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The carrot is a lie

blognorgblognorg Roseburg, ORPosts: 643Member

It's pretty common practice to label most MMO goals as "a carrot on a stick", but I recently came to fully understand why this is so bad. I found myself chasing the carrot, so to speak, because I imagined that I'd be having more fun once I got it. The truth is... I'm not. Once I get the carrot, there's just another one. I somehow keep talking myself into playing more on the prospect of future fun. That future is just a hologram, and the problem is that I never seem to be having fun in the present. Isn't that the point of video games... to have fun right now? School and work are for delayed pleasure. 

 

At some point, the mentality has changed from: I'm going to play to have fun. To: I just need to get this item, or achieve this, and then I can have fun. Is it just me, or is that kind of messed up? You're taking time away from your busy life just to be even busier in a different one. I think what I'm going to start doing from now on is asking myself if I'm actually having fun every 20 minutes or so. If I can't honestly answer 'yes', then I'm not going to keep playing. If everyone adopted this policy, then developers and publishers may have to rethink their game design.

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Comments

  • TerronteTerronte Cedar Rapids, IAPosts: 321Member

    Supposedly new MMOs are designed for that quick fix in a 20-45 minute window, ie being designed for casuals.

    People are achievement junkies, thats why they are in everything from Steam to MMOs to xbox, etc. We are being treated like pidgeons pecking in the right places for a reward that sustains us long enough to continue pecking.

  • laokokolaokoko TaipeiPosts: 2,003Member

    I remmeber what happen when I get rr80 in warhammer, finish all the wow raid, get lvl140 in atlantica online.

    I quit the game...

  • drbaltazardrbaltazar drummondville, QCPosts: 7,987Member
    Want fun play supermario party on wii witb famely or friend
  • TheLizardbonesTheLizardbones Arkham, VAPosts: 10,910Member

    I've gone from chasing the carrot on a stick to playing games that are fun. Of course, that's what I've always done, I just thought that the 'carrot' thing was fun. As it turns out, I didn't enjoy it so much.

    I don't think it needs to be taken away completely...character progression through levels or skills is a kind of carrot and I think there's definitely some benefit to having that in games. I just don't think it should be the be all and end all of the game.

    This is also why I'll probably never be in an uber raiding guild and that I'll never see top tier content. Maybe after the content is no longer top tier, but certainly not while it's current.

    This is what I like about SWToR. The carrot is the story. It may end at the top level, which is fine with me. I'll enjoy it while it lasts, and if BioWare adds more of that kind of content, well, so much the better. :-) If not, I'll be playing Minecraft or Fallout. Maybe Diablo. Or The Secret World. Perhaps Guild Wars. Maybe even Terraria. Who knows? The world is full of stuff to do.

    I can not remember winning or losing a single debate on the internet.

  • sanosukexsanosukex Los Angeles, CAPosts: 1,836Member
  • SolarstrikerSolarstriker Odense NVPosts: 26Member Uncommon

    If you want fun then try Crimsonland:

    http://crimsonland.com

  • TheodwulfTheodwulf Brockton, MAPosts: 231Member Uncommon

    I think what I'm going to start doing from now on is asking myself if I'm actually having fun every 20 minutes or so. 

     

      It is the best bet...I learned my leasons in the past.. The Jedi grind ..The old WoW PvP grind ... for what? At this point , many people don't want to grind to max level without some assurances of a fun endgame. Who can blame them?  You do the grind , and next thing you know they remove the grind right after you complete it (that's me twice) and start giving it all away.

     

      Play for fun and fun only

  • drbaltazardrbaltazar drummondville, QCPosts: 7,987Member
    Very true.an hour after login swtor.do we have fun yet.nope .mom are we there yet this is boring.nope 3000mile left to reach disney.how long .5 sleep.mom can we go back home.this isnt fun.(grin)
  • TNgalTNgal Springfield, TNPosts: 19Member

    Variety is the spice of life.

     

    Any time anything I'm doing for enjoyment stops being fun, I take a break from it and do something else. Games aren't the only recreation around, though I'm sure it's sacrilege to say so!  :D

     

    Camping, fishing, go to the movies, go for walks outside, console games, other games than what is getting to you.  The list is long, and I think sometimes we have all been sucked into a tunnel vision view of what is fun, gotten stuck in a rut, and find ourselves addicted to one pattern.

     

    I have never been and never will be into the scheduled raids or events in any game. I have a real life schedule that is mandatory, it's called a job. I play for fun, and while casual players catch a lot of flack from hardcore ones, I suspect we casuals have a much healthier overall mindset. 

     

    But, hey, that's just me, my view. Maybe I'm wrong. But it does work for me. Balance, grasshopper, all things in balance. 

  • CuathonCuathon University City, NYPosts: 2,211Member

    Originally posted by TNgal

    Variety is the spice of life.

     

    Any time anything I'm doing for enjoyment stops being fun, I take a break from it and do something else. Games aren't the only recreation around, though I'm sure it's sacrilege to say so!  :D

     

    Camping, fishing, go to the movies, go for walks outside, console games, other games than what is getting to you.  The list is long, and I think sometimes we have all been sucked into a tunnel vision view of what is fun, gotten stuck in a rut, and find ourselves addicted to one pattern.

     

    I have never been and never will be into the scheduled raids or events in any game. I have a real life schedule that is mandatory, it's called a job. I play for fun, and while casual players catch a lot of flack from hardcore ones, I suspect we casuals have a much healthier overall mindset. 

     

    But, hey, that's just me, my view. Maybe I'm wrong. But it does work for me. Balance, grasshopper, all things in balance. 

    Saying maybe I'm wrong doesn't remove the offensiveness of calling people who really like games unhealthy. You chose to do a lot of things over play MMOs and some people didn't. We all exercised our rights to decide how to use our time because we are adults and adults get to do that. Your choices aren't any more objectively good than other people's.

  • RohnRohn Saint Peters, MOPosts: 3,740Member Uncommon

    One consistent theme of RPGs, going all the way back to paper and pencil, is that they allow you to continually develop or advance your character.  It's an important aspect of this genre.

    AoC learned this lesson the hard way, as they attempted to create a game with very little real progression, purportedly to make personal skill more important, and they were torn to pieces for the fact that it was supposed to be an RPG, and there was no real way to progress a player's character or differentiate themselves from other players' characters.  The lack of progression was a motivation-killer to a lot of people.

    A focus on "skill" is great in shooters or games treated as e-sports, but runs counter to one of the most basic elements of an RPG.  It's one of the reasons ANet can't get away with charging a subscription fee on either GW or GW2.

    Hell hath no fury like an MMORPG player scorned.

  • AntariousAntarious Greenville, SCPosts: 2,802Member

    Yes the carrot is definitely a lie these days.

     

    They simply beat you with the stick like you are a Pinata.. until the money falls out.   Leaving you too dazed and confused to figure out what happened.

    Moderator's on this site allow certain posters to create endless troll threads. Yet "warn" people for giving recommendations... account *pending* deletion because.. why bother.

  • CuathonCuathon University City, NYPosts: 2,211Member

    Originally posted by Rohn

    One consistent theme of RPGs, going all the way back to paper and pencil, is that they allow you to continually develop or advance your character.  It's an important aspect of this genre.

    AoC learned this lesson the hard way, as they attempted to create a game with very little real progression, purportedly to make personal skill more important, and they were torn to pieces for the fact that it was supposed to be an RPG, and there was no real way to progress a player's character or differentiate themselves from other players' characters.  The lack of progression was a motivation-killer to a lot of people.

    A focus on "skill" is great in shooters or games treated as e-sports, but runs counter to one of the most basic elements of an RPG.  It's one of the reasons ANet can't get away with charging a subscription fee on either GW or GW2.

    I try to tell people that RPGs are progression. The game is about the skills of the character not the player, which is why twitch doesn't work, but no one listens.

  • blognorgblognorg Roseburg, ORPosts: 643Member

    A few of the responces seem to think that I'm against progression. That's not the case at all; if it was, then I wouldn't bother with MMOs. I've played RPGs my whole life, and I really enjoy progression in games... at least I used to. Once upon a time, I felt fufiled when I would get something new and shiny. I think the problem these days that is that the devs/pubs want the player to be hooked for years, and not to simply create a game that's fun to progress in. Looking back, some of my favorite RPGs didn't take years to beat; they took maybe a month, and I would replay them after some time. The demand to create something that has to keep someone occupied for years is insane to me. I don't think any game should be played for five years, but games these days are being designed for that purpose. As a consequence, I can't play for a few hours and feel fufilled. Part of the problem is the players, themselves; and I've heard this arguement before. People play the shit out of an MMO on launch, then after a month, complain that there is nothing to do. Game companies respond to this type of feedback by making content take longer. 

     

    I saw an interview with some of the Guild Wars 2 devs that really drew my attention to the game. Someone was asking them about a potential exploit with the scaling content that might allow lower level characters to level more quickly. Their responce was that the game is a journey; however players want to get through it is their choice. If they want to sacrifice their experience with the game to level more quickly, then they can have that freedom. I couldn't have hoped for a better answer. Obviously, the exploit in question wasn't game-breaking, but to fix it might have hurt a part of the game that they felt more important. It seems that their priorities sync up pretty well with my own. 

  • eye_meye_m Notta Chance, ABPosts: 3,133Member Uncommon

    Is the carrot the lie, or is it really the term game that's misleading?

     

    On another note, carrots are a natural sweetener. Try adding them to stews, sauces, soups, and chili. Hell try one in your next cup of coffee!   http://www.101cookbooks.com/archives/carrot-cake-recipe.html 

    All of my posts are either intelligent, thought provoking, funny, satirical, sarcastic or intentionally disrespectful. Take your pick.

    I get banned in the forums for games I love, so lets see if I do better in the forums for games I hate.

    I enjoy the serenity of not caring what your opinion is.

  • laokokolaokoko TaipeiPosts: 2,003Member

    well you know gw is a buy to play game.  I dont' think the developer care if players quit, they got their money already.  

    Unlike other games, dev really have some cake or carrot that keep chasing because they want your money. 

  • blognorgblognorg Roseburg, ORPosts: 643Member

    Originally posted by eyelolled

    Is the carrot the lie, or is it really the term game that's misleading?

     

    On another note, carrots are a natural sweetener. Try adding them to stews, sauces, soups, and chili. Hell try one in your next cup of coffee!   http://www.101cookbooks.com/archives/carrot-cake-recipe.html 

    Then perhaps I should change the topic to "the carrot cake is a lie".  :-P

  • TNgalTNgal Springfield, TNPosts: 19Member

    Originally posted by Cuathon

    Originally posted by TNgal

    Variety is the spice of life.

     

    Any time anything I'm doing for enjoyment stops being fun, I take a break from it and do something else. Games aren't the only recreation around, though I'm sure it's sacrilege to say so!  :D

     

    Camping, fishing, go to the movies, go for walks outside, console games, other games than what is getting to you.  The list is long, and I think sometimes we have all been sucked into a tunnel vision view of what is fun, gotten stuck in a rut, and find ourselves addicted to one pattern.

     

    I have never been and never will be into the scheduled raids or events in any game. I have a real life schedule that is mandatory, it's called a job. I play for fun, and while casual players catch a lot of flack from hardcore ones, I suspect we casuals have a much healthier overall mindset. 

     

    But, hey, that's just me, my view. Maybe I'm wrong. But it does work for me. Balance, grasshopper, all things in balance. 

    Saying maybe I'm wrong doesn't remove the offensiveness of calling people who really like games unhealthy. You chose to do a lot of things over play MMOs and some people didn't. We all exercised our rights to decide how to use our time because we are adults and adults get to do that. Your choices aren't any more objectively good than other people's.

       I didn't call people who really like games unhealthy. I made the point that we all need balance in our lives, whatever that balance may be. If chasing the carrot makes you feel balanced, nothing wrong with that. If it starts depressing you, frustrating you, or whatever other negative result, then maybe it is time to step back and re-evaluate why you are playing.

     

    Adults do have the right to choose.Whether or not the choices are objectively better than other's would depend on an objective observation of the results in that life.  

  • kashiegamerkashiegamer Online City, NYPosts: 263Member

    Sometimes though, we should't blame the games. For example, in classic single-player RPGs that use DnD rules, people were expected to roleplay a character that they like the most and make use of that class properly. Eventually though people started to min/max their characters, which was okay, since they were expected to play their characters properly. Somewhere along the way though, people just opted knowing which characters have the most min/max potential, and essentially stayed away from their preferred classes and just go on with having the strongest character the game could possibly offer.

     

    It can both be the game and the player's fault.

    My Blog About Hellgate Global, an ARPG/FPS hybrid MMO:
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  • warmaster670warmaster670 Simcoe, ONPosts: 1,384Member

    Originally posted by drbaltazar

    Want fun play supermario party on wii witb famely or friend

    good ole mario party, the only game ive ever played wehre you can be the best and doing the best and still lse to teh worst player there.

    Apparently stating the truth in my sig is "trolling"
    Sig typo fixed thanks to an observant stragen001.

  • Moaky07Moaky07 Flushing, MIPosts: 2,096Member

    Chasing the carrot is a much better philosophy than giving subsidies to that bum Owen IMO.

     

    It makes no sense to run your loot system thru those not completing the content. To make matters worse, in an Owen system you will be buying an item multiple times to keep him in business.

     

    Although themeparks can be a bit generous on the loot, it is still the far better way from where I am standing.  Loot should be a reward for time invested.....not simply farming credits due to a forced dependancy.

     

    When you give out a ton of it, then you end up with the "grind" like what I am hearing out of the OP.

     

    I liked EQ's loot system. Certain named mobs had a fixed loot table to draw upon.  Raiding wasnt always about your class. Those playing with you had mobs they needed taken out, just like you did. Same with various camps for groups. You knew what items were being dropped by the mobs your group was camping.

     

    Throw in that mobs could always drop gems/cash as well, and it made it worthwhile to spend an evening with friends jamming.

    Asking Devs to make AAA sandbox titles is like trying to get fine dining on a McDonalds dollar menu budget.

  • ZekiahZekiah Aurora, COPosts: 2,499Member

    I would liken todays MMOs as more of a Skinner Box but in the end it's all about conditioning.

    "Censorship is never over for those who have experienced it. It is a brand on the imagination that affects the individual who has suffered it, forever." - Noam Chomsky

  • KhaerosKhaeros Monroe, NYPosts: 452Member

    Originally posted by kashiegamer

    Somewhere along the way though, people just opted knowing which characters have the most min/max potential, and essentially stayed away from their preferred classes and just go on with having the strongest character the game could possibly offer.

     

    I had fun doing both.  Probably the best thing about making good builds was seeing the reactions to them.  On NWN / NWN2 there are roleplay servers that have a laundry list of class combinations you can't be.

    "omg bros no druid / monk or paladin / sorc!!!!1! and you need to roleplay stormlord rly gud or we delete you!1!1"

     

    They had a good reason, though.  People just wanted to play their warlocks (LOL WARLOCK) and not get killed by the F12 / Bard 1 / RDD10 / WM7 all day.  Can't really do that sort of balancing / player moderation in an MMO though, so even roleplayers are concerned about their builds now.

  • DannyGloverDannyGlover Portland, ORPosts: 1,277Member

    All I gotta say is that ten years ago I put in about 30+ hours a week on mmos. Now I put in 10 hours a week tops. Sometimes I go a few days between sessions. I'm enjoying MMOs now more than I did back then.

    I sit on a man's back, choking him and making him carry me, and yet assure myself and others that I am very sorry for him and wish to ease his lot by all possible means - except by getting off his back.

  • Matticus75Matticus75 Posts: 396Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by blognorg

    It's pretty common practice to label most MMO goals as "a carrot on a stick", but I recently came to fully understand why this is so bad. I found myself chasing the carrot, so to speak, because I imagined that I'd be having more fun once I got it. The truth is... I'm not. Once I get the carrot, there's just another one. I somehow keep talking myself into playing more on the prospect of future fun. That future is just a hologram, and the problem is that I never seem to be having fun in the present. Isn't that the point of video games... to have fun right now? School and work are for delayed pleasure. 

     

    At some point, the mentality has changed from: I'm going to play to have fun. To: I just need to get this item, or achieve this, and then I can have fun. Is it just me, or is that kind of messed up? You're taking time away from your busy life just to be even busier in a different one. I think what I'm going to start doing from now on is asking myself if I'm actually having fun every 20 minutes or so. If I can't honestly answer 'yes', then I'm not going to keep playing. If everyone adopted this policy, then developers and publishers may have to rethink their game design.

    I agree, and the only way it will change is if people stop following it, the market is not about what people want, its want they respond to

    All they look at is what appears on a spread sheet with behavior patters, its takes the soul out if it, and pass some big boobs on the product = cash

     

    Forget about society having a form self determinaton other than amassing reasources like virus does........

     

    Throw the morality out of it, as in right and wrong, and religion too. The market even controls religion "the concepts of right and wrong", people that go for it, are people to believe what Corps, religious leaders and what politicans say, And people that dont believe it that crap are labeled as "outcasts"

    Corps, Religions, Politicians = Cash/Power

     

    Just watch wheel of fourtune, eat fat foods beacause it what you respond to because it taste good, put up with sex on tv, remain docile and stupid, and Wal street will get what they want and be fat and rich too!

     

    Welcome to planet earth

     

    Im going to bed..............

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