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Character Race Restrictions or None?

TyranusPrimeTyranusPrime Sea of JapanPosts: 101Member Uncommon

 Greetings and Salutations all.. An interesting topic was brought up in my gaming circle recently, and I thought I would pose the question to all of you as well.. In the MMOs you play, do you favor class restrictions on character race choices or do you like being able to freely choose any class available?

 

 I will mention a few pros and cons that were brought up.. "Class restrictions" definitely add to re-playability and uphold to a game's lore more often than not.. This can seriously add to immersion by eliminating very odd class/race combos.. However, the obvious downside is that your character is more limited..

 The "no class restrictions" option allows for every race to be any class desired, resulting in greater customization for the character.. Yet, crazy combinations occur far more often without restrictions and can decrease immersion factors..

You have your fear, which might become reality; and you have Godzilla, which IS reality. - Ogata

Comments

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

     Greetings and Salutations all.. An interesting topic was brought up in my gaming circle recently, and I thought I would pose the question to all of you as well.. In your MMOs, do you favor class restrictions on your (and others) race choices or do you like being able to freely choose any class available?

     

     I will mention a few pros and cons that were brought up.. "Class restrictions" definitely add to re-playability and uphold to a game's lore more often than not.. This can seriously add to immersion by eliminating very odd class/race combos.. However, the obvious downside is that your character is more limited..

     The "no class restrictions" option allows for every race to be any class desired, resulting in greater customization for the character.. Yet, crazy combinations occur far more often without restrictions and can decrease immersion factors..

    There needs to be far more game play differencs with race.  I think class or skill restrictions are good for the game.  Or at least difficulty for achieving hard class/race combos. 

  • TheRealBanangoTheRealBanango Fairfax, VAPosts: 75Member
    I think it is a good thing depending how its done. A great chunk of the RPG aspect of MMOs is the ability to make choices, the earlier that starts the more immersed you will be. If i need to make a choice on which class I want to play based on which races are available (or vice versa) then for me, it adds to the lore and helps make the world more "real"
     
    Just like the op said, it adds to immersion too, which is  needed to make a successful mmorpg.

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  • TyranusPrimeTyranusPrime Sea of JapanPosts: 101Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Vermillion_Raventhal

    There needs to be far more game play differencs with race.  I think class or skill restrictions are good for the game.  Or at least difficulty for achieving hard class/race combos. 

     I have to agree on the point of differences.. Whether there are race/class restrictions or not, I think each race should "feel" different from the others..

     

     I am still on the fence about such restrictions though.. I like the idea of every race being capable of every class combination, but dread the inevitable 9-foot tall, burly "rogue" that breaks some immersion factors.. It's a tough call, overall.. Keep the opinions coming, folks! :)

    You have your fear, which might become reality; and you have Godzilla, which IS reality. - Ogata

  • maplestonemaplestone Ottawa, ONPosts: 3,099Member

    Over the years and across game types, I have enjoyed games where every race/class combination exists, I have enjoyed games where your race is your class and I have enjoyed games with a sort of random scattering between.

    I've come to the conclusion that there is actually a missing tier between race and class: culture.   Between the genetics that give you your raw aptitudes and the education that gives you your actual skills is the body of basic teachings and taboos that make up a society's expectations: what career paths a person is exposed to, what paths are forbidden.   Give or take some special cases where the gene for magic exists in some races but not for others, race/class combinations are the game's way of describing neither race nor class, but the sum of all the available cultures. 

     

     

     

  • crack_foxcrack_fox WellingtonPosts: 402Member
    I agree with the point about culture. All cultures have a form of 'figher', but a Zulu warrior is not a Sioux brave is not an Norse beserker is not a Samurai. Culture should define the interpretation of a particular class, and that interpretation should be restricted to members of that culture. However, culture is not the same as race and so there should be a degree of freedom for the rare outsider to be raised in a different culture. 
  • TyranusPrimeTyranusPrime Sea of JapanPosts: 101Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by crack_fox
    I agree with the point about culture. All cultures have a form of 'figher', but a Zulu warrior is not a Sioux brave is not an Norse beserker is not a Samurai. Culture should define the interpretation of a particular class, and that interpretation should be restricted to members of that culture. However, culture is not the same as race and so there should be a degree of freedom for the rare outsider to be raised in a different culture. 

     An interesting point as well.. But, how would that culture be implemented in game terms? I suppose you could have suggestions for various races choosing certain classes, and still allow them to choose whatever they want.. This option seems more lore/fluff-based while still allowing sandbox class freedom..

     

    The questions remains: Do you all prefer class restrictions per race? No restrictions at all? or a hybrid of sorts, with no restrictions but "suggestions" based off of cultural lore? :)

    You have your fear, which might become reality; and you have Godzilla, which IS reality. - Ogata

  • LourentLourent Punta Gorda, FLPosts: 19Member
    Why bring racism into fantasy games?  Blacks used to be told they couldn't do this or that.  Why the desire, today, to do as much to gnomes?  Equal rights.  In and out of game.
  • MetanolMetanol TamperePosts: 247Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Lourent
    Why bring racism into fantasy games?  Blacks used to be told they couldn't do this or that.  Why the desire, today, to do as much to gnomes?  Equal rights.  In and out of game.

    I actually want those nasty things in my games. I want my fantasy like I want my coffee and metal - dark.

    The Witcher would lose a huge part of it's charm if it didn't feel so real. Look at the silly humans there - you have full out racism and sexism. And the way warfare is portrayed in the universe.. The pillaging, raping, looting, smuggling. It was all there in the books, it brought authenticity to the series and it was damn well done.

     

    But moving on and talking about class restrictions. In certain fantasy genres, it just dosn't make sense for every race to be of every class. Now, devs and the writers can turn this around as they please, but it often adds authenticity to have racial restrictions in case of classes.

     

    Lets take World of Warcraft as an example, a game which I heavily dislike and what does not make any sense, if I may say so. There, even the undeads can be priests and heal theirselves with the Light, or whatever it was called. If I remember right, in older Warcraft lore, paladins and priests using this light on anything undead would deal huge damage to it, not heal it, like they do in the current MMO. Thus - Mind = Blown.

    Because, where I come from, divine magic had these two major categories (and many more) - Necromancy and conjuration. Using necromancy, you would damage living beings, but if used on undead it would heal them. While conjuration (healing) did the very opposite.

     

    In the end many devs take the easy way out to please their gamers, while some of us want more details, just like what we are used to from Pen and Paper RPGs.

    We?re all dead, just say it.

  • TsaboHavocTsaboHavoc PinheiralPosts: 351Member
    Originally posted by Lourent
    Why bring racism into fantasy games?  Blacks used to be told they couldn't do this or that.  Why the desire, today, to do as much to gnomes?  Equal rights.  In and out of game.

    do you realize that blacks and whites are both humam right?  they are the same race just different fenotypical classes.

    now gnomes and humans are completely different beasts. they have an alien form of thinking and acting when compared to us, i really have a very difficult time imagining a gnome berseker swinging his axe against a sneaking ogre mage -rogue , that would ruin any imersion of the world.

  • TheocritusTheocritus Gary, INPosts: 3,743Member Uncommon
    I like having class restrictions for both race and factions...i like that certain races have special things about them that not every race has......If I can play every class with any race then really the only difference is just what my character looks like.....
  • TyranusPrimeTyranusPrime Sea of JapanPosts: 101Member Uncommon

    As a further example..

     

    WoW - Races use to have way more race/class restrictions.. A lot of these were eased up on over various expansions, until now when each race only has a few classes they cannot pursue..

     

    EQ2 - Every race can be every class.. No restrictions at all.. Starting stats are really the only factor discouraging a weird combo, but kudos go out to those who make it work anyway..

     

    LotRo - Races have access to many classes, but are restricted from several.. Lore acts the the primary barrier on these restrictions..

    You have your fear, which might become reality; and you have Godzilla, which IS reality. - Ogata

  • jtcgsjtcgs New Port Richey, ILPosts: 1,777Member
    Originally posted by TyranusPrime

     "Class restrictions" definitely add to re-playability and uphold to a game's lore more often than not.. This can seriously add to immersion by eliminating very odd class/race combos.

     Not true at all.

    If I favor playing a "mage" I am going to play a mage no matter what, by limiting racial choices it basically forces me to play something I don't want which detracts from the game. If the game is good enough to play through a second time, a race/class restriction is not going to INCREASE it at all...and if the game is not very good, being forced to play according to its vast limitations is not going to detract from the fact the game is not very good.

    Race/class limits is an antiquated idea that is long past due to be dropped, just one of many ideas holding this genre back.

    “I hope we shall crush...in its birth the aristocracy of our moneyed corporations, which dare already to challenge our government to a trial of strength and bid defiance to the laws of our country." ~Thomes Jefferson

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

    The questions remains: Do you all prefer class restrictions per race? No restrictions at all? or a hybrid of sorts, with no restrictions but "suggestions" based off of cultural lore? :)

    This is how my thinking goes ...

    My overall preference is for open classless skill trees in game without a single endgame - just a variety of professions and in that sort of game, the character's race is more like a starting point of attributes that then suggest natural paths without forcing them.

    But open skill systems do not work well in open games with a wide variety of endgame activities - if your game is ultimately working up a ladder of progression with the goal of maximizing your dps, then open systems quickly turn into "lots of ways of locking yourself into the wrong path" and so it makes sense to either limit classes/races to specific combinations or to make race purely cosmetic. 

    But this doesn't lead me to an answer to your question, just to a "I don't care, either extreme is fine".  So I figure it comes down to the cost-benefit calculation of the developer, not a preference on my part.  If the cost of creating/testing a race/class combination is low (relative to the cost of creating new races and classes, what are you really gaining with the restrictions?  Is that texture meaningful?

    ( on the question of implementing cultures - cultures are your starting zones; replacing the concept of racial capitals and factions, also potentially allowing players different starting experiences for their alts that emphasize different playstyles )

     

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