Orcs Must Die! Unchained, Robot Entertainment's upcoming multiplayer online battle arena-like game, won't allow toxic players to ruin the experience for their teammates, the developer recently told Polygon.
We spoke with designer Jerome K. Jones and director of marketing Adam Fletcher as a follow-up to previous comments made by Jones on the existence of toxic players. At the time, Jones said there's "probably something good" about toxic players who want to stick with your game.
"The good thing is probably that it's a good game," Jones said. "It's holding their interest, it's keeping them around. It's making them passionate enough to give a damn."
Speaking with Polygon again, however, Jones said that Robot will not tolerate anyone harmful to the community.
"By no means would toxic players be something that we would want or something that would be good for our game," Jones said. "Toxic players aren't something we would [allow]. We would always take a stance on with this game, and I guess I just didn't make that very clear."
Fletcher said that Robot will deal with players appropriately if they make the experience a negative one.
"Our goal is for everyone to have fun," Fletcher said. "If someone is in the game and they're going to destroy that type of environment where someone can't have that fun experience ... we don't want that type of activity within our game."
"Passionate players are very important to us."
Players are encouraged to report issues, which Fletcher says will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Robot is implementing tools within its closed beta for players to send in complaints and screenshots for bad behavior. Punishments and standards for toxicity are still being decided internally, though the developer recently opened up a discussion with the founder community in its private developer forum. Base conduct for players is now available on those forums as well.
Jones added that the game's team-only chat will help stop some negativity before it starts.
"We haven't seen a need to allow people to be able to yell across enemy lines in the game, and I don't know that there necessarily will be a need," Jones said. "We're digging it right now where it's very simple to chat directly to your teammates only and never worry about it going to everybody. That's a helpful thing when you think about it."
Robot is interested in hearing from its passionate players, the designer said, not its toxic ones. Those two categories carry distinct differences. While toxic players cause turmoil for everyone, passionate players are the ones that reach out to the developer to communicate their problems and help with the process.
"Passionate players are very important to us," Jones said. "We have a big feedback system here and the office and we've always worked like that. We love the community feeding back to us, and we've never wanted to discourage it."
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