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Originally posted by binary_0011 lot of of players skip the fp in swtor and grind HM again and again just to reach max level...what is the point if you ask me.....
This is the core of the problem. And it's due to the game design.
Once upon a time....
Adding to lowering the level speed, difficulty should also be upped.
Because... the outcome is only worth what you invested. If you invested alot in time, skill, practise, and more, the feeling ofcomplishment is just much higher. I played alot of WoW but I never really cared about anything, because I was rarely really challanged and anything I earned seemed like it was handed to me and anyone doing the same.
I assume many have tried the scenario where a friend invites you to play a game, and gives you items to get you started.. that is the worst way of starting a new game, emmediatly it will mean nothing to you because you never earned anything.
This doesn't mean the difficulty should be so harsh it will scare away normal (saner) players, there should just be many difficulties integrated in the game so everyone on their level of commitment/skill/gear will have challanges that they can beat or fail ... yes FAIL I know it is a foreign word on the mmorpg scene... developers come on, failing is what makes you try harder, and eventually gives you more "pride" when you do actually succeed a previously failed attempt.
"I am my connectome" https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=HA7GwKXfJB0
I'm an old school leveler. I love pvp, but I hate rush leveling. Never been a big raid guy. I love long, drawn out content.
Me, I'm playing casually right now. Sometimes group, sometimes solo. After a week (of an hour or two a night) I'm level 17. While the storylines are interesting, the leveling is too easy. There really isn't much tactics being required on these quests. Only time I died is when I wasn't paying attention, and accidently engaged a champion mob solo when it was the same level I was. Even then, the fight was close.
The game isn't very intuitive. The "heroic" feel you get is just you smushing mobs, and provided you aren't a total dunce, you will only fight 2 or 3 enemies at a time. Now I can't speak about later levels, but this isn't fun for someone who wants an engaging time leveling.
In SWG, it took me 2 months to get a full template. In POTBS, it took me 3 months to hit level 50. I do it the old fashioned slow way. I hate power leveling.
Another thing is, providing a fast track leveling system doesn't make better players. The PVP system in this game is sorta fail, but if it was in-depth and smart, you'd have a bunch of people who don't know what they are doing, because there was all the incentive in the world to enjoy your character. Right now, there is no "enjoying" of your character.
These things might change once I hit later levels, but that's what I've found so far. If this were a single player game (with limited multiplayer) it would be an awesome game. As an MMO, its got some great ideas and concepts, but it really falls flat in many areas.
This is a perfect read and exactly how I feel about MMOs right now.
The solution, a slower leveling trinket. An item you can equip, or a debuff you can get to make you level slower. That way people that want to rush can, and those of us that want to experience all of the content at the appropriate level can. It doesn't take a genius to figure out a solution, but I guess geniuses don't make games.
World of Warcraft is on a bit of the right track with their increased experience items and their frozen experience option you can pay for, but where are the less experience items? I still want to advance, but just much slower. It's a simple solution that should not be overlooked. Unfortunately, I'm just one voice.
It's about the journey not the goal, It sounds like SWTOR gives out ten times too much experence for thier storyline quests.
I really hope that Guild Wars 2 is not like that. I want to spend six months doing every quest I can find to get to the level cap. I don't want to be too high a level for the next thread of quests, that just makes no sense.
Originally posted by Ozmodan I think many of you are missing the point. A game does not have to be a grind, yet can be a entertaining sandbox. When you get away from the dumb class/level system and go to a more realistic skill system you can extend play for much longer periods of time. Take for example Eve, there are more skills than anyone could ever learn, you have to specialize which can easily be done in a month or two, yet if you want to diversify it can take quite some time to collect all the skills you need. In Eve everything is made in game, only the most basic commodities are available from NPCs. So resources are important. The economy is based on the players, not who got which drop. Crafting is a huge business in Eve. Eve has many avenues to get those resources. Eve's biggest disappointment for me is the extremely boring mining design. Someday CCP will realize that needs to change because most people just give up and bot. Eve would be better off incorporating SWTOR's design of underlings who mine for you. Resource collection should never be tedious. This could easily be translated into a fantasy setting. Asheron's Call, while it had levels was really a skill based system. You had to choose what to specialize in. There was no resource collection in that game per se, yet the real crafting was based around enhancing drops which were in essence it's form of resource collection. One of these days these theme park designers are going to realize the great benefit of a skill driven system. With enough skills you can keep people hooked for years, not months. The trick with a skill based system is to allow the low skiil point players to be competitive in pvp in a short period of time. I think CCP has done a very good job in this area. Housing is another area, that if done right, can keep players in a game. Two games that really excelled with housing was UO and SWG because housing was not instanced based, but in the actual player worlds. Player built cities in SWG was an amazing accomplishment. A successful game that keeps players playing in any genre could be done using the following: A deep skill system that keeps players interested in the game that has set skill training times that increases the higher you go and are not limited to playtime. The economy must be player based and be very varied. Resource collection must be fun and not tedious. Pvp balance is important, nothing must be allowed to be overpowering. Factions are important in a pvp respect and must be more than 2. Housing based in the actual player world is important, instanced based housing is just not near as interesting. I think a game designed around the principles above can retain players for a long period of time and keep them entertained. There is no rush to end game in a game like this, you cannot speed up skills by playing more. This attracts the casual player as well as the hardcore ones.
I agree on the EvE thing totally.
The one thing that really got me about that game is that you know if you play long enough you can learn absolutely everything. But that is around 6 years of subbing and that is why that model works well.
When I got bored with EVE I decided to try exploration. 6 months later I was back into the game with exploration skills etc etc.
I have no idea why the bigger companies don't look at CCP for insipiration. People are dedicated to that game for years not months.
The levelling speed has merely been adjusted so that casual players have the chance to reach max level, too.
I don't know how many people reach max level in a few days. But I can't even imagine how that is possible. I'm a rather casual player. I've been playing SWTOR for nearly a month now and my highest character (of 2) is level 12. I've played MMOs since 2000 and not in a single one of them have I ever reached max level.
Not even in Neocron where you could level fairly fast, apparently, and which I have played about 2 years. I got pretty close, though. Same with CoH.
Anyway, it would be interesting to know for how large a percentage of the player base the allegedly too fast levelling is actually a problem. You sure do hear a lot of complaining, but that doesn't have to mean anything. If levelling was any slower in SWTOR I would doubt me reaching max level at all. But if the gameplay in between is fun it doesn't matter. Of course SWOTOR's gameplay is not fun. It's the same old tread-of-the-mill 1-2-3-tab;1-2-3-tab combat. But at least the stories are entertaining enough. It being a single player game with an online co-op would make more sense, though, since hardly anyone wants to group up (for anything else than heroics/flashpoints) anyway.
Not only is SWTOR too fast leveling (I casually reached level 50 cap in less then 3 weeks, and many reached it in less time even), but there's not even anything to do at 50. Except daily quests to get some better gear.
- legacy leveling? I suspect it will only get me cosmetic gear, as it's cross character.
- datacron hunting? I got all I wanted, anyway it's a joke, something for solo games, not mmo.
- pvp or raids? I'm not at all into it. Anyway, it's again to get gear, which I already have.
I can remember my fist MMO, Endless Ages. Skill cap was only 18, but reaching it was an ... endless goal. But motivating to reach it.
I haven't had the pleasure of playing SWTOR yet, but it doesn't surprise me that this is turning out to be just another "rush to engdame" mmo. Sadly, that's what almost all of them are nowadays. My first true mmo was EQ2 (played it from launch - 2010. I remember that it took me almost 6 months for me to max lvl my 1st toon, but yet, I didn't really notice because the journey to get there was so much damn fun. Unfortunately, in EQ2 and most all the other big mmo's on the market today, everything from beginning to endgame has been so trivialized that it's nothing to max a toon in a month or less time. The entire journey to endgame is a joke.
I truly miss the days when it took months to max a toon and finishing any instance, even the lowly level 20 ones was a major accomplishment. Unfortunately, we are all at fault for allowing this to happen...those that wanted the instant gratification and cried out for it, and those of us that were quite content to savor the journey but didn't speak up enough when the "i want it nows" were yammering in the forums to the devs. The only way this will ever change nowadays is for us to be very vocal with the game devolpers and then deny them our money when they refuse to listen.
Originally posted by tordurbar Why do the new games make leveling so fast - for raiders and pvpers. Casuals (like me and maybe you) like the journey. We like enjoying the scenery and the story. We like crafting things that are useful during the journey. We like strolling through a world not rushing through a story. Who wants to get to max level as soon as possible - raiders and pvpers. The best gear (both pve and pvp) are at end game - why would anyone not want to go there right away? All new non-Asian MMOs are going the fast track to max level. Cataclysm started it. The Big Lie is that WOW was changed for the casuals. I went back and leveled from 1-20 after Cata and decided that, if WOW was like this from vanilla I would never have stayed 6 years like I did. Rush, rush, rush. Gone were dozens of quests. The complete emphasis was level up quickly. Who enjoyed Cata (for a while) - my son - the pvp champion. Swtor can be a fast level. My son got to 50 in 5 days. But my highest toon is 43 with only 2 other level 20 alts. I am trying to enjoy my way up the levels but like you I feel something is missing. I feel I am reading a story with tiny branches, not living in a Star Wars world. Maybe I am a true sandbox player but I did like Rift (still sub). Like you I will probably stay another 3 months. But after that i don't know...
I totally agree with this post, and the one thing that TOR has that most other ones including RIFT do not (still subbed- will probably lapse once 6 month sub is up) is replayability. TOR is quite easy to level in, but by paralleling my toons, I've sort of extended the life as each one has totally different story. I do think that the focus needs not to be totally level based, to satisfy those that want to level as fast as possible, and those that want to take the time to experience the content, but also to get rewarded for it. The things you gain at level are the intangibles (stats and %s), the enablements (in terms of able to use gear/access content), and the tangibles (abilities). If one of these could be untied from level and tied to other achievements related to content (sort of like AAs in EQ2), then those that take the time to experience and conquer the content could be rewarded for it, without slowing down those that only want to get access to the endgame. Still not a perfect system, but something does need to be done to address the fact that there is a disparity, and that hard-core levelers are not the only people that exist in the game.
I agree! Gone are the days that made MMO's even simi difficult. I believe the great MMO's (EQ,DAOC,VG) died because people got lazy, and the grind got too much. The killer of all games is of course the player base. Why play something that can be a slight pain, or dare to puch a challenge, when you can follow the masses to the prize at the end of the maze.. Where did working for something and then feeling that ultimate joy of getting it done go? I like leveling fast, but then you run into the redundancy and end up doing the same mission/quest over again not matter what race/class you choose it really doesn't change much. The guesswork in my opinion is really being taken out of games for people. In the end i understand why there are games out there where you can get alot done in a short amount of time. People do have lives out side of the MMO world,but in the same instance i do wish they would make things harder and people would stop looking for the easy way out so that they would feel like people would stay if they did so. Easy Games get boring fast and if having a roster full of over powered max level derps is how you win the peeing contest then you need to pull your pants back up and realize if that's the case then it wasn't that hard in the first place.
Very interesting article and discussion.
As a noob (both in MMORPG and this forum terms) I have only played two games seriously, which I imagine would be at different ends of the spectrum - Runescape and Vindictus. To reach the ultimate level caps in RS would take, I imagine many years (I mean maxing every skill etc.), certainly I came nowhere near maxing any skill in 9 months (course this was partly cos I didn't play in a very structured way, although I did spend a lot of hours!). In Vindictus it is pretty easy to reach the level cap (as someone has observed) and there are quite a few content locusts around who reach a new level cap in a few days (of very intensive play I guess) and then disappear or moan about lack of content. But in fact there is a ton of content beyond the level cap - now admittedly this is of the farm/grind type so I suppose it depends on what you feel about the latter (and opinion seems sharply divided here). The rewards for this can also be of a type which might only appeal to a small number of players (titles in particular - for those who don't know Vindicitus you can earn titles which give no game advantages whatever, but - great redeeming feature for me - can be very funny; I love being able to call myself Pot Head, but then I have a weird sense of humour!) - this content is for completists. Is a completist locust the same thing as a content locust?
Anyway having played both types of game I would say that I am just happy that both options exist. I like being able to level quickly sometimes but I also like grinding sometimes.
Great site and great forum btw.
At the moment, I wish SWTOR's leveling was faster, because it's so fast (and meaningless).
Level 41 Guardian is my highest level and I've been playing since Day 2 of the "Extra Early Access".
The leveling experience leaves you feeling more like your just standing on the assembly line putting tires on the car for 8hrs straight; aka BOOOOOOOOOOOOORING.
I personally think MMOs are a dying breed. Everyone jumped on the MMO Bandwagon and pushed out so many MMOs that most players will get the "been there; done that" feeling in any MMO that comes out.
In every single MMO I've played past WoW: TBC (you can literally break WoW into 2 MMOs; Hard(er)core and Casualcore) I find myself getting bored with them in about a month.
...been 'here'; done 'this'
I laugh everytime they say "innovation". There are no "innovations". It's all just a rehash with some extra features (ie Voice Overs).
Then I laugh at the players who scream that a game's "to different".
I hope more MMOs come out as Free2Play, I'm tired of spending $15/mo for the same crap.
"Our greatest glory is not in never falling but in rising everytime we fall." - Confucius
I wonder if leveling based on number of days played may bring back the desire to play more content for people. Image if either every day represented a level or every 3 days or even some sort of max number of levels that can be achieved in a day or 3 days etc.
Then casual players could keep up leveling, "Locust" could level then logout and content players could emmerse themsselves in the content of the game. quests, raid etc.
All playing style could be accomodated, and then make the content enjoyable enough that players will want to plat. mini games, pvp challanges, etc,
I know there will be people who "Want to level now" but i believe in time they would emmerse themselves in the content.
I wholeheartedly agree with your article.
I sadly quit star wars recently, because everyone levelled so damn fast and it was boring. It was very reminiscant of Vanguard, although for different reasons.
In vanguard i was sad because the journey was so small in such a big world (level 1-30 had so many zones that nobody went into and so many hidden quests/places to visit) but everyone only focused on a core quest line that got you to max level quickly.
In star wars, no matter how slow im trying to enjoy the game i level so damn fast. To put this into perspective: My trooper hit 28. Im on taris, im nearly 10 levels above the planet now. This isn't fun, its just dull!
How did i get that high? Seriously, i was only doing the quests the game gave me to do, yet i outlevelled taris before i got there. Im now 8 levels above Nar Shadda and i havent even started it...this just made me sigh and put the game away like the rest of my friends.
It was a fantastic experiance, but when your higher level then the content the challenge is gone and its no fun anymore.
The so called content locusts..i remember those! I love the term. I think im going to keep using it from now on, thank you. The people that rush to endgame then scream about how theres no content in the game, they upset me. Its people like that who ruin mmos...
Im looking forwards to guild wars 2, because i absolutely adored their system of 'no levels, just content' Yes theyve upped the cap from level 20 this time around, but theres no level cap on quests etc the game just levels you down.
Endgame on guildwars looks to be nothing more than going back to the start and doing it all again with more people. Sounds brilliant to me.
Bioware made mention that the leveling speed of SWTOR is geared towards more casual players. People who have jobs, kids, lives, hobbies, etc. The hardcore MMO players will blow through the content fairly fast, but they claim that is not really the target audience. And in the case of SWTOR, considering each of the eight classes as its own story, even if you hit max level, there is still plenty more content to experience. Although I do still think they could have slowed things down just a wee bit.
And so it comes to ultimate truth. Original SWG was a KING of all MMO-s EVER.
Could hardly have said it better myself (than the OP).
WoW devs just don't get it. WoW was a great game in many ways, but there have always been things I didn't like about it, and now those things are so bad I'm having a hard time being interested any more. What will keep me playing is things that I want to do despite the changes, but more and more I think I have to leave the game to just to get my message across.
To tell the truth, I feel guilty now for having played WoW so long, and in doing so given tacit approval to those things I didn't like. I really believe that the WoW devs think that if the players coninue to play, they must like the changes despite the fact that they complain about them.
I'll tell the truth - I'm really angered by the lack of MMORPG standards that have moved out of WoW into other MMO"RPG"s. It makes me want to puke to see names like "roflcopter" in them, and one of my reasons for playing Everquest II, to get away from that kind of thing, is simply gone. EQII is gone to me, and it's a sad time; it would have been the game I went to if I quit WoW. It is the main game I played when I took breaks from WoW over the years. Now, EQII mixes F2P players with subscription players, and that was the last straw. I don't even want to try Vanguard because I'm so mad at SOE.
"Roflcopter" is a good name for FPS co-op, where there is no "RPG" involved. I found that kind of name barely acceptable in WoW, because I always thought of it as an "RPG lite" game, it wasn't really at all about RPG. The basic problem with MMORPGs today is the fact that WoW pulled in so many players that have no clue what "MMORPG" really means, and that the developers and publishers would rather have these players and increase their cash flow than make good MMORPGs.
I've come to the point where I've mostly stopped using "MMORPG" except when I want to make a point. I use "MMOG" now, mostly, there is absolutely no RP to them any more. There used to be some minimum standards; there used to be a community of players that understood what it was and why it was there. You didn't have to do full RP, not by a long shot, and I never have, but you did have to maintain a certain level of respect for that part of the game, even if you weren't into it. It's gone now. It was hardly there in WoW from the start, but now the standard has totally disappeared. It's gone from EQ II, it's gone in Age of Conan (It was diluted from the start in AoC, which is one major reason I stopped playing after the first couple of months. I was playing on what was supposed to be the RP server, and they allowed names that were in clear violation of RP standards, and did nothing about it. Thanks, Funcom, thanks for crapping all over players like me), it's gone even in Asheron's Call. The last is what makes me most feel like throwing up.
I strongly suspect if I went back and checked out Darkfall again, I'd find the RP element gone from that game, too. (I didn't continue to play it because I'm not a PvP type player, and it's definitely a PvP game. That's not a bad thing, at all, but it's just not my thing.) MMORPGs aren't for people that want to play a character in a fantasy world anymore, they are for people that want to run an avatar that represents them in the same way it does in an arcade game, or a(n) FPS. Worse, they have no clue why you complain about their name.
That's the standard we have for players, and the devs don't even care. Hey, maybe I wouldn't either, if caring meant I couldn't afford a Ferrari. (Any dev that sold his soul for less than Ferrarri-owning money is - a cheap whore.)
If I were to win millions in a lottery (l love how gambling is okay for governments and churches in the U.S. but we have to "save" everyone else from themselves because they'll all turn into gambling addicts and starve to death if we allow them to gamble legally. I'll never win a lottery becuase I don't buy tickets to support that kind of hypocracy.) I'd get some other investors together to develop the kind of MMORPG I want. Maybe it would never have WoW's popularity, but at least it would be an actual MMORPG, one that solo players and group players both could enjoy. One in which the whole point of leveling up wasn't lost, that solo quests weren't insipid busy-work. One in which if you didn't get it, you couldn't play no matter how much you were willing to pay.
Have played: Everquest, Asheron's Call, Horizons, Everquest2, World of Warcraft, Lord of the Rings Online, Warhammer, Age of Conan, Darkfall
Go with a sandbox style game where there isn't a clear beginning and clear end where the game turns into a shallow grind and you won't have this problem. Themeparks are always doomed to suffer from this. Honestly no Themepark MMO has held me strongly for more than a couple months because in my eyes I beat the game and what I am doing at end game is a shallow and lame shell of what the journey was in the first place.
SWTOR is not about leveling. Some people got used to grind MMOs so much that they can't see anything else. SWTOR is a cinematic experience. Levels, raids, loot are for people who still think in WoW terms. SWTOR has EVERYTHING to get off that loot train and just enjoy yourself like you did in KOTOR. If you can't - thats not SWTOR fault.
Its people's fault who can't relax and enjoy the ride. SWTOR has different type of content, none of that content FORCES you to do either. SWTOR is RPG and MMO, raiding and grouping, soloing and story. If you like fedex quests - do them, if you like PvP - suit yourself, if you like grouping - grind flashpoints.
SWTOR is based on story, everything else in the game may be similar to other MMOs, but thats not Bioware's fault. They just implement familiar MMO mechanics so that players didnt' get scared. If you are bored because things are EASY? WHO in the world asks you to outlevel yourself? Do quests while they are white/yellow then move to a different planet. Keep your challenge up if you are bored.
Problem is that so many people were playing dumb games and got used to dumb mechanics. They can't recognize any more whats important in a ROLE PLAYING GAME. Roles are long forgotten, all there is left in peoples brains - loot loot loot. If SWTOR has it, it doesn't mean that the game is dumb. Its you - player who can't see anything else in the game but loot, even though there is SO MUCH MORE to see.
Originally posted by ProfRed Go with a sandbox style game where there isn't a clear beginning and clear end where the game turns into a shallow grind and you won't have this problem. Themeparks are always doomed to suffer from this. Honestly no Themepark MMO has held me strongly for more than a couple months because in my eyes I beat the game and what I am doing at end game is a shallow and lame shell of what the journey was in the first place.
Really, Themeparks make for a poor game. They take you on a ride instead of letting you drive yourself. Nothing's interesting because it's all layed out for you, in story and action. It's like watching a movie about some other character instead of making your own story for your character. And no, options to be taken some other way along a chaperoned tour is not making your own story.
Another excellent article, Isabella. Generated lots of discussion, too. Your approach to gaming is so similar to mine that I can sit back and let you write the articles to say the things I can't be bothered to say any more ^^
I'm currently playing WoW again after 2 yrs away (I've been in and out that game since vanilla), and one of the things which really gets me down is the speed at which pug's want to complete dungeons. It's always "go, go, go" and when I say I prefer to take it more slowly, enjoy the scenery, etc, and even that it might be my first time there, the replies are not printable here.
Don't really understand what that's all about. Never did. Way back in vanilla WoW I can remember my sig on forums being "game = fun, relax and enjoy", so even then I did notice a trend among some people to rush to the end, and that trend has definitely increased. Personally, I long for an immersive experience, multi-faceted, that I can journey through at my own leisurely pace and enjoy to the full.
I like SWTOR, but like the article above I am leveling way to fast for the quests and content I am on. I have to physicaly and mentaly try not to level up to much in a zone or world while I quest.
I liked UO, EQ1, DAoC and Eve Online because they are MMO's where it took time to get anything and especialy with the sandbox type most of the content is player driven which makes it all the more complelling to play even once you attained the max level in skills etc.
SWTOR for me is only a filler while TSW and WoD is being devoloped. Pitty as I love Star Wars I just wish they made it more sandboxy rather than listening to the WoW crowd.
This article makes no sense, whatsoever.
You say the problem is the leveling being too fast, which you stated is the result of Bioware trying to appeal to casual players.
And yet, somehow, you find a way to blame it all on "content locusts"? Sense, you're not making any my friend.
If anything you should blame casual players for wanting a dumbed down game, not content locusts. Content locusts are precisely the type of players that don't mind hardcore leveling, cause guess what they will rush through anything anyways, silly.
Sigh, fail logic is sadly fail.
rpg/mmorg history: Dun Darach>Bloodwych>Bards Tale 1-3>Eye of the beholder > Might and Magic 2,3,5 > FFVII> Baldur's Gate 1, 2 > Planescape Torment >Morrowind > WOW > oblivion > LOTR > Guild Wars (1900hrs elementalist) Vanguard. > GW2(1000 elementalist), Wildstar
Now playing GW2, AOW 3, ESO, LOTR, Elite D