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Are MMORPG players really this anti-social?

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  • JemcrystalJemcrystal Champaign, ILPosts: 1,550Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Aelious
    Originally posted by Beatnik59
    Originally posted by Aelious
    Similar to what Rungard pointed out, if you offer more effective ways to communicate in the first place (integrated audio and visual communication with first person capabilities) you will go a long way in brining more socialization to MMOs. At the very least it would improve socializing while fighting badies. Activities that are more social in nature already would be money with the tools listed above. For now it's only in one game.

    I would absolutely never play a game like that.  The people who play these games are about on the same level as the people I meet at the bar: they are cool enough, but I wouldn't want to bring them into my home.

    In fact, I'll take that one step further.  To me, I find that the things players create (their characters) are far more interesting to play with than the players themselves.

     

    You may have misunderstood what I meant by "visial communication".  I didn't mean you would see the other person as in real life but what SoEMote does that is tied to thier integrated voice system:

     

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cde01HNKQVw

     

    And you are right, I would not want to see others in real life either because it's a fantasy game.  You may still not want to interact that way and I doubt games would make it a mandatory feature.

    This is very nice and deserves it's own thread but I'm to lazy to start one.  I had this idea ages ago to alter our voices in voice chat and no one listened to me.  Heh.


  • CuathonCuathon University City, NYPosts: 2,211Member
    Originally posted by Loktofeit
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    Originally posted by Loktofeit
    There's an unrealistic expectation among some MMO gamers that others should make the effort to interact with them. Some even go as far as wanting games changed to force others to have to be tethered to them in hopes that it will also force others to interact with them.

    Oh come now, I expected you to know better.  Programming in interdependency between players is a common, well accepted practice in most MMORPG's...

     

    I never said it wasn't or shouldn't be. The issue I presented is that some people aren't social but want to be part of the social environment, so they want or, worse, expect the game mechanics to force others to interact with them.

    Take dating for example. Some people go to clubs, bars and other social circles to meet others. Some go to those 5-minute date musical chairs things to meet others. Two very different types of people. The first type is social and outgoing. The second type wants to be social and doesn't know how to, so they seek outside catalysts to create the desired situation. Where MMOs are different is that others have their social circles and may not be playing to make new friends online. Just because the person isn't talking to you doesn't mean they aren't talking.

    This is bullshit. I am a group mechanics advocate and I have no problem being "social" in games. I ran a Tibia guild as well as guilds and clans on other games that weren't inherently social.

     

    When I played Dungeon Inquisitor I was the first community mod. I formed a group of followers, its what they are called. They literally follow you and in turn you each get minimal benefits of the energy mechanic and I got them to follow each other and organized hunts of top tier monsters. 2 of my acolytes are now the new community moderators as well as remaining top players and remaining friends with almost all of my 50 initial followers that havent quit as well as starting new groups. I taught them how to set up sales of monster callers they couldn't use due to level to higher players for lots of gold, I bought them first. So increased the wealth rise of the game by a factor of 10 since with limited item space you had to throw it away. I even jump started the minion economy in various ways. I quit to program 3D RTSish games which I still do or I would still be there. If I go back people instantly know who I am. I am essentially legendary in the same way as top tier SWG item crafters and I basically created the entire community aspect of the game including pioneering the player economy with my theories.

    The gameplay as initially explained by devs involved getting just a couple followers, like 4-5 for each high level player, for PvP purposes and I hit the 50 cap in 2 days after I decided I wanted the energy bonus. All you had was a market where most items had no value and a chat channel.

    The tight knit community has loosened slightly as PvP came into full swing and the game gained a larger player base. Maybe 4-5x as big but its still in a large sense the community I created.

    But I still want to add more grouping mechanics and my own MMO design which I put on hold for my RTSish work was massively focused on grouping and interdependent economies and extensive guild and political things.

    The long DI paragraph was just evidence that I can and am social in computer games, and browser MMOs are relatively similar to graphical ones. So its not that I can't do the work to be social and make friends and start communities.

    Take that argument and shove it where the sun don't shine.

    Its that I prefer games with interdependent social/economic/political systems. They are just more interesting than jumping through reflex based hoops in grinding raids.

    And I bet you will find that just as many people who are introverts PREFER solo play and many extroverts PREFER forced grouping.

    I see the same tired argument trotted out every time about how forced groupers can't socialize with out situational help and its just as much bullshit now as it always was.

  • ScotScot UKPosts: 5,758Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Aelious

    And you are right, I would not want to see others in real life either because it's a fantasy game.  You may still not want to interact that way and I doubt games would make it a mandatory feature.

    Scot leans back in his chair, loosens his doublet and cape, pulls his leather hood back and has a mouthful of mead from his tankard…what is that guy going on about?

  • AeliousAelious Portland, ORPosts: 2,853Member Uncommon
    Scot

    Lol, you'd have to look at the quote I was referencing. I brought up how features like SoEMote would improve communication through "visual communication" and someone replied they would never do that because they don't want to bring strangers "in my house".

    I took this as he misunderstood what I meant by "visual communication" and linked the SoEMote video showing its the digital representation of a real person face in thier avatar you are seeing, not the persons real life face.

    I ended with the same conclusion that I'd rather see the avatars face than the real life one because it's a fantasy game.

    FYI, time to tap the pipe.
  • KyleranKyleran Tampa, FLPosts: 19,989Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Quirhid
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    Originally posted by Quirhid
     

    Ah golf, now there's an activity that really provides for a lot of downtime between gameplay and therefore is full of socialization, in fact, might be the socialization king in that respect, probably why so many businessmen take up the game.

    But same holds true for things like bowling, bridge, and several others, lots of opportunity to socialize due to the slower paced gameplay.

    Thank you for enforcing my point. Indeed, the pace of the gameplay has much more effect on socializing than playing in a team or not.

    Well, I guess we're in agreement, sort of.

    Hard to socialize if the game mechanics make it as rewarding (if not more so) to run solo content, people generally will take the path of least resistance and it will be mostly a solitary playing experience.

    But as you pointed out, being in a group isn't being social either.  Pro football (soccer) don't socialize much on the playing field, because the action on the field is too frantic and intense.  They may be playing together, but any socialization occurs outside of the actual activity.

    Same thing with modern MMOs.  With the removal of forced down time in between fights, the pacing has been frantic, with players rushing from spot to spot with nary a moment to speak to each other. (unless they happen to be in voice comms with their guild mates)

    Take out all the other forced down time mechanics such as long travel time (like 5-10 minute boat rides between zones), the need to craft around a certain spot for hours at a time, the need to sell your wares personally rather than through an auction house certainly speeds up game play, and improves the overall "game playing" experience (especially for solo players) at the cost of providing opportunities to socialize with others.

    Now the real trick is, since the mechanics I mentioned above are no longer practical in today's modern MMO, what new systems  can we put in place to encourage more in game socialization while not penalizing those who eschew such interaction.

    And I'll be the first to admit, I don't have a plethora of great ideas, I might be able to come up with 1 or 2 at best.   But I suspect if a bunch of really smart game designers put their heads together they'd come up with a few solid ones that would make the socialization aspect of MMOs better while not driving off a large portion of the player base.

     

    In my day MMORPG's were so hard we fought our way through dungeons in the snow, uphill both ways.
    "I don't have one life, I have many lives" - Grunty
    Still currently "subscribed" to EVE, and only EVE!!!
    "This is the most intelligent, well qualified and articulate response to a post I have ever seen on these forums. It's a shame most people here won't have the attention span to read past the second line." - Anon

  • bunnyhopperbunnyhopper LondonPosts: 2,751Member
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    Originally posted by Quirhid
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    Originally posted by Quirhid
     

     

    Well, I guess we're in agreement, sort of.

    Hard to socialize if the game mechanics make it as rewarding (if not more so) to run solo content, people generally will take the path of least resistance and it will be mostly a solitary playing experience.

    But as you pointed out, being in a group isn't being social either.  Pro football (soccer) don't socialize much on the playing field, because the action on the field is too frantic and intense.  They may be playing together, but any socialization occurs outside of the actual activity.

    Same thing with modern MMOs.  With the removal of forced down time in between fights, the pacing has been frantic, with players rushing from spot to spot with nary a moment to speak to each other. (unless they happen to be in voice comms with their guild mates)

    Take out all the other forced down time mechanics such as long travel time (like 5-10 minute boat rides between zones), the need to craft around a certain spot for hours at a time, the need to sell your wares personally rather than through an auction house certainly speeds up game play, and improves the overall "game playing" experience (especially for solo players) at the cost of providing opportunities to socialize with others.

    Now the real trick is, since the mechanics I mentioned above are no longer practical in today's modern MMO, what new systems  can we put in place to encourage more in game socialization while not penalizing those who eschew such interaction.

    And I'll be the first to admit, I don't have a plethora of great ideas, I might be able to come up with 1 or 2 at best.   But I suspect if a bunch of really smart game designers put their heads together they'd come up with a few solid ones that would make the socialization aspect of MMOs better while not driving off a large portion of the player base.

     

    Forced mechanics is such a misnomer. You choose the game you play and thus you choose to partake in those mechanics. Anyway moving on...

     

    The mechanics you mentioned above are more than practical in this day and age, games which promote persistent communities and social interaction are more than practical this day and age. It's just that it is not practical for every game to have them.

     

    Trying to get the same level of player/community interaction from games dedicated at rush, rush rush, faster pussy cat kill kill, as those experienced in more community orientated games is just not realistic.

     

    If someone wants a large amount of social interaction they choose to play a sandbox game or a game with a great deal of social features and not one which is all about how many mobs I killed in the last 5 minutes.

     

    If someone wants to focus on pure action for their entire game session then they choose to play a themepark game or one with high amounts of instancing, arenas, LFG tools.

     

    The trouble comes when you expect to get the same kind of interaction you find in game A, when you are playing game B.

     

    I play GW2 and from time to time spend time I just chat to or help random players. But if I went into GW2 expecting to find the same level of interaction and community persistency as I did as say when I was playing UO, or EVE or even Darkfall. Then I would be mad.

     

     

    "Come and have a look at what you could have won."

  • KyleranKyleran Tampa, FLPosts: 19,989Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by bunnyhopper
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    Originally posted by Quirhid
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    Originally posted by Quirhid
     

     

     

     The mechanics you mentioned above are more than practical in this day and age, games which promote persistent communities and social interaction are more than practical this day and age. It's just that it is not practical for every game to have them.

    The trouble comes when you expect to get the same kind of interaction you find in game A, when you are playing game B.

     I play GW2 and from time to time spend time I just chat to or help random players. But if I went into GW2 expecting to find the same level of interaction and community persistency as I did as say when I was playing UO, or EVE or even Darkfall. Then I would be mad.

     

    And that's the rub now isn't it. I agree, it isn't practical for every game to have them, but let's face it, most modern day MMO's have decided to eschew these mechanics in favor of a single model. (more or less).

    If there were modern day equivalents for DAOC or UO I'd be thrilled, but as it stands, EVE is the only refuge I've found in the past 6 years.

    I'll be playing DF:UW because it's the only bright light on the near horizon even though I actually loath hard core PVP titles.  (I tend to be the prey that the predators all feed on) image

     

    In my day MMORPG's were so hard we fought our way through dungeons in the snow, uphill both ways.
    "I don't have one life, I have many lives" - Grunty
    Still currently "subscribed" to EVE, and only EVE!!!
    "This is the most intelligent, well qualified and articulate response to a post I have ever seen on these forums. It's a shame most people here won't have the attention span to read past the second line." - Anon

  • bunnyhopperbunnyhopper LondonPosts: 2,751Member
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    Originally posted by bunnyhopper
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    Originally posted by Quirhid
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    Originally posted by Quirhid
     

     

     

    And that's the rub now isn't it. I agree, it isn't practical for every game to have them, but let's face it, most modern day MMO's have decided to eschew these mechanics in favor of a single model. (more or less).

    If there were modern day equivalents for DAOC or UO I'd be thrilled, but as it stands, EVE is the only refuge I've found in the past 6 years.

    I'll be playing DF:UW because it's the only bright light on the near horizon even though I actually loath hard core PVP titles.  (I tend to be the prey that the predators all feed on) image

     

    Most modern day mmos are built that way, I agree. But sadly that is just the way it is at the moment, trying to ram home more social features into these games just would not work as that is clearly not what the players in said games seem to want. It would be nice to think that with the line up of sandboxes on the horizon things might change somewhat, but I doubt it in all honesty.

     

    Still as you say at least Unholy Wars might offer some much needed respite. I loved DF and I will be in Unholy Wars from the word go (let's just hope it is actually any good). Personally I love hardcore pvp titles (IB4 "it's ganking not pvp", yes I love esports as well) and tend to be the predator, unfortunately I tend to be the kind of predator who's skin ends up as part of someones furniture lol.

    "Come and have a look at what you could have won."

  • QuirhidQuirhid TamperePosts: 5,969Member Common
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    Originally posted by Quirhid
     

    Well, I guess we're in agreement, sort of.

    Hard to socialize if the game mechanics make it as rewarding (if not more so) to run solo content, people generally will take the path of least resistance and it will be mostly a solitary playing experience.

    But as you pointed out, being in a group isn't being social either.  Pro football (soccer) don't socialize much on the playing field, because the action on the field is too frantic and intense.  They may be playing together, but any socialization occurs outside of the actual activity.

    Same thing with modern MMOs.  With the removal of forced down time in between fights, the pacing has been frantic, with players rushing from spot to spot with nary a moment to speak to each other. (unless they happen to be in voice comms with their guild mates)

    Take out all the other forced down time mechanics such as long travel time (like 5-10 minute boat rides between zones), the need to craft around a certain spot for hours at a time, the need to sell your wares personally rather than through an auction house certainly speeds up game play, and improves the overall "game playing" experience (especially for solo players) at the cost of providing opportunities to socialize with others.

    Now the real trick is, since the mechanics I mentioned above are no longer practical in today's modern MMO, what new systems  can we put in place to encourage more in game socialization while not penalizing those who eschew such interaction.

    And I'll be the first to admit, I don't have a plethora of great ideas, I might be able to come up with 1 or 2 at best.   But I suspect if a bunch of really smart game designers put their heads together they'd come up with a few solid ones that would make the socialization aspect of MMOs better while not driving off a large portion of the player base.

     

    My approach would be to have a positive encouragement for socialization rather than socializing out of necessity. For example, the best kind of socialization is the sort where you are discussing which tactic should you use to engage particularly tough content. Socializing because the boat ride takes half an hour and there's nothing better to do is the worst possible way to accomplish socialization.

    And it pains me to read over and over again, that we should have such downtimes or force people to interact over mundane tasks such as trading without an auction house. Adding inconveniences just drives customers away. And yet some posters are still wondering why the "hardcore MMOs" don't get proper funding...

    Usability and accessibility are good for any game. I guarantee no game is adversely affected by being user friendly. It is what every developer should strive for. The people who think they're hardcore for playing games with poor usability are egocentric imbeciles. The right kind of challenge is to make the game easy to learn but hard to master. And the right way to make people socialize is through positive encouragement - not by adding needless inconveniences.

    I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been -Wayne Gretzky

  • Master10KMaster10K LondonPosts: 3,065Member
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    Originally posted by Master10Kecause an MMO only really needs a decent community and enough downtime in-between active progresion, for socially-minded players to take advantage of.

    Well, I think this is one major reason for a decrease in socialization of modern MMORPG's, the shift to action oriented combat/encounters with very little downtime in between fights or activities does not provide many opportunities to socialize.

    In early MMO's I made many friends while riding 10 minute boat rides from one place to another.  Or sitting in dungeons camping boss spawns for hours on a time, not much fun in terms of game mechanics, but sure gave us a bunch of time to socialize.

    Even the combat was simplified, was easy to socialize via text chats when camp grinding with others, as opposed to today's "dancing with the stars" approach to dungeons and raids where people are too busy executing the dance steps to spend much time socializing. (and when not in them, they're out soloing alone and don't really have a need for company)

    I think I remember reading that when SWG launched they had game mechanics that literally forced players to return and wait in line for medics to heal up some sort of lost stat, and the same may have been true for entertainers as well. (gave you some sort of bonus for spending time socializing)

    So I think what is missing from modern MMO's is the opportunity for socializing.

    Now to your other point about you having no issues socializing, you probably do well with social media tools such as facebook.  Some folks are naturally social, they'll sit down and share things with most anyone about anything, but other people require some common ground first before they'll open up, and I'll address that in a separate reply.

    That there is the classic case of nostalgia. You remember things as being more fun than they originally were and quite frankly, all of those cases you brought up sound absolutely no fun at all and it's more of a case of 'if you didn't socialize, you pretty much did nothing at all'. Now today's MMORPGs allow players to do more things, other than "waiting to have fun" and that's a good thing. The problem seems to be that players that relied on mechanics that forced a lot of standing around doing nothing but /saying, for hours on end, aren't left with much. Now that in so many games people can just queue up for one thing, whist they go do another. In a lot of cases I think that those same players simply cannot adjust and just blame the game.

     

    Also knowing how to socialize, isn't something that just a person into social midea tool (e.g facebook & twitter) knows about. Heck, I have a facebook on only use it to get into the occasional competition that ask for Likes and other nonsense. I just know that one of the most important aspects of socializing is knowing how to "break the ice". Mostly I just make some off-handed comment that sometimes generates a response and a conversation builds from there. That simple. Would love to see people who complain about the lack of socializing in games to do just that and see how easy it is to kick off a conversation with randoms.

    image

  • halflife25halflife25 Toronto, ONPosts: 737Member

    I don't play MMOS looking for long elaborate talks neither i play MMOS to forge long lasting relation ships. So for me if i am playing with other players and there is enough response to give the feeling that we are co operating and playing as team. That is good enough for me.

    I have no idea what people expect when they say they want MMOS to be more social.

  • fenistilfenistil GliwicePosts: 3,005Member
    Originally posted by Master10K
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    Originally posted by Master10Kecause an MMO only really needs a decent community and enough downtime in-between active progresion, for socially-minded players to take advantage of.

    Well, I think this is one major reason for a decrease in socialization of modern MMORPG's, the shift to action oriented combat/encounters with very little downtime in between fights or activities does not provide many opportunities to socialize.

    In early MMO's I made many friends while riding 10 minute boat rides from one place to another.  Or sitting in dungeons camping boss spawns for hours on a time, not much fun in terms of game mechanics, but sure gave us a bunch of time to socialize.

    Even the combat was simplified, was easy to socialize via text chats when camp grinding with others, as opposed to today's "dancing with the stars" approach to dungeons and raids where people are too busy executing the dance steps to spend much time socializing. (and when not in them, they're out soloing alone and don't really have a need for company)

    I think I remember reading that when SWG launched they had game mechanics that literally forced players to return and wait in line for medics to heal up some sort of lost stat, and the same may have been true for entertainers as well. (gave you some sort of bonus for spending time socializing)

    So I think what is missing from modern MMO's is the opportunity for socializing.

    Now to your other point about you having no issues socializing, you probably do well with social media tools such as facebook.  Some folks are naturally social, they'll sit down and share things with most anyone about anything, but other people require some common ground first before they'll open up, and I'll address that in a separate reply.

    That there is the classic case of nostalgia. You remember things as being more fun than they originally were and quite frankly, all of those cases you brought up sound absolutely no fun at all

    Nope that's classic example of people viewing things diffrently.   Some people liked old mmorpg's design and some did not.   Same like today's design is liked by some and not liked by some.

    Just because YOU did not like older mmorpg design and view it as one that create boredom it does not mean that all players that played it feel the same.

  • Master10KMaster10K LondonPosts: 3,065Member
    Originally posted by TangentPoint

    Because, OP, what you're talking about is the exception, not the rule. I'm a very social person in MMOs as well - asking questions, cracking jokes, commenting on their names, asking if people want to group up (if we're both in the same area, etc) complimenting people on gear they've acquired, etc. I can say with absolute certainty that for every person who does respond to me, there are at least 10 who don't. They just ignore you.

    You give one specific example of someone being social and you two ending up becoming acquaintances in-game. How many times does that not happen though? Not just in GW2, but in any newer MMO of the the last, say, 3 or 4 years? I'm gonna not really go out on a limb and say that, unless you have a knack for picking out the social folks in a crowd, anti-social behavior has been more common.

    The community itself reinforces this fact. What do you see people say, time and again, when someone says "where's the community?" or "why don't people talk"? They say "Join a social guild". Right? And that isn't even "the right answer" many times because, unless they need help with something, many people won't even talk to their guildmates.

    Final Fantasy XI, Lineage 2, Asheron's Call 2, Anarchy Online (old-school).. even Shadowbane... In all those MMOs, I found the situation to be the inverse of how it is now. People not talking and being social was the exception. People being helpful was the norm. I would be out leveling in XI, on a new job or whatever, and people would run by, throw a full round of buffs on me, cheer me on and run off. Sometimes they'd even start up conversation with me.. "Are you new?", etc. They'd offer help, advice, etc. I had a list a mile long of friends in those games... every one of them was sparked by us being in a group or just from random conversation. XP parties were a stream of pleasant and fun conversation and banter - part of what made long-term xp parties so much fun. The un-social ones were the odd-balls.

    Thanks, in part, to the way MMOs are designed now - where you can be a lone wolf and get by just fine - there simply is very little need to talk to others. In a number of "modern" MMOs I've played, most people don't talk because they're caught up in their own little world, doing their own thing, and they have no interest in talking to anyone else. I've known of people to disable all chat channels except for system messages and PMs in the event a GM was trying to get their attention because they didn't want to see all the chatter. 

    I agree 100% with the idea that MMO gamers are largely anti-social these days. I've seen and experienced it far too many times myself to think or be convinced otherwise at this point. The odd person being super social and friendly just isn't much of a reason to think it's any different in GW2.

    You and me seem to think about things differently. In real life I don't expect every person I meet, on the street, to be super friendly and helpful to me. No quite the opposite. But occasionally you'll come across someone that peeks your interest or maybe are introduced to others. I treat MMORPGs that same, so maybe that's why I can think fondly about those few individuals that I come across, rather than you who has fond memories of those you've been somewhat forced to initially rely on.

    image

  • Master10KMaster10K LondonPosts: 3,065Member
    Originally posted by Ailingforale

    Yeh, things "were better back in the day" with games like FFXI or UO etc., but they can be the same way now (honestly, it possible).  My personal issue are the trolls in chat.  I have to turn off chat except for guild and friends because it's all rubbish anyway.   It doesn't have to be serious or anything, but holy crap... how many times do you have to read "Why do they call it an XBox 360?" (please dont' feed the trolls) without wanting to punch something?

    I'm a very social creature, but I keep it in guild or in raidcall/vent.  I do miss the days when actual coversations could be had.  It just seems like now adays you have to search for or start out with like minded and stick with them in a game and if you see anyone else that is on the level, you just add them to the list and keep rolling.

    Now I think that is mostly to do with the game in question. I remember my time in the TERA beta and the chat in that game was so terrible that I had to turn off /area chat. was most filled with Sex, Pedophilia and GW2. Now that I'm in GW2, apart from having to constantly block gold sellers, the chat is mostly pleasent on my server. Maybe I'm just lucky with the server I picked, but you are right that in some cases you have to go out of your way to find like-minded individuals.

    image

  • rungardrungard st. john''s, NFPosts: 1,035Member
    Originally posted by Quirhid
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    Originally posted by Quirhid
     

    Well, I guess we're in agreement, sort of.

    Hard to socialize if the game mechanics make it as rewarding (if not more so) to run solo content, people generally will take the path of least resistance and it will be mostly a solitary playing experience.

    But as you pointed out, being in a group isn't being social either.  Pro football (soccer) don't socialize much on the playing field, because the action on the field is too frantic and intense.  They may be playing together, but any socialization occurs outside of the actual activity.

    Same thing with modern MMOs.  With the removal of forced down time in between fights, the pacing has been frantic, with players rushing from spot to spot with nary a moment to speak to each other. (unless they happen to be in voice comms with their guild mates)

    Take out all the other forced down time mechanics such as long travel time (like 5-10 minute boat rides between zones), the need to craft around a certain spot for hours at a time, the need to sell your wares personally rather than through an auction house certainly speeds up game play, and improves the overall "game playing" experience (especially for solo players) at the cost of providing opportunities to socialize with others.

    Now the real trick is, since the mechanics I mentioned above are no longer practical in today's modern MMO, what new systems  can we put in place to encourage more in game socialization while not penalizing those who eschew such interaction.

    And I'll be the first to admit, I don't have a plethora of great ideas, I might be able to come up with 1 or 2 at best.   But I suspect if a bunch of really smart game designers put their heads together they'd come up with a few solid ones that would make the socialization aspect of MMOs better while not driving off a large portion of the player base.

     

    My approach would be to have a positive encouragement for socialization rather than socializing out of necessity. For example, the best kind of socialization is the sort where you are discussing which tactic should you use to engage particularly tough content. Socializing because the boat ride takes half an hour and there's nothing better to do is the worst possible way to accomplish socialization.

    And it pains me to read over and over again, that we should have such downtimes or force people to interact over mundane tasks such as trading without an auction house. Adding inconveniences just drives customers away. And yet some posters are still wondering why the "hardcore MMOs" don't get proper funding...

    Usability and accessibility are good for any game. I guarantee no game is adversely affected by being user friendly. It is what every developer should strive for. The people who think they're hardcore for playing games with poor usability are egocentric imbeciles. The right kind of challenge is to make the game easy to learn but hard to master. And the right way to make people socialize is through positive encouragement - not by adding needless inconveniences.

     i agree. put in the tools in the game to encourage it. Theres lots of things that could be done. The voice chat would certainly be a godsend for todays action based mmos but theres lots of other ways as well.

    --npc guilds of various types. Class/race/deity/misc. Many players dont want the drama of leadership of a pc guild. You can foster many different kinds of relationships by improving the number of organizations you can belong to. Like players guilds , give players the chance to improve these organizations on a server wide basis. The more you belong to, the more chances for socialization, the more things you have to do at your disposal, the more likely you will interact with other players. You would start the game already in a number of "guilds" that span the server. Your not forced to participate, but its there if you do and your contribution matters.

    --put pubs in the game and have armorless barfights, dancing contests and drinking contests.

    --randomized treasure hunting quests where whoever finds all the items first wins. You can register a group ( or try by yourself)

    --community building (literally) events do do things on your server like build a bridge, build a teleporter or dig a mine, or build a wall or a castle. Split up hte tasks on these so it encourages people to join small groups to complete the tasks faster using teamwork. Takeguild ownership(pc or npc) to protect these things

    i havent even scratched the surface.

     

     

  • SuraknarSuraknar Montreal, QCPosts: 824Member

    Not everyone is the same, even if we share the same experience. Some people are more outgoing, some less, some are timid some les, some are goal oriented some less. Some more rational some more emotional. We all prioritise tasks within the same experience differently. And this results in varying sociability degrees. And I have simplified much already in the above. The personality of a person is quite complex and depends on many other factors too.

    Then there is the fact that a Themepark game by nature is a goal oriented experience. Some people will prioritise attaining the goals of the experience much higher than standing there speaking to someone else and losing their time.

    While others will care little for the gols of the game because they enjoy attaining them after they had some social interaction.

    Are there more than one or the other, it is not clear, again it depends from individual to individual and how they establish their priorities depending on the gameplay experience. The same person could be very social in a Sandbox game but not social in a Themepark game solelly because one is not goal oriented and the other is. While again some will keep same attitude in both.

    In general however, most people will adjust to the environment and the expectations ofthe experience, it is a human trait to be addaptable in order to accomplish a task and a goal. So most of the time, it has been my experience that in Themepark games the atmosphere around seems to be less social overall because people adjust to it, not because people are anti-social.

    So far in GW2 the people I socialise the most with are fellow guild mates, and my experience with others outside of the Guild has been very very casual, people just say thanks and move on to continue their business. But i do not think they are anti-social nevertheless.

    Cheers.

     

     

    - Duke Suraknar -
    Order of the Silver Star, OSS

    image
    ESKA, Playing MMORPG's since Ultima Online 1997 - Order of the Silver Serpent, Atlantic Shard

  • nariusseldonnariusseldon santa clara, CAPosts: 22,441Member
    Originally posted by bunnyhopper

     

    Forced mechanics is such a misnomer. You choose the game you play and thus you choose to partake in those mechanics. Anyway moving on...

     

    The mechanics you mentioned above are more than practical in this day and age, games which promote persistent communities and social interaction are more than practical this day and age. It's just that it is not practical for every game to have them.

     

    Trying to get the same level of player/community interaction from games dedicated at rush, rush rush, faster pussy cat kill kill, as those experienced in more community orientated games is just not realistic.

     

    If someone wants a large amount of social interaction they choose to play a sandbox game or a game with a great deal of social features and not one which is all about how many mobs I killed in the last 5 minutes.

     

    If someone wants to focus on pure action for their entire game session then they choose to play a themepark game or one with high amounts of instancing, arenas, LFG tools.

     

    The trouble comes when you expect to get the same kind of interaction you find in game A, when you are playing game B.

     

    I play GW2 and from time to time spend time I just chat to or help random players. But if I went into GW2 expecting to find the same level of interaction and community persistency as I did as say when I was playing UO, or EVE or even Darkfall. Then I would be mad.

     

     

    That is very true. You won't see me playing EVE precisely because i found the combat very boring, and i am not interesting in going to meetings for a virtual corporations (heck, i have enough meetings in a REAL corporation).

    And it is not like you cannot find out about the game before you play.

     

     

  • GrumpyMel2GrumpyMel2 Catskills, NYPosts: 1,832Member

    @Beatnik59,

    I'm not sure what you are getting at? I'm not trying to say that you will be bonded to the people you played a game with 40 years after you left the game anymore then you are neccesarly bonded to people you played high-school football with. Neither have really been the case with me.  I'm saying that while you are there, involved in the activity it tends to facilitate bonds significantly more then activities which involve very little interaction with. I'm going to TEND to be more socialy interactive with a person I need to work with on a team in order for our team to be successfull and see every Sunday then a person I happen to randomly pass in a park once inawhile while jogging.

    It's just human nature...we're hard wired that way. It's why organizations do actualy spend alot of time, effort and money on "team building" excersizes. On the surface they may sound like b.s. but statisticaly they yield real measurable results. It doesn't neccesarly mean that you'll end up liking someone that's a real jerk....but MOST people tend to be less of a jerk and try to moderate thier behavior and make compromises if they NEED to work with someone in order to be successfull....they are also more likely to sympathize with that person if they feel like they've shared experiences in common. You can try to argue against it...but you are essentialy arguing against a couple million years of evolution as "herd animals" effect on human instincts and emotions.

     

     

  • dzoni87dzoni87 BelgradePosts: 541Member

      I will always say like i did before. Only fault is yours. If you chose to be deaf-mute in the online world it is your own choice. You cant really blame other people ot game system for being anti-social, if you by yourself is refusing to say anything else but "ty" "ok" "yes" "no".

      I never, ever had this problem in MMORPGs for all these years. I speak and i joke a lot with people around, hell i sometimes even RP and that draws a lot of attention (despite me being told to GTFO many times because of that lol).

      You can also try to do some kind of social (/dance?) or RP activities in Capitols too and you'll see how making online friendships/contacts start to bloom :) 

      It always comes down to player's choice what does he want and chose to do in persistent online world and no game's system can fix that. If one chose to play Single-player game on internet, its his (be it good or bad) choice. My 5c worth of opinion.

    Main MMO at the moment: Guild Wars 2
    Waiting for: Pathfinder Online

  • GrumpyMel2GrumpyMel2 Catskills, NYPosts: 1,832Member

    @Quirhid

    I think the problem here is that some of the things YOU see as "getting in the way of gameplay experience" others see as an "enjoyable part of the game-play experience".

    For example, in skiing is the chairlift ride an incovenience that is "getting in the way" of your ski experience or is it an "important part" of the ski experience that affords you the opportunity to relax, take in the scenery, chat/socialize with others, etc?

    The answer is going to depend on what the individual actualy enjoys and expects to get out of the "ski experience". If it's all about going down the slopes for one person...then the chairlift is a pain...if other things are an important part of that experience for another, then taking away the chairlift REMOVES a large part of the fun for that individual.

  • TwoThreeFourTwoThreeFour Virginia, VAPosts: 2,131Member
    Originally posted by Master10K
    Originally posted by TangentPoint

    Because, OP, what you're talking about is the exception, not the rule. I'm a very social person in MMOs as well - asking questions, cracking jokes, commenting on their names, asking if people want to group up (if we're both in the same area, etc) complimenting people on gear they've acquired, etc. I can say with absolute certainty that for every person who does respond to me, there are at least 10 who don't. They just ignore you.

    You give one specific example of someone being social and you two ending up becoming acquaintances in-game. How many times does that not happen though? Not just in GW2, but in any newer MMO of the the last, say, 3 or 4 years? I'm gonna not really go out on a limb and say that, unless you have a knack for picking out the social folks in a crowd, anti-social behavior has been more common.

    The community itself reinforces this fact. What do you see people say, time and again, when someone says "where's the community?" or "why don't people talk"? They say "Join a social guild". Right? And that isn't even "the right answer" many times because, unless they need help with something, many people won't even talk to their guildmates.

    Final Fantasy XI, Lineage 2, Asheron's Call 2, Anarchy Online (old-school).. even Shadowbane... In all those MMOs, I found the situation to be the inverse of how it is now. People not talking and being social was the exception. People being helpful was the norm. I would be out leveling in XI, on a new job or whatever, and people would run by, throw a full round of buffs on me, cheer me on and run off. Sometimes they'd even start up conversation with me.. "Are you new?", etc. They'd offer help, advice, etc. I had a list a mile long of friends in those games... every one of them was sparked by us being in a group or just from random conversation. XP parties were a stream of pleasant and fun conversation and banter - part of what made long-term xp parties so much fun. The un-social ones were the odd-balls.

    Thanks, in part, to the way MMOs are designed now - where you can be a lone wolf and get by just fine - there simply is very little need to talk to others. In a number of "modern" MMOs I've played, most people don't talk because they're caught up in their own little world, doing their own thing, and they have no interest in talking to anyone else. I've known of people to disable all chat channels except for system messages and PMs in the event a GM was trying to get their attention because they didn't want to see all the chatter. 

    I agree 100% with the idea that MMO gamers are largely anti-social these days. I've seen and experienced it far too many times myself to think or be convinced otherwise at this point. The odd person being super social and friendly just isn't much of a reason to think it's any different in GW2.

    You and me seem to think about things differently. In real life I don't expect every person I meet, on the street, to be super friendly and helpful to me. No quite the opposite. But occasionally you'll come across someone that peeks your interest or maybe are introduced to others. I treat MMORPGs that same, so maybe that's why I can think fondly about those few individuals that I come across, rather than you who has fond memories of those you've been somewhat forced to initially rely on.

    If I ask for directions for where to find this or that street, I expect them to be super friendly and helpful. I haven't been dissappointed so far, in real life that is.

  • VengeSunsoarVengeSunsoar Posts: 5,316Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by GrumpyMel2

    @Quirhid

    I think the problem here is that some of the things YOU see as "getting in the way of gameplay experience" others see as an "enjoyable part of the game-play experience".

    For example, in skiing is the chairlift ride an incovenience that is "getting in the way" of your ski experience or is it an "important part" of the ski experience that affords you the opportunity to relax, take in the scenery, chat/socialize with others, etc?

    The answer is going to depend on what the individual actualy enjoys and expects to get out of the "ski experience". If it's all about going down the slopes for one person...then the chairlift is a pain...if other things are an important part of that experience for another, then taking away the chairlift REMOVES a large part of the fun for that individual.

    I guess what all these arguments ultimately boil down to is, what is your purpose in playing, and is said game, and your particular style meeting that purpose. 

    Using your skiing analogy fo me, at the beginning of the day the purpose is to ski, the chairlift is an inconvenience.  By the end of the day the purpose is still to ski but I need longer breaks, the chairlift is usefull at that point :)

    I think MMO's should be the same way.  Things should be in the game that COULD enhance gameplay, depending on your purpose, but can be taken advantage of by those seeking them. 

    I don't think there should be a reason for 5-10 minutes between fights if people don't want them.  But the developers could put in something that would encourage discussion between players that would be usefull in the next fight...

    Quit worrying about other players in a game and just play.

  • nariusseldonnariusseldon santa clara, CAPosts: 22,441Member
    Originally posted by VengeSunsoar

    Using your skiing analogy fo me, at the beginning of the day the purpose is to ski, the chairlift is an inconvenience.  By the end of the day the purpose is still to ski but I need longer breaks, the chairlift is usefull at that point :)

    I think MMO's should be the same way.  Things should be in the game that COULD enhance gameplay, depending on your purpose, but can be taken advantage of by those seeking them. 

    I don't think there should be a reason for 5-10 minutes between fights if people don't want them.  But the developers could put in something that would encourage discussion between players that would be usefull in the next fight...

    Obviously different people have different purpose.

    My purpose is to have fun combat in a co-op mode, and progression. Anything else is just dead-time, non-fun, and prefered to be optional.

    And before you say it, MMOs are not the ONLY games with that kind of features .. and i play them all. Quite a few MMOs have enough variety of combat mechanics though, just because of the shear number of classes.

     

  • Beatnik59Beatnik59 Chicago, ILPosts: 2,226Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by GrumpyMel2

    @Beatnik59,

    I'm not sure what you are getting at? I'm not trying to say that you will be bonded to the people you played a game with 40 years after you left the game anymore then you are neccesarly bonded to people you played high-school football with. Neither have really been the case with me.  I'm saying that while you are there, involved in the activity it tends to facilitate bonds significantly more then activities which involve very little interaction with. I'm going to TEND to be more socialy interactive with a person I need to work with on a team in order for our team to be successfull and see every Sunday then a person I happen to randomly pass in a park once inawhile while jogging.

    It's just human nature...we're hard wired that way. It's why organizations do actualy spend alot of time, effort and money on "team building" excersizes. On the surface they may sound like b.s. but statisticaly they yield real measurable results. It doesn't neccesarly mean that you'll end up liking someone that's a real jerk....but MOST people tend to be less of a jerk and try to moderate thier behavior and make compromises if they NEED to work with someone in order to be successfull....they are also more likely to sympathize with that person if they feel like they've shared experiences in common. You can try to argue against it...but you are essentialy arguing against a couple million years of evolution as "herd animals" effect on human instincts and emotions.

     

     

    The fact that we are natually social means that we don't need "team building exercises" or "team sports" to be social.  We only need an environment that brings us together.

    But team sports and team building exercises are about something different: they are about breaking down the individual, getting the individuals to give up their personalities, to think of themselves and the others as pieces of something greater: a machine.

    In team sports, you don't think of your teammates in terms of personalities.  You think of them in terms of roles, ie, "this is the center, this is the quarter back," and so on.  And this depersonalization is necessary, because the task at hand is too important to get sentimental about the people next to you.

    See, creating "bonds" is a double-edged sword in "teams."  Because if the interpersonal bonds between the members become too strong, the whole machine breaks down when someone leaves or dies.

    But good teams, good armies, and good workplaces aren't like that.  They are designed in such a way whereby if someone leaves, you can insert another person in there that does the same role and not miss a beat.

     

    __________________________
    "Its sad when people use religion to feel superior, its even worse to see people using a video game to do it."
    --Arcken

    "...when it comes to pimping EVE I have little restraints."
    --Hellmar, CEO of CCP.

    "It's like they took a gun, put it to their nugget sack and pulled the trigger over and over again, each time telling us how great it was that they were shooting themselves in the balls."
    --Exar_Kun on SWG's NGE

  • pkpkpkpkpkpk amherst, MAPosts: 85Member

    Players that complain are anti-social in the sense that they want to play a good game rather a status quo time waster. I can guarantee you that in reality people that want to play good games are less social than people content to play status quo time wasters.

     

    The fact is, interdependency is an accepted quality of a good MMORPG. Perhaps because it is blatantly unrealistic not to have it, perhaps because it is simply good game design.

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