Fraud talks about bad and conflicting design in ss13 and bee

Today I’ll tell you why I think this game, at least in its traditional setting, is an unfinished product. I’ve come to believe that what we have right now is a setting that asks the players to do one thing while the system and rules constantly punish them for it. In other words: bullshit and bad design. Below you will find why I’ve come to think this way. This is not necessarily a bad thing, it can be improved upon, it’s just the state of it right now. It also refers to MRP, not LRP. Because LRP is really NRP and realistically, as long as you don’t kill people as a nonantag or act as a total asshole you’ll probably be fine. There’s nothing there to discuss, so to speak.

The points below tie in to each-other, each is just a different part of the game. Connect the points and you get the whole picture, or shitshow.

1. Antagonist design is alien
The game is set up so that most of the players are doing their jobs or fucking around. However, the job of the antagonists is extremely often to kill some if not all of the players. Antagonists already have many objectives that aren’t murder, but murder still dominates them. This ties into…

2. Self-defense rules are cruel and unusual
The crew is encouraged to NOT have any weapons or defensive tools ready unless they play security. The players can and will often get penalized or banned for having weapons ready and using them in case of attacks. What weapon is justified and what weapon is powergame is not a proper rule and so there is inequality in bans too. In essence players are regulated in order to optimally die instead of fighting back if attacked by a threat. This leads into…

3. “Dying is a part of the game” mentality/Only sec actually loses
The common argument when presented with the fact of point 2 is that people should, in fact, just die when attacked and that dying is a part of the game. This is at its core an awful argument because it is just stating the facts. “The sky is blue because it is blue”. I believe there is an actual fallacy for this kind of thinking too. In reality any game where dying is expected to take place in is just a badly designed game unless it is due to difficulty. It isn’t a case of difficulty here, and the player is directly told that learning how to survive better is wrong. If a player dies once their insticts tell them to prepare better for next time, but if you prepare too much (the actual amount being too much being a fluctuating one depending on the admin asked) you are breaking the rules. But if you prepare too little you will die. In the system we have right now, players who go by the rules don’t lose. They get fucked. Only security can claim that they actually lose when they get killed, because they are the only department that should be playing (or fighting back in this case) to begin with. This is strongly related to…

4. PvP mechanics? RP game? Clusterfuck rules?
The question of where powergaming starts and what the intent of combat and combat items even is. SS13 has a metric ton of PvP options for most jobs. Some of these take time to set up while others are seen as just things departments can have. This leads to a major inequality of department power where, for example, a xenobiologist is fine with having an extract that teleports a target to a deathtrap with one click, but an assistant with a baton is not. The rules are being enforced from a realism and RP perspective instead of a PvP perspective but the antagonists are all about PvP and don’t care about RP at all. This leads to further shittery like players specifically going to certain departments just to stand a better chance against antagonists without being banned. Prominent examples include miners and botanists. This leads to the next point…

5. Antagonists are idealized and overrated
Despite SS13 being a game where only a small amount of crew gets to be an antagonist, they are seen as the whole point of the game by many people. Even if not, the rarity and nature of getting antagonist means that the role is generally treasured, seen as superior, and put above regular jobs. Sadly this also propagates a repeating cycle of death. Because of the points noted above, you will usually die to antagonists simply due to power gap unless you specifically play against this. Aside from swapping departments, this teaches you two things: That antagonists should kill people, and that you should kill people as an antagonist. The player is inspired to further go about murdering people when they get the chance, becasue they can. The system is putting antagonists and the mere ability to fight properly on a pedestal because players are fucked with if they try to do so normally. The more this happens the more antagonists get idealized and the more they become the reason people play, even though according to our own policies they shouldn’t be, because combat is bad apparently.

6. As a minor point - Permadeath and the implications
Getting revived means the antagonist fails their objective. Killing people off permanently is encouraged which only further encourages more murder later along with the antagonist pedestal mentioned earlier. Ghost roles are not obvious and not encouraged, and instead of being always available are random and even then, limited. The current system breeds revenge and bloodlust. (Which is, again, denied unless you are an antagonist yourself, which, again, puts antagonists on a bigger pedestal)

And that’s enough points. Below you can read the conclusions which are also basically the TLDR of it all.

1. Our antagonists are not designed for an RP game
If we’re expecting people to RP and have fun with their jobs, antagonists should not have murder objectives at all. Conversion antagonists are as close as we get to this right now. Our antagonists are also expected to complete their objectives at all costs, but these objectives are concrete tasks and there is usually not room for RP at all. If an antagonist does try to RP they usually regret it anyway due to the bloodthirsty or anti-antagonist players (rightfully so, due to the murder mentioned earlier). Removing or reducing murder will cull the PvP crowd…but do we want them here?

3. Our gear is not designed for an RP game
We have enough pvp items and techniques to fill a whole book with. Despite this we are restrained from it unless we play security. We’re being told to play an RP game where the bad guys don’t RP and where we can’t use the weapons in front of us. Remove the gear or remove the RP. (The former, most likely)

3. The game’s/server’s purpose is not concrete
Some of the players are here exclusively for combat, some are here for actual RP, meanwhile the owner/admins constantly push their own agenda on how the game “should” be played. This makes an overall toxic environment where players are told to just ignore the shit around them and obey the law instead of actual action being taken to improve the shit in question. We aren’t driving out the players that shouldn’t be here nor are we helping the ones that should. The server’s own agenda is unclear and confusing at times. Due to the rules and gameplay we have right now, our audience isn’t what it should be for what the heads are saying the server is. Too many of our players are here to kill people, basically.

4. Our servers aren’t advertised properly and our rules are outdated
The old saying goes: MRP is LRP and LRP is NRP. It’s completely true, but our descriptions for the servers are outdated and out of touch. While LRP is picking up lately and its lawlessness works in its favor, MRP is stuck with ever-shifting rules where admins are doomed to fuck up simply due to the amount if openness the blanket of MRP and the rules themselves offer. We’re making new and better rules for a system that’s struggling and doesn’t deserve them. We could dance around powergame for 10 years or maybe fix things.

I just wanted to get this pile of dung off of my chest. Its all from my observations since I joined and all honest.


All of this is a direct result of open source development, there is no concrete design vision on what the game should be, therefore causing everyone to have their own ideal version of the game and therefore each person works towards a completely different version of their ideal SS13.


antagonists exist so the game isn’t desk job simulator 2055

A desk job simulator is what we have right now. Only you can also get killed. And apparently this is good. See points 5 and 3

In addition antagonists on their own are ok, but their dissociation with RP and impact on the crew is often not. Cults are a good example of an antagonist that is fine rp-wise.

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LRP is every man for himself where people can grab whatever they’d like, and in turn, combat is more common and antagonists can murderbone with less restrictions. MRP does not allow for people to hoard items, but in turn, antagonists are restricted in who they’re allowed to kill.

Or so I’d like to say.

While the design of antagonists fit LRP/NRP perfectly, it’s not made so that antagonists gain anything out of roleplaying. Very rarely do you see anyone make use of the social aspect of the game to get out of a situation they find themselves in, nor is it particularly effective compared to what you can do using harm. I don’t think the problem is with the rules or how the server is advertised though, it just has to do with how antags are and by their existence how the goal of the game is shaped.

PvP is undeniably a large part of the game. A part of why SS13 is so alluring is because it allows wacky shit to exist, and getting rid of it would not help the game at all. What we need is a more flexible ruleset centered around common sense rather than a strict one where encompassing every single situation is literally impossible.

Currently I think the servers can be compared to riding a car or flying by plane. You’re less likely to die in a car crash, but it’s more common (LRP). You’re more likely to die in a plane crash but it’s less common (MRP).

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The issues with “Antags are the entire game” are common and deep rooted into SS13, and most hidden role games in general. SS13 has it especially badly because it’s a roleplaying game as well, and so has to discourage/punish absurd overparanoia. Fixing this would require a heavy rewriting of most of SS13 from the ground up. There are a few bandaid fixes which I will list in a bit.

We do need better rules, though I don’t know if it is possible to balance them on bee considering how much leeway they have.

We also have LRP for wacky stuff and solid PvP, yet a lot of the players who play for PvP are on MRP instead, where things are expected to be more peaceful (though the design does not help)

We could always have better rules. That’s not the cause of the problem here though.

This. It’s a special role in itself, so you’d have to be lying if you said that it’s not any more important than a regular crew role. Likewise in TTT Traitor is seen as more important than an Innocent role as it’s special compared to what you get by luck 90% of other rounds.


They’re mostly there because of the pop difference between LRP and MRP. I still think MRP is more peaceful than LRP despite the problems though.

It is more peaceful. It just also has far more problems because people who’d seriously benefit from being on LRP are chasing highpop instead. Also the whole pvp based game thing.

So the issue, in summary, is we’re trying to push RP on a codebase not really meant for RP?


/tg/ code is inherently anti-RP.


ONE of the issues. Yes.

Just make it so more people would play security :+1:

I’ll address this point for point, as these are a lot of complaints I’ve personally had as well, considering I’m franc 'complains-nonstop-about-game-design inum.

  1. Antag Design
    • A lot of jobs as of late have become strangely sedentary affairs, which is likely factoring into this problem.
  2. Self Defense
    • This point is somewhat of a corruption of an internal discussion from a few days ago. I’m of the personal opinion that our rules are overly strict in this regard as well, though I know fraud’s position on this is more related to departmental ability to accrue forceful tools, and less self defense in general.
    • Mostly part of above. sometimes you do just die. But in my opinion, it’s not that simple. SS13 is best when your toolkit is composed of a pile of 'possibly will save you’s. It’s your job to tape these tools into a way out of a bad situation, but lately that toolkit has gotten a few 'certainly will save you’s in it, and that’s not great.
  4. Department Murder Gear.
    • I don’t have much to say on this one. Blame TG.
  5. Antagonists as an idea.
    • I’m a proponent of getting rid of objectives as a whole outside of LRP and just telling antags to make the game fun with their relaxed view on the rules and IC behavior.
  6. Really just an extension of the above.
    • Just see above.

On self defense, both our rules and our balancing are tjkdktkgkkd but if either is fixed the second adapts and follows. If all departments have concrete rules on deadly items, it solves it as much as the departments losing those items (though presumably the latter would be far less creative)

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I don’t like the idea of writing a pile of super-specific policy that can become invalid in one PR.


You guys are writing a lot, but you’re missing out on the main point.

The game is meant to be fun, not pvp, not rp. Just. Fun.
Re-watch Sseth’s video then read my next paragraph.

The only reason those kinds of shenanigans can’t happen is because rules exist. (And lube was nerfed, and atmos was fucked, etc etc)
Why do rules exist? Because someone abused everything they could, toolbox’d everyone each time he could (as antag) and that was that. Additionally, because you’d be spending 1hour + on xenobiology, only for someone to call the shuttle, maxcap, kill you etc etc…

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All of sseth’s stories are either from griefing or from L/NRP servers. Not a single one contains RP.

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Despite being L/NRP, people were doing their jobs.
Sec was being sec, chemist was being chemist.

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Wouldn’t consider doing your job RP, but alright.

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