It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!
Classes specialize performance. A group of mixed classes will assume roles. The ones who can heal, will do so. The ones who can take damage and who need to be up close will do so. The ones who can DPS from ranged will do so.
Even without aggro mechanics (taunts and dumb mobs that lock onto the tank while getting killed) there are still roles, and they tend to parallel: Melee DPS, Ranged DPS, and Heals.
MMOs didn't invent the three. Early game systems established roles. Gamers figured out 3 was minimal.
Ken Fisher - Semi retired old fart Network Administrator, now working in Network Security. I don't Forum PVP. If you feel I've attacked you, it was probably by accident. When I don't understand, I ask. Such is not intended as criticism.
Originally posted by Alberel Before WoW the 'trinity' actually was a quartet that included a crowd control class of some kind. A tank would NOT survive engaging multiple mobs at once and a CC class was essential in ensuring only one target was ever actively engaged in the battle. EQ1 and EQ2 (in the early days at least) both had this, but WoW did away with it and no MMO since has allowed CC to be that useful... So with that said, WoW actually created the modern trinity.
Rogue or mage for CC was quite common in WoW Vanilla and BC. It was later that tanks became god-like eliminating the need for CC.
Originally posted by abottemiller Sorry played D&D long before MMO's. Started in 82 and the trinity was strong in D&D you needed it that way.
I've played D&D for most of my life, and I've played in campaigns and have DMed campaigns that were made up of a single class or only a couple of classes.
Originally posted by waynejr2 http://www.youhaventlived.com/qblog/2010/QBlog190810A.html
There isn't a "right" or "wrong" way to play, if you want to use a screwdriver to put nails into wood, have at it, simply don't complain when the guy next to you with the hammer is doing it much better and easier. - Allein"Graphics are often supplied by Engines that (some) MMORPG's are built in" - Spuffyre
Physical blocking isn't the only way to replace the trinity with something more flexible and interesting, of course; there are many ways to do it. Hit location would be one way (dps the legs and it doesn't move); speed would be another (if it can't catch you, it can't hit you); proximity check would be a third (if you're standing close to someone in armour, they're deemed to be defending you so they take the hits aimed at you). There's lots you can do. I personally like physical blocking, but then I also like area of effect spells to damage friend and foe equally, so I'm probably a bit too traditional for most of today's MMO players.
Such narrow minded views. He is a very oldschool guy but his views don't even touch what technology is capable of NOW.
Hero EvermoreGuild Master of Dragonspine since 1982.Playing Path of Exile and deeply in love with it.
Originally posted by grimal Since this side-discussion seemed to be derailing a thread, I thought I'd create a new one specifically for this. So, the Trinity. Did this start with MMOs or was it created back with pen n paper Dungeons n Dragons some twenty plus years ago? The trinity, as I understand it, is the tank/dps/healer combination used in most modern MMORPGS. For the Trinity to exist, there needs to exist game mechanics of "Aggro" and "Taunt". These, as far as I know, never existed as game mechanics in old pen n paper Dungeons and Dragons rulebooks. So even though you may have used tactics similar, it was not in fact the Trinity. What do you think?
Lets dicern between trinity and holy trinity.
Basicly the premise that goes wrong is that that there needs to be an aggro and a taunt mechanic.
That is what is needed for the speciffic variation of the trinity thats often best called the "holy trinity".
The trinity in it self is the mechanic of Support, Control and Damage.
The "holy trinity" is where controll have become all about agro, tanking and taunting. Support about reactive healing in the form of a whack a mole minigame. And damage about gearing up for max Dps.
That's the reason that its makes sense to use the terms "the trinity" and "the holy trinity" because the holy trinity is just a primitive fixed and limitted version of the trinity. And support includes alot more than reactive healing, controll alot more than taunts and tanking, and damage can have alot more variation involved than just dps.
The trinity itself exsisted way back in games history, and was fleshed clearly out in pen and paper roleplay from the start.
The name "the holy trinity" is fitting because it became a dogma in MMO gaming that it was really the best way to make combat, to a degree where developers lost sight of the basic foundation it was build upon and it looked like it was the only way. And a whole generation of gamers understood it as the only way a MMO gameplay could be. And they basicly equalised the holy trinity with the trinity itself.
Still too day people claim that old MMO games did have non trinity game play because there where more roles. But they fail to realise that not having the fixed "holy trinity" doesn't takes you away from the basic premise of having a trinity setup in form of damage, support and control.
MMO games is trinity games of control, support and damages, and that part is found in old school classic games as well.
read how to create a succesfull mmo before posting about GW2. And read tao of ArenaNet before talking about innovation in GW2
Originally posted by endgame1 There was no "trinity" in D&D while I as growing up. If the dungeon master, (the guy running the campaign), pulled out a module for the group to do, the module would simply say "adventure for characters level 4-7", and any class combination could do it if they played intelligently. You could have three people playing, with all three rolling a thief, or everyone rolling a fighter, or two wizards and a fighter, or whatever, and they would be just fine. Your characters could buy potions of healing, scrolls of healing, bandages, there were certain items that would heal you, you could hire an npc to heal you, wizards had spells like vampiric touch that would heal them, etc.. Never in my history of Dungeons and Dragons was a group unable to do something because it didn't have a dedicated tank or healer. Anyone saying differently, I don't think they really played the game.
Same with EQ.. whether it was AD&D or EQ, there was no trinity so to speak.. There was many times our group kited Mobs or used other means of fighting besides tank and spank with heals.. I miss kiting, and wish MMO's today would go back to class roles of yesterday..
Originally posted by ice-vortex Originally posted by abottemiller Sorry played D&D long before MMO's. Started in 82 and the trinity was strong in D&D you needed it that way.
Seconded. 90% of the games I played in, the DM let people play what they wanted and tailored the combat to that mix. When I DM'd, I did the same thing. There must have been people who played more structured games, but I'm not sure that I ever met them.
If anything, old-school RPG's had a Holy Quadrilateral, not a trinity. Thieves were never considered a damage dealer -- they were needed to scout ahead, disarm traps, pick locks and sometimes pockets. Anyone who rolled a 1st or 2nd edition thief to put a hurtin' on things was an idiot. The class was more Bilbo Baggins than it was Ezio Auditore.
The word "tank" was never even used during old school table-top games -- unless it referred to that thing filled with sharks that you fell into when the thief failed his Detect Traps roll.
Originally posted by AlBQuirky Reading a bit further on, I find that the "trinity discussion" has become the "aggro discussion." I guess, in effect, since no aggro management was used by your DM in D&D games, there was no tanking in your experience. Not every DM used a random roll to see who the mob would hit. Why did fighters wear the best armor they could get? Why did fighters get the higher hit dice per level? After all, isn't a human a human and a half-orc a half-orc? Why the variance depending upon the career one chooses? Those game mechanics tell me it was so they could take the brunt of the attacks. Unlike tanks in MMOs, they also could deal a lot of damage, which also sometimes factored into the monsters choice of target. I realize what you are arguing is the actual management of aggro. In my experience, we had some control over who the monster would hit because of our DM. It was not always a random dice roll to decide who they monsters would attack. I admit that EQ had an actual "taunt" skill, and thus aggro management became the norm and was probably the reason for term "the trinity" to be born, but that does not mean it did not exist beforehand. I recall a battle my little group engaged in against a female troll and her young offspring. Our Fighter attacked the youngster and handily managed the momma troll's aggro. I laugh with the memory of the encounter because my DM was sick of us always asking, "What was the loot?" He said her "treasure" was an old dirty rag and an old gnawed on bone. "It was a treasure to her!" he informed us As far as DPS goes, D&D combat was based on 6 second rounds. You could hit three times and miss 7 times in a turn (1 minute segment) of battle or hit all 10 times in the same turn. You could add up all the highly variable damage done by a player, divide it by the length of the battle and come up with their DPS. It really did not matter, though. The mechanic was there but rather pointless. Kind of like how it is in MMOs, wouldn't you say? AIDS was not "discovered" before the late 19th, early 20th century. Does that mean it did not exist before then? Who knows? Maybe, long ago, deaths credited to the flu or a simple cold or chicken pox was actually AIDS and nobody labeled it as such. After all, AIDS attacks one's immune system and thus makes them susceptible to more common diseases. We will never know how long AIDS has been around. Does that mean that "the trinity" did not exist before it was coined for MMOs? As I said previously, it really depends upon on how someone played D&D. A game mechanic DM would randomly roll for every action taken by a NPC. A roleplaying DM would react to the player's actions.
Tanks wore heavy armor, the best they could, because it did not impede any magical powers or movement based skills like other classes. Mages and rogues and druids could wear heavy armor, but they were penalised for doing so. Instead they got other skills or abilities to handle damage recieved. Warriors used heavy armor because the armor and potions were the only thing stopping them from a nasty death. They didnt have the avoidance or trickery of the rogues, or the magical defence of the sorceror, or the healing and magic of the druid. That is why they wore plate. Not because they were there to get beaten up instead of the squishier target. Clerics could also wear heavy armor and take a hit, but paid for it in damage capacity. They all had different strengths and weaknesses.
It would make no logical sense that someone would avoid attacking the obvious healer and go for the juggernaut instead. Which is why the whole principle of the trinity annoys some people. If your DM made it so everything went for the plate wearer and ignored the others while someone cast heals on the 'tank' every round, that would just be rediculous.
Originally posted by rioban It looks like there's been a passing reference to the origin of the trinity in mmo's but I don't think I saw anyone go into the actual history of what happened. The trinity was one of several mmo terms that began in Everquest. Class balance had been poor at release and SOE took a wrecking ball to the whole thing with the release of the Kunark expansion. I have never seen an in-game community turn on its own as fast or as viciously as what happened in the two months after Kunark was released ( hybrids ... those poor bastards). Part of the fallout of the balance mess SOE had made of the game was that three classes were now considered indispensable for every high level group - warrior, cleric, and enchanter with just three spaces left over for everybody else. The definition of trinity in mmo's have slightly changed over the years since then going from W/C/E (and I guess we will deign to allow a few of you plebians to tag along with us) of Everquest to the modern Tank/Healer/Dps. Not so fun fact: This was the game that also gave birth the the infamous "working as intended".
This is exactly how I remember it. I'm really glad you posted this because I was beining to think I was crazy and just remembered it wrong or it was from a weird dream or something.
The idea was that you needed the trinity to play (warrior cleric chanter) and anything after that was fine. you could probably get the job done with 3 bards after that and it would eventually get done.
The trinity of (tank healer dps) actually makes more sense and seems to be an evolution of the one I remember from EQ. Ahh, the Kunark days.
I really don't recall the trinity ever being mentioned in D&D. Maybe in 4E but I haven't played it much.
Originally posted by Tjed Originally posted by rioban It looks like there's been a passing reference to the origin of the trinity in mmo's but I don't think I saw anyone go into the actual history of what happened. The trinity was one of several mmo terms that began in Everquest. Class balance had been poor at release and SOE took a wrecking ball to the whole thing with the release of the Kunark expansion. I have never seen an in-game community turn on its own as fast or as viciously as what happened in the two months after Kunark was released ( hybrids ... those poor bastards). Part of the fallout of the balance mess SOE had made of the game was that three classes were now considered indispensable for every high level group - warrior, cleric, and enchanter with just three spaces left over for everybody else. The definition of trinity in mmo's have slightly changed over the years since then going from W/C/E (and I guess we will deign to allow a few of you plebians to tag along with us) of Everquest to the modern Tank/Healer/Dps. Not so fun fact: This was the game that also gave birth the the infamous "working as intended".
Everything said here is true but doesn't mean the Trinity sprang into existence here just one form of it and where the term was coined.the Term MMORPG was coinded by Richard Garriot when he was lead dev on UO but that the games before the term was coined were not MMORPGs.
Originally posted by Drakynn Originally posted by Tjed Originally posted by rioban It looks like there's been a passing reference to the origin of the trinity in mmo's but I don't think I saw anyone go into the actual history of what happened. The trinity was one of several mmo terms that began in Everquest. Class balance had been poor at release and SOE took a wrecking ball to the whole thing with the release of the Kunark expansion. I have never seen an in-game community turn on its own as fast or as viciously as what happened in the two months after Kunark was released ( hybrids ... those poor bastards). Part of the fallout of the balance mess SOE had made of the game was that three classes were now considered indispensable for every high level group - warrior, cleric, and enchanter with just three spaces left over for everybody else. The definition of trinity in mmo's have slightly changed over the years since then going from W/C/E (and I guess we will deign to allow a few of you plebians to tag along with us) of Everquest to the modern Tank/Healer/Dps. Not so fun fact: This was the game that also gave birth the the infamous "working as intended".
Oh I totally agree. The term trinity really describes three amazing things all the way back to it's spiritual reference. I think in EQ we used is as a tounge in cheek remark to try to get some attention to the other classes.
It could have started anywhere. Having read one person that remembers it starting the way I did just makes me feel not quite so crazy.
Originally posted by KingJiggly Does it matter?
Does anything discussed in these forums really matter?It's jsut a poitn of discussion which it seems more than a few are willing to partcipate in.
Originally posted by Drakynn Originally posted by KingJiggly Does it matter?
I would rather discuss the future of the trinity. It seems a general consensus that a game to be played with one imagination would have little to no limits on exactly what one wanted to be. I have hardly played dnd, I have been interested in it, but the idea that needing a trinity in a game based on imagination is odd.
When noving on to mmos, this discussion is of little to know help... Especially since it seems the op is here simply to prove her/himself right in some random forum argument. Sure, the answers are interesting but was the entire op post? (Sorry for the rant, it isnt aimed at you Drakynn). The future is where the focus must be. Of course, this site being more of a hardcore crowd, they seem to like to go back to the "glory days", when instead the future should be focused on.
Originally posted by Boreil EQ, one of the first true mmorpgs, didnt have a trinity, it was a 4 way, Healer/tank/damage and support. The trinity was born somewhere else, Mmorpg's always had the 4 way .
The "Holy Trinity" is 100% from EQ and it is Warrior, Cleric, Enchanter. While these werent hard rules for forming a group (but necessity for raids) they were the optimal classes to build a group around (you could argue Bard over enchanter but thats a different argument).
Originally posted by KingJiggly Originally posted by Drakynn Originally posted by KingJiggly Does it matter?
If the OP came off as me trying to just prove a point, I didn't mean it to. I do realize it can sound like that. However, I wanted to create a new thread than continuing to hijack another's.
Back on point, I think it is important to understand where we come from as a genre.
This has been a very interesting year in MMOs. Bioware attempted to bring the RPG back into the genre with story....ANET tried to bring the MASSIVE back with DE....both were successful to a point, but in the end I think each went too far in ditching traditional mechanics. The genre has gotten itself into a rut but it doesn't need to toss the baby out with the bathwater.
I think if we look back to classic RPGs and the first MMORPGs and what they were both were trying to accomplish then we can really start to head in the right direction. For the former, there was no technology and the latter has led us to basically little to no socialization. This overabundant focus on the themepark experience (or the Dungeon Module from PnP days) doesn't really provide the full of what we are looking for. Themeparks are fine, but they only last for so long. As did modules....I mean, I could only go through Keep off The Borderlands so many times before it was just a headache.
Sandbox with themepark rides is a possibility (like SWG) but themepark by itself is just too limiting. Afterall, classic RPGs were all sandbox. You could buy a module if you wanted a clean and ready adventure (DLCs?) but the main game was all freeform with the DM.
And I don't believe the Trinity as we know it now existed back then. It's a by-product of the limitations of the MMO genre. The time between EQ and WoW is where the genre enjoyed huge success...but also moved in the wrong direction. Trinity, themepark, gear treadmill.....these are all ideas born out of this period and the path to MMO freedom is to rid of these. But don't remove them just for removing them....Themepark replaced by sandbox....Trinity replaced by? and Treadmill replaced by? We still need to answer that.
Originally posted by grimal This has been a very interesting year in MMOs. Bioware attempted to bring the RPG back into the genre with story....
Except that story has little to do with RPG, and the story actually hindered this. You arent playing your role, you are playing the role someone determined for you.
You want to bring back the RPG, look to EQ and SWG (among other old school games). These games didnt start with saving the world, they started with just inhabiting the world and making your way in it best you could.
Personally I like the trinity, but I'd like to see it grow. Maybe to the Quintessential Quintet! Tank, Healer, DPS, Buffer, Debuffer. Take away the buffing/debuffing from damage only classes and reinvent hybrids.
Although, if you are looking for a sandbox game with open world pvp, no trinity and a few quests scattered around just to give the world some flavor - there's Age of Wushu which is like playing EVE in China with martial arts. Granted, the learning curve is steep and upon logging in I can see many people do the same they do in EVE and high tail it outta there.
In fact, I'll say that EVE's tutorial is amazing compared to AoW.
It was in EQ that it began as I remember it.
I played DnD for a long time in the 80s and early 90s and there was NEVER a trinity in it then. The only reason 4th Gen is using it is so that it will align more toward the video games.
In truth the trinity is the dumbest thing that ever was put into a game. IMHO the heavy armor wearing characters should be the deadliest characters in one on one face to face combat because a Knight was the deadliest European fighter in that role back in the dark ages, and yes they could get up if they fell off a horse. In fact, they were surprisingly nimble all thinkgs concidered. Now most of us wouldn't be able to perform like they could, but that's because we haven't trained since we were kids on how to fight wearing heavy armor and they were. The rogue should be the deadliest when attacking from behind and/or from shadows or concealment and the ranger/wizards should be the deadliest at ranged combat. One using magic and one using arrows. The idea that the heavier the armor the lower the damage output is plain dumb and a stupid mechanic that does nothing but perpetuate untrue stereotypes. The armor compliments a fighting style and social status not how deadly you are.
In my day of palying DnD we always put the squishies, and yes that's what we called the caster/healer/ranger back then and we had a heavy in the front and rear of our formation. We would of course adjust depending on surroundings and group make up that night, but the idea was simple. If attacked from either the front or rear in a dungeon, the monster would have to fight through a fighter/pally to get to the squishies. Our usual DM was known for trying to get to the healer when we had one, because when he went down, the rest of us were easier to drop and it makes sense if you think about. The Fighters wouldn't taunt, but physically being in the way would prevent the monster from getting to the easy kills. This allowed the ranger and magic users to attack from a protected postion and the healer was able to heal as well.
Originally posted by Greyface I've been playing table-top RPGs since I could hold a pencil, and I don't think any of them had any notion of an aggro mechanic. We had THAC0 and alignment languages, but never anything so stupid as the trinity. In old-school CRPGS, it made sense to put your heavilly armored characters up front, but there was never any special mechanic that pigeon-holed characters like the current trinity does. As far as I know, all that originated with Everquest (I could be wrong -- I was playing UO back then, where everyone was a heavilly-armored mage and we bandaged our own damn selves).
Maybe no aggro mechanics as such, but there definitely was screening tactics. Classic 10 foot wide corridor, 2-3 heavy armor wearers shoulder to shoulder, and behind them the people with spears, bows, casters and healers. We did that 35+ years ago when dwarf and elf were classes not races, just a variant of battlefield tactics.
Originally posted by strangiato2112 Originally posted by Boreil EQ, one of the first true mmorpgs, didnt have a trinity, it was a 4 way, Healer/tank/damage and support. The trinity was born somewhere else, Mmorpg's always had the 4 way .
Or a shaman over an enchanter, or one of the two other plate wearing classes over the warrior- it depended on the content you were doing at the time. If you had a paladin as a tank, maybe a druid would be better than a cleric as healer because of the way buffs stacked.
Basically the Holy Trinity was Warrior, Enchanter, Cleric. The "we need these three things if we are going to do anything as a group" was Tank, Healer, Slower, with crowd control sometimes a fourth requirement. Almost all classes that had spells had some sort of crowd control mechanic (root or mez, or off-tank with a pet, or even snare and run or snare and fear), so often a group of six people would "break" a group of spawn by doing some hard work and then get to the point where they were just single pulling monsters. At that point the group could swap in anyone, and just farm the 15 spawns they were killing. Often two or three groups would share their casters. One enchanter would go around and buff the other group, and then the 2nd group's shaman would return the favor, and when someone died, the only cleric in the area would have the body dragged over to him for a ressurection. This is a mechanic that WoW left behind. WoW and it's clones made gaining experience a solo effort. WIth the orginal Everquest, some classes couldn't solo at all, and only a few could solo competently.
The Tank/DPS/Slower/Healer/Crowdcontrol mechanic make a lot more sense when the monsters are as powerful as they were in Everquest. Regular exp mobs were like "Elite" mobs in WoW. Imagine trying to solo elite instances in WoW at the level you are eligible to receive quests - that was what all the monsters in EQ were like. They hit hard, they hit fast, they cast complete heal on themselves, they gated and came back with 20 friends. The game was hard. Making groups with the best healer, the toughest tank and the best crowd control class (who also increased the group DPS with buffs), was a reaction to the difficulty of the content.
EDIT: Good points, grimfall. The enchanter/bard mez and need for CC disproves the trinity theory all by itself.
There was mention of the original AoL Neverwinter Nights in the OP.
I was an original Gold Box fanatic.
There was no 'Taunt' ability in the Gold Box series or NWN on AoL, because it wasn't in DnD.
There was the idea that Wizards were low armored and needed armored characters to protect them. This could be easily accomplished in PnP games through description, and even in the original NWN through tactical placement/movement.
In my estimation, when EQ came along, there wasn't an easy way for well armored characters to keep the MoBs off the spell casters so the taunt mechanic was invented to assist.
but even then...
Anyone who played EQ knows that taunt wasn't a guarantee. it didn't always 'hit.'
In my opinion, anyone who says the trinity exsisted in the 1970's, 1980's or at least before 1998 is imposing modern day mechanics where they don't belong. Go back and read the blue books. It was about living in your own story, roleplaying and being given the mechanics/tools to do so.
It's understandable that people make the connection though. We often try to impose order where there is none.
Good thread. Good read.
EDIT: limited experience with Meridian 59, so someone else will have to weigh in there.
_____________________________"Ad eundum quo nemo ante iit"
Originally posted by CyclopsSlayer Maybe no aggro mechanics as such, but there definitely was screening tactics. Classic 10 foot wide corridor, 2-3 heavy armor wearers shoulder to shoulder, and behind them the people with spears, bows, casters and healers. We did that 35+ years ago when dwarf and elf were classes not races, just a variant of battlefield tactics.
Not arguing any of those points -- a lot of people did what you're describing. But a guy in armor up front does not a trinity make.
The reason this thread is 8 pages long is that no one has bothered to define the "Holy Trinity." If there aren't any objections, let me take a stab:
Tank /taNGk/ (noun): a heavilly armored character who hits like 9 year-old girl with rickets, but somehow manages to compel violence against themself through some variant of the Jedi Mind Trick.
Damage /deePEEess/ (noun): a character who can rain death upon selected targets, but somehow manages not to be noticed by the same. Should those enemies so much as glower in their direction, they explode.
Healer /HEELehr/ (noun): a character who sits around waiting for little green bars to shrink, so they can waggle their fingers and re-embiggen them; serves a secondary function as the target of scorn should either the DPS or Tank die; will also explode if glowered upon.
Compare that to D&D:
As you can see, this is not the same thing as the "Holy Trinity" found in modern MMO games. Yes, there are three items on each list, but they aren't the same three things. I had a great uncle with three nipples, and they weren't an early form of the "Holy Trinity" either.
I hope this clears everything up.