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The Perfect MMORPG

Pvp is my forte. My achievements: DaoC: Rank 11 Runemaster and Berserker WoW: Gladiator rogue, Warlord Warrior, Gladiator DK Warhammer: Rank 73 Sorcerer and Rank 69 Witch elf

Author: Darrgen

DaoC 2 Your time is now!

Posted by Darrgen Saturday February 5 2011 at 1:32PM
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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

  Lore

   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.  

RvR

  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.

Faction Differences

 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

WoW clone

   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.

3 Factions

  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.

Game Mechanics

   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

   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.

UI

  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.

Graphics

   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

Diversity

  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.

 

Closing Thoughts

  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. 

Hellekin writes:

/signed. nothing more, nothing less to say.

Sat Feb 05 2011 3:00PM Report
cirdane writes:

I mostly agree but you have one thing very wrong aoe cc was a major killer for the fun factor of daoc. Yes it was fun to run with an 8 man gank squad, aoe cc 32 other players and beat them down a few at a time. you get 8 happy players and 32 /cancel results. the keeps and towers were a better solution if you were out numbered grab a tower and hang on. Any solution where 1/2 the people playing die after being mezzed 3 sec into combat is going to fail. And as mythic found out once the hard core chase the easy meat part timers out the hard core bitch that it's "empty" and leave too. any rvr game that wishes to make it on a large scale needs to give make pvp as even as they can. DAOC made huge mistakes in listening to extrem hard core players who wanted to be able to win 20 to 1 fights so they WOULDN'T have to realy on their realm mates for PERSONAL victory.

Sat Feb 05 2011 8:57PM Report
Darrgen writes:

While you make valid points, I do not agree that larger numbers should always win. The reason why is because there will never be even playing fields no matter how much you try to regulate it. There should always be a way for smaller numbers to atleast escape. Also aoe cc was a key component in daoc's success.  This is why wow would never work as an open world pvp game

Sun Feb 06 2011 10:59AM Report
Vargur writes:

There were many problems with casting. With no cap on casting speed or dps adjustment, casters could pour out rediculous amounts of damage in no time. Add their base CC, especially Hibernian caster stuns, and you had unhappy enemies who got stunned and killed without having a fighting chance.

Realm-wise AoE CCs had some issues. Midgard, who I played, only had Pac-Healers' insta-AoE CC timers, while especially Albions' therguists and sorcerers had longer range, but a slight casting time. The result was that Midgard would have a slight advantage if healer instas were up, but a huge disadvanage if they were down.

As cirdane pointed out the effects of AoE CC were too decisive with durations far too long. Cut durations to 15 seconds for mezzes and 5 seconds for stuns, and the winner of the refllexes has a slight advantage, but not one a large group could recover from. If 32 people gets slaughtered by a 8-man squad repeatedly, and only because of CC, not their own faults, then those will leave. While I can agree that numbers should not count for everything, the one-sided slaughter CCs allowed some groups to pour out, were rediculous.

Aside from that, I wholeheartedly agree that DAoC should get a revamp.

Sun Feb 06 2011 11:24AM Report
Darrgen writes:

8 man squads were defeating larger numbers not because of aoe cc alone. It mainly had to do with coordination at the time. Big Zergs of people did not use ventrilo and stuff like what happens today. So when you mezz a large zerg back then chances are they would not do what a coordinated group would do by getting demezzes and purges on the right people. Now days you have to pretty much asume people are going to use vent. If they aren't they shouldn't really have an advantage just because of numbers. Coordination should play a factor. Simple fact is, daoc had MANY ways to avoid cc with purges, demezzes, and stuff like mez bt etc. If you didn't use what you had at your disposal of course you shouldn't always win. Most of the time though if an 8 man gank squad defeated a large zerg it was because of imbalanced group makeups of the zerg, lack of communication, low realm ranks, and general lower skill with not knowing how to fully utilize their class. 

The gamer nowdays is much more organised. Most everyone who plays mmo's owns a mic now, back then it was very uncommon for vent to be used until later on in daoc's life which happens to be around the time defeating large numbers became increasingly dificult. 

Overall though I do think cc duration should be cut down to about the duration cc lasts in molvik. Obviously if i were to make a daoc2 I would balance cc better between the 3 realms, no instant cc, and range balance. However I would still want it to feel unique to each realm.

Sun Feb 06 2011 6:52PM Report
Vargur writes:

I agree that vent made a huge difference, and the game towards the end (I stopped playing after the archery patch was introduced some years ago) made pugs more competitive compared to 8-man squads. But early on, there was nothing more frustrating than standing mezzed and waiting for the assist train to pick your number, and even later on, iusually if a group had been in a good fight it would have no timed abilities left, and are reduced to avoiding everything until they regain them. A vast reduction in CC duration is one thing, but the whole RA system would have to be rebuilt. As a stealther (hunter, RR7) I could be quite formidable when I had everything up (Purge, IP, SoM, Celerity ++) and was buffed with both shaman and healer buffs, but without them I was usually dead meat against most melee stealthers.

One of the problems that evolved was that DAoC became so filled with abilities that the learning curve for new players were simply too steep. Even skilled players who levelled up a new class struggled to make the most of their new classes. Simple does not always mean easy, and I believe DAoC at release was challenging enough for most people.

I admit that I only played Midgard, so I only know the other realms classes from what I have read and my combat experience, and I think Hibernia is fine CC-wise (minus caster baseline stuns). The Bard is a versitile class that seems to function well in groups. Albion suffer from Minstrels being stealthers and that needs to be addressed, the proc fix approach they did to Friars made them solo monsters, but offered little in regards to improved group performance. Midgard suffers mostly in their shamans who far too often were reduced to buff shearers.

Finally, something needs to be done concerning the melee vs casters. With the layout of NF, the artifacts gained from ToA, and the lack of dps management on casting times, casters ruled supreme. Add all the towers and keeps in NF and being a melee became increasingly a poor idea. That balance needs to be restored.

Mon Feb 07 2011 11:00AM Report
Darrgen writes: Yes I agree with a lot of what you said. In my opinion shamans/bards/friars should have been much closer to the pure healing classes so that if you did not have a cleric/healer/druid it did not matter as much. Also about the cast speed stuff, really there should be flat values for every spell. realm rank abilities would increase certain abilities cast time be so much would basicaly make the game far easier to balance. casting speed and dex effecting all spells is no good. ALso i believe casters should have to use more than just 1 dps ability. spammable spells should do far less damage tahn abilities that either require certain things to happen or have cooldowns. That was one of the biggest things i didn't like about daoc. Was far too easy just to spam one spell Mon Feb 07 2011 11:55AM Report
Vargur writes:

We seem to be on the same page. .)

Tue Feb 08 2011 8:23AM Report
forses writes:

first of all, great post.

I agree with almost everything u say, except for the changes to the casting system.

The interrupt mechanics are the core of the whole RvR game, and it is that in combinatin with the cc, what makes the RvR so tactical and in need of great teamwork.

Fights are won by the groups that succeed in interrupting the enemies dd casters and healers.

Rupts --> tactics --> trained groups --> need for good guilds = fun.

Mon Feb 21 2011 5:29AM Report
Lasastard writes:

One of the reasons why I do not see a DAoC 2 happening is because the concept is one that favors dedicated players willing to collaborate with others (not very popular these days). WAR had the opportunity to update some of the concepts in DAoC to make it more appealing to the broader market while still remaining open a niche for the old-school players. Sadly, it failed on both accounts by trying to be too much like WoW and too little like DAoC. No big Dev studio is going to approach this concept again anytime soon. Here is to hoping that an Indy studio sees the potential. But polish and balance will be important and this is a difficult thing to achieve, especially for Devs with no prior experience in that kind of game. Took Mythic long enough to achieve some resemblance of balancing. 

Sat Mar 05 2011 4:13AM Report
hildace writes:

As per what forses said, I agree with most of what you said, but I do not agree with a change to casting mechanics. 

I'm an old diehard pvp veteran myself--rr11 armsman from percival in daoc, gladiator+grand marshal warr in wow, rr65 black orc (before quitting) in warhahmmer

I believe 3 factions is essential for a world pvp game, and agree with you on the need for group speed.  Even without ranged ae cc, a 3 faction pvp game with group speed + similar combat mechanics to daoc would be leagues ahead of the wow clones out there (in the pvp department anyway).

The three things that made me first quit daoc in 2004 (came back in sept 2010) are: the melee style change patch prior to ToA (which screwed up my melee combos and took away my any-angle 1v1 stun), the terribad ToA xpac (with boring pve-raids and arti/scroll grinding), and the NF xpac, which basically promoted zerging (with teleporting to frontlines, etc), and made the game less fun as a melee class. 

I went to WoW (2004-2008), WAR (4 months from 2008-2009), Aion (chinese and american, 2009-june 2010), to APB (it died in 2 months), and then finally back to DAoC in sept 2010, when i realized there were NO OTHER GOOD WORLD PVP GAMES OUT THERE!!!  It's a shame--10 years later, and daoc is still better than the rest when it comes to world pvp..even with the broken cross-realming that goes on, the lack of melee-heavy teams on alb, etc...just a real shame...I wanted daoc 2 a long time ago...i even hoped that warhammer would be daoc 2..but i was wrong.

I doubt daoc 2 will ever come out, but if it does, i will absolutely play it.

Sat Apr 16 2011 8:38PM Report
Kirann writes:

I whole-heartedly agree with a lot of this discussion. I'll tell ya though, the one that REALLY bothered me about DAoC, (which is essentially the only thing that got me to switch to WoW) was player control. Strafing is actually "side-stepping" and turning/jumping was just downright awkward. Being able to move so freely and the vibrant, easy-to-use, fluid UI were what drew me to WoW. I'm especially dying for a updated DAoC-style game now. I bought Cataclysm back when it came out, played for a little while, and haven't played in prolly, 4-6 months now. WoW was unoriginal and unspecialized enough from the start: but with the new talent tree system and stat mechanics... it's so fucking cookie-cutter you could use it for your Toll House Christmas baking. I miss DAoC mechanics so badly, but after bein' away for so long and having the player control and UI from WoW, I just can't quite get back into the groove I used to be in. Plus I want OF, to Hell with NF. Old Emain ftw! By the by, if anyone's interested to know, I am, in fact, the original Kirann. Albion/Igraine pally. Don't recall what my rr was. Not very high though, as I hit 50, played OF for a little while, had to leave the game due to finances, came back to NF and threw that shit right in the trash.

Sat Jun 11 2011 11:21AM Report
A970747 writes:

Wow, I liked this. I liked seeing the name Darrgen even more, what nostalgia haha~ 

 

-Lockh

Thu Nov 10 2011 12:38AM Report
Bhusta writes:

I know a courtyard of people just do not like thinking about it because it has both positive and negative effect based on who you were. The commoner deed 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 of merry christmas text. It also added a seperate status description and clarity to the game in a CC class or also known as Crowd mastery class.

Thu Nov 24 2011 10:41PM Report
edged27 writes: The OP sounds very very nostalgic. There were alot of good things that I remember fondly about original DAOC, but killing 4 to 10x your number was definitely not one of them. My guess is that the OP was fortunate enough to play with enough competent friends and he was on the right side of 8v40 sluaghterfests most of the time. So for every 8 people out there nostalgically recalling epicly slaying 40 people (most of them standing still!), there are 40 people playing other games that don't require you to know an ace-mezzer to succeed. That kind of disproportion is precisely why DAOCs aren't being made these days (at least not with number-negating abilities like AOE CC). I'm on board with craftable gear, speed buffs over mounts, sandbox RvR, meangingful PvP, and even a casting system that combines DaoCs system with the modern era. But allowing the OP to enjoy his nostalgic fantasy of killing 10x his numbers while they all stand around? Been there, done that (on both sides of the coin), and it was the epitome of lame. Find a new solution to population imbalance and maybe you can sell a daoc clone to those of us who have fond memories of such a good game. Just don't try and sell us a ToA clone several years later and force us to give you our collective middle fingers. Wed Apr 25 2012 3:41PM Report
Mastara writes: Make DAoC 2! If you build it, they WILL come! I wish they would. I highly doubt it will happen, but I'll never loose that hope. They would just make a killing in profit if they just made some upgrades but kept the RVR mostly the same. Thu Sep 13 2012 2:06PM Report
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