Policy

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The in-game POLICY verb will always have the most current version of official policy and will supercede this page in the event of any conflict. It has been copied here for reference purposes only. Please refer to the edit history for the status of this page.

Individual policies are often referred to by GS staff to their policy page numbers, e.g. "Policy 18" for the Scripting Abuse policy. Click on the page numbers below to navigate to a specific section.

See the Policy category for more in depth pages and/or applicable saved posts for such topics as GS Wiki, alterations and private properties. Saved posts relating to this page may be found here.

>policy
Usage:
  POLICY [PAGE #]   - Read the policy.
  POLICY REVIEW     - Review your warnings, HMC status, and if you're being monitored for vulgarity.

GemStone IV Player Policy

Topics                    Page  Topics                      Page
------------------------------  --------------------------------
Introduction.................1  Score Lists...................11
Role-Play....................2  GameMasters and GameHosts.....12
Abusive/Disruptive Behavior..3  Repair/Replacement Of Items...13
Player vs Player Conflict....4  Unique Items..................14
Solicitations................5  Game Mechanics and Changes....15
Character Names..............6  Quests And Special Events.....16
Bug Abuse....................7  Privacy.......................17
Delays Or Slowdowns..........8  Scripting Abuse...............18
Transferring Characters......9  Violations Of Policy..........19
Character Purges............10  High Maintenance Guests.......20
>policy review
You've been warned X times on the character XXXXXXX.  You haven't been flagged as a high maintenance customer.  You're not being monitored for vulgarity.  You've last read the policy in full on Thu Sep 20 01:24:05 ET 2018.

Introduction

GemStone IV Player Policy: Introduction

This policy is in addition to the overall TERMS AND CONDITIONS that every user of Simutronics services agrees to follow.  Included in the Terms are topics like use of accounts, use of vulgarity, and use of the service.  We strongly recommend that every Player read the TERMS and CONDITIONS on the web site, as every user is required to follow them and this Policy.  Our goal is to provide an enjoyable experience for the majority of our Players.  If you have any questions about either the TERMS AND CONDITIONS or this policy after reading them, you may put in an assist to speak with a staff member.

By using GemStone IV, players agree that Simutronics reserves the sole right to make the final determination of what is and is not in violation of any part of this policy.  Other policies in addition to the ones listed here may occasionally be necessary (such as unique rules for a quest).  Therefore, Simutronics also reserves the right to make special-case adjustments to its policies and the steps it takes concerning violation of these policies.

Role-Play

GemStone IV Player Policy: Role-playing

GemStone IV is a Role-playing Game.  This means that players interact in the world playing the part of their characters in a medieval fantasy environment.  This is known as "in character" (IC) and means that the player is acting out the part believably.  The term "out of character" (OOC) means that the player is behaving inconsistently with their character's situation in the game (such as discussing the latest sports event, singing the latest music release, playing the part of a starship captain, or communicating in French, Swahili or any earthly language other than English (Elanthia's Common tongue).

Players are expected to remain in character.  Generally, if someone wants or needs to be OOC (such as explain game mechanics to another player), they may do so in ways that are not in public.  Using a private room (one with a locked or latched door) or talking in whispers is recommended.  Note that tables are considered in public.

When one individual is reducing the enjoyment of other players by out-of-character behavior (be it by speech, actions, ESP messages, or any other method of communication within GemStone IV), this may be considered disruptive behavior.  Private rooms, whispers, direct thoughts to another player through ESP, or any other methods of communication are not excluded from this if one of the participants involved objects.

Staff Member Characters (GameMasters and GameHosts) are necessary to keep the game running smoothly and to assist players with working out problems and are inherently OOC entities because of the nature of their tasks.  Because of the reasons a Player may need the assistance of a staff member, interactions with staff characters are not required to be IC.  It would be extremely difficult for a high elf to describe the details of a serious game mechanics calculation bug that the character would never see, but the Player has to talk about the numbers involved.  This only applies to Staff Member characters, not interactions with Non-player characters (merchants, creatures, royalty, or other NPCs).  These should be IC.
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Abusive/Disruptive Behavior

GemStone IV Player Policy: Abusive Or Disruptive Behavior

General Behavior

Because GemStone IV is a multi-player game, there can sometimes be a conflict between an individual player's idea of entertainment and that of the majority of the players as a whole.  In such situations, the majority will be given the greatest weight.

GemStone IV is designed for the enjoyment of everyone, and as a general rule, any behavior which is specifically targeted to lessen that enjoyment for another player may be in violation of GemStone IV policy.  While what is disruptive is an extremely long list, it includes things such as vulgarity, harassment, sexual misconduct, cyber-bullying, out of character threats, doxing, and actions specifically targeted to be disruptive.  Threatening violence, using hate speech, and engaging in any sort of personal harassment can result in immediate account termination.

This applies to all interactions within the in-game environment, Play.net Forums, GSWiki, and the official GemStone IV Discord server.

Vulgarity

Vulgarity in GemStone IV is prohibited.  Using vulgarity in non-private areas of the game can cause your character to undergo stricter monitoring, and depending on the severity of the language used, result in harsh penalties.  It is important to have consent when using graphic language and to engage in private communication.  POLICY 17 also touches base on privacy and what locales are considered non-private that are commonly mistaken as private areas.  Masked vulgarity through alternate spelling and abbreviations can be considered graphic language, even though it is more accepted in general conversation outside of GemStone IV.

Buyer Beware

When making a purchase from another player, there are several ways everyone can protect themselves from getting scammed, such as asking to see the note or contents of a container before buying, getting a bard to LORESING, having a warrior ASSESS, casting Elemental Detection, and using one of the magic crystals (such as the one in the Abandoned Inn).  In order to avoid someone running off with your money before handing over an item, use the EXCHANGE verb.  All buyers are responsible for protecting themselves from dishonest dealers, so it is a good idea to check into the reputation of a seller when making a large investment of silvers.  Remember, if something seems too good to be true, it most likely is!

While GemStone IV is a "buyer beware" economy when exchanging items between other players, purposely participating in fraudulent activity to steal or cheat someone of their items, silvers, or other in-game currency can result in an official warning or a permanent lockout.  Items obtained through fraud are subject to confiscation.

Player vs Player Conflict

GemStone IV Player Policy: Player vs Player Conflict

There are elements in GemStone IV that promote a competitive environment.  GemStone IV has been designed to promote competition as player vs. creature, or player vs. puzzle, and not generally player vs. player.

Some events (such as the Gladiatorial Games), encourage player vs. player combat in a structured setting.  Also, some players will choose to role-play a competitive situation between themselves, and will combat each other, which is acceptable.  What is not acceptable is to initiate combat against unsuspecting victims, especially to prey upon weaker players for the singular enjoyment of the attacker.  As a rule of thumb, Character vs. Character (role-playing -CvC) combat is acceptable, while Player vs. Player (OOC or disruptive - PvP) is not.

There are many gray areas in terms of defining what is acceptable competition, and what is abusive behavior.  For example, a pickpocket stealing items or silvers.  This *can* be considered an open invitation for CvC, but losing 25 silvers isn't exactly cause for death.  Losing large amounts might be though.  Another example, the classic duel (Character 1: You have insulted my honor and I must defend that to the death!  Character 2: Have at thee Knave!) is on the surface acceptable, but on the other hand saying dueling (Player 1: Wanna duel?  Player 2: Yeah) isn't as it can be considered OOC.

In general, Simutronics will not get involved in a conflict confined to a small group of players unless it threatens to overlap to others or cause a generally disruptive influence on the game.
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Solicitations

GemStone IV Player Policy: Solicitations

GemStone IV may not be used as a venue for promotion of products or services of any kind.  Casual discussion of the genre (such as saying "The Lord of the Rings is a great book") is acceptable as long as it falls within the role-playing section of policy (such as in whispers, locked rooms, etc).  Directing players to external and unofficial Simutronics websites may be deemed in violation of this policy and should be avoided.  Directing players to helpful websites, such as maps or player created encyclopedias, is not a violation of this policy.

Character Names

GemStone IV Player Policy: Character Names

The following guidelines are in place to ensure a high level of consistency among the names of the adventurers within our community.  Players consistently creating names that violate the guidelines may be formally warned or face suspension of playing privileges.

  - Names with titles in them.  (Knighblackness, Mistressjade, Kingdan)
  - Phrases.  (Imatoasteroven, Irocku, Westandtall, Youfearme)
  - Technology based names.  (Laserbrain, Jetfighter, Mouseclicker)
  - Copyrighted or trademarked names.  (Nintendo, Lucasfilm, Chevy)
  - Odd punctuation or capitalization.  (Fragel DeLYon)
  - Garbage names.  (Xxbdgscy , Yyyzzz)
  - Names with repetitive letters.  Two may be allowed, three will not.  (Xxfredxx, Ghannndalf, Marrrisa)
  - Abbreviations or words with missing letters are not allowed.  (Drgnslr, Grngobln, Ldyjssie)
  - Character names should not be the name of any of the monsters, gods, goddesses, towns or cities in Elanthia.
  - Names that mimic items or creature names.  (Broadsword, Tower, Puma)
  - Names too similar to names of Staff members or NPCs in game.
  - Famous out-of-genre literary figures or well-known literary terms.  (Buckrogers, Chewybacca)
  - Names of out-of-genre personalities from T.V., literature, cartoons, video games, or movies.  (Hansolo, Clarkkent, Spongebob)
  - Names of current or past well-known personalities.  (Madonna, Goldberg, Cronkite)
  - Names of well-known historical or religious figures.  (Hitler, God, Stpeter, Gandhi)
  - Names of real locations, holidays, or events.  (Chicago, Easter, Mitzvah)
  - Vulgarity of any sort will not be allowed.
  - Racist or racist related terms are clearly unacceptable.
  - Drug-related terms are not allowed.  (Cocaine, Opium, and prescription names)
  - Names clearly in bad taste will not be allowed.  (Lykmipihole or Monkeyspanker)
  - Names created specifically to mock current players.

Names used from a fantasy naming generator (including the one in the character creation for GemStone) do not automatically comply to this policy.

Two words that form a name do not automatically violate the naming policy.

There may be names within the lands that do not adhere to the above guidelines.  The fact that these names were created prior to this revision has no bearing on the creation of new names.  We will not argue or debate names currently in the game, if we feel a newly created name violates our guidelines.

If you were sent to re-create your name, but feel your name is acceptable, and you wish to appeal, you must file the appeal in writing to gsfeedback@simutronics.com.  Your request will be submitted to the senior staff for review.  Be prepared to wait 1 to 2 weeks for a review of your appeal.

If an existing name is found to be a blatant violation of our guidelines, the senior staff may either request or force a name change depending upon the severity of the guideline breech or disruption among the community.
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Bug Abuse

GemStone IV Player Policy: Bug Abuse

Attempts to gain an unfair advantage which circumvents the letter or spirit of the rules presented in the documentation and version notes, as judged solely by Simutronics, are a violation of policy.  Types of abuse range from sending special characters or signals to the software to obtain an unusual result, to using normal game mechanics in ways they are clearly not intended.

Examples of serious bug abuse: Disconnecting from the merchant manager to avoid paying the purchase price of an item; finding a "feedback loop" with spells or mana points, which allows spells to be cast multiple times with little or no cost; repeatedly injuring yourself (or another character) in order to generate experience for an empath or cleric; finding a special circumstance in which to use a potion whereby its quantity is not decremented when it is used; abusing game mechanics to cause duplication of items or silver.

Abusing bugs disrupts the balance of GemStone IV and reduces its effectiveness to remain an entertaining product.  Sometimes there will be a great temptation to abuse a bug for personal gain because the negative effect is not readily apparent.  Therefore, Simutronics will exercise no tolerance whatsoever for anyone participating in this type of activity.

Bugs should *always* be reported.  Serious bugs should be REPORTed and BUGged, while minor ones should be BUGged.  If you observe someone else abusing a serious bug, or discussing a plan to abuse one, and fail to report it, you are subject to the same penalties as they are.  Serious bugs should be reported through GemStone IV Feedback.

Benefits obtained from bug abuse may be confiscated.  Failure to cooperate with Simutronics as to the extent or nature of a bug, or failure to be honest about the benefits obtained from bug abuse, is grounds for immediate lock-out from GemStone IV.

Delays Or Slowdowns

Some delay between commands is a normal consequence of playing a game on a network.  Delays are typically only a few seconds, but may occasionally be longer.  Additionally, some delays may affect only one player, because he or she is having problems with a local network node.

If a character is harmed because of a delay (or "slowdown") which was caused by a Simutronics system-wide delay which affected all users, repair or replacement of the damage may only be authorized if three separate criteria are met: 1. The damage was related directly to the slowdown; 2. The slowdown was at least 10 seconds in duration; and 3. The slowdown is verifiable by Simutronics.
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Transferring Characters

GemStone IV Player Policy: Transferring Characters

Under no circumstances will Simutronics transfer an existing character from one online service to a different service.  If you decide to switch online services, you will have to either roll up a new character from the new service, or continue to use the old service to play your old character.

Even within the same service, characters generally cannot be transferred from one account to another, except in certain specific situations.  For example, if a user moves, he or she may require a new account, which would require the transferring of the player's character from the old account to the new one.

To request the transfer of your character from one account to another, use the GemStone IV Feedback option.  All requests to transfer a character to another account must be approved by the management of that particular service.

Transferring Characters (Platinum Specific)

Due to the extent of disruption caused when a character changes ownership within the Platinum community, any account owner wishing to transfer his or her character to a new account, or any account owner who wishes to transfer his account ownership to a new person, must first gain the approval of the Platinum Guru.

Approval may be gained by consulting the Platinum Guru, either from within the product or via e-mail.  The Platinum Guru will endeavor to determine whether the character or account transfer is legitimate.

Legitimate transfers include, but are not limited to:

* Situations where a family started playing on one account, however, they are interested in playing simultaneously and wish to split the account in order to allow access to Platinum to all members of the Family at once.

* Situations where members of a family are parting ways for any number of reasons (going to college, or divorce, etc.) and responsibility for account payment is being passed from the breadwinner of the family to the actual controller of the characters.

* Situations where members of a family, for one reason or another, wish to consolidate all of their characters into one account.

* Any other legitimate situation where multiple people individually controlled separate characters on a single account and wish to split those characters up in legitimate ways into multiple accounts.

Once the Platinum Guru is consulted, the Platinum Guru must have his decision seconded by one of the following people: The Platinum Gurus Senior Manager, the Producer, or the Customer Service Manager.

Should Simutronics determine that the owner of an account is attempting to bypass this policy (either via transfer of credit card or other means); Simutronics reserves the right to confiscate any account or character involved in the transfer.

Character Purges

GemStone IV Player Policy: Character Purges

Certain inactive characters may be removed from the database to make room for active characters.  The rules are as follows:

If someone just logs into the game once or twice for a few minutes, and then never returns, their character may be removed.

The criteria are, if a character's TOTAL playing time in the game is under an hour, and they have not visited the game for at least 15 days, they may be removed.

ANY character, even a high-level one, that has not visited the game for 6 months or more may be removed from the database.

If this happens, your only option is to start a new character, as nothing from the old one (stats, silver, fame, inventory, etc.) will be replaced or re-created.
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Score Lists

GemStone IV Player Policy: Score Lists

Simutronics is the sole judge of the accuracy of any high score lists and other event score listings.  An announcement by Simutronics as to the winners of an event, is final.

GameMasters and GameHosts

GemStone IV Player Policy: GameMasters and GameHosts.

GameMasters are the equivalent to the GM in tabletop role-playing games.  They create the world that characters live in, the events that occur within it, and the non-player characters and creatures that populate it.  GameMasters have several roles with GemStone IV.

As Customer Service Representative, GameMasters are frequently on duty to answer any calls for technical help or to address Policy issues that arise.  Do NOT share your password with anyone claiming to be a GameMaster or Host.  They have no need for that information and will NEVER ask you what it is.

Type HELP first, since many questions are answered within the extensive HELP system.  If you still have difficulties or a technical problem with game mechanics, type ASSIST for additional sources of information, one option of which will notify on duty staff members that you have a question.

If it is an emergency or technical problem that will affect the integrity of the game, type REPORT and the specifics of the emergency.  Also, while we encourage you to instantly inform us where you feel there is an important issue that may require our immediate attention, please try and limit REPORT to one time and then follow-up with an ASSIST.

Instant action and results should not be expected when reporting.  Understand that every report is heard even though there may not be someone on duty and the issue will be addressed.  While Staff Members try to answer each REPORT, keep in mind that they may  need to focus on taking care of the issue (such as stopping a programming loop so that the game doesn't crash or preventing a character from being corrupted in the database time is of the essence) and fixing the problem takes priority over everything else.  Therefore, you may not receive an answer to your REPORT.

Unless a staff member requests additional information through REPORT, please try and give additional information through ASSIST.  Additional REPORTs can be distracting when the staff is trying to fix a problem.  Over-use or misuse of REPORT can result in a warning.

While able to handle Technical Support in depth for game mechanics issues, GameMasters may not give solutions to puzzles or give out details which Players are supposed to discover for themselves.  For example, a GameMaster could examine a locked chest to see if it was constructed properly, but would not typically be allowed to tell you its exact difficulty level, or what number you would have to roll in order to be able to open it.

GameMasters may not make personalized items for players.  NPC GM-run characters running special events such as merchants may.  GameMasters may not show favoritism towards one player or another.  Specific concerns about favoritism or in-game decisions about policy enforcement should be directed to the Senior GameMasters or feedback.

VERY IMPORTANT: Although one of the roles that a GameMasters fills is Customer Service oriented, their main responsibility is to preserve the integrity of the game's rules and balance.  In situations where customer service may conflict with preserving the integrity of the game, the GameMaster is required to put the rules first.


GameHosts

GameHosts are volunteer staff members who assist Players with basic mechanics questions, assist with finding help sources and aid with simple trouble shooting.  GameHosts can not handle involved Policy enforcement situations or mediate disputes, but can record concerns and bring issues to the attention of the GameMasters.  Often, GMs will ask Players to put in an assist so that a GameHost may record their side of a problem and/or get a REFER.  GameHosts may not replace items nor give out game secrets.
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Repair/Replacement Of Items

GemStone IV Player Policy: Repair Or Replacement

Simutronics is not obligated to credit or replace losses for any user if their use is interrupted by a software failure or other service interrupt.  Simutronics' sole obligation is to make a reasonable effort to fix a software problem or to return service as quickly as possible (except in cases where the service interrupt is not related to the GemStone IV product itself).  Simutronics has no control over and is not responsible for hardware or software that it does not own (internet routers or a user's ISP for example).

If it appears that your character is missing some points or that something about your character or its inventory has changed unexpectedly, you may inform us by typing ASSIST and speaking to a GameMaster directly.  Simutronics will attempt to investigate the problem, and may, at its sole discretion, authorize adjustments to your score or inventory.  GameMasters are empowered to make many on-the-spot decisions about replacement, but some situations will require approval from Simutronics management.  GameMasters will inform Players about these situations when further research or approval is required.

Some missing items are caused by normal means, such as a weapon which is broken in combat, silver lost to a pickpocket, or a mis-typed line.  For example, if you were to type PUT SWORD IN SACK, this would normally put the sword into your own sack, but if there were to be a sack on the ground (perhaps left there by another player), your sword would instead go into that sack, and when you reached for it later, you might think it had just "disappeared."  In any case where an item is lost or damaged through this type of normal game mechanics, repair or replacement may not be authorized.  Items lost due to sharing passwords or accounts will not be replaced.

In many instances, Simutronics' only recourse in determining the cause of a problem a user may experience, is to verify that the programming involved is reliable. If specific game mechanics function correctly, and repeated tests under similar circumstances as the reported problem yield correct results, then we must rule that what the user saw is attributed to some type of communication problem or a misunderstanding of the output.

If Simutronics cannot verify that an error in programming has occurred or cannot verify the construction of the missing item, then the replacement request will be declined.  Characters will ONLY be replaced due to an error in Simutronics programming.  Players may help verify construction of items by registering their items regularly.  See the town registrar to register your items.  Also see the Unique Items section.

Note that some items may change the way they work from the last time they were handled.  See the Game Mechanics section for more information about these instances.  Compensation or replacement requests will be declined in cases where mechanics balance adjustments have been made and are working properly.

Unique Items

GemStone IV Player Policy: Unique Items

Because of the volume of items and the wide range of distribution methods used for items that exist within GemStone IV, Simutronics cannot, and does not, maintain detailed records of the types of items, and who claims them.

It is possible that there will be mistakes in item creation from time to time.  These mistakes may be technical, invalid or unreasonable parameters, or elements which are outside the guidelines and mythos of the game environment.

Items vary widely in their scope, concept, and usefulness.  Some items of similar or exact appearance may have different powers.

Therefore, the following policy is imposed on these items:

- Simutronics will not replace or repair unique items under any circumstances other than bug fixes we initiate at our sole discretion.  Therefore, if you lose one of these items in a crash, we may not be able to replace it because we will not have any documentation on what it was, or how it really worked.

- Simutronics can and will, at its sole discretion, make adjustments or repairs to these items as needed.  In most cases, if an error represents a clear imbalance, you will not lose the benefits you acquired while the item was working the way it was.  The exception to this is if it was a mistake that has an effect on world balance.

- Simutronics is not required to make any notification that a change has occurred.  If you see that an item suddenly shifts its operation, then the reason is either due to a repair, or that the item was programmed to do what it does for some reason.  Items should never be trusted to ALWAYS behave perfectly predictably.

- In very rare instances, an item may have to be confiscated if it is seriously in error.  GameMasters may replace it at their discretion with the next item in the unique item queue (though this will probably not have any relationship to the benefits/powers of the one removed).
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Game Mechanics and Changes

GemStone IV Player Policy: Game Mechanics and Game Changes

Simutronics reserves the right to make modifications to any and all game mechanics and rules at any time, without notice.

Simutronics has a responsibility to preserve the balance of the game for the majority of the players, and furthermore, to maintain a level of challenge that is adequate for this type of product.  Therefore, Simutronics will routinely add new rules, modify existing rules, and even go back and change new additions that did not function as expected.

These changes can impact your character in a variety of ways.  If you feel that the change unfairly penalizes your character, or your character type, given the requirements of balance, challenge, and the general good of the game, then you may make your views known to Simutronics via GemStone IV Feedback (not ASSIST or REPORT).

Simutronics maintains a longer range view which may be in conflict with short-term and character-specific interests, but Simutronics will always attempt to make the best decision for the overall good of the game.

Quests And Special Events

GemStone IV Player Policy: Quests And Special Events

Quests and special events may happen at any time.  Simutronics is not required to give warning that a quest will be run.  Some quests are announced ahead of time, while others are run spontaneously. The intent is to involve characters and players in a living story, much as they would if the world was real and the character was truly living and breathing within.

Because of this, quests and special events have inherent dangers in them over and above the normal dangers to your character while playing GemStone IV.  This could mean the death of your character, the loss of inventory, the threat of kidnapping or capture, and many other possibilities due to choices your character, someone elses character or even a staff NPC makes.  Not every quest or event will end up working out in your favor, so be careful with choices and actions with your character, as they will have repercussions, both good and bad.

You have the option of choosing not to participate in an ongoing quest, by typing ASSIST and requesting that you be removed from the quest.  This must be done as soon as you are aware that there is a quest in progress.  Once you have become involved, it is up to the GameMaster running the quest as to whether your request to be removed should be honored.

Some quests and special events have a limited capacity.  For these limited space quests and events, not everyone who shows up will be able to participate.  Most quests and events will be run again at a later date, but there is no guarantee of the frequency of these quests, or that any particular player will be able to participate in any of them.

If you participate in a quest, please do not discuss the details of the puzzles with other players, because this can decrease their own enjoyment of it when their turn comes around.  Also, please do not broadcast puzzle solutions or other spoilers over general means of communication, such as the ESP network, or the public Message Board topics.

Awards may be given out at the end of quests and other events, but participation in an event does not guarantee an award.  Even though a player may have contributed to the solution of a puzzle, or role-played well, their actions at those times may not be monitored.  Simutronics is not required to monitor all quest participants.

Quest participants who are being disruptive may be removed from the quest at the discretion of the GM running the event and will not be eligible for any refunds.  Examples of disruptive behavior in addition to the normal disruption definition are:
  - Making disparaging comments about the quest or the people involved.
  - Actively thwarting the progress of other participants.
  - Circumventing a decision made by a GameMaster by "shopping" around.
  - Players who have participated in a quest before or by players who have received puzzle solutions from other participants who lessen the enjoyment of other players who wish to discover the solutions for themselves (Such as solving the quest or giving out answers just to get to the next step).
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Privacy

GemStone IV Player Policy: Privacy

Staff members may not eavesdrop on private conversations unless there is a reasonable concern that such conversations relate to breaking policy, disruptive behavior, or ongoing events.  In general, we try to respect player privacy as much as possible, however no area in the game is completely private.  All actions and conversations within GemStone IV are subject to monitoring at any time.

Engaging in vulgar or intimate behavior in a non-private area can result in being nudged to move to a private area, or depending on the severity, an official warning, a lockin, and/or a lockout.

Major Sanctuaries (Major Spirit spell [220]), inn tables, and bath houses are all considered non-private areas and are subject to monitoring.

Scripting Abuse

Main article: AFK scripting
GemStone IV Player Policy: Scripting Abuse Policy

Any activity that derives ANY benefit to either yourself or another player while being unresponsive to the gaming environment will be considered against policy.

If your attention is not on the game window, you should log out of the game or stop ALL SCRIPTED activities (including but not limited to: artisan skill use, guild skill use, healing, lock picking, purifying gems, spell casting, hunting, and playing) to avoid being warned.  The use of character "bots" that provide third parties an in-game advantage while being either responsive or unresponsive are strictly prohibited.  The excuse that you looked away from the monitor or left your desk for a few minutes will not prevent you from being issued a warning since the Staff of GemStone IV will have no way of verifying that fact.

Warnings for scripting or any unresponsive activities are based on the Staff's observation of the character, and the Staff's judgment may vary from instance to instance.  Therefore, each instance of scripting abuse will be judged independently.  Furthermore, GameMasters have the right to verify that any and all characters are following this policy at any time.

Exceptions

In general, if you are running a script or are in Rest Mode and are not gaining any NEW experience, skills, money, or providing other players or characters with an in-game advantage (e.g., casting spells), it does not fall under this policy.  ANY activity that is deemed by Staff to be disruptive or not in the best interest of the game or its players can be warned when discovered.  Examples include, but are not limited to:

 --If you are script moving in and out of rooms or an area causing excessive screen scroll, a warning may be issued.
 --If you are gaining skills passively or providing other characters with an in-game advantage, a warning may be issued based on your being unresponsive to the gaming environment.
 --If your "Rest Mode" message is determined to be inappropriate, a warning may be issued based on the messaging being Out of Character (OOC) or disruptive.
 --If you set up a character "bot" to provide services (e.g., healing, lock picking, spell casting) to others while being unresponsive, you will be issued a warning.

Long Roundtime

Players are not responsible to be attentive through long durations of roundtime (RT), as long as no commands are being entered into the system.  However, the moment the RT is over and a new command is entered, the player MUST be attentive at this point or be subject to a scripting violation warning.  An example of long roundtime would be anything that incurs over 60 seconds of roundtime.

Character "Bots"

For the purpose of this policy, a character "bot" is defined as any character that is either responsive or unresponsive to the gaming environment that uses any sort of trigger which can be executed by third parties to perform automatic "services" (e.g., healing, lock picking, spell casting, etc.).

Any participation in the use of character "bots" witnessed by Staff, even if the unresponsive character(s) is not connected to your account, will be considered against policy and result in a warning and or other penalties.  For example, if you knowingly activate a script run by another character who is unresponsive (such as set up to cast spells when "tapped"), you will receive a warning for scripting abuse.

Multiple Accounts

The use of multiple accounts is not prohibited by GemStone IV Policy; however, if a player chooses to run multiple accounts at the same time, and they are being controlled by scripts and are gaining ANY benefit to the character or other surrounding characters, the player must be actively responsive to the gaming environment from EACH character's perspective.

Kill Switches

If while performing an activity that has any in-game advantages, you log off or go completely silent while being investigated for a scripting violation, this will result in both a scripting violation warning and a game mechanics abuse warning, as this is a zero tolerance activity.  This includes logging off,  "slamming" to avoid consequences, or running to an area to mimic resting.

Violation Penalties

For the purpose of this policy, all offenses by any character on an account can be treated as having occurred to the same character.  As with other policy violations that lead to lockouts, accounts that are "linked" by any method, including but not limited to name, address or other billing information, password sharing, or account access, can be treated as the same account in regards to disciplinary action.

First Time Violation: Player is moved to the scripting limbo room and acknowledges this policy (POLICY 18).  An official warning will be applied, but no other penalties.  After an account has been warned once, the first time violation is never revisited.

First Offense: Player receives an official warning, is moved to a consultation room or scripting limbo, loses ALL field experience (unabsorbed experience), and an experience inefficiency penalty is added, and must reread and agree to policy before being released.  If the character was scripting an Artisan Guild skill or Adventurer's Guild task, will lose HALF of their current bounty points or 50 ranks in an artisan's guild or 10 ranks in a professional guild skill.  Other gains, such as animal companion affinity, PLAY skills, and/or other in-game progression may be reduced.

Second Offense: In addition to another warning, substantial penalties may be assessed, including experience inefficiency penalties, and the loss of all current outstanding bounty points.  The character may also be removed from the Adventurer's Guild for 30 days and lose up to HALF of ALL ranks in an artisan or professional guild skill.  F2P subscribers will have their character permanently locked out, with the only option for release being to RETIRE their character and start over.

Subsequent Offenses: In addition to another warning, substantial experience inefficiency penalties can be assessed, all Artisan's or profession guild skill ranks may be removed, and all characters on the account may be removed from the Adventurer's Guild for at least 30 days and forfeit all current rewards.  The account, plus all related accounts, will be reviewed for lockout.  Lockouts typically progress from 30 days, 60 days, and 90 days.  After 90 days, the account can face permanent lockout.

Starting at the first offense, if the character was engaged in any activity including, but not limited to, a game, event, or any other exercise which results in acquisition of points, scrip, prizes, or any other type of item or "score", those items/points may be confiscated as well.  You also may lose the ability to participate in any games for an extended duration.  Items that are being unlocked, purified, or attuned may also be confiscated and/or lose any gains including experience, treasure, or attunement data.

Players who exhibit an understanding of this policy and avoid further violations may have penalties reduced after a year (365 days) of their last offense.
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Violations Of Policy

GemStone IV Player Policy: Violations Of Policy

Anyone found to be in violation of the GemStone IV policies or Simutronics Terms and Conditions, at the sole discretion of Simutronics, may be warned or removed from the game.  Please keep in mind that GameMasters may not rely on a Players word alone when handling possible Policy violations, however a Players history may be taken into account on any given violation decision.

This list is used as a general guideline by GameMasters in determining steps to take. The actual decision will vary based upon the severity of the decision and the history of violations on *any* accounts connected to a players account.

1. First violation: The user will receive a warning describing the breach of policy Simutronics believes they have committed, either onscreen or in e-mail. Incidents of scamming and serious bug abuse may be locked out for a minimum of two months on the first violation.  Scamming is deliberate use of game mechanics to bilk another player (for example, selling mystery notes and getting a note of a value lower than the sale from the bank after the sale is made, or deliberately stealing items or silvers from one account to transfer to another.)

2. Second violation: The user may be locked out of GemStone IV for a period of up to one month, and will be notified via Email.  A second violation for bug abuse or scamming may result in a permanent lockout.

3. Third violation: The user may be locked out of GemStone IV for any duration up to and including permanent.

4. In certain circumstances, such as extremely abusive behavior, a user may be locked out without warning or notice of any kind.

If the user has more than one account, all accounts, on all services, may be simultaneously subject to the above actions.

Any account that is being used by a person who has already had a lockout issued on them may also be locked out.  This includes accounts that are not registered to the person who is locked out.  The lockout for *both* accounts will be re-started from the date that the second account was removed.

If anyone is locked out of one Simutronics product, for any reason, Simutronics may choose to lock that user's accounts out of ALL Simutronics products, on all services.  This includes current and future Simutronics products.  If a user is discovered to be playing on an account which is registered to a fraudulent or incorrect name, address, or billing method, that may also be grounds for immediate lockout.

Players are also always subject to the policies of the online services that provide the connection to GemStone IV.  If a player violates the policy of the online service, then that is also considered to be a violation of GemStone IV Player Policy.  Reports of such policy violations may be forwarded to the online service involved.

Players wishing to appeal a warning may do so through GemStone IV Feedback (found on the website or through e-mail at gsfeedback@simutronics.com).

Players wishing to dispute a lockout may do so through lockout@simutronics.com.  Once a lockout request has been put in place, GameMasters may not handle requests for information or appeals.

Simutronics, at its discretion, will have the Senior GM staff review decisions on warnings or lockouts and take appropriate action.  Note that all situations will not merit a Senior GM review.

High Maintenance Guests

GemStone IV Player Policy: High Maintenance Guests

In certain situations, the overall pattern of behavior on an account or a set of linked accounts may be determined to be disruptive or abusive, even if not one single act clearly violates any specific policy.

Simutronics reserves the right to determine what patterns of behavior are defined as "high-maintenance" or "disruptive" and may take action against the account(s).  High maintenance customers (HMC) will be consulted on a case-by-case scenario.

High maintenance customers (HMC) can become locked out for the following activities:
 * Continued disruptive behavior in game, on the forums, or on the wiki.
 * Any in-game violation of policy or forum violation beyond a notification.
 * High volume of assists, reports, and emails.

HMC status may also hinder the ability of getting timely assistance and responses from both onsite and offsite staff.  HMC cannot hold a position of leadership such as an officer in an MHO, CHE, or other GM maintained group.  They cannot be mentors, GameHosts, GameMaster, or any form of moderator.

Once a player is flagged as HMC, it is a permanent decision on all linked accounts, even if the account transfers hands.
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