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Are games missing that "breath of a Wok" touch these days?

Colt47Colt47 Naperville, ILPosts: 310Member Uncommon

For those that don't know what "Breath of a Wok" is, it's that extra hint of flavor someone gets when someone cooks with a well seasoned and heavily used Wok that makes the dish taste authentic.  In a way, I think games (especially MMOs these days) have lost their own baked in extra value, which in turn has contributed to a lot of what people are experiencing with trying to play different titles and never returning to them.  How many games in the MMO space have we seen easter eggs or developer secrets in?  Or for that matter, a developer dropping in small mementos to things that inspired him to make the game?

The only MMO I know of that actually had anything like this was World of Warcraft with the Linkin quests, the early Holiday extras, and some of the funny behaviors people could pull off with certain monsters (like Stitches from Duskwood being pulled to Goldshire, where it pretty much massacred the entire town.)  Heck, the developers didn't even punish the people who pulled Stitches to Goldshire.  Try doing that in any modern MMO and they will slap a suspension or something else on their account.

Comments

  • Mtibbs1989Mtibbs1989 Fredericksburg, VAPosts: 2,920Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Colt47

    For those that don't know what "Breath of a Wok" is, it's that extra hint of flavor someone gets when someone cooks with a well seasoned and heavily used Wok that makes the dish taste authentic.  In a way, I think games (especially MMOs these days) have lost their own baked in extra value, which in turn has contributed to a lot of what people are experiencing with trying to play different titles and never returning to them.  How many games in the MMO space have we seen easter eggs or developer secrets in?  Or for that matter, a developer dropping in small mementos to things that inspired him to make the game?

    The only MMO I know of that actually had anything like this was World of Warcraft with the Linkin quests, the early Holiday extras, and some of the funny behaviors people could pull off with certain monsters (like Stitches from Duskwood being pulled to Goldshire, where it pretty much massacred the entire town.)  Heck, the developers didn't even punish the people who pulled Stitches to Goldshire.  Try doing that in any modern MMO and they will slap a suspension or something else on their account.

    Interesting comparison. Yeah, they can be a little old. Even if they're launched brand new. The only MMO that I've played of recent that was completely different as far as combat was Wakfu. Which is a tactical turn-based MMO where players move their character around similar on tiles. Similar to a game of chess.

    image

    Somebody, somewhere has better skills as you have, more experience as you have, is smarter than you, has more friends as you do and can stay online longer. Just pray he's not out to get you.
  • MeowheadMeowhead New Carlisle, INPosts: 3,716Member

    I thought all the MMORPGs did stuff like that.  I knew WoW did.

    GW2 does.  People who are really into an MMORPG know all sorts of secrets about it.  At least, if there's any secrets to be known.

    In GW2 there are call outs to various things in NPCs, gravestones, place names, secret locations, etc. etc.

    You just aren't aware of ones in other games because you didn't care enough to be curious?  I'm not going to claim it's unique to GW2 (Or GW2 and WoW), I just assume I don' tknow enough about the other games to notice them.

  • Colt47Colt47 Naperville, ILPosts: 310Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Meowhead

    I thought all the MMORPGs did stuff like that.  I knew WoW did.

    GW2 does.  People who are really into an MMORPG know all sorts of secrets about it.  At least, if there's any secrets to be known.

    In GW2 there are call outs to various things in NPCs, gravestones, place names, secret locations, etc. etc.

    You just aren't aware of ones in other games because you didn't care enough to be curious?  I'm not going to claim it's unique to GW2 (Or GW2 and WoW), I just assume I don' tknow enough about the other games to notice them.

    A lot of them don't, or at least if they do they don't breadcrumb trail to the eggs effectively, the said secrets have zero impact and don't get any forum attention, or they end up being a by the book planned inclusion rather than something born of whimsy or spontaneity of the author.  It's something that both adds value to the game for the player and says something about the author.  Terraria, Unreal Tournament, and even Super Mario 64 had this kind of thing going.  League of Angels would be an example that does not...

    At least I can thank that ad for helping pay for the site, though.  Glorious boob plate and all. =)

  • GeezerGamerGeezerGamer ChairPosts: 5,590Member Uncommon

    For me, it's about depth and layers. I called "Meta-Game" There used to be multiple fascets to MMORPGs. It was one game you played, but in it, you played a multiple of different sub-games. There was an economic game, there was a crafting game, there was a social game, etc etc. Choices and options, different paths to take within the game that weren't doing the exact same thing day after day, after day.

    Today, almost all of the big budget MMORPGs revolve around one concept:

    If you aren't fighting something, you aren't really doing much to advance your character in a meaningful way.

     

    I forget what video it was that was featured here recently, it was a conference where the devs from EQN and Wildstar were talking about what they were going t odo that was different. And the answer to the very 1st question from the devs was their idea of reducing grindiness and improving the games was to make combat more fun. NO! Their idea is all wrong. It's not "Players will be spending most of their time in combat so make it more fun" It should be "Players need to have other things to do other than combat all the time that will still advance their character in a way that improves them."

    I saw that video and knew MMORPG development is currently far to fixated on combat and it's probably not going to change anytime soon.

  • Colt47Colt47 Naperville, ILPosts: 310Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by GeezerGamer

    For me, it's about depth and layers. I called "Meta-Game" There used to be multiple fascets to MMORPGs. It was one game you played, but in it, you played a multiple of different sub-games. There was an economic game, there was a crafting game, there was a social game, etc etc. Choices and options, different paths to take within the game that weren't doing the exact same thing day after day, after day.

    Today, almost all of the big budget MMORPGs revolve around one concept:

    If you aren't fighting something, you aren't really doing much to advance your character in a meaningful way.

     

    I forget what video it was that was featured here recently, it was a conference where the devs from EQN and Wildstar were talking about what they were going t odo that was different. And the answer to the very 1st question from the devs was their idea of reducing grindiness and improving the games was to make combat more fun. NO! Their idea is all wrong. It's not "Players will be spending most of their time in combat so make it more fun" It should be "Players need to have other things to do other than combat all the time that will still advance their character in a way that improves them."

    I saw that video and knew MMORPG development is currently far to fixated on combat and it's probably not going to change anytime soon.

    I'm not sure if you've looked at it yet, but Shroud of the Avatar is trying to do exactly what you are looking for.  As far as the devs response from EQN and Wildstar, I'd have to hear how the question was asked and the context of the situation.  If the concept of their game revolves around combat then that is the only vector they have to work with.   There are very few, if any, MMORPGs that have enough complexity in their level advancement to give experience rewards based on factors other than battle.

  • GeezerGamerGeezerGamer ChairPosts: 5,590Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Colt47
    Originally posted by GeezerGamer

    For me, it's about depth and layers. I called "Meta-Game" There used to be multiple fascets to MMORPGs. It was one game you played, but in it, you played a multiple of different sub-games. There was an economic game, there was a crafting game, there was a social game, etc etc. Choices and options, different paths to take within the game that weren't doing the exact same thing day after day, after day.

    Today, almost all of the big budget MMORPGs revolve around one concept:

    If you aren't fighting something, you aren't really doing much to advance your character in a meaningful way.

     

    I forget what video it was that was featured here recently, it was a conference where the devs from EQN and Wildstar were talking about what they were going t odo that was different. And the answer to the very 1st question from the devs was their idea of reducing grindiness and improving the games was to make combat more fun. NO! Their idea is all wrong. It's not "Players will be spending most of their time in combat so make it more fun" It should be "Players need to have other things to do other than combat all the time that will still advance their character in a way that improves them."

    I saw that video and knew MMORPG development is currently far to fixated on combat and it's probably not going to change anytime soon.

    I'm not sure if you've looked at it yet, but Shroud of the Avatar is trying to do exactly what you are looking for.  As far as the devs response from EQN and Wildstar, I'd have to hear how the question was asked and the context of the situation.  If the concept of their game revolves around combat then that is the only vector they have to work with.   There are very few, if any, MMORPGs that have enough complexity in their level advancement to give experience rewards based on factors other than battle.

    I found the video I referenced.

    I did not watch the whole video, I stopped as soon as the panel started answering the very 1st question. Maybe that was short sighted, but I'd seen enough to get an insight as to what these guys were thinking.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5M3cgZmudMw

  • Colt47Colt47 Naperville, ILPosts: 310Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by GeezerGamer
    Originally posted by Colt47
    Originally posted by GeezerGamer

    For me, it's about depth and layers. I called "Meta-Game" There used to be multiple fascets to MMORPGs. It was one game you played, but in it, you played a multiple of different sub-games. There was an economic game, there was a crafting game, there was a social game, etc etc. Choices and options, different paths to take within the game that weren't doing the exact same thing day after day, after day.

    Today, almost all of the big budget MMORPGs revolve around one concept:

    If you aren't fighting something, you aren't really doing much to advance your character in a meaningful way.

     

    I forget what video it was that was featured here recently, it was a conference where the devs from EQN and Wildstar were talking about what they were going t odo that was different. And the answer to the very 1st question from the devs was their idea of reducing grindiness and improving the games was to make combat more fun. NO! Their idea is all wrong. It's not "Players will be spending most of their time in combat so make it more fun" It should be "Players need to have other things to do other than combat all the time that will still advance their character in a way that improves them."

    I saw that video and knew MMORPG development is currently far to fixated on combat and it's probably not going to change anytime soon.

    I'm not sure if you've looked at it yet, but Shroud of the Avatar is trying to do exactly what you are looking for.  As far as the devs response from EQN and Wildstar, I'd have to hear how the question was asked and the context of the situation.  If the concept of their game revolves around combat then that is the only vector they have to work with.   There are very few, if any, MMORPGs that have enough complexity in their level advancement to give experience rewards based on factors other than battle.

    I found the video I referenced.

    I did not watch the whole video, I stopped as soon as the panel started answering the very 1st question. Maybe that was short sighted, but I'd seen enough to get an insight as to what these guys were thinking.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5M3cgZmudMw

    Watched the whole panel through.  That definitely wasn't a bad Q&A, though the group doing Wildstar definitely felt like they were in a bit of a pinch near the end.  Pretty much every developer on the panel agreed that player driven content was a way to the future and a hybrid model between free to play and subscription was going to be the best approach in the future.  The question really comes down to what player driven content is to each of the developers.  EQN seems to embrace the idea of having players push monster populations into different areas based on their exploits (good), which will generate conflicts and quests.  On the other hand there has been no indication that said monster population could ever be wiped out (bad), so we end up with something that will probably play out as a looser form of dynamic events.

     I agree they need player driven content in MMOs, but the results of the players must have a lasting impact on the game world.  Player A should be able to tell his exploit apart from Player B, and each major conflict in the game should be memorable.  That's part of what has been lost in the transition to the World of Warcraft themepark model: everyone becomes the same in the end and there's no exploits that truly define the player except for their achievements... which are derived from a common checklist.    

  • GeezerGamerGeezerGamer ChairPosts: 5,590Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Colt47
    Originally posted by GeezerGamer
    Originally posted by Colt47
    Originally posted by GeezerGamer

    For me, it's about depth and layers. I called "Meta-Game" There used to be multiple fascets to MMORPGs. It was one game you played, but in it, you played a multiple of different sub-games. There was an economic game, there was a crafting game, there was a social game, etc etc. Choices and options, different paths to take within the game that weren't doing the exact same thing day after day, after day.

    Today, almost all of the big budget MMORPGs revolve around one concept:

    If you aren't fighting something, you aren't really doing much to advance your character in a meaningful way.

     

    I forget what video it was that was featured here recently, it was a conference where the devs from EQN and Wildstar were talking about what they were going t odo that was different. And the answer to the very 1st question from the devs was their idea of reducing grindiness and improving the games was to make combat more fun. NO! Their idea is all wrong. It's not "Players will be spending most of their time in combat so make it more fun" It should be "Players need to have other things to do other than combat all the time that will still advance their character in a way that improves them."

    I saw that video and knew MMORPG development is currently far to fixated on combat and it's probably not going to change anytime soon.

    I'm not sure if you've looked at it yet, but Shroud of the Avatar is trying to do exactly what you are looking for.  As far as the devs response from EQN and Wildstar, I'd have to hear how the question was asked and the context of the situation.  If the concept of their game revolves around combat then that is the only vector they have to work with.   There are very few, if any, MMORPGs that have enough complexity in their level advancement to give experience rewards based on factors other than battle.

    I found the video I referenced.

    I did not watch the whole video, I stopped as soon as the panel started answering the very 1st question. Maybe that was short sighted, but I'd seen enough to get an insight as to what these guys were thinking.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5M3cgZmudMw

    Watched the whole panel through.  That definitely wasn't a bad Q&A, though the group doing Wildstar definitely felt like they were in a bit of a pinch near the end.  Pretty much every developer on the panel agreed that player driven content was a way to the future and a hybrid model between free to play and subscription was going to be the best approach in the future.  The question really comes down to what player driven content is to each of the developers.  EQN seems to embrace the idea of having players push monster populations into different areas based on their exploits (good), which will generate conflicts and quests.  On the other hand there has been no indication that said monster population could ever be wiped out (bad), so we end up with something that will probably play out as a looser form of dynamic events.

     I agree they need player driven content in MMOs, but the results of the players must have a lasting impact on the game world.  Player A should be able to tell his exploit apart from Player B, and each major conflict in the game should be memorable.  That's part of what has been lost in the transition to the World of Warcraft themepark model: everyone becomes the same in the end and there's no exploits that truly define the player except for their achievements... which are derived from a common checklist.    

    Well, Like I said, I stopped watching it when they started  thinking the solution is that combat should be more fun. No matter how engaging they can possibly make it. It's going to get redundant and lose that fun factor. I'm all for complex and integrated combat, but there still needs to be more.

    I think this idea of player driven content, A-LA-Dynamic Events isn't going to have the payoff these devs are looking for. One of the big complaints about GW2 is that it still boiled down to the same quests. While it was great that getting the quests could change based on events, It wasn't enough. In the end, you are still doing escorts, gathering items, killing a set number of mobs or capturing/defending locations. You are still doing the exact same activities. And when I last stopped playing GW2 a couple months ago, Dynamic event leveling was reduced to this:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BWnS0eH_NIM

    A cycle of champions repeated over an over non stop. Almost all other events in QD went largely ignored and unattended.

    So if EQN developers think they can alter the quest delivery system without actually changing what the players are doing on them, then players will still feel like it's the "same old" and the truth is, it will be.

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