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News & Features Discussion  » General: This is Endgame, My Friend

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Novice Member

Joined: 7/18/10
Posts: 3207

Veni, Vidi, Converti

5/23/11 2:58:48 AM#141
Originally posted by Drakiis
And now you finally understand the truth about pure pve game play, and to a lesser extent themeparks as a whole. This is how pvpers are born, from the ashes of boredom, to counter end game repitition, because nothing in pvp is scripted, nothing is repetitive, it's not about shinies, merit badges, or high score. It's about respect and recognition of skill, for your guild pride, for your own virtual immortality.

Welcome to the real game.

That's got to be Matrix inspired?! Good skills...^ ^

Awesome article. I think End-game must be the developers' attempt to address eg the situation: "Everyone is assembled for an urgency meeting... the head (devs) looks around solemnly at the assembled crowd (the players) and starts proceedings by saying purposefully: "We all knew this day would come... ." Perhaps Endgame is the result of the most profitable way to monetize or at least most effective way to keep players playing a subscription game?

I think faction PvP has the potential to supplement Endgame raids or even become End of the game for PvE AFTER moving your main onto this variable/repeatable game system which according to daoc does generate some strong community/fun too? For more PvE more viable alts? Hmm, one day such a system will filter into the whole of the game and levelling will disappear along with it too maybe.


Novice Member

Joined: 2/20/04
Posts: 26

5/23/11 5:47:26 AM#142

The journey is definatly the point, for me anyway. Every time I hit level cap I get quickly bored. Getting together 10 people for a raid is tedious and time consuming. Waiting 3 hours to finally get enough people to do a raid is crazy. Leveling an alt is usually no fun either as the content is usually the same and the same boredom sets in.

At the very least, like in SWG, the crafting was deep and kept you entertained while you tried to build a city or the best weapon etc.. alas most games do not have a decent crafting system as an alternative to end game.

Good article and I agree!


Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/02/04
Posts: 3010

5/23/11 11:08:48 AM#143

You know, rather than have an endgame, why don't we just have more games like DDO that allow the altohalics just "reincarnate" their level capped character?  Let them keep some of their power from having been to level cap before and let the players determine their own "level cap."


Or even better yet:  Lets make a levelless game for a change.  Allow us to level skills to infinity.  Take EVE's classless system and expand it to include xp requirements instead of time requirements for skills.  Allow the skills to be upgraded through questing, repitition,  or gold (or all) indefinately.  Sure, in the overall scheme of thigs you are going to have some unbeatable rocks out there versus scissors, but they will have no defense against the ultimate paper.  Sure it would be a grind, but it would be your grind, defined by limits set by you.


Apprentice Member

Joined: 5/22/11
Posts: 14

5/23/11 12:18:38 PM#144

I always had a serious problem with "The game starts at  x lvl." To me that always meant you didn't have the right skills as a game designer to figure out how to make content fun. And it brings up other questions, if your entire leveling span is not "part of the game" as players see it then get rid of it. What's the point of having you got around killing 10 rats, goblins, burglars, thiefs, murderers, etc over and over and over if the content surrounding it is complete rubbish. - LegalBinary, were the law and mmorpgs, botting, computers and gaming intersect.


Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/17/06
Posts: 70

5/23/11 12:38:03 PM#145

End game could almost be an ironic term on the tombstone of many games.  It is one of the things most demanded on the forums of games still in development and yet many players, if not most , never make it to that content.  One would think if profit was actually the goal that a desire to keep the majority of players happy and keep them in game long enough to develope attachments would be important.   Instead the lofty goal of pleasing a smaller player base of elitist end gamers takes a priority even though they are not paying any more for their sub than average solo questing and occaional grouping joe, and are likely max level in a week or less and moving on their next conquest in less than 4 months.   I know the idea of keeping average joe scrambling for the big goal is part of it too but I think devs need to realize that the frustration factor leads to looking for a new game at some point.

I get the feeling sometimes that every dev longs to be a part of that elitist group and that some are.   Even if said multi game guild with much influence is really just stringing them along.   No names of course LOL.


Advanced Member

Joined: 11/13/04
Posts: 180

5/24/11 4:21:04 AM#146

I've been playing MMOs since UO came out, and my fondest memories are still seated with DAoC.  I liked the way pvp, crafting and pve all were interwoven and its community sense was a very palpable presence.  Unfortunately, Trials of Atlantis with its forced raiding content to remain competitive in PvP killed the game for me and many others.   I've enjoyed WoW, used to raid regularly up till Cata came out and then total burnout set in.  Not because the raids were too hard, they're not that hard at all, everything is spelled out for you to do in video tutorials and just requires people to run it a few times to get the timing and routine down, but the treadmill of yet more levels, yet more gear to collect, more epeens to put up with, and pvp being gear>>>player skill/ability.

The problem of WoW (for me), and themepark games in general, is their static content/play style and the very nature of having to cater to the lowest common denominator.  It also fostered a very base community who's vitriol spewing and peacock posturing was endless and largely without substance.  Sadly, this is the face of the public in the truest sense. 

MMOs are no longer about community or journey, they're about gear and bragging/dissing.  Something which the themepark model takes to a further extent than others, and sadly, its the model that dominates.  But I am faithful that human nature being what it is, the WoW model is closing in on its end.  You can only endure so much repetition till you get sick of it, which is why as a former raider, I've become more and more enamored of games with a solid pvp component.


That said though, I don't like static pvp content either, I tried WAR and found it mind numbing as well, too much CC, and just flipping the same old objectives for a few more measely points, oh and...shinies/level > skill.  PvP should be about the same things in game that conflict is about in real life, resources that change the lives of the owners for the better.

I.E. Hold castle X and your faction enjoys Y while the enemy factions wish they had it and resent you for holding it and plot to take it away from you.  And when a faction is downtrodden and has little hope, they need a mythical legend to unlock within their own region to give them a solid fighting chance, thus a small, tight knit community can topple a teeming horde if they prepare for it and have 'the gods on their side', something that can't happen unless the rival faction has way more presence.  Such mythical elements could be permanent and stolen or have a timed duration and then a new one has to be sought out/made, etc.  

So much devs could do if they would actually try to design a game with a more to do than repeat the same sort of fight against robots or static models of pvp goals.  It'll take time, the market is already showing its impatience and lack of interest in the formats that are out.  SWTOR and GW2 may redefine the MMO genre or merely leach away enough money from WoW to where WoW's influence diminishes far enough to where much greater creativity is endorsed.  Either way, it may be a while, but the whole static Endgame paradigm is going to change because it cannot sustain itself, human nature goes against it.  Don't believe me?  Take your favorite food, eat it and nothing else for a year, and at the end of that year, how many more of that type of food do you think you'll buy?

Even peace may be purchased at too high a price, and the only time you are completely safe is when you lie in the grave.


Novice Member

Joined: 8/25/03
Posts: 98

UO + DAoC + SWG + SL + EQII + LOTRO = Near perfect MMORPG.

5/25/11 5:13:06 PM#147

I agree with this article as well. I would love to see more sandbox activities included at end game; as well as throughout the game. Raiding is not for me.

A Voice From Within


Apprentice Member

Joined: 3/21/05
Posts: 142

I am the WoW killer.

5/26/11 2:03:45 AM#148

Seem to be a lot of DOAC fans on this thread.  I liked the concept of DOAC but, (braces for the tomatoes to be thrown), I never liked their interface.  Te controls and the turn radius and just about everything in the way you interacted with the world felt backwards to me, so sadly I never got to endgame. 

My point about thsi thread is that it really comes down to play style.  Some people work fast, and live fast, and drive fast.  So why wouldn't they play fast?  It stands to reason your argument for slowing down and smelling the flowers is really an inditement of the pace at which society moves today.  MMO's used to be played but a very narrow cross section of people, very computer and game literate middle and upper class people.

WoW, for better or worse, has changed that.  There are a lot of players for whom WoW is their first major gaming experience.  They are going to have vastly diffrent ideas from old-timers about where to take the game.  IDKY but it reminds me of some of the old people you work with who refuse to become computer literate.  I'm sure life was better before the information age, but just the same, I don't want to go back to a life before the internet. lol


Elite Member

Joined: 10/29/07
Posts: 17353

5/26/11 2:13:18 AM#149
Originally posted by goingwylde

Seem to be a lot of DOAC fans on this thread.  I liked the concept of DOAC but, (braces for the tomatoes to be thrown), I never liked their interface.  Te controls and the turn radius and just about everything in the way you interacted with the world felt backwards to me, so sadly I never got to endgame. 

My point about thsi thread is that it really comes down to play style.  Some people work fast, and live fast, and drive fast.  So why wouldn't they play fast?  It stands to reason your argument for slowing down and smelling the flowers is really an inditement of the pace at which society moves today.  MMO's used to be played but a very narrow cross section of people, very computer and game literate middle and upper class people.

WoW, for better or worse, has changed that.  There are a lot of players for whom WoW is their first major gaming experience.  They are going to have vastly diffrent ideas from old-timers about where to take the game.  IDKY but it reminds me of some of the old people you work with who refuse to become computer literate.  I'm sure life was better before the information age, but just the same, I don't want to go back to a life before the internet. lol

I think the misstake here is assuming that one game can make all people happy. Wow tries and even though it have loads more players than anything else P2P many people think leveling is too fast.

There is room for one game with a lot slower leveling and one either with just fast or that starts in the endgame from the start.

The real reason behinds Wows huge success is that it is a well made game. It would still be huge if leveling was very slow as well so pointing on games with slower levelings sub numbers doesn't really prove or dsproves anything.

MMO games needs to be more diverse and stop trying to be everything at once. But they also needs to be well made with good coding.


Novice Member

Joined: 5/23/11
Posts: 2

5/26/11 10:27:16 AM#150

Even if WoW is your first MMO experience, the game has devolved now to a boring "single-playerish" rush to raiding.  Everyone is too busy leveling now to enjoy what the game does have to offer.  This causes the leveling journey to seem irrelevant.  The developers focused so much time on the end-game content that the social aspect of the game was largely forgotten.  I would welcome a new MMO that encouraged a player to interact with other players for some other reason than taking down a raid boss or selling their over priced ore. 

  User Deleted
6/01/11 12:41:14 PM#151

I'll post a dissenting standpoint here. Before I get dismissed as a low-IQ gerbil with ADHD, I'll have to say that I've been playing tabletop or PnP RPGs since 1981, I've made my own (successful) Neverwinter Nights server in the roleplay section on GS, and I've participated or built in about a dozen more between NWN1 and NWN2.

Before Monty Haul gets brought up, the only players I DMed who made it up to level 12 were after nearly 2 years of regular game-sessions, under the 2ED rules. I think there was a grand total (in a Forgotten Realms setting) of a dozen magical items between eight players. So I'm pretty frugal, and not at all "item rich" in my playstyle.

As far as MMO experience, I beta tested SWG and played for about 6-7 months, did COH, AOC, EQ2, WOW, LotR beta... more than I can remember, in actual fact. Eve just never appealed to me so I cannot speak for that MMO.

First, let me say that I am not a WOW fanboi. I quit the game due to repetitive gameplay, boring expansion, my friends moving on, me not being able to do an extensive raiding schedule due to wanting a real live girlfriend , and becoming more involved with real life than fantasy.

I personally enjoyed the End-Game in WOW from TBC to WOTLK. I think that there is a misnomer on "end game" in play with WOW - levels ceased, yes. You no longer gained new abilities, and the game switches over to gear-based rewards.

Funny thing, I actually stopped playing WOW on my Druid at the exact same level as the author did during Vanilla. I had even done some "raiding" (as it was in vanilla) in LBRS.

Gear acquisition, in and of itself, is not the be-all and end all of "end game". "End game" is simply where you ceased being fodder for higher-level gankers and could hold your own against most comers.

Your "levels" still increased in many other ways. Increasing faction standing with different groups was one area to "improve your abilities" - albeit only from gear which wasn't available otherwise.

Gathering or grinding gold still took you to different locales, especially if you collected components or resources for sale on the AH. Some of the more meaningful interactions with other players (even opposing faction) occurred on such trips. 

Increasing honor standing and PVP skills (either in World PVP or BGs) was another method of earning tokens and better gear, having social interactions and getting a group of like-minded people together for group BGs, etc. Quite often, some RP would occur (well, as much as can be done within WOW - which is pretty poor).

I could go on, but raiding in and of itself was one piece of the end-game. One which I enjoyed quite well, becoming the 5th best healer on a rather large PVP server - and we were the second-ranked progression guild. I put in perhaps 10-15 hours a week and was relied on quite a bit for this progression - mainly for the 10-man and 25-man heroics. Beating bosses which few others had beaten, and getting the spoils, were of course part of the fun.

I believe the "achiever" metatype has been brought up, and one might categorize me based off of my post above - but above all, I'd say I'm an explorer with a bit of socializer thrown in. I didn't revel in what gear I got so much as seeing the content. Many times I passed on stuff that was only a slight improvement over my current gear, but that was a drastic improvement for a new guildie. But seeing some of the instances which were beautifully crafted, exploring the encounters and figuring out the best way for my healers to keep people alive during them, all these things made this enjoyable.

That above being said, I don't particularly enjoy the development direction, and I do agree with the statements above about the next Xpack making the previous achievements basically useless. There were other problems with the game as well, such as the simplicity of graphics, interaction between factions being retardedly limited, PVP objectives being extremely short-sighted. Everything was just getting pigeon-holed into tightly regimented activities by the time Cata was about to be released, and with the departure of many friends over time, I also left.

However, for me, the "end-game" was fun, and I still "leveled" - just not in the traditional sense. Whether they just turn the "item-leveling" into straight XP leveling or not, or the "faction-leveling" into straight XP or not, it really (from a mechanics point of view) doesn't make a difference.

For example, in COH, the end game (there was none, really) was possibly getting all Hamidon-SOs in your power slots. Hitting level 50 back in the first days was a bit of a chore, not easy in the slightest, and was more akin ot EQ (until E5 or so). However, it was, when you boil it down, the exact same mechanics in play as in WOW - you just hit a numbered  level cap later.

What WOW did was take the leveling grind which existed in all other games, shotrtened it, and subverted the remaining ~10 or so levels to gear, factions and honor. A WOW player who had Tier 10/11 gear, who had maxxed factions and had tons of honor points (i.e. PVP experience) couldn't be beaten by a fresh level 80 (going back to WOTLK). It just wasn't possible - said player was equivalent to a level 90 player, and was pretty much out of danger if he had a modicum of wit or intelligence. Even as a clothie playing my Shadow Priest, a level 80 undead rogue in green/blue gear had to have incredible skill and luck to take me down. 

Forgive my rambling here, but I think an obvious point was missed by most of the posters here. "The game begins at 60" as most used to say, was true. It's just a different model of "leveling" than exists in the previous MMOs. And it was insanely successful - not due to raiders, or twitch PVPers, or anything else than...

Anyhow, I just think being elitist over the raiders isn't becoming. Looking at it in such a sandbox "the numbers represent the level" light really does limit the understanding of the mechanics, and I'm surprised that so many people don't think out of the box on this.

The "end game"  kept everyone busy, just like EQ/SWG/COH, and for about the same amount of time to hit "the cap". The trouble is, the game never ended, and there was always iLevel 200 just around the corner - but without the other methods of "leveling" being increased (with the exception of PVP). And the fact that the raiding content itself became too accessible, unaccessible, too accessible, etc. etc.

I also sort of long to see a story-arc MMO (which I think TOR may end up doing) where the journey is more important than the destination. But don't fool yourself - Blizz was brilliant at extending the journey.

From a dissenting point of view, I hope this opens up some vistas and insight, especially since this seems to have escaped most of the posters (and certainly the author).


Novice Member

Joined: 5/01/04
Posts: 184

6/07/11 5:35:28 PM#152

I remember Age of Conan that had people screaming after like a week from release for more endgame, i got one char to 80 in aoc thanks to offline leveling but i do prefer the fun getting there, not much for raiding so once at max level game feels bit over to me.

I have played everquest and anarchy online since mid 2001 on and of but not even close to max level, but i don't mind.

bkmvl Xfire Miniprofile

Novice Member

Joined: 6/05/11
Posts: 45

6/10/11 4:23:23 PM#153

Great article. I agree with you. My best MMO experience was my first with EQ back in 1999. I was never worried about end-game. It was the journey leveling up and exploring that I enjoyed most.


Hard Core Member

Joined: 8/23/06
Posts: 1317

6/13/11 2:36:37 AM#154

The more developers concentrate on endgame, the quicker the entire MMORPG genre will die off.

Soon we will be paying for MMOs that basically instant-level us to max level the minute we log on, throw us in an arena death match, and have a queue for some random raid in the background. Everyone will complain about class balance to the point that every class will play the same with just different graphics. The end.

Matter of fact, many years ago I predicted one day we will be paying to play FPS games online with a subscription-baed model because of the digression direction MMORPGs have taken, and the day is finally coming. Gone are the days of actual MASSIVE online worlds to explore.

You never heard so many people complain about "the grind" back in the days until the focus of game developers shifted towards simply the endgame, and not the journey to it. It is only a grind because these new games lack any interesting content, leaving you with the feeling that leveling is nothing but a chore. And why do they lack any interesting content? Because developers are now focused on the endgame, and not the inbetween part.

I DON'T want the game to start at max level, I want the game to start the minute I log on, with interesting stories, huge massive worlds, so I no longer am worried about what level I am, but more interested in saving the village, or slaying the dragon.


I'm sorry, instant leveling, end-game focused, horrible communities: that's NOT the game I want to play.

I want to adventure.

I want to explore large "MASSIVE" online worlds.

I want to walk into NPC cities and feel immersion, hear crowd chatter, marvel at the small details the developers actually took the time to create in order to give us that feeling of a living online world.

I want the option to quest when I want to or craft when I want to.

I want a crafting system that HAS MEANING.

I want people to stop abusing the stupid terms "theme park" and "endgame" and bring back the MMOrpg crowd together to demand quality games again. We are fighting amongst each other over the bitter taste of failed MMORPGs we so naively believed to be the next big thing.

I want to go out questing, run into someone in trouble fighting too many mobs, throw them a few random heals, spark a conversation, make a friend, and then slay some dragons together afterwards. Some of the best people I have met in game were through similar circumstances. I do not want instance after instance to the point I feel I'm paying for a single player game with co-op options.

I want fun, not an endgame that feels like a job. No thanks, I am a young successful investment banker, I do not need to come home and log on to a second job.

I want the journey, the experience, not the endgame.


Hard Core Member

Joined: 8/23/06
Posts: 1317

6/13/11 6:46:13 PM#155

R.I.P the "journey"


Novice Member

Joined: 7/18/04
Posts: 39

12/26/11 11:08:47 AM#156

Originally posted by Nevulus

I want to adventure.

I want to explore large "MASSIVE" online worlds.

I want to walk into NPC cities and feel immersion, hear crowd chatter, marvel at the small details the developers actually took the time to create in order to give us that feeling of a living online world.

I want the option to quest when I want to or craft when I want to.

I want a crafting system that HAS MEANING.

The solution is simple: play a single player RPG like Skyrim (sandbox) or Dragon Age (theme-park)

Do you want it so it never ends ? It's impossible because all good movies, books, games end.

Do you want to play something else that never ends ? Look for a sandbox MMO where PvP is king. Unfortunately there's nothing like that as of today.

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