This is long, so read at your peril.... Morgana Lefay brought up this quote from Raph Koster: I started to write up a response in the thread, then thought, hm.. isn't this an interesting topic in general? The problem being, that if you don't provide the "good" and the "bad" folks with consistent ways to deal with their opposites, that allows everyone to be that "Hero" or "Villain", then you end up with everyone unhappy. The inherent belief is that people will band together to fight the Villains, or that Villains will lay careful plans to thwart the Heroes. IT NEVER HAPPENS THAT WAY WITH REAL HUMANS UNLESS IT IS "ROLE PLAYED" or "SCRIPTED", IN OUR CURRENT GAME. Instead, you get Heroes attempting to protect their friends and charges, who are beaten constantly by folks who aren't Villains, but just like to kill them for the thrill. And fighting them just lends to the killers' fun and excitement, not always for the protectors. You have to have overriding reasons for people to BECOME heroes and villains. Something they are striving for OR that they are told to do. Something that you can approve of and help, or disapprove of and thwart. And associated fame or infamy to go with it. A lot of the pking that goes on hasn't reflected that, but is just killing to get a kill shot or because they are bored or to pick up a flag or cash. Even the ones who role play the bandit or evil lord somewhat don't do it in an way that lets you decide whether to "play" or not. You are chopping wood in a forest, as you've done every day for weeks. All of a sudden, someone comes out of the blue and kills you. Doesn't bother doing anything else, says nothing, doesn't offer any reasoning. So.... I'm supposed to be upset? Angry? Hurt? Actually, I'm confused. Anytime a supposed "villain" pker kills a crafter, I have to really question their intent. Most times crafters have little on them these days. If they do, they are in Trammel anyway. The crafter has nothing to go on, no one she can contact to deal with the person... and no idea when or where to do anything about it anyway. So... no warning, no explanation, just random killing for nothing. That's supposed to be a villain or hero situation? And then there's the cold-war going on with items and skillsets. You may consider yourself a Hero. You may have good equipment, GM or better skills, know your way around a dungeon or two, and have protected some folks in many raids. But all it takes is some odd grouping of skills that gives someone a full on advantage and you are useless, no matter how good you are. Anyone that BECOMES powerful, a "hero" or "villain" as a skillset and playstyle tends to be nerfed to oblivion within a couple of patches. Those that have been around the game since the beginning all may have different ideas on what constitutes Heroism and Villainy, sometimes in the same household. There is also the underlying background for real Heroism and Villainy --- the inherent human problem that you might DIE. You can't be a Hero or Villain if you can just walk around the corner and lose the cape and go back to being normal Nancy. Heroes have a history, work hard, live hard, and evade the worst thrown at them with skill, bravery and hardness of character. It can be argued that Villains are the same, just working for alternate purposes. So, how does Heroism and Villainy meld into a world where you CAN'T truly die? We end up with kill points and people dancing around moongates showing off their fancy moves. Even if you counted skill and stat reduction as a restriction, no one keeps track of such things so that you could say "wow, Johnny has taken so much skill and stat reduction over his life, but still comes back to fight again... he is a real Hero". However, there is also the fact that Heroism (and villainism) tend to be given by others, not by the person doing the events in question. You jump in front of a dragon and take the brunt of it's attacks... but you have the best armor and skillset and are EXPECTED to do so. I think Heroism and Villainy is unexpected, unrequired, and given to others. What would everyone do if Heroism and Villainy were something added into the mix to be given by others? If certain actions and events led to you gaining in H or V from those around you and thus showing that your character was that sort of person? How would folks react to a character venue that allowed you to be a Hero or Villain, with major bonuses and capabilities, but that once your character dies, it is deleted? Most of what folks do in this game they consider being a hero or villain. However, it's small potatoes for the most part. What if you had to be careful, watch what you did, show people your bravery in the face of potential real loss, with the commensurate rewards and feelings?