[Discussion] Attempt at finding compromise between pvp and no-pvp MP

… because I see a possibility and it’d be foolish not to try find middle ground. That’s my jugdement though.

But before I begin, I will lay out the terms of this discussion:

Attempt on Weighed compromise on the subject of PvP multiplayer.

What is this discussion?
This discussion aims to find a wheighted compromise between the players who want pvp to become part of stonehearth and those who do not want that. It also attempts to bring all points on the table, by which I mean, facts, lines of reasoning, gameplay goals, how details affect said gameplay goals as well as the nuances of when said details still work to affect the game towards those goals in the ways we want. In short, this discussion will try to find out what is possible in this space, and do so in a civilized manner.

What do I mean by wheighted compromise? Glad you asked.
A normal compromise has both parties comming to the middle, soley because they have to compromise and because their views differ. A weighted compromise adds weight to the facts that are on the table. In short terms: if you’re asking the impossible, you don’t get what you want. If you ask something reasonable (and in line with good quality/the goals the discussion tries to achieve), you will get something more like what you want.

What does that mean in this case?:
In this case it means the following: We know that currently the dev’s don’t want pvp or anything like it, because it might destroy the cutesy, peace-y feel of the game. Now this is a reasonable argument, thus you have two options. The first is to agree, and the second is to come with an alternative that takes this into account. A weighted compromise tries to do that by requiring that a solution takes all reasonable arguments into account.

Code of conduct

  1. Adhere to forum rules, and common decency.
  2. Please keep emotions in your arguments and reasoning, not in how you conduct your arguments and reasoning.
  3. If anyone fails point 2, assume it was unintentional and discard the emotional tone of the message in favor of the literal message.
  4. Always try to be constructive to the discussion. If you sense bad quality, at least try to come with an alternative instead of just complaining.
  5. The dev’s have the last say. They’ve thought about this more than anyone else, have the long term development path in the back of their minds and also know the goals they want the game to meet. This discussion is meant to try find compromises, but if it doesn’t work out, we go back to the default conduct which is, well, that the dev’s have the last say. All of this is to prevent the discussion to go to the political sphere where one can expect policy wins if they have sufficient voice, and instead keep things focussed on the facts.
  6. This is not the place for discussions on how we conduct these kind of discussions, or how we conduct these discussions in general. If you feel you have constructive stuff to say about it, there is the ability to reference to this discussion thread in the meta-section of the forums. If you want to ask me questions about why the specific code of conduct items are what they are, that is also the place to go. (please keep it all in 1 thread though.)

Thanks in advance. :smile:.

I will justify and kick off this discussion by laying out the weighted compromise I think could work:

We know the dev’s like to preserve the peace-y cutesy feeling of stonehearth going into multiplayer. On the other hand, with a game like this, it is not hard to image that some players sometimes just want a playthrough, just so they can go to war against each other and, I don’t know, get rid of grievance that is btter fought out in stonehearth than elsewhere, or just because people are curious how well their towns would fare against each other.
But I don’t think it has to be a black-white thing where you either have multiplayer or not. Instead you can also have the ability to attack one-another, but just make that very, very unlikely to happen naturally, unintentionally and unilaterally. The core of my compromise is tries to do this as follows:

  • Any act of war (stealing, killing, tespassing, strangling etc.) is recognised by the game, and halted with a notification giving the player the power to stop it from happening.
  • If the player explicitly tries to push through, and commit said act of war, the game will understand this to be a unilateral war.
  • Now in any game this peaceful, where the things are possible which are possible in stonehearth, you can ask yourself: What, lore-wise, keeps this world so peaceful? One possible answer might be that the gods cid and rayya, (i.e. the balance of game systems, and also maybe new lore-related systems specifically designed for this purpose) find these unilateral wars among their people highly unpleasant. So they employ karma to tip the balance of fate agains the attacker and/or in favor of the attacked.
  • Now bilateral wars, on the other hand, are perfectly fine. If they decide to slaughter one-another, good riddance, I say, keeps the world peaceful. If the attacked decides to declare war on his attacker (such as in those cases where that was the idea all along) then this inbalance is stopped.
  • You do not fool rayya and cid by supporting arggressing towns, they will know it, and you will know that they know it.
  • The bad effects scale with enemies, which is to say, if you pick more fights, fate will be even harder on you.
  • The bad effects should also scale with the relative power inbalance that exists. Aggressors should pick towns their own size.

-by aggressing towns I meant towns who unilaterally go to war.

All this serves three purposes:

  1. Exile any agressing towns from the otherwise peaceful communtiy. By picking fights, you don’t just get your enimy on your bad side, but also the gods and all peaceful nations.
  2. Prevent conflict from pouring into peaceful regions. After all support for war is not something that keeps you neutral, just be warned. And picking small finghts to fight the large fight is no good strategy for the aggressor either, because all the problems they had with the big fight are now coming from the new fights you pick. Even if your conflict was a bilateral one, inplicating other towns into conflicts they don’t want to is yet another act of war, or act of support for war, and thus will make your life miserable.
  3. Defend attacked towns from aggressors, by tipping the combat balance in their favor, and making life miserable for their attacker.

Let the discussion begin…


Quick questions before everything heats up too much::smile::thinking:

What age group will be playing?
If pvp is implemented, what would it look like? (with this age group)
What will be the set goals to tell who won the pvp?

If co-op is implemented, what would it look like?
What is the set goals of a co-op game?

If the age is 7+ in the ersb will be rated E for everyone in the US. This would then dictate how pvp can be done. I for one would like all the Kickstarter goals to be accomplished.
Actually I would like to have both be playable.

1 Like

My opinion on pvp is that it should definitely exist, it was a kickstarter goal.
But I don’t see the need in a fight/battle between players, it could be any other competition. Food fight, capture the flag, first to build a monument, etc…


Honestly, to me it’s extremely simple:

Have an option at map creation, just like we do with difficulty, to define whether PvP is enabled or not. Tie said option into the in-game diplomacy system so that it can be changed mid-game if desired, with a further option at map creation to “lock” the chosen setting in.

That way, people who want PvP can get it, and people who don’t want PvP combat never have to deal with it.

In a game like Stonehearth, if the players can’t agree upon such a rule then it’s going to be really hard to play together anyway. All multiplayer games rely on a level of common understanding of the “game boundaries”, a trust between players to stay within those boundaries and a respect for the other player’s option to do anything they like within those boundaries. In a sandbox game, though, those levels of trust and respect become even more important since the boundaries are a bit broader and less defined, and there are more edge-cases to deal with.

Options for both combat and non-combat PvP would be wonderful, but at the end of the day it comes down to an agreement between players. If players agree upon the rules/boundaries, pretty much anything is possible from there. But if players disagree with the ruleset… well, there’s nothing to stop one player from creatively exploiting loopholes in order to “defeat” the other player without any kind of combat; except of course the other player dropping from the game. As the old saying goes, it takes two to tango – if one player actually wants to do a waltz instead, then both are probably better off just finding a different partner.


This is where my view has shifted on the aspect of “PvP” and it fits the theme of Stonehearth a bit better than ‘SLAUGHTER’ another group of poor hearthlings.


Two young men (they were in their late 30s but whatever) recently played a “peaceful game” of Stonehearth. By the end of the hour, they had bricked up access to each others stockpiles, destroyed the terrain under each others houses, nuked each others woodland forests and destroyed each others’ berry bushes.

“We’re best friends now” they told me as they left the room.

So you know, I now think pvp is relative.


Yeah, the answer to the pvp question is obviously going to be “a flag set by the server host” because literally any other option will just result in people walling off their servers and not letting you play on their server any more you meanie.

You can’t make people who don’t want to PvP participate in it any more. They’ll just not play.


That was my opinion from another thread discussing multiplayer. I used to be strongly opposed to the idea of PvP cause it just seemed to go against the spirit of the game, but there are ways to go about it in a more friendly competition sorta way and less of a bloody war to the death. It was rather silly when I think about it, cause it wouldn’t affect my games at all lol.

  • town banner :white_check_mark:
  • hearthlings can go KO and come back to life :white_check_mark: (use the same system but say they fake it for the game)
  • classes :white_check_mark:
  • turrets :white_check_mark:
  • town as playing field :white_check_mark:

I like that idea.


Why not include the ability for “peaceful” competition?

Combat hearthlings competing to see who can battle their way through a dungeon or up a monsterous mountain first?

Hearthlings having a non-fatal combat tournament with wooden weapons?

A competition to see who can build the most luxurious palace or best workshop in an allotted time?

Or just have the players be able to influence the other players environment, for example a ritual that causes elemental enemies to attack the other player. Nothing major, just minor cheeky things.


I don’t think there should be PvP, because if you think about it, there are in the same kingdom. Why would they fight themselves? I think it would be cool to have thing like capture the flag. But you never see two community’s within one country fight each other, having PvP would be like that.

The best option would be to add two tickboxes:

  1. allowing the Host to change rules during the game or not
  2. allowing various options of PvP, from no PvP to non-violent PvP to permadeath PvP.

And please add WOLOLO! sound for Clerics when they heal a Hearthling. GLaDOS approves.

1 Like