No Man's Sky Malcontent Says He Was Just Role-Playing An Evil Emperor

Three days ago, a No Man's Sky community leader saw one of her bases erased by a notorious streamer who roleplays as a tyrannical overlord. In response, the community put their foot down.

SeriusGamerX, or SGX, is a streamer who mainly plays No Man's Sky. His whole gimmick is that he's an evil overlord, playing in character as "The Gek Emporer," whom he described over email to Kotaku as "a character that is supposed to be evil ... and [the] rightful conquerors of the No Man's Sky universe."

It's common for his streams to begin with orchestral music and self-aggrandising speeches, which then segues into him chain-smoking and talking about his nefarious plans with his friends as he roams around the No Man's Sky universe.

SeriusGamerX is not the only No Man's Sky player with a gimmick. Roleplaying is a big part of the player community, which includes player-made civilisations, governments and police forces, often populated by roleplayers acting their parts. But the people who have run into SGX aren't all down with this character and behaviour.

Lillihop, the player who saw her base destroyed, is a No Man's Sky community member who runs Cafe 42. It's a No Man's Sky fan space on the social networking site Amino, and it has over 400 members.

"It's the most troll-free place I've ever been," she said over Twitter direct messages. "We're neutral, and support all players — as long as they aren't doing actual harm to others' game play."

Lillihop is one of the few female civilisation leaders, something she takes pride in. She sees herself as a kind of mediator between civilisations, so when she saw that SGX was catching the ire of other players and civilisations, she tweeted to him asking to chat. Soon afterward, she tweeted that SGX had erased one of her bases and derided her on stream for being a woman, and was also threatening to take another landmark base of hers she made as a gift to another civilisation.

Her base isn't the only base that SGX has allegedly overwritten, but it was the only one that came with a side helping of sexist commentary.

The former location of Lillihop's base.

Erasing a base in No Man's Sky is pretty easy to do. Each planet can only have a certain number of bases that are visible to other players. In many communities, it's considered polite not to claim a base on a planet that has other bases on it already.

What SGX did was go to planets in civilised space, meaning communities like Cafe 42 or the Galactic Hub, travel to places where he knew player-made bases existed, and claim bases at the same site, effectively destroying them. He's also left some rude comments in his wake, all in keeping with his evil overlord persona. In one stream, he re-words a comment a couple of times because the profanity filter won't let him submit his desired message: "I pissed at your door."

The No Man's Sky community has largely stood behind Lillihop, in part because of comments SGX made about her on his stream. "He went on and on of how it's a joke for a female to run a community, how females can't run anything, etc," Lillihop said.

"I'm like family to everyone and they know I'm a girl so this just set them off. I'm one of the few ever to have a full on civ, community, and building a hub with others now — as a girl. So it was a slap in the face, publicly, right after I offered to assist him before he did something stupid that would cause him to be hated."

Popular No Man's Sky YouTuber CobraTV tweeted to SGX that, "roleplaying does not include being sexist and discrimination," and 7101334, leader of the Galactic Hub, also encouraged other players to report SGX's channel for harassment.

7101334 provided Kotaku with a tip for restoring erased bases.. If you go back to a previous save where the base is visible to other players, then change a minor element like removing and then adding a chair or a flag, your base you be visible again within an hour.

"No Man's Sky shows the most recently updated base, not the most recently claimed base," he said. "I've kept the info under wraps because I didn't want trolls to use the same technique, but with only 14 days until [the next update], I think it would do more good than potential harm at this point."

SGX has not denied that he threatened Lillihop's base, nor has he recanted his statement that he "doesn't like female leaders," in No Man's Sky. He just doesn't see what the big deal is.

"I know some people don't like the way I roleplay," SGX said to Kotaku, "but do you get angry at actors on screen when they play EVIL as part of the character?" In a two hour video titled "A BIG MESSAGE TO THE NO MAN'S SKY COMMUNITY," SGX reiterated this point numerous times: he's just roleplaying, and the people who are criticising him and reporting his channel are the real bullies and harassers.

"Criticising me all over the internet as a personality is a thing that they should be ashamed of as a community!" he told Kotaku. "And driving people into reporting me and my channel and trying to shut me down! That is the true face of the community!"

Lillihop said over DMs that the No Man's Sky roleplaying community members that she knows are "livid" at getting used as an excuse for SGX's actions. One such group, the Collectors, roleplay as antagonists against the Galactic Hub.

They addressed the situation by tweeting their definition of roleplaying: "players assume the roles of characters and collaboratively create stories and determine the actions of their characters according to a system of guidelines. Within the rules, they may improvise freely; and shape the game." They added, "SeriusGamerX brings us amateur hour."

Despite the blowback, SGX did not say he has any intention of playing the game any differently. "For me in roleplay there has to be a freedom of choice! If I'm playing the evil guy, then I have to be evil guy also in the game!" he said. "Actual roleplay involves gameplay too. And if that means messing with people around a little bit, then that's what it is."

Lillihop isn't going to let a little piracy stop her from running her civilisation and building new bases. "At this point, I've moved from the coffee cup base I'm known for [that SGX is threatening] and relocated. He can take the base, but he won't take the Cafe," she said over DMs. She described the No Man's Sky community as a country that the players who participate in civilised space inhabit and, ideally, work together to protect.

"We're the protectors of dreams," she said. "I guess when you see this simulation as an extension of your own world, you become passionate about it and want to see it thrive and blossom."

"Hello Games may never know my name, but I love what they have given me and my simulated world full of travellers the world over that I adore," Lillihop said. "I'll always protect this, and I'll always support it. It's truly my home away from home, and I thank them so much for that."


Comments

    Getting real tired of these people spouting about "freedom" when it's invariably "my own freedom to be an absolute shitstain and also I shouldn't have to face repercussions ever".

    Sounds like the same thing as Dr Disrespect. Hiding behind the excuse of "I'm just playing a character bro" as though it excuses shitty behaviour. Roleplay isn't a unilateral excuse to be a dick, it's a collaborative thing people participate in so that everyone's fun is improved. This guy just seems like a shitty person who thought he could get away with being shitty if he just stuck a 'fiction' label on it.

      It sucks because the demographic this behaviour appeals to is young troglodytes who haven't fully formed their frontal lobes yet, which is Twitch's primary fanbase. X.x

      Yeah he doesn't seem like he's RP'g as anything other than himself being a troll.
      "I pissed on your door" doesn't exactly scream Supreme Emperor of the Gek Empire.

    Can't say roleplaying a sexist generically evil emperor has much depth to begin with, thats straight out of a 2 star scifi flick. I get destroying bases and conquering territory, but the sexist remarks just seem totally offhand. Like the definition in the article, it's a game go ahead and roleplay away, but I imagine that game also has a code of conduct that supersedes roleplaying.

    He's pretty obviously chosen to be an evil 'character' just because it allows him to be a dick to people - or rather, he thought it would alleviate the consequences of him being a dick to people. Pretty hard to call it roleplaying if he's just being himself though.

    The 'iTs JuSt MeMeS bRo!' type excuses can go and get fucked, as well as the complaints about his channel getting shut down. If your channel is based on creating negative interactions with other community members - either as genuine roleplay, or more likely, under the guise of roleplay - don't be surprised when the community turns around as one and tells you to fuck right off.

    Yep, he’s a tool.

    As a side note - it’s been a while (ok, ages) since I’ve played but I had no idea it was that easy to wipe other players’ bases. Surely that could be fixed. What possible reason is there for allowing that to continue? Seems completely non-immersive, given the game is basically built on there being a huge number of worlds.

    This is what happens when you move people to front counter before they've properly graduated from flipping burgers.

    Sweet I might go rob a service station and tell the cops I was just role playing.

    I'd believe his role play story if his real life persona wasn't a dick too

    At first I read this and I was all “Fuck this guy!” and “That poor, dramatic Cafe owner!”. Then I remembered that “Bride kidnapping” is a thing that 1 in 4 women in Kyrgyzstan go through and I haven’t got enough fucks to give about people who role play more than live an actual life.
    That’s where I’m at.

      I agree with you. It's the digital equivalent of having your sand castle destroyed at the beach, annoying? Yes. But ultimately if that's the biggest problem you face today it's a good day.

      Theres a part of me that thinks its not an issue. Its a game, something thats meant to entertain you, so do whatever it takes to be entertained.

      Then theres the rest of me that thinks "...but not to the point you're ruining other peoples entertainment."

      In the grand scale of things, it's safe to say it's not the biggest issue in the world, but to the people he's impacting on, theres relevance. You dont have to just give a fuck to the big issues, its OK to have opinions on the small ones as well.

        It’s getting too tiring, man. You can control two things in life: Your thoughts and your actions. I can’t control the attitudes of others, just influence them. I think that guy’s behaviour extrapolates into further scum baggery by default and I feel his reasoning is lame as fuck, but: His life already sucks a bunch of wangs taped together into one, composite mega wang. That’s why he role plays a villain and destroys things other people love. He is experimenting with having impact on others. Judging from his defensiveness, he clearly doesn’t have the tools to handle the outcome.
        If that’s the worst we get from him, then the children should be safe.

      You've evidently got enough fucks to give to read the article and make a post telling everyone you had no fucks to give.

        That’s not how it works, friendo.
        People post in the comments because we are all opinionated fucks who think our own individual wisdom trumps standard reasoning.
        Which is exactly why you took time out at 3:30am to point the fucks I give out.

    Abusing immersion-breaking game mechanics in a way that could be considered an exploit is not role-play and would get you immediately removed from any RP community I've been involved in (quite a few actually).

    Sexist rants could be in character I suppose but not when they're directed at real people as opposed to a character.

    In short I don't think this guy knows what role-playing is.

      Precisely. It's a shithouse excuse.

      "Look, it's simple: if I do something and it offends you... it was just a prank, brah. That means you can't be offended, OK?"
      Only 'roleplay' instead of prank, now, I guess? Nah. That's horse shit.

      You know what's a big part of roleplaying, that any experienced roleplayer can tell you? Consent. It's been an issue in roleplaying which involves conflict for decades. There's a language grown around it.

      If this guy wants to roleplay as an evil asshole, he needs to understand the difference between 'IC' (in character) and 'OOC' (out of character). The standard roleplaying convention is that if you're going to engage in IC conflict, it's done with OOC agreement. A winner and loser may not necessarily be determined in that discussion, allowing the systems to do the work, but consent to conflict is a cornerstone of roleplaying.
      (tl;dr: If you're going to RP a fuckhead, you need to be exceptionally polite about it IRL and accept that it won't always be appropriate to RP that fuckhead.)

      For literally decades of roleplaying as a 'thing', people who 'godmod', 'metagame', or 'powergame' or attempt to use other domineering tactics to overrule or bypass consent or who attempt to derail an agreed-upon theme for the RP group often find themselves quickly ejected from that roleplaying group.

      The systems might allow it... ettiquette and community generally won't.

      Basically, he's talking out his ass and won't/can't cop to just being a selfish, shitty person.

    If some evil overlord type started threatening me and my community wouldn't I reach out to others to help me stop him?

    I'm not persecuting you buddy, my character is just trying to stop your character. And since my character has friends and we all don't like evil arseholes we're working together to stop you, in character.

      That's the best way to look at it.

      I really think in role playing you should be able to play as the person you want. It's up to the dev's and the other players to work out what they want to do about this behaviour. Telling him to stop isn't the answer.

      Problem is that theres not much they can do about it. Game is still essentially single player, its just you can exploit the server-side connections to impact on others. I doubt he'd care if they tried to do anything similar, he'd just see it as vindication.

      Its something they'll need to address soon though. Theres a big update in a couple of weeks, and its rumored to include proper multiplayer, so the impact he could have in that environment escalates, especially if this over-writing flaw sticks around.

    Seems real stupid the way bases are handled in this game, why not make them all real and just force people to actually destroy them which can take time? creating a base destroys a older one in a so called infinite galaxy! .... silly broken NMS!

    Waiting for the day when NMS developer pulls the plug and the server shuts down, alone with everyones game!

    Last edited 12/07/18 2:25 pm

    Sounds like SGX has genuine personality flaws...that's not me roleplaying, that's me giving a genuine opinion, which makes it right to say.

    This guy is no different to those youtube shitheads who think doing really abhorrent things to strangers is okay as long as its a "Prank"

    Anyone with half a brain knows that anyone "Roleplaying" on multiplayer game still needs to have a level of Out of Character courtesy. Hell those that play evil more so. He just sounds like a tool.

    If you don't agree with what he is doing in game, stop him in game. If he's a dick IRL he's a dick, having a cry about it won't change that.

    Step up and make the game not fun for him, stop him in game. Hearing about that would also make for an actual interesting read...

      If he's a dick IRL he's a dick, having a cry about it won't change that.

      Turns out it is, though. Not changing him being a dick, but holding him accountable and forcing him to re-think being a dick. And this IS how you make the game less fun for him. Because when someone's just slashing and burning instead of building up something they care about, there's not exactly much you CAN do to stop him using the game tools.

    The guy sounds like a dick but I have to admit that having villains in online games does add something to them. If that is the intention. That being said, a lot depends on whether the mechanics give you a sporting chance of retaliation. If he is just trying to inject eve type drama, I like the idea. If we think about the reality we find ourselves in, a lot of what gives it its worth is the adversity. Again, though - if the game does not have a way for evil acts to be punished by the community, it is less what I am talking about

      What I don't understand is why the Evil Overlord is suddenly shocked that the innocent citizens he attacks are rising up to shut him down, literally and figuratively.

      If you're going to be a tyrant, you're going to have to suffer revolutionaries.

      Don't bite off more than you can chew, SGX..

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