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244 posts found
  fs23otm

Hard Core Member

Joined: 6/11/07
Posts: 239

3/27/13 10:51:15 AM#101
Originally posted by Vesavius

I remember a few years ago on this site when almost everyone was loving the themepark style of game, the slide into casual drop in play, and why these things should be 'accessible' with equal rewards for everyone, deriding anything that didn't fit into that mold as being a 'job' and not a game. People that thought this was the way forward got very angry at folks that wanted more.

Funny how fashions shape the way people think and the landscapes of these forums.

I would be willing to be that in five years we will see it all swing around again and there will be thread after thread about how much we need to see the return of drop in themeparks and super accessible play that isn't 'a job'.

Most people on these forums don't know their head from a hole in the wall. They scream "We want sandbox", and yet can't even define on what makes a sandbox.

IMHO, sandboxes are not great. They have some neat features, but they don't set the standard on anything. Eve and Minecraft are the two only "true" sandboxes.

I think what people really want is freedom of choice. 

EQ (Pre-GOD) got it right. Many races, different starting zones, faction loss/gains, Questing was not "mandatory", everything was open world.

What was missing from EQ was player housing. 

What the current games stop doing was they streamlined the races and starting areas.... which made replayability crap...they made questing mandatory....so you had to do the same quests over and over.

 

  JasonJ

Apprentice Member

Joined: 3/19/13
Posts: 414

3/27/13 10:58:46 AM#102
Originally posted by Quirhid
You talk like player created content is good.

 Cant tell if serious...

  achesoma

Advanced Member

Joined: 5/05/05
Posts: 958

3/27/13 11:06:18 AM#103
Anyone thinking themeparks are dead is living in a bubble.  And sandboxes are not the future.  Though I believe sandbox elements as well as in-depth, non-combat  features will be needed for future player retention.  To not have "themeparkish" elements is purely a niche market.  Even Archeage has themepark content.  The key is to have a well-rounded and solid performing  MMO regardless of style. 

  GGrimm

Novice Member

Joined: 3/12/13
Posts: 50

3/27/13 11:07:28 AM#104
Originally posted by nariusseldon
Originally posted by GGrimm
 

You may not have figured it out, but based on this video, it looks like developers are starting to. What games have you developed or are you just an armchair developer and avid MMO player just like the rest of us?

It is more like they are willing to make a bet. We will see if that pans out.

Every new game is a bet. It is a bet based on where a business thinks the future is, not on where it was. I hope it pans out well for them too.

  GGrimm

Novice Member

Joined: 3/12/13
Posts: 50

3/27/13 11:09:44 AM#105
Originally posted by achesoma
Anyone thinking themeparks are dead is living in a bubble.  And sandboxes are not the future.  Though I believe sandbox elements as well as in-depth, non-combat  features will be needed for future player retention.  To not have "themeparkish" elements is purely a niche market.  Even Archeage has themepark content.  The key is to have a well-rounded and solid performing  MMO regardless of style. 

I don't think people are saying themeparks are dead, more like the pendulum is finally swinging back towards sandboxes. For the last 10 years, the preference was towards themeparks. Personally, I think the future successful games will have a sandbox core with themepark elements hooked in. That would give the best of both worlds.

  WhiteLantern

Novice Member

Joined: 1/27/10
Posts: 2776

3/27/13 11:11:16 AM#106
"Rumors of my death have been greatly exagerated." - Themepark

I want a mmorpg where people have gone through misery, have gone through school stuff and actually have had sex even. -sagil

  Aelious

Advanced Member

Joined: 9/27/11
Posts: 2262

World > Quest Progression

3/27/13 11:14:23 AM#107
Although there are clearly camps for and against sandbox MMOs I don't think many will be disappointed by the new "sandbox style" MMOs that will come out. A few titles come to mind that look to both have themepark structuring and sandbox gameplay.

EQN
Archeage
Pathfinder Online

I personally don't want to be dropped in a world without anything to begin with as a pure sandbox would be like. I really want sandbox gameplay though because I've spent almost 10 years playing other people's MMO storyline and more than that reading book series.
  nariusseldon

Elite Member

Joined: 12/21/07
Posts: 17994

3/27/13 11:17:19 AM#108
Originally posted by Aelious
Although there are clearly camps for and against sandbox MMOs I don't think many will be disappointed by the new "sandbox style" MMOs that will come out. A few titles come to mind that look to both have themepark structuring and sandbox gameplay.
 

I doubt people are really "against" sandbox MMOs. There is a big difference between "i don't like them so i won't play" and "i am against them ..they should not be made".

I don't really care for them .. haven't seen one that is fun for me. However, if there are some new games .. i will take a look. It is not like there aren't plenty of other games to play.

Having said that, it is, of course, fun to speculate, and discuss whether they will be successful.

  nariusseldon

Elite Member

Joined: 12/21/07
Posts: 17994

3/27/13 11:18:57 AM#109
Originally posted by GGrimm
 

I don't think people are saying themeparks are dead, more like the pendulum is finally swinging back towards sandboxes. For the last 10 years, the preference was towards themeparks. Personally, I think the future successful games will have a sandbox core with themepark elements hooked in. That would give the best of both worlds.

I don't see it a pendulum at all. I see if more like an exploration ... if you look at games that are like MMOs, but not quite .. there are a lot of innvoation and successes. LOL, WOT, D3, .....

A full MMO, sandbox or themepark, is not the two approach to big online games. I am more excited about World of Warship and Destiny, then any "true" MMO announced.

  Kyleran

Bitter Vet™

Joined: 9/13/06
Posts: 18385

Fools find no pleasure in understanding, but delight in airing their own opinions. Pvbs 18:2, NIV

3/27/13 11:21:26 AM#110

I'm not looking for a revolution of sandbox style games, just one or two to supplement EVE so I can swing a sword from time to time in the same sort of in depth gaming experience.  Maybe WOD, who knows.

 

"The discrepancy between what we know is possible and what we currently have to choose from is beyond disappointing" - GeezerGamer
Kyleran - Bitter Vet ™ since 2006
"This is the most intelligent, well qualified and articulate response to a post I have ever seen on these forums. It's a shame most people here won't have the attention span to read past the second line." - Anon

  DavisFlight

Advanced Member

Joined: 9/25/12
Posts: 2369

3/27/13 11:30:04 AM#111
Originally posted by Malcanis
if nothing else it's good to see that the "Let's copy WoW and get 10 million subs!" meme is dying.

Tell that to the Elderscrolls Online team.

  NaMeNaMe

Novice Member

Joined: 8/24/09
Posts: 91

3/27/13 11:36:19 AM#112

"if u forcefully insert foriegn objects into my? body, i will die"

  hfztt

Elite Member

Joined: 5/31/05
Posts: 541

3/27/13 11:42:51 AM#113
Originally posted by Quirhid
You talk like player created content is good.

Player created content is irrellevant. It's Theme Park even if a player created it.

In the sandbox you do not create content. You ARE content.

  Aelious

Advanced Member

Joined: 9/27/11
Posts: 2262

World > Quest Progression

3/27/13 11:46:09 AM#114
But you don't just stand there, right? IMO the ability to create things that are content for others is how I recognize "sandbox" gameplay. Sure, there are other factors but I'm not sure where the seperation is.
  Quirhid

Elite Member

Joined: 1/28/05
Posts: 5382

I dare you to pin a label on me.

3/27/13 12:02:15 PM#115
Originally posted by GGrimm
Originally posted by nariusseldon
Originally posted by GGrimm
 

You may not have figured it out, but based on this video, it looks like developers are starting to. What games have you developed or are you just an armchair developer and avid MMO player just like the rest of us?

It is more like they are willing to make a bet. We will see if that pans out.

Every new game is a bet. It is a bet based on where a business thinks the future is, not on where it was. I hope it pans out well for them too.

But you get feel more confident making that bet when you've seen someone else has made money betting on it, right?

Jeff Strain said something along the lines of "you can't out-do WoW with only a fraction of its budget" back in 2007 or something. Entry-level business classes already tell you that if you can't compete with price or quality, you have to differentiate. In other words, those that tried to follow World of Warcraft too closely, were pretty much doomed to fail right from the start.

Plenty of games have differentiated themselves and made profit. And anyone who throws around "WoW-clone" around the forums on nearly every new release is willfully ignorant, likely a hater (and an idiot). They throw that label on everything they don't enjoy, despite what the game is like.

Another poor argument is to bring up WAR, AoC and many other games who had problems not in the least related to "the themepark design". WAR, for example, had serious management issues - nothing to do with its design. AoC? -Well, Funcom hasn't released a finished product yet. Maybe they get there if they survive long enough.

In contrast, should I bring up Fallen Earth and Mortal Online as an examples of sandbox viability? Or any other sandbox from the indie graveyard...

A badly made themepark gets millions of buyers whereas Eve hasn't even reached half a million yet over its almost decade long history. Now which one should you bet on? If you're expecting some sort of revolution or a massive paradigm shift, you're just asking to be disappointed; You're letting your hopes affect your judgement.

---

Shit, I get branded as WoW fan and a roleplay hater for being a moderate...

I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been -Wayne Gretzky

  Quirhid

Elite Member

Joined: 1/28/05
Posts: 5382

I dare you to pin a label on me.

3/27/13 12:03:23 PM#116
Originally posted by JasonJ
Originally posted by Quirhid
You talk like player created content is good.

 Cant tell if serious...

Maybe that is because I was half serious.

I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been -Wayne Gretzky

  JasonJ

Apprentice Member

Joined: 3/19/13
Posts: 414

3/27/13 12:08:35 PM#117
Originally posted by Quirhid
Originally posted by JasonJ
Originally posted by Quirhid
You talk like player created content is good.

 Cant tell if serious...

Maybe that is because I was half serious.

 so serious about him talking, not so much the rest. Gotcha.

  SysFail

Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/01/05
Posts: 370

 
OP  3/27/13 12:32:28 PM#118
Originally posted by Quirhid
A badly made themepark gets millions of buyers whereas Eve hasn't even reached half a million yet over its almost decade long history. Now which one should you bet on? If you're expecting some sort of revolution or a massive paradigm shift, you're just asking to be disappointed; You're letting your hopes affect your judgement.

 

If a game has enough hype surrounding it via advertising, something that the big studio's do well, then players will be leaping over the isles to part with their cash, this applies to sandbox games as well as themeparks, we just haven't seen a sandbox given this kind of advertisement, but we will see it soon enough.

  GrumpyMel2

Advanced Member

Joined: 3/24/09
Posts: 1789

3/27/13 12:32:32 PM#119
Originally posted by Malcanis
Originally posted by GrumpyMel2

I don't think there is much secret here....

 

1) The market is absolutely SATURATED with Themepark games. It's just basic business sense. No matter how much more popular hamburgers are at a certain point you have a better chance of success opening up a Chinese place then becoming the 251st hamburger stand in your small town and having to compete for market share with all those already established hamburger stands. MMO Developers are branching to try different market niche's that don't have alot of competition and sandbox's are an obvious choice. There really aren't that many quality modern sandbox's out there, and Developers are banking on (and I tend to agree with them) there is enough of an audience to support a few of them.

2) Sandbox's can generaly be produced MUCH less expensively then Themeparks. The reason why is that Themeparks require a TON of content in order to be successfull...

 

This is widely assumed, but never demonstrated. Bad "sandbox" MMOs can be produced cheaply. Successful, durable ones, not so much. How much do you think CCP have spent on developing EVE over the years? I'm willing to bet that in total they spent as much as TOR cost at launch.

"Sandbox" games require content at least a much as themeparks do, it's just that the definition of content is different.

For a themepark, content means new rides, and the rides don't actually have to be all that different from each other; you can use pretty much the same building blocks, reskinned and rethemed, with the same game mechanics.

For a sandbox game, content means new environments, new mechanics, new ways to interact with other players. A new kind of NPC isn't big news; a new crafting profession or an improvement to the netcode that allows larger battles (thus changing the metagame) is.

Do I need to explain the difference between investing the proffits you've made from an active business back into your business to grow it over a period of 10 years and BORROWING the same amount of someone elses money for 5 years before you even make a dimes worth of return on that money and know whether the products going to flop or not?

I seriously doubt CCP spent anywhere near as much money over the years building EvE as EA/Bioware did getting TOR to launch.... but even if they did it would end up VASTLY less expensive for CCP. If you learn a little built about running a business, you'll quickly find out that money doesn't all come at the same cost.

If it helps to understand it the way an average consumer might, imagine the difference between buying a $200K home outright and having to take out a 30 year mortgage from the bank at 18%.  The first year alone that costs you $36K in interest without even making a dent in the $200K you owe.

Same dynamic holds true for a business, reinvesting proffits is VASTLY cheaper then having to raise capital. Even if your only having to use your OWN money, as might be possible with a big company with EA having that money tied up in a project for years that is not realizing any returns comes at a big opportunity cost.

You're also off-base about the "sandbox"....the majority of the content is being generated by the players themselves. The Dev's are just adding to it with new features, etc.

Finaly, you may want to do some investigation into where the expensive bits of building an MMO actualy lie (HINT it's exactly the sort of things that go into assembling a "new ride")

All this is precisely why (or at least one of the reasons) there is so much interest in going the "sandbox" route. Capital is very, very tight these days. Being able to build something with less of a Capital investment is attractive....even if that means the returns are more modest....as long as it's proffitable and can grow over time. It's about the only way most businesses are able to attempt building new products right now. EvE prooved that a "sandbox" CAN be built less expensively, can be proffitable and can achieve sustainable growth over time. The only question is can other companies successfully repeat that with thier own products.

Even if you hate "sandbox" MMO's, if you are an MMO player you should be rather happy about this. Because the alternative isn't more big AAA MMO's being built...the alternative is NO MMO's being built.....because the money just isn't there to do big budget projects like TOR or ESO today. The few ones that are launching or getting ready to launch are the ones where the money has mostly already been spent and they just need to get enough to finnish and launch....but go out today and see about raising big capital for an MMO. That isn't going to change until the economic climate in general changes.

 

 

  Zorgo

Elite Member

Joined: 12/05/05
Posts: 2158

Who did wrong? The advertiser hired to sell the game or the consumer who put faith in advertising?

3/27/13 12:33:34 PM#120
Originally posted by nariusseldon
Originally posted by Quirhid
Originally posted by Malcanis
Originally posted by Quirhid
You talk like player created content is good.

You talk like TOR was a success.

Is TOR a good representation of developer made content?

TOR adds 2M players after F2P. It is pushing out the first expansion. May be it is not as big a failure as people make it out to me. At least it is better than Tabula Rasa, and surviving.

Accounts.

And now that it is f2p, they will never lose that.

I am one of the 'accounts' they tally up for PR. I played at release for like 3 months and haven't touched it since. 

How many of those 2 million quit? How many still play? 

I don't disagree that TOR is likely on solid ground at this point. The fact is 2 million players started an account to check out f2p, which is good, but we have no idea what the retention rate was. What do we know about the retention rate? If the release is the only  indicator we have,  how many of those 2 million new accounts would you logically predict are now devoted players? And how many people have quit in disgust? And how many people have play it just maybe 2 or 3 times a month? 

It is not as big a failure as people make it out to be, however, we must be careful about what stats we use to toute its success.

IMO, SWTOR is the exact opposite atmosphere I want for an mmo. I want to create my own character, with my own personality, with my own set of priorities. I do not want to read a choose your own adventure book by running around a character who's role was written by someone else. No improvements to the game, no pay model and no expansion will ever change the core game. Which, in my opinion, is why they will always have a low retention rate and high turnover in their player base.

The move to sandbox is a move to allow people to create their own story in their own way. It isn't for everyone, but for many it is a welcome change from SWTOR's model. 

The beautiful thing is that we may finally be entering an age where there isn't one kind of mmo. There will be one for those like me and those who like games like TOR. 

 

 

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