New Dark and Darker rules could see you banned for teaming up with other groups in the hardcore dungeon-crawler RPG. Developer Ironmace has adjusted its position on Dark and Darker teaming, taking a firm stance on players who are forming “mobs of insiders” to run roughshod over the game’s dungeons. Bans will start at two weeks for a first occurrence, with permabans for a second offense, but Ironmace clarifies it is “not targeting normal players with this policy,” as we still await news of its return to Steam.
On Monday, October 30, the Dark and Darker team announced, “Starting today, if you are caught grouping with another team to kill other players inside the dungeon, you will be banned.” After initial huge success on Steam before it was removed due to an ongoing dispute with publisher Nexon, the PvPvE loot-grinding RPG game has continued to maintain a strong community since.
Speaking via its official Discord channel for the game, Ironmace developer ‘sdf’ explains that “unfair teaming has become widespread in certain dungeons – what we’ve seen is players will use VoIP or the base camp to form huge mobs of insiders to hunt down non-insiders, usually for nefarious needs such as unfairly monopolizing resources.” They say that “this type of behavior flies in the face of the fair play we are looking to enforce.”
Of course, some players do like to team up as part of their adventures; after all, part of the appeal of PvPvE games is coordinating with other players who could theoretically fight and kill you and working together for mutual benefit on a short-term scale. Ironmace says it is “not looking to penalize plates that team up temporarily for unique emergent experiences,” but acknowledges, “This is a tough issue for us as there is a fine line that can be hard to delineate.”
As such, it recognizes that the initial announcement “was overly broad without properly explaining our specific targets.” It says, “We still consider [teaming] a serious issue for the health of the game but we also realize we need a multi-faceted approach with our solutions,” and is planning to roll out in-game solutions, although “will also reserve the right to ban people we think are unambiguously violating the unfair teaming policy.”
“We are not against roleplaying for fun,” sdf continues. Fellow dev ‘krapst78’ adds, “We are looking to cut down on the blatant malicious teamers that are brazenly abusing loopholes. If you deliberately and repeatedly team up with the purpose of creating large mobs for the purpose of unfairly dominating a dungeon then you already know who you are and we will be monitoring and taking action against these egregious cases.
“If you are a normal player who enjoys the typical dynamic interactions in the dungeons, then you do NOT need to worry about a ban,” they reassure. “We are sorry for the confusion in causing normal players to fear for their accounts.” It’s certainly nice to hear – I personally love the ambiguous tension caused by uneasy alliances, but there’s absolutely nothing more frustrating than running into a group that has clearly coordinated to run you over. Hopefully, this is the first step to a brighter future.