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A long time MMO player's lament

_redruM__redruM_ Winnipeg, MBPosts: 34Member

Hi, folks.

 

I started playing MMOs about 12 years ago. In the beginning, they were great. I was absolutely thrilled by my first MMO experience. In recent years, however, I've found myself struggling to maintain interest in anything. While it's true that I could just be burned out on MMOs, there are specific things I've noticed that have really started to annoy me regarding the design of recent games. I will detail some of them for you here, in the hopes that some may share my feelings and perhaps point me towards anything more desireable, as I am rather out of the loop regarding newer MMOs in development.

This thread is, in part, a looking for game thread. I posted it in general because of the rant involved, and the potential discussion it could lead to.

Please be advised there is a TL;DR section down toward the end, for those who don't have the time now/can't be bothered to read the whole thing.

 

Story/Quests

First, the quests. Lineage 2 was my first real MMO and I fell in love with it right away. I remember being at a low level, exploring around the Elven starting zone, and deciding to check out a nearby dungeon. I slowly made my way a few rooms in, then came across another guy doing the same. We joined up and made it further in, before finally dying valiantly to some much more powerful enemies. When we went back, we found a higher level guy burning karma (he had just killed someone else - open world pvp), and instead of killing him and having a chance at his items, we decided to let him join us so we could make it further in. This is something else I find lacking in recent MMOs -- a gray area. There was no clear best option to take here, as both options offered us risks and benefits. We had to make a meaningful choice about what to do with this guy.

What I really enjoyed about that was the spontaneity. We were just exploring, seeking danger and better loot. There were no quests attached to that dungeon, you didn't feel railroaded there or obligated to do it because of the quest reward. You simply delved into it because you wanted to, either in hopes of finding something valuable, for roleplaying purposes, or whatever. My own motivation was thinking that because the mobs further in were so hard to get to, they must offer some good drops. Lineage 2 had far fewer quests that would come about under certain conditions/milestones and on a more significant scale. The way MMOs have been going for a long time now is quest after quest after quest, the same re-skinned thing from one area to the next. Most dungeons (and pvp for that matter) are instanced and have to be queued up. Everything is so contrived and handed to you. There is just no spontaneity nor reason to go off the beaten path anymore.

When did that become desireable? Do people really enjoy that? I played many MMOs after L2, including Aion, Vanguard, Rift, Tera, and most recently Neverwinter. All were guilty of this. In Neverwinter I tried really hard to be interested in the quests, to actually read all the dialogue and try to immerse myself in them. I just couldn't do it. There are so many of the damn things, and they're all so similar and forgettable that I inevitably end up just doing the same old click quest, click accept, run off following map indicators, kill/gather x of y, return, accept all rewards, repeat. What's worse is that this is most often the most efficient way to progress. It ensures the fastest experience, level appropriate gear, and transition to the next area. So even as much as I hate doing them, I end up doing them simply because I'm just shooting myself in the foot by not doing them.

I realize that quests are useful in exposing players to the game's lore. I guess what I'm looking for is a less story-focused game? That's not really true, though. I can enjoy a good story and lore. I just wish the game encouraged you to have a more proactive role in discovering the world's lore and story, rather than shoving it down your throat with the endless quests.

 

Crafting

What should I talk about next, crafting? The only game where I really actually enjoyed the crafting was Vanguard. It was a whole other game unto itself. You had to balance various factors while crafting, like the item's quality and durability during the craft. In addition, you could craft pretty much anything. Valuable items and gear, as well as ships for traveling and houses to live in.

In pretty much every other MMO, crafting just seems like an afterthought. The process is just as boring and grindy as questing. In fact, a lot of them are just another endless meaningless quest grind. The gear is usually not competitive with similar level gear acquired by other means, and there is little motivation to actually do it. I also dislike it when a game - like Neverwinter, for instance - allows you to max all crafting disciplines on a single character. When I pursue crafting, I just want to focus on one or two disciplines and take those as far as I possibly can. Hopefully, the crafting is deep enough that I can spend every single hour available to me pursuing that. Being able to max everything just means I can do everything myself, which is not really interesting to me. That just becomes a single player game. I like to actually have to engage the economy and seek out other materials I may need from people who have mastered other disciplines.

I already mentioned Vanguard, but I suppose L2 is another example that stands out. In L2, there was much more incentive to have a crafter, because it was the only way to ensure access to higher level gear. That gear could drop, but chances were very small, and like I talked about earlier, there were no quests offering them as rewards. I liked that. The crafting system itself could have been much more interesting in L2, but I liked that they played an essential role in gearing people. If you didn't have a crafter/had no interest in having a crafter, you could always seek one out and pay them for the service. And many people didn't have them, because it was no trivial matter to get one to the higher levels required to craft higher level gear. I liked that, also. That made sense to me.

I guess what I'm looking for is crafting that is more involved, is a non-trivial pursuit, allows you to focus on 1 or 2 professions to great depth, and plays an important role in acquiring useful gear, as well as stimulating the economy.

 

Customization

The next big thing is customization. This is a really big deal for me. I'm talking about character customization in the form of racial/class stats and traits, skill trees, etc. Cosmetic customization I really don't care about. I despise uniformity. As soon as I realize just how similar everyone who picks the same class ends up being toward the end game, I lose all interest. I like to be able to put my own spin on things, as well as being affected by the luck of the draw.

L2 is actually a bad example of this. Especially in the earlier days - which I'm primarily talking about - there was very little difference between certain race/class combinations. A skill here or there, but that was it. Thankfully, in later updates they added more skills to differentiate them, but unfortunately they added other things I really didn't care for. But at least they had things like item enchants and augments, allowing luck to come in to play when setting your character apart. That, at least, allowed some differentiation in gear towards the end game.

After L2 I discovered games like Rift. The single thing I enjoyed most about that game was the different souls and trees. I loved having that choice and variety. Sure, it may be difficult to balance, but I'm not really concerned with the absolute most effective build. I never look up builds. I just build whatever it is I'm interested in. As long as the system allows for some true variety in different gameplay approaches and is reasonably well balanced, I'm happy. However, what I didn't like about games like Rift is that the gear is so uniform. Everyone follows the same gear progression, and inevitably ends up in pretty much the same stuff in the end game. This kind of kills it for me. I'd really like to see more randomization when it comes to itemization. I don't necessarily expect a full blown D3 or PoE type of RNG, but at least some amount of it would be nice. When I'm level 40, and I already know what I'm going to be wearing at level 60 and the exact progression path I'll take to get there, a lot of the mystery and excitement is taken away from me.

The other thing I should mention regarding items is the different tiers available through pursing different gameplay options. For example, gear obtained from raiding is usually the most valuable. This is a big problem for me. I've really disliked the focus on raiding content. I find it very hard to raid. I'm an adult with other responsibilities and areas of my life that take priority over a game. I can't commit to playing at a certain time for 3+ hours at a time. Hell, I find it very difficult to sit in one place for hours at a time even when I do have the time for it. I understand it's a challenge:benefit thing, but that type of content is really just no good for me.

To summarize, I'm looking for extensive customization, both in character development and itemization. I'd like to be able to have a totally different build/gear than other people of the same race/class. Also, I'd like to be able to pursue and acquire the best gear available without having to treat the game like a full time job. I just don't have the time/lifestyle for that.

 

PvP

I think I'll finish with pvp. As you might guess starting out in L2, I became intimately familiar with pvp right away. At first, I shied away from it. I downright scorned it, in fact. I later warmed up to it, however. So much so that I went on to make something like 16 videos of nothing but pvp exploits. Unfortunately, I haven't been too happy with the way most recent MMOs have handled pvp.

The first part is open world pvp. I grew to enjoy this in L2. I understand why a lot of people are apprehensive about it. It leaves a bad taste in your mouth being killed by some pimply, fat/scrawny 14 year old loser who plays the game 6x as much as you do, and 4x as much as any human being should. I'm not really sure how to fix that. I think that's just a demographic thing more than anything. That being said, I enjoyed L2's system. You could kill pretty much anyone pretty much anywhere at any time. However, there were consequences for doing so. I enjoyed this not only because of the accurate metaphor for real life, but because of the gameplay it allowed. We've all been annoyed by someone. Now you can kill them. However, it's a gamble on your part. Besides that, it can be an effective means of keeping rival clan members out of prized hunting spots, as well as other interesting aspects of gameplay.

On the flip side, it sucks being killed for no reason. However, L2 had a karma system in place, whereby someone who killed another would receive karma. This amount would grow for each successive kill. If someone died while having karma, they would drop some of their items. The only way to lose karma was through death or killing a lot of mobs. This creates more interesting gameplay choices, as I mentioned in my example at the beginning. After being killed by someone, you have options. Do you gather people to hunt them down? Do you hunt them alone, taking all the potential loot for yourself? Or do you just try to avoid them altogether? The person's level was not known to you. All you had to go by was the gear they were wearing, which could be deceiving. So judging your ability to take them down was another gamble. I enjoyed having these choices to weigh and decide on.

Of course, another big part of L2 was the castle sieges. Large fields of battle contested for castles, and the resources therein. This aspect of gameplay could be a lot of fun, involving teamwork, organization, politics, and was totally optional. It's your choice if you want to be part of a castle owning clan, but if you enjoy the benefits of such, you will most likely be expected to help defend it. As far as recent MMOs go, they seem to really shy away from open world pvp. The most common pvp nowadays seems to be in an arena type setting. That can be fun for a while, I guess, but I find myself getting bored of it pretty quickly. Nearly everything is instanced, putting you in random groups of comparable strength. It's just another example of everything being taken out of your hands and being done for you. Where's the risk? The reward is usually small, requires a lot of grinding to get to, and things like politics aren't even factors. At least in Rift you could invade the other faction's lands. However, there was pretty much no risk involved, and the reward was small aside from amusement.

To summarize, I'd like to see a return to open world pvp. Pvp that requires you to make choices, weighing your options and the factors involved. Pvp that requires more risk, as well as more reward. Nothing should be instanced. Random arenas are not necessarily a bad thing, but I just can't see it being enough by itself to keep pvp content of a game interesting.

 

TL;DR

I've been posting walls of text on forums for years, and this is the first time I've bothered with a tl;dr section. Consider yourselves lucky. I'm pretty much just going to re-post the last paragraph of each section, because I'm almost as lazy as you are. I'd strongly encourage you to read the full post for more info/details.

I'm looking for a game that encourages you to have a more proactive role in discovering the world's lore and story, rather than shoving it down your throat with endless meaningless quests. I'd like to see much fewer quests, and the ones that do exist should be more interesting and meaningful. I want a larger focus on exploration, and just going where you want to go and doing what you want to do, rather than feeling obligated to complete recycled quest chain after quest chain for the rewards and efficient level gains.

I'm also looking for crafting that is more involved, is a non-trivial pursuit, allows you to focus on 1 or 2 professions to great depth, and plays an important role in acquiring useful gear, as well as stimulating the economy. I'd like it if crafting was at least partially involved, if not the only way to get more valuable gear.

I also want extensive customization, both in character development and itemization. I'd like to be able to have a totally different build/gear than other people of the same race/class. Also, I'd like to be able to pursue and acquire the best gear available without having to treat the game like a full time job. I just don't have the time/lifestyle for that.

Finally, I'd like to see a return to open world pvp. Pvp that requires you to make choices, weighing your options and the factors involved. Pvp that requires more risk, as well as more reward. Nothing should be instanced. Random arenas are not necessarily a bad thing, but I just can't see it being enough by itself to keep pvp content of a game interesting.

 

That pretty much covers it, I think.

Anyone feel similarly, or perhaps completely differently?

Does anyone know of any current MMOs, or any in development that resemble what I'm looking for? Or am I going to have to make the damn thing myself?

Come at me, bros.

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Comments

  • ScalplessScalpless SnowballvillePosts: 1,396Member Uncommon

    ArcheAge, I suppose? Hard to say without playing it, but it seems to promise most of the above. All other games I've played lately lack several of the things you mentioned.

    If you decide to make the damn thing yourself, I'll sub.

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

    I've been posting walls of text on forums for years, and this is the first time I've bothered with a tl;dr section.

    This is a 'fresh' alt, though? Lurking in wait since its creation in 2004? We're honored!

    I'm looking for a game that encourages you to have a more proactive role in discovering the world's lore and story, rather than shoving it down your throat with endless meaningless quests.

    Well, you've got the rhetoric and delivery style down pat.

    I'd like to see much fewer quests, and the ones that do exist should be more interesting and meaningful. I want a larger focus on exploration, and just going where you want to go and doing what you want to do, rather than feeling obligated to complete recycled quest chain after quest chain for the rewards and efficient level gains.

    So, no theme parks.

    I'm also looking for crafting that is more involved, is a non-trivial pursuit, allows you to focus on 1 or 2 professions to great depth, and plays an important role in acquiring useful gear, as well as stimulating the economy. I'd like it if crafting was at least partially involved, if not the only way to get more valuable gear.

    So, no theme parks.

    I also want extensive customization, both in character development and itemization. I'd like to be able to have a totally different build/gear than other people of the same race/class. Also, I'd like to be able to pursue and acquire the best gear available without having to treat the game like a full time job. I just don't have the time/lifestyle for that.

    So, City of Heroes. Maybe Aion. But...those are both Theme Parks, and CoH is gone. Companies do not show much interest in "customization", any more. Frequent Marketing Buzzword in the early 2000s, not the early 2010s.

    Wonder why it dropped out of favor? Too expensive to maintain, probably.

    Finally, I'd like to see a return to open world pvp.

    You just might have more luck tracking down the Holy Grail. Run on over to Camelot and cheer for Mark, I guess. He's not likely (with a tiny startup company) to deliver Big Brand Customization, though.

    Pvp that requires you to make choices, weighing your options and the factors involved. Pvp that requires more risk, as well as more reward. Nothing should be instanced. Random arenas are not necessarily a bad thing, but I just can't see it being enough by itself to keep pvp content of a game interesting.

    That pretty much covers it, I think.

    Anyone feel similarly, or perhaps completely differently?

    Does anyone know of any current MMOs, or any in development that resemble what I'm looking for? Or am I going to have to make the damn thing myself?

    Come at me, bros.

    No thanks, no belligerence please. But realistically, I don't believe what you're seeking exists any more (or arguably, ever did).  Good luck.

     

    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.

  • WW4BWWW4BW KoldingPosts: 493Member

     I really dislike the never ending quest spam too. I feel like they are keeping me from playing the game. 

     Also the fast leveling in the games keep me from enjoying the areas I go through to the fullest.. 

     

  • JemcrystalJemcrystal Champaign, ILPosts: 1,552Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by _redruM_  "Hi, folks.................... When we went back, we found a higher level guy burning karma (he had just killed someone else - open world pvp), and instead of killing him and having a chance at his items, we decided to let him join us so we could make it further in........."

     

    I'm the anti-PvP.  I don't know if I'll take time to read all OP's post.  I read this far and thought, "Who does this???"  This does not exist.  I started with FFXI and there was no open world pvp.  I thought it would be really great to have the extra challenge of some people chasing you instead of mobs.  I switched to WoW PvP server.  Boy was I wrong.  Real people hunting me down makes me feel like an unloved vampire.  "Torch the building he's in!  Bring the stakes!!!"  No thank you.  But who the f* ever in pvp turns down an easy kill?  You are all a bunch of blood lust shites that never say to yourselves, "Gee I think I'll let the little guy live."


  • MetsisMetsis TamperePosts: 66Member

    If the PVP thing is "ok" for you and you enjoy it. You could go try Darkfall... The graphics aren't that top notch (though haven't played since they updated the whole thing), but it has quite a bit of what you are looking for.

    There are different races and you can wear anything and pretty much in any direction with your character. And it doesn't have levels to limit you. So if you feel like trying something else, it is not removed from advancing the whole "big picture" you have going for your character.

    There are quests in there, but it certainly ain't no themepark... Just something to get you started, but the rewards are nothing you absolutely need to have. In other words, you won't lose much if don't do the quests.

    Crafting, in it, at least before you could master everything, but the crafting was relevant. In other words, there is very little "Epix" to be found in the game and most of the gear is crafted. Also the gear suffers from wear and tear and does break down eventually so you can't just get that one sword and be done with it, as it is with most other MMO's.

    Although, there is one drawback to the game, you are pretty much in the same boat as I am... Time is of the essence. I too cannot find the time to really do end game raid content from MMO's pretty much at all. I won't lie, Darkfall is a huge time sink. I hear they've been speeding things up almost constantly, but it takes time to do stuff in the game. The world is huge and as such just getting to the place you want to go can take a whole lot of time. I remember running across the map for quite a long time in the game.

    I would suggest giving DF a try... Even if you find out you don't have the time to throw yourself into the game totally, I think you can find enjoyment in the game even in short stints... Just don't expect to be in end game in a month.

    And to add to this all, some of the most dangerous PVE fights I've seen have been in Darkfall. The Mob AI is good and you can get your ass handed to you by a single starter monster if you don't have a clue of what you are doing.

    Also, it does have that "full loot" too... But as I said, the gear is pretty basic at least in the early going and if you get PVP killed and looted, you probably won't be losing too much in any case. Just make sure you have something in the bank if/when you do get ganked.

    I would also like to see some sort of a real penalty system in an MMO game. I know the snot nose kids probably wouldn't like it, but there needs to be risk-reward in the game to make it worth anything other than a gear grind.

  • _redruM__redruM_ Winnipeg, MBPosts: 34Member
    Originally posted by Scalpless

    ArcheAge, I suppose? Hard to say without playing it, but it seems to promise most of the above. All other games I've played lately lack several of the things you mentioned.

    If you decide to make the damn thing yourself, I'll sub.

    I'm legitimately tempted. Unfortunately, I have the skills, but not the money. I really just can't understand a lot of the design choices being made in recent MMOs.

    I'll have to check out ArcheAge. I've heard some good things and some bad. Thanks for the suggestion.

     

    Originally posted by Icewhit

    This is a 'fresh' alt, though? Lurking in wait since its creation in 2004? We're honored!

    Not really sure what that means. This is not an alt, no. When I said forums, I wasn't talking about this forum, specifically. I've never been very active on this forum, at all.

    I'd like to see much fewer quests, and the ones that do exist should be more interesting and meaningful. I want a larger focus on exploration, and just going where you want to go and doing what you want to do, rather than feeling obligated to complete recycled quest chain after quest chain for the rewards and efficient level gains.

    So, no theme parks.

    I suppose not.

    I'm also looking for crafting that is more involved, is a non-trivial pursuit, allows you to focus on 1 or 2 professions to great depth, and plays an important role in acquiring useful gear, as well as stimulating the economy. I'd like it if crafting was at least partially involved, if not the only way to get more valuable gear.

    So, no theme parks.

    Not necessarily. Some would call Vanguard a theme park, which had the most enjoyable crafting I've yet encountered.

    I also want extensive customization, both in character development and itemization. I'd like to be able to have a totally different build/gear than other people of the same race/class. Also, I'd like to be able to pursue and acquire the best gear available without having to treat the game like a full time job. I just don't have the time/lifestyle for that.

    So, City of Heroes. Maybe Aion. But...those are both Theme Parks, and CoH is gone. Companies do not show much interest in "customization", any more. Frequent Marketing Buzzword in the early 2000s, not the early 2010s.

    Wonder why it dropped out of favor? Too expensive to maintain, probably.

    I don't think what I'm asking for is too expensive or extravagant. Rift did well with the soul trees, but the itemization is lackluster. Basically, take Path of Exile, convert it to MMO form with a large, open world and several other MMO necessities, and there you have it.

    Also, I don't remember Aion having any customization.

    Does anyone know of any current MMOs, or any in development that resemble what I'm looking for? Or am I going to have to make the damn thing myself?

    Come at me, bros.

    No thanks, no belligerence please. But realistically, I don't believe what you're seeking exists any more (or arguably, ever did).  Good luck.

     

    Belligerence? And that makes me very, very sad.

     

    Originally posted by Jemcrystal

    Originally posted by _redruM_  "Hi, folks.................... When we went back, we found a higher level guy burning karma (he had just killed someone else - open world pvp), and instead of killing him and having a chance at his items, we decided to let him join us so we could make it further in........."

     

    I'm the anti-PvP.  I don't know if I'll take time to read all OP's post.  I read this far and thought, "Who does this???"  This does not exist.  I started with FFXI and there was no open world pvp.  I thought it would be really great to have the extra challenge of some people chasing you instead of mobs.  I switched to WoW PvP server.  Boy was I wrong.  Real people hunting me down makes me feel like an unloved vampire.  "Torch the building he's in!  Bring the stakes!!!"  No thank you.  But who the f* ever in pvp turns down an easy kill?  You are all a bunch of blood lust shites that never say to yourselves, "Gee I think I'll let the little guy live."

    If you read the rest of that section you would have the answer to your question. We didn't know what level he was, and we couldn't be confident in our ability to kill him. Also, at that time we wanted to make it further into the dungeon, and he wanted to burn off his karma. He scratched our backs and we scratched his.

     

    Originally posted by Metsis

    If the PVP thing is "ok" for you and you enjoy it. You could go try Darkfall... The graphics aren't that top notch (though haven't played since they updated the whole thing), but it has quite a bit of what you are looking for.

    I think it was the combat that originally turned me off from Darkfall. Just looked like a giant clickfest. I may have to check it out, though. I like the open world pvp, and definitely like the no level cap. Time constraints may be an issue, however.

    Thanks for the suggestion.

  • _redruM__redruM_ Winnipeg, MBPosts: 34Member

    Scratch that on Darkfall. Didn't realize it was still using the p2p model. Not that I'm opposed to subscribing to an MMO, but I don't have confidence in anything p2p after I held a paid sub to rift from pre-release, only to have it go f2p. Left a bad taste in my mouth.

    Any other suggestions?

  • IcewhiteIcewhite Elmhurst, ILPosts: 6,403Member
    Originally posted by _redruM_
    Not really sure what that means. This is not an alt, no. When I said forums, I wasn't talking about this forum, specifically. I've never been very active on this forum, at all.

    Well, as of yesterday, account creation date 2004 (way old) and post count of 6 (but only one post, this one, in post history--which means the last ones were a long time ago), or possibly in a deleted forum or somesuch.

    Admiration, awe, that anyone can hang on to an unused account for so long.

    I surely wouldn't remember a login I hadn't used for 10 years. Bravo on your filing system.

    Originally posted by _redruM_

    Belligerence?

    "Come at me, bros"-something I normally associate with high school girls about to initiate a slap fight. Sounded a wee pugnacious, not important.

     

    But that's all beside the point. I suspect that your expectations are just too high (at least the sum total of them all together is). Any single one of those bullet points excludes a large number of titles; trying to pass the combined gate of all of them, I suspect, leads to an answer of "0 titles passed".

    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.

  • jacktorsjacktors Port St Lucie, FLPosts: 158Member Uncommon

    Sadly, I agree with most of what you said, OP.  

    Leveling needs to sloooow down.

    I am still waiting for a game that has many of the things you described.  I absolutely hate seeing a game go live and some people are at max level in 24 hours.  I could care less if it takes me twice the time to level than every other MMO out there. I have always had my most fun and immersion in an MMO during the leveling period. Dark age of Camelot had a long leveling period in the beginning, which I remember complaining about.  But looking back, I remember how great I felt when I reached max level.  It was an accomplishment.  The other problem by fast leveling is that the zones become wastelands.  People just fly through and there is never a need anymore after max level. 

    Open World PvP

    I cant say it enough: open world pvp with a player switch is the way to go. If you want to run around with your guild mates all day, pvping other groups, then more power to you. It adds to realm/faction pride. If that is not your style of play, then keep your pvp switch "off". It is that simple. Make different factions/races speak different languages. That way, if some max level comes into an enemy town, there is no childish taunting.   Modern mmo's have no more cohesion anymore. Its like a single player game. Keep the npc's either extremely strong, or off limits to avoid griefing quest hubs. 

    Player Housing (Sandbox Style)

    I dont know about you, but I loved Dark Age of Camelot's housing system. Even though it was instanced, it was just like another part of the world. Anybody from your realm could enter and use the player run vendors. But I would expand on that. To start your project, you would have to buy a plot of land, and it is up to the player what is built on that property. But every single piece of materiel needed to build on your plot of land must come from gathering and crafting. The more extravagant and unique the project, the more rare the raw materials. Gamers could spend hours upon hours trying to fine tune their homes. Guilds could create Guild Houses the same way. But more of a group project. 

     

  • _redruM__redruM_ Winnipeg, MBPosts: 34Member

    Originally posted by Icewhite

    Originally posted by _redruM_
    Not really sure what that means. This is not an alt, no. When I said forums, I wasn't talking about this forum, specifically. I've never been very active on this forum, at all.

    Well, as of yesterday, account creation date 2004 (way old) and post count of 6 (but only one post, this one, in post history--which means the last ones were a long time ago), or possibly in a deleted forum or somesuch.

    Admiration, awe, that anyone can hang on to an unused account for so long.

    I surely wouldn't remember a login I hadn't used for 10 years. Bravo on your filing system.

    Ah, I see now. Yeah, not sure the last time I posted here, or what it was about. Thankfully, this site has kept me logged in by default for years and I've never really had to remember the login info. I'm fairly certain I'd know what it is if I ever had to log in again, though.

    Originally posted by _redruM_

    Belligerence?

    "Come at me, bros"-something I normally associate with high school girls about to initiate a slap fight. Sounded a wee pugnacious, not important.

    Oh, that. Yes, I'm aware of how it sounds. Trust me, I hate memes. I used it in a very tongue-in-cheek manner.

     

    But that's all beside the point. I suspect that your expectations are just too high (at least the sum total of them all together is). Any single one of those bullet points excludes a large number of titles; trying to pass the combined gate of all of them, I suspect, leads to an answer of "0 titles passed".

    That's what I feared. I already mentioned in the original post how I hate uniformity, yet that's what I'm seeing with pretty much all recent MMOs. All I want is quality crafting and itemization, character customization, open world pvp, and a break from the endless pointless quest grind. I can't be the only one who feels this way. There must be a demand for it.

    I've tried to get into recent MMOs. I really have. Shortcomings in one or more of the areas I detailed always kills it for me. I just don't understand the design mindset a lot of these developers have. Spending all that time and effort writing lengthy quest dialogue for 89230423 quests, which the majority don't bother to read because they don't have to, instead of focusing that energy and resources on other parts of the game. So many companies are making the same design decisions, targeting the same audience, and sharing a relatively small portion of the customer base as a result.

    From a game player's standpoint, it frustrates me to no end, but even from a business standpoint I have a hard time understanding it.

    Originally posted by jacktors

    I am still waiting for a game that has many of the things you described.  I absolutely hate seeing a game go live and some people are at max level in 24 hours.  I could care less if it takes me twice the time to level than every other MMO out there. I have always had my most fun and immersion in an MMO during the leveling period. Dark age of Camelot had a long leveling period in the beginning, which I remember complaining about.  But looking back, I remember how great I felt when I reached max level.  It was an accomplishment.  The other problem by fast leveling is that the zones become wastelands.  People just fly through and there is never a need anymore after max level. 

    L2 had very slow leveling, in the beginning. Nothing was instanced. The nice thing about that was you spent a good deal of time in each area, had alternatives in different areas, and had time to get to know people around the same level as you.

    Open World PvP

    I cant say it enough: open world pvp with a player switch is the way to go. If you want to run around with your guild mates all day, pvping other groups, then more power to you. It adds to realm/faction pride. If that is not your style of play, then keep your pvp switch "off". It is that simple. Make different factions/races speak different languages. That way, if some max level comes into an enemy town, there is no childish taunting.   Modern mmo's have no more cohesion anymore. Its like a single player game. Keep the npc's either extremely strong, or off limits to avoid griefing quest hubs. 

    I think I could live with a switch. I'd much prefer pvp be 'always on', though. Like I mentioned, L2 had a karma system. Killing another person, without being hit by them first, would give you karma. When you had karma, friendly NPCs like guards would attack you on sight, the vast majority of merchant NPCs would not do business with you, and anyone who killed or was at least nearby when died would have a chance at your items.

    The nice thing about that system was it allowed you the freedom of killing anyone anywhere anytime, but gave you sufficient incentive to be very careful about doing so. I personally knew a lot of people who were not into pvp at all, but continued to play the game and accepted it more - in some cases, even starting to embrace it - as time went on.

    It was nice because pvp was just a constant part of the game world, allowing everything to come full circle. It wasn't completely segregated from pve content, and made into it's own little 'mode' that people eventually get bored of. Unfortunately, that seems to be the way most games are treating it now.

    Player Housing (Sandbox Style)

    I dont know about you, but I loved Dark Age of Camelot's housing system. Even though it was instanced, it was just like another part of the world. Anybody from your realm could enter and use the player run vendors. But I would expand on that. To start your project, you would have to buy a plot of land, and it is up to the player what is built on that property. But every single piece of materiel needed to build on your plot of land must come from gathering and crafting. The more extravagant and unique the project, the more rare the raw materials. Gamers could spend hours upon hours trying to fine tune their homes. Guilds could create Guild Houses the same way. But more of a group project. 

    Unfortunately, I never got to play DAoC, but I do like what you're talking about. I think it would be great if owning property as a guild had a lot of depth to it, requiring people from all backgrounds - raiders, pvpers, crafters, etc - to build and maintain, while offering significant reward.

    I always seem to come back to L2, but that's kind of what the end game castle siege gameplay was like. Owning a castle offered a lot of benefits, but that castle could be attacked and would need to be defended. Pve minded players enjoyed helping the castle to grow, Pvpers enjoyed defending/attacking them, and crafters were well represented, being required to build important siege warfare.

    Like I said before, you just don't get that kind of experience when pve and pvp are treated as separate entities, segregated, and made trivial. Both suffer as a result.

  • jacktorsjacktors Port St Lucie, FLPosts: 158Member Uncommon

    In regards to what you said about a Karma system for  open world pvp, I like it.  Thinking about it, I think it would be a better alternative to a pvp switch. So I stand corrected. Bottom line, I do not think what you have asked for is anything out of the realm of a real possibility. Truthfully, it is just a bunch of current or past gaming designs that that worked. 

     

    I am certainly in your corner on this one. 

  • Vermillion_RaventhalVermillion_Raventhal Oxon Hill, MDPosts: 1,147Member Uncommon

    I understand your frustration.  I've been playing MMO's since what M59 and than UO beta testing.  I don't even know when that was anymore...  95, 96 or 97?

    I guess part of my problem with MMORPG"s is that the experience can be done better in a single player/multiplayer style game better in what 90% of MMORPG's offer these days.

    My view of MMORPG's was that was supposed to be a world that we lived in not some where that we're vagabond gamers who enter the world to collect loot and experience.

    I'm coming to realize the Sandbox vs. themepark is really a marketing argument.  Essentially UO was view a failure so in many instances those elements were avoided or removed.  Most  of the social limitations and interaction limitations come from the experiment that was UO.  UO was naively designed game that allowed players to essentially create their own world/adventure/culture.  It wasn't really ready for the intentions of the internet and allowed griefing and relentless PVP, housing spam and other things to run rampant.  It became what not to do.  The relative success of EQ is what sealed the deal on this.  WoW became the protype of easy MMORPG's... good UI/easy to write mass quest/raiding/causal gaming and pvp.  Many of this can and is done better in single player games with mulitplayer options.  At least there my decisions effect my world.

    I don't really see the point in MMORPG's being so casual and devoid of community.  The more we go on and the more generic the genre gets the more community breaks down.  We've become vagabonds of a vagabond genre hopping from game to game with no community.  The world are instanced, the zones are instanced, the chat box is optional.  You have guilds to pull you through but even then their not part of the main world.  They're all isolated in their own instances.  

    IMO all MMORPG's should be designed around some sandbox elements that should be as standard as the WoW UI that all these games use these days.  The technology has to be better to support games where we have a real stake in the world.   Having games that give community responsibilities and players stake in what happens seemed like a logical progression.  How many empty shell of a combat builder games do we need that can't really do what single players do with story and don't take advantage of being an online world and just make graphical  fronts for us to level on?

     

  • ichihaifuichihaifu nullPosts: 259Member Uncommon

    I don't see Guild Wars 2 mentioned anywhere and I'm going to get hate for saying this, but based on what you are looking for GW2 fits your criteria's nearly perfectly.

    Customization, people who don't really play the game further than 20 levels in never get there. But there is serious amount of stat customization in the form of traits. Even if, say, person A goes 20/20/20/20/0 in traits and the person B does the same, it doesnt mean they will be sitting at the same builds because within those traits there are major traits unlocked by putting in points. Major traits drastically change how some ability or skill works and gives them much more depth and each one of the lines you can go down have many major traits to choose from while also providing passive stat bonuses for your character the deeper you go down a tree.

    Every single build is viable in some way, no matter what people say, you can build your character as nonsensically as you want and have fun with it while also being useful if you are not a min-max'er. There are certain ways to go for every character if you want the "best" builds, but they are in no way a must. Especially since people cant tell how you built and what you are wearing without asking, no-one can even complain to begin with.

     

    Crafting isn't really such a huge part of GW2 (for me), but you can create ridiculous amount of items by crafting especially stats wise. There is no item you cannot get by crafting if you only look at the stats. Also you can master yourself in every crafting discipline on one character if you so wish while maintaining the knowledge of others but not being able to access them unless you select the said discipline again.

     

    Exploration and story

    This is what's really big: story isn't forced down your throat and there are insane amount of things to find out in the world regarding past, present and even future. Tyria is insanely huge and there are ridiculous amount of things hidden beneath the surface, I would go as far as to say that 70% of the game isn't visible unless you actually turn every rock over and search deepest depths of the ocean.

     

    sPvP is supposedly very balanced but I personally cant say much about it because I'm no pvp person.

     

    All in all the amount of things you can do as explorer in GW2 is absolutely overwhelming.

    I have played the game since it was launched and I still have not found every place and fought every major boss according to achievements.

     

    I say if you still haven't tried GW2 and those are your search criteria's for an MMO, you MUST try it out.

  • MagiknightMagiknight McKinleyville, CAPosts: 782Member

    Totally agree with 90% of what you said OP. It's very ironic that people who are obsessed with visual "customization" of their avatars are bent on playing classes that don't really differentiate from each other. A healer and tank will still do dps, etc. 

     

    And instancing has the be the number one thing that is destroying what MMOs were.

  • jacktorsjacktors Port St Lucie, FLPosts: 158Member Uncommon

    Actually, I played GW2 for about 4 months. I loved my time in the game, but after I explored all of the gaming world, and completed all of the jumping puzzles, found the little nooks and caverns hidden all around the world, I got bored.  I beleive that Guild Wars 2 is a great game with lots of content. But for me, I did not like their dungeon instances. I am not fond of the non-trinity system. And I got very bored with their WvWvW system. 

    I can certainly see those gamers who love the pvp system in the game. But for me, coming fro DAOC, where going out and taking Castles and Keeps really meant something for the realm, I just didn't find re-taking the same keeps over and over again very much fun to me. It seems repetitive. 

    Plus, there is no Housing content at all. I feel that housing and MMO games go hand in hand. It is immersive and can provide tons more hours of playtime if it is done correctly (Sandbox Style).  

    As soon as GW2 comes up with an expansion, i will be back. But until then, I am certainly not going to make an alt just to do all the same content over again. 

  • kakasakikakasaki Lockhart, TXPosts: 1,205Member

    I find it amusing (no I am not mocking him) that what the OP mentions as the reasons he loves "old time" MMOs are some of the reasons people hates a particular game. Take the first example he mentions, Lineage II. A good chunk of "old" players found it to be a tedious grind fest with no soul and an endless chain of boring quests. But to the OP, that was his "real" first MMO and he loves it! Then he mentions crafting. No one can argue that Vanguard had some of the most complex crafting in any MMO, some people loved it because if it but just as many people hated it! I remember on post on this very site from an "old" gamer who said Vanguard had some of the most tedious and overly complex crafting he had ever seen.  Does this make the OP right? Wrong? Of course the answer is neither. People have different likes and dislikes,  but when it comes to "old games" and even more insidious factor comes into play; nostalgia.

     Proust said it best: “Remembrance of things past is not necessarily the remembrance of things as they were.”

    And there in lies the problem with nostalgia. When you played your first MMO, the genre was new to you. There was this sense of newness and discovery because you had never played anything like it. Sure, there was some negative things about the game but nostalgia and time makes you mind "re-write history" and only the positive remains. In addition, the memory of said game and your time in it is intermingled with the positive emotions of that experience further muddying your memory.

    After a few more games under your belt, that sense of discovery is gone because, let's face it, there is only so many "new" things you can bring to an MMO. The basic formula is the same: Kill some NPCs, gain some levels/skills, do some PvP (if that's your thing), reach level/skill cap and do "end game" activities till you grow bored. Hence, now new game will compare favorably to the memory of your earlier experiences.  

    This is why there is such a disconnect between old players and new player to the genre.

    A man is his own easiest dupe, for what he wishes to be true he generally believes to be true...

  • Vermillion_RaventhalVermillion_Raventhal Oxon Hill, MDPosts: 1,147Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by kakasaki

    I find it amusing (no I am not mocking him) that what the OP mentions as the reasons he loves "old time" MMOs are some of the reasons people hates a particular game. Take the first example he mentions, Lineage II. A good chunk of "old" players found it to be a tedious grind fest with no soul and an endless chain of boring quests. But to the OP, that was his "real" first MMO and he loves it! Then he mentions crafting. No one can argue that Vanguard had some of the most complex crafting in any MMO, some people loved it because if it but just as many people hated it! I remember on post on this very site from an "old" gamer who said Vanguard had some of the most tedious and overly complex crafting he had ever seen.  Does this make the OP right? Wrong? Of course the answer is neither. People have different likes and dislikes,  but when it comes to "old games" and even more insidious factor comes into play; nostalgia.

     Proust said it best: “Remembrance of things past is not necessarily the remembrance of things as they were.”

    And there in lies the problem with nostalgia. When you played your first MMO, the genre was new to you. There was this sense of newness and discovery because you had never played anything like it. Sure, there was some negative things about the game but nostalgia and time makes you mind "re-write history" and only the positive remains. In addition, the memory of said game and your time in it is intermingled with the positive emotions of that experience further muddying your memory.

    After a few more games under your belt, that sense of discovery is gone because, let's face it, there is only so many "new" things you can bring to an MMO. The basic formula is the same: Kill some NPCs, gain some levels/skills, do some PvP (if that's your thing), reach level/skill cap and do "end game" activities till you grow bored. Hence, now new game will compare favorably to the memory of your earlier experiences.  

    This is why there is such a disconnect between old players and new player to the genre.

    It's kind of like High School for a lot of people.  Until your out for a while some times you don't appreciate what you had despite all the bullshit and you hated half of it while you were there.

    To me some of the lack of polish, uniformity and very unique ideas are what made old school games good for their time.  Even though most couldn't or wouldn't want to play many of those games now.  It's the ideals behind it.   Some of the polish of MMORPG or more like the generic aspects of the games is what make them suck in ways.  MMORPG were basically dreamer games that have come down to a formula driven genre.

     Questing is horribly generic and you seen one MMORPG questing system you've seen them all.   The older  games didn't really have that kind of direction so sometimes quest were limited or not there at all or required some exploration.  Of course, breaking us back down to this would be like taking our cellphones away after a decade of using them. 

    We can basically break down most new MMORPG's.  

    WoW like UI and quest (!) (?) system.  Quest consist of FedEx, kill, gather, a few instanted kill things and click items, see next quest giver.  

    Combat system of pressing 1-0 for abilities or action based mouse clickers or a combination of both.

    Game world is divided into leveling hubs based on level.  Zone A 1-10, Zone B/C/D 10-20, E/F/G 20-30 etc.  with a main hub(s) that work as general gathering spots to show off mounts, armor, trade crap and bank.  

    Than we have things like Instanted dungeons, pvp battles, and raids.  

    The only thing that really is different are the crafting systems. 

     

  • Ladrann27Ladrann27 ValkenburgPosts: 43Member

    Yes I agree with you on many of your points OP, these seem to be some of the many problems with the games released and being developed at the moment. Most of it is themepark, it is a grind for gear and PvP is meaningless.

    Look at GW2 for example, the battles in there are just large zergs running around the map chasing each other, in all respects that is not something I would call good PvP. These battles should happen I agree, but not continuously . DAoC definetly had fun PvP but it was nothing more then that, you had the other factions and they were built in to be your enemy. By this I mean that it was hard coded (you did not have any say in the mather) that these players where your enemy and your faction allies.

    To me it would make for a far more appealing, immersive and fun experience if there was OWPvP, where clans would form their alliances (for example as in Lineage 2 or EVE) and would even be able to build castles / strongholds. People would take care of the politics in and out of game themselves and incentives to fight would be land and resource control and clan/alliance pride.

    You have griefers running around killing your lower level allies or just low level players in general? Why let the game developer hard code something to stop this? In a system I just described you could take matters in your own hands and take them down. Want to take it a step further? Declare war on their alliance and capture or destroy their castle. They will think twice before griefing again.

    In a MMORPG like this you will make many friends (much stronger sense of community) and you will also make enemies where it means something if you kill them. Instead of just farming zergs for that next piece of gear.

    A system like this would open any game up for so many possibilities and instantly creates a very immersive endgame experience.

    I am baffled that people would prefer a capture the flag type battleground grind for gear or a zerg vs zerg never ending battle over a system I just described. But to each their own I guess.

    I think most of us old players just want more freedom in an MMORPG.

    I think the future is looking better though, mainly because over the last year(s) several games have been announced which offer a greater variety of freedom and a more sandbox type play. We can only hope these titles will see the light of day and be popular enough to make a difference in the MMO market.

  • Vermillion_RaventhalVermillion_Raventhal Oxon Hill, MDPosts: 1,147Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Ladrann27

    Yes I agree with you on many of your points OP, these seem to be some of the many problems with the games released and being developed at the moment. Most of it is themepark, it is a grind for gear and PvP is meaningless.

    Look at GW2 for example, the battles in there are just large zergs running around the map chasing each other, in all respects that is not something I would call good PvP. These battles should happen I agree, but not continuously . DAoC definetly had fun PvP but it was nothing more then that, you had the other factions and they were built in to be your enemy. By this I mean that it was hard coded (you did not have any say in the mather) that these players where your enemy and your faction allies.

    To me it would make for a far more appealing, immersive and fun experience if there was OWPvP, where clans would form their alliances (for example as in Lineage 2 or EVE) and would even be able to build castles / strongholds. People would take care of the politics in and out of game themselves and incentives to fight would be land and resource control and clan/alliance pride.

    You have griefers running around killing your lower level allies or just low level players in general? Why let the game developer hard code something to stop this? In a system I just described you could take matters in your own hands and take them down. Want to take it a step further? Declare war on their alliance and capture or destroy their castle. They will think twice before griefing again.

    In a MMORPG like this you will make many friends (much stronger sense of community) and you will also make enemies where it means something if you kill them. Instead of just farming zergs for that next piece of gear.

    A system like this would open any game up for so many possibilities and instantly creates a very immersive endgame experience.

    I am baffled that people would prefer a capture the flag type battleground grind for gear or a zerg vs zerg never ending battle over a system I just described. But to each their own I guess.

    I think most of us old players just want more freedom in an MMORPG.

    I think the future is looking better though, mainly because over the last year(s) several games have been announced which offer a greater variety of freedom and a more sandbox type play. We can only hope these titles will see the light of day and be popular enough to make a difference in the MMO market.

    The easy solution to open world PVP are to make safe starting areas for players to learn and quest that are relatively safe.  Wild areas for players to develop into relatively safe areas.

    Wars would have to be coordinated efforts because you couldn't just easily  waltz into an enemy area without guards handing you your ass.  

    Of course this requires a sandboxish world with large open spaces to colonize for the players.  I have to say that the player drama I experienced in UO has never been matched by any MMORPG so far.  Most MMORPG's these days I could play offline and not notice much difference.

  • gakulegakule Findlay, OHPosts: 91Member
    I completely agree with everything the OP has stated. As a Lineage 2 player since closed beta and through every update and even a current active player, I can identify with the experiences outlined in the post. Lineage 2 and Everquest are the only games that have given me a true sense of being lost in the world with no idea what to do next aside from what I'm willing to risk taking on and exploring myself. Not much information was available in the early days online.

    I think the most wonderdul thing about both gamed is the fact that people still raid old content. In games like WoW, old content is run for achievements or for transmog.. but in Everquest, gear dropped by old raids is still relevent even six expansions back. Same goes for Lineage 2 in regards to the boss jewelry and even the older gearfor alts and subclasses, and raid bosses are even just used for leveling.

    No other games to date have felt this raw and 'immersive' and with the same longevity of content.
  • _redruM__redruM_ Winnipeg, MBPosts: 34Member

    Originally posted by jacktors

    In regards to what you said about a Karma system for  open world pvp, I like it.  Thinking about it, I think it would be a better alternative to a pvp switch. So I stand corrected. Bottom line, I do not think what you have asked for is anything out of the realm of a real possibility. Truthfully, it is just a bunch of current or past gaming designs that that worked. 

    I didn't think so either, but it's depressingly hard to find. Also in regards to L2's pvp, you could declare clan wars where any member of the opposing clan was killable on sight with no repercussions (aside from politically). Both clans would have to agree to the war, though.

     

    Originally posted by Vermillion_Raventhal

    I guess part of my problem with MMORPG"s is that the experience can be done better in a single player/multiplayer style game better in what 90% of MMORPG's offer these days.

    That's a good way of putting it. When I think of my experience in single player games, it's not that difficult to make quests more interesting. For example, in a game like Dragon Age: Origins where you have a quest to take out 3 bandit groups, each of those groups is a different encounter, involving different enemy types and requiring you to adjust your strategy. In MMOs, the equivalent type of quest is basically just killing 5 things among a field of them. Often times you can even just kill the same one after it respawns.

     

    I don't really see the point in MMORPG's being so casual and devoid of community.  The more we go on and the more generic the genre gets the more community breaks down.  We've become vagabonds of a vagabond genre hopping from game to game with no community.  The world are instanced, the zones are instanced, the chat box is optional.  You have guilds to pull you through but even then their not part of the main world.  They're all isolated in their own instances.
    Well said. I find myself disabling global/area chat right off the bat in every recent MMO I play. The conversation - and I use that term very loosely - there just takes me right out of the game. With everything being so accessible and instanced in these games, there is no requirement for a sturdy, supportive community. People are free to just be idiots while they wait around for their dungeon/pvp queues. It often does feel like a single player game, operating in a falsely populated backdrop.

    IMO all MMORPG's should be designed around some sandbox elements that should be as standard as the WoW UI that all these games use these days.  The technology has to be better to support games where we have a real stake in the world.   Having games that give community responsibilities and players stake in what happens seemed like a logical progression.  How many empty shell of a combat builder games do we need that can't really do what single players do with story and don't take advantage of being an online world and just make graphical  fronts for us to level on?

    I agree, I do believe there needs to be more of a sandbox focus. Recent sandboxes haven't been doing well, however. Some of that may be a lack of appeal to some people, but I think a large part of it is those games have been making some common mistakes of their own.

     

    Originally posted by ichihaifu

    I don't see Guild Wars 2 mentioned anywhere and I'm going to get hate for saying this, but based on what you are looking for GW2 fits your criteria's nearly perfectly.

    I do like most of the things you said about GW2. I have 2 issues with that game, though.

    1) I've always heard people complain that there is a serious lack of end game or anything to really strive for when you reach it.

    2) It still suffers from overly contrived instancing in the vast majority of it's content. Pvp - and even pve, to a lesser extent - is much less interesting when it's done in such an artificial and inorganic way as to leave the player element and politics out of the equation.

    In L2, I often saw serious real conflict between people. Large and powerful allies would become bitter enemies overnight, because of the actions of those involved. It wasn't just because they happened to be opposing factions in the game world, or the game put them on opposite ends of an instance. I'm talking about real conflict, involving real people. That was something people actually cared about, and something that could actually involve long-reaching consequences. I really feel MMOs need to take a step back and stop trying to hand so much to the player. Conflicts like that are much more meaningful to the people involved when it all stemmed from them, organically.

     

    Originally posted by jacktors

    I can certainly see those gamers who love the pvp system in the game. But for me, coming fro DAOC, where going out and taking Castles and Keeps really meant something for the realm, I just didn't find re-taking the same keeps over and over again very much fun to me. It seems repetitive.

    That's pretty much how I feel about it, also. Those instanced pvp 'arena' like battles can be fun for a while, but it's certainly not the kind of content that can keep me invested for a particularly long period of time. Especially if my only motivation for doing it is grinding some kind of pvp currency for gear I already have picked out, and then everyone else is also wearing.

     

    Originally posted by kakasaki

    I find it amusing (no I am not mocking him) that what the OP mentions as the reasons he loves "old time" MMOs are some of the reasons people hates a particular game. Take the first example he mentions, Lineage II. A good chunk of "old" players found it to be a tedious grind fest with no soul and an endless chain of boring quests. But to the OP, that was his "real" first MMO and he loves it! Then he mentions crafting. No one can argue that Vanguard had some of the most complex crafting in any MMO, some people loved it because if it but just as many people hated it! I remember on post on this very site from an "old" gamer who said Vanguard had some of the most tedious and overly complex crafting he had ever seen.  Does this make the OP right? Wrong? Of course the answer is neither. People have different likes and dislikes,  but when it comes to "old games" and even more insidious factor comes into play; nostalgia.

     Proust said it best: “Remembrance of things past is not necessarily the remembrance of things as they were.”

    And there in lies the problem with nostalgia. When you played your first MMO, the genre was new to you. There was this sense of newness and discovery because you had never played anything like it. Sure, there was some negative things about the game but nostalgia and time makes you mind "re-write history" and only the positive remains. In addition, the memory of said game and your time in it is intermingled with the positive emotions of that experience further muddying your memory.

    You are absolutely right about nostalgia and the first MMO experience being special. I realized right away that I would probably never get that same feeling again when MMOs were brand new to me.

    That being said, I've tried to keep the rose tinted glasses off and be objective about the things I like/don't like. I drew a lot of examples from Lineage 2, but that's because it's one of the few examples of systems like open world pvp that are rarely seen these days. Being totally objective, I really don't think L2 is that great of a game, especially recently. In fact, after playing 5+ years of it, I roll my eyes when anyone I know tries to convince me to play it again, and I really can't see myself going back.

    It lacks a few of the things on my list, but what it did really well was the pvp, less quest-centric story, and atmosphere. The latter was partly a result of it being my first real MMO, but I really did enjoy L2's atmosphere. I felt like I could just explore to my heart's content, and I certainly never felt forced to do any particular kind of content.

     

    After a few more games under your belt, that sense of discovery is gone because, let's face it, there is only so many "new" things you can bring to an MMO. The basic formula is the same: Kill some NPCs, gain some levels/skills, do some PvP (if that's your thing), reach level/skill cap and do "end game" activities till you grow bored. Hence, now new game will compare favorably to the memory of your earlier experiences.  

    This is why there is such a disconnect between old players and new player to the genre.

    I agree that nothing will bring back that first MMO feeling, but I disagree that nothing can compare favorably. Like I said, I'm pretty objective in my assessment of L2. I believe Rift's soul system was a big improvement over anything in L2, as was Vanguard's crafting. Unfortunately, I just haven't yet found a game that could put all of those things together. But it I did, you can bet I would be singing it's praises.

     

    Originally posted by Vermillion_Raventhal

    It's kind of like High School for a lot of people.  Until your out for a while some times you don't appreciate what you had despite all the bullshit and you hated half of it while you were there.

    Lol trust me, I don't think of high school any more fondly now than I did when I was in it. University is not as bad, thankfully.

     

    To me some of the lack of polish, uniformity and very unique ideas are what made old school games good for their time.  Even though most couldn't or wouldn't want to play many of those games now.  It's the ideals behind it.   Some of the polish of MMORPG or more like the generic aspects of the games is what make them suck in ways.  MMORPG were basically dreamer games that have come down to a formula driven genre.

     Questing is horribly generic and you seen one MMORPG questing system you've seen them all.   The older  games didn't really have that kind of direction so sometimes quest were limited or not there at all or required some exploration.  Of course, breaking us back down to this would be like taking our cellphones away after a decade of using them. 

    You are on the money here. It's like newer games tried to polish these features, but just made them over saturated and largely meaningless as a result. I think I'd rather a game with a poorly represented story that I could pursue in my own way, rather than a really well though up and written story that is shoved down my throat in so many meaningless quests that the story and the game itself now become a chore to me. What a waste of good writing.

     

    We can basically break down most new MMORPG's.  

    WoW like UI and quest (!) (?) system.  Quest consist of FedEx, kill, gather, a few instanted kill things and click items, see next quest giver.  

    Combat system of pressing 1-0 for abilities or action based mouse clickers or a combination of both.

    Game world is divided into leveling hubs based on level.  Zone A 1-10, Zone B/C/D 10-20, E/F/G 20-30 etc.  with a main hub(s) that work as general gathering spots to show off mounts, armor, trade crap and bank. 

    That's pretty accurate, yeah. Regarding that last example, what I liked in L2 was that there could be many different places you would find enemies of similar level. They were placed in ways that made sense, but not so rigidly as described above. You could level 3 different characters taking 3 completely different paths. All of those enemies would have different drop tables, providing potentially different equipment and crafting materials. Such a simple change that can make such a significant difference.

     

    Originally posted by Ladrann27

    To me it would make for a far more appealing, immersive and fun experience if there was OWPvP, where clans would form their alliances (for example as in Lineage 2 or EVE) and would even be able to build castles / strongholds. People would take care of the politics in and out of game themselves and incentives to fight would be land and resource control and clan/alliance pride.

    You have griefers running around killing your lower level allies or just low level players in general? Why let the game developer hard code something to stop this? In a system I just described you could take matters in your own hands and take them down. Want to take it a step further? Declare war on their alliance and capture or destroy their castle. They will think twice before griefing again.

    In a MMORPG like this you will make many friends (much stronger sense of community) and you will also make enemies where it means something if you kill them. Instead of just farming zergs for that next piece of gear.

    Yes, that's exactly the kind of thing I'm talking about in regards to pvp. When the reasons for fighting a particular enemy are your own, and not completely contrived by the game itself for you, the content is much more meaningful. You have a game with pvp having a much longer lifespan. In addition to that, the player's write the game's history. Long time members of the community can reminisce about the large, powerful clans that once were, as well as the ones that still survive to the present day.

    This makes for not only more meaningful pvp content, but a much more involved and fully fleshed out community, as well.

     

    I think the future is looking better though, mainly because over the last year(s) several games have been announced which offer a greater variety of freedom and a more sandbox type play. We can only hope these titles will see the light of day and be popular enough to make a difference in the MMO market.

    What games would those be?

     

    Originally posted by Vermillion_Raventhal

    The easy solution to open world PVP are to make safe starting areas for players to learn and quest that are relatively safe.  Wild areas for players to develop into relatively safe areas.

    Wars would have to be coordinated efforts because you couldn't just easily  waltz into an enemy area without guards handing you your ass.  

    Here's the thing, though. You wouldn't even need any artificial policing like that. Don't get me wrong, having fairly strong npcs like guards around a town is a good idea. However, I feel like the community should still be able to police itself. For example, if someone decides to grief a lowbie area, in a game with open world pvp and the proper community to back it, that person will likely be blacklisted. Most people won't want them in their clan, because it makes them look bad. Also, it's just a matter of time before either a higher level or a group of people come along to kill them and take their items, supposing there was a system similar to L2's karma in place.

    So, the freedom exists to do things like that. There are no artificial or arbitrary boundaries. However, there are consequences for those actions, and it's all up to the community to come up with solutions. That makes for a much more organic experience, as well as a much more tight knit community. People aren't just random names you will see in a random instance or two, then never see them again. Reputations stick around, and politics/conflicts ensue.

     

  • IcewhiteIcewhite Elmhurst, ILPosts: 6,403Member

    Red, I think that what's happening here is a kind of pass/fail cascade gate error that catches an awful lot of gamers.

    Feature list: I want these four things (ABCD). 1000 mmo titles available.

    • Feature A: 90% of available titles "fail", 10% pass.  1000 titles go in, 100 make it out.
    • Feature B: 90% of available titles "fail", 10% pass.100 titles go in, 10 make it out.
    • Feature C: 90% of available titles "fail", 10% pass. 10 titles go in, 1 makes it out.
    • Feature D: 90% of available titles "fail", 10% pass. 1 titles go in....uh oh.

    "Why isn't anyone making a game to my exacting specifications omg?"

    Options exist.

    Modifying your expectations would be one (the "fails" are soft fails, "well, I'd rather have something else, but I can accept this one feature offering other that what I would choose"). Some things (while not ideal), you can learn to live with.

    Keep searching for years. We've got some local examples of very unhappy (and oftentimes grumpy) folks pursuing this option.

    Adopt a feature that you believe will instantly cure all problems and save the entire genre. We get a lot of these guys, too. But their grasp on reality may be a bit tenuous.

    Wait for someone to seduce you to their title with marketing promises. (We get lots and lots of these guys).

    Personally, I'd suggest option 5: stop over-thinking it and writing TLDR novels. Your disease could also be described as "Forumitis".

    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.

  • DukeDuDukeDu SorocabaPosts: 73Member
    Old Korean MMORPGS were the best. Too bad they were all ruinned by BOT'S and gold sellers.
  • aspekxaspekx Brandon, FLPosts: 2,167Member
    Originally posted by Icewhite

    Red, I think that what's happening here is a kind of pass/fail cascade gate error that catches an awful lot of gamers.

    Feature list: I want these four things (ABCD). 1000 mmo titles availeable.

    • Feature A: 90% of available titles "fail", 10% pass.  1000 titles go in, 100 make it out.
    • Feature B: 90% of available titles "fail", 10% pass.100 titles go in, 10 make it out.
    • Feature C: 90% of available titles "fail", 10% pass. 10 titles go in, 1 makes it out.
    • Feature D: 90% of available titles "fail", 10% pass. 1 titles go in....uh oh.

    "Why isn't anyone making a game to my exacting specifications omg?"

    Options exist.

    Modifying your expectations would be one (the "fails" are soft fails, "well, I'd rather have something else, but I can accept this one feature offering other that what I would choose"). Some things (while not ideal), you can learn to live with.

    Keep searching for years. We've got some local examples of very unhappy (and oftentimes grumpy) folks pursuing this option.

    Adopt a feature that you believe will instantly cure all problems and save the entire genre. We get a lot of these guys, too. But their grasp on reality may be a bit tenuous.

    Wait for someone to seduce you to their title with marketing promises. (We get lots and lots of these guys).

    ^this. and a vote for Ice as most rational poster on mmorpg.com, just for this post mind you.

    "There are at least two kinds of games.
    One could be called finite, the other infinite.
    A finite game is played for the purpose of winning,
    an infinite game for the purpose of continuing play."
    Finite and Infinite Games, James Carse

  • Vermillion_RaventhalVermillion_Raventhal Oxon Hill, MDPosts: 1,147Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Icewhite

    Red, I think that what's happening here is a kind of pass/fail cascade gate error that catches an awful lot of gamers.

    Feature list: I want these four things (ABCD). 1000 mmo titles available.

    • Feature A: 90% of available titles "fail", 10% pass.  1000 titles go in, 100 make it out.
    • Feature B: 90% of available titles "fail", 10% pass.100 titles go in, 10 make it out.
    • Feature C: 90% of available titles "fail", 10% pass. 10 titles go in, 1 makes it out.
    • Feature D: 90% of available titles "fail", 10% pass. 1 titles go in....uh oh.

    "Why isn't anyone making a game to my exacting specifications omg?"

    Options exist.

    Modifying your expectations would be one (the "fails" are soft fails, "well, I'd rather have something else, but I can accept this one feature offering other that what I would choose"). Some things (while not ideal), you can learn to live with.

    Keep searching for years. We've got some local examples of very unhappy (and oftentimes grumpy) folks pursuing this option.

    Adopt a feature that you believe will instantly cure all problems and save the entire genre. We get a lot of these guys, too. But their grasp on reality may be a bit tenuous.

    Wait for someone to seduce you to their title with marketing promises. (We get lots and lots of these guys).

    Personally, I'd suggest option 5: stop over-thinking it and writing TLDR novels. Your disease could also be described as "Forumitis".

    I don't see what discussing your ideals of what you want from an MMORPG hurting anything or are unrealistic.  If anything its more of a duty if you want to see just maybe a few people to see where your coming from to know there's other options.  But if you want to a sanctified high on the horse I take the realistic approach comments on other's opinions of the genre is better some how go right ahead.   You might have your own case of "Forumitis."

     

    I don't think most think having stated list of features will suddenly cure a game or many believe in MMORPG marketing hype like this is 1998.  Been Charlie Brown and Lucy'd  with the football trick too many times to believe any hype machine.  

     

    There are some very bad games with some of the features people talk about wanting but doesn't stop them from being a bad game.  And I don't think it's fair to say people just want a set of features.  People are more into a style of gaming that hasn't really existed in a quality title.  

     

    It would be like saying I want an electric car and the few on the market with desired features literally have fall apart quality to them .   Companies with the ability won't take a chance of them because of past failings and the companies that do are horrible.  Consumer vents frustration at not getting a viable electric car.   Naysayers come swooping and saying learn to accept theses failings or electric cars simply aren't viable because people won't buy them.  Consumers think just do it with high quality and we'll buy.   Naysayers say we're unrealistic in some for or another.

     

    Sadly this is the case for most of the different styled MMORPG people want to play are made by underfunded or inexperienced companies or just bad companies and thus the games are horrible.  Supporting a bad game is like supporting a generic game IMO.  

     

    The genre is something I just play in small doses to see if anyone has offered anything new.  If noting that the genre has generic features with different skins and hasn't progressed in almost a decade...  I plead guilty.  

     

    So, I guess personally am doing the keep searching for something route.  Beta, week trial and free to play games to test the water and keep it moving if it's a formulated MMORPG and not support them financially.  

     

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