web analytics

Next-Gen MMORPG: If you could name 3 things…

One of my favorite things about having a blog is how often I’m forced to think about what I want in MMORPGs.  Do you ever stop and think what would cause you to want to play a next-gen MMORPG, or what would cause you to lose interest entirely in that same game?  What if you had to narrow your list down to just three things?

Thinking about these things causes people to think about what they want instead of just going along with what they are given.  When people start to think, they start to question, and when they question they begin to expect better.

Mark Jacobs wrote the following on our forums:

If you could name three things that would make you want to play a next-gen MMORPG what would they be? Also, what three things would cause you not to play the same MMORPG?

Please keep in mind the following:

1) That the MMORPG would be created by an independent studio, not backed with stupid amounts of money. Think old school MMORPGs, before the coming of the Blizzard-like budgets and way beyond that now.

2) That the MMORPG could be either FTP, BTP, Subscription, Light Subscription+ or Full Subscription+

3) That the MMORPG would follow more of the Minecraft approach to beta releases of the game. In other words, put out early builds and let people truly participate in the evolution of the MMORPG.

Just curious of course. :)

Mark

Obviously I want a game that emphasizes 3+ faction RvR with safe areas to PvE as the foundation. I’m not against the idea of a completely PvE game, though.  EQ was a PvE game and I played it longer than any other MMO.  I’ll focus on details that can happen across any type of game.  I’m in a very basic, traditional, and broad mood right now.  You certainly don’t have to be as old school in your ideas as I am.  Really think about what you want!

3 Things that would make me want to play:

1. Open world.  One of the best parts about older games was how open and connected the world felt.  DAoC and EQ are great examples.   Even the dungeons are open to everyone at the same time.  The world should also be connected and not truncated into bits and pieces with linear zones forcing the player down a road into the next zone to do the same.

SWG Skill Tree

SWG’s skill system gave players a limited number of points to spend.

2. Skill-based system.  I really like the skill systems that SWG and UO used.  If a next-gen MMO had a skill system that allowed players to use a sword and gain sword skill, or craft and skill up, and have to monitor where they spend skills because they have a limited number — that would really interest me.  If I could make a character use any combination of skills, without being forced into an archetype or class, that’d be intriguing.

3.  Crafting and Socializing getting equal emphasis.  (I cheated and combined 2 into one).  A game that focuses on providing an experience deeper and richer than just combat would get my attention.  I want people to -want- to group not because they have to (though that’s a plus for me personally) but because communicating and socializing with others is fun and rewarding.  I want people to be able to open shops and sell their goods, entertain people in taverns, and have ways to play other than going out and killing monsters or other players.  Items shouldn’t be permanent;  DAoC, SWG, and UO all did a good job with that.    Crafted gear should be very competitive.

3 Things that would cause me not to play:

1.  “Instancing” or “phasing”.  I’m not a fan of lobby-instancing, redundant instancing, instancing, or whatever you want to call it.  SWTOR and GW2 use this way too much to break up the world.  I’ll take this one as far as not wanting instanced dungeons either.  I don’t want a dungeon just for me or my group.

2.  Questing. I don’t have it in me to do another quest.  I really don’t.   I’m not even sure how I stand on public quests to be honest.  When I talked to Mark back at E3 2008 he mentioned how everyone is going to start copying his PQ idea.  Well, they did.  GW2 improved upon them slightly,  but now I’m burned out on them.  Give me camps of mobs instead.

3.  End-game gear grinds. Gear progression is fine.  Getting better items is fine.  Killing big bosses is fine.  I think it’s silly to rule out finding items from a game, but having the entire end-game be about raiding to get gear, to raid to get gear, to do the same thing… to the point of creating actual tiers or “seasons” makes me sick.

I could probably list 10 things on each side, but at this very second those are my 3.  Give me 20 minutes and I’ll probably change my mind.

Creativity loves constraint.  How would you answer Mark’s questions?  Head over to our forums and post in the thread with everyone else, or respond here if you like.  This is a an interesting, and I’m sure useful, type of feedback for developers.

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on RedditShare on StumbleUponShare on Google+

Comments

  1. Really interesting topic, especially given the provenance. Too late at night to do it justice but off the top off my head:

    Positives:

    1. Internally logical, consistent virtual world. Preferably low-magic, low-fantasy, high-medieval/early renaissance setting.

    2. Go out and get your gear gameplay. If a bandit is wearing leather armor and wielding a shortsword, when you kill him he drops leather armor and a shortsword. If you can craft leather armor from deer hide you need to kill deer to get it. And so on.

    3. Most important of all: infinite levels. The whole point of the game is to level and leveling never ends. You can spin that with finite levels plus AAs if you prefer. Leveling happens by exploring, fighting mobs (and players if MMO has a PvP/RvR element – I’m easy on that) NOT by questing. Quests get you stuff or faction or are just for story or fun.

    Negatives

    1. Quest-to-level – no, just no. It sucks.

    2. Dailies – suck even harder than general quests.

    3. Balance. I hate balance. Let us decide if we want to be uber or underdog. Some of the most fun I ever had was playing gimped races and classes. Make a real effort not to be fair. Unfairness is fun.

  2. I simply want to see a sandbox-style MMO that’s not a huge PvP gankfest. Basically Skyrim with other players and a larger building/crafting component. The more emergent, unscripted gameplay and the more detailed the ecology and economy, the better.

    Encourage cooperation rather than competition in PvE, e.g. GW2’s “anyone who hits it gets rewarded” approach.

    Focus on horizontal rather than vertical progression (i.e. improving skills that can’t all be used at the same time, rather than improving the character’s base power levels) – the former can basically last forever, whereas the latter always ends, then players quit. Don’t use levels or gear to gate content – there are other more natural ways to do it. Although I’m kind of against gating content at all.

    And I’ll echo what Keen said about instances and quest merry-go-rounds – they’re basically a big turnoff for me at this point.

  3. Positives:

    – A living, dynamic world. I know the premise is small developer but I just want to play in a world that feels alive. If a one man outfit can do that (in an extremely limited manner) in a game like Din’s Curse I think a developer making an MMO can do something similar. Monster factions should have their own goals and fights. Winners should gain power, losers lose. Animals should have migration patterns and hunting grounds, etc. Players should be a part of the world and not the supermen they are in most current games.

    Moving through the world should be an adventure and exploration should be a goal in itself.

    – Combat isn’t everything/Crafting is important. The act of being a crafter should be engaging and necessary to support all the other activities in the game. Expand the mining of SWG into all fields. If I’m a hunter let me go out and track game, hunt for better pelts, find spots where certain creature live, etc. If I’m a cook let me explore the world to find a rare ingredient, or grow plants in my garden, etc.

    – Keep combat simple, deep and movement oriented. GW2 system is a good example. No need to have 100 ui mods and a mouse with 57 buttons to just compete. On the other hand positioning, movement and using your abilities to good effect are all important to success. I also don’t want to see it end up too twitchy. Some of us are older and we’ll never compete with the reaction times of some kids out there :)

    Negatives:

    – Raiding/gear grind endgame. It’s the reason I quit the last few MMOs I played. I got to cap and couldn’t force myself to do the gear grind.

    – Free for all PvP when there are no consequences. I don’t want to play a Darkfall or Eve type game. PK should equal bounties, limited access to towns, jails, long term criminal label, etc. If people want to PK as a lifestyle they should be able to but the penalty should be severe enough that a person thinks long and hard if that’s the road they want to travel because getting back will be a long, arduous road.

    – Forced grouping. I play solo most of the time. I like MMOs because the human element adds something single players will never have. On the other hand that doesn’t mean I want to be forced to play with people to get anything meaningful out of a game.

  4. I don’t need a pve world at all. Just give me a huge/awesome rvrvr experience. Stop wasting development money. Instead of making a $300m piece of pve trash make a $50m pvp awesomesauce game.

    I don’t need no stinking classes. Stop limiting my creativity with classes. Take GW2 as an example. Imagine if they went and came up with about 20 skills for each of the 5 weapon slots for each weapon. You had no class but could slot whichever ones you wanted. You would have to earn the skill points to buy them. You could spend x amount of points across your attributes. No trait trees. Select whatever traits you wanted 4 adept 3 master 2 grandmaster 8 minor traits. Armor? Heavy armor slower but defensive, lighter armor quicker but weaker.

    Tera crosshairs and gw2 dodge.

    Let me really build some stuff. Ditches, extra walls, spikes, man traps… let me build the damn castle I just took. Make me gather the resources though.

  5. Positives:

    Open world sandbox type. This includes allowing players to build cities but not over predefined city lots like Darkfall did.

    Maximum player interaction. This means every item would be crafted by players just like in EVE. 100% of quests come from players. I actually imagine sprawling monster regions that attack player cities and putting bounties on those monsters thins their ranks and protects your city. If possible it would even be cool for players to manage the currencies used in different regions.

    A skill-based system would be cool. Don’t even show levels just have it all be skills. I know a lot of sandboxes already do this.

    Negatives:

    Themepark style. The whole idea is just dead to me now. Like Keen I’ve done all the quests and ran all the raids I can. I’d rather just kill monsters and players.

    It can’t turn into a Quake deathmatch with swords with no consequences for killing people but it also can’t have draconian rules governing pvp. It has to strike a good balance

    Grouping should be very beneficial. No one likes forced grouping but the best system I’ve seen was Shadowbane. If you had a group of 2 or 3 everyone in the group received full exp. 4+ people and everyone received a very good chunk of exp, almost as much as if they had actually soloed the mob. Random groups formed in the newbie areas, it was awesome. I guess this actually turned into something I would like to see in a game… but I don’t care.

  6. Take a look at https://www.xsyon.com/myaccount/signup.php seems to meet alot of your wants, in theory.

  7. Here we go :)

    1)Let players advance on their own pace. Difficult content,linear (cannot skip content)and with no time-locks (dailies,weekly lockouts, e.t.c.)

    2)Simulation on an open and seamless medieval world. Examples: Rogue need to gather materials and craft their poisons. You moce slower on plate armor and faster on light armor, you cannot swim on plate armor, you cannot damage a fire demon with fire, e.t.c.

    3)Heavy pve content with no competition between players on tag mobs, gathering resources and also heavy crafting content and huge quantity of armor/weapon skins.

  8. About itemization. I hate gear grinds and gear verticalization, never played SWG but Uo did a GREAT work on that, you had to stock up on good quality gear, buying or crafting and that was a great part of the game, organizing your stuff and logistics

  9. Reading that thread, I guess a new sandbox, heavily focused on PvP MMO from CSE is pretty much confirmed. Glad to know. :D

    And sorry about the slight off-topic, will respond to the question inside the forums later.

  10. I want something where you can truly explore. Maybe the world even changes every once in a while (mob camps moving)

    I still enjoy Skyrim, and the main part is that I can stumple over stuff I didnt know was there. I never really found that in an MMO, because everything is so…I dont know, in its place? If I walk into a lvl 25-30 zone I know what i’m gonna find, and the reason to explore is only achievements which feels too artificial to me

  11. I have thought long and hard about really want makes me enjoy MMOs. While I like reading the lore (read all the Warcraft novels) and Guild Wars novels, I don’t really care a lot about quest either. I skim over the text and just pick out what is needed and go from there.

    Public quest were okay when Warhammer done thing, and then Rift improved on them, and then Guild Wars hit the pentacle of what I think they are good for, yet they got old fairly quickly.

    I really don’t know what I would like to see out of future MMOs. I am interested in Defiance just to see how well it ties into the SyFy show, but I think it will most likely bomb. Elder Scrolls Online has a lot of potential but it is one that I am trying not to get my hopes up on.

    I guess I have gotten to the point were it is going to take something really impressive to pull me back hard to the genre. Wildstar might do it, or maybe ArchAge. I just don’t know anymore. Every time it pretty much is the same thing, get one, play it hard for a couple weeks and then maybe pick it up once a year or so just to see what has changed. Other than WoW and EQ2 I have never reached endgame in an MMO before, just because I usually get alt-itis. That is what happened to me with Guildwars 2.

    I do agree exploration is great. Personally I wouldn’t mind seeing an MMO were you don’t really improve in levels, just skills, and you can travel to every zone in the game at any level and still use your smarts to survive.

    Honestly though for as much as I want a great MMO, I think they the genre is stagnant these days. When it goes to PVP it is nice to play games like Forge, Chilvary, etc where you don’t have to grind in PVE to jump in and have fun.

  12. Surely, SURELY we all want a DAoC 2 from CSE, right…? :)

    (And don’t call me Shirley!)

  13. I’ll keep it short and sweet.

    1) MMO Mechanics (as opposed to shooter)
    2) Stuff to own and fight over
    3) PvP progression from the start

    Werit

  14. I don’t get how people are all for games without end-game gear grinds, but then complain that they are 3-monthers with nothing to do at end-game. I mean, seriously? Or are the majority of you complaining about the “raiding” part of the end-game gear grind and not the “grouping” end-game gear grind?

    I actually agree with you on a lot of your points – especially how instancing, little guided rails to follow, and even questing have essentially ruined these new games for many.

    But there has to be some reason to keep playing! I’ve said it before but it appears that I need to say it again. If you don’t have an end-game skinner box reward mechanism in your game you are basically ROLEPLAYING at the end! And how long can most of us keep that up for?

    So if the crafted gear available on the auction house is as good as what you can find in a dungeon, why go to a dungeon? Let the crafters craft houses or boats or things you cant get as loot in a dungeon. Hell, let them craft mounts for all I care!

    I think you should look to EQ. Levelling was difficult and you felt like you accomplished something when you got halfway to max level! It was an open world with hardly any quests to be found. It wasn’t instanced so there were not 10 billion copies of gear item B on week two of launch. There was difficult levels of group content, so you didn’t have to actually raid at top level to feel like you were progressing your gear. They had an alternative advancement system. Just copy most of this.

  15. Oh and before I forget. STOP already with the scripted boss fights in every freaking dungeon! I don’t want to always have to run behind the mob when he looks like he’s about to fire laser beams from his eyeballs. Or run under a ledge when I see a certin phrase of text on my screen so I don’t get killed by the acid downpour. I just want to stand there and kill the thing. Let the tank hold agro, the healer heal, somebody control the adds, and everybody else blast the mob until it’s dead. Save that scripting crap for a few high level raids. Thanks.

  16. 3 things I want to see in a next gen MMO:

    1) An OPEN and UNSCALED world. You should be free to explore and that exploration should have risk and reward. The world shouldn’t adapt to you, you should have to adapt to it. Put more responsibility on the players to figure things out, don’t lead them from one quest hub to the next. You WANT geographic isolation, you DO NOT want instant teleports to anywhere because that kills exploration.

    2) Put some damn thought into your PvP. Give it some structure and weave it into your game like you do the PvE. Nobody really wants a gankfest but they do want some freedom and choices as to where/when/how they PvP. PvP quests can work, your game can and should provide structure and incentive to PvP as well as PvE. Provide structure and incentive for all 3 forms of PvP AND PvE (solo, small group, raids).

    3) This last 1 is a bit weird but – Log everything. For the achievers out there give them something to work towards just let them define what that is. If they want to find out who healed the most on the last raid they should be able to find out. They should be able to see who picked the most flowers this month. If they want to see who took the most damage from only green fireballs during the 2nd push up the left stairway during the PvP attempt on the wizards keep last Tuesday, make sure they can look it up. . .and look it up in game.

    3 things I don’t EVER want to see in a next gen MMO:

    1) Phasing/instances. Single player PvE instances ONCE IN AWHILE to help tell a story – fine. PvP instances – NOOO. Phasing high traffic areas – NOOO.

    2) Server transfers/cross server anything. Dumb, dumb, dumb. . .foster a community where players get to know each other (enemies included), make it feel familiar, don’t make it feel like a single player game where the players aren’t much different than the mobs/NPCs.

    3) Lastly, a bunch of small things that bug me. . .computer generated geography – NO, handcrafted only. Quest hubs – bad. Manual aiming – NO (I’m sure I’m a minority on that). MUST be able to remap keys (mouselook toggles etc.). When you add on or release expansion packs don’t raise caps, add the levels on the side (think DAoC master levels NOT WoW raising caps and making all previous time invested worthless). 1 world wide auction house is bad, splinter them. Any cash shop should be cosmetic ONLY, you shouldn’t even put in time savers. 2 factions is DUMB, 3, 5, 7 is good, the more splintered (7) the better. All encompassing classes – dumb, I’m not saying there shouldn’t be solo content, there should be, but if 1 class can do dmg, heal, tank, and CC you haven’t given them any incentive or structure to do group or raid content. Badges for gear – f’ing BAD. Regular instances vs. heoric instances – DUMB, and also lazy.

  17. I already posted my thoughts in the forum, so I’ve only got to say…

    Keen, isn’t is awesome that Mark Jacobs registered on your Forums and is asking for input? That’s freaking amazing! I’m going to get a few I know that play MMOs to register and give some thoughts. This is a cool opportunity!

  18. @Lokked: Yeah, Mark has always been great about taking the time to talk to the gaming community. Very few people in his position (past and present) would be willing to do the same. I think it shows in his games.

  19. wufiavelli says:

    3 Positives
    1: 3 faction PvP tied into the economy.
    2: UO style Economy/PvE
    3: Events like gw2. I do not want hearts, i dont want quests i just want events to pop up like they did in GW2. I think these would go nicely with an exploration based PvE economic system like UO had. They also would add some really good life into the world.

    3 Negatives
    1:Treadmill quest hubs
    2:Instancing
    3:things that make it an RPG instead of a MMO

  20. Gankatron says:

    Try rethinking the mechanics behind the current paradigm. Sometimes one needs to stop fighting against a force to overcome it; kung-fu verses karate for instance:

    1) 3 month resets – As it implies the server gets reset every 3 months. The 3 month cycle is embraced and rapid boredom is eliminated as everyone has a chance to start anew. It also synergizes with the next points.

    2) Skill systems that involve random elements – One can choose to research within a skill discipline with offensive, defensive, or utility emphasis. What they get would be determined by something akin to a loot table; moreover that skill would have randomized elements to make it feel truly unique. Research crits would further enhance effectiveness.

    Combinations between pre-existing skills would be linked to open new hybrid options. All would be kept secret by the devs and new linkages would be formed upon reset; in this way the community could participate in and observe how the skill trees evolved in each reset.

    For example one might choose the skill discipline category > [spell, fire, offensive] and eventually research “fire ball”; their fire ball would likely be different from someone else’s in its variably determined, but generally balanced, range, damage, cooldown, area of effect, plus any other unique bonus effects.

    To continue if they next researched > [ability, sword, defensive] they might get “improved parry”, which in turn now might open up a [spell/sword, fire, offensive] hybrid category that might reveal itself to be “fire sword”.

    3) OP crit crafted and looted items with set decay times – Allow someone to feel like they are the king of the berserkers for 2 weeks it they crit craft a Vorpal Greatsword, but after the set time, poof it is gone and you are just another schmo (well a schmo with the woot, experience, and reputation from the last 2 weeks that is).

    Balancing is much less important given that items are short lived and in 3 months the playing field is re-leveled.

    This would be an chaotic game with epic surprises at every turn.

    One wouldn’t need leveling per se, and a set number of ability slots would keep things in check ala GW2 style.

  21. Folks,

    So, I’ve been staying away from this thread since you guys are having such a great conversation here with Keen and I’ve been busy posting on the forum thread. There are some really great ideas here, kind words (thank you very much), etc. but man, one comment here by Gankatron really caught my attention:

    “This would be a chaotic game with epic surprises at every turn.”

    One of the things I wanted to build into some of WAR’s systems was close to what GT describes in his post. I’m going to add this exact quote into the document that I’ve been working on because it embodies a principle that I believe in and hope to create with this game. Until now I couldn’t find quite the right words to explain it so succinctly though I describe the principle in different sections.

    So, I’ll go back to lurking here, chatting on the forums and working on the doc. And GT, you got one in the bank with me.

    Happy New Year all!

    Mark

  22. Gankatron says:

    Thanks for the positive feedback Mark.

    Long term persistence is overrated on a public with a short term attention span…

    Cycles of creation, racing to a terminal event, followed by rebirth would keep everything fresh and exciting. Here “endgame” is a transient event heralding re-creation; people will frenetically build to the last moment until the server goes down, and then switch to hitting refresh to get the first in feeling on the next server iteration.

    Sometimes the worst thing that one can have happen is to get everything they desire. Evolutionarily we are designed to become desensitized to the familiar; such habituation filters need to be in place to keep us from burning out under a constant stream of sensory information. So the question becomes how does one keep that fresh first kiss feeling over a length of time?

    I have found traveling to fit this bill; if you know you are only going to be in any given new place for a short amount of time, otherwise common experiences retain an edge. The prospect of loss and re-building in a fresh relatively unknown evolving framework will keep people’s attention. It is the transitory nature of these types of game play mechanics that make it dynamic.

    Build it and people will buy it. If you are hiring people to help design it please contact me; this former Professor wouldn’t mind a career diversion right now! ;)

    Good luck.

  23. Dear god no grinding camps of mobs.

    At least have the leveling experience based on exploration sort of like Skyrim without the quests. Instead you wander into a dimly lit dungeon and at the end you find a boss monster or soemthing.

  24. This kind of follows on to the comments several folks made about sandbox worlds, but one of the things I loved about EQ that almost no other MMO ever got right was the mix of level content in zones. Characters of all levels should interact, not just in cities, but outside, too. There was nothing cooler than seeing and meeting high levels with awesome gear run by while fighting dervishes, or better yet having them come by and kill the Hill Giant/Spectre/Griffon. It also kept the zones feel more alive far longer. If a zone is strictly level 5-9 content, then when 98% of your players are level 10+, that zone is a ghost town. But if the zone has 5-9 content, 15-20 content, a level 30 dungeon, and a rare spawn needed for a level 50 quest, then you get a much more interesting mix of characters milling about, interacting, talking, helping, etc.

  25. A feature of MMOs that I tolerated in 1999 but really annoys the hell out of me now: static PvE spawns. Especially overly frequent static spawns.

    If I just killed everything within 50 m, it should all stay dead, not suddenly reappear out of thin air 30 seconds later, in exactly the same spots as the last mobs (and typically right on top of me). I’m boggled that this is even still an issue (GW2, I’m looking at you)… It’s so stupidly easy to — at the very least — apply a random position offset, and/or check if any players are in proximity to the spawn position before spawning something.

    And the precedent for a better way has already been set by games like Borderlands, L4D, andn Diablo II. Spawn enemies out of dens, huts, nests, etc. Spawn enemies from locations that are generally out of sight from players.

    Finally, let players actually affect and control spawn locations. For example, players could burn a bandit camp to the ground and nothing could spawn there anymore. (And a new camp could be spawned somewhere else, a la Ultima Online.)

  26. @Gankatron
    @MarkJacobs

    That’s the kind of MMO you want?

    The crafting thing, I’m all for that. . .but 3 month resets and somehow inserting RNG into skill sets? People complain about class and skill balance non stop in MMOs and you’re going to introduce a random element into the equation? You’re right that’s going to be epic alright. It’ll add a whole other level to the kinds of complaints people can make, “I only lost because he got a good roll last time he dinged. Well, I’ll just wait for the reset and hope for better skill rolls in 3 months, back to WoW.”

    I have a question for you both. . .what is your definition of MMO that includes 3 month resets? Is ‘persistent world’ not included in that definition?

    If you make that game and get rich all the more power to you. Lord knows I’m in the minority when it comes to the kind of MMO I want to play. . .but I’m probably not going to be playing something like that.

  27. @Khoram: Agreed 100%! You nailed it… A mix of mob levels makes for a much more interesting zone, and gives players a reason to return later.

  28. @iLkRehp: Good point! What happened to “persistent world”?

    I can only assume it’s in reference to the “3-monther-theme-park” MMO, but then what’s the point? If it’s a 3-monther, it’s already a flawed design, or it wouldn’t be a 3-monther. I fail to see how a server reset would “fix” it. Also, why would I bother working to improve my characters’ abilities, if I know all that effort will be erased after 3 months???

    @Gankatron: More elaboration please. While the 3-month server reset might work for something like Planetside, I fail to see how it would benefit MMOs like GW2, WoW, EQ, etc.

  29. @iLkRehp

    My shout out to GT was specifically on the addition of the element of chaos into certain systems and yes, I’m a big believer in that. I did not comment on the 3-month thing. BTW, I didn’t agree with that part of what he wrote. :) Again, let me emphasize again that the line of his that I loved was:

    “This would be a chaotic game with epic surprises at every turn.”

    Whatever shape the game eventually takes , GT captured a few principles that I truly believe in for the next game in a single line.

    1) It shouldn’t be a linear, themepark style game.

    2) The addition of chaos (otherwise none as randomness) to certain systems is one that can be fun. A special reward when you craft, a spectacular spell effect (success or failure), an “Oh S***” moment when your trusty weapon (or an opponent’s weapon) snaps in half. This sort of randomness has been in almost every RPG ever since the first RPG was created. At a minimum it’s the “random dice roll” (3D6 vs. 2D6+6) for example as opposed to your sword does 12 pts of damage. Certainly nothing earth-shatteringly new. :)

    3) A game world that feels alive and like our world, a bit chaotic at times.

    4) A world where you don’t know what could be around the next corner.

    5) A world where even when you think you know what is around the next corner, maybe this time you’ll be surprised.

    6) A world that changes as events around it occur.

    That’s some of what I believe in and what I was complimenting GT on embodying with a single line and that’s what I was singling out. Frankly, when I say that I agree in full, total agreement, etc., that means that I do agree with the entire post, if not, as in this case, I simply believe in that I am referring to, as in this case, one sentence of a well-thought out post (which I did/do not agree with everything). :)

    Hope that clears it up.

  30. @iLkRehp
    @xenovore

    Quick addition, having a persistent MMO world has always been near and dear to my heart and even more so these days.

  31. I won’t do a whole list, but i will say one for each. Despite me adoring the gear treadmill in WoW in BC days and to an extent in wrath, but now being older and not being able to set aside dedicated raid times to do that, and finding the “LFR” system WoW has introduced to lack the allure i had to raiding all along, which was teaming with friends, to do something very difficult, it just doesn’t have the same satisfaction at the end, b/c well you’re generally doing it with strangers, and it isn’t all that hard.

    With that being said, one thing that Aion did well, despite the game having such major faults it did have A LOT of good ideas that were simply executed poorly, was the instancing system, plagued by the lack of mechanics to fights, virtually every boss was a tank n spank with adds that spawned (I haven’t played since around 6 months post launch, so forgive me if this is no longer correct), i say this about the instancing was i enjoyed the small scale option for instancing, in Aion’s case 6 people, RIFT also tried to emulate this system with Master Modes. Essentially nearly raid style mechanics on boss fights, making them near raid difficulty fights, yet smaller scale, meaning you could
    A) Do them on a more spontaneous time frame
    B) Not be locked down into strict raid times
    C) No Longer so heavily dependant on raid attendance
    D) Gives a bigger % of the player base incentive to do “raid style” encounters

    Now in Aion’s case instance reset once a day, and Master modes in Rift reset twice a week, i think the latter would probably be more appropriate, Aion’s problems were as previously mentioned the insanely tedious clearing of mobs to get to bosses, though not that bad, but more importantly the awful mechanics that almost always boiled down to Tank N Spank. Rift on the other hand had a good set of mechanics, and a good amount of trash, where it lacked was shear lack of instances, they essentially took their regular 5 mans, and on top of the stanrdard “regular” and “heroic” versions that most themepark MMO’s have nowadays they added a 3rd difficulty, but there was only 2 of these modes out of the 10+ instances released during “vanilla” RIFT, and i’m not entirely sure seeing as i quit shortly b4 the expansion, but i believe there is 0 Master modes out currently. I honestly want more games to incorporate this system, whether or not this would be the main endgame PvE raid progression for a game, or simply an alternative in RIFT’s case would be optional, though the latter would probably appease more people.

    As far as something that deters me from playing, it’s the removal of the Holy trinity, i have no problem trying to make players more “self reliant” but what GW2 did destroyed their instancing system, just as i anticipated, too much of a zergfest trying to kill mobs before they killed everyone, coupled with a lazy dodge system, maybe if they had a dodge system closer to TERA’s it would of been more manageable, and maybe with the correct tuning of numbers it would be successful, but IMO i don’t understand this extreme desire to remove it, it’s what people like to have in MMO’s. Like i said I’m not opposed to some innovating to make players more reliant, but i just think GW2’s direction was far too extreme in this case, and as a result their instances at least the first month of release were deemed “Graveyards”. Not sure how much that has changed since then, i never liked the idea in the first place, and was one of the biggest things that pushed me away from the game.

  32. @Mark Jacobs: Good to hear!

  33. 1. First person mode only, if it is a Role Playing Game third person has no place.
    2. An end to the “boss fight”, complex mechanics and huge mobs may seem attractive but when you get down to it two things happen:
    a. If the players can find a way to break the mechanic and turn it into a dps race they will (if mechanics are fun why do that?)
    b. The developer will try to make the event/encounter be repeated over and over again to make the content stretch. How immersive is it to kill the same named character over and over again? How many times does he have to be killed to stay dead?
    3. High quality graphics and the ability to sustain 30fps+ when 100+ players are in the same area.
    4. No PvP and as Bhagpuss said no attempt to ‘balance’ classes. Each class should be of benefit in itself and not the equal of any others.

    5. Please, please, please get over the obsession that your target audience is less then 16 years old and male. There are a lot of gamers of all genders over the age of 45 cater for them, they have the cash and often have the time.

Trackbacks

  1. […] topic of “chaos” came up in the discussion we’ve been having lately regarding things we want/don’t want in a next-gen MMORPG.  I thought I might share my thoughts on the subject and get your input.  First, what is meant by […]