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MMORPG Game Concepts  » Either make leveling meaningful or remove it all together.

13 posts found
  qombi

Novice Member

Joined: 7/09/04
Posts: 1187

 
OP  10/17/08 8:34:43 AM#1

If some of you have read any of my post you will know I am a fan of long level based games. When you read this post of mine you may find what I suggest odd but hear me out. I am tired of these newer MMORPGs where they put leveling into the game but make it so trivial what's the point. All it does it put a bump in the road on the way to the "real game" as developers and fans alike have said.

Let's make World of Warcraft the example here. You now level from 1-70 in a matter of a month or so, so why make all that world and content obsolete so quickly? Why even put it in if you don't want us to spend a lot of time there?

Now here is what I am suggesting and this is odd for me because I really really like long leveling. What I suggest is remove levels in games such as these. If they are trivial and everyone just wants to blow by them then why waste all these wonderful dungeons and lands that quick. Picture a giant world the size of World of Warcraft that when you log in everything is your level. Not a single peice of land is wasted, you can continue to explore the world any time you want. It will always be relevant.

This is how it would be done. You would log in and there would still be quest, loot, and monsters to slay but no level what so ever, everything in the game would be your level. The way you advance would be something similar to alternate advancement points in Everquest or another method of customizing your build, armor, or renown points. How ever they decided to setup the carrot you would quest, fight bosses in dungeons, pvp etc to obtain these talents, gear, renown points, alternate advancement points, or etc.

I believe if they are making levels trivial then remove them. I would rather play their games the way they are wanting me to play them. Imagine every dungeon in World of Warcraft being your level, every zone being your level, etc. Each zone would have certain advancement points you would need to customize your character but you can do it in any order you want. This wouldn't be a skill based game, even a skill based game you are ultimately very weak in the beginning and grow strength in different areas to kill bigger monsters. In this game there would be no levels, just character customization with gear and some type of customization points.

Here is the disclaimer:

I love level based games. If they are going to make a level based game it better take me some time. If it is so trivial like in these newer games no thank you. Just put me at the end where you want me to be.

  keltic74

Novice Member

Joined: 4/16/05
Posts: 30

10/17/08 8:46:48 AM#2

The main issue with this that even though leveling in some games is ridiculously too easy, it still provides a sense of achievement. Unless you are on your 20th WoW character */raises hand*  As far as all the content that gets skipped, I always tried to make it so that one character would level through to max through one direction, and another would go a completely different way.  That way I wouldn't miss mcuh.  As such I make my own replay value.

My preference would be go the other way.  And keep zone levels closer matched.  Make leveling CONSIDERABLY more difficult, and have your zones laid out close to linearly.  What I mean is say you start in Northshire Abbey, next zone much like it is is slightly harder, and next zone slightly harder than that.  Granted WoW does this to an extent but some of the starting areas should be closer together for the same faction for exploration sake.

And by considerably i mean considerably more difficult.  Such that your max level characters are more rare than your lower characters for quite some time.  As such you get a much larger sense of accomplishment.

I do see where you are coming from in games like  WoW since it is heavily based on getting that sense of accomplishment from your gear.

 

  John.A.Zoid

Novice Member

Joined: 10/08/08
Posts: 1554

10/17/08 12:38:44 PM#3

If you make leveling harder then it takes longer for new people to catch their friends because all level based mmorpgs become top heavy, this isn't fun for people because all you want to do is play with your friends and because the game is top heavy it's hard to find a group and you find yourself soloing most of the game or quiting because it's just boring.

If you make it too easy then the game becomes top heavy much faster as you need to keep pouring out content for everyone whose end level. It also removes a sense of accomplishment and breaks the game because theres no fix for it so it'll age faster too.

So how to fix the level problem?


SWG pre Cu Skill system with a player based economy instead of loot based. This way you can play with your friends as soon as you join the game because there are no levels to keep enhancing your stats, everything you need your friends can purchase for you if they choose to which makes you viable to play with them. All skills do is give you more access to skills like healing and damage spells or whatever.

  Deewe

Novice Member

Joined: 5/02/08
Posts: 1976

10/17/08 1:02:41 PM#4


Originally posted by John.A.Zoid
If you make leveling harder then it takes longer for new people to catch their friends because all level based mmorpgs become top heavy, this isn't fun for people because all you want to do is play with your friends and because the game is top heavy it's hard to find a group and you find yourself soloing most of the game or quiting because it's just boring.
If you make it too easy then the game becomes top heavy much faster as you need to keep pouring out content for everyone whose end level. It also removes a sense of accomplishment and breaks the game because theres no fix for it so it'll age faster too.

So how to fix the level problem?

SWG pre Cu Skill system with a player based economy instead of loot based. This way you can play with your friends as soon as you join the game because there are no levels to keep enhancing your stats, everything you need your friends can purchase for you if they choose to which makes you viable to play with them. All skills do is give you more access to skills like healing and damage spells or whatever.


I agree in pre-cu there where no level requirements to join a group, nor madatory skills or classes. We even had crafters coming along just for the fun.

From day 1 your character was welcome to any group no matter you where (or wanted to be) a bounty hunter or a pistoleer / architect.

That was the firt MMO to bring many women and also characters who never ever used a weapon.

  User Deleted
10/17/08 1:17:51 PM#5

Some implementations of skill base systems do just that.

Spend a week or less getting to the maxium 'power tier'*.   In most games this would mean you're stuck going through end game content to be micro-fractionally more powerful.   but in this skill system implementation you've only mastered 5 or 6 skills and have another 100 you could unlock and master if you wanted to.

Balance also requires limiting what people can use at any one time like only being able to a use certain number of skills in a build.

 

*DPS, HPS, Utility, or whatever.   Just the maxium usefullness.   basically the requirement for the high content.

  IchabodCrane

Apprentice Member

Joined: 10/15/08
Posts: 39

10/28/08 3:24:43 PM#6

I'm fine with leveling based games...it's just "kill 10 of X" games that really annoy me.

 

Do some innovative quests for gods sake! With the technology we have today...there is so much room to be creative with quests.

Played: Runescape, World of Warcraft, Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning

  DrSpanky

Novice Member

Joined: 5/26/07
Posts: 346

"my favorite thing is a Gyro"--Malibu Dan

10/28/08 3:37:19 PM#7

I thought about this a lot actually. AOC and WAR both hyped their "endgame" so much, and at least in AOC's case (didn't realy stick around too long in WAR), made leveling so easy, I just didn't understand the need for leveling. If the end game was so good, why make us level to it. Put us there at the endgame.  I think they had an opportunity to do something a bit more revolutionary but decided to use the old forumla. The leveling part just seemed tacked on.

It's a proven historical fact that beer saved humankind.

  methulah

Novice Member

Joined: 7/17/05
Posts: 236

10/28/08 7:38:31 PM#8
Originally posted by IchabodCrane

I'm fine with leveling based games...it's just "kill 10 of X" games that really annoy me.

 

Do some innovative quests for gods sake! With the technology we have today...there is so much room to be creative with quests.

Or bump quests off altogether as a way of leveling. I'm currently leveling a character on a great EQEmu server, and I'd forgotten that ironically, leveling in Everquest hardly ever revolved around questing in the common MMOG understanding. I've had this conversation with someone before, and it's to do with the definition of "quest." We should be refering to goals set by players as "quests" and the "kill X of Y" NPC things as "tasks."

Thus, the quests we saw emerge in Everquest became things like, "run X dungeon for Y item" and things like that. Obviously the quest many had was the level to the cap. So, people would work on their quests, and they'd do it by grinding, but it was directed grinding, the same way that "kill X of Y" tasks lead to directed grinding. The only difference is that the players chose the direction. With some tweaks, that seems more interesting and fun to me that tasking all the time.

  qombi

Novice Member

Joined: 7/09/04
Posts: 1187

 
OP  10/28/08 8:47:35 PM#9
Originally posted by methulah
Originally posted by IchabodCrane

I'm fine with leveling based games...it's just "kill 10 of X" games that really annoy me.

 

Do some innovative quests for gods sake! With the technology we have today...there is so much room to be creative with quests.

Or bump quests off altogether as a way of leveling. I'm currently leveling a character on a great EQEmu server, and I'd forgotten that ironically, leveling in Everquest hardly ever revolved around questing in the common MMOG understanding. I've had this conversation with someone before, and it's to do with the definition of "quest." We should be refering to goals set by players as "quests" and the "kill X of Y" NPC things as "tasks."

Thus, the quests we saw emerge in Everquest became things like, "run X dungeon for Y item" and things like that. Obviously the quest many had was the level to the cap. So, people would work on their quests, and they'd do it by grinding, but it was directed grinding, the same way that "kill X of Y" tasks lead to directed grinding. The only difference is that the players chose the direction. With some tweaks, that seems more interesting and fun to me that tasking all the time.

 

I couldn't agree more. I like making my own adventures like you. I don't care to run around and kill certain monsters because a computer character tells me so. 

What is ironic is they added a lot of instant travel in these games today because they listened to some disgruntled players from the past to lessen it. Now that they force you to grind quest .. players do more foot work than ever. In EQ there wasn't much instant travel but when you grouped and XP you generally stayed in a small area for a long while. I miss that game.

I think what really people bothered people about EQ was no solo options. I am a group player myself but I am okay with having solo in a game as long as there is plenty of incentive to group up (faster xp, dungeon crawls for nice items, etc)

  Neosai

Novice Member

Joined: 6/19/06
Posts: 403

11/09/08 10:22:11 PM#10

I agree with the title except the removal part.

Remove level system means another system will take its place.  Which doesn't change a thing.

Too many people believe sandbox is a system, and that it will allow more freedom.  Yes it allows for freedom, however those freedoms can easily be obtained from game developer using level, skill, or any other system.

Sandbox is really a style and it means alot of freedom,but it doesn't mean no limits.  It is up to the game developer on how to give player freedoms while imposing the necessary limits.  This can be done whether it is sandbox or not.

  onlinenow225

Novice Member

Joined: 3/25/08
Posts: 393

11/09/08 10:48:26 PM#11

Have any of you played other MMO's besides western MMO's?

 

Most JMMO's and KMMO's are all level based.  And then have a crafting system to make the best gear.  The gear could simply be crafted and/or monster loot can be upgraded to be better.

 

Now what else do these games have?  Well some don't have every class pigon holed into set types of armor and items.  They revolve around stats.  Do these games become balanced for PvP?  Well not exactly balanced but counters for the flavor of the month builds are always found out.  Not rock paper siccor counters though just something to make your life easier to kill this guy if you know what hes doing.

 

Now whats the problem with western mmos now?  Well take a look at gear progession.  Its 100% linear.  There is no if ands or buts.  My Warrior in WoW at the time was specced MS, his best pvp gear would have been season 4 with a season 4 sword/axe/mace.  So wait i get to choose 1 of 3 items to be different? lmfao.

 

Now lets look at blizzards old game diablo 2.  I'll tell you now that leveling in that game was easy yet hard.  Easy as in fast if you got good groups of people to do Baal runs.  (after synergies)  Yet hard because even with some of the best gear in the game you could still die like a little noob from simple mobs.  (spectors anyone?)

Now that game had stats.  It also had only ONE item that was specific for each class.  It also allowed for every class to be made so many different ways even if it was just for fun, because you could have a friend pLvl your character to say 60 and find out if you want to keep it, or take its stuff and toss it. (i have no problems with pLvLing it allows for people to try/make new class' faster and still demands time from veterans to do it)

Now are there any Western mmos that allow for any of the following above?  I thought the future of games were saposse to be better.  Yet it seems like blizzard the big power house of mmorpgs regressed and dumbed down rpgs.  They traded variety with extreme linear cookie cutter crap. 

But as its said WoW is for the mass' not the person that likes to explore class' and character builds.

 

  Neosai

Novice Member

Joined: 6/19/06
Posts: 403

11/15/08 6:22:32 AM#12
Originally posted by onlinenow225

Have any of you played other MMO's besides western MMO's?

 

Most JMMO's and KMMO's are all level based.  And then have a crafting system to make the best gear.  The gear could simply be crafted and/or monster loot can be upgraded to be better.

 

Now what else do these games have?  Well some don't have every class pigon holed into set types of armor and items.  They revolve around stats.  Do these games become balanced for PvP?  Well not exactly balanced but counters for the flavor of the month builds are always found out.  Not rock paper siccor counters though just something to make your life easier to kill this guy if you know what hes doing.

 

Now whats the problem with western mmos now?  Well take a look at gear progession.  Its 100% linear.  There is no if ands or buts.  My Warrior in WoW at the time was specced MS, his best pvp gear would have been season 4 with a season 4 sword/axe/mace.  So wait i get to choose 1 of 3 items to be different? lmfao.

 

Now lets look at blizzards old game diablo 2.  I'll tell you now that leveling in that game was easy yet hard.  Easy as in fast if you got good groups of people to do Baal runs.  (after synergies)  Yet hard because even with some of the best gear in the game you could still die like a little noob from simple mobs.  (spectors anyone?)

Now that game had stats.  It also had only ONE item that was specific for each class.  It also allowed for every class to be made so many different ways even if it was just for fun, because you could have a friend pLvl your character to say 60 and find out if you want to keep it, or take its stuff and toss it. (i have no problems with pLvLing it allows for people to try/make new class' faster and still demands time from veterans to do it)

Now are there any Western mmos that allow for any of the following above?  I thought the future of games were saposse to be better.  Yet it seems like blizzard the big power house of mmorpgs regressed and dumbed down rpgs.  They traded variety with extreme linear cookie cutter crap. 

But as its said WoW is for the mass' not the person that likes to explore class' and character builds.

 

 

Yeah, sadly to say, I have played many types of MMO from languages I can read.  I could have spent my childhood a bit more wisely.  At least I learned a bunch of new languages in the process I guess.

Language I can read:  English, Japanese, Chinese (Mandarin), Korean (not quite fluent).

  Tatum

Novice Member

Joined: 7/27/07
Posts: 1154

11/15/08 1:53:57 PM#13

I'm still waiting for a "progression free" MMO.  By that, I mean an MMO with no levels or skill levels.  You build your character, then play the game.  Sure, there would be some types of progression and award systems in the game, but for the most part, there wouldn't be any significant power gap between a new character and an experienced character.

Like Qombi said, you'd always have the entire world (and it's content) available to you, reguardless of your experience.  You wouldn't have this constant, linear "progression" through a series of sterile, stictly defined zones. Of course, I've always believed that levels are (ultimately) meaningless.  PvE grinding very rarely involves any form of challenge or creative thought.

However, for this type of game to work (IMO of course) you'd need a living world type of MMO, rather than a theme park.