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Is it the players’ fault this time?

This post has been a very long time coming as I’ve been contemplating all the various angles of how to go about expressing my feelings on the current situation in Warhammer Online and the mmorpg industry in general.  As it stands right now, at least on Wolfenburg, RvR does not exist.  Let me explain.  RvR is Realm vs. Realm and it means more than the face value of the words.  It’s a concept of having a realm, or a group of united players, coming together to do battle against the enemy realm NOT just for the sake of doing battle but for a purpose.  RvR, how I see it, does not exist.  Realm Pride or the feeling of fighting for your realm simply for the glory of your realm does not exist.

Players are worried about the points.  They’re trying to min/max their way to the top and it’s destroying the foundation of what Warhammer Online is supposed to be about.  Instead of coming together and doing battle in one of the beautiful regions like Dragonwake or Kedrin Valley(sp?) players would rather be cooped up in Serpent’s Passage in a 12v12 controlled environment where they can get their points faster.   Instead of taking advantage of the well thought out and designed areas of the game where players can use strategy and tactics to out think their opponents players would rather be able to spawn camp the other team for 15 minutes.  Why?

This industry has been plagued by the “I want it, and I want it now” attitude.  Yes, this was largely introduced when World of Warcraft gained popularity because, for the first time, developers started realizing that the majority of players want the ease of accessibility.  What started out as a good idea – making things more accessible – turned into the near extinction of effort, achievement, and earning your reward.  Many players – enough to influence game developers – decided that they would be willing to throw away their “Go out and get it” attitude in order to adopt a “Give it to me now” mindset.  While I will not deny that some people enjoy having everything handed to them in a mmorpg, I personally can not fathom how anyone can derive enjoyment from not earning a darn thing they do.  Where is the achievement?  I’m sorry, but you’ve traded one hamster wheel for another here folks.  How is queuing for the same scenario every day and just grinding out your realm ranks any different from raiding?  It’s not.  It’s one vice for another and in the process you’re ruining the soul of what this game is all about.

I’m speaking from experience in Elder Beta here.  When we only had ~380 people on the server we had some of THE BEST RvR I’ve ever seen taking place in open-world areas like Praag and Reikland.  We would have multiple fronts going on at once.  Players would gather together and have big open battles against each other that weren’t even for an objective – it was simply for engaging in the battle of your realm vs theirs.  THAT is RvR.  I’m baffled by the playerbase’s inability to function with what they’ve been given.   Mythic has made a lot of mistake with WAR but they HAVE provided players ample opportunity to take advantage of open-rvr and they’re continuing to increase the appeal – almost to the point of “give it to me now” – to lure people out of scenarios.  100% increased experience in open-world RvR.  I’m getting 7500 EXP PER KILL right now – that’s half the EXP of a level 36 quest for ONE kill!  Imagine if we had our armies out there fighting each other.  But no.  The players want to let the RvR side of teh game shrivel up and wither away into nothingness because scenarios are less work, less effort, more accesible, and more rewarding.   It’s really sad.

So yes, it is the players’ fault this time.  It’s the players’ fault right now, at least on Wolfenburg (and I believe other servers experiencing an open-rvr drought) that the game is drying up.  This game is about RvR and if you’re going to cram yourselves into tiny hamster cages and take turns running on the wheel then I have no sympathy for you and I know without a doubt that you’ll reach level 40 RR 40 and quit the game.  I hope it doesn’t take 95% of the people quitting to bring us back to that population of 380 to experience the game the real way again.

If you’ve read this far then congratulations for having high enough mitigation to survive the wall of text critting you for 18758419 damage.  I want to talk about what will possibly resolve some of these issues and what Mythic SHOULD have done and what they CAN still do – and have already stated they will do – to remedy the situation.

  • Continue increasing the reward for Open-rvr and lower the rewards for scenarios
  • Institute a randomized scenario system where players can not choose which scenario they queue for
  • Add that RvR influence system NOW – aka ASAP – and DO NOT let scenarios contribute to it.
  • Make scenarios further contingent upon open-world RvR.  Find some way to make them dependent on people actually going into RvR lakes and fighting.
  • Make holding a keep more rewarding.
  • Make the battle objectives worth taking and worth defending – they’re beautiful and some of them provide an awesome area to fight – entice people to come to them.
  • Fix the balance issues, bugs, and obvious exploits.


Players, if you are one of those with the “I want it, and I want it now” attitudes I urge you to think about what that type of attitude is doing to the industry and where it will take future games if this mindset continues to be represented by the majority.  If you like your dungeon bosses having half HP now and your epic loots dropping like candy from a pinata now, how far will it have to go before you stop having fun?  Are you looking forward to Star Wars the Old Republic?  If you’re building up this mental image of an epic Star Wars mmorpg with a big vibrant and amazing world to explore and fantastic gameplay opportunities stop and imagine it being a Guild Wars meets Hellgate London experience.  That candy is starting to taste a little bitter, isn’t it?

I’m not ready to abandon the “Go out and get it” style of gaming that this industry used to provide.  I’m not ready to abandon the idea that we can take the things that made WoW so popular – the accessibility and what have you – and apply it to a game that still offers the chance to achieve something and progress with player interaction and community.   It starts right here and now, and it starts with you.

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Chris - October 24, 2008

I tried so hard to do open rvr. Yesterday I went in excited cause I read about the 100% xp thing. I didn’t see one person just me on my mount. It was the first time I got to see the keep in Badlands. Sad really.

Chris - October 24, 2008

I just had a thought. I think one of the reasons why there is a lack of interest in the T1-T3 rvr areas. I think people are saying “I’m just passing through to the next tier anyways why should I care?”

Medrin - October 24, 2008

Wow, me and my brother were JUST having this conversation the other night. Word for word we agree with you completely. Would you reroll on a no scenario server? I’m thinking I will.

notcoding - October 24, 2008

It looks like you are arguing that players should leave Scenarios, even though they are perceived* (reality doesn’t matter, perception is the issue) to be the most efficient way to level.
Players will, as a rule, follow the path of least resistance. If the goal is leveling – which it presumably is – then whatever does that fastest and easiest, is where you’ll find people.
This isn’t an ‘accessibility’ issue. No matter how easy or hard the options are, most players will most of the time choose the easiest option. In EQ, would people have camped spawns for hours/nights on end if there was another option? Some perhaps, but not many. The difficultly isn’t the issue, it is the difficulty relative to other in-game options.
This is a balance issue, and that goes to the developer. If there are multiple method to provide the same advancement, they’d darn well better be perceived* as equal.

Josh - October 24, 2008

I wish there was just a simple timer on the scenarios. Like you can only do each one once every 4 hours. It would force people to not just run scenarios and do some other things.

Right now its a chicken and egg thing. open RVR is not fun because nobody is doing it. Nobody is doing it because its not fun.

Barken - October 24, 2008

Well I hear ya Keen..but to be honest im one of the “I want it now” crowd. Its not that the pve isn’t engaging, its not that the rvr is poorly done or in any way a fault of the game itself. The problem is ive done it all before. Ive taken my characters to lvl 60 in eq, 50 in eq2, 60 in WOW, 65 in shadowbane and I have several 50s in DAOC. Im tired of leveling characters and a change of venue hasn’t dampered that feeling one bit. Ive done it before, played to the top of the tier and Im sick of it. I feel like ive paid my dues and nobody wants to start over no matter what the change of scenery provides.

Now having ranted about that I will also say WAR has the potential to be the best rvr/pvp game out there. Everything is in place for epic sieges and rampaging battles that take effort, skill and time to see through. I just dont think you will see a big influx of rvr untill most everyone is lvl 40 and only then if its faster to lvl your renown in rvr than in the scenerios. If scenerios will level renown faster then thats where the majority are going to be and thats that.
Its like the multitudes of scenerios that are available right now. Why mourkain Temple and Tor Anrcc the only 2 played for the most part? Because they are the most bang for the buck and thats all there is to it. You can get much more exp and renown playing these 2 scenerios than the others per time spent so thats where people que up to play.

I am lvl 28 on my highest character have played since launch and I get in 3 or 4 hours per night playing. Honestly the leveling seems slow and getting slower. Ive done both pve quests, pq’s and enough scenerios to keep my rvr rank about equall with my pve rank.
I LOVE rvr..but until the rewards for keeping/taking/owning a keep make it worth my while its just not happening.

For one the cost of keep ownership is just short of impossible to maintain. I hear this is what they intended..keeps cant be owned for extended periods of time. I have no idea why they would implement such a policy. Thats what made DAOC awesome! The time spent trying to own a keep, building it up and hanging on to it defending it night after night was the most fun I ever had in any game ive ever played. Its a shame WAR has it in place so you cant hang on to a keep very long. You wont lose it to an enemy, but to the game mechanics that make it all but impossible to maintain ownership.

/rant off

coppertopper - October 24, 2008

“Add that RvR influence system NOW – aka ASAP – and DO NOT let scenarios contribute to it.”

Mythic said they would do this? This would be a very nice carrot to dangle in front of players to get them in open RvR, and even PQs, given those would be the only 2 ways to get the best gear in the game.

Bring it!

And good points – you are right they need to do this right away so I can further regret not subscribing after the first 30 days, and canceling my internet connection to finalize the deal :p

Tipa - October 24, 2008

As someone who loved open world RvR in both DAoC (Emain Mecha) and WoW (Southshore/Tarren Mill), this really does make me sad. But when you think about it, MMOs are about advancing your character. If you want RvR just for the fun and glory of it, then you really have to take things like levels, xp, most loot and stuff out of it.

WAR should have been made as a kind of mega Team Fortress 2 with persistent characters. Wouldn’t that have been FAR closer to the tabletop game?

Making it an MMO meant making it like WoW. Levels. Loot. XP. Quests. It’s not the player’s fault that they are playing it like WoW.

Ravious - October 24, 2008

I was with you up til the second to last paragraph where you lost me. And I really didn’t understand the whole Guild Wars thing. Are you saying Guild Wars is bad because all the game is so accessible and does not require 3-hours of raid prepping? There is “accessibility” and “I Win”-button and it felt like you crossed streams somewhere.

Joggoms - October 24, 2008

I definitely think scenarios are the problem. You can say the players are at fault and that is true, but Mythic shouldn’t have made scenarios the most rewarding thing in the game (speaking of a time to reward basis). So the fault lies with the players and developers.

Limited number of scenarios per day, massive buffs to rewards available outside of scenarios, or servers that don’t have scenarios at all are all decent solutions in my mind.

I chose not to subscribe to WAR due to the empty game world. I’m open to coming back some day, but not until it is actually an active RVR game.

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Joggoms - October 24, 2008

And another thing….I fully agree with @Tipa. Warhammer should have ditched the ‘WoW-ness’ they attempted to achieve and allowed the players to focus on the RVR goodness.

Julie Whitefeather - October 24, 2008

There is one basic problem with the “it’s the players fault idea”; as a college professor I once had in undergraduate school once said “arts were not made for reviewers – they were made for the common man.” Likewise I ask myself, who did Mark Jacobs and his team of developers make Warhammer for and why? Did they make it for themselves or the players? If they made it for the profit there are alot better ways to do it. If they made it for the players then the players will be the ones to decide how they want to play the game; and how they choose to play a game is not wrong – it is simply their choice.

In any new game there is always going to be a rush to get to the maximum level, but once the majority of the players reach the maximum level this will change as the reason for playing will change.

The game has hardly been on the shelves a month – give it a chance to mature. The vast majority of players are not “elder beta” players and are still exploring all the facets of the game.

I might add that on Badlands RvR is very much alive.

Julie Whitefeather

MakersMark - October 24, 2008

It’s never the players fault.

Given 2 paths to the same objective, the majority of people will take the easiest path. This is a basic tenant of game design (of any design, really). Games that fail to acknowledge that this is the case will fail, as Warhammer is currently failing.

There is currently no incentive to take or defend keeps. People want to get better, the fastest way to do that is scenarios. You can’t blame people for wanting all their abilities or to move on to new content.

Yeebo - October 24, 2008

A timer on scenarios is a great idea. Each scenario can only be run once every 45 minutes or once per hour. If you want to do nothing but grind scenarios, you at least should have to mix things up.

I’d hate to see scenarios get nerfed. If you stick to one pairing there are big gaps in the quest leveling that you are pretty much forced to fill with scenario XP. As it stands that’s a pretty painless prospect and I don’t have to resort to doing quests in a different pairing.

Snafzg - October 24, 2008

Mythic and EA want to make an insanely popular game. Look at WoW… one of the most insanely popular games. You can’t expect them not to want to mimic that. Apparently, they’ve even gone with a tiered-gear system now.

WoW may not appeal to many of us anymore, but it still appeals to many millions, and EA/Mythic want a chunk of those millions. It appeals because of accessibility.

Now don’t get me wrong, I absolutely want them to buff the heck out of ORvR, making scenarios meaningless. Who the hell wants the focus of the game to be on sandboxed RvR? I’d be one of the first to transfer to a non-scenario server if my guild would come along with.

Bia - October 24, 2008

People are slowly doing more RvR on my server – but only because Mythic have made it more rewarding – it should never have been the case that Scenarios were the best way to get RP and XP for your time. That was not players fault but Mythics…

I think things are changing, but do not blame the palyers for doing what your rewarded for.

Gamlix Madgouger - October 24, 2008

I always wondered how big the world would have had to been for them to take a page from SWG before it got the deathblow of the skill system patch, attackable player buildings/camps. Would certainly give a reason to be in RVR, your guild’s warcamp is there…

Gronyon - October 24, 2008

Are you sure it’s only player’s fault ?

In open RvR I have the feeling if I’m not the first one to hit an opponent player I do not get any experience at all. I’m tank you see. So I try and join open groups, but that often doesn’t help. When we come close to 40, more and more people in my guild will want to take keeps, I’m eagerly impatient to see that !

btw, I like scenario. well I don’t like to play tor anroc or serpent pass all the day in a mindless grind. I want, sometimes, to be able to have different goals to achieve than just run to the circle plate, plant a ram, use it, curse at the other players not knowing how it works, and hope there are enough dozens of people that work together so that the keep is taken.
Masses of players is fun (except that you need to downgrade yours video options so much…) but I have troubles to see how what I do affects the final issue.

Team PvP on various maps is also very interesting. So a server without Scenario doesn’t appeal me. A server were all scenarios brings the same rewards, or where each 15 minutes you get a different scenario, or… well something that removes the “use scenario to race faster towards the end” but not something that remove the “fast pace balanced team fight”.

Xiv - October 24, 2008

When there is an option to buy a chocolate bar for 50 cents instead of a dollar, wouldn’t you take it? The options are there yes, but people tend to gravitate towards what OTHER people gravitate. Warhammer has many choices and people tend to say “Ok, I see that I can do ORVR but scenarios can bump my renown faster, so why the hell should I do it?”. I do the same thing, even though I wish that scenarios were minimal, or even gone to once have that feeling of realm pride. Hillsbrad again pl0x.

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Curious George - October 24, 2008

I despised the scenarios ever since I heard they were going to be a part of WAR. It is major reason why I never subscribed after beta. Open RvR is what I missed most about DAoC and what I had hoped would be the best part of WAR but I knew scenarios would help to kill that idea.

Instancing such as arenas an scenarios are the devil in disguise especially because of the rewards (including the instant-action). If I were designing a game I would have insta-action open RvR and the only time people would be in an arena/scenario would be for a ranked or ladder system that had no practical reward for the general game.

Rafe - October 24, 2008

I think this gets at the fundamental problem with WAR that keeps me away. There’s just too much to do given the population. You can wander through an empty RVR area to go to an empty public quest and then do some regular quests unmolested by anyone else on the server.

In the meantime, the PQs closest to the flight point and the scenarios are chock full of people. It’s pointless to blame the game makers for this when it’s obvious it’s humans that are to blame. They want to take the path of least resistance to advancing rather than explaining all that the game has to offer.

It’s a shame for a developer like Mythic that has put a ton of work into the game to see a few parts heavily utilized and everything else just sit there, waiting for attention. And it sucks for the players who wander aimlessly through a cool environment wishing that there were other people to play with.

Jeremy T - October 24, 2008

Did you forget for a moment that you’re playing a mumorpug? Most people will always flock to the most efficient option for character progression. This tendency is radically enhanced by how grindy WAR is once you hit T3, where progression of any sort slows to a crawl.

It’s up to the developers to fix this, basically by increasing the rewards for PvP in the RvR lakes and by making leveling less painful in general.

That said, I actually like the scenarios, since they 1) prevent sheer numbers from determining the outcome and 2) allow you to get into the action right away.

br3ntbr0 - October 24, 2008

“the wall of text critting you for 18758419”

Hey, that’s my line! :p

But seriously, I just read through a 14 page thread on this exact topic at Warhammer Alliance. I have strong thoughts on this too, but I think that Mythic can put some things in place that will definitely rectify the situation. I’ll definitely start harping on this more if patch 1.1 doesn’t help the situation. All they really have to do is dangle a few more carrots in the RVR lakes and it should fix things, the xp bonus was a great start.

Argon - October 24, 2008

I do scenarios because I enjoy scenarios. As it is, they are the only way I can easily be guaranteed of some fun PvP action, quickly. The alternative is to wander around barren wastelands hoping that people will show up. And I have to hope that even if there are enemies, I am not too heavily outnumbered or I will just be killed.

I’ve really only done RvR a handful of times. Once I was in a warband fighting against another warband and that was fun. Another couple of times it was me and another guy against a warband, and I had to either run away or die. Another time I was in a warband and there were only one or two enemies. Another time it was me against two other people. I ran away and almost escaped but they managed to catch up and kill me without my being able to do anything about it. Of all those scenarios (no pun intended) only the first was fun.

p@tsh@t - October 24, 2008

Its never the players’ fault. Their world, their rules. Player “free will” only exists to the extent of that which is permitted.

That’s like blaming gravity for the flood rather than the folks that built the town at the base of the dam, and the dam on a fault line and the cloud seeders and the clear cutters….

If the vagaries of player behavior in games like this is such a mystery to Mythic, than that’s surely an epic fail on the design side.

If the game were ball-in-a-cup and players started beating the hell out of each other with them rather than trying to fling the little ball in the cup, then I might give them a pass.

But lets face it, WAR is just another ball-in-a-cup game and after watching more than 10 million people play just about every possible permutation of ball-in-a-cup in the last few years, there should be few surprises by way of player behavior in the genre.

Carrots and sticks, currently misplaced. Simple as that.

Thallian - October 24, 2008

Ty Keen. Yes I would reroll on a no-scenario server. Sign me up. The game might actually have people in it.

Keen
Keen - October 24, 2008

The fastest way to the reward is not always the best. In this case, players are actually hurting themselves and the game by taking the shortcut, the easy route, and the more rewarding. If Mythic forced players to advance one certain way then I could agree that it is mostly their fault. However, since the opportunities are there to do BOTH scenarios AND open-rvr and players are ONLY doing scenarios because it is the perceived “easy route” then it’s absolutely their fault.

Higgs - October 24, 2008

I love Thegreenskin’s idea of a server ruleset without scenarios.

I was hoping to level an Alt by doing only Open RvR. Right now i dont think that is possible.

Not only are the RvR lakes empty most of the time, but i find that the PvE zones are pretty empty. They feel like pre-60 zones after TBC came out. But we are 1month after release ;/

I miss thidranki,

~Higgs
30 Black Orc – Ironfist

Graktar - October 24, 2008

This is the house that WoW built. Playing WoW taught people that the fastest way to the level cap is the best way, the only way. Anything else is wasting your time. WoW taught people that the way to PvP is to queue for a battleground, wait for it, grind it out, then do it all over again. WoW is WAR’s biggest enemy not as a competing game, but due to the habits it’s instilled in MMO players.

They need to implement those changes, and fast, especially the Open RvR influence system and nerfs/changes to scenarios. I’d enjoy randomized scenario queuing just for the change of pace, though I don’t think it would reduce the number of people in scenarios.

One thing they really need to do is make holding (and claiming) a keep meaningful. Right now it costs a guild huge amounts of money and all it does is provide guild xp an contribution to the war effort, both of which are fairly nebulous on an individual level. One possibility (off the top of my head) would be for a controlled keep to provide an increase to loot drops and/or xp gain zone-wide for the owning side (like +10% drop chances and +50% xp or something). If there are two keeps in the zone, you have to own both of them. Claimed keeps could provide an even greater bonus for their guild members in the zone. Make holding a keep have obvious rewards for everyone, and people will contest them fiercely.

Another thing I think they need to do that I haven’t seen mentioned is improve respawning in open RvR areas. In a scenario, you die, respawn, and run back into the action. At most you have 60s between death and renewed battling. In the open RvR areas, you can easily spend several minutes slogging your way back to where the action is, which makes scenarios more appealing in comparison. Create additional respawn areas in each lake that players can choose to rez at so long as no enemy players are within a certain radius. These could either be part of the battlefield objectives, or new graveyard objectives. It would even add a new tactic to the battle since keeping players in the enemy respawn area would force them to respawn further away.

WAR RvR isn’t dead yet, but they need to take drastic action soon before everyone gives up on it for good.

Graktar - October 24, 2008

I’d roll on a scenario-less server also. I like the scenarios well enough, but I’d rather have a game world with people in it, rather than the entire Warhammer world feeling like a lobby for pvp scenarios.

Or, rather than removing scenarios, what about actually placing them in the game world? Plunk them in part of an appropriate RvR zone and make players actually run into the swirly zone thing to queue. Since they’d be in the rvr area and waiting for a queue to pop, hopefully players would run out and rvr for a while. I don’t know, maybe that’s too optimistic, players would probably just pick one scenario per tier and everyone would go there and camp the entrance until the scenario popped.

Sigh.

Vort - October 24, 2008

If I could just look at the world map and it would show me where battles were going on anywhere in the world not just the area I’m in.

I believe that would change open RvR over night. Not just throwing more XP at the problem. I say increase accessibility just do it in the right way.

Something better change soon WAR is getting shallower and shallower not deeper.

Tipa - October 24, 2008

Limit the number of scenarios? Like only two or so in a tier can be active at once? Sure, if people want to wait five hours for their turn, cool, but maybe they could do something else while waiting?

Or take any particular thing to do, and lower the rewards incrementally as it is run, so any specific scenario gradually becomes worthless if it’s run too much. Have a window so you can see what are the most rewarding things for you to do at your tier. Oh look, full rewards for the PQs and Open RvR over there! This unpopular scenario still has decent rewards, but THIS one is worthless :/ better head out and do some of those PQs!

Or just remove levels and tiers so most content is available to everyone.

Nazgum - October 24, 2008

Personally I think ORVR has two major flaws: Battlefield Objectives & Keeps have no meaning, and there is zero purpose for solo players to venture into RVR lakes.

Give solo players a reason to venture out into those lakes, so they can run into some other enemies who have reason to venture into those lakes, and groups will form and RVR will ensue automatically.

And give the BOs and Keeps a real purpose (com’on Mythic, you know the answer; DF2)

Of course, capping the scenarios at 39 or capping the renown earned from scenarios at RR40 would also help tremendously.

Anjin - October 24, 2008

I was really enjoying this post until you started hating on Guild Wars. Shame on you.

Galaji - October 24, 2008

Before I get going into my thoughts, I just want to point out that your post has a very “I want my hardcore MMO, all you casual players need to go away because you’re ruining it for me” feel to it.

Now, scenario bashing seems to be the most recent trend I’m seeing in the WAR blog-o-sphere.

I’m here to defend scenarios.

A few days after WAR launched I found myself thinking “they could have made this game ONLY scenarios and it would have been great.”
Scenarios are popular because they are a fair (relatively) and fun fight.

Even if we assume changes are made to bring the majority of the playerbase into the RvR areas, it still won’t match the fun of scenarios to me.

Scenarios keep the teams somewhat balanced.
The population in the RvR area will never be balanced. If I attempt to take an objective with a group of 3 and you bring a group of 6, then I return with a group of 9, it just keeps going until one side trumps the other.
It is flat out foolish to believe players will voluntarilly agree to be outnumbered, outmatched and still want to participate.
There are no caps, no checks or balances in place to prevent this or to promote fair fights.

Every single time I’ve found a fight in RvR it ends with the opponents calling for help and coming back with larger numbers to crush us completely. Not them showing up with even numbers to duke it out.
It is not fun being on the overly large or small side of the fight.

You can up the rewards and incentives for RvR all you want. But until you can give me a fair fight against similar sized / leveled groups, I’m going to stick with scenarios.

Now as far as the PvE goes….don’t make me laugh. PvE in its current form is outdated. Who are you impressing when you outsmart or defeat the NPCs? After you’ve killed one, you’ve killed them all. Yes, some have slightly different AI routines, but for the most part its the same behavior. I can do 99% of the quests in the game, at their appropriate level, without the thrill that comes from PvP or the desire to repeat them because they were fun.

People are playing scenarios because they like playing against other people in a fair fight. Plain and simple.

Take away all the rewards, give them to RvR areas, and I’ll still stand around queuing up 90% of the time for them. The other 10% will be me doing public quests for equipment upgrades and to slowly level. But make no mistake, I will moan about having to do so because it is not something that is “fun” but rather a requirement. And if that requirement ever begins to take too much of my time (that I’ve set aside in my life for recreation) then I WILL quit your game and find another activity to entertain me.

WAR is a casual PvP game. Scenarios are the best fit for that crowd, thus the most popular feature at the moment. I fail to see what is so confusing or upsetting about this unless you were somehow mislead or convinced yourself that WAR was something other than a casual PvP game.

Graktar - October 24, 2008

I like Tipa’s idea of diminishing rewards for over-use and an interface to show what’s currently productive and what isn’t. Rather than just a penalty for things that are over-used, I’d like to see bonuses for things that are underused as well. So every given activity has a baseline reward value. As one activity is overused it decreases in value, while another one that isn’t touched at all (say, PQs) increases in value. Thus you can keep the penalties on over-used content fairly minor and still create a considerable incentive to do something else. If you can get double xp for Chapter 9 PQs and PQ mobs, or 50% xp for T2 scenarios and scenario players, you certainly COULD keep doing the scenario, but the PQ will be far more productive, luring the min/maxers out from the cave.

Rivers - October 24, 2008

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jtmYNMi9OY0 I don’t know if you have seen this, its a new video that PB talks about open RVR. improvements.

Romble - October 24, 2008

The easy solution is to remove renown in scenarios. Scenarios should be used as a method to level for xp but not to farm renown, leave that for open rvr. I am surprised Mythic has not done this yet especially for T4.

Werit - October 24, 2008

Players are playing the systems, not the games. Seems common in most games these days.

@romble: And what about those that think the scenarios are fun?

p@tsh@t - October 24, 2008

“However, since the opportunities are there to do BOTH scenarios AND open-rvr and players are ONLY doing scenarios because it is the perceived “easy route” then it’s absolutely their fault.”

The fallacy here is equating opportunities with outcomes which are fundamentally disparate at the moment. The existence of the opportunities and the incentives they provide informs player perception. Creating and managing that perception is Mythic’s job. That’s absolutely a consequence of design.

I wish peeps played differently and were differently motivated toward open RvR also, but if there’s a modest pile of carrots next to me and another pile of carrots WAY over there, unless someone convinces me that its worth it to go WAY over there and that the pile of carrots is MUCH bigger and no one is going to whack me with a stick, I’m going to just grab the pile of carrots right here thank you very much.

PvE is too few carrots, too far away compared to scenarios as is open RvR as well ATM.

Its hugely naive on Mythic’s part to think people would behave any other way. They always have and always do.

Diminishing returns, or buffing alternatives, etc. all amounts to rebalancing the incentives away from scenarios.

At this point, I’d totally reroll on a scenario-less server provided that some more love was given to PvE and open RvR.

@Grak: Great point on the death debuff which is borked as well. Scenario debuff = 0, PvP debuff = 3 min, PvE debuff = 15 min which sucks if you get killed by an NPC in a keep rather than another player…

Keen
Keen - October 24, 2008

The outcomes are no longer fundamentally disparate in favor of scenarios though potshot. They’ve made EXP in open-world RvR far more rewarding than scenarios now. 100% more exp in fact. It’s simply the ease of use that scenarios offer which is enticing people to not put forth any effort. The incentives are actually greater for open-world now. The sad part is that Mythic will have to make open-world rvr SO MUCH more enticing just to get people’s attention.

So we have:
a more rewarding experience in open-world RvR for EXP.
a more rewarding experience in terms of gameplay provided by objectives, terrain, and design for open-world RvR.
a fundamentally more complex, detailed, and designed system that the game was developed upon for open-world RvR (city sieges)

… and people STILL queue up for scenarios because it’s the “I want it, and I want it now” attitude. It’s far easier to queue up for scenarios, get less exp, have a less dynamic experience, see less of the game, and not experience what the game is about but have an easier time at doing it… yeah, that makes sense. Dumbfounding.

lumio - October 24, 2008

” * Continue increasing the reward for Open-rvr and lower the rewards for scenarios
* Institute a randomized scenario system where players can not choose which scenario they queue for
* Add that RvR influence system NOW – aka ASAP – and DO NOT let scenarios contribute to it.
* Make scenarios further contingent upon open-world RvR. Find some way to make them dependent on people actually going into RvR lakes and fighting.
* Make holding a keep more rewarding.
* Make the battle objectives worth taking and worth defending – they’re beautiful and some of them provide an awesome area to fight – entice people to come to them.
* Fix the balance issues, bugs, and obvious exploits.”

My name is Lumio and I approve this message.

SleepySam - October 24, 2008

Hmm. Plenty of O-RVR on Avelorn usually from 7 CST onward if not other times. Come on over, the water is just right!

Scott M. - October 24, 2008

I would love an Open RVR/No Scenario server. I’m one of those guys that explores some of the great environments in WAR and thinks “this would be a fun place for a battle…” and yet no one is around. No reason for people to be there.

LJ - October 24, 2008

Very well Put keen. My guild from AoC is on Wolfenburg and they are playing on another server, order because of the lack of open pvp as u have explained.
I work 2nd shift and when I get home I wanna kill people.. Erm I mean fight and die more then kill hehe. If i have to wait too long for a que, I just play a alt or log onto another server/side. Its not so much for me about the exp as it is the fun. I am already tired of grinding out quests and pq’s because i dont have steady folks to play with 🙁
Getting back to blaming it all on the players needs/desires/whines is mostly true. At least Mythic listens and does stuff about it in contrast to the ToA fiasco in Daoc.
One thing that is a delicate balance is trying to cater to the part time gamer. I have always devoted alot of time in the past to Daoc. They were great times. I met great people, and most importantly I had the time to waste.
I am almost having recent flashbacks of AoC where they made too many servers and thinned everything out too much. But I have seen that Mythic is still allowing server transfers so thats a good thing. The game is still pretty young so I hope they figure something out so I have people to kill!

LtWarhound - October 24, 2008

“… and people STILL queue up for scenarios because it’s the “I want it, and I want it now” attitude.”

Not even close to the mark, sorry. I do a fair bit of oRvRing. I have an alt that levels up just from PvP, and I stayed up way too late last night taking a keep. I was running around today in oRvR, defended a keep, took objectives, tried and failed to take a keep. Not bad, pretty fun. And about as far from the norm as you get.

oRvR is _empty_. Or, if you find someone, they run or they outnumber you, so you have to run. Its almost _never_ this fantasy world you seem to believe in, where good clean fights swirl madly, tactics and strategy abound and no one ever zergs.

Scenarios work because they are fast – no wandering aimlessly in empty RvR area, forlornly looking for a fight that isn’t a ganks. Scenarios work because they have basic balance – numbers, which you _never_ find in oRvR. Scenarios work because they have decent rewards – loot drops, cash drops, exp and renown. oRvR has crap rewards. Scenarios work because despite having 24 people fighting in the same small area, I don’t suffer any slowdown or lag, whereas in oRvR with _fewer_ people I always lag. In large oRvR fights I can count on CTDs – and there goes my chance at a bag if we actually take the keep. Scenarios work because oddly enough, they are Fun. Fun. Let me repeat that, Fun. And that’s why people play the game, right? Fun?

Fix those imbalances, and you will get more people in oRvR, but you will _never_ get everyone out of the scenarios. Not everyone enjoys oRvR and that’s just the way its going to be.

” * Continue increasing the reward for Open-rvr and lower the rewards for scenarios”

No. See above. Increase, yes, nerf? No.

” * Institute a randomized scenario system where players can not choose which scenario they queue for”

No. I’m supposed to be punished for enjoying part of the game? Your way or the highway?

” * Add that RvR influence system NOW – aka ASAP – and DO NOT let scenarios contribute to it.”

Booya, agree 110%

” * Make scenarios further contingent upon open-world RvR. Find some way to make them dependent on people actually going into RvR lakes and fighting.”

No. Why should my fun be dependent on something I want nothing to do with? Thats the reaction this would get. Not a good way to keep subscribers. Stop punishing people for having fun.

” * Make holding a keep more rewarding.”

Amen. And make DEFENDING a keep rewarding.

” * Make the battle objectives worth taking and worth defending – they’re beautiful and some of them provide an awesome area to fight – entice people to come to them.”

Agree.

” * Fix the balance issues, bugs, and obvious exploits.”

A-fricking-men.

Make oRvR as rewarding, as enjoyable and as accessable as scenarios, and you’ll have more people doing it. For now, I go where the FUN is, and I suspect a lot of people in scenarios are doing the same thing. Just because we aren’t playing the game the way you want us to doesn’t mean we are ‘going for the easy route’ or being lazy or shortsighted. Claims of that nature are shortsighted and lazy.

tolakram - October 24, 2008

It’s not the players fault.

oRvR is fun, but not very rewarding. I’ve been on 3 keep takes and we lost each time, a group of 20 of us, because of at most 5 defenders. Who balanced this crap?

What did we get for this?

XP was great at first, and we had some great skirmishes outside the keep, but then the XP dropped because of multiple kills. The RP’s, I didn’t make the amount of RP’s in one entire night that I would have made in 2 scenarios.

That is NOT the players fault, nothing is ever the players fault.

Honestly this is what frustrates me sometimes reading player blogs 🙂

This is clearly a design issue. Players take the path that they deem most fun. Scenarios offer balanced play and guaranteed XP and RP. That breaks the game.

By all means keep scenarios, but make oRvR just as rewarding.

tolakram - October 24, 2008


The outcomes are no longer fundamentally disparate in favor of scenarios though potshot. They’ve made EXP in open-world RvR far more rewarding than scenarios now.

This is wrong, unfortunately. If it was true you would be correct, but scenarios offer steady XP and RP with no reduction from killing the same player multiple times. If you have 20 people defending a keep and they’ve all been killed once then eventually the XP and RP drops to nothing (exploit prevention code).

We know people respond to rewards, and we know this is not an FPS but an RPG where people expect to make progress, so it should be no surprise that people gravitate to places that provide them the most bang for the buck.

It’s a design issue, it’s not the players fault.

Odius - October 24, 2008

/initiate slow clap moment

I agree Keen, and I would roll on a scenario-less server. I also like the idea of reducing experience in scenarios.

I think it really all comes down to the fact that most people don’t know what real RvR is like. If they did, this wouldn’t be an issue, and unfortunately, scenarios make it too easy to never know.

Keen
Keen - October 24, 2008

@Tolokram: On my level 6 Ironbreaker I get 1.5-2k exp per kill. On my 34 Shaman I get 7.5k exp per kill. I get 5k exp per winning scenario on average on my Ironbreaker. 3 kills in open-rvr is more exp than an entire scenario. I get 17-20k exp on my Shaman in a scenario. 3 kills is the entire scenario’s exp.

It’s absolutely worth more. If you’re zerging in a warband of 24 people and kill 1 person, sure, it’s going to suck. But that’s not a fair analysis.

tolakram - October 24, 2008

—-
@Tolokram: On my level 6 Ironbreaker I get 1.5-2k exp per kill. On my 34 Shaman I get 7.5k exp per kill. I get 5k exp per winning scenario on average on my Ironbreaker. 3 kills in open-rvr is more exp than an entire scenario. I get 17-20k exp on my Shaman in a scenario. 3 kills is the entire scenario’s exp.

It’s absolutely worth more. If you’re zerging in a warband of 24 people and kill 1 person, sure, it’s going to suck. But that’s not a fair analysis.
—-

On paper that’s fine, but I was in a 2 hour keep take try on each of the last 3 nights, with multiple defenders each time. If I had done 2 hours of scenarios I would have gained at least a level and RR if not more.

My son and I make it a regular thing each night. We go to the keep, we start an open group, and we start pulling guards (that grant xp, so yay for that). This lights up the map so eventually we get a larger group, then a warband, then we try to take the thing.

We both started this when we were level 13 and I finally dinged 14 tonight, early in the process.

This does not beat scenario XP and RP, no matter how much it looks like it should. For your paper analysis to work we would have to have an even number of defenders (which pretty much ensures defeat) and be able to kill them AND the XP and RP would not be split amongst the large group / warband.

I’m not seeing that, are you?

To me, the armchair designer, the answer seems fairly obvious.

Once you light up a keep you get buckets of timed experience based on your activity.

Fake Numbers:

2 people killing guards, 1XP every 15 minutes.
A group with a RAM, 5XP every 15 minutes
Warband inside taking the lord, 10xp every 15 minutes

Or something that rewards an activity that improves the game.

sicc - October 24, 2008

Funny that you post this a day after I crit Darkfalls forum with a wall of text about the state of todays mmorpg. Anyways you seem to see what I have seen but I have different theorys as of why this happened. I invite you to have a look at it here http://forums.darkfallonline.com/showthread.php?t=75990 . Anyways I’m taking a break from WAR atm leaving my lvl 34 and 33 characters idle due largely in part to what you said combined with what I state in my post. I’m about to toss all my eggs in Darkfalls basket because if pulled off correctly that game will be the next big thing.

Ainilome - October 24, 2008

Sadly, the fact that WoW has been hurting the industry as a whole is something I’ve been saying for nearly five years now. It’s terribly sad that I saw it five years ago and seeing it progress to where it is now, where innovation and games catered to a certain type of player can’t flourish because investors are convinced that they must see 1million+ players for a game to be successful and worth their money. Appealing to the masses very rarely gets you quality. What we need are more developers who are interested in creating GOOD games, not trying to beat WoW at it’s own game.

Jeromai - October 25, 2008

Server differences. You need strong guilds on either side with people who will rally the casual PUGs to action in Open RvR. Big zergy numbers don’t hurt either.

The very nature of T2 and T3 keeps and BOs means that there’s always going to be a bit of turn-taking, and snake heads eating tails (to pull in an analogy from Kill Ten Rats.)

That’s PvP for you, after losing a few times, the losers aren’t going to stick around for more – at most, they’ll change tactics, but likely they’ll find it a good time to take a break until a better window of opportunity opens.

The trick is that you need enough players and a few good leaders on each side to dangle enough victory carrots to offset the morale damage of the losses.

Otherwise people will try RvR, get terribly disheartened if they lose miserably (and everyone loses at some point in PvP), and then stop going into the lakes for good. Vicious cycle.

Ultimately it comes down to motivation via morale and other emotional factors. You can put the tastiest, most desirable external motivating carrot in the RvR lake, but if people don’t feel like they have a chance of getting it, they won’t bother – they’ll just think it’s a useless waste of their time.

Elder Beta testers no doubt had a great time because there was enough intrinsic motivation to go to war, to attack each other, and what not. I’d guess they were also more dedicated and sold on RvR as fun.

Melf_Himself - October 25, 2008

The players aren’t going to change, get over it.

Everyone wants to do open RvR, but they want to get to max level to really do the good stuff. That’s why they’re in scenarios. At the level cap you’ll get your massive battles.

In the meantime, Mythic need to introduce a simple UI tool to let people declare when/where they want to RvR (and PQ, and regular Q for that matter) so that it’s super easy to find people to play with/against.

SleepySam - October 25, 2008

Jeromai said it best imo. Good leaders on both sides – rvr happens. At least in this player’s experience.

BiggDawg - October 25, 2008

The problem is that games aren’t made for geeks anymore, they are made for cool kids. The generation growing up now is the focus of games, not the generation before. The reason WoW busted open the floodgates is because it took something for geeks and made it cool. Now that it is for cool kids the focus is on them and what they like, not what geeks like. Hence the shift from “Go out and get it” to “Give it to me now”. After all cool kids get what they want when they want it.

Nigel - October 25, 2008

Sadly, WAR’s is a flawed system. Fair and open RVR will not and cannot work. If the action weren’t taking place in scenarios, it would be battle of the zergs, á la LOTRO.

Vyx - October 25, 2008

It’s sad to see all the players who only care about getting to max lvl in the shortest amount of time. Though, I agree that the exp and renown rewards should be much higher and that open world RvR should be the best place to lvl both your rank and renown rank. Playing Scenariohammer is getting old really fast, and part of why I left WoW was just this, I couldn’t be bothered farming the same battleground over and over. Hopefully Mythic will be able to change this, and hopefully it won’t be too late.

The whole “I want everything, right now!” mentality sucks as well, which was part of what killed WoW for me. Back at lvl 60, we had to work for out epics. With TBC, Blizzard started slowly handing out epics to everyone, which took the “epicness” out of it. No effort needed other than time. No skill involved. Don’t even get me started on the arenas, which are so class biased and unbalanced it’s not even funny.

Gaming ain’t what it used to be.

esky - October 25, 2008

“Most people don’t know what real RvR is like”…

Maybe not. Or maybe they do know. Because after all, open RvR more often than not ends in one side just zerging the other down by numbers.

I play scenarios to get at least a few even/close fights, I don’t get that in open RvR. Win or lose, it’s because of numbers.

This applies especially to T3, where the fun usually ends with six lvl 40 stepping down to roflstomp a group of keep-sieging lvl 28’s.

So in short, yes, it’s the players fault for not wanting to be endlessly slaughtered (or easymode winning without point) in the open RvR lakes.

Cedia - October 25, 2008

I know that Mark has said, over and over, that he does not want to “nerf” anything. And I agree with him, generally.

However, in this case, what needs to be done is to nerf the everliving crap out of scenario experience and reknown gains. Why? Because most people do not read about how open RvR was buffed, they are too lazy. So most don’t know about the bonuses. If they nerf scenarios, people will have no choice but to pick their heads up out of the sand and look elsewhere.

Ethe - October 25, 2008

Two things are keeping people away from Open RvR.
1) New chicken system in Open RvR servers. Imagine as a new Rank 21, with 15 of your friends you go to RvR lake to attack a keep, and four Rank 40s come and kick you all in the face.
It’s no fun.

2) People can’t see damage meters in Open RvR and go “HAHA i did 100k damage I O.W.N”

Valdur - October 25, 2008

I think it’s both Developer & Player’s fault as both has been influenceed by a previously and still popular game.But as I’ve said elsewhere I do see Scenarios as an ORvR breaker in Tier 4.

I`ll wait till patch 1.1 because I love the game but the backlash will be that some Order players will roll for the KOTBS which will lead to less players in Tier 4 ORvR.

Torea - October 25, 2008

Forgive me if what I’m about to say has been said before . . . I didn’t read all 65 previous posts. I understand that ORvR in T1, T2, and T3. But when everyone is T4, wouldn’t there be more ORvR?

Here’s my question. What is there to do at Rank 40 other than city sieges? I remember a previous post by Keen that talked about “endgames.” Although I am immensely enjoying WAR and its focus in RvR, if city sieges and some miscellaneous quests and dungeon runs are all that is at Rank 40, I think this may be a problem. Maybe raiding a city is fun once or twice, but if that is all there is to WAR and there is no ORvR, WAR may have a short shelf-life indeed.

Xiv - October 26, 2008

Have to get to 40 first Torea, and no matter how much I want to, the game lacks something for me.

I’m not going to stop playing WAR, I really want to have open RVR be a success, and no matter how much I want to to like this game and for it to be more addicting and fun than WoW, it’s not. I honestly hate saying it right now, I want to play WoW more than ever AFTER WAR came out and after I want it to to be good. Mythic made a mistake slowing down the leveling process, and I feel that they overlooked/ignored/underestimated what the playerbase would do.

Obviously things are not playing out as we all want them, and none of us are going to do a thing about that. The devs have to force something upon us to change the system, and at this time that looks like the hopefully miracle patch, 1.1. Else WAR will fall to The Wrath of the Lich King

donderwolk - October 26, 2008

even with 100% increase… in opn rvr it will not happen…

the only way to make open rvr viable and fun..
is to follow the scenario way..
I want to go to the battlefield when I want it when I feel like it… and when I know there will be others…

so a que to form a group.. then to spawn to the open rvr and spawn back to where I was before…

most players are not going to walk 10 min towards open rvr and 10 min back (in the hope a battle is in the open rvr)
to finisfh of there personal quest to get some items… and to enjoy some others in npc bashing…

so scenario’s are now a very welcome change in playing from quests…

also alot of players do not want to get zerged.. which they feel will happen once they enter the rvr zone….

World RvR is dead… for now « Almost A Perfect Game - October 26, 2008

[…] RvR is dead… for now Published October 26, 2008 Uncategorized Keen’s latest post made me think about current status of World RvR. Until rank 27, i could participate only in 3 siege […]

Vig - October 26, 2008

I personally think you may be wrong here, yes scenario has its fault but think of the bigger picture of Open World RvR and the griefing it will bring with it.

At least in scenarios, it’s a balance field of similar number of people in a controlled environment battling in a somewhat “fair” environment.

In Open RvR there is no controlled space, anyone can kill anyone any time, even if its totally unfair. You can’t force people to go one on one, therefore there is a chance of griefing in these cases. Not everyone has a guild or play with a large group of players every day.

I once had this experience with a guild, we went on a rampage of all BO’s and Keeps from one scenario to the other, and each player we see, get’s instantly mauled over by more than 30 players. I felt pity on those players, I had to disband from their seemingly mindless zerging or keeps and other players, because I pity those that tried to fight back against this horde of ours.

Its always easy to be on the winning side, but if you were the player that were being griefed, what will you say then? Will you give up on this game entirely ?

Kleist - October 26, 2008

Keen you’re pretty far off base on this. There was plenty of world RvR in beta because rewarding players for their efforts didn’t matter as much at that point.

Mythic supplied you guys with templates and gear and all that stuff so it was unnecessary to actually do scenarios for xp and renown. Testers could get a 40 or 31 or w/e of every class and mess around in the ORvR areas. Now we are playing on live and people want to focus on leveling their main. And at this point it’s just not possible to do that through ORvR.

Get a clue Mythic and stop taking half assed measures like 2000 xp for a keep capture (LOL at that btw). ORvR rewards need to be buffed to insanity NOW not in December.

Ceadrick - October 26, 2008

I play in the casulties of War guild on avenheim. The RVR for t3 seems fine when I’m on, mostly late evenings. I would say at least 3 out of 5 days someone is defending or sieging a keep. Its fun to jump in but to see it through to conclusion isn’t all that much fun. Mostly people quit when they die a few times because it takes to much time to run back. Or the opposing faction has the area blocked so single players die over and over which isnt fun either. Scenerios provide a easy way to get some pvp in with a conclusion and good rewards. It isn’t ruining the game for me and I would imagine in t4 to be doing much more RVR since I think it matters more at that point. The game is young still lets see how it is when the servers are mature.

Nollind Whachell - October 26, 2008

Blissful Open RVR

Open World RVR is definitely not dead, at least not on the Red Eye Mountain server in the Tier 3 zone. Holy crap the last couple of days have been phenomenal for Open RVR play and I’m in bliss. I think the reason it’s happening is because of great leadership. There’s a player on our server who seems to be pulling people together effortlessly because he’s a great strategist. He getting people to contribute with scouting intel and planning lightning attacks across multiple realms. I mean the other night we took over four keeps, four flag objectives, killed two cave bosses, and then went into Gunbad for some fun at the end of the night. Was amazing. Last night was just as great, as we grabbed another keep, held off multiple heavy assaults, and grabbed at least four more flag objectives as well.

Developers not Players

Definitely don’t blame the players though (especially in light of players, like the guy I mentioned above, who is helping things out against all odds). As others have said, they are going to where the rewards are. That’s not their fault, that’s the developer’s fault for making the Scenarios that way. The Scenarios most definitely do have a place in the game but not the way they are functioning now. Why? Because they are detracting from the other aspects of the game instead of enhancing them (i.e. Open RVR).

Scenario & Open RVR Interaction

As you said in your recommendations, Keen, Open RVR and Scenarios shouldn’t be competing with one another, they should be complementing one another. They need to function in such a way that you want go from Open RVR to Scenarios and back to Open RVR because each provides different functionality in progressing a battle forward. For example, successful Scenarios for one realm should give them a bonus or boost in some way, so that it makes them easier to overtake an objective in Open RVR. Even more so, once you’ve taken that objective, doing a Scenario should then strengthen the defense of that objective in some way. So the end result is this perpetual motion and interaction between the two.

Reknown Rewards

And by all means, I totally agree with your statement about reknown gear and better rewards. I should be able to get reknown gear at the same levels as I can get influence gear, but that gear should be superior to PQ influence gear. Even more so, they need to figure out better objective rewards for everyone at all levels. That to me is the biggest problem with Open RVR areas. They need to promote interaction from people at all levels. Thus in turn, they need to provide rewards for people at all levels. I mean, ya it’s great if I get a bag from a keep capture but if I’m only 22nd level and the item is 27th, that’s not really going to help me now is it?

Financial Rewards

Finally, they need to improve money rewards for Open RVR. I started doing Open RVR at 20th level / 7th reknown rank with a little over 10 gp. By almost the end of 22nd level / 18th reknown rank, I now have only 1 gp. Why? Because I’m focusing on Open RVR totally which I love and doing no PVE (as they said you could focus on RVR completely if you wanted), yet I’m getting next to nothing for money rewards. Thus my expenses, such as siege weapon purchases (30sp) and flight costs between realms (25sp), is greater than my income from player kills (2sp?). Fine, don’t give me any rewards for defending a keep but if I take over a keep, I should be getting some decent coinage for that to help cover my expenses in defending it in future. And no I shouldn’t be forced to play PVE if I’d rather not.

Collaboration

Finally I think the developers need to provide better collaboration tools to allow people to more easily cooperate with one another. Open Parties are a great first step but they need to take another step. I mean a warband leader shouldn’t have to be continually relaying what his target is and where he’s add. Add the ability to relay the group’s target and location in some way (i.e. Malavar’s Warband is attacking Mandred’s Hold) to the open parties list in some way. In addition, add some stats to the map overlay, so you can actually see the odds for a battle when you hover over it (i.e. Mandred’s Hold, 22 attackers, 12 defenders). I mean make it easy for people to be AWARE of the battles occurring at the moment and how best they can contribute to them.

PS. @donderwolk: With regards to getting in a Open RVR, not sure where you’re getting 10 minutes from. Assuming you have a mount, you can get to most battles in a minute or two. I mean I’ve been in a different realm, viewed the maps, and flew over to a battle via a flight point in two or three minutes at most (since most flight points are near Open RVR zones).

Nollind Whachell - October 26, 2008

BTW for all those people saying Scenarios are a fair fight. Far from it, at least not the way they are working now, when you can join a Scenario with no healers on your team or your team is 80% lower level tier players versus the opposing team which is all upper tier players.

I mean ask yourself how many Scenarios have you played where the battle was very close, fighting tooth and nail? Now ask yourself how many Scenarios you were in where one side dominated (500/100) or obliterated (500/10) the other team?

For the thirty or so Scenarios I’ve played, at least 80% of them have been the latter. Actually I find when I play Open RVR, I find the odds much more balanced, even when one team outnumbers the other. That’s because in Open RVR you tend to be using tactics much more so (i.e. keep defense, siege engine usage, etc) to balance the odds. Again it’s why I pretty much stay away from Scenarios now because I actually prefer a “fair” fight. 🙂

donderwolk - October 27, 2008

thinking about it again….

open rvr is like fine dinning

and scenario rvr is like MacDonalds.. easy fast and cheap..

in this day and age of the financial crisis MacDonalds is making better profits then before…

so it is not the players fault.. it is just how we humans are… so mythic is to blame and not the players…

Castorid - October 27, 2008

I am going to echo #37 Galaji, this post sounds like “My Fun is the One True Fun”.

Some people like to kill other people. That’s only possible if there are reasonable odds of success (sometimes long odds are reasonable, but that’s the gambler psychology talking). Scenarios, for better or worse, are the closest you are going to get to a fair fight. At minimum, each side has the same number of people.

Open RvR is entirely different. If you have the same number of people and you’re all standing in a field, it’s largely just masturbation with a bunch of pretty lights. Healers are doing their thing, ranged sits there nuking the crap out of each other only to pause briefly to light up the melee that is foolish enough to try to cross the killing fields. It’s the Revolutionary war all over again, but with DoTs. Keep sieges and defense are impossible with equal numbers, so may the best zerg win.

Finally, there is a certain amount of “meh” involved in lower level RvR. 40 is where it all takes on the appearance of “fair” again… everyone has all of their spells, then the only remaining imbalance is numbers.

I agree there are still obvious systemic flaws that need to be fixed, and motivations can be better addressed. “Open RvR”, whatever that means, is still a fundamentally flawed system.

LordAposno - October 27, 2008

Good post, I completly disagree with any mention of nerfing scenarios. I think that rvr should be massively buffed to make them appeal more than scenarios. Nerfing scenarios is not the way.

A lot of people dont have hours to sit and plan to go to siege a keep everyday. Scenarios are a viable way to spend 30 mins to an hour and actually accomplish something. By removing/nerfing scenarios you will alienate a great many casual players. The end result will be a big migration back to wow. basicly a bad bad move.

You can not force people to play your way by nerfing a very popular game mechanic. Scenarios are one of the reasons many people play warhammer.

The ONLY solution is to buff the hell out of rvr lakes. Increase rewards and xp. when you defend a point not only get reknown, but get a huge xp buff. then rvr and scenarios will both be viable for all types of players.

breather - October 27, 2008

You have some valid points Keen and I agree with you for the most part. However, why would anyone want to RvR in the zones when they are IMPOSSIBLE to capture?

Ever since the hotfix from Mythic that made zones harder to capture, I have not seen one T4 zone captured on the Volkmar server. My guild has grinded out PQs in Praag for hours while all of the RvR objectives and keeps are ours and the zone is never captured.

Now I don’t like to point fingers so I’ll just say this: Make the zones easier to capture, if all the objectives are ours we should be taking control of the zone or be very close to taking it. Also, why do you have to PvE(PQ grind) in order to continue RvR(capture zone and move to the next)?

Keen
Keen - October 27, 2008

I agree with you there breather about making zones easier to capture again. I think it’s bogus and ruining the fun by making it such a horrific process – especially during a time when rvr is flatlining.

As for the PvE/PQ’s, in their defense, Mythic has always stated that PvE is part of RvR because RvR is not always “PvP” – it’s actions your realm does vs actions the enemy realm does. I guess they include PQ’s in that. *shrug*

Amputechture - October 27, 2008

My suggestion would be to link ORvR success into Scenarios. Make it so that in order to queue for scenarios in a particular zone your faction needs to control the keep. Also lock out the respective zone’s scenario quests. This way you can still do scenarios however you lose out on the extra experience and gold from the quests.

This does a couple things. First with a concentrated effort one side can lock the opposing faction out of scenarios and force them to come out and battle. Secondly if there are only certain zones open it’ll encourage different scenarios if people wish to capitalize on the scenario quests.

You could also put the keep possession on timer so that it will switch to the opposing side every few hours or so. This would allow both sides to attack and defend.

I think this method along with upping the returns from ORvR, the game will become a lot more enjoyable and competitive.

breather - October 27, 2008

That is an interesting idea Amputechture, taking it one step further.

Scenarios as a zone capture mechanism.
Have it so a realm can only queue for a scenario when they control ALL of the zone’s keeps and objectives (attacking realm). The opposing realm (defending realm) will receive a message calling them to arms to defend the zone in scenarios. This will enable the defending realm to queue for scenarios (only if there are people in the attacking realm queuing for scenarios). If the defending realm doesn’t queue for scenarios within a timelimit they lose control of the zone. There will then be a tug-a-war over scenario wins. If the attacking realm gets 5 wins and 0 losses then they win control over the realm. Another example would be the defending team winning 7 scenarios and the attacking team winning 2 scenarios (7-2=5 sucessful defense of the realm control).

Some type of implementation like this will force people to openRvR and it also incorporates scenarios into the forumla.

This might be too strict against scenarios, a more liberal implementation might be to have a selected grouping of scenarios stay the same (ie: MT, SP) and dedicate some of the others (ie: City of Praag) dedicated to zone capture scenarios.

Thoughts?

Azarias - October 27, 2008

If Scenarios give better rewards for less effort than ORvR, that is a flaw in the game design. You can’t blame the players for being efficient.

If Scenarios give lesser rewards for less effort, then the game design is working as intended. The original post seems to suggest the former, but it sounds like that’s not really the case.

If the issue is truly with the people and not the game design, then you’re just bumping up against human nature. Some people will do the easy thing because it’s easy. Some people will do the hard thing because it’s hard. Others will do whatever gets them the best reward in the least amount of time. You make it sound like a bad thing, but it’s just population variance.

To make a long comment short, ditto on the “My Fun is the One True Fun” critique.

Howdy Doody - October 28, 2008

Great post, sorry I’m late to it.

I agree with most of the previous comments. From my experience I believe making points and keeps easier to take (with smaller numbers) would really help out. Why can’t a group of 6-8 folks take keeps. That was one of the big draws for me on this game. You don’t have to be in a raid group of 40 to get stuff done. If you only needed smaller groups to take stuff, then the size of zergs should also decrease. Just make the rewards for defending them a lot greater. Make it worth while to keep your guild banner up there even if it’s a lot shorter time frame.

But if a group of 6-8 of us that want to RvR know that we have to wait for another 20+ folks to show, it gets pretty dull. I’d love open rvr if it contained lots of small packs all over the place, then at certain times them all randomly meet in huge battles. Just let the human nature kind of bring the RvR together.

aleph - October 28, 2008

It is bad game design, plain and simple.

Something has gone seriously wrong when my leveling options at level 25 consist of 4 million games of Tor Anroc versus questing solo in a deserted world, pitting my skills against some of the stupidest NPCs ever coded, without even the possibility of getting ganked to spice things up. On my server the only way you could get ganked is if you presented yourself half dead at the opposing factions Tor Anroc quest giver.

Neither of these leveling options are my idea of fun and I suspect this sentiment is shared by a good proportion of the player base. We came to Warhammer for the promise of mass RvR, keep seiges and drowning our opponents in boiling oil. I really doubt any of us we hoping for a second, dull unpaid job that we could do in the evenings after work.

Given that the game isn’t actually fun most of the time, you can hardly blame players for simply gritting their teeth and levelling in the fastest way possible, clinging vainly to the hope that things might pick up at 40.

When it actually occurs, the RvR is a whole lot of fun. How did Mythic manage to turn the game into a dull grind-fest? And what will my already low pop server look like come November 13?

Howdy Doody - October 28, 2008

I don’t know if it’s a bad game design, but more of a design that needs tweaked. I think if Mythic got the correct formula then there will be a flood of RvR’n. Everyone I know “wants” to RvR, its just not viable because …

1) We can’t do it with our group of 6-8 (so we run scenerios)

2) When we go there nobody’s there and see #1.

3) There are folks there, but not quite enough to take a Keep, so you sit there waiting in a stalemate hoping more folks come.

Blacknimbus - October 28, 2008

Maybe most people just prefer BG style PvP when given the choice?

» How to Fix the Warhammer Open World RvR Problem Mordiceius’ Gaming Blog - October 28, 2008

[…] While I don’t play Warhammer myself, I do spend a lot of time reading Warhammer blogs (don’t ask me why). The general consensus is that scenarios are killing open world RvR. […]

Keen
Keen - October 28, 2008

@Blacknimbus: As simple as that sounds, it’s possibly true. I think that might be over simplifying the problem a bit, but in the end it still means that it’s the players fault that open-rvr isn’t thriving.

Mordiceius - October 28, 2008

Keen, I have always respected your opinion on things, could you let me know what you think of my views on how to fix RvR (the trackback link is in post 87).

Warhammer Online Patch 1.04 Witching Night - Fixes : Money News - October 28, 2008

[…] from what they are trying to do with the problem of lack of open world RvR?  There is a pretty big discussion going on over at Keen and Graev’s blog about the lack of open RvR, and what can be done to […]

keensego - October 29, 2008

I usually just flame you for being an immense pillow biter, but this time I have to agree with everything you laid out. That’s why I canceled my account yesterday, scenario’s are killing the game.

Pierre - October 29, 2008

The funny thing is that the same GITMN (Give It To Me Now) douchebags that push for the Arena in WOW, that here are funneling like sheep into the Scenarios.

It’s the same slaptards that whine in the warhammeralliance forums about “WE WANT 6vs6 SCENARIOS!” (aka, WHArena).

I can’t even believe you’re that dense, Keen, to think that it’s the “players’ fault” for depopulating RvR. Really?

Here’s the fix:
– Create a “Portal Master” at every tier warcamp.
– Allow players to summon themselves to the portal master of the tier they are in, at any time, from anywhere (in the tier).
– Allow said players to be able to talk to the portal master again, summoning them back to the exact same spot they were when they summoned to the portal master.

Keen
Keen - October 29, 2008

So you call them douchebags, slaptards, and say they whine… yet I’m dense for saying that it’s their fault? I’m seeing a contradiction here Pierre. The majority (aka your douchebags) would rather have it given to them right here, right now, and it’s NOT their fault for thinking that way? I guess people have lost all ability to govern their own actions, thoughts, and feelings [insert sarcasm] No, of course they haven’t. They’re douchebags because it’s their fault for choosing arena’s, scenarios, etc over the alternative – even when the alternative is designed better and more dynamic.

Sisyphean - October 29, 2008

I think it’s pretty silly to rail against an imaginary group of whiners who ‘want everything given to them now’, for the changes happening in MMO culture. Different people want different things out of different games.

I find myself most nights logging out of WAR, frustrated, and playing Guild Wars. Not because I want everything given to me right away, but because I’m sick of having nothing to work towards except a meaningless grind for gear and ranks.

In Guild Wars, I may have all my items and gear unlocked, but I could play daily for the next 5 years and probably never touch the skill cap for some classes. The skill curve is intoxicating in its breadth and depth, and the reward that comes from successfully playing a challengin skill bar is far more fulfilling than getting a virtual piece of equipment to wear – to me, at least.

On the other hand, I *want* my WAR time to be about big, knock-down, drag out fights in open terrain. But everyone’s spread out trying once again to grind through levels to get to the actual game part. And I’m sorry, but I don’t feel like I’ve achieved something when after grinding for hundreds of hours I’m finally given core abilities that my class needs to stay alive – that just feels like a bunch of filler was added to keep me busy.

I do not want everything given to me – I just don’t want the one thing I want – the real, rank 40 large scale WAR – hidden behind hundreds of hours of something I have no interest in. And I want all the tools I need to play well and on an even footing with everyone else given to me from the start – leave things like skill, knowledge, and bragging rights to be worked for over months of play.

Keen
Keen - October 29, 2008

Culture is not changed by imaginary groups. 😉

Attack of the RSS! « Book of Grudges - October 29, 2008

[…] made a stand-out post about Tier 4 open RvR. It mirrors how many are feeling. I think his decision to make an alt and […]

Proximo - November 2, 2008

Kinda late now I guess but I’ll express my POV on this anyways =P
I’m one of those queueing for scenarios instead of going into open world rvr (even though our server actually has a fair share of open world rvr going on).

But I don’t do it for the reasons you state.

I do it because its a quick and easy way to get into some “pretty balanced” PvP, at least numberwise. I don’t care so much for the rewards, I do it cos its FUN (yes I find scenarios fun!).
Open world RvR on the other hand has let me down majorly since beta. Its been mindless zerging, its been unbalanced in numbers so one side has no chance to defend themselves, its been a lot of dying and “corpserunning”, and for what ?
The few times I’ve actually been in a succsessful keep claim then there’d be 40+ of us and 4-5 lootbags, so no rewards for me. And after 10 mins the XP is down to almost nothing due to diminishing returns.
When it’s not fun nor rewarding, then why do it ?

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