Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Fuzzy Avatars Solved! Please re-upload your avatar if it was fuzzy!

[Column] General: On MMOs Going Solo

13

Comments

  • ForumPvPForumPvP KingstownPosts: 871Member

    What if WoW had servers like there is PvP ,RP etc but also Solo and MMO versions.

    Solo players in one server,why not? there they can play with same minded folks,or do they ,or what they want ?

     

    Edit:What a super hit it could be,someone writing on trade channel "LFG dungeon of DOOM "

    Anonymous666 - €$#& nooob this is solo server,you broke my immersion,reported.

    OoUnnamedoO - Deal with it! someone duel him and give him a lesson! and then ignore him like we have ignored eveybody on this server,well nobody hears this but anyways!

    XxSomebodyxX  - IMO he is MMO &%@! scum spy!

    NotYourMom - ROLFMAO TSUNG! wrong server %@!% go search your team somewhere else and get a %$"! Dirge life.

    etc...

    Let's internet

  • znaiikaznaiika denver, PAPosts: 203Member
    Originally posted by Azaron_Nightblade

    Sadly the game's now being killed off by NCsoft, even though it was still profitable it didn't fit into the company's future "vision"

     

    NCsoft didn't killed anything, they just implemented event system, scale system and individual reward system, and it is a blast.

    This is the future of the gaming industry.

    Mob spawn based on how many players are participating, you get scaled down to around npcs level and you get rewarded individualy, that is what did the trick. 

    If Tera had this system? they wouldn't had to merge it's servers, I love Teras combat system.

  • Azaron_NightbladeAzaron_Nightblade KingsmouthPosts: 2,646Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by znaiika
    Originally posted by Azaron_Nightblade

    Sadly the game's now being killed off by NCsoft, even though it was still profitable it didn't fit into the company's future "vision"

     

    NCsoft didn't killed anything, they just implemented scale system and individual reward system, and it is a blast.

    This is the future of the gaming industry.

    Mob spawn based on how many players are participating, you get scaled down to around npcs level and you get rewarded individualy, that is what did the trick. 

    If Tera had this system? they wouldn't had to merge it's servers, I love Teras combat system.

    All features inspired and further polished up from their original City of Heroes. Which I also love in GW2.

    I haven't tried TERA yet, but I plan to this weekend (picked it up on Amazon during the promotion, so I can try it just so I can experience the combat system).

    My SWTOR referral link for those wanting to give the game a try. (Newbies get a welcome package while returning players get a few account upgrades to help with their preferred status.)

  • thorwoodthorwood MayfieldPosts: 485Member

    There is a market for solo play.  

    The development costs are a lot  lower if developers can use graphics, landscapes and dungeons from a group or raid based game.  They just need to scale it  for solo play and tweak the quest and gameplay for solo play.

    The game company may also be able to reduce lost income due to piracy if the solo game requires some sort of server registration or  server content.

    Whether or not the developers can provide an enjoyable experience for both group and solo play on the same server is something the developers would need to work through.

     

    In most games, solo players are playing cripple-ware  as there is no solo content to make their character as strong as a group  dungeon runner.  The solo player is denied access to dungeons or the opportunity to explore the dungeons.  This makes the end game boring and repetive for solo play.

    Group dungeon runners and raiders may be disenfranchised if solo players won similar rewards .  It would erode their feeling of being elite.  A separate server for solo play may be one option for implementing the game without disenfranchising either group players or solo players.

  • IcewhiteIcewhite Elmhurst, ILPosts: 6,403Member
    Originally posted by Suzie_Ford
    There is a subtle but distinct trend in the MMO industry towards the “solofication” or “single-playerization” of the MMORPG.

    Not subtle.  That kind of $$$ is not in the least bit subtle.

     

    Self-pity imprisons us in the walls of our own self-absorption. The whole world shrinks down to the size of our problem, and the more we dwell on it, the smaller we are and the larger the problem seems to grow.

  • CerebralMCerebralM Pittsburgh, PAPosts: 21Member
    Alot of these posts are really insightful. I mean... in a crowded marketplace... you create a group centric game. The people who play that game are going to be more socially oriented and coorperative because they want to work with other people. +++ for that.
  • jayartejayarte LancasterPosts: 450Member
    Originally posted by Sovrath

    Whoa! +1 for  "No Exit". Great play.

    good article, we need more columns by Victor.

    My thoughts exactly.  I enjoyed this article immensely.  What a refreshing change to have a writer who takes note of the fact that games don't exist in a vacuum (something I've said so many times on this forum).  Extremely well written, thoughtful and thought-provoking.  I'm not one for hyperbole, but I've reading enjoyed this more than just about anything else I can remember on mmorpg.com.

     

    Regarding the topic, I agree that I would like to see options for both solo play and group play.  The same person might want different things at different times (I know I do), and different people want different things from their gameplay.  Some want to socialise and connect with other players, enjoying the satisfaction of excellent teamwork and the feeling of forging new friendships.  Others, perhaps because they get enough socialising through work and other leisure activities, or perhaps because they are more of a loner-type personality, would rather play through the game mostly or solely solo.  And, as I said,  some of us want different things at different times.

     

    More from Victor, please.

     

    p.s.  I never in my wildest dreams imagined a column-writer on mmorpg.com quoting Sartre o/

  • gilgamesh9gilgamesh9 austin, TXPosts: 133Member
    I solo plenty in GW2, but I never avoid a chance to assist or follow a fellow traveller when we're going the same way -- which is still grouping, but it's organic, not forced.  No stupid invites or feeling trapped with a bunch of yahoos.  This is the way it should be.
  • lugnutusalugnutusa Buena Vista, VAPosts: 8Member

    "As someone who came into MMORPGs during the infancy of World of Warcraft"

    Well, there's your problem.

    As others have stated, older MMO's catered to both styles pretty well.

    I'm an Asheron's Call veteran, playing from 1999 to 2004.  The majority of my time was spent either going it alone, or working with one or two close friends.  Large groups were for party-based level grinding or big quest dungeons (many of which could also be done solo if you were high enough level).

    The thing is, if I'm forced to group with others to progress, then my enjoyment of the game comes at the whim of others.  I have to find people who want to do the same content I'm doing, and that isn't always as easy as it seems.

  • abottemillerabottemiller Woodland, WAPosts: 43Member
    Originally posted by tupodawg999

    All the advantages given for solo play are true but there are two major problems with it

     

    1) Humans are social animals. Social animals aren't that way just because they like being sociable. They are that way because they couldn't survive (in game terms: achieve goals) except in a group.

     

    So whether people like it or not social == sticky beause humans are made that way.

     

    The proof of this would be to ask all those people who mostly play solo while chatting with players they've known a long time is how/where did they meet those players? I bet most of them initially met doing content that required a group to survive/achieve and that of the 100+ players they met that way the people they still travel to different games with are the 4-8 of that 100+ they got on with best.

     

    To get to that small group of 4-8 you generally have to go through 100+ people who annoy you.

     

    Now all the practical reasons for anti-grouping still apply but despite that social will always equal sticky because that is how humans are made so the question them becomes what is the best compromise. It is very tricky but i'd suggest the first step might be to move the argument from solo vs group of 5+ to solo vs group of 2+.

     

    ===

     

    2) The solo quest chain model has some inevitable logic to it.

     

    If all the classes are doing the same quests then the quests have to be designed around the weakest solo class. This means either the quests become a faceroll for the best solo classes *or* over time the classes gradually become more and more similar via some mechanism or other e.g. specs or souls or whatever, so the gap between the best and worst solo class becomes less and less.

     

    Slightly separately but also if the focus is on endgame then there is no need for multiple solo quest chains. At most you only need two for pvp

     

    So, *even if* the optimal course was providing an online single player game within the context of an mmo the current course doesn't work because the trend has been towards creating *one* single player game inside an mmo - because the classes play mostly the same and play through the same quest chain. So it's not surprising if player's quit after they finish it.

     

    (The SWTOR model ought to have worked on this level at least with players treating different classes as effectively a different single player game. I can only assume it didn't work out because the inidividual class stories weren't different enough.)

     

    So *even if* the best mmorog model is a place where a lot of people play a single player game on the same server then the model has been moving away from that because if an mmo wants players to play longer than they play a single player game then an mmo needs to either a) constantly and rapidly produce sequels (expansions in mmo terms) or have *multiple* single player games within the same game i.e. where playing a human thief is as different as possible an experience as playing an ogre warrior (i.e. more like the ES model of RPG).

     

     
     

    I for one am NOT an animal and I enjoy my solo time. To state that because Im human I must group is interesting, and why must solo content be at odds with multi? Give desingers some credit. They have the ability to keep each side content.

     

  • JosmalJosmal CuliacanPosts: 3Member
    Originally posted by Aerowyn
     many of us have family, work, ect..I still want to enjoy mmos but don't have time to group most of the time and with my kids can't always commit a lot of consistent time grouping.. allowing me to enjoy the game with and without needing to group is ideal for me and many people.

    +1 to this.

    I started playing MMOs when i was 19 yo, that's 15 years ago. Now i have 2 kids, a wife, a full-time job... but i still like MMOs, and i look for solo friendly MMOs. I still enjoy being able to chat with people, make new friends, join a guild, etc. In my regular 2-hours gaming session, i have to go afk 3-4 times 'cause wife or kids need me for something, sometimes in a hurry. I think it was the 4th time i had to go afk in a rush while killing a boss and after hearing the screams of rage some of my party-mates, i decided to stop grouping. See, i always play the tank class...

  • abottemillerabottemiller Woodland, WAPosts: 43Member
    Originally posted by Wizardry

    There really is a simple asnwer.....

    If the game is being labelled and sold as a MMORPG ,it should perform like one.So many are giving arguments based on THEM,well a game is not about the individual unless it is a sinmgle player game,it is about the entire server.

    A MMO should not disguise itself as a MMO to attract people looking to play a MMO,then all of a sudden cater to those who want or should be playing something other than a MMO.

    We see a common excuse like "I have no time for grouping".That is fine,MOST understand that,fact is a MMO is still a MMO,it shouldn't be catering to you a player who should not be in a MMO because you haven't the time to play one.

    I used some analogies before and i will again.Sometimes people need to see the extreme to understand the logic.

    Imagine there is a local kids baseball league.Now we all know what baseball is right?It is a TEAm sport,not a solo sport like Tennis or Badminton.Ok lets use that same analogy,i am very busy with life,i have no time,should Baseball change it's whole design to cater to me or others with no time?instead of 9 players aside we will change  it to one player each team.Then just like games we also need to change the mechanics to meet the new standard for baseball.

    Baseball is Baseball,youi can NEVER use any argument to have it cater to YOU,if yo uwant to play a TEAM sport or a grouping game, but can't ,then you don't play Baseball ,is is as simple as that.Once you begin to make changes to BAseball to allow one player to form the whole team,it is no longer Baseball anymore.

     

    I really hope your not serious. Just because a game is Multi Player Online does not imply that you Must group. It just means that there are many people playing at the same time making the game a vibrent changing theme.

  • picommanderpicommander SolingenPosts: 246Member Uncommon

    Some people like to feel and play like a hermit, something they might not be able to realize in their real life. As for the "why not play a singel player then" argument: being a hermit is meaningless if there's nothing to hide from. Also, playing like a hermit doesn't mean no interaction with other players at all, just limited... Personally, I prefer playing such kind of hermit roles in a game that "encourages" (but doesn't "force", that's a difference!) team play so that solo play is an extra challenge there.

    edit:

    and to the quoting above: baseball is baseball and mmorpgs are mmorpgs. Simple like that. mmorpgs are no sport games, hence the "rpg" in its name.

  • umcorianumcorian Boston, MAPosts: 466Member Uncommon

    The only reasons I tend to solo often in MMORPGs:

    * Quest syncronization. I have lots of RealID friends in WoW - I'd love to quest with them. Problem is, we're on different quests. One of us usually has done the chain the others working on... so that leaves one person questing and getting decent EXP, the second getting crap.

    * "LF1-4M for <Group Quest>. Taking 10-30 minutes to find a group for a group quest is boring as shit. No thank you. If it's a group quest I can't solo, I'll give a random general question one try, then move on. 9 out of 10 times, the Group Quest is not done. 

    I'd say if Quest syncronization became an non-issue, or LFG technology could be applied to grouping/questing AND grouping/questing reaped greater rewards, I would be all over it. 

  • tupodawg999tupodawg999 LondonPosts: 724Member Uncommon

    "To state that because Im human I must group is interesting"

     

    I didn't say that. I said social === sticky.

    What this means is the more an mmo can find a compromise between the downsides of other people and the upsides of other people the more successful it will be (in terms of longevity).

  • GrumpyMel2GrumpyMel2 Catskills, NYPosts: 1,832Member
    Originally posted by abottemiller
    Originally posted by tupodawg999

    All the advantages given for solo play are true but there are two major problems with it

     

    1) Humans are social animals. Social animals aren't that way just because they like being sociable. They are that way because they couldn't survive (in game terms: achieve goals) except in a group.

     

    So whether people like it or not social == sticky beause humans are made that way.

     

    The proof of this would be to ask all those people who mostly play solo while chatting with players they've known a long time is how/where did they meet those players? I bet most of them initially met doing content that required a group to survive/achieve and that of the 100+ players they met that way the people they still travel to different games with are the 4-8 of that 100+ they got on with best.

     

    To get to that small group of 4-8 you generally have to go through 100+ people who annoy you.

     

    Now all the practical reasons for anti-grouping still apply but despite that social will always equal sticky because that is how humans are made so the question them becomes what is the best compromise. It is very tricky but i'd suggest the first step might be to move the argument from solo vs group of 5+ to solo vs group of 2+.

     

    ===

     

    2) The solo quest chain model has some inevitable logic to it.

     

    If all the classes are doing the same quests then the quests have to be designed around the weakest solo class. This means either the quests become a faceroll for the best solo classes *or* over time the classes gradually become more and more similar via some mechanism or other e.g. specs or souls or whatever, so the gap between the best and worst solo class becomes less and less.

     

    Slightly separately but also if the focus is on endgame then there is no need for multiple solo quest chains. At most you only need two for pvp

     

    So, *even if* the optimal course was providing an online single player game within the context of an mmo the current course doesn't work because the trend has been towards creating *one* single player game inside an mmo - because the classes play mostly the same and play through the same quest chain. So it's not surprising if player's quit after they finish it.

     

    (The SWTOR model ought to have worked on this level at least with players treating different classes as effectively a different single player game. I can only assume it didn't work out because the inidividual class stories weren't different enough.)

     

    So *even if* the best mmorog model is a place where a lot of people play a single player game on the same server then the model has been moving away from that because if an mmo wants players to play longer than they play a single player game then an mmo needs to either a) constantly and rapidly produce sequels (expansions in mmo terms) or have *multiple* single player games within the same game i.e. where playing a human thief is as different as possible an experience as playing an ogre warrior (i.e. more like the ES model of RPG).

     

     
     

    I for one am NOT an animal and I enjoy my solo time. To state that because Im human I must group is interesting, and why must solo content be at odds with multi? Give desingers some credit. They have the ability to keep each side content.

     

    What are you then? a Vegtable or Mineral? Humans ARE animals, albiet very complicated ones and just like every other type of animal our evolution is going to have some impact on our preferences and behaviors as a species.

    I don't believe the poster was trying to tell you what your individual preferences must be, he was just making a generalization about human behavior as a whole as it relates to liesure activities. Human beings, like it or not, have evolved as herd animals which means social interaction is an important part of our psyche which is why such activities play a large role in our lives (in general). As opposed to, say, your house-cat which would be perfectly content with never seeing another cat it's entire life (because it evolved as a solitary predator) human beings or monkies which are deprived significant social interaction grow deeply depressed, disturbed, even to the point of going insane. It's just something hard wired into us. That is not to say that you can't have some time or activities in which you prefer to be alone (we all have a degree of that too), it's just that things which involve social activity tend to resonate strongly with us in general.

    Which is why it seems odd to some of us that there has been a trend away from that in MMO's.

    In terms of designers being able to keep both groupers and soloers content....if that were true, there wouldn't be so many of us groupers complaining here that we aren't content. Do you think we are lying about our own feelings? Most of the people posting here that grouping (or social play) is working just fine in todays MMO's are ones with a very strong prefernce for solo play...so not in a very good position to judge how the other side feels. You'll find very few posters here who actualy express a strong preference for grouping/social play saying "everythings ok"...most are expressing the opposite view.

    I don't deride designers abilities but the fact it's not nearly as simple or easy to put together a game design that significantly satisfies both groupers and soloers well. Think about trying to design a play space that allows people to play golf and baseball in the same space at the same time without either group interfering with the others play and with a limited budget and resources to get it done. That's what you are asking of designers.....it's not really that simple of a task is it?.....and it's just one of the many interelated aspects of the design that they have to address. It's really not much of a surprise to me at all that one side ends up getting sacrified in favor of the other.

  • GrumpyMel2GrumpyMel2 Catskills, NYPosts: 1,832Member

    I think a big part of what's happaned with MMO's and also possibly explaining part of the "solofication" trend is the breakdown and minimization of COMMUNITY.

    Coming to MMO's from MUDS that point is really driven home to me.

    In MUDS community and your interaction with it was REALLY IMPORTANT and the rulesets and designs reinforced that.

    Who you were MATTERED. The things you did MATTERED...to other players and to the community as a whole. Your actions had signifigant consequences both to you and to the community as a whole. Bad behavior could have very serious consequences to you. It could cause you to lose a certain kind of unspoken "social currency" that was harder to earn and more precious then gold or gear. At the same time exceptional behavior had rewards far beyond anything that appeared on your character sheet.

    The entire game as structured and designed around these assumptions and supporting them. I think alot of this bled into the design and gameplay of the early MMO's, many of which were often labeled as "Graphical MUDS". Developers were familiar with these paradigms of the MUD because many had played in or had working experience with them themselves. Many of the initial playerbase had also migrated from or played MUDS. So much of what existed within them was reflected in these early games. They had a little bit of the "small village" atmosphere that MUDS had. Somewhere along the way this gradualy started to change...until the "small village" had morphed into a large faceless city that lost it's sense of community.

    I think that may be part of what happaned with the increasing trend toward socialization. It became less desirable to players because it was less rewarding both tangibly and emotionaly. It didn't matter that YOU were there or what YOU did because those had little consequences beyond the immediate rewards. You were easly interchangable with faceless fighter #557. The same held true for negative behavior, the consequences for it became far less significant so those with an inclination toward it persisted...many because they had never been taught otherwise. The games had lost thier sense of community...so participation in social based activites was less desirable.

    Some I think try to recapture a bit of that with Guilds...but even there that's problematic because the game systems don't really reinforce the interdepency and one can easly slip from Guild to Guild.

    I think if a game really wants to appeal to those of us who like and miss that "small village" feel, it's going to have to drasticaly change it's character. It will need to create actual villages and towns, pockets of civilization in a vast wilderness where players can spend a significant portion of thier careers...not just breeze through in 45 minutes before they move onto the next quest hub...and it's designs are going to have to be based around the idea of interdependance. Players who are on thier own should still have some things that they can do solo, as it was in the MUDS, because there will always be times when you can't or don't want (for some reason) to go out with others...but it shouldn't be the core game-play of the game.

    It would be a risky proposition...because it's a large departure of what most of todays MMO players and designers are used to seeing. However, I think it has some inherent appeal because human beings ARE inherently social animals and they like to do social things. Maybe it'll even draw in a different crowd then typical plays MMO's....there are plenty of folks that have interest in online social venues (facebook, linked-in, etc).

  • abottemillerabottemiller Woodland, WAPosts: 43Member
    Originally posted by GrumpyMel2
    Originally posted by abottemiller
    Originally posted by tupodawg999

    All the advantages given for solo play are true but there are two major problems with it

     

    1) Humans are social animals. Social animals aren't that way just because they like being sociable. They are that way because they couldn't survive (in game terms: achieve goals) except in a group.

     

    So whether people like it or not social == sticky beause humans are made that way.

     

    The proof of this would be to ask all those people who mostly play solo while chatting with players they've known a long time is how/where did they meet those players? I bet most of them initially met doing content that required a group to survive/achieve and that of the 100+ players they met that way the people they still travel to different games with are the 4-8 of that 100+ they got on with best.

     

    To get to that small group of 4-8 you generally have to go through 100+ people who annoy you.

     

    Now all the practical reasons for anti-grouping still apply but despite that social will always equal sticky because that is how humans are made so the question them becomes what is the best compromise. It is very tricky but i'd suggest the first step might be to move the argument from solo vs group of 5+ to solo vs group of 2+.

     

    ===

     

    2) The solo quest chain model has some inevitable logic to it.

     

    If all the classes are doing the same quests then the quests have to be designed around the weakest solo class. This means either the quests become a faceroll for the best solo classes *or* over time the classes gradually become more and more similar via some mechanism or other e.g. specs or souls or whatever, so the gap between the best and worst solo class becomes less and less.

     

    Slightly separately but also if the focus is on endgame then there is no need for multiple solo quest chains. At most you only need two for pvp

     

    So, *even if* the optimal course was providing an online single player game within the context of an mmo the current course doesn't work because the trend has been towards creating *one* single player game inside an mmo - because the classes play mostly the same and play through the same quest chain. So it's not surprising if player's quit after they finish it.

     

    (The SWTOR model ought to have worked on this level at least with players treating different classes as effectively a different single player game. I can only assume it didn't work out because the inidividual class stories weren't different enough.)

     

    So *even if* the best mmorog model is a place where a lot of people play a single player game on the same server then the model has been moving away from that because if an mmo wants players to play longer than they play a single player game then an mmo needs to either a) constantly and rapidly produce sequels (expansions in mmo terms) or have *multiple* single player games within the same game i.e. where playing a human thief is as different as possible an experience as playing an ogre warrior (i.e. more like the ES model of RPG).

     

     
     

    I for one am NOT an animal and I enjoy my solo time. To state that because Im human I must group is interesting, and why must solo content be at odds with multi? Give desingers some credit. They have the ability to keep each side content.

     

    What are you then? a Vegtable or Mineral? Humans ARE animals, albiet very complicated ones and just like every other type of animal our evolution is going to have some impact on our preferences and behaviors as a species.

    I don't believe the poster was trying to tell you what your individual preferences must be, he was just making a generalization about human behavior as a whole as it relates to liesure activities. Human beings, like it or not, have evolved as herd animals which means social interaction is an important part of our psyche which is why such activities play a large role in our lives (in general). As opposed to, say, your house-cat which would be perfectly content with never seeing another cat it's entire life (because it evolved as a solitary predator) human beings or monkies which are deprived significant social interaction grow deeply depressed, disturbed, even to the point of going insane. It's just something hard wired into us. That is not to say that you can't have some time or activities in which you prefer to be alone (we all have a degree of that too), it's just that things which involve social activity tend to resonate strongly with us in general.

    Which is why it seems odd to some of us that there has been a trend away from that in MMO's.

    In terms of designers being able to keep both groupers and soloers content....if that were true, there wouldn't be so many of us groupers complaining here that we aren't content. Do you think we are lying about our own feelings? Most of the people posting here that grouping (or social play) is working just fine in todays MMO's are ones with a very strong prefernce for solo play...so not in a very good position to judge how the other side feels. You'll find very few posters here who actualy express a strong preference for grouping/social play saying "everythings ok"...most are expressing the opposite view.

    I don't deride designers abilities but the fact it's not nearly as simple or easy to put together a game design that significantly satisfies both groupers and soloers well. Think about trying to design a play space that allows people to play golf and baseball in the same space at the same time without either group interfering with the others play and with a limited budget and resources to get it done. That's what you are asking of designers.....it's not really that simple of a task is it?.....and it's just one of the many interelated aspects of the design that they have to address. It's really not much of a surprise to me at all that one side ends up getting sacrified in favor of the other.

    This ought to be fun, I do NOT believe in evolution and think that using such a theory to explain my behavior will not work.

  • znaiikaznaiika denver, PAPosts: 203Member

    I can say that I am not an animal too, I am more advanced then animal and I don't have any plans to degrade to animal level.

    There is a big diference, where you want to group-up and forced to group-up.

    In todays gameworld you get penalized for grouping-up with friends or screwed-over if grouped-up with the wrong people.

    GW2 is actualy made grouping-up possible without penalties and reward is personal not depended.

  • JaedorJaedor Denver, COPosts: 1,140Member Uncommon

    Is there a working definition of "MMO" that includes a requirement to group up?


    From some posts, it is apparent that some folks think an mmo is about social interaction and that it should be required to some extent. Others don't want to be excluded from content if they don't group up. And yet others want the flexibility to group or solo, without being penalized for either choice.


    IMO, none of these perspectives is wrong.

  • jayartejayarte LancasterPosts: 450Member
    Originally posted by GrumpyMel2

    I think a big part of what's happaned with MMO's and also possibly explaining part of the "solofication" trend is the breakdown and minimization of COMMUNITY.

    Coming to MMO's from MUDS that point is really driven home to me.

    In MUDS community and your interaction with it was REALLY IMPORTANT and the rulesets and designs reinforced that.

    Who you were MATTERED. The things you did MATTERED...to other players and to the community as a whole. Your actions had signifigant consequences both to you and to the community as a whole. Bad behavior could have very serious consequences to you. It could cause you to lose a certain kind of unspoken "social currency" that was harder to earn and more precious then gold or gear. At the same time exceptional behavior had rewards far beyond anything that appeared on your character sheet.

    The entire game as structured and designed around these assumptions and supporting them. I think alot of this bled into the design and gameplay of the early MMO's, many of which were often labeled as "Graphical MUDS". Developers were familiar with these paradigms of the MUD because many had played in or had working experience with them themselves. Many of the initial playerbase had also migrated from or played MUDS. So much of what existed within them was reflected in these early games. They had a little bit of the "small village" atmosphere that MUDS had. Somewhere along the way this gradualy started to change...until the "small village" had morphed into a large faceless city that lost it's sense of community.

    I think that may be part of what happaned with the increasing trend toward socialization. It became less desirable to players because it was less rewarding both tangibly and emotionaly. It didn't matter that YOU were there or what YOU did because those had little consequences beyond the immediate rewards. You were easly interchangable with faceless fighter #557. The same held true for negative behavior, the consequences for it became far less significant so those with an inclination toward it persisted...many because they had never been taught otherwise. The games had lost thier sense of community...so participation in social based activites was less desirable.

    Some I think try to recapture a bit of that with Guilds...but even there that's problematic because the game systems don't really reinforce the interdepency and one can easly slip from Guild to Guild.

    I think if a game really wants to appeal to those of us who like and miss that "small village" feel, it's going to have to drasticaly change it's character. It will need to create actual villages and towns, pockets of civilization in a vast wilderness where players can spend a significant portion of thier careers...not just breeze through in 45 minutes before they move onto the next quest hub...and it's designs are going to have to be based around the idea of interdependance. Players who are on thier own should still have some things that they can do solo, as it was in the MUDS, because there will always be times when you can't or don't want (for some reason) to go out with others...but it shouldn't be the core game-play of the game.

    It would be a risky proposition...because it's a large departure of what most of todays MMO players and designers are used to seeing. However, I think it has some inherent appeal because human beings ARE inherently social animals and they like to do social things. Maybe it'll even draw in a different crowd then typical plays MMO's....there are plenty of folks that have interest in online social venues (facebook, linked-in, etc).

    Excellent post, thank you.  I must admit I often stop watching a thread once it grows much beyond the first page because for some reason it seems to often degenerate into pointless bickering (just my opinion, of course).  It's a shame, because I'm sure I often miss posts worth reading, like this one.

     

    It's heartening to read an excellent article, which I found thought-provoking, and then to see some posts which further encourage a bit of thinking.

     

    You make a very interesting and valid point, I think.  Would love to hear from other players of MUDS, too.  I didn't actually play them, although my son does with friends at univesity, and much prefers that to online gaming these days.

  • GrumpyMel2GrumpyMel2 Catskills, NYPosts: 1,832Member

    @abottemiller

    "This ought to be fun, I do NOT believe in evolution and think that using such a theory to explain my behavior will not work"

    No problem then. You've simply indicated that there is no point in our continuing this line of discussion....since the basic apriori assumptions that would form the basis for a usefull discussion of that aspect of the posters statement  are not commonly shared between us thus we are at an impasse.

    We'll simply have to agree to disagree. Have a good day.

     

     

     

  • GrumpyMel2GrumpyMel2 Catskills, NYPosts: 1,832Member

    @Jayarte,

    Thank you. I generaly find Victor's articles insightfull as well, even if they are sometimes purposefully provacative, taking the Devils Advocate position.

    It's rather difficult to articulate the experience provided by a quality MUD to those who haven't experienced it first hand.  I'm glad I was able to offer some insight in that regard.

  • CecropiaCecropia Posts: 3,472Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by abottemiller

    This ought to be fun, I do NOT believe in evolution and think that using such a theory to explain my behavior will not work.

    It's ok, evolution is not something you believe in. It's something that you either understand or do not. Some crazy info; there is actually more proof of the theory of evolution than the theory of gravity.

    And yes, you are very much an animal, lol. You can pretend to be something else just the same as I can pretend to be an Astronaut. In the end however, I am most likely not leaving Earth anytime soon. 

    Good luck.

    "Mr. Rothstein, your people never will understand... the way it works out here. You're all just our guests. But you act like you're at home. Let me tell you something, partner. You ain't home. But that's where we're gonna send you if it harelips the governor." - Pat Webb

  • JagaridJagarid West Covina, CAPosts: 415Member
    I like mmos that offer both. Five days a week I can only play about one hour at a time and I don't want to waste any of it looking for a group. On weekends I have more time and can do group stuff. This trend is good in my view because I can play the same game all week.
Sign In or Register to comment.