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The Pub at MMORPG.COM  » What about a sandbox and themepark game?

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46 posts found
  Vesavius

Old School

Joined: 3/08/04
Posts: 7206

Players come for the game, but they stay for the people- Most Devs have forgotten this.

7/16/12 5:28:11 AM#21
Originally posted by GTwander
Originally posted by MMOExposed

it was called SWG.

But SWTOR killed it.

You wish.

LA/SOE killed it by frankensteining it (while it was in perfect health, mind you).

 

Lets be really honest though... only a handful of people thought it looked well in the first place. Some thought it was in perfect health, a lot thought it needed putting down.

If as many people had been playing SWG as now lament it the NGE would never have been needed ;)

  Vesavius

Old School

Joined: 3/08/04
Posts: 7206

Players come for the game, but they stay for the people- Most Devs have forgotten this.

7/16/12 5:30:56 AM#22
Originally posted by ste2000

Archeage...............

 

AA... sigh...

The only thing I want to hear about now anout this game is what alternate rule servers they are considering for launch.

I don't want to be stuck in any game with the same of Darkfall type crowd ever again.

  fenistil

Novice Member

Joined: 9/22/11
Posts: 3016

7/16/12 5:36:12 AM#23
Originally posted by GTwander
Originally posted by fenistil

ArcheAge tries to do it.

Yeah, but I worry that they will try to occupy all available space with overarching quest goals, like a full-out themepark, when it's much better to relegate sections of the game world to this kind of stuff so that people doing gated content are more likely to bump into each other, while leaving the others that are going about their own business to do so without interfering with each other. No idear how big the world itself is, though.

Otherwise, that would be like getting peanut butter in my chocolate, and I'm highly allergic to nuts.

Afaik first two continents are mostly themeparkish.  You have quests and most of them are kinda standard like in WoW, Aion or most themeparks.  You can also build houses or boats in designated places in open world on those two continents, so bit of sandboxy thing.

 

Still 3 rd contient is where themepark content is either non-existatnt or scarce and where people, groups, guilds can build castles and get teritorial control, do sieges, where you transport certain resources to or get it back, etc

 

Levelling up to certain level will be / have to be done on two themepark continents.  Then you can go on 3rd continent or stay on two continents or travel back and forth.  Not sure how certain content level wise is on continetns later on.

 

So there is PARTIAL separation.   Most hardcore sandbox and most meaningful pvp will be done on 3rd continent.

Most themepark contents - most quests, most dungeons, some of open world bosses, rare mobs, etc will be on two faction continent.

 

AFAIK game world is BIG and seamless.  Even if you would take boat or ship and sail from one continent to other there is no loading screens at all.

Only loading screens are in those few instanced dungeons (there will be also open dungeons afaik) that will exist, in pratice battlegrounds (mostly cosmetic rewards) and in sieges.

All buildings, areas, continents, etc are not instanced at all.  There is no zoning.

  Ironclad

Advanced Member

Joined: 7/03/10
Posts: 63

7/16/12 5:38:29 AM#24

Check out The Repopulation.  Not launching until next year some time but the devs are working to take the best of both the themepark and sandbox worlds and merge them in a F2P game.

 

http://www.therepopulation.com/

  maplestone

Novice Member

Joined: 12/10/08
Posts: 3109

7/16/12 5:39:55 AM#25

Rather than adding a storyline to your world, why not look at your proposed storyline and ask why those sorts of adventures aren't spontaneously emerging from the simulations in the world?

( usually the answer is simply that even in a typical "sandbox" there are barely any actual simulations running - they are just inert  worlds waiting around for a player to kick something )

  fenistil

Novice Member

Joined: 9/22/11
Posts: 3016

7/16/12 5:43:13 AM#26
Originally posted by Vesavius
Originally posted by GTwander
Originally posted by MMOExposed

it was called SWG.

But SWTOR killed it.

You wish.

LA/SOE killed it by frankensteining it (while it was in perfect health, mind you).

 

Lets be really honest though... only a handful of people thought it looked well in the first place. Some thought it was in perfect health, a lot thought it needed putting down.

If as many people had been playing SWG as now lament it the NGE would never have been needed ;)

Change was needed.  Problem is that SoE / LA instead of fixing bugs, exploits and improving on pre-nge game design, CHANGED game design instead.
 Sure SWG was bleeding subs before, but after NGE there were mass quits very fast, so I dare to say that NGE was a mistake.

SoE should fix things and eventually add some themepark things. 

Instead they cut out many of sandbox elements and replaced them with alien design that did not fit well in eyes of many players + overly brutally simplified and streamlined alot of game mechanics.

 

Result speaks for itself.

  User Deleted
7/16/12 5:50:06 AM#27
Originally posted by MMOExposed

we had that.

it was called SWG.

But SWTOR killed it.

It tried to do both things, it did neither of them well. All it had was good crafting in a shockingly bad economy, a sandbox with no decay and/or no looting = hyper inflation fucked economy.

 

SWTOR didn't kill SWG, the development decisions over the last x years killed it. The game was just bad, really bad, by the end.

  GTwander

Novice Member

Joined: 3/14/09
Posts: 6125

LARPer Hunter

7/16/12 5:54:25 AM#28
Originally posted by bunnyhopper
Originally posted by MMOExposed

we had that.

it was called SWG.

But SWTOR killed it.

It tried to do both things, it did neither of them well. All it had was good crafting in a shockingly bad economy, a sandbox with no decay and/or no looting = hyper inflation fucked economy.

SWTOR didn't kill SWG, the development decisions over the last x years killed it. The game was just bad, really bad, by the end.

It used to have decay, loot loss on corpses you couldn't reach in time, and a really good economy.   >_>

~but yeah, it really seemed like the devs couldn't make up their minds as to what the game needed. How many armor value revamps were there? 2-3?

They completely lost sight of scope.

Writer / Musician / Game Designer

Now Playing: Skyrim, Wurm Online, Tropico 4
Waiting On: GW2, TSW, Archeage, The Rapture

  Rydeson

Elite Member

Joined: 3/05/07
Posts: 3351

7/16/12 5:57:12 AM#29
Originally posted by ReallyNow10

I do not believe "sandbox" vs "themepark" is the argument, but just used to try to convince players they do not need freedom to play their own characters.

The REAL issue is "free range" vs "on-rails".  And the answer is to get rid of the "rails" and stop with all the hand-holding; a MMORPG should not play like an 80 level tutorial.

This is exactly my issue.. I don't want to play a pre-program game on rails.. I want the freedom to have a large variety of things to do at my discretion..  I also want more non combat things to do as well..  I get tired of hacking and slashing everything the moment I log on..  There are times I want to go fishing, cooking or farming mats.. I'm so burnt out on story driven content.. Let me created my own BIO, by the actions I take..  The world should be filled with choices at each turn..  I want the ability to kill my own faction and become KOS, while gaining faction with my enemies.. Of the games I played EQ1 did that part right..  Earning and losing faction was great.. :)  and it actually meant something..

  Torgrim

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 12/15/05
Posts: 2155

7/16/12 6:08:05 AM#30

A true sandbox game have everything, both themepark features and sandbox.

 

If it's not broken, you are not innovating.

  Selenite

Hard Core Member

Joined: 9/11/10
Posts: 29

7/16/12 6:12:23 AM#31
Originally posted by Torgrim

A true sandbox game have everything, both themepark features and sandbox.

 

Thought I don't even want to think about the cost of developing such a game, at least in AA+ level.

I'm sure that many great projects have been started but if the game can't cover the cost  of its development and make money then it pretty clear that it won't be made..

  Icewhite

Made History

Joined: 7/11/11
Posts: 6495

Pink, it's like red but not quite.

7/16/12 6:21:19 AM#32
Originally posted by GTwander
Originally posted by bunnyhopper

SWTOR didn't kill SWG, the development decisions over the last x years killed it. The game was just bad, really bad, by the end.

They completely lost sight of scope.

With "fans" like those, who needs enemies?

Self-pity imprisons us in the walls of our own self-absorption. The whole world shrinks down to the size of our problem, and the more we dwell on it, the smaller we are and the larger the problem seems to grow.

  fenistil

Novice Member

Joined: 9/22/11
Posts: 3016

7/16/12 6:34:45 AM#33
Originally posted by Icewhite
Originally posted by GTwander
Originally posted by bunnyhopper

SWTOR didn't kill SWG, the development decisions over the last x years killed it. The game was just bad, really bad, by the end.

They completely lost sight of scope.

With "fans" like those, who needs enemies?

Still it does not make what they wrote less true.

  Icewhite

Made History

Joined: 7/11/11
Posts: 6495

Pink, it's like red but not quite.

7/16/12 6:42:36 AM#34
Originally posted by fenistil

Still it does not make what they wrote less true.

It's weird to reconcile the revisionist-historian vesion of gamer's paradise, with what we know was their behavior like before the shutdown announcment, isn't it?

This is the fan base that hounded developers relentlessly for NGE, and still (often) does.  Now they portray the post-NGE period, up til shutdown announcement date, as happy funtime sunshine and rainbows in the perfect gaming paradise?

The game never had a chance. 

 

Self-pity imprisons us in the walls of our own self-absorption. The whole world shrinks down to the size of our problem, and the more we dwell on it, the smaller we are and the larger the problem seems to grow.

  Thane

Hard Core Member

Joined: 8/14/03
Posts: 1894

I'm a leaf on the wind. Watch how I soar.

7/16/12 6:45:48 AM#35
Originally posted by MMOExposed

we had that.

it was called SWG.

But SWTOR killed it.

actually lukas arts killed it with the wow approach in a game that was just fine.

that wasn't bioware's fault, SWG went down the river some time ago (i think it was the JTL addon)

"I'll never grow up, never grow up, never grow up! Not me!"

  fenistil

Novice Member

Joined: 9/22/11
Posts: 3016

7/16/12 6:51:07 AM#36

Of course it had a chance.

For a game that released in so unfinished state and was so unstable and full of such major bugs, playerbase was very forgiving.   Playerbase was initially stable and later on bleeding down much slower than it happens in most mmorpg nowadays.

SWG was released in a state that nowadays would be called early-beta at best.   Any game released nowadays like that would lose 70-90% of playerbase in 2 months.

Until NGE that is, where changes were made with big, rusty knife when game needed scalpel.

 

Anyway we'll never know.

 

 

  TwoThreeFour

Novice Member

Joined: 3/26/12
Posts: 2148

7/16/12 7:18:14 AM#37
Originally posted by Larsa
Originally posted by Fendel84M

I'm not talking about a mix of the two. I mean just straight up, throw it all in there. Have all the sandbox elements you would expect, but ALSO have all the "rides" you can go on.

So you could go create your own adventures but then the townsfolk might also have some quests for you if you have been lacking creativity.

Quests or not does not define whether a game is a themepark or a sandbox. Freedom does. A game that has the features of a sandbox and offers quests (or rather missions) is still a sandbox.

It's very hard (to almost impossible) to have both types of gameplay in one MMORPG:

  • You cannot design a game that is both carefully guided (for accesibility, for convenience, for instant fun and rewards) and offers the player the freedom to do as he wishes.
  • You cannot design a game that has both a loot-driven gear economy and a player-run market economy,
  • You cannot design a game that has both end-game dungeon drops and where crafters make all the gear.
  • You cannot design a game that is both combat-centric and not combat-centric.
  • You cannot design a game where the devs create the "personal" story and the players make their own.

 

 

1. You can make a grand tutorial and minigames/instanced dungeons for those who want it, but it should not cover most of the game world and it should be completely optional for those who just want to get into the wild from start.

 

2.  A game where gear matter and loot matter while most trades are done through player auctions/markets is what you say is impossible, but it is actually very possible.

 

3. Just make those end-game dungeons drop crafting material but never full gear.

 

4. You are right here, but you can make a game that has excellent combat and excellent non-combat.

 

5. No, but you can let the developers make a rough draft while the players choose all the details. 

  User Deleted
7/16/12 8:16:23 AM#38
Originally posted by Icewhite
Originally posted by fenistil

Still it does not make what they wrote less true.

It's weird to reconcile the revisionist-historian vesion of gamer's paradise, with what we know was their behavior like before the shutdown announcment, isn't it?

This is the fan base that hounded developers relentlessly for NGE, and still (often) does.  Now they portray the post-NGE period, up til shutdown announcement date, as happy funtime sunshine and rainbows in the perfect gaming paradise?

The game never had a chance. 

 

Yeah you're right, I totally see in my initial post where I pointed out that pre NGE the game was a gamers paradise with zero problems and "happy funtime sunshine". There may be plenty of rose tinted vets, but that is not the case here.

 

It has nothing to do with being a "fan" of the game in either form, merely it is pointing out the reality of the situation. In it's later years the game tried to be all things to all people and competely lost any real direction and failed to be anything to anyone.

 

The game "never had a chance" because it made wholesale changes which both alienated it's original audience whilst at the same time, failed to provide a product good enough to attract a newer audience.

 

Eitherway it is certainly far from a good example of what a themepark/sandbox hybrid should be like.

 

  rdrakken

Apprentice Member

Joined: 6/15/12
Posts: 435

7/16/12 8:31:33 AM#39
Originally posted by Larsa

Quests or not does not define whether a game is a themepark or a sandbox. Freedom does. A game that has the features of a sandbox and offers quests (or rather missions) is still a sandbox.

It's very hard (to almost impossible) to have both types of gameplay in one MMORPG:

  • You cannot design a game that is both carefully guided (for accesibility, for convenience, for instant fun and rewards) and offers the player the freedom to do as he wishes.
  • You cannot design a game that has both a loot-driven gear economy and a player-run market economy,
  • You cannot design a game that has both end-game dungeon drops and where crafters make all the gear.
  • You cannot design a game that is both combat-centric and not combat-centric.
  • You cannot design a game where the devs create the "personal" story and the players make their own.

 

 This is not true.

1. having quests take you from one place or another does not mean the game must be a level based game. By removing this horrible aspect of MMOs you remove the need for a game to have "zones" or "walls" to prevent players from entering areas way beyond their abilities.

2. You CAN have a loot economy AND a player run market economy. No BoPs allow everything that can be looted to be sold by players...and make a damn crafting system worth something...Just because you can loot an uber mace of smash your face it doesnt mean a player should not be allowed to make something similar. The only thing that should be different is the LOOK which will drive the player market even more.

3. See above, loot system and crafting system are NOT exclusive systems...you just think they are because game designers are too god damn lazy to work on both. A game should be made with a vast variety of weapon and armor design, the more look options there are the more players will enjoy their characters. So, dungeon 1 drops one look, dungeon 2 drops another look, dungeon 3 drops a 3rd look  and player made items have looks 4,5 and 6.

4. this makes no sense at all. What does sandbox have to do with a game being combat-centric or not?

5. This is 100% player dependant. If you have never been able to roleplay in a themepark game, it was YOUR choosing. A game having a story and quests does not take away your ability to go do whatever you wanted in the world that was created...hell, one of my guildies never reached level 80 in WoW because he was playing a town drunk who had a habit of falling off of Thunder Bluff in a blind stupor...he would ALWAYS be drunk, even in raids and we made it so he could charge mobs in a drunken rage for RP reasons.

And dont even get me started on the RPing that can be done in each of the superhero games like City of Heroes, Champions Online or DCUo...or LoTRo for that matter...lol...it has a story and yet you can do NOTHING but farm if you wanted to.

  Venger

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Joined: 8/03/04
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7/16/12 10:49:21 AM#40
Originally posted by rdrakken

Core sandbox players would call any game with themepark aspects...a themepark game.

Sandbox to them means its ALL open, no rails, no guides...no rides...no stories...no quests. And that is why there are not many sandbox games, the playerbase for those types of games does not compare to themepark players. If only more sandboxers would be willing to compromise we could end up with a game like SWG that actually had a team that can make content for a game instead of people like Koster, the destroyer of MMOs.

Sadly very true. 

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