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The Pub at MMORPG.COM  » 10 Things DAoC did right in the early 00s that MMOs today ignore, are ignorant to, or took a decade to catch onto

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  40Hz

Apprentice Member

Joined: 1/18/12
Posts: 36

 
OP  9/06/13 1:22:13 AM#1

Foreword: I'm not claiming DAoC was the perfect end-all-be-all of MMORPGs, nor am I claiming that any of the points below were only found in DAoC.

1: Every content update was heavily tested for weeks/months on a populated, open PLAYER-BASED test server BEFORE mass deployment to regular shards.

2: The chat system doubled as a command prompt for the core game client. You could player query(search for players based on any parameter[name/level/class/guild/location])  your zone, or any zone by doing a search with that zone's name. It also made it very easy to find other players in your current area, players from a certain guild, players of a certain level range, etc. The way it worked also actually fostered social interaction via chat.

Almost all non-combat functions could also be executed from a simple typed command. Games today flood you with tons of visual menus that don't function half as well as a simple command prompt built into the chat system.

3: Crafting ruled the player equipment world. It was really tedious, difficult, time-consuming, and BENEFITIAL. The best armor/weapons in the game were crafted via an item "quality" system and reasonably expensive because they required a large amount of refined or rare resources. It should be noted that these items were not un-attainable for the average Joe, they just cost a lot. Raid and dungeon items were still very good and often had special colors and effects, but top-end crafted items held the title of max possible stats.

4: Replayability. Your options were huge. Three "Realms" (not one or two), each with its own lore/races/classes and entirely separated from each other except in open world PvP. 

Each one of the three realms also had 11 UNIQUE classes (16 currently), which each had different skill paths you could take, making the possibilities vast and interesting. Today's MMORPGs barely manage one starting area/realm with 3-5 tired-to-death cookie cutter classes.

5: PvP/RvR. Three completely segregated and proud "realms" constantly jockeying for realm-wide benefits via "relics". It fostered such a strong nationality for each realm that people of all levels and skills were mobilized and extremely motivated to go and do REAL, non-instanced PvP that actually mattered to everyone. It even mattered to strictly PvE players that never set foot on the frontier to do PvP, because their PvE stats would be mildly affected by the status of your realm's relic control.

6: Mixing high level content with low level content. The zones in each realm had their target level, but they also had pockets of much higher level mobs that were necessary for quests or dropped special items. I think this is important because it makes the world more interesting, mixed, more like a sandbox, less linear, and less like a packaged theme park. (i.e. Mario 64 vs. Crash Bandicoot).

7: Active out-of-game web access to current in-game data. DAoC had a web portal to it's current in-game status that kept track of every player and guild on every server. It also allowed you to see, in real time, what was going on in the 3-realm warfare on your server without even needing to log into the game. This was in 2001. Games today don't even have this level of coverage.

8: Dungeons were open-world, not instanced. A lot of people will probably argue that instanced dungeons are a positive evolution, but I disagree. Instanced dungeons promote solo and exclusive play which can be boring and predictable. I feel like open-world dungeons promote social interaction between players and gently force strangers to work together and find solutions ad-hoc. Often times strangers would become friends through these interactions. It is simply more engaging and memorable in the long run.

9: Darkness Falls. A huge three-realm dungeon, connected to three-realm PvP(RvR) that offered the best of every world. PvP, PvE, strategy, amazing gear...it was all a master stroke combination to get people to come together to really challenge one another to have access to various enticing benefits. Darkness Falls was simply MMO developer genius that I haven't seen repeated since.

10: Guild emblems. This may seem goofy or irrelevant to some but it actually created even more of a guild/realm pride when you and your whole group of friends could run out onto the frontier in matching guild emblems/colors. People knew who you were with visual impact.

  caremuchless

Apprentice Member

Joined: 3/19/11
Posts: 597

Whether you believe you can or believe you cannot, you are right.

9/06/13 1:30:35 AM#2

 /w the op

 

In addition to what you said, one of my favorite things that DAOC did with pvp that I have yet to see,

 

-Stealthers could see other stealthers. This included rogue/thief types and archer types. It added another level to combat.

(rogue types could also climb keep walls)

 

-Some spells that I loved, just haven't seen in any mmos of late, NearSight for one. And never have I seen a spell I liked as visually as RuneCaster flaming that spear that went up into the air and then came down. 

  Serelisk

Apprentice Member

Joined: 8/02/11
Posts: 845

9/06/13 1:45:52 AM#3
A ton of games do #10, I'm pretty sure?... o_O

 

  40Hz

Apprentice Member

Joined: 1/18/12
Posts: 36

 
OP  9/06/13 1:53:38 AM#4
Originally posted by caremuchless

 /w the op

 

In addition to what you said, one of my favorite things that DAOC did with pvp that I have yet to see,

 

-Stealthers could see other stealthers. This included rogue/thief types and archer types. It added another level to combat.

(rogue types could also climb keep walls)

 

-Some spells that I loved, just haven't seen in any mmos of late, NearSight for one. And never have I seen a spell I liked as visually as RuneCaster flaming that spear that went up into the air and then came down. 

I missed the whole stealth point. Good call. DAoC had an amazing stealth system that really had it's own unique way of contributing to PvP with scouting, beyond just owning certain classes with DPS.

  40Hz

Apprentice Member

Joined: 1/18/12
Posts: 36

 
OP  9/06/13 2:18:50 AM#5
Originally posted by Serelisk
A ton of games do #10, I'm pretty sure?... o_O

 

You might be right, but which modern, active games do this? I only know of Aion...

  Utinni

Novice Member

Joined: 7/13/13
Posts: 358

9/06/13 2:22:57 AM#6
Almost all of these points applied to multiple early MMO's. It's what MMORPG was built on and somehow slid off of the foundation into something that can be played on a leapfrog.
  Electro057

Novice Member

Joined: 3/05/09
Posts: 537

9/06/13 2:26:14 AM#7
Originally posted by 40Hz
Originally posted by caremuchless

 /w the op

 

In addition to what you said, one of my favorite things that DAOC did with pvp that I have yet to see,

 

-Stealthers could see other stealthers. This included rogue/thief types and archer types. It added another level to combat.

(rogue types could also climb keep walls)

 

-Some spells that I loved, just haven't seen in any mmos of late, NearSight for one. And never have I seen a spell I liked as visually as RuneCaster flaming that spear that went up into the air and then came down. 

I missed the whole stealth point. Good call. DAoC had an amazing stealth system that really had it's own unique way of contributing to PvP with scouting, beyond just owning certain classes with DPS.

 

On the runecaster spell effect bit, I'm quite surprised but the attack and casting animations for FF:ARR are actually quite amazing. The leather straps on grimoires flop about, the hems and bottoms of robes flail in the etheric winds when you start casting....And I unno, the build up looks really cool.  This is one of the things I like about the game so far....But for the longest times casting hgas been SO BLAND.

Every game I have played till now put absolutely no effort into the casting animations and effects, this is the first one to have that....I unno, it looks like magic is building around the caster...For arcanists atleast.

So I can see why that'd be quite appealing in DAOC if it had very well done spell effects.

Video linked doesn't show attack animations, but they're really cool with geometric sigils and stuff spinning around.

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  Scalpless

Elite Member

Joined: 3/22/07
Posts: 1353

9/06/13 2:42:28 AM#8
Originally posted by 40Hz
Originally posted by Serelisk
A ton of games do #10, I'm pretty sure?... o_O

 

You might be right, but which modern, active games do this? I only know of Aion...

At least GW2 does. It has special guild armor items that have your emblem on them. It also has #7, with things like http://mos.millenium.org/matchups for its RvR matchups. And, arguably, #3 and #5.

With the new wave of RvR titles coming, we may see some healthy competition in this field. Still, I think people tend to forget DAoC's faults in topics like this. For example, its matchups were often really unbalanced, which is something a modern MMO would get bashed about endlessly.

  Alders

Hard Core Member

Joined: 1/28/10
Posts: 1753

I cannot fiddle but I can make a great state of a small city.

9/06/13 2:53:21 AM#9

Too many things have changed player wise, such as attitudes, for a lot of what worked back then to work now.

It's my opinion that current players really wouldn't care at all about faction/realm pride.  We'd probably see one side heavily stacked prior to release with dozens and dozens of rather large guilds teaming up and setting up alliances to guarantee victory.  Once that happens, all the "free agents" will transfer their way or reroll to the winning side.  People won't like losing.

The players themselves would kill any sort of competitive balance any game attempts to implement.

I agree with the OP, but i just can't see most of those elements working with todays players.

  40Hz

Apprentice Member

Joined: 1/18/12
Posts: 36

 
OP  9/06/13 2:54:21 AM#10
Originally posted by Scalpless
Originally posted by 40Hz
Originally posted by Serelisk
A ton of games do #10, I'm pretty sure?... o_O

 

You might be right, but which modern, active games do this? I only know of Aion...

At least GW2 does. It has special guild armor items that have your emblem on them. It also has #7, with things like http://mos.millenium.org/matchups for its RvR matchups. And, arguably, #3 and #5.

With the new wave of RvR titles coming, we may see some healthy competition in this field. Still, I think people tend to forget DAoC's faults in topics like this. For example, its matchups were often really unbalanced, which is something a modern MMO would get bashed about endlessly.

You make a good point.

By no means was I trying to say DAoC was the perfect MMORPG. It definitely had it's flaws and many aspects of it are very dated by today's standards.

My point with this thread was to try and create some discussion about how people feel about today's options vs. the options that were provided early on in the MMORPG timeline.

  vorpal28

Novice Member

Joined: 7/07/05
Posts: 89

9/06/13 3:07:40 AM#11

EQ and AC did the majority of those points before DAOC.

Personally I found the PVP scene on Darktide to be one of the best of any PVP game I've played to date.

  40Hz

Apprentice Member

Joined: 1/18/12
Posts: 36

 
OP  9/06/13 3:18:45 AM#12
Originally posted by vorpal28

EQ and AC did the majority of those points before DAOC.

Personally I found the PVP scene on Darktide to be one of the best of any PVP game I've played to date.

Darktide was a lot of fun.

Remember the Fort Tethana wars around 2000? Before Blood took over the PK scene?

  Scalpless

Elite Member

Joined: 3/22/07
Posts: 1353

9/06/13 3:27:43 AM#13
Originally posted by 40Hz
Originally posted by Scalpless
Originally posted by 40Hz
Originally posted by Serelisk
A ton of games do #10, I'm pretty sure?... o_O

 

You might be right, but which modern, active games do this? I only know of Aion...

At least GW2 does. It has special guild armor items that have your emblem on them. It also has #7, with things like http://mos.millenium.org/matchups for its RvR matchups. And, arguably, #3 and #5.

With the new wave of RvR titles coming, we may see some healthy competition in this field. Still, I think people tend to forget DAoC's faults in topics like this. For example, its matchups were often really unbalanced, which is something a modern MMO would get bashed about endlessly.

You make a good point.

By no means was I trying to say DAoC was the perfect MMORPG. It definitely had it's flaws and many aspects of it are very dated by today's standards.

My point with this thread was to try and create some discussion about how people feel about today's options vs. the options that were provided early on in the MMORPG timeline.

I think we have different options. Now, the only new, released game with RvR is GW2 and many DAoC fans were very disappointed with it. It lacks many of the features DAoC was loved for, such as your #4. However, the reason why it's missing all the unique classes is that it (almost successfully) tried to eliminate the unbalanced matchups I mentioned by using a server vs. server approach to RvR and autobalancing it. Is that better or worse? I don't think it's either. However, I'd say it's more modern, because the current generation of MMO players hates losing constantly more than the DAoC generation did. I think you must give them relatively balanced matchups or they'll just quit.

Darkness Falls is the one feature I really miss. I don't think ESO will have something like it. Maybe CU will? Haven't been following that for a while. GW2 teased us with its DF-like dungeon, but it's just different enough it misses the mark completely. I even remember an ANet dev saying they'd love to make a proper DF later on and then... yep, nothing.

I really hope ESO's RvR is good and successful, because then both ANet and Zenimax will have to put more effort in it. Competition is a great motivator.

  40Hz

Apprentice Member

Joined: 1/18/12
Posts: 36

 
OP  9/06/13 3:41:12 AM#14
Originally posted by Scalpless
Originally posted by 40Hz
Originally posted by Scalpless
Originally posted by 40Hz
Originally posted by Serelisk
A ton of games do #10, I'm pretty sure?... o_O

 

You might be right, but which modern, active games do this? I only know of Aion...

At least GW2 does. It has special guild armor items that have your emblem on them. It also has #7, with things like http://mos.millenium.org/matchups for its RvR matchups. And, arguably, #3 and #5.

With the new wave of RvR titles coming, we may see some healthy competition in this field. Still, I think people tend to forget DAoC's faults in topics like this. For example, its matchups were often really unbalanced, which is something a modern MMO would get bashed about endlessly.

You make a good point.

By no means was I trying to say DAoC was the perfect MMORPG. It definitely had it's flaws and many aspects of it are very dated by today's standards.

My point with this thread was to try and create some discussion about how people feel about today's options vs. the options that were provided early on in the MMORPG timeline.

I think we have different options. Now, the only new, released game with RvR is GW2 and many DAoC fans were very disappointed with it. It lacks many of the features DAoC was loved for, such as your #4. However, the reason why it's missing all the unique classes is that it (almost successfully) tried to eliminate the unbalanced matchups I mentioned by using a server vs. server approach to RvR and autobalancing it. Is that better or worse? I don't think it's either. However, I'd say it's more modern, because the current generation of MMO players hates losing constantly more than the DAoC generation did. I think you must give them relatively balanced matchups or they'll just quit.

Darkness Falls is the one feature I really miss. I don't think ESO will have something like it. Maybe CU will? Haven't been following that for a while. GW2 teased us with its DF-like dungeon, but it's just different enough it misses the mark completely. I even remember an ANet dev saying they'd love to make a proper DF later on and then... yep, nothing.

I really hope ESO's RvR is good and successful, because then both ANet and Zenimax will have to put more effort in it. Competition is a great motivator.

I played GW2 through 80 and well into RvR ranks for months. To me, it was similar and ALMOST as fun, but it just wasn't the same. For one, the culling issue was really a dealbreaker for me. I don't know if they resolved that, but I've moved on.

Part of me really wonders if I'm just outdated and hoping for something that will never come.

  Electro057

Novice Member

Joined: 3/05/09
Posts: 537

9/06/13 3:48:24 AM#15
Originally posted by 40Hz

I played GW2 through 80 and well into RvR ranks for months. To me, it was similar and ALMOST as fun, but it just wasn't the same. For one, the culling issue was really a dealbreaker for me. I don't know if they resolved that, but I've moved on.

Part of me really wonders if I'm just outdated and hoping for something that will never come.

Most likely, you know what they say about refusing to adapt and change....Slow death and what not. Oh, sorry....That's overspecialization. Which could be argued that this is the case, seeing as your needs can only be met by a very specific niche that is fading into non-existence and no longer catered to...

However I hear there are some hardcore leet full PvP RvR games out there and all that....So keep hope!

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  Scalpless

Elite Member

Joined: 3/22/07
Posts: 1353

9/06/13 5:24:37 AM#16
Originally posted by 40Hz

I played GW2 through 80 and well into RvR ranks for months. To me, it was similar and ALMOST as fun, but it just wasn't the same. For one, the culling issue was really a dealbreaker for me. I don't know if they resolved that, but I've moved on.

Part of me really wonders if I'm just outdated and hoping for something that will never come.

I don't think that's it. GW2's WvW is really not the same as DAoC's RvR, although it's almost as fun IMO, too. ESO promises to be a bit closer to DAoC, but we'll see how that turns out. Their early "we wanna be like WoW" interviews still haunt me.

They did fix culling, by the way.

  karmath

Apprentice Member

Joined: 8/24/05
Posts: 843

9/06/13 5:36:24 AM#17
Great thread. Gives a little insight into what a lot of us fail to explain about the older MMO's that we constantly carry on about.
  Helleri

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 5/26/08
Posts: 829

“If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.”- Henry Ford

9/06/13 5:56:13 AM#18
Originally posted by 40Hz
Originally posted by Serelisk
A ton of games do #10, I'm pretty sure?... o_O

 

You might be right, but which modern, active games do this? I only know of Aion...

Aika online has guild emblems. But, it is kinda hard to call Aika active anymore. It's not under Gpotato, but t3fun and I think any notoriety it had is pretty much gone. Those are fully customizable though, you make the icon much like you would a favicon (yourself and with a bit of frustration). And then, associate it with your guild and all members will sport that (unless they have show guild turned off).

 

Runescape has clan capes, that the logos are customizable on...a lot like how it used to be on halo 2 for live. You can choose from a range of emblems up to 2 emblems total.change their color, the background color and the trim color. This is displayed as the clans cape, as the flags to the clan vexillum, one the clan avatar, On players profile on the runescape website, and at the clan citadel.

 

I really like features that let one show their allegiance. The thing is it usually seems to be on one extreme or another for how it is implemented. Usually I see that you either get to pick from a range of things and do some mild customization to them, or you have to make it all yourself.

 

Making it all yourself has the benefit of total customization, but you end up seeing a lot of bad logo's, either cause the maker didn't know what they were doing or they they made it look to good for the venue and a lot of it is lost on those viewing it. But, with the other road while they all look good and clean and like they all belong. Variety and one being all that different from another is kinda squashed by it.

  TrivanDK

Novice Member

Joined: 8/08/13
Posts: 9

9/06/13 6:12:45 AM#19

don't have time for a long answer - but I agree 100% with OP - especially the Darkness Falls, I simply dont get why other games dont use this idea as well

 

 

  Imperil

Apprentice Member

Joined: 1/24/04
Posts: 17

9/06/13 6:20:12 AM#20
ahhhh Asherons Call:Darktide, DAoC, Shadowbane.... the golden age of PvP before this no skill wow crap happened =p
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