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How Would You Overhaul Quest?

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

    I think of mini-games like what WoW offered with plants vs zombies where you were taken out of the game to play another game. Actual games separated from the MMO.

    Ah-ha!  This is where we've been getting crossed up - when I say "minigame", I just mean an activity or block of mechanics.   For example: to me, fishing is a minigame, even though it doesn't phase you of the world.   I look at everything about a quest between the question between the exclamation mark and a question mark as being it's own little minigame.

    When I look at the way the last few themepark games I've sampled have been designed, that gameplay between the start and the end of a quest seems to be starting to take a back seat to the attempt to tell a story and I just don't think that works.  If the activities of the quest are just filler between text boxes or cut scenes, then I start to wonder why you are making an MMO and not a movie or a comic book. 

    So my argument is that in order to improve quests, you have ignore the quests, ignore the story, ignore the lore and simply ask: if there were no exclaimation marks and no question marks, is this something that I would have fun doing for a few hours?

  • BahamutKaiserBahamutKaiser Hyattsville, MDPosts: 306Member

    Quests are SOOOOOO 2012, all games should have missions from here on out.

    Just saying >.>

    Let's not play games with the interpretation of a word when it's clear what the individuals are referring too, it doesn't actually add to the discussion.

    Before you criticize someone, walk a mile in their shoes.
    That way, if they get angry, they'll be a mile away... and barefoot.

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

    Let's not play games with the interpretation of a word when it's clear what the individuals are referring too, it doesn't actually add to the discussion.

    Is it clear?

    Admittedly, I've not been as helpful or insightful as I had hoped I was going to be, but I feel like there are at least two fundamentally different views of quests in this thread: one focused on where the exclamation marks in a story should be placed and one focused on the gameplay between those exclamation marks.

  • KlandausKlandaus Sacramento, CAPosts: 2Member

    Traditionally, quests have been the main way for developers to provide stepping stones to players to grind on, so they can progress in the game.

     

    The problem is not in how these quests are implemented but rather the fact that they are NPCs giving you specific tasks that have already been completed before by another.

    As far as I know, the only way to abandon quests all-together is to have a fully player-driven MMO, where players create their own requests for players of a lower caliber to complete. This would work well in a sandbox.

     

    The problem is that with today's resources as they are for the industry, and the preference of today's resources being put into more mainstream types of MMOs that follow a proven system there is no way to create an 'ideal' sandbox game or MMO without quests. MUDs have come close to achieving this, with player-run main factions as a part of the themepark, though nearly all still have quests. It would also have things players could achieve without grinding, such as having your character work at a task while you are offline, to simulate the time spent in the real world and possibly achieve better immersion if done properly.

    An MMO of this caliber would require a very large team, with a plethora of intelligent designers thinking of every aspect of the game. An ideal physics system would be nice, as well as control of the world's terrain and cities much like WURM online if it were a sandbox, but with the pace of Minecraft to a certain extent depending on what items your character was using to accomplish the task. 

    As a freelance designer with little experience, I still have time to think over the major plague of the MMO 'Treadmill' though I have never taken the thought into detail until now.

  • AxehiltAxehilt San Francisco, CAPosts: 8,745Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Deivos

    If you're going to discuss the truth, you need to establish what is the truth.

     What was described previously was not quests, but a list of activities. Such things can exist entirely without a questing framework, and indeed does in regards already. It's not as prolific or obvious as when it's done as a quest where it outlines exactly what you need to do to get a reward, but it can viably exist without it. 

    The general complaint I'd have about how quests are largely handled right now is that they are not reducing the grind, they are migrating it into a different package. As long as games have a distinctly finite set of actions with which you can interact with the world, that will always be the case.

    Well without a quest system even if a game had the same activity variety, the player will essentially be penalized for switching between them -- much like how in archaic Endless Mob Grind MMORPGs you were penalized for fighting a variety of mob types (because it takes time to travel between different mob types, and that time is completely unrewarded without a quest system.)  At least not unless we're talking about an MMORPG with every activity and mob in the same place, or where you can teleport anywhere instantly.

    Eventually everything seems like a grind.  But it's fairly well-understood that by being dramatically less repetitive, quests were a significant reduction in grind.

    "Joe stated his case logically and passionately, but his perceived effeminate voice only drew big gales of stupid laughter..." -Idiocracy
    "There is only one good, knowledge, and one evil, ignorance." -Socrates

  • DeivosDeivos Mountain View, CAPosts: 1,791Member Uncommon

    Yeah, that skipped the fact that a quest system is just a wrapper for activities.

     

    You only perceive the action of flipping activities to be a penalty because you built a dichotomy that caters to it. Arguments built to task are not arguments of the systems as a whole.

     

    Quests functionally only serve to make the grind shorter by tossing lumps of reward at you. When they are accounted for with the leveling curve in the game, that claim flies out the window as well, because it becomes a balance of reward gained from the activity as well as that gained from the quest.

     

    So no, in reality it does nothing for the grind save to put it in a different package.

     

    The claim time goes unrewarded only works in the context of events not being supported. Players can very easily have the option of earning xp for exploring zones or receiving a reward for hitting forms of travel milestones, thereby replacing what they would have 'lost' in your mind to the lack of a quest driving that action.

     

    The problem with the example you give is that those older titles didn't have the same activities and rewards, it's not equivalent comparison between content, and an inaccurate argument to make.

     

    And that was my entire point right there. No matter which way you do it, it's just looking for a way to keep people going.

    Ultimately I just have the opinion that pushing the reward system back away from quests and instead into an achievement system coupled with a bit more randomness would end up making players more content, as the treadmill is always running at their pace instead of having to grind mobs at a single spot or constantly jump between quest hubs.

    "The knowledge of the theory of logic has no tendency whatever to make men good reasoners."
    - Thomas B. Macaulay

  • PhryPhry HampshirePosts: 6,295Member Uncommon

    afaik questing didnt really exist much Pre-WoW, even Eve doesnt really have questing, oh you can do mission running for cash and LP's but their not really all that significant, even in SWG, before they shot it to pieces with the NGE, the closest thing to 'questing' there was mission terminals that would create a creature/faction spawn for you to destroy, i think too many games focus too much on the whole questing experience, and less on the 'world experience' though with games like Neverwinter, its because there isnt really a 'world' but a series of maps with very linear pathways/mobs etc. it seems like modern MMO's have moved away from having a 'persistent world' in favour of instanced and phased zones that are 'stitched' together with quests/missions, i see these games as having zero longevity tbh, as their dependent on the players willingness to continue 'grinding' quests with very little variation except perhaps the name of the mob involved or the locations. Imo one of the main reasons why WoW managed to continue as long as it did, was because it had such a huge game world, even if the progression was linear, the number of paths you chose to travel throughout the game were numerous enough that you werent repeating things too much, and you didnt really have to quest either, i even levelled up a hunter in WoW without doing a single quest,  even managed to get to level 54, just by travelling around, killing things, and doing the odd dungeon run - without accepting any quests in the process, something that just isnt possible with some games as the model the game relies on is too closely tied into the questing system, whether its quest hubs or dynamic quest 'spawns'.

    To me, if a MMO isnt fun to play without questing, then its not a complete game.image

  • WizardryWizardry Ontario, CanadaPosts: 8,454Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Vermillion_Raventhal
    We've been stuck with quest mechanics for a while and likely will be stuck with them forever.  Kill, Fedex, Collect items from dead, Escort, Locate items in area, defend area against waves, click something to activate something.  I am sure they're more but it's largely the gist of it.
     
    OK, to the question how would you modify current MMORPG quest to bring freshness to SOME has become a stale aspect of MMORPG gaming?
     
     
     

    Start with "interaction" there is little of that.

    I guess i should side track and mention the fact that you need a developer that wants to make a great game and not just looking to make a fast mmo designed around making tons of profit and that has been the biggest problem.

    To have really fun interaction you need to remove the hand holding and sparkles.Then you need to have PHYSICs,so that you can have destructive surfaces and just overall realistic interaction,other wise you end up with dull things like pull this lever or enter this warp field.

    Basically you need TOOLS to work with to make a great quest.One of the worst ideas i see in games is making you wander to some instance and linear dungeon path that really has no purpose than to force you to fight a dozen trash mobs to get to some boss.

    A quick example,perhaps you enter some zone,everything looks empty but you can blast away the side of a mountain to enter to the other side or maybe a dungeon.Perhaps you have to cross a bridge to avoid being attacked and then can destroy the bridge to make the enemy fall into a gorge.If the game has climbing abilities then you might have to scale mountain sides but might encounter hidden paths along the way and enemies to fight as well.How about falling debris as you try to scale the mountain side?Imagine if you could actually destroy the ground and make your own paths or tunnels.

    We have seen ideas already used they just need a little more to them ,example putting out fires or flying a ship or plane.Maybe you would have to actually craft that plane or ship to be able to do the quest.If you have meaningful stats in the game,you might need a player with a lot of strength to open a passage or pull that sword out of the ground.Instead of simply clicking on a NPC,perhaps he challenges you to a duel or a card game.

    I could go on and on,just think of any base idea and you can expanding  on it in endless ways.


    Samoan Diamond

  • UsualSuspectUsualSuspect CardiffPosts: 1,243Member

    The problem is that MMO's have become far too linear, which, when you're trying to emulate a fantasy world, really doesn't make a lot of sense. Most MMO's have everyone start in the same location, move on from quest hub to quest hub, before eventually reaching end game which is the furthest link in the chain. It's horrible design.

    The reason I liked EQ and LOTRO so much was the different starting areas and the actual feel that you were in a world, not just a series of linked areas. In the case of LOTRO, if I was a Hobbit I'd start in The Shire and make my way up toward Bree and onwards. If I was a Dwarf I'd be in a different place entirely, as an Elf somewhere else. But they were all accessible to everyone else. The same with EQ, I could start in Freeport, Greater Faydark, Qeynos, Neriak and a load of other places. The world was massive and everything was connected - some areas were more dangerous than others, some areas had dangerous mobs wandering through on occasion, which always kept you on your toes.

    Now we have - everyone starts at A, does quest B, C and D, then moves on to area E which gives quest F, G and H before pointing people to location I. If the worlds were more open such as EQ and LOTRO then you'd have more varied quests. Some of the quests in EQ, for example, started off in one part of the world and had you searching for parts of an item that were dropped in other parts of the world, be it random mobs in open areas or a named mob in a dungeon somewhere. These, to me, were actual quests, not some random task to travel 10 feet and kill half a dozen wolves who are threatening that farmer 15 feet in the same direction.

    If developers started making actual worlds instead of little mini-game activities that lead you along a set path, I think we'd see a lot more interesting quests incorporated. The chances of that while WoW is still king? Probably nil.

  • AxehiltAxehilt San Francisco, CAPosts: 8,745Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Deivos

    Yeah, that skipped the fact that a quest system is just a wrapper for activities.

    You only perceive the action of flipping activities to be a penalty because you built a dichotomy that caters to it. Arguments built to task are not arguments of the systems as a whole.

    Quests functionally only serve to make the grind shorter by tossing lumps of reward at you. When they are accounted for with the leveling curve in the game, that claim flies out the window as well, because it becomes a balance of reward gained from the activity as well as that gained from the quest.

    So no, in reality it does nothing for the grind save to put it in a different package.

    The claim time goes unrewarded only works in the context of events not being supported. Players can very easily have the option of earning xp for exploring zones or receiving a reward for hitting forms of travel milestones, thereby replacing what they would have 'lost' in your mind to the lack of a quest driving that action.

     The problem with the example you give is that those older titles didn't have the same activities and rewards, it's not equivalent comparison between content, and an inaccurate argument to make. 

    And that was my entire point right there. No matter which way you do it, it's just looking for a way to keep people going.

    Ultimately I just have the opinion that pushing the reward system back away from quests and instead into an achievement system coupled with a bit more randomness would end up making players more content, as the treadmill is always running at their pace instead of having to grind mobs at a single spot or constantly jump between quest hubs.

    What are you talking about?

    Quests are a wrapper for the varied activities, absolutely.  They're a wrapper that works.

    It's not that I "perceive" there being a penalty for switching, there actually is a penalty for switching.   If you kill one mob a minute, then in 100 minutes you can either:

    1. Kill 100 mobs.
    2. Kill 80 mobs, because you spent 20 total minutes traveling between 3-4 different mob types.
    So switching activities is a significant penalty, and players are rewarded for the most boring choice: repetition.   (Incidentally this is why it wouldn't matter if you gave early MMORPGs more activity variety: because if you can do 1 activity per minute, the same principle applies, and switching is significantly penalized.)
     
    Quests don't make the grind shorter due to reward.  The reward's only importance (beyond being a reward, which is fun) is what I just described above: ensuring activity variety isn't penalized.
     
    Quest make grind less because they're more varied.  "Grind" is a player saying "I'm bored".  Players are bored fastest in repetitive games.  And as we've been discussing, the primary function of quests is to reduce repetition (by rewarding activity variety.)
     
    Basically removing quests fundamentally gimps the gameplay of a game.  You're going to have quests in some form, whether or not they're an interface for serving up big text blocks.   Because without some system for serving the player gameplay variety, they won't end up experiencing gameplay variety, and will quickly bore of the game and describe it as a grind.

    "Joe stated his case logically and passionately, but his perceived effeminate voice only drew big gales of stupid laughter..." -Idiocracy
    "There is only one good, knowledge, and one evil, ignorance." -Socrates

  • UsualSuspectUsualSuspect CardiffPosts: 1,243Member
    Originally posted by Axehilt

    It's not that I "perceive" there being a penalty for switching, there actually is a penalty for switching.   If you kill one mob a minute, then in 100 minutes you can either:

    1. Kill 100 mobs.
    2. Kill 80 mobs, because you spent 20 total minutes traveling between 3-4 different mob types.
    So switching activities is a significant penalty, and players are rewarded for the most boring choice: repetition. 

    Wow. Is that how you approach games? With the most efficient way of advancing? See, I'd be asking to move on after 50 mobs, get a new bit of scenery, not sticking to the same spot because it's a less efficient way of gaining xp if you spend time moving. What nonsense. If people want to play that way then good for them, but a game is meant to be enjoyed, not be an exercise in precision mechanics.

  • ArclanArclan Chicago, ILPosts: 1,494Member Uncommon


    Originally posted by maplestone
    ...So my argument is that in order to improve quests, you have ignore the quests, ignore the story, ignore the lore and simply ask: if there were no exclaimation marks and no question marks, is this something that I would have fun doing for a few hours?


    Yes that is the perfect test, IMO.



    Originally posted by Deivos
    ...You only perceive the action of flipping activities to be a penalty because you built a dichotomy that caters to it. Arguments built to task are not arguments of the systems as a whole. Quests functionally only serve to make the grind shorter by tossing lumps of reward at you. When they are accounted for with the leveling curve in the game, that claim flies out the window as well, because it becomes a balance of reward gained from the activity as well as that gained from the quest. So no, in reality it does nothing for the grind save to put it in a different package...

    Devious, I think I shall refer to you as The Oracle. There is much wisdom in your words.



    Originally posted by UsualSuspect
    The problem is that MMO's have become far too linear, which, when you're trying to emulate a fantasy world, really doesn't make a lot of sense. Most MMO's have everyone start in the same location, move on from quest hub to quest hub, before eventually reaching end game which is the furthest link in the chain. It's horrible design....If developers started making actual worlds instead of little mini-game activities that lead you along a set path, I think we'd see a lot more interesting quests incorporated. The chances of that while WoW is still king? Probably nil.


    Agreed, and well said.



    Originally posted by UsualSuspect
    Wow. Is that how you approach games? With the most efficient way of advancing? ... a game is meant to be enjoyed, not be an exercise in precision mechanics.


    Exactly, and this is why the term "Grind" arose; players today focus on their xp gain, whereas in EQ the xp gain was secondary to enjoying the scenery for many of us.

    Luckily, i don't need you to like me to enjoy video games. -nariusseldon.
    In F2P I think it's more a case of the game's trying to play the player's. -laserit

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

    The problem is that MMO's have become far too linear, which, when you're trying to emulate a fantasy world, really doesn't make a lot of sense. Most MMO's have everyone start in the same location, move on from quest hub to quest hub, before eventually reaching end game which is the furthest link in the chain. It's horrible design.

    That is a false premise. There is no reason why a MMO needs to emulate a fantasy world. In fact, that is the problem.

    If they put everything in instances, and change the instances around the user, it will feel much more alive, because the "world" can change around you in response to the story and what you do.

    There is no reason for quest hubs except because you have to use a persistent fantasy world. That is why story instances like those in STO or NWO has much better story quests, than world-based questing.

    The best way to overhaul quest is to put everything into instances.

  • DeivosDeivos Mountain View, CAPosts: 1,791Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Axehilt

    What are you talking about?

    Quests are a wrapper for the varied activities, absolutely.  They're a wrapper that works.

    It's not that I "perceive" there being a penalty for switching, there actually is a penalty for switching.   If you kill one mob a minute, then in 100 minutes you can either:

    1. Kill 100 mobs.
    2. Kill 80 mobs, because you spent 20 total minutes traveling between 3-4 different mob types.
    So switching activities is a significant penalty, and players are rewarded for the most boring choice: repetition.   (Incidentally this is why it wouldn't matter if you gave early MMORPGs more activity variety: because if you can do 1 activity per minute, the same principle applies, and switching is significantly penalized.)
     
    Quests don't make the grind shorter due to reward.  The reward's only importance (beyond being a reward, which is fun) is what I just described above: ensuring activity variety isn't penalized.
     
    Quest make grind less because they're more varied.  "Grind" is a player saying "I'm bored".  Players are bored fastest in repetitive games.  And as we've been discussing, the primary function of quests is to reduce repetition (by rewarding activity variety.)
     
    Basically removing quests fundamentally gimps the gameplay of a game.  You're going to have quests in some form, whether or not they're an interface for serving up big text blocks.   Because without some system for serving the player gameplay variety, they won't end up experiencing gameplay variety, and will quickly bore of the game and describe it as a grind.

    Incorrect. You're attributing aspects to quests that do not define them exclusively.

     

    I already gave an example in the use of achievements. By replacing the presence of quests to reward such gaps with achievements given at regular intervals, you are able to avoid such shortcomings.

     

    Quests do not give you fundamentally more variety, that can't be said clearly enough. They are a single method to absolve an issue with the way some games are seen to operate, and by far not the only ones.

     

    I don't even see why you're trying to rant about this as what you said is largely in agreement with my own commentary. Not once have I said to kill quests, I have talked of evolving them.

     

    The only divergence is where I have noted that quests are a wrapper for what is ultimately the same set of activities. Perhaps the biggest point we'd be separated in is the notion of fun, where I consider the activity itself should be fun and not only so due to a reward handed after. But that is a separate debate for a different thread.

    "The knowledge of the theory of logic has no tendency whatever to make men good reasoners."
    - Thomas B. Macaulay

  • ZekiahZekiah Aurora, COPosts: 2,499Member

    1) Player kills mob x or finds y

    2) Mob x drops item z

    3) Player returns to town, asks NPCs about said item

    4) Random NPC responses:

        a) "I've heard about those, if you get A, B and C, I might be able to create D, E or F."

        b) "NPC U was talking about that the other day, check with them."

        c) Use your imagination, isn't that what designers are supposed to do? Duh.

    5) Random rewards:

        a) Alternate quest advancement/chains

        b) Random items within parameters and random stats

        c) Use your imagination, isn't that what designers are supposed to do? Duh.

     

    You get the idea. Where is the creativity? Where are the dreams? Where's the excitement and wonder?

    The MMO industry had/has so much potential but so much fail. So much fail.

    "Censorship is never over for those who have experienced it. It is a brand on the imagination that affects the individual who has suffered it, forever." - Noam Chomsky

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

    1) Player kills mob x or finds y

    2) Mob x drops item z

    3) Player returns to town, asks NPCs about said item

    4) Random NPC responses:

        a) "I've heard about those, if you get A, B and C, I might be able to create D, E or F."

        b) "NPC U was talking about that the other day, check with them."

        c) Use your imagination, isn't that what designers are supposed to do? Duh.

    5) Random rewards:

        a) Alternate quest advancement/chains

        b) Random items within parameters and random stats

        c) Use your imagination, isn't that what designers are supposed to do? Duh.

     

    You get the idea. Where is the creativity? Where are the dreams? Where's the excitement and wonder?

    The MMO industry had/has so much potential but so much fail. So much fail.

    The creativity is in how to dress that up into a story.

    Look at Bioshock Infinity .. you go from point A to B, killing stuff .. no difference than the list you make up ... but it is a great game. The difference is that it dress it up with good writing, good animation, and create the right mood..

  • The biggest change I'd make to quests, is to make quests optional. I don't mean simply not doing the quest, I mean that you need to think if you want to do the quest or not.

     

    Maybe killing 10 wolves for their pelts would be a good quest for an industrial character, but for a class that is looking to enter a grove of druids, accepting that quest would be a negative thing. While I realize this type of system lends itself to branching and thus more complex game design, I do feel it'd make quests feel like they'd have a meaningful impact on your characters story as how your character interacts with the world is a direct result of your choices.

     

    You might be presented with two quests at one point, kill ten vampires, or bring ten humans to the vampires, one could bring you favor with vampires, the other with the town guards.

  • ZekiahZekiah Aurora, COPosts: 2,499Member
    Originally posted by nariusseldon
    Originally posted by Zekiah

    1) Player kills mob x or finds y

    2) Mob x drops item z

    3) Player returns to town, asks NPCs about said item

    4) Random NPC responses:

        a) "I've heard about those, if you get A, B and C, I might be able to create D, E or F."

        b) "NPC U was talking about that the other day, check with them."

        c) Use your imagination, isn't that what designers are supposed to do? Duh.

    5) Random rewards:

        a) Alternate quest advancement/chains

        b) Random items within parameters and random stats

        c) Use your imagination, isn't that what designers are supposed to do? Duh.

     

    You get the idea. Where is the creativity? Where are the dreams? Where's the excitement and wonder?

    The MMO industry had/has so much potential but so much fail. So much fail.

    The creativity is in how to dress that up into a story.

    Look at Bioshock Infinity .. you go from point A to B, killing stuff .. no difference than the list you make up ... but it is a great game. The difference is that it dress it up with good writing, good animation, and create the right mood..

    No, I don't want developers spending ridiculous amounts of time and money on storylines and video cutscenes. Develop solid, immersive content/worlds and players will make their own stories. We all realize after your countless themepark defense posts that you love those type of games, but a lot of us don't. You keep pretending that you have the answers for everyone else and you don't.

    "Censorship is never over for those who have experienced it. It is a brand on the imagination that affects the individual who has suffered it, forever." - Noam Chomsky

  • UsualSuspectUsualSuspect CardiffPosts: 1,243Member
    Originally posted by nariusseldon

    That is a false premise. There is no reason why a MMO needs to emulate a fantasy world. In fact, that is the problem.

    If they put everything in instances, and change the instances around the user, it will feel much more alive, because the "world" can change around you in response to the story and what you do.

    Seriously? It's an RPG, of course you need a fantasy world. Instances are just cheap ways of creating different areas in that fantasy world and, personally, I find them to be a terrible invention. It turns an MMO into little more than a lobby game. And what happens in your instanced world to all the other players if they choose different responses to you? Player 1 kills Dragon, saves town, Player 2 loses against Dragon and town is destroyed. How are those two players now supposed to interact?

    What you're proposing works great for a single player game, but for an MMO it really doesn't. But then, most MMO's now seem to be becoming single player games, so what the hell, might as well go the whole route and get rid of the other players too.

  • AxehiltAxehilt San Francisco, CAPosts: 8,745Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by UsualSuspect

    Wow. Is that how you approach games? With the most efficient way of advancing? See, I'd be asking to move on after 50 mobs, get a new bit of scenery, not sticking to the same spot because it's a less efficient way of gaining xp if you spend time moving. What nonsense. If people want to play that way then good for them, but a game is meant to be enjoyed, not be an exercise in precision mechanics.

    The lion's share of game mechanics are about being efficient at whatever it is you're doing.  How can you advance the fastest, deal the most damage, survive the roughest encounters, and earn the best rewards?

    Because it's the mastery of those types of patterns which fundamentally drive much of gaming's fun, because our minds are pre-programmed to enjoy learning them (and because they've been designed in turn to be fun to learn,) which is why we play.

    The thing is, this isn't a necessary evil.  Questing systems solve it.  Even with travel time, variety is rewarded (even better rewarded than grinding usually.)  Players are going to search for and find the quickest, most effective path to being the strongest character they can make, and if that path involves excessive repetition they're going to quit because their options are (a) excessive repetition or (b) intentionally advancing slow for no good reason other than the fact that the game is designed poorly.

    "Joe stated his case logically and passionately, but his perceived effeminate voice only drew big gales of stupid laughter..." -Idiocracy
    "There is only one good, knowledge, and one evil, ignorance." -Socrates

  • AxehiltAxehilt San Francisco, CAPosts: 8,745Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Deivos

    Incorrect. You're attributing aspects to quests that do not define them exclusively. 

    I already gave an example in the use of achievements. By replacing the presence of quests to reward such gaps with achievements given at regular intervals, you are able to avoid such shortcomings. 

    Quests do not give you fundamentally more variety, that can't be said clearly enough. They are a single method to absolve an issue with the way some games are seen to operate, and by far not the only ones. 

    I don't even see why you're trying to rant about this as what you said is largely in agreement with my own commentary. Not once have I said to kill quests, I have talked of evolving them. 

    The only divergence is where I have noted that quests are a wrapper for what is ultimately the same set of activities. Perhaps the biggest point we'd be separated in is the notion of fun, where I consider the activity itself should be fun and not only so due to a reward handed after. But that is a separate debate for a different thread.

    If achievements provide rewards, they're quests.  They're an interface with a stated goal, and you do that goal and you get a reward.

    But sure, if it makes you feel like you've "gotten rid of quests" by creating quests (er, I mean "achievements!" *wink*) then more power to you.

    I never said quests were the only method to provide gameplay variety. In fact I pointed out two other ways variety could exist without quests. But they don't fit very well in MMORPGs.

    "Joe stated his case logically and passionately, but his perceived effeminate voice only drew big gales of stupid laughter..." -Idiocracy
    "There is only one good, knowledge, and one evil, ignorance." -Socrates

  • DavisFlightDavisFlight Talahasee, FLPosts: 2,556Member
    Originally posted by Axehilt
    Originally posted by DavisFlight
    All of that breaks down into "Run to the glowing point on your map, click one button". There's no thought behind it, no actually different mechanics. They're just chores. And they're all the same and always will be the same.
     
    When killing mobs in DAoC, I could choose where to go, make my own difficulty, explore where I wanted, fight different mobs with different tactics. Different players would make each experience unique. The grind lasted too long, that's for sure, but the game didn't try to insult your intelligence by pretending you were doing some noble quest for an NPC (that in reality is just a boring chore). It was an honest grind. I'd rather have the freedom to group with other players and go where I want (with the option of taking a break by finding a quest, doing bounty missions, or kill tasks) than by being forced to solo grind chores for a layabout NPC with no change for 70 levels.

    You don't really get to address a list of varied activities and claim they involve "no thought" when your side of the fence requires less thought and fewer activities.

    Stopped reading there.

     

    There was SO MUCH more thought involved in managing a camp in a hostile non instanced area than there is following a glowing quest marker to a level scaled instance where you are designed to win and there is no penalty for failure. And the quests in old MMOs actually had you think.

  • mmoskimmoski plymouthPosts: 282Member

    My plan is to get away from the typical static/chain questing systems for my game, I also looked at the storybricks system that's going to be used for EQnext  but really that kind of a system will just produce static user made quests(I'm not saying that's not cool, it's cool when in a diverse sandbox environment).

    But my approach is to integrate a AI NPC generation system combine with multi dimensional quest trees and chain diversification, available dependent on NPC context, environment, player to NPC communication and player to NPC attributes (yeah you need to talk to my NPC's by typing)(similar to talking to an "semi intelligent"  IRC Bot but with context keyword and sentence definition).

    There's so much more to this, such as cross context NPC to NPC root quest to node conformation and extended Quest chain generation etc...  It's not  going to be easy but I think it's worth it.

  • DeivosDeivos Mountain View, CAPosts: 1,791Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Axehilt

    If achievements provide rewards, they're quests.  They're an interface with a stated goal, and you do that goal and you get a reward.

    But sure, if it makes you feel like you've "gotten rid of quests" by creating quests (er, I mean "achievements!" *wink*) then more power to you.

    I never said quests were the only method to provide gameplay variety. In fact I pointed out two other ways variety could exist without quests. But they don't fit very well in MMORPGs.

    An achievement isn't a quest for the same reason you wouldn't call killing a monster a quest. Slapping a  UI on something doesn't make it a quest, that's only the idea in your head.

    Sure, you know killing X amount of mobs will net you a bonus. But there's no dialog, context, etc that dictates the need to do so. It's just something that given time will happen.

    Same as if you made the game measure distance traveled to reward the player on intervals.

    If you're going to call that questing, then killing mobs endlessly is also questing (given there is a clear means of action to grant reward) and you have zero logical ground to make any argument.

    If you wanted to be technical, any activity a person chooses to do would be a quest. Seeing as that's not generally the case in games and we knowingly are referring to quest as a specific setup, flexing the definition to fit your whim is just semantics for a worthless debate.

     

    It's nice that you'd give a few suggestions, seeing as that was somewhat the point of the thread. To be arbitrarily rebuking other posts incorrectly is rather unnecessary though.

     

    I additionally don't see your point in your last remark as I never argued for or against that, don't start more pointless arguments.

    "The knowledge of the theory of logic has no tendency whatever to make men good reasoners."
    - Thomas B. Macaulay

  • ragz45ragz45 rochester hills, MIPosts: 686Member Uncommon

    Imagine for a moment, if GW2 had never included any of the renown hearts.  And instead had filled the world with 10x 20x as many randomly spawning events through out it's zones.  With every single one of the event lines having a great backstory and interesting reasons for the events actually happening.  Also imagine that they had enough events in each zone that you would rarely ever see the same event twice in a weeks time period.

     

    I understand that this isn't logistically feasible, but that would be one badass MMO.

     

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