Black Desert Online is a game with open world PvP and you can attack other players almost everywhere except large cities and villages.
If you want to fight you need to activate PvP mode. While you have this mode activated you are free to attack any other player if this player is allowed to participate in PvP (40th/35th level). You can even attack players who have turned off their PvP button. But you will be receiving karma points if you kill such players. You can also be attacked any time by other player.
If your PvP mode is on, attacker will not get any penalties. By activating this mode you tell other players that you are ready to fight. This system is pretty similar to PvP system of many other MMO games.
You can’t attack players with level lower than 35/40. Low level players are protected from being attacked by the game.
If someone attacks and kills you while your PvP mode is switched off he will receive special karma points for this. A player gets 5000 karma points for each PK. If your karma is high you will be attacked by guards and other players even in peaceful areas where normal PvP is not allowed. As you see it’s rather difficult to be Player Killer.
There is only one way to decrease the amount of karma points – you need to kill monsters.
Life of a criminal with very high karma is much more difficult than the life of a normal player.
- If your karma is high you will lose 5% of experience every time you die, instead of 2%. But there is good news: if the amount of experience at the current level is equal to nil the level will not be decreased. So you lose only experience you get at the current level.
- As you know Black Desert is a game with full loot, meaning you can pick up items of you dead enemies. The other disadvantage of high karma is that the more it grows the higher the chance of losing items is. The chance increases according the growth of your karma points and can reach 100%. The worst possible situation is: every time you die, you lose 5 items simultaneously and any player can take this loot after 1 minute.
- But you can drop not only items from your inventory. There may be situations when you lose special stones which improve gear. These stones can’t be picked up.
When you play Black Desert you will enter a guild sooner or later. Guild will help you to advance faster and will open new opportunities for having fun. If your level is higher than 40 you can create your own guild. Up to 80 members can be in one guild.
Any guild can start war against other guilds any time. One guild can be in war with up to 3 other guilds at the same time.
Rules of guild war differ from rules of PvP fight. The core difference is that when you attack and kill player of the enemy guild you don’t receive any karma. This rule also works when you participate in sieges.
As you know it’s possible to send caravans in other cities on order to make money. It’s a part of in game economy. But it’s also possible to rob caravans of other players! Caravan owners will sometimes protect their property and that’s where a lot of PvP fight will take place.
Right now there are no battlegrounds in the game. And to be honest we don’t think that developers will add something like this. If you want to fight against other players you can do it almost everywhere.
There are sieges in Black Desert where one guild protects their castle while the other one tries to take it. A lot of players can participate in a siege at the same time. Sieges are the best place for group PvP fights where tactics matters a lot.
Sieges are not just crowd vs crowd fights. If your group is coordinated you can protect castle from large number of enemies. There are also different types of siege equipment available. Siege machines can be used by both sides.
Understanding the Most Basic Form of PVP Through Karma
If you've ever played EVE Online, you should already be somewhat familiar with how PVP works in Black Desert Online. The basic gist is that, unless you've officially declared war on another guild, there's going to be some stiff penalties in place for randomly attacking other players. While some might see this as merely protecting the weak from the strong, Black Desert Online implements a smart system that encourages robust and exciting combat, but only when both sides have consented to it.
This current system is almost entirely adapted from the Korean version of the game, but Daum Games has expressed that this system is being tailored for western audiences, and might see significant overhauls as Black Desert Online matures.
The most basic form of PVP in Black Desert Online is the 'PK' or 'karma system'. This is the open world form of PVP that becomes available around level 45 (could potentially be changed to 50). If you are below this level, you are always safe from any form of unwarranted aggression from a single player.
How this system works is fairly similar to other MMORPGs. By pressing 'control + C', your character becomes flagged for PVP, which enables you to attack other players who are above the required level—even if they haven't flagged for PVP themselves. Once you reach a certain level, there's always the threat of being attacked by other players.
For those who want to enjoy the game without being harassed, this might sound like a nightmare. However, unwarranted player-killing in Black Desert Online is extremely costly for the attacking party, and engaging in this activity will have serious consequences.
Every time you attack another player, you will immediately lose around 10,000 karma. Once you engage in battle with a non-hostile player, you will stay flagged for PVP for several minutes, allowing other players to target you without consequences and also making you hostile to any NPC guards who you might stumble upon.
While attacking a player has a significant karma penalty, however, following through on your attack and actually landing the killing blow on a player will drop your karma around five times more, somewhere in the ballpark of 50,000 to 60,000.
This system is designed to allow aggressive players a chance to engage other players in combat without significantly damaging their karma. While the initial cost for assaulting a player is high, clever players can negate the larger penalty by attacking players who are already fighting monsters, letting the monsters deal the final blow or, perhaps a better idea, attacking a player as a method of scaring them off.
Karma is a currency you earn through killing monsters. If you want to make up the cost of attacking another player, you're eventually going to need to spend a decent chunk of time farming monsters roughly equal to your level in order to keep your karma positive. There is a maximum value your karma can reach, however, so even if you rarely engage in player-killing, there's always going to be a relatively substantial fine for going on reckless killing sprees.
If your karma drops beneath zero, your character becomes an outlaw and other players can attack you without penalty. Dropping below zero will also change how you play the game, as guards will attack you on sight. However, thanks to Black Desert Online's sandbox nature, being an outlaw doesn't immediately restrict you from entering cities as clever players can find ways to sneak into a town or city without alerting the local guard. Normal NPCs, such as merchants and quest-givers will still treat you normal, so while being an outlaw will impact how you play the game, some might find the extra challenge fun.
While being on the other side of the law might be entertaining for awhile, you're going to want to keep your karma relatively close to zero. The maximum negative value your karma can drop to is one million, which would represent hours upon hours of grinding monsters in order to earn back a positive karma score. If your karma reaches negative one million, there's likely no coming back.