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Originally posted by Quirhid Originally posted by Kyleran Had to fix that for you, and while I share your viewpoint regarding the usefulness of housing in a MMO, I also acknowledge that by incorporating these fluff items including in depth character/item looks customization, pets etc broadens the appeal of a game to wider audience which generally is a good thing as long as the fluff doesn't divert too many resources from core game play features
Well yes. I left that out for emphasis.
They don't tend to be highly complex systems (as far as object-coding goes).
Anybody who worries about fluff "taking resources from core game" features really hasn't thought it through very deeply. Good training projects to give to your junior staff (except the Animators; not entirely sure what their "freshman" projects are...emotes maybe?).
Ok here is the Video of me building a house in the Prototype:
Company OwnerMMO InteractiveGreed Monger
Originally posted by JamesP Ok here is the Video of me building a house in the Prototype:
Looks like a very interesting system, having so many small "building blocks" gives the player a wide variety of options.
But isn't it a trade-off ? Won't all those seperate objects start causing lag ? That model mansion would probably run to 200+ 3-D objects when completed, and then you still have to add all the furniture and decorations...
And doesn't the presence of so many objects pose serious challenges for NPC AI when determining pathing ?
Originally posted by SpottyGekko Originally posted by JamesP Ok here is the Video of me building a house in the Prototype:
Well the solution is a mix of several other systems. Server side I have a custom Area of Interest System. Houses will only be displayed if your with in the area of interest for that house. The AOI settings for each object can be set on the fly resulting in a dynamic system that can be adjusted based on the situation the player finds him/her self in at any giving time and based on the players settings/computer specs. If the player enters a heavily packed city center for example the AOI can be decreased allowing for more objects to be displayed for each building.
Item's inside a house will only be rendered once the player steps onto the parcel that the house resides in. Which means that unneeded objects won't be rendered. Each parcel will also be allowed a certain number of Rendered objects and won't be able to have more then that number. Alot of these settings will be figured out during Alpha when we conduct Load tests.
The Models them self use Texture atlases which helps to keep the Draw Calls down to a minimum. As a last area to optimize if needed we can also combine the meshes into a single mesh once the house is completely built.
Path finding: We have a dynamic Path finding solution which can adjust at runtime. NPCs will be kept down to a minimum where Greed Monger is mostly a Player Driven game,. We will have City Guards, Player Hired Vendors, Bar Keepers, and other sorts of NPCs that do certain tasks. Most of these types of NPCs however will be stationary at their place of work. For the few Wondering NPCs we add in to give the world more life they will mostly stick to the streets and paths which should be free from too many Obstacles for them to path around.
Ultima Online had a good concept for housing but it sort of fell short of the mark for me.. Especially after my house was bugged into and robbed blind.. Plus, the sheer amount of player houses out in the wilderness became a little gaudy really.. It was hard to find an area untouched by player homes..
Horizons (before it became known as just Istaria) had an excellent system for housing.. Or more appropriately, a system to design a house, merchant area, storage, or whatever you or your guild wanted.. Whole guild townships grew up over weeks and months.. Plus, they were in set parcels of land so they didn't interfere with your cross-country adventuring..
Overall, however, I'd say Everquest 2 has the best system in place.. With 3 types of guild halls and a ton of player homes (albeit a bunch of them are Station Cash purchases), EQ2 has most of the competitors beat.. I spent a bit of time myself falling into the "decorating" crowd and was surprised by the many options in house design..
You have your fear, which might become reality; and you have Godzilla, which IS reality. - Ogata
Originally posted by nilden Nothing even comes close to what you could do in Star Wars Galaxies with player houses and starships.
yah nothing is more awesome than having the landscape littered with ghost towns. Ill take instanced any day of the week.
No matter how cynical you become, its never enough to keep up - Lily Tomlin
Originally posted by apocoluster Originally posted by nilden Nothing even comes close to what you could do in Star Wars Galaxies with player houses and starships.
That's why any good open world housing system must have a decay and maintenance system.
What would actually be nice and quite immersive is if after a specific time without maintenance by the player, the house starts to decay into a ruin which will stay around a while and can be "repaired" if the player comes back, until it completely disappears freeing up the spot for another player's house.
Ruined cities could actually add the feeling of a living, breathing world.
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Originally posted by JamesP What are some games that you guys feel got buildable Player housing correct and what are some MMOs that you felt didn't get it right? Would you guys rather have an advanced Modular System which allows you to design your own houses from the different blocks available or preset layouts/Prefab housing?
Both of them have awesome player housing in my opinion.
Lotro has a bad one with predetermined hooks for furniture. At least it has housing even if it's not a good one.
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It's a pity that cities were mostly ghost town but they looked good. And player spaceships were awesome, I took a ride in a millenium falcom witha friend, I roamed around inside while it traveled, it was so fun.
Originally posted by Rydeson Good Points Spotty.. The one point you brought up with SWG was the extra inventory, which was one major perk I considered.. One of the issues I had with SWG was the lack of policing how cities were being abused.. and also the lack of originality.. People loved having their own shop.. BUT.. there was not one commercial floorplan for vendors.. Musicians had theaters, Doc's had hospitals, and then cantinas.. but there wasn't a true "STORE" .. Player cities I think ran into the same problem much of the game did after release, it lost sight of what they were, and where they were going.. I heard that many devs had moved on, and they were either never replace or the new ones were clueless.. I had left SWG before NGE, because the game just seemed lost in what direction they were going.. Exploits ran rapid, and bugs ignored..
Underlined was excactly the great thing for me, sure I used at first a small house, moved to a medium house and eventually created a large house which then was swapped into our guildhall to made a large mall. It was the players desision how their store looked, thankfully without a commercial floorplan. it was left to players creativity and allot incl. me did build true store's. Sure from the outside apart from the vendor sign it all where houses, but inside we made some very creative store's. Would be different if everyone had the same floorplans and might even become boring to not be creative in how you designed your shop.
But full on topic, yes I feel SWG had the greatest housing system and I never have seen or experianced anything alike. Sure there are some MMORPG's that do offer or go beyond SWG's housing but then the overall visual settings isn't what I like.
1. UO - It is 2D, but you build every block, and can get up to a castle sized house.
2. SWG - Open world 3D housing, different models, but not as customizable as UO.
3. Vanguard - 3D, same as SWG with pre-built plans, housing areas/plots that are sectioned off to keep from having a sprawl everywhere.
The best way to kill creativity is restricting the placement of items in a house like Lord of the Rings Online did with their hook system. It strangled your ability to place items of furniture in ways the creators of the game never thought of. Just take a gander at the exhibition on the Everquest 2 boards. Players with limitless imagination have come up with unique and thoroughly exciting ways to use bookshelves to make fireplaces or sconces for fire in those fireplaces. Carpets on walls to make aquariums or interesting partitions to rooms or levels in a place with a high enough ceiling like the homes in Freeport. This could give you a mezzanine like floor or an attic. So wonderful to allow your playerbase the freedom to create and not be limited by the developers idea of where a stick of furniture should lie.
Second it is also amazing to build your house including the bricks like Vanguard allowed on strips of land mass sometimes out in the middle of nowhere which I will come to in a moment. The houses were predesigned but the inside was free like EQ 2 but unfortunately the choice of items to place in them were not as vast as EQ 2. The sad thing about Vanguard was that no one ever got to see your creations because unlike EQ 2 which was in the main street in some town this was in the boondocks somewhere the monsters might roam. Plus EQ 2 allowed your home to be converted into a store so people visited your home and got to see your creativity or your borrowed creativity first hand.
My Vanguard home unfortunately I do not have both my Qeynos and Freeport home pictures for your perusal. This Vanguard adobe was very modest and I built most of what you see with almost every crafter in the game . Probably this crafting was what did my wrist in and I had to quit the game.
This is the link I mentioned sorry should have edited my earlier post but just take a look at the amazing ideas some of these players had. The graphics are dated but just concentrate on the scope of ideas and how a free system can nurture that.
SWG nailed it (imo), Vanguard had a good housing system. O like the ability to build and design my own house. Rift has a great housing idea, some pre-fab, some just a blank space where you can build anything. I definitely prefer building my own housing. Instanced is horrible.
If you want a new idea, go read an old book.
End of discussion.
Actually, if you think about it, Minecraft has better housing than most MMORPGs ;-)
Originally posted by LoverNoFighter Originally posted by nilden Nothing even comes close to what you could do in Star Wars Galaxies with player houses and starships.
SWG housing can be done even better. It relied on pre-made houses, a system where you can entirely design your own house would be superior.
The maintenance system wasn't efficient enough either, since even if the player had quit the game, maintenance would automatically continue as long as there was money in his bank account, resulting in dead towns staying in game long after all owners had stopped playing.
The thing is you can actually build Star Wars inside of RIFT Dimentions
Everything build piece by piece!
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I think EQ2 is easily one of the best. I can't comment on SWG because I didn't play it much. Open world housing is ok but I'm against the idea of having massive areas where players completely litter the landscape with their buildings(what I hear from SWG). Or the terrible way Vanguard did it by having very inconvenient plots that could be bought by players to keep indefinitely but never build on them. Not to mention there were a limited number of them so they could all be bought, never used, and overall doesn't add any realistic functionality.
Housing should serve a common function as well as be fun and simple to decorate
With EQ2 you can go there to buy/sell wares to avoid market tax, give offerings to your deity, and use unique housing items for buffs or granting items. In Neocron your apartment was where you stored the majority of your stuff, was the cheapest way to fast travel, you would appear there if you died and can't warp back to that location(safe zone), and also had all the usual tools.
World housing can be great I just haven't seen it be as good as well disguised and convenient instanced housing.
We have released the prototype to our Building Tool now:
Originally posted by JamesP We have released the prototype to our Building Tool now: http://www.greedmonger.com/prototypes/housetool
Hey there JamesP, I just tried but when I open the build tool in the right corner I get "error" and none of the plans like outer wall or type of houses are shown.
There are several models of housing I've liked. I liked EQ2's design where I could build my house, brick and board style and decorate it basically however I want. If there was a way to put that in the real world without cluttering that would be great, maybe a town lotro style.
Istaria is pretty good as well, they give you a plot and about a thousand things you can build on it so you can design your plot almost anyway you want, buildings, gazebos, workshops, trees, bushes, snowmen, sidewalks... but you can't alter the design of each item. and no decorations for inside the structures.
City of heroes was great for building your base, again instanced, but can pick the walls, and place lights and objects around/in/on top to make unique structures.
So for me, something that exists in the real world, brick and board style, function (craft, teleport...), decorate (let me stack peices, flip them around around, fit things into other things to make the look I want. And don't don't don't have an item limit, please don't do that. EQ2 had an 1100 item limit, a lot but not enought to finish my castle, completely lost interest after that.
Here were some of my castle pictures.