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All Posts by Tarka

All Posts by Tarka

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As has been proven time and time again by others, MMO's have one shot to get it right. 

If devs disappoint people by implenting sub standard gameplay elements, then they have a real chance of losing them forever.  However, if they reassure people AND prove to them that their concerns are both warranted and being considered, then they stand a chance at keeping them.  Unfortunately a lot of MMO's in the past have inferred certain things and then failed to deliver, trying to pass off sub standard core gameplay by "hiding" such issues behind gimmicks and an IP.  They tried to "talk the talk", but they couldn't "walk the walk". 

Coming back to the subject in hand, just because they CAN implement better space combat in the future, doesn't mean that they WILL. 

When it comes to MMO's, all bets are off.  Devs invariably do what they want, when they want.  Regardless of the players wishes and concerns.   We've all seen posts that say "This game really has potential".  Hell, I've even wrote some myself.  But potential is intangible and remains so until it is realised.

So, all we can do as players is voice our concerns and see if the devs pay attention to them.  If they refuse to listen then, well we all know the end of THAT story

Originally posted by Swanea

This game wants to beat wow, yet it has a rail shooter space combat?

I completely understand not having a sandbox space sim.  Or even Eve or SWG.  But what was wrong with a smaller version of Tie Fighter? Small groups doing objectives.  PvP could be set up around said objectives.  But you would fly around the area as if it was space.

 

Not this swoop racing in space with shooting.

 

I'll be playing this game, but it really looks like after the first few times of doing the rail shooter, I'll be bored out of my mind with space.  Well, not space, but driving down a road.  This doesn't seem like the road to being #1.

 Agreed, the funny thing is that it's not as if the problem is with the inablity of the HeroEngine to emulate space flight:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lt-Jk3TmodY

So no doubt the issue is more concerned with time, money and resources right now.  Which to me suggests that Bioware should remain focused on the main core gameplay and not get sidetracked with "minigames" until such time arises where they can give it their full attention.  In the meantime, they should assure people that they WILL implement space interaction that is worthy of the title some time after launch (e.g. the first big content addition after launch).  Of course, this implies that they would then have to keep to their word as well.  

Originally posted by OneMMOVet

let me ask a question to all of you, now that we are hearing more and more about tor and what bioware is doing with it am i the only one that knows this game is going to fail?

Personally I don't agree.  Although I think this "Tunnel Shooter" aspect is inappropriate for SWTOR, I still think the game has the potential to be successful.  More successful that some themepark AND sandbox games.

me and many others like the fringe have been saying this for months now. 8 classes? no real way to custom make your toon? they haven't shown us really anything besides two somewhat well done trailers that look nothing like the game will. they haven't shown us the pvp system or end game content. all so far we have seen is it's wow in space with a pre-told story and now space is an on rails shooter.

Where have they said there's no real way to custom make your toon?  Nothing like the will look?  Those are gameplay videos.  You saw the action bars.  Now, true they haven't shown us pvp or end game yet.  But have those elements been shown for GW2 yet?  The point is that the fact that they haven't been shown is inconsequential. 

this isn't the game i want or you want! look around the theme park wow games are failing and people are demanding for skill based sandbox titles! but bioware isn't going to give you that.

Really?  Not the game that I want?  How do you know?  Sorry but please, put the "Sandbox is the future" drum down and get off your soapbox lol.  Besides sandbox games have hardly been enjoying massive success lately.

lets be truthful here every game bioware makes is the same. really kotor was their last good game and everything that has come out after that has not been good. jade empire? boring. mass effect? more of an fps then an rpg. dragon age? boring. mass effect 2? just one big dlcfest that is sucking the money from players into ea's pockets. and now tor shows that bioware truely has no idea what we gamers want.

Opinions are often subjective.  Obviously you don't like Bioware games, so you can hardly classify yourself as being in the very demographic that Bioware are aiming at.

now is the time where we should all each and every one of us say no more to what bioware is trying to feed us. we should demand that they give us the game we want not the game they want. tor is now in the eyes of not just me but many others 2011 or more likely 2012 biggest failure.

WoW you don't half sound like an evangelist.  I honestly expected you to finish with "Praise the lord god CCP!!!"

Any excuse to bang that "Sandbox" drum eh? 

I'm curious as to why you draw a comparison to Half Life, aside from the fact that it's set around about the present time?

Personally, I'm not paying much attention to TSW yet because we don't know anything about the game other than flashy pics and a few CGI trailers.  The game is based on the AOC dreamworld engine, which indicates that the world will be split into zones just like AOC was.  Therefore, even though its being designed by a separate team, it may exhibit issues which were apparently in its older brother.

However, Ragnar Tornquist is at the helm who is a self-proclaimed story teller.  His 18 chapter novel which acts as a preface to Anarchy Online was, in my opinion, very good.  So I'll wait and see.

Originally posted by bookworm438
Originally posted by Tarka
Originally posted by sidhaethe

Perhaps the people commenting who believe the trailer is full of CGI magic (as opposed to godmode camera angles with little other intervention) don't know that ANet will be having live demos at Gamescom next week.

The fact is that it is entirely possible that the emperor has no clothes, that we've been hoodwinked and bamboozled, distracted by shiny lights and glittery things. It's possible that the ACTUAL gameplay of Guild Wars 2 is as different from that trailer as Warhammer Online's gameplay was from the CGI trailers EAMythic released.

If that were the case, however, ANet's ruination at the hands of disgruntled fanboys would be displayed to the interwebs via 24-hour livestream directly from Cologne, Germany. I mean, it's possible. I just don't think that ANet is that delusional or career suicidal to insist that if they're talking about game mechanics, it means the mechanics are in-game, then open up 45 demo stations and stream the results to fans who have been chomping at the bit to see just that.

But hey, we'll find out in a week! Either way, it will be interesting.

The thing is, live demos on rigs specially designed for the job and showing scenarios that are specially designed for the show are not necessarily indicative of how the rest of the game will be on joe publics pc at launch.  However, at least the demo will give a little more insight into the game. 

As an aside, one thing I've noticed about these videos is that Anet are heavily using a lot of "bloom" effects.  The point is, using such an effect is like putting vasceline (petrolium based clear lubricant) on a camera lens, it can hide a lot of imperfections in the subject matter.

Anet has admitted that they are spending months polishing those areas that players will see in the demo. Why? Because it's the first real impression of guild wars 2 for the world. People don't want to see a demo that's full of bugs, glitches, and graphical problems. Why do you think they aren't releasing open beta till close to release, if they even do open beta. Beta has now become the demo period for the mass. And the demos are meant to give us an insight into the gameplay of GW2, not whether it'll be able to run on joe shmos computer fom 2004(which i don't think it will). Anet said they are shooting for midrange computers from around 2009. Anyways, it's expect that the demo at Gamescom and PAX will be the best quality possible for the game. What would you rather see for the first real showing of the game? A demo on a midrange computer, without achieving the best graphics possible, or a demo showcasing the true potential of the game?

 Let me quote another example of why such an attempt to "market" the game could end up biting them in the proverbial ass.  Allegedly, Brad McQuaid admitted that they purposefully engineered the scenarios that they were showing at the shows to emphasise the game in the best possible light.  And whilst in theory that sounds all very well and good, it is also very dangerous for the reputation of both the product and the company.  Especially when in reality Vanguard ran like crap on even the high end rigs come launch day.  And what was Brads reasoning?  That Vanguard "had been designed for future rigs". 

Now, yes, of course we'd like to see the game in the best possible light (so to speak) but if the result of doing so ends up as a gross misrepresentation of how the game will actually play on an average customers pc which exceeds the minimum spec, then that isn't going to do the game or the company any favours come launch day.

The moral of all this is:  don't try to kid your customers with marketing BS, misdirection and other attempts to hide the issues with the game.  It will eventually bite you in the ass.

Originally posted by canibusclub

This game is gonna be revolutionary and it will Kill all other mmo's including wow and it will leave swtor in the dust.

 The sarcasm is strong with this one...

Originally posted by OneMMOVet
Originally posted by Tarka
Originally posted by someforumguy

Why does it matter if ppl think sandbox suck? The course for SW:TOR is set.

No matter how much you want it SW:TOR fail out of spite, itll have a higher chance of succeeding in this form, then as some preCU SWG clone. Too few ppl want to play the '30min shuttle wait and decay' game.

 Aint that the truth.  Whilst PreCU may have had some nice concepts, the game as a whole MMO sucked and was bleeding subs even BEFORE the NGE was announced.  This wasn't purely because of WoW, it was because there was parts of the game that had major issues that weren't being addressed.  But certain people have a tendency to overlook such problems because they prefer to look through "rose tinted glasses". 

Some people have so much hatred for ANY MMO that uses a formula that they don't like, that they feel an incessant urge to attempt to "predict" the failure of the game even before it launches.  Just so they can then take comfort IF other MMO's "fail".  It really is quite pathetic.

As much as I would love to see a "hybrid" MMO take the best bits from themepark and sandbox games and put them into a game that I find appealing, that has yet to happen.  Predicting the failure of an MMO just because it happens to differ with ones own expectations is ridiculous and immature.

 i don't know what your talking about. yes people did leave swg for wow but tons came back right before the cu and it was the cu and then the nge that ran everyone off swg. and those major issues? what the combat imbalance that people claimed swg had? first off know how hard it was to get to jedi you had to do this thing called work for it something that most gamers today don't want to do and rather they just want to sit there and do nothing. outside of that combat was fine. all swg had was a lack of 'content' for the single player questers but it had tons of player made content. and player made content is the whole idea of mmo's. i mean know how much fun people had with weekend long battles? no not a battle that lasted an hour or two but the whole weekend!

swg pre-cu was the better game no rose tinted glasses needed.

and look around we predicted that aoc wouldn't do good or warhammer. many of us said aion was going to bomb after the first month or two. so far i think those of us on here and over on the fringe are right.

Thank you for proving how people look back on things with a pleasant light and tend to skip over anything that doesn't conform to being positive.

With regards to the problems with SWG Pre-CU, lets look at a few:

  • Combat in Pre-CU was "fine"?  Seriously?  How about the combat imbalances concerning certain overpowered class combinations i.e. Tera Kasi + Swordman (if i recall correctly).  You didn't stand a chance against that "cookie cutter" setup in pvp.
  • Let's also not ignore the issues concerning the modified ("sliced"?) weapons which were extremely overpowered and were only removed from the game later.
  • Also (and this was a big issue for many) lets not forget the performance issues in populated areas (Correlia Starport lag being a prime example).
  • Then of course, there is the issues with the missions and dungeons, including mobs that shoot through walls (which, incidentally they still do to this day) and the introduction of the Corellian Corvette mission which was bugged to hell. 
  • Bounty Hunter missions where the targets either disappeared or were found inside trees and buildings.

The point is that SWG Pre-CU had a LOT of issues that caused it to bleed players long before WoW was released, some of which I listed above. Now, I can appreciate that SWG Pre-CU had some good points, but it was far from "fine" as you make it sound to be.  Maybe you should take off those tinted glasses and remember the game as it REALLY was.  You may have been willing to overlook some of the games glaring issues at the time, but others weren't. 

Now, I will agree though that another of SWG's Pre-NGE issues was concerned with the lack of content.  Unfortunately, we will never know how the game would have turned out IF the NGE hadn't hit it.  To dwell on such things is futile.  The fact is that SWG Pre-CU was found by many to be lacking for a variety of reasons.  And those reasons caused people to leave.  Which only helped with WoW's popularity at the time.

Also please, don't try to generalise entire playerbases down to the level of people who just want instant gratification for no effort because that is a fallacy with no factual evidence to support it.  Even WoW's playerbase isn't entirely (or even majorly) composed of such a mindset.  There is a difference between someone who doesn't like a mindless grind such as the jedi quest in pre-cu, and someone who just wants something for nothing.  It isn't as "black and white" as you make it sound.

I'm sorry but in my opinion "player made content" is often used as a poor excuse for lazy designers.  I'm all for giving players tools to make their own content and not have to be forced to follow "progression paths" if they don't want to, but "player content" certainly shouldn't be used as the ONLY primary way for players to experience content in the game.  And lets face it, aside from the Bounty Hunter missions, the repetitive mission terminals, and the "themepark" mission hubs, there wasn't much else in terms of content.

12 months after SWG's launch, players realised that they wanted developer made content in a polished MMO that didn't suffer the persistent issues and problems that SWG had at the time that didn't look as if they would be fixed...........cue the release of WoW.....

Originally posted by daniel!!!

After watching the design manifesto they speak so much truth, a game for the players, not for the mulitmilions they could rake from a half assed job e.g. WoW.  I truly beleive this game is going to, if it already hasnt, change mmo history, a world that revolves around the player, thats what iv wanted in a mmorpg for so long, and guild wars 2 just has it all :)

Ok firstly, this "a game for the players" crap that they spout is complete marketing BS.  Seriously, just think for a moment.  What MMO ISN'T made for players?  It's a ridiculous marketing statement, nothing more.  They're hardly going to say "We made this game for developers to enjoy!"

Secondly, if you think WoW is a "half assed job" then you obviously haven't been paying attention to the lessons it tried to teach the MMO industry.  Unlike you, they are lessons which I might add Anet seem to be paying close attention to.  Thankfully.

Personally, I don't believe its going to change MMO history.  However, like SWTOR, it MAY help to give the industry a boost because it may turn out to be a success story (the industry needs a new one).  Also, like SWTOR, it MAY help to direct future development of MMO's.  But it probably won't make the impact that you are making it sound like.

Still, I'm glad you're happy with your preconceptions and assumptions at this point.  Hopefully they'll come true for you.  But that doesn't mean it will meet everyone's expectations.

Originally posted by sidhaethe

Perhaps the people commenting who believe the trailer is full of CGI magic (as opposed to godmode camera angles with little other intervention) don't know that ANet will be having live demos at Gamescom next week.

The fact is that it is entirely possible that the emperor has no clothes, that we've been hoodwinked and bamboozled, distracted by shiny lights and glittery things. It's possible that the ACTUAL gameplay of Guild Wars 2 is as different from that trailer as Warhammer Online's gameplay was from the CGI trailers EAMythic released.

If that were the case, however, ANet's ruination at the hands of disgruntled fanboys would be displayed to the interwebs via 24-hour livestream directly from Cologne, Germany. I mean, it's possible. I just don't think that ANet is that delusional or career suicidal to insist that if they're talking about game mechanics, it means the mechanics are in-game, then open up 45 demo stations and stream the results to fans who have been chomping at the bit to see just that.

But hey, we'll find out in a week! Either way, it will be interesting.

The thing is, live demos on rigs specially designed for the job and showing scenarios that are specially designed for the show are not necessarily indicative of how the rest of the game will be on joe publics pc at launch.  And so, we have to take what is shown at the demo "with a pinch of salt".

However, the good point is that at least the demo will give a little more insight into the game. 

As an aside, one thing I've noticed about these videos is that Anet are heavily using a lot of "bloom" effects.  The point is, using such an effect is like putting vasceline (petrolium based clear lubricant) on a camera lens, it can hide a lot of imperfections in the subject matter.  Thus making the subject "appear" to be more aesthetically pleasing to the viewer than it is in reality.

Originally posted by aesperus
Originally posted by bookworm438

it's good not being over hyped. At least your not coming in and saying the video completely sucks. However, what you see in the video actually happens in the game. It isn't CGI trailer. There are small examples in there of the systems at work, but you just gotta know where to look for them. An example of a dynamic event taking place would be where you see teh centaurs charging in with the things overhead blowing up. The dragon is real and exists in the game. Martin confirmed over on GW2G. It's called The Shatterer. I guess it's one of the first dragons you meet, and i guess players may run into them during the demo. Anet seems to know what they are doing, as they've said they've spent hours polishing the beginning areas for the demos.

Just to expand on this. I applaud people for being skeptical and not buying into 'the hype', but what bookworm is talking about is true if you analyze what you are seeing. Granted the lack of a UI does make it hard to swallow as 'actual gameplay', but much of what you are seeing is game engine driven. You are seeing glimpses of what the game will look like; what's lacking is the persistant world they are talking about (which hopefully we'll see later). They've shown examples of combining attacks to create combos (charging the charr w. lightning so his rifle shots shock the enemy, creating  a firewall to ignite arrows, etc.).

As for how fun this will be, that will have to wait for launch, but I think it's a bit harsh to put these guys in the same category as company's like Funcom. They have a reputation (albeit a limited one) of producing quality games that live up to their own standards.

 

-  also, I don't see how people can think this game is 'overhyped'. Compared to most of the large titles released in the MMO genre, the info coming from anet has been somewhat limited for this game as well as the first one. They tend to release just enough info to let players know what type of game it's going to be, and then let them see for themselves whether or not they enjoy the specifics.

Both Brad McQuaid and Richard Garriott proved that it doesn't matter what your reputation / heritage is, you can still mess up your next product.  This is why I don't think it's harsh at all to make reference to the mistakes made by Funcom when it comes to claims made by MMO companies prior to launch.  Bioware, Anet, SquareEnix and all the others have marketing departments who will be telling those who take part in interviews / videos to "big up" their game by "embellishing" the truth a little.  I'm not necessarily talking about lies mind you, but just a little over emphasis here and there.  Which is why one has to be very careful when listening / watching these announcements.  A lot can be smoke and mirrors.

On the subject of overhyping, its funny you saying that compared to "the info coming from anet has been somewhat limited", which is precisely what Bioware are doing as well.  And yet, people are claiming that SWTOR is being overhyped (a statement which personally I don't agree with).

Firstly OP, it isn't the testers job to "inform" the public about how the game is at that point, it is their job to test the product under the guidance of the devs.  If the devs mess it up, it will soon be found out at launch.  You aren't there to be some kind of self righteous journalist reporting for the good of players everywhere.  You are supposed to be testing the game.  Period.

Secondly, don't judge APB's development as being indicative of every MMO out there.  Many MMO's bring their NDAs down at "open beta" stage which is nothing more than a marketing / server stress test period.

Thirdly, there are countless reasons why NDA's are in effect in the first place.  Patents pending, fear of competition implementing features before the devs do, copyright lawsuits, etc, etc.  Plus, the NDA's allow devs to make changes in development without having to constantly answer why they did them to the players (unlike what they have to do after launch).  And let us not forget the doozy of them all "omg!!! they've implemented XXXXX, I hate it!!!" or "the performance of this game sucks!!" and then 100,000 others irrationally assume that's how its going to be at launch on everyones pc when in actual fact the issue was going to be addressed in the next beta patch.

So, to answer your question, NDA's ARE gamer friendly simply because it gives devs the freedom to do what they need to do during development whilst minimising the repercussions and protects the product from the morons who actually have no intention of helping the devs, and just use it as free game time.

So in short, NDA's protect the product from irrational morons whilst it undergoes changes, and protects the irrational morons from themselves.

Don't like an NDA?  Don't opt to be in a closed beta test. 

Originally posted by Drakynn
I'm sorry but I don't see what all the frothing at the mouth excitement is about.I saw a lot of talk not backed up with any evidence and a lot of game engine driven movies but nothing that actually looked like actual game play.I hope GW2 turns out great too and that they deliver on all their hype,but until I see actual evidence I ain't going nuts over this.
 
I mean I can see them delivering ont he no grind thing coz of the B2P business model meaning they don't have to worry aobut retaining subs by artificially extending content so they have time to create more to keep people subbing.As to the rest I need hard evidence that it's in the game and that it actually works in a way that is fun.

 Agreed.  The video was nice eye candy, but no evidence to backup their claims as of yet.  Talk is cheap when it comes to hyping MMO's and their designs may look good on paper but in reality turn out to be very lack-lustre.

For instance, AOC boasted about the use of a directional shield system and spell weaving.  In the end the shield system was a complete waste of time, and spell weaving proved to be, in a lot of cases, more hassle than its worth and created a lot of imbalances.  SWTOR boasts about focus on story, and whilst I think that both Bioware and Anet are aiming in the right direction with this, it may turn out to be as one dimensional as SWG's "Destiny" quest because aside from the main quest chain, there's nothing else to support it. 

And so, even though I hope GW2 AND SWTOR both do well (after all the industry needs some new success stories), I'm yet to be convinced that this game will live up to all it's claimed to be. 

Originally posted by someforumguy

Why does it matter if ppl think sandbox suck? The course for SW:TOR is set.

No matter how much you want it SW:TOR fail out of spite, itll have a higher chance of succeeding in this form, then as some preCU SWG clone. Too few ppl want to play the '30min shuttle wait and decay' game.

 Aint that the truth.  Whilst PreCU may have had some nice concepts, the game as a whole MMO sucked and was bleeding subs even BEFORE the NGE was announced.  This wasn't purely because of WoW, it was because there was parts of the game that had major issues that weren't being addressed.  But certain people have a tendency to overlook such problems because they prefer to look through "rose tinted glasses". 

Some people have so much hatred for ANY MMO that uses a formula that they don't like, that they feel an incessant urge to attempt to "predict" the failure of the game even before it launches.  Just so they can then take comfort IF other MMO's "fail".  It really is quite pathetic.

As much as I would love to see a "hybrid" MMO take the best bits from themepark and sandbox games and put them into a game that I find appealing, that has yet to happen.  Predicting the failure of an MMO just because it happens to differ with ones own expectations is ridiculous and immature.

Originally posted by Ceridith
Originally posted by Kyelthis

Ceridith- NGE did change the game in a very negative way, I agree, but even vanilla SWG had blatant problems (as do many other MMOs). Severely imbalanced classes, a ton of bugs (WAR's release comes to mind), and very (imo) bland adventuring. All this compounds to make a frustrating PvE and PvP experience. SWG wasn't perfect as many claim it to be, and I'm glad TOR isn't being made with SWG in mind.

 

That said, I'm also not very happy that TOR seems to be ripping off what games like WoW and WAR have already done. I figured Bioware would at least try to innovate something else than how quests are given/player choices. But the truth is, the Bioware making TOR is not the same Bioware many of us are used to. It's a newer studio and this is their first game in that studio.

 

Locke- I don't think any "risk" has gone into this game yet, at least not from what I've seen. They don't seem to be changing systems around or how they work. The only game at the moment that comes to mind for "risk" is GW2. They're at least innovating multiple gameplay systems, but it's always a "wait & see".

I never claimed that the original SWG was perfect. I'm well aware that it had bugs and balance issues, I know I suffered at times from them. But those things can, and were being fixed before they drastically altered the game. When people are asking for a SWG back, they don't want it ridden with bugs and balance issues. What they want is the ideals and game philosophy of SWG back.

For many who played SWG, it's the fundamental concepts of the game that made SWG so much more superior to so many other MMOs that are out there now, even despite all of the bugs and balance issues. Too many MMOs are nothing more than instance ridden quest grinds that might as well be single player games with online lobbies, as player impact on the game and other players being pretty much non-existent. There's absolutely no reason for online communities in today's MMOs, which is why the MMO communities are so terrible today.

 On this I can appreciate your point.  Even though I think Pre-CU was by and large awful, I am baffled as to why the "essence" of what SWG got right has never been transplanted into more recent MMO's.

By that I mean the crafting, housing, guildcities, open world pvp, large seamless environments.  People have been yearning for these concepts in more recent MMO's and yet, MMO devs seem to shun them (aside from Vanguard whose own issues sadly overshadowed the similar concepts it tried to envelope).

Personally speaking, I'm surprised that the likes of AOC's devs have publically stated that they don't put much emphasis of crafting and how housing is something that they would love to put in but don't have the time for.  STO, again has awful crafting.  Even the 800lb gorilla that is WoW seems to shun it by and large.  You would think that if ANY dev had the resources to do it, it would be Blizzard.

Sadly, SOE seem to own the only three titles that at least attempted to put a little depth on these kind of gameplay elements.  And 2/3's of them are on their last legs.

Originally posted by slim26

Tarka, thank you for this information on "utilising technology"

(The simple issue is that when OTHER players see an encounter, it has to be reset so that they can do it.  However, it doesn't have to appear reset to YOU if you have already done it.  The answer lies in utilising technology and methods of putting players in specifically tailored environments to suit their choices.  One way is instancing, another is phasing.  Both of which have been confirmed to be in SWTOR.  At this moment we don't know to what extent phasing and instancing will be used to tailor the environment based on the quests at a player / group has.)

That info you post up should of change the way this thread was going because it just help me understand how the hell Bioware was going to do this. This way is tricky and smart, what happens on me screen will appear different to my team mate but.... ahhhhh I am still abit puzzle on this method but this info really did clear me up a little.

No problem. Don't get me wrong though, "phasing" and instancing has yet to completely address the issues associated with what each player in the same group will experience when the environment changes.  Because this kind of technology brings it's own unique issues, which were apparent when Blizzard attempted to use "phasing" in WotLK. 

How phasing works in WoW

In short, each player "sees" the environment in accordance with the quests they had done, how Blizzard accomplished this was to place the player seamlessly into a particular version of the environment that matched the quest.  No loading screens, no gates of entry, just a clever use of misdirection to change the environment accordingly (e.g. use of in game event videos, cut scenes, etc).  Unfortunately, whilst this works fine for an individual player, it had issues in a "group" situation....

The WotLK phasing and grouping issue

Lets take a hyperthetical scenario whereby a quest is in three parts:

1)  Kill a named mob.

2)  In-game cut scene plays.

3)  Get access to the next stage of the quest from npc's you couldn't access before.

So a first player who had yet to kill the mob would be in a particular version of the environment (e.g. they can see the mob walking around and everything is as it always has been).  However, another player who had done the second part would be placed in a DIFFERENT version of the environment and thus can see in game elements that the other cannot (e.g. a big dragon stood near were the npcs once were and bodies lying everywhere).

Blizzard realised that this caused an issue in that even though BOTH were still in the same group, they couldn't actually see each other until their progression in the particuilar quests were in synchronisation, this was because they were in effect in separate versions of the same environment.  This caused some obvious confusion with players.  Of course, this isn't an issue in a more "static" environment like instancing has.  Apparently though, Blizzard have indicated that they are addressing these issues for the next expansion.  Hopefully Bioware can do so too.

 

Until such an issue is addressed in the next expansion, players in WoW have to be a little "pro-active" when finding groups and ensure that each group member is on the same part of the quest so that they can all do it.  Which in itself isn't a terrible thing.

Originally posted by xaldraxius

All I can  say about the graphics and the other games coming out is that we shall see just how playable those games are on your standard rig. Remember Vangaurd? Age of Conan? Visually stunning games, but they ran like cold molasses on anything but the highest end computers. I think Bioware is being very smart knowing that we have been in an ecconomic recession and most people haven't been able to upgrade their computers in a while.

 I certainly do remember those!  I also remember the issues with the launch of EQ2 as well as others. 

One common factor that always seems to "rear its ugly head" is that games that focus on "realistic" graphics always seem to have performance issues.  This is perhaps one of the reasons why Bioware chose "stylised" graphics AND perhaps is the very same argument why SOE are choosing "stylised" graphics for the next Everquest incarnation.

There are certain merits with using "stylisation".  For one thing, there's less demand on texturing, for another there is less need for focus on "realism" in terms of getting facial expressions and such like just right.  Which means that the development time that would be normally spent on enhancing realism can be spent elsewhere prior to launch, in areas such as dungeon development, itemisation, level and character progression, etc, etc.

Originally posted by Ceridith

SWG-NGE is still around... the SWG that most SWG players loved however, is not.

SWTOR is shaping up to be nothing more than WoW in space, and most people who want to play a game like WoW, are already playing WoW.

 With all due respect, if you insist on distilling a game by ignoring its differences just so you can refer to it as a "clone" of another game then you will never be happy.  Now, besides having a foundation that is defined by a particular genre (themepark), TOR has no connection with WoW whatsoever.  And whilst WoW maybe a themepark game (because it too has a foundation that is defined by a genre), that doesn't mean that all themepark games are all copies of WoW.  To think otherwise is a ridiculous argument indeed.

Maybe your lack of happiness isn't a problem with the industry, but with your own myopia.

Originally posted by Anubisan
Originally posted by njmberger
Originally posted by Anubisan

If you want to be Uncle Owen, SWG is still around people!

No it isn't actually. Coz the SWG they talk about was removed with the NGE....

As to SWToRs future, I think it will be successfull as Bioware has decided to cater to the mass crowd, and the Bioware crowd. Will I play it? Yes, I most likely will. Am I disappointed with what I know about it? Yes, I am, but that does not change the fact that I at least will try it out.

So has it issues? I think that depends on who you are asking. It will sell, but not s**tloads to the swg vets. And if you ask those (the swg vets, SWTOR has serious issues, many that are game breaking according to them)

Actually the SWG they talk about IS still around. Google is your friend...

The game may have issues, but I haven't played any games without issues. I am at least going to give Bioware the benefit of the doubt after years of never letting me down. I am a fan of both themeparks and sandbox games if they are done well... and I have faith that Bioware will do this game well. I may be wrong, but that's my stance on it.

As for TOR not getting the SWG vets - I seriously doubt this is at all an issue for Bioware/LucasArts/EA. The SWG vets make up such a small niche sub-group fo the MMO playerbase and most developers frankly don't care about them. I know I wouldn't.... I mean this is a group that does nothing but whine about everything and is apparently unhappy no matter what they get. I honestly don't think any game will make the SWG whiners happy at this point... Nothing will ever measure up to their memory of that game... no matter how foggy and erroneous it may be.

 From what I recall, Pre-CU was far from perfection in terms of an MMO in my opinion.  I'm willing to bet that IF SOE decided to launch a "classic SWG" server, it wouldn't be incredibly popular simply because peoples tastes and expectations change over the years.  For instance, people don't expect mobs to be able to shoot through walls like they STILL can in SWG.

When I played it, that's when I came to the conclusion that "Sandbox" was synomynous with "lazy assed devs who expect players to make ALL their own fun, and implement features poorly".  Of course, that's a personal opinion.  But to this date, I've yet to witness a sandbox game that doesn't echo that sentiment.  That goes for Eve too.  Whilst Eve does some things quite well (crafting / economic synergy), it also does some things VERY badly.

Originally posted by Faelsun
Originally posted by Anubisan

Another regurgitated complaint thread from an SWG fan who will never be satisfied with a non-sandbox game...

It should be pretty obvious at this point that this game will not be what you want it to be. It is not a sandox... Bioware never intended it to be a crafter-heavy game or a moisture farmer simulator. This game is a story-driven action MMO and, as I have said many times, this is obviously not going to appeal to you SWG players...

You are looking in the wrong place for your perfect game and are barking up the wrong tree. Just because it is a Star Wars MMO you think it should automatically be like SWG!? Why would any company emulate that failure of a game? No amount of whining will change Bioware's direction and all I can say is thank God...

If you want to be Uncle Owen, SWG is still around people!

Thats right this is going to be another Themepark WOW clone for you themepark lovers, it will peak in 3 months and dwindle down to 200k users in under a year. Then you can join the ranks of other too big to fail Themeparks such as WAR, LOTR and AOC, Congratulations.

Don't be so childish, you sound like a kid guarding a candy bar.

 And the majority of Sandbox games have been soooo successful recently haven't they? 

Seriously, that's a tired old argument Failsun.  The funny thing is, the fact that these devs produce themepark games rather than sandbox ones simply proves the fact that they consider the themepark design to have more merit than the typical sandbox design.  And why is that I wonder?  Because whilst certain themepark games maybe more restrictive than Sandbox design games, at least the themepark games give more people what they want. 

So, let me counter your typical "themeparks are evil / all themepark games are WoW Clones and therefore failures" argument with this question: 

How many AAA SANDBOX games are there that launched AFTER WoW and considered by the Western MMO community as being popular right now? 

Fallen Earth, Mortal Online and Darkfall aren't exactly rolling in subs are they?  Eve was released way before WoW so that doesn't count and is as much an anomaly as WoW is.   FE, MO and Darkfall in all probability have the same if not less populations than the so-called "failed" themepark games that you so love to hate.

So please, drop the "all themepark games are WoW clones and therefore are dooooooomed" self righteous speeches.  If YOU can think of a sandbox MMO design that is guaranteed to attract the level of audiences found in the better themepark games, then by all means go for it and come back in 5 years to tell us how popular it is.

Its not the MMO industry's fault if you are wanting a game that is considered by many developers as being too financially risky in this economic climate.  Don't like the games?  Fine, don't play them and certainly don't just drop into threads to troll.

Originally posted by Sketch

Agreed, and Wookieswere playable in SWG & KOTOR, sounds kind of weak if they aren't available in TOR.

And seriously, I'll listen to a wookie all day rather than EVER listen to another fucking Jawa making that obnoxious TEEHEE sound...

 I'm betting that wookies ARE going to be playable for certain classes (e.g. Bounty Hunter and Commando) but not for others (e.g. Force sensitive classes).  Bioware are no doubt holding the announcement back because its a big thing for some people, so they are using the announcement for marketing purposes in a few months time, just like they held off about announcing other things until recently.

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