Ghost Cams and Hidden EJs Cams, what about finally getting rid of them ?

poppspopps Posts: 1,546
edited June 9 in General Discussions
From time to time I see complaints from players on the Forums about Ghost and Hidden EJs Cams.

If my memory still serves me, I think I remember this issue being lamented to the Developers also in a past Meet and Greet...., maybe even in more then 1 ?

How about to finally stop the ability to use Ghost and Hidden EJ Cams in such an unfair and unbalancing way ?

Yes, supposedly the Exorcism spell should rid of Ghosts but, unfortunately, it only works (when and if it works, as I understand it not always functions effectively.....) in very limited and restricted Champion Spawn regions which it means, that having these Cams sitting in other places where they can still monitor players' activity, they cannot be countered in any way....

Not to mention, EJ hidden characters which are not subject at all to the Exorcism spell and, thus, can freely be used by the numbers (they are free, no charge to use them....) to report to their controllers any and all players activities in a given area...

Yes, in theory players with Tracking and Detect Hidden could detect such hidden EJ characters but let's be realistic, how many players really go around playing all the time checking an area every 10 tiles or so should there be hidden EJ characters there ?

Gameplay would take forever if one was to have to double check any and all areas that they go to play to, all over the place....since EJ hidden characters could have been placed anywhere to monitor the activity in that area.

Do not get me wrong, I am not saying that this monitoring should not be possible at all, if a player on a subscribed, paid account wants to pass their in game time watching a given spawn in case someone shows up I am ok with it, but only as long as they pay for that account AND they actually use their time in the game, actively, to do such moitoring....

What I have a problem with, is when accounts not subscribed are used and/or the player is not actively using their in game time to do such monitoring activity because scripted Cams are used....

What I am trying to say is that, to my opinion, such monitoring activity should REQUIRE subscribed accounts (not free EJ ones, at least players would have to pay to do such monitoring....) AND, also, the character there should actually be actively controlled by the player spending 100% of their playing time to stay at the keyboard to check that Cam, continuously, and not that Cam be possible to be used with scripts and AFK as I imagine these Cams could be used as, while the controller does something else whether in the game or out of it, and only when they get reported by the Cam any activity in the surroundings of a Ghost or Hidden EJ Cam because the AFK script reports such activity to them, they then decide what action they want to take in that regards.

To my viewing, fixing the use of Ghost Cams could really be rather easy.... as we all know, it ain't possible to play UO as a Ghost.... to get anything done, one has to be alive in the game, pretty much.

This means that, to my viewing,an account should be automatically suspended and require GM Supervision if, even intermittedly, during 24 hours that account is detected as having a Ghost online for more then 10 minutes. Yes, having an account have a Ghost logged for more then 10 minutes (even interruptedly, not necessarily continuosly), should to my opinion flag and suspend that account.

Even if one was to die multiple times in a day, considering the short times to resurrect, it only gets one to stay a Ghost a few seconds before they get resurrected by a fellow player, find a healer or a Shrine.

So, 10 minutes in 24 hours should be plenty allowance for an account to stay as Ghost. Past that, the account would get suspended automatically and need a GM to review the extended use of a Ghost character in game before the account is reactivated. If that account is found to be used for scripted, Ghost Cam reporting, then the account would get perma banned.

Hidden EJ Cams I guess would be a more difficult thing to tackle as actively playing an EJ character that is hidden and perhaps also stealthing is, of course, a legittimate thing.

Yet, if they are used scripted and perhaps AFK to report activity in the area in which they are located to their controllers, that would be, to my understanding, against the TOS and thus sanctionable.

But how to find that out and thus stop such an abuse, if any ?

One starting way could be some automated monitoring of characters from the servers when they sit moreless in the same given area, hidden and/or stealthing, doing basically nothing or hardly anything for extended times.

Sure, a player might sit in a given area even for hours for farming purposes but they actually "do" something there like fight spawning characters, mine, chop woods etc., all activities which "reveal" the character.

A character staying in the same given area, hidden, or at most stealthing around for more then a few minutes, should ring some bells about the why it really is there and to do what, and possible actions against it could be the suspention of the account pending a review by a GM, if the server detects such a character to stay hidden and/or stealthing in a given, limited area, for longer that, say, 15 or 20 minutes even when coming out of hiding now and then....

Yes, I know that many players often play as hidden like tamers or others but, as I said, their pet would still interact with the surroundings and thus not flag their account for suspicious Hidden EJ Cam activity...

The entire point of an Hidden EJ Cam is not to be seen because if it is, its presence is of course reported to others in the area. So, even if the script was to now and then take the Hidden EJ character out of hiding not to have it flagged by the server and have the account automatically suspended pending GM reviewing, such breaking of the hiding would highly put that EJ Cam at risk of being seen by others in the area and, thus, make its use pointless as a reporting Hidden EJ Cam......

What my point is, that I think that there can be solutions that can be found towards getting rid for good of Ghost Cams and Hidden EJs Cams, then why I keep seeing players on the Forums now and then lamenting about them ?

Why cannot they be addressed for good, once and for all, with a solution that was to deal with them permanently, making their use no longer possible or viable ?


  • PawainPawain Posts: 2,748
    edited June 9
    I read a little bit then got bored.  It sounds like you want EJ accounts to not be able to die.  LOL

    Or you want to end banksitting.

    Fine you are complaining about ghost cams but please let someone who knows game mechanics resolve this issue.
  • MargeMarge Posts: 279
    Do you honestly think anyone will read thru this entire Novella?
  • PawainPawain Posts: 2,748
    edited June 9
    I think most are against ghost cams.  The title explains what the point is.

    His fixes are the problem.  Many do not realize that some players have a lot of time to play UO.
    They can have multiple monitors and computers at a desk.  They are not afk.  Whatever "fix" that Popps recommends is easily bypassed by the player being attended.

    Step 1. Make the Exorcism spell work as intended.

    Gather feedback.  

    The PKs have been finding tamers on LS doing spawns just fine without using ghost cams.
  • jelinidasjelinidas Posts: 221
    Pawain said:
    I read a little bit then got bored.  
    ^^^ This.   
  • JackFlashUkJackFlashUk Posts: 187
    Popps  please just stop with war and peace. 
  • KHANKHAN Posts: 323
    Popps  please just stop with war and peace. 
    I think he must have a side gig writing for Yahoo and thinks he is getting paid by the word. With about as much "substance" as I see in 99% of Yahoo articles/liberal mush. 
    If you sell UO items for R.L. $$$, you need to quit playing UO , and get a BETTER R.L. JOB!
  • Luc_of_LegendsLuc_of_Legends Posts: 226
    Popps -  I have two words for you: 


    This was THE fix for ghost cams.  However, this was back in the Age of Shadows/Samurai Empire time period where we still had a very large PvP population and Factions.   Well there was much screaming, bitching, moaning, foot-stomping, whining, crying, fit-pitching, sulking, toys-tossed-from-the-prams and tantrums thrown until the Producer ,SunSword, agreed to turn it off.  

    It was a BAD move.  If they turned it back on today, ghost cams would be 100%  USELESS.

  • dvviddvvid Posts: 174
    It should be activated again or just replaced with some other spell.  To have a spell in game for all this time that doesn't do anything is odd.
  • poppspopps Posts: 1,546
    dvvid said:
    It should be activated again or just replaced with some other spell.  To have a spell in game for all this time that doesn't do anything is odd.
    First, The exorcism spell when it works, as I undertand it, only works IN the Champion Spawns areas, not elsewhere.

    So what would people do ? Just place it at the edge of that area and script it so that it was to report any activity in the near surroundings of it.

    That is, people would easily "bypass" the issue of the Exorcism spell and still manage to use scripted, AFK Ghost Cams to monitor what is going on in a given area.

    No, to my opinion something more drastic is needed to get rid of this unfair, unbalancing and against the TOS practise (AFK scripting is, to my undertanding, against the TOS), and since being a Ghost cannot permit one to play the game, that is why I suggested an easy solution.... whenever an account is detected having a Ghost logged in for more then 10 minutes (even when not continue but in shorter intervals), the account would get temporarily suspended pending a Game Master reviewing of what that Ghost was doing.... if indeed illegal activity was to be found for that Ghost acting as a Ghost Cam, then the account would get banned.

    Furthermore, as I said, even if the Exorcism spell was to be working, it would still not take care of another type of Cam, at times also used, is my understanding..... Hidden EJ (free) characters CAMs.

    Sure, with Tracking and Detect Hidden it is possible to detect them but it would force people to have to put additional kill points on their templates and, also, it becomes a chore that takes the fun of gameplay out of it since tracking has a limited range and, thus, in order to secure an area with tracking, it would be necessary to repeat using the skill multiple times over a number of tiles so as to double check all of a given area.

    Personally, I do not thing that permitting the use of free EJ accounts, worse when used AFK and scripted which is against the TOS, as I undertand, at the expense of the gameplay and fun of paying, subscribed accounts would be a logical thing to allow to keep going on....

    UO needs the subscribed, paying accounts which bring in monthly revenues but does not need the free EJ accounts which bring no monthly revenues from subscriptions.

    So, I honestly do not understand why it should be permitted to use free EJ accounts to be used as Ghost Cams at the expense of the fun of the gameplay of subscribed, paying accounts.

    The Exorcism spell, unless somehow modified to also work against hidden EJ characters, would have no impact on Cams where hidden EJ characters, scripted AFK, where to be used...

    That is at least how I see it.
  • JackFlashUkJackFlashUk Posts: 187
    Popps.  SCALE IT DOWN FFS.   Nobody wants a degree dissertation every time from you

     Please remember the following:-

    You are NOT a game dev or forum moderator
    You do NOT make policies 

    So please do NOT kill us every time 

    You achieve nothing this way. I would say you prob have valid ideas and suggestion but you lose people in flannel 
  • Garth_GreyGarth_Grey Posts: 1,094
    What I do now is, I scan his somewhat lengthy posts and I look for the words " As I understand it" and then I stop reading.
    You and Several Others like this.

    Please make the Grizzled Mare a 5 slot mount, it's incredibly rare and deserves it.
  • PawainPawain Posts: 2,748
  • JackFlashUkJackFlashUk Posts: 187
    What I do now is, I scan his somewhat lengthy posts and I look for the words " As I understand it" and then I stop reading.
    lol me too,  its much more fun doing that....
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