How do YOU define a "Quest"?

SmolderSmolder Los Angeles, CAMember Posts: 9

Quest

A quest is a journey towards a goal used in mythology and literature as a plot. Quests can be found in the folklore of every nation. In literature, the objects of quests require great exertion on the part of the hero, and the overcoming of many obstacles, typically including much travel.

This travel also allows the storyteller to showcase exotic locations and cultures, which may, indeed, be the writer's objective if not the characters.

 

Quest objects

Even if he does return after the culmination of the quest, he may face false heroes who attempt to pass themselves off as him, or his initial response may be a rejection of that return, as Joseph Campbell describes in his critical analysis of quest literature "The Hero With a Thousand Faces."

If dispatched, the claim may be false, with the dispatcher actually sending him on the difficult quest in hopes of his death in the attempt, or in order to remove him from the scene for a time, but the story often unfolds just as if the claim were sincere, except that the tale usually ends with the dispatcher being unmasked and punished. Stories with such false quest-objects include the legends of Jason and Perseus, the fairy tales The Dancing Water, the Singing Apple, and the Speaking Bird, Go I Know Not Whither and Fetch I Know Not What, and the story of Beren and Lúthien in J. R. R. Tolkien's Silmarillion.

 

Literary analysis

The quest, in the form of the Hero's Journey, is central to the Monomyth described by Joseph Campbell; the hero sets forth from the world of common day into a land where adventures, tests, and magical rewards are found.

Vladimir Propp identified a quest as the central function of a fairy tale in his analysis, The Morphology of the Folktale. The person going on the quest may be driven out from home, or kidnapped, and the quest stem from that, which Propp termed "victim-heroes"; others actively set out on quests, which Propp termed "seekers".

 

Historical Examples

An early quest story is the quest of Gilgamesh, who seeks a secret to eternal life after the tragic death of Enkidu, including the search for an emerald.

Another ancient quest tale, Homer's Odyssey, tells of Odysseus, who is cursed to wander and suffer for many years before Athena persuades the Olympians to allow him to return home. Recovering the Golden Fleece is the object of the travels of Jason and the Argonauts in the Argonautica. Psyche, having lost Cupid, hunted through the world for him, and was set tasks by Venus, including a descent into the underworld.

Many fairy tales depict the hero or heroine setting out on a quest, such as East of the Sun, West of the Moon where the heroine seeks her husband, The Seven Ravens where the heroine seeks her transformed brothers, The Story of the Youth Who Went Forth to Learn What Fear Was, or The Golden Bird where the prince sets out to find the golden bird for his father. Other characters may set out with no more definite aim that to seek their fortune, or even be cast out instead of voluntarily leaving, but learn of something that could aid them along the way and so have their journey transformed from aimless wandering into a quest. Other characters can also set forth on quests — the hero's two older brothers commonly do — but the hero is distinguished by his success.

Many medieval romances set the knight out on quests. The term "Knight-errant" sprang from this, as "errant" meant roving or wandering. Sir Thomas Malory included many in Le Morte d'Arthur. The most famous -- perhaps the most famous quest in western literature -- centres on the Holy Grail in Arthurian legend. This story cycle recounts multiple quests, in multiple variants, telling stories both of the heroes who succeed, like Percival (in Wolfram von Eschenbach's Parzival) or Sir Galahad (in the Queste del Saint Graal), and also the heroes who fail, like Sir Lancelot. This often sent them into a bewildering forest. Despite many references to its pathlessness, the forest repeatedly confronts knights with forks and crossroads, of a labyrinthine complexity. The significiance of their encounters is often explained to the knights -- particularly those searching for the Holy Grail -- by hermits acting as wise old men -- or women. Still, despite their perils and chances of error, such forests, being the location where the knight can obtain the end of his quest, are places where the knights may become worthy; one romance has a maiden urging Sir Lancelot on his quest for the Holy Grail, "which quickens with life and greenness like the forest."

So consistently did knights quest that Miguel de Cervantes set his Don Quixote on mock quests in a parody of chivalric tales. His attempt to ridicule knight-errantry into non-existence was not successful; quests remain a vital part of fantasy literature to this day.

 

Modern Literature

Quests continued in modern literature. Many, perhaps most, stories can be described as a quest in which the main character is seeking something that he desires, but the literal structure of a journey seeking something is, itself, still common. Quests often appear in fantasy literature, as in Rasselas by Samuel Johnson, or The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, where Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Tin Woodman, and the Cowardly Lion go on a quest for the way back to Kansas, brains, a heart, and courage respectively.

A familiar modern literary quest is Frodo Baggins's quest to destroy the One Ring in The Lord of the Rings. The One Ring, its baleful power, the difficult method which is the only way to destroy it, and the spiritual and psychological torture it wreaks on its Bearer, is used by J. R. R. Tolkien to tell a meaningful tale of friendship and the inner struggle with temptation, against a background of epic and supernatural warfare.

Some writers, however, may devise the arbitrary quests for items without any importance beyond being the object of the quest. These items are known as MacGuffins, which is sometimes merely used to compare quests and is not always a derogatory term. Writers may also motivate characters to pursue these objects by meanings of a prophecy that decrees it, rather than have them discover that it could assist them, for reasons that are given.

 

Role-playing Games

The quest is a basic plot in role-playing games.

A common quest in a role-playing game will announce that the heroes must assemble some artifact, which has been broken into several pieces, each of which has a challenge the heroes must overcome. The carefully designed quest may allow the heroes to shine and show the qualities that make them heroic.

In literature as well as video games, side-quests are often used to develop character depth and reveal the world setting. These miniature plots may or may not have to do with the story's focus (being hereafter called the main quest), such as a romantic interest or providing help to other characters. In Robert Jordan's The Wheel of Time, for example, the major quest is the binding or destruction of the dark one, with major side quests being the securing of political power, romantic interests, and the growth of personal strength or power. Often these major side quests are stepping stones to the completion of the final goal.

In the beginning of the game, the player may need to learn how to effectively play the game, and the character may lack the abilities or equipment to embark on the main quest. The game may provide side-quests that are menial in nature and have little to no bearing on the main quest, and include such actions as finding a lost book, finding a lost child, or ridding a basement of rats. Luckily, the gamer quickly passes through this level. This may also be a tutorial teaching the basics of gameplay with relatively little danger to the character in contrast to what shall cross their paths when their adventure begins. In regards to the Monomyth, the player may is unlikely to have defeated the guardian at this stage.

Another form of side quest is a distraction or minigame. This includes activities such as raising pets, roleplaying social activities, buying drinks at a bar, dancing and horseback archery.

 

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quest

 

Prompt: Are we really questing in MMORPGs or just fulfilling tasks? Do quests require permadeath in order to be epic? Do you enjoy retrieving gnoll ears from gnoll garden in order to collect two copper pieces so that you can repeat the same thing with orc shoulderpads? Is that adventure worthy of producing heroes? How many more tasks will you complete before you get fed up with this pathetic excuse for content?

Comments

  • mmofanaticmmofanatic Ellington, CTMember Posts: 136

    Originally posted by Smolder


    How many more tasks will you complete before you get fed up with this pathetic excuse for content?

    42

    Just kidding. But when every new game comes out they use quests as a means of getting experiences fast, and not as a journey. I find quests in games like WoW, EQ2 and Vanguard very tasklike to the point i dont even read it any more and just look for the "Kill X amount of creatures" part.

  • ScorpioXScorpioX CologneMember Posts: 23

    a quest is a quest imo.

     

    oh , and this topic sucks

  • ForcanForcan Cypress, CAMember Posts: 700

    Well, let's see... the "questing" system in MMOs right now is not quests, but missions/tasks, stuff that you do for xp/money/reward.

     

    I think a good quest system that people would like to see (some, not all) is that quest and mission/tasks are somewhat separated, and that you could have missions within quests, but not the whole content. 

    Mission can be more static (but yet interesting).  I could give what kind of system I'm thinking, but I'm lazy... maybe I might post it later...

    Quests can be to talk to someone, understand something, travel to places to collect rare/special items, all put into one.  It can also have unexpected turns of event which change the quest itself (such as your action, or lack of, can change the outcome of certain event, which affects what you can and cannot do later on). 

     

    That being said, hopefully the newer MMOs can implement a better mission/quest systems....

    Current MMO: FFXIV:ARR

    Past MMO: Way too many (P2P and F2P)

  • SamuraiswordSamuraisword Washington DC, MDMember Posts: 2,111

    A quest  includes problemsolving, having to figure out where, how, when, who , what in order to complete the quest.

    Unfortunately quests seem to have died in classic EQ1. Now all we see are NPCs that glow with unrealistic icons overhead who spell everything out in painful detail and minimaps with arrows showing you exactly where to go and who to see.  That is a task not a quest.

    image

  • SmolderSmolder Los Angeles, CAMember Posts: 9

    Originally posted by Samuraisword


    A quest  includes problemsolving, having to figure out where, how, when, who , what in order to complete the quest.
    Unfortunately quests seem to have died in classic EQ1. Now all we see are NPCs that glow with unrealistic icons overhead who spell everything out in painful detail and minimaps with arrows showing you exactly where to go and who to see.  That is a task not a quest.
    I agree that they did die in EverQuest by and large, but Epic Quests were in fact quite something out of the ordinary that were really well done and admired by the playerbase.



    Each game since then has ensured that Quests become nothing more than endless tasks based on Fedex or bounty, which gets old very quickly. Even EVE-Online, with all the praise still has this monotonous facade as a means to satisfy gamers with content. But I will give credit to CCP for allowing these tasks to come about by players, which is in many ways an improvement.

  • mmofanaticmmofanatic Ellington, CTMember Posts: 136
    Originally posted by Samuraisword


    A quest  includes problemsolving, having to figure out where, how, when, who , what in order to complete the quest.
    Unfortunately quests seem to have died in classic EQ1. Now all we see are NPCs that glow with unrealistic icons overhead who spell everything out in painful detail and minimaps with arrows showing you exactly where to go and who to see.  That is a task not a quest.



    Not to mention after recieving a quest in Vanguard, there is a summary of it, which only points out what you need to do. Taking out they all ready minimal reading.

  • ladyattisladyattis Wichita, KSMember Posts: 1,273

    To the OP: Brilliant post, man, you really hit the nail on the head in regards to the issue of the misuse of the term quest within MMORPGs.

    To me, a quest is an over all story you're trying to fulfill, and everything else is just a step along the way, helping/hindering you in your quest. I think, if developers thought in this context, then what are called quests today, would be simply renamed tasks or bounties, which would be better off anyways, then they could go on to really fill the gap that is missing in all MMORPGs, the actual attainment of quests. In this regard, quests for MMORPGs will be hard to code, some would be static, possibly attached to you helping an NPC hero type in its own quest as part of updates to story arcs and what not, this would be an easy solution imho since it wouldn't require reinventing the current bounty/task system they have already (static DB of tasks with particular conditions to fulfill, blah blah blah). But I think it could go further, much further, by considering the concept of what a quest involves. Some quests involve the concept of values. So quests like this: you're defending your kingdom from the evil X (whatever X is) for A, B, and C reasons, would follow as an achievement of values needed to do the quantified part of the quest. Whether the values involve being smarter than most other players (you take on tasks or challenges that require you to outwit npc and pc opponents to fulfill them), or whether it requires you to be very brave, possibly recklessly so (take on an insane amount of foes at once to ensure you keep them distracted for long enough for whatever). Encapsulating it in the view of values, then all tasks would simply evolve from the attainment of such values (or virtues if you wish to call them) without requiring defining them for each and every player. Basically, you let the player choose the values they hold most sacred, possibly explicitly at character creation if it makes sense in your game, or let them choose the values by their actions, then see how it all pans out.

    -- Brede

  • ladyattisladyattis Wichita, KSMember Posts: 1,273


    Originally posted by Paragus1
    My problem with quests...


    I love the Atlan weapon remark. Even the lesser Atlan weapons were a pain the #$%#@ to get the ignots for. Or even the anti-magic material based weapons (I killed many a Lugian to get that dang sword, oi!), which were hard to get the material for. Basically, it was fun. Quests today are the chores you speak of, but more as they're really bounties. And considering they're bounties, since you're mostly dealing with intelligent beings or vermin, then they should just procedurally generate on their own without npcs. Basically a bounty board in each town, go and pick up a bounty, get some gold/currency/whatever. Rinse and repeat. Quests should tell stories, give you pig feet. o_O

    -- Brede

    P.S. I forgot about another quest I went on in AC1, which wasn't uber hard, but it wasn't the win button either: The Greenmire Cuirass(sp?). I can't remember how it starts out, but I do remember the dungeon the cuirass was in, full of mossworts, gromnies, and other assorted nasties. Basically, I ran my arse off when I got the thing, because I had a trail of a zillion or so of those buggers behind me. XD

  • b0rderline99b0rderline99 walworth, NYMember Posts: 1,441

    a developers sad attempt to cover up yet another grind game

    the only quests that ever proved this statement wrong (at least through my expiriences) has been runescape

  • SioBabbleSioBabble Eugene, ORMember Posts: 2,803

    The original SWG had three kinds of quest-like experiences, basically.

    1.  The mission terminal system, in which you were paid for destroying some sort of lair, be it critter or NPC.  The XP was gained by killing off the guardians of the lair, which might drop usable items, or credits, or in the case of creatures, resources that could be harvested by those who had scout skills.  Primary goal was the XP for killing the guardians and the money from destroying the lair.  There were profession specific mission terminals as well that granted you credit rewards for surveying, or entertaining, depending upon the type of terminal.  These usually were not very lucrative in terms of rewards.

    2.  NPCs who would send you on a series of missions, and who you returned to for some sort of reward, usually a few coins or an object to decorate your house.

    3.  The theme parks, which were a series of missions that gained you faction points and items.

    CH, Jedi, Commando, Smuggler, BH, Scout, Doctor, Chef, BE...yeah, lots of SWG time invested.

    Once a denizen of Ahazi

  • bonobotheorybonobotheory Seattle, WAMember UncommonPosts: 1,007

    I'm on a quest to rid the world of attention whores who post everything in large bold fonts with bright colors.

    If you can't write something worth reading, drawing attention to the text itself isn't going to help.

  • AirspellAirspell warsawMember Posts: 1,391

      There hasnt been a big mmo to date that actually had quests.  First and most important reason is majority of people can't handle a real quest.  People want a walkthrough experience like in WoW. Go to point a, talk to the guy with a gigantic ! on top of his head , go kill thos monster who is in X Y coordinates or in the area etc.   Also because of the competetive nature of mmorpgs people will not wait to figure something out by themselves as they would do(at least up to a point) in a single player game. No, they will quickly go to a sp0iler site so they dont fall behind in the game.

       If someone can figure out real questing that can be achieved through a dynamic/random system that still retains the glory of old skewl questing then I'm all for it.

    image

  • TorakTorak xxxxxxxxxMember Posts: 4,905

    How many more?

    None.

    We do not have "quest" in MMO's you have a mechanical chore that pushes you forward mathmatically in XP and maybe a reward. Like another poster said, people are not, could not handle an actual quest nor do I think that the current generation of MMO makers up to making them.

    The future of gaming is online but I'm not so sure if thats going to include MMORPG's.... 

  • Death1942Death1942 CanberraMember UncommonPosts: 2,587

    a quest is a task beset upon you by an individual or organization to complete the objectives they want and gain a reward for your services. 

     

    as for Quests in MMO's they really should think long and hard about which ones are put in as they can make or break a game

    MMO wish list:

    -Changeable worlds
    -Solid non level based game
    -Sharks with lasers attached to their heads

  • andyjdandyjd BristolMember Posts: 229

    If 90% of quests were labelled as 'tasks' would you think of them differently?

  • Paragus1Paragus1 Philadelphia, PAMember UncommonPosts: 1,741
    Originally posted by andyjd


    If 90% of quests were labelled as 'tasks' would you think of them differently?

     I would at least appreciate not having a developer insult my intelligence by trying to tell me there is something epic and meaningful about collecting dingleberries.

  • andyjdandyjd BristolMember Posts: 229

    Originally posted by Paragus1

    Originally posted by andyjd


    If 90% of quests were labelled as 'tasks' would you think of them differently?

     I would at least appreciate not having a developer insult my intelligence by trying to tell me there is something epic and meaningful about collecting dingleberries.

    Well i'll give you that...I think dev's should consider quests/tasks/whatever a bit better than they do...
  • b0rderline99b0rderline99 walworth, NYMember Posts: 1,441

    i really think for something to be considered a quest, it should have multiple outcomes based on what you do.

    i mean like where you have choices and can choose various outocomes, like a fable style thing

  • TorakTorak xxxxxxxxxMember Posts: 4,905

    Originally posted by andyjd


     
    Originally posted by Paragus1

    Originally posted by andyjd


    If 90% of quests were labelled as 'tasks' would you think of them differently?

     I would at least appreciate not having a developer insult my intelligence by trying to tell me there is something epic and meaningful about collecting dingleberries.

    Well i'll give you that...I think dev's should consider quests/tasks/whatever a bit better than they do...

     


    Now I haven't played DAoC in a long time but that game did seperate the two. You got some generic kill task from guards and a few other NPC's but your "quest" were different and formed a somewhat generic story throughout your leveling and usually involved recoving something or killing a boss of sorts. (its been awhile) It progressed and thats how you got your "epic armor" at level 50. Which at the time was the best armor you could get.

    It was nothing earth shattering but there was a difference. People would tell you to do "task" until you were high enough to do the next part of your quest. 

    To bad Mythic f*cked the game all up...... I hope they can do a better job with WAR because DAoC was mutilated by them.

  • SamuraiswordSamuraisword Washington DC, MDMember Posts: 2,111

    Here is an example of a quality, fun, quest from classic EQ1.

    This is the quest to obtain the Langseax or the Langseax of the Wolves. You need a very good faction to complete this quest (amiable at least).



    Complete Version: Go to Renth McLanis in the tavern across from Mac's Kilts. Ask him "What dangerous matter?". He tells you of a crime. Agree to hunt the murderer. Renth then sends you to see Dok in Dok's Cigars. Find out all you can about the crime. He tells you to go see the leader of Clan McMannus. This is the fishing village located in West Karanas. Speak to the leader. Then speak to Ulrich McMannus and he tells you Frostbite can track prey if he has a piece of sweaty clothing. Return to Dok and ask him "Where is the sweaty shirt?". He then tells you he sold it to Tundra Jack. Find Tundra Jack on the tundra of Everfrost. He will tell you that Iceberg is using it for a collar and that you can distract Iceberg with his favorite meal, Lion Delight. Go back to Halas and speak to Teria O' Danos. Do the lion meat quest (you get coin and faction as well as the Lion Delight). Once you have Lion Delight, be sure to bury it lower in your container then your normal food to prevent it being eaten by you. Take the Lion Delight to Iceberg and receive the shirt (NO DROP, LORE ITEM) and faction adjustment. Now run to the village and give the shirt to Frostbite. (NOTE: Frostbite will wait for the murderer to spawn before he takes off. He walks pretty fast so I wouls strongly suggest that you have Spirit of Wolf on you. It also helps to have a party member along that can track because I lost sight of Frostbite many times and have had to start over. Also, Frostbite likes to fight things along the way. Help him out. Be very careful not to target Frostbite by accident!) Frostbite will lead you right to the criminal. The murderer will be either Paglan or Basil. Paglan is tougher to kill and probably in his low to mid 20's, Basil is around level 20. Kill whomever the dog leads you to, hope he drops a Barbarian head and then return to Halas with the head. Give the head to Renth for faction, coin, and of course, the Langseax (if you have Basil's head) or the Langseax of the Wolves (if it is Paglan's head). I am not sure what triggers which criminal you get or even if you can just kill both and get both heads, but it seems that you wil normally get Basil.



    Here is a short version: Run to village, and receive the lion meat. Run to Halas, turn in meat to Teria and get Lion Delight, faction, exp. and coin. Run to Iceberg, give Lion Delight, receive shirt, faction, exp. Run to Frosbite, give shirt, gain exp. Kill the criminal. Return head for faction, coin, exp and Langseax. One thing to keep in mind is that your faction drops a good deal with the thieves guild with this quest, and the banker in Halas is a thief, making it possible that doint this quest can cause you to get kos if you try to use the bank. Also, you need a high faction with the Wolves of the North to finish the quest.

    Granted, once the information is posted on a cheatsite  you can look it up, but someone had to figure it out initially and many people enjoy figuring quests out themselves because that is what makes them rewarding and fun. Keep in mind that in classic EQ1 information was acquired by engaging NPCs with "key" words to further any conversation for additional clues. Lower level quests gave you the key words by highlighting them in the NPC text, but higher level quests did not. You had to research and explore to develop the correct questions, thus key words to ask. The NPCs didn't tell you which zone the next clue or NPC they named was located and NPCs didn't have stupid unrealistic icons floating over their heads, nor was there a minimap pointing the way in classic EQ1. You had to explore. What a concept! Faction also played a big part in many quests in classic EQ1, and many factions were opposing so that when you raised one, you would lower the other, which makes complete sense and adds to immersion and planning. You might end up KOS(kill on sight) at your favorite town if you weren't paying attention.

    Everyone I know who ran the Langseax quest  thoroughly enjoyed it.

    image

  • TorakTorak xxxxxxxxxMember Posts: 4,905

     

    Originally posted by Samuraisword


    Here is an example of a quality, fun, quest from classic EQ1.
    This is the quest to obtain the Langseax or the Langseax of the Wolves. You need a very good faction to complete this quest (amiable at least).



    Complete Version: Go to Renth McLanis in the tavern across from Mac's Kilts. Ask him "What dangerous matter?". He tells you of a crime. Agree to hunt the murderer. Renth then sends you to see Dok in Dok's Cigars. Find out all you can about the crime. He tells you to go see the leader of Clan McMannus. This is the fishing village located in West Karanas. Speak to the leader. Then speak to Ulrich McMannus and he tells you Frostbite can track prey if he has a piece of sweaty clothing. Return to Dok and ask him "Where is the sweaty shirt?". He then tells you he sold it to Tundra Jack. Find Tundra Jack on the tundra of Everfrost. He will tell you that Iceberg is using it for a collar and that you can distract Iceberg with his favorite meal, Lion Delight. Go back to Halas and speak to Teria O' Danos. Do the lion meat quest (you get coin and faction as well as the Lion Delight). Once you have Lion Delight, be sure to bury it lower in your container then your normal food to prevent it being eaten by you. Take the Lion Delight to Iceberg and receive the shirt (NO DROP, LORE ITEM) and faction adjustment. Now run to the village and give the shirt to Frostbite. (NOTE: Frostbite will wait for the murderer to spawn before he takes off. He walks pretty fast so I wouls strongly suggest that you have Spirit of Wolf on you. It also helps to have a party member along that can track because I lost sight of Frostbite many times and have had to start over. Also, Frostbite likes to fight things along the way. Help him out. Be very careful not to target Frostbite by accident!) Frostbite will lead you right to the criminal. The murderer will be either Paglan or Basil. Paglan is tougher to kill and probably in his low to mid 20's, Basil is around level 20. Kill whomever the dog leads you to, hope he drops a Barbarian head and then return to Halas with the head. Give the head to Renth for faction, coin, and of course, the Langseax (if you have Basil's head) or the Langseax of the Wolves (if it is Paglan's head). I am not sure what triggers which criminal you get or even if you can just kill both and get both heads, but it seems that you wil normally get Basil.



    Here is a short version: Run to village, and receive the lion meat. Run to Halas, turn in meat to Teria and get Lion Delight, faction, exp. and coin. Run to Iceberg, give Lion Delight, receive shirt, faction, exp. Run to Frosbite, give shirt, gain exp. Kill the criminal. Return head for faction, coin, exp and Langseax. One thing to keep in mind is that your faction drops a good deal with the thieves guild with this quest, and the banker in Halas is a thief, making it possible that doint this quest can cause you to get kos if you try to use the bank. Also, you need a high faction with the Wolves of the North to finish the quest.
    Granted, once the information is posted on a cheatsite  you can look it up, but someone had to figure it out initially and many people enjoy figuring quests out themselves because that is what makes them rewarding and fun. Keep in mind that in classic EQ1 information was acquired by engaging NPCs with "key" words to further any conversation for additional clues. Lower level quests gave you the key words by highlighting them in the NPC text, but higher level quests did not. You had to research and explore to develop the correct questions, thus key words to ask. The NPCs didn't tell you which zone the next clue or NPC they named was located and NPCs didn't have stupid unrealistic icons floating over their heads, nor was there a minimap pointing the way in classic EQ1. You had to explore. What a concept! Faction also played a big part in many quests in classic EQ1, and many factions were opposing so that when you raised one, you would lower the other, which makes complete sense and adds to immersion and planning. You might end up KOS(kill on sight) at your favorite town if you weren't paying attention.
    Everyone I know who ran the Langseax quest  thoroughly enjoyed it.



    Thats an excellent example of an old school type quest. Asheron's call was loaded with similar ones. IMHO, back a few years ago some young buck came up with the idea to save time and energy that having people kill 10 rats was a great idea for a "quest". The community didn't react negitively enough and embraced it as "content"....the rest is history.

     

    Why should devs rack their brains trying to come up with quest like this one if the community is just as, if not more happy going out and killing 10 rats like bots?

    Cynical am I?

  • KyernaKyerna MechelenMember Posts: 119

     

    Perhaps it is due to the fact that most MMO's still build on the foundations set by single player CRPGs that we are stuck with this bastardized term. There's only one hero and all the actions we as player undertake are inevitably interwoven with a (usually) linear plot and storyline. Most CRPGs are just one big quest. Sure we can have a little more options, sidetracking and a slightly different outcome; but in the end the outcome has already been set one way or another, and that outcome is the goal of the game we are railroaded to.

    Thus it's fairly safe to say a quest is a major goal, something that would have a major impact on the story as a whole; be it the protagonists themselves or the world that surrounds them.

    In a way I feel MMO and CRPG questing are highly inferior to PnP RPG games with a half-decent Gamemaster as to avoid the feel of railroading, but also for the impact of the choices the characters make. The difference however is that for both CRPG and PnP RPG games the player(s) are the real protagonists or 'heroes', since they are the only 'real' entities that interact or shape the story by their actions; whereas in an MMO it's highly unlikely a player can become a 'hero' as their actions will usually have little affect on the gameworld or story due to lack of real interaction, consequences and the fact an MMO has to take entertainment of a massive amount of players into consideration.

    There's currently a bunch of games out there that have live-action events; player actions have consequences, on their characters and on the gameworld (which may include story progression). There's also MUDs who have proven real consequences to player actions are possible, mainly due to various Gamemasters catering for the undertakings of a bunch of players, allowing for questing and it's effects on the world. Now what if the next logical step for MMO questing could be found in specialized animation teams? No pre-scripted and programmed fed-ex 'questing', but Gamesmasters who alter and affect the world, make it dynamic, offer problems for groups of players to solve, where their actions will have consequences.

    Then again, dedicated teams like that would have a hard time catering to masses of players and more importantly, drain a lot of cash.

    Wishfull thinking perhaps?

     

  • SioBabbleSioBabble Eugene, ORMember Posts: 2,803

    There is an inherent contradiction in the world of MMOs with quests; you see this in WoW where the quest givers sometimes treat you as the only being they've ever talked to, and it's up to you, young dwarf hunter, to set the entire world right by taking down the troggs in that cave.  So from the getgo, we've got a problem.  There are multiple heroes doing the same thing repeatedly saving Azeroth by their deeds.  It is, as has been mentioned above, deterius from single player RPGs where you ARE the hero and you need to do heroic things.  In a multiplayer environment, this hits some cognitive dissonance devices and turns what was epic into the mundane because you wind up doing basicaly the same thing over and over again as you treadmill your way up the levels.

    This situation naturally grates on some players.  Can't blame them, but hey, this is the nature of the beast.

    There are a lot of players out there that need directed content.  SWG didn't operate that way and it suffered from a lack of 'content' as a result.  Unless things are handed to some players, they aren't going to be happy.

    I'll give the Blizz guys some credit; WoW's quests are grounded in the overall storyline and while repetative, have story elements in them that are engaging.  I think the quest series in Duskwood, in particular, is very good from a story perspective.

    Of course, this may not be satisfying for the most hardcore of MMO vets, who want world-changing consequences as part of the quest, but that's just not realistic because it involves upsetting the applecart that is the static world that can facilitate the army of players.  The need for the virtual world you're participating in to be sustainable gets in the way, because every detail in it is artificial, not organic, just simulating organic.  It's not self regulating at the level players interact with it, it just appears to be because it is static.

    CH, Jedi, Commando, Smuggler, BH, Scout, Doctor, Chef, BE...yeah, lots of SWG time invested.

    Once a denizen of Ahazi

  • MiNaAuMiNaAu LondonMember Posts: 382

    i see quests as epic journeys into unknown places to complete great feats and so on. like the beowulf book could be a quest.

    problem is developers seem to have got a different definition of quests

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