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[Column] EverQuest Next: Class Roles Are A Riot

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  • TamanousTamanous Edmonton, ABPosts: 2,125Member Uncommon

    This actually sounds very easy for SOE to accomplish seeing how more and more of the mmo part of the game itself is based entirely on the AI.

     

    We recently found out that mobs migrate without fixed spawn points based upon their AI. Combat mechanics could directly do the same thing.

    An example:

    A Hill Giant is facing off with 3 player characters. Each player; a warrior, a wizard and a cleric are equidistant and surrounding the giant. The terrain is even. The giant knows which it prefers to attack first under such situations and if given the first chance would take that action. The players however have many more tools to work with. The wizard or cleric could cast terrain altering affects or a sensory or physical impalement that alters the giant's next choice in combat. The warrior could intercept with a leap or charge and snare or stun the giant forcing a new choice in combat. The giant sees the warrior in armor and with a shield and knows it's fists alone are not enough so it rips a tree from the ground and smashes the warrior with it (the player then learns to not fight near trees when fighting giants).

     

    It is all just a bunch of direct affects against mob AI built into the class design that specialize each class into it's own unique role.

     

    It doesn't honestly sound that hard to do. It's simply different.

     

     

    You stay sassy!

  • simmihisimmihi -Posts: 615Member Uncommon
    Well I gotta see it in action to actually have a clear opinion. If I'd want to be a prophet like most people here I'd say that there is some "expected" flaw: if the "smart AI" decides to go after a healer / dps and one shots that guy, then the mechanics are a bit retarded. I have to assume that the DPS / healer guy that the "smart AI" is going for will not be one-shot, In this case, everything would be a DPS zerg fest. If the highest damage dealers can take a few hits, then there's no point in having anything else than the highest damage dealers in the group. I hope there's something I'm missing.
  • Jairoe03Jairoe03 Winthrop Harbor, ILPosts: 732Member

    I think the bigger issue regarding the trinity beyond the simple threat mechanics used in the past is the heavy reliance on just ONE type of group composition. I hope they will develop the encounters in ways that it can be solvable in more than one way, regarding group dynamics of course. Like a 2 DPS, 1 tank, 1 healer 1 support setup can be as successful as a No DPS setup etc. Of course once a cookie cutter composition is established, the community will do a good job in rushing the roles they prefer and ousting the ones they deem not worthy.

  • TamanousTamanous Edmonton, ABPosts: 2,125Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by simmihi
    Well I gotta see it in action to actually have a clear opinion. If I'd want to be a prophet like most people here I'd say that there is some "expected" flaw: if the "smart AI" decides to go after a healer / dps and one shots that guy, then the mechanics are a bit retarded. I have to assume that the DPS / healer guy that the "smart AI" is going for will not be one-shot, In this case, everything would be a DPS zerg fest. If the highest damage dealers can take a few hits, then there's no point in having anything else than the highest damage dealers in the group. I hope there's something I'm missing.

    It is hard to fully imagine something we know so little about but in doing so we have to imagine that none of the old aggro mechanics may even exist. There may not really be a need to have any one class do entirely more damage than another. The type of damage could be more important again or how it is delivered.

     

    Calling a melee a tank could be simply wrong. A melee could potentially have a great defensive advantage over physical based enemies but would be considered a glass canon against a magic mob. Each different class build could open up advantages, specializations or weaknesses in combat the AI exploits when the combat plays out.  A cloth wearing caster class may find themselves at times the tank (and I don't just mean takes the most damage) in unique situations and adapt to it. 

     

    There are many possibilities but I can sense if it is something like this then the identity of a traditional combat role could still be preserved albeit in a much more dynamic sense. If the end result is that the combat direction can heavily be influenced by the players through their class abilities then roles are essentially preserved.

     

    I only say that in theory is all seems very possible if done right.

    You stay sassy!

  • plescureplescure leicesterPosts: 370Member Uncommon

    my biggest worry for EQN is the combat. The reason i stopped playing GW2 was the lack of good group combat and the action style. i just cant help but worry that EQN is going to have the same problem

     

    I like the concepts writtn in this article but i need to see it in action before i can stop stressing

    If someone is talking in general chat in a language you dont understand, chances are they're not talking to you. So chill out and stop bitching about it!

  • simmihisimmihi -Posts: 615Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Tamanous
    Originally posted by simmihi
    Well I gotta see it in action to actually have a clear opinion. If I'd want to be a prophet like most people here I'd say that there is some "expected" flaw: if the "smart AI" decides to go after a healer / dps and one shots that guy, then the mechanics are a bit retarded. I have to assume that the DPS / healer guy that the "smart AI" is going for will not be one-shot, In this case, everything would be a DPS zerg fest. If the highest damage dealers can take a few hits, then there's no point in having anything else than the highest damage dealers in the group. I hope there's something I'm missing.

    It is hard to fully imagine something we know so little about but in doing so we have to imagine that none of the old aggro mechanics may even exist. There may not really be a need to have any one class do entirely more damage than another. The type of damage could be more important again or how it is delivered.

     

    Calling a melee a tank could be simply wrong. A melee could potentially have a great defensive advantage over physical based enemies but would be considered a glass canon against a magic mob. Each different class build could open up advantages, specializations or weaknesses in combat the AI exploits when the combat plays out.  A cloth wearing caster class may find themselves at times the tank (and I don't just mean takes the most damage) in unique situations and adapt to it. 

     

    There are many possibilities but I can sense if it is something like this then the identity of a traditional combat role could still be preserved albeit in a much more dynamic sense. If the end result is that the combat direction can heavily be influenced by the players through their class abilities then roles are essentially preserved.

     

    I only say that in theory is all seems very possible if done right.

    Yea, you are right on many points. Even if initially the lack of "pure trinity" was a huge letdown for me, I'm not that pessimistic anymore. The possibilities of good interesting combat are there, and I was thinking exactly at what you pointed. What if some mobs take reduced projectile damage or spell damage? What if magic mobs hit melee hard, and "magic resistances" are very important? What if debuffs play a major role? I'd love to see at least those things i've mentioned, and for sure they'll make combat interesting even for a "trinity lover" as myself, I'm kinda tired of my firemage that kills fire golems with fire...

  • TheocritusTheocritus Gary, INPosts: 3,731Member Uncommon
    From what I know at this point the class system sounds ridiculous and very unEverquest like......I think the only thing this game has associated with any of the previous EQ titles is just the name.....Im totally expecting this game to be craptacular.
  • feztoniofeztonio webster, NYPosts: 34Member Uncommon
    so it will be similar to pvp.  where you typically focus-fire the healers, then the highest to lowest threat dps, while kiting tanks and/or melee.  i suppose it's a novel approach to raiding, but it kinda already has a home in pvp.  i pvp when i want that experience and the AI of human beings. when I raid it's because I want to either pew pew from the back as ranged or heal the damage-sponge tank.  not sure if I'd enjoy the pvp AI in pve.
  • simmihisimmihi -Posts: 615Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by feztonio
    so it will be similar to pvp.  where you typically focus-fire the healers, then the highest to lowest threat dps, while kiting tanks and/or melee.  i suppose it's a novel approach to raiding, but it kinda already has a home in pvp.  i pvp when i want that experience and the AI of human beings. when I raid it's because I want to either pew pew from the back as ranged or heal the damage-sponge tank.  not sure if I'd enjoy the pvp AI in pve.

    I really doubt it's gonna be like that. The whole "flaw" of the trinity is the predictable AI. If they make the same predictable AI but just change threat order, putting healers in the first spot, they solve nothing. My bet is it's gonna be some sort of unpredictable AI who picks targets somehow "at random" and people will have to expect it and quickly react to that. Also, I expect the damage and "threat" to be affected by positional and mob-type elements (more damage from behind and sides, eventually vulnerability spots, melee hurts casters more but also take more damage from them etc)

    Unfortunately, other games tell us that, if people need to change gear/spec/role in order to apply a 2-3 seconds CC or debuff, they'll just say "screw it, i'll stick to DPS". Making things too complicated is as bad (if not worse) as making them too straightforward. We'll have to wait and see.

  • Four0SixFour0Six Missoula, MTPosts: 1,181Member Uncommon

    The more I hear of EQN the more and more it sounds NOT like a MMORPG. Maybe a MMOHackandSlash. Something you could play at a stand up arcade. But not with any "real" character development, which is why I play.

     

    My 2 pennies.

  • AdrazahnAdrazahn Lake Park, FLPosts: 26Member

    Right now, this design is heavily dependent on the AI actually being radically better than what we've seen in MMO's up until now. That's a big risk to take, because a lot of games have seen their enemy AI fall short. However, in SOE's case, they've partnered with a company (Storybricks) that pretty much focuses on nothing but AI. So perhaps they can pull off something we've never seen before.

    That being said, there's one aspect of this that the press hasn't really touched on: the design decision to have no trinity system is easily reversible. Hell, they already have 40 classes. It should be relatively easy to go back and change class skills to make several of them healing or tanking oriented. There's no re-engineering of systems required, other than implementing basic threat mechanics. Sure, it isn't as revolutionary as what they promised, but if things don't work out the way they intend, there's an acceptable fall back option.   

  • LanessarLanessar PALM HARBOR, FLPosts: 87Member

    Honestly, I don't know what all the hubbub is about. Trinity play is quite boring, honestly (and I've been a trinity healer since there was a trinity).

     

    It appears that the EQN devs are going for a LOL approach to role. I can get behind this as a concept, and it's a good thing to shoot for. And if you "DPS zerg" in that game, you lose, plain and simple. Even in a bot game.

     

    I can see the "general concept" of what they are going for; more than just trinity play, but there are roles. Those roles can change on a character based on spec. Similar to how I can play Morg as a DPS mage, debuff support, or even an off-tank/harass. Just depends on how you gear her, or what skill points you invest in (which can be switched out). Of course, MOBA isn't an MMO, but the general idea still holds in the microcosim of combat.

     

    TLDR; EQN might be able to do something that goes beyond "trinity" while still requiring "roles". Let's keep a conservative viewpoint until we play it.

  • NanfoodleNanfoodle Posts: 5,440Member Uncommon
    I have bought into this kinda hype before only to end up playing a game thats all about zergs. If they have something that can match team synergy of trinity or trump it, I would love to try it but I am not hopeful. 


    =-D Only on a forum can optimism be called bad and pessimism the good thing =-D Welcome to the internet and forums. 


  • AmarantharAmaranthar OhioPosts: 2,422Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Four0Six

    The more I hear of EQN the more and more it sounds NOT like a MMORPG. Maybe a MMOHackandSlash. Something you could play at a stand up arcade. But not with any "real" character development, which is why I play.

     

    My 2 pennies.

    With the game's AI and how it remembers every action you take, and how the NPCs and the entire world reacts to your character's history of action, this is hardly a hack and slash game.

    However, I do share some concerns on the class/combat system.

    Once upon a time....

  • XarekisXarekis Anaheim, CAPosts: 16Member
    It's funny to see MMORPG.com ripping on GW2 after they hyped it and heralded it as the greatest thing evar prior to launch.  I guess EQN will get the same treatment.  Pathetic journalism.
  • Jairoe03Jairoe03 Winthrop Harbor, ILPosts: 732Member


    Originally posted by simmihi
    Originally posted by feztonio so it will be similar to pvp.  where you typically focus-fire the healers, then the highest to lowest threat dps, while kiting tanks and/or melee.  i suppose it's a novel approach to raiding, but it kinda already has a home in pvp.  i pvp when i want that experience and the AI of human beings. when I raid it's because I want to either pew pew from the back as ranged or heal the damage-sponge tank.  not sure if I'd enjoy the pvp AI in pve.
    I really doubt it's gonna be like that. The whole "flaw" of the trinity is the predictable AI. If they make the same predictable AI but just change threat order, putting healers in the first spot, they solve nothing. My bet is it's gonna be some sort of unpredictable AI who picks targets somehow "at random" and people will have to expect it and quickly react to that. Also, I expect the damage and "threat" to be affected by positional and mob-type elements (more damage from behind and sides, eventually vulnerability spots, melee hurts casters more but also take more damage from them etc)

    Unfortunately, other games tell us that, if people need to change gear/spec/role in order to apply a 2-3 seconds CC or debuff, they'll just say "screw it, i'll stick to DPS". Making things too complicated is as bad (if not worse) as making them too straightforward. We'll have to wait and see.



    Sounds a lot like Guild Wars 2 AI's targeting system or "threat" system, but I guess not a lot of you knew how that works. Maybe slightly more intuitive (you would hope if they plan to push what's currently out there), but GW2 has accomplished a good portion of what has been said on the AI-end.

  • UhwopUhwop Wilm, DEPosts: 1,663Member Uncommon

    To be honest, I think I saw one person in this entire thread that actually responded honestly. 

     

    The guy that said he really liked EQ2 and just "wanted more of the same".  That's what it really comes down to in my opinion, but most people don't really have the nerve to say it honestly.  People just want more of the same; that's why developers have been doing the same thing over and over for more than a decade now.  They know, people just want more of the same, just updated with fancier graphics. 

     

    People play wow or EQ2 for a couple of years, feel they've seen all there is to see in that game and want to see more.  Instead of waiting for a new expansion or update they just go out and pick up another game that will look, feel, and play just like the one they were already playing, but provide them with a load of new content that is just "more of the same". 

     

    I'm sorry, but I truly believe that is the underlying mentality of every person that complains when something new comes along and it's not "how it's supposed to be done."  It's pretty clear from the number of responses that went along the lines of "this is how it's SUPPOSED to be done in an RPG", "that's not how an RPG is supposed to be".  As though Role Playing Game infers some set formula of gameplay akin to tabletop pen and pencil D&D. 

     

    It's nice to have roles to fulfill, because obviously it's supposed to be a Role playing game.  GW2 missed that in my opinion.  I played every class and they all felt the same to me; it felt like one role, DPS.  That doesn't mean I want to be stuck only being able to heal because I chose to play a healer.  This isn't 1990 and my computer and console can do a lot more today then they ever could.  It's about time games started providing better AI and the ability to "play my way".  Playing my way may mean that today I want to just heal, but tomorrow I may want to heal and blast the hell out of some things, or maybe even my heals aren't really that mandatory for this encounter so I can really blast the hell out of things. 

     

    Choice is nice, and the only people who dumb down games are the ones who insist that every new game just give them "more of the same".  If developers don't take chances then games never evolve or get better, and it's long overdue that the large studios start stepping up to the plate and start taking some real chances with new gameplay.  Small independent studios, with limited budgets have been making the AAA studios look pretty stupid lately. 

  • TalemireTalemire Clearwater, FLPosts: 756Member
    All I ask is that it keeps an "Everquest" feel to it that 1, 2, and even Vanguard has. I don't want to feel like I'm playing something other than the next Everquest.

    ------------------------------
    MMORPGs are great to look forward to after a hard day of work, but heaven is the ultimate reward for those who live Christ-like.

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  • wizardanimwizardanim Apple Valley, CAPosts: 278Member
    Originally posted by nationalcity

    I still can't help but worry that it's gonna turn into a DPS zerg because it just seems like it will be easier just to DPS down the mobs then bother with anything else.......

    People will eventually do like they did in GW2 and if your not DPS you will be shunned.......

    Whack-a-mole anyone?

    Hope I'm wrong I love healing but if it's like GW2 whats the point.......

    You think that it will be easier to DPS a mob down, when the mob is doing its best to avoid your DPS and punching you in your face?  Where are the tactics in that?  What you said sounds opposite of what they are promising.

    I have faith that this new tactical approach will be very fun.

  • nennafirnennafir Greater New Orleans Metro Area, LAPosts: 283Member Uncommon

    City of Heroes/Villains did an excellent job not having a trinity and yet having distinct roles for different people.  I will be (happily) amazed if EQN can achieve even half of what it did.

    CoX did so much correctly, and before almost anyone else did:

    No global cool down

    No auto attack

    Sidekicking/Exemplaring

    Buff classes that were not heal bots

    Control classes with a lot of personality and viability

    Not needing a trinity

    Character customization that is still unmatched

    Very complicated possibilities for character builds, for those who like it...with the invention sets at the end more complicated than any single MMO ever--and yes I mean this and it won this competition hands down

  • Sp00shSp00sh Grand Rapids, MIPosts: 48Member
    Still interested!
  • STYNKFYSTSTYNKFYST Sacramento, CAPosts: 290Member
    Originally posted by Lord.Bachus
    The problem os that stepping away from trinity combat eemoves both a tactical and a strategical layer from the combat, with nothing to replace these layers.. Which decrease a games depth...  In the end this dumbs down a game...

    This is what irritates me the most about players now.

     

    Removes...tactical and strategical (is that a word?) layer?!?!?

     

    This IS the problem with the trinity. Set game mode to stupid and charge! There ARE no tactics to the trinity. You have been and always are dumbed down. 

  • PhelcherPhelcher Boston, MAPosts: 1,053Member

    As long as weapons are single items and can mix & matched by appropriate classes & not exactly like GW2 then I believe combat will be varied & dynamic.

    If EQN turns into a min/max button mashing game, then the multi-role thing wont matter. The game will be too bland and little depth.

     

     

    Additionally, I do not like the idea of being able to CHANGE your class so easily, or on-the-fly.

    Everquest is a roleplaying game and so your character can't be a Plate wearing Warrior one day, then a staff wielding Wizard the next..  I'd much more have people have alts for additional roles and not quick-change them.

    It takes too much away from recognition of others in game, & the fact you have to make chpoices and live with them.

    If SOE manages to tie the multi-classing to some in-game penance for doing so. Many liked the idea of rare classes in EQ due to actual EXP penalties.

    "No they are not charity. That is where the whales come in. (I play for free. Whales pays.) Devs get a business. That is how it works."


    -Nariusseldon

  • TheocritusTheocritus Gary, INPosts: 3,731Member Uncommon
    I jsut fear that this game is going to be the continuing trend of the individual over the group and that its going to be DPS zerging at its finest......Its a shame to me they are calling this Everquest at all......Why not just call it what it really is: Minecraft Wars Next
  • Gallus85Gallus85 Winter Park, FLPosts: 1,092Member
    Originally posted by Lord.Bachus
    The problem os that stepping away from trinity combat eemoves both a tactical and a strategical layer from the combat, with nothing to replace these layers.. Which decrease a games depth...  In the end this dumbs down a game...

    A completely base-less blanket statement that couldn't be any further from reality.  Lets not pretend like there's a ton of depth to standard agro-based trinity mechanics.  With mobs mindlessly spamming attacks on the most defensive player and ignoring healers/dps/cc characters as long as they don't "pull agro".  That's about as dumbed down as it gets.  There's a reason why PVP in trinity games looks nothing like AI PVE combat, and why PVP is always much more demanding on the player.  Because agro based mechanics are easy, simplistic, predictable encounters that are almost always nothing more than gear checks and body counts using pre-determined whack a mole skill rotations.

    It takes way too much out of the player's hands and forces unrealistic and predictable combat dynamics that are nothing more than forced group requirements.

    EQN is aiming for more frantic, skill based combat, and one of the best ways to do that is to get away from tired trinity agro-based combat mechanics.

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