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No more sidekicking up?

SereliskSerelisk somewhere, NYPosts: 836Member

EU Fan Day QA

We had a chance to try the game and noticed that the side kicking system didn’t work inside instances. We were wondering if you are going to confirm this or if in the future or in the release there is a side kicking system inside instances or dungeons?

Colin Johanson: There is side kicking in all of dungeons in the game. Each dungeon whether it is a story dungeon or an explorable dungeon has a correlated level that your character gets side kicked down to if you are over the level of the dungeon, but we do not sidekick you up to the level of the dungeon. So to do any of the dungeons in the game you need to get be high enough level to participate in it and then if you go over level for it, we’ll side kick you down to keep it challenging and fun for you. So for example the Ascalon Catacombs story dungeon is a level 30 and if you get up to say, level 38 we’ll side kick you down to the level of the dungeon so you can keep playing it with everyone and have it be fun and challenging for you.

Eric Flannum: One thing to note is that, earlier we talked about how we were going allow players to sidekick up in level we actually don’t have that functionality in the game and the reason we don’t have it is because when we were going through the game we thought one of the really important moments in the game was kind of that moment where you ran into something and you weren’t quite powerful enough to overcome it, or skilled enough to overcome it, and we wanted to give people the ability to kind of be able to build their character in such a way that you could by those moments instead of just bypassing them by getting artificially side kicked up a level. And so we don’t have side kicking up anymore in the game anymore except for in WvW. So if you want to think of how our dynamic level adjustment works is that it automatically happens downwards in PvE and automatically happens upwards in WvW. And competitive PvP obviously you get set to equal level everybody. So that’s kind of how that works now.

 

While some may not have known about this feature, as highlighted in this thread over at Guild Wars 2 Guru, there was, at some point, a feature planned where players would be able to have a higher level character sidekick them up to their level. This was supposed to be similar to systems in other games like CoH. They would still retain all their original traits, gear, and skills like in WvWvW. There would just be a base increase of stats so they could play with their friends in higher level PvE content.

I'm actually really disappointed that this feature is no longer in the game's PvE. My understanding was that their vision for the game would include a lot of focus on being able to play with your friends. Now, obviously, I expected their to be SOME restrictions to this (like sidekicking up and doing dungeons would have been limited somehow) but it was my idea that the sidekicking up half of this feature for PvE had everything to do with them wanting to play together. Players can obviously still play together through auto scaling to lower leveling content, but this significantly limits the amount of content players can experience together at any given moment.

Now, instead of a level 30 being able to sidekick up to level 60 content with their level 60 friend because they found an awesome event they wanted to experience with their friend, the level 30 now has to work through 30 levels in order to play with their friends, assuming they stayed the same level. While this may sound logical to some, who would refer to there being "no point in levels at all" if it were like that, I'd argue that Guild Wars and Guild Wars 2, from my perspective, were never truly about levels. Vertical progression seemed like a very limited and unimportant theme with the games. And Guild Wars 2 would still have points to levels, because you playing that higher leveled character through sidekicking would actually prove to be very challenging since you'd be without a lot of utility that true players of that level would likely have. And utility is ultimately an integral part of the game's combat. That's what the build system is based off.

Also, I intentionally referred to these understandings as completely belonging to my own concieved notions of the game so I wouldn't come across as thinking that my possibly skewed perception is the fault of Arena Net for not living up to my ideals. However, I don't think i'm alone in thinking that this goes against one of ArenaNet's core phoilosophies for gameplay, which is that there should be very few barriers for friends to play together, and there are things ArenaNet was willing to sacrifice in order for this to be achieved.

I guess not though. Thoughts?

 

p.s. I thought there would be a thread on this, but I didn't see any when I searched. So if there is, then oh well~

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Comments

  • pacovpacov Saskatoon, SKPosts: 311Member

    They pretty much answered all the concerns people might have with sidekicking up so I can't add anything else except that I actually like it

    EDIT: Also to add imagine how many people would skip like half the content and just maybe go from 10 --> 30 zone and skip all the zones in between... or even worse 10 --> 80. There would be no incentive in playing anything in the middle if you can get to 80 so quick, farm the crap out of best gear and skill points and complete the game in like 2 days.

    image
  • NaralNaral Solway, MNPosts: 751Member Uncommon

    Hmm, interesting. I admit, first, that I would not sidekick up for mainly the reason I percieved the dev saying. With that in mind, one thing I have liked about GW2, until now, anyway, is that they put all these tools for how you wanted to play your character out there, and then just let you decide how and what you want to do.

    This change is a move in the other direction, steering players to play the game a certain way. I am hardly going to lose sleep over this change, but at the same time, I do kind of dislike losing a freedom of that choice (especially since I level slower than most of my friends, and always feel like a dick asking them to level down to me).

    Ah well, nothing to do but play the game!

  • VowOfSilenceVowOfSilence wheePosts: 575Member

    I blame sleep deprivation due to crunch mode.

    Hype train -> Reality

  • deathangelldeathangell oviedo, FLPosts: 85Member

    So if you want to think of how our dynamic level adjustment works is that it automatically happens downwards in PvE and automatically happens upwards in WvW.

     

    in less im reading this wrong they didnt take it out. They basically just said instead of getting side kicked UPwards in PvE ur sidekicked Downwards which i think is the right way to handle sidekicking for PvE

  • BeansnBreadBeansnBread PshPosts: 5,501Member Uncommon

    I personally prefer it without sidekicking up. And I like that you can sidekick down.

     

    That level 60 can still play with the level 30. He just has to do level 30 content. But he will be scaled down and they can still play together.

  • Saxx0nSaxx0n PR/Brand Manager BitBox Ltd. Hell, CAPosts: 817Member Uncommon

    excellent!

     

    Actual forethought and planning.

     

    impressive

  • SereliskSerelisk somewhere, NYPosts: 836Member

    Originally posted by deathangell

    So if you want to think of how our dynamic level adjustment works is that it automatically happens downwards in PvE and automatically happens upwards in WvW.

     

    in less im reading this wrong they didnt take it out. They basically just said instead of getting side kicked UPwards in PvE ur sidekicked Downwards which i think is the right way to handle sidekicking for PvE

    It was never instead of, before this. It was planned to be both. But the way to do it upwards would have required you to be playing with a higher level player.

  • aguliondewaguliondew Nashville, TNPosts: 95Member

    From my understanding leveling to max level is an easy process. The only issue I have when playing with friends is if they are new to the game. With other mmo's you would not be rewarded or challenged for helping out your low level friends, so few players would bother helping out a low level.

    Getting kicked up to high level content posses the problem of having people not use to the game mechanic complain about difficult (like in alot of the first press beta videos). This it is a step in the right direction, this will have no effect on WvW. If it did it would create balance issues.  

  • CorehavenCorehaven Colorado Springs, COPosts: 1,538Member

    So Im assuming sidekicking down works at least?  Or rather, if a level 60 plays with a level 30 in a 30 area, he's kicked down to 30. 

     

    If thats the case you can still play with your friends.  You just have to play the content they are leveled too. 

     

    I never spoke out about it, but having my friend who just started the game at level 1 suddenly come romping along with me to do level 70 stuff, is kind of weird.   How would rewards or drops even work for him?  Guess there are work arounds for that, but still, with the former system, you could just skip to end game zones by just going with an 80 friend when you are level 4.  

     

    So personally Im kind of glad its not there anymore.  Im assuming they thought it was a good idea, saw it in practice, and decided it was anything but.  Such things happen in development. 

  • starstar Seattle, WAPosts: 1,101Member
    I was never a fan of the idea of side kicking up in PvE, for reasons similar to Pacov. I completely agree with the 'side kick up for PvP; side kick down for PvE' mentality, and am pretty pleased this is the direction they're going.

    image

  • SereliskSerelisk somewhere, NYPosts: 836Member

    Originally posted by colddog04

    I personally prefer it without sidekicking up. And I like that you can sidekick down.

     

    That level 60 can still play with the level 30. He just has to do level 30 content. But he will be scaled down and they can still play together.

    Exactly.

    My particular problem is that they're limiting the ways players can play together. I don't think it's enough for these players to be able to play together just for the sake of playing together because there stills needs to be mutual gain for both players to enjoy it. And a large part of that, I thought, would be experiencing new content together. With the level 60 player only able to go down in level to play with his friend, it's entirely possible he'll have already experienced that bit of content. Not to say it'll always be that way, there's so many dynamic events happening at different times that it's also likely he missed that content or didn't level in that zone at all, as well as devs adding later DE's into old areas, but you're still limiting the amount of content for players to play together and mutually benefit from significantly.

  • Eir_SEir_S Argyle, NYPosts: 4,623Member

    I agree with other people in this thread, I never thought that much of sidekicking up, I'd almost completely forgotten it existed.  The excitement came from sidekicking down to me.  I wouldn't want to be tempted to go and see level 80 content when I haven't earned it.

  • BeansnBreadBeansnBread PshPosts: 5,501Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Serelisk

    Originally posted by colddog04

    I personally prefer it without sidekicking up. And I like that you can sidekick down.

     

    That level 60 can still play with the level 30. He just has to do level 30 content. But he will be scaled down and they can still play together.

    Exactly.

    My particular problem is that they're limiting the ways players can play together. I don't think it's enough for these players to be able to play together just for the sake of playing together because there stills needs to be mutual gain for both players to enjoy it. And a large part of that, I thought, would be experiencing new content together. With the level 60 player only able to go down in level to play with his friend, it's entirely possible he'll have already experienced that bit of content. Not to say it'll always be that way, there's so many dynamic events happening at different times that it's also likely he missed that content or didn't level in that zone at all, as well as devs adding later DE's into old areas, but you're still limiting the amount of content for players to play together and mutually benefit from significantly.

    I guess I feel like some content should be limited by level. Part of the fun is discovering new content as you gain levels.

     

    I guess we just differ in that regard.

  • SereliskSerelisk somewhere, NYPosts: 836Member

    Originally posted by pacov

    They pretty much answered all the concerns people might have with sidekicking up so I can't add anything else except that I actually like it

    EDIT: Also to add imagine how many people would skip like half the content and just maybe go from 10 --> 30 zone and skip all the zones in between... or even worse 10 --> 80. There would be no incentive in playing anything in the middle if you can get to 80 so quick, farm the crap out of best gear and skill points and complete the game in like 2 days.

    This doesn't actually make sense as a negative.

    1.) Players cannot play higher level content unless they've been sidekicked up to that level for the time they're playing with that person.

    2.) DE's aren't a tool of vertical progression. They're not there just as a buffer until 80. The end game effectively was supposed to start at 1. There is no "best gear". DE's are actual content put in place for players to enjoy. Being level 80 will give a player no advantages to others since they would still have that same pool of 1500+ DE's to experience. Level 80 does not mean you completed the game at all.

     

  • KanethKaneth Posts: 1,930Member Uncommon

    I'm ok with it. You still get sidekicked up for PvP which is an important feature for V8 (or W3) to work. On the PvE side, getting downkicked is more beneficial than the reverse, especially in terms of skills and abilities. Honestly, I like having more options for reusing previous content (sidekick down) content, rather than allowing folks to skip a significant portion of the game.

  • pacovpacov Saskatoon, SKPosts: 311Member

    Originally posted by Serelisk

    Originally posted by pacov

    They pretty much answered all the concerns people might have with sidekicking up so I can't add anything else except that I actually like it

    EDIT: Also to add imagine how many people would skip like half the content and just maybe go from 10 --> 30 zone and skip all the zones in between... or even worse 10 --> 80. There would be no incentive in playing anything in the middle if you can get to 80 so quick, farm the crap out of best gear and skill points and complete the game in like 2 days.

    This doesn't actually make sense as a negative.

    1.) Players cannot play higher level content unless they've been sidekicked up to that level for the time they're playing with that person.

    2.) DE's aren't a tool of vertical progression. They're not there just as a buffer until 80. The end game effectively was supposed to start at 1. There is no "best gear". DE's are actual content put in place for players to enjoy. Being level 80 will give a player no advantages to others since they would still have that same pool of 1500+ DE's to experience. Level 80 does not mean you completed the game at all.

     

    Thats your way of thinking, and I don't disagree with it. I wasn't relating to how I will be playing but lets be honest many people will think 80 is the end game and if the sidekicking up existed they would rather play on level 80 content with their friends and never touch the other parts of the game... alts would be even more abused

    EDIT: my examples are targeted at when the game becomes older and when there are many level 80 guilds around

    image
  • VowOfSilenceVowOfSilence wheePosts: 575Member

    Originally posted by Serelisk

    With the level 60 player only able to go down in level to play with his friend, it's entirely possible he'll have already experienced that bit of content. Not to say it'll always be that way, there's so many dynamic events happening at different times that it's also likely he missed that content or didn't level in that zone at all, as well as devs adding later DE's into old areas, but you're still limiting the amount of content for players to play together and mutually benefit from significantly.

    Also, consider a group of 5 people with 1 of them being a lower level.

    Now everybody has to move to the lower lvl area - or they just drop him.

    Hype train -> Reality

  • CorehavenCorehaven Colorado Springs, COPosts: 1,538Member

    Originally posted by Serelisk

    Originally posted by colddog04

    I personally prefer it without sidekicking up. And I like that you can sidekick down.

     

    That level 60 can still play with the level 30. He just has to do level 30 content. But he will be scaled down and they can still play together.

    Exactly.

    My particular problem is that they're limiting the ways players can play together. I don't think it's enough for these players to be able to play together just for the sake of playing together because there stills needs to be mutual gain for both players to enjoy it. And a large part of that, I thought, would be experiencing new content together. With the level 60 player only able to go down in level to play with his friend, it's entirely possible he'll have already experienced that bit of content. Not to say it'll always be that way, there's so many dynamic events happening at different times that it's also likely he missed that content or didn't level in that zone at all, as well as devs adding later DE's into old areas, but you're still limiting the amount of content for players to play together and mutually benefit from significantly.

     

    Yea but it would some what destroy a sense of progression.  Its not exactly the same, but its like reading chapter 22 of a book, then chapter 1, then chapter 15, then chapter 12, all completely out of order and context.   " Why is this place like this? ", " Well this happened, and this, so this place looks like this, and thats why whats going on is happening here.  You find that out sometime around level 45. " ,  " Oh....okay.  Thanks for explaining it. " 

     

    The problem as I see it, is Anet obviously wanted to do the side kicking up, but it didnt work in execution.  For many reasons Id imagine.  Sometimes ideas seem great on paper, and then fail utterly in execution.  Like when you're five and think that bed sheet is really going to work as a parachute and the roof isnt all that high up in the air anyways. 

  • illeriller Aspen''s 4th hole, COPosts: 510Member

    I fail to see a problem here....  Anyone who DOES.... let me ask you...  HOW LONG did play City of Heroes for?

     

    If you never played City of Heroes then you're kind of walking into this issue totally ignorant of the Meta-game that is created by allowing "Sidekicking Upwards".   Not only that, it actually led directly to the RMT'ing of power-leveling services b/c it's almost impossible to enforce the proper leveling Curves in end-game against certain mobs that allow for "Phat XP farming".   In City of Heroes there was nothing more cancerous in the entire game than the Peregrine Island power leveling.  It separated the playing populace into two groups and that made grouping itself real chore b/c later on you'd end up getting teamed with these power-leveled MORONS who didn't have the slightest idea of how to actually play their class. 

     

    I applaud A-net for this decision.  They recognized a limitation in the mathematics of Min-Maxxable XP balancing and they nipped it in the bud BEFORE release.

     


    Originally posted by VowOfSilence

    Also, consider a group of 5 people with 1 of them being a lower level.

    Now everybody has to move to the lower lvl area - or they just drop him.

    So?  There's still "Elite" content for them to do in the lower regions as well and they may get even higher quality mods/rewards for beating it than they'd get against vanilla-difficulty mobs in the upper levels.

     

    Infact some of the most profitable farming in the game in GW1 was done in lower level areas. (especially if you turned on hardmode)

  • SereliskSerelisk somewhere, NYPosts: 836Member

    Originally posted by Kaneth

    I'm ok with it. You still get sidekicked up for PvP which is an important feature for V8 (or W3) to work. On the PvE side, getting downkicked is more beneficial than the reverse, especially in terms of skills and abilities. Honestly, I like having more options for reusing previous content (sidekick down) content, rather than allowing folks to skip a significant portion of the game.

    There would be no skipping though. And these two systems are in no way mutually exclusive. Both were supposed to exist so that there would be very few barriers for people to play together.

    People keep talking about "skipping" content, but this is alarming to me because it calls into question the actual design of the game and how people are understanding it versus what I understand of it. Dynamic events are not ways to get to 80. They're certainly good for leveling, and getting those utilities mentioned in the OP, but leveling was, as I understood it, supposed to be largely irrelevant. At level 80, you're not supposed to just be doing level 80 stuff. The downscaling is NOT only for going back to help your friends, but rather being able to experience the dynamic events you definitely will miss and still being able to gain from them.

     

  • VowOfSilenceVowOfSilence wheePosts: 575Member

    Originally posted by Serelisk

    People keep talking about "skipping" content, but this is alarming to me because it calls into question the actual design of the game and how people are understanding it versus what I understand of it. Dynamic events are not ways to get to 80. They're certainly good for leveling, and getting those utilities mentioned in the OP, but leveling was, as I understood it, supposed to be largely irrelevant. At level 80, you're not supposed to just be doing level 80 stuff. The downscaling is NOT only for going back to help your friends, but rather being able to experience the dynamic events you definitely will miss and still being able to gain from them.

     

    The actual design is in fact changing to cater to those people who "don't get it". Anet is dropping their manifesto. All the latest announcements have been U-turns. Soon enough, you'll be farming epic gear with epic stats in dumbed-down dungeons.

    Hype train -> Reality

  • SereliskSerelisk somewhere, NYPosts: 836Member

    Originally posted by iller

    I fail to see a problem here....  Anyone who DOES.... let me ask you...  HOW LONG did play City of Heroes for?

     

    If you never played City of Heroes then you're kind of walking into this issue totally ignorant of the Meta-game that is created by allowing "Sidekicking Upwards".   Not only that, it actually led directly to the RMT'ing of power-leveling services b/c it's almost impossible to enforce the proper leveling Curves in end-game against certain mobs that allow for "Phat XP farming".   In City of Heroes there was nothing more cancerous in the entire game than the Peregrine Island power leveling.  It separated the playing populace into two groups and that made grouping itself real chore b/c later on you'd end up getting teamed with these power-leveled MORONS who didn't have the slightest idea of how to actually play their class. 

     

    I applaud A-net for this decision.  They recognized a limitation in the mathematics of Min-Maxxable XP balancing and they nipped it in the bud BEFORE release.

     


    Originally posted by VowOfSilence



    Also, consider a group of 5 people with 1 of them being a lower level.

    Now everybody has to move to the lower lvl area - or they just drop him.

    So?  There's still "Elite" content for them to do in the lower regions as well and they may get even higher quality mods/rewards for beating it than they'd get against vanilla-difficulty mobs in the upper levels.

     

    Infact some of the most profitable farming in the game in GW1 was done in lower level areas. (especially if you turned on hardmode)

    The problem, as I see it, is that the developers, by getting rid of upscaling, are limiting ways for players to enjoy the game together when they want to.

    I don't understand your talking about min-maxxing XP balancing and how this was handled in CoH, but Guild Wars 2 is unlike CoH in-that levels is not a dominant feature of the game. There is no leveling curve at all.

    Also, there's still ways players can enjoy the game together through downscaling, but it's significantly less. Let's say a player is level 40, and another is level 70. There's 500 DE's from level 1-40, and 500 DE's from 40-70. You can only play half of the total amount of content available to the level 70 player which is 1000 DE's total, instead, being only able to play the 500 available to the level 40.

     

    You're right, Arena Net could have unearthed problems with this system during extensive playtime, but I'm not very concerned with why they would've done it if it's not something we actually have avilable to discuss because personally I can't think of any. I'm more concerned with the explained loss of content avilable to play with friends at higher levels.

  • ZzadZzad Palma de MallorcaPosts: 1,332Member Uncommon

    I simply love it !

    You can still feel the thrill of leveling up!

    but you can go back & still be challenging.

    nuff said-

  • SereliskSerelisk somewhere, NYPosts: 836Member

    Originally posted by Zzad

    I simply love it !

    You can still feel the thrill of leveling up!

    but you can go back & still be challenging.

    nuff said-

    I don't get it.

    I mean, I still think there's a thrill in leveling up because you gain access to skills and traits to customize your character with actual leveling, but as I see it with DE's, there are now large restrictions on the amount of content available for you and your friends to play together and still mutually benefit from

  • SereliskSerelisk somewhere, NYPosts: 836Member

    Originally posted by Corehaven

    So Im assuming sidekicking down works at least?  Or rather, if a level 60 plays with a level 30 in a 30 area, he's kicked down to 30. 

     

    If thats the case you can still play with your friends.  You just have to play the content they are leveled too. 

     

    I never spoke out about it, but having my friend who just started the game at level 1 suddenly come romping along with me to do level 70 stuff, is kind of weird.   How would rewards or drops even work for him?  Guess there are work arounds for that, but still, with the former system, you could just skip to end game zones by just going with an 80 friend when you are level 4.  

     

    So personally Im kind of glad its not there anymore.  Im assuming they thought it was a good idea, saw it in practice, and decided it was anything but.  Such things happen in development. 

    Your friend would only be able to sidekick up to your level and play content with you if you or someone you're partied with manually leveled him up for specifically that reason. He wouldn't be able to just move through zones as if levels didn't actually exist.

    A couple of people have mentioned the second highlighted, but it doesn't really add to the pros and cons of the upscaling system if we don't actually know what those are. I'm interested to know what people think those game breaking reasons might be though.

     

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