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The Pub at MMORPG.COM  » Aren't we done with use-to-improve character development?

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36 posts found
  Quirhid

Elite Member

Joined: 1/28/05
Posts: 5967

Correcting wrongs on the Internet...

 
OP  10/12/12 3:54:04 PM#1

Haven't we seen enough failure to ditch it forever from MMOs. Its fine in a SP game where you are not competing against anyone, but in a multiplayer environment it will always be exploited in one way or another.

I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been -Wayne Gretzky

  Simphanatic

Novice Member

Joined: 9/11/12
Posts: 94

The problem with virtually every MMORPG: too much Pavlov and not enough Maslow.

10/12/12 5:26:39 PM#2
Please explain. I don't know what you are asking.
  Kyleran

Bitter Vet™

Joined: 9/13/06
Posts: 19868

Fools find no pleasure in understanding, but delight in airing their own opinions. Pvbs 18:2, NIV

10/12/12 5:29:20 PM#3

I know I am, I love EVE's real time training model, where I can advance at the same rate as everyone else regardless of my playtime.

 

Arrogant, Condescending, Dismissive, Elitist, "Meany", you speak as if these are bad things?
Still currently "subscribed" to EVE, and only EVE!!!
"This is the most intelligent, well qualified and articulate response to a post I have ever seen on these forums. It's a shame most people here won't have the attention span to read past the second line." - Anon

  User Deleted
10/12/12 5:29:56 PM#4
Uh...I'm not familiar with the "Use to Improve" thing you speak of.
  Kyleran

Bitter Vet™

Joined: 9/13/06
Posts: 19868

Fools find no pleasure in understanding, but delight in airing their own opinions. Pvbs 18:2, NIV

10/12/12 5:32:09 PM#5
Originally posted by Enigmatus
Uh...I'm not familiar with the "Use to Improve" thing you speak of.

He's talking about leveling up skills by using them, see Darkfall for an example.

And in that game when it first launched many players were macroing and botting to level up their skills to high levels when they weren't even at the keyboard.

There were "bloodwalls" and macro swimming and the like.

He's saying its not possible to create a good skill based system that can't be exploited by the player base.

He might be right.

 

Arrogant, Condescending, Dismissive, Elitist, "Meany", you speak as if these are bad things?
Still currently "subscribed" to EVE, and only EVE!!!
"This is the most intelligent, well qualified and articulate response to a post I have ever seen on these forums. It's a shame most people here won't have the attention span to read past the second line." - Anon

  Simphanatic

Novice Member

Joined: 9/11/12
Posts: 94

The problem with virtually every MMORPG: too much Pavlov and not enough Maslow.

10/12/12 5:46:25 PM#6
Originally posted by Kyleran
Originally posted by Enigmatus
Uh...I'm not familiar with the "Use to Improve" thing you speak of.

He's talking about leveling up skills by using them, see Darkfall for an example.

And in that game when it first launched many players were macroing and botting to level up their skills to high levels when they weren't even at the keyboard.

There were "bloodwalls" and macro swimming and the like.

He's saying its not possible to create a good skill based system that can't be exploited by the player base.

He might be right.

 

Ok, gotcha ... sort of like systems employed in Forlorned World and more recently in Perfect World.

 

In my experience with these game sanctioned level-up systems, there's also a P2W cash shop involved, where artificially leveled toons can also purchase gear in some way (presumably to compensate for items they didn't get through the normal course of leveling). I really dislike these mechanisms and utterly refuse to play games featuring them.

 

Too many games catering to a certain type of casual player -- and by that, I mean  L A Z Y  S O B S  who lack the strength of character, maturity, and patience to start something and play it through conclusion, no matter how difficult. I feel for people who can devote only an hour or two daily, but in themeparks it should be a simple fact of life that it will take them longer to level up. I can go on and on about that, but I think the real death knell for MMORPGs began when developers started pandering to this gaming population.

 

Too many gamers have migrated from SPs to MMORPGs, expecting the same experience, but with other players involved. You know who they are -- they think they're the center of the gaming universe, treat other players like NPCs, and generally act like the game was created for their sole enjoyment.

 

Sorry, I'm that heartless, opinionated biotch from that other thread.

  Wizardry

Elite Member

Joined: 8/27/04
Posts: 7745

Perhaps tomorrow will be better.

10/12/12 6:05:54 PM#7

Although it is not a perfect scenario,i wil lshare the light on one simple reason you don't want to remove it.

Imagine you have a RMTY operationthat wants to quickly level up players to use them as bots making money.

You could simply have 5 bots sit there in a group while a couple real players power level them.So those players sitting there would do absolutely NOTHING at all and be given a fully capable player.

At least with the skillup system as in FFXI for example you force players to actually play the game.Even then there are many who simply powerlevel to max level then work on the skills later.

A player that cheats or powerlevels to max will have no skills.that player might carry the tag of a level 90 but in reality plays like a level 5 because it has no skills.MOST games have level checks and give a penalty to fighting creatures to ofar and above,i think skill checks shoudl be used instead of level checks.

That way a player trying  to fight a level 50 with level 2 skills,would not even hit the creature and would not get any skillups.

Really the only peoblem is that it is treated as a time=reward systm.it is a tough argument because just like in real liffe a person that does the same routine over and over wil be much more skilled than someone picking up a tennis raquet for the first time.

 

 

http://www.youtube.com/user/Napolianboo#p/u/15/rCYLLQCNc1w
Samoan Diamond

  DOGMA1138

Novice Member

Joined: 8/25/11
Posts: 477

10/12/12 6:14:09 PM#8
Originally posted by Kyleran
Originally posted by Enigmatus
Uh...I'm not familiar with the "Use to Improve" thing you speak of.

He's talking about leveling up skills by using them, see Darkfall for an example.

And in that game when it first launched many players were macroing and botting to level up their skills to high levels when they weren't even at the keyboard.

There were "bloodwalls" and macro swimming and the like.

He's saying its not possible to create a good skill based system that can't be exploited by the player base.

He might be right.

 

Eve has, or atleast had a pretty good skill system, the problem is it was learned in real time, back in the day when i first tried it i got my brand new ship with a kick ass mining laser that had a 24 hours cool down, but when i realized it was 24 hours irl i closed the client never to open it again :P

The funny thing is that i know of more people that used bots to level skills in games like Oblivion, and Skyrim than in MMO's...

  Quizzical

Guide

Joined: 12/11/08
Posts: 14300

10/12/12 6:32:48 PM#9

A lot depends on how it's implemented.

Good luck trying to macro the adventuring discovery skills in Uncharted Waters Online, for example.  It's "use to improve", but a single use may entail sailing a long distance to a landing point not marked on any in-game map, then landing there, then running to a spot on the landing point that doesn't even have an in-game map, then using the skill.  And you have to deal with various disasters at sea and getting attacked by ships while you're sailing, and then getting attacked by various mobs on land after you land.  In many cases, it might take you half an hour to get credit for your one use of the skill, and you get no credit at all if you don't find the exact spot.

  madazz

Elite Member

Joined: 10/07/03
Posts: 1406

10/12/12 6:36:16 PM#10

I liked UO's skill system. 

Tons of skills to choose from.

To max any of them it use to cost 100 points.

You had 700 points max to use up. Meaning you can master 7 skills.

  gravesworn

Novice Member

Joined: 6/15/12
Posts: 325

10/12/12 6:53:08 PM#11
I actually didnt mind the skilling up in darkfall, the botting and macroing they had in the early days messed the entire game up, I am not sure how a developer keeps this from happening though. I have yet to see an mmo without botters or macroers, including wow. I hope the new darkfall doesnt fall victim to these practices again and drive the player base away.
  kaiser3282

Tipster

Joined: 5/21/08
Posts: 2719

10/12/12 6:54:36 PM#12

Dont really see how it could possibly considered any worse, or more exploitable, than your standard XP level based games.

People exploit to get their skills maxed out fast.

People exploit to get max level fast.

But in both situations, you will still catch up eventually. What matters more is how extensive of a grind it is, not which type of system it uses. For example Darkfall 1 took many months to max out your skill, but there are also level based games that take months to hit max level. Eithe rgame would take just a slong for a new player to catch up.

There is one difference I see though, and which I think would make skill based games more desirable to someone like the OP. In a skill based game, such as Darkfall or EVE, you can focus in developing specific skills early on which make you useful in group play. You may not be as good overall as some of the others, but you can at least be rather effective in that 1 field. In a level based game though, you typically have no option. Youre just some lowbie who will get 1 shotted, do absolutely nothing to the max level enemies, and overall just drag your entire team down.

Take 50 fairly new players in games like EVE and Darkfall vs 10 vets and the newbies will likely lose, but can at least take down a few of the vets if they focused on the right types of skills early.

Go into a game like WoW, WAR, Rift, etc and put 50 low level players vs 10 maxed out players and you will most likely see every one of those lowbies get 1-2 shot (most likely several of them at a time with AoEs) while doing like 1% HP worth of damage to the maxed out players, if theyre lucky to do even that much. Build and gear wont really matter for the lowbies. They have no way to compete at all.

  hangakugz

Novice Member

Joined: 4/25/12
Posts: 2

10/12/12 7:02:35 PM#13

I like the use-to-improve system although I only know this system from 9Dragons.

There you play martial arts, so in this case I see this system very appropriate, because the perfection of martial arts relies in practice.

With this system, in 9Dragons you feel like you are really getting stronger as long as you play.

However, this is a game based on grinding, so leveling the skills is a motivation. Maybe another games with another philosophy don't need this system, reading a magic book to inmediately learn a skill has more sense...

hangaku Xfire Miniprofile
  Quirhid

Elite Member

Joined: 1/28/05
Posts: 5967

Correcting wrongs on the Internet...

 
OP  10/12/12 7:50:18 PM#14

Originally posted by Wizardry

Although it is not a perfect scenario,i wil lshare the light on one simple reason you don't want to remove it.

Imagine you have a RMTY operationthat wants to quickly level up players to use them as bots making money.

You could simply have 5 bots sit there in a group while a couple real players power level them.So those players sitting there would do absolutely NOTHING at all and be given a fully capable player.

At least with the skillup system as in FFXI for example you force players to actually play the game.Even then there are many who simply powerlevel to max level then work on the skills later.

A player that cheats or powerlevels to max will have no skills.that player might carry the tag of a level 90 but in reality plays like a level 5 because it has no skills.MOST games have level checks and give a penalty to fighting creatures to ofar and above,i think skill checks shoudl be used instead of level checks.

That way a player trying  to fight a level 50 with level 2 skills,would not even hit the creature and would not get any skillups.

Really the only peoblem is that it is treated as a time=reward systm.it is a tough argument because just like in real liffe a person that does the same routine over and over wil be much more skilled than someone picking up a tennis raquet for the first time.

 

 

Originally posted by Quizzical

A lot depends on how it's implemented.

Good luck trying to macro the adventuring discovery skills in Uncharted Waters Online, for example.  It's "use to improve", but a single use may entail sailing a long distance to a landing point not marked on any in-game map, then landing there, then running to a spot on the landing point that doesn't even have an in-game map, then using the skill.  And you have to deal with various disasters at sea and getting attacked by ships while you're sailing, and then getting attacked by various mobs on land after you land.  In many cases, it might take you half an hour to get credit for your one use of the skill, and you get no credit at all if you don't find the exact spot.

It seems more things can go wrong with it than right - it is a vulnerable system. Is there some advantage to using use-to-improve over some other system, such as receiving universal skillpoints (or XP) which you can then allocate to the skills you want? Is it worth it, to emulate reality?

I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been -Wayne Gretzky

  Quizzical

Guide

Joined: 12/11/08
Posts: 14300

10/12/12 8:06:20 PM#15
Originally posted by Quirhid

Originally posted by Quizzical

A lot depends on how it's implemented.

Good luck trying to macro the adventuring discovery skills in Uncharted Waters Online, for example.  It's "use to improve", but a single use may entail sailing a long distance to a landing point not marked on any in-game map, then landing there, then running to a spot on the landing point that doesn't even have an in-game map, then using the skill.  And you have to deal with various disasters at sea and getting attacked by ships while you're sailing, and then getting attacked by various mobs on land after you land.  In many cases, it might take you half an hour to get credit for your one use of the skill, and you get no credit at all if you don't find the exact spot.

It seems more things can go wrong with it than right - it is a vulnerable system. Is there some advantage to using use-to-improve over some other system, such as receiving universal skillpoints (or XP) which you can then allocate to the skills you want? Is it worth it, to emulate reality?

Again, it depends on the game.

In UWO, for most players, there are vast swaths of the game that they'll barely ever touch.  The game economy relies on the forced specialization to a considerable degree.  And use-to-improve has the advantage that the portions of the game that you have high skill ranks for are the portions of the game that you participate in a lot--hopefully because they're the portions that you like.

In UWO, there isn't a monolithic "this is your experience level" indicator.  There are three separate main experience levels, as well as three separate fame levels (which is basically a different type of experience), in addition to each skill being leveled separately.  And that's in addition to having several aides that are leveled separately in three types of experience and six attributes, having school skills that let you grab an arbitrary subset of them (though you can only enable a few at a time), having a private farm that is leveled separately in several ways, and so forth.  And that's all completely independent of your gear and your ship.  It's not a matter of "this gear is better than that gear", either; it would be a trivial matter to come up with 30 dfferent sets of gear such that each had circumstances in which it was obviously far better than any of the others.

Knowing a player's level in one thing tells you basically zilch about his level in anything else.  Trying to shove everything into a system that lets one say "this player is higher level than that player" would pretty much break the game.  Granted, UWO is a very unusual game.  But that's my point:  it depends on the game.

  Apraxis

Apprentice Member

Joined: 9/28/05
Posts: 1515

10/13/12 3:19:13 AM#16
Originally posted by Quirhid

It seems more things can go wrong with it than right - it is a vulnerable system. Is there some advantage to using use-to-improve over some other system, such as receiving universal skillpoints (or XP) which you can then allocate to the skills you want? Is it worth it, to emulate reality?

Well. XP to skillpoints is in a lot of cases almost as easy to exploit as use to improve with bots and macroing.

Therefore a skill over time like in EvE is rather solid, but with another disadvantage, a new player starting a few years later can almost never catch the veterans.. he may become useful, but thats it about it.

On the other hand i am not fan of vertical progression anyways, rather do it horizontal, and then you can avoid all of the macroing/botting exploits.

I think of a system where you learn your skills from different trainers spread all over the world(a little bit like shadowbane), and where you have to convince them to learn you the new skill(with money, or a task/quest or whatever). And learning the skill should be some kind of tutorial, which will show you the skill, and what you can do with it. Because in my mind almost any character skill should also involve some amount of player skill, and that should be trained or at least shown in that tutorial.

If you have done the tutorial you got the skill.. no more vertical progression required, no way to macroing or botting. And i seriously dont see any good reason for any kind of vertical progression. And now a example from a themepark game, look at GW2.. there is vertical progression, but it will be neglected almost immediately by downleveling you while entering a lower level zone. With other words, they give you vertical progression and take it away immediately.. rather insane, isnt it?

So why not just drop vertical progression entirely and just progress horizontal.. and you can avoid instantly almost any problem you will have with any vertical progression system. And further more, you can make the skilling up more of a roleplaying thing and not pure grind/botting/macroing.. because look at it, vertical progression is almost always either grind, botting or macroing. There is no whatsoever advantage in a vertical progression.

PS: And about the arguement that you want to feel more powerful than a noob just starting. Is that really as much of a problem? Look at GW2 and ask yourself.. is it a problem? Because in GW2 your progression is mainly horizontal progression and a little bit of gear progression, but almost no horizontal progression.. although they do the way of horizontal progression, just with taking it away a few seconds later. And is there really an advantage to mimic horizontal progression.. do player need the feeling of getting more HP over time? Or would it in the case of GW2 not be as good as now, when you do not progress horizontally at all? Just the skill points/treat points? Would that not enough progression, because in fact you dont get more progression anyways in GW2(and the gear progression of course, which is also rather soft)

  Banaghran

Novice Member

Joined: 1/17/12
Posts: 872

10/13/12 5:13:17 AM#17
Originally posted by Quirhid

It seems more things can go wrong with it than right - it is a vulnerable system. Is there some advantage to using use-to-improve over some other system, such as receiving universal skillpoints (or XP) which you can then allocate to the skills you want? Is it worth it, to emulate reality?

I think the main drive there is to make players different , you will be best at things you enjoy most, or you want most. :)

But ofcourse it clashes with "nouveau mmo" design patterns, when people under the impression that they know perfectly well what makes ANY game good frown upon even things like dedicated healer or buffer characters, another thing we seem to be "done with". :)

The implementation is the most important part, as was already pointed out.

Flame on!

:)

  phantomghost

Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/05/11
Posts: 704

"Kill me, my man kills you, that's how you lose."

10/13/12 5:25:59 AM#18
Originally posted by madazz

I liked UO's skill system. 

Tons of skills to choose from.

To max any of them it use to cost 100 points.

You had 700 points max to use up. Meaning you can master 7 skills.

I kind of like this type of system as well.  Maybe not necessarily 700 pts but enough points to build your chatacter type... if u want 7 skills to 100 u get 7 skills... if u want more some cannot be 100.

 

Although I think there should be basic skills that everybody or certain class types should get that need to be use to improve.    From there it should depend on specializations.

"I see they watchin' me and takin' notes on my moves, Run up on me it's all I want I ain't got nothin' to lose."

  ste2000

Apprentice Member

Joined: 2/28/04
Posts: 4736

10/13/12 5:35:10 AM#19
Originally posted by Quirhid

Haven't we seen enough failure to ditch it forever from MMOs. Its fine in a SP game where you are not competing against anyone, but in a multiplayer environment it will always be exploited in one way or another.

Look BF3 and CoD are still sold, why not playing that instead of expeting a MMO to be a PvP arena.

The point of MMORPG is progression.

Improving your character (both skill and equipment) is what keep people playing a MMO.

If you take out progression from a MMO, it just become a normal Multiplayer game, in which case you are spoilt for choice.

OP you chose the wrong genre to enjoy Esport PvP.

So to answer your question, NO, we are not done, and we never will.

  fenistil

Novice Member

Joined: 9/22/11
Posts: 3016

10/13/12 6:32:55 AM#20

System from UO or DFO and similar are bad because they can be easily macroed / botted - well actually UO was in big way depending on macroing including build in macros.  Which is BAD. 

 

On the other hand progression and character development are bread and butter of mmorpg's and I don't want those to go away.    It just have to be implemented in a way that is not easily botted / macroed.   UWO ideas are actualy ok.  

SWG idea of looking for specific places with specific resources and using instalations to get some of it out was also good idea (it was all tied to character development if you consider it in wide definition of it). Though SWG itself still followed UO macroing which was very bad.  

 

IDEA is good,  implementations are frequently bad.

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