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My epiphany on the irony of solo-favored mmos.

adam_noxadam_nox hays, KSPosts: 2,036Member Uncommon

Ok ok, excluding the irony of playing solo in a game that wouldn't exist except for the premise of sharing the world with countless others...

 

It occured to me that optional grouping, where solo play is either as rewarding, or as NET rewarding (minus hassle of putting together a group, etc), doesn't work because people who choose to slow thier own progression or go to great lengths to group up are usually immature, incompentant, or ill-mannered. 

 

Not saying those self-interested enough to play solo when it is most profitable are perfect, but this is the irony I see when I play mmos today.  For the philosophically minded, consider ethical egoism.  People who care about themselves are probably more polite to others that they may depend on later than those who care about nothing at all, or perhaps just about having some immediate kicks. 

 

I guess the point of this revelation is that it's not so simple to say 'just group up anyways', when what you'll get is a very unfun grouping experience in a game that doesn't promote or pressure team efforts. 

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Comments

  • ScarfeScarfe londonPosts: 281Member

    Someone got a thesaurus for Christmas.

    I agree that in solo-orientated games it is a little too simple to say, just group anyway, create your own social aspect to the game.  It goes against the concept of an mmo, and frankly is a waste of time and effort when you can just solo the content rather than take the risk of a pug. 

    The only time I seem to group these days is if I am rushing or getting rushed. 

    currently playing: DDO, AOC, WoT, P101

  • Johnie-MarzJohnie-Marz La Puente, CAPosts: 865Member

    In the real world MMO gamers enjoy sitting alone in their rooms at their computers, playing their games. (Not that gamers don't go out with friends and have fun when they chose to)

    Is it really that surprising when they enter a virtual world they enjoy doing quests and other activities alone. Then, when they chose to, they group when they want to be social. (They just don't want to be forced to group)

     

  • QuirhidQuirhid TamperePosts: 5,969Member Common

    The modern MMOs are "solo friendly" meaning they allow you to go solo,but it is rarely the most efficient form of advancement. Outside of few required quests & missions, or few tasty rewards, grouping is always the most effective form of engaging content.

    Developers have only met a demand. That is all.

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

  • EnerzealEnerzeal WarringtonPosts: 326Member
    Originally posted by Quirhid

    The modern MMOs are "solo friendly" meaning they allow you to go solo,but it is rarely the most efficient form of advancement. Outside of few required quests & missions, or few tasty rewards, grouping is always the most effective form of engaging content.

    Developers have only met a demand. That is all.

    In my opinion everything is now catered to the solo gamer. In World of Warcraft the most played themepark game out there, at no point do I need another persons help. I'll queue solo for instances, and I'll grind solo through quests.

    I do not have to wait for anyone to go take a shit, I don't have to wait for someone to eat, get home from work, nothing.

    I will level faster than people in groups, just a fact, unless they are using some unintended technique such as aoe grinding massive monster groups.

  • WolfenprideWolfenpride San''doria, WIPosts: 3,988Member
    Originally posted by Quirhid

    The modern MMOs are "solo friendly" meaning they allow you to go solo,but it is rarely the most efficient form of advancement. Outside of few required quests & missions, or few tasty rewards, grouping is always the most effective form of engaging content.

    Developers have only met a demand. That is all.

    Soloing in a game like Lotro/Rift/STO I found was much more rewarding than grouping. You don't have to split drops or experience or ensure everyone is working on the same quest stage. When it comes to dealing with solo content, I don't see the incenitive to get a group for them.

    Ideally your idea would be how it works, but in most games I find that isn't the case.

     

    edit: I did try playing through lotro and EQ2  in a permagroup with some friends who loved those game last year. I ended up leveling another character solo when they weren't in the mood to play, and the end result was my solo character having much more money, better gear, and more traits/AA than the one I used in our group in both games, despite being several levels lower.

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

    The modern MMOs are "solo friendly" meaning they allow you to go solo,but it is rarely the most efficient form of advancement. Outside of few required quests & missions, or few tasty rewards, grouping is always the most effective form of engaging content.

    Developers have only met a demand. That is all.

    Soloing in a game like Lotro/Rift/STO I found was much more rewarding than grouping. You don't have to split drops or experience or ensure everyone is working on the same quest stage. When it comes to dealing with solo content, I don't see the incenitive to get a group for them.

    Ideally your idea would be how it works, but in most games I find that isn't the case.

     

    edit: I did try playing through lotro and EQ2  in a permagroup with some friends who loved those game last year. I ended up leveling another character solo when they weren't in the mood to play, and the end result was my solo character having much more money, better gear, and more traits/AA than the one I used in our group in both games, despite being several levels lower.

    Much what you mentioned comes from poor content/quest design - not grouping vs. soloing. Arenanet adressed those issues in GW2, although some people still weren't happy. We have masochists in our midst, I tell you.

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

  • Cephus404Cephus404 Redlands, CAPosts: 3,675Member
    Originally posted by Enerzeal

    In my opinion everything is now catered to the solo gamer. In World of Warcraft the most played themepark game out there, at no point do I need another persons help. I'll queue solo for instances, and I'll grind solo through quests.

    I do not have to wait for anyone to go take a shit, I don't have to wait for someone to eat, get home from work, nothing.

    That's essentially why most people solo, it's better than all the frustration of a group.  What's wrong with that?  I have limited time to play anyhow, why should I sit around and wait for other people when I could be playing the game?

    I will level faster than people in groups, just a fact, unless they are using some unintended technique such as aoe grinding massive monster groups.

    That's something I've never seen, however.  Given characters of the same level, a group will always level faster because they can take on harder content that would stomp a soloer into the dust.  The only reason a soloer might level faster is if the group is sitting around waiting for someone to come back from AFK or if they're trying to do low-level content, which is just stupid.

    Played: UO, EQ, WoW, DDO, SWG, AO, CoH, EvE, TR, AoC, GW, GA, Aion, Allods, lots more
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  • NovusodNovusod Lakewood, NJPosts: 892Member Uncommon

     

     

     

     

    Really wish some game would try mandatory  Forced grouping again. It has been a decade since a game really forced players to group up. No solo content at all so people like the OP don't even bother setting foot in this game.

  • Cephus404Cephus404 Redlands, CAPosts: 3,675Member
    Originally posted by Novusod

    Really wish some game would try mandatory  Forced grouping again. It has been a decade since a game really forced players to group up. No solo content at all so people like the OP don't even bother setting foot in this game.

    Sure, if you wan to see a game fail even faster than SWTOR, go for it.

    Played: UO, EQ, WoW, DDO, SWG, AO, CoH, EvE, TR, AoC, GW, GA, Aion, Allods, lots more
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  • XAPKenXAPKen Northwest, INPosts: 4,936Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by adam_nox

     

    ... doesn't work because people who choose to slow thier own progression or go to great lengths to group up are usually immature, incompentant, or ill-mannered. 

     

    I don't see this part.  I don't think that groupers are more toxic than soloers.  In my opinion it's just that the toxicity is more easily noticed when grouping.

     

    Although I'm a die-hard fan of grouping, I do admit that treating an MMORPG as a single player game is one method of enjoying a game with a toxic community.  The other being finding a good guild and treating the game as a coop-RPG rather than massively multiplayer.

     


    Ken Fisher - Semi retired old fart Network Administrator, now turned Amateur Game Developer.  I don't Forum PVP.  If you feel I've attacked you, it was probably by accident.  Realm Lords 2 on MMORPG.com
  • Cephus404Cephus404 Redlands, CAPosts: 3,675Member
    Originally posted by XAPGames
    Originally posted by adam_nox

     

    ... doesn't work because people who choose to slow thier own progression or go to great lengths to group up are usually immature, incompentant, or ill-mannered. 

     

    I don't see this part.  I don't think that groupers are more toxic than soloers.  In my opinion it's just that the toxicity is more easily noticed when grouping.

     

    Although I'm a die-hard fan of grouping, I do admit that treating an MMORPG as a single player game is one method of enjoying a game with a toxic community.  The other being finding a good guild and treating the game as a coop-RPG rather than massively multiplayer.

     

    While I agree that it isn't just the groupers who are asshats, it's everyone playing most of these games, the fact that there are so many asshats in groups has driven a lot of us away from wanting to group.  It doesn't really matter if the soloers are jerks, you don't have to play with them.  I don't know that there are many  good guilds out there, simply because a big reason the communities have gotten so bad is because all anyone wants to do is win at all costs.  That attracts, or creates, a certain type of person that I personally don't want to be around.  It makes greedy, sneaky, rude, obnoxious people who are only really concerned with their own advancement, usually as fast as they can possibly get it, and whoever they have to step on along the way is just fine.

    That's why most game communities suck these days, it's all about the mad rush to end-game.

    Played: UO, EQ, WoW, DDO, SWG, AO, CoH, EvE, TR, AoC, GW, GA, Aion, Allods, lots more
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  • XAPKenXAPKen Northwest, INPosts: 4,936Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Cephus404
     

    That's why most game communities suck these days, it's all about the mad rush to end-game.

     

    Ditto.  I agree.  I think it's part of the skinner box parallel.  I'd love to see an experiment where rats are addicted to the skinner box in solo, then forced into a multi-user skinner box where there are 6 rats but only 2 reward switches.  I wonder if they would exhibit anti-social behavior.

     


    Ken Fisher - Semi retired old fart Network Administrator, now turned Amateur Game Developer.  I don't Forum PVP.  If you feel I've attacked you, it was probably by accident.  Realm Lords 2 on MMORPG.com
  • AlberelAlberel LondonPosts: 1,121Member
    Originally posted by adam_nox

    It occured to me that optional grouping, where solo play is either as rewarding, or as NET rewarding (minus hassle of putting together a group, etc), doesn't work because people who choose to slow thier own progression or go to great lengths to group up are usually immature, incompentant, or ill-mannered. 

    This doesn't make much sense to me... the ones who voluntarily group tend to be the better members of the community from my experience. It's the ones who hate grouping but are forced to who tend to be the most immature or incompetent.

    When a game has a mix of solo and group content you tend to find the soloers who don't want to be in groups are the real problem. In a game with nothing but 100% group content you don't get this problem as those soloers don't touch the game in the first place. Go see FFXI pre-Abyssea for a good example; groups in that game were exceptionally positive experiences, and if someone was excessively negative or did something to deliberately annoy they simply wouldn't get any groups again as the community would blacklist them.

    The irony of solo-oriented MMOs is that they invite one type of player with solo content during the levelling process whilst endgame almost universally is group content that doesn't appeal to those soloers. This problem would be fixed by making grouping so attractive at low level that players get used to it before the cap... it doesn't have to be 100% forced grouping, just make it so rewarding that soloing is seen as a last resort if you can't find a group.

  • Cephus404Cephus404 Redlands, CAPosts: 3,675Member
    Originally posted by Alberel

    This doesn't make much sense to me... the ones who voluntarily group tend to be the better members of the community from my experience. It's the ones who hate grouping but are forced to who tend to be the most immature or incompetent.

    Not remotely true.  Now granted, I'd argue that 95% of everyone in most MMOs are immature and incompetent, but in my experience at least, most PUG groupers are only in it to use other people for their own advancement.  They want to throw other people in front to take the hits first, throw more firepower at more powerful targets, get free healing, so they can get better drops and more XP.  They don't give a damn about anyone else in the group, they're just cannon fodder that they'll never see again.

    When a game has a mix of solo and group content you tend to find the soloers who don't want to be in groups are the real problem. In a game with nothing but 100% group content you don't get this problem as those soloers don't touch the game in the first place. Go see FFXI pre-Abyssea for a good example; groups in that game were exceptionally positive experiences, and if someone was excessively negative or did something to deliberately annoy they simply wouldn't get any groups again as the community would blacklist them.

    How is that a problem?  A soloer who doesn't want to be in a group with you affects you how, exactly?

    The irony of solo-oriented MMOs is that they invite one type of player with solo content during the levelling process whilst endgame almost universally is group content that doesn't appeal to those soloers. This problem would be fixed by making grouping so attractive at low level that players get used to it before the cap... it doesn't have to be 100% forced grouping, just make it so rewarding that soloing is seen as a last resort if you can't find a group.

    Lots of us don't play end-game content at all.  For me, once I hit level-cap, I retire the character.  I don't raid.  I don't PvP.  Game is over.  Either re-roll a new character or go find a different game.

    Do try again.

    Played: UO, EQ, WoW, DDO, SWG, AO, CoH, EvE, TR, AoC, GW, GA, Aion, Allods, lots more
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  • KingKaioKingKaio Lufkin, TXPosts: 48Member
    I think in any MMO where solo gameplay is encouraged you are going to get a lot of very a-holeish people. There is nothing stopping them from being a-holes. There's no real consequence.

    In Final Fantasy XI if you were the kind of person that went out of your way to be a jerk, then you would most likely be shunned. You wouldn't progress very far in-game because no one wants "that guy" in the group.

    image

  • FangrimFangrim PrestonPosts: 589Member Common
    Originally posted by Alberel
    Originally posted by adam_nox

    It occured to me that optional grouping, where solo play is either as rewarding, or as NET rewarding (minus hassle of putting together a group, etc), doesn't work because people who choose to slow thier own progression or go to great lengths to group up are usually immature, incompentant, or ill-mannered. 

    This doesn't make much sense to me... the ones who voluntarily group tend to be the better members of the community from my experience. It's the ones who hate grouping but are forced to who tend to be the most immature or incompetent.

    When a game has a mix of solo and group content you tend to find the soloers who don't want to be in groups are the real problem. In a game with nothing but 100% group content you don't get this problem as those soloers don't touch the game in the first place. Go see FFXI pre-Abyssea for a good example; groups in that game were exceptionally positive experiences, and if someone was excessively negative or did something to deliberately annoy they simply wouldn't get any groups again as the community would blacklist them.

    The irony of solo-oriented MMOs is that they invite one type of player with solo content during the levelling process whilst endgame almost universally is group content that doesn't appeal to those soloers. This problem would be fixed by making grouping so attractive at low level that players get used to it before the cap... it doesn't have to be 100% forced grouping, just make it so rewarding that soloing is seen as a last resort if you can't find a group.

    Well said my friend,100% agree with you :).

    As for the comment by someone else about Arenanet 'fixing' this grouping issue I totally disagree,how does a game where you never  need to socialise,where you walk around a bit,make some pies and armored underpants and 'BAMF' you are level 80 deal with this?

    Gnome Wankers two.After the events of 18/07/2015 i fucking hate anyone that has anything to do with skyforge
    image

  • AlberelAlberel LondonPosts: 1,121Member
    Originally posted by Cephus404
    Originally posted by Alberel

    This doesn't make much sense to me... the ones who voluntarily group tend to be the better members of the community from my experience. It's the ones who hate grouping but are forced to who tend to be the most immature or incompetent.

    Not remotely true.  Now granted, I'd argue that 95% of everyone in most MMOs are immature and incompetent, but in my experience at least, most PUG groupers are only in it to use other people for their own advancement.  They want to throw other people in front to take the hits first, throw more firepower at more powerful targets, get free healing, so they can get better drops and more XP.  They don't give a damn about anyone else in the group, they're just cannon fodder that they'll never see again.

    What do players in PUGs have to do with the difference between players who voluntarily group and players who are forced to group? Most people in PUGs only do it because they are forced to do so to achieve certain goals; beyond those ends they solo exclusively. This means they fall into the first group I was talking about, which means what I said was correct. The players who group voluntarily tend to do so in isolated groups with the same people on a regular basis, because they're well aware that PUGs are almost exclusively formed of soloers with no desire to group, but feel forced to do so to complete certain content.

    When a game has a mix of solo and group content you tend to find the soloers who don't want to be in groups are the real problem. In a game with nothing but 100% group content you don't get this problem as those soloers don't touch the game in the first place. Go see FFXI pre-Abyssea for a good example; groups in that game were exceptionally positive experiences, and if someone was excessively negative or did something to deliberately annoy they simply wouldn't get any groups again as the community would blacklist them.

    How is that a problem?  A soloer who doesn't want to be in a group with you affects you how, exactly?

    The OP was attributing immature behaviour to players who choose to group voluntarily. I was explaining that it is the opposite; it is usually soloers who feel forced to group for some reason that are a detriment to the experience of all in that group as they are usually excessively negative and just use the group as a means to an end. I thought this was obvious...

    The irony of solo-oriented MMOs is that they invite one type of player with solo content during the levelling process whilst endgame almost universally is group content that doesn't appeal to those soloers. This problem would be fixed by making grouping so attractive at low level that players get used to it before the cap... it doesn't have to be 100% forced grouping, just make it so rewarding that soloing is seen as a last resort if you can't find a group.

    Lots of us don't play end-game content at all.  For me, once I hit level-cap, I retire the character.  I don't raid.  I don't PvP.  Game is over.  Either re-roll a new character or go find a different game.

    Good for you, what does that have to do with the discussion in this thread? We're talking about behaviour of people in groups here... if you never group then how on earth could you have an input to this discussion?

    Do try again.

    Why are you attacking me with snide remarks like that? It almost makes you sound like one of the immature players you're complaining about...

  • Caliburn101Caliburn101 LondonPosts: 636Member

    This could all be elegantly sidestepped with an intelligent advancement system. 

    Have a group, solo and crafting path to a maxed out character - including endgame content and allow drops to be mixed and matched so for instance a solo dungeon drop of top tier kit can b e worn with a dungeon or raid piece next to a craftable and they all look and operate as a set gained by focussing on just one way of getting them.

    Adjust the time necessary to acheive these things to compensate for player bias so there is a feeling that regardless of how you get the gear and/or advancement you have had to earn it, and hey presto - a game about choice and variety which doesn't have these problems.

    You'd think it was quantum physics the way such an obvious solution has been avoided...

  • Loke666Loke666 MalmöPosts: 18,045Member Uncommon

    Forcing anything is bad. Rewarding people for social interaction on the other hand is good.

    It is annoying that soloers today often levels faster than when you group, a lot of people will just play the way that rewards best which mean if soloing is the best way to level up it will be harder for the rest of us to find groups and we will suddenly face people with no clue about group dynamics at the levelcap instead of early in the game.

    Let people who do group stuff level faster again, together with let it be worth our while to once again do dungeons gear wise before the endgame.

    Lately have the small boost of none endgame dungeon gear just not been worth the trouble getting it. The sologear today are very close and you level past none endgame gear so fast that the only reason getting it is for the skin.

  • maplestonemaplestone Ottawa, ONPosts: 3,099Member
    Originally posted by Loke666

    Forcing anything is bad. Rewarding people for social interaction on the other hand is good.

    Rewarding X == Punishing !X

    It's unfortunate, but that's the perception that always seems to emerge.

  • MalcanisMalcanis LondonPosts: 3,191Member
    Originally posted by Enerzeal
    Originally posted by Quirhid

    The modern MMOs are "solo friendly" meaning they allow you to go solo,but it is rarely the most efficient form of advancement. Outside of few required quests & missions, or few tasty rewards, grouping is always the most effective form of engaging content.

    Developers have only met a demand. That is all.

    In my opinion everything is now catered to the solo gamer. In World of Warcraft the most played themepark game out there, at no point do I need another persons help. I'll queue solo for instances, and I'll grind solo through quests.

    I do not have to wait for anyone to go take a shit, I don't have to wait for someone to eat, get home from work, nothing.

    I will level faster than people in groups, just a fact, unless they are using some unintended technique such as aoe grinding massive monster groups.

    One thing I like about EVE is that it makes very few concessions to the solo gamer. If you want to be the lone wolf type, then you are free to do so, but you'd better be aware that everyone else is free to group up and overpower you if they can.

    Give me liberty or give me lasers

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

    The modern MMOs are "solo friendly" meaning they allow you to go solo,but it is rarely the most efficient form of advancement. Outside of few required quests & missions, or few tasty rewards, grouping is always the most effective form of engaging content.

    Developers have only met a demand. That is all.

    In my opinion everything is now catered to the solo gamer. In World of Warcraft the most played themepark game out there, at no point do I need another persons help. I'll queue solo for instances, and I'll grind solo through quests.

    I do not have to wait for anyone to go take a shit, I don't have to wait for someone to eat, get home from work, nothing.

    I will level faster than people in groups, just a fact, unless they are using some unintended technique such as aoe grinding massive monster groups.

    But you can't go into the instanced without 4 other playres playing with you. That is not solo.

    Do you want to wait for people to eat their lunch? It is a good thing that is out of the picture.

  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,676Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Alberel
    Originally posted by adam_nox

    It occured to me that optional grouping, where solo play is either as rewarding, or as NET rewarding (minus hassle of putting together a group, etc), doesn't work because people who choose to slow thier own progression or go to great lengths to group up are usually immature, incompentant, or ill-mannered. 

    This doesn't make much sense to me... the ones who voluntarily group tend to be the better members of the community from my experience. It's the ones who hate grouping but are forced to who tend to be the most immature or incompetent.

    Makes sense.

    When banding together is voluntary, people are joining up with others because they want to do the content with others. This is radically different from when people are banding together because other avenues to achieve a particular goal are too difficult or non-existent. In such a scenario, people are joining up with others because they want the reward of the content (loot, xp, rep, etc). In the first scenario, the person's goal and interest is the group unit. In the second scenario, the person's goal and interest is the reward, with the group unit simply being a means to that end.

     

    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

  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,676Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Malcanis

    One thing I like about EVE is that it makes very few concessions to the solo gamer. If you want to be the lone wolf type, then you are free to do so, but you'd better be aware that everyone else is free to group up and overpower you if they can.

    Another important aspect of that is that people can contribute individually to major group goals. A mission runner doesn't have to be tethered to a group to have their missions return cash to the corp coffers. A miner doesn't have to be in a group to contribute ore to the corps manufacturing efforts. A lot of the EVE gameplay is centered around collaborative efforts that allow players to complete tasks alone or together to further the group's ends. We also see a lot of that in EQ2 with the way player actions, alone or in a group, can contribute to the overall guild's goals. One step further and we have GW2, where completing goals with fellow guild members increases the returns for the guild unit, incentivizing (not forcing) the players within the guild to band together when doing activities in the game.

     

    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

  • botrytisbotrytis In Flux, MIPosts: 2,567Member

    You can't force people to be social, period. No amount of forcing people to group together will force people to be social. I will use GW1 as an example. When the game forst came out, there were henchman you could use but the build they had were not that great and it forced people to play together - not really social at all but, people did end up being more social and this was how many of the guilds were formed in the game. When the 3rd chapter, Nightfall came out, Heros were introduced (which had builds you provide for them) this totally took out grouping because you could use all heros/henchman and get through. Yes, your guild still could make it social but you ended up meeting less people.

     

    My 2nd example is Rift, if you want end game armor, you have to do 20 man dungeons, and this forced people to group. There was no social interaction at all - use this build with this equipment and listen for orders. I was social with some of my guild members but most did not want to do that at all.

     

    People are solo-oriented. Games can force you to group, it doesn't mean people want to be social.

    image

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