Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Opinion: Sometimes The 'Massively Multiplayer' Can Get In The Way Of The RPG | MMORPG.com

SystemSystem Member UncommonPosts: 7,110

imageOpinion: Sometimes The 'Massively Multiplayer' Can Get In The Way Of The RPG | MMORPG.com

Bradford loves MMORPGs. However, there are occassions where the "massively multiplayer" can get in the way of the RPG aspects of a game, such as a recent experience in The Elder Scrolls Online.

Read the full story here


«13

Comments

  • ziabatsuziabatsu Member UncommonPosts: 147
    Nothing is impactful (narrative-wise) in a MMORPG; not to say that communities can't create some awesome memories/stories, but if you're after a immersive story experience, you aren't gonna find it.
    AlomarTwistedSister77
  • KnightFalzKnightFalz Member EpicPosts: 1,869
    Well, it is a MMORPG and an expansion just came out, bringing the swarm of players such typically does. That ESO can largely be played solo doesn't mean it will provide you with a solo experience. You can't really expect your show to be the show.

    Actually, even in normal circumstances I tend to run into players throughout the world more often than any other MMORPG I've played, so it may just not be a good game for expecting to be alone the majority of the time.

    That scenario wouldn't come at the expense of my role-playing. My character would know there are many other adventurers in the world and even his best laid plans can be disrupted if one blunders into his vicinity when he is trying to sneak about. Obviously that would be annoying to him, as he'd either have to abandon his plan or wait until the disruption was over to proceed. But, it is something that can and will happen, so he knows to be prepared to deal with it.

    It's essentially a random encounter that one must adapt to, and could reinforce immersion rather than shatter it with the right frame of mind.
    NaitakalAlomarcorrosivechains
  • CacolacoCacolaco Member UncommonPosts: 94
    This has been one of my problems with this game in particular since it was in beta. It seems like every time I enter a dungeon, it's been cleared out ahead of me by other players. Since ESO has put such a strong emphasis on the story, it's a bit of a letdown to discover that your quest has essentially been done for you.

    It always made me wonder why they didn't either make the quests group instances (or at least give that option), or make the mobs a little harder (at least the "boss" ones) so that you really need those extra people to make it through
    AlomarMendelKyleranGorwecorrosivechains

    I'm just waiting for a F2P overhyped sandbox WoW clone with full PVP, epic raid bosses, instanced group content, and Crysis-quality graphics to come out. That, or something fun.

  • TheocritusTheocritus Member EpicPosts: 8,331
    I don't know....Listening to other posters it seems more like the RPG gets in the way of the MMO........
    AlomarkjempffcorrosivechainsMr409Winstzervo
  • GorweGorwe Member Posts: 636
    edited June 8
    Not sometimes. Regularly. Here is why:

    Designing an open world RPG(what most MMOs are) is a daunting task ; designing all of those systems to properly align and so they don't become perpendicular to one another. I call this "segmentation". If an activity you're interested in is locked behind multiplayer(=mmo elements) and segmentation leaves that activity barren...it could happen that you might not finish something as "banal" as story. Not to mention all the grinding(=mmo elements) getting in the way of story, exploration and immersion(=rpg elements).

    This is all horribly difficult to align properly and often results in a mish-mashed salad of systems. It's VERY RARE to witness when RPG benefits ftom MMO elements. I've experienced this in WAR, in AoC, in SWTOR(=rpg part mostly overpowering the mmo parts ; inverse situation of this one), in ESO...hell, in most MMOs.
    AlomarMendelKylerancorrosivechains
  • k61977k61977 Member RarePosts: 1,373
    I ran into this just yesterday myself. I was doing some areas I never got around to doing on one of my characters and actually was interested in the story. When I got to one of the last steps on a quest someone ran in about 30 secs before me an started the event so I missed out on the entire storyline at the start of the event as they just blew through the dialogue to start the event before I got there. Sure I could have sat there waited for the guy to kill the mob which actually takes a little time to do, and then waited for the guy to respawn and see it, but that was just a killer as it was wasting what little time I had to play and what were the chances of it happening again with someone else running in.
    MendelSovrathKyleranHluill
  • EladiEladi Member UncommonPosts: 1,129
    its not a MM(o) problem,its a level / quest designers flaw. if you give a quest were they say you should go stealth , then make sure the mobs are OP asshats that you cant rush into but have very poor stealth detection ( so that non stealth builds still can do it)

    AlomarMendelSovrathGdemamiHluill
  • MendelMendel Member EpicPosts: 4,542
    That's what happens when you allow multiple different people into a single-player scripted story.  The problem isn't that another person smashed the NPCs, it was entirely that the game presented multiple players with a single-player story.  Open world and scripted single-person stories just don't work well; there's always the chance other people will interfere and disrupt things.

    ESO, in this case, simply understand what they were asking the player to do; they tried to establish a narrative that the player should follow blindly.  When another player didn't follow the script, it interfered with another player.  Make that mission use an instanced area instead of an open world and the script works fine.  This is a failure of the script-writing; not the 'massively multiplayer' nature.



    NanfoodleTacticalZombehGdemamiGorwecorrosivechainsHluill

    Logic, my dear, merely enables one to be wrong with great authority.

  • AlbatroesAlbatroes Member LegendaryPosts: 7,661
    edited June 8
    I know its an opinion piece but it kind of strands from the "past decade" view of things, where devs hold people's hands on every aspect of the game, including role-playing. If you played from the vanilla wow era and prior, people will tell you that role-playing was a community-based thing, not a developer-created thing. Were there quests/stories/etc? Yeah. Were some of them memorable? Sure. But most people from then will usually tell you memories that were developed out in the field, competing for mob spawn, grouping with strangers for hours on end and talking about random stuff. So to say the 'mmo' aspect gets in the way of the 'rpg' aspect is a bit misguided. Besides using ESO is a bit awkward as well since they often referred to the game in the past as a 'shared-world' experience, not an actual 'mmorpg.'
    corrosivechainsHluill
  • NanfoodleNanfoodle Member LegendaryPosts: 9,351
    I remember back in 1999 playing EQ and most people would RP. Today most people get ticked when you RP. I find its not the MMOs problem, its the players that get in the way of RP. 
    MendelViper482TheocritusTwistedSister77corrosivechainsHluill
  • KnightFalzKnightFalz Member EpicPosts: 1,869
    edited June 8
    Eladi said:
    its not a MM(o) problem,its a level / quest designers flaw. if you give a quest were they say you should go stealth , then make sure the mobs are OP asshats that you cant rush into but have very poor stealth detection ( so that non stealth builds still can do it)


    It's a bit difficult to make mobs OP asshats in ESO, as characters facing that mob, perhaps simultaneously, are going to be widely different in terms of development.

    One may be on their first character and low level with few skills accessible, and the other max level with many skills, gear sets, and tons of invested CP (progression after max.)

    While for the former it may be prudent to sneak around to avoid combat or strike from advantage, the latter is going to go *CRUNCH* without breaking stride even though each is facing mobs scaled to them.

    One can either follow in their wake or wait.

    When the game is as busy as it is right now, waiting isn't really a viable option because it won't take that long before another steamroller will blast through.

    Some things are instanced so one is free from intrusion in those, but a lot of the story content is not.
  • NanfoodleNanfoodle Member LegendaryPosts: 9,351
    Mendel said:
    That's what happens when you allow multiple different people into a single-player scripted story.  The problem isn't that another person smashed the NPCs, it was entirely that the game presented multiple players with a single-player story.  Open world and scripted single-person stories just don't work well; there's always the chance other people will interfere and disrupt things.

    ESO, in this case, simply understand what they were asking the player to do; they tried to establish a narrative that the player should follow blindly.  When another player didn't follow the script, it interfered with another player.  Make that mission use an instanced area instead of an open world and the script works fine.  This is a failure of the script-writing; not the 'massively multiplayer' nature.



    Phasing has fix that mostly, some MMOs do that better then others. ESO at launch did a piss poor job of it. My wife and I often could not work together on the same quest even if we were on the same step of the quest. ESO does this seamlessly now and RP together is very rewarding. 

    SWToR does this better then most, even rewarding people for choices that fits in their role and also for RPing with friends when doing story. I agree with Mendel, its the MMOs developers fault if its the design of the game.
    MendelTacticalZombehGorwecorrosivechainsHluill
  • kjempffkjempff Member RarePosts: 1,690
    However, there are instances where that lauded aspect can get in the way of the story telling a developer is trying to portray

    That is because the developer think they are making a mmorpg, but by controlling the story and narrative, they are working against what a mmorpg is. What they are making is a story driven rpg, with online features.
    Of course everyone is doing the story driven thing, ever since WoW came and hijacked the genre, and obviously the mejority think that what they play is mmorpg,
    SovrathMendelGdemamicorrosivechainsHluill
  • UtinniUtinni Member EpicPosts: 2,043

    kjempff said:


    ever since WoW came and hijacked the genre



    WoW came out 16 years ago now. It didn't hijack the genre, it literally created it.
    SensaiViper482cameltosisTheocritusGdemamicorrosivechains
  • NanfoodleNanfoodle Member LegendaryPosts: 9,351
    Utinni said:

    kjempff said:


    ever since WoW came and hijacked the genre



    WoW came out 16 years ago now. It didn't hijack the genre, it literally created it.
    When WoW launched back in 2004, RP was still very heavy in the MMO community. Matter of fact, my yearly visit back to WoW to catch up on content and story. I always find people to RP with in WoW
    Mendel
  • KyleranKyleran Member LegendaryPosts: 37,894
    Nanfoodle said:
    Mendel said:
    That's what happens when you allow multiple different people into a single-player scripted story.  The problem isn't that another person smashed the NPCs, it was entirely that the game presented multiple players with a single-player story.  Open world and scripted single-person stories just don't work well; there's always the chance other people will interfere and disrupt things.

    ESO, in this case, simply understand what they were asking the player to do; they tried to establish a narrative that the player should follow blindly.  When another player didn't follow the script, it interfered with another player.  Make that mission use an instanced area instead of an open world and the script works fine.  This is a failure of the script-writing; not the 'massively multiplayer' nature.



    Phasing has fix that mostly, some MMOs do that better then others. ESO at launch did a piss poor job of it. My wife and I often could not work together on the same quest even if we were on the same step of the quest. ESO does this seamlessly now and RP together is very rewarding. 

    SWToR does this better then most, even rewarding people for choices that fits in their role and also for RPing with friends when doing story. I agree with Mendel, its the MMOs developers fault if its the design of the game.
    The phasing definitely is fixed from when I first played at launch but I do agree it's annoying to be charging into a delve or public dungeon and having to scrabble to get through it before everyone else does.

    I actually like the 4 person dungeons because the group has them all to themselves and it's one of the few times you get to win or lose entirely without assistance.


    NanfoodleHluill

    "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






  • Viper482Viper482 Member EpicPosts: 3,414
    edited June 8
    The problem here is ESO is a single player RPG pretending to be an MMORPG. It has nothing to do with the genre and everything to do with execution.
    MendelTheocritusGorwecorrosivechains
    Make MMORPG's Great Again!
  • Viper482Viper482 Member EpicPosts: 3,414

    Utinni said:



    kjempff said:




    ever since WoW came and hijacked the genre






    WoW came out 16 years ago now. It didn't hijack the genre, it literally created it.



    Oh look....it's that "WoW was the first MMO" guy from every world chat in every MMO.....
    Nanfoodlecorrosivechains
    Make MMORPG's Great Again!
  • Viper482Viper482 Member EpicPosts: 3,414

    Nanfoodle said:

    I remember back in 1999 playing EQ and most people would RP. Today most people get ticked when you RP. I find its not the MMOs problem, its the players that get in the way of RP. 



    The genre was mainstreamed, sadly.
    Make MMORPG's Great Again!
  • IselinIselin Member LegendaryPosts: 15,659
    The flaw is in the quest design when trying to shoehorn a "you are the one" story into an open environment. That can work in instances but the open world should be about community goals and community quests where the quest and story are written with the notion that you are just one of the many.

    Take Cyrodiil PvP for example. The underlying eternal conflict of many against many is never in danger of having its immersion broken because many others doing many different things to accomplish the Cyrodiil goals is exactly what you're told to expect and what should be happening there.

    PvE should also be scripted to be that way with casual drop-in group events being the dominant quest and story telling device. It's an MMO, There may be many others or just a few around, so why not just acknowledge that fact and design stories around it?

    You can still have stories akin to those of single player games in the mix if you want but keep those in instances where they belong.
    MendelkjempffTacticalZombehlaseritHluill
    "I don't wait for games. Games wait for me."
    -- CHUCK NORRIS

    “Microtransactions? In a single player role-playing game? Are you nuts?” 
    ― CD PROJEKT RED

  • MendelMendel Member EpicPosts: 4,542
    Iselin said:
    The flaw is in the quest design when trying to shoehorn a "you are the one" story into an open environment. That can work in instances but the open world should be about community goals and community quests where the quest and story are written with the notion that you are just one of the many.

    Take Cyrodiil PvP for example. The underlying eternal conflict of many against many is never in danger of having its immersion broken because many others doing many different things to accomplish the Cyrodiil goals is exactly what you're told to expect and what should be happening there.

    PvE should also be scripted to be that way with casual drop-in group events being the dominant quest and story telling device. It's an MMO, There may be many others or just a few around, so why not just acknowledge that fact and design stories around it?

    You can still have stories akin to those of single player games in the mix if you want but keep those in instances where they belong.

    The instant an open-world multiplayer game writes a quest with the 'you' (singular) pronoun, it introduces an element of competition.  One possibility is always going to include some variation of 'someone got there first' or 'someone killed the NPC I needed to talk to'.  Intended or not, singular individualized quests have consequences to game play.



    Hluill

    Logic, my dear, merely enables one to be wrong with great authority.

  • cameltosiscameltosis Member EpicPosts: 2,998
    I've been saying it for years: computer games are a bad medium for telling a story. Multiplayer games are even worse.



    Another thing to point out: story is not roleplaying. A story can occasionally provide some roleplaying opportunities, and definitely can provide content for roleplaying. But story is not roleplaying.




    So, designing an MMORPG around a story is a huge mistake.


    I'm very surprised that Bradford has only just now experienced this problem as it exists in every single MMORPG with a story. Which is basically all of them.
    kjempffcorrosivechainstzervoMr409WinsHluill
  • QuarterStackQuarterStack Member RarePosts: 476
    edited June 9
    I've sent feedback to ZOS twice about that very thing... that other players are able to potentially ruin what *should* be a solo instance.

    It's happened to me a number of times, and it ruins the experience every time.

    The worst was when I was sent in to do something for the Dark Brotherhood. It was a very well devised story with a cool twist. I got all the way to my objective, and was well on my way out - completely undetected the whole way. I was at the final stretch to leave the building, just waiting for a guard to turn and walk the other way so I could sneak by when another player comes barreling through the room with 3 guards in tow. They ran straight to me and then started fighting the guards, I guess assuming I'd help them.

    Before I have a chance to react, I'm detected and now have a bounty - by no fault of my own. It was 100% because this other player was able to drag NPCs over to me.

    This pissed me off. Another player had been able to ruin my experience. That should NOT be able to happen.

    So I sent feedback to ZOS suggesting exactly what you did.. make missions like that solo.

    A similar thing happened with another mission some time later, and I sent a second request to please make stealth missions solo.

    I said something to the effect of: "If you're going to challenge me to get through a mission undetected, please let me do so without someone else ruining it"

    I dropped the game shortly after that anyway. I'd felt like the game itself was starting to feel too repetitious and cookie-cutter from one expansion to the next anyway. This second encounter where another player ruined my experience was a final nail.

    I haven't been back to the game since. This last expansion doesn't even interest me enough to check it out.

    I loved ESO for a long while - even back shortly before 'One Tamriel', and for some time after (though I never liked the scaling much; at least not how they handled it). But the cookie-cutter design has become more and more obvious from one "chapter" to the next. Even new systems they introduce, like Antiquities, quickly prove to be just another grind.
    KylerancorrosivechainstzervoHluill
  • KnightFalzKnightFalz Member EpicPosts: 1,869
    Viper482 said:
    The problem here is ESO is a single player RPG pretending to be an MMORPG. It has nothing to do with the genre and everything to do with execution.

    My fiance and I play through this "single player RPG" together all the time, each having our own character dedicated to this purpose. The same could be done easily with a static group of players as a persistent party.

    So, while the story may assume a single player, it is by no means a single player RPG, but a MMORPG that can be played as such by anyone that doesn't wish to play alone.
  • KnightFalzKnightFalz Member EpicPosts: 1,869
    So, designing an MMORPG around a story is a huge mistake.

    There are some pretty profitable huge mistakes in the MMORPG genre then.

    WoW, FFXIV, and ESO all seem to be doing alright.

    So, what's the actual problem with their story-led approach?
    Viper482tzervoKyleran
Sign In or Register to comment.