So long has it been since a game has captured my interest as much as Dark age of Camelot. Over a decade later I've tried mmo failure after failure trying to fill the itch that DaoC created. The only question I have to ask is why with such technological advances in mmo has a game not been created with the traits of daoc? The vast majority of people that surged to the mmo market thanks to WoW are also in a similar position as I am in. To be quite frank, World of Warcraft is repitive and boring now. It seems I have been doing the same thing over and over since BC. Don't get me wrong it can be fun but it all feels the same with different skins and it seems every MMO that has come out since then just wants to make a less robust clone of WoW. The question I have to you people is why? Do you not understand we dont want another WoW, we want something different to replace it. A game that was massively popular and was before the mmo boom that didn't get to be experienced by these players that still has more hype than any game for pvp/rvr is DaoC so why not recreate it?
Why DaoC's time is Now
So why is this a good time for the recreation of DaoC you might ask. Well one reason I think it's a good time is because of upcoming tv shows. One in particular that I am very interested in with the name of Camelot(Starz Channel). This is going to be very relateable with Dark age of Camelot's lore. Not to mention the show Merlin that is already hugely successful with the same lore. It's astonishing to me that a developer would not get behind a game that has such huge shows with the same lore. Not only that but arthurian lore is hugely popular from a historical standpoint. Many history channel shows such as The Dark Ages are huge interests of mine thanks to DaoC.
The gem of old DaoC. Still talked about to this day even by people who were not familiar with how it worked. The simple fact is DaoC had meaningful pvp. Even people that were not player vs player type of people got behind daoc's rvr. It gave you a sense of accomplishment for your realm when you won a major victory over your enemies. Also with the 3 factions even with the imbalances of realms you never really felt hopeless.
Another big thing that DaoC had that no other game has had to this point is the complete change of landscape. When you played one of DaoC's three factions there was virtually no similarities in the factions. You felt like you were playing a whole different game based on your faction with new landscapes and dungeons to figure out. The only thing that was even shared was the rvr zones where you constantly did battle and Darkness falls which you battled for control over.
What new games have done wrong
The big one. So many games are influenced by WoW in the wrong ways. It simply amazes me how influenced every new game is by WoW. The playerbase is absolutely not looking for another WoW. We want something different and meaningful. That is why i think Guild Wars 2 is the only game in the near future that even has a shot at stealing some of the mmo market and even this game has a lot that I dont really care for.
Where is it? Why is Dark age of Camelot the only game I've ever played where there are 3 factions and no definitive bad guy? What's the deal? This was one of the simplest basis that made daoc rvr so well recieved and great. Imbalances in realms had a much smaller impact and this is one of the biggest things that plagues every new mmo that tries for world pvp. It's just never fair with only 2 factions battling no matter how much you try to control it.
This in my opinion is the single most important thing new games mess up with. Everyone with a brain realizes that WoW's game mechanics will never support open world rvr. The abilities just do not go well with the playstyle of WoW. Daoc had 2 big mechanics that made it work as a world pvp game. The first was ranged aoe CC. Now I know a lot of people just do not like thinking about it because it has both positive and negative impacts based on who you were. The simple fact is though without this mechanic daoc would have never worked as an open pvp game. This gave smaller numbers a fighting chance vs larger numbers. It also added a seperate class description and depth to the game in a CC class or also known as Crowd control class. You generally wanted someone who had very fast reactions on your CC class simply because it was a race for your CC class to aoe cc the other group before their cc class aoe cc'd yours. Of course there were ways to get out of this and classes that could dispel it so it was key for everyone to be able to spread on incoming(about the time you can see the other group/raid was CC range). The other thing I think made DaoC so great was group speed. Now days every game has gone to mounts only. So speed classes have pretty much died out. I think group speed classes were a great idea, not only did it add to the depth of the game but the way it worked was perfect in DaoC. Speed breaks once you either attack or are attacked, also it broke if you got so far away from the speed class or they simply turned it off due to switching to a different group ability. This also allowed for smaller numbers to escape giant raids of people because big raids generally did not have every group with the fastest speed possible. The reason I emphasize so much on smaller numbers being able to have the decision of escaping big numbers is simply because in a game where a smaller group feels they have no chance of winning or escaping they give up and stop playing if massive numbers are out. This also leads to less and less participation over time and this is exactly what you do not want in an open pvp game. So mechanics must be in place to give people a chance and have that holy sh*t factor as well where people talk about what they just escaped or took on. I still to this day have stories from daoc where we were able to hold off massive raids of players with 10x less the numbers. It was part of what made daoc so great in the eyes of those who played it. Everyone has stories from daoc because it gave the players so many opportunities to do things that almost seemed impossible. This has echo'd over a decade later with players that played it.
What I would change
Casting in DaoC is a bit outdated. In daoc if you were attacked or casted on while you were trying to cast the spell would be interrupted and you would have to try to reposition and recast when you were free. I do like being able to interrupt on hit, but I also think all casters need abilities with cooldowns that can be casted when players are attacking them. Obviously these abilities would not be as powerful as abilities that can be interrupted but they would allow the caster to do things even if they are being interrupted.
Another thing that simply is too outdated and needs to be updated. This is the one thing I would clone WoW in. The ease of use of the world of warcraft interface is the thing that daoc could use. Warhammer's UI would be perfect for a DaoC game. I loved the fact that in Warhammer you were able to have an enemy unit and a friendly unit targetted at the same time.
Not as big of a deal but still something that could be updated. Age of Conan graphics would be spot on for a DaoC game.
PvE(Player vs Environment)
DaoC definitely did not have the most enjoyable PvE. This is mainly due to the age of the game. A more fluid system as well as diversity in quests would be perfect. The lore of DaoC could provide for some very enjoyable quests. Dungeons could definitely use a more modern challenge to them as well rather than mostly tank and spank.
What I would Keep
DaoC diversified everything from Classes to the landscape. When you played Midgard the classes were different than that of Albion's classes or Hibernian classes. This was another thing that sold me so much. When I first experienced Player vs Player I had no idea what to expect from the enemy players just because I was only familiar with my particular faction's classes. It made it so much more exciting and cool. The first time I saw a blademaster triple weild I was awe struck. I thought that was the coolest thing I ever saw. Also the landscape was completely different. Each faction had their particular feel to them. I thought it was so much fun. This would also be great for people who just love to level. 3 factions with completely different landscapes, zones and quests would give those types of players plenty to explore, and do.
If only I could come up with a few million dollars I think I would be the perfect candidate to be in charge of bringing the game to life in the way that the current mmo market needs. I've experianced and done extremely well In pvp in every game I've played. This includes multi glad in WoW, rr11s in DaoC, and 2x rr70s in Warhammer. This is not to come off as a brag rant just to simply give credibility to my understanding of PvP. I honestly think I could make the game so many of us have been waiting for. Maybe one day the opportunity could present itself but until then I will keep dreaming or hoping someone has similar ideas as mine. I'm interested to hear what others think about this so please comment.
Here is a link to one of my guild's pvp videos in DaoC for those who are unfamiliar with the game or just want to watch a video on it. It shows Hibernian multi classes pvp point of view.