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General Discussion Forum » The Pub at MMORPG.COM » Modern MMOs: Stop trying to make me into a special little snowflake.

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131 posts found
  dancingstar

Hard Core Member

Joined: 11/19/11
Posts: 273

11/20/12 10:00:51 AM#21

This is pretty muich the intrinsic absurdity of the themepark MMORPG form & has been a known issue for 10 years or more (it is implied for instance in this interview with Richard Garriott from 2002).  Your choice is more or less, (a) ignore the absurdity (b) play a single-player or small-group co-op game where there aren't over 9000 other "heroes" running round the same world or (c) play a pure sandbox MMO.  Installing, logging into and playing a themepark MMORPG and complaining it has quests which present you as "The Hero" and whic hit makes no logical sense for every player character in the game world to have done makes about as much sense as installing and logging into Darkfall and complaining about other players killing your character and taking their stuff.

It may sound like a good idea that once someone defeats the Big Bad, he stays defeated & the entire game world changes to take this into account, but to do this in an MMORPG would be pretty much commercial suicide -- it would be spending developer resources to create content that could be completed by at most one raid party per server. Unless and until someone comes up with a good enough AI to dynamically create content and implement it in the game world as fast as the player base gets through it, it ain't gonna happen.

  DavisFlight

Hard Core Member

Joined: 9/25/12
Posts: 2427

11/20/12 10:04:29 AM#22
Originally posted by Icewhite
Originally posted by mmoDAD

I'm the chosen one... again.

A NPC has lost her ring... even though 1,000,000 players before me had found and returned it. Is she that stupid?

Now my own character talks for me? This doesn't feel like "me" anymore; it feels like I'm turning the pages of a fricken' book.

 

 

Quests should not be personalized. Any answer to a quest giver should be a simple YES or NO.

Sorry it bothers you.  Perhaps you should choose games that did not descend from RPGs, instead.

It's not because the games descend from RPGs. It's because some developers (the WoW clone devs mostly) don't understand the strengths of an MMO.

It is entirely futile to try to craft a personal storyline into an MMO. It'll never, EVER be as good as a storyline in a singleplayer RPG, and its just dishonest and hollow, when you see all the other players.

Devs should focus on what MMOs do best, large scale storytelling, like Asheron's Call, where thousands of players dictate the outcome of an evolving story that shapes the game world.

SWTOR failed for a reason. Singleplayer should not get the most attention in an MMO.

  Icewhite

Made History

Joined: 7/11/11
Posts: 6495

Pink, it's like red but not quite.

11/20/12 10:06:12 AM#23
Originally posted by dancingstar

 

It may sound like a good idea that once someone defeats the Big Bad, he stays defeated & the entire game world changes to take this into account

Well, we did get a statue for Arthas.

(But so did a couple of hundred other guilds, on other servers. And we were still re-killing him a year later.  I can understand that, they did not construct this entire instance for just 10 guys.)

Self-pity imprisons us in the walls of our own self-absorption. The whole world shrinks down to the size of our problem, and the more we dwell on it, the smaller we are and the larger the problem seems to grow.

  Iselin

The Listener

Joined: 3/04/08
Posts: 3736

11/20/12 10:10:35 AM#24
Originally posted by mmoDAD

I'm the chosen one... again.

A NPC has lost her ring... even though 1,000,000 players before me had found and returned it. Is she that stupid?

Now my own character talks for me? This doesn't feel like "me" anymore; it feels like I'm turning the pages of a fricken' book.

 

 

Quests should not be personalized. Any answer to a quest giver should be a simple YES or NO.

OK fine. I'll be the chosen one. You can clean my stables.

 

Get what ring? Oh you meant the one the first guy got 1 hour after the game went live? Sorry, it's been found. All there's left for you to do is muck the stalls.

 

You say you keep talking at the monitor and nothing is happening? Put in a ticket and we'll pass it on to the voice recognition team... Better yet, ask the chosen one to do it, we'd rather not talk to peons.

 

Are you enjoying cleaning stables? Jus answer yes or no.

 

There. Happy?

  User Deleted
11/20/12 10:19:57 AM#25

It's not impossible for MMORPGs to ditch the SP "hero" RPG mode.

 

There is always non-hero questing.

"The Toratha are in need of leather.  Go kill 10 bluehounds and bring me the skins.  I will pay you on your return."

No hero here, but obviously a task.

 

Or another, a design I find enjoyable, is adventuring.

"There is a derelict mine located to the east of town.  The locals say the place is haunted."

Then XP is provided by kills and cash or item reward from hidden loot or boss drop.  No hero, no task, just raw environment based PVE.

The problem is that such is easily exploitable by chest or boss camping.  That puts pressure on the developer to use instancing, phasing or some other gating mechanics to push a character out of the location once it has been completed.

  Icewhite

Made History

Joined: 7/11/11
Posts: 6495

Pink, it's like red but not quite.

11/20/12 10:20:59 AM#26
Originally posted by Iselin

Get what ring? Oh you meant the one the first guy got 1 hour after the game went live? Sorry, it's been found. All there's left for you to do is muck the stalls.

I once created unique items for a player base that valued them deeply, enough to purchase access to auctions with real cash.

Even so, we were only allowed to create a handful of truly unique (as in one of a kind) fully scripted items each year...the re-sold for hundreds of dollars, thousands in at least one case, each.  Much more common? "This item is one of five to be sold for this year..."

That game had a player base that never exceeded 5000.  Special snowflake, really unique, had a definitely marketable value.

What precludes Unique in mmos is the scale of the games.  Uniqueness is gone, interaction with staff is gone.  Permanent effects, like having a street in town named after your character. gone. Your character, creating or changing the lore of the world permanently, gone. 

And they aren't coming back.

I understand the gripe, possibly much more so than the most rabid of fanbox fans. Those moons and constellations up in the sky were mine.

But their usual reflex "throw narrative away entirely, it's the only way we can have anything different" is a false one, that weakens the genre to a mere simulation.

Self-pity imprisons us in the walls of our own self-absorption. The whole world shrinks down to the size of our problem, and the more we dwell on it, the smaller we are and the larger the problem seems to grow.

  CreepProphet

Novice Member

Joined: 10/10/09
Posts: 104

A figment of your imagination.

11/20/12 10:21:21 AM#27

For what it's worth I like writing my own stories via games.

I may not be a hero, and it may or may not be an epic tale.

But at least it's mine. I may be a regular joe running around with 5 million other regular joe's, but if what I do makes any impact at all on the world around me, I feel like that's a pretty epic story. 


Waiting on The Repopulation.

  nariusseldon

Elite Member

Joined: 12/21/07
Posts: 19248

11/20/12 10:28:12 AM#28

I wonder if the complaint is that the writing of the story is bad, or that many are having the same story.

Personally, i don't care if others are having the same story, as long as i don't see it (like phasing). No one cares that millions else did the same thing when you play Borderland, or Diablo co-op.

However, some of the writing in games (not just MMO) is cliche. Be the chosen one and save the world from the big bad boss again ... is getting old. I suppose you can do somethign like a Dishonor type story in a MMO setting. That would be fun.

  Trudge34

Hard Core Member

Joined: 8/08/12
Posts: 388

11/20/12 10:32:38 AM#29
Originally posted by XAPGames

It's not impossible for MMORPGs to ditch the SP "hero" RPG mode.

 

There is always non-hero questing.

"The Toratha are in need of leather.  Go kill 10 bluehounds and bring me the skins.  I will pay you on your return."

No hero here, but obviously a task.

 

Or another, a design I find enjoyable, is adventuring.

"There is a derelict mine located to the east of town.  The locals say the place is haunted."

Then XP is provided by kills and cash or item reward from hidden loot or boss drop.  No hero, no task, just raw environment based PVE.

The problem is that such is easily exploitable by chest or boss camping.  That puts pressure on the developer to use instancing, phasing or some other gating mechanics to push a character out of the location once it has been completed.

I also don't mind the Crushbone belt / Bandit sash type masks too. It's like the kill 10 of X, but there's really no limit until you outgrow the quest reward. Not sure what happened to mobs dropping quest items too until you had the quest in your log. Always thought that was odd while playing Rift...would go out and kill some mobs before picking up a quest, right after I picked it up the next 10 mobs dropped pieces for the quest and I was finished with it. 

Think the more open ended quest gives you a bit more freedom to explore as you will and turn in your rewards as you wish without a set number you needed before getting your all or nothing reward. Plus you could either turn the rewards in or sell the pieces for some decent cash at low levels for the people who were looking to push past those lower levels quick.

Played: EQ1 (10 Years), Guild Wars, Rift, TERA
Tried: EQ2, Vanguard, Lord of the Rings Online, Dungeons and Dragons Online, Runes of Magic and countless others...
Currently Playing: GW2

Nytlok Sylas
80 Sylvari Ranger

  ThomasN7

Advanced Member

Joined: 3/17/07
Posts: 6652

"Had to be me. Someone else might have gotten it wrong.” - Mordin Solus

11/20/12 10:33:50 AM#30
I'm actually tired of being the hero right away. Problem is that in almost every mmo you are hero but to earn your hero status is way too easy.
  Iselin

The Listener

Joined: 3/04/08
Posts: 3736

11/20/12 10:36:20 AM#31
Originally posted by Icewhite
Originally posted by Iselin

Get what ring? Oh you meant the one the first guy got 1 hour after the game went live? Sorry, it's been found. All there's left for you to do is muck the stalls.

I once created unique items for a player base that valued them deeply, enough to purchase access to auctions with real cash.

Even so, we were only allowed to create a handful of truly unique (as in one of a kind) fully scripted items each year...the re-sold for hundreds of dollars, thousand in at  least one case, each.

That game had a player base that never exceeded 5000.  Special snowflake, really unique, had a definitely marketable value.

What precludes Unique in mmos is the scale of the games.  Uniqueness is gone, interaction with staff is gone.  Permanent effects, like having a street in town named after your character. gone.  And they aren't coming back.

I understand the gripe, possibly much more so than the most rabid of fanbox fans.

But their usual reflex "throw narrative away entirely, it's the only way we can have anything different" is a false one, that weakens the genre to a mere simulation.

Yeah I do actually undestand the frustration playing in static worlds...it's getting old. We all want dynamic events that actually do change the world. Trion and Arenanet both understand this but what they've done is just a beginning that still recycles.

 

They need to write the main story and let the little ones take care of themselves. They need to program better mob AI that allows them to populate and conquer areas in a more realistic fashion. There is an Orc invasion from somewhere off map? Fine. Let them invade from point A and move to point B fighting along the way. They can get "reinforcements", I.e. re spawns, but back at the "beach head", not just repop out of thin air.... Lots can and should be done.

 

but yeah, let's not throw away the whole genre in frustration and replace it with a totally uninteresting sterile proto world.

  Icewhite

Made History

Joined: 7/11/11
Posts: 6495

Pink, it's like red but not quite.

11/20/12 10:46:55 AM#32
Originally posted by Iselin
There is an Orc invasion from somewhere off map? Fine. Let them invade from point A and move to point B fighting along the way. They can get "reinforcements", I.e. re spawns, but back at the "beach head", not just repop out of thin air.... Lots can and should be done.

 

but yeah, let's not throw away the whole genre in frustration and replace it with a totally uninteresting sterile proto world.

We did invasions, too, several times a month.  And we worked on a small enough scale that a specific invasion could (occaisionally) affect the world in a permanent way.

Rift, that big invasion force spawns and rolls over the players--then what?  Next week, the landscape returns to normal, right?

Players want macro world effects.  Which the average mmo can achieve about once per major patch...accompanied with lots of player griping about new bugs, god QC sucks these days, what the hell rushed content.

At some point you have to recognize that no matter what, individual desires have to give way to the rest of the player base.

That's a hazard of playing with other players.

Self-pity imprisons us in the walls of our own self-absorption. The whole world shrinks down to the size of our problem, and the more we dwell on it, the smaller we are and the larger the problem seems to grow.

  Iselin

The Listener

Joined: 3/04/08
Posts: 3736

11/20/12 11:05:12 AM#33
Originally posted by Icewhite
At some point you have to recognize that no matter what, individual desires have to give way to the rest of the player base.

And this is the main problem: If you create a game where the world truly changes and events don't recycle no two players will experience the game the same way. Personally, I'm OK with that. But if you read MMO forums, whenever someone doesn't get exactly the same reward for the same effort as someone else all hell breaks loose. Maybe it's just because the games promise you that going in and everyone feels entitled.

If a game with a dynamic world was up front about it and players knew that going in, it could be different. But it still would require a lot more hands-on maintenance of the world to keep infusing fun and rewards on a regular basis. People wouldn't mind missing out on something so much if they got to do something else equally fun instead.

 

I think we're ready for something like that.

  Dauzqul

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 2/10/12
Posts: 1239

 
OP  11/20/12 11:16:30 AM#34
Originally posted by Iselin
Originally posted by mmoDAD

I'm the chosen one... again.

A NPC has lost her ring... even though 1,000,000 players before me had found and returned it. Is she that stupid?

Now my own character talks for me? This doesn't feel like "me" anymore; it feels like I'm turning the pages of a fricken' book.

 

 

Quests should not be personalized. Any answer to a quest giver should be a simple YES or NO.

OK fine. I'll be the chosen one. You can clean my stables.

 

Get what ring? Oh you meant the one the first guy got 1 hour after the game went live? Sorry, it's been found. All there's left for you to do is muck the stalls.

 

You say you keep talking at the monitor and nothing is happening? Put in a ticket and we'll pass it on to the voice recognition team... Better yet, ask the chosen one to do it, we'd rather not talk to peons.

 

Are you enjoying cleaning stables? Jus answer yes or no.

 

There. Happy?

I have never seen anyone miss the point so badly. Moreover, you weren't very funny. Sorry.
  Iselin

The Listener

Joined: 3/04/08
Posts: 3736

11/20/12 11:20:08 AM#35
Originally posted by mmoDAD
Originally posted by Iselin
Originally posted by mmoDAD

I'm the chosen one... again.

A NPC has lost her ring... even though 1,000,000 players before me had found and returned it. Is she that stupid?

Now my own character talks for me? This doesn't feel like "me" anymore; it feels like I'm turning the pages of a fricken' book.

 

 

Quests should not be personalized. Any answer to a quest giver should be a simple YES or NO.

OK fine. I'll be the chosen one. You can clean my stables.

 

Get what ring? Oh you meant the one the first guy got 1 hour after the game went live? Sorry, it's been found. All there's left for you to do is muck the stalls.

 

You say you keep talking at the monitor and nothing is happening? Put in a ticket and we'll pass it on to the voice recognition team... Better yet, ask the chosen one to do it, we'd rather not talk to peons.

 

Are you enjoying cleaning stables? Jus answer yes or no.

 

There. Happy?

I have never seen anyone miss the point so badly. Moreover, you weren't very funny. Sorry.

 I'm sorry my sarcasm went over your head... shrug ... it happens.

  nariusseldon

Elite Member

Joined: 12/21/07
Posts: 19248

11/20/12 11:20:53 AM#36
Originally posted by Icewhite

At some point you have to recognize that no matter what, individual desires have to give way to the rest of the player base.

That's a hazard of playing with other players.

It does not have to be. That is why instances & phasing can help. Cut up the world into little pieces so you can have your own piece and be special in there.

Games are entertainment and illusions. No one ever actually achieve anything in a game. It is not real work. The sense of achicevement and challenge are set up artificially so we can enjoy ourselves.

Use modern tools to help with the illusion.

  Uhwop

Elite Member

Joined: 3/20/10
Posts: 1617

11/20/12 11:21:25 AM#37
Originally posted by dancingstar

This is pretty muich the intrinsic absurdity of the themepark MMORPG form & has been a known issue for 10 years or more (it is implied for instance in this interview with Richard Garriott from 2002).  Your choice is more or less, (a) ignore the absurdity (b) play a single-player or small-group co-op game where there aren't over 9000 other "heroes" running round the same world or (c) play a pure sandbox MMO.  Installing, logging into and playing a themepark MMORPG and complaining it has quests which present you as "The Hero" and whic hit makes no logical sense for every player character in the game world to have done makes about as much sense as installing and logging into Darkfall and complaining about other players killing your character and taking their stuff.

It may sound like a good idea that once someone defeats the Big Bad, he stays defeated & the entire game world changes to take this into account, but to do this in an MMORPG would be pretty much commercial suicide -- it would be spending developer resources to create content that could be completed by at most one raid party per server. Unless and until someone comes up with a good enough AI to dynamically create content and implement it in the game world as fast as the player base gets through it, it ain't gonna happen.

 He doesn't imply any of that. 

He straight up says that the future of MMO's is that of lobby based, social gaming.  He's been saying it rather vocally sinse about the time he stopped working on UO and started working on TR.  He even started a studio that's dedicated to building a portal system for lobby based social MMO's. 

TR was even designed kind of like a virtual lobby world.  There was the main hub world and you'd travel in it to various portals that took you to various "content" worlds.  TR was a bigger, more persistant version of what Anet eventually did with GW, and Turbine did with DDO. 

Gameplay is actually kind of irrelevent to what he was saying.  Sandbox, free form, or quest/ story driven, didn't really matter as long as it was fun.  Although, he believes that episodic story based content was the most viable approach.  If you're even a little familliar with NCsoft games, you'll notice that pretty much all of them released future content as episodes, as apposed to large retail expansions -think WoW-.  GW wasn't really any different, aside from relying on box sales in place of the subscription model. 

He was just preaching the same thing he's been preaching for the last 10+ years, the future of MMO's is lobby based social games.  It doesn't really mater to him if they're sandbox or themepark, as long as it's lobby based and social. 

He's was dreaming about being the Zynga games of virtual worlds before there was a Zynga games.  He's pretty much been talking about facebook MMO's sinse before everyone and there mother was using facebook to share what they're having for dinner and pictures of thier ugly ass kids. 

  Iselin

The Listener

Joined: 3/04/08
Posts: 3736

11/20/12 11:29:40 AM#38
Originally posted by Uhwop
Originally posted by dancingstar

This is pretty muich the intrinsic absurdity of the themepark MMORPG form & has been a known issue for 10 years or more (it is implied for instance in this interview with Richard Garriott from 2002).  Your choice is more or less, (a) ignore the absurdity (b) play a single-player or small-group co-op game where there aren't over 9000 other "heroes" running round the same world or (c) play a pure sandbox MMO.  Installing, logging into and playing a themepark MMORPG and complaining it has quests which present you as "The Hero" and whic hit makes no logical sense for every player character in the game world to have done makes about as much sense as installing and logging into Darkfall and complaining about other players killing your character and taking their stuff.

It may sound like a good idea that once someone defeats the Big Bad, he stays defeated & the entire game world changes to take this into account, but to do this in an MMORPG would be pretty much commercial suicide -- it would be spending developer resources to create content that could be completed by at most one raid party per server. Unless and until someone comes up with a good enough AI to dynamically create content and implement it in the game world as fast as the player base gets through it, it ain't gonna happen.

 He doesn't imply any of that. 

He straight up says that the future of MMO's is that of lobby based, social gaming.  He's been saying it rather vocally sinse about the time he stopped working on UO and started working on TR.  He even started a studio that's dedicated to building a portal system for lobby based social MMO's. 

TR was even designed kind of like a virtual lobby world.  There was the main hub world and you'd travel in it to various portals that took you to various "content" worlds.  TR was a bigger, more persistant version of what Anet eventually did with GW, and Turbine did with DDO. 

Gameplay is actually kind of irrelevent to what he was saying.  Sandbox, free form, or quest/ story driven, didn't really matter as long as it was fun.  Although, he believes that episodic story based content was the most viable approach.  If you're even a little familliar with NCsoft games, you'll notice that pretty much all of them released future content as episodes, as apposed to large retail expansions -think WoW-.  GW wasn't really any different, aside from relying on box sales in place of the subscription model. 

He was just preaching the same thing he's been preaching for the last 10+ years, the future of MMO's is lobby based social games.  It doesn't really mater to him if they're sandbox or themepark, as long as it's lobby based and social. 

He's was dreaming about being the Zynga games of virtual worlds before there was a Zynga games.  He's pretty much been talking about facebook MMO's sinse before everyone and there mother was using facebook to share what they're having for dinner and pictures of thier ugly ass kids. 

 "Lord British's" ideas on game design have always been sort of hit and miss. Sometimes he even misses his own hits: He pioneered first person RPGs with the very good  Ultima Underworld... and then abandoned it and let Bethesda take the ball and run with it... they've scored several touchdowns while RG was busy preaching about the casual gaming future.

 

I ain't buying. Not interested in playing with this new crowd of casual non-gamers.

  fenistil

Novice Member

Joined: 9/22/11
Posts: 3016

11/20/12 11:37:29 AM#39
Originally posted by Icewhite
Originally posted by fenistilNot all RPG's revolve around player being one in a million.   You seem to prefer most common exceptional one in the world hero theme, but that does not make that all fantasy and all rpg's are about that.

"Descended from"...implying earler games...never mind, OP was a one-shot anyway.

Not all those earlier rpg games were about being one in a million.  That what I was getting at.

  Uhwop

Elite Member

Joined: 3/20/10
Posts: 1617

11/20/12 11:52:37 AM#40
Originally posted by Iselin
 

 "Lord British's" ideas on game design have always been sort of hit and miss. Sometimes he even misses his own hits: He pioneered first person RPGs with the very good  Ultima Underworld... and then abandoned it and let Bethesda take the ball and run with it... they've scored several touchdowns while RG was busy preaching about the casual gaming future.

 

I ain't buying. Not interested in playing with this new crowd of casual non-gamers.

 Yup. 

He's always been a little ahead of the curve, and never really "stuck with it" and waited for things to catch up. 

And his ideas of the future of MMO gaming make me want to curl up in a ball and cry.  I also don't think RG would know what fun gameplay was if it ran him over with a mac truck, a train, and then crashed a boeing on him.  He made the bulk of his games in the 80's and rather early 90's; there weren't very many options as far as what you could do mechanically to create fun gameplay. 

There's a drastic difference between the way games play today then they did when RG was at the top of his game.  It's really no wonder he's got a man-crush on Mark Zukerwhatever. 

And then by the time he gets things going, the technology that runs the games you play on social networks and mobile devices is going to be to advanced and capable of such complex gameplay for him to know how to make a fun game. 

Fankly, they should have left him in space. 

PS:  I should say that I don't deny that the lobby based, more stuctured themepark, casual style social game wouldn't be the most "popular" styel of gaming.  I just also believe that he's the sort of person that wouldn't mind achieving it at the expense of the more immersive virtual world model -as in he wouldn't mind if everyone stopped trying to create the virtual world simulation and switched to making nothing but lobby styled themepark, social games-.

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