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Wednesday, November 26, 2008

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Eirik Haefnir

My only experiences with Bloodlines were by seeing it in action through "spampires". Assholes who stalk crowded newbie regions and send bite requests to everyone without saying a word.

Burying you under an ever growing pile of spammy blue windows. And the only way to stop is by wearing a garlic necklace made by the creator of the game. Granted, this garlic necklace is a freebie, but it just looks retarded having to wear a garlic around your neck 24/7.

If this game deserves 2 stars, it should be 2 NEGATIVE stars. It is solely a tool of spammers and jerks.

Prad Prathivi

No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, NO!!!

Argh!!!

Seven Shikami

I'll say up front I don't play this game, but I've seen it in action, and this review confirms a lot of suspicions.

I've got no doubt that in the right hands, it can be used as a tool to aid roleplaying. But that's all it SHOULD be -- a tool, an aid, an additional. The real meat of the "game" should be the roleplaying factor, the imagination and the writing skill of the participants. In an ideal world, that is.

Unfortunately, by design, that's not how it works. This is a GAME, one with numbers that need to be manipulated -- numbers that penalize you for not spreading it virally, for not constantly seeking out new people to go all neck-chompy on. Blood banks are a good hack for people who don't wanna harass all their friends and total strangers just so they can keep roleplaying, but the curve is still too sharp and demands too much.

For true roleplayers, that's not really a problem, they're just in it for the social interaction and not the Progress Quest style meter-balancing -- but get some folks who are into it for the meter-balancing and NOT the social interaction (which sadly is probably the majority) and you get people who exploit the game in an OOC manner just to max out blood points off newbies and people who aren't interested.

The only way this could be fair and not a death spiral of system abuse is if the curve for blood point drops was gentler, if the 'bit-ee' was already a player in some way or it wouldn't count (a victim UI plus a vict-ee UI?) or if low blood was simply a penalty and not a death sentence. Then maybe the folks ignoring the social community and focusing on min-maxing and gaming the rules wouldn't be so encouraged to hassle everyone else. Maybe.

Doubledown Tandino

What I appreciate is that there IS indeed a role play element to it. The creator makes the vampire theme as brilliant looking as it is. On the sim, this game is great.... the style, and the look, and the biting...

But outside of their sim, no one wants to be bothered with it. They are spampires.

It's a brilliant overlay of a very simple game from 20+ years ago. The downline game always makes mega bucks for the creator which in tern makes the creator more passionate about creating the roleplay vibe for the players.

This game could be anything. It's been drugwars, mobwars, alienwars, starwars, pornwars, poowars... whatever... its the same simple concept game, but the content creators are what makes the downline game addicting.

The more they add to the game, and the more the create the impression that there's something to work for, the more people play. but people that dont want to play REALLY DONT WANT TO PLAY.

Seven Shikami

Here's an idea for how the primary problem of the game -- harassment of people who don't want to be involved -- could be addressed.

Make the system unable to bite anyone unless it hears a response from a 'bloodlines server'. This could be done within 20m, 100m, or across a whole region. That way, you have to opt-in to playing the game in an area of SL (a roleplaying sim, more often than not) or it won't work. No more biting newbies in Ahern, for instance, because Ahern won't have a server.

(Make sure the response is authenticated, though, or hackers who wanna max out their Blood e-Peen will create their OWN fake wearable servers.)

Of course, that would drastically cut down on the number of places where you can hunt... and the only people going to those places would be hunters or voluntary huntees. No more spampires. And that means if vampires are dropping dead left and right because not enough people ACTUALLY WANT to be food... well, you've just exposed a flaw in your game design, haven't you? Time to retune your game's parameters to compensate.

Princess Ivory

I really don't understand the fascination with playing vampire games. Or watching vampire movies. Or reading vampire books. Even when they are artistic and beautiful, or incredibly written. I don't GET IT. What is the attraction? And why does it seem so sexual in nature? Where does that come from? I really would like to read a well-written blog entry by an expert at RPG who plays by the rules. Explain it to me. I want to understand. Why does blood=sex?

Princess Ivory

Erbo Evans

"And the only way to stop is by wearing a garlic necklace made by the creator of the game. Granted, this garlic necklace is a freebie, but it just looks retarded having to wear a garlic around your neck 24/7."

Actually, that's not the case. After you've worn the garlic necklace and "activated" it, you can take it off. You'll only need it back on if you decide to deactivate its protection, as it's the master game server that keeps track of your "protected" status.

That said, there are an increasing number of clubs that have explicit "No Bloodlines" rules.

JeanRicard Broek

Did I read this right?

Released: 5-6-2008
Price to Play: L$599
No. of Players: 37,000 since launch

Doing the math: 599/284 per US$ = $2.10 x 37,000 = $78,000 just for the HUD, not including other products sold.

Not bad for 6+ months. They can afford the tier and could show a few "developers" & corporations how to engage customers in SL.

Vidal Tripsa

You are correct, JeanRicard. Those are the user figures I've been given, and if the HUD has always been that price, it really is quite some selling.

Mr Haefnir, I don't mean to sound rude, but I wonder if you read my review at all. "Bloodlines" is not solely the tool of spammers. I couldn't reasonably comment on just how many DO treat this as a platform for decent role-play, but on the other hand I do see where that impression can come from. The sad fact is that "Bloodlines" is measured by its reputation, and the more people dismiss it as spam-bait, the more it is likely to do just that. Reputation is how it's sold so well, too - quite how that all balances out is a study well beyond my limited grasp!

Lastly, Princess Ivory, your comment really intrigues me. Vampires as a genre is perhaps like any other big cult movement. Personally I don't understand how anyone can admire superheroes or enjoy the apparently vapid storylines attributed to them, and yet many buy into the likes of Marvel and DC's leading comics. Personally I enjoy this culture because of the decadence and smooth romanticism associated with post-Bram Stoker vampires. The consumption of blood is also very little to do with vampires' mystique; it is the erotic seductions and power-plays beforehand which folks like I and the dedicated role-players of "Bloodlines" enjoy most. I fear it may be tricky to explain without some way of having experienced it for yourself, though.

Thank you for the lively comments by the way, folks! I hadn't anticipated this review sparking up quite so much discussion. :)

dandellion Kimban

Vidal, you really opened an issue here.
On one side, having games that spread all over the grid (and becoming lifestyles then) is great and is what makes SL so wonderful place. On the other, it's bad if the grid suffers from idiots that don't know how to roleplay it and don't understand that no means no. Question is how to find a good measure and organize the things?

kanomi

One's missing one of the main appeals of vampire roleplay I think:

http://jezabellbarbosareturns.blogspot.com/2008/11/dark-side-of-me-wants-to-have-party.html

tripp cantu

i play bloodlines and i can say , about noobs , u can not bite or attack anyone under 2 weeks , about the garlic necklace once u put it on and activate it , u can take it off , it still does its job even if u r not wearing it , as long as u ativated it , if you see some one spamming bites , go to slbloodlines page look there name up, and then it will tel you there king or queen , most famlys are against spam biting , i know mine is and so is the 15 other famlys i know , its not a bad game , you just have to research it more and know whats goin on , so until u buy the hud or acualy played the rp part stop complaining its just an internet game

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