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The Secret World Forum » General Discussion » MMO-ADVENTURE rather than an MMO-RPG

11 posts found
  dylan32

Novice Member

Joined: 8/14/13
Posts: 15

 
OP  12/23/13 5:08:42 AM#1

I've just come back to TSW from an eight month break.  Like everybody else, I loved the campaign, stories, characters, quests and acting.  What originally drove me away was the lack of tangible character progression (all my newly aquired skills were no more effective than my previous), and limited dynamic elements.

Coming back to it, my expectations are different and I'm enjoying the game all over again.

I originally approached the game as an MMO-RPG, and expected a certain level of tradional gameplay which you expect from the genre (PvP, at least some sandbox content, crafting, social stuff, etc).  But, TSW is not really an MMO-RPG, but an MMO-ADVENTURE.  It has far more in common with URU (the online Myst game) than any MMORPG.

Sure, it has MMORPG inspired elements, but they play second fiddle to the adventure game elements.  Character progression is not about becoming more and more competent in combat (there is an element of this, but nowhere as near as you see in MMORPGs where the difference between low level mobs and high level is so extreme) but more about exploration and lore collections.  Which is a neat alternative way of measuring your achievements, rather than being a particular level and having a certain gear set.

So, lets discuss how TSW can progress as an MMO-adventure rather than an MMO-RPG.  What other sort of progression measurement can be introduced to maintain the feeling of character development (URU had a sort of floating island which you collected things for, kind of like a home)?

  Ortwig

Hard Core Member

Joined: 4/20/12
Posts: 1087

12/29/13 12:55:01 PM#2

While I do agree that the adventure aspects are definitely more present in TSW than most other MMOs, I also disagree a little bit about progression -- there is vertical progression in the sense that you gain better quality gear as you move along, and spending SP is probably the most direct way to progress your character vertically.  That said, TSW is really more about adaptability and versatility than most games -- you can build powerful decks, but this is done through the players own research of the ability wheel and creating decks as they go.  Sure, the pre-made decks are there, but they are certainly not the most powerful you can make, and understanding the active/passive synergies is where you can make a huge difference in how well you perform against the baddies.  The big difference is that the onus is on the player to figure these out rather than the game simply making you more powerful as you "level."

 

But, yeah, I do love the adventure aspects of TSW.  The investigations and sabotage missions are top notch, and even the action missions require a bit of thought -- either by switching upon your build, or understanding the "dance" with the mob or boss.  HOw could they be improved?  I do think some other aspects could be incorporated further -- the ARGs for example are a really cool way to mix real world and ingame stuff -- see the Twitter experiment...  I could see more ingame easter eggs or specialty loot for people who go through the trouble of figuring out the puzzle.  I do know "Puzzle Raids" are a big item on Joel Bylos' list for the future.  I'd like to see some sort of group magic/occult system, but I haven't thought too much how that might work.  I'd like to see something different than player housing, or at least a twist on it.  I'd almost prefer a workshop or research lab to a traditional apartment or house in TSW.  Any other cool ideas?

  dylan32

Novice Member

Joined: 8/14/13
Posts: 15

 
OP  12/30/13 10:17:25 AM#3

Puzzle raids sounds like an amazing concept, but very difficult to pull off.  If done correctly, they would require some sort of dynamic element so that the solution would not always be the same.

A system for developing player made stories and zones would be great, sort of like that in Neverwinter Online.  The easiest implementation would be via the scenario system, but it would be cool if they could be integrated into the game world in a way that does not disrupt the existing campaigns.

Player developed campaigns could retail on the cash shop, with a percentage going to funcom (like itunes app store).  This would remove the risk of people no longer purchasing issues, plus provide a huge incentive for writers to create great content as it could become a minor income for them.

  Margulis

Advanced Member

Joined: 12/14/08
Posts: 1643

12/30/13 10:32:36 AM#4
I REALLY liked how they did the story and the quests in this game, I think it sets the bar for what can be done in an mmo.  But I just couldn't stick with it for a couple reasons.  No matter what zone or time of day I was in the world chat was completely dead, except in Agartha and that was just LFG spam.  Also the world was instanced in such a way to feel so disjointed to me it didn't feel at all like a world, but like different levels in a mario video game.  Finally, it's just hard to be in a gloomy survival horror environment all the time, at least for me.
  Ortwig

Hard Core Member

Joined: 4/20/12
Posts: 1087

12/30/13 10:38:02 AM#5
Originally posted by Margulis
I REALLY liked how they did the story and the quests in this game, I think it sets the bar for what can be done in an mmo.  But I just couldn't stick with it for a couple reasons.  No matter what zone or time of day I was in the world chat was completely dead, except in Agartha and that was just LFG spam.  Also the world was instanced in such a way to feel so disjointed to me it didn't feel at all like a world, but like different levels in a mario video game.  Finally, it's just hard to be in a gloomy survival horror environment all the time, at least for me.

During events you can use /chat join #event to meet a lot of people doing things. Right now the Krampus event is going full steam. Also London and Kingsmouth are good places t o start up chats in General.  Finally joining a cabal thru the forums is a good way to hook up with people.

  tom_gore

Apprentice Member

Joined: 2/27/09
Posts: 1809

12/30/13 10:42:51 AM#6

What are you talking about? TSW has more roleplaying tools and support than almost all other modern MMOs.

If you argue that TSW is an MMO-Adventure because of its lack of RP tools, you're arguing that practically all modern MMOs are just MMO Adventures.

I can sort of agree with that. And it's sad.

  Ortwig

Hard Core Member

Joined: 4/20/12
Posts: 1087

12/30/13 10:54:39 AM#7

I think he was pointing out the larger number of puzzles in the game, at least in comparison with  most MMOs.  Agreed though that I've seen more RP in TSW than I've seen in other themeparks.  And the devs really do support RP venues (most notably the Albion theater). 

 

  BlizzardShill

Novice Member

Joined: 6/06/13
Posts: 37

12/30/13 10:55:54 AM#8

On the puzzle raids topic, DDO has a few raids that involve a good bit of puzzle solving.  The trouble, of course, is that most of the puzzles are the same each instance and so the solutions are generally memorized by veteran players.

 

This can be worked around, though: One of DDO's mid-level raids in Gianthold involves a Mastermind puzzle.  Those of you who know about this puzzle know that there are specific methods you can use to win the game so it's not entirely luck-based, but it's also random every time which makes it particularly nail-biting when a newbie is solving the puzzle (if you fail the puzzle, the quest fails too!)

 

As long as the time the puzzle takes is balanced well with the time the combat takes and puzzles are randomized every instance, TSW would greatly benefit from more.

  cura

Hard Core Member

Joined: 7/24/04
Posts: 903

12/30/13 11:09:55 AM#9
I loved investigations so for me its the way they shoud go but if i was to play again they also would have to cut mob density to 1/4. I just cant stand fighting in this game. 
  dylan32

Novice Member

Joined: 8/14/13
Posts: 15

 
OP  12/31/13 4:55:03 AM#10
Originally posted by tom_gore

What are you talking about? TSW has more roleplaying tools and support than almost all other modern MMOs.

If you argue that TSW is an MMO-Adventure because of its lack of RP tools, you're arguing that practically all modern MMOs are just MMO Adventures.

I can sort of agree with that. And it's sad.

I was referring to the difference between TSW and MMORPGs rather than 'role playing'.  Role playing does not require any in-game mechanics, just the mindset for character acting.

In the MMORPG market, people come to expect certain accepted game play mechanics, not necessary but inherited from title to title.  Such as housing, fishing, crafting, an economy, grinding, levelling, etc.  TSW does not feel quite like a dynamic persistent world which most MMORPGs strive to attain, but more like a table top RPG campaign (or set of campaigns).  I certainly don't think this is a bad thing (fishing in TSW, what the hell would you catch???), but many MMORPG players approach it with that expectation and are left wanting.

I don't see TSW as providing tools to support RP however (such as player scripted events, etc), unless I've missed something?  You could argue that the whole wardrobe system is an RP tool, and I think I would agree with that.

  tom_gore

Apprentice Member

Joined: 2/27/09
Posts: 1809

12/31/13 5:47:21 AM#11
Originally posted by dylan32
Originally posted by tom_gore

What are you talking about? TSW has more roleplaying tools and support than almost all other modern MMOs.

If you argue that TSW is an MMO-Adventure because of its lack of RP tools, you're arguing that practically all modern MMOs are just MMO Adventures.

I can sort of agree with that. And it's sad.

I was referring to the difference between TSW and MMORPGs rather than 'role playing'.  Role playing does not require any in-game mechanics, just the mindset for character acting.

In the MMORPG market, people come to expect certain accepted game play mechanics, not necessary but inherited from title to title.  Such as housing, fishing, crafting, an economy, grinding, levelling, etc.  TSW does not feel quite like a dynamic persistent world which most MMORPGs strive to attain, but more like a table top RPG campaign (or set of campaigns).  I certainly don't think this is a bad thing (fishing in TSW, what the hell would you catch???), but many MMORPG players approach it with that expectation and are left wanting.

I don't see TSW as providing tools to support RP however (such as player scripted events, etc), unless I've missed something?  You could argue that the whole wardrobe system is an RP tool, and I think I would agree with that.

Yes it doesn't _require_ any in-game mechanics, but if the game doesn't support roleplaying in any meaningful way, thus requiring players to imagine everything themselves, the roleplayers could just play PnP roleplaying games.

I also agree even TSW could have more toys for roleplayers, but compared to most of the themeparks we have today, it has plenty. The Wardrobe system is one, chat bubbles and plenty of emotes is another, albion theatre (which actually does allow player scripted events, although at one limited venue).

But I think I catch what you mean. In fact I played TSW 90% as a single player RPG and once I had finished all quests (except the dungeon quests) I quit playing. Personally I don't really miss any of the typical MMORPG cliches, but maybe some do.