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Why do modern mmos punish grouping?

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  • PAL-18PAL-18 AnachronoxPosts: 802Member

    Team Level

    Ever wondered what the Team Level in the Team Window actually affected? After a little research through the Official Forums, a post by ARK Regulas from March 2004 provided the answer.

    Team level is a bonus given to your team for sticking together. It grants the following:

    -Increased chance of disarming a trap/opening a door successfully

    -Increased chance of landing nano programs successfully.

    -An AMS/DMS (attack and defense) boost

    The 2005 Official Game Manual from FC gives the following information:

    Teams that stay together for a long period of time get more coordinated, and fight better together. With time their team level increases, and they gain a small bonus to offensive and defensive skills.

    The team level starts at 1, and can be no higher than 5. Getting your team level to 5 takes several hours though, and each time a member of the team leaves (or is kicked out), the team level decreases by 1.

    The theory of Team Level affecting the percentage of valuable items dropping has never been proven.

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

    http://www.ao-universe.com/index.php?id=14&pid=533

    It can be more than just xp :) .

     

    So, did ESO have a successful launch? Yes, yes it did.
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  • npr71570npr71570 HatyaiPosts: 2Member

    HeroesGo is one of those games that discourages grouping.

    In dungeon if you team up, you get:

    _ Increased mob difficulties per player in the group 

    _ Much higher risk of death (difficulty is scaled weirdly due to from the above)

    _ Longer clearing time (due to the aboves)

    _ Decrease in exp for all players

    _ Less loot as this one is not increased and must be shared among all players.

    So there you go, if you team up, you'll get less exp, more death (and more repair cost, death involved or not), slower clearing time, and less loot. 

    As such, who wants to party?

  • VengeSunsoarVengeSunsoar Posts: 5,316Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Novusod
    Originally posted by VengeSunsoar

    How  is that different from old MMO's (not Vindictus, just the new mmo statement).  Old mmo's had the exact same set up, except you'd roll a /roll 100 to see who got it. or you waited for your turn at the bat and hoped the peice dropped.

    When you /roll 100 against 6 other people most of the time you walked away empty handed. Under the Vindictus model nobody walks away empty handed. Everyone gets loot. Sitting around and waiting to get lucky just isn't worth anymore since loot comes faster solo in most games and that is where the majority of the player base is.

    Yes.  I get that, and Vindictus sounds really.  But you said that new MMO's only gave a chance for someone to get the loot, then said the benefits of vindictus.

    So my question was old mmo's do that as well, the same as your new mmo's statement, so whats the difference then between old and new?  Not between vindictus and all the others.

    Quit worrying about other players in a game and just play.

  • ropeniceropenice Lake Worth, FLPosts: 587Member Uncommon
    I believe the OP has a good point but just stated it in a bad way to make point. If you just look at gaining xp, grouping was way more efficient than soloing, while more modern games the xp discrepancy between solo or group is very close, instead of tilted enough to encourage grouping. In EQ for example, soloing was very difficult. Many classes couldn't do it well, or at all, at higher levels and it was usually slow going, with long mana breaks. You couldn't solo most bosses for better loot solo. Grouping gave better xp and with the speed of taking down mobs, most chose to group because the game mechanics rewarded it enough. With xp being so close now, solo and group, many don't want to wait to form group or put in time or effort to start or maintain a group. It's not the only reason grouping is less used but mechanics can create the atmosphere for grouping.
  • TheCrow2kTheCrow2k Adelaide, AKPosts: 953Member
    It is generally because games are geared toward balance of progression for solo players. Because of this players who group up tear through content & level "too quickly".

    Group centric MMO's used to make solo leveling a lot slower & then when grouped you leveled faster sheerly by faster progression through areas & killing mobs faster.

    So yes sadly solo centric MMO's are to blame.
  • KonfessKonfess Dallas, TXPosts: 949Member Uncommon

    I have been explaining this for the past 15 years.  What the OP is talking about is the tendency for MMOs to split XP over the group.  If a Mob is worth 100 xp to a solo player, then that same mob is worth 100xp / 4 to a single player in a group of four.

     

    What the OP and millions of players that can't do the math fail to realize is that in a group you blow through content at a faster rate.  This faster rate makes grouping far superior to solo game play and doesn't punish grouping.  This is why every player that power levels to level cap does so in a group.

     

    In the same time ( 1 hour ) that a solo player completes 1 quest (200 xp) and kills 5 mobs  (5 x 100xp)for that quest and earns 700 xp.  The group of four does 10 quests (10 x 200 xp) and kills 200 mobs (200 x 100xp/4) and each players earns 7.000 xp.

     

    If it takes that solo player 12 months to reach level cap, it takes that group of four 1.2 moths to reach level cap.  But really it takes that group 3 months.  Why?  Because they also have time to do their homework, go to their min-wage jobs, earn a little money, and take their girlfriend to the movies on Friday nights.  They do all of that and still make it to level cap before the solo player making full xp on mobs.

     

    Groups finish zones faster and move on to higher level zones faster than solo players.  Groups Get better gear first, before solo players can get it.  Ever notice that quest mobs drop gear 6 to 4 levels below them?  Most players call this Vendor Trash, because they solo these mobs at the mobs level or greater.  This looted gear is useless.  But the group players are doing these quest at 8 to 6 levels below the mobs.  So the gear is still useful to them.  These same groups are running dungeons long before the solo player.  They run it multiple time and equip each member with blue items.

     

    Group level faster and make XP faster.  They acquire items faster, take less damage, and make money faster.  You can solo any game, but it will take longer, and be harder to do.

    Pardon any spelling errors
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  • moosecatlolmoosecatlol Boring, TXPosts: 1,171Member Uncommon

    If it matters any KRPGs have gone through one by one taking up the task of rectifying such backwards thinking. Of some of the more recent ones give additional exp to groups are Dragon Nest, Vindictus, and Blade and Soul. I'm all for abolishing the split exp syndrome of game design, it never made sense.

    Why did split exp ever exist, it never made sense.

  • BootezBootez Yucaipa, CAPosts: 57Member

    I definitely see a lot of good points in this thread. But for games like WoW, or GW2, or Rift, or even the terrible SWTOR, the solo focused play is still very dominant. The slight extra xp from grouping isn't enough to make the majority of players want to team. GW2, there is no incentive at all since it is based on tagging mobs. Once you get into exploration mode dungeons, teaming is something more important. But general level progression? Why bother teaming?

    Yes, a group, even with split xp, will kill mobs faster and net a bit more xp, but it still isn't enough to make it the main route. It's very rare to see "LFG XP Farm" in chat for a modern mmo. Actually, I don't think I've since it in anything after WoW. Dungeons, yes. But grouping for quests of hunting parties? Sadly I haven't.

  • maplestonemaplestone Ottawa, ONPosts: 3,099Member

    As a solo player, I've never encountered an MMO where I've felt like I had an advantage over grouped players (except for a few rare bottlenecks where there aren't enough mobs to go around)

     

  • AxehiltAxehilt San Francisco, CAPosts: 8,714Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Boneserino

    Lets not forget the phenomenom called the "Power Leveller"!

    If there is one thing I hate in MMO's these days it is this guy.   You know the guy who starts at level 1 and immediately wants to group with you so that he can do level 50 content in a group while achieving ridiculous amounts of experience points as well as skipping the majority of low level game content.  

    And he does all this just so he can get to endgame and complain that there is not enough content to keep him amused.

    But aside from that I agree with most here, in that I don't really see grouping being punished in the games I have played.   If grouping isn't necessay to do the content then generally there is always some bonus offered as incentive to group.  But it shouldn't be excessive as other have stated.

    Well powerleveling still happens for sure (every time WOW releases a new expansion, it's a grouping player who hits max level first) but what you're describing hasn't happened in MMORPGs for years, maybe even a decade.

    I think Asheron's Call is the only MMORPG where a level 1 player could actually benefit from lugging alongside a level 50 player, and actually earn rewards for doing so (and I'm not even sure how good that was; I might just be mixing it up with the vassal system.)

    Arguably you could do something similar in City of Heroes too, but that game maintained the difficulty with its sidekick system. Basically you would have the stats (health/damage/etc) of a level 50 player, earn rewards about equal to your own level's content, but lack any of the higher-level abilities.  So it was actually a bit harder (considerably harder in some cases) to do the level 50 content while sidekicked up, but it wasn't so hard that you weren't a worthwhile group mate.  Because MMORPGs should let friends play together, you know?

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  • VengeSunsoarVengeSunsoar Posts: 5,316Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by ropenice
    I believe the OP has a good point but just stated it in a bad way to make point. If you just look at gaining xp, grouping was way more efficient than soloing, while more modern games the xp discrepancy between solo or group is very close, instead of tilted enough to encourage grouping. In EQ for example, soloing was very difficult. Many classes couldn't do it well, or at all, at higher levels and it was usually slow going, with long mana breaks. You couldn't solo most bosses for better loot solo. Grouping gave better xp and with the speed of taking down mobs, most chose to group because the game mechanics rewarded it enough. With xp being so close now, solo and group, many don't want to wait to form group or put in time or effort to start or maintain a group. It's not the only reason grouping is less used but mechanics can create the atmosphere for grouping.

    Thats the thing though it wasn't that way in the genre as a whole, just in EQ.  In UO you could solo well, in SWG you could solo well, in AC you could solo well. Just in EQ it was harder.

    So since the genre wasn't that way in the past, why do they want to be that way now all the while saying it changed to be more solo?  It doesn't make sense, it was always solo friendly, just one game wasn't and they are claiming the whole genre was like that.  It wasn't... just one game.

    Quit worrying about other players in a game and just play.

  • dave6660dave6660 New York, NYPosts: 2,543Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by lizardbones

     


    Originally posted by Axehilt
    Which ones punish grouping?  Nearly all the MMORPGs I've played over the years provide a slight XP buff to groups.

     

    Sometimes it's not enough to make it worth grouping, but usually it's pretty close.  For example, throughout WOW's lifespan it's kinda bounced back and forth with updates (sometimes it's been way faster to solo, sometimes about even, and sometimes it's been the fastest way to level.)

    Certainly I'd agree it's best when grouping provides a slight advantage to overall progression.



    The problem is that people expect group xp to be considerably faster than going solo. There is an advantage to groups, but often it's in the group's ability to work together to kill things faster. If the group doesn't work together as a group, or if everyone has different quests or something, then they think that grouping has been nerfed.

     

    That's the key.  A group that consistently works together will get a nice xp boost from grouping.  PUG's, on the other hand, are often chaotic making solo a more efficient choice.

    “There are certain queer times and occasions in this strange mixed affair we call life when a man takes this whole universe for a vast practical joke, though the wit thereof he but dimly discerns, and more than suspects that the joke is at nobody's expense but his own.”
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  • nariusseldonnariusseldon santa clara, CAPosts: 22,441Member
    Originally posted by Hrimnir

     

    Because they aren't MMOs.  They're single player rpg's with other people running around in the same world as you.

    Yeh. Many MMOs are not massive. The market seem to like single player RPG with other people running around better.

    May as well change the meaning of "MMO", unless you can get the whole industry to adopt a new label.

     

  • PsiKahnPsiKahn Woodside, NYPosts: 126Member
    I don't know any MMOs that are actively discouraging grouping, but I do think there is a passive de-emphasis on grouping that results from the modern emphasis on solo play.  Group play still has benefits in most cases in speed alone if nothing else, but today, those benefits may not be sufficient to lure players away from the vastly-improved solo play that most games sport.
  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,651Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Bootez

    I have never understood this logic. When in a group you get less experience. Why wouldn't they just boost the XP to get people grouping like crazy? 

    Seems counter productive to me to create a multiplayer game and then make it not worth while since it isn't the most efficient way to level up. 

    If they simply made all dungeons, quests, etc give more XP in a group than solo, these games would be social again and probably a hell of a lot more fun for most people. 

    When you group, you get less experience. The rest of us don't join crappy groups.

    There isn't a "right" or "wrong" way to play, if you want to use a screwdriver to put nails into wood, have at it, simply don't complain when the guy next to you with the hammer is doing it much better and easier. - Allein
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  • RajCajRajCaj Lafayette, LAPosts: 706Member

    I think just taking into account XP gained is a mistake, when trying to understand the motives of modern MMO game devs & the feasability of soloing.

     

    What the OP may be getting at is not just the fact that people are in a party, but how meaningful that party experience is.  Specifically, he mentions the comradary & friendships that that are built through party gameplay.

     

    Blizzard has taken great measures to make grouping MUCH easier & painless....but has it also increased the quality of that experience?  I'd say no.  I might just be speaking from anticdotal evidence, but running group content (instanced dungeons)...even at low levels.....required careful coordination & actually required the group members to speak to eachother.

    If you jumped in any non raid dungeon content today, the players are so over powered that you can just steam roll the entire dungeon experience without a single party member saying a word.  Tab Target + Damage Skill / Spell...rince & repeat.

    There may be more grouping going on....but the current grouping experience doesn't hold a candle to what it used to be.

     

    The same can be said for games like Rift & GW2.  You end up getting added to one of these open world roaming groups for "dynamic world content" and that experience amounts to everyone spamming their skills as they cycle through targets.

    It's essentially a solo experience, with other people helping to kill the things you need to kill.

     

    But the answer to the OP's question has much to do with streamlining the MMO experience, so that they can maximize the number of subscribers.

    Fact of the matter is, most gamers are typically considered casuals....in that they don't have 4-5 hours a day to invest in an entertainment experience.  They have jobs, have to cook dinner, change diapers, walk the dog, homework, etc.  That said, those folks (who represent the largest subsection of the gamer demographic pie) want to feel like they make progress in their limited gaming sessions (which are closer to 30-60 minutes, rather than 4+ hours).

    There is a fincancial driver for these modern MMO publishers to maximize their suscribers as well.  Given that recent AAA MMOs now cost in the 10s-100s of millions of dollars to make, they cannot limit their audience to a small niche of traditional MMO gamers.  The time it would take to break even (muchless earn a profit) with 300k subs would take MUCH longer than if they had 5-10 million.  So the cost of these new MMOs plays a HUGE role in what kind of game they can make.

     

    So for the folks that have played traditional MMORPGs, and are used to a more hard knocks & greater time investment....THOSE are the reasons why the MMO experience in many of the more recent MMO games feels "cheaper", and lacks depth & consequence (things that used to drive players to interact in a more meaningful way).

  • DeVoDeVoDeVoDeVo Outhere, NCPosts: 94Member Uncommon

    Modern games do not punish grouping.

    In every MMO I’ve played, grouping is always the easiest, fastest and usually only way to get the best gear, items and currency.  Sure you can solo your way to max level by playing a story line or grinding but if you want the real good stuff, you have to group for big bosses, dungeons and raids. 

    Take Neverwinter for example.  Yes soloing is great fun but grouping is the only way to get that top T2 gear, purple drops for making Diamonds, experience per hour, etc., . 

    The so called “single player” MMO allow players to solo if they want but grouping is still encouraged, especially at endgame.  Us soloers just tolerate it and try to enjoy ourselves despite it all.

    By the way, I think grouping is very important for the health of an MMO, it just shouldn’t be the only way to play.  Also, I wish developers would add very challenging solo content with a chance to drop the fat lootz groupers are currently only able to obtain.

  • nariusseldonnariusseldon santa clara, CAPosts: 22,441Member
    Originally posted by RajCaj

    Blizzard has taken great measures to make grouping MUCH easier & painless....but has it also increased the quality of that experience?  I'd say no.  I might just be speaking from anticdotal evidence, but running group content (instanced dungeons)...even at low levels.....required careful coordination & actually required the group members to speak to eachother.

    If you jumped in any non raid dungeon content today, the players are so over powered that you can just steam roll the entire dungeon experience without a single party member saying a word.  Tab Target + Damage Skill / Spell...rince & repeat.

    There may be more grouping going on....but the current grouping experience doesn't hold a candle to what it used to be.

     

    Obviously that sentiment is not shared by most of blizz audience. Otherwise, they will complain (like QQing about how difficult H dungeons were at the start of CATA) and blizz will change it (like how they nerf those H dungeons).

    Personally i much prefer the more convenient and painless dungeons. If i want a challenge, i play solo Diablo 3. I don't want my fun to be dependent on some other random dude on the internet.

     

  • Sk1ppeRSk1ppeR PlovdivPosts: 511Member
    They don't. They just doesn't force you to group anymore to progress. I think this is the better way
  • GardavsshadeGardavsshade Cedar Springs, MIPosts: 756Member Uncommon

    MMOs don't punish Grouping in general... Player themselves are more of a deterrent to Grouping now than anything else.

    Case in point: PUGS in most AAA MMOs. Even if you want to Group the experience while in a PUG generally now makes you never want to join one again. Thing is this.... most Players find their Guilds through joining random Groups (PUGS), or at least they used to... so if Players don't join PUGs... you can see where that leads: right to your question.

    So look to Players themselves for the answer to why Grouping doesn't happen more often.

  • RajCajRajCaj Lafayette, LAPosts: 706Member
    Originally posted by nariusseldon
    Originally posted by RajCaj

    Blizzard has taken great measures to make grouping MUCH easier & painless....but has it also increased the quality of that experience?  I'd say no.  I might just be speaking from anticdotal evidence, but running group content (instanced dungeons)...even at low levels.....required careful coordination & actually required the group members to speak to eachother.

    If you jumped in any non raid dungeon content today, the players are so over powered that you can just steam roll the entire dungeon experience without a single party member saying a word.  Tab Target + Damage Skill / Spell...rince & repeat.

    There may be more grouping going on....but the current grouping experience doesn't hold a candle to what it used to be.

     

    Obviously that sentiment is not shared by most of blizz audience. Otherwise, they will complain (like QQing about how difficult H dungeons were at the start of CATA) and blizz will change it (like how they nerf those H dungeons).

    Personally i much prefer the more convenient and painless dungeons. If i want a challenge, i play solo Diablo 3. I don't want my fun to be dependent on some other random dude on the internet.

     

    I have no doubt in my mind that the majority of the blizz audience prefers the easy painless (some would say mind numbing) dungeon crawling experience.  (See the part of my post you left out regarding *most* MMO gamers being of the casual types that are looking to move the progress needle in the 30-60 minute mark)

    "A Quality" experience is obviously subjective, but I think it's pretty telling of the point the OP was trying to make when you seek out a solo button masher game (instead of looking for challenging collaborative play in a MMO) for a challenge.

    Those "random dudes on the internet" used to make for pretty good friends, and sometimes long lasting MMO experiences, when game mechanics gave people the opportunity to work together (in a meaningful way) to overcome some challenge.

  • nariusseldonnariusseldon santa clara, CAPosts: 22,441Member
    Originally posted by RajCaj

    "A Quality" experience is obviously subjective, but I think it's pretty telling of the point the OP was trying to make when you seek out a solo button masher game (instead of looking for challenging collaborative play in a MMO) for a challenge.

    Those "random dudes on the internet" used to make for pretty good friends, and sometimes long lasting MMO experiences, when game mechanics gave people the opportunity to work together (in a meaningful way) to overcome some challenge.

    Yes. I don't depend on other people for fun in my gaming. That is just too much work. I used to raid in a progression guild in WOW. That no longer fits my lifestyle.

    Don't get me wrong, i have made friends on the internet (in fact, some wow guildies are still on real id friend list) but i have enough friends and i have family. I simply don't have time to make friends with random people on the internet, and that is certainly not my reason to play a video game.

     

  • GruugGruug Chillicothe, ILPosts: 1,311Member Uncommon

    I have yet to see any MMO today that "punishes" those that group. In fact, as has been mentioned, you get more xp quicker in a group and it is easier to go through content in a group then it is to solo.

    Now, someone above seemed to allude to the idea that solo play should somehow be discouraged. Why? If someone does not wish to play  for one session in a group for whatever reason, why shouldn't they be allowed to go that route. I for one have had instances where I get on to play for a couple of minutes and don't even consider grouping. Not fair to a group to join and leave so soon. And, what is wrong if someone just wishes to play solo most of the time? It is up to them if they do not wish to be a social butterfly. In fact, I would feel very much like a particular gaming style is being forced upon me if soloing was not allowed or strictly controlled and penalized. 

    Let's party like it is 1863!

  • RajCajRajCaj Lafayette, LAPosts: 706Member
    Originally posted by Gardavsshade

    MMOs don't punish Grouping in general... Player themselves are more of a deterrent to Grouping now than anything else.

    Case in point: PUGS in most AAA MMOs. Even if you want to Group the experience while in a PUG generally now makes you never want to join one again. Thing is this.... most Players find their Guilds through joining random Groups (PUGS), or at least they used to... so if Players don't join PUGs... you can see where that leads: right to your question.

    So look to Players themselves for the answer to why Grouping doesn't happen more often.

    I've found that the old traditional MMOs have a smaller niche audience that gave you better odds at finding people that are like minded, and share more in common than the modern MMOs.

     

    If a MMO is geared for a HUGE causal gaming audience, that is generally appealing to folks that aren't exactly looking for great grouping experiences (and by great, I mean cooperative & social), you're bound to run into a bunch of a-holes that are just going through the motions to get the shiney.

  • JabasJabas Caldas da RainhaPosts: 1,207Member Common

    The only problem grouping in mmos is not the lack of incentive from devs, but the extreme hapiness of solo players that dont like to group.

     

    In all mmos that i play in last years, we get more experience per hour grouping than solo, but most players only look to how much that mob gives and forget that in group we kill him much faster and did the quest in 2min, while in solo is 10min.

    Im playing TERA, and there is players that prefer killing BAMs solo, even if it takes 15min to each one, then grouping and kill each bam in 2min.

     

    This is the time where ppl only group if thats a really huge reward, dam..... i must be getting old, i group alot of times only for the fun of doing things.

     

     

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