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All Posts by MikeJT

All Posts by MikeJT

5 Pages 1 2 3 4 5 »
83 posts found

What I'd like to see them do:

Cancel the game (no really), and go back to the drawing board after refunding everyone their money.

 

What they probably will do:

Release the game then blame external factors on its failure.

 

The option to create an Elder Scrolls MMO has been excercised and unfortunately this is a wasted opportunity.

Even if they were to make tremendous changes to a second Elder Scrolls Online game, so many people will already have been turned off by this that I very much doubt they'll ever gain the same subscriber base as they could have if they just did the game right the first time.

Originally posted by Loktofeit
Originally posted by MikeJT

I currently have a 7-page design document detailing a concept for a crafting system and the character attributes in the game. It also contains a little bit on the skill system, ranged weapons and how armor works. I have have thought about a lot more features but am yet to put them into writing.

That is the core of the problem right there. Almost everyone you bring to your project will have the same thing. Whose do you choose? A community MMO project is a monumental task, if for no other reason than the people that want to do these community projects all feel their ideas should be the ones used.

Well when I say 'design' document what I really mean is a collection of ideas (most of which are very original and never before seen features in an MMO or other RPG game). Obviously other people would bring their ideas to the table and hopefully a team would be able to pick the best of the bunch.

That's the ideal outcome but obviously there's no garantee it'll actually work that way.

Originally posted by jazz.be

Yeah and then you need to replace this dude cause he left because he got a kid. Then the other one grows up and feels more like party all day.

Being a community project, people coming and going isn't such a big deal, so long as those people keep decent documentation and upload their work to the project's online storage on a regular basis (trying to work out what someone elses code actually does is always a bitch when there's no documentation).

You can always have multiple people working on the same thing too. Like if one person creates a character model, another person might texture it, a third person might rig it for animation and test the rig, and a fourth would create the animations. If any one of these people leaves the project it's not such a big deal.

Originally posted by Kiljaedenas

You do know that this would take years of effort right? And how would you compensate people for their time?

However...

If you have some good ideas, I might be able to help out a bit with the design and possibly project management.

It would be a community project like a lot of free software that is available.

People would be compensated with the experience and personal satisfaction they gain from working on a project which produces a functioning game. :-p

I currently have a 7-page design document detailing a concept for a crafting system and the character attributes in the game. It also contains a little bit on the skill system, ranged weapons and how armor works. I have have thought about a lot more features but am yet to put them into writing.

Been wondering if it would be possible to get a group of people together over the internet to develop an MMORPG.

The project would obviously need programmers, database designers, modellers, texture artists, animators, sound designers, music composers and project managers. I'm sure atleast some people in the MMORPG.com community would possess these skills.

Could even be in 2D like UO which would probably make things a whole lot easier.

So I've decided to try out the Mortal Online free trial.

I downloaded the installer and started it up to start patching. I figured it'd take a few hours, so I decided to play Dungeons and Dragons Online whilst I was waiting.

I started it up and after walking around for a bit in town, my entire system freezes. First time I've experienced this problem. Alt-Tab, Alt-Ctrl-Delete, Alt-Enter, nothing works. Its a total system freeze. Figured it odd but hey these things happen.

Restarted the computer, started up the MO patcher again, then started D&D. Whilst on the loading screen after character selection, it freezes up again.

Restart, MO patcher, D&D, and it freezes after about 3 minutes.

Think my video card drivers might be the issue so I check nVidia's website, find an update and install them.

Start up D&D just by itself. Walk around for about 20 minutes with no issue. Figure my old driver must've been corrupted somehow, and installing a new one must've fixed the problem.

Alt tab out of D&D, restart the MO patcher, and continue playing D&D. About 2 minutes after restarting the MO patcher, D&D freezes up again.

Coincidence or causal link?

It doesn't make much sense that the patcher for MO would cause D&D to freeze up, but in 20 years of using computers, I have seen stranger things.

Anyone out there got D&D and MO installed who can test it to see if it occurs at their end too? I'd really like to be able to rule out hardware faults as the warranty on a bunch of parts in my PC runs out quite soon.

I think the inability of studios to break free from the WoW mold comes mainly from the fact that the people with the money simply won't fund games which don't follow a tried and tested formula.

Think of recent MMO releases like Darkfall and Mortal Online (well okay they're not that recent anymore). Both developed by small studios with limited budgets, both plagued with severe bugs on release, both slow to correct unintended gameplay imbalances or unforseen consequences of changes to the game.

What if those games had the budget of something like WoW? What if Darkfall released back in 2009 with the same features, gameplay balance and bug-free gameplay that it has today?

Buggy releases, gameplay imbalances and poorly thought out features lose a game subscribers in the long run, even after those issues have been fixed. I have no evidence but personal observation to back that statement up, but you know it makes sense. I know many people who started playing Darkfall at the same time that I did who left because magic was entirely overpowered and the grind to catch up was ridiculous. These people didn't come back when these issues were fixed (by the introduction of global cool downs and a change in the skill gain rate, and other things later).

And lets not forget to mention that the majority of press on a game is generated during it's release, so launch reviews of buggy games are certain to turn off many gamers who demand a more polished experience from the outset.

Because these small studios are never going to be able to release a game with the same polish as the big budget titles, MMORPG's that might be industry changing are probably never going to create a significant impact.

It's only when a big named studio takes the risk on breaking the mold and releases a polished, AAA title that the industry may shift from being so heavily limited by the current WoW-based model to alternatives.

I think the biggest challenge for the industry as a whole, when trying to move away from the WoW-style MMORPG, is rebranding their games so that people who associate the term "MMORPG" so heavily with WoW will not be turned off by a game based on the simple fact that its an MMORPG. So many people I've spoken to who proclaim not like to MMORPG's have only ever played WoW, and they won't even consider other MMORPG's because they think they are all like it.

Originally posted by darkehawke

what worries me is will the mmo change the way the sp games are done? in order for it to be more "accessible" for its mmo players or some bs like that

I personally think that won't be a concern.

Bethesda aren't the ones who are screwing up the MMO, Zenimax Online Studios are.

I'm hoping that Bethesda will be able to retain their autonomy when it comes to designing the games they're creating now and into the future (although I'm betting that the simplication they decided on when creating Skyrim was due to pressure from the guys in suits who wanted the game to have greater mass appeal by eliminating some of the RPG elements, not just the development team themselves).

The day that Zenimax Media starts telling Bethesda how to make their games is the day that half the staff at Bethesda quit.

Maybe then we'll see an Elder Scrolls-esque MMORPG if they form a new studio together.

Originally posted by darkehawke
Originally posted by FrodoFragins

MMO's are so big and expensive that fluff like player housing generally doesn't make the cut on release.

which just shows that somewhere along the way, MMORPGs have become mutant twisted deformed freaks of what they should represent

I personally blame World of Warcraft. World of Warcraft came along and called itself an MMORPG, and its commercial success meant every other MMORPG developer after it decided to emulate its model, hoping their formula would work for them too.

It's gotten to the point now where people assume that every MMORPG out there plays like WoW or its numerous imitators. I've heard people say "I don't like MMORPG's" many times, who when queried on which MMORPG's they've played, reveal that WoW is the only MMORPG they've ever played.

"MMORPG" today is almost taken to mean 'a game like WoW' by a wide section of the population. Its almost like Xerox is to photocopier or Walkman is to portable cassette player.

For every WoW subscriber out there, there's probably 10 people who "don't like MMORPG's" because they played WoW. That's probably 100,000 who have it in their minds that they don't like "MMORPG's", and who will probably never try another MMORPG because they don't like WoW.

I'm one of the lucky ones who started my MMORPG career with Ultima Online, so I know there's other types of MMORPG there are out there, and my imagination of what an MMORPG could be isn't restricted to the confines of the WoW theme-park model.

Good gameplay design doesn't necessarily take any longer to program than bad gameplay design.

You can have a team of the most talented programmers with all the time in the world and you will still come out with a crappy game if your game design is bad. Or you could have the worst programmers in the world (who create buggy, overly complicate code) and still have a brilliant game (albiet one that uses more processing power than it needs to and crashes every 20 minutes).

Good gameplay design is something that can be established in a couple of minutes, or through hours upon hours of play-testing and feedback, either way, more money doesn't always equal better gameplay design.

As such, chosing whether to have good graphics or bad graphics really isn't going to impact on your ability to deliver top-notch gameplay design. The main factor impacting on how good your game design is, is the people who are designing the game.


Originally posted by Soandsoso
Anyone who thinks a single player rpg will translate directly into a mmo is delusional.
I keep hearing this again and again and not one person who's made this assertion has actually given an example of how the single player game's mechanics and features can't be transferred into a multiplayer setting.


Originally posted by Soandsoso
One is set up for the tastes of one person and the other is set up to cater to the tastes of many.

This statement doesn't even make sense. You say this like every single player game is customised to each individual player's preferences.

When 500,000 people like the same thing, isn't that a good indication that putting those features into a multiplayer game would give you a multiplayer game that those 500,000 players would like?

Originally posted by Vesavius
Originally posted by MikeJT

No player housing? Why not? 

 

Because their whole focus is wrong and instead of developing an amazing PvE social world they are sticking PvP in.

 

 

Player housing and PvP content are not mutually exclusive features, and neither are social aspects and PvP content.

You can have non-instanced player housing and open world FFA PvP, and social gaming and excellent PvP all in one game.

Originally posted by Thorbrand

Player housing does nothing for a better gaming experience in MMOs. Just a waste of money, time and resources.

I think it's best not to state an opinion as if it were a matter of fact.

Whilst you might not gain any enjoyment from player housing, many other players may gain significant utility from its inclusion.

The best thing about player housing is that it doesn't affect the enjoyment of the game for people who aren't interested in it.

Originally posted by jtcgs

There are too many aspects of the series that CANNOT be brought into an MMORPG...

 

Like?

A lot of people have made these assertions without actually offering examples.

Originally posted by SEANMCAD

What they should have said is this.

'our deployement of the game will not have player housing, we might entertain the idea later but for now it will not be there when we go live'

That is much better than.

'because player housing is not possible how players want it'

That statement attracted people like myself who dont care about player housing but do care about being lied too.

Not to mention that saying that "because player housing is not possible how players want it" is quite arrogant as they assume they actually know what players want.

Originally posted by Ambros123
Originally posted by MikeJT
Originally posted by rygard49

Meaningful decisions...

Most modern MMORPG's are severely lacking in meaningful decisions. Very rarely does a player actions actually influence the game world as a whole.

If truly meaningful decisions is something they could achieve in TESO (or any MMO for that matter), then I'm pretty sure you would see people flocking to that game in droves.

This is pretty much a very hard mechanic to achieve, imo this concept belongs more in a single play game than an MMO.  There are few exceptions, how EVE handles player driven content is about the only way player decisions can impact the world.

 

People scream about meaningful decisions but really you can't have this concept like how everyone expcected in SWTOR.  Sure have decisions that impact how you go about a quest and what not but for impacting the world... not gonna happen.

That's a very defeatist mentality.

One of my favourite quotes is "Things are only impossible until they're not."

The reason why most developers would probably agree with you is that in most games, when the player makes a decision which impacts the game world, the game loads up Scenario A, B or C depending on the players choice, and just like magic the whole world changes due to the players decision.

Making player decisions meaningful in an MMO context would require a highly dynamic system of AI which factors in the actions and decisions of all players affecting that AI. And of course, when a player effects one AI, the behaviour of that AI changes which affects the behaviour of other AI, which creates a constant knock on effect until all AI have been effected and a new status quo is reached.

Of course, small decisions have very little effects (possibly effecting only one or two AI units) whereas big decisions can effect broad areas. For example, raiding a large NPC iron mining operation, slaughtering all the miners, stealing all the ore, then burning out the support structures in the mine so there's a cave in, would drive the price of iron and iron-based products up all over the region. It would also increase the cost of substitutes, as the increased price of iron might drive more people to purchase other metals.

Creating a system of AI robust enough to be able to handle rapid and violent change is the main challenge in delivering meaningful player decisions, and the processing power is the primary requirement.

Difficult to implement? It probably is. Impossible in an MMO context? Not at all.

Originally posted by rygard49

Meaningful decisions...

Most modern MMORPG's are severely lacking in meaningful decisions. Very rarely does a player actions actually influence the game world as a whole.

If truly meaningful decisions is something they could achieve in TESO (or any MMO for that matter), then I'm pretty sure you would see people flocking to that game in droves.

The last point about being political is one that I particularly agree with. The ability for players to rise to positions of power within the game world is extremely important for a sandbox MMORPG. Whilst most mainstream theme-park MMO's fail to capitalise on this point, I think the Elder Scrolls universe lends itself particularly well to political gameplay.

Of course, I doubt this game is going to be much of a sandbox and doubt even more that they'll actually introduce content as dynamic as that.

Wow.

Instead basing the game around the current existing lore, they decided to re-write history all together, effectively giving a great big slap in the face to all the people who carefully established over 5,000 years of history.

Originally posted by MikkelB

TES for me, has always been a climb to the top. From being a prisoner, a nobody, to the hero of that particular time. Something like that is (at the moment) impossible to recreate in a MMO, because of the simple fact that you're not alone. Combine that with other elements that are characteristic of a TES game (the exploration, the buttload of dungeons, scaling enemies, the leveling system, to be able to kill of NPC's permanently, etc.) and a MMO in the TES style is simply very hard, if not impossible to make. So why use the IP if you now that there is a strong possibility that people are going to have expectations that can't be met? That caused a lot of this bile in the past week.

Don't think for a moment that it's not possible to make a faithful multiplayer recreation of the single player Elder Scrolls experience. Sure, it might be a little different in that fact that maybe not everyone rises to be the "Champion of Cyrodiil", yet in a living breathing world, there's no reason for them to be - there would be so many more meaningful roles for players to fill, from great military leaders, to wealthy traders, to master craftsmen, or even as far as dukes or kings (perhaps even the Emporer!).

Just like in a single player game, the only thing limiting how realistic an AI character can be is the processing power behind it. So whilst they might not be able to achieve a living breathing world using the same server technology as a game like WoW, there's certainly nothing stopping them from greatly expanding the processing capabilities of their servers to enable them to create a world that lives and breaths, with realistic economies and rich culture which continues to play out even when not a single player is logged on.

Separating the servers from the AI systems means that an NPC character would most likely use less bandwidth than a player, and limiting the decision models of each AI unit would greatly reduce the processing power needed to create a convincing cast of NPC's which make the world feel much more realistic.

You have to remember: "Things are only impossible until they're not."

Originally posted by Xanrn

Ah this whole situation makes me laugh.

Funny how all you Bethesda Fanbois, had no problem with this when the shoe was on the other foot.

When Bethseda took the Fallout series and changed pretty much everything for the worse, when they took away 90% of what made the games Fallout, ignored the Fallout fans, twisted the lore so bad it end up in a knot.

But no that was fine... Until it happens to your beloved game, then its bad.

This is Karma and its Justice.

Now you know how the Fallout fans felt when they sold our Game down the river.

Difference is there's no stopping them from making another Fallout game in the future with traditional Fallout gameplay.

They're not going to be able to make a new "The Elder Scrolls Online" if they screw this one up. Its going to be a one time deal. If this game fails miserably, we're not going to see "The Elder Scrolls Online II" a few years after TESO servers go dark. Maybe we'll see another one in 10 or 20 years if we're lucky.

But Bethesda could start work on a new Fallout game with traditional Fallout gameplay tomorrow. Perhaps if Wasteland 2 is a commercial success, they will do that.

If Fallout 3 had been named anything but Fallout 3, and all references to "Fallout" were removed from the game, then not a single Fallout fan would've had a thing to complain about. The same goes for this MMORPG they're producing. It is only an Elder Scrolls game in name and lore.

Sorry but tipping your hat to Elder Scrolls lore whilst completely ignoring everything that makes an Elder Scrolls game isn't enough to keep the fans happy. If they aren't keeping the fans happy, who are they trying to keep happy exactly?

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