I also hope to suggest that by going into PK anticipating a death or two, even if they're stupid reasons, you'll be perfectly set up to both learn the PK rules as they have mutated and maturely cope with any grey area that you experience without making things fun for a troll.
This has been a thing floating around the forums the last couple of days, and I just want to give my advice as somebody who engages in PK but does not consider it to be one of my 'favorite' parts of the game:
If you don't want to fight someone... don't fight them.
Let them kill you if they have a reason, even if it's a garbage reason you feel is unjust - fight back if you're feeling enthusiastic, idc - Then let them walk away feeling like winners. Let them gloat and don't call them names. Let them have it. They need it. And then you can go back to roleplaying/bashing.
Consider 1-2 deaths your entrance fee for participating in PK. Any engagement? Expect to die. Shardfall? Raid? Defending your sister from a bounty? Just expect to die. Dying isn't bad. It's a two-minute time-out. PK Levels matter at exactly level 100 and level 50. Not any other time. It's going to be okay.
And griefing? It's a form of harassment. 1-2 deaths with relatively tentative justification is not harassment, especially when you engage the person. 1-2 deaths with NO justification is barely issue-worthy unless the killer is making it a pattern of behavior. Your best recourse if you've been killed is to run to a bigger, badder dog in-character or to let it go.
All an issue does is make the person & their friends laugh, lets them know they've gotten to you, removes any alternative options YOU have (calling on other friends or pulling some sneak jumping later), and considering the absence of genuine harassment of most of these issues, will be shrugged off, justly, by the administration who are exclusively policing for toxic players, not just assholes. Being an **** isn't an issueable offense.
This has been fun to read. I don't have much to say for fixes, but I do want to observe something to the administrators:
The majority of the players who have participated in raids from the beginning are frustrated to the point of apathy. In this thread alone you've had three individuals, who are all people to leap on PvP opportunities, express their frustration to the point of wanting to opt out of the system entirely. All of these people are in Demonic/Magick. In Theophilus' case, I mostly just want to pat him on the back and welcome him to the raiding system, since he joined in quite a while after we'd been bashing our heads against the dozens of bugs that have been uncovered. Maybe things are to a functional point right now. That's an exciting prospect in theory, but the means to that ends has been wearing down the patience and enthusiasm of the people who were eager to pick up this system from the start and play with it.
I don't want to criticize the administration at all, especially after going through the effort creating and putting out this system that works enough that people care about enough to get angry. That said, I think that we deserve a bit more credit owed to us and our opinions that are exclusive from mechanical functionality. Everyone's gotten mad. Every single circle has failed at least 1 raid because of a bug - and those of us at a disadvantage have fewer opportunities and greater investment in these failures because we can't just log on tomorrow and do over. As you said, @Jeremy, it does require organization and planning. We haven't bothered seriously raiding since Kinsarmar lost 8 v 2 in Antioch - which we planned for downtime hours (still garbage). Yes, we made a few mistakes and Antioch had some very good strategies up their sleeves we did not anticipate or recover from, but at the same time... we lost 8 v 2, at the downtimiest downtime we could manage for people shifting their sleep schedules to wake up early or stay up late etc. It's our fault, fine. It's happened to all of us exclusive from bugs. But to what ends is that continued effort when we'd have to do that consistently to even keep our own objectives? Why should we do more cross-circle mingling, which was fun during the shade event, but with raiding will mean a constant alliance, not an interesting event, but something we will have to stay vigilant with every. single. day.
I'm personally not sore. I don't have any insight further than the contributions I've already made. I do want to say I've enjoyed not being raided and not raiding (edit: over the last couple of weeks. It's been a much needed break from something I was very up close & personal with but have enjoyed very much) because it's been a real headache this entire process. I also want to say that @Swale is exactly the reason I've never hit the point where I want to opt out of raiding, because of her decision TO take things seriously to the point of reading over logs to find ways to improve and strategize. It's like... a good thing?
I understand the attitude the admin have, and I can easily see how our frustration sounds like losers crying and expecting fairness and winsies where fairness and winsies are frankly not possible; but we happy few were genuinely disadvantaged mechanically for quite a while and now we're in a spot where our only recourse to recover from that is to create a 2-circle game indefinitely and still roll the dice at our efficacy? And that is how the system looks like it is going to work forever? And the tone of this news from the admin/@Jeremy isn't exactly inspiring.
But as I said, I don't really have any suggested fixes (edit: and I honestly don't think a reset will help), but I do know that the situation began out of our control mechanically and the aggravation and many of the inherent design disadvantages have not dissipated now that it is more balanced. I think Antioch and admin should keep that in mind. Especially when addressing individuals.
tldr; I have no input for changes but like 1000 words about perspective.