There’s been an awful lot of topics about players disconnecting, recently. There’s a lot of calls for further punishment rather than simply a marginal loss of somewhere around 200k credits, since it makes the game a good deal less fun when it happens. There’s also a lot of calls for no further punishment due to the current cost of about 200k credits per match, the fact that this is simply a game, and because it isn’t strictly against the rules. I made a post not too terribly long ago about an idea for a system to make a reasonable punishment, but since it’s buried inside another topic, I think it’s a good idea to simply make another thread. So here we go. Disconnection punishment, revised edition. If you don’t like walls of text, the important parts are underlined.
The first idea is that everybody has to disconnect sometimes. Y’know, a phone call, a knock at the door, internet going out, that sort of thing. So if there is a system for penalties, it ought to have forgiveness built into it for those cases. The best idea I can come up with is making a system where a certain number of demerits are penalized for disconnecting, and where the number of demerits you have determines your punishment. Of course, it also implies that there ought to be as many chances as possible to rejoin a battle. Thus, there should always be an option to rejoin a battle under the “Launch” button in hangar. Another important part, from the fact that many players are clueless: These rules, if implemented, ought to be put under the help tab, and the details of any punishment sent to the player who incurred them through inbox.
Each battle is meant to have a certain number of players to a side. Let’s call that number N. For a 2v2, N is 2. For a 12v12, N is 12. N is special, since it’s a huge factor in how much the disconnect is felt. So, for any numerical system of demerits, the penalty for leaving an N=2 match ought to be more than an N=12 match, all other things being equal.
Let’s throw a few formulas out there.
For requeuing after disconnecting (while some of your ships are in battle, in other words), you ought to get 25 - 1.5 * (N - 2) disconnect demerits.
That is 10 for a 12v12 and 25 for a 2v2. This is the largest, simply because if you do this, you clearly disconnected simply for another match.
For disconnecting for more than half the duration of the match, you ought to get 15 - (N - 2) disconnect demerits.
That is 5 for a 12v12 and 15 for a 2v2. This is a smaller factor due to the fact that sometimes, it’s just necessary to disconnect.
For disconnecting manually (either by using alt+f4, if that’s possible to detect, or by using the menu button), you ought to get 10 - .5 * (N - 2) disconnect demerits.
That is 5 for a 12v12 and 10 for a 2v2. This is the smallest factor because, once again, you just gotta disconnect sometimes.
Everything is linear here, but that’s just details. Formulas can be changed, after all. These just put out nice, round numbers for every value of N.
It’s pretty obvious punishments ought to get worse as the offenses do. And, of course, if there is to be forgiveness built into the system, the first penalty has to be at a respectable number already. But if there is to be much discouragement at all, the first punishment must be at a relatively low number.
For persons who reach 50 disconnect demerits, a fine ought to be applied worth 10% of their credits. Note that for 5 million credits, this is a mere setback of 500k, which is approximately three or four matches, or 15 minutes in invasion.
For persons who reach 100 disconnect demerits, a further 10% fine on credits should be applied, as well as an income malus of 10% for all income (with the exception of GS, since that’s real money) until their demerits drop below 100 again. This is again only 500k for people with 5 million credits. The income malus is probably more a psychological disincentive than an actual one, since credits aren’t the most important currency, and 10% is really not that much.
For persons who reach 200 disconnect demerits, a 20% fine on not only credits, but artifacts and vouchers as well, should be applied. They should be put into a special low priority queue, weighted towards matches with only other people with 200 points or more. They should be told of this through a message in their inbox. Furthermore, another income malus for all income (again, no GS) should be applied, not stacking with the previous, so that they only receive 150/(number of demerits) of their income until they drop below 200 demerits again. This punishment is huge. If you get to 200 points, you’re probably disconnecting from around half your matches. A ridiculous solution to a ridiculous problem.
Of course, given that the only methods described thus far are punishments and ways to gain points, there must also be a way to reduce demerits.
Every day at midnight, GMT, either five percent, or just plain five, of every player’s demerits, whichever is greater, should be removed.
So here’s a few examples of the times it’d take to get rid of demerits.
Examples of penalty times:
50 - 10 days to get rid of all demerits, assuming no further disconnects.
100 - 20 days to get rid of all demerits, assuming no further disconnects. Just one day to get rid of the income malus.
150 - 28 days to get rid of all demerits, assuming no further disconnects. Eight days to get rid of the income malus.
200 - 34 days to get rid of all demerits, assuming no further disconnects. 14 days to get rid of the income malus. Just one day to get out of the special queue and super income malus.
250 - 38 days to get rid of all demerits, assuming no further disconnects. 18 days to get rid of the income malus. Five days to get out of the special queue and super income malus.