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I have grouped and found the community feeling in every "solo" MMO. Maybe YOU are the problem

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  • KarbleKarble San Diego, CAPosts: 741Member

    EQ original did it right for a good portion of content. You could actually do certain really challenging group encounters with a single character. The main difference was the amount of time it took.

    So what they did is basically make a single player take 10 to 15 minutes to kill 2 tough group mobs with effort. These mobs also had to be a certain flavor that best benefited the class of the single player to really work well.

    Groups could get through the same mob in about 2 minutes which meant that they would have a 1/6 chance to get something or nothing they wanted every 10 minutes versus a chance for a single player to get a possible drop of something or nothing, but more exp for the single kill.

    Over all Ultima Online was still the best system I have encountered for fostering grouping. Much of it was to have numbers in case of PK attack, but in EQ Next there will be dynamic world where anything can happen and having friends will no doubt be a benefit if you want to not die often. Not saying it's the only way, but obviously there is strength in numbers. I hope that EQ Next is similar to UO but with more interestingly intelligent ai that does indeed strike back or initiate attacks basically raiding the players.

  • STYNKFYSTSTYNKFYST Sacramento, CAPosts: 290Member


    Originally posted by VelocinoxWell, I am here to tell you it actually means Massively Multiplayer Online, which means there are a massive amount of players online simultaneously. It doesn't imply ANYTHING about being cooperative. Try standing on your own two feet and stop expecting everyone else in the game to carry you to the fun.
     

    The OP has a great point. But what Vel says covers it best. MMO has no "G" for group in it. Just means a ton of people online playing. Any other definition is just flawed.

  • ZorlofeZorlofe Whitehouse, TXPosts: 187Member
    Great post OP, very good points! I know that sometimes I just want to get a little play time in and then have to go do something and if I had grouped up it would have meant me being late or having to disappoint people when I had to leave.
  • toddzetoddze no where, OKPosts: 2,155Member
    Originally posted by Jean-Luc_Picard

    Forced grouping only brings up forced friendships... which aren't true friendships.

    Nothing like people who actually stay with you because they enjoy your company, and not only because you're a tool for them to get better "epic" gear.

    That is the biggest load of garbage I have seen on these forums since I joined in 2008!!!

    I still have friends from FFXI that I talk to to this day 6 years AFTER we quit XI!

     

    Waiting for:EQ-Next, ArcheAge (not so much anymore)
    Now Playing: N/A
    Worst MMO: FFXIV
    Favorite MMO: FFXI

  • EcocesEcoces Chicago, ILPosts: 879Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Distopia
    Originally posted by supertouchme

    If you divide solo content and group content equally, players tend to choose the path of least resistance and you're stuck with a game in which there's little incentive to group.

     

    You're right here, yet not about people not grouping, but they do bypass the harder content. Again I'll use TOR as an example. Every world had group areas for group questing/leveling. YEt they were frequently bypassed (even by groups). The heroic areas were always empty, or close to it. Yet plenty of groups were going through the main content. It always boggled me a bit to see that.

    did you ever try to get a group together and do the heroic areas? i did and it was a lot of fun. it was extremely hard though i actually had to type in guild chat "hey anyone want to do the heroic area on X planet?" TWICE!

     

    thats the thing i see on this post, tons of those in the "group only" camp apparently don't see "group looking for tank", "group looking for healer", "group looking for CC", "group looking for tank and healer" and think no one wants to do t hem. take the initiative and start a group for those areas and i bet you will see people join you.

     

    it always amazes me how people just expect groups to be waiting for them. I remember playing SWTOR and wanted to finish up a group quest, I shouted "LFG for X quest" ... heard nothing at all. i then saw a few others shout for it but again not one single grouping. so i said screw it and shouted "forming group for X quest PST"

     

    I literally got bombarded with 10 tells almost immediately. this guy said hes been shouting for a group for 2 days for this quest and I thought maybe if you had taken the initiative you would have gotten it done sooner.

  • Cor4xCor4x Dallas, TXPosts: 241Member

    *sigh* OK.

    What I’m hearing is that the OP wanted group only content. That’s been done in a number of games and has failed ... every time that I’ve seen. Although I’ve not seen everything, to be sure.

    Let’s see. UO. People quit in hordes because they got tired of getting killed again and again. I played that. Solo. I know at least 20 people that rage quit because of me. They lost over 85% of their player base but not because of grouping. It was a flawed game.

    EQ specifically required grouping for much of the content, even though you could, and I did, solo (most of) the entire thing (avoiding death-touch mobs) by picking certain classes. Try doing that as a warrior. You also got NOTHING from the mobs and had to buy everything in the marketplace. That game could NOT be played with crappy gear.

    Anyway, DDO required grouping. I played that to game limit and quit. If you weren’t in a group, you didn’t play. I remember this kid asking for a group over and over and over and over like a mantra for hours.

    We’d feel sorry and invite him to run a dungeon with us. That game had voice chat. When he’d come on and say something, the rest of my guild would unload on him like a bunch of bullies. I felt SO sorry for this kid. And his toon was Warforged *spit* and our guild name was NO WARFORGED.

    They changed that because everyone screamed about being forced to group and ... no one would group with them. If you had a suck member, it usually meant you wouldn’t finish the dungeon or be penalized until it wasn’t worth it.

    So, everyone became super-elitist. Make ONE wrong move and they would scream at you to leave or else they would all drop and reform.

    Once you got blacklisted, your ass was done. NO ONE would invite you; you couldn’t play. Naturally, over 50% quit and the game almost died.

    DDO redid all of that and added solo content to cap.

    In EQ1 where groups got favorable XP (at one point with over 4 people in a group, everyone got 100% XP for each mob). No way to top it. We sat around in Plane of Disease for hours and hours killing the same mobs for DAYS to level. Players aren’t going to have the patience for that now.

    I played a Bard, so I could (and did, with the right gear) charm kite the whole upper deck of Nightmare at once. If someone gave me crap, like messing with my trees or something, I’d just run on top of them, smile, and fade. BAM! 5 dead chars in under 2 seconds.

    EQ2 used to have almost everything group. They had to change it because people quit in mass. (Not to mention the stupid idea of SHARED XP loss. Oh god.)

    Are you seeing a pattern? Grouping generally costs a lot of extra time and effort and there are usually drags. Know who those are? They sit around and are either AFK or only do 1 thing during combat. They’re useless but they do click those loot choices! And they suck up XP.

    Groups always cost a LOT of time to create and group. Especially when the game requires certain crippled classes or classes that are expert in solo.

    Most people (the vast majority) are extremely poor at active socialization. I don’t group often in games but I have loads of non-mmorpg friends. I make friends on line when I need to.

    I don’t have a problem forming groups and usually know my way through the content. If I don’t, I have no issue paying a good group to show me the way, or I do it myself.

    A lot of people won’t get mad if you explain that you’re learning. Usually there are a LOT of people that want in because they don’t know the content either.

    A lot of people are shy or typically don’t talk to others. It doesn’t always mean that you’re needy if you like other people around or need help or like someone to show you how to run a dungeon. But it does, sometimes.

    For the solo versus group situation, most players won’t group unless there are definite incentives to do so. Once those adds go above a certain point, you get boters. I’ve done that too.

    Groups take time and effort to form unless the game is set up for it. DDO was at one time. Groups were very efficient and with voice chat, you could get to know other players. Just don’t be a kid or a woman.

    LOL!

    I remember that clearly. Some guy would join and then say something. She was a woman! A real live woman!

    You would hear rustling as they brushed cheetoes off their beer bellies and sat up straighter. It was gut-splittingly funny.

    They would absolutely not leave her alone. It was horrible. I got to the point where I would claim they were my wife or girlfriend to get them to shut up.

    Anyway, adding grouping as a secondary content is in a lot of games, but you’d find it very unused. Most people skip those as they take too long and leveling is too fast.

    This is similar to the PK areas. Most of the time they’re empty as well.

    Played the new Star Wars game? Did you play the group areas? I did, because I was usually in a group of friends. We marauded through that game. It was very easy though.

    Almost everyone bypassed those because most people were solo.

    Who leveled faster? They did. But I wanted to enjoy the game.

    WoW? Soloed to cap very quickly. Then I quit because the idiot-elitism at the end of the game made me sick. I’m good at the market, so I could always trade piles of gold for them to run me through the dungeons. It was the most effective path.

    No one should be forced to group. Ever. That breeds the AFK players and asshats. It also causes most if not all of your players to leave. Changing it later won’t help.

    Did you play Vanguard? Worst raids in history. It, overall, was a crappy game that I hated, but I got two characters to cap and raided for a bit. Most of the time I was in a group (duo or raid).

    LOTRO suffered from miss-matched classes similar to EQ1. Some classes were easy to solo. A few died constantly. They may have changed it now.

    I played a minstrel, so I could solo easily. My friends and some other casuals didn’t, so we formed groups.

    Do you want a game where most people group? Create a need for that to happen and TELL PEOPLE UP FRONT. Don’t expect a lot of people to play it though, like a PK game. It’ll be a small niche game. That might be good for you, but not so much for the company.

    You could play solo content as a group, just with no challenge. You could group only for the “group” optional stuff, like EQ2 or WoW.

    Oh, yes, WoW does have group encounters, most of which can be soloed by certain classes or at least in a duo. Insta-grouping was the usual way that was done.

    There were dungeons that needed a group while it was still level appropriate. I ran hundreds of people through dungeons for my guild. It was casual and I was one of 3 level limited characters, so it was no big deal. I liked doing it.

    Later, I lead lots of level appropriate content. But WoW is extremely easy. Like children playing easy. WoW was entertaining while I played it though.

    And this was pre-cataclysm.

    I guess, what I'm trying to say is ... do whatever makes you feel good, but I'd develop both types (solo and group) of play. I'd also form groups at least once a week to get the hang of it. If someone does well, ask if you can add them to your friend's list. People usually say no to that if they're REALLY soloists or they think you're going to be a pest.

    You can then develop those people as friends. Enough friends, and you have a guild.

     

    image

  • DracockDracock Eugene, ORPosts: 75Member
    Originally posted by Allein
    Originally posted by Reizlanzer

    Why hasn't anyone mentioned the possibility of having both? Let's look at games in the near future coming out that share certain similarities, Wildstar and EQN.

    I have. Both are needed to have a well rounded game. All the games I've played since the mid 90s offer both.

    It's just that as games have become "easier" and soloing has become a viable option, many can't find the balance between being part of a community and making connections to racing to the end to earn that golden carrot.

    I grouped and was part of guilds in both WoW and GW2. Both I soloed a great deal in and in both I had great team oriented adventures.

    Seems that many have no self control and when given the option, they take the easiest route possible and then blame their personal choice issues on the game or on other gamers for doing the same thing they are.

    EQ seems to be the only major MMO that is used as an example of "forced grouping" or how hard content made people come together. I knew plenty of people that soloed (druids quad kiting giants sure didn't have a group) and they did just fine.

    Seems people's personal opinions and maybe cloudy memories make them jump to conclusions on how things were or should be for every other person.

    I could care less if 99% of the gaming population wants to solo, that isn't going to make me do so. I'll always find like minded people to spend time with. If people decide to mindlessly solo alone, that's on them. I'll work with others and have a lot more fun in the process.

    I disagree that WoW is "well rounded." This is what separates me from those of you that agree with the OP. I think WoW is heavily solo biased through most of the game. The game is designed in a way where you are expected to solo from zone to zone until you reach the level cap. Because no one was grouping, they added in a lower level dungeon finder and a bunch of quests that you could do. Even if it is worth the to do it (I did the math, it rarely is), its only worth it as to do it 1-2 times to get all the quests you were given done, then it goes back to being less far efficient.

    90% in, the game does a 180,° and you need to group exclusively to progress. No one was meeting anyone or forging any relationships as they leveled, and it made it difficult to find groups. So they nerfed the content and added in dungeon finder... then a cross server dungeon finder. Now it is easy like the soloing.

    The endgame is all raiding exclusively. It followed the same pattern. Nerf + dungeon finder, so you don't have to talk to anyone.

    There are two big problems I have with this model:

    1. The dev's focus the majority of resources on solo content. There is necessarily a great deal less group viable zones. This makes it hard to scale the difficulty correctly. Everyone in the "endgame" ends up dog piled into a small portion of the world. Raids are then relegated to an even smaller portion of the content.
    2. Most the game can be done without anyone's help, so people there is little incentive not be a douchebag.
    If I start up EQN with my friends and guild (currently amongst the world firsts in Rift) and we all end up soloing for 5 weeks like WoW, that doesn't bode well for the game's future. You end up with a game where everyone is blowing through the content, or slowly solo grinding all day.
    There are many btw, in this guild that agree with me. There are plenty of people agree with me that don't really need to meet new people in order to progress group content (myself included). The OP is objectively wrong, in that it has something to do with not being a social person. His argument is analogous to claiming the reason people work is because they want to, not because they get paid.
    Here is an equally stupid argument about everyone opposing grouping centered games: They are all self centered WoW kids, that cant get along with anyone so they want to easily solo everything. I might have said something like that back when I was 16...But these days I try to exercise a little bit of critical thinking before making blanket statements.
     

    As for you Allein, how much you care about your progress as a character is not really the point. Its more about what the general player base cares about, and character progress is top of the list. If grouping is a superior way to progress your character, more people are going to do it.

    Even if you have your circle of friends and could care less about what those people are doing, it still impacts you. It directly impacts the allocation of development resources. If 75% of the playerbase solos most the time, you can bet that they will make sure to add frequent solo content patches and otherwise cater to this base.

     

     

  • TorreyHTorreyH Santa Cruz, CAPosts: 42Member
    Originally posted by Gallus8

    I don't like games "forcing" grouping.  Just like anything forced, you get a way lower quality of people in your group (because many people don't even want to be there).  However, a game should never promote soloing as the fastest way to level.  Groups take more effort, to start, to run, to stick together and it's more dangerous with more risk.  Grouping should be the far superior exp gainer / item dropper / skill gainer / etc.

    But soloing should always be a choice.  I don't want people in my group who don't want to be there.

    This.

    I don't think anyone is suggesting we go back to the days when most classes could not function effectively without a group, like in early EverQuest.  Its just that a lot of the newer games - and WoW is one of the worst offenders here - have removed ANY incentive to group.  The fact that its still *possible* to group does not mitigate the damaging effect this has on the social aspect of MMORPG's.  I started a toon in WoW for Pandaria, and leveled from 1-90 without EVER grouping - or feeling the slightest need to.  THAT, we are saying, is bad game design. 

    While soloing should be an option, the emphasis is *supposed* to be on grouping, or what's the point of an MMO game in the first place?  Group play should enable tackling harder opponents, entail more risk, and offer more reward, both in experience and loot.  It also requires learning your role in a group, and actually making friends and having a good reputation in the online community.  If everyone is soloing, there IS no community.  Its a solo game with a chat channel.  We all know the commercial reasons why this has happened, but it has not improved the genre.  I hope EQN is strongly focused on group play again.

  • DullahanDullahan Posts: 2,059Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by toddze
    Originally posted by Jean-Luc_Picard

    Forced grouping only brings up forced friendships... which aren't true friendships.

    Nothing like people who actually stay with you because they enjoy your company, and not only because you're a tool for them to get better "epic" gear.

    That is the biggest load of garbage I have seen on these forums since I joined in 2008!!!

    I still have friends from FFXI that I talk to to this day 6 years AFTER we quit XI!

     

    Indeed.

    I've played just about every major and most minor MMOs in the last decade, and because of their level of triviality and catering to solo gameplay, any sense of community within their virtual world is nonexistent.

    Its a simple formula.  If the game is hard, people will learn to work together.  If the game is easy, they will accomplish anything and everything they can on their own, just like the real world.


  • AlleinAllein San Diego, CAPosts: 1,659Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Dracock
    Originally posted by Allein
    Originally posted by Reizlanzer

    Why hasn't anyone mentioned the possibility of having both? Let's look at games in the near future coming out that share certain similarities, Wildstar and EQN.

    I have. Both are needed to have a well rounded game. All the games I've played since the mid 90s offer both.

    It's just that as games have become "easier" and soloing has become a viable option, many can't find the balance between being part of a community and making connections to racing to the end to earn that golden carrot.

    I grouped and was part of guilds in both WoW and GW2. Both I soloed a great deal in and in both I had great team oriented adventures.

    Seems that many have no self control and when given the option, they take the easiest route possible and then blame their personal choice issues on the game or on other gamers for doing the same thing they are.

    EQ seems to be the only major MMO that is used as an example of "forced grouping" or how hard content made people come together. I knew plenty of people that soloed (druids quad kiting giants sure didn't have a group) and they did just fine.

    Seems people's personal opinions and maybe cloudy memories make them jump to conclusions on how things were or should be for every other person.

    I could care less if 99% of the gaming population wants to solo, that isn't going to make me do so. I'll always find like minded people to spend time with. If people decide to mindlessly solo alone, that's on them. I'll work with others and have a lot more fun in the process.

    I disagree that WoW is "well rounded." This is what separates me from those of you that agree with the OP. I think WoW is heavily solo biased through most of the game. The game is designed in a way where you are expected to solo from zone to zone until you reach the level cap. Because no one was grouping, they added in a lower level dungeon finder and a bunch of quests that you could do. Even if it is worth the to do it (I did the math, it rarely is), its only worth it as to do it 1-2 times to get all the quests you were given done, then it goes back to being less far efficient.

    90% in, the game does a 180,° and you need to group exclusively to progress. No one was meeting anyone or forging any relationships as they leveled, and it made it difficult to find groups. So they nerfed the content and added in dungeon finder... then a cross server dungeon finder. Now it is easy like the soloing.

    The endgame is all raiding exclusively. It followed the same pattern. Nerf + dungeon finder, so you don't have to talk to anyone.

    I played WoW from beta until maybe a month or two after BC came out. Quests were designed for soloing for the most part, I agree. I did solo a great deal of the way to 60. I also grouped a lot with my roommate. We were both in a guild the whole time and were always talking either in chat or vent with others. So we had no problem transitioning from solo/duo to full on raiding because we knew everyone to some degree and then it was just about working together an taking orders from our raid leaders. 

    From what I hear, WoW today is almost a lobby game and is completely different then Vanilla. To me it isn't even worth comparing them as the dungeon finder and cross server grouping seems to make all content pointless and easy. Vanilla raiding was not easy. We had hours of wiping to show for that.

    Overall, this is how they decided to design their game. Solo most of it, Group the rest. Neither way gives you friends or makes connections for you. You have to try. I could of been in a guild and not said a word to anyone (there are plenty like that). But then what's the point. If you want to be social, then do so.

    As seen in WoW, you can be handed a group (dungeon finder) and don't have to talk or communicate and still burn through content like crazy. It requires a group, yet doesn't require being social. They are not one and the same.

    There are two big problems I have with this model:

    1. The dev's focus the majority of resources on solo content. There is necessarily a great deal less group viable zones. This makes it hard to scale the difficulty correctly. Everyone in the "endgame" ends up dog piled into a small portion of the world. Raids are then relegated to an even smaller portion of the content.
    2. Most the game can be done without anyone's help, so people there is little incentive not be a douchebag.
    If I start up EQN with my friends and guild (currently amongst the world firsts in Rift) and we all end up soloing for 5 weeks like WoW, that doesn't bode well for the game's future. You end up with a game where everyone is blowing through the content, or slowly solo grinding all day.
     
    Why would you all solo? Isn't that against the whole point of having a guild and friends? If you choose to solo, even with a social network in place, that is your choice and your fault if it leads to not having fun. I really don't see the reasoning. I've switched games with guilds with the reasoning that we would play together, if we were like "hey lets try this game, but lets not group at all" I wouldn't bother.
     
    There are many btw, in this guild that agree with me. There are plenty of people agree with me that don't really need to meet new people in order to progress group content (myself included). The OP is objectively wrong, in that it has something to do with not being a social person. His argument is analogous to claiming the reason people work is because they want to, not because they get paid.
     
    This is the problem. Many seem to care about only themselves. If you are part of a guild, you should be working together as a team. Helping each other out and enjoying the game together, not trying to speed through content to get to the end. If you all of a sudden "needed" people to progress, your attitude would instantly change and you would want to be social? Doubtful. Never had a guild mate working on an alt, log on their main to help the guild, even though they really didn't want/need to? Crazy stuff like that does happen. Sometimes meeting people is greater then your personal progress.
     
    Here is an equally stupid argument about everyone opposing grouping centered games: They are all self centered WoW kids, that cant get along with anyone so they want to easily solo everything. I might have said something like that back when I was 16...But these days I try to exercise a little bit of critical thinking before making blanket statements.
     
    I don't see anyone saying they want to solo everything easy, they just want multiple options to play. Instead of only grouping all the time as it appears others feel is the right way. While blaming game mechanics for not grouping themselves. I don't tell others how to play their games, nor will I agree with those trying to tell me and others how to play mine. Play the way that suits you best, everything has pros/cons and you have to find what is for you.
     

    As for you Allein, how much you care about your progress as a character is not really the point. Its more about what the general player base cares about, and character progress is top of the list. If grouping is a superior way to progress your character, more people are going to do it.

    As you have pointed out about WoW, obviously the general player base does not want to group and therefore no intelligent company is going to force everyone to do so, they seem to actually do the complete opposite to cater to the masses. Show me a game that forces people to group and I'll probably be able to show you a game that either isn't live or has a small population. If everyone wanted to group, games would all be grouping centered instead of optional.

    If I logged into EQN and was instantly put in a group or couldn't kill a rat without help, I would probably log right back off as that is not how I want to play. Does that mean I want to solo a dungeon I discover, no, I'll find a group to come along for the adventure.

    Even if you have your circle of friends and could care less about what those people are doing, it still impacts you. It directly impacts the allocation of development resources. If 75% of the playerbase solos most the time, you can bet that they will make sure to add frequent solo content patches and otherwise cater to this base.

     And I'll continue to do it with other people like I always have...but I have a feeling EQN will not be this way as they have said multiple times they want to focus on the social aspect of gaming. From all the talk about Tiers and Dungeons to Rally Calls, it seems to all be focused on working with others. Maybe you don't have to be in a group for all of it, but you are still working along side others, if you take the time to meet/invite them, maybe you'll have an even better experience.

    The whole issue is that it is up to the individual person. No matter the game system people will find a way to play the way they want.

    EQ was so hard that people could multi-box content alone or depending on class, kite large groups of mobs around forever and kill them solo as well.

    Forced grouping all the time, besides "high end" content, never has and never will work in a traditional MMORPG (From my experiences in the last 17+ years).

     

  • AlleinAllein San Diego, CAPosts: 1,659Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by TorreyH
    Originally posted by Gallus8

    I don't like games "forcing" grouping.  Just like anything forced, you get a way lower quality of people in your group (because many people don't even want to be there).  However, a game should never promote soloing as the fastest way to level.  Groups take more effort, to start, to run, to stick together and it's more dangerous with more risk.  Grouping should be the far superior exp gainer / item dropper / skill gainer / etc.

    But soloing should always be a choice.  I don't want people in my group who don't want to be there.

    This.

    I don't think anyone is suggesting we go back to the days when most classes could not function effectively without a group, like in early EverQuest.  Its just that a lot of the newer games - and WoW is one of the worst offenders here - have removed ANY incentive to group.  The fact that its still *possible* to group does not mitigate the damaging effect this has on the social aspect of MMORPG's.  I started a toon in WoW for Pandaria, and leveled from 1-90 without EVER grouping - or feeling the slightest need to.  THAT, we are saying, is bad game design. 

    While soloing should be an option, the emphasis is *supposed* to be on grouping, or what's the point of an MMO game in the first place?  Group play should enable tackling harder opponents, entail more risk, and offer more reward, both in experience and loot.  It also requires learning your role in a group, and actually making friends and having a good reputation in the online community.  If everyone is soloing, there IS no community.  Its a solo game with a chat channel.  We all know the commercial reasons why this has happened, but it has not improved the genre.  I hope EQN is strongly focused on group play again.

    I agree with both of you.

    I think the problem stems from the problem that most themeparks have. The entire focus or point of the game is the end game grind (raiding usually).

    Any leveling or progress beforehand is simply a long drawn out time sink to make getting to the end seem like an accomplishment. It has almost no meaning. They might as well just give you an instant lvl 90 when you start. As the results would be about the same.

    EQN hopefully rids itself of this issue and has the "end game" be the game from the start. No imaginary finish line or need to rush to the end to get to the good stuff. People can slow down and take a look at those around them and say "hello."

    I still believe you can be social, group, be in a guild, etc regardless if you "need" to or not. It is always an option to open up the social avenue. But it should be an option. If someone really doesn't want to be social, yet wants to play a game, them soloing isn't going to hurt those that aren't.

    If WoW had "hard" content from lvl 1, all it would do is cause groups to rush through the content instead of soloers. There would still be a mindlessness to the whole process as everyone is just using others as a means to an end. Zone to zone to zone, to finally get to the raid content at the end.

    Make the entire game a challenge, entertaining, and rewarding, without a need to rush to the end and people will start to communicate more and community will have the time needed to develop.

  • DistopiaDistopia Baltimore, MDPosts: 16,915Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Ecoces
    Originally posted by Distopia
    Originally posted by supertouchme

    If you divide solo content and group content equally, players tend to choose the path of least resistance and you're stuck with a game in which there's little incentive to group.

     

    You're right here, yet not about people not grouping, but they do bypass the harder content. Again I'll use TOR as an example. Every world had group areas for group questing/leveling. YEt they were frequently bypassed (even by groups). The heroic areas were always empty, or close to it. Yet plenty of groups were going through the main content. It always boggled me a bit to see that.

    did you ever try to get a group together and do the heroic areas? i did and it was a lot of fun. it was extremely hard though i actually had to type in guild chat "hey anyone want to do the heroic area on X planet?" TWICE!

     

    thats the thing i see on this post, tons of those in the "group only" camp apparently don't see "group looking for tank", "group looking for healer", "group looking for CC", "group looking for tank and healer" and think no one wants to do t hem. take the initiative and start a group for those areas and i bet you will see people join you.

     

    it always amazes me how people just expect groups to be waiting for them. I remember playing SWTOR and wanted to finish up a group quest, I shouted "LFG for X quest" ... heard nothing at all. i then saw a few others shout for it but again not one single grouping. so i said screw it and shouted "forming group for X quest PST"

     

    I literally got bombarded with 10 tells almost immediately. this guy said hes been shouting for a group for 2 days for this quest and I thought maybe if you had taken the initiative you would have gotten it done sooner.

    I never have much of a problem with this type of stuff as My wife and a few friends are usually with me. That's how I knew how empty those areas were :).  Not to mention a good portion of the people who keep in touch from SWG  that were there at TOR's launch. Even then though there weren't nearly as many people doing the harder content as I thought there would be. It was a fairly smooth ride in those areas at launch.

    For every minute you are angry , you lose 60 seconds of happiness."-Emerson

    It is a sign of a defeated man, to attack at ones character in the face of logic and reason- Me

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

    Its a simple formula.  If the game is hard, people will learn to work together.  If the game is easy, they will accomplish anything and everything they can on their own, just like the real world.

    So you want to talk about the real world? Good idea!

    Making a barbecue isn't hard. You can do a barbecue alone, and eat it alone. Yet people like to invite friends, family, neighbors to their barbecue. They do it simple because they like to be with people they enjoy the company of, and not because they are forced to do it.

    And that is the key. People they enjoy the company of. Not people they are forced to endure the company of, like e.g. all day at work. And a video game is... yeah, a game, not a second job. People should be able to be with people they enjoy the company of, just like the barbecue, and not be forced to endure people they don't like by silly game mechanics.

    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.

  • IfrianMMOIfrianMMO BarcelonaPosts: 212Member

    Why is everyone talking about how you can still socialize today because of guilds and stuff like that?

    The fun part of the "old mmo socializing" were the random encounters that the tougher, group content provided and not your guilds or leveling groups.

    For instance,  when i played Final Fantasy XI for the first time, i thought i could just go around exploring as i wished even at lv 5 so as soon as i switched zones, i found myself surrounded by a bunch of lv 15 monsters that could kill me with ease.

    I ran as i could and eventually got stuck in some kind of creek, surrounded by monsters that could easily kill and de-level me and unsure about what to do, so i simply began to ask for help in the chat.

    After 10 or 15 minutes, a little group of three people came by, rescued me, and brought me back to the newbie grounds, where we gave our introductions, and i found out those three players were a mom, her hubby and their son.

    We played for many, many months ´til i left FFXI and i still talk to the mother today.

    My older mmo life is full with dozens upon dozens of these kind of encounters, some are silly, some were epic, some were weird, some were sweet and some were fun, but they all were special and completely natural.

    While it is not impossible to have similar encounters nowadays and you can still rarely meet people in a natural way, the easier, solo oriented content makes it much less likely for these situations or similar ones to happen.

     

    image
  • DullahanDullahan Posts: 2,059Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Jean-Luc_Picard
    Originally posted by Dullahan

    Its a simple formula.  If the game is hard, people will learn to work together.  If the game is easy, they will accomplish anything and everything they can on their own, just like the real world.

    So you want to talk about the real world? Good idea!

    Making a barbecue isn't hard. You can do a barbecue alone, and eat it alone. Yet people like to invite friends, family, neighbors to their barbecue. They do it simple because they like to be with people they enjoy the company of, and not because they are forced to do it.

    And that is the key. People they enjoy the company of. Not people they are forced to endure the company of, like e.g. all day at work. And a video game is... yeah, a game, not a second job. People should be able to be with people they enjoy the company of, just like the barbecue, and not be forced to endure people they don't like by silly game mechanics.

    Comparing social interaction in a virtual world to the controlled environment of a family meal isn't a realistic comparison.

    If anything, a virtual world is more similar the interactions that take place at a job.  There are those who work well together, and those who don't.  Those who don't play nice or do their job get the boot, those who do are accepted and become part of a "work family."

    In Everquest, the higher level you got, the more grouping became necessary.  Players learned that they would be held accountable for their actions, and it would directly affect how much success they would have in game.  If you weren't pleasant to other players, or simply weren't good at your class or willing to learn, it made it hard for you to join the better groups and guilds of players.  You were more or less left to play with the casual crowds, if anyone would play with you at all.

    Much like the real world, succeeding in harder games required both the ability to work with others as well as play your role in society.


  • aesperusaesperus Hamshire, NVPosts: 5,128Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by IfrianMMO

    Why is everyone talking about how you can still socialize today because of guilds and stuff like that?

    The fun part of the "old mmo socializing" were the random encounters that the tougher, group content provided and not your guilds or leveling groups.

    For instance,  when i played Final Fantasy XI for the first time, i thought i could just go around exploring as i wished even at lv 5 so as soon as i switched zones, i found myself surrounded by a bunch of lv 15 monsters that could kill me with ease.

    I ran as i could and eventually got stuck in some kind of creek, surrounded by monsters that could easily kill and de-level me and unsure about what to do, so i simply began to ask for help in the chat.

    After 10 or 15 minutes, a little group of three people came by, rescued me, and brought me back to the newbie grounds, where we gave our introductions, and i found out those three players were a mom, her hubby and their son.

    We played for many, many months ´til i left FFXI and i still talk to the mother today.

    My older mmo life is full with dozens upon dozens of these kind of encounters, some are silly, some were epic, some were weird, some were sweet and some were fun, but they all were special and completely natural.

    While it is not impossible to have similar encounters nowadays and you can still rarely meet people in a natural way, the easier, solo oriented content makes it much less likely for these situations or similar ones to happen.

    Thing is, those moments still exist in today's MMOs. From more exploration-oriented games (like GW2, TSW), to more guided MMOs (like SWTOR, Neverwinter). I've met all kinds of people across many of the newer MMOs. Most of whom I still talk to, after leaving the game. You should see my Teamspeak server list, it's getting a bit insane.

    The ironic thing, is you don't need the game to be any specific way to have those moments. That ALL comes down to the players. When people are open towards strangers, don't mind talking to random people, you get those kinds of experience. However now it appears, at least on this site, that people have grown to expect the games to generate that for them. And that's not how it works. Maybe it's terrible social skills, maybe it's because we've been playing so many story-driven games, who knows. But outside of MMOs, most people realize that if you want to have a social experience, all you need to do is talk to people. The only time a game can be 'anti-social' is if it has specific systems in place that make it impossible to talk to others. And usually, those are called single-player games.

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

    Its a simple formula.  If the game is hard, people will learn to work together.  If the game is easy, they will accomplish anything and everything they can on their own, just like the real world.

    So you want to talk about the real world? Good idea!

    Making a barbecue isn't hard. You can do a barbecue alone, and eat it alone. Yet people like to invite friends, family, neighbors to their barbecue. They do it simple because they like to be with people they enjoy the company of, and not because they are forced to do it.

    And that is the key. People they enjoy the company of. Not people they are forced to endure the company of, like e.g. all day at work. And a video game is... yeah, a game, not a second job. People should be able to be with people they enjoy the company of, just like the barbecue, and not be forced to endure people they don't like by silly game mechanics.

    Comparing social interaction in a virtual world to the controlled environment of a family meal isn't a realistic comparison.

    Actually, it's a fine comparison, both are leisure activities. The people you invite are akin to your guild in a non forced grouping game, you select them because you like each other, and not because they do over 7000 dps in a raid.

    If anything, a virtual world is more similar the interactions that take place at a job.  There are those who work well together, and those who don't.  Those who don't play nice or do their job get the boot, those who do are accepted and become part of a "work family."

    There are those who confuse MMORPG with second job, and those who play it like a video game. I let you guess who are the majority...

    In Everquest, the higher level you got, the more grouping became necessary.  Players learned that they would be held accountable for their actions, and it would directly affect how much success they would have in game.  If you weren't pleasant to other players, or simply weren't good at your class or willing to learn, it made it hard for you to join the better groups and guilds of players.  You were more or less left to play with the casual crowds, if anyone would play with you at all.

    And thus breeds the elitism and general bad attitude in group/raid centric games. Let's get real, some nice people were excluded from the group just because they didn't play as well as the rest, and I don't mean "bad", just "not as well", as in "doing 6500 dps instead of 7000", and some asshats were allowed to stay because they were excellent for raiding, or also because they were the leader's friends. I've seen that so many times it's not even funny. People weren't selected on how nice they are, but on how well they played. I for one prefer to play with selected people who enjoy each other's company, even if it means having to carry those who play "not as well" sometimes, and help them getting better instead of kicking them because they slow down the purple loot collection machine. Crap like performance elitism, gearscore and all that stuff are good for a real life job, definitely not for a video game, a leisure activity, and that's what forced grouping creates.

    Much like the real world, succeeding in harder games required both the ability to work with others as well as play your role in society.

    Being solo friendly doesn't stop the game from having hard group content. It just doesn't force people to group all the time, for everything, which automatically leads to having to endure people you don't like.

    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.

  • Tsar_BombaTsar_Bomba Moonbase Alpha, TXPosts: 11Member

    Why don't we just reminisce about the days before cars? I sure would like to go back to riding horses instead of cars. No gas prices, no carbon footprint. Those were better days! The cars today are lifeless and have no empathy for who they are transporting like horses did!

    The mmo industry has changed. The players are more savvy about what is and isn't possible. They know that meeting a strange group is far more likely to develop into a bad encounter than a positive one so they find their groups offline and then group with them. THAT is why you can't find groups and nobody is talking to you, because they ARE talking, to their FRIENDS on TS, Vent, or Mumble. That is why nobody is typing to you in chat. Because that is old technology.

    We've learned. We're still grouping, but we've learned a better way than just random chance. If you can't learn that there is no reason to drag the entire industry back to the horse and cart days just because you can't make the upgrade from snail mail to email, from land line to cell phone, from type chat to voice chat.

     

    You can't go home again.

     

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

    Indeed.

    I've played just about every major and most minor MMOs in the last decade, and because of their level of triviality and catering to solo gameplay, any sense of community within their virtual world is nonexistent.

    Its a simple formula.  If the game is hard, people will learn to work together.  If the game is easy, they will accomplish anything and everything they can on their own, just like the real world.

    How about communities that gather around something other than e-peen-itude?

    I understand your theory; but there have been many communities that formed around common interests (roleplay, for example) that didn't care at all about "hard", and certainly did not need that to encourage cooperation.

    If your posit is Truth, other-motivated communities could not happen, yes?

    Your hypothesis needs revision.

    I suspect that the primary reason this topic comes up again once a week, is because the sorts of "communities"we envision individually when trying to create "rules" are very different. Yet all valid ones.

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

  • Grimlock426Grimlock426 Sacramento, CAPosts: 159Member
    Originally posted by munx4555

    Think some might misunderstand what people mean when they say "forced" grouping.

     

    Even in eq1 you could lvl to max lvl solo with most classes, the problem with Wow and Mmo's ever since wow is that you are basicly penalized for grouping for anything but pvp, dungeons or raids.

    The beauty of eq1 was not that it forced grouping, it was that it strongly encouraged it, less chance of dieing less chance of death penalty, If you died there was less chance of having trouble retriving your corpse, and the xp gain per hour with a group was actually better then when soloing.

     

    These days we have mmos where your overall xp gain in a grp is generally far lower, dieing dosnt mather one way or another so grouping for that purpose is out the window, and mobs dies so fast when in a group that it feels like you are constantly being rushed.

     

    A Mmo should most definatly be possible to play solo for the most part, but grouping should be beneficial compared to soloing, which it currently isnt.

    This guy gets it.  There were so many times in WoW where I'd be off questing and someone would offer to join up and most of the time I'd decline.  There was no incentive for me to partner up except for a few specific quests.  When grouped I'd have to share the loot, receive less gold, receive less experience and then have to worry if this person would be a tool or a ninja, and I lost freedom because I may not get to go where I wanted, but had to consider what this person wanted, and I could no longer go at my own pace, I had to worry if I was going to fast or to slow for this other person.  Yeah, kind of makes it not appealing to group up.

    Developers definitly have a hand it designing content such that it's possible to solo to the top, but not necessarily ideal.

  • TheLizardbonesTheLizardbones Arkham, VAPosts: 10,910Member


    Originally posted by Grimlock426
    Originally posted by munx4555 Think some might misunderstand what people mean when they say "forced" grouping.   Even in eq1 you could lvl to max lvl solo with most classes, the problem with Wow and Mmo's ever since wow is that you are basicly penalized for grouping for anything but pvp, dungeons or raids. The beauty of eq1 was not that it forced grouping, it was that it strongly encouraged it, less chance of dieing less chance of death penalty, If you died there was less chance of having trouble retriving your corpse, and the xp gain per hour with a group was actually better then when soloing.   These days we have mmos where your overall xp gain in a grp is generally far lower, dieing dosnt mather one way or another so grouping for that purpose is out the window, and mobs dies so fast when in a group that it feels like you are constantly being rushed.   A Mmo should most definatly be possible to play solo for the most part, but grouping should be beneficial compared to soloing, which it currently isnt.
    This guy gets it.  There were so many times in WoW where I'd be off questing and someone would offer to join up and most of the time I'd decline.  There was no incentive for me to partner up except for a few specific quests.  When grouped I'd have to share the loot, receive less gold, receive less experience and then have to worry if this person would be a tool or a ninja, and I lost freedom because I may not get to go where I wanted, but had to consider what this person wanted, and I could no longer go at my own pace, I had to worry if I was going to fast or to slow for this other person.  Yeah, kind of makes it not appealing to group up.

    Developers definitly have a hand it designing content such that it's possible to solo to the top, but not necessarily ideal.




    In WoW you could earn more XP per minute than solo if you actually worked together. Ditto for gold and loot. If you weren't intending to actually work together with other people, what was the point of grouping in the first place?

    I can not remember winning or losing a single debate on the internet.

  • Grimlock426Grimlock426 Sacramento, CAPosts: 159Member
    Originally posted by lizardbones

     


    Originally posted by Grimlock426

    Originally posted by munx4555 Think some might misunderstand what people mean when they say "forced" grouping.   Even in eq1 you could lvl to max lvl solo with most classes, the problem with Wow and Mmo's ever since wow is that you are basicly penalized for grouping for anything but pvp, dungeons or raids. The beauty of eq1 was not that it forced grouping, it was that it strongly encouraged it, less chance of dieing less chance of death penalty, If you died there was less chance of having trouble retriving your corpse, and the xp gain per hour with a group was actually better then when soloing.   These days we have mmos where your overall xp gain in a grp is generally far lower, dieing dosnt mather one way or another so grouping for that purpose is out the window, and mobs dies so fast when in a group that it feels like you are constantly being rushed.   A Mmo should most definatly be possible to play solo for the most part, but grouping should be beneficial compared to soloing, which it currently isnt.
    This guy gets it.  There were so many times in WoW where I'd be off questing and someone would offer to join up and most of the time I'd decline.  There was no incentive for me to partner up except for a few specific quests.  When grouped I'd have to share the loot, receive less gold, receive less experience and then have to worry if this person would be a tool or a ninja, and I lost freedom because I may not get to go where I wanted, but had to consider what this person wanted, and I could no longer go at my own pace, I had to worry if I was going to fast or to slow for this other person.  Yeah, kind of makes it not appealing to group up.

     

    Developers definitly have a hand it designing content such that it's possible to solo to the top, but not necessarily ideal.



    In WoW you could earn more XP per minute than solo if you actually worked together. Ditto for gold and loot. If you weren't intending to actually work together with other people, what was the point of grouping in the first place?

     

    That would only be the case if you already had  a friend you were grouped with and questing and you both knew what you wanted, where to go, and were on the same page. 

    The context of this thread is socializing, so for me that means meeting someone brand new out in the world.  In that case you had to figure out what quests they were on, and what quests you were on, or what stages of quests.  As far as looting goes, you had to figure out if you would do round robin, group loot or open looting.  All these things slowed you down to the point where soloing was faster and easier. 

    Add in the other parts I mentioned where you had to adjust where you went and how fast/slow you progressed to match up with the other person and on top of that hoping they were not a jerk-face, and yeah, it made it preferable to solo most of the time.  

    This to me is a flaw in the game mechanic. 

  • IcewhiteIcewhite Elmhurst, ILPosts: 6,403Member
    Originally posted by lizardbones
    There was no incentive for me to partner up except for a few specific quests.

    Boredom relief? A change of pace? Someone to talk to?

    I think some people are blaming a solo-capable game unfairly.

    Communities disappeared when players stopped doing things without a "what's in it for me" easily-defined payoff, in terms of direct xp or some other award.

    May be a product of the Me Generation, as much or more as any other factor.

    "I can't be bothered to blow my nose, it cuts down my xp/minute rate."

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

  • TheLizardbonesTheLizardbones Arkham, VAPosts: 10,910Member


    Originally posted by Grimlock426
    Originally posted by lizardbones   Originally posted by Grimlock426 Originally posted by munx4555 Think some might misunderstand what people mean when they say "forced" grouping.   Even in eq1 you could lvl to max lvl solo with most classes, the problem with Wow and Mmo's ever since wow is that you are basicly penalized for grouping for anything but pvp, dungeons or raids. The beauty of eq1 was not that it forced grouping, it was that it strongly encouraged it, less chance of dieing less chance of death penalty, If you died there was less chance of having trouble retriving your corpse, and the xp gain per hour with a group was actually better then when soloing.   These days we have mmos where your overall xp gain in a grp is generally far lower, dieing dosnt mather one way or another so grouping for that purpose is out the window, and mobs dies so fast when in a group that it feels like you are constantly being rushed.   A Mmo should most definatly be possible to play solo for the most part, but grouping should be beneficial compared to soloing, which it currently isnt.
    This guy gets it.  There were so many times in WoW where I'd be off questing and someone would offer to join up and most of the time I'd decline.  There was no incentive for me to partner up except for a few specific quests.  When grouped I'd have to share the loot, receive less gold, receive less experience and then have to worry if this person would be a tool or a ninja, and I lost freedom because I may not get to go where I wanted, but had to consider what this person wanted, and I could no longer go at my own pace, I had to worry if I was going to fast or to slow for this other person.  Yeah, kind of makes it not appealing to group up.   Developers definitly have a hand it designing content such that it's possible to solo to the top, but not necessarily ideal.
    In WoW you could earn more XP per minute than solo if you actually worked together. Ditto for gold and loot. If you weren't intending to actually work together with other people, what was the point of grouping in the first place?  
    That would only be the case if you already had  a friend you were grouped with and questing and you both knew what you wanted, where to go, and were on the same page. 

    The context of this thread is socializing, so for me that means meeting someone brand new out in the world.  In that case you had to figure out what quests they were on, and what quests you were on, or what stages of quests.  As far as looting goes, you had to figure out if you would do round robin, group loot or open looting.  All these things slowed you down to the point where soloing was faster and easier. 

    Add in the other parts I mentioned where you had to adjust where you went and how fast/slow you progressed to match up with the other person and on top of that hoping they were not a jerk-face, and yeah, it made it preferable to solo most of the time.  

    This to me is a flaw in the game mechanic. 




    You're complaining about general flaws in WoW's mechanics. Those things are issues whether you know the people or not.

    You also highlighted the other issue with MMORPGs in general. The experience, loot and quest completion are more important than socialization. Even to you, because you will forgo socialization to gain those resources. You can see this in WoW's LFG/LFR mechanics. People group up for the material benefits, not the social benefits. This has always been the case. "Being social" was a side effect, not a goal of group mechanics.

    I think the OP's post and others contain some wisdom. If people find socialization lacking in MMORPGs, maybe they shouldn't depend on artificial mechanics that were never intended as social mechanics in the first place.

    I can not remember winning or losing a single debate on the internet.

  • NavinJohnsonNavinJohnson albquerque, NMPosts: 60Member
    Originally posted by Ecoces
    Originally posted by Kyleran

    At the end of the day, perhaps you are the odd one if you socialize with no real reason or incentive  to do so?

     

    i socialize just fine in MMORPGs i don't need silly mechanics to force people to interact with me. again thats the point of my post if you NEED the game to force people to group with you so they will talk to you then you might be the problem and need an attitude adjustment.

    Personally, I think it has more to do with socialized dependencies.

     

    Some (note that I didn't say "all", I said "some"...) people like playing certain classes within trinity-based environments because the game mechanics create dependencies, and these folks loath games in which those dependencies don't exist; games where players have other options that may not include them.

     

    If anything, non-trinity-based mechanics put an even greater weight on being a good social player because class needs aren't driving the decisions.

     

    This is my opinion anyway.

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