PFEU

Hunting

Calypso Hunt & Draw:
Partly oceanic M-Class Planet viewed against the background of nebula space.


Arkadia Hunt & Draw:
Mostly temperate continental M-Class Planet viewed against the background of nebula space.


Rocktropia Hunt & Draw:
Mostly arid continental M-Class Planet viewed against the background of nebula space.


Hypercharged logo against night lightning.


PFEU Policy and Procedures

The objective of all PFEU policy is the equitable enrichment of Entropia Universe participant experience.

Contents

Section 0 PREAMBLE: Core Objective of PFEU Policy
Section 1 Independence of PFEU from its Members
Section 2 Adoption of Activities
Section 3 Announcement Criteria
Section 4 Registration Procedures
Section 5 Draw Procedures
Section 6 Preflight Operation Guidelines
Section 7 Dispute Resolution
Section 8 Donations
Section 9 Operator Selection
Section 10 Planet Selection Criteria for New Operations
Section 11 Documentation
Section 12 Reporting

Section 0. (^Top:Contents^)
PREAMBLE: Core Objective of PFEU Policy

The core mission of the PFEU entails enriching the Entropia Universe experience which depends heavily on improving population stability and reducing population turnover. The PFEU operators envision achieving this goal by providing various forms of support for beginning to intermediate level players and by nurturing a positive sense of community. If one, most important, guiding principle was to be expressed, it would be that all policy and procedures of the PFEU must serve the purpose of positively enriching the experience of Entropia Universe participants, not as isolated individuals, but as reciprocal parts of that larger social whole which makes enduring individuality possible in the first place.

The exclusion of strictly isolated individualism or solipsism is to contextualise the community service role of the PFEU with respect to the differential reciprocal relationship between individual and group which, when correctly balanced, dictates that while the desires of the many may well outweigh the desires of the few, the needs of the few can never be outweighed by the desires of the many; no matter how numerous. So, while the PFEU provides benefit to as many individuals it can, this is done on the basis of equal rights and opportunity. On the one hand, beneficiary's have the right to benefit as documented but, on the other hand, this right is paid for by and, strictly subject to, the responsibility not to interfere with the same right of fellow beneficiaries to also and equally benefit as documented.

For Example
An avatar chosen for a team hunt has the right to participate as an equal to the other participants in that team hunt. However, this right does not extend to behaviour which interferes with the same right of any fellow team hunt participant. Behaviour which is persistently solipsistic with respect to the reasonable expectations of other participants will result in the offender being kicked from the team. Equally, the participants as a group, are not allowed to marginalise a given participant on the basis of consensus (e.g. for gain at the expense of an unpopular or vilified avatar).

From the participants perspective, the social context of the PFEU's mission is a matter of reciprocity. As a participant in a PFEU activity, one cannot do any harm or injustice if one does not do things which one would not want other participants to do. This extends to and includes not doing anything which might disappoint reasonable expectations raised by the activity's documentation.

To Summarise
The objective of all PFEU policy is the equitable enrichment of Entropia Universe participant experience.

Section 1. (^Top:Contents^)
Independence of PFEU from its Members

The PFEU is an organisation. While an organisation is capable of facilitating various collaborative actions, all organisations are inanimate objects comprising the Articles of Association which define the system by which their members go about doing what they do and, otherwise, gather dust on a bookshelf until eaten by silverfish or fire finds them; whichever comes sooner.

Inanimate objects cannot love, cannot think and certainly cannot entertain opinions. All of these things are exclusively unique to sentient, thinking, feeling, sensual beings that possess the capacity for self-awareness. Individuals leading, facilitating or otherwise carrying out the directives and activities of the PFEU possess volition and intellect and, consequently, their own opinions which they are free to express as individuals in their own right. However, irrespective of how strong a consensus may be reached on a given point of view, it can never be held as an opinion of the PFEU because the PFEU is only an organisation and an organisation is not a person but meagrely a collaborative tool; an inanimate object made by people to facilitate a commonly held purpose (i.e. a system). As such, an organisation can no more entertain an opinion than a chair - and neither can the PFEU.

Section 2. (^Top:Contents^)
Adoption of Activities

Activities adopted for facilitation by the PFEU must meet a number of criteria:

  1. First and foremost, the activity must contribute to the mission of the PFEU by positively and equitably enriching the Entropia Universe experience.
  2. The activity must be accessible to any participant chosen - on the understanding that participants are also meeting the minimum hardware and operating system requirements for Entropia Universe.
  3. The equity between participants in the activity must, within budget constraints, be enforcable by the operator/facilitator and this must be the case as close as possible to all of the time during which this activity is offered.
  4. Allowing for the cost of materiel needed to carry out the activity, the cost of facilitation and the cost of taking all steps necessary to ensure the equitable delivery of the activity, the cost of the activity must not exceed the value of the activity as deemed by the Liaison between PFEU and the general consensus of its sponsors.

An example of an activity whose cost outweighs the value of the perceived benefits is currently circuit racing. Although a lot of fun, the activity depends too heavily on the good will of the participants and is prohibitively expensive to supervise properly. Moreover, the necessary mechanics for racing (including vehicle to vehicle collision, related avatar skills, etc.) have not been enabled in Entropia Universe. Consequently, the PFEU does not have a regular racing event, although PFEU operators often discuss the viability of different types of racing system. We'd like to offer something like this but a way to make it equitably beneficial is yet to be determined. A regular space hunt, on the other hand, is eminently practical but prohibitively expensive - even for a single "special" event.

Section 3. (^Top:Contents^)
Announcement Criteria

Announcements for PFEU events and activities must convey certain basic information:

  1. Who is hosting the event (e.g. the PFEU)
  2. The cost of the activity or event (to date, always free of charge)
  3. The nature of the activity or event
  4. What is provided for the purpose of executing this activity or event.
  5. Who keeps the dividends returned on the activity or event (to date, always the participant)
  6. The time when the activity or event is scheduled to take place.
  7. The applicable timezone.
  8. The identifier and starting point for the process of getting access to the activity or event being offered.
  9. The time when the opening time for the process of getting access to the activity or event being offered.
  10. When broadcasting on universal channels which are neither local nor planet-specific, it is necessary to specify which planet the activity or event is being hosted on.
  11. Generally, chat statements are limited to a maximum of 135 characters per broadcast entry

For example, Mercurio's announcement for the Thursday PFEU hunt will probably be as follows:

Hi all. PFEU Calypso Hunt @ 23:00 hrs UTC. FREE weaps+ammo+loot. 22:00 Registration opens in the next 30 minutes via http://pfeu.org

The above announcement meets all of the announcement criteria while only requiring a single chat entry because, at 132 characters, it is under the 135 character maximum.

Section 4. (^Top:Contents^)
Registration Procedures

Registration for a PFEU activity or event involves logging into a chatroom and, when registration is announced open in that chatroom, typing ones full in-game avatar name into chat. This is confirmed by the registration ADMIN once the name has been entered into the pool of the event's registrants. At a preannounced time, usually 25 minutes past the hour, registration is closed. Entry into the pool of registrants does not mean that one is drawn for the team as there are usually more people wanting to participate in an activity than there are viable places on that activity's team. The purpose of registration is to ensure that equal accessibility to a given activity is offered to as wide a range of potential participants as possible.

Section 5. (^Top:Contents^)
Draw Procedures

Although the registration-ADMIN will often joke about the exact process of selecting participants for an activity (from the pool of registrants), this is actually regimented procedure. In the case of the PFEU Calypso Hunts, each registrant is entered into a prefabricated Open Office spreadsheet allocated for the day. This spreadsheet comes with a pre-set column of cells invoking the RAND() function and, with every change to the spreadsheet, all of the RAND() functions in all of the cells in the spreadsheet reset and generate a new random number. At the close of registration, the random number functions in each cell are successively replaced by the first three significant figures displayed by the rand() function at the time the cell is being edited. Once these numbers have replaced the RAND() function in each of the cells adjacent to a registrant's name, the column is selected and Descending Sort is then executed and extended to the attached column of names. This effectively sorts the names of the registrants from highest final RAND() score to lowest and registrants are subsequently drawn from the top of the list down until all places on the activity's team have been filled.

Section 6. (^Top:Contents^)
Preflight Operation Guidelines

Anyone who has ever flown in space with Mercurio Morat piloting knows how meticulous he can be about completing a comprehensive pre-flight checklist. Perhaps this is to compensate for his near permanent state of snable-brew inebriation or perhaps he really does have other reasons for paying such close attention to the decay of his quad and its attachments in space. Who is to know? But these are not the kind of preflights we are talking about here.

It takes considerable time and effort to acquire every teleporter on most planets. As a consequence, most people have not yet got access to the nearest teleporter to some of the best hunting locations. This is why it is necessary for the team to meet in the vicinity of a teleporter which everyone has or can get easy access to - such as Camp Icarus and a number of other teleporters which are acquired by visiting the Immigration Official in Port Atlantis, namely New Oxford, Port Atlantis, and Treasure Island City according to Nisha(2013-0916-1012). From one of these meeting places, it is necessary to fly out to the venue selected for the activity. However, before the team can begin hunting, a number of tasks need to be completed and these all take time.

  1. People have to gather in enough numbers to bring Merc out of his Snable-brew-induced-coma.
  2. Merc then needs to invite people to the team and successfully get them to accept the invitation (which can be tricky when important occurences draw people away from their keyboards).
  3. Once a member of the team, Merc then needs to open and successfully conclude a trade so as to give the free weapons and ammunition to the member.
  4. Once the member is suitably equipped, it is necessary for her/him to be added to the guest list of Merc's chopper.
  5. If a participant has not arrived by 45 minutes past the hour or by the time all the other team members have been invited and equipped, it becomes necessary to attempt direct contact with the missing participant.
  6. If a missing participant cannot be contacted or is failing to respond to attempts at communication, it becomes necessary to scratch that participant and give the participant's place to the next person in the draw (repeating steps 5 and 6 until a full team has been assembled and equipped)
  7. If there are insufficient registrants to fill the team assembled at the Gungnir, whoever is present may be drafted onto the team. Sometimes this involves a kidnapping but if you don't tell the CDF, Merc surely won't.
  8. Generally, it's wheels-up at 50 minutes past the hour, depending on conditions.
  9. Flight time is between 5 and 10 minutes so Merc usually takes the time to quickly run through some guidelines. Whether his pet blowfly does the talking or the flying on any given hunt is anyone's guess.

As you can see, a lot has to be done between the draw and the beginning of the hunt and, even under optimal conditions, it takes at least 25 minutes to assemble, prep, transport, and deploy the team.

Section 7. (^Top:Contents^)
Dispute Resolution

  1. If a participant is seen doing something which is known to be harmful to the team's equity, the leader will assume that the behaviour is unintentional and monitor that participant's behaviour with the expectation that it will be corrected within a reasonable time frame.
  2. If the behaviour is not corrected in a reasonable time frame (which is about the time it usually takes for someone-else on the team to call attention to that behaviour in team chat), the team leader will ask that the participant discontinue that behaviour if another participant hasn't already done so or if it becomes clear that another participant, having made that request, has been disregarded by the offending participant.
  3. Failure to discontinue unequitable behaviour within a reasonable period of time after having been requested to do so by the team leader will result in that participant being kicked from the team. The practical consequence of being kicked from a team is that one is no longer awarded a share of team loot.
  4. If the offending participant responds by bringing heavy weapons into competition, with the team, for total loot share the team leader has a number of options:
    • The team leader can load the team into the Gungnir and fly them to a hunting location out of reach of the kicked participant.
    • Failing this, the team leader can, with the consent of the team, begin tagging targets with a half-kill, thereby preventing the kicked participant from stealing the teams target. Generally, when employiong the half-kill-tag to thwart kill stealers, a PFEU team leader will divide his share of the hunt's loot equally among the remaining team at the close of the hunt.
    • On occasion, one or more of the team are sufficiently high level to step in and correct the behaviour of malefactors.
  5. If the offending participant wishes to participate in future PFEU activities, the first step is register or apply for participation.
  6. The responsible ADMIN will initially reject the registration attempt or application as the opening of negotiation for agreement to equitable participation on the part of the offending participant.
  7. Should the offending participant continue negotiation by, for example, requesting clarification, the responsible ADMIN will explain the nature of the offense to the participant.
  8. If the offending participant acknowledges the actions which define the offense in question, the ADMIN will require that participant to publically enter into an agreement specifically promising not to engage in those actions when participating in PFEU events and activities.
  9. If the offending participant chooses to publically enter into this agreement, registration for future PFEU activities and events will be re-opened to that participant after the passage of seven days (168 hours) on the first offense.

Participants who re-offend, subject to circumstances, face increasing wait times on the re-opening of registration to them after a public agreement not to reoffend. This amount of time is determined by the following formula:

P = 7+[(7B-7)/(G+7)]

Where:
P = the penalty period in days
B = the total number of times the participant has had to enter into dispute resolution to begin participating in PFEU events
G = the number of days which have passed between the current offense and the previous offense

ADMINs may adjust this figure at their discretion if there is evidence of circumstances which compells an exception to be made (if, for example, it can be determined that the offending participant's account was, in fact, hacked and under control of another person at the time of the offence - in which case, confirmation from MA Support would not be an unreasonable evidence requirement).

Section 8. (^Top:Contents^)
Donations

Donations are, by definition, unconditional. As such, donations received by the PFEU are received for the purpose of carrying out the objectives of the PFEU in whatever manner the PFEU operators deem suitable.

Section 9. (^Top:Contents^)
Operator Selection

Operators (acting in such roles as ambassadors, team leaders, facilitators etc.) are selected on the basis of trustworthiness, other-awareness, ability to commit reliably to key time slots, and passion for Entropia Universe and for the PFEU activities in question. Aptitude, after all, is a product of passion for the activity (as opposed to passion for the position) because it is the nature of all life to find a way. Selection of operators usually occurs long before a position is available and, as such, selection is never communicated outside the PFEU until a position is made available by both the viability of a new PFEU activity and the necessary commitment of resources to fund that activity.

Section 10. (^Top:Contents^)
Planet Selection Criteria for New Operations (Draft Policy)

Having a PFEU hunt staged on a given planet offers definite advantages for the corresponding Planet Partner. The PFEU Hunts contribute to the stabilisation of the new-playerbase partly because these hunts give new players better exposure to team-hunting activities in Entropia Universe. This has the effect of extending new player retention and increasing the likelihood that those who can appreciate Entropia Universe will be around long enough to arrive at this realisation and make the decision to start depositing. It is evident, from the size and corresponding profitability of playerbases attached to worlds such as Calypso and Arkadia, that investment in the new-playerbase is directly proportional to size, stability and profitability of the resulting planetary economy. Thus the PFEU planet selection criteria revolve around both the minimum game mechanics necessary to allow the PFEU hunts to take place, and new player support infrastructure capable of nurturing and retaining a stable new-playerbase. This boils down to four key criteria:

  1. Vehicle enablement or, otherwise, any viable system for getting new players from a commonly held meeting teleporter to the hunting grounds
  2. Relatively bug-free operation of all new player areas, facilities, infrastructure and missions
  3. The provision of support infrastructure (e.g. ROCKtropia Beer Garden, Toulan Nawa Fountain, etc.) to keep new players in the game long enough for them to experience the major benefits of the game and be able to make an informed decision to become economically involved.
  4. Proof of concept in the form of an actual new player population present in sufficient numbers to assemble a 6 member team for a hunt during the hours when the assigned operator will be available.

As the funding of all PFEU activities is, entirely, due to the goodwill of the playerbase, there is, very much, a desire to avoid squandering this goodwill. That is to avoid "throwing good money after bad" when selecting a planet for new operations. It is a fact that Planet Partners who invest most heavily in new players (e.g. Calypso, Arkadia) have a strong enough player-base to establish solid, independent economies and get the lion's share of depositing players because new player support infrastructure (e.g. Calypso Orthos Rig, Arkadia Oil Rig) ultimately dictate where player avatars and their economies will congregate - in much the same way that real world resources dictate the location of settlements, towns and cities. On the other hand, Planet Partners who expect something for nothing generally get a dose of reality (i.e. nothing for nothing) and, for us, that means no viable playerbase to work the hunts with.

Much as we support MA's initiative to equalise interplanetary starting conditions for new players, it is not practical for us to operate in the absence of a stable new-playerbase of sufficient size or, for that matter, in the absence of key game mechanics which, for example, may allow us to transport a team from a universally accessible meeting place to various hunting destinations within a reasonable timeframe (about 15 minutes, at most, for travel to or from a 30 minute hunt). It is for these reasons that we must adhere to our selection criteria.

Section 11. (^Top:Contents^)
Documentation

There is currently no formal policy concerning the documentation of PFEU activities, however, this may change if necessary.

Section 12. (^Top:Contents^)
Reporting

There is currently no formal policy concerning the reporting of PFEU activities, however, this may change if necessary.