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MMO rumblings

Instead of pushing my walls of text in Forum Topics, i am going to try and create blogs about some of the more extensive topics that i would like to discus.

Author: Lord.Bachus

Multi layered MMOs

Posted by Lord.Bachus Wednesday March 26 2014 at 5:48AM
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Multi layered MMOs, its something that has been on my mind for quite some time. Currently we have mostly MMO with different sections. A good example is Gw2, where there is almost no synergy between the different parts (PVE, WvWvW, competitive PvP, dungeons, minigames, etc etc).


In my vision the future of the MMO is a world consisting of multiple layers that all have impact on each other.  


It starts all out with basic PvE adventuring, but these adventures and quests give players choices, and based on all these actual choices, players build NPC factions. Part of the PvE world becomes friendly to them, and part of the world turns against them.


There are not only PvE factions, but also PvP factions ( much more then 3) which players can join based on their actions in PvE. Actions in PvP also have impact on the PvE factions of your game These PvP factions are pre created but they are player ruled.  


The PvP factions are ruled by players, there is a political system in place, political actions have roots in both PvE and PvP. Members of a PvP faction can for example do quests and such and with those quests they gain alliance with PvE factions. based on that alliance they can call on those factions if there is need in a PvP setting..


The PvP world is huge, much larger then cyrodill currently in ESO, and all PvP factions fight with some of the PvE factions for control of an area...  The leaders of a PvP faction have access to the macro game, in which they control their factions NPCs much like you would control an RTS game.  Other players would be part of that area as normal players with normal actions. The combination of these three parts should make for some very interesting player generated content..


Next to that there should be a creation tool, that allows players to create their own content, they could add simple things like dungeons to their alliance PvP factions, housing, but also entire adventuring zones and dungeons for PvE.


The housing system should be the base of the social interaction, there should be reasons for players to visit other players homes. Which could be as simple as a mini game, or a dungeon below a house, or just a dance party or a local shop. Houses could grow into castles with lots and lots of NPCs, these NPCs would be the people you met on your adventures.   The houses would be in a neutral area, without PvP. But, people could challenge others for a PvP fight, which would place the houses of all the challengers in 2 little villages (or more) in an instanced area and they could fight each other and each others NPC,s  in a PvP setting.. Until there is a winner..  


By now you must have the idea.... Multiple layers, all influencing each other. Still a large quest based PvE part, where adventuring pays off... But also a more open world with players creating their own content... And a deep social experience with much of the stuff we know from 2ndlife... And all these different layers are somehow interconnected with each other. If i take an action in place A, it has consequences elsewhere..



Its time, they start building worlds instead of games... Still an MMORPG, but with enough to give everyone his own flavor, and enough strings for players to pull to have an actual impact on the world.



(Please refrain from shooting me for my my bad English grammar, but i am not natively speaking)

Housing in ESO done right

Posted by Lord.Bachus Sunday March 9 2014 at 7:27AM
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This is my first Blog in English, Its not my native language, so it might sound a little awkward, but then its all about the contents, i hope this adds to the community feeling.


Since there will not be any housing in ESO at release, there is still enough time for the player base to give input on what kind of housing they want. In most games houses are just an extra banking spot, and a private place to show off your rewards from quests, nothing special, because everyone else got those same rewards and trophies. Its not meaningful, its just a place to show your E-peen to nobody else but yourself...

I think developers need to set the next step. If you want to do housing right, you need to make it the core of the social system in your game, and give other people a reason to visit your little estate. So how can this be done?  actually it isn’t that hard to think of reasons why anyone would want to visit your home. I can name dozens of them.


- Allow players to organize events like tournaments, contests, puzzle games, riddles contests, dances, live music and more stuff like that in their houses and castles. LOTRO has a little of that, and its one of the things setting that game apart from the rest. But games like 2nd live and the Utherverse are build around that philosophy, and its quite easy to steal some great ideas from there.

-Allow the player to put up NPC merchants and NPCs with other services at their homes, even creating shops or inns.

- Create a quick travel system that allows people to quickly travel to friends houses and guild member houses, or any other house they have ever been before (like fireplace traveling)

-add a set of animations, that can be set to be used with objects in the house or just with other people in the house...

-Add any other social interaction idea here.


When executed to perfection this will truly create a home for the gamers, something where they can sit down from their adventures and relax with their friends. 



The next step will be to find  the best way to implement housing on the mega server.  Because a good housing system requires houses to be in the open world. But 3 million houses out there in the open world would totally kill off the immersion so that’s in my opinion not a wise option.  But you still want people to be able to build houses all around the world, in towns in woods, on that small island just before the cost, in Daggerfall.

to achieve this, there should be housing plots added to the world, and players could buy these housing plots and build their own homes on them, small plots, big plots, even underground cave plots, something for everyone’s taste.  And on that plot players could build their very own house, cottage or castle.  Keep in mind that obviously  you will be sharing that same plot with thousands of players, and when other people walk by in the open world, there can be only one single house visible to a trespasser.

Now this is where phasing technology comes around, the game will show every player the most appropriate house, first priority is the players own house, 2nd priority is friends houses, 3rd priority is guild members houses and so on. So you might be walking next to a random character and both see a different house, without even noticing.

To make this work every house has a base plan (size and walls), but allows players to add their own look to it, interiors and cellars and such are free to create as you see fit... (If they added a versatile a good construction set, you could even build your own dungeon under your house where people could adventure)


-Allow people to create their own houses from building blocks and totally recreate the exterior look and have full freedom with the interior. Personally i am a firm believer this process should require resources, but that’s a very personal opinion. 

-add rare drops and more stuff that people can show off in their houses

-Add housing stuff to the gathering and crafting 

I think you get the general idea by now......


An aftertought...

They could also use the same creation tool for people to truly create player created content, there is a lesson to be learned from the mistakes of Neverwinter´s toolset and if you improve on that concept there is a bright future for player created content.  If they invest in a toolset and make it multifunctional, it will be a win/win in the end.



But if you ask me, just adding housing without functionality is just a waste of resources.  Its done before and does not add that much.  And with a little more effort they can make it the perfect socializing tool. This is supposed to be a multiplayer social experience, and that’s what they should give to the players.