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All Posts by Tanemund

All Posts by Tanemund

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99 posts found

I know PvE gets a bad rap around here, but that's what most of us spend our time doing in MMOs.  Either through just plain leveling or crafting or farming to go on raids or to get PvP gear, PvE is where our avatars live the majority of their pixellated lives.  Even though I tend to PvP as much as possible and I have some great memories, the strange part is my most cherished memories of playing MMOs are PvE related.  Usually it's something foolish that happens during leveling or farming or even just horsing around.  These seemed to be the moments when  I really connected with people and they became more than people I knew on line; they became friends.

 

I'd like to see a post about your top ten PvE memories be they funny, silly, sad, maddening or otherwise.  They can be in whatever games you choose.

As has been repeated many times above, not including Everquest in this list is inexcusable.  Like WoW, EQ cast a huge shadow over the online gaming industry for a while.  It was the first game that people outside of gaming had ever heard about.  It was the first game to "go public".  Before that MMORPGs were the purview of early denizens of the internet.  Games like DAoC were produced as Anti-EQ games and people talked about games being "EQ killers".  Before WoW this game was the 800 pound gorilla in the room and it introduced many things that most of us take for granted in our online gaming (level based advancement, anyone?).  Whether games that came out later copied or rejected the base principles of EQ, they were influenced by it, just as games that come out now-a-days are influenced by either copying or rejecting the WoW model.  Even people that didn't game knew about EQ.

 

 

Were DAoC and SWG good?  Yes.  Were they groundbreaking?  The data seem to suggest that they weren't.  As noted above no one seems to be in a hurry to copy those games, so their influence is limited.  In the end I'm not sure these games would pass the "Star Test", meaning that even people who don't game would know of these games.  You ask the average person who doesn't game what EQ or WoW is and they'll know.  Ask them what DAoC or SWG was and they'll go "What?"

 

After that I can see the logic behind the rest of the picks.  I'd probably drop the fourth choice in favor of EQ.

Originally posted by wargfoot
Originally posted by Tanemund

Ack!  Look how a great idea can get ruined in just a few sentences.

You killed the dream.

Proof positive that nothing can mess up a good game faster than players.

 

/shame

You going to run a Kickstarter on this?  Because if you are I'll throw you enough to get your first ream of paper. 

 

By the by that's another way to monetize;  different color paper.  Although with this you have to be careful because as everyone knows red paper is clearly superior to green paper.  And then there is that whole scissors issue.  Better  nerf scissors right off the bat.

 

Ack!  Look how a great idea can get ruined in just a few sentences.

First off, why would you ever want to see a game hyped up?  How many games have been hyped to the point of disappointment lately?  The last think you want is people getting hyped up for the game until they've got completely unrealistic expectations for the game.  If you want a successful game you almost have to sneak it under the radar now.

 

Second, as has been said before the game is still vaporware.  It's a lot of promises, posts on forum boards and a few scraps thrown out by the developers.

 

Third, maybe everyone needs a refresher.  Am I the only one that remembers that Mark Jacobs, who is now being hailed as the possible savior of the MMO genre, was the guy who created DAoC, and then proceeded to kill the player base and ruin the game just 24 months later with the Trials of Atlantis expansion?  Then he cranked out that turkey called Warhammer.  Don't tell me he was not the lead dog on that project.  He may have left before the ship sank, but he was captain when it ran into the ice burg.  With that as a given I'm a little skeptical when someone bandies around the name "Mark Jacobs". 

 

With those three factors in play I think the "we'll wait and see" approach is wisest.  Blessed is he who expecteth nothing for he shall not be disappointed.

Blizzard, as a developer, is the company gaming companies should copy.  Now before you get that look on your face, let me lay out my argument.

 

First off, I don't mean that everyone should copy Blizzard games or the Blizzard formula.  That's been tried ad naseum and it doesn't work.

 

However gaming companies should follow the Blizzard model of development.

 

1) Have a solid original vision for the game.  (Blizzard envisioned the World of Warcraft World and the idea of a theme park where everyone got to see everything in the big vast world.

 

2) Remain true to that vision.  (Blizzard stuck to the lore and didn't stray).

 

3) Do things that the masses can enjoy (i.e. keep graphical content at levels that you can run on any PC, not just the PCs using the very latest graphics cards).

 

4) If you're going to put it in the game, make sure it works and it appeals to the crowd it is intended to appeal to.  (It may not be the "best"  PvP you ever saw, but WoW's vanilla PvP works for the most part and PvPers have goals to reach etc.  Hey, it wasn't the best but it was fun for a while).

 

5) Make sure it is ready to be released before you release it.  (How many other gaming companies just shove stuff out the door before its ready while Blizzard is famous for delaying releases until they have worked out the kinks).

 

Any gaming company can do this, but so few actually do it.  This is the secret to Blizzard's success, yet the model remains uncopied.  Too bad.

Some people have touched on it, but not said it out loud.  The thing that ruins PvP or RvR or GvG or whatever you want to call it is a "rewards system" of some kind.  As soon as you add in some kind of incentive to get people to try and kill each other it turns into a farm fest.  Players adopt strategies to obtain the rewards with as little effort as possible.  All those people who want "meaningful" PvP are deluded.  As soon as you add a "meaning" to personal combat it becomes another type of PvE farming.  Then the "reward" becomes just another participation trophy and it loses all its meaning, and thus the PvP or whatever loses its meaning.  (By the way it is "LOSE", not "LOOSE".  If you don't know LOSE from LOOSE, then you don't know your NOSE from a NOOSE.  You LOSE a contest, fight, game or whatever.  You "LOOSE" a ship from it's moorings or your wrath upon the world.  Spell checker English for the LOSE!)

 

For example, look at the honor farming in the WoW Battlegrounds.  The two sides came to a kind of tacit agreement that they wouldn't interfere with one another.  You also had about 10 to 15 percent of the people just going AFK in the starting areas.  I can remember getting yelled at by my own realm mates for actually fighting the enemy.  I was slowing down the honor farming by extending the fight.  People didn't want to fight.  They wanted to get as much of the "reward" (in this case honor points) as fast as they could so they could get their armor and move on to some other kind of farming.  You got more honor for killing NPC guards and bosses than you did for killing enemy players.  In fact you got a lot of nothing for killing enemy players.  So with everyone focused on the reward, they didn't focus on killing each other.

 

If you want to screw up players contesting other players in a game then just add in some kind of incentive.  The players will focus on the incentive and develop an unwritten set of rules to get the reward with as little blood being shed as possible.  PvP just can't be "meaningful".  It should be like PvP in real life; random, stupid, pointless and usually fueled by alcohol or illicit substances of some kind.  Basing PvP or any other type of player contest on a military (i.e. objective based) model will ultimately lead to the one military tactic that has been used without shame since time immemorial - the ZERG.  Ask the Iraqis what happened to them in both Gulf Wars.  They got zerged by hundreds of planes and tanks driven by the Jolly Green Giants with guns (in case you've never been overseas, Americans are flat huge when compared to most of the other people in the world and this is especially true of our fighting forces who are physically fit and highly motivated individuals).  Why?  Because ZERGING is the one tactic that works for everyone and, more importantly, it is the most efficient way for the masses to get the REWARD for participating in PvP, RvR, GvG or whatever you want to call it.

 

If you want PvP it must be utterly meaningless, pointless and provide absolutely no reward.  This means only people that REALLY want to fight (not just pwn, but fight) will show up to the fight.  It shouldn't be a battlefield.  It should be a riot.

 

The risk/reward factor of PvP should be does your character get maimed, disfigured, arrested, sued or any combination thereof.  The risk/reward should also include the fact that you can't know the level or abilities of the player your facing until you get into the fight, just like in real life.  Who knows?  That 90 pound weakling might turn out to be an MMA champion who proceeds to beat you into a bloody pulp.  That would make PvP really exciting.

 

What do you mean?  People should just go on random, pointless killing sprees?  Yes that's exactly what I mean.  Kill for the sheer pleasure of killing and for no other reason.  However most people don't want that.  Not only does it border on psychopathic, but people want a risk/reward system.  What they want is their opponent to take the risk so that they can reap the reward.  They want to pwn a bunch of noobs and take their phat lewts.  And what happens when they run up against someone they can't pwn?  Well they're going to call their buddies and zerg his ass and then take his uber phat lewts.

 

You want to PvP, then do it.  Don't do it because you'll get a new cod piece.  That's just another participation trophy and its meaningless, just like all the other pixels in the game.  If you want to be a PvP legend then go kill a bunch of random people in the name of the Flying Spaghetti monster and don't take a damn thing from their cooling corpses.  Just kill and /dance in the blood.

This is a bit tangential, but it fits.  I think WoW was the last game I can remember where people didn't just throw up their hands and quit because there were bugs or broken features (i.e. the log in server disasters at the beginning and the 12 problem child servers that seemed to crash every 30 minutes).  People complained, but they seemed to wait for the fix and Blizzard was pretty good about responding to the biggest problems first and at least getting some kind of band aid on them until they could finally fix it.

 

If a game launched today with the log in server issues/log in queues (by the way that is WoW's greatest contribution to mankind:  a whole generation of gamers learned to spell "queue") that WoW had the first month, people would be leaving in droves and shouting the demise of the game from the roof tops.  Don't get me wrong.  I don't believe in this day and age there is an excuse for a company to have a launch as bad as WoW's was, but back then Blizzard got an opportunity to make good.  That just wouldn't happen today.

 

Remember when battlegrounds launched?  People would queue up and then go to work and stay logged in all day so they could get one battlefield done.  No one could get into the battlefields as a result.  Again there was a lot of grumbling, but Blizzard was given a chance by the players to make good and they did.  They clustered up the servers for PvP purposes and soon all the players were busy as little beavers grinding away honor to get their "Welfare Epics". 

 

Something has changed since 2004.  People don't seem to want to give a game a chance either to be what it is or to improve.  How many times have we heard that Age of Conan is 100% better than it was at launch or that The Secret World is really worth a go now?  Yet those games have been tried and written off as bug-riddled, boring clap trap. 

 

The reason we all had good times at Tauren Mill wasn't because the of any particular game design beyond the fact that the Horde and the Alliance each had a base in Hillsbrad so it was a convenient place to fight one another.  We stuck out the log in issues and the queues and when we got in, we didn't wait for the game to make our fun.  Instead we went out and made our fun.  Witness the hilarious gnome zerg of Ironforge someone detailed above.  That's creative and hilarious and it had NOTHING to do with anything content set up by the developers.

 

The lesson is if you want to have fun, you can have fun even in the most buggy piece of junk game.  The fun isn't the content.  The fun is in how you play the game and the people you hang out with.  And give the developers a chance like we did back then.  Believe me when things go wrong they devs aren't sitting around lighting cigars with $100 bills and laughing "Haha we sure fooled those idiots, didn't we?"  Instead they're up all night pouring over code going "OHCRAP, OHCRAP, OHCRAP, OHCRAP!!!" just like you do at work when things aren't going right.  Give them a chance and they'll work it out and the fun can continue unabated.

 

/rant off

Honestly its us players.  No matter what we get, its not what we want.  We don't give the Developers any room.  Within ten minutes of release we declare everything DoA and follow the crowd to quitsville.  We're quick to blame the faceless "Them" that we imagine hides behind the curtain and steers each game down certain paths.

 

In the end we're to blame.  We're responsible for our own fun and I've played many games that were "dead" according to the players that were, in fact, fun games if you let them be what they were designed to be instead of wishing they were "X, Y or Z" game.

 

You've got to admit that we geeks are a tough and opinionated audience. 

World of Warcraft nostalgia articles?  Isn't that one of the signs of the End of Days?  Someone check to make sure the seven seals are still intact.

 

I too played WoW during those days and those were fun times and fun fights in the Hillsbrad Foothills.  It was one of the few places you had to worry about being ganked by the other faction.  The rest of the time we pretty much ignored one another.

 

I remember the worst thing you could do (I too was a sucker and played a Paladin) as an Alliance player in those fights was hit the Bat Wrangler in Tauren Mill.  If you did that the sky would darken with angry level 60 bats which attacked every alliance player in sight.  Those bats turned several near victories into ignominious wipes of defeat.

 

Strange how the best times came from something that wasn't "rewarded".  Once a reward is placed on something it becomes a grindfest.  Maybe there is something us players could learn from those days.  Random acts of violence for no particular reason are fun!

I don't mind nostalgia.  There is nothing wrong with remembering good times.  However what I can't stand is the constant revisionist history that goes on in the guise of nostalgia.

 

When SWG came out I was playing DAoC.  Two or three people from my guild left to play SWG.  Within a week they were back claiming that SWG was buggy to the point of being unplayable and that PvP was pointless due to debilitating lag.  One guy stuck it out and gave us constant reports right up until he quit because of the complete overhaul Sony did on the game.  Basically everything now cited as "right" with the game was "wrong" back then.  Each of his reports started with something like, "Well, they just missed on "XYZ" feature.  If they'd only have done "ABC" it would have been great."

 

Now I'm going to go away from SWG because I didn't experience it personally.  I did experience the glory days of DAoC and it's funny how the things everyone bitched and moaned about have now become the things that were great about "ye olde timey games."  I suspect that what goes for DAoC goes for SWG as well.

 

1) Forced Grouping - Everyone today raves about forced grouping.  However back in the day I heard nothing but rants about how it took half an hour of gaming time just to find a group to get started.  How many remember putting your name on a list to get into a group camping a specific leveling area?  Finlaiths anyone? 

 

2) Down time/Teleport Padding to the different frontiers - Today everyone waxes poetic about down times in the game such as medding up health/mana and sitting on the teleporting pad for 10 minutes waiting for the mages to come down and beam you to the other frontiers.  Oh what a wonderful time to talk to your realm mates and make merry.  Horseapples.  Those times were universal smoke/bathroom breaks and the ones that got back first did nothing but complain about having to wait.  And how about waiting an extra ten minutes for those that went AFK and forgot to put on their teleporting necklaces and had to wait for the next port?  Twenty minutes of game time sitting on your virtual arse waiting for something to happen so something else could happen and then maybe you could play the game.  Oooooo fun!  No wonder people actually roleplayed back then.  You had to do something to kill the time while waiting for an opportunity to actually play the game.

 

3) In depth crafting systems - Well back in my day it took 237 days /played to make junior appretice crafter and we had to walk uphill both ways to the forge carrying huge piles of crafting materials and we were damn glad to get them.  We were all a huge happy group of people sitting around the forge singing songs and swapping tales of adventure.  Now-a-days these spoiled kids make master crafter in 30 minutes and they do it via a pet while they continue to quest!  Folks, crafting back in the day was an absolute bitch.  It took as long to level your crafting as it did to level your character.  There were frequent dead spots in the leveling where you had to go out and farm up the cash to move  up to the next level.  All I ever heard was people complaining about how much they hated sitting there pushing one button and watching a green bar move across the screen, only to do it again and again and again.  The only laughter I heard was maniacal hysteria when someone went through a marathon crafting session of several hours only to find out they still weren't high enough level to make ANYTHING that anyone wanted to buy.  Remember having to find a leather crafter with high enough skills to make the leather linings you needed to make any kind of metal armor?  And if you didn't want to wait around you could roll an alt and spend a thousand hours leveling leather crafting up to the sufficient level!  How about having to level up woodworking so you could make handles for the swords you were trying to smith up?  Oh, what fun!  If you want crafting that realistic, get a job in a factory in real life.

 

4) Meaningful PvP - I have to be honest; I'm not sure what the hell this means.  I think people mean that there was an element of risk to PvP and/or a system of risks and rewards for winning and losing in PvP.  So then I look at a game like chess.  Chess has been around for centuries and for those centuries (with the exception of war or gladitorial combat) chess has been the very definition of mano y mano contests.  Its PvP in it's purest form.  However there is no inherent risk or rewards system for winning and losing.  You don't get to raid the other guy's wallet simply because you beat him at chess.  You don't get to take his dog home because you check-mated him.  You might lose some money if you bet, but you don't have to bet to play.  Yet people have played chess avidly for centuries without any semblence of risk/reward.

 

By the by when did it become mandatory that someone get "rewarded" or "punished" for participating in PvP?  Yea brother, we must slay that vile person who dared to roll the other faction and pilfer his meager purse and then hold up our bloody prize and scream our cyber victory to the gods!  A MANLY type of PvP for MANLY MEN such as we!  Piffle.  I think people who believe this are in their 30s and still want a lollipop from the barber when they get their hair cut because they held still like a good boy while the barber cut their hair.  If you want to PvP, don't wait for a reason.  Just go out and do it.  Kill for the sheer joy of it and play pool with your victim's eyeballs like a good virtual serial killer.  When they ask you why you killed them don't say things like "LMAO" or "L2P Newbist!".  Say something creative like, "well, my new armor was too tight in the crotch and its chaffing and that puts me in a really FOUL mood and when I'm in a foul mood I kill everyone in range.  Now, hush up while I write my name on the ground in your blood!"  Or how about finding a line of people and just killing the last person in line while shouting, "THOSE WHO ARE TARDY DO NOT GET FRUIT CUP!"  The truth is if you do this you'll get to be a kind of cult anti-hero of the kind people will remember meeting.  Thus not only did you make a good memory for you, but a good memory for them as well.

 

The point of this wall of text plus the bonus rant at the end is that "fun" is up to you.  Anything can be "fun" if you go in with the idea of making your own fun.  It doesn't matter if the game was made in 2014 or 414.  If you wait for the game to make your fun you're going to be disappointed.  Your fun is your responsibility and if the game isn't fun, then make it fun or quit and try something else.

 

Edits : Punctuation.  Thanks Weird Al.

The market for MMOs has shown that FFA Full Loot PvP won't work.  If you want a viable money making game then you have to give peace a chance.  In the end these games aren't set up to build online societies where everyone plays a role and a code of conduct develops as an agreement between the players.  Instead they're set up so everyone is the hero and everyone is a warrior.  So you've got a combat environment where only might makes right and therefore the whole online society breaks down into chaos.  The reason is there are truly no consequences for bad behavior in MMOs. 

 

In real life if you PvP you find yourself arrested and possibly sued.  You might get your victim's wallet, but there is a possibility that you'll land in jail.  There is also the possibility that you picked on the wrong guy and he turns out to be a Krav Maga expert who proceeds to smear your body all over the pavement like so much jelly.  My point is there is an element of risk in real life that doesn't and almost can't exist in MMOs.  I mean, who wants to play a game that is like real life after all?

 

However in an MMO if you're max level and you kill noobs, what happens?  Probably nothing.  Maybe some other max levels come out to defend the noobs and you get killed, but so what?  Log out and come back at another time.  You risk no real punishment.

 

Meanwhile the noobs have more in game risk than the gankers.  So eventually the noobs don't log on and the on line community withers on the vine without new blood.  The risk is all one way.  The ganker's risk is almost nothing, while the noobs risk is everything he has.

 

The answer?  Well I can think of three.

 

First off do what DAoC did.  There are home zones without PvP where you can get your toon to max level without worrying about being ganked.  Then there are PvP zones (the frontier) where no matter what level you are you run the risk of being killed if you go out there and you voluntarily assume the risk by going out onto the frontier through a special portal.  That takes the "accidental" or "random" gank out of the equation.  You went onto the frontier knowningly and voluntarily assuming the risk of getting ganked, killed or zerged.  Take all the guesswork out of it.

 

The second way is to add elements of risk for bad behavior.  Make it so someone who PvPs is risking beyond the ire of the no longer existent community.  When MMOs first came out forced grouping meant if you behaved badly you could be frozen out of groups so you couldn't level.  That kept all but the most socio-pathic in line.  Now the risk for FFA PvP needs to be hard wired into the game.

 

You want to gank noobs, OK.  But for every noob you gank a hunter/killer NPC spawns that is programed to hunt you down and kill you.  The more you gank, the more NPCs are hunting for you and when they catch up to you not only are you going to die, but your account will be frozen for a number of days that depends on how many noobs you ganked.  And maybe those noobs will be able to claim a piece of the ganker's stuff as compensation for the stuff they lost when they were ganked.

 

To add a further layer let people with max level toons disguise themselves as noobs.  That way the ganker doesn't know if he's attacking a helpless noob or a full powered, arse whuppin' machine. 

 

The third is to make a society where there are other occupations besides "warrior."  For example the game can be to become an epic blacksmith who can make the greatest weapons in the game.  Cross this guy and suddenly everyone is wielding the epic sword of whup arse EXCEPT you and everyone is out to get you because you picked on the guy who makes the epic sword of whup arse.  In other words, messing with the economy gets you ostricized from the community and you get no more resources.  Thus you wither and die while the society rolls on.

 

That's just three simple things that might make FFA PvP more tolerable.  There are other ideas, but you'll probably never see them implemented.  It requires imagination to make an online society (which would be stable and cause the game to last a long time) whereas its easy to program special zones for PvP. 

 

So get used to instancing when it comes to PvP.  Its simply good business for the devs.

Just a dumbed down version of Age of Wushu.  If you played any Wushu you'll recognize this as it's stupid little brother.  Don't get me wrong.  Wushu wasn't built for geniuses either, but at least it felt a bit original as the first Martial Arts MMO I tried.  Swordsman felt like a carbon copy with all potential for thought removed.

 

In 25 levels I've never been passed 3/4 life in PvE.  The mobs aren't even aggro.  You're literally spoon fed everything you'll ever need.

 

Its fun for about 30 minutes.

... Meanwhile, back at the ranch Larry noticed that one of the sheep was looking at him funny ... staring at him in that slack jawed, detached cud-chewing way he found so enticing.

 

Hey, this is fun!

 

Random text bomb 4tehwinzorrsz!

CoH was my second MMO after DAoC.

 

Best character creator EVER in any game.  Period.  It was a game in itself.

 

It was an altaholics dream.  The game had so much going for it in powersets and replayability.

 

Even though by today's standards it was "grindy", back then it was so "casual player" friendly that it was shocking.  Coming from a game where you absolutely HAD to have a group being able to solo missions at any level was a revelation.

 

And travel powers?  Talk about an eye opener after plodding across gigantic maps for hours with trains of mobs chasing you in other games. 

 

Its the only game I ever played where I didn't find myself thinking, "Boy if it only had this it would be awesome."  It had everything you wanted to do in it, including PvP if you wanted to PvP.  There was always something to do.

 

In the end though, if you role played even in the most superficial way this game was made for you.  Without an official role play server, Virtue became the de facto one.  That's the home of my all time favorite character, Nox Noctivagus.  He was the hero that opposed Lord Ignotus and his Order of the Fang (I beta tested CoV and spent a large amount of time there.  Of the 50s I had in the game, two were Heros and five were Villians.

 

Over the course of my MMO career this is the game I kept coming back to over and over.  When I was sick of another game and it's community I'd fire up CoH and I always had a blast with the game and the people playing it.  It was one of the only games I've ever played where the community just took you as you were (Jump Kicks and all if that was your thing) and PuGing was actually a pleasurable way to meet new people because no one was too stressed out about getting this or that pixelated prize.

 

And that's the finest epitaph any game can have, I think.

 

Best, most helpful, welcoming and friendly community ever in any game, bar none.

 

/salute all those who played CoX.

One of the funnier ones I can remember was the Dark Wolves in Dark Age of Camelot killing the NPC merchants in a dungeon over and over so their realm mates couldn't buy the equipment the NPCs were selling.  The grief occurred in a dungeon called Darkness Falls which realms fought for control over.  Once a realm had control its members could enter the dungeon and kill the monsters in there for a currency known as seals.  These seals were then traded to NPC merchants at the realm's entrance to the dungeon for armor and weapons that had, at the time, great stats.

 

In DAoC you couldn't kill your realm mates directly, which made griefing a little more difficult.  Someone figured out that you could kill these merchants.  The merchants were little pigmy demons with pot bellies.  The Dark Wolves one night entered the dungeon, declared they were on a holy quest to save their realm mates souls from demonic possession inflicted on them by the demon armor.  When people complained to the Mods, the Dark Wolves answered that they were XPing and that their realm mates were interfering with the Dark Wolves' camp.  Since it wasn't against the rules the Mods had to let it run its course until they quickly hot fixed the game to prevent people from killing their realm's NPC merchant demons.

 

My personal best is from the same game.  In Dark Age back when I played it you needed a group to get anywhere in the game, be it leveling in PvE or fighting in RvR.  The realm would always start a huge chat group in RvR (the PvP part of the game) to communicate the location of enemies or put out a call to arms if a huge attack was on.  Everyone used to join the Chat Group even if they weren't RvRing just to keep track of what was doing on the frontier and shoot the bull.

 

Back then Dark Age had a memory leak in it.  It got progressively worse as you played it.  After an hour of play time it could take up to five minutes to shut the game down.  The longer you played, the longer it took to shut the game down.  Everyone bitched about it so to address the problem the Devs didn't fix the leak.  Instead  they put in a command prompt in the game that let you quit directly from the game to desktop.  You typed /QTD and the game would drop you right to your desk top rather than going through the long /quit and sit period.

 

They instituted /QTD in a patch one day.  My friend and I were talking about the patch when I got an idea.  I bet my buddy ten bucks that I could prove barely anyone reads patch notes.  He took the bet and we both logged in and I joined the RvR Chat Group.  I typed in "Hey, everyone check out this /QTD emote.  It's hilarious!"  Almost immediately about three quarters of the people in the Chat Group crashed out of game.  You could tell by the messages rolling in the chat box that said, "So and so has just left the chat group."  This left the quarter that was still in the game without group mates and they were promptly ganked by whatever mob or player enemy they were currently facing.  Then the people that had crashed out began logging back in to be promptly killed by the waiting mobs or player enemies.  In Dark Age when someone died you saw death spam in the chat box that would say something like "so and so was just killed by so and so" and the spam just rolled on and on.

 

So in the space of about 10 minutes I killed most of the people in my realm in a game where you couldn't kill your own realm mates.  In truth I didn't set out to get them all killed.  I set out to prove no one read patch notes and win 10 bucks.  The realm wide death spam was just a bonus.

I'm not entirely sure what you mean by "Get it Right".  Honestly I've managed to have fun in just about every MMO I've tried simply because of the people I play with and find in the game.  With that said, I can tell you what my favorites were in each category you listed.

 

Leveling Experience - I think City of Heroes/City of Villains was the best leveling system I've ever been involved with.  As mentioned before the "Debt" system that penalized you for dieing was painful but not overly punitive.  Also it was set up to where you could solo efficiently when you were alone, but you could also group up and get bonuses that made it go faster.  The leveling curve still took time to get through, but the content was enjoyable so it didn't feel like grinding.

 

The World - World of Warcraft probably was the world I enjoyed the most due to size and variety of environment.  WoW contained one of my all time favorite zones in any MMO (Darkshire) and back during Vanilla WoW when I played it took time to get around.  I also liked how the devs had hidden little pop culture references in the landscape as well.  If you took time to notice the world it was really well constructed.

 

Instances - City of Heroes/City of Villains was most enjoyable to me.  Age of Wushu isn't too bad either.

 

Combat - This is a tough one for me.  Pure "Turn Based" MMORPG combat I'd have to say the best I played was Dark Age of Camelot.  The game was full of positional and reactive styles that made you pay attention during the fight, rather than just standing there spamming your best move over and over.  CoH/CoV had a fun combat system as well.  One that didn't have TAB targeting and was Real Time as opposed to Turn Based that I really enjoyed for a short time was Neverwinter Nights and I still get a kick out of Planetside 2.  World of Tanks was fun as well.  I'm not sure if that counts as an MMO though.

 

Customization - Character Creation was CoX hands down.  Blew everything else away.  Star Trek Online was decent in this area as well.  Customization of UI would have to be WoW because they allowed people to mod the UI.  One of my all time favorite mods was "Click" which bound a heal spell to your left mouse button so when you selected someone with your mouse on your healer helper it also cast the spell.  That was nifty.  Star Wars the Old Republic had built in customizable UI which was fun too.

 

Story/Lore - Dark Age of Camelot won this category for me.  Three realms each with their own feel and back story.  Lore permeated the game in a way I've never seen it permeate any other game.

1) "Bads" - (Noun) - A derogatory terms applied to anyone who doesn't PvP exclusively or enjoy PvP above anything else.  A "bad" is anyone who dies in a PvP match.

2) "Zerg" - (Noun) - A derogatory term applied to any group of players that has or may have had one or more players in it than the group of players they just defeated in PvP.  In gaming circles this word is a visual cue that this victory shouldn't even count as a victory because it was allegedly accomplished by sheer volume of players exhibiting no "skill".

3) "Soloability" - This is not even a word.

4) "Skill" - (Noun) - In the end this boils down to is studying the proper posts/websites to determine what gear and abilities are necessary to achieve maximum success, having spent the required amount of time in game to possess the proper gear and abilities on one's hot-bar and to mash the required hot-bar key when given the proper visual stimuli.  All "skill" in MMO combat amounts to this and this alone.

 

I'm not sure I can react with sympathy here.  Instead you'll get two coppers from another author.

 

It sounds to me like you're bummed out about your career choices and you're rationalizing the fact you're running from the problem rather than dealing with it. 

 

It seems that in the past you've used this same technique when it came to gaming; rather than simply state "gaming makes me happy, therefore I game" you used the, "I use gaming to escape from the pain and misery of real life" line.  Now instead of saying, "I'm not happy with my work and career path" you're saying, "I can't do my job because the meanness of the world bums me out."

 

Either you're simply rationalizing the fact you're not happy in your work or you're really bummed out by this revelation that not everyone is 100% nice all the time.  Let me give you the benefit of the doubt and lay it out for you as if you're problem is you're wounded instead of just unhappy with your career path.

 

Do you want me to say you've had some massive insight and that you're the spearhead of a new "Turn on, Tune in, Drop out" movement?  Honestly what would you like me to tell you? 

 

Do you want me to coddle you and lie to you?  Do you want to wrap you up in a big hug and assure you that the world really is a nice place where everything is easy and knowable and everyone can be taken at their word and that Santa Claus really is going to show up with a sleigh full of toys?

 

Or do you want me to agree with you and lie to you?  Would you have me slap you in the face and tell you that the world is a mean nasty place where people are self interested and do things that benefit them almost 100% of the time, even if it means starving, raping and killing their neighbors?

 

Well what happens if I simply look you dead in the eye and tell you the truth is it's both?  What happens if I tell you that whatever you believe made kittens and chocolate and morality possible also made it possible for killers and arsenic and chaos to exist?  What happens if I tell you that whatever you believe in gave you the power to choose which side of the coin will flourish and which will diminish?  What happens if I tell you that you have been given the power to choose which side you'll be on?

 

So some people didn't take the Pope at his word and you're running for the hills?  What happens when you find yourself on a church mission in a place like Rwanda just after four weeks of absolute chaos where 800,000 people died?  What happens when you see people hacking children to death for being from the wrong tribe?  What happens when you see all vestiges of humanity stripped away and hordes of people doing things to one another that makes war look like recess?  What happens when you see things that would make combat veterans turn away and cry in anguish?  What do you do when you see the very face of evil look you dead in the eye and smiles and says, "witness what I have done.  Now what are you going to do?" 

 

Will you dare to stare back or will you buckle and run?  Will you write about your experience and challenge the evil or will you write a wimpy post about how you can't handle the fact that everyone isn't excellent to each other and you need a break?

 

What if I tell you that the very evils that you're lamenting expand when people like you give up their platforms and bury their heads in the sand? 

 

You are an author, a wordsmith and the bard of our times.  You have a platform and the unique opportunity to tell the world what it is you see and expose the stuff you don't like.  You have the power to make people laugh and cry and think and feel and, most important, begin to CONNECT with one another and UNDERSTAND one another.  Abdicating that responsibility by giving up your platform and power is simply victory for the forces you're upset about.

 

So if you're quitting because you're not happy with your career choice, OK.  I get that, but say that rather than rationalizing it.  Everyone is entitled to change their minds.  Just be honest with everyone and yourself rather than pretending to be some wounded butterfly who needs to sail away on a sea of red wine and Sara McGlaughlin songs.

 

However, if you're really are quitting this detail because the mean people made you unhappy then I say suck it up you wimpy little wannabe and get back in the fight.  There are a whole lot of us that have been through a hell of a lot more than you and we're still in there swinging and not looking for pats on the back for it.  Use your posts and your voice to combat the things that are wrong in the world, even on a gaming website.  Help people connect and understand.  That is the privilege and the responsibility that your talent has given you and you should use it early and often on any forum, platform or soapbox you can possibly find.  Accept the mantle and the yoke and wear it proudly.  Don't give up your voice in the chorus of "this is wrong and it needs to be fixed" because you're "bummed". Don't give the mean people your silence, because that is what they really want.

 

In the end, either way you should quit your bitching and get back to work.

 

Here endeth the lesson. 

 

Now go forth and kick ass.

 
 
Originally posted by ShakyMo
Tane
Sorry but players didn't invent instancing, which is the greatest cause of shite pvp.

Shaky,

 

I accept that players didn't invent it, but player whining did.  Players whining about "gettting zerged" and "getting ganked" etc caused the developers to do the easy thing and create 1) instances where the numbers are even and 2) create mirror classes across realms.  Rather than analyze what caused the problems and addressing that, the developers simply attacked the symptoms of the disease because that in the end was easier (and cheaper) than addressing the root cause (the disease itself).

 

The disease is Power Creep.  When someone can get an advantage in PvP through simply gaining items or abilities that others don't have then that is when PvP goes from Player vrs. Player to Loot Score v. Loot Score.  Power creep bleeds skill out of PvP contests and turns it into the card game War.  Ever play War?  Skill doesn't mean anything in the card game War.  All that matters is you have the highest card when you turn them over.  Its the same in MMOs that blend PvE and PvP.  When two characters run into each other Power Creep turns the game into who has the best loot/abilities available when the confrontation occurs. 

 

In DAoC groups would sit around the Border Keeps waiting for their "I WIN" abilities provided by PvE items and abilities to come back up because going into a PvP fight without them was suicide.  The vast majority of people in PvP in any game don't look for good fights.  Instead they're looking for fights they can win, just like in Real Life.  No one looks for a fight they might lose against a giant rugby player.  Instead they want to pick on that kid from the debate club.

 

It was the same in DAoC.  If people in DAoC really wanted good even fights then the most popular battle ground would have been the level 5 battleground, where people weren't even their advanced class yet and loot was extemely limited.  Instead everyone put artifacts on their level 24 toons so they could pwn it up in Thidranki.  The higher the levels, the more goodies from PvE were available through items and abilities and the less skill based combat got.  (Please don't start in with that "pre kiting" stuff.  I know there was some skill, but your group was still sitting at the boarder keep waiting for Purge to come up before you went to fight, so spare me.  I know because my group was just as guilty.)

 

The solution to Power Creep is to keep items available in PvE equal to both sides and make PvP as skill based as possible.  But even then you won't get even fights because people will 1) avoid each other to collect alleged PvP rewards as fast as possible 2) only fight when they have a clear advantage of some kind and 3) cheat using various hack programs.  Just take a run through Planetside 2 if you don't believe me.  People usually just avoid fighting and get Certifications by capturing enemy fascilities.  If you fight you get yelled at because "there are no certs for defending."  For the most part the only PvP occurs when several are running over the few on their way to the next capture point.  And then you run into that Heavy Assault who is immune to damage and can fly.  Meh.

 

So there you have it.  Player whining caused instances and player behavior makes them the only viable alternative.

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