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All Posts by jakin

All Posts by jakin

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143 posts found

Hackers - very rare (I've seen one in the last 4 months)

 

Stat padders - still present, but meh.

 

Shooting through spawn shields - mostly fixed, some notable exploiters were banned.

 

Aimbots and what not apparently have been hammered in recent months.

A few games of Epic with a buddy of mine.  He was really more interested in the painting than the game, and we were both far too poor to afford to get into it fully, but those few games were really enjoyable.  Saw some seriously awesome setups for a Space Hulk game at a local gaming con that were really cool to watch play out.

 

Much respect for the folks that can put that much detail into mini painting - I'd be lucky to get the main colours all in the right places.

Update was delayed until next week due to consequences from the forest fires in the area.
Originally posted by threefeet

how does this help? it doesnt fix the queues, it just puts people in a different queue to distract them from the fact that they are still in the queue for the BG they would rather be in, thats on a server that still has not been upgraded/fixed to handle the number of players who actually want to play the game.

 

If a player is only interested in participating in the WvW gameplay format (i.e. PvE and the arena PvP is uninteresting to them) this map gives them a place to play, where otherwise they are forced to queue and find something else to do (or just not play).  That's an improvement.  Not to mention the increased transparency of the queue system itself is immensely helpful.

 

want to have this 'fix' the queue times Anet style? make all the server achieves count in it. thats the only way their idea can 'fix' it. and instead of selecting only certain guilds to test this, they should have randomly chosen players who had purchased the game about release time w/ wvw xp under their belt for their input. the fact that most of the guilds in it will be biased toward their style of play never came up in their deciding this, clearly. and every guild from my server prefers the 'karma train' garbage that is pve; that is not the way wvw was designed to be played.

 

This sounds more like someone upset they couldn't test than any kind of cogent argument.  How is random selection any better or worse than volunteering.  At least volunteers are self-selected to be interested in the content and gametype.  As for style of play, every player in every group has a different view on what is the "proper" way to play WvW.

 

in the reality based world outside of the greasy teenage devs working on it, the best way to fix long queue times is to upgrade the wvw servers so they can not only handle more players but reduce the lag in battles significantly. many times that god-awful lag is what can make or break a win in a big fight. and i have noticed that individual players do not go to any given BG, all players who enter a BG are chosen as a group of others who are also queued for that particular BG, which significantly adds to the queue times.

Tough to take you seriously when you start ranting in this fashion friend. 

 

The fact of the matter is that there is a finite number of characters and effects you can pack into any given area on any given hardware.  That limit is a lot lower than most people would like, but it's a direct effect of having gameplay that is more action-oriented.  EVE Online can get away with many many more players interacting because their interactions are simpler and less time-dependent than Guild Wars 2 combat is.  In truth, map caps should probably be lower than they are, but they can't do that without releasing more maps to play in - which is exactly what they're doing here.

 

As to your queue voodoo there - now that you can see the queue positions and time you can see whether you are correct.  What you're probably seeing is a group that queue's together and thus are all in line one after the other, then when a group of players quit a BG, that new group all gets in at once.

the clear lack of vision and direction in this game is what has made me move on from it, which is unfortunate because so many of us who had high hopes for it during the first year have seen that hope dashed; if there was anything significant coming or planned for the future they wouldnt have created a thread in their forums specifically for player feedback on the living world, though there are hundreds of thousands of posts directly related to that topic already.

You moved on because the vision and direction that ArenaNet has for their game does not fundamentally match what you enjoy.  No harm, no foul.  To say that they don't have one is disingenuous at best, outright ignorant of reality at worst. 

 

Then to criticize them for gathering feedback (in a focused fashion rather than scattered across a thousand threads) when just two paragraphs above you were saying they need to randomly invite testers to provide feedback seems contradictory.

 

 

This is one of those "things" about MMO development that completely mystifies me.

 

Obviously developers and publishers care about why a given player decides to throw in the towel, but why is it that virtually all MMOs wait until that point to ask the player what they are thinking?

 

I'm hard-pressed to think of another product type where there is a capability for nearly 100% capture on a given survey question (every MMO uses a log-in launcher of some sort - put a question there and everyone who plays will have to answer it) and yet the only time I've ever seen a survey is when I'm already out the door.

 

Sure, sometimes there might be one event that triggers the decision to stop playing, but more often it's the death of a thousand cuts.  Friends quit, game gets grindy, systems change, balance gets messed up - all these things contribute to the decision to leave but by the time the leaving actually happens the reason is usually "I'm done with the game", and all of that fine-grained stuff is lost in the generalization.

 

Moreover, what is to be done with the rise of Subscription-less or Freemium games.  Virtually no one actually "quits", they just drift away.  I haven't played Guild Wars 2 in months, but my account is still there - how would ArenaNet capture that information from me? 

 

It would seem to me that it would make the most sense for Developers to start working on an unobtrusive (i.e. no 100 question surveys) but meaningful way of leveraging the fact that they have a virtually captive audience they can poll whenever they want, while that audience is still mostly satisfied with their product.  Forums are selection biased and in-game metrics are both limited and must be carefully evaluated to get the right message from the data.  Opinion surveys could be a valuable addition (which other product fields would kill for) that for some reason goes unused.

Well - if you read the producer's letters that come with the new stretch goal announcements, they usually say something like this (from the $33 million one) "Each stretch goal system represents additional artists, tools, programmers and new technologies that will make the finished project even better!"

 

I'm not a programmer, but I've been around the hobby long enough to see it stated over and over again that dumping more people onto a project is not a means to accomplish that project faster.  More people take time to get up to speed, which takes away time from the people currently coding, etc.

 

As such, it's not really likely that each stretch goal would result in the game getting shipped earlier.  What each stretch goal gives is a more complete experience at launch. 

 

Where Squadron 42 would have been |------| at launch, it is now going to be |--------------------|.

 

Whether you agree with the philosophy of crowd-funding or not, I think pretty much every project works like this to a certain degree.  It's just the source of funding that is different in this case.

Just to clarify terms - this is all related to World vs. World experience points.

 

PvP usually refers to GW2's instanced arena battles rather than WvW.

Originally posted by GrumpyMel2

Matt,

It's not a binary choice. You guys don't need to choose between zero control and anarchy and absolute control and a static world. There are levels in between. You just need to figure out some sensible bounds and limits that you can have the players work within and still not break the game while allowing for creative input.

 

I don't think the tools are quite there yet for this to be realistic.

 

Content creation takes a really long time in current-gen MMOs.  With the demand for high quality graphics, hand-crafted design, and full voice-over it will likely take a very long time before game development can be as responsive as would be desired.

 

To a certain extent, developers are forced into static worlds because they have these long lead times before content can be produced.  If it takes 4 months to go from concept to finished content the storyline pretty much has to be static and scripted or else the content would be continually behind the times.

 

The GM-type program that various games have had comes reasonably close to the ideal of responsive storytelling, but a game company would have to build a game specifically around the idea of having in-game GMs to really make the idea sing - and such a choice would drive a lot of other decisions (sandbox systems, single-shard universe, large staff of GMs on payroll, etc.)

 

More on-topic to the OP.  I once tried running a "sandbox-style" campaign for our D&D group.  My take-away lesson was primarily that my group was not really prepared for a largely undirected game experience.  Some of that was my fault, but to a very large extent, without a figurative ! (long before that paradigm existed) the players were conditioned to wait around (usually in an inn, later in their castles) for the very obvious "for adventure - go here" hook.

 

On the other hand - it may have just been our group.  In another campaign with another DM one of the newly-rolled characters came into the game with a very obvious adventure hook that would lead to the character joining the party, and our group as a whole simply walked away from the new character and the hook and the whole thing ended up in the trash can. 

Personally, I've only ever paid for one thing  -  Content.

 

In DCUO for instance, F2P up to a point, but then bought the DLC packs as they came out to have more things to do.  In GW2 I bought a character slot as I wanted to try a 5th race and I had already used up my initial 5 slots.  Expansion packs would be fine too (as long as there is something worthwhile in the pack).

 

Frankly, I'd probably be ok with paying small sums regularly for content patches.  That would give me the option of buying the content I like while staying away from the content I don't.  Though asking the consumer to make constant value judgements might be ego-bruising to the development teams.

 

As a player, I simply don't understand most of the 4 things listed in the article though.  If a game is purposefully inconvenient to the point where I would feel the need to buy something to make it less painful, I simply wouldn't play that game.  Same with the power argument - if I was so underpowered using the items the game supplies that I feel it necessary to buy stuff just to play; again off to the junkpile.

 

Vanity items particularly perplex me.  I just cannot for the life of me ever see myself paying actual cash for a virtual item just for the purpose of having a good looking avatar in game.  Just does not compute.

 

 

Originally posted by Jakdstripper
... snip ...

 

it's been my experience that once a cash cow is turned on, it's incredibly hard to turn it off. i truly hope i'm wrong.

 
 
 

A great deal of this will depend on how the private server option turns out.  If it is indeed a fully featured replica of the persistent universe (as many are expecting, though I can't possibly see how it could happen) then CGI will have very limited options with regard to pricing.  Someone somewhere will set up their own server where everything is easier to obtain (it's already pretty obvious that there are a lot of backers with very deep pockets attached to this game already).

 

Pirates of the Burning Sea had a program something like this and as I recall it turned out a couple of the more popular ships in the game.  I think it's a pretty neat way to leverage fan talent on the cheap, while giving aspiring artists and modelers something to put in their portfolio.

Originally posted by drtack1

Why does mmorpg.com write a story on Dust514??? This makes no sense, if the title was on the pc I may understand, but the majority of EVE players are still mad because Dust came out on ps3 with no pc version......they do realize 100% of their player base of EVE in on a PC right???

 

You're thinking as if DUST was some kind of expansion for EVE.  It isn't and never was.

 

DUST was CCPs attempt to diversify their company into console gaming.  They decided to try to develop a console based shooter and then decided that since they already had the EVE fiction in place they would set the shooter they were already making in the EVE universe.

 

Sometime further down the road someone suggested trying to tie the two games together, mainly because CCP operates from the "can we even do that?" realm more often than not.

 

CCP had no desire to see EVE players also playing DUST.  It was always about broadening their market base.  Whether they were successful in that is a separate subject and one can easily argue that PS2 came along and ate their lunch, but at the end of the day DUST should be viewed as if it were a completely separate game that happened to be produced by CCP because that was their whole reason for doing it in the first place.

Originally posted by cinos
Originally posted by jacklo

WvW gets flame ram mastery!

Are they serious?

I just can't get interested in this game anymore until I see some major effort put into WvW.

 

I guess you missed this then:

NEW RUINS OF POWER IN WORLD VS. WORLD

Big changes are coming to the eternal war in The Mists!  Each borderland map in WvW has been redesigned to include five new Ruins of Power—capture points that armies can battle over in order to earn lethal Bloodlust boosts for everyone on their server!

That would be a negative not a positive.  The new capture points are interesting, but putting bonuses on them that favor whatever server can afford to hold those points plus operate normally is a bad idea.

Originally posted by stayBlind
Would anyone have a problem with an exclusively NON-LBGT guild?

I can guarantee you that such a guild is very easy to make.  It's almost a self-fulfilling prophecy.  In fact, it only takes one or two members of a certain mindset and it's a sure thing.

 

Of course, there's no warranty on what the rest of the server will think of such a guild - but thems the breaks.

Originally posted by immodium

What I find unusual is why someone would play a game and think "I need to get my sexual orientation/religious/political views involved somehow"

I don't think it's so much seeking to get their views involved, but more of someone looking for an atmosphere where they can express their beliefs and / or be who they are without worrying about ridicule.

 

Alternatively, I know it's also the case that sometimes people are looking for a place where they know they won't have to deal with casual bigotry.  People in a LGBT guild simply don't use the term "gay" as casually as much of the gamer population.

 

MMOs are supposed to be social experiences.  I don't see why game companies wouldn't want to encourage social groups to form around shared interests.  Such bonds usually keep players in a given game far longer than they would without any social bonds.  As long as the game is proactive about harassment, and the groups themselves aren't especially militant about their views, I can only see it as a positive for the developers.

Originally posted by johaocarl
Originally posted by Shadanwolf
Still no WvW improvements.

Are you serious? WvW had a lot of improvements this year.

WvW has had a lot of changes this year, very few are actually improvements.  The main problem is that the gameplay is fundamentally unchanged since release.  Same two map sets, same balance of power, same old same old.  Both WvW and Dungeons are in dire need of some serious renovation that this Living World strategy doesn't seem to allow for.

 

As to this leg of the LW, it sounds like the winner will be decided based on which kind of content is linked to who wins, and it's a token grind too.  Shame.

Originally posted by lickm3

I am really curious on this game. <snip>

If you're telling me that you can't see the difference between a game made in 1990 and one made in 2013, I'd seriously suggest getting a full medical check-up.

 

Though It's pretty rough trying to figure out what you're critiquing, I gather that you're saying that pledging a game on Kickstarter is a stupid thing to do, presumably because one is just giving money to a team without any proof they'll produce anything?

 

Valid point if that's the point you're making, which is why anyone pledging anything should be doing a reasonable amount of investigation before ponying up their money.

 

In this case, CGI long ago raised the amount of money they would need to produce a complete single-player space sim descendant of Wing Commander.  That is what most people were pledging to support in the beginning.  So at a bare minimum, you're pretty sure that you'll get something.  It might suck, sure - but people are backing it in the hope that it won't (same as pre-ordering a game or getting a lifetime membership).  Nothing stops the more cynical from waiting until it's released and making their judgement then.

 

Not sure what the SWTOR comment was about - that team was certainly using other people's money to develop that game, that's what being a publicly funded company is all about.  Thing was, they needed to make more than development costs to break even - CGI's crowdfunded approach means they can start turning profit as soon as development costs are covered.

I'm desperately, desperately hoping that these achievement rewards are not going to be limited to one character.  GW2 is pretty schizoid when it comes to rewards helping or hurting players running multiple characters (i.e. some things are available to the whole account, other things are character specific - without a whole lot of rhyme or reason) - as such, I really can't anticipate which way these will go.

 

If the bonuses aren't applied account wide I'll be pretty disappointed.

Originally posted by grummz

Its really going to hamstring the discussion if I can't mention Firefall. I try to leave it at the very end only and talk about the philosophy that we observe in current MMOs. 

As for facts and figures, there are no public sources. I am drawing upon my experience leading the WoW team, working on Diablo II, and talking to many of my friends who are leaders in the industry. I'm not the only one who feels this way.

 

 

I don't think the issue is the simple mention of Firefall, is the structure of the article.  Both of the past pieces have essentially boiled down to: 

- this is what's wrong with every other MMO.

- this is how Firefall will do it right.

 

It would appear more balanced if you covered several MMOs specifically rather than hand-waving more generally. 

As mentioned in the comments - there is no area in EVE that is "wasted" as your article addresses the point.  That could be a discussion of the validity of using hard and fast character levels vs. skill-based systems, but still the point should be addressed.

You mention down-leveling as being negative, but don't mention what model you're dismissing.  GW2's level-matching doesn't take anything away from the player that I've ever observed, and I have found myself in lower-level areas far more often than the highest level ones.

 

I don't think anyone begrudges you the right and ability to talk about the game you are creating in the context of the article, but the framing of the pieces so far is really is coming off as more Firefall advertisement than MMO commentary.

 

My two cents.

I don't think I'd be quite as effusive in praise for this effort.  I can't speak to the group dungeon, but the solo dungeon is poorly conceived.  The worst part is putting boss hints in the chat log (seriously, it's an action based game - why wouldn't the tell be visual?) but the whole concept is just odd. 

 

A single player dungeon who's instance spawnpoint is on through and on top of a mob spawn and event path capable of instagibbing players as they port in and out.  Patchy audio and buggy mechanics with very little sense of drama or completion.  I actually have no idea how I came to be chasing down Canach, but he's pretty limp as a villain.

 

The Southsun arc has IMO been pretty uninspired on its own merits though.  It has reminded me of nothing more than Star Wars Episode 1.  I remember when it released every critic was making great fun of how they went from a galaxy spanning epic threat to what amounted to a trade dispute and a political "drama".

 

There are massive, primordial dragon forces tearing Tyria apart at the seams, all existence is threatened and all heroes are called, but instead of facing that threat down we're all running around on an island investigating a property dispute.

SOE has this uncanny knack for snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.  How many times have they had killer properties, neat game systems, and/or huge hype only to continually be second rate.  Their last true victory was the original EQ and Smed's been turning gold into crap ever since.

 

Even if they manage to pull together a good game, I strongly suspect based on past performance that their post-launch bumbling will sink it.

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