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Qombi's MMORPG Design Fantasies (Venture inside a tiny gnome's mind)

I have day dreamed about MMORPG design since I seen the first text based MUD in action. I have been always critical of things different games could have done differently or imagined my own design. This will be a blog to share these design ideas.

Author: qombi

Wizards! Wizards! Wizards! Welcome to my world.

Posted by qombi Wednesday January 21 2009 at 6:32PM
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Hiyoodin folks!

Where has the powerful Wizard gone? What do you think of when you think Wizard? KABLOOEY GIGANTUOUS NUKES!? Me too!

Let's make a Wizard a Wizard. I am going to delve into my Wizard now, hold on to something! When I envision a Wizard I picture a very large battle turning blazing fireball, a single zinging powerful lightning strike, or a bone chilling freezing cold ice blast. You heard me right .. one! One is all it should take, I am a Wizard right?! Err hum .. You may be asking how would that be balanced? He wants to be a almighty God of mob sizzling.

Here is where my design comes in. Where balance comes in is preparation. Preparing an exploding bomb of pure magic of this size takes time. In my system a wizard in a group would start preparation of his particular spell of choice depending on monster resist at the start of a battle.

To assist you in picturing my Wizard correctly I will need to reveal a little information about my game mechanics. In my game world the group encounters would consist of very large mobs, that would take three to four minutes each to bring to their demise depending on importance of the mob in question. As you can see, preparation time would be feasible in my world unlike some game worlds today where battles are about fighting multiple mobs at the same time. Encounters would not be boring because of this by no means. I didn't say only one monster would be visiting you at a time, only that it would be wise not to fight more than one at the same time. That may be very painful in Qombi's world if attempted. There would be crowd control but that is for another post. I digressed ...

At the start of a battle my Wizard would start preparing his spell. The other group members would be doing their works which I will go into at a later date during this process. The way this preparation mechanic would work will now be described. You would create your chosen spell by combining "words" together. When you start your Wizard he starts out knowing all the words, which would be able to be arranged any way you choose on your hotbar. As you gain levels you learn more combination for words to chant to produce more spells.

Chanting words can be thought of similar to channeling a spell, if you are hit during the process there is a strong chance it will be interrupted. Also remember my game world getting touched as a Wizard would be a big no no. The Wizard would be the most fragile class in the game, second most fragile would be the rogue (That will be for a later time!). All you are wearing is a robe. One to three hits is all you can withstand from a group classified monster. Don't worry in Qombi's world as a Wizard you would have methods of releasing mob hate off of yourself and ways of sticking naughty monsters to the ground to where they can not reach you, though not always reliable. Also if you are playing properly you should not gain agro as the Wizard because after your one nuke the monster should be a sizzling pile of ashes. Again there are those emergency spells there in place for the occasion you do not time your nuke properly to kill your poor victim though risky.

There would be some smaller chants available, requiring only one up to three word combinations to produce non damaging spells such as your root, invisibility, levitate, teleport and other wizardry utilities! The long chants would be your damaging spells which would grow in strength as you get spell upgrades. The word combinations would not change on a spell upgrade just the strength of the spell to be effective against current level monsters of solo an group strength appropiately. Don't worry folks, in my game I would make it challenging but not overly complicated. I wouldn't make it like memerozing war and peace!

There would be monsters designated for solo, I wouldn't want folks to be tied to a group if they did not want to be or there would be times you may care to wander alone! How would a Wizard solo being this fragile and spells taking this long to prepare? Very simple, thanks for asking! (I know you didn't ask but go with it.) Solo designated monsters should be destroyed in one to two nukes and can be rooted via the Wizards chanted root spell. Solo designated mobs have little resistance to chanted spells such as root, slow, etc.

The most common solo battle would begin with either a chanted root spell or a chanted nuke depending on the situation. Was the Wizard spotted? Wizards will most likely want to be the one catching the monster off guard. There are tools provided to help the Wizard such as the invisibility chant which could allow the Wizard to choose his ideal location to start the confrontation. Chanting another spell would break invisibility though, becareful!  A Wizard and a Rogue would bring a foe to his demise ultimately in the same amount of time the difference being the Wizard will have large preparation times and a absurdely large single damaging hit (A great class for the folks who love big numbers) while the rogue would have no preparation time with small fast attacks. (Still not delving into my Rogue at this time!)


While I went a little into grouping earlier, I will conclude with a grouping scenario now. The Wizard will want to time his nukes carefully unless he wants the task of trying to deal with a mob that is angry as a hornet and wants Wizzy for breakfast. (Remember how fragile Wizards are!) Ultimately the Wizard will want to time his attacks to land when the group mob's health is at fifty percent to complete the kill. This is also taking in consideration they Wizard is using the correct spell type according to mob resistance. The preparation time would probably take up to around two minutes to complete. If you noticed I have mentioned group designated mobs would take aproximately three to four minutes to kill, which is longer than the time it takes a Wizard to cast a spell ..what gives? Remember the Wizard is about preparation and timing! At the beginning of the battle you would most likely not want to start chanting your damaging nuke. You would be more likely to be chanting spells to reduce mob resistance to certain magic schools which would be the Wizard's secondary role.

I have typed enough. I hope you enjoyed the read. I like constructive criticsm, who knows maybe you thought of something that could make my fireball chucker better or problems with my ideas that I have not thought of. Though I do realize my Wizard would have very different limitiations than my other classes but that is they way I would want my game. I would want sharp glaring difference in all my classes! I have enjoyed presenting this to you!

First blog entry (More of an introduction)

Posted by qombi Friday January 9 2009 at 3:16PM
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This is my first blog, pretty exciting. I have debated whether or not I would even write a blog, I decided it would be fun to get feedback on these random MMORPG design ideas that pop in my head throughout my daily life. Not necessarily wanting approval or whether they would be even actually plausible. It will be interesting seeing my ideas in words for once rather than just in my little gnome mind. It would be entertaining as well to have other's view my thoughts.

Of course I am not really a gnome but it is one of my favorite races in many rpgs. Anywho, these blogs are going to be casually written, maybe in disarray, and possibly have random thoughts throughout them. This first blog will be an introduction.

I have lurked the forums for many years off and on.  I enjoy a good debate and I love hearing peoples perspective on these games even though they may disagree with me. I will say honestly I am very critical of game design .. there I said it. I know it is true, I can't help it. I think it is the engineering background I bring with me. While playing games I very seldom do not think how I would have made this function, that could have been better, or that was great before why did they change it!

I have played a few MUDs not long enough that I probably should mention names. I have played MMORPGs starting with Everquest. After leaving Everquest I ventured on to other games, Rubies of Eventide, World of Warcraft, Lords of the Rings, Vanguard and other titles that a played too little of to worth mentioning them by name. I think I will keep it short today. .... I do have a class design I will be writing about in the near future. It evolves big nukes and pointy hats!

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