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The Pub at MMORPG.COM  » How About an Entirely Horizontal MMORPG

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61 posts found
  BadSpock

Hard Core Member

Joined: 8/21/04
Posts: 7769

Logic be damned!

12/05/12 1:37:53 PM#21

Even Minecraft has progression man...

The real trick is to make people want to play the game and enjoy themselves without having to worry about progression - it just kind of happens in the back ground...

MMOs are generally extremely, extremely focused on some form of progression and throw it right in your face every chance they get.

Even the great sandbox hope - EvE - throws progression in your face at every turn. You want to fly THAT ship and use those modules? Play for another couple of months. Your skill and dedication as a player doesn't really matter, you have to fill out those skill certs first son!

It's because in computer language everything has to be assigned a value - and we the players want to see those values.

If you made a game that had skill progression but you hid it, so players would not know they were now at 67 Swordsmanship instead of 34 Swordsmanship, they just had to "feel" like they were getting better with swords...

Would it work?

I doubt it.

 

Now Playing: Destiny, WoW

  Icewhite

Made History

Joined: 7/11/11
Posts: 6495

Pink, it's like red but not quite.

12/05/12 1:51:16 PM#22
Originally posted by greenreen

What you speak of is what has kept me up late nights trying to work out and I don't think it would appeal to many.

Humans have a drive to "get things".

It's difficult to imagine mmo gamers not constrantly measuring themselves or their status against all other gamers, isn't it? MMOs are traditionally just shallow little pools of status symbol, their players as vain and prone to strut as teenage boys.

We assume it could work, in the same way the Nirvana or Shangri-la could work, if only it weren't for the damned humans being involved.

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.

  Meleagar

Novice Member

Joined: 6/12/09
Posts: 407

 
OP  12/05/12 2:27:00 PM#23
Originally posted by greenreen

 

You could plan your idea out into documents and give it a test run on a kickstarter if you get staff together if you are ambitious and can get together some capable people with the same ideas.
 

I'm not a game developer nor do I have that kind of ambition. I'm just expressing some ideas - like I do on my blog here - with the hope that it contributes in some way to the creation of such a game.  You never know where an idea might take hold.

  nariusseldon

Elite Member

Joined: 12/21/07
Posts: 20545

12/05/12 2:31:33 PM#24
Originally posted by Icewhite
Originally posted by greenreen

What you speak of is what has kept me up late nights trying to work out and I don't think it would appeal to many.

Humans have a drive to "get things".

It's difficult to imagine mmo gamers not constrantly measuring themselves or their status against all other gamers, isn't it? MMOs are traditionally just shallow little pools of status symbol, their players as vain and prone to strut as teenage boys.

We assume it could work, in the same way the Nirvana or Shangri-la could work, if only it weren't for the damned humans being involved.

Well, given that gearscore, wow-heroes, and all sort of rating website/tools are extremely popular, it is safe to assume that measuring is not going to go away.

But, you are wrong that status is only important to teenagers. There is plenty of scientific evidence that status, even artificial ones, is important to humans. Here is one paper on that subject:

http://spq.sagepub.com/content/67/1/103.short

I would not dismiss something like this as just "shallow teenage thinking". It is a pretty strong motivator of humans, like it or not.

  waynejr2

Elite Member

Joined: 4/12/11
Posts: 3854

RIP City of Heroes!

12/05/12 2:35:44 PM#25
Originally posted by Icewhite
Originally posted by greenreen

What you speak of is what has kept me up late nights trying to work out and I don't think it would appeal to many.

Humans have a drive to "get things".

It's difficult to imagine mmo gamers not constrantly measuring themselves or their status against all other gamers, isn't it? MMOs are traditionally just shallow little pools of status symbol, their players as vain and prone to strut as teenage boys.

We assume it could work, in the same way the Nirvana or Shangri-la could work, if only it weren't for the damned humans being involved.

 You believe that status is just something teenage boys do?  Seriously?

The bartle test even has Achiever as one of it's major aspects.  It's not something you can easily dismiss.  Well, apparently you did.

  Icewhite

Made History

Joined: 7/11/11
Posts: 6495

Pink, it's like red but not quite.

12/05/12 2:43:17 PM#26
Originally posted by nariusseldon
But, you are wrong that status is only important to teenagers.

Well then, it's good I didn't say that then.

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.

  Meleagar

Novice Member

Joined: 6/12/09
Posts: 407

 
OP  12/05/12 2:44:59 PM#27
Originally posted by coretex666

First off, I think this belongs to "Game concepts" section.

As to the idea, I am afraid it would not have the potential to maintain sufficient playerbase for a long time. Why? Because people do like some sort of progression. They like it in real life and they like it in MMOs.

Unless of course it offers something that has not been seen before, something amazing, something you have not described in the OP.

People engage in all sorts of games, hobbies, sports, and liesure and entertainment activities that have no meaningful vertical progression. I'm not arguing that people shouldn't enjoy vertical progression activities, I'm just saying that there's plenty of successful non-vertical entertainment in the world. It's not like you can accumulate "more powerful cards that most others can't get" in poker, canasta, bridge, spades. It's not like you can go into a domino tournament with your own dominos that have extra dots.  People spent endless hours playing "pong", and other multi-person games that had no vertical progression. Where is the vertical gear or stat progression in football, baseball, or soccer?  It doesn't exist in many FPS games or sports or simulation games. Most standard board games have no vertical progression. People invest endless hours in hobbies that have zero vertical progression.

The argument that "people like vertical progression" is, IMO, obviously a non-sequitur. Sure, they do in a lot of things, but in a lot of other things that they invest a whole lot of time in, vertical progression isn't even a consideration.

Again, I'm not arguing against vertical progression in all games, it just seems very odd and narrow to me that virtually every MMORPG ever made is almost entirely focused on vertical progression.

It's like when sound first got into movies; every single movie was a musical. Every. Single. One.  They couldn't imagine a movie *not* being a musical. Then years and years later some guy pitched a non-musical movie, and most of the studios laughed at the idea. Why would anyone go to a movie that didnt have song and dance?  It's like they totally forgot that BEFORE sound, NO movie was a "musical". It's like a strange quirk of the evolution of MMORPGs that funneled everything down a very narrow focus on vertical progression.

Almost like it relates to something psychological in many people. Hmm. Sounds like a future blog post to me.

 

  Icewhite

Made History

Joined: 7/11/11
Posts: 6495

Pink, it's like red but not quite.

12/05/12 2:45:28 PM#28
Originally posted by waynejr2
You believe that status is just something teenage boys do?  Seriously?

It's easier to answer arguments that someone (anyone) actually made, isn't it?

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.

  nariusseldon

Elite Member

Joined: 12/21/07
Posts: 20545

12/05/12 2:46:49 PM#29
Originally posted by Icewhite
Originally posted by nariusseldon
But, you are wrong that status is only important to teenagers.

Well then, it's good I didn't say that then.

And it is good that now we are all clear that status is an important human motivation.

  greenreen

Hard Core Member

Joined: 11/19/12
Posts: 1512

12/05/12 2:52:37 PM#30
Originally posted by Meleagar
Originally posted by coretex666
...snip

People engage in all sorts of games, hobbies, sports, and liesure and entertainment activities that have no meaningful vertical progression. I'm not arguing that people shouldn't enjoy vertical progression activities, I'm just saying that there's plenty of successful non-vertical entertainment in the world. It's not like you can accumulate "more powerful cards that most others can't get" in poker, canasta, bridge, spades. It's not like you can go into a domino tournament with your own dominos that have extra dots.  People spent endless hours playing "pong", and other multi-person games that had no vertical progression. Where is the vertical gear or stat progression in football, baseball, or soccer?  It doesn't exist in many FPS games or sports or simulation games. Most standard board games have no vertical progression. People invest endless hours in hobbies that have zero vertical progression.

...snip

How many of the hobbies that people do require a cash shop? I don't know about you but I have to be talked into spending money and I can't say I have ever bought from a cash shop.  Only thing that really jumps out at me is something game related with people that do Warhammer miniatures, those I heard cost a lot. Sports and cards are out of that unless you are playing competitive. Even when I played euchre for money at clubs it was cheap entry fees.

We play cards at holidays for my family and it's always for the competition. Whoever wins gets to choose what they take home from the dinner. There is also lots of smack talking during spades matches. We do it because we are competitive, not just because there is a gain from it. I don't know if that is tradition for any other families but that's the one thing I look forward to on holidays are the screaming debates on politics and religion and the card playing because then I get to be the one to walk out with all the white meat turkey and flaunt it in my brother's face shaking that ziploc bag at him lol

  Icewhite

Made History

Joined: 7/11/11
Posts: 6495

Pink, it's like red but not quite.

12/05/12 2:52:38 PM#31
Originally posted by nariusseldon
And it is good that now we are all clear that status is an important human motivation.

Better.  :)

 

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.

  nariusseldon

Elite Member

Joined: 12/21/07
Posts: 20545

12/05/12 2:52:49 PM#32
Originally posted by Meleagar

 

People engage in all sorts of games, hobbies, sports, and liesure and entertainment activities that have no meaningful vertical progression. I'm not arguing that people shouldn't enjoy vertical progression activities, I'm just saying that there's plenty of successful non-vertical entertainment in the world. It's not like you can accumulate "more powerful cards that most others can't get" in poker, canasta, bridge, spades. It's not like you can go into a domino tournament with your own dominos that have extra dots.  People spent endless hours playing "pong", and other multi-person games that had no vertical progression. Where is the vertical gear or stat progression in football, baseball, or soccer?  It doesn't exist in many FPS games or sports or simulation games. Most standard board games have no vertical progression. People invest endless hours in hobbies that have zero vertical progression.


 

may be not verticle progression, in the sense of accumulating stuff in a MMORPG, but in almost all of the competitive games you cite, there *is* progression, and status plays a role.

In poker, you have amount of money won. In fact, more money you have, you have more psychological power over your opponent since it is harder to "bankrupt" you.

In chess, and bridge, and many competitive sports like ping pong, there is the ELO ranking score. That is also used in many online competitive games.

In baseball, you have your stats (if you play competitive games).

Obviously it is much harder to improve your chess ranking, than acquiring the new armor from a MMORPG dungeon .. but that is the point. Human, in general, crave status, and MMORPG provides an artificial, easy and cheap way to satisfy that need.

  Rossboss

Novice Member

Joined: 10/26/10
Posts: 241

12/05/12 3:06:00 PM#33

I would love this game except that it might get boring as far as standard combat goes unless it's AI that learns from you. What I mean is killing an unending amount of rats/mongrels/snakes would get really boring because their behaviors are entirely predictable. I could definitely see this being a PvP only MMORPG, would be perfect for drop in style gaming where players could join zones based on their amount of collectables they have, rewards could be receiving cards based on the amount of kills or the amount of work you put into getting kills. This actually sounds more like a phone game more so than a console or pc title. This would be a game that people could play in short bursts of like 15-30 minutes per encounter or area to keep players satisfied without feeling like it's some overly hardcore version of minecraft.

Free roam crafting is the future really. Manually placing materials on a pattern to create a piece of armor would be awesome. Where all you get is a basic layout for what area your armor is supposed to fit in and a full list of items you have.

I played WoW up until WotLK, played RoM for 2 years and now Rift.
I am F2P player. I support games when I feel they deserve my money and I want the items enough.
I don't troll, and I don't take kindly to trolls.

  Meleagar

Novice Member

Joined: 6/12/09
Posts: 407

 
OP  12/05/12 3:10:57 PM#34
Originally posted by greenreen
Originally posted by Meleagar
Originally posted by coretex666
...snip

People engage in all sorts of games, hobbies, sports, and liesure and entertainment activities that have no meaningful vertical progression. I'm not arguing that people shouldn't enjoy vertical progression activities, I'm just saying that there's plenty of successful non-vertical entertainment in the world. It's not like you can accumulate "more powerful cards that most others can't get" in poker, canasta, bridge, spades. It's not like you can go into a domino tournament with your own dominos that have extra dots.  People spent endless hours playing "pong", and other multi-person games that had no vertical progression. Where is the vertical gear or stat progression in football, baseball, or soccer?  It doesn't exist in many FPS games or sports or simulation games. Most standard board games have no vertical progression. People invest endless hours in hobbies that have zero vertical progression.

...snip

How many of the hobbies that people do require a cash shop? I don't know about you but I have to be talked into spending money and I can't say I have ever bought from a cash shop.  Only thing that really jumps out at me is something game related with people that do Warhammer miniatures, those I heard cost a lot. Sports and cards are out of that unless you are playing competitive. Even when I played euchre for money at clubs it was cheap entry fees.

We play cards at holidays for my family and it's always for the competition. Whoever wins gets to choose what they take home from the dinner. There is also lots of smack talking during spades matches. We do it because we are competitive, not just because there is a gain from it. I don't know if that is tradition for any other families but that's the one thing I look forward to on holidays are the screaming debates on politics and religion and the card playing because then I get to be the one to walk out with all the white meat turkey and flaunt it in my brother's face shaking that ziploc bag at him lol

Competition doesn't have anything to do with vertical progression - in fact, many games and activities that are competitive are only meaningfully so because the playing field (including what one would call "gear") is fair and even. 

Most hobbies require a cash shop. People that build and fly radio controlled games pay at the cash shop - a real life one. I don't know of any hobbies that do not require a cash shop - a real life one.  Play the guitar as a hobby? Paint?  Bowling - tennis - even when you go play putt-putt. There's no vertical progression on a putt-putt course, unless you count the inclines and ramps.

 

  Meleagar

Novice Member

Joined: 6/12/09
Posts: 407

 
OP  12/05/12 3:16:12 PM#35
Originally posted by Rossboss

I would love this game except that it might get boring as far as standard combat goes unless it's AI that learns from you. What I mean is killing an unending amount of rats/mongrels/snakes would get really boring because their behaviors are entirely predictable.

At the end of the day, killing anything repetitively is boring, but at least with this kind of game you can go wherever you want in the world because it's all the same "level" and fight different stuff, and you don't feel compelled to do so because you aren't trying to level. You can do other things that bring in the materials, tokens or gold you want.

  nariusseldon

Elite Member

Joined: 12/21/07
Posts: 20545

12/05/12 3:16:52 PM#36
Originally posted by Rossboss

What I mean is killing an unending amount of rats/mongrels/snakes would get really boring because their behaviors are entirely predictable.

I question that statement. Diablo 3 combat is still fun after so many hours. The mobs are kind of predictable (normal mobs have several types of behavior from rushing you, or evading and throw fireball .. and elite ones have a few combo of stuff they do), but a) it is still challengeing, and b) fun to mow down 10s of mobs as long as there is some variations.

I think it is only boring if it is predictable and easy. If it is somewhat predictable but challenging, it is ok.

  User Deleted
12/05/12 3:24:32 PM#37

An game doesn’t have to appeal to everyone. Just a large enough niche to be profitable. A game that doesn’t appeal to the gear obsessed, status needy, immature, show off, some of you describe as the typical MMORPG goer might actually find a good audience of its own with a community that doesn’t fit the typical mold. Wouldn’t that be nice?

 

However, it seems the OP isn’t describing a true MMORPG and is really after something else MMO I am hesitant to label. A video game RPG is defined by forms of vertical progression which is what separates it in part from any other shooter or action game into a unique genre. What they note is a lot of features that aren’t wrapped into a point to make a complete game and could be tacked onto anything really. They don’t make a game by themselves.

 

If the main thing you do in the game is kill stuff and take its loot then how you go about that will start to define it as some form of hybrid. I am reminded of Borderlands as a hybrid shooter (FPS) / RPG (vertical progression by talent trees.)

  Meleagar

Novice Member

Joined: 6/12/09
Posts: 407

 
OP  12/05/12 3:25:06 PM#38
Originally posted by nariusseldon
Originally posted by Meleagar

 

People engage in all sorts of games, hobbies, sports, and liesure and entertainment activities that have no meaningful vertical progression. I'm not arguing that people shouldn't enjoy vertical progression activities, I'm just saying that there's plenty of successful non-vertical entertainment in the world. It's not like you can accumulate "more powerful cards that most others can't get" in poker, canasta, bridge, spades. It's not like you can go into a domino tournament with your own dominos that have extra dots.  People spent endless hours playing "pong", and other multi-person games that had no vertical progression. Where is the vertical gear or stat progression in football, baseball, or soccer?  It doesn't exist in many FPS games or sports or simulation games. Most standard board games have no vertical progression. People invest endless hours in hobbies that have zero vertical progression.


 

may be not verticle progression, in the sense of accumulating stuff in a MMORPG, but in almost all of the competitive games you cite, there *is* progression, and status plays a role.

In poker, you have amount of money won. In fact, more money you have, you have more psychological power over your opponent since it is harder to "bankrupt" you.

In chess, and bridge, and many competitive sports like ping pong, there is the ELO ranking score. That is also used in many online competitive games.

In baseball, you have your stats (if you play competitive games).

Obviously it is much harder to improve your chess ranking, than acquiring the new armor from a MMORPG dungeon .. but that is the point. Human, in general, crave status, and MMORPG provides an artificial, easy and cheap way to satisfy that need.

I'm talking about vertical and gear stat progression within the game, not titles and status and money you get *outside* the game itself. You don't get more powerful ping pong paddles or pawns that can shoot lasers out of their eyes in chess.  Those are entirely horizontal games.  When you play tournaments in any sport to become the champion, you don't accumulate gear advantages over the players you meet - you're both playing with the same gear. You dont get a hockey stick +7 str or a football +2 against interception.

Seriously, what's the big deal? There are countless games, hobbies and activities that have **no** vertical stat/gear progression and people pour millions of hours and hundreds of millions of dollars into those things every year. We all know this.  There's no sense trying to call a leader board, playoff brackets or a title "vertical progression".  You all know what I'm talking about here, and those things have nothing to do with the kind of vertical progression we're discussing in an MMOG.

The argument that an MMOG can't succeed without stat progression is just not founded in reality, IMO.

  Meleagar

Novice Member

Joined: 6/12/09
Posts: 407

 
OP  12/05/12 3:28:19 PM#39
Originally posted by Crazy_Stick

However, it seems the OP isn’t describing a true MMORPG and is really after something else MMO I am hesitant to label. A video game RPG is defined by forms of vertical progression which is what separates it in part from any other shooter or action game into a unique genre. What they note is a lot of features that aren’t wrapped into a point to make a complete game and could be tacked onto anything really. They don’t make a game by themselves.

There is nothing explicit or implicit in the term "massviely multiplayer role-playing game" or even "role-playing game" that refers to vertical progression.  That may be the narrow, myopic choice developers have decided to utilize, but just as "talkie" used to be synonymous with "musical", the current association doesn't necessarily define the potential of the genre.

  nariusseldon

Elite Member

Joined: 12/21/07
Posts: 20545

12/05/12 3:42:38 PM#40
Originally posted by Meleagar
Originally posted by Crazy_Stick

However, it seems the OP isn’t describing a true MMORPG and is really after something else MMO I am hesitant to label. A video game RPG is defined by forms of vertical progression which is what separates it in part from any other shooter or action game into a unique genre. What they note is a lot of features that aren’t wrapped into a point to make a complete game and could be tacked onto anything really. They don’t make a game by themselves.

There is nothing explicit or implicit in the term "massviely multiplayer role-playing game" or even "role-playing game" that refers to vertical progression.  That may be the narrow, myopic choice developers have decided to utilize, but just as "talkie" used to be synonymous with "musical", the current association doesn't necessarily define the potential of the genre.

I agree. Vertical progression is independent of MMORPG, and CRPG in general. However, it is a very popular gameplay element. Even action/stealth games like Dishonored, and Dead Space has it.

Vertical progression is leveraging a very powerful psychology to make games fun. A devs don't have to use it .. but it is tried and known to work in providing entertainment/pleasure to players.

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