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Difficulty sliders in MMORPGs!

Creslin321Creslin321 Baltimore, MDPosts: 5,359Member

Hey Guys, I was playing Skyrim and it gave me an idea...

I don't like to spend hours and hours having to grind in MMORPGs to move on to the next area.  But I'm often forced to do this because there is no way to make the content easy enough so that I don't have to grind.  In Skyrim and games like it, I can get around this by just setting the difficulty slider to an easier setting.

So I thought...why not have this in MMORPGs!  Except obviously it can't affect the monsters around you...but a difficulty slider could affect your character.  It would work to where if you set it to "easy" it would apply a positive multiplier to your stats.  And if you set it to "hard" it would apply a negative multiplier.

This would allow players like me who just want to play the game and not grind to go through content at a much quicker pace.

What do you guys think of this idea?

 

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IT'S A TRAP!

Heheheh...soooooo this has gone on long enough.  This entire thread was basically just a ruse, so that I could make a point I've been trying to make for a while.  

For the record, I actually think that a difficulty slider as I described in the OP for would a TERRIBLE thing for an MMORPG to have.  It would completely destroy any fairness or sense of equality in the world.  You would have one player running around dropping gnolls like flies, and another one fighting for his life..and they would be the same level.  And as the poll showed, over 80% of folks agreed with me that this was a bad idea.

Which brings me to my point...

There has been a growing trend of acceptance lately of...how should I say..."victimless" advantage selling in cash shops.  By victimless I mean that the advantages players gain from the CS can't be used directly against any other players in PvP, but they can be used to make the player's life easier in PvE.  These CS things include items like exp boosters, or items/stat-boosters that can only be used in PvE.

Folks argue that since stuff bought from the CS can't directly be used against players in PvP...then there's really no harm done, and hey, the dev gets money to help support the game.  Also, players that may be turned off my the difficulty/grindiness of the game get to avoid that by just paying a nominal fee.  Win, win right?

Ummm...no, not the way I see it.  It's cleverly hidden, but I seriously see this kind of activity as being almost the same allowing an open-world difficulty slider in an MMORPG...EXCEPT, you now have to PAY to shift it to "easy."  I mean, think about it.  What is the end result of the stuff someone buys in a cash shop like this?  Whether it be an exp booster, or some gold that he uses to buy a spiffy new sword, the end result is the same.  The game becomes easier

So in the end, is there really a big difference between paying $50 to set a difficulty slider to "easy," which will guarantee that your gear is always powerful and you get an exp boost, or paying $50 over the course of leveling to constantly get the best gear available for your level and get exp boosters?  I really don't think so.  Smoke and mirrors my friends.

So I ask you.  If the vast majority of respondants to this poll thought that having a FREE difficulty slider in an MMORPG is a bad idea...then how in the heck is having a PAID one a good idea?

 

Are you team Azeroth, team Tyria, or team Jacob?

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Comments

  • AconsarAconsar Narvon, PAPosts: 262Member

    I just found myself complaining about how games used to be difficult because the entire game itself was designed that way.  They used to not HAVE difficulty settings and be able to put on "easy mode" where you can literally drool on the controller/keyboard/whatever and still win.

     

    This hand-holding for every bad player needs to stop, seriously.

  • ZooceZooce B, FLPosts: 586Member
    Would this difficulty slider affect the loot drops and experience earned?
  • HomituHomitu Hometown, HIPosts: 2,030Member

    I don't disagree with the proposal for varying difficulties in MMOs, but I do have a fundamental objection with this specific approach to it.  This just farts in the face of character progression.  It would make every upgrade one receives while playing on a harder difficulty feel utterly pointless.  What's the point when I could just as easily boost myself to higher stats by turning down the difficulty?

    Even when one understands that progression tredmills during leveling or post-level cap are all arbitrary, the illusion still exists that our characters are actually getting more powerful relative to the rest of the world.  This proposal would evaporate this illusion and make it all feel worthless.  

    Instead, I'd suggest something like full servers with different difficulty settings, and then perhaps a feature like GW2's Guesting where you can temporarily play any of your characters on another server so that you wouldn't have to reroll completely every time you tried a different difficulty.  

    It would just feel much better from a progression standpoint to increase the power of the enemies you face rather than nerf or artificially boost individual players' characters.  

  • eye_meye_m Notta Chance, ABPosts: 3,133Member Uncommon
    I've thought about this before. It would have to be appropriately balanced or people would level on easy then farm lower level zones for drops. I think it would be better to have different difficulty servers.

    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.

  • VinterkrigVinterkrig BOSTON, MAPosts: 1,672Member

    what the hell new mmo is too difficult? ROFL ... maybe old school games, but.... wtf?

    mmos are time sinks that is why you have to grind an area to go to the next, they want the content to be pointless (lol @ character progression via killing 30 of one mob for a quest) and repetative so you pay multiple months + the box price

    what you want is a voice buddy while you play a single player game

     

    frankly, if MMOs didn't have PVP I wouldn't waste my time (and haven't played much of any for years now) k, bye bye

     

  • XiaokiXiaoki White Pigeon, MIPosts: 2,601Member Uncommon

    Welcome to City of Heroes circa 2005.

  • Creslin321Creslin321 Baltimore, MDPosts: 5,359Member

    Okay okay...

    I see that many people disagree with this idea.  And maybe the problem is that it would be that a difficulty slider would make it so "easy" for a player to complete content that it would cheapen the game.

    So how about this instead...

    The dev charges a modest fee to allow players to slide the difficulty slider to easier modes.  So you have to pay like $10 for easy mode, or $20 for very easy.  This way, not everyone could do easy mode...but you could pay for it if you really wanted it.

    Are you team Azeroth, team Tyria, or team Jacob?

  • yaoming36yaoming36 None of your damn business, INPosts: 189Member Uncommon

    I think you are confusing hard vs time consuming.

    Say we were to make some MMORPGs "hard" by lowering stats. That wouldn't make the game harder just more time consuming because it'd take longer to kill the mob. In the typical MMOG, you'd still be facerolling the same hotkeys, except in "hard" mode you'd be doing it for longer, nothing hard about that.

    Now if you want to make it "hard" I suggest smarter AI. Example: Mobs move out of AoE, mobs evade, mobs run away, etcetc 

    To make it hard would mean to offer a challenge to player. Just lowering stats wouldn't make anything harder only more time consuming :)

  • maplestonemaplestone Ottawa, ONPosts: 3,099Member
    You mean sort of like green, yellow and orange difficulties?
  • VinterkrigVinterkrig BOSTON, MAPosts: 1,672Member
    Originally posted by maplestone
    You mean sort of like green, yellow and orange difficulties?

    no, like the guy above you said.. he doesn't want a time sink, but he still wants to play a mmo so he can have online friends

  • nariusseldonnariusseldon santa clara, CAPosts: 22,441Member
    Already done in WOW .. lfr, normal & hard mode raid, with loot adjusted accordingly.
  • DisdenaDisdena Troy, NYPosts: 1,093Member
    Originally posted by Homitu

    I don't disagree with the proposal for varying difficulties in MMOs, but I do have a fundamental objection with this specific approach to it.  This just farts in the face of character progression.  It would make every upgrade one receives while playing on a harder difficulty feel utterly pointless.  What's the point when I could just as easily boost myself to higher stats by turning down the difficulty?

    Even when one understands that progression tredmills during leveling or post-level cap are all arbitrary, the illusion still exists that our characters are actually getting more powerful relative to the rest of the world.  This proposal would evaporate this illusion and make it all feel worthless.  

    Instead, I'd suggest something like full servers with different difficulty settings, and then perhaps a feature like GW2's Guesting where you can temporarily play any of your characters on another server so that you wouldn't have to reroll completely every time you tried a different difficulty.  

    It would just feel much better from a progression standpoint to increase the power of the enemies you face rather than nerf or artificially boost individual players' characters.  

    My sentiments exactly. Progression is a key element of RPGs, both MMO and non-MMO. Anything that says "you can be more powerful right now if you want" runs counter to the core mechanic of the game.

    image
  • KiljaedenasKiljaedenas New Westminster, BCPosts: 468Member
    What a moronic idea...games aren't supposed to hold your hand and give you a cookie just because you feel lazy and "I don't wanna do it!". You don't like the grind in MMOs, don't play MMOs. There are thousands upon thousands of other games to choose from that don't have anywhere near the grind.

    Where's the any key?

  • DrakxiiDrakxii Waxahachie, TXPosts: 594Member
    I support different difficulty level servers.  There is so much more devs could do with servers then just PvP or not.

    I will not play a game with a cash shop ever again. A dev job should be to make the game better not make me pay so it sucks less.

  • logicwarlogicwar nottsPosts: 68Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Zooce
    Would this difficulty slider affect the loot drops and experience earned?

    lol did not take long, its what is wrong with mmorpgs now days. what do i get out of it.

    some of us dont care about loot or xp but are sick of how easy games have become.  so give us something to make the game harder while the rest can get there free stuff.

  • ZooceZooce B, FLPosts: 586Member
    Originally posted by logicwar
    Originally posted by Zooce
    Would this difficulty slider affect the loot drops and experience earned?

    lol did not take long, its what is wrong with mmorpgs now days. what do i get out of it.

    some of us dont care about loot or xp but are sick of how easy games have become.  so give us something to make the game harder while the rest can get there free stuff.

    Equip inferior gear, enjoy the challenge.

  • nariusseldonnariusseldon santa clara, CAPosts: 22,441Member
    Originally posted by logicwar
    Originally posted by Zooce
    Would this difficulty slider affect the loot drops and experience earned?

    lol did not take long, its what is wrong with mmorpgs now days. what do i get out of it.

    some of us dont care about loot or xp but are sick of how easy games have become.  so give us something to make the game harder while the rest can get there free stuff.

    Play hard mode raid.

  • logicwarlogicwar nottsPosts: 68Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Zooce
    Originally posted by logicwar
    Originally posted by Zooce
    Would this difficulty slider affect the loot drops and experience earned?

    lol did not take long, its what is wrong with mmorpgs now days. what do i get out of it.

    some of us dont care about loot or xp but are sick of how easy games have become.  so give us something to make the game harder while the rest can get there free stuff.

    Equip inferior gear, enjoy the challenge.

    what if we could play the same with the same gear. just make the game harder with say a slider.

  • Asuran24Asuran24 St. pual, MNPosts: 517Member

    In a mmo one big issue is that t is well massively multi player with the fact of being multi player as the primary issue here. I mean what if everyone in a group of players set their slider differently, it would lead to aloow of verience in the proformance of the group an player. Also the difficulty slider would for many players be seen as redundent as the actual game for most mmos now are based around end-game making those that do not set it to easy gimping themselves leveling wise. Even in a setting where characters are leveling seeing people able to farm or kill mobs faster or slower might lead to alow of issues with people riticuling players that choose to level in a harder difficulty (we already see peole that make fun or people that even just deviate minorly from precieved viable speccs or builds in games, and even in methods.). The great part of diffculty sliders is that it customizes the enjoyment of the game to the player playing, yet in a game where yyou are going to deal with vast amounts of players it is a good guess that some would use it to grief an make fun of others in that world.

     

    So in group conetent if the diffculty normalized to an  average of what the group desired or set for their difficulty that would work largely, so that one player's choice of playing harder or easier can not be used against them in the group. The system would also have to be either normalized to where when you fight or attack a player all bonuses an penalities are discounted to keep pvp largely balanced in the pen world. Though i think putting bonuses an penalties on the effects of what you get for playing in the diffculty (such as extra exp, gold, drop rate or quality of drops) would help to keep the amount of people using the fact f leveling in a hard difficulty to make fun of players down too. Anytime you create a feature that allows for players to feel superior to others, or which can allow ther players to find fault with the choices players make it will be used for that.Look at gearscore, speccs, recoount, many of these are used to show how bad a player is, even if they only very from others by a small margin.

     

    Yeah i agree if you are going to make different difficulties leave it in being based on servers, as they it takes alot of the issues out of the way, and also brings more of the like mind players on  the same server.

  • Hopscotch73Hopscotch73 DublinPosts: 971Member

    I honestly don't think there's fun in a game without challenge.

    I would never fork out cash to play an easier version - I might do it for a harder version though. 

    I remember playing games on my ZX Spectrum with no saves and busting my ass to beat a platformer with a perfect run. We don't often encounter challenges like that nowadays (Demon Souls notwithstanding), but I still love them.

    Maybe it's a generational thing, but I think there's more reward in the sense of accomplishment you get when you meet a challenge and best it than just being given a medal for pressing play (a lot of games seem to do this nowadays, it's like participation medals at school sports meets imo- pointless and empty). 

    So, the OP's idea baffles me, but to each their own. If you pay $10 for EZ-mode and it doesn't affect my experience, then I don't care one way or the other. Tiered rewards for challenge levels would be a must though (think normal, hard and nightmare mode raids). 

     

  • 9ineven9ineven SomewherePosts: 153Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Creslin321

    Okay okay...

    I see that many people disagree with this idea.  And maybe the problem is that it would be that a difficulty slider would make it so "easy" for a player to complete content that it would cheapen the game.

    So how about this instead...

    The dev charges a modest fee to allow players to slide the difficulty slider to easier modes.  So you have to pay like $10 for easy mode, or $20 for very easy.  This way, not everyone could do easy mode...but you could pay for it if you really wanted it.

     

    Wow ! This is even worse than your previous idea ! P2W much ? :p

  • aesperusaesperus Hamshire, NVPosts: 5,128Member Uncommon
    Maybe it's just me, but I have yet to find an MMO that's difficult enough to warrant a difficulty slider.
  • nariusseldonnariusseldon santa clara, CAPosts: 22,441Member
    Originally posted by aesperus
    Maybe it's just me, but I have yet to find an MMO that's difficult enough to warrant a difficulty slider.

    Have you finished all WOW hard mode raids?

    Have you finished D3 inferno in hard core mode?

  • WolfenprideWolfenpride San''doria, WIPosts: 3,988Member

    It can and does work well for heavily instanced games like City of Heroes or Vindictus. In a persistent world game though...i'm not sure. Seems very exploitable.

    I do like the idea of there being some kind of option for players who find the game to easy. Like someone else mentioned, some kind of hardcore server with buffed up mobs would be neat.

  • maplestonemaplestone Ottawa, ONPosts: 3,099Member
    Originally posted by Vinterkrig

    no, like the guy above you said.. he doesn't want a time sink, but he still wants to play a mmo so he can have online friends

    So a social virtual world with no progression ... does it have to be an MMO?  What about second life?  Does it have to be a world?  There are matchmaking services for linking up with random people in non-MMO games.

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