that would have earned a lot of extra points beyond the kill itself.

By contrast, in most MMORPGs players may be competing for the same in-game resources, but are not generally in direct conflict with one another. (In situations where they are, such as two opposite-faction players in a World of Warcraft player-versus-player server, there is usually little animosity towards kill-stealing, as there is a means of redress and prevention, and it is seen as part of the general struggle between Horde and Alliance)

<i>World of Warcraft</i> video game by Blizzard Entertainment

World of Warcraft (WoW) is a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) released in 2004 by Blizzard Entertainment. It is the fourth released game set in the Warcraft fantasy universe. World of Warcraft takes place within the Warcraft world of Azeroth, approximately four years after the events at the conclusion of Blizzard's previous Warcraft release, Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne. The game was announced in 2001, and was released for the 10th anniversary of the Warcraft franchise on November 23, 2004. Since launch, World of Warcraft has had seven major expansion packs released for it: The Burning Crusade, Wrath of the Lich King, Cataclysm, Mists of Pandaria, Warlords of Draenor, Legion, and Battle for Azeroth.

In team based game modes, many players overreact when they do not understand the objective is for the team to win, rather than individual progression.

Prevention

Many newer MMORPGs implement game designs that distributes the reward more fairly to those who fought a creature. Rewards can be distributed based on how much the player contributed to defeating the creature. A player that does 30% of the damage gains 30% of the money and experience points rewarded for defeating the creature. A game might have a more sophisticated way to measure a player's contribution to the fight as well. A character whose primary task is healing other characters might be judged based on how much he healed combatants during the fight.[ citation needed ]

In some newer multiplayer first-person shooters such as Battlefield 4 [4] and Battlefield 1, if a player does enough damage to an enemy player, but a teammate gets the final blow, then the player will receive what is known as 'Assist Counts as Kill'. The player then gets awarded the amount of damage they did to the enemy as points, and on their statistics it counts as kill rather than as an assist.

<i>Battlefield 4</i> 2013 first-person shooter video game

Battlefield 4 is a first-person shooter video game developed by video game developer EA DICE and published by Electronic Arts. It is a sequel to 2011's Battlefield 3 and was released in October 2013 for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360; then later in November for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

<i>Battlefield 1</i> 2016 first-person shooter video game

Battlefield 1 is a first-person shooter video game developed by EA DICE and published by Electronic Arts. Battlefield 1 is the fifteenth installment in the Battlefield series, and the first main entry in the series since Battlefield 4. It was released worldwide for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One on October 21, 2016.

See also

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<i>Borderlands 3</i> 2019 first-person shooter video game

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References

  1. Schell, Jesse (2014-11-06). The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses. CRC Press. p. 410. ISBN   1466598646.
  2. Peter Kollock (2002). "Communities in Cyberspace". Routledge. ISBN   978-0-203-19495-9.
  3. Jennings, Scott; Macris, Alexander (2005-12-19). Massively Multiplayer Games For Dummies. For Dummies. p. 310. ISBN   0-471-75273-8.
  4. [DICE] H Brun (October 18, 2013). "BF4 Point Mechanics". DICE. Archived from the original on October 21, 2013. Retrieved March 25, 2017.