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Ever wondered what happened to roleplaying in MMO's?

ScotScot UKPosts: 5,769Member Uncommon

"Role-playing is easily supported by a development team, but often overlooked. Since there is no “carrot” at the end of the RP stick, it doesn’t attract a lot of players, and therefore goes under the radar of most game developers."

Says it all really.

 

http://www.mmorpg.com/showFeature.cfm/loadFeature/7274/page/1

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Comments

  • PurutzilPurutzil East Stroudsburg, PAPosts: 2,925Member Uncommon
    Honestly roleplay in games to me also felt... weak. If I want to roleplay I'll go do some on a forum for more in depth RPing or play a game of Pathfinder (DnD). It just doesn't feel like it belongs in a more fast paced world of gaming to me. I do enjoy roleplaying on the side but for me it never fit in much with gaming. It just felt off and never really clicked as 'belonging'. 
  • ScotScot UKPosts: 5,769Member Uncommon

    I agree, for me RP in MMO's has always been third rate when compaired to PnP. But I have had some great times doing it, so I don't do a lot but have done some in every MMO I have played.

    The question is, how can RP in MMO's ever get better when we are so far down the design prioity list, if on it at all? We will be stuck in RP guilds playing a game within a game until that changes.

  • AlthewiseguyAlthewiseguy DumfriesPosts: 108Member
    Originally posted by Scot

    I agree, for me RP in MMO's has always been third rate when compaired to PnP. But I have had some great times doing it, so I don't do a lot but have done some in every MMO I have played.

    The question is, how can RP in MMO's ever get better when we are so far down the design prioity list, if on it at all? We will be stuck in RP guilds playing a game within a game until that changes.

    This is extremely true. 

  • DistopiaDistopia Baltimore, MDPosts: 16,915Member Uncommon
    I'd say a big part of this is that many of those who play MMO's today are far more interested in action games than RPG's.

    For every minute you are angry , you lose 60 seconds of happiness."-Emerson

    It is a sign of a defeated man, to attack at ones character in the face of logic and reason- Me

  • IcewhiteIcewhite Elmhurst, ILPosts: 6,403Member
    Originally posted by Scot

    "Role-playing is easily supported by a development team, but often overlooked. Since there is no “carrot” at the end of the RP stick, it doesn’t attract a lot of players, and therefore goes under the radar of most game developers."

    Says it all really.

     

    http://www.mmorpg.com/showFeature.cfm/loadFeature/7274/page/1

    Yep. Expensive, no obvious fast return on investment. A pretty typical response from a corporation, really.

    The cost of ignoring it (in terms of the depth of your world, socialization of your player base) are not easy to estimate. Corporations aren't really capable of considering the long term damage.

    Dinosaurs. We can make a fast buck off the pvp guys instead, don't need ya.  Door's right over there.

     

    S'all right, my bard performed, and that memory is always going to make me smile. And the game universe changed because I was there.

    That game entertained me for ten years...what's a ten-year customer worth to you, corporate bean-counters? My record time for MMO's is in the neighborhood of five. What's your average churn rate right now?

    Self-pity imprisons us in the walls of our own self-absorption. The whole world shrinks down to the size of our problem, and the more we dwell on it, the smaller we are and the larger the problem seems to grow.

  • TraugarTraugar Robbinsville, NCPosts: 183Member Uncommon
    Kinda hard to rp when the games force everyone down the same path with the same stories.  There is no room for interesting backstory because the game already has that worked out for you also.  The only solution with the games of today is to completely differentiate your characters rp persona from the events that they are taking part in which to me defeats the purpose of rp.  
  • WizardryWizardry Ontario, CanadaPosts: 8,464Member Uncommon

    Will personally i feel that Rp'ing should only need be included in your character selection.After all that is what you are doing in a game is role playing that character.So to make that happen you need to give the players more choice as in being able to role play the creatures in the game or perhaps even the NPC's.I think EQ2 did it the best having languages,it just could have been better yet.

    I have actually had some funny encounters just role playing the chat with other players.This one chick was Rp'ing so i joined in and i think by end of it ,i made her BF mad lol.I guess all we need is a white hanky to insult thy foul cursed being,then to draw swords wha sah !,on guard foul scum :P Then the fair maiden can tell her trusty steed...YOU SUCK ! :p.


    Samoan Diamond

  • Four0SixFour0Six Missoula, MTPosts: 1,181Member Uncommon

    I RP'd in CoX, almost all the time. BY that I mean, I spoke "in character", always. There were tons and tons of players who did.

    Helped that every character was unique, hard to RP when there are hundreds of you standing around. I also think the pace of games is too fast now to RP, unless you want to stand in the bar and tell someone your sob story, booooooooo.

  • kjempffkjempff AarhusPosts: 883Member Uncommon

    Also when a game doesn't have actual roles and everyone has the same purpose, roleplaying is not about to happen. The game needs to offer options to take on a role, to be different from others, not just by typing "I am a butterfly collector" but to allow You to be a butterfly collector.

    Class can be a starting point for roleplaying, and it is very typical for a healer to stop and heal someone on the way to a raid even if they are in a hurry and could have ran by - That is also roleplay. Others take it further, but only if they have some freedom to fit a role into the game.

  • Vorpal.RendVorpal.Rend Trinity BeachPosts: 74Member

    I used to love RP in games, back when WoW first came out, i jumped on an RP server for the hell of it.

    Vorpal, every day roguish human with no real background....at face value.

    Get on his wrong side and next thing you know SI:7 is after you.

     

    Or in SW:toR, Blesain Varisia. Twilek working for the Sith in order to get information of every jedi still alive.

    But she is highly conflicted and her superiors are concerned about her leniency towards her subjects

     

     

    Those are my 2 fondest memories, and while they didnt last long, they were still good fun.

     

    They are what drove me back to pen and paper for DnD, where my mates would meet up and have no choice except to be who their characters were.

  • SnarlingWolfSnarlingWolf Thereiam, ARPosts: 2,697Member

    What happened to it is that most of us never wanted it. I've played MMOs from the beginning and have never wanted to roleplay in the sense that is being talked about here and generally avoided roleplayers simply for the fact I wanted to be able to talk and act normal with those who I was grouping with.

     

    I'm already playing a role by being a character who isn't me and who has a specific set of skills. If I'm healing for a group, I'm playing the role of a healer. I don't see the need to go beyond that and talk in Old English or act like the real world doesn't exist and all of that stuff. Most people simply aren't into that.

  • AlBQuirkyAlBQuirky Sioux City, IAPosts: 3,828Member


    Originally posted by SnarlingWolf
    What happened to it is that most of us never wanted it. I've played MMOs from the beginning and have never wanted to roleplay in the sense that is being talked about here and generally avoided roleplayers simply for the fact I wanted to be able to talk and act normal with those who I was grouping with.
    I am pretty much the same here. Talking "Ye olde English" does not make a roleplay experience for me. Acting like the dumb fighter with an intelligence of 3 or the Megalomaniacal Mage who is overconfident of his abilities or the dashing duel wielding swashbuckler is the kind of roleplay I seek.


    Originally posted by SnarlingWolf
    I'm already playing a role by being a character who isn't me and who has a specific set of skills. If I'm healing for a group, I'm playing the role of a healer. I don't see the need to go beyond that and talk in Old English or act like the real world doesn't exist and all of that stuff. Most people simply aren't into that.
    That makes no sense to me. Is Sonic the Hedgehog a RP game? You "play the role" of Sonic, right? Same with Mario and Luigi, right? Heck, was Doom or Quake a roleplaying experience for you?

    Roleplaying is much deeper than just playing a role for me.

    Like others have pointed out, RP is not a quantifiable quantity (read: easily chargeable). Except for a few cosmetic items that many Roleplayers will not like for their character, or selling "emote packages", what else can a company charge for? Well, longevity with a sub comes to mind, but nobody wants that :)

    PS: A good thread to necro, Althewiseguy :)

    - Al

    Personally the only modern MMORPG trend that annoys me is the idea that MMOs need to be designed in a way to attract people who don't actually like MMOs. Which to me makes about as much sense as someone trying to figure out a way to get vegetarians to eat at their steakhouse.
    - FARGIN_WAR

  • IcewhiteIcewhite Elmhurst, ILPosts: 6,403Member
    Originally posted by AlBQuirky
    Except for a few cosmetic items that many Roleplayers will not like for their character, or selling "emote packages", what else can a company charge for? Well, longevity with a sub comes to mind, but nobody wants that :)

    Ever play an MMO that could demand (and get) sixty bones a month? (A couple of nutbags racked up bills breaking a thousand, while still on AOL/hourly rates)

    Players like a staff that's involved and events that are not predictable, yes, they do.

    But the payroll cost is real and a couple of orders of magnitude bigger. 1 GM per 500 players, instead of 1 per 50000. And you've got to get your staff interacting directly with players, mmo theory sees that as Liability.

    You accept awful customer service and dead worlds as a matter of course, because of Scale.

    Self-pity imprisons us in the walls of our own self-absorption. The whole world shrinks down to the size of our problem, and the more we dwell on it, the smaller we are and the larger the problem seems to grow.

  • waynejr2waynejr2 West Toluca Lake, CAPosts: 4,481Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Icewhite
    Originally posted by Scot

    "Role-playing is easily supported by a development team, but often overlooked. Since there is no “carrot” at the end of the RP stick, it doesn’t attract a lot of players, and therefore goes under the radar of most game developers."

    Says it all really.

     

    http://www.mmorpg.com/showFeature.cfm/loadFeature/7274/page/1

    Yep. Expensive, no obvious fast return on investment. A pretty typical response from a corporation, really.

    The cost of ignoring it (in terms of the depth of your world, socialization of your player base) are not easy to estimate. Corporations aren't really capable of considering the long term damage.

    Dinosaurs. We can make a fast buck off the pvp guys instead, don't need ya.  Door's right over there.

     

    S'all right, my bard performed, and that memory is always going to make me smile. And the game universe changed because I was there.

    That game entertained me for ten years...what's a ten-year customer worth to you, corporate bean-counters? My record time for MMO's is in the neighborhood of five. What's your average churn rate right now?

     ::bow::

    It's not like the role players could be creative and somehow make their own emote.  This makes me sad.  ::cry::

    Ever wonder what role players did back in muds?  They rolled around in the dirt.  ::lol::

    So do RPers need the devs to give them tools to role play or do role players need  to step up their game.  ::ponders::

  • ReklawReklaw Am.Posts: 6,478Member Uncommon

    Ever wondered what happened to roleplaying in MMO's?

    Not really.

    What happend is Online Combat Oriented Games.

  • DrakynnDrakynn The Pas, MBPosts: 2,030Member
    Originally posted by AlBQuirky

     


    Originally posted by SnarlingWolf
    What happened to it is that most of us never wanted it. I've played MMOs from the beginning and have never wanted to roleplay in the sense that is being talked about here and generally avoided roleplayers simply for the fact I wanted to be able to talk and act normal with those who I was grouping with.

    I am pretty much the same here. Talking "Ye olde English" does not make a roleplay experience for me. Acting like the dumb fighter with an intelligence of 3 or the Megalomaniacal Mage who is overconfident of his abilities or the dashing duel wielding swashbuckler is the kind of roleplay I seek.

     

     


    Originally posted by SnarlingWolf
    I'm already playing a role by being a character who isn't me and who has a specific set of skills. If I'm healing for a group, I'm playing the role of a healer. I don't see the need to go beyond that and talk in Old English or act like the real world doesn't exist and all of that stuff. Most people simply aren't into that.

    That makes no sense to me. Is Sonic the Hedgehog a RP game? You "play the role" of Sonic, right? Same with Mario and Luigi, right? Heck, was Doom or Quake a roleplaying experience for you?

     

    Roleplaying is much deeper than just playing a role for me.

    Like others have pointed out, RP is not a quantifiable quantity (read: easily chargeable). Except for a few cosmetic items that many Roleplayers will not like for their character, or selling "emote packages", what else can a company charge for? Well, longevity with a sub comes to mind, but nobody wants that :)

    PS: A good thread to necro, Althewiseguy :)

    The RP in MMORPG is not a reference to people socially roleplaying or even roleplaying the character you play in the game.It refers to the conventions and tropes of the CRPG game genre that have existed since the first Wizardry,ultima,might and magic,dungeon master etc games were conceived to mimic the rules and conventions of PnP RPGs in single player video game form.The phrase was first coined by Richard Garriot in reference to taking his single player Ultima CRPG series online with many players playing at once.

    I have nothing against players wanting to roleplay in MMORPGs to try and immerse themselves more,more power to them and they should be left alone to enjoy the game the way they want to.Bu to turn around what you said to SnarlingWolf any game with a chat system and multiplayer is by definition a MMORPG even if it's just pong with skype built in.

  • IcewhiteIcewhite Elmhurst, ILPosts: 6,403Member
    Originally posted by waynejr2

    It's not like the role players could be creative and somehow make their own emote.  This makes me sad.  ::cry::

    Why would we need to, with both /act and /smile both being completely open-ended (user defined) verbs?

    Not limited to a single animation (see: emote).

    Self-pity imprisons us in the walls of our own self-absorption. The whole world shrinks down to the size of our problem, and the more we dwell on it, the smaller we are and the larger the problem seems to grow.

  • aspekxaspekx Brandon, FLPosts: 2,167Member

    another issue is that consensus on character driven content is difficult to achieve at times. while i have certainly enjoyed my random moments of rp running across someone in the open world or at the local tavern, the ability to combine how we both see the world of our roleplay can be very difficult indeed.

     

    this is often where a gamemaster or dungeonmaster would step in and be able to offer some guidance and refereeing about the world they have placed you in and how it might or might not relate to the world you are creating with your other roleplayer.

    ------

    in the end we have yet to truly see the conversion of tabletop to an online game, massive or not, in any broad sense of the term. yes there was, and still is, the Neverwinter series with its various mods to allow select groups of people to explore together.

     

    my dream is a virtual Faerun mmo style server of my own that i can open up to as many or as few people as i want. run one or many story arcs or campaigns and have that world changeable by the players themselves and myself.

    "There are at least two kinds of games.
    One could be called finite, the other infinite.
    A finite game is played for the purpose of winning,
    an infinite game for the purpose of continuing play."
    Finite and Infinite Games, James Carse

  • IcewhiteIcewhite Elmhurst, ILPosts: 6,403Member
    Originally posted by Drakynn
    Bu to turn around what you said to SnarlingWolf any game with a chat system and multiplayer is by definition a MMORPG even if it's just pong with skype built in.

    Yup, we did a fair bit of roleplay on AIM, actually. But the props, staff and events do undeniably help.

    Really no point in trying to explain it; you either experienced it, or you confuse RP with cybersex and shakespeare. And the MMO generation really has no idea what they missed.

    You really should grumble about the horrid customer service you receive daily, though.

    Self-pity imprisons us in the walls of our own self-absorption. The whole world shrinks down to the size of our problem, and the more we dwell on it, the smaller we are and the larger the problem seems to grow.

  • SawlstoneSawlstone barrie, ONPosts: 301Member
    I enjoy light RP. My first taste of it was in GW2 where in my guild, everyone created their backstory from where they come to be. I assume that is pretty standard fare in RPing. But for me it realy made me attached to my character and I enjoyed reading about other people in the guild. Sadly if the game was half as good as my guildies imaginiations I might still be playing it.
  • aspekxaspekx Brandon, FLPosts: 2,167Member
    Originally posted by Sawlstone
    I enjoy light RP. My first taste of it was in GW2 where in my guild, everyone created their backstory from where they come to be. I assume that is pretty standard fare in RPing. But for me it realy made me attached to my character and I enjoyed reading about other people in the guild. Sadly if the game was half as good as my guildies imaginiations I might still be playing it.
    that's rp in a nutshell. creating a story within a storied world and allowing the stories to impact you. we do it all the time when we get sucked into a great book or movie.
     

     

    "There are at least two kinds of games.
    One could be called finite, the other infinite.
    A finite game is played for the purpose of winning,
    an infinite game for the purpose of continuing play."
    Finite and Infinite Games, James Carse

  • DrakynnDrakynn The Pas, MBPosts: 2,030Member
    Originally posted by Icewhite
    Originally posted by Drakynn
    Bu to turn around what you said to SnarlingWolf any game with a chat system and multiplayer is by definition a MMORPG even if it's just pong with skype built in.

    Yup, we did a fair bit of roleplay on AIM, actually. But the props, staff and events do undeniably help.

    Really no point in trying to explain it; you either experienced it, or you confuse RP with cybersex and shakespeare. And the MMO generation really has no idea what they missed.

    You really should grumble about the horrid customer service you receive daily, though.

    Like you say such RP communities existed online before MMORPGs if you wandered around any site with chat rooms like say old school Yahoo you'd trip over dozens of different RP communities.Hell there are still hundreds of IRC chat rooms that house said communities.

    MMORPGs like said chat rooms were in no way designed with these communities in mind.They do now cater to do them to varying degrees because they are a large consumer group but they have nothing to do with the naming or covnentions of the MMORPG genre.That is the point I was trying to make.

  • IcewhiteIcewhite Elmhurst, ILPosts: 6,403Member
    Originally posted by aspekx
    Originally posted by Sawlstone
    I enjoy light RP. My first taste of it was in GW2 where in my guild, everyone created their backstory from where they come to be. I assume that is pretty standard fare in RPing. But for me it realy made me attached to my character and I enjoyed reading about other people in the guild. Sadly if the game was half as good as my guildies imaginiations I might still be playing it.
    that's rp in a nutshell. creating a story within a storied world and allowing the stories to impact you. we do it all the time when we get sucked into a great book or movie.

    Or putting on a Dwarf outfit, or (heaven forbid) an avatar with bewbs.

    Self-pity imprisons us in the walls of our own self-absorption. The whole world shrinks down to the size of our problem, and the more we dwell on it, the smaller we are and the larger the problem seems to grow.

  • IcewhiteIcewhite Elmhurst, ILPosts: 6,403Member
    Originally posted by Drakynn
    MMORPGs like said chat rooms were in no way designed with these communities in mind. That is the point I was trying to make.

    And the point this thread's trying to make :)

    Self-pity imprisons us in the walls of our own self-absorption. The whole world shrinks down to the size of our problem, and the more we dwell on it, the smaller we are and the larger the problem seems to grow.

  • DrakynnDrakynn The Pas, MBPosts: 2,030Member
    Originally posted by Icewhite
    Originally posted by Drakynn
    MMORPGs like said chat rooms were in no way designed with these communities in mind. That is the point I was trying to make.

    And the point this thread's trying to make :)

    Agreed but I was responding to a post that seemed to say otherwise and there are people who do believe otherwise and they must all individually be told they are wrong!!!!Even if I have to visit them all one by one Jay and Silent Bob Style!!!

     

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