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Why the Warrior-Mage-Healer Trinity Sucks....

Posted by vajuras Monday April 28 2008 at 6:16PM
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Was reading a blog by heero today:
http://www.mmorpg.com/blogs/heerobya/042008/1590_Thoughts-on-the-Grouping

While reading this piece it hit me. This is why I cant stand traditional PVE anymore it all boils down to the same crap rerolled: Tank, Mage, and Healer. Nevermind in real life everyone wears armor in a war and if you dont you're really gonna get it when shot.... So there is no such thing as a clothie period- beyond a dead one.

Seriously, every MMORPG pretty much to date reuses this formula over and over for PVE and it makes no sense period. Why the hell would you just sit there and keep attacking a Tank while he is being healed by a caster? Wouldnt you go kill that caster NO MATTER WHAT? After all, this is how PVP works, players target the healers/rezzers first. Next we kill the mages. Next and very last, the Warriors. Under no circumstance ever in ANY PVP in *any MMO* have we ever targeted the Tankers first. Why cant Group PVE be half this intelligent?

This is one of the reasons it all falls down for me. It's the same old retarded stuff being reused without any change. The only MMO/MMO-lite (or whatever you call it) I've seen differ was Guild Wars where we saw the mobs go after Healers til no tomorrow. The rangers and such actually had to trap the mobs to prevent the clothies from being slaughtered. I know I played a monk in prophecies campaign and I remember packing snares to slowdown the mobs in emergencies...

Still, I find it moronic I cant wear armor to a war. Seriously, can someone please explain to my why on earth would a medic wear robes unto a battlefield ever? If he's such an awesome wizard that he can wear robes to a war then surely- his magic is much more protective to lethal damage then armor? That is the only thing that would make sense- my magic is so strong then I dont need armor. At least in D&D they tried to make it logical- armor inteferes with magic. But in mmorpgs of today they discarded all explanation and reason....


Solution:

Simple, at least make these mobs go straight for the healer as soon as he tries to heal someone. There is no way ever in PVP players let healers live. If players want to prevent this from happening then they will need their snares and mezzes. If they cant prevent the mobs from taking out the healer then its a wipe, that simple.

Next, Warriors. Taunt. Very stupid. What would be better is have actual server side collision. If players want to protect their healers they can form a wall around the healer. Now the mobs cant get to them. you can turn off collision between players if you must but at very least we need collision for PVE. It cant be hard the older gen MMORPGs had it.... WOW! Now Warriors can really be warriors and *protect* vital assets.

There, simple, only took me 1 minute to conceive. I'm sure with another few minutes you could solve other issues as well.

Ekibiogami writes:

Would be Nice. Ive wanted the PVE side of MMO's to Mimic Pvp for a long time.

In Eve there are 2 Different settups. The Pvp Build thats all Gank/Tank of some kind. Then PVE is ALL tank (Low sec/0.0 Hide is in there). Makeing the Mobs think and act together in a way that Pvpers can Respect would make more people willing to Pvp Because they got Basic training in the PVE.

As it is in ALL MMO's atm the Pvp setup and the Pve settup are 2 Different Beasts. and they DONT mix verry well. But if i was Forced to Hunt my PvE prey in Full Pvp Gear Because the NPC's are not just standing there Drooling and are Useing the Pvp Builds Posted Every Day on the fourms. When a Player shows up I Might have a small Chance. As it is I have none Normally Because My Gear isent ready. Or i have the Wrong skills.

Mon Apr 28 2008 6:37PM Report
BadSpock writes:

I think the guys/gals over at Spellborn said it best.. let me see if I can find it for you...

Mon Apr 28 2008 7:15PM Report
BadSpock writes:

read this Vajuras-

http://www.tcos.com/sbforum/viewtopic.php?t=12168

Trust me, you'll like it.

Mon Apr 28 2008 7:18PM Report
Veingloria writes:

Tabula Rasa doesn't have the "Holy Trinity."  Might give it a try, if you're looking for a change.

Mon Apr 28 2008 8:50PM Report
JB47394 writes:

My problem with combat is the predictability.  So long as the rules of behavior are constant, I'm not going to have use more than three or four neurons to figure out what to do.

I want many different NPCs at the same time, operating on slightly different variations of the same rules.  That NPC that suddenly starts sprinting towards the healer?  It turns out that sometimes, he's running away!  Attacking him is a waste of resources.  Some NPCs will hang back in hesitation.  The group will just give up after a few die.  Those NPCs that always come charging up like morons?  Maybe they stealth over, giving us a nasty surprise that we're not expecting.  Maybe they use bows when we've never seen that before.  Maybe they're not even always hostile, for crying out loud.

The thing about the Spellborn article that bothered me was the author's observation that players want to control combat.  I want combat out of control.  I want to be reacting to the game instead of knowing that after the fourth orc attacks, there will be a second wave of three.  One of those three will be a mage, and Bob needs to be ready with his anti-mage skills.  I don't think that knowing that the healer is going to get aggro as soon as he starts healing that it's going to make a real difference.

For me, the problem does not lie in sophistication or intelligence, but simply the variety of behaviors that NPCs exhibit in combat.  I want them to vary.  At the same time, I don't want to have to worry excessively about my character dying.  Sure, if things get out of hand, we can have a wipe, but throw 2:1 odds at us, and let us try to figure out how to deal with this newest set of NPCs.

Mon Apr 28 2008 9:21PM Report
vajuras writes:

Thanks for the spellborn link heero. I've been waiting on that one for the character custimization and active combat they promise. I think what he s striving for is tactically transparent AI however.  will have to see it in motion. I didnt get nto the beta for spellborn yet I guess because im in the US but hopefully they'll let me in soon so I can see first hand

Only bad thing is spellborn will have traditional Levels I think. I love Levels in single player RPGs but hope for new systems for mmorpgs. Still though, the features they promise like really great so I'll be buying it I'm thnking

 

Tue Apr 29 2008 12:26AM Report
vajuras writes:

Note from that Spellborn link:

"-‘hit mob, mob checks which nearby target is the weakest and aggro’s, mob will go to another target if previous target keeps being healed’.
Simple additions which can already cause countless of ‘dynamic’ combat situations. Because these rules are rather basic, players will be able to predict the behavior after a couple of encounters, so they can be expanded with more of these basic rules."

 

Man where do mmorpg developers find game designers like this? This doesnt sound very clever too me. Actually, I think if the mobs had a brain they'd always go for the healer. You should always target healers first and because we are playing a Traditional Class based mmorpg then we have full tactical transparency. So upon sight, mobs should dash for the healers and execute them

This really doesnt sound like smart AI too me. I think MMORPG designers are some of the worst designers sometimes

Tue Apr 29 2008 12:41AM Report
vajuras writes:

Another thing that angers me from spellborn designer:

" What if a goal said that the combat experience should be “dynamic and realistic”? Really dangerous terms and they sound like something players will want. Dynamic as in, mobs will pick the weaker target during the fight, make sure there’s no healer in the back, finish off players with low health, ignore players who are good at dodging and so on. Realistic because you want a bear to be a bit slower then a tiger, but have more biting strength. Swords to cut and maces to break bones, but where’s the limit?


I’m sure a couple of you readers now think “cool, yes I want that, of course, who doesn’t”, yet most MMO’s you enjoy work with very transparent aggro systems. Having these complex ‘dynamic’ and ‘realistic’ systems in place, combat could become very chaotic, unpredictable and especially, not a fun player experience at all."

 

Like a typical mmorpg designer he knows exactly what players ask for. We ask more challenging PVE encounters and instead he's like no you really dont want that because you all play World Of Warcraft!

On one hand he is correct- PVE is about making players feel like a hero. It's a win-win. We program mob AI to lose. That's truth

But at some point we should see 'choatic' as he explains. There should be more variety and better decision making.

Right now it feels too me his aim is for total tactical transparency. I guess what I'd like to see is something like RTS AI. You have to use your brain to figure out best way to defeat your opponents.

However, I suppose what I want is in direct conflict with "character skill". Problem is spellborn has some emphasis on "player skill" so I would hope they would go for more dynamic AI. At least, for higher level areas right guys? At least for optional endgame content you can have much tougher content for your hardcore players

Still, I look forward to messing around in Spellborn but I dont agree with this guy's stance on much

Tue Apr 29 2008 12:47AM Report
grimfall writes:

Here's an answer to some of your questions:

Why do mages wear robes?  That comes from AD&D where the intricate hand movements required to cast a spell prevented them from being weighed down by armor.  More importantly it's for class balance.

Why cant Group PVE be half this intelligent? My first guess is because it wouldn't be any fun.  No one would play a warrior class in your system, because they would be useless.  Or at best you wouldl need a 5 to 1 warrior to priest/mage ratio so that they could make their little circles around the mages.  Then they would get attacked one at a time (the weakest warrior, once identified) and the other four would stand there and watch.  Is it any wonder that every game maker has figured out that is a bad plan?

Anyway, play DDO if you want that, it's the closest thing you'll get. I think the warriors still get some aggro skills, but on a lot of fights the only way to win is for the warriors to block a doorway while the mages blast the baddies.

Tue Apr 29 2008 1:04AM Report
vajuras writes:

Exactly, Warriors can setiup blockades. I'm not writing a design doc here I'm just tossing out exampels off the top of my head

Warriors can setup *DING* shields like we see in movies like 300 and such whereas they setup a blockade to protect Assets.

Hell, even in old Diablo we could cast a Firewall spell that would block mobs.

Come on there is a million things we can do.

 

Tue Apr 29 2008 1:28AM Report
vajuras writes:

"Why do mages wear robes?  That comes from AD&D where the intricate hand movements required to cast a spell prevented them from being weighed down by armor.  More importantly it's for class balance."

Yeah but in D&D I can subclass and become a Warrior/Mage (like I've anwsered you previously)... There is also weight restrictions in D&D and there are many logical reasons and inconviences to naturally balance their systems. Current mmorpg is nothing like D&D

*would have been interesting to play D&DO but alas I'm busy with other games

Tue Apr 29 2008 1:50AM Report
E1io writes:

 I have a simpler solution:

 

 Forego PvE and play PvP.

Tue Apr 29 2008 2:34AM Report
Melf_Himself writes:

I agree very much with most of this vajuras. I started typing out a bunch of stuff in response but it became really long so I've blogged it at:

http://www.mmorpg.com/blogs/Melf_Himself/042008/1597_Revisiting-the-Holy-Trinity

Tue Apr 29 2008 4:33AM Report
grimfall writes:

It depends on what version of D&D you're talking about.  You can sub-class, but if you put plate armor on you're going to get a 90% fail rate on spells.

You still haven't answered the questions of why anyone would play a warrior class and how you would encourage 10 people to make one warrior for every priest and mage. 

Just saying "I have a great idea", doesn't make the idea great.  Slavery is a great idea.  You've got to think through the implications to have a great idea. 

Tue Apr 29 2008 5:24AM Report
xenogias writes:

E1io has the right idea. I'm all for tougher PvE encounters that developers dont just toss a "boss" mob in the game with massive hp/skills and say here you go.

But in reality what the blogger is asking is for AI to be PvP not PvE. That would not be smart.........though maybe it would be. PvP without all the trash talk.......actually thats a GREAT idea lol.

Tue Apr 29 2008 6:13AM Report
Bainer writes:

I think its easy to say "The method everyone uses sucks" and then suggest something that wouldn't work at all.

The fact that you thought of it in one minute is the proof that your idea wouldn't work. If they went directly for healers every time then fights would have to either a) last 30 seconds or b) involve some crazy sequence of  mob avoidance that imo wouldn't be fun at all.

I can agree that finding some way to mix it up would be nice, but we have teams of the best minds in video games thinking about this topic.  Your 1 minute "idea" isn't going to shatter the mold.

Tue Apr 29 2008 8:22AM Report
vajuras writes:

Warriors dont have "Taunt" in Guild Wars and that game seems to do just fine. Seriously, the integration of formations and such to protect vital targets isnt my idea per se. It's always been employed in intelligent RTS and strategy games. And we do it in PVP in games like Savage 2 (WArriors form a formation around vital assets and help protect priests)

Granted, Savage 2 is all PVP but I see it work in other genres just fine. Why is it so hard to make PVE half this challenging and intelligent?

And there is nothing cutting edge about making a mob dash for the healer. Code side- you are merely doing a SetTarget() on the biggest threat is almost always healers/rezzers

Tue Apr 29 2008 9:57AM Report
andyjd writes:

In pvp 90% of my fights againsts good opponent as healer is (shield) spamhealself spamhealself fear shield spamhealself etc etc....

In essense, I play a tank...and the fights are fairly quick. Either I die after running (quickly) out of mana, or my teammates kill the other. It's a quick messy and chaotic fight. But it sure wouldn't last 5 mins which some of the fights in PvE do.

And your collusion detection is a bit of a misnomer. What are tank abilities after all, but a sneaky way of getting in the way of a monster, using a shield/big sword whatever. He's still stopping the monster getting to the squishies....end result is the same.

Tue Apr 29 2008 10:21AM Report
vajuras writes:

grimfall - "It depends on what version of D&D you're talking about.  You can sub-class, but if you put plate armor on you're going to get a 90% fail rate on spells."

Exactly in D&D you can put on heavy armor regardless. There is nothing stopping you. D&D is leaps and bounds ahead of the current mmorpgs this is what I keep trying to say....

Bainer - "I think its easy to say "The method everyone uses sucks" and then suggest something that wouldn't work at all."

What I posted was just an example I expect readers that have a real designer bone in them to come up with their own solution. What I suggested worked in Guild Wars. Warriors dont Taunt in GW. It works, I've seen it. The only thing  added was also integrate collision detection

Mages can cast AOE Firewall spells to discourage mobs from coming their way. Warriors can still snare or rotate in spells to aid in kiting.

There are literally a million things designers can try. I expect a real designer to develop their own solutions. I'm not writing design docs here, I'm giving examples for at least future Indie MMOs because I for sure dont expect innovation in most upcoming triple A titles I see coming down the pipe

Tue Apr 29 2008 10:22AM Report
vajuras writes:

andyjd - "And your collusion detection is a bit of a misnomer. What are tank abilities after all, but a sneaky way of getting in the way of a monster, using a shield/big sword whatever. He's still stopping the monster getting to the squishies....end result is the same."

Actually I think Mages can be used to setup blockades. Warriors should pretty much always be low priority on an NPCs aggro list. Warriors only become a threat if they physically blockade vital assets

Warriors can also be equipped with Hamstring moves but this move is only for the Warriors purpose to slowdown their enemy.

Works just fine in Guild Wars from what I recall. Mages also had AOE slows and knockdowns. In GW, Warriors also had knockdowns

Tue Apr 29 2008 10:25AM Report
vajuras writes:

Hm, I think everyone got a bit off track here. The real question is why cant a Healer put on armor or swing a sword in a pinch.

 

Tue Apr 29 2008 10:33AM Report
andyjd writes:

'What can't a healer put on armour'

Well ignoring the D+D reason, one very good reason is that people like choice and like to be different...If it was only down to pure stats of course people would pick the highest armour item, and there would be only one 'type' of armour which would have no restrictions on.

But then, what difference would there be between my priest (cloth) and a paladin (plate). Without things like armour resistrictions, then characters/classes begin to merge, and gameplay would ultimately become blander and the same for all.

Tue Apr 29 2008 10:41AM Report
vajuras writes:

Seriously it makes no sense players cannot don armor in the first place. There should be natural restrictions inplace though- a player that is physically weak would be heavily encumbered by heavy armor and have a hard time carrying lots of loot without magical aid (Feather)

A Warrior is merely a physically strong character that runs faster then anyone else (perhaps if he wears lighter armor) and so forth

A physically weak character can pickup a sword and defend himself in an emergency but its not optimal

 

When I suggested the Warriors setting up a 'blockade' I was only giving one possible viable strategy for such a title. You could also have Mages casting AOE which should always scatter mobs (like we see in Guild Wars and other titles). Warriors can help snare individual targets but thats merely to aid their damage dealing and make them more viable.

What I would propose is indeed a bit different from what we see now but seriously it exists in bits and pieces already (like Guild Wars)

I think Guild Wars works because they treated PVE/PVP equal. There is no power in Prophecies campaign that only works in PVE. this forced their designers to think out-of-the-box. Plus their marketing model gave them a bit more freedom

 

Tue Apr 29 2008 11:25AM Report
grimfall writes:

So now we've found two games that suit your requirements, Guild Wars and DDO.  How many more do you want?

So snaring and casting fire walls is OK, but taunting isn't.  Let's stop calling it 'Taunting' which actually does make sense by the way, just like you can taunt someone into throwing a punch at you in a bar, and call it casting anger.

Problem fixed, removed taunt and replace it with casting anger.  You're welcome.

Tue Apr 29 2008 11:29AM Report
vajuras writes:

In PVP a Warrior can shout all he wants and he's still priority 0 in PVP. So the bar example doesnt hold up in organized pvp surely.

In a war you can give a soldier a horn and he can spout insults but most likely the enemy will target the true threats if they are tactically visible

Tue Apr 29 2008 11:40AM Report
vajuras writes:

And btw, our goal is not to help me find an MMO- I already have several sandboxes I play. This blog is a criticism of current worn out core gameplay I see in traditional mmorpgs

Tue Apr 29 2008 11:44AM Report
grimfall writes:

You're not getting it.

In 'real war' no one can cloak or cast teleport or cast heal spell.  You're not playing a real war, sorry to break the news to you.  In an actuall combat scenario you are going to assess the targets by what is most dangerous, and then which of those can you do something about.

The main prolbem is that you take a critical component of PVE - taunting - and disable it in PVP. 

Can you explain why they don't put taunting into PVP?

Tue Apr 29 2008 11:46AM Report
BadSpock writes:

Wow Vajuras your blog got more popular then mine on the comment train. I guess I'm an enabler, then I see that Melf_Himself wrote a blog too. 

Hurray for me restarting a trend, revisiting a common debate.

I have to agree with Grimfall though. These games are about having fun. PvE is SUPPOSE to be able winning, and in order to enable players to have a good chance at winning, PvE HAS to be something that is slightly predictable, something that you can practice and learn and become good at. 

I think many of us don't even think about it any more because we've been doing it for so long, we just come to accept things like CC and tanking and aggro pulling etc. etc. but imagine how it is to a new MMO player? 

These things really do take SKILL, real player SKILL to do successfully, we all have just been doing it so long, we know the forumulas and what is expected already.

There is nothing wrong or broken about the system, it's actually the PERFECt way to do PvE, hence, why EVERYONE does it pretty much the same way, and hence why those who actually make games (unlike us) do it this way. 

The chaotic uncontrolled go-after-the-healer unpredictable combat? That's what PvP is for. 

If you create PvE AI that behaves like that you know what is going to happen? It'll still become predictable and you'll be able to figure out the patterns. It's what human beings do, it's what makes us what we are, the top of the food chain.. we figure out patterns. 

Leave the chaotic random intelligence to other players in PvP, PvE is just fine, I agree with the Spellborn guys 100%.

If you actually played a game where the AI is as crazy and unpredictable and as "dynamic" as you think it should be, chances are you really won't like it.

Tue Apr 29 2008 12:04PM Report
vajuras writes:

grimfall - "

  • You're not getting it.

    In 'real war' no one can cloak or cast teleport or cast heal spell.  You're not playing a real war, sorry to break the news to you.  In an actuall combat scenario you are going to assess the targets by what is most dangerous, and then which of those can you do something about.

    The main prolbem is that you take a critical component of PVE - taunting - and disable it in PVP. 

    Can you explain why they don't put taunting into PVP?"

     

    Because Taunting doesnt work well in PVP. Players aren't dumb. they will run out-of-range, break the Taunt, and come back to kill the Healers. There are mmorpgs with Taunts in PVP. Additionally, and foremost- Taunting makes no sense. Why would I not kill a Healer simply because some guy taunted me? It simply doesnt make sense period

    Cloaking is simply not really for and have already blogged on. I'd rather see people make use of terrain and such or merely be harder to see

    Teleportation pretty much breaks PVP altogether and really has no place on the battlefield. If you can teleport- then it should be handled like we saw In Guild Wars (limited teleportation)

Tue Apr 29 2008 12:23PM Report
vajuras writes:

Heeroboya wrote - "If you actually played a game where the AI is as crazy and unpredictable and as "dynamic" as you think it should be, chances are you really won't like it."

I already did- its called Guild Wars. In my blog and throughout all my comments I have repeatedly stated this is how GW works. It works, I've seen it work

Tue Apr 29 2008 1:04PM Report
BadSpock writes:

I guess I never really got that into Guild Wars. I never really played any more then a two or three person group, none of the high end stuff.

I am interesting in seeing how this works Vajuras, you got any video links? I've tried to understand by reading your blog and comments, but I guess I'm not following ya.

Tue Apr 29 2008 3:16PM Report
BadSpock writes:

Now I agree with you that warriors should be able to physically block enemies from getting past them with things like collision detection, knockbacks and taunts....

Taunting isn't just yelling at someone to get there attention. It's like stabbing someone in the side as they try and run by you, you are going to get their attention right?

You're going to force them to pay attention to you if you are stabbing them and physically blocking their path. 

The only thing to make it even more realistic is turning friendly fire on, where yeah the warrior can block the mob from running past but it's OK for the mage to shoot a fireball right through the warrior? I think not. 

Once you demand realizm from one aspect, you have to keep changing things to make it work. How far is too far? How far is far enough? It's finding that balance.

And the balance they found is using aggro and threat systems. Different classes and different abilities build up threat, threat gets high, monster attacks you. It's simple, but like the Spellborn devs said, the simple stuff with a few variations can add infinite dynamic situations.

Tue Apr 29 2008 3:24PM Report
grimfall writes:

Vajuras, I want you to concentrate, bear down and answer the question.

Stealth = not realistic - but OK in your PVP world

Healing = Not realistic - but OK in your PVP world

Mezmorizing = Not realistic - but OK in your PVP world

Rooting = Not realistic- but OK in your PVP world

Snaring = Not realistic - but OK in your PVP world

Slowing = Not realistic - but OK in your PVP world

Taunting = Not realistic - So NOT OK in your PVP world

Explain.

Tue Apr 29 2008 4:27PM Report
Tatum writes:

Im surprised theres so much support for the old "holy trinity".  To me, its always seemed extremely one dimensional and basic.  I mean, when you combine this with predictable AI, you have a guaranteed snooze fest, which is why so many players gravitate towards PvP. 

Tue Apr 29 2008 5:37PM Report
grimfall writes:

It's not support for the Holy Trinity, it's support for specialization, which fosters teamwork and replayability.  It's not really a holy trinity, anyway, it's 4 archetypes - CC, DPS, Heals and Tank.  It's just that WoW combined two of them.  The Holy Trinity is actually Tank, Healer and Crowd Control.  You further combine two of them,  or combine all of them, but then all the players would be the same and it would be boring.

Tue Apr 29 2008 5:46PM Report
Ekibiogami writes:

Heres a thought.

Make Warriors Buffs like Taunt Buff the HELL outa the party for the 30 seconds its Active.

Rouges gain a Dmg Buff.

Healers gain a Lot of Resists.

Archers gain speed( to keep away)

Mages gain mana.

That only lasts 30 or so seconds maby 45. And if they kill the Tank then those Buffs Reverse. And the party has Huge Negs.

I Like the Idea of the AI dooing more and Smarter things. But If we went with your Idea then as a Tank id be Wearing Leather armor and Carring a 200 Pound Mace to Smash the Bad guys in one hit.

AI Being different from one Encounter to the Next would be a Big Inprovement in Most games. That said Some things are Just needed in the game. Fire is weak to water, Undead to Holy ect.

That said You could have a Undead in Plate and make them Resist slashing, Or a Fire Elemantal with a Dimond Vest and need to Smashit.

And theres No real reason that a Some casters cant Wear Plate.

In DnD if i rember right you  can wear Plate as a Cleric and In Vanguard As a Cleric i can wear Plate and Use a shield, and im often NEEDED in the front lines Helping tank/heal.

There are Lost of silliy things in MMO's and most are anoying.

That said there should always be 4 areas in a Good MMO.

1. a solo - two man Party area

2. a Group Party area

3. a Pvp area.

4. a Raid area.

These Dont gata be Seperated By a Dungeon or a Massive wall. They can Exist verry close to each other and Encourage you to wander over to the Other side for the Forbiden Fruit on the other side.

Tue Apr 29 2008 6:32PM Report
vajuras writes:

grimfall -
"Stealth = not realistic - but OK in your PVP world

Healing = Not realistic - but OK in your PVP world

Mezmorizing = Not realistic - but OK in your PVP world

Rooting = Not realistic- but OK in your PVP world

Snaring = Not realistic - but OK in your PVP world

Slowing = Not realistic - but OK in your PVP world

Taunting = Not realistic - So NOT OK in your PVP world

Explain."


If someone slices your hamstring that is a snare. Slows are covered.

Stealth- I already stated I do not care for stealth outright you did not read my comment. Guild Wars doesnt have that

Rooting - I hate roots. Guild Wars doesnt have that

Healing - I'm okay with it since games do a decent job explaining this in their Lore. Even World of Warcraft explains this in their backlore.

Taunting - very stupid. No one ever explains this in Lore. Doesnt work well in PVP, even when it exists Warriors are still ignored

Tue Apr 29 2008 7:37PM Report
Tatum writes:

grimfall, my point is, it reduces everything down to a few, one dimensional classes that basically repeat the same PvE forumula over and over.  Funny enough, one of the few things that newer MMOs have improved on (IMO) is class design and versatility.  Yet, this gets crumpled up and tossed in the trash by players, in favor of the same old tank/heal/spank combo.

Personally, I would agree that PvE should do more to mimic PvP.  At least, in the sense that situations are more unpredictable and require awareness and adaptation.   

Tue Apr 29 2008 7:47PM Report
vajuras writes:

Tatum -
"Im surprised theres so much support for the old "holy trinity".  To me, its always seemed extremely one dimensional and basic.  I mean, when you combine this with predictable AI, you have a guaranteed snooze fest, which is why so many players gravitate towards PvP. "

Yeah if the MMORPG PVE was half as good as the AI in games like Halo 3, etc I think you'd see a lot more people doing PVE for pure fun. But the way it is now players demands constant rewards for PVE because it's such a zzzZZZZzzz without it. In other genres, you see people repeating PVE content over and over due to the heavy interaction and well thought out mechanics (my friends and I play Supreme Commander against the AI for fun for example)

There's no doubt MMORPG developers are aware of the current state of AI and I'm sure if I posted a poll right now the votes for more complex AI would be staggering.

Tue Apr 29 2008 7:47PM Report
vajuras writes:

grimfall - "It's not support for the Holy Trinity, it's support for specialization, which fosters teamwork and replayability.  It's not really a holy trinity, anyway, it's 4 archetypes - CC, DPS, Heals and Tank.  It's just that WoW combined two of them.  The Holy Trinity is actually Tank, Healer and Crowd Control.  You further combine two of them,  or combine all of them, but then all the players would be the same and it would be boring."

you are all already the same thats the whole point of employing Static Classes. Developers want Tactical Transparency enforced 100% this way I know exactly what you are upon sight. you said it yourself thats what you love about Classes (in one of my earlier blogs)

There is no way you can be unique when total Transparency exists. Talent Trees are nice but I still know all of your strengths and weaknesses within a few seconds in PVP with minor probing.

 

Tue Apr 29 2008 7:55PM Report
grimfall writes:

So really it's just a mentail block.

Release the mental block you have and add the Tank's class defining skill to PVP and the problem is gone.

Or remove the other class's defining skill.  Take away heals from your healers, stuns and roots from your CC, ranged damage from your wizards and rangers and backstabs from your rogues.  Then the tanks are the best PVP class, which mimics 'real life' anyway.

Wed Apr 30 2008 1:20AM Report
BadSpock writes:

Yeah that's the thing Grimfall. It's not realistic. People who cry for realism in PvE and mobs/NPC's behaving realistically really don't want what the end result would be.

The end result would be that EVERYONE wears heavy armor and carries a shield, probably a long spear, and a sword as a backup and for when things get in close. There is no magic, ranged is useless once the melee gets in close because of the chance of hitting your own people...

Just watch any movie. 300, Troy, Kingdom of Heaven, Braveheart, any movie. Even in the Lord of The Rings, the apex of Fantasy, you barely see any magic used and Gandolf is one of the most powerful wizards in Middle Earth. He get's things done with a sword and staff.

So you get to a point where you start subbing out realism for things to make the game fun. But how far do you go? Ok so we can't walk through people, but we can shoot through our allies with no consequence. Ok so we can cast magic spells and use magical heals, but no stuns or roots because it's not fair for melee. 

The list goes on and on and on. You guys have to remember that devs are in the business of making games, games that are suppose to be fun. What's fun about sword and shield medevil combat in real life? Nothing. It was savage and brutal.

So you bend the rules to make a game that is fun and interesting, and for PvE you want a game where the player's deck is a little stacked, as many have PvE is designed for the player to win. 

I think Grimfall said it best that "it's support for specialization." You want players to feel important and feel like the contribute to the group, to the over all effort. The best way MMO devs have found thus far to do this and also build community and commradery at the same time as by having players specialize towards a role in the group setting. 

This means that the AI has to expect players to be filling those roles, and must be programmed to act accordingly. Of COURSE there is going to be some predictability and pattern to that. There is SUPPOSE to.

Wed Apr 30 2008 11:16AM Report
Melf_Himself writes:

Um. Aggression much grimfall? Chill out and let's keep it friendly huh?

Anyway, my 2 cents to re-add to this discussion.

Taunting is an example of making another player lose control. You *have* to attack to the tank. This is different to slows or other debuffs that reduce character effectiveness, because those other debuffs still let you do *what you want to do*, albeit less effectively. However, like I said, WAR is implementing taunts in PvP, so I guess we'll see how it works out in a few months.

I was surprised to see a lot of support for the Holy Trinity, but I guess different people want different things out of games. More importantly, different people want different things at *different points in the game's life cycle*. Like, when I first start playing a game, for the first few months I probably *want* relatively predictable, simple combat.

But, after I become a hardcore vet, I get bored of that. I either move on to another game, or, if they want to keep my sub, the devs will supply me with new and more challenging options, such as more advanced AI such as we're talking about here.

Thu May 01 2008 7:23PM Report
vajuras writes:

Sorry I forget to delete grimfall's comment he's become a pretty excited troll of late

Fri May 02 2008 10:07AM Report
vajuras writes:

Okay posted a poll to gather opinions I think only 10% last time I checked voted to maintain the status quo:

http://www.mmorpg.com/discussion2.cfm/thread/176970

The votes are of course overwhelming for something new and different. Of course, its just a small sample of mmorpg.com community which consists of veteran mmorpg gamers I would say. So its not indicative of newbies being drawn into a genre to play a specific title based on that license / IP...

Still, I think it really shows there is a desire from experienced gamers to see some new things get tried

Sat May 03 2008 6:49PM Report

MMORPG.com writes:
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