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I'm just asking, is allFollow

#52 Feb 28 2013 at 8:31 PM Rating: Excellent
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Quote:

Intricate crafting: Again Ill go back to FF11, you could make furniture in that game, some people used it to make their Moghouse nice looking, most just put in the items they: got for free, needed to max out storage space, gave them a buff to crafting, or needed an item to get a quest.


I think more people would have paid more attention to crafting if it wasn't so ridiculous in both trying to level and trying to make something.

I've literally seen this before:

Smithing 60

"I want to make a bronze sword today. I need... um, a bronze ingot and a giant femur. Okay... I have a tin ore in my house, the airship dock sells copper ore. And I found a giant femur earlier. Let's do this!"

1). Go to the Airship Dock. Buy 3 copper ores.
2). Go to make it......BOOM. Attempt failed, 2 copper ore lost.
3). Meh, buy 2 more copper ores.
4). Success! Yay, now I have the bronze bar.
5). Attempt to make the sword... BOOM. Bronze Bar lost, Giant Femur lost.
6). /ragequit

On a recipe that is no higher than level 5-10 with my Smithing on 60..... yeah.

No wonder people lost interest in crafting. *rolls eyes* I can't rightly remember the last time I somehow failed to properly cook ramen noodles, or the last time I failed to properly make a sandwich, or the last time I failed to properly cut a log in half with a saw.
#53 Feb 28 2013 at 8:35 PM Rating: Good
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Okay, so you clearly missed the entire point of my post, which was about creating a complex fantasy world in which the player would actually carve their way through it. How you could possibly dumb that down into "I want to run a farm" is beyond me... But moving past that, it's also a terrible argument. [EDIT] Response to Lyrialis, because other people hadn't posted when I first opened this window. [/EDIT]

If all people wanted was to have fun combat, they'd play TOR EQ2 LOTRO GW2 AION TERA.

Do you see where I'm going with this? WoW's combat is solid. But so is the combat in many, many other F2P MMOs available right now. Potentially better in plenty of them. TERA is known for its combat system, GW2's is highly polished. The Secret World has a fairly unique skill system. Etc.

I would never be interested in playing an MMO that was just about running a farm. But an MMO that would let me run a farm, or become a master blacksmith, or run a mercenary company, or be a mercenary, or run for mayor, or be an alchemist, or delve into dungeons, or join a criminal underworld, or be a brigand, or an assassin, or build a guild and lay claim to an area of an outlying zone and build a fort there, etc.? That I would be VERY interested in playing.

Thing is, WoW at launch wasn't ANYTHING like what it is now. It wasn't that much like what it is now back in BC, either. You know, that four year span during which most of WoW's growth happened? Yeah. In vanilla, getting your craft to cap actually was an achievement, because gold was not overflowing, and getting all those mats together was expensive and time consuming. And the epics you could craft? Ridiculously expensive. In the land of taking over a month to earn what you needed for them.

BC definitely reduced that and made them more acceptable, but it didn't destroy them. Nowadays, crafts exist for one purpose--to give the crafters a unique buff (that's equal to the buff from every other craft). Sure, there's one or two decent items to make, but it's not like they're actually all that interesting. Better than dungeon gear, sure, but generally unimpressive if you raid and can get the materials for them easily. And if you're not raiding, you don't need those gloves anyway, because the cheaper stuff from one patch ago is more than sufficient and vastly cheaper.

WoW's population is currently lower than it was before Wrath was released. Vanilla was very much a casual's game. It was combat-heavy, sure, but it was largely about building your reputation, working on crafts, exploring the world (which wasn't NEARLY as easy then as it is now, even without flying mounts), etc. The game was successful because the game gave people things to do. ONLY the hardcore players did raids. Ever. It required months of preparations and dedicated gear sets to raid, and it took 40 people. Most people only ever saw dungeons, if they even did those.

I think making raiding more accessible was a good thing. I think dumbing everything else down, without adding other casual-friendly content, was not.

But most importantly:

Quote:
But usually when I load up a game, I want to be adventurous, I want to explore, I want to do stuff.


How is this in any way contrary to my post? I said I wanted there to be a diversity of things to do. When it all amounts to running a dungeon, raid, or doing your dailies, you get burned out fast. Adding a lot of other things to work on makes the game more interesting. The goal doesn't need to be to get everyone to do everything. The goal is to provide a sufficient diversity of activities, and enough interaction between those, to keep the community interacting and the players happy. Some of them may never leave their farms. Some may have a farm just because it makes it easier to gain access to the pumpkins they need for the pie recipe they designed specifically to sell to treasure hunters because it has a -aggro range, +drop rate buff. Likewise, some people might train as a chef to discover and design recipes, others might just become a chef because they only need some basic food for health regeneration and don't want to spend any more of their hard-earned gold on it than necessary.

The point is that, when everything but combat is boring and simple (like crafting is in WoW now) but combat, the game stagnates. Particularly when a similar experience is available from literally every single one of your competitors.

Edited, Feb 28th 2013 9:36pm by idiggory
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#54 Feb 28 2013 at 8:44 PM Rating: Good
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Perhaps I misunderstood what you meant, then.

You kept saying "non-combat" this, and non-combat that, it gave me the impression you wanted a game with very little combat at all.

And to say that these other MMORPGs have "better" or "just as good" combat as WoW has, is like saying whether an apple or an orange is better.

TERA, for example, isn't that the MMO that advertises "real-time" combat where you can move around freely and do stuff in real time, etc? Some players might not like that. I played GW1, not sure how close #2 is to it, but meh. IIRC, it reminded me somewhat of Diablo/Torchlight. Some players might not like that style, either.

Adding more stuff to WoW that's different? Hey, that's awesome... but yet you need to give it a reason as to why it exists in the game. You have to make some kind of reward for it, otherwise players won't do it much. Look at Pet Battles -- some people do it, but I hear a LOT of players saying "meh...". Because there's no reward.

Sure, Raids/Heroics/Dailies get boring after awhile, but then that's only if you grind em out constantly and run out of things to progress before the next patch (hardcores tend to have this problem when they do all dailies every day, and raids until they're all locked out every week).

WoW continues to work fairly well, because (other than some WoW-clones) its combat is different than the other MMORPGs you mentioned in your post AFAIK (judging from videos/screenshots/etc). Different people like different things. And obviously, plenty of people seem to still like it.

MoP took a huge step in the right direction by giving us multiple ways to progress our characters, and it added Pet Battles and the Farm. Who is to say they won't add more stuff like this in the future?

Edit: I do agree that Blizz keeps dropping the ball on the crafting game. Whether it is the ridiculousness of trying to make a suit of Lv85 mail armor, or there being very few options of actual Lv90 weapons to make, or the hugely underwhelming gear you can actually make with crafting. But then if they make crafting too good, then why do anything but farm materials?

Edited, Feb 28th 2013 9:46pm by Lyrailis
#55 Feb 28 2013 at 9:04 PM Rating: Good
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Hmm, I know I will be a little off by saying this but this kinda boils down to Wrpg Vs JRpg. Do you like a system where its more open and free, like D&D/Skyrim where you get to be the character you want or do you like a more linear story driven game, but your characters have their own personalities and growth outside of what you control.

WoW IMHO is just enough to capture both, I like the story but I also like the ability to make my character more of my own.

I usually stay away from games that have to many options because I feel I'm doing it wrong or if I hit a snag I just drop the game. I tried 2 times to get into Oblivion and Skyrim giving each about 2-4 hours per game and just came down to me not liking them, while In Jrpgs i have a clear cut path, I know where Im supposed to go next for most of the game and at the end it says, well you could finish or go off and explore.
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#56 Feb 28 2013 at 9:09 PM Rating: Good
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[EDIT] Honestly, my rant after all this is more interesting than my responses, and actually goes to the core of the issue I'm talking about with combat-centric game design ultimately creating an experience that feels empty even when the world is immense. [/EDIT]

One thing that needs to be clear, It's too late for WoW to do much about this stuff. It's systems and the game are too old for such an extensive revamp.

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Breeding systems: FF11 had chocobo breeding, for about 6 months it was awesome and now almost no one cares.


That's also because it was issued to a bored population with a massive excess of gil and literally everyone did it. If breeders were the only source of mounts, and not everyone had the skill to train them (and certainly not to breed the fastest mounts), and it was part of a game at launch, it would certainly be a different story.

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Politic system: It just wouldnt work, why put in a system that caters to the few, everyone pays the same amount shouldn't everyone be entitled to the same experience? and internet popularity polls just mean he who has the most friends or followers or most amount of money to bribe can be the king/mayor w/e


Why would you automatically reduce it to something like this? Why assume it has to be as empty and pointless as an internet poll? Make it necessary to cultivate votes in the local community by raising your reputation with them, only allow people with houses in the town vote (discouraging people from just getting reddit to win them the election), actually give the winner the ability to set the town laws and tax rate (and then utilize the funds, such as by increasing guards outside city walls so that farmers lose fewer crops to brigands, or authorize hunting parties to curb wolf populations, etc.). People will care really quickly when who they vote for actually affects their experience.

Quote:
Intricate crafting: Again Ill go back to FF11, you could make furniture in that game, some people used it to make their Moghouse nice looking, most just put in the items they: got for free, needed to max out storage space, gave them a buff to crafting, or needed an item to get a quest.


Again, why are we automatically using the same systems as a decade-old game? Crafting doesn't need to rely on an RNG and always have a chance for failure to be intricate? It needs cross-craft interaction (which WoW had, once upon a time). It needs more input from the crafter other than just selecting the materials and clicking on a recipe (why in the world can't crafters work to put their own effects on items, and train to get better at certain effects than others?) Why can't materials actually be harder to access than titanium ore? Why can't a sword actually break beyond repair, so blacksmiths don't run out of things to make two months after an expansion comes out? Etc.

Quote:
Also WoW had/has cross crafting. you need a BS to make the rod enchanters use and a few others. But all it doid was act as a pay wall for new crafters, becuase to get passed a certain point and level a craft you needed said item, and If you couldnt find someone to make it for you cheap you needed to pay stupid high prices on the AH to even get farther in crafting.


That's REALLY stretching it. I think it's pretty clear I was talking about actual crafting materials, not random gates you need to get through. I mean like:

Scholar wants to make a transcript of a ballad which, when read in battle, reduces incoming damage by X% for Y seconds (those numbers set by his choice, and his skill).
To do so, he needs a quill, ink, velum, and a copy of the ballad. Ink requires an alchemist, who will require the goods produced by an herbalist and/or forester (LOTRO term, iirc). Vellum requires a leatherworker, who will require hides from a skinner, plants from an herbalist, and some basic chemicals from an alchemist. Quills require feathers from an adventurer, and can be prepared with a penknife by a scholar (and scholars can choose to invest in training with a penknife so that they can get more use out of each Quill).

And the quality of the final product will be based to the quality of the materials, modified by the skills of the Scholar. Truly experienced scholars might even be able to edit works to produce works superior to the original. Etc.

Any crafting system can be made vastly more dynamic and interesting. The only question is where you stop. I'm also a VERY strong proponent of no artificial limits on numbers of skills (a la EVE). If a Scholar wants to train to be fully proficient at producing or procuring all the materials necessary for their work, and to use them efficiently, they should be able to. The cost is that time spent developing those is time spent not developing other skills.

Quote:
Also for a while you couldnt invite people into your MH on FF11, after they introduced it no one cared unless they wanted to cyber, I think I used the option to invite someone one time to try out the system but never cared to again.


There was also never any reason to invite anyone into your house in FFXI. Say you are running for office in a game, and private chat channels are only possible between secure locations. Inviting people into your house for some scheming would be VERY appealing. Or maybe you want to run a crime syndicate? Same story. Maybe upgrading a house to include crafting stations you need would allow you to sell your wares out of your own home, instead of having to let the auction house take a cut (a big deal in a world where gold doesn't flow like water). If you bought a house in a less protected area of the world, you might be letting friends into your home for protection from the gangs that rule those towns. Etc.

Overall giving you a way to increase combat just feels natural as most MMOs are focused around it, and if your looking for other crafting systems there's other games out there to fit the niche. Its a tangible reward you can actually see advancing your character.

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Othergames have tried to get rid of the gear grind but either they find niche markets (GW2) or become so stale you have players leaving (FF11 of a few years ago


I'm not sure what niche market GW2 is filling? It's sold over 3 million copies, and every one of those is a permanent account (minus those banned). That's not really a niche so much as making it the 2nd or 3rd largest MMO on the market. Sure, we don't know how many are actively playing, but that's true with games like WoW as well. How many people in the 9 mill report haven't logged in for months, but have a sub because it let them get Diablo 3 for free (or whatever deals they're running), or just haven't cancelled their account? Mine usually always ran for about 3 months before I finally cancelled my sub from lack of use.

FFXI also was not a niche market, considering it was one of the largest MMOs when it was going strong, before WoW ever even launched. It isn't even a niche market now, since they aren't really actively trying to attract new players. It's still around because the people who have played it for a long time still want to play it and are willing to pay to do so.

It's not about getting rid of the gear grind, it's about giving players the way to advance their characters outside of raiding. That's a big difference.


[EDIT]

I actually think Skyrim is a good example for this, because Skyrim's wasted potential is so massive it's actually disturbing. Skyrim's a great game. I really enjoyed playing it, I still play it quite a bit, I just bought Hearthfire and can't wait to start building houses, I'll be getting Dawnguard (PS3 user, btw). There are things about Skyrim that are way better than earlier ES games. There are also things that are way worse.

Combat has gotten better, for sure. I know some people like (for some reason) the failures/misses of Morrowind, but I hate them. Graphics are better. The scaling and feeling of immensity of the world is better (imo). But a lot of people feel like Skyrim's towns feel empty, or that it's missing the soul of other games. The people are less interesting to watch, they don't really interact with each other like they did in earlier games (more banter, less approaching real conversation, or more mindless interaction). Their schedules tend to be less interesting and they go fewer places throughout the day, they mix it up less, etc.

But what I really want to talk about is the speech skill. I @#$%ing hate that this skill was even put in the game. Not because I don't want it, but because I find its implementation so insulting. Skyrim is this war-torn world, with each city its own faction, and then two master factions on top of that, and then the dragon threat above that. There are separate guilds, but none of them take any stance in the other story lines. You can become a Thane of holds, headmaster of the college, whatchamacallit of the Companions, etc. etc. etc...

But when you go to a new hold, you're just some random beggar coming to get work, and the jarl doesn't care about you at all until you wipe out some bandits for him. REALLY? You don't care that I can forge legendary armor for your guards? You don't care that I have a tongue that could sell lightbulbs to the mountian-Amish? You don't care that I am the head whatchamacallit of one of the most respected groups in Skyrim or that I'm the Dragonborn? All you care about is that you have some bandits in a cave 7 miles away from your stupid walled hold?

It drives me insane.

I want the speech skill to let me weasel my way up to the Jarls. I want to be able to manipulate them. I want to join the Thieves guild and convince the Captain of the Guard to change patrol patterns because I have him thinking it's a good idea. I want to join the Dark Brotherhood, but take out my target after making everyone at court trust me more than their own mother.

THAT'S what a speech skill should be. And it absolutely kills me that Skyrim ultimately boils down to "So, can you kill bandits?" Because the raw potential in that story and that world is massive. Why the **** can't I direct troops to strategic locations on the map (and join or NOT join them in battle)? Why can't I actually go after mill operators (physically, financially, or persuasively) to cut the supply lines to the Stormcloaks?

It's like Bethesda created the perfect world for such amazing gameplay, and then stopped short of adding any of it besides the combat (which is already easily Skyrim's weakest point). It's like they left the Speech skill in just because they felt bad for eliminating so much complexity from Morrowind.

The worst part is how dumbed down from Oblivion that aspect of the game is on top of it. In Oblivion and Morrowind, how much an NPC liked you actually affected what they would do for you, what information they would provide you, whether or not they'd lie to you, if you could buy a house from them (or access whatever service they provided), etc.

It was amazing. In Skyrim, it's basically they're your follower, they like you just fine, or they're trying to kill you. That's a LOT of missing gray area.

I mean, I completely ***** over that Bard in Riverrun and he'll still play me songs. For free.

It makes me furious.

Okay, sorry, I've been holding this rant in for an audience for a long time now.

Edited, Feb 28th 2013 10:27pm by idiggory

Edited, Feb 28th 2013 10:29pm by idiggory
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#57 Feb 28 2013 at 9:50 PM Rating: Excellent
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Dig, if you're going to post rants like that I have to demand you go all the way -- I want footnotes, proper pagination, chapter titles and sub headings. Graphs and pictures might help too, but please put them in the appendix.
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#58 Feb 28 2013 at 9:53 PM Rating: Good
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Be careful, I just might do it. Smiley: lol

Hey, look what I found!

Screenshot
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#59 Feb 28 2013 at 10:18 PM Rating: Excellent
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idiggory, King of Bards wrote:


That's also because it was issued to a bored population with a massive excess of gil and literally everyone did it. If breeders were the only source of mounts, and not everyone had the skill to train them (and certainly not to breed the fastest mounts), and it was part of a game at launch, it would certainly be a different story.


But what stops every player from learning to raise the fastest horse? RNG? Training? Buying a rare tome? Given enough time any character should be able to reach the same skill, because it has to have a cap. At first it will be very versitile but after a few months suddenly youll have a ton of people near the same. How can you program uniqueness into a game without putting in a RNG, which then takes it out of the players hands and relies mostly on luck.


iddigory wrote:

Any crafting system can be made vastly more dynamic and interesting. The only question is where you stop. I'm also a VERY strong proponent of no artificial limits on numbers of skills (a la EVE). If a Scholar wants to train to be fully proficient at producing or procuring all the materials necessary for their work, and to use them efficiently, they should be able to. The cost is that time spent developing those is time spent not developing other skills.

Great so as a new player, you not only cant compete against veterans for years. Or if i have real life obligations vs some guy that has all the time in the world I could never catch up? As for the parchment, if you put all that work into making it , when would you use it? How many RPGs have you played where you beat the end boss and have all your elixers because they were just to good to use. Or that outdated scrolls because you just didnt want to use it til you had too? Maybe you found a time, but regretted it next fight, or used it on a fight that was easier on accident. In this system you can create super items with enough time and effort but if it takes to long to remake it, your just grinding out to do the same thing that could be simplified, by making everything the same power.

Quote:

There was also never any reason to invite anyone into your house in FFXI. Say you are running for office in a game, and private chat channels are only possible between secure locations. Inviting people into your house for some scheming would be VERY appealing. Or maybe you want to run a crime syndicate? Same story. Maybe upgrading a house to include crafting stations you need would allow you to sell your wares out of your own home, instead of having to let the auction house take a cut (a big deal in a world where gold doesn't flow like water). If you bought a house in a less protected area of the world, you might be letting friends into your home for protection from the gangs that rule those towns. Etc.

1st part would assume you had no other means of conversation, IM, Vent, phone calls, texting, which just isnt viable, you can even IM on PSN/Xbox outside game.

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I'm not sure what niche market GW2 is filling? It's sold over 3 million copies, and every one of those is a permanent account (minus those banned). That's not really a niche so much as making it the 2nd or 3rd largest MMO on the market. Sure, we don't know how many are actively playing, but that's true with games like WoW as well. How many people in the 9 mill report haven't logged in for months, but have a sub because it let them get Diablo 3 for free (or whatever deals they're running), or just haven't cancelled their account? Mine usually always ran for about 3 months before I finally cancelled my sub from lack of use.

From what I've seen Gw2 is ONLY viable because its not a sub, a ton of people I know hit cap realized there wans nothing to do cept get vanity gear and just left. I got almost to cap and havent installed since. Theres no where to go, Ill always do around the same dmg, there's nothing next. Almost everyone raved about the leveling experience, but once they hit cap, uninstall. WoW also gives us subs, every quarter, thats telling us that people are playing. THe annual sub they did to bolster their numbers and throw it off, but I dont see any new one coming out because of what did happen with that, you know the fool me once thing. I'm in the same boat as you mine runs for a month or 2 after patch then cancels (mainly cuase Im on a bad server and cant afford to transfer to one I could play on alot)

Quote:

FFXI also was not a niche market, considering it was one of the largest MMOs when it was going strong, before WoW ever even launched. It isn't even a niche market now, since they aren't really actively trying to attract new players. It's still around because the people who have played it for a long time still want to play it and are willing to pay to do so.

It's not about getting rid of the gear grind, it's about giving players the way to advance their characters outside of raiding. That's a big difference.


Final Fantasy came out about 2? years before WoW and survived for the most part on brand recognition. I know tons of people both gamers and non gamers who know what WoW is but not FF11 (they know of the console versions) it was no where near as large as WoW. Mainly because WoW is way easier to just pick up and play, FF is a niche market, for a LONG time the best equipment was from the 2nd expansion, all the new expansions added were sidegrades/optional pieces. Once you got BiS that was it, other then a few optional pieces. I mean for 3 expansions the lvl cap was 75, think about that if BC raised the cap to 70, wrath was still 70 and Cata was 70 and the gear was always close to the same strength. Lately they have been on a trend to change this raising the cap, changing the playstyles etc. Also It was ALOT of peoples first MMO which like first love sticks with you, I still drop in to see the changes every once in a while, and cant play more then a month becuase of how archaic it feels.

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#60 Feb 28 2013 at 10:20 PM Rating: Excellent
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Please for the love of god no more. Too much typing. Also See post #57
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#61 Feb 28 2013 at 10:20 PM Rating: Good
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Perhaps it comes down to limited voice acting, and limited coding?

But surely they Could do a little better, heck even in Fallout 3/NV, you get people who run up to you and hand you random junk just for being well-liked in some towns/areas. Usually a small bit of ammo here, a stimpak there, etc.

They coulda done something like that in Skyrim (AFAIK there's nothing like this).

The 'kill bandits' quests from the Jarls? Pfft, never really bothered with those lol. Half of the time I already had those places cleared out anyways just from exploring.

I will say one thing about Skyrim, though...

What the heck is up with those Forsworn enemies... they wear practically zero armor, but as you level up... my God, talk about overpowered enemies. For them wearing no armor, using wooden weapons with bone bits tied to them with rope, they sure do a freaking ridiculous amount of damage and can take ridiculous amounts of punishment, despite the fact they're basically wearing leaves and thin hides.

Yet I can walk into a bandit camp and kill a bandit chief wearing full plate armor in seconds....
#62 Mar 01 2013 at 12:15 AM Rating: Good
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BeanX wrote:
idiggory, King of Bards wrote:


That's also because it was issued to a bored population with a massive excess of gil and literally everyone did it. If breeders were the only source of mounts, and not everyone had the skill to train them (and certainly not to breed the fastest mounts), and it was part of a game at launch, it would certainly be a different story.


But what stops every player from learning to raise the fastest horse? RNG? Training? Buying a rare tome? Given enough time any character should be able to reach the same skill, because it has to have a cap. At first it will be very versitile but after a few months suddenly youll have a ton of people near the same. How can you program uniqueness into a game without putting in a RNG, which then takes it out of the players hands and relies mostly on luck.


I'm assuming you haven't played EVE, because that's exactly how their system functions, and it works great. You can absolutely train to do everything. And getting decently proficient at it won't take that long in the grand scheme of things. But fully training everything? That's going to take you years. And I mean YEARS. The game has been out since 2003, and no one has trained everything yet.

Because there are hundreds of skills, and the shortest to train take 3 days (on an average skill modifier) to go from level 0 to 5. So players choose what to specialize in, figure out what else they want to do, and focus on those accordingly. And it works well, because training times to specialize are massive compared to just dipping your toes or getting proficient. To get a brand new pilot to a point where they have decent odds in frigate pvp combat would take a week. Sure, they'll be super limited in what builds they can use, and other pilots will be better, but they'll still do well enough to hold their own, maybe win a few fights, and actually learn. Another week or three, and there really won't be that large a gap between them and other frigates. The trade off is that they'll still only have trained to use that one setup, and they won't have the skills to do anything but combat, or use any larger ships than frigates (which isn't an issue, because all ships have strengths and weaknesses in EVE--frigates don't have many guns, and can only fit smaller models, but they're super fast and hard to hit by slower ships with bigger guns).

Training higher level skills also means meeting prerequisites for them. So getting to the point where you can fly a cruiser is awesome, because flying a bigger ship is just fun, but the skills you needed to fly that ship won't necessarily help you in pvp in frigate vs. frigate combat.

Within the context of a fantasy setting, say that sword skills progress from short sword -> schimitar -> longsword -> broadsword -> greatsword. (not trying to make that logical, it's just an example). Each class of swords has weaknesses and strengths. Like you can't use shields or offhand items with the last two, and short swords allow for a variety of movement, etc. So say that a new player has +15% swing speed with short swords, +15% riposte accuracy with short swords +15%... etc. A true swordsman has +25% with all relavant sword skill for all sword types. Thing is, the new little swordsman isn't that far behind him in situations where a short sword is superior. And because the swordsman has spent so much time specializing, he may have neglected other skills (like his armor and shield skills) that let the new guy close the gap even more.

My favorite part about this system is that the short sword newbie can solo content close to home, and still team up to do hard stuff further away, because his short sword will still fill gaps that broadsword users need filled. For instance, a broadsword user could never use a shield, so the short swordsman could, even as a newbie, be a tank in tougher zones by relying on the broadsword user to do most of the actual killing (that the broadsword user couldn't do otherwise with his current skills, because he's been relying on having a shield up to this point and hasn't trained too much into evasion or healing or parry or whatever.

And sure, a swordsmith could craft the same sword better than any amateur swordsmith could, though the amateur would be a source of less powerful, but cheaper items. Because it's not really an issue, because there isn't much incentive for a swordsmith to craft shortswords when he can craft a legendary longsword. Because, even though shortswords are often useful, their profit margin is lower. If he's going to take the time to gather all the materials and go through the process of creating a sword, he's going to create the sword that takes 20% more time to make, but generates 600% the profit.

The system I would personally love to see is something like EVE's system, where you have real time training, combined with an experience system (you get exp for what you do, regardless of whether or not that's what you're studying at the time), and maybe even throw in the ability for higher level characters to "train" you (but at the cost that they have to pause their own passive studying).

It really wouldn't be hard to adapt the system (well, design a similar one). And, in my experience with EVE, it's a really awesome one. There's clear content difficulty gradation, but nothing that's actually bound by your level of experience. It's bound by how useful the skills you've trained and the ships you have are, which means the experienced pilots have access to more content just because of their variety, but doesn't lock out newbies.

And I'm not saying that this is the best system, that it has to be like this sytem, etc. I'm just pointing out that you need to stop rejecting ideas because you're grounding them in what is typical of MMOs now. Because that's the point. There's no reason we have to keep holding to typical MMO rules, because most of them have never been challenged by a polished game actually able to have the potential to wow the market.

iddigory wrote:

Any crafting system can be made vastly more dynamic and interesting. The only question is where you stop. I'm also a VERY strong proponent of no artificial limits on numbers of skills (a la EVE). If a Scholar wants to train to be fully proficient at producing or procuring all the materials necessary for their work, and to use them efficiently, they should be able to. The cost is that time spent developing those is time spent not developing other skills.

Great so as a new player, you not only cant compete against veterans for years. Or if i have real life obligations vs some guy that has all the time in the world I could never catch up? As for the parchment, if you put all that work into making it , when would you use it? How many RPGs have you played where you beat the end boss and have all your elixers because they were just to good to use. Or that outdated scrolls because you just didnt want to use it til you had too? Maybe you found a time, but regretted it next fight, or used it on a fight that was easier on accident. In this system you can create super items with enough time and effort but if it takes to long to remake it, your just grinding out to do the same thing that could be simplified, by making everything the same power. [/quote]

See last. You don't need to be the blacksmith who can make everything perfectly, you have to be the blacksmith who can make something good enough and charge a price reasonable enough that people want it.

I don't think holding onto items is an issue, because I think any game to have any economy that isn't absolute crap needs to actually allow for items to be damaged beyond repair. Even the super rare items need to be destroyable (even if it's harder to do so, like it can only happen on death). And maybe a good market solution to that is to sell legendary potions that bind the equipment to the player's soul for one death cycle. They'd be super hard to make, super expensive, and people would actually use them if they were going to rock their best equipment.

To bring this back to an EVE example, simply because they're the only MMO I've seen who actually has a functioning economy, players don't fly their best ships all the time. ****, most people fly their best ships a small minority of the time. Because their best ships are expensive, and they don't want to lose them. IMO, I think a fantasy setting would work the same. If you are going into a situation you expect to break your gear in, you aren't going to bring your best gear. In WoW land, this means stripping naked for a moment. But why not create a game where you actually figure out what to bring for the situation (especially if every weapon type/item is balanced to have pros and cons).

People use their items when there's a threat of losing it all. In EVE, these potions are performance enhancing drugs called boosters. They're super expensive, they're a minor boost, but you're sure as **** going to use one if it means keeping your ship. You don't use your best items in single player games because you can always reboot. But I always use my items when I'm playing League of Legends.

Quote:
Quote:

There was also never any reason to invite anyone into your house in FFXI. Say you are running for office in a game, and private chat channels are only possible between secure locations. Inviting people into your house for some scheming would be VERY appealing. Or maybe you want to run a crime syndicate? Same story. Maybe upgrading a house to include crafting stations you need would allow you to sell your wares out of your own home, instead of having to let the auction house take a cut (a big deal in a world where gold doesn't flow like water). If you bought a house in a less protected area of the world, you might be letting friends into your home for protection from the gangs that rule those towns. Etc.

1st part would assume you had no other means of conversation, IM, Vent, phone calls, texting, which just isnt viable, you can even IM on PSN/Xbox outside game.


Because obviously you want everyone you play with to have your personal information when they're perfect strangers even though it's so much easier to just zone into someone's house to talk. It's also fully possible that furniture would have an attunement, like in FFXI. But instead of just giving you a buff, it gave one to anyone who entered (and the maker could choose what attunement to give it), further incentivizing entering people's homes.


I really don't get why you keep assuming that all the systems have to work like they do in typical MMOs. It makes no sense to me. The point is to look at the systems and ask how else they could be implemented to make them more fun and immersive, not to wonder how you could change them slightly so they're still functionally the same.

And the thing is that these aren't even new systems. They're being used, incredibly successfully, by one of the most successful MMOs on the market. EVE generally has 30-40,000 people playing in their world at any time, all on one server. I think they have 500,000 subscribers. It's not an earth shattering number, but it's a tidy sum, considering the genre and fact that it isn't a flight simulator (and they have a RMT store too). I'd guess they're second in terms of profit behind WoW.
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#63 Mar 01 2013 at 12:17 AM Rating: Excellent
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BeanX wrote:
Also It was ALOT of peoples first MMO which like first love sticks with you, I still drop in to see the changes every once in a while, and cant play more then a month because of how archaic it feels.

Is basically my feeling towards the game atm as well.

Lyrailis wrote:
What the heck is up with those Forsworn enemies... they wear practically zero armor, but as you level up... my God, talk about overpowered enemies.

The way it should be. If you're going to have an enemy like that they better have the skimpiest outfits out there. It's like an unwritten rule of video games or something. Smiley: wink

In my mind what WoW really has going for it is depth and variety of content. There's so much there you never finish, and much of it is actually pretty interesting. It's well rounded, so while many games may have a better story line, or better combat, or housing, or crafting, or whatever, but WoW is poor in few areas. Unlike many other games that have a some sort of hook/gimic/'thing they do well" to draw you in, and that loose their novelty quickly. End game isn't shabby either. "World First" in a WoW expansion gets a lot more press than "World first" in a SWTOR expansion. "It's biggest minus is just simply time. It's showing it's age more than ever now, and will likely continue to do so in the future, same as every other game that came before it. Not necessarily the end of it though, it has such a fan base that "new WoW expansion" is enough to boost subscriptions and bring in a pretty penny still.

Lord knows I'll likely be coming and going for years to come... Smiley: lol

Also diglett, you need to not go away for so long next time. You've obviously been deprived and are binging on this posting thing. Smiley: wink

Edited, Feb 28th 2013 10:21pm by someproteinguy
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#64 Mar 01 2013 at 6:00 AM Rating: Good
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Quote:
Also diglett, you need to not go away for so long next time. You've obviously been deprived and are binging on this posting thing.


Another downside of having 6 hours in commuting time the same week I've been test driving some MMOs. A LOT of time to think about what does and doesn't work, what would be awesome, etc.
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#65 Mar 01 2013 at 6:06 AM Rating: Excellent
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BeanX wrote:

From what I've seen Gw2 is ONLY viable because its not a sub, a ton of people I know hit cap realized there wans nothing to do cept get vanity gear and just left. I got almost to cap and havent installed since. Theres no where to go, Ill always do around the same dmg, there's nothing next. Almost everyone raved about the leveling experience, but once they hit cap, uninstall.


I've come to the conclusion that everything that caused me to wander off from GW2 is that it's new and hasn't yet had the development resources to build enough yet. There are so many aspects of it that, for me subjectively, have the makings for a nearly perfect game: combat mechanics, art style, world, crafting, character cosmetics, the way your choices in the personal story drive your progression via orders, and so forth. I did miss the trinity, which is one of the reasons I came back to WoW. But I think fundamentally what it comes down to is that they took away raiding but haven't yet added enough to do to replace it. I think if they continue to do well enough to keep working on the game, that will change. Add housing, add more world goals for guilds to do together, heck, add farming and pet battles. Smiley: nod

And of course the beauty of GW2 is, I own it forever. Because there is no sub, I can come and go as I please, try new features, enjoy the game until I get bored, then go do something else until I'm ready to go back to it again. Whereas every time I sub/unsub from WoW it's like this big decision. (Even though $15 isn't much. And every time I unsub and they make me take that survey, I put as my reason for quitting "Because Ghostcrawler hates my class.")
#66 Mar 01 2013 at 6:53 AM Rating: Good
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[EDIT] Okay I SWEAR I didn't think this was as long as it turned out being. God I have a problem.

The patch this week just added guild missions or something. I haven't really looked into what those are, though.

The Zam guild has been completely silent the few times I've logged on in the last few months, so I'd need to look for another guild anyway.

But I think you're right, Teacake. The problem with GW2 is that it was essentially a launch title. But because there was so much you COULD do, that it didn't really seem like that. No MMO launches with a big endgame. They've added some different dungeons, that use different systems, already. I don't know what they are though because I haven't really kept up with things.

We'll certainly see if ANet can keep cranking out content at a rate that will actually let people invest in the game. But I still worry that too much of their content is ultimately dependent on that. Crafting has an interesting system, but it's an absolute joke. Everything but cooking is almost 100% worthless in the context of the game. So no one really wants to bother leveling their skills, because the return at endgame is so low. And it's sad, because their systems are actually cool, but loot is just way too readily available in the game, and crafted goods are literally no better than the drops you find off monsters.

The exploration content is nice for people who enjoy that. But the problem is that it's only really fun to do once, since the world doesn't change enough to warrant more than that. It's a big world, but it's not THAT big. And there aren't Skyrim-level details here. You won't be stumbling upon an abandoned hut in the woods that has a little old later who turns out to be a powerful witch if you pry too much.

I really worry about the game, because it has/had so much potential. But it's like modern WoW/TOR--it's so obsessed with providing a new combat/questing system that it clearly stopped looking at the big picture too early in its development. You can't make a quality MMO if all you care about is combat. Because MMO combat is NEVER going to be the best on the market. They rely on the team aspect to make them interesting, but with every single single player game rolling out online MP modes, that just doesn't cut it anymore. In 2005, people didn't have that many options for online cooperative play in a fantasy setting. They do now. At the end of the day, regardless of how fun GW2's combat is compared to WoW's, Mass Effect 3's online multiplayer is going to be more fun, Dark Souls' cooperative play is going to be more fun, whatever online mode the next Dragon Age game includes will probably be more fun.

Not because these are better games, but because they don't have to split their focus like an MMO does. An MMO has to have a crafting system--people will scream if it doesn't. That's development time not spent making their combat better. Repeat for everything else an MMO has to do that a single player multiplayer mode doesn't. So if you're going to spend the time in development with these anyway...

Why not actually develop them into something worth building, instead of hitting a point where you can check it off a list? People demand crafting systems because people are legitimately interested by the potential to create items in a fantasy universe. Stop letting that be a gimmick, and let players really invest themselves in creating items. Let novice blacksmiths create some basic throwing knives. They may not be as well-weighted as their better cousins, but they can certainly have a place in the market due to how cheap they'd be (letting them be spammable, for instance).

Things like this. If you're going to bother implementing the craft and the marketplace, why not actually make those systems something worth a ****?

Edited, Mar 1st 2013 7:54am by idiggory
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#67 Mar 01 2013 at 8:56 AM Rating: Excellent
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Why is it when a farming game is discussed, it's compared to Farmville? Harvest Moon would make a **** awesome MMO.
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#68 Mar 01 2013 at 9:01 AM Rating: Excellent
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lolgaxe wrote:
Why is it when a farming game is discussed, it's compared to Farmville? Harvest Moon would make a **** awesome MMO.


I do not have Facebook and have never played Farmville. Perhaps this is why I came to the farm in WoW with no hatred in my heart, and have found it so fun. Smiley: grin I've seen a lot of people saying that it's nothing at all like Farmville and that the comparison has been unfortunate.

Whatevs, let the haters hate; I haz a dog! And sheep! And furniture! I love my farm so much.
#69 Mar 01 2013 at 9:15 AM Rating: Good
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I've never played Farmville, and I don't intend to. But I know enough to realize that those aren't fair comparisons.
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#70 Mar 01 2013 at 9:21 AM Rating: Good
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Quote:
Mass Effect 3's online multiplayer is going to be more fun, Dark Souls' cooperative play is going to be more fun,


Whaaaaaaaaat?

What are you smoking, exactly, may I ask? No offense, but... have you _played_ ME3/Dark Souls?

I have.

ME3 is basically the same thing over and over and over again (at least its multiplayer). You +2 random people turtle up in a small arena and kill waves and waves of mobs. That's it. No storyline, no lore, no "reason" as to why you're doing it other than "fight the enemy". There are several arenas, which have similar shapes and layouts and are kinda bland in general. There's two different sets of enemies (Reapers and Cerebus) but each set of enemies has the exact same enemies in the different waves. The enemies are chosen at random when the match is played unless you decide you want a specific set of enemies. It takes _forever_ to unlock anything "good" (they highly encourage you to spend real money to do so) AND your fruits of labor, the Galactic Readiness stat or whatever, degrades over time to force you to keep doing it constantly. I suppose if you really really like mindlessly shooting at things, I suppose it might be OK. Except when starting out, unless you're prepared to dump a lot of RL money (ontop of what was then an expensive game anyways), you are going to be useless as your equipment will suck and nobody will want you in their groups (getting kicked as a <Lv10 before the match even starts was common).

Dark Souls? It is hindered by ridiculous petty rules...

1). Your level ranges have to be similar.
2). You cannot have already killed the boss of an area. As soon as you do, their phantoms get sent home.
3). You have to turn yourself into a human to summon someone, this opens you up for unwanted PvP in a game that is already hard.
4). You cannot invite people by friendlist -- you have to coordinate with your friend (using 3rd party programs, calling them by phone, talking to them RL, etc), ask them to drop their summon sign in a specific location and pray you're on the same server region as they are so you can see it. Even when you do find their summon sign, the summon might fail if the game switches regions on you.
5). Lag. Sometimes you get stuck on server regions far away from your physical RL location, causing lots of lag. This is particularly annoying when the inevitable unwanted PvP happens; you go to swing at someone standing in front of you and then a split second later, they're stabbing you in the back and you die.
6). Oh wait... you died? You have to go collect your souls, spend _another_ Humanity point to become human again so you can try and summon again and hope you get your friend there, and step through the boss door within 15min before you get invaded again.

You're trying to say that those Multiplayer systems are better than WoW's multiplayer? Seriously?

Edit: Don't get me wrong; I love Dark Souls, but its multiplayer coop needed serious work. And ME3... okay, gameplay is OK... the Storyline is "meh" compared to the previous two and its endings absolutely kill the experience. Multiplayer? Why bother, you'll just lose the fruits of your efforts over time anyways.

Edited, Mar 1st 2013 10:29am by Lyrailis
#71 Mar 01 2013 at 9:33 AM Rating: Good
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lolgaxe wrote:
Why is it when a farming game is discussed, it's compared to Farmville? Harvest Moon would make a **** awesome MMO.


Well, Farmville is brought up because Farmville already is a kinda-sorta MMO, while Harvest Moon is not (not yet anyways).

A Harvest Moon type thing would be awesome, true. However, they'd have to make a Lot of tweaks to the game from what I've seen of a few versions (I pointed some of these out in one of my earlier posts in this thread) if they were to do something like that.
#72 Mar 01 2013 at 9:49 AM Rating: Good
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Did you play ME3's MP for 3 rounds and then call it a day or something? Because your information is just wrong.

Matches are four players, and there are four difficulty modes. Platinum is HARD. Wave one spawning multiple banshees kind of hard, and clearing it without coordinating with team members is not going to happen unless you're absurdly skilled.

There are four types of enemies, Reapers, Cerberus, Geth, and Collectors. Each use different tactics, different defenses, different skills. All of them have had unit upgrades with subsequent patches, adding enemies like Geth Bombers and Cerberus Dragoons.

Weekend Challenges are generally easy to clear, and award an N7 weapon card, which makes gearing fairly simple. And even if you don't get something you want from those, veteran packs (two matches to earn the credits to unlock) have plenty powerful weapons in them. And the cheapest packs, which cost 5k credits, have a lot of weapon upgrades that you'll use until the end of the game. Even the weaker guns are going to be plenty strong if you have a level 5 barrel upgrade on them. The end result is that getting to a decent level of gearing is not hard at all. It'll take under a week of casual gaming to have sufficient gear to handle Silver difficulty (assuming you have the skill to back it up--if you need gear to make up for a deficit of skill, it's another story). With meh gear, but decent skill, Bronze is soloable. But most players need to play Bronze to actually build their skill at playing.

Every match is 11 waves, which increase in difficulty in each wave, but also use a RNG to generate the actual enemies. Sometimes, you'll get two banshees fairly early in the game. Sometimes, you'll face much easier foes. There are 5 different mission types that can send you around the map to complete on waves 3, 6, and 9. The faster you complete them, the larger the credit bonus you receive. There are 19 maps, including the 6 hazard variations of existing maps (which add environmental systems you have to contend with, like acid rain which obliterates your shields when you stand in it).

There are 10 adept classes, 10 Engineers, 10 Infiltrators, 9 Sentinels, 11 Soldiers, and 9 Vanguards for a total of 49 distinct class combinations, the vast majority of which use unique skills not available to Shepard in standard play and can handle very, very differently (skill with one DEFINITELY doesn't mean skill with another).

Sure, there are people who just played the multiplayer to get their galaxy rating up. But that was only necessary for the best ending if you didn't bother doing everything. You don't need to play MP at all to get the best ending--it's a way to expedite the process for people who prefer MP to side quests. A nice touch, so you don't need to decide between advancing your single player save and playing online. But that's all it EVER WAS. Galaxy Readiness was never the point of MP play. MP play was the point of MP play.

The reason it degrades doesn't have to do with single player it all, it degrades because your readiness can have an effect on your leveling speed IN MULTIPLAYER.
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#73 Mar 01 2013 at 10:05 AM Rating: Good
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idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
Did you play ME3's MP for 3 rounds and then call it a day or something? Because your information is just wrong.

Matches are four players, and there are four difficulty modes. Platinum is HARD. Wave one spawning multiple banshees kind of hard, and clearing it without coordinating with team members is not going to happen unless you're absurdly skilled.


Was it 4 players? I haven't touched it since a couple weeks after the game's launch, so.... my memory of it is a little fuzzy.

Quote:
There are four types of enemies, Reapers, Cerberus, Geth, and Collectors. Each use different tactics, different defenses, different skills. All of them have had unit upgrades with subsequent patches, adding enemies like Geth Bombers and Cerberus Dragoons.


Did they add the Collectors later? I don't remember Collectors being a part of that when I did it, huh. Or maybe its just I never saw a match with em. Now, Geth... maybe I did see a geth match once. I don't remember too well. lol.

Quote:
Weekend Challenges are generally easy to clear, and award an N7 weapon card, which makes gearing fairly simple. And even if you don't get something you want from those, veteran packs (two matches to earn the credits to unlock) have plenty powerful weapons in them. And the cheapest packs, which cost 5k credits, have a lot of weapon upgrades that you'll use until the end of the game. Even the weaker guns are going to be plenty strong if you have a level 5 barrel upgrade on them. The end result is that getting to a decent level of gearing is not hard at all. It'll take under a week of casual gaming to have sufficient gear to handle Silver difficulty (assuming you have the skill to back it up--if you need gear to make up for a deficit of skill, it's another story). With meh gear, but decent skill, Bronze is soloable. But most players need to play Bronze to actually build their skill at playing.


When I tried, every "random" match was a Silver. Trying to start a Bronze match, players either joined and then left as soon as the match started, or, I got players who couldn't even do any sort of basic play whatsoever. Doing Randoms as a low level and ending up in a Silver match got me kicked a lot of times before the match even started. I managed to buy a few of those 5k credit packs and all I ever got out of them were consumables, and upgrades for weapons which I didn't even have or even plan on using, such as SMGs (I was playing as a Soldier, wtf do I want an SMG for? I didn't even _have_ a SMG).

Quote:
Every match is 11 waves, which increase in difficulty in each wave, but also use a RNG to generate the actual enemies. Sometimes, you'll get two banshees fairly early in the game. Sometimes, you'll face much easier foes. There are 5 different mission types that can send you around the map to complete on waves 3, 6, and 9. The faster you complete them, the larger the credit bonus you receive. There are 19 maps, including the 6 hazard variations of existing maps (which add environmental systems you have to contend with, like acid rain which obliterates your shields when you stand in it).


Some of this stuff sounds like it was added later on; I don't remember any sort of environmental stuff when I played. And 19 maps? It was more like 10, tops, unless some of them are unlocked as you play? *Shrugs* Either way, trying to start multiplayer was.... not fun at all. And even still... 19 maps with random waves of enemies still turns into the same thing over and over again.

Quote:
There are 10 adept classes, 10 Engineers, 10 Infiltrators, 9 Sentinels, 11 Soldiers, and 9 Vanguards for a total of 49 distinct class combinations, the vast majority of which use unique skills not available to Shepard in standard play and can handle very, very differently (skill with one DEFINITELY doesn't mean skill with another).


That is all fine and dandy... if you can get past the crappy beginning part of being kicked and/or being stuck in bronze matches where people leave when the match starts, lol.

Quote:
Sure, there are people who just played the multiplayer to get their galaxy rating up. But that was only necessary for the best ending if you didn't bother doing everything. You don't need to play MP at all to get the best ending--it's a way to expedite the process for people who prefer MP to side quests. A nice touch, so you don't need to decide between advancing your single player save and playing online. But that's all it EVER WAS. Galaxy Readiness was never the point of MP play. MP play was the point of MP play.

The reason it degrades doesn't have to do with single player it all, it degrades because your readiness can have an effect on your leveling speed IN MULTIPLAYER.


Well they could have thought of some better system that doesn't degrade over time, or something, if they wanted MP helping out Single Player. It feels like a punishment if you have to do a weekend of MP to bump your rating up high enough to get the best ending. And even if you do all the side-quests, you need a guide because some choices/actions that you made in the previous games actually _hurts_ your War Readiness in Singleplayer, making MP necessary to get enough Readiness to achieve the best ending. And of course if you do MP just for the Readiness... you'd better beat the game and see the ending while you can, because you'll do what I did -- log on a week later and find out that what was 60-some % is now 52% and that work you put in is now gone.

Of course, the game doesn't actually Tell you this anywhere that I saw.

My original point still stands:

1). It isn't medieval fantasy which WoW is. So saying ME3's Multiplayer is "better" than WoW's is kinda silly. It is very much an Apples vs Oranges comparison. If you're into medieval fantasy RPG, you're probably going to choose WoW over ME3. If you're into sci-fi and/or guns, you're probably going to choose ME3 over WoW. if you like both? Nothing stopping you from enjoying both as they both give radically different experiences.
2). There's no real "story" or "lore" or "reason" as to why you're doing it other than "shoot stuff" and the objectives are Random, meanwhile in WoW you have an actual reason as to why you're in a Raid/Heroic/Battleground.

Edited, Mar 1st 2013 11:09am by Lyrailis
#74 Mar 01 2013 at 10:42 AM Rating: Good
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Yes, a lot of that has been in content patches since then. They added collectors, they added new maps, more guns, more classes. But those have been regular enough. About as frequently as you get map packs in CoD, iirc. I don't actually feel like looking that up. But the game launched with 6 maps, which all have hazard variations now. And they've since altered the layout of the base maps, making them more difficult.

I never had any issues with people leaving. For one, bronze isn't hard enough for that to really matter (and leaving isn't an issue anymore, since you can join started games now). I think I have the highest ranking on ME3 (or at least I did last time I checked) of all Zam players in my friends list (PC), and I may have seen 4 people kicked the entire time I've played. And that was only when they were afk for way too long, forcing us to wait to start the match, or they were queuing for gold/platinum as a level 1.

I also never had issue joining Bronze games. The system asked you to specify what difficult you wanted. Very, very rarely I'd be put in Silver. But 95% of the time, I was placed in Bronze if I was seeking Bronze. If you were having issues, you could just create your own match. It doesn't really matter if your teammates suck on Bronze, because you only really needed one other decently skilled player to clear the content, assuming you had nothing but base gear. And if you were highly skilled, you wouldn't even need that. Let the other people act as human decoys and use that to your advantage.

All recruit packs contain 3 consumables, and two upgrade cards. Upgrade card can be weapons, weapon mods, or classes. This general system is shared by almost every care pack type.

All players started with a base model of every weapon type, so you definitely had access to a SMG. They also aren't bad weapons, and have just as many pros and cons as an assault rifle. There are times when you'd prefer one or the other. As a human soldier, using a SMG instead of an assault rifle would have let you use your Concussive Shot and Adrenaline Rush abilities more frequently. They're also stronger at closer ranges than Assault Rifles typically are (and it's true of the Shuriken, the smg, and the Avenger, the AR). There's no one single way to build your character in ME3, and most weapons with any real bias for certain classes over others were added in updates. That wasn't the state of the game at launch.

So you could have built to use the best gun you had, if you really cared about a small increase in performance. That's no different than something like WoW. If you were planning to go Assassination Rogue in Wrath, but had access to some really strong Maces, chances are you were going to spec Combat until you found some competitive Daggers. You didn't have to, of course, that's up to you.

Not feeling like using something and something not being an upgrade are two different things.

And you aren't understanding the point of galactic readiness. You are looking at it as a single player system. It isn't. Galactic Readiness was extended to single player so that people could spend their time in multiplayer or with the ipad game just so people could experience the story at an appropriate pace even if they wanted to spend time doing other things than single player. The point of galactic readiness, more than anything else, was to affect the rate at which multiplayer could generate WAR ASSETS. It degrades because your characters level faster when your readiness is capped, which would mean adding 20 to your war assets at too fast a rate if it degraded.

War Assets DO NOT degrade. They're a permanent boost to your readiness.

All Galactic Readiness rating does is lower the threshold at which you obtain sufficient war assets for the better endings. Every single one of these is fairly easily obtainable just by playing the game. And playing multiplayer makes them permanently easier to access by introducing additional War Assets from unit promotion. Galaxy at War just acts to allow players to replace side quests in their game with multiplayer matches, without having to sacrifice story pacing. That's literally the only reason it exists.

You are imagining it's something that it isn't, and has never been, at all.
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#75 Mar 01 2013 at 10:47 AM Rating: Good
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Yes, I agree that people come for the setting, not the combat. That was my point. If they just want combat, they have a whole range of quality free games that run the gamut of settings. League of Legends, Heroes of Newerth, TERA, LotRO, etc. There is no lack of multiplayer games with a fantasy setting.

The reason people ultimately choose a game isn't because its combat is the best, it's because the total package is. That's my point. Developers need to stop spending so much of their time focusing on making combat their MMO's best feature, because combat is the hardest sell you have. There are too many games with amazing combat systems already on the market, many of which are free. You need to make them want to stay because the whole game is worth staying for.

The trend in MMO markets has been too far away from this idea. Everything is coming down to combat and story, so that general ambience and the richness of the world outside of the plot lines gets ignored. And it needs to stop for MMOs to be worthwhile again.
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#76 Mar 01 2013 at 10:52 AM Rating: Excellent
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The biggest problem I see in MMOs these days is that by the time you can put out enough content to be competitive people have already left for the newer games on the market.

If you take the time to create a 'competitive' amount of content your game will be outdated before it's released. Or you release a half-finished game and hope to slow the mass exodus with sparkles, glitter, and promises of awesomeness. Either way it's a tough gamble, the "new best thing" is always a large draw and nearly impossible to compete with really. Everyone leaves for the new game regardless and you get labelled the latest "WoW killer" that failed. Once you have that label, you're going to be hard pressed to lure back people.

Edited, Mar 1st 2013 9:13am by someproteinguy
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#77 Mar 01 2013 at 11:38 AM Rating: Good
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I think it's partly that, but I also think that it's as much a symptom of a larger issue as anything else. I think MMOs desperately need to do away with leveling systems. I wish the marketing, launch, and internal issues with FunCom weren't so bad, because I would have been interested to see where they took The Secret World.

I'm convinced that there's nothing worse for the health of a game than leveling systems, especially when paired with WoW's version of expansions, where everything old in the game becomes 100% irrelevant for anything but leveling. When a level system is in place, there's an automatic goal of reaching cap in play, with the expectation that cap is where all the fun stuff actually is. But games don't launch with most of their at-cap content, because that's what patches are for.

Leveling systems are fine in single player games, because they're used to pace players--there isn't much backtracking in most RPGs. The fact that Lulu can 1-hit KO flans with her dolls outside Besaid doesn't really mean much when you have no reason to be fighting things outside Besaid when she's that powerful.

If you remove a leveling system, then you have fundamentally removed the notion of endgame. Everything becomes content, because nothing ever stops being relevant. There's no notion that what you're doing doesn't matter, like leveling dungeons tend to feel like. When you're leveling, you tend to do whatever makes you level fastest. That generally means running a dungeon for some quests, and maybe chilling in the queue, but it's a means to an end. You're not there to do it because it's fun to do, you're there to do it because you need the experience to get the content you actually want to access.

I think it's a terrible system. That's why I've been dwelling on EVE's skill point system in this thread, because EVE has some amazing "endgame" content. It could do with a fair bit more PVE stuff (like AI-controlled dreadnaughts occasionally being an issue), but there's no lack of epic fights, because there's nothing keeping a battle of all frigates from being epic. And, every so often, you'll see something truly crazy happen, like battles with hundreds of ships, from dreadnaughts all the way down to drones.

There's clear lines of progression, because there's always something new to learn to do, which opens up new opportunities for the player, but it's fun because you never have to slog through useless content (even if it has the guise of being epic) just because you're a low level.

[EDIT]

I mean, let's face it, what good reason is there that a "level 20" character not be able to take part in a raid? The only reason they can't is because they're too weak to, and the only reason they're too weak to is because the leveling system only lets people who have treked all the way up to 90 raid. There's no super meaningful difference between a level 20 player and a level 80 one, besides what abilities they have access to (which is also just a symptom of our leveling system, since you need access to everything to be useful). The worst part is that a level 20 character can be played by someone who is super experienced and capable, and if it wasn't for the absence of a few thousand strength and a few locked abilities, they'd do just fine.

I'm tired of MMOs trying to pretend like they're doing anything but putting in one massive gating system. I think it's stupid. Just give me a freaking sandbox and let me play the game.

Edited, Mar 1st 2013 12:43pm by idiggory
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#78 Mar 01 2013 at 12:09 PM Rating: Excellent
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someproteinguy wrote:
The biggest problem I see in MMOs these days is that by the time you can put out enough content to be competitive people have already left for the newer games on the market.

If you take the time to create a 'competitive' amount of content your game will be outdated before it's released. Or you release a half-finished game and hope to slow the mass exodus with sparkles, glitter, and promises of awesomeness. Either way it's a tough gamble, the "new best thing" is always a large draw and nearly impossible to compete with really. Everyone leaves for the new game regardless and you get labelled the latest "WoW killer" that failed. Once you have that label, you're going to be hard pressed to lure back people.


I completely agree with this. Particularly for WoW players I think, who are spoiled with - what? 10 now? - years worth of development. We expect that level of Stuff To Do, and when we don't get it, we get bored quickly and become easily distracted by the next shiny thing. I think WoW earned its success, but I also think it's maintaining it as much through being established as through any special merit or creativity (even though I give Pandaria high marks for not feeling like laurel-resting the way Cata felt to me). If vanilla WoW came out today, in the form it was in at release - even assuming the graphics etc. were up to today's standards - it would fail too. Not even WoW could be the much-mythologized WoW killer.

I'm not sure any new game, right at launch, could ever capture my attention the way WoW did when I first found it. Because now there's WoW. They changed the market, and customer expectations, possibly forever. As Protein notes, even if someone has an idea that's completely fresh and revolutionary, it's difficult for them to get our attention and money long enough to be able to put it into effect. Unless maybe the somebody is Blizz, or someone like them, able and willing to take a significant loss for a long time as a gamble on a huge ROI... what's the word on this Titan thing?
#79 Mar 01 2013 at 12:25 PM Rating: Excellent
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I don't think any game can do it if they're just going to feel like WoW with a different setting. Which is really what most games have felt like. Developers keep trying to find new ways to package old systems. TOR storytelling was great, but the quests are typical MMO fare. Rift is a typical questing experience, plus rifts. GW2 removes traditional questing, but instead just bottles a bunch of quest objectives into a single quest in a small area, and removes almost all story telling from the experience as a result. TERA? Typical questing. LOTRO? Typical MMO questing.

I want to know why no one has bothered creating new systems. Why just repackage and sell the old system? It's clearly not working. Why do players need to have 12 quests in their logs just from one hub in one zone? Why don't we make quests that are more epic and more fulfilling? I don't blink an eye when I complete a quest in MMOs anymore, because I'm completing 14 of them every hour.

Actually send me on a QUEST. That word used to mean something. It has a connotation of being epic. But in modern MMOs, it just isn't. I'd much rather story telling be uncoupled from questing, and actually let the questing experience be grand again.

Honestly, I just don't see why saving someone's daughter from kobolds has to be as easy as running in, slaughtering everything I see in seconds, and clicking on them. Why can't it be more like a rescue mission in Skyrim, where I actually need to invest myself in the task at hand (and don't have 400 other objectives in that mine)?

I'm just worried that the industry is relying too much on a formula and not allowing for real creativity. That formula worked because it was the best combination anyone had found for the technologies available at the time and the needs of the community. We're long passed many of those limitations now--I want to see developers being creative again. The formula has changed. We haven't found the new formula yet. We won't until someone bothers to look.
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#80 Mar 01 2013 at 12:38 PM Rating: Excellent
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idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
leveling system blah, blah, blah...

Thing about leveling systems is that everyone knows what they are and how they work. There has to be some sort of character progression system because 1) people like building a character, and 2) you can't start someone off with a fully developed character and expect them to know what to do (think of all those Death Knights in the Hellfire dungeons for a wonderful example of this). You want something that's simple to play, but hard to master. You can give that easily through a gated system.

Not to say there aren't other options to "levels" of course. I mean in the FFX example you gave there were no levels, the sphere grid functioned as a masked leveling system of sorts. Also remember without a progression system people will skill-cap quickly. We all are only so good at video games, and don't like being reminded of that. We start hitting a brick wall and we quit. A gated system at minimum gives some of us a chance to feel like we're improving for a while. Smiley: wink
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#81 Mar 01 2013 at 1:07 PM Rating: Good
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[EDIT] Ugh, I have a problem. I'm gonna go ahead and label where I start to ramble (four paragraphs down), so no one has to read more than that if they don't want to. [EDIT] Well, at least one of the walls of text I posted in this thread was about EVE's skill system. Everything in the game has associated skills, from crafting to trading to piloting dreadnaughts. And because early levels of skills train much faster than old ones, and because it would take YEARS to learn all of them, people are constantly progressing their characters in ways that are relevant to their own interests, but they aren't completely left in the dust by people who have been playing for seven years, since getting to the point where you can do something well isn't hard--specializing and training a variety of skills are what really suck the time away.

I really don't see why that kind of system couldn't work really well in a fantasy MMO setting. I don't need to be a master swordsman, in the sense that I am a master of all sword types, to be useful fighting a dragon. I just have to be decently capable with the sufficient skills to fight a dragon. Sure, a career warrior might be able to fight well with any type of weapon, in any type of armor, with or without shields, and tailor his gear to a situation accordingly. That's awesome. But to fight a dragon, I just need to be able to use my shortsword and shield well enough that I'm not a drain on the rest of the group. If we're making a direct comparison between the two systems, in EVE that's essentially like doing dedicated skill training in one specific fitting for about one week. One week in EVE will get your skill in flying your class frigate, using your chosen weapon types, with decent efficiency with your energy source, and sufficient speed boosts, to be more than sufficiently useful to earn your place in a fleet. Your actual skill at playing will be the bigger factor.

But in EVE, if you want to be able to use turrets or missiles (and all the subcategories of those), fly different ships, operate both shields and armor defenses well, use your capacitor efficiently, fly frigates, destroyers, and cruisers, it's going to take a lot more time in training. To maximize your skills in all of these areas (or even just one specific ship fitting) is going to take quite a bit of time as well.

So you're always progressing, you're always gaining access to new and shinier things, or learning to use things even better, but because the gap between basic competence in something and mastery of it isn't huge, and because there's true variety in what you can train to use, you don't get screwed by being new or old.

[EDIT] HERE THERE BE RAMBLING:[/EDIT]

So maybe you start a new character who has default access to all the base forms of every weapon type, and basic cloth, leather, and mail armor. You don't really know what you want to do yet, so you just start training some general skills, like movement speed, swing speed, etc. These give you some baseline percentage buffs that will be useful for just about everything. And while you're training those, you work on trying things out. You discover you really like the skills that you gain access to with clubs, so you do some dedicated training in both the Blunt skill and the Club dedicated skill, just to make those better. You also find you prefer the agile dodge-based play style of leather armor to the slower, mitigation style of mail. So you train up that.

In under a week, your dual wield skill, club skill, blunt skill, leather armor, speed skill, and general one-handed skills are all high enough that, as long as you are wearing basic leather armor and using clubs, you can definitely be useful in many of the advanced combat scenarios (assuming you have the skill to back it up, which you won't if you are a new player).

After that first week that you've spent with dedicated building (because you knew enough about the game to actually aim for sufficient skills for some kind of content), you can choose to branch out to new things, specialize, or a mixture. Another week may cap out your basic club skill, bring your general blunt skill higher, and open up access to (and give a decent buff to) tier 2 leather armor. Maybe then you start working on your Mace skill, so you can gain access to the new weapon type, which has different strengths and weaknesses from clubs. Or maybe you're happy with your combat capabilties, and you start investigating what leatherworking is like.

Or maybe you never made a break to get combat-ready, because you're new to the game and just trying to figure out what you like. So after a week you only have basic skills in one-handed and two-handed weapons, with additional skills in a few specific weapon types. You have some basic skills in a few different crafts, move slightly faster, have some exploration bonuses, etc. You aren't ready for any super tough content, but that's find, because there's plenty you can do and you're just investigating what you might enjoy. It's not like any of this time is wasted--all skills serve as baselines or prerequisites for something else. It's only "wasted" if you actually intend to never do it again.

You end up realizing that you love blacksmithing. The supply lines, requirements, and material costs are all within your liking. Maybe they even have specific systems for each craft, and you like the interaction blacksmithing requires. So you decide to start training in that. Sure, the city you are in has master smiths. So you start churning out some basic bronze swords. These aren't super powerful weapons, by any means, but there's still a market for them because they're dirt cheap and no one cares if they break. And the master smiths don't bother making them because they can make items with much, much higher profit margins. So even though you're brand new, you're contribtuing to the economy and making something of value. Those swords are being grabbed by new players, and oldhats who are diving into easier dungeons and don't want to risk breaking or losing their better items. Etc.

Progression doesn't have to be level based. At all. We're just used to it. And we're used to it because the industry has been super lazy.

Edited, Mar 1st 2013 2:09pm by idiggory
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#82 Mar 01 2013 at 1:58 PM Rating: Excellent
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The rambling part sounds kind of Skyrim-ish (yes they had levels, but they were largely meaningless and IMO could have been done away with fairly easily), which certainly worked for them in a single-player context, but would have fallen apart in a multiplayer simply because of expectations (You mean you didn't go Breton for the magic damage resist? Are you a fail-tank or what? "You can't be competitive at end-game without 100 enchanting...") . I'm a bit afraid that anything too open is too problematic to work well in a multi-player context. I mean, if you get a druid healer in your random group, and you know what skills they have and what they can do. Rather than a Q/A session: Have you mastered HoTs? AoE spells? Cleanses? How about stuns? You mean you don't have a maxed single-target heal yet? Lol gtfo nub *you've been vote kicked.* (Whether or not you really needed a maxed single-target heal skill being a completely different issue of course.) LF tank for XXX, must have max magic resist. People will always push the boundaries here, necessary or not. If not maxed, then choose some arbitrarily high number.

Basically every reason why Blizzard went away from talent trees in the first place, but more so. There was no good reason most people had to spec a certain way, but boy did it mean you took a lot less crap from the other players. Smiley: rolleyes

Admittedly I don't know enough about EVE though, and whatever they've been doing has worked for them for a very long time. I'd like to see something different as well, I'm just not sure how it happens. Really great games come very rarely. There's only so many Civilization, Halo, Portal, (insert your favorite awesome game here) games out there, and something that has a WoW-scale success is a rarity at best.

If they can find a way to have a nice open system that works well in a fantasy MMO setting I'll probably be all over it. Not sure how that happens though. A competitive environment makes it hard for a sandbox to reach it's fun full potential as you eliminate a lot of the possibilities that do 5% DPS or something. Smiley: frown

Edited, Mar 1st 2013 12:27pm by someproteinguy
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#83 Mar 01 2013 at 2:39 PM Rating: Good
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Well in EVE your race only affects what your starting skills are, and that's it. Every race has the equivalent skills for their own racial weapons/ships, and the total training time to "catch up" (if you want to fly a different race's ships) is negligible in the grand scheme of things. So there's no racial balance issues. And I'm honestly fine with that, because I've never found the PVP bickering about racial skills in WoW all that interesting. I don't really want meaningful bonuses to come back. IMO, racial bonuses should be like skill bonuses in Skyrim; something that's quickly remedied in an hour or two of playing. And maybe they can carry the themes to racial homes, which are just one example of housing layout you could choose to purchase. So Pandaren can start with skill level 3 in amateur cooking (which is the prerequisite to begin training 1 in the next cooking tier).

As for skills, I don't see think that would really be a big issue if the game was properly designed. Since the assumption is that most players won't specialize, people won't be able to afford to demand specialization. And because the actual % increase in output for specializing isn't huge, that's okay. Sure, some content will require a healer who has at least hit the <insert tier number> in the healing type they've chosen (maybe healing can come from the healing school of magic, the chant school of songcraft, or the medicine school of alchemy/herbalism/whatever).

As long as balance is kept within those three schools, the particular differences shouldn't matter too much, because content can't be approached as a min/max formula. In WoW, every Rogue is equal to every other Rogue, just slightly altered by their race/spec/gear. But then that's it. In the context where classes don't exist, but you're training in skills as you want to use them, then it becomes a different story. Now you can't TC for optimal results, because each player is fundamentally different. It's not like you have a baseline you can establish.

Let me put it this way--the actual performance of the skills themselves doesn't need to change, because what you are discussing is the concept of a total package. You might be bringing me along to heal, and equivalently skilled healers don't even need to function that differently across different disciplines, but they can still be distinct. I imagine an equip system to access skills. Healing magic might require a stave be equipped in the main hand, but chants would demand that a "bard" be equipped with, idk, rosaries in their offhand, and "doctors" would need a tincture launcher (or whatever) in their ranged slot.

The end result is that what you really care about, their ability to heal, is equal. But the experience of the actual player changes quite a bit, because what else they can do depends on which slot that healing skill leaves free. A bard could equip a sword and contribute to damage while chanting. The magician could have a wand in their ranged slot, and be flinging arcane arrows while they send out heals. The doctor might have a dagger in their off hand, and have a poison kit (that allows them to poison their allies' weapons on the fly).

Whatever, I'm just tossing out random thoughts. But the end result is the same--because you create the total class, and because each healing discipline requires something different to be sacrificed or used to access those skills, the play experience ends up different when the actual balance of the healing remains intact.
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#84 Mar 01 2013 at 3:13 PM Rating: Excellent
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That would be in the interesting balance to strike. Make it easy enough to do your job well, but at the same time give you a reason to want to further your skill any higher than necessary.

Of course I'm also a soulless abomination after many years of internet gaming, and don't have much faith in people to handle something more complicated than "roll mage, spam frostbolt." Smiley: lol
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#85 Mar 01 2013 at 4:52 PM Rating: Good
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someproteinguy wrote:
That would be in the interesting balance to strike. Make it easy enough to do your job well, but at the same time give you a reason to want to further your skill any higher than necessary.

Of course I'm also a soulless abomination after many years of internet gaming, and don't have much faith in people to handle something more complicated than "roll mage, spam frostbolt." Smiley: lol


I definitely hear you on that one. Not going to lie, one of the things that adds to how well EVE works is the fact that everyone is on server--all 500+k subscribers. But the effect is that your reputation matters. People you **** off can put bounties on you, which adds incentive for others to attack if you wander into unsecured space. You can see a player's reputation with CONCORD (the NPC security corporation). If a player's security status dips too low, they can't even enter high security space without getting destroyed. Corps generally cultivate relationships with other corps, to try and add security to a game world where there literally isn't any. Someone can suicide gank you (attack you in high security space, and kill you before CONCORD arrives and obliterates them. Last year a banking/investment scam made off with, iirc, trillions of in-game currency. And it's all sanctioned by the TOS.

I think this kind of system WOULD demand a higher population for servers. Say, 40k maximum population each (40k players, not 40k characters), at least. I think WoW's populaiton cap is something like 20,000. The trick here is to keep central hubs from dominating everything, like they do in WoW. There's no major reason why every player needs to be in two cities. Though, forunately, there have been a lot of strides in MMOs in the last few years to reduce lag in high-volume areas, so I'm not too worried.
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#86 Mar 01 2013 at 6:38 PM Rating: Excellent
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idiggory wrote:
I'm just worried that the industry is relying too much on a formula and not allowing for real creativity. That formula worked because it was the best combination anyone had found for the technologies available at the time and the needs of the community. We're long passed many of those limitations now--I want to see developers being creative again. The formula has changed. We haven't found the new formula yet. We won't until someone bothers to look.

In my opinion, Blizzard fell into this trap a long time ago. They have a cash cow. They don't really want to rock the boat. They want subs.

I love WoW, don't get me wrong, but it has devolved over time, in my opinion. It has become less immersive, more homogenized, and fankly easy (hardmodes aside, obviously). Everything is accessible, which is good in a way, but also bad, in my opinion. Things like the farm and pet battles, while enjoyable, are really just rip-offs from other popular ideas/games. Pet battles, in particular...and I'm a big addict...really have nothing to do with the game and honestly probably don't belong in an RPG. Blizzard caters to their market. Nothing wrong with that, but they're not really interested in thinking outside the box.

I have more thought, but typing on this iPad is highly annoying. So, I'll try to add some more coherent thoughts later.
#87 Mar 01 2013 at 7:25 PM Rating: Good
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RE:ME3 stuff:

It sounds like they changed _a lot_ since the game's launch. I don't remember "upgrade cards", I remember how it worked, you bought this... box... which gave you random stuff. You had no control over whether it gave you weapons, mods, consumables, etc. I tried saving up for a 2nd tier goodie box (keep in mind I was a soldier) and I got....

a Pistol, an SMG Mod, and a couple consumables after getting nothing but consumables and other mods I didn't really need out of two of the cheapest boxes. I was thinking "Wow, I saved up just to get a pistol that doesn't do much good for me?"

Said pistol wasn't even much of an upgrade; it was a side-grade to the one I was already using.

As far as matches go... at game's launch, I remember you could start your own matches, or you could specify a challenge level/arena/enemy type, BUT if I recall correctly, the game implied you get less reward for it.

OR, you could click the "Random" button. I played 10-12 matches, and all but 2 of those randoms were Silver matches. I woulda thought that it would at least stick you in a match befitting your level, but meh.

But yeah sounds like they changed it a lot. Oh well. maybe some day I'll mess around with it if I get bored.
#88 Mar 01 2013 at 8:33 PM Rating: Good
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If you're having trouble with ME3 multi there's probably just one thing you're doing wrong, which is bunkering down. Don't do this. You should use cover, yeah, but you have to keep moving or you'll be overrun. The problem with multi is basically that like any horde mode game it gets too easy after a while. I haven't played it in about half a year.

Also, yeah, those random packs were some serious **********
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#89 Mar 01 2013 at 8:41 PM Rating: Good
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RE: ME3 people

You may want to check out Warframe. A Lot of people like it because it feels like ME3 MP, its free to play, Co-op. I find it pretty fun, very fast and interesting. They had a patch right after that vid was made adding new scenarios/areas, which was one of his concerns.

Also Zam is giving away Beta keys. http://www.zam.com/giveaways/warframe.html
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#90 Mar 02 2013 at 5:56 AM Rating: Good
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Quote:
As far as matches go... at game's launch, I remember you could start your own matches, or you could specify a challenge level/arena/enemy type, BUT if I recall correctly, the game implied you get less reward for it.

OR, you could click the "Random" button. I played 10-12 matches, and all but 2 of those randoms were Silver matches. I woulda thought that it would at least stick you in a match befitting your level, but meh.


"Random" adds an experience buff for random maps and random enemies (25% total, iirc). But you still specify the difficulty. I don't think there is a random option where difficulty is concerned, actually.

And Warframe looks interesting. I requested a Beta key--we'll see how it works out. I worry that a pure PVE game won't really hold player attention, though.
____________________________
IDrownFish wrote:
Anyways, you all are horrible, @#%^ed up people

lolgaxe wrote:
Never underestimate the healing power of a massive dong.
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