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[Column] WildStar: Is a 'Sandpark' Even Possible?

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Comments

  • CrynswindCrynswind buenos airesPosts: 290Member
    Originally posted by ShakyMo
    Yep it seems like "sandbox" is the latest marketing buzzword following the success of minecraft, terraria, skyrim etc..

    I mean... how the hell is Wildstar a "hybrid" if all i can do is:

    Choose the kill 10 rats quest i want to do

    Instanced PVP and probably OWPVP with no meaning

    Shallow crafting

    ....

    Yeah nice sandpark, rofl.

     

  • TheLizardbonesTheLizardbones Arkham, VAPosts: 10,910Member


    Originally posted by Crynswind
    Originally posted by ShakyMo Yep it seems like "sandbox" is the latest marketing buzzword following the success of minecraft, terraria, skyrim etc..
    I mean... how the hell is Wildstar a "hybrid" if all i can do is:

    Choose the kill 10 rats quest i want to do

    Instanced PVP and probably OWPVP with no meaning

    Shallow crafting

    ....

    Yeah nice sandpark, rofl.

     




    You can build a town.

    I can not remember winning or losing a single debate on the internet.

  • VorthanionVorthanion Laguna Vista, TXPosts: 2,117Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by skydiver12

    One just needs a quick look at   and <(item-based) progression> to realize you have two fundamental groups of players which can't be pleased at the same time.

     

    In your typical Themepark clone you get the "ENDGAME" Raid and instance grinds for progress, more shiny "the best in slot" items. Those players demand the exclusivity of the best items, they feel entitled to have superior gear. In those games everything else means nothing and outside of those instances and Raids (and 5 daily quests) you don't have any progress at all and nothing to do.

     

    Your "sandbox" people want progression too. But they don't want to grind forced fix group size instances and raids. They want to craft the best gear, trade (buy it off others) and go out and find that hidden lair with an open world boss which can drop a piece of shiny armor or do just a bit of everything.

     

     

    Maybe it's just me, but whenever i lately hear someone talk about "Sandpark" all i see is someone claiming "You can grind mobs too for leveling up, you don't need to do all the quests in our Endgame raid tiered themepark".

     

    A few public quests don't make your game Sandpark.

    Involving Raid exclusive drops for crafting items does not make your game Sandpark.

     

    Giving exclusive OR equal progression to players outside your gear treadmill instance/raid cluster does transform your Themepark to a Sandpark. 

     

     

    1. Golden rule, don't limit your player's progression by one exclusive way of obtaining said goal. 

    Example Themepark: Do instance X with daily limit for 5 marks, need 20 for boots. You want boots? - Go do this instance.

    Example Sandpark: Do instance X for marks, gather 100 "x ore" for 5 marks, Craft 20 Boots of X for your faction and get 5 marks, kill 200 for 5 marks. (you can just focus on crafting or do whatever you feel like to get those boots, sell the loot and dropped crafting parts and buy those boots or marks)

    And the most important part about it, don't do it in a "daily quest" shape or meta. It's not sandboxish if i need to do a checklist daily or miss out on progression!

     

    But as you see, if you give progression to everyone and not just the tiered Instance player base the later wont be happy about it. You can do a sandpark, but you can't get both playerbases and if you don't give up the exclusivity of progression you don't even have a sandpark.

     

     

     

     

     

    While I completely agree with your sentiment, good luck getting a modern game that would embrace such a philosophy.  Raiders are a very vocal and hateful minority that still has a deathgrip on the genre.  Sadly, there are too many developers who happen to feel the same way or even worse, used to be raiders themselves before they took up the job of making them.  It's also in part due to development laziness.  It's easier and more cost effective to cater to a single play style than it is to cater to multiples, especially for high end content.  I'm afraid I don't see this trend changing anytime soon and I don't think there are any development houses out there right now who would be up for the challenge.

    image
  • HeretiqueHeretique Posts: 1,101Member Uncommon
    I am not opposed to the idea. Gives players direction while giving them multiple options. I am curious to see how this plays out.

    Originally posted by salsa41
    are you have problem ?

  • DaGafferDaGaffer Carbine Studios Laguna Niguel, CAPosts: 62Member

    Here's an example from the game (I've talked to some of this in a dev blog before but with a bit more detail):

    • "Loftite" is the blue glowing crystals you see in the 6-12 zone (Algoroc) shown in our F&F video.  When you get close to those crystals, there's a low gravity zone - so not only are pieces of the world floating around, but you float around too.
    • Bounding through the crystals can start a spontaneous challenge - collecting a certain amount in a certain time.
    • There's a minefield at the base of the cliff - it throws you into the air and damages you/monsters you lure in.
    • Scientists can study and enhance creatures and things in the environment.  If they scan loftite, the area becomes even more low-gravity, allowing even higher jumps etc (I can't recall off of hand if they buff the individual area or themselves/others nearby, we do both in different spots of the world).
    • Some of the random discoveries in the 6-12 area do things like further increase your jump height (amongst many many other things).
    • There is a quest to kill marauders (the green guys) past the minefield - but there aren't directed quests to scale the cliffs, or interact with the rest of that stuff as a rule.

    So, in a playsession, without really considering it, I scanned loftite as a scientist, found a random jump buffer, was blowing up marauders for my quest by luring them into the minefield, while some of the mines were in the low-gravity area.  

     

    I mis-timed one and tried to jump out of the mine explosion and blew myself via double-jump-height-in-low-gravity-with-scientist-boost literally up to the cloud layer, and splatted down on the very top of the cliff.    Where, by the way, there was some hidden content off the normal quest path - so it all worked out.

     

    In our minds the fun happens when we provide enough density of small (well, some big, but groups of small work too) things in an area that the interactions become interesting.   So there is some direction (the quest that had me killing Marauders) but there are enough individual elements on the playground that there is a chance for some emergent or clever gameplay.

     

    Other areas in the game currently vary in density and interestingness of the dynamic and static elements we've popped in.  Common feedback in playsessions is if an area feels "not dense enough" or "too dense" for content.  We actually want some variation so it a) doesn't feel monotone and b) if an area is too much for you you have some fallback areas that might be more or less dense to match your pace.

     

    We don't promise re-inventing everything in the world, but IMO the right combinations of these are pretty dang compelling for me as a pretty experienced gamer, but we see noobies having fun too when they walk in off the street for a usability test.

     

    We're just making a game we enjoy, honestly, and aren't really stressing about fitting into any particular box.  That may or may not make for easy marketing, but we figure good games sell and if we make something we and our testers (growing as we hit new phases of test) like it'll work out.

    -jg

     
     

    Jeremy Gaffney
    Executive Producer, Carbine Studios (Wildstar Online)

  • DashiDMVDashiDMV Not Saying, QCPosts: 362Member
    Originally posted by DaGaffer

    Here's an example from the game (I've talked to some of this in a dev blog before but with a bit more detail):

    • "Loftite" is the blue glowing crystals you see in the 6-12 zone (Algoroc) shown in our F&F video.  When you get close to those crystals, there's a low gravity zone - so not only are pieces of the world floating around, but you float around too.
    • Bounding through the crystals can start a spontaneous challenge - collecting a certain amount in a certain time.
    • There's a minefield at the base of the cliff - it throws you into the air and damages you/monsters you lure in.
    • Scientists can study and enhance creatures and things in the environment.  If they scan loftite, the area becomes even more low-gravity, allowing even higher jumps etc (I can't recall off of hand if they buff the individual area or themselves/others nearby, we do both in different spots of the world).
    • Some of the random discoveries in the 6-12 area do things like further increase your jump height (amongst many many other things).
    • There is a quest to kill marauders (the green guys) past the minefield - but not to scale the cliffs, interact with the rest of that stuff as a rule.

    So, in a playsession, without really considering it, I scanned loftite as a scientist, found a random jump buffer, was blowing up marauders for my quest by luring them into the minefield, while some of the mines were in the low-gravity area.  

     

    I mis-timed one and tried to jump out of the mine explosion and blew myself via double-jump-height-in-low-gravity-with-scientist-boost literally up to the cloud layer, and splatted down on the very top of the cliff.    Where, by the way, there was some hidden content off the normal quest path - so it all worked out.

     

    In our minds the fun happens when we provide enough density of small (well, some big, but groups of small work too) things in an area that the interactions become interesting.   So there is some direction (the quest that had me killing Marauders) but there are enough individual elements on the playground that there is a chance for some emergent or clever gameplay.

     

    Other areas vary in density and interestingness of the elements we've popped in.  Common feedback in playsessions is if an area feels "not dense enough" or "too dense" for content.

     

    We don't promise re-inventing everything in the world, but IMO the right combinations of these are pretty dang compelling for me as a pretty experienced gamer, but we see noobies having fun too when they walk in off the street for a usability test.

     

    We're just making a game we enjoy, honestly, and aren't really stressing about fitting into any particular box.  That may or may not make for easy marketing, but we figure good games sell and if we make something we and our testers (growing as we hit new phases of test) like it'll work out.

    -jg

     

    When you guys get a free moment, might want to look into what your options are to get out from under NCSoft. Gonna have a lot of people not bother to even look at the game because they don't know how long until the rug is pulled out from under you guys.

    The art style kind of reminded me of a Space Ace MMO.  You have some good ideas and hopefully you can build on them and stay true to the vision you want.

  • hockeyplayrhockeyplayr Middlesex, NJPosts: 604Member Uncommon
    To me I feel like the perfect sand park would be a modern take on runescape. It has optional quests.You can grind . Player driven economy. Various crafting skills. Player housing. Mini games and an option full loot PvP area. They have the concepts right (most of the time).
  • Ice-QueenIce-Queen USA, GAPosts: 2,451Member Uncommon
    It's sounding more like Gw2 type of game with housing. < sighs >

    image

    What happens when you log off your characters????.....
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GFQhfhnjYMk
    Dark Age of Camelot

  • paulythebpaulytheb Wauwatosa, WIPosts: 261Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by DaGaffer

    Here's an example from the game (I've talked to some of this in a dev blog before but with a bit more detail):

    • "Loftite" is the blue glowing crystals you see in the 6-12 zone (Algoroc) shown in our F&F video.  When you get close to those crystals, there's a low gravity zone - so not only are pieces of the world floating around, but you float around too.
    • Bounding through the crystals can start a spontaneous challenge - collecting a certain amount in a certain time.
    • There's a minefield at the base of the cliff - it throws you into the air and damages you/monsters you lure in.
    • Scientists can study and enhance creatures and things in the environment.  If they scan loftite, the area becomes even more low-gravity, allowing even higher jumps etc (I can't recall off of hand if they buff the individual area or themselves/others nearby, we do both in different spots of the world).
    • Some of the random discoveries in the 6-12 area do things like further increase your jump height (amongst many many other things).
    • There is a quest to kill marauders (the green guys) past the minefield - but there aren't directed quests to scale the cliffs, or interact with the rest of that stuff as a rule.

    *Snip*   ( just to shorten this up a bit)

    -jg

     
     

    I hate replying to a Dev, just out of fear that they will not ever post again if criticized. So thank you for the post.

    In that vein I am trying to be nice and say this in the nicest possible way.

    This post does not make me more interested in your game, it makes me less interested. Everything you have mentioned here has been done before. The last thing this genre needs is another game full of the same things as the last 10 years.

    I have followed quite a few of the Wildstar Wednesday news releases and I do have my eye on it , but it IS going to take something new and different for me to buy another MMO box. So far I am not convinced.

    The game does have a style and humor about it that could even be called charming, but the information given so far is couched in a lot of very carefully chosen words or cute but uninformative videos that cause more questions than they answer. I have learned, at an expense, that it is more important to look at what is NOT said.

    So far there has been a lot written on Wildstar, but there is very little actual solid information. There has been a lot that has been NOT said. This fact alone concerns me

    I just wanted to let you know that these games cannot continue to live by selling marketing buzzwords while delivering the same game we have all seen before.People are starting to get wise. Even the kids these days.

    Thank you again for posting and in return I will continue to keep an interested eye on your game. I am just not "SOLD" at this point.

    ( Note to self-Don't say anything bad about Drizzt.)

    An acerbic sense of humor is NOT allowed here.

  • paulythebpaulytheb Wauwatosa, WIPosts: 261Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Crynswind.

     


    You can build a town.

     

     

    Can you elaborate? Could you provide a link? 

    ***************************************************************************

    I found this...  http://www.vg247.com/2012/08/02/wildstar-mmo-nc-softs-trailer-details-house-building-and-more/

     

    But that is just the corny movie from last AUG that shows the plots of dirt being launched into the air and kinda explains housing without giving any real details at all. Except that YES you will be able to have a house and launch it in the sky and build a windmill.

    But they use words like "your land" and "do what you want with it". It sounds interesting, BUT there is a lot unsaid here and a lot to read between the lines.

    As far as I know they have not even said whether the housing would be instanced or not. So if there is some housing information out there that I have missed, I would really like to see it.

    ***************************************************************************

    I also found this ...  http://www.wildstar-online.com/en/blog/wildstar_wednesday_interview_with_a_tester.php

    In the interview the tester talks about not liking the settler path and he mentions building equipment "to augment" towns and outposts, but that could just mean you make thing to sell to NPC vendors in the town and outposts or maybe it could mean you can make a town wide buff item. Or it could mean lots of things.

     

    This is what I am talking about when I say the words they use are very carefully chosen so that they might be interpreted a lot of different ways when they really didn't give any information at all.

    I have not seen anything that says you can build towns.

    ( Note to self-Don't say anything bad about Drizzt.)

    An acerbic sense of humor is NOT allowed here.

  • TorvalTorval Oregon CountryPosts: 7,187Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by DaGaffer

    Here's an example from the game (I've talked to some of this in a dev blog before but with a bit more detail):

    • "Loftite" is the blue glowing crystals you see in the 6-12 zone (Algoroc) shown in our F&F video.  When you get close to those crystals, there's a low gravity zone - so not only are pieces of the world floating around, but you float around too.
    • Bounding through the crystals can start a spontaneous challenge - collecting a certain amount in a certain time.
    • There's a minefield at the base of the cliff - it throws you into the air and damages you/monsters you lure in.
    • Scientists can study and enhance creatures and things in the environment.  If they scan loftite, the area becomes even more low-gravity, allowing even higher jumps etc (I can't recall off of hand if they buff the individual area or themselves/others nearby, we do both in different spots of the world).
    • Some of the random discoveries in the 6-12 area do things like further increase your jump height (amongst many many other things).
    • There is a quest to kill marauders (the green guys) past the minefield - but there aren't directed quests to scale the cliffs, or interact with the rest of that stuff as a rule.

    So, in a playsession, without really considering it, I scanned loftite as a scientist, found a random jump buffer, was blowing up marauders for my quest by luring them into the minefield, while some of the mines were in the low-gravity area.  

     

    I mis-timed one and tried to jump out of the mine explosion and blew myself via double-jump-height-in-low-gravity-with-scientist-boost literally up to the cloud layer, and splatted down on the very top of the cliff.    Where, by the way, there was some hidden content off the normal quest path - so it all worked out.

     

    In our minds the fun happens when we provide enough density of small (well, some big, but groups of small work too) things in an area that the interactions become interesting.   So there is some direction (the quest that had me killing Marauders) but there are enough individual elements on the playground that there is a chance for some emergent or clever gameplay.

     

    Other areas in the game currently vary in density and interestingness of the dynamic and static elements we've popped in.  Common feedback in playsessions is if an area feels "not dense enough" or "too dense" for content.  We actually want some variation so it a) doesn't feel monotone and b) if an area is too much for you you have some fallback areas that might be more or less dense to match your pace.

     

    We don't promise re-inventing everything in the world, but IMO the right combinations of these are pretty dang compelling for me as a pretty experienced gamer, but we see noobies having fun too when they walk in off the street for a usability test.

     

    We're just making a game we enjoy, honestly, and aren't really stressing about fitting into any particular box.  That may or may not make for easy marketing, but we figure good games sell and if we make something we and our testers (growing as we hit new phases of test) like it'll work out.

    -jg

     
     

    See, that all sounds very interesting to me.  I guess it's all how you look at it, but that doesn't sound like every other game out there.  I like the idea of exploration and content discovery being different for different professions.

    I don't mind that you aren't reinventing the wheel so to speak.  I do hope that you help refine existing concepts and put your own spin on it.

    The best line in your post is that you're making the game you want to play.  To me that is key.

    I really hope you all consider offering a subscription free payment model or one with options like TSW or GW2.

  • paulythebpaulytheb Wauwatosa, WIPosts: 261Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Torvaldr
    Originally posted by DaGaffer

    Here's an example from the game (I've talked to some of this in a dev blog before but with a bit more detail):

    • "Loftite" is the blue glowing crystals you see in the 6-12 zone (Algoroc) shown in our F&F video.  (I have seen blue glowing crystals before.)
    •  
    • When you get close to those crystals, there's a low gravity zone - so not only are pieces of the world floating around,(WOW BC + others) but you float around too.(Any superhero game or underwater zone)
    •  
    • Bounding through the crystals can start a spontaneous challenge - collecting a certain amount in a certain time.(Typical DE)
    •  
    • There's a minefield at the base of the cliff - it throws you into the air and damages you/monsters you lure in. (WoW WOTLK+ many others)
    •  
    • Scientists can study and enhance creatures and things in the environment.  If they scan loftite, the area becomes even more low-gravity, allowing even higher jumps etc (I can't recall off of hand if they buff the individual area or themselves/others nearby, we do both in different spots of the world).(This is just a buff)
    •  
    • Some of the random discoveries in the 6-12 area do things like further increase your jump height (amongst many many other things).(this is just another buff)
    •  
    • There is a quest to kill marauders (the green guys) past the minefield - but there aren't directed quests to scale the cliffs, or interact with the rest of that stuff as a rule.(standard MMO kill quest)

    So, in a playsession, without really considering it, I scanned loftite as a scientist, found a random jump buffer, was blowing up marauders for my quest by luring them into the minefield, while some of the mines were in the low-gravity area.  (This guy got 2 jumping buffs and went to go do the kill quest)

     

    I mis-timed one and tried to jump out of the mine explosion and blew myself via double-jump-height-in-low-gravity-with-scientist-boost literally up to the cloud layer, and splatted down on the very top of the cliff.    Where, by the way, there was some hidden content off the normal quest path - so it all worked out. ( Made a mistake and flew to high then went splat- now he did find something- but it is only implied that his buffs had something to do with that -in no way does he say that content couldn't be found by another profession in another way or just by anyone who happens on the path)

     

    In our minds the fun happens when we provide enough density of small (well, some big, but groups of small work too) things in an area that the interactions become interesting.   So there is some direction (the quest that had me killing Marauders) but there are enough individual elements on the playground that there is a chance for some emergent or clever gameplay. ( just mob/event density jibba jabba here- and a breadcrumb quest)

     

    Other areas in the game currently vary in density and interestingness of the dynamic and static elements we've popped in.  Common feedback in playsessions is if an area feels "not dense enough" or "too dense" for content.  We actually want some variation so it a) doesn't feel monotone and b) if an area is too much for you you have some fallback areas that might be more or less dense to match your pace. ( this again is just talk about density and feedback from testers- I can practically see the guy talking about density to a test group )

     

    We don't promise re-inventing everything in the world, ( LOL ) but IMO the right combinations of these (these what? these densities? )are pretty dang compelling for me as a pretty experienced gamer, but we see noobies having fun too when they walk in off the street for a usability test. ( people they pull in off the street think its a fun game)

     

    We're just making a game we enjoy, honestly, and aren't really stressing about fitting into any particular box. (Does it fit into the MMO box?) That may or may not make for easy marketing, (lol)but we figure good games sell and if we make something we and our testers (growing as we hit new phases of test) like it'll work out.    ( it'll all work out  sounds more like faith than business )

    -jg

     
     

    See, that all sounds very interesting to me.  I guess it's all how you look at it, but that doesn't sound like every other game out there.  I like the idea of exploration and content discovery being different for different professions.  (it sounds to me exactly like every other game out there- sorry that is just how I feel - the different professions will probably be a major disappointment and not all that diffferent - its probably gonna be no more than what flavor buff do you like so as to not unbalance the game)

    I don't mind that you aren't reinventing the wheel so to speak.  I do hope that you help refine existing concepts and put your own spin on it.  ( the wheel doesn't need complete reinvention, but MMO's could use a move beyond stone wheels )

    The best line in your post is that you're making the game you want to play.  To me that is key. (Technically he said they were making a game they enjoy, the words "they want to play" did not appear -  I enjoy football, but I sure don't want to play it)

    I really hope you all consider offering a subscription free payment model or one with options like TSW or GW2. (I don't care about this. If the game is anything less than mid level hit, it'll be in the discount bins and going FTP in just a few months. If it is a hit, well then no worries, it all worked out.

     

    My responses in green. Again I am not trying to be mean or nasty. I just feel that some reading between the lines is now REQUIRED after getting burned by these game companies just too many times now.

    I am keeping my eye on this game. I am not mad at them or anything. It's just that the marketing around these games (oh and believe me this thread IS marketing) is getting to be so dishonest that even a clean honest company ( which this one may well be)  has got me lumping them all together because there are so many dirty ones out there. So I gotta watch what they say, what they don't say and what is in between the lines.

    ( Note to self-Don't say anything bad about Drizzt.)

    An acerbic sense of humor is NOT allowed here.

  • smurfmasterxsmurfmasterx denver, COPosts: 9Member
    Would rather just have raid tiers and static loot.  All this handholding crap is getting old.
  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,638Member Uncommon

    Not only is a 'sandpark' possible, but almost every MMO for the past 15-20 years has been one. You'd be hard pressed to find one that isn't a combination of themepark and sandbox elements.  I know Jef at Massively took a liking to that ridiculous term, but it's disappointing to see more site writers start using it.

     

    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

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