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jsetano

I had dream about LOTRO

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It'd be interesting if someone with access could post this on the OF...

Anyway I had a dream about LOTRO in the shower today and it went something like this:

The game launcher loads and I find a new post titled "New Management: What to Expect"

My heart skips a beat and I click on a link in the post that directs me to a stream where a new lead developer seems to be greeting the community. He introduces himself and his fellow coworkers around him who are all be wearing LOTR themed t-shirts:

"I am not only the new lead developer, but the new publisher and owner as well, as I've decided to buy the management of this beloved IP to see it not only return to its former glory, but surpass it."

The stream chat, which started as just a few hundred viewers and is now reaching a thousand, unsurprisingly burst with praise.

He continues: "Although we are a business that seeks to remain afloat, we are not willing to sacrifice the integrity of this game, the loyalty and support of its players, or the reverence and love shown for its universe in order to make a profit. In fact, we would rather break even or lose money than continue to see such a beloved game world from the father of fantasy himself be run down even further into its ruinous state. Many changes will be made and not a moment too soon."

Chat begins to spam 'CHANGES CHANGES' and '#CHANGES'

"There will no longer be a VIP status or an LP currency behind which many of the game's core features are locked only to frustrate and inconvenience new and old players alike, driving them away from this beautiful game. There will be 'Backer's Status' which will allow players that wish to support our new endeavor to better the game for everyone to support us in exchange for a choice in new monthly cosmetic options, entry to developer-run events, and the opportunity to submit feedback and work hand in hand with our team in order to provide features that the community wishes to see implemented."

Everyone in chat now begins to spam 'PAY TO BACK!' 'P2BACK!'

"In fact, starting tomorrow, every Tuesday and Friday will be community feedback days during which we take suggestions from our players on the forums and on our bi-weekly streams in order to address and work on the this amazing and dedicated community's most pressing concerns. We will have devs dedicated to the meticulous balancing of classes, gear, and PVE content as well as the reviving of PVMP, among many other things. An end there will be to developer silence and anti-player policies!

Which brings me to the next point: the immense pay wall for new players and the ceaseless, predatory grind at the endgame are gone as of next week. The legendary system will be completely reworked to be intuitive and above all player-friendly. The incessant grind created for every level increase by the previous team will be completely overhauled as per our community's feedback. The virtue system will once again be reworked along with every other system that was purposely twisted in the name of inconvenience in order to be monetized.

Purposely disrupting free and premium players, locking the game behind hundreds of dollars, over-saturating Tolkien's world with intrusive monetization and providing significant disadvantages to those unable to dish out cash is a depraved and wicked manner to run a game such as this and now, thankfully, a thing of the past.

New players will be able to play completely for free prior to the expansions and be given the option to pay for each expansion as they wish once they reach that stage in their journey, unencumbered and unmolested. The game will surely attract and retain a large population of players wholly unfathomable to the previous developers who in ignorance or apathy cared not at all about new players that were highly unlikely to stick around and spend an inane amount of cash.

Lord of the Rings will never go out of style and upcoming years show much promise; we wish to nurture and grow the white tree of LOTRO for all future players that wish to come and explore this incredible world. And through our passion we wish to mend its wounds and keep its heart untainted for future generations."

The stream chat went quiet in awe and building anticipation almost as if the words they were hearing were too good to be true. A few moments later a spectacular eruption of joy shook chat as players realized that hope for the game, which they loved and had cherished for years, was rekindled.

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On 12/9/2019 at 2:06 AM, INTELLIGENCE said:

This is the dumbest shit I have ever read on these forums and I want my 5 minutes back. 

Not really.  Paragon Studios had a similar moment in the real world regarding the City of Heroes MMO, when they looked back at what had gone before with Cryptic Studios and determined that development trends and the game's quality were anti-player rather than pro-player.  I remember Matt Miller's producer's statement when Paragon took over from Cryptic, where they admitted that the game had gone off-the-rails and they pledged to do better for the players.  And Paragon kept its word.  The game development became attractive, dynamic and bearing a good road map for future development.  Unfortunately, NCSoft decided to make the game a scapegoat for some of the colossal failures they engaged in (e.g. Tabula Rasa and Wildstar).  The game was loved, nevertheless, because the design studio and its producers gave a player-driven priority to the game.

 

So, to say that the OP was a dumb post is essentially saying that such a thing couldn't possibly happen ... except that it did ...

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Definitely a pipe dream, if this were to happen somebody has to pump a shit load of cash into a dying broken game with probably zero return on their investment. I would definitely be happy as hell if this happened but aint counting on it

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1 hour ago, Altreg01 said:

Definitely a pipe dream, if this were to happen somebody has to pump a shit load of cash into a dying broken game with probably zero return on their investment. I would definitely be happy as hell if this happened but aint counting on it

I still would love to see something like this happen just to see how the SSG Asslickers react.  Would they leave?  Would they change alliances?  If anyone were to do this, housecleaning and major housecleaning would have to happen on the forums to get rid of the "elite" who think they own they game

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With the deceptions that SSG perpetrate on it's customers so willingly you'd have to wonder how much rubs off on inter office communications. MoL has only just left his bubble briefly to get some ILI suggestions, who else can raise their head above the parapet? No one with any shred of rep left. We have art and systems rather see players and the CM live stream these bowcrossbow abominations than admit fault. The craft dev with years of abuse on crafting behind her ineptly continues on without issue. The "hype" that has always disregarded consequences is too ingrained. Anyone coming in to "fix" it just wouldn't stand a chance in hell. We even have a CM aggrieved that his "no ETA" and zero comment on the transfers re-coding details should bring condemnation when he fails to answer multiple threads every day and when he or marketing do they only show how ignorant of the game they are. Each little bit they learn just exposes more that they fail to grasp. Jokes the both of them but too stupid to realise how obvious their failures are. The CM's denial of "shareholders": whilst true, just confirms the Daybreak "pact with the devil" they are under, moron.  It's fortunate they have enough morons still paying for this shit with goldfish memories that forget how they were shafted every time before.

Mac

 

 

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Just took a look at the OF and MoL is replying to concerns on his BBoM questline. He even recognises that players with vastly different strengths and abilities are coming to it and he set it to be achieved by anyone, yet still some couldn't cope with the simplest of mechanics.

If you market the game with inept un-monitored twitch moderators, have a history on the forums of some "players" struggling with every aspect of gameplay then you'll get players totally unsuited to a MMORPG, the consequence of indiscriminately casting the net wide. Trawl for morons and you get morons and then you have to cater to the morons who pay the wages.

How can SSG function when any department has every other undermining their efforts?

 

Mac 

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I can't imagine dreaming in the shower. Sounds kind of dangerous tbh. Dreaming suggests sleeping and those two don't mix. A metaphor? A literal device I've never seen before? The rest of the post though seemingly thought out as a good scenario likely can never happen.

SSG has their hooks in LOtRO awfully deep and won't let it go readily. SSG plans to milk this cow until it dies. MoL recently said he and SSG are in no hurry to do the Scouring of the Shire reaffirming SSG will continue to destroy and mutate LotR and Tolkien's other works in ways we can't imagine. Jeff Libby's story telling is at best mediocre. Sure he has the Lore to work with but honestly at his age it should be a premium showcase of a man's creativity not just a so so read. I still say SSG should complete the original story and add his stuff after the fact. It is because He and SSG has chosen the opposite, I stopped playing despite the game itself not even performing on par for its age. Fear, risk adversity, greed, drive the direction of LotRO. So the OP's dream is just that. SSG would rather pull the plug than have another take this game to a higher plane of existence.

 

On another note relating to the direction of LotRO. It is still true. I no longer play this game, though I do keep in contact with some who do. In this, a person who wanted to play a Minstrel for the first time, ask me to guide them through the class. Not a flyby course but much more in depth. I said, I would offer help as long as it didn't require me to log into the game. I agreed to do this while we used headsets and 3rd party tools. While she was playing, I received virtually a play by play of everything she was doing along with our continued conversations. Early on, I arrived at a conclusion that came back to me again and again. This was the fact whole quest chains are now absent from the game. Some quest chains now do not have their end chain goal or their rewards. Just small, not critical, but enough to have originally got me to log on many evenings in my past. There were so many, I can no longer recall each event. She is now in her level 40s and still my memory serves me that at each recognition of the past is no longer represented in the present.

I bring this to attention for this reason. SSG is systematically removing content from past Turbine employees who perhaps SSG does not hold in a respectful regard. Also this includes systems in the game. Systems which are being replaced rather than fixed, upgraded, and or maintained. When this realization became apparent it brought about new light on why the game is what it is and how it exists in the future. Basically anyone that doesn't remain in SSG's grace has their work erased. I imagine if SSG could legally get away with it, they would also remove those past employees from their credits list found on the launcher. As time passes, I dislike those at SSG who command the road it travels and even more so for the roads they left as dead ends. But... when has it ever been so that losers, the lost, or the dead write history?

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20 hours ago, Splay said:

Early on, I arrived at a conclusion that came back to me again and again. This was the fact whole quest chains are now absent from the game. Some quest chains now do not have their end chain goal or their rewards. Just small, not critical, but enough to have originally got me to log on many evenings in my past. There were so many, I can no longer recall each event. She is now in her level 40s and still my memory serves me that at each recognition of the past is no longer represented in the present.

I bring this to attention for this reason. SSG is systematically removing content from past Turbine employees who perhaps SSG does not hold in a respectful regard. 

Her 40s level range suggests Trollshaws and Misty Mountains, the zones that were brutally raped by the so-called "region revamps." This was in the spring of 2014, still under Turbine. (Which of course makes no difference, same shit different turd shapes). Yet it brings to mind what an insidious precedent this has set, something that has sailed entirely under the radar when it happened and whose magnitude of damage to the game can only be appraised now, in light of everything that has followed since. 

Having repeatedly alted through (and loved) the original Trollshaws and Misties pre '14, I can point out some of the most egregious bullshit of these zone-rapes just to illustrate calling them rapes is no exaggeration:

Misty Mountains

  • BEFORE:  Your traveling quest hero arrives to Gloin's Camp and meets the iconic dwarf sire, who asks for help with establishing good diplomatic relations with Elven neighbors and offers a series of quests to that purpose. Mindless killing quests become relevant and meaningful: you are in fact gathering animal pelts that the dwarves will turn into luxury gifts for Rivendell, and your efforts are rewarded not only with + Rivendell Reputation but with Gloin's appreciation texts giving more flavor and atmosphere to it all. He also offers you a personal gift: Gloin's Crossbow, an item with a personal touch to remember this quest chain by.

 

  • AFTER:  Your traveling quest hero enters the Misty Mountains region for the first time. New unfamiliar zone, different landscape, so you stumble around aimlessly and suddenly get a pop-up "remote quest": Hey there's too many critters running around, maybe you should thin their numbers. You click "accept" on this pop-up and start killing 10 critters til it's done. Time to turn in the quest, another pop-up: good job, here is your + Rivendell Reputation rep and Gloin's Crossbow. This quest is a daily repeatable, but you can reset it now for Mithril coins and get even more Rivendell rep! All this for derping around aimlessly. You never set foot in Gloin's Camp. You don't get to meet Gloin. You don't get to interact with him at all. Instead, this quest chain was killed and turned into several discrete "remote pop up quests". One of which has the temerity to offer a reward originally associated with that iconic quest NPC. And now? Gloin has NO MORE quests to offer directly, ever. No more quest ring over his head.

 

  • BEFORE:  After helping Gloin, your traveling quest hero receives the attention of his friend based in the same Gloin's Camp. Mindful of secrecy, the dwarf offers several quests to scout the different enemy strongholds in the snow, all intended as atmospheric introductions to the zone and its history. Secrecy adds to immersion element, you wanna help dwarves out and travel out of sight, even if it means covering great distances back and forth.

 

  • AFTER:  Gloin has zero quests for you, so you derp around through the zone, completing one random pop-up quest after another, til you reach what looks like a new quest hub. Right in the middle of the crossroads between enemy camps: who is it but the same dwarf NPC who got yanked out of Gloin's Camp and put here instead. Nice secrecy, bro. Yes, he still offers these scouting quests. How convincing are they now, with this dude parked in full sight in what should be untraversible and hostile wilderness? Meanwhile, Gloin's Camp is rendered redundant, with no quest-bestowing NPCs there anymore. A player might never even discover it.

 

Trollshaws:

  • BEFORE:  Entering Trollshaws for the first time was the first real taste of untamed wilderness. No markers, no directions, you were meant to find your own way and this was the whole savage charm of it. Intentionally left rough, unpolished. Deep woods, new dangers at every turn. Your destination quest hubs are well-hidden out of enemy eyes and friendly eyes alike, and ominous foreboding of this haunted wilderness is fully reflected in creepy sound effects and empty spaces intentionally left unfilled.

 

  • AFTER:  Entering Trollshaws for the first time, you are greeted with the following sight: literally every critter mob in sight has a quest ring over its head. You kill one to see what happens, and get a pop-up: "good job now kill 9 more." You kill more and get another pop-up: "good job, here is your + Rivendell rep." These pop-up quests are daily repeatables and can be reset with Mithril coins, as the pop-ups remind you. So you derp around looking for more critters to kill, til you stumble upon a bunch of Elves parked IN FULL SIGHT right along the Great Road, who happen to be chilling out and vector you to Thorenhad - you know, the secret quest hub stronghold you were supposed to find in the wilderness on your own. The whole zone was stripped of its rough dangerous mystique and turned into this mindless theme park click fest.

 

  • BEFORE:  Your traveling quest hero arrives to Thorenhad, full of Elven NPCs each with their own quest lines and stories. There is one haunted-looking fellow standing by merchants quarter, who tells you about the Valley of the Wolves and what unwholesome creatures they are. He does not recommend you explore that valley, but feels a great danger brewing there that must not be ignored. Your curiosity is peaked and of course you go. The graphic details of the wolf pit it sends you to, fully matches the haunting writing of quest text. There is a half-decaying Elf corpse sitting up in the shadows there, looking suspiciously werewolfish and demonic... whose presence is never explained. And after you complete this quest? Every time you walk within close distance of this Thorenhad Elf NPC, he will /say: "Do not return to the Valley of the Wolves." Like, holy shit. Some things were meant to stay unresolved. The whole  text of that quest chain was full of ominous foreboding, a genius of subtle storytelling that literally gave me chills every single time.

 

  • AFTER: Your traveling quest hero derps around the zone until you stumble upon that wolf pit and get a random pop-up quest to explore the cave and kill a bunch of wolves. Well, okay. Here is your + Rivendell Reputation, bye. You run to Thorenhad to check up on the haunted fellow who used to be original quest bestower, and guess what. He offers nothing now. Tbh, I don't even recall if this NPC is there at all anymore. Just like that. Such a compelling masterpiece of quest design just trashed and pissed on and shat on and flushed. 

 

There is far more, but these particular examples alone are already unforgivable.

Back in 2014, sure enough there were player rumblings about turning Middle Earth into a theme park, but it is only now in retrospect something else becomes very clear. These were no haphazard clueless butcherings of older content. There was a method and a logic driving these "changes" to original game design, with clear long-term goals in mind. We can now, of course, all recognize what they are.

  • Conditioning players to treat LotRO as a theme park casino, not as an immersive MMO.
  • Conditioning the "payer" mentality: notice these "zone rapes" were implemented in for-purchase quest packs, not in f2p zones. Those who bought these packs and played through these "new revamps" without knowing what originals were like, will have already bought into this clickbait design and more likely to open their wallets again.
  • Conditioning players to accept random pop-ups "as intended" - imagine all those lore-gasming roleplayers accepting quest popups without ever complaining how "immersion breaking" they are. That is some pro level brainwashing.
  • Auto-bestow quest pop-ups prepare players for LotRO Store pop-ups and condition the click-and-buy mentality.
  • Removing (!!!) interactions with quest-bestowing NPCs conditions players for a pay-to-win mentality. Trivialize landscape questing and players won't regret skipping them. 
  • Target what makes the game personally meaningful: stories, quests, adventures along the way. If players derive satisfaction from personal gameplay, they will not spend $$$. Gut these meanings and trivialize landscape gameplay to make players feel restless and unfulfilled: they will start shelling out cash to "buy" meaningful game experiences (Valared toons, LI imbuements, dicking around with housing decorations, etc).

Everything is WAI. Sobering to think how far back this "SSG" monetizing philosophy extends, but not at all surprising. Only now the chickens are coming home to hatch.

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Trollshaws has you find some objectives by looking for specific markers on the ground.  After they went all cut-n-paste happy to liven up the landscapes a while back, there are now rocks, weeds, bushes, flowers, etc plopped via algorithm all over the place that hide a lot of the things you're supposed to be looking for.  The roads are obscured by grass/vegetation a lot now too in many places in the world.

And don't get me started on the ubiquitous use of the Mithril Coin to ease the way: travel to NPC, reset daily tasks, reset daily repeatable quests, travel routes, ILI tiers...they even have a MC button attached to the "repair equipment" icon that comes up when your crafting tool wears out.

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20 hours ago, Wrath of Winter said:

Her 40s level range suggests Trollshaws and Misty Mountains, the zones that were brutally raped by the so-called "region revamps." This was in the spring of 2014, still under Turbine. (Which of course makes no difference, same shit different turd shapes). Yet it brings to mind what an insidious precedent this has set, something that has sailed entirely under the radar when it happened and whose magnitude of damage to the game can only be appraised now, in light of everything that has followed since. 

Having repeatedly alted through (and loved) the original Trollshaws and Misties pre '14, I can point out some of the most egregious bullshit of these zone-rapes just to illustrate calling them rapes is no exaggeration:

I had not considered the 2014 revamp of the earlier regions for setting the stage leading to monetization. I did recognize the starter areas as such but how I missed the obvious for those regions extending beyond...

Seeing this as you describe perfectly fits our interaction while talking. How there were discrepancies between what I remembered and what she was experiencing. So, my assessment is off on the premise of being on a personal nature for changes and removal. That's about a derpy facepalm moment, because monetization has been the overarching shadow on the endgame for years.

Drauglaud idk maybe I spelled it wrong. I mentioned the wolves in stealth and how they respawned kinda quick for a solo on level player and timeliness was a factor. Also, she might endure dread. I said she could go back and do the slayer deed there later but as we talked she said only half the number of wolves were there verses what I described. This reduced numbers of npcs occurred again and again.

Trait tree addition and now with virtues has made this content rather trivial. Times when I said she would be challenged solo turned out to be easy for her. I enjoyed helping her and now she seems somewhat confident to tackle the game with her new Minstrel as a solo landscape adventurer. This person hasn't played since level 75 Isengard. So much has changed since then, she was at a loss how to play her Hunter and gave up. I urged her to find and join a kinship.

20 hours ago, warspeech said:

And don't get me started on the ubiquitous use of the Mithril Coin to ease the way: travel to NPC, reset daily tasks, reset daily repeatable quests, travel routes, ILI tiers...they even have a MC button attached to the "repair equipment" icon that comes up when your crafting tool wears out.

Totally annoying to see the SSG yellow icon pasted over everything. Once the majority of players start consuming this it becomes like the best candy ever. Before they know it they spent $200 avoiding the opportunity to engage with other players on the landscape while questing in a MMO.

Shrinking the Massive. Eliminating the Multiplayer. Becoming Online slot machine participants.

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So we go from what we wish the game to be, to what it was, and now to what it is.

Very very sad.

I also recall a quite recent 'redo' of armour, esp. in Angmar but also elsewhere, where the rich variety of items with individual names, and, more importantly, with different stats, were replaced by cookie cutter variants. This to push players more quickly to slotted armour and essences.

So yes, the makers of this game have been on a very long monetization trajectory (which is completely intentional - there are videos about this, much more in depth. SSG wanted monetization to be much more than 'icing on the cake', they wanted it to 'be mixed through the entire dough as well'.

The last kicker is at the new Yule festival. New housing items have not been added as rewards for Yule tokens but are gated behind the hobbit presents, which can, of course, be rerolled with mithril coins. Edit: the gold ones are only available for VIPs and they only have 4 rolls (included in their subscription) on these 'Christmas' presents before the festival ends. So lots of reasons for everyone who wants to goodies to spend lots of mithril coins for a CHANCE to get a special item.

When the store came out and the game went f2p, one player prophetically wrote 'we will not recognize the game once they are done with it'. He was right.

Slot Machine Park it is. 'If you don't have your wallet, no need to enter'.

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On 12/10/2019 at 6:26 PM, INTELLIGENCE said:

Wow 2 for 2. I guess this thread just attracts dumb shit like moths to a flame. 

Did you have something intelligent to counter my point with, or were you just going to stay with what you wrote?  Just curious.

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This guy is having LOTRO dreams of the nightmare sort...

https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthread.php?677392-This-failed-update&p=7980725#post7980725

This failed update

So ...

The great staff of programmers decides to "Fix" one of the instances - the absolute silliest one - and breaks it - so they close it - WHICH MEANS - NO ONE can progress the god damned deed to start the dailies - meaning that there is - literally - NOTHING you can do on those toons - meanwhile -everyone else that got by earlier is progressing just fine - totally outdistancing every other toon because YOU CAN'T FREAKING PROGRESS ... great f-ing job - this entire update is a god damned unmitigated disaster - not a god half of it barely worked and then - you BROKE that ... and THAT means that all those toons can't even do the STORV deed for the "cool gear" either --- .|. it ... 7 of 9 120+s either stuck - of sitting because why the hell even bother ...

... whenever ...
He mad.

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1 hour ago, warspeech said:

7 of 9 120+s either stuck

Who even has that kind of time?  I don't have it nor the patience to endure bland repetition. Seven to Nine alts takes a month of 4 to 6 hours a day from 120 to 130 and that is just leveling. Not all the other systems which are only partially in step with those levels. Maybe if a paycheck came with it.

It is like riding a bicycle and then needing a basket to keep stuff. Then needing a cart to tow behind. I can't drag all my stuff up the big hills so I rent a car. Next thing I know I need a truck. A few years later I own a bus. Before I realize how much I have to keep up with I need a small country and an entourage to keep the whole things mobile.

I place self limits on these kind of cumulative progressions. Else I still be creating alts never leaving starter areas.

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And then you find out that all of your dreams can come true if you give the new publisher 10,000 bucks and allow him to anally rape you without lube.

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48 minutes ago, Amenhir said:

And then you find out that all of your dreams can come true if you give the new publisher 10,000 bucks and allow him to anally rape you without lube.

Yeah, about that..... doesn't cost me 10k.

But I don't think it's rape if you get paid?

Oh, what do you say? Am I derailing the thread?

Carry on then!

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13 hours ago, Tarantula said:

Yeah, about that..... doesn't cost me 10k.

But I don't think it's rape if you get paid?

Oh, what do you say? Am I derailing the thread?

Carry on then!

Well, but you aren't getting paid, you are the one who pays ;)

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Today's downtime:

1.) 8am - noon

2.) noon: extended to 2PM

3.) 2PM: extended to 5PM

4.) 4:30PM: all worlds are down, no ETA at this time.

The OF is fun, the usual stuff.

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16 hours ago, Thrabath said:

Well, but you aren't getting paid, you are the one who pays ;)

True, my message seems to make no sense. However

First line: 'Yeah, about that..... doesn't cost me 10k'. Usually rapists don't get paid. If someone wants to be raped.... can it be rape? But let's say it can be. Who in their right mind would seek that out? But if one wanted to, I am sure one can. And it wouldn't cost a penny.

Hence the second line: 'But I don't think it's rape if you get paid'?  Would it be rape if you were paid by the person raped? Can you rape someone who pays you for it?

Clearer now?

I know, crazy subject !

 

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