Players Naturally Seek Out Shortcuts
I just dinged level 40 in Neverwinter. That might not be anything special, except a few hours ago I was level 16. How did I jumped 24 levels in one evening of playing? I used the Foundry.
Players can make their own content using the Foundry. I wrote before how much I love this feature, and I really do. In a game all about getting out and doing content, letting players make something worth doing (since the normal quest grind sucks) is, in theory, invaluable. Except for the fact that players can’t be trusted to make games better.
When given the opportunity, players will seek out and take shortcuts and employ exploits to gain an advantage. Imem commented in my previous post that if players could have created content in EQ that expedited the leveling process they would. I agree. Despite loving the leveling more than any other part of EQ, a lot of players wanted to reach end-game because there’s something alluring about being at the top.
I remember in Dark Age of Camelot I loved leveling up. But after reaching level 50 three times, I started to wish my alts could just get into RvR quicker. I sought out faster exp groups — none were exploiting, but it was all about power-leveling. The same happened in EQ; Druid friends would damage shield me and we’d level up alts to a point where they were more fun to play.
In Neverwinter I’m utilizing these experience maps because I hate the quest grind and I don’t find the leveling up to be fun at all. I’m interested in what Cryptic has done for the dungeons, and I want to play in some of the competitive PvP, but the rest of the game is just in my way and leveling in Neverwinter is truly unnecessary.
Should Cryptic nerf the Foundry? On one hand the players are doing what I said Cryptic should have done during development: Remove the leveling. On the other hand, much of the game is now being skipped and the entire game is being damaged. I’m curious if Cryptic will punish creators of these maps and the players who use them. If so, I’ll probably be banned because I plan to be level 60 tomorrow.