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  • Is Destiny 2 an MMO:Poll

    I have plenty of games to play and I'm not fussy on the age of the game either, so I have decades worth of AAA to play through. Currently going through FF9 again, before that I went through GTA5 again, before that Mad Max. I don't struggle to find games to play. 

    However, I struggle to find MMOs worth playing. I don't like shooters as a general rule and I didn't like the Halo games, so Bungie were always going to struggle to attract me to Destiny and Destiny 2. 

    You just said "I have decades worth of AAA to play through". So why even bother to struggle finding a good game in a niche genre like MMO?

    Just enjoy the decades worth of AAA (despite you do not like Destiny, which of course is your right and i totally respect that), and if a good (to you) MMO comes along, enjoy. If not, i doubt you need to even bother to notice.

    MMORPGs are my favourite genre of games. No other genre I have ever played has come close to the enjoyment I experienced in both SWG and LotRO. So, whilst I can still get enjoyment from single player games and I still game 2 or 3 nights a week, that enjoyment never reaches the heights experienced playing MMORPGs. 

    Imagine you are a massive fan of burgers - they are your favourite food and you eat them all the time. There is a restaurant in your town that does the best burger you have ever tasted in your life. Then the restaurant shuts down. So do all the others. For years, your only choice of burger is McDonalds and Burger King. They're still tasty and enjoyable, but you know that it could be so much better. 

    That is what my gaming life feels like - its still enjoyable, but I know the industry has the potential for far greater things than it is currently producing and I would like to see it reach that potential. 
  • Celebrity Raid Boss (prizes not included)

    Following on from the great thread started by @ConstantineMerus, I thought I'd follow on with something similar, purely for fun. No prizes included, I'm not drunk nor do I really care that much!

    Your challenge: design a raid boss based on something from real life, preferably something that we all know or can easily look up. 

    Please explain why you've chosen your particular person or group to be the raid boss. Explain any particular special abilities they might have, the sort of environment you are fighting them in and any special tactics required to beat them. 

    I'll start you off with an example. 

    Boss: The Anchorman Team - Ron, Brick, Champ and Brian
    Adds: Random other news teams 
    Location: Alley outside a strip club (yeh, I'm basically recreating the movie scene)
    Special Abilities: Too dumb to die, short term memory (aggro resets every 20 seconds), wide variety of weapon attacks
    Tactics: These guys are literally too dumb to die. During the fight, you can pound away at them and their health will drop, only to randomly regen to full. With aggro resetting frequently, combined with the amount of adds, this fight is chaos! Kiting is the order of the day. 

    To win this fight, you must locate / collect / cc the following - a fit woman (brian), a lamp (brick), a signed piece of sports equipment (champ) and the dog Baxter (ron) - and then kill/destroy them all within 5 seconds of one another. This demoralises all 4 bosses at the same time, causing them to cry like little children and destroy their public credibility. They will then concede the fight to you. Should you get the timing wrong and leave one boss up, that person will quickly lift the spirits of the downed bosses, bringing them back into the fight. 

    Over to you guys :smile:

  • Gear Dependency Vs. Player Skill (Poll)

    First, I disagree with your definitions. 

    Games that rely on gear dependancy use gear as a gate to content. If your gear is below this level, you cannot complete it. If you gear is at this level, you can do it at the intended difficulty. If your gear is above this level, you can do it at a reduced level of difficulty. 

    Player skill simply means that the outcome of the fight is based off of the player's actions. All games require player skill. I know of no game where you can initiate combat, do nothing, and still win because your character is strong enough. They might exist, I don't know, but I'd imagine they'd be extremely boring. 

    There is a very close relationship between gear and player skill in typical mmorpg mechanics. Usually, gear is used to determine the level of player skill required. Got great gear? Player skill required for success is minimal. Got poor gear? Player skill required is a lot. 

    There is a further issue at stake in a conversation like this: do the combat mechanics allow player skill to shine? I would argue that very few MMOs really allow player skill to shine. In my opinion, player skill is a combination of the physical and intellectual capabilities of a player. 

    The physical is your typical twitch-skills: do you react quickly? are you observant? can you aim accurately? can you concentrate for 10 minutes in a row? These are skills that anyone can learn (baring disabilities) and simply require time to acquire. The move towards action-combat has placed a greater emphasis on physical player skill than past games. 

    Intellectual player skill is all about problem solving: do you know the tactics? do you know the correct rotation? do you know what to do when shit goes wrong? are you choosing the correct skill to use next? are you able to support your team mates properly? can you predict the other players actions? The move to action-combat has massively reduced the need for intellectual player skill. When you only have movement + 5 skills to choose from, how hard is it to know what to use next? With hardly any inter-class dependancy left in modern MMOs, plus the trinity class design reducing possible tactics, there is very little opportunity left for a "smart" players to shine. 

    Personally, I love games with deep combat systems that allow intellectual player skill to shine. The last one I played was LotRO before I left for SW:TOR in 2011. Between the resource management, inter-class dependency, large amounts of skills to choose from and the inclusion of 3 dedicated support classes, LotRO really let player skill shine. My captain (support - buffer) had a standard rotation of 6 or 7 skills, but about 30 situational skills (short duration buffs, triggered skills, defensive skills on long cooldowns etc) as well as a large array of consumables. It meant that at any given moment, I was having to make a decision about which skill to use next, a decision that was not easy given the large amount of variables. The decision was also meaningful - use the wrong skill or target the wrong person and it would have a profound effect on the outcome of the fight. 

    I was hoping SW:TOR would be similarly deep - each class had just as many skills as LotRO and there were 8 classes, rather than 7. Sadly, SW:TOR turned out to be really shallow. Resource management was ridiculously easy. Inter-class dependency was non-existent beyond threat and healing. You only had a few emergency skills. Every fight just became "execute rotation, avoid the crap, if below 20% HP use emergency skill". No brain power required. 

    My personal preference is that difficulty should be balanced around 80% intellectual difficulty, 20% physical difficulty. We should be winning fights because we understand the tactics, know how to work together in a group, fully understand our classes and thus choose the right skills at the right time. There still needs to be some physical difficulty - we should still require quick reactions, we should still require good observation of our surroundings and we should still be required to concentrate for extended periods for the hardest content. 

    From there, gear (and general character setup) should alter the difficulty by much smaller amounts. I am a big fan of horizontal progression, meaning that overall power level of any character stays the same throughout the game. Progression in a horizontal system is all about specialisation. Start off an all-rounder, then steadily unlock crit builds, burst versus sustained, AoE versus single target, glass cannon versus tanky etc. 

    With that in mind, I believe that content should start to be balanced around the absolute worst setups (bearing in mind everyone has the same overall power). 

    So, lets say you were going to do a raid with 20 of the worst setup characters you could imagine. All the DPS have specialised in burst aoe, but it's a single boss with masses of HP. Healer's have opted for HoT builds instead of big heals, despite the boss dealing burst damage. 

    In such a situation, that raid should be able to complete the content if all 20 players hit 100% of their capacity. This means everyone avoids as much damage as possible, never misses a skill in their rotation, never chooses the wrong skill, kills any adds in the right order, pulls levers / moves at precisely the right time. A single mistake and they fail. This is basically saying they'll never complete it as there is no way in hell that 20 players will play perfectly for the duration of an entire boss fight. The sorts of players that are capable of that would not be using the worst setups. 

    Then, take 20 players with the absolute best gear / customisations / setups. In such a situation, I believe they should succeed if they hit 50-70% capacity. As the customisations they've chosen should be best suited for that boss, they'll be able to hit DPS levels easier, they'll be able to soak up a few more mistakes and stuff. 
  • Is Destiny 2 an MMO:Poll

    Kane72 said:
    The thing is, does I really matter?  You are either going to play the game for what it is or you are not.  Hopefully no-one buys a game without doing their homework, so does it make any difference whether you think it is an MMO or not, only that you enjoy it (like I do on the PS4) or you do not.
    This is a common argument - does it really matter?

    The short answer is that for most people, no, it doesn't make a damn bit of difference. Most people have never played an actual MMO. Those that have played an actual MMO probably haven't participated in anything massively multiplayer. Chances are, the actual MMO they played didn't even have many/any massively multiplayer features. 

    So, for most people, they couldn't give a shit - the features in the game are all they care about, it makes no difference to then whether they're solo, instanced in small groups, or part of a proper server with a community. For most people, their gameplay experience is barely going to change based on the number of people around them. 

    However, for those of us who do want actual MMOs, of course it matters. I haven't found an MMO worth playing for the last four years. The old ones I used to like are either dead, dying, or have been nerfed into oblivion. The new ones are too easy and dumbed down right out of the gate. 

    So, I spend a lot of time looking for a new MMO to play. I read this site and MOP every day, hoping for new information on upcoming MMOs or existing MMOs to see whether anything is worth playing. 

    When these sites mis-label a game as an MMO when it really isn't (like destiny), it directly wastes my time. Sometimes, it's pretty obvious so you only waste 5 minutes on an article before realising it's not an MMO. Other times, it might be months of reading previews / new articles before it becomes clear its not an MMO. 

    I don't like having my time wasted. I especially don't like having my time wasted deliberately in order to generate money for someone else (which is the reason and mislabel games). 

  • ...A party of five (Prizes included!!)

    Awesome work everyone, and thanks @ConstantineMerus for both starting the thread and for actually following through on drunken promises!