Player Versus Player
Player Versus Player (PvP) is a type of Gameplay Mode in Video Games
where the enemies are other players of the video game. This is in contrast to Player Versus Environment
(PvE,) where the enemies of your character are generated and controlled by a computer's artificial intelligence. The idea of Player vs Player is not only to outplay, outlast, or outwit your opponents, but to put your opponents at as many disadvantages as possible so they can't do the same to you.
Some games have both a PvP mode and a PvE mode. In some cases, the two modes occur at the same time, like in most MMORPGs
. In World of Warcraftnote
, the player character can be busy with a quest vs. computer generated monsters in an outdoor zone, and be ambushed by enemy players nearby. This can be either irritating or exhilarating, depending on your mood and tolerance for fellow players, forming the basis of The Great Player Versus Player Debate
Most games have strictly defined modes where only PvE (usually even separating single player and Coop Multiplayer
from each other) or PvP, but not both, can occur.
Player vs Player is actually the older
of the two modes, since it eliminates the need for any sort of AI. Very early games such as Space War
PvP is these days divided into two categories:
- Synchronous PvP is when two people play against each other in real time (as in the early examples). This can be done locally (with two controllers plugged into the same console) or over the Internet.
- Asynchronous PvP is when you fight against a player and AI plays on their behalf. This is very popular in Mobile Games because synchronous PvP can be hard to organize when people are going about their daily lives. This typically goes in hand with the idea of "asymmetrical" PvP where the AI-controlled player has different objectives. For example, in Clash of Clans, your job as an attacker is to decide which troops to deploy, when and where. (This is important because troops prioritizes different targets.) As a defender, your job is to design your city in a way that causes those troops to march to their deaths; when you are attacked, the AI takes care of all the actual fighting and you're not allowed to intercede. (In fact, if you try to log in while you are being attacked, the different Clash of Clans Clones vary in whether you are even allowed to do so, or whether you have to wait until someone's done with your base.)
See also Player Killing
Video Game Examples:
- Mortal Kombat players know that most of its charm is PvP, one big reason the game went online, though you can still play two-player at home.
- Fighting Games and Racing Games in general have a big focus on players competing against each other.
- Team Fortress 2 is nothing but players fighting each other. Even the bots are meant to simulate other players, down to "Virtual Mousepads" that control how fast they turn.
- A team-based Player Versus Environment was finally added in the Mann vs Machine mode, though the enemies are more or less robotic playable classes.
- Minecraft has player vs player on by default for servers, though it can be disabled by choice. The feature's uses range from every player for themselves or even clan battles.
- Demon's Souls has a boss controlled by another player, the entire boss battle is essentially a Pv P match.
- Dark Souls has several covenants that cater to PvP action, with different rewards for each.
- RuneScape has several different Pv P areas. The most well-known is the Wilderness, a volcanic wasteland where players can be attacked by anyone within a certain number of levels of their own, defined by how far into the Wilderness they are. There's also the Duel Arena, where players can fight each other one-on-one using agreed rules, the Soul Wars game where players try and stop the opposite team from destroying their team's Avatar, the classic Capture The Flag game of Castle Wars, and the Clan Wars where teams of players can fight each other.
- Both PlanetSide games, being MMOFPSes, are entirely Pv P - each faction is always at war with other two factions; the New Conglomerate, Terran Republic, and Vanu Sovereignty. Everyone on your faction is always on your side. Everybody else is someone to shoot at. The only non-player enemies are the turrets guarding bases and the player-deployed turrets.
- EVE Online is Pv P by its very nature. The players run everything significant, and most of the memorable events were orchestrated by player factions. Even within Concord space (i.e. NPC guaranteed safe space), players regularly try to screw other players through exploits.
- Phantasy Star Online 2 has a Battle Arena where players are tasked with outscoring the enemy team. Points are rewarded by collecting Emblems and killing opponents to steal a portion of their score.
Non-Video Game examples:
Anime and Manga
- In episode 2 of Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai, Kodaka, Sena, and Yozora are all playing Monster Hunter. Sena "accidentally" hits and knocks out Yozora's character, and later Yozora "accidentally" shoots Sena with her bow and arrow. She then knocks out Sena with a sleeping arrow while fighting a boss, and sets an explosive, and blows up both Sena and the monster. A few moments later, both girls are fighting each other much more than the monsters, and in the end fail the quest due to running out of time.
- This trope is a plot point in Log Horizon. Players who die are resurrected at a nearby cathedral, although they may drop items before dying. So other players have taken up looting and killing other players, partly out of boredom, and partly For the Evulz.
- Due to the players' circumstance, PVP is deeply frowned in Sword Art Online. A minor arc dealt with someone exploiting bugs in the PVP system to send players to their death. No, not character death — actual death of the person behind the joystick.
- This is the main appeal of Williams Electronics' Joust pinball machine, which had two symmetrical playfields set up for head-to-head competition.
- Pro Pinball: Big Race USA allows playing against another person over the internet.
- One of the tables in Star Trek Pinball, "Nemesis", splits the playfield vertically into two mirrored halves, then pits two players against each other. A LAN multiplayer mode was also planned, but was not finished in time for the game's release.
- Necronomicon allowed players to submit high scores to the developer's website for its leaderboards.
- The Action Park attraction "Action Park Gladiator Challenge", where two people raced to complete an obstacle course first.