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Why do some developers change mechanics and not just add content?

mgilbrtsnmgilbrtsn Member EpicPosts: 3,336
If a game is 'broken' in some way, I can see the need to attempt to change things to fix issues.  However, some very successful games hurt themselves when they change the mechanics of the game instead of just adding content.  Two that I can think of is SWG and WoW.  Both seem to have seriously hurt themselves by deviating from their successful model.  I'm sure there are others than I'm not thinking of, but those two seem to be the biggest that I can think of.

As the old saying goes, 'If it Ain't broke, don't fix it'

Concentrate on enjoying yourself, and not on why I shouldn't enjoy myself.

Comments

  • anemoanemo Member RarePosts: 1,901
    If you have a tool, you're going to find a way to use it...   Is close enough to the classic "if you only have a hammer, everything looks like a nail".

    Essentially if everything is on fire, you're going to use ALL of your resources to try and put it out.   You're not just going to leave a fourth/a fifth of your team (software devs) in reserves, in hopes that everyone else making content fixes everything.

    Practice doesn't make perfect, practice makes permanent.

    "At one point technology meant making tech that could get to the moon, now it means making tech that could get you a taxi."

  • KyleranKyleran Member LegendaryPosts: 37,009
    From what I've read Lucas / SOE expected SWG to be the MMORPG which broke out and become a run away success because of its IP. 

    They were expecting numbers in the multi millions and instead never broke 500K as I recall.

    When Blizzard's WOW instead became the biggest thing in gaming history there was intense pressure by Lucas on SOE to change the game's design in major ways to boost sales.

    Thing is, the game's quirky sandbox design, in depth crafting and terrible production quality from being rushed out the door too early plagued it from the beginning and Lucas/SOE  were too short sighted to see it.

    Instead of casting the player as the hero gamers had to make their own story as is typical with sandbox style games. 
     
    A famous quote was made by Smedly or someone, 'who wants to be a moisture farmer?' to explain why the NGE was necessary.

    There's far more to it, like the paid expansion released shortly before the NGE, and volumes of text have been written by Raph Koster and many others on how and why everything happened as it did.

    In the end the changes failed to generate an influx of new players and certainly drove away the core fanbase in a major way.
    mgilbrtsngervaise1

    "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






  • VrikaVrika Member EpicPosts: 6,692
    When you increase the amount of content, every time the number of people who wish to play more of the same is smaller and smaller. Your options are to either keep changing and improving the game to keep it fresh, or accept that it's going to die after a couple of xpacs and focus on sequel.
     
  • iixviiiixiixviiiix Member RarePosts: 2,183
    "You think you do, but you don't" . In the end , consumer know what they wanted
    They try to catch new players by discared old player , but don't understand that instead of change the old things , better to create something new.

  • KyleranKyleran Member LegendaryPosts: 37,009
    edited August 2019
    As for Blizzard I can't see where one can say their changes were a failure. 

    They made signicant game design changes with every expansion, but these resulted in ever increasing new customers and sub numbers eventually topping out at something like 12M subs and over 100M people who bought the game.

    Sure, somewhere around Cataclysm or Pandera they jumped the shark and numbers began to decline.

    Hindsight is 20/20 and no one can say leaving the designs alone or going in a different direction would have generated better results, which still sees huges sales of every expansion and millions of folks paying for a sub in an era when that payment model is not supported by many other games.

    Heck, if Classic ends up being a big success one can say their change strategy over the years was brilliant, creating the pent up  demand which resulted in the successful relaunch of a 15 year old game for relatively little money.

    Kind of like what I say after hitting a tree trunk dead on in golf, they can say "we planned this all along."

    ;)


    Azaron_Nightbladeiixviiiixanemo

    "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






  • Azaron_NightbladeAzaron_Nightblade Member EpicPosts: 4,829
    I believe it's in part the devs being perfectionist. Always looking to streamline the experience. And the profits. Okay, probably mostly the latter. :wink:

    All the changes WoW got over the years were for the sake of accessibility. Since that's what originally helped make WoW such a huge success. Blizzard extended that to most of their other games after that. Diablo 3 being the prime example.

    Goodbye complicated mechanics (character builds) and hello instant action. You didn't have to put much thought into your specs anymore. Nor time. Just a few clicks and you were all set.

    My SWTOR referral link for those wanting to give the game a try. (Newbies get a welcome package while returning players get a few account upgrades to help with their preferred status.)

    https://www.ashesofcreation.com/ref/Callaron/

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