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Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Runescape, Penguins, and PKing; Death while the Chaos Elemental watches

Me just before getting mass-killed, while, appropriately, the Chaos Elemental looks on
Okay, I'm about disgusted with Jagex.  While I love most aspects of Runescape, and am tolerant or indifferent to most of the rest... me and player-killing are not a good match.
Monique and I have loved the penguin mini-game ever since it came out.  It's our Tuesday night date.  Fun, relaxing, and a chunk of experience to spend on any skill.  When PKing came back, I had my doubts.  But my voice, among many others, was overwhelmed in the flood of pkers, bots, and fraudulent voters who wanted it back.
So, PKing came back.  I'm not against letting other people have fun, but certainly not at my expense.  Unfortunately, there's no such thing as fairness involved in pking.  If Jagex takes content I want, and puts it in the wilderness, I have two choices.  Take my chances in the wilderness, or give up that content.
Until this week, the pker's haven't been totally obtrusive.  We've continued to find our penguins, with only small interference from the pkers.  But this weeks update includes a ton of clan-centric changes, making communication and organization far easier for the player killers.  So this week, it was a nightmare.  Penguins in the wilderness were being 'camped' by teams of pkers, just waiting to pounce on non-aggressive, minimal-item-carrying, penguin hunters.  The pic above is pretty much how it went all night.  Get killed, head back out.  Get killed, head back out...
Honestly, how is that fun?  Certainly not for me, who was killed by gangs of thugs several times, or Monique, who was also killed several times, before finally getting that last penguin.  But even for pkers, I just don't get it.  There's no profit, or minimal profit, in killing penguin-hunters.  And there's no challenge in it either.  Big brave pker comes out with full armor, lots of supplies, in highly organized groups, and takes out an unarmored quester.  It's kind of like deputizing Ghenghis Khan.
Funny thing is, many of the pkers call us whiners, crybabies, etc... I remember when pking was removed from the game, many pkers sure whined and cried as well.  It's human nature to complain if you don't get what you want.  I'm certainly in favor of letting pkers enjoy killing each other.  But I'm not a pker, and don't want to be part of their game.
Jagex has stated that if you go in the wilderness, it's supposed to be dangerous, and the rewards are commensurate with the risks.  Seriously?  It took over 2 hours to get that last penguin.  For 16 penguin points, I usually get around 30k of experience, depending on which skill it goes on.  That works out to about 2k per penguin point.  For the frustration, aggravation, and inconvenience I experienced last night, I get a measly 6k of exp...
And 3 penguins in the wilderness at once?  Since when?  The usual mix is 0, 1, or 2.  Is it a coincidence that Jagex stuck an unprecedented 3 penguins in the wilderness... in the same week they gave tremendous power, support, and organization to the clans?  I had so many people killing me at a single time, I couldn't even count them before I was dead.
My only consolation was using a poison++ dagger, and the Ancient Curse, Wrath.  So at least my getting killed managed to mildly inconvenience some of my assassins.  I did notice one person in the "group attack" killing me.  He got hit pretty hard with my first Wrath.  As I was dying the 2nd time, he started to run, so I guess he knew I'd be 'Wrathing' again.  But it was too late... I was dead, and he was in the blast range.  Small consolation to me, who still hadn't found my last penguin.  But it made me slightly happier.
While the voting was still in play, Jagex promised to move non-related content away from the wilderness, or give alternate ways to get there.  To be honest, they have done so in at least 2 instances (Gorrock castle, and the Blood Altar.)  But penguin hunting, that ultimate of harmless, light-hearted, just plain friendly fun minigames, has taken a turn for the dark side.
Shortly after stating they would be moving content like penguins and beacon-lighting from the wilderness, Jagex did a little soft-shoe and stated "it would be taken under consideration".  Then, after the decision to bring back player killing was made, they announced that, no, that's not what they meant.  What they REALLY meant, was that the wilderness is a dangerous place, and player-killing is part of the risk.

Jagex is currently in the middle of a non-clanner, non-pker witch hunt.  Everything seems to be in favor of the player killers.  The independent player, who keeps to themselves and just wants to play, is worth little more than target practice.  Okay, that's probably not the truth... I'm just aggravated.  I still enjoy the majority of the game, and will continue to play.  But I'm done with the Wilderness.

Runescape refuses to take me and other players like me into consideration.  They claim if it's in the wilderness, it's been made more valuable, therefore worth the risk of getting killed by another player.
I say... 2 hours to find 3 penguins, for a max of 10 exp points?  All because PKers continually group-killed me so I couldn't stay out and hunt?  I see no commensurate value.  Not worth my time to satisfy some sick little wannabe thug for 10k exp.

Yes I sound bitter.  Not my usual style, and I will get over it.

But after last night, I'm still kind of steamed.  In all honesty, I'm done hunting penguins in the wilderness.  It's just not worth the hassle for the "commensurate" return I'm getting.  Make the rewards more equal to the hassle, and I'd go back.  But for now, no.

Just bear in mind, this is a highly targeted rant about one aspect of Runescape.  There's plenty of things I still love about the game.  Monique and I have enjoyed it for over 6 years, and will probably continue to enjoy it for as long as it's available.  I just had to get this one thing off my chest.  Find me in the game, I'll still be there, having a grand old time. 

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