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Item Decay is the bullet that must be bitten.

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  • hraethhraeth Hillsboro, ORPosts: 34Member
    Honestly I think you could get around the need for items to degrade by simply slowing the leveling curve.  Item degredation only really becomes important to the economy once everyone is at max level and has the gear that they want.  Once you hit that point the game begins to go stale (at least for me).  While very slow item degradation might be part of the solution I don't believe that it is the one bullet that will slay this beast.  If a game developer wants their game to last beyone the initial three months of "ooh shiney..." then they'll need to slow content consumption and make ealier content feel just as epic and worth enjoying as "end game" content.
  • aRtFuLThinGaRtFuLThinG MelbournePosts: 1,133Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by hraeth
    Honestly I think you could get around the need for items to degrade by simply slowing the leveling curve. 

     I think the entire current concept of levels and classes in most thermepark mmo is a disease. Problem with levels is there will always be max, and max levels will always get bored and have nothing to do. Slowing down only delays that inevitably.

     

    I think games that implement skills system is a much better solution. Give you points, you can choose what skill/skill paths to take, but the only limitation is how many skill points you have. Thus if people got bored with 1 skill tree/profession they can always switch that skill out and put points into another.

  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,633Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Yalexy

    I would actually prefer a mix. Decay over time for all and random destruction of a few items upon death. This guarantees a never sleeping economy, with constant demand for new materials and items.

    Another system of removal is consumption. For example, in ATITD, you don't really have gear, so the items that enter the system are almost all materials to create higher tiers of items. UO, AC and EVE cycle gear into the consumption system through the ability to smelt, salvage or refine existing goods down into a portion of the material that was used to create it. Removal of weapons and gear from the system becomes an incentivized form of gameplay because it returns materials that can then be consumed by the crafters to make other items. Reduction of materials occurs through each step of the process.

     

    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: 13,633Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by hraeth
    Honestly I think you could get around the need for items to degrade by simply slowing the leveling curve.  Item degredation only really becomes important to the economy once everyone is at max level and has the gear that they want.  Once you hit that point the game begins to go stale (at least for me).  While very slow item degradation might be part of the solution I don't believe that it is the one bullet that will slay this beast.  If a game developer wants their game to last beyone the initial three months of "ooh shiney..." then they'll need to slow content consumption and make ealier content feel just as epic and worth enjoying as "end game" content.

    Another way to keep items cycling in and out without the need for items to degrade is to use dynamic loot systems. In UO and AC, players craft, tinker and augment their gear to fit their playstyle. The optimal sword for one of their swordsmen will usually differ from what's optimal for their other one. While many characters in both those games will have a particular weapon or piece of armor they will keep for a long period of time, they regularly cycle through countless other alternate and secondary weapons; removing old weapons from the system through a combination of decay, breakage, loss and refining.

    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

  • sanshi44sanshi44 BrisbanePosts: 1,085Member Uncommon
    Mabinogi had a good system for item durabilitys and stuff, All items have a max durability and when u go to repair an item the blacksmith had a chance to fail reparing an item it would loose 1 max durability so it iinstead of being 12/12 durability it will dow be 11/11 durability. There were ways to reduce the chance of a fail on repairing but u couldnt get rid of it so there was always a small chance to loose some dura on ur item and it will eventualy become to low top use so you will need 2 buy another weapon or armor piece.
  • aRtFuLThinGaRtFuLThinG MelbournePosts: 1,133Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Loktofeit
    UO, AC and EVE cycle gear into the consumption system through the ability to smelt, salvage or refine existing goods down into a portion of the material that was used to create it.

     I agree salvage is another good system.

  • nariusseldonnariusseldon santa clara, CAPosts: 22,441Member
    Originally posted by waynejr2
    Originally posted by nariusseldon
    Originally posted by adam_nox

    Do you want crafting to play an important role in an mmo?

    Don't really care.

    Do you want to be able to give items to your friends?

    I can already do that.

    Do you want your mmo to have a functioning economy?

    Define "functioning". I don't see anything wrong MMO economy today.

     

     Economies function.   I suspect he thinks functioning means he has an idea of a correct economy rather than a wrong economy. 

    Does item decay help the regular player?  we know it's great for the crafters.

    THere is no "correct" economy. No even economist can agree on that. If the game is fun, and clever people can make out in the market, do we care if there is gold inflation (btw, which is "realistic")? or price changes over time (it is not like prices are stable in the real world)?

  • waynejr2waynejr2 West Toluca Lake, CAPosts: 4,469Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by nariusseldon
    Originally posted by waynejr2
    Originally posted by nariusseldon
    Originally posted by adam_nox

    Do you want crafting to play an important role in an mmo?

    Don't really care.

    Do you want to be able to give items to your friends?

    I can already do that.

    Do you want your mmo to have a functioning economy?

    Define "functioning". I don't see anything wrong MMO economy today.

     

     Economies function.   I suspect he thinks functioning means he has an idea of a correct economy rather than a wrong economy. 

    Does item decay help the regular player?  we know it's great for the crafters.

    THere is no "correct" economy. No even economist can agree on that. If the game is fun, and clever people can make out in the market, do we care if there is gold inflation (btw, which is "realistic")? or price changes over time (it is not like prices are stable in the real world)?

     I agree.  For the most part, I think game economies have been good enough. 

    The interesting question to me is should devs design in problems to be solved or just let players do what they will.  For example:

    instead of an world reaching auction house with EMAIL item delivery, what about local markets? 

    What if certain plants only grown in certain areas.  You won't find them in a distant market unless someone brought them from the remote location to the local market.  That could create fun for some players.

    There is a thread on item decay.  Well, what about spoilage for food?  How about farming?  Grow grapes to make wine.  As it ages it can get better in quality.

    What would be the best thing for the game?

  • xpowderxxpowderx Radcliff, KYPosts: 2,131Member Uncommon
    I like this post. It brings back memories. Star Wars Galaxies had all the above in the original post. Probably the gest game I ever played to this day. Of course that was "pre-CU". But another game with that would beawesome. Just make sure to include crafting as a class. :-D You know armorsmith, weaponsmith ect. Would love to see a fantasy based mmorpg with that!
  • jtcgsjtcgs New Port Richey, ILPosts: 1,777Member
    Originally posted by aRtFuLThinG
    Originally posted by jtcgs

    Crafting being worth something does not require item decay, it requires being able to craft more than just armor/weapons but also VANITY ITEMS and/or ITEM SKINS for new looks, and a large amount of consumables...

     I think the most self-perpetuating problem of not having item decay and dynamic resource/crafting quality is, developers have to keep introducing more levels to the classes and more powerful items to obsolete the older ones (so to give newer players a chance to catch up).

    This has been one of the most common problem among themepark mmos. Just look at WoW - players are up to level what? 90 something now? and they got too many abilities that they don't even use, just because they want to balance the dungeon loots and item powers.

    Perm decay is a good way (and a easier way) to prevent the "Dragonball syndrome" - ie. 20million dps ridiculousness once a game has a couple of expansions.

     

     Item decay and item power or dungeon loot are NOT TIED TOGETHER...you can still end up with a game that has an uber leet sword of melt your face off that decays over time forcing you to get yet another one.

    You are basing your arguments on something that isnt connected in any way.

    “I hope we shall crush...in its birth the aristocracy of our moneyed corporations, which dare already to challenge our government to a trial of strength and bid defiance to the laws of our country." ~Thomes Jefferson

  • nariusseldonnariusseldon santa clara, CAPosts: 22,441Member
    Originally posted by waynejr2
     

     I agree.  For the most part, I think game economies have been good enough. 

    The interesting question to me is should devs design in problems to be solved or just let players do what they will.  For example:

    instead of an world reaching auction house with EMAIL item delivery, what about local markets? 

    What if certain plants only grown in certain areas.  You won't find them in a distant market unless someone brought them from the remote location to the local market.  That could create fun for some players.

    There is a thread on item decay.  Well, what about spoilage for food?  How about farming?  Grow grapes to make wine.  As it ages it can get better in quality.

    What would be the best thing for the game?

    It depends on what does the "market" is designed for. For combat centric game, the only purpose is to help progression, and add another dimension to get items.

    That is, to make sure if i get a great item that i cannot use, i can sell it to someone who can, and i get gold to buy what i *can* use.

    If that is the goal, instead of making the economy a big part of the game, we don't need local markets or what-not.

  • aRtFuLThinGaRtFuLThinG MelbournePosts: 1,133Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by jtcgs
    Originally posted by aRtFuLThinG
    Originally posted by jtcgs

    Crafting being worth something does not require item decay, it requires being able to craft more than just armor/weapons but also VANITY ITEMS and/or ITEM SKINS for new looks, and a large amount of consumables...

     I think the most self-perpetuating problem of not having item decay and dynamic resource/crafting quality is, developers have to keep introducing more levels to the classes and more powerful items to obsolete the older ones (so to give newer players a chance to catch up).

    This has been one of the most common problem among themepark mmos. Just look at WoW - players are up to level what? 90 something now? and they got too many abilities that they don't even use, just because they want to balance the dungeon loots and item powers.

    Perm decay is a good way (and a easier way) to prevent the "Dragonball syndrome" - ie. 20million dps ridiculousness once a game has a couple of expansions.

     

     Item decay and item power or dungeon loot are NOT TIED TOGETHER...you can still end up with a game that has an uber leet sword of melt your face off that decays over time forcing you to get yet another one.

    You are basing your arguments on something that isnt connected in any way.

     I think you are totally missing my point. I'm not talking about item power and dungeon loot at all.

    I'm talking about developers having no where to go in their design because they can only make existing players "obsolete" their gears and contents over time by keep upping levels only - and the lack of perm decay perpetuates the problem because people can keep items forever and they have nowhere to go to keep them from increasing they distance in terms of wealth and power versus the late starters.

    See there are powerful weapons in games like pre-NGE SWG as well, but perm decay and dynamics resources forces create a resource sink in terms of both wealth and power (in terms of individual's power) instead of having to create just arbitary sinks. Perm decay was the sink, dynamic resources becomes the chase (instead of farming the same dungeron 200 times for the same gear).

  • ScotScot UKPosts: 5,751Member Uncommon
    I have always thought that having crafted items simply better than any drops apart from raids would be enough to solve ecomomy issues. But if its the only way I have no problem with item decay.
  • XAPKenXAPKen Northwest, INPosts: 4,894Member Uncommon

    One thing that came to mind regarding item decay is that since it builds pressure for gear replacement, the availability of gear should be balanced with how much decay is involved.

     

    Lots of decay should be reflected by having gear that is easy and affordable to achieve.

     

    Lots of decay and difficult gear would just end up being a pain that drives off players.

     


    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
  • evilastroevilastro EdinburghPosts: 4,270Member
    Originally posted by adam_nox 

    1.  In most modern mmo's crafting has lost most it's significance.  Blizzard has in two different games introduced special items that you can craft, but if you don't care about them, then there's no point to crafting except something to do.

    2.  Similarly, we now have the concept of soulbinding, where we cannot freely trade or gift items around.  Even if in practice it doesn't infuriate you, how do we tolerate something that makes so little sense?  Oh yeah...

    3.  Economic inflation.  As more and more gear floods the economy, currencies crumble and gear acquisition and ownership become pointless. 

    1) I don't recall any games where crafting was significant. Maybe SWG? But even then the best items were still drops. EQ2 has played with the significance here and there, but drops / other aquisition methods usually win in the end.

    2) I prefer soulbinding, I don't like seeing powerful items able to be sold, even via inviting players to your group before you loot. Loot should be locked to those that beat the encounter.

    3) Gear aquisition should be merit based, not market based. Market based systems just lead to gold spam and greed. I would rather the game rewarded player accomplishments, rather than credit cards.

  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,633Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by evilastro

    1) I don't recall any games where crafting was significant.

    2) I prefer soulbinding, I don't like seeing powerful items able to be sold, even via inviting players to your group before you loot. Loot should be locked to those that beat the encounter.

    3) Gear aquisition should be merit based, not market based. Market based systems just lead to gold spam and greed. I would rather the game rewarded player accomplishments, rather than credit cards.

    1) Asheron's Call and EVE Online.

    2) Why?

    3) This explains point 2. It seems like you prefer gear grinding for advancement over player economy. Both are valid game designs and there are many games to support both styles. To say that MMOs should be based on only gear acquisition is a bit over the top, though.

    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

  • n00bitn00bit rochester hills, MIPosts: 343Member
    Makes me miss SWG. Nothing like making a name for yourself as a crafter and having people go out of their way to visit your shop for the best gear. Hell, even good mob drops generally ended up just being gear components. Time to log back onto SWGEMU I think.
  • IcewhiteIcewhite Elmhurst, ILPosts: 6,403Member
    Originally posted by Loktofeit

    3) This explains point 2. It seems like you prefer gear grinding for advancement over player economy. Both are valid game designs and there are many games to support both styles. To say that MMOs should be based on only gear acquisition is a bit over the top, though.

    But an appropriate response to the op's assertion that they should be based on crafting. :shrug:

    Run in circles, scream and shout. He could have saved a lot of time, with just posted the standard "Themeparks are Satan's Spawn burn them burrrrrnnn!!"

    This thread's really only even mildly interesting for positing archaic ideas like Decay. :shrug:

    First heard that one proposed around 1979—"the problem with D&D is these items last forever, that +5 magic sword will always be unbalancing everything for as long as it continues to exist". His proposed solution was exhaustible Charges on the magic sword, as I recall.

    Consider the size that the Magic Weapon Factory in WoW just has to be, to keep up with that demand. We're not talking a once-in-a-lifetime masterwork by a senior enchanting wizard, here, we're talking assembly lines churning out tater tots.

    But we regularly dredge up old ideas one at a time and declare them "the saviors of gaming's future". It's jist what we do to kill time, in between gaming sessions (to kill time).

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

  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,633Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Icewhite
    Originally posted by Loktofeit

    3) This explains point 2. It seems like you prefer gear grinding for advancement over player economy. Both are valid game designs and there are many games to support both styles. To say that MMOs should be based on only gear acquisition is a bit over the top, though.

    But an appropriate response to the op's assertion that they should be based on crafting. :shrug:

    Run in circles, scream and shout. He could have saved a lot of time, with just posted the standard "Themeparks are Satan's Spawn burn them burrrrrnnn!!"

    This thread's really only even mildly interesting for positing archaic ideas like Decay. :shrug:

    First heard that one proposed around 1979—"the problem with D&D is these items last forever, that +5 magic sword will always be unbalancing everything for as long as it continues to exist". His proposed solution was exhaustible Charges on the magic sword, as I recall.

    Consider the size that the Magic Weapon Factory in WoW just has to be, to keep up with that demand. We're not talking a once-in-a-lifetime masterwork by a senior enchanting wizard, here, we're talking assembly lines churning out tater tots.

    But we regularly dredge up old ideas one at a time and declare them "the saviors of gaming's future". It's jist what we do to kill time, in between gaming sessions (to kill time).

    For me, the interesting part was seeing how few actually understand the mechanic they are supporting. Decay isn't to take the decaying items out of the system, it's to take cash and materials out of the system.

    And WTF are you doing up at this hour? :)

    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

  • IcewhiteIcewhite Elmhurst, ILPosts: 6,403Member
    Originally posted by Loktofeit

    And WTF are you doing up at this hour? :)

    Er. I dunno. Been waking up at the crap of dawn recently.

    /damn snowplows

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

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

    It's one of the MAJOR reasons why players are finding more tumbleweeds instead of other players in games like SWTOR, AoC, WAR, [...]

    Do your homework and reform that statement.

    ?

    What kind of comment is that?

    It means your take on why aforementioned games failed is wrong. Economy is nowhere near the top faults in those games. Economy is not even a big crowd magnet.

    So do your homework, research the subject, before making a statement like that.

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

  • NeherunNeherun St. MichelPosts: 278Member
    Originally posted by Scot
    I have always thought that having crafted items simply better than any drops apart from raids would be enough to solve ecomomy issues. But if its the only way I have no problem with item decay.

    This leads to other issues. It forces people into crafting. Take Ultima Online, take Mortal online. If you wanted the best gear, you made an alt. To be precise, a crafter alt. And you had to grind all the crafting skills you wanted to maximum to get the gear. And oh lord was that time consuming piece of annoyance.

     

    Not commenting at you anymore Scot. But item decay alone does not suffice. Player's would see items as expendable consumables they can use for a limited amount of time until they are restricted from using them anymore. This does not increase the value of items, but it actually decreases them. So now instead of having a inflated economy, we have extremely deflated economy. 

     

    The most solution that actually works? No currencies! Good example of that is Path of Exile. The game has no currencies, but items players can use as currencies (no one told them to do that, actually): But players have actually made their own economy, and the "orbs" (items that can alter stats of items) have become the standard currency in the game, with well, elusive values. The game is now a massive field of bartering and trading, and it flourishes.

     

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  • haplo602haplo602 Posts: 212Member Uncommon

    There are 2 problems with your idea:

     

    1. Item decay for me means item lowers durability by usage. However the concept of durability/repair is enough. You don't need to permanently lower the maximum durability of an item. Correct me if I misunderstood something.

     

    2. Any gear based progression in the game that's monster drop exclusive cannot work. Everything musy be craftable by players.

     

    A great example of both is EVE Online. There's no item decay (but items have HP) and the economy works great.

  • Loke666Loke666 MalmöPosts: 17,933Member Uncommon

    I think you can do a middle way.

    Say that an item that been repaired a lot breaks faster and faster, so at the end you can still use you special weapon but the first you die it needs to be repaired to be useful.

    But OP is right, crafting games needs better item decay than Wow.

  • ice-vortexice-vortex Xenia, OHPosts: 951Member

    You need some item inflation or the amount of currency coming into the economy will cause major price inflation, placing even basic items out of the price range of most players. The major issue with MMORPGs today is the sheer amount of items obtained. If items with stats were much more rare and sparse, the amount of items in the game wouldn't drastically rise.

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