Imagine you had unlimited time, money, resources, even infinite knowledge. You are the complete architect of your creation. You can negotiate with any company to use any kind of lore you want. Simply put, you could make any MMOG you want. I specifically say MMOG and not MMORPG because if you want to make a MMOFPS (first-person shooter) or MMORTS (real-time strategy) you can do that too.
Describe what you would do with that here. After you do so, discuss your concepts and ideas with other people. If you just want to discuss other peoples’ ideas here you can do that too. I’ll start up:
Sid Meier’s Civilization Online
*A MMORPG based off of Sid Meier’s Civilization.
Sid Meier’s Civilization is a game where you choose to be something between a civilization leader and a God. You are a leader of a nation, you are always the leader of that nation, and you never die. It is a turn-based strategy game where the objective is to conquer the world. In older reincarnations of Civilization, you could only conquer the world by going to war with the other nations, but In the newer games you may also win diplomatically by establishing the U.N. or win the Space Race.
*One server, one world
Everybody plays on the same server, in the same world. The world is equal to Earth in size, climate, animals, and resources, but it will not be identical. Nothing in the beginning is named, the map is only as big as what you’ve seen, and people will have to re-label everything themselves, including areas in the game, flora, and fauna. This will be the scouting and exploration side of the game. Every human is a player character; every animal is a non-player character. Everybody starts off as a simple caveperson in a cave; there are many different caves throughout the world and which one you start off is designed to be random but if a player wants to be in the same cave as his or her friends he or she can type the number ID of his or her friend and he or she will play in the same cave as his or her friend. (More on number ID later) There is no instancing.
*Create your own tribe, civilization, cult, religion, organization etc.
This is what the game will be all about. Right from the beginning you’ll be able to create or join a player-made tribe or cult. When the leaders (being you if you created it) have gathered enough information, developed enough leadership skills, and obtain enough people, either by their own or grouping with other tribes, they will then be able to create a Civilization or Religion. A Civilization will be the equivalent to factions in other MMOs. Civilizations will be able to advance further in the game much faster than a person going solo, but in return the people must conform to the standards of that civilization. Civilizations will have their own culture, language, currency, etc. Religion will be more about developing culture within a Civilization.
*Maintain groups of friends the way you want to
Outside of leadership skills, you will also be able to create groups of people built into the game. For example, you could have a group listing all your friends, and then make sub-groups and divide them into real-life friends and in-game friends, or make a subset of best friends. Your avatar can also develop romantic interests inside the game and you can designate another avatar to be your significant other. However, the other person must accept being friend/best friend/significant other as the game will automatically create a chat channel for your various groups of people. You are allowed more than one significant other, and developing on the religion you choose in-game you can be married to one or more avatar, male or female, at a time. Eventually when culture evolves the nonreligious will be able to get civil unions.
*Advance your avatar from ancient times to modern technology.
There are no classes or levels. There are only skills to acquire. In the beginning the skills will be very crude and basic; learning ancient technology will start off with only a few skills such as making fire, fishing, hunting, sharpening tools. Those technologies will rapidly branch out into more current technologies. Nobody has to do one of anything if they don’t want to; you’ll be able to advance in different skills to your choosing, including cultural, economic, combat, crafting, and leadership trees. Everybody has memory which will serve as how you advance. If you do something a lot, you will remember it and get better at it, but fail to do it and you’ll forget it. If a Civilization becomes advanced enough schools/universities will be built, allowing players to become teachers to teach other players how to do things without the need for them to start from the beginning.
*Grind will feel natural within a learning curve
There will be a learning curve built into the game. Combat will be a mix of button-mashing and twitch-based combat, as you will develop your own fighting animations for your avatar. What I mean about that is that you’ll be able to go into your characters movements and designate what moves and how fast it moves when you hit a certain button. If you go too fast, your avatar will easily get tired and uncomfortable, and if you go too slow your avatar will die in combat. You will cycle buttons either using your mouse wheel or Ctrl and it will be twitch-based aiming.
Crafting will be trial-and-error. You’ll get no stats on what you make until your avatar learns scientific notation, but even then you need to test it and give results to that notation. Even if you try your hardest to make something identical, unless your avatar is far enough skilled to completely measure things out things will always behave differently, especially in the beginning. For example, if you are making a sharp tool out of stone, you must twitch-based actually hit the sharp tool with the stone until it looks fine enough to you to cut through things, or you can test it out in the sacrifice of comfort: if it is dull it will not pierce or will take a great force to pierce so you must hold the button longer and if it is sharp it will cut and hurt you before you even get to use it.
Leadership skills will be about trusting people. Leadership skills will be divided into social and economic scales. As a leader you have the ability to give people in-game tasks (like quests) and you get rewarded with skill points by giving tasks, having them complete the task, and then the learning process by having them return to you afterwards. For example, as a leader of a tribe, you want to build houses for your people. You give the task to your crafters to build five houses. In return you say you will give them a feast for them to eat. To give them their food, you hire combat people to kill deer and then you use your own skill of making fires to cook it. As a reward, you give your combat people those five houses to live in. As a reward for exchanging one good for another the leader gets many economic leadership points he or she will be able to use to advance the tribe to a civilization and create currency. Eventually economic power will divert from leadership to entrepreneur skills as people will be able to make companies and eventually corporations.
Cultural skills will first be about exploring in a tribe or an early civilization, because people with culture will be able to claim land for a tribe or a civilization by putting crude posts made by crafters into the ground. These posts will eventually be replaced by roads, made by cutting forests down and laying paths. Cultural skills will be the most diverse, because it will also be about things like designing the civilizations’ currency, creating languages, creating and playing sports and activities, and adopting national styles like pillar architecture or domed buildings. Countries with high culture can dominate and take over tribes lands without going to war with them, but instead adopting their land into their culture simply by maintaining it. Someone with cultural skills will simply be able to make cultural unto any kind of organization, although it is most useful within a civilization.
There will be more and more skills and different play styles available the longer you play, including forging that will turn into harvesting crops or mining ore.
*Names will never be taken
You must have a first and last name, with an optional middle name (that you will be able to change when your avatar learns language and joins a Civilization), but the way you will talk to people in the game will be with an identification number, that will automatically translate to the person’s name when you type it.
*Support for in-game talking
There will be no need for Ventrilo because you’ll be able to talk in the game, which will serve as an identical match to typing. Just scroll down and push a button and you’ll be able to speak out-loud or have a phone/Skype-like conversation with someone else or a group of individuals of you’re choosing.
*A natural aging process (“Perma-death”)
When you first enter the world your avatar will be 18 years old, but as you play in-game your avatar will get older and older and eventually will naturally die and you’ll have to create a new character. Getting killed by a player will not cause permanent death, as you will be able to reincarnate inside your cave or house. Houses can be destroyed but caves cannot, so if your house(s) are demolished you will always be able to reincarnate inside your cave. When you are not playing the game your avatar does not age.
*Every avatar will look unique
In the character creation process you’ll be able to customize your avatar human into anything that looks like a normal human being. There will be dozens of different sliders for different attributes, and it will go further than that: you’ll be able to change your avatar’s “DNA” attributes as well, allowing you to customize anything that your avatar can be born with, outside or in.
*Avatars will have needs
Like the Sims, avatars will have needs. Needs will include sleep, hunger, thirst, comfort, fun, and social. Avatars will naturally sleep every time you log off, but if you play too long your avatar can get tired. Your avatar will need to eat and drink water to replenish hunger and thirst. Comfort can be easily changed just by changing stances. Fun comes in by doing different things – if you do one thing too much you’ll avatar will get bored and uninterested in what you are doing, unless you pre-defined it not to in the DNA. Social interactions will be in the game, and will be encouraged and required for all players that choose not to have the “schizoid” gene in their DNA. Hunger and thirst are primary needs, and sleep, comfort, fun, and social are secondary needs. Your avatar will die (although not permanently) if hunger or thirst is not replenished.
*A built-in language system
Everybody will be able to type and talk in their own native language at start, but once your avatar learns language and writing you’ll be able to make your own codes. For example, if you want to say something nobody understands, you create the language in-game with your cultural abilities and designate every letter you type to act and behave to other people who don’t know the language one to three different letters. So, it will ask you a = [insert one to three letters here], b = [insert one to three letters here], c and so-on forth. When you type in that language to you it will look like English, but to everybody else who does not know the language it will look like gibberish! Cultural linguists will be able to teach their language to people they know, and leaders will be able to adopt that as one of the national languages. This feature will be especially useful during war between two or more civilizations.
Your avatar will be able to carry anything to an infinite point. However, if you die you are vulnerable to being looted, but you will be able to go from your house or cave to your body and retrieve anything that wasn’t lost. Tribes and civilizations will be able to have laws to avoid killing and then looting the corpse. Leaders specialized in law will be able to put criminals to justice. The game will support banks that will be able to store currency or items, and you will be able to keep your valuables safe in your own house.
I think you have an idea of it by now.
There will be expansion packs expanding the technology/skill tree even farther and will allow players to go “into the future”.