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Notoriety Combat and You

Updated Thu, Oct 30, 2008 by Martuk

Age of Conan Hyborian Adventures Update 3 is now live on servers. What does this mean for you? For starters the second part of the much anticipated PvP update the Notoriety system is now live and with it several new combat changes and Ten Ton Hammer is here to break it down and explain how this will affect your playing experience.

Outlaw

Outlaw Camps have been established for criminals and murderers.

The Notoriety System
This system will make some big changes to the way PvP combat is carried out across PvP servers. This part of the update won't affect PvE servers so much, but PvP servers need to be aware of these recent changes. Griefers beware, your free ride of slaughtering low levels without consequences is at an end. Now you will have to suffer the consequences of your actions.

With the new Notoriety system now active if you engage an enemy of a level so low that you will not get PvP experience from the kill (we will refer to them Innocents) then you are going to start earning murder points. The first offense will flag you as a criminal. Any offenses carried out during this time will reset your criminal timer and if you persist then you will be flagged as a murderer after you build enough murder points and then your life will become a bit more complicated. Let's take a look at what exactly happens to our innocents and anti-social misfits.

Innocents
Innocent people are what everyone starts as. These people have not engaged in slaying those of lesser power and thus have no murder points. these guys are pretty much the goody two shoes of the world until they decide to cross over to the dark side. They can be attacked by would be killers, but until these people take up arms against those of lesser power they will remain innocent and can carry out life as usual.

Criminals
If you engage and kill an innocent you will be flagged temporarily as a criminal. What this does is make you free game for anyone to take out. They can kill you without building up murder points of their own. You are simply free game with a giant bullseye on your chest. If you refrain from killing more innocents you will eventually return to your normal status over time. Criminals can't trade with city traders and any player that trades with a criminal will then be flagged as a criminal themselves, so be cautious if that trade window opens up. If you group with a criminal or murderer, your group will also be flagged as criminals for the duration of the criminal/murderers stay and up to five minutes after their departure. Don't worry, you will get a warning window when a criminal is invited or has invited you to a group.

Murderers
If you have attacked and killed enough innocents to build yourself a enough murder points your criminal status will be converted to murderer. This carries several consequences. For starters, NPC guards within cities will attack you on sight. You can't trade or use vendors within the city and if you are attacked this section of the Testlive patch notes explains it best.

Dying while flagged as a murderer results in the following: a. 100% increased loss of PvP XP for the murder b. 100% increased gain of PvP XP for the person killing the murderer c. 100% increased chance of dropping an item.

Ganked

There's little worse than getting spawn camped. Murderer specific spawns should help keep this from happening.

Players also need to be aware that if a member of their group performs a criminal activity, those in the vicinity of the offending player will also be flagged as criminals. Murderers and criminals while outcast from normal society can still gain access to vendors and traders through their guild city vendors and the new Outcast Camps that have been added to several areas. These hubs serve as a gathering spot for our local criminal element and provide them with vendors and a way to begin redemption through quests that can reduce their murder points. Murderers will also have their own respawn spots that can only be seen by other offending players. This should help curve getting ganked on a respawn.

Exploiting a Mechanic
There are some members of the community that have voiced concerns about the new Notoriety system and how it could be exploited by lower level players with the intent of griefing the community by attacking the higher levels first. One such question was asked by Vandalia on the official AoC forums.

You expose a flaw in the system.

Its ok for a lower level or several lower level characters to attack you with no criminal penalties where as you have merely defended yourself.

This leads to a very large opening to be exploited. Unless the higher level has attacked FIRST there should be no crime in defending oneself.

You expose a flaw in the system.

Its ok for a lower level or several lower level characters to attack you with no criminal penalties where as you have merely defended yourself.

This leads to a very large opening to be exploited. Unless the higher level has attacked FIRST there should be no crime in defending oneself.

Game Director Craig 'Silirrion' Morrison was quick to put to rest any concerns stemming from this question.

This will be accounted for by the system. We have gone to lengths to ensure that we have closed off as many of the obvious roads for 'griefing' with this system as we can. Lower level players will have to be actively targeted by a higher level target to have them generate murder points. A lower level actively attacking a higher level players first will flag them as 'free prey' for the higher level player and they can kill them at will without fear of gaining any negative impact. The team have done a lot of work to ensure this system is as smooth as we can make it.

As to the original poster, this isn't a system to reward this kind of behavior. It is a system where someone who consciously chooses to be 'that' type of player isn't disallowed from doing so, but has to live with the consequences of doing so without having his normal game-play completely removed. We do not wish to reward that kind of game-play. It's about choices for the player, if they choose to be notorious rather than a good citizen they are allowed to do so (Hyboria is a brutal world after all!), the results are negative though, it's up to each individual whether they can live with that life as an outlaw and murderer. I am sure some will!

With that said, this route to griefing seems to be well in hand by making those that swing first pay the price.

Combat
The Notoriety system is not the only major change in this patch. The combat system also got a few alterations. Melee and ranged combo attacks have been shortened by removing some of their steps to make them easier to execute. This will make PvP a bit easier for ranged and melee who often find themselves unable to land a combo against those bunny hopping enemies that bounce from place to place. This change doesn't come without a price though. With the increase in speed given by these new shortened combos comes a decrease in damage. It's sort of a counterbalance. You can land them easier but for less damage. For a further balancing effect the Demonologist, Ranger, and Herald of Xotli have been given a healing debuff.

CC

Crowd Control changes will keep you from having to just stand helplessly by while your opponent beats you like you owe them money.

Crowd control abilities have also gone through some changes. Now if a player is snared, stunned, feared, charmed, or rooted they will break out of it after receiving a certain amount of damage. This will give players a fighting chance to defend themselves and not have to stand there while their opponent beats them into the ground unopposed.

This new update brought a lot of changes to the game and while the Notoriety system won't affect the PvE servers quite as much as the PvP servers it is still a big change to the game. With the combat changes making things a bit faster paced battles will be heating up all over Hyboria and in the Border Kingdoms as Innocents and Murderers collide. Choose your side and try not to be a casualty of this new war.

You can read more from the source patch notes.

 


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