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Is this MMO concept viable for todays RPGrs?

RhinotonesRhinotones BenowaPosts: 241Member Uncommon

Sorry if this is a double up but I'm new on this site and realised this should probably been posted in this forum.

 

Hi all, I hope I will make some sense so please bare with me as this is my first post.

I would like to get peoples opinions based on sound reasoning (not just a yes or no response) as to whether or not the following idea could be viable in todays MMO's or if you have a suggestion/s that could enhance it. Please think through thoughtfully before responding. I'm hoping to read some great replies. The numbers provided in the below scenario could be modified of course.

Scenario:

A MMO comprising of 5  factions (maintains imbalences having an odd number)

You may have characters of various classes but only with one faction (all factions have the same types of classes)

Each faction though an in game democratic vote system may form or break alliances with other factions once a month. This adds a new dynamic to the game. You could find a 3-2 ratio or even 1-3-1 or 5-0 bringing a month of uneasy truce and no world pvp. This would create very interesting conversations in general chat of each faction leading up to the tally of votes.

Here's the kicker...You can CHANGE FACTIONS (but all your characters would have to change at the same time). I'm thinking a type of reputation system within your faction. High faction rep would give some types of bonuses, once a low rep level is achieved you would qualify to leave and start afresh with a new faction.

I can go into much more detail but this is the basic concept of my idea. Looking forward to some feedback and some flames if needed.

Cheers,

Rhino.

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Comments

  • MyrdynnMyrdynn Beaumont, CAPosts: 1,775Member Uncommon

    I really like the sound of that, what could be really good is if the vote came out 1v1v1v1v1 would be some great world pvp.

    I assume each player would receive a ballot with something like this

    vs faction A vote 

    war

    ally

    neutral

    and so on.  

    personally it sounds great on paper, but Im not sure how it would actually work out in an MMO setting once it started

    edit: after a 2nd thought would be kinda cool if you could only vote for 1 war 1 ally and other 3 neutral, that way there could be a very interesting dynamic each month as each faction is at war with 1 alligned with 1, and neutral to 3 which you could recruit to help with your side or fight against.

    another thought is, what if Faction A and B vote to be at war vs each other, but Faction B is Ally with C, while Faction A is also allied with C.

    Might be just to complicated after additional thoughts

     

  • RhinotonesRhinotones BenowaPosts: 241Member Uncommon

    Thank you for your thoughts. A lot of potential there.

    Here is my second concept to this idea...and this is all I'm going to divulge at present.

     

     

    The concept is much much deeper which I have only mentioned a portion of. A large basis for the seperate factions is also to do with control of resources for crafting. Some resources are only available in certain areas controlled and farmed by the faction of that land.

    The faction system can become vital to trading also, having an affect on economies also. Each faction is going to have things the other factions need.

    When alliances are formed you are then able to trade with that faction (like an auction house setup) and you are able to talk to them in game for that period. Friendships can quickly be formed but the majority will always rule.

    The implications and intricacies could be quite profound.

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  • MyrdynnMyrdynn Beaumont, CAPosts: 1,775Member Uncommon
    It sounds great, let me know if you need any testers, or semi-skilled programmers, Im old school, do a little dabbling on the side, and can be easily instructed on what is needed.  Not sure what type of budget you are looking at or what not,  or if you are developing yourself.  
  • RhinotonesRhinotones BenowaPosts: 241Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Myrdynn
    It sounds great, let me know if you need any testers, or semi-skilled programmers, Im old school, do a little dabbling on the side, and can be easily instructed on what is needed.  Not sure what type of budget you are looking at or what not,  or if you are developing yourself.  

    Thanks Myrdynn for your offer, I'll keep that in mind. We're still in the creative stage at the moment but it's progressing nicely.

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  • ghstwolfghstwolf hampstead, NHPosts: 386Member

    In the simplest terms yes, a 5 faction system could work.

    With that said, I would consider it a foolish choice to launch with 5 factions when 3 factions offer virtually the same instability.  I get what you are going for with it, but it does raise the minimum population needed (or make things overly sensitive to the distibution).  Starting with the lower faction count avoids that problem, and they can still be patched in as part of an xpac.

    What really interests me though is "life in a faction".  I'd love to hear a bit more on that, and whether the factions are uniform in their handling of them.  There is also the matter of individuals vs guilds and how that is handled.  I will say, I'm more a fan of allowing "high level" defections (someone with high rep) as long as it has a steep penalty (ex. being KOS w/bounty even if the factions are neutral).

  • RhinotonesRhinotones BenowaPosts: 241Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by ghstwolf
    In the simplest terms yes, a 5 faction system could work. With that said, I would consider it a foolish choice to launch with 5 factions when 3 factions offer virtually the same instability.  I get what you are going for with it, but it does raise the minimum population needed (or make things overly sensitive to the distibution).  Starting with the lower faction count avoids that problem, and they can still be patched in as part of an xpac. What really interests me though is "life in a faction".  I'd love to hear a bit more on that, and whether the factions are uniform in their handling of them.  There is also the matter of individuals vs guilds and how that is handled.  I will say, I'm more a fan of allowing "high level" defections (someone with high rep) as long as it has a steep penalty (ex. being KOS w/bounty even if the factions are neutral).

    Cheers ghstwolf. I can't give much more away for obvious reasons. We had the same though with going for a lower number also to begin with then expanding on it further down the track. Agree that there should be some type of penalty involved with defecting, as well as limiting certain things you can take with you. i.e it could be exploited to transfer resources to markets with high demand etc.

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  • vgamervgamer Texas, IAPosts: 195Member
    If this is going to be a open pvp or faction pvp game, it won't work. People will always flock to the 'best' faction and your rep system will not help against it. What things do you have to ensure relatively balanced factions?
  • RhinotonesRhinotones BenowaPosts: 241Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by vgamer
    If this is going to be a open pvp or faction pvp game, it won't work. People will always flock to the 'best' faction and your rep system will not help against it. What things do you have to ensure relatively balanced factions?

    I agree, if this was that type of game which it isn't. There are numerous avenues players can choose to focus on, PvP being one of them. The beauty of having more than 2 factions is that 3rd+ option. If a good system is used, as a loose example (and not saying that this one is good) -  rewards to the top X pvpers of each faction monthly or quarterly,  you may see defections to lower strength pvp factions to try to obtain rewards, like recruiting mercenaries.

    As a rough rule, If a faction is going to be mainly pvp focused, they may be missing out on the trade/crafting/resource or some other types of aspects critical to a factions game play. The faction may not be getting enough taxes to foot decent types of rewards and you may see top pvpers going elsewhere. As always, trying to balance this is the difficult part.

    Not a perfect answer for you I'm sure but I hope this gives you some idea into the complexity of this concept.

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  • mmoguy43mmoguy43 In cyberspaaaaaacePosts: 2,696Member Uncommon

    Having as many as 5 factions with changing alliances sounds promising. I've played in a MMO that had 12 factions but PvP wars were more about the guilds that are faction-hostile or purely for the reason to capture territories.

    Yep, I'm also unsure how you can keep the population issue under control. Even with enticing rewards (xp/resources bonuses) players still decide that winning 75% of the time because they outnumber you is still more rewarding and fun. How do you get 3 much weaker, PvP-wise, factions rally together against a much larger and more easily organised faction? You are going to need some really shiny enticements. Things that will make people WANT to betray their faction for the weaker one (bonuses for betrayal, sounds good to me). IMO the bonuses for the weaker side would have to be rather significant and some alliances may have to happen regardless of the voting. Leaving 30% of your populace getting decimated over and over for a long time is going to get very frusterating regardless of rewards IF you even get a kill or whatever. At some point, the system will have to match up factions for alliances. In essence, auto-balance them if players don't do so themselves. What about overpopulation? Maybe the faction that has far more players that the second highest has it's growth slowed. Ultimately, you are giving a lot of freedom and control to your players but you will need a reward system to encourage your players to rebalance the factions once the natural tendency to unbalance them goes too far.

  • VyntVynt Posts: 655Member Uncommon

    I kind of like it. Perhaps don't have voting for alliances, just every faction for themselves, but allow factions to form alliances on their own.

    I remember in daoc, when the albs outnumbered people by a lot, the mids and hibs often worked together to kill the albs, then turned on each other. Kind of an uneasy truce.

    That could turn into some great chaotic gameplay between 5 factions.

    I'd hate to be locked into an alliance with say faction #3 when I really hate them, and unable to kill them for a month. I'll work with them to beat say #1, but once faction 1 is gone, I want to wipe out #3, hehe.

  • RhinotonesRhinotones BenowaPosts: 241Member Uncommon

    Finding a system that works well to maintain some semblence of balence is going to be one of the biggest hurdles I'm thinking. Ideas on paper, which I have a few of seem viable but until it's tested you never know for sure.

    I don't want another MMO that's world PvP based. I don't believe a game is sustainable if PvP is the MMOs main objective.  Character development needs to be at the core. A strong influence toward crafting, forming trade standing with factions (when you have an alliance) religion and faction standing, questing, raiding and character community status are going to be at least as important and hopefully more time consuming for the character than running around the world PvPing.

    Again it's going to need a system that will ensure people spend a little time on alot of paths rather than alot of time on one path (PvP). 

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  • AdamantineAdamantine NowherePosts: 3,875Member Uncommon

    Well, the basic idea of five different factions is great.

    Unfortunately, everything else in this concept sounds weird and pointless to me.

    - There is no point to a "democratic vote" in a war game. Armies arent organized democratically - for a reason. You can vote the leadership democratically - but the leadership then has to do decisions fast. As a rule, democratic votes are slow and time consuming.

    - There is no point to a "side". What would these sides be ? Whats the point of joining either of them ? Its much better to just allow any alliance forming imagineable - For example, A and B battle C, D stays neutral to A and B and C but not to E, and E battles everybody else.

    - There is no point in limiting the alliance forming to once in a month. It should be possible any time - so A and B battle C, but C is overwhelmed and the next moment A and B battle, and the next C joins B, and so forth.

    - There is no point, and its very dangerous, to allow people to switch factions. At least this should only be possible at a certain time in the month, before a longer period of peace, like a week time. This way a player that changed factions wont know what the previous faction is planning to do.

    - I dont get this whole high faction / low faction deal. One can rely on most people always trying to have high faction. If you want people to allow changing faction, why would you want to install such a separate mechanism. And how would faction be decided, anyway.

    - Well this might be an issue of personal preference, but while I'm perfectly fine with different factions having the same base classes, I think its a good idea to have the same classes being different between factions. Which also again means its better to not allow people to change faction.

    - I also fancy the idea of different faction having different structures, for example it could be a classic fantasy game and the factions are racial and the dwarf faction would be organized in clans, while the elves have a nobility, the gnomes have democratic structures, the orcs decide about their leadership in pvp battles, and the humans have a king or queen.

    - The really important question that was completely omitted was - what are A to E actually fighting over ? Thats the core question one needs to answer in such a faction game. If there isnt some form of valueable ressource, there wont be fighting.

  • BahamutKaiserBahamutKaiser Hyattsville, MDPosts: 314Member Uncommon

    Devils in the details. Just depends on exactly how it impacts gameplay and how it's implemented. What's your target audience and what do they want. Hardcore gamers who want serious concequence?, Casual gamers who don't want to be hindered by the political scheme?

    Personally I love the idea of a multitude of factions, I would even up the anti 5 fold, 25 nations or states, various alliances, conquests, and neutrality. It reminds me of Game of Thrones. It also reminds me of ArcheAge.

    I'd also find it more interesting if there were various means of control and government. Whether player based or region based, some could be monarchies, some could be democratic, some could be socialist, some totalitarian. Players could aim to control or cooperate different areas in different ways, they could ally or serve other regions for resources, protection, politics or more.

    Ultimately it seems like a beside though, a good way to add depth to an MMO world with interactivity, but not the fundamental gameplay itself. Finding a balance of depth and accessibility will be key, but it's mostly just curious for me, hope you find some interesting solutions.

    Before you criticize someone, walk a mile in their shoes.
    That way, if they get angry, they'll be a mile away... and barefoot.

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