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Quests within MMO, are they still a good concept?

LucioonLucioon Palm Harbor, FLPosts: 814Member Uncommon

Quests in Pen and Paper RPG, and Single player games work because you can start and finish it whenever you want. Either with a group of friends when playing PnP, or by yourself. 

But in MMO, Quests are shorten so that other players you meet during your quest can join in without being left out., or they become Instanced Quests that only people at that certain stage can join in. 

How many times have you, yourself try to play with your guildmates but found out that they are two stages ahead of you in the quest, or you are ahead and have to wait for them. 

So my question is, are Quests still viable in Modern Day MMO's

Are they the only way to get Progress within a story?

Guild wars 2 changed the quest system alittle, so that as long as you are in the vicinity, the quest automatically goes into your log, so anyone can jump in and participate. 

But is that as far as we can take it?

Can Quests be eliminated all together? 

What kind of alternatives is available? 

 

Life is a Maze, so make sure you bring your GPS incase you get lost in it.

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Comments

  • QuirhidQuirhid TamperePosts: 5,969Member Common

    Well, events in GW2 are a promising step forward, but even when they have no traditional quests at all in that game, I see the tasks ("heart symbols") as a step between quests and events. I don't see traditional quests enjoying much popularity in the future, atleast not in the traditional form. Heavy quest grinding gets exhausting fairly quickly. Alteast I had an unpleasant reaction to the Continent of the Ninth's excessive use of trivial miniquests for what felt like everything you did. Didn't like that at all...

    Arenanet talked about having multiple end states in the events (more than pass/fail), with which you could build elaborate webs of events rather than just separate strings of events (which are essentially a form of quest-lines). However, the downside to this would be the same as with all branching content: it takes a lot of effort to produce those alternate paths.

    Still, I wouldn't mind using quests for a more long term goal or objective - only a few active at any given time.

    I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been -Wayne Gretzky

  • fenistilfenistil GliwicePosts: 3,005Member

    Since DE in GW2 were major disappintment  (way too frequent simple occurings on timer - and no I don't know how to design and implement them better in mainstream game for big audience) and quickly became very boring zergs - I think that quests still are needed because there is nothing better out there.

     

    Leaving that aside.  I think that mmorpg's overally are hitting a wall.   Current technology, not only game design wise but also network latency wise or anti-cheaters & anti-botters / macroers techs and current concepts are not enough anymore to deal with problems in mmorpg's.     Trying to douse it by throwing money at it does not work also. 

    That's why I think currently mmorpg's are facing reality of folding themself. Especially in west.   Various lobby games ranging from simple MOBAS like LoL to pseudo MMO's like DDO or Neverwitner with still be succesful propably.

  • muffins89muffins89 Yakima, WAPosts: 1,306Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Quirhid

    Well, events in GW2 are a promising step forward, but even when they have no traditional quests at all in that game, I see the tasks ("heart symbols") as a step between quests and events. I don't see traditional quests enjoying much popularity in the future, atleast not in the traditional form. Heavy quest grinding gets exhausting fairly quickly. Alteast I had an unpleasant reaction to the Continent of the Ninth's excessive use of trivial miniquests for what felt like everything you did. Didn't like that at all...

    Arenanet talked about having multiple end states in the events (more than pass/fail), with which you could build elaborate webs of events rather than just separate strings of events (which are essentially a form of quest-lines). However, the downside to this would be the same as with all branching content: it takes a lot of effort to produce those alternate paths.

    Still, I wouldn't mind using quests for a more long term goal or objective - only a few active at any given time.

    i disagree that events are a "promising step forward".   they are nothing more than traditional quests in a different wrapper.  i played gw2 today and an event i did was escorting a lady around while she collected fruit.  i would rather collect the damn fruit myself.   DE's in gw2 are just kill x,  gather x,  go to x,  quests presented a different way.

     

    quests are still viable imo.  they've just become to trivial and meaningless.  give me a quest that is an actual QUEST.  make me travel a great distance.  make the quest take days to complete.  make me complete many smaller quests in order to complete the main quest.

    I think the prostitute mod corrupted your game files man. -elhefen

  • ShakyMoShakyMo BradfordPosts: 7,207Member
    Mmo pve needs a radical reworking.

    It's very boring compared to single player games like skyrim, dishonoured & farcry 3.

    I'd give a partial exception to tsw with its multistage 20 minute long one at a time quests and for bringing in puzzle and stealth elements and dropping quest hubs like gw2. Unfortunately end game was same old same old as were the item quests.
  • botrytisbotrytis In Flux, MIPosts: 2,567Member

    People want something else but when they don't know what it is, it is hard to design for.

     

    Nothing wrong with quests at all. I just think people come in and react, 'Oh, another WoW clone' without really trying to experience the rest of the game. I think exploration and quests (non-linear) work out well.

     

    People want to affect the world with quests would be hard because the system to be to complicated to code as ti would affect everything. That is why sandbox games, which people seem to thrive on (within this forum) are so simple as to be utterly boring. I have played a few.

     

    Just my $0.02 to put in.

    image

    "In 50 years, when I talk to my grandchildren about these days, I'll make sure to mention what an accomplished MMO player I was. They are going to be so proud ..."
    by Naqaj - 7/17/2013 MMORPG.com forum

  • botrytisbotrytis In Flux, MIPosts: 2,567Member
    Originally posted by ShakyMo
    Mmo pve needs a radical reworking.

    It's very boring compared to single player games like skyrim, dishonoured & farcry 3.

    I'd give a partial exception to tsw with its multistage 20 minute long one at a time quests and for bringing in puzzle and stealth elements and dropping quest hubs like gw2. Unfortunately end game was same old same old as were the item quests.

    Yes but with Single player game - the rest of the environment, etc is run by the computer. It only has to take in one person's input and deal with that. THink if there were hundreds or thousands of interactions like that. It is just impossible to code for right now.

    image

    "In 50 years, when I talk to my grandchildren about these days, I'll make sure to mention what an accomplished MMO player I was. They are going to be so proud ..."
    by Naqaj - 7/17/2013 MMORPG.com forum

  • TheLizardbonesTheLizardbones Arkham, VAPosts: 10,910Member

    I think quests are fine, but I've gotten to the point with the quest hub design that if I can't load up on quests and hit my targets without having to read anything, I don't want to do it. The quests aren't going to be interesting, so at least let me finish them quickly.

    I would prefer some sort of branching story line system if there's going to be quests though. If there's not going to be quests, then the worlds that MMORPG are set in need to be a lot more dynamic and lively, otherwise you're just spending time figuring out the mechanics of the system and gaming it.

    I can not remember winning or losing a single debate on the internet.

  • BadSpockBadSpock Somewhere, MIPosts: 7,974Member

    I'd like to see "quests" as they exist now in your standard themepark MMO go away completely.

    Quest hub grinding is very tedius and boring IMO.

    I like having a main story line - something akin to GW2 personal story or SWTOR class quests - but they need a LOT of work to catch up to the story many single player RPG's are presenting.

    Something that is pretty much completely seperate from the rest of the game. We all know it's primarily going to be done as a "single player" experience - why even pretend?

    Make a high quality 40-80 hour single-player-RPG worthy storyline you can bring 1-3 friends with you if you want.

     

    Beyond that I like daily/weekly/monthly objectives. Just give lots and lots of variety - dozen or more different "groups" at the same level range.

    Would also be nice to have rotations or a complete change after a month or two/three. Advance the story of the game world via these daily/weekly/monthly quest arcs.

    I also like seasonal/holiday events. Few weeks per event though, nothing too much longer than that.

    Between the shifting dailies/weeklies/monthlies and seasonal/holiday events, lots of changes in the world - keeps things fresh.

     

    Also give me tons of instanced dungeons and raids, all through the leveling process and at end-game with tiers of difficulty and lots of accessibility.

     

    But also give me entire zones (large areas) of group-only kind of old-school grind content. Let me form up with a party and grind mobs for a while in addition to everything else. Allow kills to drop tokens used to spawn mini bosses for your group with better loot, and then allow these mini bosses to drop tokens used to spawn bosses for my group.

     

    And then give me huge, wide open large (massive) swaths of land with powerful creatures that roam it, tons of caves and temples and open world dungeons etc. to explore solo and/or with a group, and rare crafting materials to hunt for.

  • RaysheRayshe London, ONPosts: 1,284Member
    MY experiance in GW2 was that the game felt very grindy because of the new questing system. thats the main take away i had from the game. i also only had 4 days of gameplay to tinker with it.

    Because i can.
    I'm Hopeful For Every Game, Until the Fan Boys Attack My Games. Then the Knives Come Out.
    Logic every gamers worst enemy.

  • AeliousAelious Portland, ORPosts: 2,852Member Uncommon
    Quests are a great concept but the term and it's meaning have been abused. Have thousands of "tasks" if you want but leave "quests" to multi-tiered and story uncovering affairs. Not "the" story but just a story within the game. If you offer thousands of "farmer Joe needs carrots from those pesky goblins who stole them" tasks then when you get a quests with substance you'll recognize it. Farmer Joe may give you 30c but steps in real quests may give you a valuable crafting metal or a spell creating item. If there are 5,000 tasks in a game put 500 quests that have depth and purpose. Have the length and reward be obviously different and carry it farther than one specific area.

    Which brings me to my next point. If you offer more generic but valuable rewards for real quests then you shouldn't have a problem intermixing with others along the way. City influence or faction is anothe way of equally rewarding players regardless of class or want. This goes hand in hand with skill based or adjusted levels but that's for another discussion.

    I like to use the LoTR analogy. Looking for Kingsfoil to heal Frodo was a task, Frodo getting the one ring to Mount Doom and destroying it was a quest.

  • DauzqulDauzqul Detroit, MIPosts: 1,401Member Uncommon

    I'd rather see non-story / non-personal quests.

    I don't like having to kill goblins in order to find Grandma's ring. I don't like choosing between Heavy Boots or Medium Boots as a reward.

    I personally would rather experience gigantic faction quests that eveyrone works toward. For example, The Qeynos Empire needs to fulfill the following city quotas:

    • Qeynos needs 10 tons of meat to feed its people throughout the winter. Qeynos will offer 10 silver per pound (get meat from killing animals in the wild).
    I don't know... quests like the above. Lore in a game is fine. But when my character is "part of the lore" is just cheesy. If I want to be special throughout the community, I want to earn it by being able to craft the best goods or being known as a very good enemy player killer.
  • FearumFearum Cinnaminson, NJPosts: 1,166Member Uncommon

    In some games I like questing and others I do not. I like long quest chains that end with something large to get done or with a nice story line attatched to it, but do not like little go fetch quests just to have some filler.

    I like quests to have actual rewards rather than just pocket change and crappy pair of boots. A reward like unlocking a skill or choosing a quest to study a line of skills within the class I have started out with would be alot more interesting. Making questing more of an adventure then just doing it mindlessly to get exp is what they need to focus on. 

    If they tie in questing to the develoment of my character, it gives meaning to actually doing the quests.

  • RaysheRayshe London, ONPosts: 1,284Member
    I enjoy the way TSW set them up. You can easily tell which is a chain mission and which was just a quick finish. Also in it you are not "part of the lore" the lore is a secondary entity enwhich you can read a learn. they say it right up from. "don't go thinking your some chosen one, your just part of an army, a large army"

    Because i can.
    I'm Hopeful For Every Game, Until the Fan Boys Attack My Games. Then the Knives Come Out.
    Logic every gamers worst enemy.

  • nariusseldonnariusseldon santa clara, CAPosts: 22,441Member

    The most viable way is to completely go away from the MMO virtual world concept and run quests only in instances. Think about something like Diablo 3 or Borderlands.

    A particular player is running the quest, and everyone else is a helper (who can also recieve rewards). So there is no conflict in the stories.

    In that case, you can have as deep, and as long a story as needed.

  • SlukjanSlukjan Burlington, VTPosts: 254Member Uncommon
    I like quests so long as they aren't the only thing to do.  I think they should be more difficult and take more tiime then the current crop of quests are.  Maybe only having 2-3 quests at a time and they take long to accomplish and you get more exp and better loot then usual...making them more significant.  Endless quest grinding kill x of y is boring.
  • ShakyMoShakyMo BradfordPosts: 7,207Member
    Botry
    If planetside 2 can do pvp a fresh rather than the bullshit were had for the last 8 years, why can't another themepark mmo do the same with pve. Gw2 was a good attempt but it got almost as repetitive as the wow clones it was trying to avoid being like, tsw had some good ideas too, especially with the way each quest was like a 20-30 min little adventure and the stealth stuff. We've been basicly playing the same pve in every mmo since eq2, its just to repetitive now. It needs to evolve or perhaps have a reinvention of the old school pve from ac, daoc & EQ.
  • David_LopanDavid_Lopan Madison, WIPosts: 808Member Uncommon

    Quests should still exist, however....

    They should be long streching arches and there should not be too many of them (no more quest hubs, those dont make sense to me)

  • LucioonLucioon Palm Harbor, FLPosts: 814Member Uncommon

    I got an example but not sure if anyone actually would like it.

    1) A Gigantic City full of merchants, stores and guilds, and everyone that is spawned is there.

    2) When you want to go outside, there are Huge Over Arching Quests for you to choose from, for example: Food for the Army, Explore an Cave or Sabotage Enemy....etc

    3) You choose your skills and Gear from Various of collected Gears to challenge the Quest. 

    4) Once you choose, everyone whom choosen the same thing is in the same world, doing various part of that Huge Quest, where there is an Gauge to see which part is at 100% , so lets say there is 10 different activities involved in this Huge Quest, 4 of them is at 100%, there are 3 that are at 5%, you can do what you want, but if everything is at 100% there is an special quest to defeat an big boss, an Raid event opens up. 

    5) The Huge Over Arching Quests changes once the Big boss is defeated

    6) Each Success Quest pushes the Main Plot.

    7) Like an Army being marched across the Country to battle an NPC. And the success and Failures of your City changes the Meter of success against this Evil in the world. 

    8) And since this is an MMO, Twists and Turns and Surprise Plots should be the Norm, like an Soap Opera, just when you thought the end Boss is near, something Happens. Thats why Soaps lasts for years.

    9) Then thrown in the No Quest Hub and Instant Max Level, and Political system, the purpose is now moving the plot forward and see whats happening. No Gear , Level Grind, Its more of an Plot Grind.

    I think in this kind of scenarios, everyone is part of the world, Moving the Plot forward. Everyone is Participating. Guilds are an Important factor for success. And gear is no longer an issue. 

    And the World is now Larger, and everyone in that same place you are, they are all doing the same quest or moving the same quest forward. 

    I think this could be a step forward. 

    PS: For those that wants PVP, its also easily made for Fighting Cities Hubs, Where they will be competing against each other, and those that fails gets pushed toward the Harms way, while those that succeeded gets better. 

    Life is a Maze, so make sure you bring your GPS incase you get lost in it.

  • redcappredcapp brook, NYPosts: 722Member
    theyre fine, but should not be the main focus imo.
  • goozmaniagoozmania chino, CAPosts: 145Member Uncommon

    I think quests are needed, whatever form they take, to give you some direction and to add immersion and life to the game world.

    As someone else said, they shouldn't be designed around your character being "the" hero, though. In the example of EQ's epic weapons, what irked me was it was written as though your character was the only one in Norrath who was working on this quest, and you'd have the only weapon in existence... It should have just been something more akin to "If you are able to collect these rare, fabled items, I can create a totes awesome scimitar that farts leaves"

    Also, tasks, such as "We're trying to rebuild our village and need buttloads of wood, iron, etc..." are passable. They give you something to do, some experience, some monetary reward, and it makes sense that numerous players would be doing the same thing.

  • RydesonRydeson Canton, OHPosts: 3,858Member Uncommon

          I prefer a combonation of GW2 and EQ..  The only quest I want to see exist in a MMORPG are "epic" quest such as those that existed in EQ..  As for mob encounters I only want to see dynamic events (GW2), camp locations (EQ) or general roaming mobs..  I also prefer "turn in" rewards like those we had in EQ (deathfist belts)..  What we see in WoW and other games since are nothing more then chores and task..  I find those linear as hell because they split up the playing community..  People are seldom on the same phase or questline, and because of this, most don't group up.. I actually find the use of questing to be anti social..

         GW2 does address this using DE's and adjustable character level, however it still doesn't tackle the need for people to group up..  IMO if we really want to see the need for people to group up outside of instance, there needs to be static locations of action.. such as EQ camps..  Camps need to be too hard for anyone to solo, but a little more rewarding for the desire to want to do them.. OH, and there needs to be enough of them so that multiple groups aren't fighting over them..  Furthermore camping a location needs to generate equal amount of rewards, if not people will still take whatever route rewards them the best.. 

  • DavisFlightDavisFlight Talahasee, FLPosts: 2,556Member

    Real quests? As in, quests before WoW, where they weren't the primary way to level up? Yeah, they were great. They fleshed out the world, helped you discover new places, new mobs, gave you unique loot now and then, and gave you some difficult puzzles to solve.

     

    WoW style busy work quests? No. They need to be entirely eradicated.

  • ereyethirnereyethirn KaiapoiPosts: 79Member
    Originally posted by ShakyMo
    Mmo pve needs a radical reworking.

    It's very boring compared to single player games like skyrim, dishonoured & farcry 3.

    I'd give a partial exception to tsw with its multistage 20 minute long one at a time quests and for bringing in puzzle and stealth elements and dropping quest hubs like gw2. Unfortunately end game was same old same old as were the item quests.

    I'm currently playing tsw and find the quests absolutely brilliant, however the problem with it is that the quests are very single layer focussed so it ends up being a single player game with other people around. I truely believe that story is a way foward,however game devellopers need to find a way of telling amazing stories which takes plce in a truly multiplayer environment. I think guild wars 2 had the right idea, they just didn't get it quite right...

  • ShakyMoShakyMo BradfordPosts: 7,207Member
    Yeah I think tsw and gw2 tried to nudge it in the right direction.

    If you took the big quests from tsw but not the item quests
    And the des from gw2 but not the hearts or story

    And kinda merged them somehow. Would be moving a little better also.
  • ShakyMoShakyMo BradfordPosts: 7,207Member
    Davis
    Vanilla wow had some good class quests, to get warrior stances, shamen totem, warlock pets etc..

    For some bizarre reason they dropped them, always thought that was one if the better things in wow.
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