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Koster still prefers Skill-based system, Dickenson doesnt

admriker444admriker444 Nampa, IDPosts: 1,526Member

Interesting article in March 06 issue of Computer Gaming World. In it Ralph Koster states...

"Classes and levels are legacies from pen and paper gaming that dont entirely suit the sort of things that MMO's can do. We have assumptions about MMO's; we usually think of them as basically large scale RPG's. Thats not really all they are or can be, they offer much more than that. As long as we keep using systems that proceed from different assumptions, its going to be harder to get different types of gameplay."

SWG's Dickenson states...

"While freedom is great for hardcore players, it can put most other players into unfun states which isnt a good place to be. Perhaps we shouldnt be distinuishing between virtual worlds and traditionalist RPG's after all, but rather hardcore players and casual players."

Later on the article compares SWG's recent changes to equivalent to a sex-change operation that left its existing players in a state of livid shock.

Dickenson then goes on to state...

"Hardcore gamers will always be the core of any MMO's audience, but the more the game does to provide easy-to-understand gameplay and fun rewarding adventures to a broader market the better off we all are."

To summarize, Dickenson feels the future of MMO's is making games for the casual player. That means simplistic dumbed down systems for the casual player.

The article's author states he wishes for a combination of WoW's accessiblity, the depth of EVE, the fluid character development of UO, and PVP structures of Shadowbane.

Comments

  • SofaKing2000SofaKing2000 Deeeeetroit, MIPosts: 196Member

    Dickenson is a Nancy boy!

    DICKenson is another example of a corporate tool telling us what we want in a product. I don't know about you guys, but Im am SICK to death of having DICK'S telling me what I want in a product just because his focus group of 14 year olds told him that reading is stupid and just want to jump into a game so they can shoot stuff and blow up shit.

    Granted, shooting stuff and blowing shit up IS fun... BUT!

    The real fun is being set loose in a virtual world and turning it into a home. I think what DICK does'nt know is that building and creating is human nature and once a person is weened off his/her mothers teet they don't need big brother in the sky to hold they're hand and show them what fun is.

    What game developers are learning now (thanks to us posting our opinions on how we feel about the SWG fiasco) is there's a growing market for Sandbox type games with depth and substance as opposed to stupid ass infintile FPS shooter type game.

    No offence to peeps that enjoy FPS games... Im just sick to death of them.

     

     

     

  • scaramooshscaramoosh rhhdhfPosts: 3,424Member

    I don't see what was soo hard for casual players about SWG? Theres professions and it's easy to tell what they do because of their names and skill lists!

    With EVE it's for the casual player, logon train skills while your offline that you need!

     

    Not my fault people are stupid/lazy and want to be told what to do!

    ---------------------------------------------
    image
    Don't click here...no2

  • MinimumMinimum Riverside, CAPosts: 236Member

    Koster had his chance with SWG and pretty much blew it.  That game should have had 5 times the subscribers it ever did.  I followed it from the day it's website went up.  But they were too busy spitting on their currently paying customers.   It's my fond hope he's never again put in charge of a project.  It's clear he's pretty clueless.

    Don't know anything about the other guy, except he's pretty much wrong.  All we want is for it to be fun.  If it's fun, it can be a complicated as neurosurgery and people will play, and want to learn.

    Instead we keep getting the same old retreaded ideas.  Over and over and over.

    What made WoW so popular is the original team had a sense of humor, you can see it through out the game.  It's too bad the current batch don't share that.  Now it's turning into an EQ retread with constant grinds and raids for anybody in the higher levels.  And no relief in sight.

  • OSYYRUSOSYYRUS rochester, NYPosts: 285Member

    I've often wondered what Koster's take on this whole NGE thing is. He no longer has any part of SWG, having been promoted to Worldwide Creative Director, or some other such random title (can't remember exactly). The whole Virtual World idea was his brainchild, and for the first 2 years of SWG we all got to experience it. They just flat out missed the fucking boat when it came time to change things up.
    They assumed that when their focus groups said the game was too hard, it meant they needed to dumb down the interface. NO. By too hard, they meant that HALF THE FUCKING GAME NEVER WORKED FROM DAY ONE. I played beta and to this day, there are the same amount of bugs. Maybe not the same bugs (some of them), but the same number of bugs. They wonder why people play WOW. Is it cause it's "iconic" and "warcrafty?" No.....not really. Yeah their original player base came because they played Diablo and Warcraft, but WOW's staying power comes from the fact that it's a FULLY WORKING GAME. Players tell other players that the game is great. It has word of mouth. SWG never had that. The best word of mouth it ever got from it's player base was "It's a cool game with a LOT of potential." I never recommened to anyone, in anytime of SWG's history to "go out and grab this game, NOW" It has just never felt finished, polished.
    It's just idiocity to me. For them to assume that their failing subscriptions were from a botched game system. NO you dumbasses. Your failing subscriptions were from people who didn't want to pay for them to finish the fucking game. Why would I pay 15 dollars a month to play a game in a half finsihed state, when I can pay 15 dollars a month to play a game that's fully fleshed out. It just blows me away that they go and change the whole damn system instead of just fixing the one that was. AND THEN they assume that people will be patient as they SCRAP everything they've done and start over. Yeah, I can't say I'm happy when people lose jobs, but people are losing them over this mess and it's well deserved. Why are publishes taking longer? There excuse "We are testing them longer to make sure they are right", the real excuse "We fired a good chunk of the development team and hired a bunch of cheaper devs, fresh off the boat to save money" Although there is no proof to the rumors about SONY cracking down on this disaster, I believe it 100%. Any competent CEO of any company would look at these choices with steam pouring out his ears. I can see it now "So you mean to tell me that you decided to scrap 250k current paying customers because you "had a hunch" you could get more then that by reinventing the game while they play it? You actually traded REAL PAYING CUSTOMERS for imaginary customers YOU DIDN'T EVEN KNOW YOU COULD GET?" Donald Trump would have a blast sorting this out.

    The Millenium Lee
    image

  • JodokaiJodokai San Diego, CAPosts: 1,621Member



    Originally posted by Minimum

    Koster had his chance with SWG and pretty much blew it.  That game should have had 5 times the subscribers it ever did.  I followed it from the day it's website went up.  But they were too busy spitting on their currently paying customers.   It's my fond hope he's never again put in charge of a project.  It's clear he's pretty clueless.
    Really? Then how come everyone wants the game that Koster made back?
    Don't know anything about the other guy, except he's pretty much wrong.  All we want is for it to be fun.  If it's fun, it can be a complicated as neurosurgery and people will play, and want to learn.
    Instead we keep getting the same old retreaded ideas.  Over and over and over.
    What made WoW so popular is the original team had a sense of humor, you can see it through out the game.  It's too bad the current batch don't share that. 
    That's one of the things I hate about WoW. I like my RPG's to have a serious tone.
    Now it's turning into an EQ retread with constant grinds and raids for anybody in the higher levels.  And no relief in sight.



  • dolaniousdolanious Springfield, ILPosts: 186Member

    See you guys? Their only regret is that they never made the game simplistic enough (read "shitty enough").

  • MeFartsSmellMeFartsSmell TikriePosts: 225Member
    I think that being able to have the freedom to pick what skills you would like for your characture has always been the best way to have an MMO. Its gives every person the chance to be able to have a different toon to that of another person, it makes you feel that your toon itself is special and has a set of skills and abilities to offer that maybe some of toon wont have.

    Whannnnn Whannnnn dat is the sound of 20 year old babies

  • Kyler1138Kyler1138 Vancouver, BCPosts: 69Member

    I think Koster needs to quit $OE and put his money where his mouth is. I've loved the MMO's he's designed, played Ultima Online for over 5 years untill EA really started pissing on it's customers (gee that sounds familar... lol)

    I love the skill based games, having a hard number of levels only serve to divide the playebase up in what they can do as a group, and severly limit the flexibility of characters. Being able to change your skills and template is what keeps a game fresh. You can keep your character name but with time try out any number of skills and settle into a template you enjoy more. Not some cookie cutter level system that the designers think is best for you.

    Even though i'm looking forward to Vanguard, I fear the same old level treadmill system will hold it back.

    HEY RAPH!! You need to leave $OE and make your own damn game company and do things the way wou want, as long as Raph is with $OE there is very little he can do to change online gaming.

  • admriker444admriker444 Nampa, IDPosts: 1,526Member



    Originally posted by Kyler1138

    I think Koster needs to quit $OE and put his money where his mouth is. I've loved the MMO's he's designed, played Ultima Online for over 5 years untill EA really started pissing on it's customers (gee that sounds familar... lol)
    I love the skill based games, having a hard number of levels only serve to divide the playebase up in what they can do as a group, and severly limit the flexibility of characters. Being able to change your skills and template is what keeps a game fresh. You can keep your character name but with time try out any number of skills and settle into a template you enjoy more. Not some cookie cutter level system that the designers think is best for you.
    Even though i'm looking forward to Vanguard, I fear the same old level treadmill system will hold it back.
    HEY RAPH!! You need to leave $OE and make your own damn game company and do things the way wou want, as long as Raph is with $OE there is very little he can do to change online gaming.


    This reminded me of the 1st day of the CU. It was such a shock to me because I had always only played skill based games to that point.

    My crafter suddenly couldnt reach his harvesters without being one-hit killed. My 3 boxes in pistoleer meant absolutely nada. Before, I was able to get around places like Yavin (my preferred planet for harvesters) with marksman 4xxx / pistoleer xx4x and a nice probot combat droid.

    My investment in loot-made pistols was rendered useless with the CU. All weapons were now assigned a level requirement. I couldnt use my krayt made DX2 pistols. My krayt made FWG5 pre-nerf pistols were suddenly junk. Many of my pistols now required me to be lvl 54 or lvl 80

    Armor certifications ??? Where the hell did that come from ??? No wonder the armorsmith correspondent and thousands of armorsmiths quit overnight. Nobody ever asked for that. All we wanted was a cap on armor somewhere in the neighborhood of 60%. Remember the days when you carried around 2 sets of armor ? I always had a set of Ubese for hunting and some nice composite I used for PvP. Again, overnight all the armor sets I had were useless as my profession couldnt wear them.

    Group dynamics totally 100% changed overnight as well. Suddenly that TKM / ranger couldnt find a group because he was now assigned a level which severely weakened him. His ranger /scout skills were now a huge liability. PvP was totally out of the question too.

    Hunting died the day the CU launched. Remember just going out to look for spawns of forest gurrecks because your pal armorsmith needed the wooly hide ? Then when levels were introduced, hunting died. Now we had to run missions to get the spawn we needed or to get the right level. If you were a lvl 54 TKM, you couldnt go hunting because most mobs out in the wilderness of Endor were level 70-80. The total freedom of just going out to hunt was dead overnight.

    And levels actually made the game easier to solo while hunting(which was the opposite intent). I had no trouble killing giant dune kimos in a few minutes. Pre-cu I had to really watch myself because those mind diseases really hurt. Diseases, poisons, wounds, etc all gone made basically all mobs carbon copies of each other. No more need to fear that Toxic Merek or dreaded Mantrigue Reaper from diseasing the crap out of you. Now thanks to levels they're no different than a wimpy Nuna

    Some changes totally made zero sense. Docs now could only get xp by healing OUTSIDE Medical Centers, in essence making them a combat class. I thought thats what combat medics were for ???

    The players who really enjoyed being jacks of all trades were rendered pathetic overnight. I had several friends who had templates like novice artisan / novice scout / novice medic / 0/0/4/0 ranger / 2/2/0/0 creature handler / 4/0/0/0 marksman. They werent great at one thing but they could do a lot. Set camps, harvest, track, tame pets, use  basic ranged weapons, some healing, etc. They absolutely loved their template.

    Some would even go drop their novice skill repeatedly to take up novice entertainer for a guild hunt. It really helped the night when we could get our BF healed in a campsite. And the jack-of-all trade player was considered extremely useful to us.

    Sigh I miss those days. Levels SUX

  • DistopiaDistopia Baltimore, MDPosts: 16,901Member Uncommon


    Originally posted by SofaKing2000
    Dickenson is a Nancy boy!
    DICKenson is another example of a corporate tool telling us what we want in a product. I don't know about you guys, but Im am SICK to death of having DICK'S telling me what I want in a product just because his focus group of 14 year olds told him that reading is stupid and just want to jump into a game so they can shoot stuff and blow up shit.
    Granted, shooting stuff and blowing shit up IS fun... BUT!
    The real fun is being set loose in a virtual world and turning it into a home. I think what DICK does'nt know is that building and creating is human nature and once a person is weened off his/her mothers teet they don't need big brother in the sky to hold they're hand and show them what fun is.
    What game developers are learning now (thanks to us posting our opinions on how we feel about the SWG fiasco) is there's a growing market for Sandbox type games with depth and substance as opposed to stupid ass infintile FPS shooter type game.
    No offence to peeps that enjoy FPS games... Im just sick to death of them.



    Well not that i do not agree with you , but isn't what you just said the same thing . You are saying a certain gameplay style (that you prefer ) is best for everyone .

    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

  • DistopiaDistopia Baltimore, MDPosts: 16,901Member Uncommon


    Originally posted by admriker444
    Interesting article in March 06 issue of Computer Gaming World. In it Ralph Koster states...
    "Classes and levels are legacies from pen and paper gaming that dont entirely suit the sort of things that MMO's can do. We have assumptions about MMO's; we usually think of them as basically large scale RPG's. Thats not really all they are or can be, they offer much more than that. As long as we keep using systems that proceed from different assumptions, its going to be harder to get different types of gameplay."
    SWG's Dickenson states...
    "While freedom is great for hardcore players, it can put most other players into unfun states which isnt a good place to be. Perhaps we shouldnt be distinuishing between virtual worlds and traditionalist RPG's after all, but rather hardcore players and casual players."
    Later on the article compares SWG's recent changes to equivalent to a sex-change operation that left its existing players in a state of livid shock.
    Dickenson then goes on to state...
    "Hardcore gamers will always be the core of any MMO's audience, but the more the game does to provide easy-to-understand gameplay and fun rewarding adventures to a broader market the better off we all are."
    To summarize, Dickenson feels the future of MMO's is making games for the casual player. That means simplistic dumbed down systems for the casual player.
    The article's author states he wishes for a combination of WoW's accessiblity, the depth of EVE, the fluid character development of UO, and PVP structures of Shadowbane.

    Oh My two people disagree , who would of thought it .

    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

  • admriker444admriker444 Nampa, IDPosts: 1,526Member



    Originally posted by Malickiebloo




    Originally posted by SofaKing2000
    Dickenson is a Nancy boy!
    DICKenson is another example of a corporate tool telling us what we want in a product. I don't know about you guys, but Im am SICK to death of having DICK'S telling me what I want in a product just because his focus group of 14 year olds told him that reading is stupid and just want to jump into a game so they can shoot stuff and blow up shit.
    Granted, shooting stuff and blowing shit up IS fun... BUT!
    The real fun is being set loose in a virtual world and turning it into a home. I think what DICK does'nt know is that building and creating is human nature and once a person is weened off his/her mothers teet they don't need big brother in the sky to hold they're hand and show them what fun is.
    What game developers are learning now (thanks to us posting our opinions on how we feel about the SWG fiasco) is there's a growing market for Sandbox type games with depth and substance as opposed to stupid ass infintile FPS shooter type game.
    No offence to peeps that enjoy FPS games... Im just sick to death of them.




    Well not that i do not agree with you , but isn't what you just said the same thing . You are saying a certain gameplay style (that you prefer ) is best for everyone .



    I dont think he's saying one system is best for everyone. It was obvious not everyone would like SWG's open sandbox style and skill system.

    However the general consensus amongst MMO gamers is that Skill based systems are superior. I cant find the link but it was 80% + that preferred it

    And dont forget the folks who played SWG in beta and launch bought SWG because it WASNT a FPS or a level based system. We bought it because it was open-ended sandbox style. We bought the game because of the promise of a player run economy where player made goods were always superior. We bought the game because we werent limited to a class system.

    Therefore it shouldnt come to any surprise to us or SOE that the population has plumetted. The highest numbers happened pre-cu with roughly 350k players. The fact that the CU and NGE have reduced the game to less than 40k speaks volumes on our preference

    Sure everyone knows MMO's change, but not this much. I didnt just get a new coat of paint or some tires, I got another car that I never intended to buy.

    No offense to FPS players, but I hate that style of gameplay. Its a completely different style of play I have zero interest in playing

     

  • DistopiaDistopia Baltimore, MDPosts: 16,901Member Uncommon


    Originally posted by admriker444
    Originally posted by Malickiebloo Originally posted by SofaKing2000Dickenson is a Nancy boy! DICKenson is another example of a corporate tool telling us what we want in a product. I don't know about you guys, but Im am SICK to death of having DICK'S telling me what I want in a product just because his focus group of 14 year olds told him that reading is stupid and just want to jump into a game so they can shoot stuff and blow up shit.Granted, shooting stuff and blowing shit up IS fun... BUT!The real fun is being set loose in a virtual world and turning it into a home. I think what DICK does'nt know is that building and creating is human nature and once a person is weened off his/her mothers teet they don't need big brother in the sky to hold they're hand and show them what fun is.What game developers are learning now (thanks to us posting our opinions on how we feel about the SWG fiasco) is there's a growing market for Sandbox type games with depth and substance as opposed to stupid ass infintile FPS shooter type game.No offence to peeps that enjoy FPS games... Im just sick to death of them.Well not that i do not agree with you , but isn't what you just said the same thing . You are saying a certain gameplay style (that you prefer ) is best for everyone . I dont think he's saying one system is best for everyone. It was obvious not everyone would like SWG's open sandbox style and skill system.
    However the general consensus amongst MMO gamers is that Skill based systems are superior. I cant find the link but it was 80% + that preferred it
    And dont forget the folks who played SWG in beta and launch bought SWG because it WASNT a FPS or a level based system. We bought it because it was open-ended sandbox style. We bought the game because of the promise of a player run economy where player made goods were always superior. We bought the game because we werent limited to a class system.
    Sure everyone knows MMO's change, but not this much. I didnt just get a new coat of paint or some tires, I got another car that I never intended to buy.
    No offense to FPS players, but I hate that style of gameplay. Its a completely different style of play I have zero interest in playing

    Being i bought it at launch just for those reasons alone (not even considering it was Star Wars ) Your kinda preaching to the choir . I played Uo before moving on to DAOC for about a year prior to SWG's release . And was thrilled koster was working on it , Im just saying what i like isn't what i expect everyone to like .

    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

  • admriker444admriker444 Nampa, IDPosts: 1,526Member

    totally understand where you are coming from.

    I too followed Koster to SWG. And if I saw his name attached to another MMO in development, I'd be lining up to play regardless of the setting (fantasy, sci, etc)

    He seems to be lost in SOE and unappreciated. My dream is he gets some old friends together from Ultima and starts his own MMO company with serious financial backers. 

  • DistopiaDistopia Baltimore, MDPosts: 16,901Member Uncommon


    Originally posted by admriker444

    He seems to be lost in SOE and unappreciated. My dream is he gets some old friends together from Ultima and starts his own MMO company with serious financial backers.

    Omg , we agree on something haha
    ::::17::

    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

  • freebirdpatfreebirdpat Pittsburgh, PAPosts: 568Member

    I wish Raph Koster would hook up with Will Wright on Spore. Both seem to favor the sandbox type deal.

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