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Dark Age of Camelot

Dark Age of Camelot 

Round Table Pub (General)  » Was DAOC a Theme Park or a Sand Box

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122 posts found
  zymurgeist

Advanced Member

Joined: 12/24/04
Posts: 5185

2/17/12 5:28:38 PM#41
Originally posted by jusomdude
Originally posted by zymurgeist
Originally posted by jusomdude
Originally posted by zymurgeist
Originally posted by jusomdude

I just want to know what the sandbox elements are, that people are claiming were in the game. The closest sandbox feature it had were open dungeons.

Everyone in the thread that has said sandbox has said so without a reason.

 That's ok you can flip the same reasoning on it's head and claim every game is a themepark, as many have for various games commonly considered sandboxes.. That's because there is no such thing as a sandbox "element."  A sandbox game has a nonlinear gameplay mode. That's the actual definition although people try to throw all sorts oif things in to support their agendas. People will argue that in circles for hours instead of asking the real question: How linear was DAOC? It was pretty linear. Ultima Online was linear too, just not nearly as much. Any game with any character progression is at least a bit linear. Other MMOs have been a lot more linear.

Ok, so I guess then we can call WoW a sandbox also since it has different spec branches, and a choice of areas to level.

There are sandbox elements to games. Open ended skill progression... that's an element. That's more of a programming term though, if you like you can call it a sandbox feature.

 You can. You'd be right too. What you can't say is WoW is less lnear than DAOC because WoW is much more linear. It's not particular features that matter it's the overall gameplay. No single feature or set of features defines what is or isn't a sandbox. It's not a binary question it's a matter of degrees.

It can be a binary question, for instance if game a has all linear features, then it is themepark. If game b has all sandbox features, it's sandbox.

Calling a game that has more themepark features than sandbox features a sandbox just doesn't make sense.

 

 No MMO has all sandbox or all themepark features. I suppose super mario brothers for the NES would be a themepark. It was purely linear. A game has to be at least a bit linear to have any  rules at all.  Since there are no MMOs that meet purely Binary criteria your assertion is invalid.

"Strong and bitter words indicate a weak cause" ~Victor Hugo

  teakbois

Apprentice Member

Joined: 5/06/06
Posts: 2190

2/17/12 5:44:25 PM#42

DAoC and EQ1 are not remotely themeparks.  Themeparks are really about the notion of going to a zone, doing its wuest content (usually at a hub) then going over to the next section of the park and doing content there.  While games like DAoC and EQ1 had level based zones, there wasnt really a list of activities to do, those zones were just part of the world.

 The first true themepark game was Everquest 2, followed immediately by WoW.  

 

 

  Comaf

Advanced Member

Joined: 7/13/10
Posts: 1133

I want an mmorpg where pvp matters, my enemies are not my race or class, and community matters.

2/17/12 5:49:28 PM#43
Originally posted by Wicoa

Just came up with this question in my head its friday night and I have a glass of wine, yes this is how geeks party.

In daoc I did not follow quest paths, from a low level it was about finding a group and grinding up mobs at various patches with people.  You could build your own house and RvR was an open ended pvp situation.

Let me know what you think.

 Themepark?  That's defined (as far as I know) as gamers having lots of options that are stagnant, linear, locked in one place.  Such examples can be instanced E-sport zones, such as Huttball, or dungeon finder.

 

DAoC was NOT themepark.  My reason is that persistant meaningful pvp was its own standard.  A three realm mmorpg with politcal complexity.  Themepark implies simplicity because of instant access entertainment, this is arguably why this model is able to gain massive investment and retains a lot of players.

 

But, neither was DAoC sandbox.  By definition I believe sandbox is an mmorpg where nothing is linear. Nothing is preordained (i.e., factions, realms, etc).  There is no GM created purpose.  Players are completely responsible for any and all content - probably why I can't think of one successful sandbox.  It's teenager heaven in a nutshell because you can kill anyone, do anything, or so the theorycrafting behind sandbox building goes.

 

Daoc was the only mmorpg that I know of that combined Medieval Total War with the races of Everquest, and gave you a real sense of US vs THEM vs THEM.  It makes me want to facesmash when I see folks claim that GW2 is epic.  I see 5 races and those are copy pasted all over.  There's just nothing epic. 

 

DAoC is NOT an E-Sport, i.e, theme park video game.  It's not a sandbox either, It's the ONLY mmorpg that has never been copied or imitated.  And sorry, for more reasons than you can imagine, Warhammer was NOT an upgrade.

 

 

DAoC was a gem.  You will never see her again, not a part 2, or in any updated fashion.

/my 2 cents

  george99

Apprentice Member

Joined: 10/05/05
Posts: 74

2/17/12 5:57:33 PM#44
Originally posted by Comaf

  

DAoC was a gem.  You will never see her again, not a part 2, or in any updated fashion.

/my 2 cents

Couldn't agree with you more on this statement :)

 

For the themepark / sandbox argument, someone else summed it up best, it would most likely qualify as a hybrid of both. No game has ever 'drawn me in' as much as this one did at its prime.

  jusomdude

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 11/21/06
Posts: 2340

2/17/12 6:06:11 PM#45
Originally posted by zymurgeist
Originally posted by jusomdude
Originally posted by zymurgeist
Originally posted by jusomdude
Originally posted by zymurgeist
Originally posted by jusomdude

I just want to know what the sandbox elements are, that people are claiming were in the game. The closest sandbox feature it had were open dungeons.

Everyone in the thread that has said sandbox has said so without a reason.

 That's ok you can flip the same reasoning on it's head and claim every game is a themepark, as many have for various games commonly considered sandboxes.. That's because there is no such thing as a sandbox "element."  A sandbox game has a nonlinear gameplay mode. That's the actual definition although people try to throw all sorts oif things in to support their agendas. People will argue that in circles for hours instead of asking the real question: How linear was DAOC? It was pretty linear. Ultima Online was linear too, just not nearly as much. Any game with any character progression is at least a bit linear. Other MMOs have been a lot more linear.

Ok, so I guess then we can call WoW a sandbox also since it has different spec branches, and a choice of areas to level.

There are sandbox elements to games. Open ended skill progression... that's an element. That's more of a programming term though, if you like you can call it a sandbox feature.

 You can. You'd be right too. What you can't say is WoW is less lnear than DAOC because WoW is much more linear. It's not particular features that matter it's the overall gameplay. No single feature or set of features defines what is or isn't a sandbox. It's not a binary question it's a matter of degrees.

It can be a binary question, for instance if game a has all linear features, then it is themepark. If game b has all sandbox features, it's sandbox.

Calling a game that has more themepark features than sandbox features a sandbox just doesn't make sense.

 

 No MMO has all sandbox or all themepark features. I suppose super mario brothers for the NES would be a themepark. It was purely linear. A game has to be at least a bit linear to have any  rules at all.  Since there are no MMOs that meet purely Binary criteria your assertion is invalid.

I never said there was an MMO that had all of one or the other. I said that it's possible, and it IS possible.

Anyways, what this thread is really about is whether DAOC is a themepark or sandbox, calling a game with many themepark features a sandbox, just doesn't make sense. It had a few sandbox features, mainly how different abilities were gained. By some peoples definition, just the ability to walk around in 3D space constitutes a sandbox.

  Loktofeit

Elite Member

Joined: 1/13/10
Posts: 12118

Currently playing EVE, SMITE, Wildstar, and Combat Arms

2/18/12 4:14:05 PM#46
Originally posted by Fadedbomb

Some of you don't seem to understand the concept of a Themepark, or a Sandbox.

IF you know what the two ACTUALLY mean you would have been able to clearly see that DAOC was, in fact, a SandPark.

Just to give you an "Overall" definition:

Themepark: Is an MMO that "guides" you down a specific path in order to experience the content developers created with SPECIFIC outcomes in mind. This generally happens with LINEAR quests that go from point A to point F handing off each quest to another quest. Meaning your starter village will have Quest A, the next village will finish A and will give quest B, and so forth until you reach the last village where quest F finishes off. Obviously this is an exagerated example as modern MMOs cleaverly disguise the "Linearality" design, but it's there.

The term "Themepark" describes the overall capacity of the product to allow the Player/Customer to actually explore, experience, and interact with the world itself. It has no DIRECT impact as to whether the game is classless or not, but generally themeparks use SET classes that are essentially the same as the next player with the same class. "Talent" systems do NOT differentiate classes as much as you think, so they are NOT and exception.

Sandbox: Is an MMO that does NOT "guide" you down ANY specific path and allows the player complete freedom (relatively speaking due to technology constraints) to interact with the world as a whole as they see fit. Don't like that windy sandy path down that MASSIVE open field? There are generally speaking no "Invisible Walls" here to keep you from your exploration giddyness. Again, technology constaints have an impact on world size & whether or not there are instances or loading screens. Freedom, is the CORE concept of a Sandbox MMO.

DAOC was a SAND-PARK. A mix between BOTH Themepark & Sandbox.

Cheers!

Actually, almost every MMO combines themepark and sandbox components. Using the term 'sandpark' is basically the same as saying 'I dont understand MMOs'

 

"And wikipedia is as accurate as Britannica. Wikipedia is very reliable. You would be hard pressed to find a more reliable source for these kinds of things." -fovoroth

  waynejr2

Elite Member

Joined: 4/12/11
Posts: 3732

RIP City of Heroes!

2/18/12 4:17:52 PM#47
Originally posted by Wicoa

Just came up with this question in my head its friday night and I have a glass of wine, yes this is how geeks party.

In daoc I did not follow quest paths, from a low level it was about finding a group and grinding up mobs at various patches with people.  You could build your own house and RvR was an open ended pvp situation.

Let me know what you think.

Absolutely a themepark.  Not even up for debate.

Sandboxers just want to latch on to games to make BS claims.

Lol

  User Deleted
3/11/12 10:33:11 AM#48

hm as I started in beta  and played daoc until they shutdown the Co op with GOA/moved the servers to mythic/EA.

 

I would say when I started it was more of a sandbox, and as the time go it was closing up to something you could call themepark beta.

But consider WoW and all this mmorpgs that is out now  you cant even compare them as daoc is daoc.

WoW  what is that? not even the graphics are good and it's looking like a LSD trip.

chars look like hunchback uga lolipop.

 

 

  ShakyMo

Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/21/11
Posts: 7246

3/11/12 11:09:09 AM#49
Daoc is a themepark as is everquest

They just aren't wow clones (obviously)
  teakbois

Apprentice Member

Joined: 5/06/06
Posts: 2190

3/11/12 11:11:11 AM#50

If it released before EQ2 and WoW it isnt a themepark.  Those 2 games were the first themeparks.   Older games may have themepark elements, but they certainly arent themeparks.

 

Themepark and sandbox arent all there is, just because a game isnt a sandbox doesnt mean its a themepark.

  Painlezz

Novice Member

Joined: 5/30/11
Posts: 628

3/11/12 11:21:31 AM#51

i'm 99% sure DAOC did not have housing at release, like many other games it took a while before they added that.  I could be wrong as it has been YEARS since I played.

I'm also 99% sure they had a lot of quests.  I don't recall leveling on grinding alone.  I remember doing a lot of quests.  In fact, DAOC is the first game that caused me to get TWO PC's.  You needed one to have a website database open at all times while the other ran your game.  Plus DAOC almost required two accounts.  Buff Bot and normal account.

The only grinding I remember in DAOC was enchanter pet fully buffed by buff bot pulling insta spawn "fins" i think?  The focus shield on the pet returned so much damage and held aggro so well it was insane grinding!

Then they added darkness falls or something that involved a lot of grinding for currency items to buy gear.

At some point they added Trials of Atlantis I think?  Which was VERY themepark.  You had set quests and goals to achieve and were set to different areas to complete them.

I guess the better question here would have been "What really defines themepark and sandbox?"

 

It seems to me "sandbox" = grinding to most players and that seems wrong...

And Themepark = guided quests and instances...  If guided quests and instances is themepark then I HOPE every future game is always a themepark.  I hate being forced to grind mobs for hours and hours to level up.  AZN MMO's are there if you want that!  ;)

  mlauzon

Novice Member

Joined: 6/21/05
Posts: 777

3/11/12 5:45:20 PM#52


Originally posted by ShakyMo
Daoc is a themepark as is everquestThey just aren't wow clones (obviously)

There is no such thing as a WoW-clone, all MMORPGs are in fact clones of the first: Meridian 59!

--
Michael

  Samkin772

Novice Member

Joined: 10/20/09
Posts: 104

4/04/12 4:38:43 AM#53
Originally posted by Creslin321
Originally posted by punkrock
Originally posted by Creslin321

It was a themepark.  The only folks who will think it is a sandbox probably never played a sandbox, and think that EQ1 was a sandbox.

Oh yay sandbox snab is here*rolls eyes*  there is other types of sandboxes not just you`re type.

Just becouse it was not ryzom or w/e little game you think is a sandbox, does not mean it`s not a sandbox. 

Man little let smelling you`re own a@@, get some fresh air.

 Sorry if I offended you, but try to understand where I'm coming from.

When I started playing MMORPGs, there was only Ultima Online.  A few years down the road, Everquest came out and the distinction between sandbox and themepark was created.  To me, and to many other people, Everquest was the first game recognized as a themepark, so I use it as a touchstone.

DAoC is EXTREMELY similar to Everquest in many respects, so I see it as a themepark.  I find it...interesting that many folks nowadays are trying to say that Everquest, and thus similar games like DAoC, were a sandboxes...which is funny because EQ was the FIRST themepark.

I really don't think the game elements that WoW popularized like questing have anything to do with the sandbox/themepark distinction.  So the fact that DAoC didn't have any major questing is irrelevant IMO.

I think a lot of people feel that Sandbox, PvP, and Hardcore are synonomous, which is fair enough because a true hardcore sandbox has to have FFA PvP, and generally tends to be at least a little hardcore.  However, putting in PvP, no matter how well executed, doesn't make a game sandbox IMO.  And EQ/DAoC were a lot more hardcore than WoW, but that doesn't make them sandboxes.

I can see the point of a lot of us "old school EQ" players considering it sandbox however.  Compared to the games I had played prior to EQ, it was very much sandbox.   My definition of sandbox is a game with no invisible barriers.  There were a lot less invisible barriers in EQ than in previous games (UO excluded of course).  Therefore, EQ = sandbox.  With the benefit of hindsight, and comparing how far EQ went with eliminating invisible walls to how far they could've went (or how far UO went), EQ = themepark.  And Creslin is right, DAoC was an improved version of EQ with a dedicated PvP (or RvR) component. 

In short (too late, I know), I agree with Creslin that EQ and DAoC are basically themeparks.  I just don't split up games into black and white.  The fact that it is an MMO means that there is some freedom of movement, and the game is at least somewhat driven by the player community.  You just have games like UO and DFO far to the right (sandbox), and WoW far to the left (themepark), with games like EQ and DAoC, which lie to the right of WoW, but still definitely on the themepark side of the spectrum.

  ShakyMo

Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/21/11
Posts: 7246

4/04/12 4:41:27 AM#54
Daoc was a themepark and also best mmo.I've played (eq was a themepark too but I don't like EQ)

Generally I prefer sandboxes to these modern wow clone themeparks though
  User Deleted
4/04/12 5:08:13 AM#55
Originally posted by Cuathon
Originally posted by Wicoa

Just came up with this question in my head its friday night and I have a glass of wine, yes this is how geeks party.

In daoc I did not follow quest paths, from a low level it was about finding a group and grinding up mobs at various patches with people.  You could build your own house and RvR was an open ended pvp situation.

Let me know what you think.

It was mainly a themepark, but it had some virtual worlds influences.

Wrong

 

 

 

DAoC was a Sandbox

 

 

THE ONLY criteria to determine if a game is a sandbox or themepark is does the game guide you on rails or are you free to level as you like.  THATS IT, NOTHING ELSE .  Love how people thorw these small paradigms on top of the abbreviation of the words.

An open world is a type of video game level design where a player can roam freely through a virtual world and is given considerable freedom in choosing how or when to approach objectives.[1] Video games that include such level design often are referred to as "free roam" games.

The term is sometimes used interchangeably with "sandbox" and "free-roaming";[2][3] however, the terms open world and free-roaming describe the game environment itself and allude more to the absence of artificial barriers,[4] in contrast to the invisible walls and loading screens that are common in linear level designs. The term sandbox refers more to the mechanics of a game and how, as in a physical sandbox, the user is entertained by his ability to play creatively and with there being "no right way"[5] of playing the game.

Despite their name, many open world games still enforce restrictions at some points in the game environment, either due to absolute game design limitations or temporary in-game limitations (such as locked areas) imposed by a game's linearity.

 

 

 

 

A video game with nonlinear gameplay presents players with challenges that can be completed in a number of different sequences. Each player sees only some of the challenges possible, and the same challenges may be played in a different order. A video game with linear gameplay will confront a player with a fixed sequence of challenges. Every player sees every challenge and sees them in the same order.

A nonlinear game will allow greater player freedom than a linear game. For example, a nonlinear game may permit multiple sequences to finish the game, a choice between paths to victory, or optional side-quests and subplots. Some games feature both linear and nonlinear elements, and some games offer a sandbox mode that allows players to explore an open world game environment independently from the game's main objectives, if any objectives are provided at all.

A game that is significantly nonlinear is sometimes described as being open-ended or a sandbox,[1][2][3][4] and is characterized by there being no "right way" of playing the game.[5] A common consequence (intentional or unintentional) of open-ended gameplay is emergent gameplay.[4]

  mcrippins

Elite Member

Joined: 7/01/07
Posts: 995

4/04/12 5:29:36 AM#56
Originally posted by Zylaxx
Originally posted by Cuathon
Originally posted by Wicoa

Just came up with this question in my head its friday night and I have a glass of wine, yes this is how geeks party.

In daoc I did not follow quest paths, from a low level it was about finding a group and grinding up mobs at various patches with people.  You could build your own house and RvR was an open ended pvp situation.

Let me know what you think.

It was mainly a themepark, but it had some virtual worlds influences.

Wrong

 

 

 

DAoC was a Sandbox

 

 

THE ONLY criteria to determine if a game is a sandbox or themepark is does the game guide you on rails or are you free to level as you like.  THATS IT, NOTHING ELSE .  Love how people thorw these small paradigms on top of the abbreviation of the words.

An open world is a type of video game level design where a player can roam freely through a virtual world and is given considerable freedom in choosing how or when to approach objectives.[1] Video games that include such level design often are referred to as "free roam" games.

The term is sometimes used interchangeably with "sandbox" and "free-roaming";[2][3] however, the terms open world and free-roaming describe the game environment itself and allude more to the absence of artificial barriers,[4] in contrast to the invisible walls and loading screens that are common in linear level designs. The term sandbox refers more to the mechanics of a game and how, as in a physical sandbox, the user is entertained by his ability to play creatively and with there being "no right way"[5] of playing the game.

Despite their name, many open world games still enforce restrictions at some points in the game environment, either due to absolute game design limitations or temporary in-game limitations (such as locked areas) imposed by a game's linearity.

 

 

 

 

A video game with nonlinear gameplay presents players with challenges that can be completed in a number of different sequences. Each player sees only some of the challenges possible, and the same challenges may be played in a different order. A video game with linear gameplay will confront a player with a fixed sequence of challenges. Every player sees every challenge and sees them in the same order.

A nonlinear game will allow greater player freedom than a linear game. For example, a nonlinear game may permit multiple sequences to finish the game, a choice between paths to victory, or optional side-quests and subplots. Some games feature both linear and nonlinear elements, and some games offer a sandbox mode that allows players to explore an open world game environment independently from the game's main objectives, if any objectives are provided at all.

A game that is significantly nonlinear is sometimes described as being open-ended or a sandbox,[1][2][3][4] and is characterized by there being no "right way" of playing the game.[5] A common consequence (intentional or unintentional) of open-ended gameplay is emergent gameplay.[4]

 I don't really agree with this at all. When you take a true sandbox game (say Ultima Online) and have a fresh server you will literally see next to nothing in the world except for random mobs and terrain. Now if you add 100 players to that server they will eventually start killing mobs, or sheering sheep (that's what I did) to make clothing to sell to npcs or people to make gold to have their friend (or themselves) craft them some armor and a weapon so they can go kill bigger mobs and get some gold to buy a house to place. This is just one example. Another player might choose to go to a mountain and mine ore and become a full time blacksmith. Another player might decide to start fishing and eventually buy a boat to get bigger and better fish. He may never even kill a monster on that character. There are no classes. You are free to build your character however you decide to. No restrictions. It's not just about wether a world is linear or open. It's a whole lot more than that. You just wont see it hardly ever. In fact the only game that is coming close to something like that is Archeage. 

  User Deleted
4/04/12 5:32:55 AM#57
Originally posted by afropuff420
Originally posted by Zylaxx
Originally posted by Cuathon
Originally posted by Wicoa

Just came up with this question in my head its friday night and I have a glass of wine, yes this is how geeks party.

In daoc I did not follow quest paths, from a low level it was about finding a group and grinding up mobs at various patches with people.  You could build your own house and RvR was an open ended pvp situation.

Let me know what you think.

It was mainly a themepark, but it had some virtual worlds influences.

Wrong

 

 

 

DAoC was a Sandbox

 

 

THE ONLY criteria to determine if a game is a sandbox or themepark is does the game guide you on rails or are you free to level as you like.  THATS IT, NOTHING ELSE .  Love how people thorw these small paradigms on top of the abbreviation of the words.

An open world is a type of video game level design where a player can roam freely through a virtual world and is given considerable freedom in choosing how or when to approach objectives.[1] Video games that include such level design often are referred to as "free roam" games.

The term is sometimes used interchangeably with "sandbox" and "free-roaming";[2][3] however, the terms open world and free-roaming describe the game environment itself and allude more to the absence of artificial barriers,[4] in contrast to the invisible walls and loading screens that are common in linear level designs. The term sandbox refers more to the mechanics of a game and how, as in a physical sandbox, the user is entertained by his ability to play creatively and with there being "no right way"[5] of playing the game.

Despite their name, many open world games still enforce restrictions at some points in the game environment, either due to absolute game design limitations or temporary in-game limitations (such as locked areas) imposed by a game's linearity.

 

 

 

 

A video game with nonlinear gameplay presents players with challenges that can be completed in a number of different sequences. Each player sees only some of the challenges possible, and the same challenges may be played in a different order. A video game with linear gameplay will confront a player with a fixed sequence of challenges. Every player sees every challenge and sees them in the same order.

A nonlinear game will allow greater player freedom than a linear game. For example, a nonlinear game may permit multiple sequences to finish the game, a choice between paths to victory, or optional side-quests and subplots. Some games feature both linear and nonlinear elements, and some games offer a sandbox mode that allows players to explore an open world game environment independently from the game's main objectives, if any objectives are provided at all.

A game that is significantly nonlinear is sometimes described as being open-ended or a sandbox,[1][2][3][4] and is characterized by there being no "right way" of playing the game.[5] A common consequence (intentional or unintentional) of open-ended gameplay is emergent gameplay.[4]

 I don't really agree with this at all. When you take a true sandbox game (say Ultima Online) and have a fresh server you will literally see next to nothing in the world except for random mobs and terrain. Now if you add 100 players to that server they will eventually start killing mobs, or sheering sheep (that's what I did) to make clothing to sell to npcs or people to make gold to have their friend (or themselves) craft them some armor and a weapon so they can go kill bigger mobs and get some gold to buy a house to place. This is just one example. Another player might choose to go to a mountain and mine ore and become a full time blacksmith. Another player might decide to start fishing and eventually buy a boat to get bigger and better fish. He may never even kill a monster on that character. There are no classes. You are free to build your character however you decide to. No restrictions. It's not just about wether a world is linear or open. It's a whole lot more than that. You just wont see it hardly ever. In fact the only game that is coming close to something like that is Archeage. 

Doesnt matter if you agree or disagree.  I could say soemthing like " I Think the Moon is made of Gouda Cheese"  Doesnt make it right even if I believe. 

 

Its fine to have your own narrow definition within the strata of the game, thats cool but it doesnt change the overall defintion.

 

Its a very simple and straight forward defintion defined by one term.  Linearity! 

  cutthecrap

Apprentice Member

Joined: 1/29/12
Posts: 608

4/04/12 5:57:40 AM#58
Originally posted by Zylaxx

Doesnt matter if you agree or disagree.  I could say soemthing like " I Think the Moon is made of Gouda Cheese"  Doesnt make it right even if I believe. 

 

Its fine to have your own narrow definition within the strata of the game, thats cool but it doesnt change the overall defintion.

 

Its a very simple and straight forward defintion defined by one term.  Linearity! 

Well, it matters in the sense whether you pose a statement and definition that the majority of MMO gamers and the industry agree with, or one that they find themselves disagreeing with. A claim has little value if it's about a definition or classification that most people think is wrong.

 

I can see how UO and EVE are sandbox MMORPG's and WoW and LotrO are themepark MMORPG's, something that the majority of people in the MMO know also will agree with. Problem is that sandbox and themepark are merely inofficial classifications and that things usually are less black and white, with a lot of grey inbetween.

I find it hard to determine what former pre-WoW MMORPG's actually are, because with WoW and afterwards quest based leveling became a core feature, and that's one of the defining traits of a themepark MMORPG.

I can't recall the term 'themepark' being used before WoW. People did discuss MMO designs that were either 'game focused' design, where the devs provided all the content and you as a player played their game with little impact on the world, and 'world focused' design, where the devs provided the players tools to affect the ingame world, and because of it there's emergent gameplay with players affecting the state of the world.

EQ, DAoC, CoH were MMO's that had a 'game focused' design, where as MMO's like UO, EVE and SWG had a 'world focused'  or sandbox design.

 

I see themepark design as a branch of 'game focused' design, one of the paths that such a design can take as a next step.

EQ's corpse runs, XP penalty with dying, no hand holding right from the start and overall challenging difficulty I don't particularly see as classic themepark design, but I do see EQ and DAoC as game focused design, where as UO and SWG were more 'world focused' or sandboxy.

 

  Vesavius

Old School

Joined: 3/08/04
Posts: 7147

Players come for the game, but they stay for the people- Most Devs have forgotten this.

4/04/12 5:59:01 AM#59

It was a hybrid, like 99.9% of MMORPGs.

People need to get their heads around the fact that true sandboxes are incredibly rare and there is more to these games then two absolute definitions.

Folks get way too tied up with labels imo.

  Kyleran

Bitter Vet™

Joined: 9/13/06
Posts: 18994

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

4/04/12 6:00:31 AM#60
Originally posted by Zylaxx
Originally posted by afropuff420
Originally posted by Zylaxx
Originally posted by Cuathon
Originally posted by Wicoa

Just came up with this question in my head its friday night and I have a glass of wine, yes this is how geeks party.

In daoc I did not follow quest paths, from a low level it was about finding a group and grinding up mobs at various patches with people.  You could build your own house and RvR was an open ended pvp situation.

Let me know what you think.

It was mainly a themepark, but it had some virtual worlds influences.

Wrong

 

 

 

DAoC was a Sandbox

 

 

THE ONLY criteria to determine if a game is a sandbox or themepark is does the game guide you on rails or are you free to level as you like.  THATS IT, NOTHING ELSE .  Love how people thorw these small paradigms on top of the abbreviation of the words.

An open world is a type of video game level design where a player can roam freely through a virtual world and is given considerable freedom in choosing how or when to approach objectives.[1] Video games that include such level design often are referred to as "free roam" games.

The term is sometimes used interchangeably with "sandbox" and "free-roaming";[2][3] however, the terms open world and free-roaming describe the game environment itself and allude more to the absence of artificial barriers,[4] in contrast to the invisible walls and loading screens that are common in linear level designs. The term sandbox refers more to the mechanics of a game and how, as in a physical sandbox, the user is entertained by his ability to play creatively and with there being "no right way"[5] of playing the game.

Despite their name, many open world games still enforce restrictions at some points in the game environment, either due to absolute game design limitations or temporary in-game limitations (such as locked areas) imposed by a game's linearity.

 

 

 

 

A video game with nonlinear gameplay presents players with challenges that can be completed in a number of different sequences. Each player sees only some of the challenges possible, and the same challenges may be played in a different order. A video game with linear gameplay will confront a player with a fixed sequence of challenges. Every player sees every challenge and sees them in the same order.

A nonlinear game will allow greater player freedom than a linear game. For example, a nonlinear game may permit multiple sequences to finish the game, a choice between paths to victory, or optional side-quests and subplots. Some games feature both linear and nonlinear elements, and some games offer a sandbox mode that allows players to explore an open world game environment independently from the game's main objectives, if any objectives are provided at all.

A game that is significantly nonlinear is sometimes described as being open-ended or a sandbox,[1][2][3][4] and is characterized by there being no "right way" of playing the game.[5] A common consequence (intentional or unintentional) of open-ended gameplay is emergent gameplay.[4]

 I don't really agree with this at all. When you take a true sandbox game (say Ultima Online) and have a fresh server you will literally see next to nothing in the world except for random mobs and terrain. Now if you add 100 players to that server they will eventually start killing mobs, or sheering sheep (that's what I did) to make clothing to sell to npcs or people to make gold to have their friend (or themselves) craft them some armor and a weapon so they can go kill bigger mobs and get some gold to buy a house to place. This is just one example. Another player might choose to go to a mountain and mine ore and become a full time blacksmith. Another player might decide to start fishing and eventually buy a boat to get bigger and better fish. He may never even kill a monster on that character. There are no classes. You are free to build your character however you decide to. No restrictions. It's not just about wether a world is linear or open. It's a whole lot more than that. You just wont see it hardly ever. In fact the only game that is coming close to something like that is Archeage. 

Doesnt matter if you agree or disagree.  I could say soemthing like " I Think the Moon is made of Gouda Cheese"  Doesnt make it right even if I believe. 

 

Its fine to have your own narrow definition within the strata of the game, thats cool but it doesnt change the overall defintion.

 

Its a very simple and straight forward defintion defined by one term.  Linearity! 

Let's address your last point, regardless what you say, DAOC was very linear in its design (when compared to a real sandbox title such as EVE)

You started out at level one, and could really only go hunt in the new player areas.  Head out deep into the hinterlands and you would have found every NPC for 500 yards closing in on your rapidly (unless you could stealth) and sending you back to the zone you belonged in.

Speaking of starting out, you had to pick a class, and it frequently defined the role you were going to play.  Sure, there were hybrids, but the pure classes such as Tank, Healer, DD mage really were limited to their specific role.  It was actually almost impossible to solo a healer to 50, doubt anyone actually ever tried. (as opposed to Necromancers who were soloing monsters)

As you progressed, the game guided you from one zone to the next, with each zone have progressively higher level monsters.  In fact, what quests it did have were tied to your level and frequently would guide you to the next zone when it was appropriate to do so.

It's true, there were no quest hubs like WOW introduced to the genre, but that doesn't make it any less theme parky, even if the term really wasn't defined until WOW.

Let's look at crafting.  In UO one could craft to maximum prowess and never actually pick up a sword.  Not true in DAOC, at launch some items couldn't be crafted unless you were out in the fontier keeps, and you'd never reach those unless your character was high enough in level to survive the passage out there. (they later reduced the difficulty but even then I seem to recall certain crafting levels required you to be a certain character level, but perhaps I'm confusing that with WOW now)

So don't think there wasn't any linearity in DAOC, there clearly was a progression path that the Developers intended you to follow, (even though you might have been able to stray from it) and by any comparison to real sandboxes (UO, Ryzom, EVE etc) you can't call it a sandbox.

A good virtual world yes, (which many people confuse for a sandbox) but still a guided game in many respects.

See, the problem is, you don't get to define what a sandbox is, (nor do I), but the market place overall will judge what is really a sandbox and what isn't.   By common acceptance some titles are considered so, and others not.  You are the outlier in this case.

 

"In these forums 'honest' seems to be a symonym for 'hates the game just like I do'" - ohioastro
Kyleran - Bitter Vet ™ since 2006
"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

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