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The Pub at MMORPG.COM  » IN THE SPOTLIGHT: What made old skool MMO's harder than modern day MMO's.

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154 posts found
  Isane

Novice Member

Joined: 5/24/06
Posts: 2698

"Some do , Some don''t , Others just cry"

Jean Sali

4/06/11 8:25:28 PM#121
Originally posted by Qazz
Originally posted by Isane

The older MMOs were;

  • longevity i.e 1 year plus before you run out of things to do.

I would argue that there is much more content in todays MMO's.  The reason that you still had things to do a year from launch before was that you were still trying to get to level 20 but since you picked the wrong race class combo you rarely found a group.  Oh, plus the lag spike (thanks Dial-Up) got you killed and you lost a level.  Whoops.

Sanitised gaming is no fun.

People have this self imposed view that winning is being the best player stat wise.

Some people find it a challenge to develop a character ; and in older games you could pick the worst build ever and succeed with friends.

These days if you don't play off a spreadsheet and act like a guild slave you get booted...... Sounds more like a job than fun .....

________________________________________________________
SWTOR and COS games that could deliver !!

  xcarnifex

Novice Member

Joined: 2/20/04
Posts: 36

4/07/11 1:00:43 AM#122
Originally posted by Loktofeit
Originally posted by xcarnifex

So if old MMOs weren't "harder" and new MMOs are just as "hard" but with less time consuming things/penalties.  Then what would make a game worthwhile?  If all you want is the carrot and never any stick, are you ever going to be challenged and rewarded?

Your view is black and white - a game doesn't have to be a masochistic endeavour to be worthwhile. It simply has to be fun.

For example, there was nothing hard about logging into an MMO, getting into character and heading off to roleplay at a player venue. There was no success/failure measure other than whether people wer eentertained and enjoying themselves. There certainly was no penalty. Surprisingly, hundreds, if not thousands found that a worthwhile and rewarding thing to do on a regular basis in the older MMOs.

But to stick the grind/level formula, a lot of people go adventuring for the purpose of doing something with other people. There are significantly more people that rather have a casual romp through a dungeon where a portion of the time can be spent joking around, geting coffee and stopping for smoke breaks than there are people who are looking for a punishing test of one's personal spreadsheet against the computer's spreadsheet, with an entire column of data at stake.

What makes it worthwhile? For many it's the social interaction, the entertaining diversion, the feeling of having accomplished something, the sound of a critical hit, the collection of loot, the speed of leveling (slow or fast)... there are plenty of things that make pressing 7,8,1,1,1,2,3,4,1,1,1,2,3,5,1,1,1,2,3,4,1,1,1,2,3,5,1,1,1,2,3,4,1,1,1,2,3,5 a worthwhile and rewarding experience.

 

Hardly black and white, I have never said Everquest was perfect.  I have never said WoW is perfect.  There are aspects I like of both games, the topic of which game was harder.  Personally I thought Everquest was harder, but then people come along and say none of them are hard.  So without some sort of definition of what people perceive as points that make the game hard there is no way to compare.  If the topic were fun, then I'd say all the games were fun at points and mind numbing/tedious at others. 

The only game I am aware of that had graphics and had pathways built specifically for roleplaying and/or socializing was Star Wars Galaxy with the cantinas.  MUDs had more roleplaying than any MMO server I've ever played on, but I am not on roleplaying since it never seems to fit what I envision when it comes to interaction from the mind's eye image. 

 

That's fine if people want casual, easy, pause-button experiences.  But they certainly wouldn't fall into the topic of MMOs where their difficulty is called into question.

 

And as for the last paragraph:

 

What do you think facilitates the topics you mentioned?

Social interaction  - Does global chat help or hinder?  I find myself overwhelmem with chat spam in some zones, for instance Barrens chatter.  Do mail systems facilitate or hinder?  It's like the choice between emailing or telephoning a friend, instant interaction is more social in my opinion.  Auction houses would definitely cut down on the social opportunities.

the entertaining diversion - Not even sure what this is referring to beyond the whole aspect of the game world.

the feeling of having accomplished something -  the sound of a critical hit, the collection of loot, the speed of leveling (slow or fast).  Is hitting 50 in WoW even an accomplishment for most players anymore?  I know every level in Everquest didn't feel like it was given to you, because you could lose it if you screwed around.  At what point is levelling too fast?  I mean if you kill one thing and gain a level each level....why bother having experience bars?

 

My point is there is a balance, and a black and white view of the games would say "fun" is all that matters.  Since "fun" is based off of so many things, one of which is how "hard" a game is based on a myriad of factors that can be controlled  and one big one that can't be ......and that is population numbers.  You need a certain amount of people playing a game to make it an MMO in the first place, I'd say an active crowd of at least 500 minimum at any hour of the day upwards of 2000 with how the games are handled at this time.  Some could even do 4000, but if you got into the 10000 active players on a server range (I dont think any game today can even do this since there's the potential for a large number of them to be in a specific city...and I don't count instancing as "handling" it.)...I don't think the current game designs would hold up.  If you were to drop the levelling aspect of WoW...how many people would leave?  If they removed dungeons, how many would leave?  What if they removed any of these: variable dungeon difficulty, all but 1 character slot, instant travel, spirit world for CRs, crafting, enchanting, any specific class, the myriad of other things you get used to.  It could be any one of those things keeping people in the game world making the social aspect viable.  Now, what if one of those things is not quite keeping people entertained by being too easy and they leave?

 

So again, I ask.  What makes a game "hard"?  It might be as simple as being unfamiliar with the game, and once that is gone...you can only replace it partially with expansions..  If they add too much to it to make it more novel/unfamiliar other people get upset.

 

 

  Palebane

Novice Member

Joined: 10/18/04
Posts: 3247

4/07/11 7:11:02 PM#123



Originally posted by nariusseldon
Old games are not harder .. just need more work.
Like mapping ... it is not hard to map by hand (i did that for M&M ... too much work now i think about it)  ... just tedious and time-consuming. So i prefer a mapping feature.
Ditto for searching for an NPC. It is not hard to go around in orgrimmar and talk to everyone to look for quest .. it is just tedious and time consuming .. so an exclamation mark on top is welcomed.
Even fights .. if you are camping the boss with 50 players (back in EQ) .. the fight is super easy .. you don't actually need to do much .. the others will kill him .. for your turn to loot .. and hurry you along so it will be their turn faster.
I would MUCH rather play today's MMO than EQ or UO.

Don't you think the imagination suffers though? Sure, everything is easier, but all you are left with is what you see and hear. Nothing is feared. Nothing is sacred.

Vault-Tec analysts have concluded that the odds of worldwide nuclear armaggeddon this decade are 17,143,762... to 1.

  wootin

Novice Member

Joined: 10/04/08
Posts: 260

4/07/11 7:22:11 PM#124
Originally posted by xcarnifex
But one thing Everquest had that no MMO can replicate and be competitive is a sense of adventure.  You weren't walked through everything. 

This right here. A sense of ADVENTURE. This is what no themepark can deliver. It's the difference between going to Disneyworld with some friends and going on an unguided safari with some friends. You come back from both with pictures and stories, but the experiences are just totally different.

  wootin

Novice Member

Joined: 10/04/08
Posts: 260

4/07/11 7:29:46 PM#125
Originally posted by Isane
Originally posted by Qazz
Originally posted by Isane

The older MMOs were;

  • longevity i.e 1 year plus before you run out of things to do.

I would argue that there is much more content in todays MMO's.  The reason that you still had things to do a year from launch before was that you were still trying to get to level 20 but since you picked the wrong race class combo you rarely found a group.  Oh, plus the lag spike (thanks Dial-Up) got you killed and you lost a level.  Whoops.

Sanitised gaming is no fun.

People have this self imposed view that winning is being the best player stat wise.

Some people find it a challenge to develop a character ; and in older games you could pick the worst build ever and succeed with friends.

These days if you don't play off a spreadsheet and act like a guild slave you get booted...... Sounds more like a job than fun .....

Hah, I made a gnome warrior in EQ1. Just because I could. (To those who don't know what that meant, he was a severely underpowered race for the class, no way in heck could he match a real tank at higher levels). In one of his early, level 10'ish solo fights, he was in a desperate battle just off a main pathway. He actually gathered a CROWD CHEERING HIM ON. And nobody buffed him or healed him, because it was his fight to win (although they did throw tips and advice aplenty).

And when he did win (by like 1-2 hits tops), he got a full crowd roar and someone gave him a somewhat better weapon to help him out.  Man I miss playing with those kind of people.

  Loktofeit

Hard Core Member

Joined: 1/13/10
Posts: 12405

Currently playing EVE, SMITE, ArcheAge, and Combat Arms

4/07/11 8:34:37 PM#126
Originally posted by xcarnifex
Originally posted by Loktofeit
Originally posted by xcarnifex

So if old MMOs weren't "harder" and new MMOs are just as "hard" but with less time consuming things/penalties.  Then what would make a game worthwhile?  If all you want is the carrot and never any stick, are you ever going to be challenged and rewarded?

Your view is black and white - a game doesn't have to be a masochistic endeavour to be worthwhile. It simply has to be fun.

For example, there was nothing hard about logging into an MMO, getting into character and heading off to roleplay at a player venue. There was no success/failure measure other than whether people wer eentertained and enjoying themselves. There certainly was no penalty. Surprisingly, hundreds, if not thousands found that a worthwhile and rewarding thing to do on a regular basis in the older MMOs.

But to stick the grind/level formula, a lot of people go adventuring for the purpose of doing something with other people. There are significantly more people that rather have a casual romp through a dungeon where a portion of the time can be spent joking around, geting coffee and stopping for smoke breaks than there are people who are looking for a punishing test of one's personal spreadsheet against the computer's spreadsheet, with an entire column of data at stake.

What makes it worthwhile? For many it's the social interaction, the entertaining diversion, the feeling of having accomplished something, the sound of a critical hit, the collection of loot, the speed of leveling (slow or fast)... there are plenty of things that make pressing 7,8,1,1,1,2,3,4,1,1,1,2,3,5,1,1,1,2,3,4,1,1,1,2,3,5,1,1,1,2,3,4,1,1,1,2,3,5 a worthwhile and rewarding experience.

 

Hardly black and white, I have never said Everquest was perfect.  I have never said WoW is perfect.  There are aspects I like of both games, the topic of which game was harder.  Personally I thought Everquest was harder, but then people come along and say none of them are hard.  So without some sort of definition of what people perceive as points that make the game hard there is no way to compare.  If the topic were fun, then I'd say all the games were fun at points and mind numbing/tedious at others. 

The only game I am aware of that had graphics and had pathways built specifically for roleplaying and/or socializing was Star Wars Galaxy with the cantinas.  MUDs had more roleplaying than any MMO server I've ever played on, but I am not on roleplaying since it never seems to fit what I envision when it comes to interaction from the mind's eye image. 

 

That's fine if people want casual, easy, pause-button experiences.  But they certainly wouldn't fall into the topic of MMOs where their difficulty is called into question.

 

And as for the last paragraph:

 

What do you think facilitates the topics you mentioned?

Social interaction  - Does global chat help or hinder?  I find myself overwhelmem with chat spam in some zones, for instance Barrens chatter.  Do mail systems facilitate or hinder?  It's like the choice between emailing or telephoning a friend, instant interaction is more social in my opinion.  Auction houses would definitely cut down on the social opportunities.

the entertaining diversion - Not even sure what this is referring to beyond the whole aspect of the game world.

the feeling of having accomplished something -  the sound of a critical hit, the collection of loot, the speed of leveling (slow or fast).  Is hitting 50 in WoW even an accomplishment for most players anymore?  I know every level in Everquest didn't feel like it was given to you, because you could lose it if you screwed around.  At what point is levelling too fast?  I mean if you kill one thing and gain a level each level....why bother having experience bars?

 

My point is there is a balance, and a black and white view of the games would say "fun" is all that matters.  Since "fun" is based off of so many things, one of which is how "hard" a game is based on a myriad of factors that can be controlled  and one big one that can't be ......and that is population numbers.  You need a certain amount of people playing a game to make it an MMO in the first place, I'd say an active crowd of at least 500 minimum at any hour of the day upwards of 2000 with how the games are handled at this time.  Some could even do 4000, but if you got into the 10000 active players on a server range (I dont think any game today can even do this since there's the potential for a large number of them to be in a specific city...and I don't count instancing as "handling" it.)...I don't think the current game designs would hold up.  If you were to drop the levelling aspect of WoW...how many people would leave?  If they removed dungeons, how many would leave?  What if they removed any of these: variable dungeon difficulty, all but 1 character slot, instant travel, spirit world for CRs, crafting, enchanting, any specific class, the myriad of other things you get used to.  It could be any one of those things keeping people in the game world making the social aspect viable.  Now, what if one of those things is not quite keeping people entertained by being too easy and they leave?

 

So again, I ask.  What makes a game "hard"?  It might be as simple as being unfamiliar with the game, and once that is gone...you can only replace it partially with expansions..  If they add too much to it to make it more novel/unfamiliar other people get upset.

 

 

 

You went off on a roleplaying tangent there and I'm not sure why. I think you saw that word and got yourself sidetracked... badly.  As a result of that, though, it seems you completely missed that my reply was to your question about what makes a game worthwhile if it isn't hard or full of penalties.

"And wikipedia is as accurate as Britannica. Wikipedia is very reliable. You would be hard pressed to find a more reliable source for these kinds of things." -fivoroth

  ChloroCat

Novice Member

Joined: 7/29/10
Posts: 101

Bigfoot does not have a MMORPG.com account......he told me.

4/07/11 8:44:23 PM#127

The older MMO were by gamers not some giant company just looking for a $$. And who said they were harder. They had bumps but I never seen them as hard. Just made you think more then present day.

 Walking around in UO was like walking on nails. "Was that a door open".."Is that a PKer" They made you think of differnt outcomes to your decision. Eq1 had hell lvls and you never heard many if anyone say what lvl are you. It was more about you as opposed to what equipment and lvl you were.

Eq1 gave you more time to get to know people. Sitting for hours with several people waiting on mobs to spawn. Hell no voice chat and I learned more about those people than I have ever in RIFT. You did'nt just leave a raid or group. You told everyone thanks for group guys...see you later..and you meant it. Because you would.

 Games are too hard now days. Because they are mindless drones of a great time that has gone away. Sad that I'm waiting on a Korean game to maybe change this. Plz Archeage..bring it back.

Jymm Byuu
Playing : Blood Bowl. Waiting for 2. Holding breath for Archeage and EQN.

  xcarnifex

Novice Member

Joined: 2/20/04
Posts: 36

4/07/11 10:10:58 PM#128
Originally posted by Loktofeit
Originally posted by xcarnifex
Originally posted by Loktofeit
Originally posted by xcarnifex

So if old MMOs weren't "harder" and new MMOs are just as "hard" but with less time consuming things/penalties.  Then what would make a game worthwhile?  If all you want is the carrot and never any stick, are you ever going to be challenged and rewarded?

Your view is black and white - a game doesn't have to be a masochistic endeavour to be worthwhile. It simply has to be fun.

For example, there was nothing hard about logging into an MMO, getting into character and heading off to roleplay at a player venue. There was no success/failure measure other than whether people wer eentertained and enjoying themselves. There certainly was no penalty. Surprisingly, hundreds, if not thousands found that a worthwhile and rewarding thing to do on a regular basis in the older MMOs.

 

The only game I am aware of that had graphics and had pathways built specifically for roleplaying and/or socializing was Star Wars Galaxy with the cantinas.  MUDs had more roleplaying than any MMO server I've ever played on, but I am not on roleplaying since it never seems to fit what I envision when it comes to interaction from the mind's eye image. 

 

 

You went off on a roleplaying tangent there and I'm not sure why. I think you saw that word and got yourself sidetracked... badly.  As a result of that, though, it seems you completely missed that my reply was to your question about what makes a game worthwhile if it isn't hard or full of penalties.

 

So did you forget what you wrote?  I highlighted it for you.  You suggest roleplaying at a player venue kept people (hundreds if not thousands) playing in older MMOs.  And I replied with a paragraph of my experience with roleplaying on any MMO (graphics) versus MUD (text, rudimentary graphic representation of world) saying that the only game I noticed it being actively encouraged in was Star Wars Galaxies with cantinas which is hardly one of the first MMOs..maybe a second generation.  One paragraph in response to one paragraph is hardly sidetracked.

 

And aside from forgetting what you wrote, and disregarding the rest of my post because of that......you didn't clarify any points or address anything I asked later in my post regarding the balance that has to be maintained to keep people playing.   And my original question was what people used to define their definition of "hard" so I tried to ask it in a different way by asking what  makes a game worthwhile to them.   It's certainly going to be a myriad of responses, but there's likely to be a few that stick out as the more popular...my guess being character development through combat or crafting.   If there was never a downside or choice to be made, everyone would do everything and the social aspect of the game would be muted even further.  But you're dragging it off the original topic, and I was trying to find what people use to evaluate the difficulty in the game and still include you in the conversation with your points.  I am not sure why my questions and points are less valid than yours which is bringing these condescending remarks from you, considering mine were scoped to the actual thread topic.

  Loktofeit

Hard Core Member

Joined: 1/13/10
Posts: 12405

Currently playing EVE, SMITE, ArcheAge, and Combat Arms

4/08/11 4:24:51 AM#129
Originally posted by xcarnifex
Originally posted by Loktofeit
Originally posted by xcarnifex
Originally posted by Loktofeit
Originally posted by xcarnifex

So if old MMOs weren't "harder" and new MMOs are just as "hard" but with less time consuming things/penalties.  Then what would make a game worthwhile?  If all you want is the carrot and never any stick, are you ever going to be challenged and rewarded?

Your view is black and white - a game doesn't have to be a masochistic endeavour to be worthwhile. It simply has to be fun.

For example, there was nothing hard about logging into an MMO, getting into character and heading off to roleplay at a player venue. There was no success/failure measure other than whether people wer eentertained and enjoying themselves. There certainly was no penalty. Surprisingly, hundreds, if not thousands found that a worthwhile and rewarding thing to do on a regular basis in the older MMOs.

 

The only game I am aware of that had graphics and had pathways built specifically for roleplaying and/or socializing was Star Wars Galaxy with the cantinas.  MUDs had more roleplaying than any MMO server I've ever played on, but I am not on roleplaying since it never seems to fit what I envision when it comes to interaction from the mind's eye image. 

 

 

You went off on a roleplaying tangent there and I'm not sure why. I think you saw that word and got yourself sidetracked... badly.  As a result of that, though, it seems you completely missed that my reply was to your question about what makes a game worthwhile if it isn't hard or full of penalties.

 

So did you forget what you wrote?  I highlighted it for you.  You suggest roleplaying at a player venue kept people (hundreds if not thousands) playing in older MMOs.  And I replied with a paragraph of my experience with roleplaying on any MMO (graphics) versus MUD (text, rudimentary graphic representation of world) saying that the only game I noticed it being actively encouraged in was Star Wars Galaxies with cantinas which is hardly one of the first MMOs..maybe a second generation.  One paragraph in response to one paragraph is hardly sidetracked.

 

And aside from forgetting what you wrote, and disregarding the rest of my post because of that......you didn't clarify any points or address anything I asked later in my post regarding the balance that has to be maintained to keep people playing.   And my original question was what people used to define their definition of "hard" so I tried to ask it in a different way by asking what  makes a game worthwhile to them.   It's certainly going to be a myriad of responses, but there's likely to be a few that stick out as the more popular...my guess being character development through combat or crafting.   If there was never a downside or choice to be made, everyone would do everything and the social aspect of the game would be muted even further.  But you're dragging it off the original topic, and I was trying to find what people use to evaluate the difficulty in the game and still include you in the conversation with your points.  I am not sure why my questions and points are less valid than yours which is bringing these condescending remarks from you, considering mine were scoped to the actual thread topic.

Yeah, you're kinda stuck on roleplaying. I probably shouldn't have used a specific activity as an example, especially that one as it easily confuses some people. Sorry about that.

"And my original question was what people used to define their definition of "hard" so I tried to ask it in a different way by asking what  makes a game worthwhile to them."

Yeah, I noticed you asked that, which is why I made a point to include that in my post so you could see exactly which question I was replying to. Was it that you wanted a different answer?

"And wikipedia is as accurate as Britannica. Wikipedia is very reliable. You would be hard pressed to find a more reliable source for these kinds of things." -fivoroth

  xcarnifex

Novice Member

Joined: 2/20/04
Posts: 36

4/08/11 5:10:35 AM#130
Originally posted by Loktofeit
Yeah, you're kinda stuck on roleplaying. I probably shouldn't have used a specific activity as an example, especially that one as it easily confuses some people. Sorry about that.

"And my original question was what people used to define their definition of "hard" so I tried to ask it in a different way by asking what  makes a game worthwhile to them."

Yeah, I noticed you asked that, which is why I made a point to include that in my post so you could see exactly which question I was replying to. Was it that you wanted a different answer?


One that applies in the scope of the thread topic will do.  Such as the activities you mentioned, whichever you find provide the biggest draw for you personally in MMOs.  Are those activities harder in older MMOs versus newer MMOs, and what contributes to your thought process on that answer.  I wrongly assumed the thread topic would apply to only combat and systems related/influenced by it.  But it appears you have a different aspect of the games you wanted represented in this thread.  Just don't mention roleplaying unless you want to define it so people can respond to your answer in a manner you can cope with and discuss.  I'm still trying to determine what game features people are using as their basis for the difficulty comparison.

 

  Torik

Advanced Member

Joined: 1/02/09
Posts: 2328

4/08/11 10:13:58 AM#131
Originally posted by Palebane

 



Originally posted by nariusseldon
Old games are not harder .. just need more work.
Like mapping ... it is not hard to map by hand (i did that for M&M ... too much work now i think about it)  ... just tedious and time-consuming. So i prefer a mapping feature.
Ditto for searching for an NPC. It is not hard to go around in orgrimmar and talk to everyone to look for quest .. it is just tedious and time consuming .. so an exclamation mark on top is welcomed.
Even fights .. if you are camping the boss with 50 players (back in EQ) .. the fight is super easy .. you don't actually need to do much .. the others will kill him .. for your turn to loot .. and hurry you along so it will be their turn faster.
I would MUCH rather play today's MMO than EQ or UO.


Don't you think the imagination suffers though? Sure, everything is easier, but all you are left with is what you see and hear. Nothing is feared. Nothing is sacred.

I think this explains part of the disconnect.  "Old school" players seem to have had some sort of religious experience with the way those MMORPGs were designed.  "New school" players don't subscribe to that religion so the 'religious rites' of the old school mechanics seem at best quaint and at worst idiotic. 

What to an 'old schooler' seemed like a scary and exciting adventure, to me seems like a mundane, annoying task like taking out the garbage.

  TruthXHurts

Novice Member

Joined: 6/20/10
Posts: 1641

I am here to chew bubblegum and to kick ass... and I'm all out of bubblegum!

4/08/11 10:23:41 AM#132
Originally posted by wootin
Originally posted by Isane
Originally posted by Qazz
Originally posted by Isane

The older MMOs were;

  • longevity i.e 1 year plus before you run out of things to do.

I would argue that there is much more content in todays MMO's.  The reason that you still had things to do a year from launch before was that you were still trying to get to level 20 but since you picked the wrong race class combo you rarely found a group.  Oh, plus the lag spike (thanks Dial-Up) got you killed and you lost a level.  Whoops.

Sanitised gaming is no fun.

People have this self imposed view that winning is being the best player stat wise.

Some people find it a challenge to develop a character ; and in older games you could pick the worst build ever and succeed with friends.

These days if you don't play off a spreadsheet and act like a guild slave you get booted...... Sounds more like a job than fun .....

Hah, I made a gnome warrior in EQ1. Just because I could. (To those who don't know what that meant, he was a severely underpowered race for the class, no way in heck could he match a real tank at higher levels). In one of his early, level 10'ish solo fights, he was in a desperate battle just off a main pathway. He actually gathered a CROWD CHEERING HIM ON. And nobody buffed him or healed him, because it was his fight to win (although they did throw tips and advice aplenty).

And when he did win (by like 1-2 hits tops), he got a full crowd roar and someone gave him a somewhat better weapon to help him out.  Man I miss playing with those kind of people.

Nowadays you'd be heckled to death for not pciking the "right" build, and that cheering crowd woudl have been hurling obscenities and asking why you're mad bro.

 

I think the Zero tolerance policy in today's schools might be to blame. nBack in the day if you were a mouthy annoying little prick you got the crap beat out of you and maybe you'd learn a lesson. Now kids are so shielded from consequence that you have these mouthy little idiots who have never been taught to behave. 

"I am not in a server with Gankers...THEY ARE IN A SERVER WITH ME!!!"

  Palebane

Novice Member

Joined: 10/18/04
Posts: 3247

4/08/11 3:57:23 PM#133
Originally posted by Torik
Originally posted by Palebane

 



Originally posted by nariusseldon
Old games are not harder .. just need more work.
Like mapping ... it is not hard to map by hand (i did that for M&M ... too much work now i think about it)  ... just tedious and time-consuming. So i prefer a mapping feature.
Ditto for searching for an NPC. It is not hard to go around in orgrimmar and talk to everyone to look for quest .. it is just tedious and time consuming .. so an exclamation mark on top is welcomed.
Even fights .. if you are camping the boss with 50 players (back in EQ) .. the fight is super easy .. you don't actually need to do much .. the others will kill him .. for your turn to loot .. and hurry you along so it will be their turn faster.
I would MUCH rather play today's MMO than EQ or UO.


Don't you think the imagination suffers though? Sure, everything is easier, but all you are left with is what you see and hear. Nothing is feared. Nothing is sacred.

I think this explains part of the disconnect.  "Old school" players seem to have had some sort of religious experience with the way those MMORPGs were designed.  "New school" players don't subscribe to that religion so the 'religious rites' of the old school mechanics seem at best quaint and at worst idiotic. 

What to an 'old schooler' seemed like a scary and exciting adventure, to me seems like a mundane, annoying task like taking out the garbage.

It's all about the imagination. Newer games don't really allow players to use it as much in my opinion. Many of the newer MMOs seem to discourage any use of the imagination at all. Maybe newer players don't like to use it. To each their own. I find it odd that the entrie genre was sparked by games that were played almost entirely in the imagination. And many of these games now are more akin to watching a movie. The same movie over and over again in many cases. It's not really a religeous experience, but it definitely could be an emotional one much of the time. Players were invested in one another and in thier imaginations more than they are today in general, in my opinion. It can be hard to use your imagination, especially when you've been conditioned for years and years not to.

Vault-Tec analysts have concluded that the odds of worldwide nuclear armaggeddon this decade are 17,143,762... to 1.

  Torik

Advanced Member

Joined: 1/02/09
Posts: 2328

4/08/11 5:39:23 PM#134
Originally posted by Palebane
Originally posted by Torik
Originally posted by Palebane

 



Originally posted by nariusseldon
Old games are not harder .. just need more work.
Like mapping ... it is not hard to map by hand (i did that for M&M ... too much work now i think about it)  ... just tedious and time-consuming. So i prefer a mapping feature.
Ditto for searching for an NPC. It is not hard to go around in orgrimmar and talk to everyone to look for quest .. it is just tedious and time consuming .. so an exclamation mark on top is welcomed.
Even fights .. if you are camping the boss with 50 players (back in EQ) .. the fight is super easy .. you don't actually need to do much .. the others will kill him .. for your turn to loot .. and hurry you along so it will be their turn faster.
I would MUCH rather play today's MMO than EQ or UO.


Don't you think the imagination suffers though? Sure, everything is easier, but all you are left with is what you see and hear. Nothing is feared. Nothing is sacred.

I think this explains part of the disconnect.  "Old school" players seem to have had some sort of religious experience with the way those MMORPGs were designed.  "New school" players don't subscribe to that religion so the 'religious rites' of the old school mechanics seem at best quaint and at worst idiotic. 

What to an 'old schooler' seemed like a scary and exciting adventure, to me seems like a mundane, annoying task like taking out the garbage.

It's all about the imagination. Newer games don't really allow players to use it as much in my opinion. Many of the newer MMOs seem to discourage any use of the imagination at all. Maybe newer players don't like to use it. To each their own. I find it odd that the entrie genre was sparked by games that were played almost entirely in the imagination. And many of these games now are more akin to watching a movie. The same movie over and over again in many cases. It's not really a religeous experience, but it definitely could be an emotional one much of the time. Players were invested in one another and in thier imaginations more than they are today in general, in my opinion. It can be hard to use your imagination, especially when you've been conditioned for years and years not to.

Well I hold the opposite opinion.

To me it is the old school players who seem to lack imagination and instead fall back on trite 'false difficulty' mechanics to compensate.

  SuperXero89

Advanced Member

Joined: 8/16/09
Posts: 2615

4/08/11 5:56:02 PM#135

In many ways playing Everquest was easier than playing WoW.  I played a paladin, and thanks to the pace of the combat system, I could talk to my guild, send private tells, and engage in rousing group chat conversations while in mid-fight, and in terms of actual tanking difficulty, it was all about the gear.  Certain mobs in upper tier zones were absolutely inaccessible to non-raid gamers as they hit like cement blocks flying at your face at about 90 mph, but there was none of this mentality of "I have to pull and keep aggro on an entire room or my group will leave because I'm too slow!"  Mobs came generally one at a time and in the rare case that there were two or three, you had to either extend just a little bit mor effort to keep aggro, or you relied on a crowd control class you probably had in your group.

Progression was extremely simple as there were no quests.  All you did was run to a zone, sit next to a group, and spam LFG until someone invited you to an XP camp, in which case you would accep the invite and kill monsters repeatedly for hours on end.  Sure, your XP bar moved at the pace of a retarded snale, but you weren't actually doing anything of great difficulty.  Even if you were a bad player, you were grouped with 5 other people 90% of the time who were, in all likelihood better players than you, so personal skill didn't matter.  Personally I almost never went two zones away from a PoK book without a cleric or some rez/heal machine, so a sense of danger was nonexistant.  It did discourage exploration though.  There were tons of areas in EQ that I would have loved to have explored, yet I was unwilling to risk both my gear and my hard fought experience points.  In contrast to today, titles such as EQ2 and WoW actually give experience points for discovering new areas, and in EQ2, discovery XP is actually a viable path to leveling up for characters with invisibility spells.

  Ebonyfly

Novice Member

Joined: 2/10/09
Posts: 257

4/08/11 7:13:12 PM#136

Seems to me that most people are looking at the question of difficulty from two completely different perspectives:

Some are looking at the games as a whole. They see that older games had harsher death penalties, required more cooperation with other players and took more effort to progress so they conclude the old games were harder.

Others are looking at the nuts and bolts of old and new games. They see that game mechanics have not changed and the skills required to succeed are identical so they conclude that old games were not harder, just more tedious and frustrating.

I think both perspectives have some merit. My take is that it has always been possible to find hard and easy things to do in MMOs. The thing that has changed is the way in which MMOs deal with Rewards and Punishments.

Newer MMOs offer frequent rewards and no matter how poorly or carelessly you play the game will never do more than slap you on the wrist.

By comparison older MMOs were very stingy with rewards and if you made a mistake the game would punch you in the face. Sometimes repeatedly.

Personally, I have never found an MMO that got the balance quite right for my taste. UO and vanilla WoW were probably the closest. I do think the older MMOs were generally far too grindy but with newer MMOs, well, I just end up feeling like a lab rat following a trail of cheese crumbs around a maze.

  Palebane

Novice Member

Joined: 10/18/04
Posts: 3247

4/09/11 12:00:37 PM#137
Originally posted by Torik
Originally posted by Palebane
Originally posted by Torik
Originally posted by Palebane

 



Originally posted by nariusseldon
Old games are not harder .. just need more work.
Like mapping ... it is not hard to map by hand (i did that for M&M ... too much work now i think about it)  ... just tedious and time-consuming. So i prefer a mapping feature.
Ditto for searching for an NPC. It is not hard to go around in orgrimmar and talk to everyone to look for quest .. it is just tedious and time consuming .. so an exclamation mark on top is welcomed.
Even fights .. if you are camping the boss with 50 players (back in EQ) .. the fight is super easy .. you don't actually need to do much .. the others will kill him .. for your turn to loot .. and hurry you along so it will be their turn faster.
I would MUCH rather play today's MMO than EQ or UO.


Don't you think the imagination suffers though? Sure, everything is easier, but all you are left with is what you see and hear. Nothing is feared. Nothing is sacred.

I think this explains part of the disconnect.  "Old school" players seem to have had some sort of religious experience with the way those MMORPGs were designed.  "New school" players don't subscribe to that religion so the 'religious rites' of the old school mechanics seem at best quaint and at worst idiotic. 

What to an 'old schooler' seemed like a scary and exciting adventure, to me seems like a mundane, annoying task like taking out the garbage.

It's all about the imagination. Newer games don't really allow players to use it as much in my opinion. Many of the newer MMOs seem to discourage any use of the imagination at all. Maybe newer players don't like to use it. To each their own. I find it odd that the entrie genre was sparked by games that were played almost entirely in the imagination. And many of these games now are more akin to watching a movie. The same movie over and over again in many cases. It's not really a religeous experience, but it definitely could be an emotional one much of the time. Players were invested in one another and in thier imaginations more than they are today in general, in my opinion. It can be hard to use your imagination, especially when you've been conditioned for years and years not to.

Well I hold the opposite opinion.

To me it is the old school players who seem to lack imagination and instead fall back on trite 'false difficulty' mechanics to compensate.

I would be fascinated to hear some of your examples. With todays graphics and computer animation (not to mention scripted dungeon instances and linear quest chains), please tell me how gamers today have to use their imagination more than players who often had no graphics or sound at all. Without a couple good examples, I'm going to have to assume you are simply playing devil's advocate.

Vault-Tec analysts have concluded that the odds of worldwide nuclear armaggeddon this decade are 17,143,762... to 1.

  Borzy

Apprentice Member

Joined: 4/08/11
Posts: 11

4/09/11 6:53:24 PM#138
Originally posted by Calerxes

I started my MMO career with...... yeah you guessed World Of Warcraft (boo hissss) in 2007 and I read much about this malligned game for being easy mode,

So correct my ignorance as I was not there.... what makes Ultima Online, Everquest, Asherons Call, Anarchy Online, Dark Age Of Camelot, FFXI more difficult and immersive than modern day MMO's like I have listed? 

 

Cal.

 

I can probably explain this to you in WoW terms, seeing you are a WoW player.

 

Back in 2004 when WoW launched, there was no wowhead, hell there was not even Allakhazam at that time.  Everyone was new to the game.  There were no quest trackers. You had to read the quest text to figure out where to go.  And thankyouverymuch to bugs and poor scripting, occassionally the quest texts are either not clear, or completely incorrect, about where you had to be to complete the quest.  This often meant that you had to actually physically ask people in game where certain things were.

 

There were no cookie cutter builds in the beginning, no guides about how to spec, so people just specced according what looked right by the talent descriptions.  Respeccing was an option yes, but back in those days, the cost of respeccing was quite a feat in itself to cover, considering all the other things like mounts etc that you had to spend gold on.

 

Many quests ended in elite bosses, which have now since been dumbed down.  But back then many quests ended in elite encounters that required you to group to complete.  This meant people actually had to group up to complete quests.

 

WoW today has mob markers: mark them with a cross, or skull, or purple diamond etc etc.  This was not in the original game.   Blizzard has subsequently learnt to implement this because.... In about 2007 when you were playing, you might've seen people do this via add-ons, Blizzard has adopted this feature from an add-on.  Why did people create these add-ons? Well because they were needed to coordinate and communicate with the groupd about what to do.  If you have no idea what I am talking about, the case is rested.  If you do, then the next question is, how often do people use that feature now that Blizzard have formally implemented it?  The answer is, very rarely.  WoW has even managed to take out the need for Crowd Control, because it slows the pace of gameplay for the current population.

 

So what does this all mean in terms of old MMO's being harder?

Firstly, because older MMO mechanics were more "difficult" by virtue of them needing more grouping, and more time planning. As others have mentioned, because the death penalty was harsh, and encounters required more patience because a blind rush in will almost ensure death.

Secondly the general game was harder because there were less resources / hand holding.  This is unfortunately not a bad thing, the issue is that MMOs have had no counter for this "cheating".  I'm sure every UO / EQ player out there would have warmly welcomed a compendium resource back in their day, either in the form of a wiki, or a wowhead-esque resource, so that they could figure out what they needed to do.  Vanilla WoW was frustrating and yet all the same "adventurous" because of this.  These days you are told to go here to kill / collect this, and come back to there when you're done:  you've probably spent more time looking at your map / minimap than you have looking at your surrounding environment to remember landmarks to tell you which way you need to head.

Thirdly, thanks to google and the abundance of forums / resources, there is no longer any need to experiment.  Want to know how to spec your class, google it an you are sure to find the answer.  This is not an inherent problem, but the availability of resources mean that in effect there's the expectation that: "resources are so readily available, there is no reason for you not to know this answer".  Any queries in WoW these days tend to just incite the: "OMG just google it" or "ever heard of WoWhead?" or my favourite "please go and youtube the raid boss fights before signing up" (this can actually be found under multiple guild's websites as one of your raid responsibilities).  Playing a game with this attitude or approach in mind is almost tantamount to playing any other single player game with a laptop open beside you with a browser open on a walkthrough site..... where's the fun in that?

  twodayslate

Apprentice Member

Joined: 4/04/11
Posts: 756

4/09/11 7:33:18 PM#139

Not sure how significant of a factor it was for others, but lowband internet providers that were the standard back then (still are for some people) added a fair bit of almost Final Fantasy-esque random encounters with other players.  I remember back in high school during the early days of UO, hitting a lag spike on my sucktastic 14.4 (that ran at 9600 on a good day, AOL was great), while out doing whatever.  All of a sudden, random disposeable PK guy with bone mask that was two screens away when I rode past him, becomes random disposeable PK guy with bone mask that is two squares away from my corpse.  Happened more often than I'd like, probably contributed in some way to my leaving the game within the first year - that, and the rampant corruption within the OSI GM staff.

  VengeSunsoar

Hard Core Member

Joined: 3/10/04
Posts: 4916

Be Brief, Be Bright... Be Gone.

4/09/11 7:55:52 PM#140

Allakazam's has been around since at least 2000 about when I started EQ providing hints, walkthroughs, weapon drop info and everything else.  Websites like this have been around since the very early days.

Venge

Quit worrying about other players in a game and just play.

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