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Is 'Combat' Limiting Games As A Storytelling Medium?

DimTheDungeonMasterDimTheDungeonMaster Member UncommonPosts: 21

I think combat is an overdone archaic video game mechanic that hurts games narratively.

I've heard the argument "it's easy to program to shoot people" but does that mean what's easy is what's only what we should be doing? It's easy to program X, so Y should never be attempted, is a rationale that we are stuck on in games as a whole.

I think we confuse conflict with combat. Conflict is something we deal with every day in our regular lives. We conflict with our loved ones, with our bosses, with our friends, with nature, with time. Combat is not something we go through every day.

'Fighting the bad guys' is a glorified pasttime that has become a small fraction of most of the world's reality.

Games should try to focus less on killing, more on storytelling, and we will see games transcend the kill X, gather Y types of reasons for playing and instead allow things like "help Jane get through the forest/help clean/help cook/help build" which would be different and creatively be way more fun on TOP of defending your world with combat.

We need reasons to live in a world, not only to constantly fight in one.

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Comments

  • KyleranKyleran Member LegendaryPosts: 36,359
    Can I "take" your stuff?

    "See normal people, I'm not one of them" | G-Easy & Big Sean

    "I need to finish" - Christian Wolff: The Accountant

    Just trying to live long enough to play a new, released MMORPG, playing FO76 at the moment.

    Fools find no pleasure in understanding, but delight in airing their own opinions. Pvbs 18:2, NIV

    Don't just play games, inhabit virtual worlds™

    "This is the most intelligent, well qualified and articulate response to a post I have ever seen on these forums. It's a shame most people here won't have the attention span to read past the second line." - Anon






  • DimTheDungeonMasterDimTheDungeonMaster Member UncommonPosts: 21
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    Can I "take" your stuff?

    No, and you can see yourself out of my thread and let the rest of us have a high level discussion about the future direction of gaming with respect to combat vs non combat.

  • aspekxaspekx Member UncommonPosts: 2,167

    yes.

     

    i loved Vanguard's Diplomacy system and that you could level up just that sphere if you wanted.

    "There are at least two kinds of games.
    One could be called finite, the other infinite.
    A finite game is played for the purpose of winning,
    an infinite game for the purpose of continuing play."
    Finite and Infinite Games, James Carse

  • iridescenceiridescence Member UncommonPosts: 1,552

    Lots of games exist without combat, Simulators and sports games immediately spring to mind. RPGs were created out of war games so the people who made the original ones understood combat systems very well and wrote what they knew. Most  PnP RPGs have since developed mechanics to represent non-combat and you can play them that way, although totally avoiding combat is probably a very niche playstyle.

     

    It's really hard for a computer RPG (of which MMORPGs are a sub genre) to exist without combat. Maybe you have a choice in your pnp RPG to bluff your way past guards or fight them- in a computer game you could have a bluff skill that you could roll against (and CRPGs such as NWN2 do exactly this) but it would be far more fun to actually make up your line of BS and try to fool the guard (played by the DM) with it and use the roll as maybe a final decision whether you succeeded. No computer game is sophisticated enough for that kind of encounter yet unfortunately. Not in a way that would feel to most people like actually roleplaying anyway (dialogue trees are as good as it gets).

     

    On the other hand CRPGs can give you a combat experience very close to pen and paper so guess which method of dealing with things they tend to favor.

     

     

  • reeereeereeereee Member UncommonPosts: 1,636

    Where have you been for the last three years?  ESO and SWTOR both invested a massive amount of resources into story telling, gw2's only real endgame is called the living story and while I hated FFXIV ARR's story there are certainly people around who claim that they enjoyed it.  The MMO industry has never put more effort into becoming a storytelling medium than in the last few years, and by most account the titles never been more disappointing. 

     

    Though you do have somewhat of a point.  Someone once pointed out that swg had a much more diverse community than you see in modern mmos because it attracted people who were interested in things other than combat.  The idea of an mmo that offers meaningful character advancement without ever having to participating in combat is interesting but I don't see one being made anytime soon.

  • warriorpoet7warriorpoet7 Member UncommonPosts: 41
    Originally posted by DimTheDungeonMaster

    I think combat is an overdone archaic video game mechanic that hurts games narratively.

    I've heard the argument "it's easy to program to shoot people" but does that mean what's easy is what's only what we should be doing? It's easy to program X, so Y should never be attempted, is a rationale that we are stuck on in games as a whole.

    I think we confuse conflict with combat. Conflict is something we deal with every day in our regular lives. We conflict with our loved ones, with our bosses, with our friends, with nature, with time. Combat is not something we go through every day.

    'Fighting the bad guys' is a glorified pasttime that has become a small fraction of most of the world's reality.

    Games should try to focus less on killing, more on storytelling, and we will see games transcend the kill X, gather Y types of reasons for playing and instead allow things like "help Jane get through the forest/help clean/help cook/help build" which would be different and creatively be way more fun.

    We need reasons to live in a world, not only to constantly fight in one.

    I agree with you in spirit, just think there needs to be a balance. Combat when necessary sort of thing ... there are tho MMOs that focus on story above all, such as Lord of the Rings Online as an example. I love combat, but there has to be a narrative behind it. But, I would also love a game that offers  a lot of non-combat options beyond crafting  and simple location discovery.

  • DimTheDungeonMasterDimTheDungeonMaster Member UncommonPosts: 21
    Originally posted by reeereee

    Where have you been for the last three years?  ESO and SWTOR both invested a massive amount of resources into story telling, gw2's only real endgame is called the living story and while I hated FFXIV ARR's story there are certainly people around who claim that they enjoyed it.  The MMO industry has never put more effort into becoming a storytelling medium than in the last few years, and by most account the titles never been more disappointing. 

     

    Though you do have somewhat of a point.  Someone once pointed out that swg had a much more diverse community than you see in modern mmos because it attracted people who were interested in things other than combat.  The idea of an mmo that offers meaningful character advancement without ever having to participating in combat is interesting but I don't see one being made anytime soon.

    ESO? SWTOR? Last 3 Years? ESO just came out a few months ago and has been a complete flop, with its extremely poor combat and 5 person recycled voice acting. Years ago, SWTOR I played a few short months of, and ran a guild on, and we all quit because there was nothing to do. After it went F2P, whatever starfighter/blah revamps they did weren't anything new.

     

    The main point I'm trying to make is, an over-reliance on combat has made games under-rely on storytelling and reasoning for doing anything. I don't care if I mathematically kill 10 wolves, or 27 wolves, if I'm guarding the timber gathers from the wolves, or protecting a hurt guard from the wolves, it doesn't matter. Game developers need to understand this.

    There needs to be a reason to do things, there needs to be systems in place for towns that make them live and breathe, to feed off of resources and power/energy, and to have it all change when things change, having deep character development, like healthiness with respect to eating/drinking/sleeping, personality, and a trade. There needs to be a reason to have my character sleep, there needs to be a reason to gather an armor to take over a capital, there needs to be a reason to clear the trail from one town to the next, so trade caravans can continue. All these need to be apart of games in the future.

  • KalSirian2KalSirian2 Member UncommonPosts: 42

    I absolutely agree, I once realized that fact  when I was playing a space 4X, and combat was always getting in the way of my fun. I honestly could have done without combat but with more in the way of building and research.

    It's not so much that I don't enjoy combat in some games, but there are games that I play because they hit close to something that sounds fun (like building space colonies in this case), and combat is just detrimental in that context. It could be a part of it, but it would have to be a small part in comparison to the rest of the game.

    One brilliant example of game with no combat (but some forms of conflict) is ATITD. You can't fight, but you are certainly competing for resources, goals and advancement (as well as cooperating).

    Another example, for me, is how I always end up deactivating invasions when playing Dwarf Fortress. It's such a busy job managing the fortress that I don't want to ruin my fun by having some random goblin killing my dwarves. Some people will refer to it as "being a carebear", but I think it has more to do with the fact that we've "been there, done that", and now we want something different.

    To give a last example, when playing minecraft, I rarely change the setting from peaceful. I've fought with zombies and creeper and skeletons on a dozen maps, and now when I play it, I just want to explore a mod's features, and not having to deal with boring interruptions.

    In the context of MMOs, I can definitely see how good it would be to go off the beaten path and have something fresh to do. I see more and more people interested in crafting and I'm sure there are many who would love to explore alternative gameplay styles.

    image

  • DimTheDungeonMasterDimTheDungeonMaster Member UncommonPosts: 21
    Originally posted by iridescence

    Lots of games exist without combat, Simulators and sports games immediately spring to mind. RPGs were created out of war games so the people who made the original ones understood combat systems very well and wrote what they knew. Most  PnP RPGs have since developed mechanics to represent non-combat and you can play them that way, although totally avoiding combat is probably a very niche playstyle.

    It's really hard for a computer RPG (of which MMORPGs are a sub genre) to exist without combat. Maybe you have a choice in your pnp RPG to bluff your way past guards or fight them- in a computer game you could have a bluff skill that you could roll against (and CRPGs such as NWN2 do exactly this) but it would be far more fun to actually make up your line of BS and try to fool the guard (played by the DM) with it and use the roll as maybe a final decision whether you succeeded. No computer game is sophisticated enough for that kind of encounter yet unfortunately. Not in a way that would feel to most people like actually roleplaying anyway (dialogue trees are as good as it gets).

    On the other hand CRPGs can give you a combat experience very close to pen and paper so guess which method of dealing with things they tend to favor.

    I'm not in favor of totally removing combat from games, I'm saying are we thinking of combat first, and game second? I think the world and the game itself should be priority, and the combat arises from the conflict in that world.

    You do have a great point, that RPGs originally had combat in mind, and MMO's are a sub-genre of that, but that shouldn't limit us in terms of gameplay. Going through a combat rotation shouldn't be 90% of an MMO. It should be around maybe 50%. The other 50% should be socializing, building, trading, mini-games and storytelling. The great storytelling arcs of MMO's should account for the milestones in a game.

    We don't have a reason to revisit old zones, because those zones are static and don't have relationships with their environment that change that give players a reason to care.  When the doors of Ahn'Qiraj opened for the first time, what a huge effort it was, when thousands of players across severs were trying to contribute to get their next chapter of their world story going. Their effort had impact in the world, it had meaning.

    Combat needs to have a balance with character simulation/progression, and right now most people are bored in MMO's because we can't chill in taverns and play cards with each other for gold, because there's no systems in place no modern MMO's for people to do anything like that.

    Once the reasons for existing in a world are in place, combat to survive in that world becomes meaningful.

  • reeereeereeereee Member UncommonPosts: 1,636
    Originally posted by DimTheDungeonMaster
    Originally posted by reeereee

    Where have you been for the last three years?  ESO and SWTOR both invested a massive amount of resources into story telling, gw2's only real endgame is called the living story and while I hated FFXIV ARR's story there are certainly people around who claim that they enjoyed it.  The MMO industry has never put more effort into becoming a storytelling medium than in the last few years, and by most account the titles never been more disappointing. 

     

    Though you do have somewhat of a point.  Someone once pointed out that swg had a much more diverse community than you see in modern mmos because it attracted people who were interested in things other than combat.  The idea of an mmo that offers meaningful character advancement without ever having to participating in combat is interesting but I don't see one being made anytime soon.

    ESO? SWTOR? Last 3 Years? ESO just came out a few months ago and has been a complete flop, with its extremely poor combat and 5 person recycled voice acting. Years ago, SWTOR I played a few short months of, and ran a guild on, and we all quit because there was nothing to do. After it went F2P, whatever starfighter/blah revamps they did weren't anything new.

     

    The main point I'm trying to make is, an over-reliance on combat has made games under-rely on storytelling and reasoning for doing anything. I don't care if I mathematically kill 10 wolves, or 27 wolves, if I'm guarding the timber gathers from the wolves, or protecting a hurt guard from the wolves, it doesn't matter. Game developers need to understand this.

    There needs to be a reason to do things, there needs to be systems in place for towns that make them live and breathe, to feed off of resources and power/energy, and to have it all change when things change, having deep character development, like healthiness with respect to eating/drinking/sleeping, personality, and a trade. There needs to be a reason to have my character sleep, there needs to be a reason to gather an armor to take over a capital, there needs to be a reason to clear the trail from one town to the next, so trade caravans can continue. All these need to be apart of games in the future.

    My point is games like ESO, SWTOR, and gw2 invested massively more amounts of time, energy, and dollars into storytelling than older games did and what did they get in return for it?  When you compare the paltry amount of story telling in vanilla WoW to SWTOR or ESO it's not even close... and yet you turn around and say that's not good enough they needed far more story telling?  Good luck selling that.

  • rojoArcueidrojoArcueid Member EpicPosts: 10,413
    Originally posted by DimTheDungeonMaster
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    Can I "take" your stuff?

    No, and you can see yourself out of my thread and let the rest of us have a high level discussion about the future direction of gaming with respect to combat vs non combat.

    im sure he was waiting for an ¨over my dead body!!!¨ kind of answer... lol





  • KyleranKyleran Member LegendaryPosts: 36,359
    I'll try again, the best conflict is player conflict, not scripted developer conflict.

    See EVE, which actually has tons of non combat activities if you really look into it.

    Tons of meta gaming, diplomacy, scamming, spying, infiltrating, scouting, collecting Intel on your opponents, it's all there, you just have to take it.

    "See normal people, I'm not one of them" | G-Easy & Big Sean

    "I need to finish" - Christian Wolff: The Accountant

    Just trying to live long enough to play a new, released MMORPG, playing FO76 at the moment.

    Fools find no pleasure in understanding, but delight in airing their own opinions. Pvbs 18:2, NIV

    Don't just play games, inhabit virtual worlds™

    "This is the most intelligent, well qualified and articulate response to a post I have ever seen on these forums. It's a shame most people here won't have the attention span to read past the second line." - Anon






  • DimTheDungeonMasterDimTheDungeonMaster Member UncommonPosts: 21
    Originally posted by reeereee
    My point is games like ESO, SWTOR, and gw2 invested massively more amounts of time, energy, and dollars into storytelling than older games did and what did they get in return for it?  When you compare the paltry amount of story telling in vanilla WoW to SWTOR or ESO it's not even close... and yet you turn around and say that's not good enough they needed far more story telling?  Good luck selling that.

    Gw2 still has a very popular player base. SWTOR and ESO still have decent playerbases as well. Gw2's systems were incredibly ambitious and while I was playing it, I remember myself repeatedly saying how fun and varied the questing was compared to anything else I had played. Tab targetting is the bane of modern MMO's and when we move to action-based systems, there will be a reason for me to play Gw2. I'm spoiled from Wildstar.

    WoW actually had a very epic storyline, and the reason for its success was, it had a giant world with two continents and there were reasons for doing stuff. You could raid cities. You could camp in front of dungeon portals. There were rare and valuable items farmable in certain locations off certain mobs. There were 2-3 weapon types you could use. There were trainers with different tiers, scattered around the world. WoW had giant cities with random homes, with leaders who could be attacked.

    Gw2 may or may not have some of these elements, I know SWTOR and ESO sure doesn't have anything nearly as ambitious as anything I listed about WoW, when it released 10 years ago.

    I'm not selling anything, I'm trying to talk about why most MMO's currently are boring--because the world isn't there.

  • sakersaker Member UncommonPosts: 1,286

    The answer to the question is a absolute and resounding YES. This is in no small part why these games are so freakin boring (and not healthy mentally).

  • TheLizardbonesTheLizardbones Member CommonPosts: 10,910
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    I'll try again, the best conflict is player conflict, not scripted developer conflict.

    See EVE, which actually has tons of non combat activities if you really look into it.

    Tons of meta gaming, diplomacy, scamming, spying, infiltrating, scouting, collecting Intel on your opponents, it's all there, you just have to take it.

     

     

    The best conflict is player conflict, but if what you want is story telling or puzzles, conflict limits things.

     

    I can not remember winning or losing a single debate on the internet.

  • DimTheDungeonMasterDimTheDungeonMaster Member UncommonPosts: 21
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    I'll try again, the best conflict is player conflict, not scripted developer conflict.

    See EVE, which actually has tons of non combat activities if you really look into it.

    Tons of meta gaming, diplomacy, scamming, spying, infiltrating, scouting, collecting Intel on your opponents, it's all there, you just have to take it.

     

    Eve is an incredible example of how "easy" it is to program incredibly huge amounts of content not directly related to combat.

    There's all kinds of giant establishments/structures, resource gathering facilities and trading hubs...MMO's and games need things like that, for interaction. Static worlds that offer no impact to the player's efforts should be a thing of the past. Eve is a perfect example of how a living, breathing world is affected by player action.

  • DimTheDungeonMasterDimTheDungeonMaster Member UncommonPosts: 21
    Originally posted by saker

    The answer to the question is a absolute and resounding YES. This is in no small part why these games are so freakin boring (and not healthy mentally).

    Thanks! I know we are destined for more than fighting with each other for the sake of fighting. There's a reason behind it all..

    Originally posted by DMKano

    Storytelling in a single player game - sure.

    Storytelling in a MMORPG - I can't stand it.

    Let players create the world and tell the stories, developers should give some hints of lore to be discovered - but players should fill in the pieces and tell the stories.

    Spoonfed story telling from devs is what I abhor - no thanks. 

    Couldn't agree more. The storytelling in MMO's is atrocious, and leaders of towns should be able to spin up new quests for players to help expand the town/gather resources/protect it from attackers as a way to keep questing dynamic and meaningful. This builds up into a massive conflict that becomes the main story, that is constantly changing.

    We gamers are ready for huge storyarcs in our games, that span time and space, and let us see new environments, new towns and new foes. I'm channeling Game of Thrones a bit, but it is where games need to go. Big stories, over time.

  • SovrathSovrath Member LegendaryPosts: 28,634
    Originally posted by DimTheDungeonMaster
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    Can I "take" your stuff?

     the rest of us have a high level discussion about the future direction of gaming with respect to combat vs non combat.

    So in that case "no".

    For me and others combat puts the "blood" in what would otherwise be a rather bloodless experience.

    Especially because role playing games seem to have a rather pulp fiction "type" of beginning with all sorts of games that would allow players to pit themselves against all the baddies of the world.

    It's "knights in shining armor", Barbarians from the steppes, The Wizard in the Tower or a Knife in the dark. Pick your poison.

    Of course this doesn't mean that a game "has to" have combat. But for me it then becomes a more serene experience. Nothing wrong with that but again, rather "bloodless", no excitement on a visceral level.

    However, even more to the point, having combat does not take away from what is already there. And if that story is good then it's good. If that story is bad then no lack of combat is going to make it better.

    Combat, as above, is the Errol Flynn, Flash Gordon and Lone Ranger in the whole affair. Didn't stop them from having cool stories.

  • BeansnBreadBeansnBread Member EpicPosts: 7,148
    Because of the high price of visceral storytelling (voiceovers/cutscenes/etc), I'd say that storytelling is getting in the way of feature rich MMORPGs.
  • Varex12Varex12 Member CommonPosts: 357

    To the OP:  Ummmm...NO.  

    Try Farmville.

     

     

  • DimTheDungeonMasterDimTheDungeonMaster Member UncommonPosts: 21
    Originally posted by Sovrath

    doesn't mean that a game "has to" have combat. 

    I'm not arguing for no combat, if you read the previous posts in this thread.

    I am trying to stoke conversation about combat being 99% of the focus of MMO's and games in general, when you can make just as fun and engaging a mini-game with throwing veggies in a pot, cooking, as a raid. Why aren't there crazy funny cooking mini-games inside towns that feed the guards and give you a buff and extra food to take on your journey?

    Take Risen. I'm about to play Risen 3 and although some people may argue its a horrible game, what it DOES do well is conversation. The entire game you are talking to voiced NPCs who have all kinds of things for you to do. I was thinking, would this game be better with much less combat, and much more of the voiced conversation overall (i.e. more storytelling)?

    I think it would be a stronger game, and I think games in general would be stronger if we shifted the focus less from 99.999% combat to somewhere around 50% and the other 50%, living and trying to live in the game world.

  • DimTheDungeonMasterDimTheDungeonMaster Member UncommonPosts: 21
    Originally posted by Varex12

    To the OP:  Ummmm...NO.  

    Try Farmville.

    Actually Harvest Moon was one of the best games ever made, and had many sequels that were immensely popular.

    If you didn't come off like you were 12, and had read anything in this thread, you would see I'm not advocating cutting combat completely out of games.

    I'm saying 24/7 combat in games is boring. Cuz it is.

  • YaevinduskYaevindusk Member RarePosts: 2,094

     

    I'd say technology and playerbase moreso harm storytelling.  If people demand insane graphics, then there's less possibility for believable things like large scale battles and the like.  In addition, if people just want to get to max level as quickly as possible, then they will skip story as a whole and any way it is attempted to be conveyed.  If too much is forced on them, then they may quit as a whole.

     

    Somewhere along the line -- probably when Themeparks kicked off -- the RPG out of MMORPG was bastardized for the masses.  Some games still try to have it, but we've been taught to simply ignore it as a whole and just rely on books and lore written on forums (or people just telling us what happened if we're interested).

     

    This same thing happened when new consoles were released in the PS3 / 360 era and everything became about AAA graphics and shooters.  Though as a whole, this is also why Indie teams began to thrive on the PC market.  PCs already had superior technology and were known to handle pretty much anything and blow consoles out of the water in that regard.  There was no need to "compare sizes" for a group of people that already knew they had superior hardware.  Therefore graphics became less of a big deal, and focus on gameplay and fun remained (even though RPGs as a whole were still left in the dust until Divinity: Original sin and some old console RPG ports of late).

     

    I'm hoping that with the latest console generation they will focus on the fun and innovative aspects of games again.  They may still be using 5+ year old technology that was mid-range even back in 2008... but they're at a point where graphics, quality and quantity are able to be established.  No tricks need to be used (or at least not as much) to squeeze out things.  Though it may get to that point again when PC gets all the new flashy toys like beyond 4k resolution and the other technological advancements in production at the moment.  Consoles will struggle to keep up and looking good will be the new thing again.

    Due to frequent travel in my youth, English isn't something I consider my primary language (and thus I obtained quirky ways of writing).  German and French were always easier for me despite my family being U.S. citizens for over a century.  Spanish I learned as a requirement in school, Japanese and Korean I acquired for my youthful desire of anime and gaming (and also work now).  I only debate in English to help me work with it (and limit things).  In addition, I'm not smart enough to remain fluent in everything and typically need exposure to get in the groove of things again if I haven't heard it in a while.  If you understand Mandarin, I know a little, but it has actually been a challenge and could use some help.

    Also, I thoroughly enjoy debates and have accounts on over a dozen sites for this.  If you wish to engage in such, please put effort in a post and provide sources -- I will then do the same with what I already wrote (if I didn't) as well as with my responses to your own.  Expanding my information on a subject makes my stance either change or strengthen the next time I speak of it or write a thesis.  Allow me to thank you sincerely for your time.
  • SovrathSovrath Member LegendaryPosts: 28,634
    Originally posted by DimTheDungeonMaster
    Originally posted by Sovrath

    doesn't mean that a game "has to" have combat. 

    I'm not arguing for no combat, if you read the previous posts in this thread.

    I am trying to stoke conversation about combat being 99% of the focus of MMO's and games in general, when you can make just as fun and engaging a mini-game with throwing veggies in a pot, cooking, as a raid. Why aren't there crazy funny cooking mini-games inside towns that feed the guards and give you a buff and extra food to take on your journey?

    Take Risen. I'm about to play Risen 3 and although some people may argue its a horrible game, what it DOES do well is conversation. The entire game you are talking to voiced NPCs who have all kinds of things for you to do. I was thinking, would this game be better with much less combat, and much more of the voiced conversation overall (i.e. more storytelling)?

    I think it would be a stronger game, and I think games in general would be stronger if we shifted the focus less from 99.999% combat to somewhere around 50% and the other 50%, living and trying to live in the game world.

    In truth I don't think "story" belongs in mmo's. At least in the way most mmo's offer it.

    MMO's with "story" are really offering story on a single player level. You are the champion, you are the savior and you and your party at that moment are the one to learn of the nefarious plot. Come back the next day on the same leg of the quest with different people and relive it all over again!

    My thought is that the world should have a story and depending on where people are and what they do they experience the fallout, repercussions of that story.

    At times they might be a part of it and at times they just hear about it.

    If anything, I think the weak single player stories that are offered get in the way of exciting combat.

    Kill x of y run back now collect y of z and run back, etc. Your whole game is reading story text that may or may not be good and running here and there.

    I say let the world have an evolving story that happens on the npc level and then can incorporate the pc's depending on some variables and let that be the story.

    So this way not everyone is the hero. But maybe one guild does some gun running for some npc faction and those guns get in the hands of some npc rebels that then contact a player driven alliance to attack some player controlled enclave.

    That enclave then puts out the notice that it needs not only warriors but certain supplies. Players who craft sell those supplies and those that offer to fight then defend.

    Depending on that outcome the world gets shaped and certain people rise to power and certain people fall from grace and the world's story evolves.

    Probably not to everyone's taste but I feel it's a lot more immersive than having every one of us do the exact same set of steps as if the mmo was a single player game.

    And yeah, I get that there is a suspension of disbelief when it comes to mmo stories in that you just "buy" that you are the chosen one. But it does get rather tiring when you really haven't earned it and you are just being shuffled down the storyline.

     

  • reeereeereeereee Member UncommonPosts: 1,636
    Originally posted by DimTheDungeonMaster
    Originally posted by reeereee
    My point is games like ESO, SWTOR, and gw2 invested massively more amounts of time, energy, and dollars into storytelling than older games did and what did they get in return for it?  When you compare the paltry amount of story telling in vanilla WoW to SWTOR or ESO it's not even close... and yet you turn around and say that's not good enough they needed far more story telling?  Good luck selling that.

    Gw2 still has a very popular player base. SWTOR and ESO still have decent playerbases as well. Gw2's systems were incredibly ambitious and while I was playing it, I remember myself repeatedly saying how fun and varied the questing was compared to anything else I had played. Tab targetting is the bane of modern MMO's and when we move to action-based systems, there will be a reason for me to play Gw2. I'm spoiled from Wildstar.

    WoW actually had a very epic storyline, and the reason for its success was, it had a giant world with two continents and there were reasons for doing stuff. You could raid cities. You could camp in front of dungeon portals. There were rare and valuable items farmable in certain locations off certain mobs. There were 2-3 weapon types you could use. There were trainers with different tiers, scattered around the world. WoW had giant cities with random homes, with leaders who could be attacked.

    Gw2 may or may not have some of these elements, I know SWTOR and ESO sure doesn't have anything nearly as ambitious as anything I listed about WoW, when it released 10 years ago.

    I'm not selling anything, I'm trying to talk about why most MMO's currently are boring--because the world isn't there.

    Aside from a few notable exceptions I don't think vanilla WoW really did that much story telling of its own... it was more about giving an open world form to the previous epic story telling they had done in the RTS games. 

     

    Games like ESO/SWTOR/FFXIV while investing a lot of dollars into story telling did their story telling almost exclusively through the medium of quests, which I believe may be the larger issue than the combat itself.  A number of developers have come to the conclusion that quests are how you do storytelling which is probably what you are dissatisfied with. 

     

    And back to my point about swg:  The idea that an an MMO could have such compelling noncombat elements and character advancement that a significant amount of people who had no interest combat and did not engage in combat would pay to play the game seems amazing.  However, i don't believe having good combat would really interfere with making good noncombat content other than they compete for the same development dollars.

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