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What Does No Vertical Progression Mean? Horizontal Progression is an Illusion.

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Comments

  • tzervotzervo Member RarePosts: 324
    Amathe said:
    There needs to be a method by which characters become more powerful through their adventuring efforts, or they will grow bored and feel that the game is pointless.

    What you CALL the system for becoming more powerful is unimportant.

    Players will always find a way to judge one another in terms of their relative power. "Babathet run. DPS spot open. Must have 500 skill points. " Same thing as levels. 
    Some people do get bored if they do not become more powerful, some don't.

    In GW2 which is having mostly horizontal endgame progression, the raid ads read (at least last time I played): "Sabetha, 100 LI, healer, killproof required" or whatever. LI for legendary insights which give no stat or any other form of power, but they prove you cleared 100 raid instances and are experienced - killproof is just a piece of guild hall decoration to prove that you killed the specific boss and have experience with it. The requirement in terms of gear is ascended which are the top stats and hasn't change since I think 2013 or sumfin. Just as an example.
    Gdemami
  • cameltosiscameltosis Member EpicPosts: 2,534
    learis1 said:
    I see a lot of complaints against vertical progression and that it should be horizontal progression. As far as I can tell, vertical progression means that the stat numbers on the enemy are increased. So you either have to gain levels or gear or what-have-you to increase your numbers to be able to defeat them.

    People dislike this. Fine. Let's take it away completely. So now no numbers ever increase. What then is left? The difficulty comes solely now from the AI. New content just has monsters with different AI, but the overall power level of everything stays the same. The end. Does this really change anything that much? 

    I don't think so. And I think that people who obsess over the so called "horizontal" progression have this illogical fantasy that their character will be non-stop transforming their skills into different skills in a never-ending skill customization system. At some point, your character's playstyle is defined. Horizontal progression has its limits. So when you say you only want horizontal progression and no vertical progression, all you're doing is taking something away from the game, and you're not really adding anything in return.

    Day 1: My character starts with some single target skills, and can do 1000 dps to a single target

    Day 10: I've played the game and unlocked some new skills that do AoE damage. I can now do 1000dps single target OR 200dps AoE


    In a single target situation, the player that sticks to a single target spec is more powerful. In a 5+ target situation, the player that goes AoE is more powerful. Overall power of the characters remains the same, as long as there is a good mix of single target and aoe content.


    Horizontal progression is basically a really complicated version of rock-paper-scissors


    You progress by unlocking more specialisations / customisations. Power is maintained because you cannot use everything you unlock at the same time: you must make choices. If you want more damage, you must sacrifice in some other area (like health). In other words, when you start, you can only pick rock, but as you progress, you can also pick paper, scissors, lizard, spock etc


    Obviously, implementation can vary wildly, some will be successful, others will suck (just like with vertical progression). That said, the main benefits to the MMO genre would be:


    • All content remains "on level", i.e. it doesn't become obsolete 10 seconds after you complete it.
    • Everyone can play together right from day 1. This is by far the most important reason for switching to horizontal progression. This is the massively multiplayer genre, we're supposed to be playing together! Vertical progression segregates the community, which is just ridiculous, we want to bring people together not drive them apart
    • More customisations / specialisations means that players are more likely to find a playstyle suited to them. This will increase retention
    • Devs don't need to worry about escalation / stat rebalancing when they make expansions. They can just genuinely expand the world and content for all the players without upsetting what is already there.


    The only downside, as far as I can tell, is that horizontal progression is not obvious to the wider community. We've had 40+ years of being "trained" to enjoy vertical progression, both in pen and paper RPGs, board games, single player RPGs and co-op RPGs. And, lets be fair, vertical progression works really well in those situations.

    When all the players of a game have synronised playtime (i.e. all playing at the same time) then vertical progression works really well. If all of your power increases at the same time, then power doesn't segregate you. But, as soon as players start playing at separate times, vertical progression falls apart and causes way more harm than it does good.



    Final point: whilst I am a big fan of horizontal progression and have been promoting it for 10+ years, it doesn't mean I want to get rid of vertical progression. There is clearly a market for it, many players enjoy it. I just feel that horizontal is the better progression mechanic for the massively multiplayer genre and I would like to see at least some games use it. Luckily for me, Camelot Unchained has been designed around horizontal progression, and Crowfall has been making noises about being kinda-sorta horizontal, so hopefully some point in the next few years I'll get to experience it properly in an MMO! Assuming they release....and stick to their promises.....
    GdemamitzervoAlBQuirky
  • Ancient_ExileAncient_Exile Member RarePosts: 1,303
    learis1 said:
    I see a lot of complaints against vertical progression and that it should be horizontal progression. As far as I can tell, vertical progression means that the stat numbers on the enemy are increased. So you either have to gain levels or gear or what-have-you to increase your numbers to be able to defeat them.

    People dislike this. Fine. Let's take it away completely. So now no numbers ever increase. What then is left? The difficulty comes solely now from the AI. New content just has monsters with different AI, but the overall power level of everything stays the same. The end. Does this really change anything that much? 

    I don't think so. And I think that people who obsess over the so called "horizontal" progression have this illogical fantasy that their character will be non-stop transforming their skills into different skills in a never-ending skill customization system. At some point, your character's playstyle is defined. Horizontal progression has its limits. So when you say you only want horizontal progression and no vertical progression, all you're doing is taking something away from the game, and you're not really adding anything in return.

    Day 1: My character starts with some single target skills, and can do 1000 dps to a single target

    Day 10: I've played the game and unlocked some new skills that do AoE damage. I can now do 1000dps single target OR 200dps AoE


    In a single target situation, the player that sticks to a single target spec is more powerful. In a 5+ target situation, the player that goes AoE is more powerful. Overall power of the characters remains the same, as long as there is a good mix of single target and aoe content.


    Horizontal progression is basically a really complicated version of rock-paper-scissors


    You progress by unlocking more specialisations / customisations. Power is maintained because you cannot use everything you unlock at the same time: you must make choices. If you want more damage, you must sacrifice in some other area (like health). In other words, when you start, you can only pick rock, but as you progress, you can also pick paper, scissors, lizard, spock etc


    Obviously, implementation can vary wildly, some will be successful, others will suck (just like with vertical progression). That said, the main benefits to the MMO genre would be:


    • All content remains "on level", i.e. it doesn't become obsolete 10 seconds after you complete it.
    • Everyone can play together right from day 1. This is by far the most important reason for switching to horizontal progression. This is the massively multiplayer genre, we're supposed to be playing together! Vertical progression segregates the community, which is just ridiculous, we want to bring people together not drive them apart
    • More customisations / specialisations means that players are more likely to find a playstyle suited to them. This will increase retention
    • Devs don't need to worry about escalation / stat rebalancing when they make expansions. They can just genuinely expand the world and content for all the players without upsetting what is already there.


    The only downside, as far as I can tell, is that horizontal progression is not obvious to the wider community. We've had 40+ years of being "trained" to enjoy vertical progression, both in pen and paper RPGs, board games, single player RPGs and co-op RPGs. And, lets be fair, vertical progression works really well in those situations.

    When all the players of a game have synronised playtime (i.e. all playing at the same time) then vertical progression works really well. If all of your power increases at the same time, then power doesn't segregate you. But, as soon as players start playing at separate times, vertical progression falls apart and causes way more harm than it does good.



    Final point: whilst I am a big fan of horizontal progression and have been promoting it for 10+ years, it doesn't mean I want to get rid of vertical progression. There is clearly a market for it, many players enjoy it. I just feel that horizontal is the better progression mechanic for the massively multiplayer genre and I would like to see at least some games use it. Luckily for me, Camelot Unchained has been designed around horizontal progression, and Crowfall has been making noises about being kinda-sorta horizontal, so hopefully some point in the next few years I'll get to experience it properly in an MMO! Assuming they release....and stick to their promises.....

    How about a mix of Limited Vertical Progression and Horizontal Progression?
    Gdemami
    "If everything was easy, nothing would be hard."


    "Show me on the doll where PVP touched you."


    (Note:  If I type something in a thread that does not exactly pertain to the stated subject of the thread in every, way, shape, and form, please feel free to send me a response in a Private Message.)

  • cameltosiscameltosis Member EpicPosts: 2,534
    learis1 said:
    I see a lot of complaints against vertical progression and that it should be horizontal progression. As far as I can tell, vertical progression means that the stat numbers on the enemy are increased. So you either have to gain levels or gear or what-have-you to increase your numbers to be able to defeat them.

    People dislike this. Fine. Let's take it away completely. So now no numbers ever increase. What then is left? The difficulty comes solely now from the AI. New content just has monsters with different AI, but the overall power level of everything stays the same. The end. Does this really change anything that much? 

    I don't think so. And I think that people who obsess over the so called "horizontal" progression have this illogical fantasy that their character will be non-stop transforming their skills into different skills in a never-ending skill customization system. At some point, your character's playstyle is defined. Horizontal progression has its limits. So when you say you only want horizontal progression and no vertical progression, all you're doing is taking something away from the game, and you're not really adding anything in return.

    Day 1: My character starts with some single target skills, and can do 1000 dps to a single target

    Day 10: I've played the game and unlocked some new skills that do AoE damage. I can now do 1000dps single target OR 200dps AoE


    In a single target situation, the player that sticks to a single target spec is more powerful. In a 5+ target situation, the player that goes AoE is more powerful. Overall power of the characters remains the same, as long as there is a good mix of single target and aoe content.


    Horizontal progression is basically a really complicated version of rock-paper-scissors


    You progress by unlocking more specialisations / customisations. Power is maintained because you cannot use everything you unlock at the same time: you must make choices. If you want more damage, you must sacrifice in some other area (like health). In other words, when you start, you can only pick rock, but as you progress, you can also pick paper, scissors, lizard, spock etc


    Obviously, implementation can vary wildly, some will be successful, others will suck (just like with vertical progression). That said, the main benefits to the MMO genre would be:


    • All content remains "on level", i.e. it doesn't become obsolete 10 seconds after you complete it.
    • Everyone can play together right from day 1. This is by far the most important reason for switching to horizontal progression. This is the massively multiplayer genre, we're supposed to be playing together! Vertical progression segregates the community, which is just ridiculous, we want to bring people together not drive them apart
    • More customisations / specialisations means that players are more likely to find a playstyle suited to them. This will increase retention
    • Devs don't need to worry about escalation / stat rebalancing when they make expansions. They can just genuinely expand the world and content for all the players without upsetting what is already there.


    The only downside, as far as I can tell, is that horizontal progression is not obvious to the wider community. We've had 40+ years of being "trained" to enjoy vertical progression, both in pen and paper RPGs, board games, single player RPGs and co-op RPGs. And, lets be fair, vertical progression works really well in those situations.

    When all the players of a game have synronised playtime (i.e. all playing at the same time) then vertical progression works really well. If all of your power increases at the same time, then power doesn't segregate you. But, as soon as players start playing at separate times, vertical progression falls apart and causes way more harm than it does good.



    Final point: whilst I am a big fan of horizontal progression and have been promoting it for 10+ years, it doesn't mean I want to get rid of vertical progression. There is clearly a market for it, many players enjoy it. I just feel that horizontal is the better progression mechanic for the massively multiplayer genre and I would like to see at least some games use it. Luckily for me, Camelot Unchained has been designed around horizontal progression, and Crowfall has been making noises about being kinda-sorta horizontal, so hopefully some point in the next few years I'll get to experience it properly in an MMO! Assuming they release....and stick to their promises.....

    How about a mix of Limited Vertical Progression and Horizontal Progression?

    I'm a fan of pure horizontal, if at all possible.

    Where im willing to compromise is the tutorial / beginner area.


    As mentioned in my post, unlocking new skills should mean a choice: if you want to use your new skill, you must drop another skill to maintain balance. However, because I am a massive fan of depth, I want my game to have a lot of skills, at least 15 available on the toolbar.

    However, dumping that many skills on a new player is likely to be overwhelming, even though that is what is required if you want to be purely horizontal.


    So, I'm willing to let there be a tutorial / first few zones or whatever that are vertical, as the player goes from their starting 3 skills up to the max toolbar slots. But in other areas (like gear or character stats), I'd want to be 100% horizontal, or as close to that as possible.
  • Ancient_ExileAncient_Exile Member RarePosts: 1,303
    learis1 said:
    I see a lot of complaints against vertical progression and that it should be horizontal progression. As far as I can tell, vertical progression means that the stat numbers on the enemy are increased. So you either have to gain levels or gear or what-have-you to increase your numbers to be able to defeat them.

    People dislike this. Fine. Let's take it away completely. So now no numbers ever increase. What then is left? The difficulty comes solely now from the AI. New content just has monsters with different AI, but the overall power level of everything stays the same. The end. Does this really change anything that much? 

    I don't think so. And I think that people who obsess over the so called "horizontal" progression have this illogical fantasy that their character will be non-stop transforming their skills into different skills in a never-ending skill customization system. At some point, your character's playstyle is defined. Horizontal progression has its limits. So when you say you only want horizontal progression and no vertical progression, all you're doing is taking something away from the game, and you're not really adding anything in return.

    Day 1: My character starts with some single target skills, and can do 1000 dps to a single target

    Day 10: I've played the game and unlocked some new skills that do AoE damage. I can now do 1000dps single target OR 200dps AoE


    In a single target situation, the player that sticks to a single target spec is more powerful. In a 5+ target situation, the player that goes AoE is more powerful. Overall power of the characters remains the same, as long as there is a good mix of single target and aoe content.


    Horizontal progression is basically a really complicated version of rock-paper-scissors


    You progress by unlocking more specialisations / customisations. Power is maintained because you cannot use everything you unlock at the same time: you must make choices. If you want more damage, you must sacrifice in some other area (like health). In other words, when you start, you can only pick rock, but as you progress, you can also pick paper, scissors, lizard, spock etc


    Obviously, implementation can vary wildly, some will be successful, others will suck (just like with vertical progression). That said, the main benefits to the MMO genre would be:


    • All content remains "on level", i.e. it doesn't become obsolete 10 seconds after you complete it.
    • Everyone can play together right from day 1. This is by far the most important reason for switching to horizontal progression. This is the massively multiplayer genre, we're supposed to be playing together! Vertical progression segregates the community, which is just ridiculous, we want to bring people together not drive them apart
    • More customisations / specialisations means that players are more likely to find a playstyle suited to them. This will increase retention
    • Devs don't need to worry about escalation / stat rebalancing when they make expansions. They can just genuinely expand the world and content for all the players without upsetting what is already there.


    The only downside, as far as I can tell, is that horizontal progression is not obvious to the wider community. We've had 40+ years of being "trained" to enjoy vertical progression, both in pen and paper RPGs, board games, single player RPGs and co-op RPGs. And, lets be fair, vertical progression works really well in those situations.

    When all the players of a game have synronised playtime (i.e. all playing at the same time) then vertical progression works really well. If all of your power increases at the same time, then power doesn't segregate you. But, as soon as players start playing at separate times, vertical progression falls apart and causes way more harm than it does good.



    Final point: whilst I am a big fan of horizontal progression and have been promoting it for 10+ years, it doesn't mean I want to get rid of vertical progression. There is clearly a market for it, many players enjoy it. I just feel that horizontal is the better progression mechanic for the massively multiplayer genre and I would like to see at least some games use it. Luckily for me, Camelot Unchained has been designed around horizontal progression, and Crowfall has been making noises about being kinda-sorta horizontal, so hopefully some point in the next few years I'll get to experience it properly in an MMO! Assuming they release....and stick to their promises.....

    How about a mix of Limited Vertical Progression and Horizontal Progression?

    I'm a fan of pure horizontal, if at all possible.

    Where im willing to compromise is the tutorial / beginner area.


    As mentioned in my post, unlocking new skills should mean a choice: if you want to use your new skill, you must drop another skill to maintain balance. However, because I am a massive fan of depth, I want my game to have a lot of skills, at least 15 available on the toolbar.

    However, dumping that many skills on a new player is likely to be overwhelming, even though that is what is required if you want to be purely horizontal.


    So, I'm willing to let there be a tutorial / first few zones or whatever that are vertical, as the player goes from their starting 3 skills up to the max toolbar slots. But in other areas (like gear or character stats), I'd want to be 100% horizontal, or as close to that as possible.

    I understand why you want horizontal progression.  It's just that people can get better at things.  The way I see it, the major problem with Vertical Combat Power Progression in the vast majority of MMORPGs is that Top Tier Veteran Players will be like gods while New Players are as mere ants in comparison. 

    So what if the vertical combat power progression was just more limited and reasonable?  So that a solo Veteran player (maxed combat power) would still be vulnerable to an attack by 10-20 Noobs? 
    "If everything was easy, nothing would be hard."


    "Show me on the doll where PVP touched you."


    (Note:  If I type something in a thread that does not exactly pertain to the stated subject of the thread in every, way, shape, and form, please feel free to send me a response in a Private Message.)

  • cameltosiscameltosis Member EpicPosts: 2,534
    learis1 said:


    I understand why you want horizontal progression.  It's just that people can get better at things.  The way I see it, the major problem with Vertical Combat Power Progression in the vast majority of MMORPGs is that Top Tier Veteran Players will be like gods while New Players are as mere ants in comparison. 

    So what if the vertical combat power progression was just more limited and reasonable?  So that a solo Veteran player (maxed combat power) would still be vulnerable to an attack by 10-20 Noobs? 
    Would all depend on the implementation.


    Does your limited vertical progression get in the way of people playing together?
    Does it make old content obsolete?


    If the answer to either question is "yes", then I dont want it. If the answer to both is "no", then sure, lets go for it.

    tzervo
  • Ancient_ExileAncient_Exile Member RarePosts: 1,303
    learis1 said:


    I understand why you want horizontal progression.  It's just that people can get better at things.  The way I see it, the major problem with Vertical Combat Power Progression in the vast majority of MMORPGs is that Top Tier Veteran Players will be like gods while New Players are as mere ants in comparison. 

    So what if the vertical combat power progression was just more limited and reasonable?  So that a solo Veteran player (maxed combat power) would still be vulnerable to an attack by 10-20 Noobs? 
    Would all depend on the implementation.


    Does your limited vertical progression get in the way of people playing together?
    Does it make old content obsolete?


    If the answer to either question is "yes", then I dont want it. If the answer to both is "no", then sure, lets go for it.


    I'm thinking that it wouldn't make old content obsolete.  Because the lowest 'level' mobs would still be a threat to the Veteran player if they had sufficient numbers.  And a Mid 'level' player or even a Noob could still be of assistance to a Veteran.  Especially if class interdependence is implemented properly.  Especially if non-combat skills were made to be of greater importance.

    For example, a lower level mage, priest, or thief could be of assistance to a high level warrior in a dungeon.  If there was a need to use non-combat spells or skills which a warrior could not learn.  Mobs who had different resistances and weaknesses could also give a high level warrior trouble if he or she didn't have assistance from other classes. 

    But people who played the game longer would still have advantages if the game had different kinds of power besides combat power.  If the player could also progress by acquiring higher reputation as well as social, economic, political, and military ranks.  Which brought with them various advantages and expanded options. 

    I also think that characters should be able to regress as well as progress.  Like if the character doesn't use a skill or ability enough, then his/her proficiency at that skill or abilityl could decrease over time.
    Gdemami
    "If everything was easy, nothing would be hard."


    "Show me on the doll where PVP touched you."


    (Note:  If I type something in a thread that does not exactly pertain to the stated subject of the thread in every, way, shape, and form, please feel free to send me a response in a Private Message.)

  • AkulasAkulas Member RarePosts: 2,649
    One is levels, other is gear + whatever other stuff to improve your character etc.

    This isn't a signature, you just think it is.

  • KyleranKyleran Member LegendaryPosts: 36,167
    Utinni said:
    If you gain power it's vertical.
    Define "power."
    Ancient_ExileAlBQuirky

    "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™

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  • Ancient_ExileAncient_Exile Member RarePosts: 1,303
    edited May 22

    If spells could be interrupted, and certain spells took longer to cast, then even a high level mage or priest might need to depend on a warrior to guard him or her while casting.  Meanwhile, warriors and rogues would be more vulnerable to magical and divine/infernal attacks if they're on their own.  Some types of enchanted or blessed weapons and armor might grant them greater resistance to non-physical attacks or effects, just as some races (such as dwarves) might be more resistant to magic, but aid from a wizard or priest would still be highly beneficial in many cases.
    "If everything was easy, nothing would be hard."


    "Show me on the doll where PVP touched you."


    (Note:  If I type something in a thread that does not exactly pertain to the stated subject of the thread in every, way, shape, and form, please feel free to send me a response in a Private Message.)

  • UngoodUngood Member EpicPosts: 4,138
    The main problem of Horizontal progression is not the system, but the lack of feeling of progress.

    For example, if on day 1, my character is strong enough to face and kill a dragon, and yet after playing for a year, my character is not any stronger then it was to start with, and that same dragon is the same fight it was on day one (perhaps easier due to my own skill as a player, but not do to any progress on my characters part), there is no feeling of progress, no feeling of accomplishment.

    PvP games get away with it, because they work on the players skills, and thus seeking out equally skilled opponents, so the character does not need to progress as the player does all the work.

    That self same system does not work as well in PvE games.

    AlBQuirky
    Egotism is the anesthetic that dullens the pain of stupidity, this is why when I try to beat my head against the stupidity of other people, I only hurt myself.
  • cameltosiscameltosis Member EpicPosts: 2,534

    If spells could be interrupted, and certain spells took longer to cast, then even a high level mage or priest might need to depend on a warrior to guard him or her while casting.  Meanwhile, warriors and rogues would be more vulnerable to magical and divine/infernal attacks if they're on their own.  Some types of enchanted or blessed weapons and armor might grant them greater resistance to non-physical attacks or effects, just as some races (such as dwarves) might be more resistant to magic, but aid from a wizard or priest would still be highly beneficial in many cases.

    Whilst I like the general idea, it really comes down to how the power differences really play out.

    If the power differences are small enough that newbies can still be valuable, then I feel like you may as well just go full horizontal. If the power differences are bigger, then you have what we already have, maybe slightly less frustrating but still frustrating all the same.


    That said, you've sparked an idea.


    What if defensive stats were horizontal - all players had access to the same defences through gear, but offensive stats were vertical?

    That way, all players could participate, contribute and survive, but newbies would output less damage so you'd need more of them. You could complete the same content as the vets, but it'd take you 5x longer.


    The reason I suggest this is one of the problems with power gaps is how quickly newbies get stomped. It's such a negative experience and one of the main reasons that the pvp communities in mmos struggle to grow. However, if they could at least stay alive longer, it gives them a more positive experience, perhaps time to call in friends, but at least long enough to learn something from the fight.


    You could liken it to anyone being able to buy armour and a sword in real life, or to wear a bullet proof vest, but it takes training and improvement to gain the strength / accuracy to actually deal out death.



    I dunno, just an idea, I'd still prefer horizontal, but you got me thinking :P
  • Ancient_ExileAncient_Exile Member RarePosts: 1,303
    edited May 23

    If spells could be interrupted, and certain spells took longer to cast, then even a high level mage or priest might need to depend on a warrior to guard him or her while casting.  Meanwhile, warriors and rogues would be more vulnerable to magical and divine/infernal attacks if they're on their own.  Some types of enchanted or blessed weapons and armor might grant them greater resistance to non-physical attacks or effects, just as some races (such as dwarves) might be more resistant to magic, but aid from a wizard or priest would still be highly beneficial in many cases.

    Whilst I like the general idea, it really comes down to how the power differences really play out.

    If the power differences are small enough that newbies can still be valuable, then I feel like you may as well just go full horizontal. If the power differences are bigger, then you have what we already have, maybe slightly less frustrating but still frustrating all the same.


    That said, you've sparked an idea.


    What if defensive stats were horizontal - all players had access to the same defences through gear, but offensive stats were vertical?

    That way, all players could participate, contribute and survive, but newbies would output less damage so you'd need more of them. You could complete the same content as the vets, but it'd take you 5x longer.


    The reason I suggest this is one of the problems with power gaps is how quickly newbies get stomped. It's such a negative experience and one of the main reasons that the pvp communities in mmos struggle to grow. However, if they could at least stay alive longer, it gives them a more positive experience, perhaps time to call in friends, but at least long enough to learn something from the fight.


    You could liken it to anyone being able to buy armour and a sword in real life, or to wear a bullet proof vest, but it takes training and improvement to gain the strength / accuracy to actually deal out death.



    I dunno, just an idea, I'd still prefer horizontal, but you got me thinking :P
    Well, for one thing, I don't think we really need to make a single Noob competitive with a Veteran.  However, it would be good if a Noob had a chance against or could help a lower level character.  While a lower level character had a chance against or could help a mid level character and a mid level character had a chance against or could help a high level character.  But how do we make that possible?

    Well, what about Hit Points?

    I recommend reading the following article.  It's pretty interesting - https://www.tribality.com/2017/07/06/hit-points-dying-and-death/

    Also, have you ever played Darkest Dungeon? - https://darkestdungeon.gamepedia.com/Darkest_Dungeon_Wiki

    Anyway, Hit Points are an abstraction.  They don't really mean just how much damage a character can sustain before he or she dies (or is incapacitated/knocked out/placed on death's door).  There are other factors involved.

    Morale
    Fortitude  
    Resolve/Determination
    Chance
    Divine Favor

    And just how much Stress can a character endure before his or her levels/reserves of Morale, Fortitude, or Resolve are depleted?  While having Hit Points divided into different categories could get too complex and cumbersome for P&P/Tabletop RPG, the automation made possible in an MMORPG would make them less so. 

    So, what if certain kinds of attacks, effects, situations, or encounters with different sorts of creatures/beings could weaken (or even strengthen) a character's Morale, Fortitude, or Resolve?  Escalate or Alleviate Stress?

    Remember how the Hound (in Game of Thrones) was so afraid of fire?  Even though he was a great warrior, the mere sight of flame could cause him to hesitate or even flee.  What would happen to a character like the Hound if a mage cast a Fireball at him?  Particularly if he got hit by one?

    So, what if, during character creation, players had to choose a certain amount of positive and negative characteristics?  Like one character might be afraid of spiders but at the same time have an overwhelming hatred of orcs.  So the character would have a lower chance of hitting giant spiders and a greater chance of hitting orcs.  The character's Morale, even if the character was max level, might totally break if he or she was surrounded or covered by spiders.

    Chance would always be a factor as well.  A character might stumble on a rock, slip in mud, or have the sun glare in his or her eyes at just the wrong moment.  And so the character would need to recover before he or she could attack again. 

    Divine Favor:  A character's choices and actions could increase or decrease the amount of favor has with his/her chosen deity or deities.  Depending on the amount of divine favor a character has, there could be a chance of that character being granted some kind of divine augmentation or divine intervention. 

    A good deity would probably favor such actions as helping the weak, though selfish choices might gain the deity's ire.  An evil deity might favor a character who preyed on the weak or did whatever he or she could to harm the enemies of the deity.  But that same evil deity might show disfavor toward a character who showed any sign of weakness, such as losing a battle.











    Post edited by Ancient_Exile on
    cameltosis
    "If everything was easy, nothing would be hard."


    "Show me on the doll where PVP touched you."


    (Note:  If I type something in a thread that does not exactly pertain to the stated subject of the thread in every, way, shape, and form, please feel free to send me a response in a Private Message.)

  • BeansnBreadBeansnBread Member EpicPosts: 7,125
    When I consider horizontal progression, I think about systems like the following:


    Everyone of a class gets skill A.

    Skill A a has 3 modifiers to choose from. These are all relatively equal, but situational.


    Choose one:
    Beatdown -> 1 second stun
    Beatdown -> +20% damage
    Beatdown -> 50% snare for 5 seconds


    Stat systems can help keep things relatively horizontal as well. In something like WoW, your stats start at 10 and go into the 1000s (or whatever). In DDO (or Dungeons and Dragons in general), your stats remain relatively flat comparatively.

    If you want something totally flat, you end up with something like counterstrike, where all stats are equal, and the horizontal progression is chosen through the weapon choices.

    RPGs tend to love at least some vertical progression and I think that when people clamor for horizontal progression, they are really talking about a grey area where vertical progression is flatter, but it still exists.
    KyleranAncient_ExileAlBQuirkytzervo
  • bcbullybcbully Member EpicPosts: 10,149
    ESO says “Hi”.



    pre-champion system still all in all even with 
  • AlBQuirkyAlBQuirky Member EpicPosts: 6,158
    tzervo said:
    Gdemami said:
    There is no such thing as horizontal progression, progression is always vertical.
    Then just call it progression. Otherwise you also make the distinction.

    An existing example, so we don't get into definition and semantics wars:

    https://wiki.guildwars2.com/wiki/Itzel_Poison_Lore

    You can now enter poison haze areas and pass through poisonous Mordrem vines without taking damage.

    This skill unlocks areas in some maps. It does not affect your way of handling any other content. It does not let you do more damage to mobs, craft more efficiently or anything else. I call this horizontal progression.

    In my previous imaginary example with skills vs levels:

    - horizontal: skill B does not help you in any way clear content in map A faster.
    - vertical: level 40 helps you clear content in a level 20 map twice as fast.

    The qualitative difference I see between horizontal and vertical is: horizontal adds options, gameplay loops, activities and careers etc. and does not affect the rest of your activities in any meaningful way. Vertical progression means you can do content that is already available faster or more efficiently. Existing game examples are vertical, horizontal or many times hybrid. It is not either/or, it is a slider.

    Has that ability given you the ability to go where a player without it can? Have you "progressed" your maps?

    The "sticky wicket", so to speak, is progress is usually assumed to be about combat, since that is what MMOs focus on. In that scenario, progression is easily defined. I can kill bigger mobs with better skills and abilities.

    Yet exploration is also a progression, of sorts. Level locked zones, zones locked behind keys, your example of a "death zone" without the proper ability.

    I liked EQ 1's language skills. They did nothing in the game in terms of combat or exploration or healing. They just were. Yet a player could still progress in that skill, getting better at a specific language or acquiring more languages. Since languages had no effect on gameplay, that is the closest I've seen to "horizontal progression", yet players still improved themselves.

    Really, I guess it comes down to whatever a player is seeing as "progress" :)
    Kylerantzervo

    - Al

    Personally the only modern MMORPG trend that annoys me is the idea that MMOs need to be designed in a way to attract people who don't actually like MMOs. Which to me makes about as much sense as someone trying to figure out a way to get vegetarians to eat at their steakhouse.
    - FARGIN_WAR


  • ChildoftheShadowsChildoftheShadows Member EpicPosts: 1,830
    I get the feeling most people associate vertical progression with combat power where IMO any improvement could be argued as vertical. Without improvement there is little incentive to do "stuff" for the vast majority.
    learis1Gdemami
    "Wake up, It's RNG, there is no such thing as 'rare'"
    - Ungood
  • KyleranKyleran Member LegendaryPosts: 36,167
    edited May 23
    bcbully said:
    ESO says “Hi”.



    pre-champion system still all in all even with 
    ESO clearly has several forms of progression,  eschewing just one of many possible designs.


    "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






  • Morgenes83Morgenes83 Member UncommonPosts: 183
    Imo vertical progression is a hoax.

    You start with 100hp doing 10 damage to a 50hp mob and end with 10.000hp doing 1000 damage to a 5.000hp mob.

    The only thing which changes is that you can kill low level mobs easily and brag before lowbies.
    But for the content you are doing, which is relevant for you nothing changed.

    Yes horizontal progression has its limits. You cannot create infinite variants of a skill.
    But with different sets (see ESO) you can do this for a long time.
    Gdemami

    1997 Meridian 59 'til 2019 ESO 

    Waiting for Camelot Unchained & Pantheon

  • learis1learis1 Member UncommonPosts: 153
    edited May 23
    I get the feeling most people associate vertical progression with combat power where IMO any improvement could be argued as vertical. Without improvement there is little incentive to do "stuff" for the vast majority.
    I agree. At the end of the day, horizontal progression often involves still becoming more powerful. If your stats don't increase, but your options do, then you're absolutely gaining more power. 

    Progression = power gain. No way around it, except if it's cosmetic progression (which honestly is a great thing that some MMO's suck at utilizing).

    If people truly want the newbies to be equal in power to the veterans, there is only one solution: NO PROGRESSION. Everything available to the vets is available to the newbs.

    Progression involves the game giving you something new after putting in time or an "investment" of some sort.
    GdemamiKyleranAlBQuirky

    Mend and Defend

  • cameltosiscameltosis Member EpicPosts: 2,534
    I get the feeling most people associate vertical progression with combat power where IMO any improvement could be argued as vertical. Without improvement there is little incentive to do "stuff" for the vast majority.

    Whenever I'm talking about vertical / horizontal, I'm always refering to combat power exclusively.

    I do agree that any form of progression outside of combat power can also be considered in terms of vertical / horizontal.


    As to any improvement being considered vertical, I agree. That is why a horizontal system needs to take something away at the same time as giving you something, and thats how you maintain balance. Gain an AoE skill, lose a single target skill. Gain raw damage, lose crit chance. The things being taken away aren't being taken away permanently, it's just the player has to make the choice (e.g. by selecting which skills are on their toolbar, or what gear they're wearing).
    Ancient_ExileAlBQuirky
  • ChildoftheShadowsChildoftheShadows Member EpicPosts: 1,830
    I get the feeling most people associate vertical progression with combat power where IMO any improvement could be argued as vertical. Without improvement there is little incentive to do "stuff" for the vast majority.

    Whenever I'm talking about vertical / horizontal, I'm always refering to combat power exclusively.

    I do agree that any form of progression outside of combat power can also be considered in terms of vertical / horizontal.


    As to any improvement being considered vertical, I agree. That is why a horizontal system needs to take something away at the same time as giving you something, and thats how you maintain balance. Gain an AoE skill, lose a single target skill. Gain raw damage, lose crit chance. The things being taken away aren't being taken away permanently, it's just the player has to make the choice (e.g. by selecting which skills are on their toolbar, or what gear they're wearing).
    I'm a fan of a bonus/penalty system for sure regardless of the progression as it removes or mitigates best in slot scenarios.
    Ancient_ExileKyleranAlBQuirky
    "Wake up, It's RNG, there is no such thing as 'rare'"
    - Ungood
  • KyleranKyleran Member LegendaryPosts: 36,167
    edited May 23
    Fallout 76 employs a variety of designs to help maintain the "illusion" of progression.

    First, the character itself gains in actual power between level 1 and 54 meaning a "naked fight" (no gear) between the two is no contest however a level 54 has the same "power" as I do at level 261.

    My guild held a "shovel" fight, nothing could be used except the "best" shovel a player could find or buy.

    Despite having players ranging from 25 to 450, a level 79 won.  While most of us play ranged gunners he was melee spec'd in his perks, but more importantly, he was well versed in the ways of PVP, which few are.)

    continues


    Post edited by Kyleran on
    bcbully

    "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






  • KyleranKyleran Member LegendaryPosts: 36,167
    edited May 23
    Perk card selection is the second progression system with players being permitted to pick one after each level gain until they reach 56 as I recall)

    Not only do they give increasing combat bonuses (capped at 9 pts per category,  ie. Heavy guns, Rifles etc.) the player must choose from a plethora of secondary skills which must be carefully balanced, especially in the early leveling remaining a relevant consideration well into the mid 100s, never truly ending as even just today at level 262 I was rebalancing my cards.

    From 2 to 56 each card chosen also selects a corresponding attribute. 
    Being a heavy gunner, my build goes like this, 15 strength, (the cap for any single attribute) 6 perception, 5 endurance, 6 charisma, 10 intelligence, 6 agility, and 8 luck.

    Oh yes, after level 56 players are given a choice of reassigning one attribute point, in case they make a tragic mistake like my friend did in getting 15 points in Charisma, since having to spend 12 points to bring it back down to 3.

    Finally, Perk cards have levels from rank 1 to 3 for most,  but there are a smattering of skills limited to only 1 or 2 ranks as well as a few rank 4s and 5s.

    This gives the player tremendous flexibility on how to build their characters as well as having to manage which skills to slot based on situation, combat,  crafting,  harvesting,  hacking etc.

    This is also a huge weakness as so far Bethesda hasn't included a perk card load out manager though there are Fallout 4 mods which can be used for those willing to risk their account, of which I am not one such.

    continues 


    Post edited by Kyleran on
    AlBQuirky

    "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






  • Ancient_ExileAncient_Exile Member RarePosts: 1,303
    Kyleran said:
    Perk card selection is the second progression system with players being permitted to pick one after each level up.



    Have you played Darkest Dungeon?
    "If everything was easy, nothing would be hard."


    "Show me on the doll where PVP touched you."


    (Note:  If I type something in a thread that does not exactly pertain to the stated subject of the thread in every, way, shape, and form, please feel free to send me a response in a Private Message.)

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