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3D Vision, your favourite MMO seen thrue the NVIDIA 3D VISION Glasses

I discontinued my old blog "random ideas for mmos" to blog about a couple of tests playing various MMOs with NVIDIAs new 3D-Vision Shutter Glasses.

Author: craynlon

RIFNG 3: Down with Charakter Immortality

Posted by craynlon Wednesday February 27 2008 at 5:14AM
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ok you might be scared reading the headline assuming id suggested perma death or something like that...

nah, i really love my char and i dont want to have him permanently erased on some kind of stupid disconect or bad luck.

what i would like to suggest tough for a second generation mmorpg is to let charakters age and eventually grow weaker and die as opposed to me leaving the game bored after 3 years playing the same char.

so : Down with Charakter Immortality, bring in a generational concept

with the grind and level orientated mmorpgs on todays market there are a few problems that could be avoided by letting the charakters age and die:


  • old players get bored with the charakter but cant give him up because they have spend sooo much time investing grind into that char
  • new players sometimes shy away from a game thats on the market for a few years knowing they would never be able to compete with chars that have a 3year headstart (i.e. in end game pvp)
  • companies have to fokus on developing more and more endgame content, uber skills, god quests to keep the endlevel players happy

so why not give a charakter a livespan of lets say 2 realtime-years. he will grow in power for around 16 month till his late 40s then weaken over the next 6 month to die naturaly.
During this time he could spawn a heir to continue his legacy. Maybe this heir can inherit some key characteristics, some special skills and part of his fortune but he should be his own man/woman trying to live up to the legacy of his/ her father.

Batak_Killer writes:

Holy crap! That pure genius!


But i dont see it in todays market...not until the real mmorpgs start to develop..

Wed Feb 27 2008 7:07AM Report
Nightbringe1 writes:

A large part of what I always said I wanted (before MMO's) was long lasting continuity, the ability to work on and develope my character for as long as I chose to. This was an issue for me because my D&D campaigns would never seem to last more than a year so I was never able to progress a character.

With Everquest I found what I was looking for. I have played the same main for 6 years now, I still play him 30+ hours per week, and I still enjoy progressing him.

Wed Feb 27 2008 7:08AM Report
craynlon writes:

i also come from a pnp d&d background but i felt that the higher lvl u became the more redicolous the quest. after all what to do after you slew a few gods ? thats the same with updates in current mmos. to please old time players the companies have to introduce new uber-skills, uber monsters... and thereby creating a ever greater gap between old and new players. also if in the 1st release they had to provide content for 20 levels now after 4 years they have to please level ranges from 1 to 80.

as a rpger i would rather define my char of what he did in the world and that can be passed from father to son if the npcs would have some kind of memory and maybe would age themselves. 
it would be just marvelous if some npc would approacht the 2nd char with a "hey i remember your father, he helped us fight of blackbeared the pirate so many years ago"

for me people that join an mmo early should have some benefits over ppl that come a bit later but by making the benefit more leaned towards rpg-elements (npc contacts, legacy, follow up quest) then by continuesly building power in the same charakter (lvl 30, 80, 100+) it would more motivating for both old and new players.

also at a rpger the phase where you are above your skill horizont and get weaker would feel like the old veteran going to his final battles, a feeling ull never experience in current rpg.

Wed Feb 27 2008 8:08AM Report
Anofalye writes:

The idea is would need some fine tuning.  I would play a character which age.  This is me.


That doesn't mean your idea is to be discarded.  What if some RACES ages and have an awesome XP bonus (10 times less grind), and another race which is immortal take about 10 more times to level up?  The grind never bother me, in fact...I crave for it.  But at the same time...I want my character forever! :)  It is MINE!  :)


See, your idea is good.  But it needs to be fined tuned, in order to make so that most players pick an aging race...but a few wackos can take an eternal race, at a 1000% xp penalty. :P


I also believe you would need an heirloom system, so the descendants of a past character have some shortcuts.

Wed Feb 27 2008 10:23AM Report
Anofalye writes:

I wouldn't play...damn I said, you idea is good...but as other things, leave the option to the player.


1000% xp penalty is better than aging for a player that think like me.  Most players would figure they can level 10 characters, 10 classes...over 20 years...and pick the mortal version.

Wed Feb 27 2008 10:25AM Report
JB47394 writes:

It is an idea that has come up repeatedly through the years.  Read through the following 1997 discussion on the MUD-Dev mailing list, where the notion of character aging is debated (it was a recurring topic on the list):

Wed Feb 27 2008 1:06PM Report
Nightbringe1 writes:

I would also chose an immortal (elven) character that progressed at a far slower pace than a mortal (human) character. For me the real prize is exploring the world and developing my character, not racing to end game.

As a side note, a system like this would also allow for long lived, but not immortal, races with a proportionatly smaller xp penalty (dwarves and gnomes come to mind).

Wed Feb 27 2008 3:26PM Report
craynlon writes:

@JB thanx, very interesting read, i admit the idea isnt reall new ^^

about the "near immortal" races
as i would find it unfair that an elf charakter would pick up skills at a 1/10th speed of a "mortal" race if it live 10 times longer maybe the limit that balances the immortality would be some kind of skill memory.

i dont quite remember the pen & paper rpg that implemented it (maybe it was ad&d dark sun setting) but i remember playing a game where the immortal elf would undergo a path of changes in his live beeing a warrior in hes youth then later lean more towards magic and so on.
maybe immortals would internally age like mortals getting bored of their role als a swordsman (sword related skills would weaken) and would learn new magical skills more easy. or they would have to decide wich skills are most dear to them spending xp not to forget them.

Thu Feb 28 2008 6:16AM Report
JB47394 writes:

craynlon: "i admit the idea isnt reall new"

Don't sweat it.  If you thought it up out of the blue, then you invented it.  Just like the first person to think it up out of the blue.  That they were born before you isn't particularly significant  :)

Thu Feb 28 2008 7:35AM Report
BadSpock writes:

Grinding at end game vs. grinding back to end game is what it comes down to.

I could only see it working if things changed the 2nd, 3rd, 4th etc. time through.

But if "reborn" characters are more powerful then their first generation counterparts, isn't it really just the same as an un-dying character progressing in power?

I for one would hate having to redo the exact same areas of the game the exact same way. When I make it to the "end-game" I'm proud of my achievements and the power I've gained. I don't want to throw it all away and re-do everything I just did.

Like I said, what would be key (to me anyway) is that each play through is different. You'd have to have a serious reputation / alignment system like we see in Single Player RPG's like Mass Effect, where each play through can be vastly different.

Thu Feb 28 2008 11:38AM Report writes:
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