Likely an unpopular opinion on stealing / thieves

@Kyronix - While I couldn't attend the M&G last night, I was able to read the transcript and saw that someone requested that there be a toggle so thieves couldn't steal from guildmates. While my thief hasn't ever been in a guild to actually steal from guildmates (honestly just never thought of that); I'd disagree with the toggle preventing stealing because that would be yet another nail in the coffin of the thief template that is already, for the most part, nerfed. 

Apologies for the lengthy post below but I think my stance needs to be explained given that I'm sure this is an unpopular stance because most people dislike thieves and find them to be a nuisance.

Takes a set of GM-Legendary skills....
Templates will vary but all thieves need max snooping and stealing to steal anything worthwhile from people (the random steal majority of times fails because it will try to steal a blessed [runebook] or insured item). That is 220 points of 720 dedicated to the profession. The same profession that has already been nerfed substantially by the creation of Tram type facets, item insurance, LRC suits, and a decrease in targets in most aspects (can't steal more than once from NPC targets anymore and things you can snoop no longer have anything in their packs). If yet another aspect of stealing from players is nerfed, it really does start to make snooping a very limited use of 100 points because it does nothing for NPC stealing outside of the Exodus zealots.  

...but it's much more than just a set of GM-Legendary skills.
I think that most people would love nothing more than to nerf the thief into extinction but it's a profession (and template) that is old as time (and the game). It's one of the few templates left that really still requires strategy / roleplay to be successful. Warriors just run around double clicking in war mode, a tamer will sit back and set spam "all kill" with a beefed up pet, and a bard will just sit back using a bard mastery as a secondary account. Playing a thief requires someone to have a well thought out plan and to play a role that hides their true intentions and might even require them to multitask by typing and carrying on a conversation while snooping through their stuff to see what valuables they have; while also trying to stay close enough to snoop all their bags. Some thieves will have items equipped as if to show they aren't a threat to steal from you. Then there is the decision (more strategy) to decide if some item they see is worth their true identity/motive being discovered. Does the thief cash in for whatever they can steal right then or do they hold out in hopes of a bigger payday? Whichever it is, it's only a matter of time before word quickly spreads about the thief (their name / description / last seen location / and their con). The thief then needs to change their strategy for the next payday. All the while the current day thief is still operating within the extremely limited parameters of what is actually able to be stolen these days.

Long story short, I think the thief profession has already been restricted to the point of barely being played so why restrict them any further? Ultimately these EM event drops are insurable so when the boss dies just be ready to insure the item... it's not like it's a cursed item. Just like at a champ spawn (which is actually a cursed item), the player can immediately run off screen to "save" the item. There are several things that can be done without Dev intervention to thwart a thief. Why punish the thief who has put the work in and built a whole template/persona (roleplayed being a stand up person to this point and made a strategy to snoop around his guildmates) and actually is successful within the very tiny parameters they have all because someone was lazy? 

There currently isn't any toggle (to my knowledge) preventing a guildmate from PKing someone (another nefarious tactic) so I'm not sure why thieving would get the nerf here. Like I said before, it would only be a matter of time before the thief (or PK) is discovered and banished (in the meantime just be smart). 

To further prevent player to player stealing is essentially just nixing an entire skill (snooping) and further limiting the use of stealing.

Comments

  • McDougleMcDougle Posts: 3,741
    I'd like this if I could!
    Acknowledgment and accountability go a long way... 
  • PawainPawain Posts: 6,968
    Toggle please. What risk is there from stealing from afk guild members.
  • keven2002keven2002 Posts: 1,576
    Pawain said:
    Toggle please. What risk is there from stealing from afk guild members.
    Same risk as being PKed while AFK?
  • AmberWitchAmberWitch Posts: 422
    Question for you Kevin. I just read the M&G transcript to see what the player was suggesting and my take on it is that they seemed to be mostly upset by EM event reward items being stolen from fellow guildies at EM events and then quitting the guild immediately.
    From your perspective as a thief would it make sense to have something like a one hour bless timer on an EM Event item? Or is that still a no?

  • Interesting. I see a certain amount of glorification of thieves from the opinion-makers in the community, and the rest of us generally reluctant to say anything. So I guess it depends on what you mean by your opinion being an unpopular one. The opinion-makers and trend-setters in out community are more likely to agree with you. Does that mean your opinion is more popular? Or others' is? I don't know. I'm bad at judging that stuff. Shocking, I know.

    The problem in general with the thief playstyle is that it's set up to grief other players and disrupt their experience -- enhancing the thief's gaming experience at the expense of everyone else's gaming experience. Richard Garriott's "UO memory" revolved around this.

    As to the idea of joining guilds to steal from (or kill) your guildmates? Happens all the time. Can be using the stealing skill or stealing in the broader sense. Or, at least, in the relatively recent past it did. Not sure about now. Folks who do it, or at least say they do, are pretty popular on Stratics.

    I have no opinion on the idea of a thievery flag for guilds but I do have what I think is a good suggestion for the thief template in general: I think it's well past time to turn this into a more proper fantasy "Rogue/Ranger/Swashbuckler" template. Combine lockpicking, cartography, stealing, tracking, maybe even hiding/stealth, into one skill. Give it some relatively minor combat usefulness. Make damn sure the new skills cannot stack with those of Chivalry, Bushido, or Necromancy (any combat support skill except Ninjitsu would be wildly inappropriate). Give more stealable artifacts in the world. Rework the champ spawn stealables. Have stealing quests. Right now the only viable thief template I'm aware of that does traditional fantasy thief things is having your main skills be a mage and, while it's an interesting template to have (Raistlin from "Dragonlance" was established as being quite stealthy) it's not the same as the traditional fantasy thief which is more fighter than mage.

    The Rogue is a fantasy template that should be more of a presence in UO than it is -- but, for the health of the game, not in the way it is at present.
  • TjalleTjalle Posts: 75
    A toggle is long overdue.

    A guild should be a feeling of friends or "family" and not a group you have to look over your shoulder around.
  • TimTim Posts: 712
    Tjalle said:
    A toggle is long overdue.

    A guild should be a feeling of friends or "family" and not a group you have to look over your shoulder around.
    If you need a toggle you need to be more carful of who you chose to invite to join.
  • UrgeUrge Posts: 935
    No real opinion on a toggle but as a whole thieves need better things to steal the same as crafting needs a boost. You have to get your thrills somehow. 
  • Lord_FrodoLord_Frodo Posts: 1,340
    edited February 16
    Tim said:
    Tjalle said:
    A toggle is long overdue.

    A guild should be a feeling of friends or "family" and not a group you have to look over your shoulder around.
    If you need a toggle you need to be more carful of who you chose to invite to join.
    ^^^^^^^^^^THIS^^^^^^^^^^  Guilds have ALWAYS been like this.
  • poppspopps Posts: 3,304
    edited February 16
    Tim said:
    Tjalle said:
    A toggle is long overdue.

    A guild should be a feeling of friends or "family" and not a group you have to look over your shoulder around.
    If you need a toggle you need to be more carful of who you chose to invite to join.
    Easier said then done...

    There is players who "behave" before getting accepted into a Guild only to then show their real intentions...

    How exactly can a Guild Master tell what the "real" intentions of a perspective Guild Member might be, if I may ask ?

    Especially, since the game mechanics do not provide, at least to my understanding, "tools" to Guild Masters to limit whatever behaviour and access can have "starting" Guild Members towards fellow Guild's Members and their in-game assetts before they get to prove their trustworthyness and reliability....

    Last I knew, mind reading is not yet available, unfortunately.....
  • Petra_FydePetra_Fyde Posts: 1,142
    There's two ways of looking at this. One from the point of view of the thief, and one from the point of view of the victim. Most victims are angry, resentful and upset - some to the point where they will leave the game. 
    The only times I have not minded being stolen from was when playing Siege, where it was all done in good nature and items stolen could usually be 'ransomed' back with a certain amount of light hearted role play. 
    As a thief, @keven2002 , how do you believe the person stolen from should feel about the experience?
  • keven2002keven2002 Posts: 1,576
    edited February 16
    Question for you Kevin. I just read the M&G transcript to see what the player was suggesting and my take on it is that they seemed to be mostly upset by EM event reward items being stolen from fellow guildies at EM events and then quitting the guild immediately.
    From your perspective as a thief would it make sense to have something like a one hour bless timer on an EM Event item? Or is that still a no?

    I would say no on the bless timer given that they can insure the drop literally 1second after it drops into their pack. If you think about how quickly a thief would have to go into action to actually steal a drop (assuming people are ready to insure), it's a tiny window. 

    Tim said:
    If you need a toggle you need to be more carful of who you chose to invite to join.
    Agree with this 100%. Vetting new guild members or having a sponsor has always been what should be done to weed out nefarious people. This is the true toggle.

    There's two ways of looking at this. One from the point of view of the thief, and one from the point of view of the victim. Most victims are angry, resentful and upset - some to the point where they will leave the game. 
    The only times I have not minded being stolen from was when playing Siege, where it was all done in good nature and items stolen could usually be 'ransomed' back with a certain amount of light hearted role play. 
    As a thief, @ keven2002 , how do you believe the person stolen from should feel about the experience?
    I've been on both sides of the equation. As a victim, it's a learning experience (or perhaps a reminder) that the game has thieving as a profession; ie be prepared / be smart. The only time I think I was ever really mad was back before thieving was really nerfed and there were quite a few thieves running around and I stole something from someone and another thief stole it from me. I remember thinking "what the hell I thought we were thick as thieves!" but in reality there was no honor among thieves lol.

    From the thief perspective, I'd argue that I put in just as much time/energy working on a big payday as the other professions (albeit most of the time spent in the shadows or in character clumsily running around). Over the past week or 2 I've actually played on my thief character just to do something different and overall it's pretty boring. I will go snoop people's packs and all I see is insured/insured/blessed/insured items along with some potions/petals. Until 1 day last week when I was snooping and saw that someone forgot to insure a splintering weapon which I quickly claimed and ran off (only to come back and sell it back to them). So basically I put in an entire week on my thief and only ended up with something due to the off-chance that someone was a little sloppy/careless. It's easily happened in the past where I'll walk around for a couple weeks/months with literally nothing valuable to steal (which is why I hardly play my thief anymore). 

    I won't tell anyone how they should feel as a victim but I will say this... nobody should really be surprised if/when something is stolen given that's a skill in the game. If you were to park in a metered parking lot and decided that you only needed to put a quarter in because you weren't going to be too long but actually took longer than expected, only to come back and find a ticket on your car; are you going to be angry at the meter maid for giving you the ticket (ie the thief)? Or mad at whatever store you went into for making you take too long (and vow to never go back - ie quit the game)? Or are you going to be mad at yourself for not planning accordingly? I personally find too many people decide to be mad at the meter maid when the only thing they are doing is their job (ie profession) instead of the person who made the decision in the first place taking responsibility and/or learning a lesson from it.

    As I said before, there is such a small window for a thief to actually be successful in getting the big pay day that it seems a bit overkill to nerf yet another thieving avenue when there are at least a dozen other ways to prevent a thief from stealing from you (which I will not go into but will offer my anti-theft advice for a price...as only a good thief would  :) ). 
  • PawainPawain Posts: 6,968
    edited February 16
    Actually this question was about items from dungeons. I only do those on LS. So I only see the behavior there. 

    In general players that do go afk: They stop killing for a reason and exit the dungeon and sit where they land for a while and return later and turn in the items.  So there is quite a bit of time to pilfer. I rarely insure drops. Most I trade for are not insured.

    And I agree with @popps nice short to the point post on this subject. 

    And he has a thief. He says.
  • keven2002keven2002 Posts: 1,576
    edited February 16
    Pawain said:
     I rarely insure drops. Most I trade for are not insured.

    So because players choose to be in a guild but do not insure their items (or turn them in right away) and decide to go AFK; the DEVs should put a toggle into the game to prevent stealing?

    Going with this logic should they also put in a block on killing guildmates too? Someone can easily just kill you while you are AFK and take all your stuff even quicker than if they stole them 1 by 1.
  • PawainPawain Posts: 6,968
    keven2002 said:
    Pawain said:
     I rarely insure drops. Most I trade for are not insured.

    So because players choose to be in a guild but do not insure their items (or turn them in right away) and decide to go AFK; the DEVs should put a toggle into the game to prevent stealing?

    Going with this logic should they also put in a block on killing guildmates too? Someone can easily just kill you while you are AFK and take all your stuff even quicker than if they stole them 1 by 1.
    Sounds good to me. I want to have fun in UO not be griefed and stolen from.

    Should a crate in our house disappear on a random basis?
    Should our pets go poof randomly?

    UO could play thief and do those things.  I think most of us would find that not fun.

    And yes some new guildie killed me in Luna while I was afk and my body disappeared before I noticed. I had just happened to go unload my ship  that was camped for the last spawn.  I had about 60 of those normal masks in a crate that is gone now.  They removed the guildie that did it. I never interacted with that toon so unknown as to why he chose to kill my toon.  Never saw them again.

  • quickbladequickblade Posts: 266
    edited February 16
    If you want some stealing love, devs could always bring up a stealing mastery.
    As they should do the same for alot of skills also...  (alchemy, scribe etc)
  • McDougleMcDougle Posts: 3,741
    A stealing mastery that lets you steal PS directly from the Champ  ;)
    Acknowledgment and accountability go a long way... 
  • keven2002keven2002 Posts: 1,576
    If you want some stealing love, devs could always bring up a stealing mastery.
    As they should do the same for alot of skills also...  (alchemy, scribe etc)

    I'm not really even asking for any love... I just want them to stop hating  :) 

    In my opinion, there is very little strategy in stealing artifacts that are laying around; it's literally just laying there and you just need to use the skill to grab it. The real strategy / challenge is stealing from players as they have several counter measures to thwart it (first one sounds like simply not going AFK with a bunch of uninsured stuff on them). To code some sort of toggle would be actively doing work to relegate thieves to basically only target non-player targets like monsters / doom artifacts etc which I think just promotes more scripting since people can use a rail / target system.

    My request involves them doing zero work. Now if they are going to change stealing yet again to remove more targets for a thief then yes I think they would need to overhaul the profession and add more worthwhile targets.
  • ChrilleChrille Posts: 187
    Just ban stealing from players in trammel. It solves all problem and no toggle is needed.

    If you want to harass your supposed to be friends then you will have to do it in fel.
  • keven2002keven2002 Posts: 1,576
    edited February 17
    Chrille said:
    Just ban stealing from players in trammel. It solves all problem and no toggle is needed.

    If you want to harass your supposed to be friends then you will have to do it in fel.
    I'm guessing you don't travel to Fel very often because if you did, you would see that outside of a few peak hours there isn't really anyone in Fel anymore (it's been like this for literally 5-10 years). Again if the DEVs are going to change stealing and limit target yet again; then just remove the skill from the game.

    @Kyronix
  • Always interesting to see how committed a vocal and popular minority of players are to griefing other players. Whether it's stealing using the stealing skill or exploiting house permissions or what have you, the inevitable long-term effects of this behavior are revealed in the original poster's own statement:

    [outside of a few peak hours there isn't really anyone in Fel anymore (it's been like this for literally 5-10 years).]

    It never would've occurred to me to propose a stealing flag on guildmates but this level of commitment against such an idea strikes me as an excellent argument for it.
  • MerusMerus Posts: 555
    Add me to the list of players who believe stealing from another player should be limited to the Fel rule set.  But I’m also in the camp that thinks we need more areas of the game that use the Fel rule set… ie: all dungeons should be dangerous regardless of facet.
  • keven2002keven2002 Posts: 1,576
    edited February 17
    Always interesting to see how committed a vocal and popular minority of players are to griefing other players. Whether it's stealing using the stealing skill or exploiting house permissions or what have you, the inevitable long-term effects of this behavior are revealed in the original poster's own statement:

    [outside of a few peak hours there isn't really anyone in Fel anymore (it's been like this for literally 5-10 years).]

    It never would've occurred to me to propose a stealing flag on guildmates but this level of commitment against such an idea strikes me as an excellent argument for it.
    Interesting how discriminant your post is by lumping in someone who is playing a profession in the game as intended (ie we can steal from other players) with someone who exploiting some house issue (I have no idea what you are talking about or if it pertains to thieving). 

    I think that says all we need to hear about your biased stance. Based on your stance, do you also think that anyone who PvPs also obviously exploits and that should be outlawed as well?

    Maybe a better question; given that stealing is in fact a legit skill in the game what do you think this skill should be used for (since you believe stealing from people is "griefing")? Let me guess...strictly stealing worthless (for the most part) artifacts off the ground in places like Doom?

    How many people do you think this will entice to actually use the skill? How hard do you think it is to script that?  And you want to talk about long term effects...
  • Thieves are great.  The ancient and clunky guild system are rules are not. 

    A "toggle" is not needed, what's needed is tweaks to the guild interface.  As it is working withing the EULA there isn't counterplay to the mechanics.
  • keven2002 said:
    Always interesting to see how committed a vocal and popular minority of players are to griefing other players. Whether it's stealing using the stealing skill or exploiting house permissions or what have you, the inevitable long-term effects of this behavior are revealed in the original poster's own statement:

    [outside of a few peak hours there isn't really anyone in Fel anymore (it's been like this for literally 5-10 years).]

    It never would've occurred to me to propose a stealing flag on guildmates but this level of commitment against such an idea strikes me as an excellent argument for it.
    Interesting how discriminant your post is by lumping in someone who is playing a profession in the game as intended (ie we can steal from other players) with someone who exploiting some house issue (I have no idea what you are talking about or if it pertains to thieving). 

    I think that says all we need to hear about your biased stance. Based on your stance, do you also think that anyone who PvPs also obviously exploits and that should be outlawed as well?

    Maybe a better question; given that stealing is in fact a legit skill in the game what do you think this skill should be used for (since you believe stealing from people is "griefing")? Let me guess...strictly stealing worthless (for the most part) artifacts off the ground in places like Doom?

    How many people do you think this will entice to actually use the skill? How hard do you think it is to script that?  And you want to talk about long term effects...

    Terms like "biased" are cute to use and all, and sadly it's a most-excellent tactic on the Internet (when someone corners you, yell out "BIASED" or "CONSPIRACY" real loud), but on the substance it's basically nothing. *shrugs*
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