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A True Challenge (Long Post)

LorskaLorska Portland, ORPosts: 74Member

This is a long one, but I'd really like to get your opinions~~~!

I have thought about this quite a bit over the last several years and I'd like to know the thoughts of others on the subject. 

 

What if there were unlockable "powers" in an MMO that....*MOST* people were incapable of achieving, based upon their own inherent limits as a person, or the extent of their real-life wisdom/intelligence/skills, but that a select few were capable of rising above and gaining these powers.  For example, when some of you in the 25ish to 35ish age bracket were kids, there were games on the NES/SNES/Genesis that you some of you beat, but your friends could not, or vice-versa, because some games....were really fucking hard back then. 


For those of you who played SWG at the beginning, when Jedi were still mysterious and the path to becoming one even moreso, do you remember that feeling excitement at just the idea of it?  The thought of even seeing a player jedi someday was exciting to me, even if I never became one.  I remember scouring the lands and exploring all over different planets, from the tallest mountain to the deepest cave, because I thought it was possible that I could figure it out from looking for clues in the world.  Eventually it turned out to be somewhat of a grind to getting random professions at master level and I disagreed with that.  

We've seen countless characters in all sorts of media/stories where....just by default, the main protagonist happens to be so gifted that when presented with a task, they somehow automatically succeed with ease.  If you've played World of Warcraft, you may have noticed that all the badass lore character NPCS call you "Hero"...."Champion"....and some of you, as I have felt that it was unearned, as if we were being patronized when obviously there are a million other "Heroes" all around us, with all of our claim to heroism purely based upon our willingness to sit in front of a computer and grind on tasks that any simpleton could accomplish.  We've also seen how most every game whether it be single player/console/PC/MMO/what have you all become so completely EASY to the point that the only requirement to utterly defeating it is time spent.  Everybody wins and gets a participation trophy.  But what if there was a game where NOT everyone was automatically a supreme ultimate badass....but had the potential to become one, but only if they were good enough....

For example.....suppose there is an MMO and in that MMO everyone starts out as a "commoner", a classless all around normal guy/gal that can progress through the game with basic skills/crafting but is not what you would consider spectacular.  Think of a typical foot soldier in a medieval army.  They could even go all the way to max level and participate in end-game content. 

 

But suppose that this player wants to learn how to use MAGIC, and has no idea where to begin.  They seek out a magic using NPC or player, and they  are directed to the "College of the Arcane."  Upon reaching said establishment, an NPC says that to be admitted to the college, the player must prove his intelligence in order to gain entry.  The NPC hands said player a puzzle box and says they cannot gain entry until they bring back the solved cube.  

Now...MOST people I know are incapable of solving say...a rubik's cube.  You can learn about the device, learn techniques to help you solve it, but there isn't really a way to look up online for a quick fix on how to do it.  It mostly comes down to your own level of intelligence and determination to figure it out.  This is only an example.  I'm sure there all sorts of puzzle games that have varying difficulty in solving.  What if games had tasks such as this *in game* where there was no help in looking up a walkthrough online, or going off to level up more so it would be easier.  What if it really just came down to your own skill level as a person.  

Another example could be something like the jumping puzzles in Guild Wars 2.  Some of them are much more challenging than others, and if desired one could be tuned to be EXTREMELY difficult.  A task like this could be something that gained players access to say....swiftness/agility/rogue like powers.  

With whatever tasks they may be, if they are truly "skill based", then they could easily be tuned in development iterations for the desired percentage of the population to be capable of beating over X amount of attempts.  I can't think of many more examples offhand, so I was curious to see if anyone else could.  I am having a particularly hard time thinking of one that would relate to a "raw brute strength" sort of feat.

In short, my point is that it would be possible to insert certain extreme challenges into games and tune them such that only a small percentage of players had the brainpower to achieve.  The rewards could be anything but it would be particularly exciting to me if they unlocked skills or even hero classes.  EVEN IF I was unable to ever achieve said powers, just the idea of it would be exciting enough that I would enjoy it being in the game, and probably continue to keep trying to attain it.  Just imagine the gratification you would feel for completing a challenge and reaping the rewards that say....was tuned to only 5% of the populace being able to achieve.  No grinding until you out -level the content...no epic guilds getting it all before you, it's all just for the best and the brightest...all solo man vs the challenge. 

Comments

  • MMORPGRIPMMORPGRIP Canton, OHPosts: 90Member

    Personally I think that would be really great to see. But sadly it is very unlikely for a couple reasons.

    1. The large percentage that couldn't achieve unlocking the abilities would whine excessively that the abilities should be available to everyone and not so difficult to get (Too much work in their eyes) until the company in question changed it (Dumbed it down) so it no longer provides true challenge and anyone could do it. Also rendering the abilities  not unique and/or special.

    Or...

    2. Most companies these days don't risk anything on excessively different features for fear of hurting their precious  user numbers. Again...if too difficult, or out of the reach of the self entitlement crowd...they won't play. Hence...hurting user numbers and/or potential financial income of the company and it's game.

     

    IMO of course based on today's MMORPG community.

     

     

    Otherwise...yes...I would LOVE to see such features.  Reminds me of when I played EQ1. It was not so common to see capped out players...let alone ones that had their epic weapons that were acquired through extensively long epic quests that took the player throughout the entire world for quests...that also had soloable parts, as well as parts where they required raids to that made the whole thing take days/weeks or even months to finish (Based on the players drive, Guild helpfulness, etc.).

  • LorskaLorska Portland, ORPosts: 74Member
    Originally posted by MMORPGRIP

    1. The large percentage that couldn't achieve unlocking the abilities would whine excessively that the abilities should be available to everyone and not so difficult to get (Too much work in their eyes) until the company in question changed it (Dumbed it down) so it no longer provides true challenge and anyone could do it. Also rendering the abilities  not unique and/or special.

    While this is completely true that some people, probably a lot of people would complain, I truly believe that MOST people's pride, vanity, narcissism would prevent them from complaining that they are too "weak" to surmount a task that is completely skill-based.  I may be overestimating humanity's sense of self-respect though....

  • BenediktBenedikt PraguePosts: 1,406Member Uncommon
    sorry but this would completely go against the point of rpg - point of rpg is that it allows you to be someone else, here you would be bound by your own skills instead of those of your character.
  • AlBQuirkyAlBQuirky Sioux City, IAPosts: 3,828Member

    It would be interesting to see. It could even be a fun aspect to playing a character. I would even give it a go :)

    However, it brings *me* into the game (as action combat does) just with differing abilities, ie: Intelligence or Wisdom used in solving puzzles and Manual Dexterity used for jumping.

    Trying to be unique in an MMO is a lot players' dream. I just do not see it happening with tens or hundreds of thousand, or even millions of players playing the same game. In single player games and books, yes, the main character is unique. That is much, much tougher to accomplish in MMORPGs.

    - 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

  • immodiumimmodium ManchesterPosts: 1,578Member Uncommon

    I would love to see something like that. Skill based achievements are a great idea.

    Would people whine to make them easier? Probably, people do it already with not so challenging content.

    image
  • immodiumimmodium ManchesterPosts: 1,578Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Benedikt
    sorry but this would completely go against the point of rpg - point of rpg is that it allows you to be someone else, here you would be bound by your own skills instead of those of your character.

    Are you implying it requires no skill to play an RPG?

    image
  • MMORPGRIPMMORPGRIP Canton, OHPosts: 90Member
    Originally posted by AlBQuirky

    It would be interesting to see. It could even be a fun aspect to playing a character. I would even give it a go :)

    However, it brings *me* into the game (as action combat does) just with differing abilities, ie: Intelligence or Wisdom used in solving puzzles and Manual Dexterity used for jumping.

    Trying to be unique in an MMO is a lot players' dream. I just do not see it happening with tens or hundreds of thousand, or even millions of players playing the same game. In single player games and books, yes, the main character is unique. That is much, much tougher to accomplish in MMORPGs.

    It is true that uniqueness is MUCH tougher to accomplish in an MMORPG. But I feel it really isn't impossible.

     

    Not only due to unlockable abilities, but customization options. So many MMORPG's these days have pretty graphics, but  character customization is an after thought it appears with so few options. There should be TONS of options.

     

    Not only this, but (With EQ1 again as an example) the ability to dye your gear different colors. I thought of an idea awhile ago...although I am not sure how it could be incorporated or if even possible...

     

    Say someone decides to become a blacksmith to make armor. Upon selecting to train to become a blacksmith, the player has an in-game program become available much like photoshop. It would allow them to interchange parts they created to make more unique looking armor items...maybe even with different stats (If available in said game). maybe even allow them to put their mark on them as a way of identifying the maker (Give the players the ability to make a crest if you will).

     

    Of course I know this would require a lot of resources, a HUGE amount of gear options, etc. It's more than likely a pipe dream...for now anyways. But such things would not only add to uniqueness...but the depth and excitement of the game as well...from both a crafter's standpoint and the player's to stand out in a crowd.

     

  • LorskaLorska Portland, ORPosts: 74Member
    Originally posted by MMORPGRIP

    It is true that uniqueness is MUCH tougher to accomplish in an MMORPG. But I feel it really isn't impossible.

     Not only due to unlockable abilities, but customization options. So many MMORPG's these days have pretty graphics, but  character customization is an after thought it appears with so few options. There should be TONS of options.

    I think what you are saying and what I am suggesting go hand-in-hand in that what is lacking in most MMOs is the feeling of being "special" enough.  With most MMOs, I just feel like one in a million mindless drones, chipping away at the same daily quests or whatever with no identity. 

     

    This is also true of reality.  IMO, the main goal of all people whether subconsciously or not is to 'express themselves' whether it be through creativity or demonstrating all that they have achieved (power) and having the rest of the world marvel at their magnificence. 

  • AlBQuirkyAlBQuirky Sioux City, IAPosts: 3,828Member


    Originally posted by MMORPGRIP

    Originally posted by AlBQuirky
    It would be interesting to see. It could even be a fun aspect to playing a character. I would even give it a go :)However, it brings *me* into the game (as action combat does) just with differing abilities, ie: Intelligence or Wisdom used in solving puzzles and Manual Dexterity used for jumping.Trying to be unique in an MMO is a lot players' dream. I just do not see it happening with tens or hundreds of thousand, or even millions of players playing the same game. In single player games and books, yes, the main character is unique. That is much, much tougher to accomplish in MMORPGs.
    It is true that uniqueness is MUCH tougher to accomplish in an MMORPG. But I feel it really isn't impossible.Not only due to unlockable abilities, but customization options. So many MMORPG's these days have pretty graphics, but  character customization is an after thought it appears with so few options. There should be TONS of options.Not only this, but (With EQ1 again as an example) the ability to dye your gear different colors. I thought of an idea awhile ago...although I am not sure how it could be incorporated or if even possible...Say someone decides to become a blacksmith to make armor. Upon selecting to train to become a blacksmith, the player has an in-game program become available much like photoshop. It would allow them to interchange parts they created to make more unique looking armor items...maybe even with different stats (If available in said game). maybe even allow them to put their mark on them as a way of identifying the maker (Give the players the ability to make a crest if you will).Of course I know this would require a lot of resources, a HUGE amount of gear options, etc. It's more than likely a pipe dream...for now anyways. But such things would not only add to uniqueness...but the depth and excitement of the game as well...from both a crafter's standpoint and the player's to stand out in a crowd.
    While that would truly be the ultimate in uniqueness, how many players are well versed with computer art? I certainly am not :)

    There is a line that needs to be observed when designing games: Cost vs Assets. If the assets outweigh the cost of creating them on a per user basis, the game loses money.

    There is lots that an MMO could do to make things very different, but they also have to stay cost effective.

    Your idea is a really COOL pipe dream, but one that is not cost effective :) I'd really like to see a way to "place a crafter's mark" on items :)

    - 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

  • MMORPGRIPMMORPGRIP Canton, OHPosts: 90Member
    Originally posted by Lorska
    Originally posted by MMORPGRIP

    It is true that uniqueness is MUCH tougher to accomplish in an MMORPG. But I feel it really isn't impossible.

     Not only due to unlockable abilities, but customization options. So many MMORPG's these days have pretty graphics, but  character customization is an after thought it appears with so few options. There should be TONS of options.

    I think what you are saying and what I am suggesting go hand-in-hand in that what is lacking in most MMOs is the feeling of being "special" enough.  With most MMOs, I just feel like one in a million mindless drones, chipping away at the same daily quests or whatever with no identity. 

     

    This is also true of reality.  IMO, the main goal of all people whether subconsciously or not is to 'express themselves' whether it be through creativity or demonstrating all that they have achieved (power) and having the rest of the world marvel at their magnificence. 

    Exactly...and this is what once separated MMORPG's from other forms of gaming. We need that back.

  • ElderRatElderRat Syracuse, NYPosts: 899Member
    Originally posted by MMORPGRIP

    Personally I think that would be really great to see. But sadly it is very unlikely for a couple reasons.

    1. The large percentage that couldn't achieve unlocking the abilities would whine excessively that the abilities should be available to everyone and not so difficult to get (Too much work in their eyes) until the company in question changed it (Dumbed it down) so it no longer provides true challenge and anyone could do it. Also rendering the abilities  not unique and/or special.

    Or...

    2. Most companies these days don't risk anything on excessively different features for fear of hurting their precious  user numbers. Again...if too difficult, or out of the reach of the self entitlement crowd...they won't play. Hence...hurting user numbers and/or potential financial income of the company and it's game.

     

    IMO of course based on today's MMORPG community.

     

     

    Otherwise...yes...I would LOVE to see such features.  Reminds me of when I played EQ1. It was not so common to see capped out players...let alone ones that had their epic weapons that were acquired through extensively long epic quests that took the player throughout the entire world for quests...that also had soloable parts, as well as parts where they required raids to that made the whole thing take days/weeks or even months to finish (Based on the players drive, Guild helpfulness, etc.).

    also, if there is a cash shop in that game those special things would be sold for $. So they with the most cash would pay for them .    Mostly tho I agree, the game would be made easier. 

    Currently bored with MMO's.

  • maplestonemaplestone Ottawa, ONPosts: 3,099Member

    It takes a certain chutzpah to rally against "everyone wins" games while pitching your alternative vision as one where all your readers are cast in the role of the 1% who win.

     

     

  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,668Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by AlBQuirky

    It would be interesting to see. It could even be a fun aspect to playing a character. I would even give it a go :)

    Puzzle Pirates.  To pilot a ship you need to get good at Navigation. You can only practice Navigation if you join an Armada (clan/guild) and someone who owns a ship lets you navigate. If you never get good at Navigation, you will never be able to sail your own ship.

    A lot of MMOs have content that is only accessible through personal skill, but those skills are often diplomacy, leadership and social engineering, which most people suck at.

    There isn't a "right" or "wrong" way to play, if you want to use a screwdriver to put nails into wood, have at it, simply don't complain when the guy next to you with the hammer is doing it much better and easier. - Allein
    "Graphics are often supplied by Engines that (some) MMORPG's are built in" - Spuffyre

  • anemoanemo Posts: 762Member Uncommon
    Play EvE Online.   It's one of the few games that have a few hundred people capable of altering the face of the game, and affecting thousands of others.

    Practice doesn't make perfect, practice makes permanent.

    "There are still vast swaths of our planet's surface in which it's surprisingly easy to lose things. Even a ship the size of a large building." Richard Fisher

  • Beatnik59Beatnik59 Chicago, ILPosts: 2,235Member Uncommon

    I remember back when earning Jedi was a mystery back in pre-CU SWG.

    We believed that the devs were walking around incognito observing people; they would pick people who played in character and embodied the Jedi ethos of respect and humility...

    ...Perhaps that's why the servers all went to hell when we learned it was all a rote grind...

    Anyways, I always thought it would be a cool idea if the devs took an active role in the game.  Perhaps they would portray themselves as gods or powerful NPCs, who would go around causing deeds or rewarding players who did favorable things for them.

    __________________________
    "Its sad when people use religion to feel superior, its even worse to see people using a video game to do it."
    --Arcken

    "...when it comes to pimping EVE I have little restraints."
    --Hellmar, CEO of CCP.

    "It's like they took a gun, put it to their nugget sack and pulled the trigger over and over again, each time telling us how great it was that they were shooting themselves in the balls."
    --Exar_Kun on SWG's NGE

  • nariusseldonnariusseldon santa clara, CAPosts: 22,441Member

    Very bad idea.

    Developing content that only few players will ever see? I doubt any devs will waste resources like that anymore.

    Even Blizz, who is richer than most, decide they should not create content (in this case, raid, but power is a form of content too) for the 2 percenter.

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