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Preffered Spawn system?

HelleriHelleri Felton, CAPosts: 927Member Uncommon

I am interested to know what system of spawning you prefer. We can consider (for scope of the topic) Drops (as in from enemies), Loot (as in from rewards like treasure), Items (miscellaneous things like tools, coins etc. that reappear at regular locations when taken), Materials, Mobs, Bosses, Field Bosses, and Individual creatures as part of things that spawn/re-spawn:

 

- What game has your preferred System of Spawning (If there is a game you have played that does); And why?

 

- Is there a system you absolutely could not stand; And if so, what made it intolerable in your opinion?

 

- If you had your way how would a spawn system look and behave?

 

- Should there be a high degree of consistency in the way things of different natures spawn?

 

 

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Comments

  • MMOExposedMMOExposed lalal land, DCPosts: 6,258Member Uncommon
    Make certain unknown conditions needed for boss spawning.

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  • RydesonRydeson Canton, OHPosts: 3,858Member Uncommon

    I would prefer a hybrid of GW2 and EQ1, with just a pinch of Rift..  

         I like a combination of static mobs that repawn on fixed and variable timers..  I also want to see roaming mobs that again respawn on fixed and variable timers.  Any named mobs will be variable location, on variable timers.. I like to be kept on my toes and would love to see "tracking" come back to gaming..  I love the zone wide Rift invasion idea, and would like to see that theme in more games.. GW2 local or regional dynamic events are great as well..  DELETE and Terminate 98% of all quest lines.. LOL

  • Jean-Luc_PicardJean-Luc_Picard La BarrePosts: 3,549Member Uncommon
    A spawn system that relies on an ecosystem, and not simply on an infinite supply of rats/wolves/dragons to kill.

    Playing now: WoW, Landmark, GW2, The Crew, SotA

    Top 3 MMORPGs played: UO, AC1 and WoW

    Honorable mentions: AO, LotRO, SW:TOR and GW2.

    ----------------

    "The ability to speak doesn't make you intelligent" - Qui-gon Jinn. After many years of reading Internet forums, there's no doubt that neither does the ability to write.
    So if you notice that I'm no longer answering your nonsense, stop trying... because you just joined my block list.

  • HelleriHelleri Felton, CAPosts: 927Member Uncommon

    @MMOExposed

    I like the Idea of unknown variables but I think that these variables should either alternate occasionally for other sets of variables or be  constantly alternating. This would keep fan sites from posting the easy answers by people who worked through it (which would defeat the point if someone could just look it up). This sounds like it would be interesting. I am wondering what sort of conditions for boss spawn are you thinking of for this?.

     

     

    @Rydeson

    Ahhh...so one could only have a reasonable degree of certainty, but would never quite know if they will happen upon a rouge mob or if the monster will respawn before they are fully ready for it. I would think all the timers should be variable. And, we just change the values based on what is needed...field of lvl1 bunnies - respawns between 3-5 seconds. Tougher mobs - between -10-25 seconds. Individual creatures that are good training but rather tough and always agreesive- 50% spawn between 5-10 secends 30% between 11-14 and 20% between 10-18.

     

    I think to add to this well, every creature should have a respawn range. not spawning on a fixed point facing the same direction every time.But, spawning randomly within a range, facing a random direction.

     

     

    @Jean-Luc Picard

    While UO is almost a buzz term (yeah I caught that image), It did have an ecosystem...for the first week....And, they told no one at the time of release. They thought players would figure it out. But, what happened is Players.....Well, they killed everything and it forced the devs to drop in a standard spawn system.

     

    The idea is interesting. Most attempts at executing it have been poor, from what I have seen. I would think well executed would go something like this:

     

    There would be a food chain. And this food chain would have to extend down to the flora resources level. You would have to kill rabbits to keep them from infesting fields (you need plants too). Or  you can let the foxes handle it and elect not to kill them accept when they grow too numerous and start getting at the towns chickens, because there are not enough rabbits. But even if you say to yourself "I want all fur and damn the consequences" after which you go genocide on all of them...foxes and rabbits have deep and hidden burrows. So, you can't possibly get them all.

     

    And there is the point. there would have to be a minimum number that must exist beyond the players control. The player can only force populations to go dormant (killing enough animals will cause them to do their best to avoid you while they breed more numbers). Even if someone manages to kill the very last fox that was in the game. the game will eventually respawn a breeding pair.

     

    So, you could see animal disappear for a while. This would effect the mats market and might be used to even corner it temporarily by clever groups of players. But, a species could never be completely killed.

     

    Reasonably, a kingdom might have guard NPC's that act as game wardens as well. they could warn a player about taking too much from the environment. and maybe even penalize the player who does. they could also be sources of information on the current state of the environment.

     

    It's doable...I think the real question with that one is; in doing it well do we remove a bit of the fun and make things feel like work or like doing much of any thing in the game beyond PvP is too involved to bother with?

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  • PyndaPynda Posts: 738Member Uncommon

    Interesting question. I think the closest I have ever seen to perfection was Asheron's Call 1. Spawns were random (but somewhat level/area based) so you actually had to hunt down what you were looking for. To me that created a sense of adventure, a need for exploration, and alleviated boredom. However I suppose what the majority of players today prefer is simply to have everything be preordained.


    Also, each type of mob in AC1 had it's own elemental/weapon type vulnerability and attack styles. So you would often need to prepare specifically for the type of mobs you were planning to fight by adjusting your own armor and weapons. Then, certain mobs in AC1 were more likely to drop specific types of loot (although nothing was guaranteed). So you had to figure this information out by talking to other players, reading the forum, etc.. And lastly, the stats on the loot itself was always randomly generated. So you never knew if the next corpse you opened up was going to offer a fabulous and unique treasure. I found that really motivating and fun.


    Today world mobs are essentially nothing but place holding trash. No one wants to "grind" anymore. And if you're looking for the good stuff you go to an instance. To get your carbon copy of the same thing everyone else has. What a snoozefest.

  • HelleriHelleri Felton, CAPosts: 927Member Uncommon

    @Pynda

    Loot focus play gets old quickly, I agree. And, I have always though that living creatures, dropping gear is a bad idea in most cases. If a boar drops hide, meat, tusk...that's all well and good...but daggers, staffs and chest-plates...wth image? It makes more sense for an opponent that is geared up. but not when they drop gear that they are not wearing (accept maybe the occasional rare item they could be rationalized to have taken as a trophy from past-fallen-foes). And even if they drop their own gear...well if you could kill them isn't that gear below you?

     

    On the whole, I have always thought gear should mostly be crafted. Bosses could drop more interesting items. A top level dragon (of the eastern variety) could drop a pearl that lets the apex player who has obtained it, could use it in marvelous ways. Like dropping it in a vial of potion to make it so they have a potion, that while it takes time to refill, as long as they never completely empty it, will always fill itself. If they don't drink it often enough it will over flow and any one within a certain radius of them will gain health over time. If they seal it the vial will explode doing a mass radius heal effect. they would occasionally have to replace the vial and maybe they run the risk of cracking the pearl from over use.

     

    Spiders can drop silk and poison glands. If a player collects enough silk they can infuse it's fluid from with fabric to make it more durable. and in smaller amounts can make bow strings that can receive and withstand the blows of blades (though not as good as a shield or melee weapon that can block it would give rangers an added level of protection), and go a lot longer before snapping or needing to be replaced.

     

    Maybe that is all a bit too fantastical...But, the point is bosses can drop amazing items that don't have to be gear.

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  • Lord.BachusLord.Bachus Den HelderPosts: 9,065Member Uncommon

    Non intelligent beasts would spawn random in their zone...

     

    Intelligent ctreatures would spawn in the area where they live, and move outwards from there... so a cave spawning Orcs, or a village spawning Farmers, or a pirate ship spawning pirates 

    Best MMO experiences : EQ(PvE), DAoC(PvP), WoW(total package) LOTRO (worldfeel) GW2 (Artstyle and animations and worlddesign) SWTOR (Story immersion) TSW (story) ESO (character advancement)

  • MyrdynnMyrdynn Beaumont, CAPosts: 1,518Member Uncommon

    Gauntlet Generators, its time!

     

  • whisperwyndwhisperwynd montreal, QCPosts: 1,479Member

     Spawns generally must be automatic. If it was too organic, then a depopulation of certain mob would most surely happen when players farm them. Unless you see the animation of them giving birth to fully grown versions of themselves. Not likely.

     The 'Other' dimension is nice too where they can cross over via portals/rifts etc. That way you don't know the actual population of those mobs or what items they have on them.

     Loot has always bugged me from games that drop relatively mismatched items. The greatsword from the wolf, the mount from small flying creature. Hell, haedpieces from dragons, now where would they be hiding that? image

     These are games however, and some level of disconnection from reality is required I guess. Still, would be nice to see relevant loot from monsters give purpose to killing them, aside from quest required items.

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

    Gauntlet Generators, its time!

    I'm surprised there aren't more of these.

    My dream spawning system is a sort of ecology sim with a fractal generator. 

    Tier 0: a wandering monster

    Tier 1: a camp that increasing the rate of wandering monsters in the area.  The camp itself is tracked by server as if it was a mob - it has stats, health, slots for unique features - enough information that each camp and its inhabitants are a little different and can be procedurally regenerated if the zone is deleted from memory then rebuilt from these stats.  Once players have slain enough wandering monsters, an elite camp-gaurd will spawn for a few hours - if it is defeated, the camp is destroyed.

    Tier 2: a lair ruled by a champion that can more quickly raise nearby wandering monsters into camps.  Just like camps, it has stats and a champion who spawns if enough camps in the area have been destroyed recently.

    Tier 3: a city ruled by a boss that can more quickly turn nearby camps into lairs.

    (etc)

    The game doesn't have to simulate every monster - if an area goes unvisited for a while, the server stops tracking individual mobs and starts just tracking Tier 1 spawns (or tier 2 spaws if the wider area is unvisited), then repopulates the details when a players return to the area. 

    The idea is not that players would be thinly spread over the whole game, but that the world would have a mix of individual players out doing their own thing in lightly-populated areas all the way up to huge groups of players waging month-long campaigns to spawn and defeat densely-populated monster kingdoms.

  • HelleriHelleri Felton, CAPosts: 927Member Uncommon

    I have been thinking a lot on this since yesterday. And, while boss monsters and big mobs are seemingly of principle concern. I can't help but think about how a good system for small game from which common mats are acquired would work.'

     

    As an simplified example I want to present the idea this thread has inspired by talking about Foxes and Rabbits; Dens and Burrows in respect to how the system could work:

     

    Rabbits, which are notorious for breeding like...Well, like Rabbits, could be a very common Animal, with very common always useful drops. Such as;

     

    Meat, Hide, and Sinew.

     

    Now, Meat is self explanatory (they could make rabbit jerky, as food that keeps).

    But, from hide, the player could make rabit-skin glue from rabit-skin shavings (which is a key ingredient in layered armor like fabric lined leather, and linothorax - layered fabric armor - due to it's heavy collagen content). And also, Rabbit Fur, which is soft and a great insulator.

    A player could also scrap the back side of the hide, and stretch and spin sinew (and incredibly strong and elastic type of natural material cord). The uses for this is nearly boundless (bow stringing, lacing, binding, snares, trip wires, knot work etc.)

     

    So, it is obvious that a rabbit as in real life can be a very important animal that there is always a use for. And, so given its propensity for breeding a lot, it's growth rate. And, so they would be hunted a lot. And, need to have some measure safety...

    Hence, Burrows;

     

    Burrows are multiple entrance Living Quarters of Rabbits. An interconnected system of tunnels under a mound. Rabbits spawn in Burrows. Hang out around the entrance as baby Rabbits, and range further out as Adults to forage. Burrows could spawn randomly in the world, often at middle points between sources of plentiful food and good water.

     

    A player might simply kill Rabbits they see out and about in the wild. But, reckless slaying leads to torn and bloodied hides, and gamey meat. Additionally Rabbits are hard to catch and hard to hit given their size and speed. This might be alright for the beginning player who just needs a couple of levels to be strong enough to handle bigger game. But for the player who want to get a good start on skilling, money, and being well supplied in general. A more calculated approach is necessary.

     

    The player might first obtain some switches (harvesting good branches from hazel and osage trees, and debarking, and fire hardening them into sturdy long flexible switches). They will need the switches to set snare traps and to coax rabbits into them. And because switches can break they might want to have a bundle of them.

     

    The player would start by trailing a Rabbit, if they loose sight of it (because it ran out of range) they would track it (a basic ability that lets a players see a faint fading trail towards the last thing they targeted). If it goes in a bush they can use a switch to flush it out. The whole idea being to follow it back to it's Burrow (Burrows at first will not be visually detectable by players until at least one player discovers the Burrow through tracking). Once the burrow is discovered a player can keep it to themselves, maybe just let a couple friends know, or shout it out to every in range. But, once discovered, regardless of what a player chooses to do about it. They won't remain a secret resource for long, as any player approaching a player who has discovered a burrow close enough (when the discovering player is at the site of the burrow) will also see the burrow.

     

    The Burrow will have Sentry Rabbits (that is near impossible to kill, given they are quick to go back under via a hole at their feet, and very alert, with the high ground advantage of being on top of a mound and usually partially within a bush that a mound is built on top of). These Sentry Rabbits will call any Rabbits in the area back to the safety of the Burrow. A player would use their supplies (including switches) to set up snares at any entrances of the burrow they may uncover. A player can only manage two snares at a time (they can set up more but only the last two they set up will be protected from theft by other players).

     

    The sentry Rabbits know when a  Burrow entrance doesn't look right, and will use calls to warn Rabbits in the Burrow about those entrances (The sentry Rabbit can only warn about one entrance at a time). The player will probe an un-snared entrance to drive the rabbits out of other entrances that have snares set up. The sentry will try to warn them. but the player can distract the sentry (it's hard to do this all by yourself and best to have at least one partner).

     

    If the sentry does it's job the other Rabbits will leave the Burrow cautiously (75% chance they will not trigger the snare, 25% chance of remaining in the snare if triggered) and then make a bolt for it (never to return to that Burrow). But, if the players can keep the Sentry distracted while probing the Burrow, other Rabbits will leave the burrow in a panic and get caught in the snares (90% chance they will trigger the snare 10% chance of escaping the snare).

     

    Players have to be quick to bag snared Rabbits and will have to reset the snare or replace it, if it is broken. 3-4 players, each managing a task as a team can garner as much as 60 rabbits an hour before. A team of 2 might get significantly less given the distribution of the work load, many will get a way. 1 person working a burrow is probably better off simply hunting Rabbits that they see away from Burrows (though they have a chance still at getting at least a few).

     

    Too large of a team and the rewards are spread too thinly. To small of a team and the rewards are not as great....

     

    Players who like working in smaller Team or on their own. May want to try their luck at dens;

    Dens Unlike Burrows are fixed locations in the game world that don't disappear when depleted (though if left alone long enough they can become hidden from view by bushes). Dens also have single entrances. They can often be Homes to more Aggressive Creatures (Such as Wolf Packs, Badgers, Wolverines, Linx etc.). What a Player may find in a Den at any given time varies. It could be a Lone Badger (fairly simple kill), Or pair of Wolverines (more difficult but manageable), Sometimes even a pack of wolves (likely certain death without at least one partner and good tactics).

     

    A player must first locate a Den (if they don't already know where one is) And uncover it if necessary (under the idea that topology changes over time and the wilds are easy to loose track of even fixed locations in the den does move withing a certain radius...the rationale is that a player 'could have sworn a den was right there..." but, it turns out that it was a few feet to the left of where they remember or were told it was located - regardless of weather it needs to be uncovered again the den will never leave a certain area and weather or not it contains something will always be there).

     

    Once a den is located through going to the area it is in and uncovering it. A player may investigate the den. Different animals and even Character NPC's (like highwaymen) will occasionally take up residence. Unless a den was just emptied and still uncovered it will have a resident. But the resident won't always be there at the time the player Uncovers it (about a 50-50 chance that someone is home). In the case that nothing is at the den currently a player may excavate the den. They may find the remains of kills (decent materials and sometimes damaged weapons and armor that can be repaired, left there from past kills drug inside). If something is there though uncovering and investigating the Den, are both actions that have a very high chance of rousing the resident  (90% chance of waking resident 70% chance of aggression 30% chance of attempting to flee).

     

    Should a player enter combat as a result and not loose (by death or hasty retreat). They may then harvest the kill (in the case of larger aggressive animals means good grade, hides, bones,meat etc.). And, after the kill the player may excavate the Den, to find the same kind of rewards that would have been there should the resident not have been at home... Sometimes even a chance at long Forgotten Cache's of armor, weapons and valuables such as gems, jewelry, or money.

     

    While a significantly tougher road to go, Dens offer the more Rogueish of players rewards comparable to any good Burrow. With the chance at a lot more given the level of danger.

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  • AxehiltAxehilt San Francisco, CAPosts: 8,765Member Uncommon

    Respawning mobs in the open world was sort of a flat mechanic to begin with, and is now so tired as to not really provide much interest (at least not without revitalizing it in new and interesting ways.)

    I think the best opportunities are in two types of encounters:

    • Instanced, scripted.  Similar to existing dungeons in most games, these are dungeons laid out with specific combinations of mobs and bosses ahead of time which are designed with intent to be interesting combat puzzles for players to solve due to the mobs' abilities or zone events, some of which will spawn additional mobs at inconvenient times to enhance the challenge.
    • Instanced, dynamic system.  This version would be similar to the types of puzzles you found in the scripted dungeon, but it would be dynamically randomized (including mob abilities to a degree; although I feel each mob type should have a narrow set of ability possibilities so that players can learn "Oh that's a dragon coming towards me; he'll either have dragon breath or dragon flight abilities, and I can plan accordingly in the ~3 seconds before he reaches my group.")
      • This system isn't just limited to what combat puzzles a dungeon offers, but could also dynamically adjust the difficulty of the dungeon so that it always offers the right challenge.  Although in that case you'd likely want the rewards for the dungeon to also scale (if the game detects you're skilled and sends the Skill Level 100 dragon at you, you're going to get better loot from it than if you had fought the Skill Level 80 dragon.)
    Instancing is important to both, as it controls the number of players able to fight the encounter at one time, ensuring the encounter is balanced to be the correct amount of challenge.  Without challenge, players decisions become meaningless and there is no game.
     
    However it should be noted that with extra dev effort it would be possible to control the max number of participants per fight in a non-instanced setting.  It's just probably going to have extra weird problems like "Why can't I attack that dragon attacking those people?" which might not be worth having.

    "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

  • HelleriHelleri Felton, CAPosts: 927Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Axehilt

    Respawning mobs in the open world was sort of a flat mechanic to begin with, and is now so tired as to not really provide much interest (at least not without revitalizing it in new and interesting ways.)

    VERY well put. And this is exactly why I love threads that are in a sense world building.

     

    As for the rest of the idea. That sounds a bit like Runescapes Dungeoneering Skill. If you have not played RS and your interested in that kind of model it's worth playing just for that as it is widely considered in the RS community as "The all skill - Skill" And it's own game within the game. It would be good to look at it as it has the base (though some of it's details are off) of your prefered model for adding a more intricate dynamics.

     

    Originally posted by maplestone
    Originally posted by Myrdynn

    Gauntlet Generators, its time!

    I'm surprised there aren't more of these.

    My dream spawning system is a sort of ecology sim with a fractal generator. 

    Tier 0: a wandering monster

    Tier 1: a camp that increasing the rate of wandering monsters in the area.  The camp itself is tracked by server as if it was a mob - it has stats, health, slots for unique features - enough information that each camp and its inhabitants are a little different and can be procedurally regenerated if the zone is deleted from memory then rebuilt from these stats.  Once players have slain enough wandering monsters, an elite camp-gaurd will spawn for a few hours - if it is defeated, the camp is destroyed.

    Tier 2: a lair ruled by a champion that can more quickly raise nearby wandering monsters into camps.  Just like camps, it has stats and a champion who spawns if enough camps in the area have been destroyed recently.

    Tier 3: a city ruled by a boss that can more quickly turn nearby camps into lairs.

    (etc)

    The game doesn't have to simulate every monster - if an area goes unvisited for a while, the server stops tracking individual mobs and starts just tracking Tier 1 spawns (or tier 2 spaws if the wider area is unvisited), then repopulates the details when a players return to the area. 

    The idea is not that players would be thinly spread over the whole game, but that the world would have a mix of individual players out doing their own thing in lightly-populated areas all the way up to huge groups of players waging month-long campaigns to spawn and defeat densely-populated monster kingdoms.

     I am not sure I understand what a Gauntlet Generator is even with that suggestion that seems to illuminate it somewhat? Or is that an unrelated preference after comment on your opinion on a gaunlet generator?

    image

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

    Instancing is important to both, as it controls the number of players able to fight the encounter at one time, ensuring the encounter is balanced to be the correct amount of challenge.  Without challenge, players decisions become meaningless and there is no game.
     

    I disagree.  I think developer-tweaked challenges are over-rated and that as long as you have open-ended challenges and at least a few available with mechanics that scale faster than linearly with the number of attackers, then choosing your optimal group size and challenge is a meaningful decision.

    Instances are a powerful tool for giving people nice measurable packages of content, but the level of challenge is actually the least interesting part to me.

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

    I am not sure I understand what a Gauntlet Generator is even with that suggestion that seems to illuminate it somewhat? Or is that an unrelated preference after comment on your opinion on a gaunlet generator?

    Gauntlet is an old game which monsters spawn from an object on the map and keep spawning until you destroy the object. 

    The idea I was sketching out felt like it was just an extention of this basic idea, so I wanted to acknowledge the earlier post.

     

  • rounnerrounner CanberraPosts: 603Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by maplestone
    Originally posted by Axehilt

    Instancing is important to both, as it controls the number of players able to fight the encounter at one time, ensuring the encounter is balanced to be the correct amount of challenge.  Without challenge, players decisions become meaningless and there is no game.
     

    I disagree.  I think developer-tweaked challenges are over-rated and that as long as you have open-ended challenges and at least a few available with mechanics that scale faster than linearly with the number of attackers, then choosing your optimal group size and challenge is a meaningful decision.

    Instances are a powerful tool for giving people nice measurable packages of content, but the level of challenge is actually the least interesting part to me.

    Yeah, balance goes against the principle of variety and surprise.

    This whole discussion assumes things don't deviate from the current standard that much. For example, why we are killing farm animals, or that we are killing things for typical  rewards such as xp or mats.

  • LokeroLokero Posts: 376Member Uncommon

    On the note of organic ecosystems, migratory animals and such would be a nice touch in games.  

    If the players slaughter all the wolves, then rabbits breed out of control.  If players are constantly killing the rabbits, both the rabbits and wolves would relocate and spawn in a different area.

    If deer are over-hunted, the local nomadic barbarian tribe might relocate to more sustainable hunting grounds, etc.

    Essentially, I'm envisioning a rotating cycle system.  So, it'd be slightly more dynamic and random than just static spawns over and over.   I'm a big fan of randomizing spawn points and avoiding the overly static.

    On the other hand, I like static dungeons, but you could randomize those just the same.  If the orc dungeon gets completely cleared out so many times in a week, something else could move in, etc.(anything from bears to goblins, etc.)

    As far as bosses go, I like some static nameds, if they fit the lore/location.  But, I think they should at least roam aroudn their camp/lair/cave/dungeon and not just stand in the spawn area.  Personally, I'd rather see all mobs move about in dungeons.

    Overall, I'd just like to see all AI creatures be more active and alive.  Entrance guards in a dungeon heading to the barracks for shift changes, or to their mess hall for dinner, etc.

    I know the majority of that isn't going to happen any age soon, probably due to lag and server limitations, but having NPCs that seem more like simulations and less like punching bags is a dream of mine :D

  • HelleriHelleri Felton, CAPosts: 927Member Uncommon

    btw, sorry to all for post #12 I got a little carried away there.

    @Maplestone, ty for the clarification on the gauntlet thing.

    General Question at this point:

    What is an aspect of a spawn system in a game that you never want to see repeated and why? (not to hard press for a focus on the negative but rephrasing it here from my Op as we have not gotten to that yet).

    image

  • RydesonRydeson Canton, OHPosts: 3,858Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Jean-Luc_Picard
    A spawn system that relies on an ecosystem, and not simply on an infinite supply of rats/wolves/dragons to kill.

         hmm I like that idea as well..  Similar to another thread in which I would love to see day/night cycle and weather have an effect on mobs.. I assume your idea is like wolves eating rabbits, so if I keep killing the supply of wolves, rabbits might start to over populate? and so on and so on?

  • Jean-Luc_PicardJean-Luc_Picard La BarrePosts: 3,549Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Rydeson
    Originally posted by Jean-Luc_Picard
    A spawn system that relies on an ecosystem, and not simply on an infinite supply of rats/wolves/dragons to kill.

         hmm I like that idea as well..  Similar to another thread in which I would love to see day/night cycle and weather have an effect on mobs.. I assume your idea is like wolves eating rabbits, so if I keep killing the supply of wolves, rabbits might start to over populate? and so on and so on?

    Yep, pretty much. Eventually, a new colony of wolves or other predators would come, lured by the massive availability of rabbits (and of the other wolf prey).

    Also, in the surroundings, quests would be generated automatically and dynamically depending on the ecosystem. E.g. if there are too many wolves who eat the villager's sheep, the farmer will ask for help. But if you pass through the village again a week later, you can be almost sure the available quests would be totally different since the surroundings would have changed. Intelligent NPC (Orcs, Goblins, Bandits, etc...) would migrate too, the village could then be threatened by a Orc colony which stopped in the nearby forest because of the abundance of food (rabbits!) and start to threated and harrass the villagers, and the quests in the village would relate to that. Ultimately wiping out the Orc camp would require an equally big player group ( or even raid), you couldn't do that solo just like in many other MMOs, but quests would also include solo/small group stuff like hunting the orc scouts and hunters attacking the villagers and their cattle.

    I have a ton of word documents I wrote over the years about designing a dynamic world MMO - I've even made some tests using Neverwinter Nights and got some quite fun and working results. One conclusion I came to is that there still needs moderate amounts of "artificial" spawning to keep some areas populated, but they mix just fine with the dynamic ecosystem.

    Playing now: WoW, Landmark, GW2, The Crew, SotA

    Top 3 MMORPGs played: UO, AC1 and WoW

    Honorable mentions: AO, LotRO, SW:TOR and GW2.

    ----------------

    "The ability to speak doesn't make you intelligent" - Qui-gon Jinn. After many years of reading Internet forums, there's no doubt that neither does the ability to write.
    So if you notice that I'm no longer answering your nonsense, stop trying... because you just joined my block list.

  • RydesonRydeson Canton, OHPosts: 3,858Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by maplestone
    Originally posted by Axehilt

    Instancing is important to both, as it controls the number of players able to fight the encounter at one time, ensuring the encounter is balanced to be the correct amount of challenge.  Without challenge, players decisions become meaningless and there is no game.
     

    I disagree.  I think developer-tweaked challenges are over-rated and that as long as you have open-ended challenges and at least a few available with mechanics that scale faster than linearly with the number of attackers, then choosing your optimal group size and challenge is a meaningful decision.

    Instances are a powerful tool for giving people nice measurable packages of content, but the level of challenge is actually the least interesting part to me.

         I so so so agree with this.. Every game I've played that uses instances has developed the drama of "optimal" group for killing and farming..  People will min/max EVERYTHING to get the most for their effort.. Even EQ ran into this problem in the post PoP era.. When I left WoW, most of the raids were done this way as well..  I'd like to leave instancing out of MMO all together.. :)

  • RydesonRydeson Canton, OHPosts: 3,858Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Helleri

    btw, sorry to all for post #12 I got a little carried away there.

    @Maplestone, ty for the clarification on the gauntlet thing.

    General Question at this point:

    What is an aspect of a spawn system in a game that you never want to see repeated and why? (not to hard press for a focus on the negative but rephrasing it here from my Op as we have not gotten to that yet).

         I never want to see a spawn system like Rift where mobs are every 3 feet..  SWTOR open land zones had a good mix, and GW2 was close but still a little heavy on density.. I can understand a wolves den having 10 wolves in the area, but to have a wolf every 3 feet for a mile is sorta silly.. lol

  • RydesonRydeson Canton, OHPosts: 3,858Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Jean-Luc_Picard

    One conclusion I came to is that there still needs moderate amounts of "artificial" spawning to keep some areas populated, but they mix just fine with the dynamic ecosystem.

         Agree, it's why I mentioned that I like to see at least a certain level of fixed spawn, on a fixed timer..  We, or at least I don't want to run into extinction problems.. lol   As much as I love ALL the ideas being discussed on this topic, one thing worries me.. Is it possible with the skill of devs to put much of this into code without a HUGE world fill with bugs left and right..  I remember my days in SWG.. OMFG, the nest and missions were bugged left and right.. So much so, that it was a game breaker..

  • Jean-Luc_PicardJean-Luc_Picard La BarrePosts: 3,549Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Rydeson
    Originally posted by Jean-Luc_Picard

    One conclusion I came to is that there still needs moderate amounts of "artificial" spawning to keep some areas populated, but they mix just fine with the dynamic ecosystem.

         Agree, it's why I mentioned that I like to see at least a certain level of fixed spawn, on a fixed timer..  We, or at least I don't want to run into extinction problems.. lol   As much as I love ALL the ideas being discussed on this topic, one thing worries me.. Is it possible with the skill of devs to put much of this into code without a HUGE world fill with bugs left and right..  I remember my days in SWG.. OMFG, the nest and missions were bugged left and right.. So much so, that it was a game breaker..

    What migrating mobs also allow is to make those "fixed" spawns which are intended to maintain a minimum population outside of the view of the player, and then the mobs would move in the area. It would avoid the "pop in your face" spawns, which I always found awfully immersion breaking.

    The main idea I explored is to create a world where you had little chance to find exactly the same situation twice. Imagine never seeing the same thing than on your previous characters when "leveling" (or more "skilling up", since my model would be skill based like UO) an alt, because the world is really constantly changing.

    Playing now: WoW, Landmark, GW2, The Crew, SotA

    Top 3 MMORPGs played: UO, AC1 and WoW

    Honorable mentions: AO, LotRO, SW:TOR and GW2.

    ----------------

    "The ability to speak doesn't make you intelligent" - Qui-gon Jinn. After many years of reading Internet forums, there's no doubt that neither does the ability to write.
    So if you notice that I'm no longer answering your nonsense, stop trying... because you just joined my block list.

  • AxehiltAxehilt San Francisco, CAPosts: 8,765Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by maplestone

    I disagree.  I think developer-tweaked challenges are over-rated and that as long as you have open-ended challenges and at least a few available with mechanics that scale faster than linearly with the number of attackers, then choosing your optimal group size and challenge is a meaningful decision.

    Instances are a powerful tool for giving people nice measurable packages of content, but the level of challenge is actually the least interesting part to me.

    That only works for players who completely don't care about challenge.  I don't think that's a particularly large audience, since games which provide the Sweet Spot of Challenge (which varies by player) is one of the cornerstones of good game design.  If something is too easy, it's boring.  If something is too hard, it's frustrating.  If something is just right (in the sweet spot), it's a fun game.

    So anytime more than 6 players can fight a mob designed for 6 players, they undermine that gameplay and bypass a game's natural Challenge vs. Reward relationship.  Normally fighting that mob with 6 players involves a certain amount of skill, but when 12 players fight it it requires less than half that amount of skill.

    Now once that becomes the normal way you fight that 6-man mob (to use 12 players) the game just completely fails to offer an interesting challenge and nearly all players become bored very quickly because it trivializes the entire game: where once you cared about rotation, mob abilities, your gear, and your role, now you just spam the most basic of attacks and all of those surrounding game systems aren't important.

    "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

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