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BadSpock's Logical Conclusions.

My random thoughts about MMORPGs. A bit of critique, suggestion, debate, and insanity. Enjoy.

Author: BadSpock

Forced Solo content? Please, these are MMORPGs

Posted by BadSpock Monday July 13 2009 at 1:15PM
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I see this kind of talk on these boards a lot about group versus solo content and how "solo games are killing grouping and community." 

Here are some good quotes-

"... good grouping games. Just enough downtime to let you discuss what to do next, chat, etc., while you regained hit points, mana, lost rez sickness, and could start fighting again.

Newer games lke CoH, have no downtime. It's fight, fight, fight, kill boss mob, done, kthxbye.

I like something with a bit slower pace." - Ihmotepp

"Yeah, and that's something that some people don't seem to get. Just because a game has some grouping it doesn't neccesarily mean that it's the type of grouping experience that will satisfy a group oriented player

I haven't played CoH but I played Guild Wars some and even though you can group with other players for some of the missions it's not a very enjoyable experience for the most part. It's generally just--RUN RUN RUN, KILL KILL KILL, done, the instance ends and hardly a word was exchanged between the members of the group. And in most cases there was hardly any sort of cooperative effort required so it felt more like soloing near other people than like grouping.

At this point in time, for me, the lack of good, friendly grouping is killing this genre more than anything else (for me I said). I may talk about the <Dream Game> from time to time. I may talk about sandboxy stuff. I may talk about improved AI. But putting aside dreams for the future, the thing that is making games RIGHT NOW completely unattractive to me is the lack of good grouping."

It's really depressing for me. I'm not trying to convert anyone because that can't be done. I'm just saying how it is for me."  - Neanderthal

"Amen brother. It's not about trying to make every game the same because you like it that way, it's about trying to find a game that you (we) like. All I want is a few group oriented games to choose from and ill be happy (one good one would be nice). All the other ones I could care less about and they can be as solo friendly as they want. To each his own." - whatamidoing


See this is what really get's me about guys like you... you wax so poetically about this and that but you do NOT understand, or even try to conceive that your issue is a 100% play style choice.

You could very easily, in a game such as World of Warcraft. Team up with a few friends, only play together through questing and running instanced dungeons to level your toons. You could vary your crafting professions to compliment each other and form your own little exchange economy.

If you find a group of like-minded players you could take your time and enjoy the journey while leveling 100% grouped up the entire time, helping each other in your defined group roles. Sure, lots/most of the quests would be quite simple if you approached them in a group 100% of the time, but in the end these are GAMES and they are designed for you, the player, to win.

It's like the PvP people who simply don't understand that in a truly "balanced" game you'd lose 50% of the time.

The only person who is "making" you rush to solo to the top as fast as possible is you. You are the power-gamer achiever type who can't slow down and smell the roses and make it a game about team-work and group fun. You can slow down the pulls in the dungeon and talk things over, either through a ventrillo or teamspeak or in the game. Hell use typing in the game instead of a chat client so it forces you to slow down and type a bit.

I could do EXACTLY what both you guys are describing in a game like World of Warcraft if I had a few friends that thought and felt the same way.

It's a choice. Sure you CAN solo-grind quests up to level 80 and skip all the group content. But it's a choice.

Don't you see that? There is NO such thing as FORCED SOLOing in a MMORPG. It doesn't exist.

There is no content in MMO I have ever played that doesn't let you group up with others if you want to.

"But it's not as efficient, I could do it much faster playing solo" well right there THAT is a choice YOU make to try and speed through the game and min/max power level.

Don't you see?

Yes, they have made solo play viable in modern MMOs but they have done nothing to discourage group play. It is YOU that is discouraging group play through your achiever, goal oriented, min/maxer hardcore power leveler mindset.

Don't you see?

t0nyd writes:

You pretty much described most MMORPGers. In Warhammer, my roomate and I grouped up and leveled pretty slowly, doing only PvP. We loved it. I mean, the game has some pretty glareing problems, but atleast it allowed me to level doing what I enjoy.

I have heard a lot of people griple about leveling in PvP being so much slower than PvE, then they go PvE for a few levels, then cry about hating to PvE. Im like, if you hate it, then why the fuck are you doing it. The normal reply is " its so much faster ". Proving that, even when options are available that people enjoy, they will mostly pick the faster route...

Mon Jul 13 2009 3:02PM Report
Demonshank writes:

Since you added a quote from Ihmotepp, I think its fair to quote another statement that better supports the point. Ive also found no one commenting on it anywhere. I think its probably the best statement made in regards to this entire discussion and both sides of this debate should take notice.


I don't want a game that I can solo, that defeats the purpose of having a good grouping game.

Here's your challenge: Get over this 12 foot wall, and I will give you a prize.

You will need to get a friend to give you a boost to the top, then you'll need to reach down and help your friiend over the wall. It will be challenging, but it will the reward will be worth it.

Now, I just put a door in the 12 foot wall. You can walk through the door and get hte prize. But if you WANT to, you can still get a friend and climb over it. Either way, you get the prize though.

Well, I don't want to play now, it's not fun anymore. You changed the rules and took away the challenge. I'm not going to climb over the wall for the same prize I can get walking through the door. -Ihmotepp


I understand the choice involved, without doubt. The problem arises when you're trying to create that party to scale the wall. No one else is scaling the wall. You ask in zone to create a team interested in scaling the wall. The response is 'just walk through the door, dummy'. It removes your ability to choose.

What happens next? What is your choice when you Do Not have friends to seek that direction? Are you then forced to create the party before entering the game(totally silly and purpose defeating)? I need to seek out the forums for other like-minded people looking to experience a game in a way its not fundamentally designed to be attempted? Likely to get even worse response than above?

I dont think that soloing on some level(slow and low reward, otherwise discouraging) be removed completely from a group game design. Hell, I usually find myself playing at a level, high enough solo, to seek small group encounters to give me a challenge of my personal and character abilities. I'd just rather not be forced to do so as a result of no one, but on rare occasion or against game fundamentals, grouping to complete tasks.


Most of us truly want to scale that damn wall! We couldnt care less whats on the other side in the grand scheme. The reward is the accomplishment, the comaraderie, and creating integrity through competition. The individual cheers when gaining personally from an event. The entirety of the event cheers when success is achieved together.

Mon Jul 13 2009 9:46PM Report
kjempff writes:

No I do not see!

If you do not use the game as intended by the developer (for example solo play), then you are missing most of the game. If you are going to the baker to buy bread, and you have a choice of the sidewalk or crawling through the sewers, you will take the sidewalk ... nothing prevents you from using the sewers but you dont. So the way a game is made matters.

Dont you see ?

Thu Sep 08 2011 1:35AM Report writes:
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