The Spirit of the Rules

A few thoughts from Yeniel.

I’d like to spend a moment to talk with you all about the spirit of the rules. I thought this would be a generally understood term, but after a few discussions with players I’ve come to discover it isn’t. Let’s say, for whatever reason, the staff decided it’s now against the rules to eat apples in the Serian Center Square. Simple enough, yes?

Then Bob comes along, plops himself down on the bench, and begins to eat apple pie, apple muffins, apple wedges, and washing it down with some apple cider. A staff member hauls him up and he immediately shouts, “Hey, I wasn’t eating apples!”

This is what someone’s doing when they’re violating the spirit of the rules.

They’re doing something the rules are obviously meant to cover, yet using the excuse that the rules do not specifically forbid this precise action.

On a similar note, there are certain mechanisms within the game that are intended to work a certain way, in the spirit of the game itself. One of the most basic of these, believe it or not, is mob hunting. Mobs are loaded up with equipment so that groups of brave characters (or brave individuals) can go out, fight them, and earn a reward for their actions that will further help them in the game. Simple enough, yes?

This is why the staff is against hoarding EQ. Not because it makes Bob the super-uber-captain-kill-em-all, but because while he’s holding three different sets of limited EQ, none of it is reloading on mobs. and now other players have no real reason to go fight, which is a major part of the game. So hoarding EQ actually detracts from the game as a whole.

On a related note, to emphasize, the mobs are there for players to fight. Not for a high level friend who will hold items until your character is a higher level. Not for that poor, innocent orc chieftain you charmed into being a slave. Not for that Peacekeeper you lured them to when you immediately fled from the fight you started.

Now, the staff could spend the next two or three years writing out the most exhaustive rules possible, covering every instance from every angle with every possible combination of characters, mobs, and equipment. But it wouldn’t be much fun for us, and in the long run it really wouldn’t be much fun for you guys, either.

So, please, try to think about the spirit of the rules, and the spirit of the game itself. We are all here to have fun within a certain framework, not to figure out ways to sneak around it. Because if people keep coming up with “clever” ways to work around the rules, the staff will have to come up with clever ways to stop you.

And that really won’t be much fun for you guys.

Yeniel is a former game manager and God of Deception.

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