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General: Why a Horror MMO Won't Work

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  • GrayGhost79GrayGhost79 Webster, MAPosts: 4,813Member

    Originally posted by Cruoris

    Originally posted by ArEf

    Easy way to fix all this:-

    Only allow the players to be humans. They get killed, they get killed for good.

    AI is endless swarms of zombies, massive zombie-horde summoning whatevers and creepy mofos who'll climb up walls and then eat your brains.

    Players are bastards who'll kill you and steal your stuff.

    Why is this so hard?

    this is the perfect idea for a zombie mmo.  it captures all the actual elements that are scary, challenging, and tense of about zombie horror. letting people be zombie just wouldnt be fun, and would be totally missing the point of the genre. 

     

    but no zombie players.

    unless someone wants to name all those zombie movies that focused on a single zombie ambling around and chasing people.

    I have an IDEA! You have to pay to play to be a human but free to play players can be zombies. Faction restricted chat so they can see what each other are saying but the other faction only sees meaningless gibberish. 

    Free to play players would unlock other creatures as they level up instead of leveling up their toon they would be leveling up their account to get access to bigger and badder creatures. 

     

    This way pay to play players get plenty of pew pew fodder and those that want to play as a creature get to and those unable to pay a monthly fee can still get in on the action. 

  • Loke666Loke666 MalmöPosts: 18,033Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by NMStudio

    I've lurked around these forums for a while and I've noticed several mentions, both by yourself and others, about a Lovecraft MMO.  You're comment about fights that you can't win is intriguing, and I'd guess that you've put a lot of thought into it.  Have you ever put all your thoughts into one place?  I'd be curious to see what you had in mind...

    Once upon a time there was a pen and paper RPG made by Chaosium called "Call of Cthulhu".

    It was very different from other RPGs in many ways. Players were playing investigators who fought cultists and foiled the plans of the evil old gods (In the city of Rlyah dead Cthulhu awaits dreaming), all based on Lovecrafts Mythos.

    The players were not powerful and while you could fight the minions of the gods you had to outwit the main bad guys instead of fighting them because that would lead to either you going insane (which would be cool in a MMO, you seeing stuff that ain't there and so on) or die.

    So there were times where the only way to survive really was to run away instead of pulling together a raid and kill the bad guy.

    CoC were usually set in the 1920s new England and most players were scholars, teachers, dectectives and other rather regular people even if some soldiers and cops also appeared. In the game I fought cultists at the pyramids, found a frozen city with really old evil in antarctica, hunted a vampire killer, joined an evil cult and evil fought a dragon god in the djungle of Kambodja (that was set in the 60s though, and we wiped but it was a lot of fun).

    No other RPG system have really been so full of horror, triumph and fear as that one and many old P&P players remember it in a way that would make the most rabid UO follower to blush, it is really the greatest RPG game ever made to any medium.

    And I believe you could put it into a MMO, even though it would be a very different MMO compared to anything made so far.

    Chaosiums original mechanics is leveless, you have a load of skills with a percentage chance, the higher you have the harder is it to increase in them. Combat is dangerous so strategy and wits are very important even if you just fight lowly cultists. The minions of the old gods are a lot worse but in most case possible to take down.

    Sanity is however more important than hitpoints. And I could see a real cool sanity mechanics for a MMO where the game really turns creepy if you are low on it. :)

     

  • BigHatLoganBigHatLogan Bellingham, WAPosts: 688Member

    The concept of a horror MMORPG would work just fine.  It will not work as a WoW/EQ clone.  It would have to be something different.  Think to yourself, when was the last time you were scared playing a video game?  For me it was Dark Souls, because the game punishes you.  A horror mmorpg would need a brutal death penalty.   Honestly, this would be a perfect candidate for permadeath.  With Permadeath you don't need an endgame.  The actual game becomes the end game.   And dying would sure as hell scare you.  In a zombie game, seeing how long you survived would be the goal.  You could implement a food/drink/weather system, where players would be forced to scavenge to surivive.  It would be great.

    Are you a Pavlovian Fish Biscuit Addict? Get Help Now!
    image
    I will play no more MMORPGs until somethign good comes out!

  • OzivoisOzivois Phoenix, AZPosts: 598Member

    Include Perma-disfigure, perma-dismember and perma-death with your horror game and now you got something scary. 

  • Loke666Loke666 MalmöPosts: 18,033Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by sullivanj69

    The concept of a horror MMORPG would work just fine.  It will not work as a WoW/EQ clone.  It would have to be something different.  Think to yourself, when was the last time you were scared playing a video game?  For me it was Dark Souls, because the game punishes you.  A horror mmorpg would need a brutal death penalty.   Honestly, this would be a perfect candidate for permadeath.  With Permadeath you don't need an endgame.  The actual game becomes the end game.   And dying would sure as hell scare you.  In a zombie game, seeing how long you survived would be the goal.  You could implement a food/drink/weather system, where players would be forced to scavenge to surivive.  It would be great.

    That game is in the making right now. It is called "Class 4" and the lead designer is Jeff Strain (founder of ANET, lead designer of Diablo and WC3).

    Read about it here: http://undeadlabs.com/

  • cerebrixcerebrix Orange, CAPosts: 566Member

    as much as i wanted to disagree with you.

     

    i cant

     

    youre right

     

    we would ruin it

     

    hell in swtor early access the other day, i ran across a jedi named azeroth

     

    i rest your case

    Games i'm playing right now...
    image

    "In short, I thought NGE was a very bad idea" - Raph Koster talking about NGE on his blog at raphkoster.com

  • tadams2tonetadams2tone Eureka, CAPosts: 39Member

    pointless and incorrect

  • RefMinorRefMinor MyTownPosts: 3,452Member
    In a zombie MMO I would have players as human, with crafting and economy etc, trying to survive against zombie NPCs, when they died they would be regenerated as zombies (unable to communicate in game) getting double xp but needing to feed on humans regularly to avoid death, if they die or are killed they lose a set percentage of their xp before being able to start a new character as a human( with the xp of the dying one) so the game would become a circle of human/zombie characters in opposition.
  • tkobotkobo Dunellen, NJPosts: 465Member

    Nonsense.

    Players "ruin" an atmosphere of a game becuase the game lets them.The solution is ungodly simple,create the game that doesnt let them.

    childish names -easily handled.Game auto assigned names.

    childish behavior-again easily handled.

    * limited actions adjusted by  char status

    * limited text "talk" options,again adjusted by char status.No different than when players talk to npcs.

    etc...

    Holding the piss poor designs of the current mmo industry as the "be all and end all" of what can and cant be done in mmos is beyond silly.

    You want strong emotions and "fear" to be felt by the player ?Give the player the sureness that he will lose something important when things go bad.Item loss,permanent char injury,and permanent  char death are enough to scare most players with just talk of implementing such.

     

     

     

  • fenrisbluefenrisblue hampton, VAPosts: 119Member Uncommon

    horror is a genre with many ways to interpret it, as in any other genre it can be easily made into a m.m.o.with the rigt I.P. ,  obviously there is no night of the living dead m.m.o. or any mmo that would be based on an i.p. that everyone usually dies, unless they change it a bit,but the only thing that keeps horor from being a good m.m.o. genre is lack of imagination

  • RazeeksterRazeekster Solon, MEPosts: 2,201Member Uncommon

    You know what's freaking hilarious?

    IGG (I GOT GAMES) actually is releasing an MMORPG called MoonLight Online and are comparing it to Twilight.

    When I first saw it I felt a little something die inside me.

    Smile

  • PunkrePunkre Chico, CAPosts: 92Member

    About WoD: It depends, since White-Wolf made the Table top game vague enough so that people can play the game they want to it lends its self to either be a game about horror and moral choices, or angsty teenage crap.

    The WoD Trailer for the MMO looked awesome, (very dark and mature) and most of the people that read what they had planned for the game were very intrigued. But alas the game will probably not be coming out till 2016 at this rate. If their was a developer that could pull off the true horror MMO it would be White-Wolf and CCP.

  • Loke666Loke666 MalmöPosts: 18,033Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Razeekster

    You know what's freaking hilarious?

    IGG (I GOT GAMES) actually is releasing an MMORPG called MoonLight Online and are comparing it to Twilight.

    When I first saw it I felt a little something die inside me.

    That is really great news. It means less emo kids in WodO and class 4 once they comes out...

    If there were no game similar to twilight they would try to play wimp vampire in WoDO instead.

  • UnlightUnlight Ottawa, ONPosts: 2,540Member

    Originally posted by Loke666

    Originally posted by NMStudio

    I've lurked around these forums for a while and I've noticed several mentions, both by yourself and others, about a Lovecraft MMO.  You're comment about fights that you can't win is intriguing, and I'd guess that you've put a lot of thought into it.  Have you ever put all your thoughts into one place?  I'd be curious to see what you had in mind...

    Once upon a time there was a pen and paper RPG made by Chaosium called "Call of Cthulhu".

    It was very different from other RPGs in many ways. Players were playing investigators who fought cultists and foiled the plans of the evil old gods (In the city of Rlyah dead Cthulhu awaits dreaming), all based on Lovecrafts Mythos.

    The players were not powerful and while you could fight the minions of the gods you had to outwit the main bad guys instead of fighting them because that would lead to either you going insane (which would be cool in a MMO, you seeing stuff that ain't there and so on) or die.

    So there were times where the only way to survive really was to run away instead of pulling together a raid and kill the bad guy.

    CoC were usually set in the 1920s new England and most players were scholars, teachers, dectectives and other rather regular people even if some soldiers and cops also appeared. In the game I fought cultists at the pyramids, found a frozen city with really old evil in antarctica, hunted a vampire killer, joined an evil cult and evil fought a dragon god in the djungle of Kambodja (that was set in the 60s though, and we wiped but it was a lot of fun).

    No other RPG system have really been so full of horror, triumph and fear as that one and many old P&P players remember it in a way that would make the most rabid UO follower to blush, it is really the greatest RPG game ever made to any medium.

    And I believe you could put it into a MMO, even though it would be a very different MMO compared to anything made so far.

    Chaosiums original mechanics is leveless, you have a load of skills with a percentage chance, the higher you have the harder is it to increase in them. Combat is dangerous so strategy and wits are very important even if you just fight lowly cultists. The minions of the old gods are a lot worse but in most case possible to take down.

    Sanity is however more important than hitpoints. And I could see a real cool sanity mechanics for a MMO where the game really turns creepy if you are low on it. :)

     



    Ah, a fellow connoisseur of all things lurking upon thresholds. 

    Call of Cthulhu is the only game I've played where the circumstances of one's demise, trumps one's successes in terms of the war stories to be told years later.  In fact, we learned from years and years of playing that despair is actually the best protection in that game.  The less attached you are to your own survival, the longer you'll last.  Pretty much the antithesis of nearly every other game ever made.

    Putting a concept like that into a computer game is pretty much impossible.  Gamers want to roflstomp, not have their will to live cored out.

    Remarkable game, CoC.

     

     


    Songs that the Hyades shall sing,


    Where flap the tatters of the King


    Must die unheard


          in dim Carcosa.

  • NL-RikkertNL-Rikkert schagenPosts: 121Member Uncommon
    True true, as much as i luv horror/thriller stuff, all games/movies cant scare me anymore. Our biggest fears now r supossed to be mindless zombies (dead island, l4d), little japanese childeren (FEAR, the ring) 'ghosts/demons'(paranormal activity) and uber gay vampires (thnx twilight) so what is horror anymore? Watch the old and the new ' nightmare on elmstreet'. See where we r goin? Its plain pathetic. Tho some sort of hybrid GTA/fallout with dead island elements would work for meh

    STOOPID
    When someone does something so utterly moronic that it kills your brain cells at the very thought of it.

  • evolver1972evolver1972 Port Orchard, WAPosts: 1,118Member

    I would love a horror (or is it an horror?) MMO if it was done right.  Of course, like Coyote said, the asshats would ruin it.  Even the names some people give themselves in MMOs drive me nuts!  Where's the immersion in a name like cutebunnies32 or ipwnu17?  Come up with a name that actually fits with the game you're playing for MMO's sake!

     

    Anyway, the article was hilarious and spot on.  See y'all in GW2!

    image

    You want me to pay to play a game I already paid for???

    Be afraid.....The dragons are HERE!

  • BlackWatchBlackWatch OKC, OKPosts: 983Member

    Agreed... 1000%!

    The Ministry of MMO's just found a valid voice. 

     

    image

  • BaxslashBaxslash Clinton, ONPosts: 230Member

    Coyote, is absoutely right, a Horror MMO would never work, because of what TV, and Movies have done to the monsters of our nightmares and fears, even the lowely Boogie Man is nothing to cringe at anymore.

    TV, Movies, and even books have diluted our fears and nightmares until they are nothing more then absent fears of our minds.

     

    Even today, almost all MMOs cater to the easy format, and the quick buck of the companies that are trying hard to carve out an existance, gone are the days of an evolutionary mmo that will stay for a decade, let alone a century(maybe). There is no innovation, no imagination, no pride, no guts, no glory, that companies would want strive to for. Nope, its, all about getting that first 1 billion dollar MMO out there, and seeing who can get the richest first. They don't even care aboute the game community at all, most companies make half attempts to solve the problems that are found in games, but, in most cases, they either totally ignore them, and makeing the games quit the games out of frustration, or, makeing the games so easy, so, that gamers are running to the 'Next Big MMO' all the time, just for that small glimmer of hope that the game will be the one to keep gamers around for a longer duration.

     

     

  • evolver1972evolver1972 Port Orchard, WAPosts: 1,118Member

    An MMO that would scare the hell out of me would be based on Orwell's 1984.  Now THAT's scary!

    image

    You want me to pay to play a game I already paid for???

    Be afraid.....The dragons are HERE!

  • DecoyTrooperDecoyTrooper Baltimore, MDPosts: 239Member

    it doesn't have to be a hero-oriented MMO; I am tired of the same "save the world from the bad guys" crap.

  • idgaradidgarad NOwhere, MNPosts: 174Member



    Originally posted by Ubermeh




    Originally posted by Ozmodan



    Completely disagree, your reasoning is flawed.  Just look at WOD, been selling games for a long time.  The secret world will be a success too.

    First time you really messed up Coyote.

    WOD was a leading contirbutor to the emo angsty horror genre.

    Secret world maybe a success but not because it is scaring the shit out of anyone.






     

    One Word: Toreador.

     Interview with a Vampire wasn't emo enough for ya, we had to suffer through 9 years of writing and countless clan books inspired by that Anne Rice humbug. There were enough D-bags larping all over the Mall of America with that Masqurade. WoD was about as scary as Leslie Neilson playing Dracula.

    Suspense and tension are needed in horror error. Without the ability to control the pace and environment (which single player games can do versus an MMO) you can get that. Even in small 5 man environments you can. But the moment you are about to work up to a point of intense suspense and terror some D-bag will be spamming "wtb 50 holy water for 30 gp. PST with offers" every 3 minutes or immersion breaking moments of "Need 2 Vamp hunters and a Witch Doctor to run Vlad's Crypt. 400+ Gear Score only please."

    [Mod Edit]

     

     


  • divmaxdivmax JhbPosts: 106Member

    Great article, Coyote! I agree totally with your summation of the MMO community at large.

    But I do agree that some or all of your points can be mitigated by an iron-fisted developer, willing to enforce certain things and take some freedoms away from the players. Horror, in particular, needs to make the player feel just a little bit like they're not in control, to be successful. The problem is that that will never happen because that will mean only appealing to the horror fans with their horror product *gasp*

    And unfortunately that will just never satisfy their management. Most MMO's start out trying to appeal to their respective core fans, and then diluting it in order to capture a broader market. 

  • leojreimrocleojreimroc Toronto, ONPosts: 371Member

    I just want to say that your articles are probably my favorites on this site.  No offense to the other writters of course.  But yeah, always enjoyable reads.

  • tshack88tshack88 Indianapolis, INPosts: 48Member

    I don't find any horror game to be even remotely scary if I have a human ally.

    And if you're throwing that idea into an mmo where you see human players everywhere?  Yep, not gonna scare me a tiny bit.

  • xS0u1zxxS0u1zx Keswick, ONPosts: 209Member
    So I was just thinking of a scene myself that would be terrifying... I'm arachniphobic so it would apply to me, but probably apply to many.

    In the game you have realistic responses such as pain. When attacked or hit in a specific area, you suffer as you would in real life. If something bites you, hits you, shoots you or whatever you would be penalized as you would if it really happened to a person, including poisons!

    So considering a very well detailed, graphic intensive game. You enter a cave, upon exploring it you find yourself falling into a pit. Looking around you see a mass amount of webs, indicating significant spider population. Turning your head you notice a massive amount of tarantulas *which would be baby spiders* Swarming to close in on you, now remember with the actual effects of being bitten you could be paralyzed and unable to move due to pain. There's too many spiders to fight and get out, then you turn around and see one or even a few massive spiders your size or larger that just discovered their next meal. Now you need to find a way out, do you have weapons probably not and if you did would they be useful? To me that would be terrifying in the game, along with many other similar situations. Being out numbered is a rather scary feeling, especially when you know that you're in danger and there's a good chance you won't survive.

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This discussion has been closed.