Lets talk bid’ness.
The value of gankers is hard cash.
The fact is that as with other unsustainable habits, gankers will pay through the nose and beyond for their fix. This is a valid and much used business model in gaming today, and not only in gaming. Wilderness areas often keep themselves funded through the sale of hunting licences to controlled amounts of people who by no stretch of imagination need the food, for example. In gaming, this model requires the devs to set up fields of fresh and happy noobs for the relatively few big payers to enjoy killing. Gankers, are wide open for monetisation and are heavily exploited. they are the true “whales” in that description of how f2p makes money, and they’ll pay subs on top as well.
The reason they are not discouraged in so many pvp (and pve) games is because relatively few spoiled ones are needed to bring in the money, big time. Games are closed systems and its not that hard to shut off the New Player Kill pipe. The makers of gank-reliant games actually prefer churn. It’s takes a lot of publicity (not much actual work though) to get the flow of victims coming in I’m sure but there is no way you can keep (sustain) people once they realise they are fodder anyway so game systems tend to be rather thin. If I had a hot dinner for every pvper or pvp game that’s told me I can peacefully craft and explore in a war zone I’d be fat and many many many times game-dead. The fodder aren’t truly seen as customers (or human), and can be allowed free access and treats really – all the devs are after is more bods for the big payers to kill. Some of the fodder can even be allowed to advance a little – makes the sport a bit more challenging. You can spot it. Established players at the top of the heap? And… paying a lot into the game? Pvp games that should have died years ago being kept alive by about ten regular players? Don’t go there.
A good tweak is to make the toppest of the top able to play for free – that gives everyone else some purpose. Ahh the old strategies are always the best ones eh. Another common tactic is to throw in a sandbox to lure in the less aggressive. Ever wonder why there are pvpsandboxes all over? Every new game – its a sandbox, yay! Oh. Pvp. That old thing again.
Luckily there’s always fodder that think to emulate glory or become a ganker themselves – even more opportunity to make money there. Poor skills can be compensated for by good weapons, buffs, any other advantage. Server transfers earn a fortune for the game. Gankers is walking money. And if I was a dev reliant on a gank-game I’d also be boosting their egos to the sky – which happens.
And thats all the clothes folded.
I might make a pvp game one day – I’ve thought about it a lot. But it wouldn’t be a gank game – though that might be handy for funding. It’s mostly the cockroach percent that thinks ganking is fun but there are one or two real nasties in the melee. Occasionally you see something older, colder and more sinister stirring. The psyche behind truly predatory, destructive, sadistic behaviour appalls me and so I think not – not even for pretend, not even for cash. But I would like to make a really, really difficult pvp game that even the hardest of the hard would think twice about playing. It would be heavily stylised, heavy combat, with incredibly complicated rules – much like chivalry in old times when the huge war horses made the earth shake under terrifying riders, their weapons scarred, and their faces set before the clash. Honor riding. Baht first I need to change the duvets for a few million years.
Ah, Saturdays. Nvm after housework I’m going to play with Blender.