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General: Content Locusts Killed My MMO

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  • AvsRock21AvsRock21 Member UncommonPosts: 256

    6 days (not game time) to reach max in TOR?  With that statement alone, it's easy to conclude that the author of this article HAS NOT reached max on TOR.  TOR has a leveling curve much closer to vanilla WoW than it does current WoW.  Unless you're a no-lifer who spends 5+ hours every single day playing a game.  In which case, you will never find a game that pleases you.  All the major timesinks are old games, like AC and DaoC.  The majority playerbase today are not a bunch of no-lifers that have all day to play a game.  This is why games are more casual today, the majority of players have a life.  For those out there that can't enjoy games like TOR and WoW, it's because you have nothing to do, so you need a game with more to do so you can continue to not have a life.  

  • wowhagawowhaga Member UncommonPosts: 5

    It most certainly was NOT leveling speed - it was DPS CHECK RAIDS and PvP systems that took ages to get to the top!

    Games nowadays - EVEN WoW - have absolutely no DPS check fights (Ragnaros, Vael, etc etc) that took guilds ages and ages to do because they needed to continually farm for gear in order to bypass the DPS check fights!

  • DredphyreDredphyre Member Posts: 601

    I stopped reading after 'corpse runs'.  If this author's idea of good game design includes corpse runs, she has zero credibility. ZERO.

  • umcorianumcorian Member UncommonPosts: 519

    Nice column, Isabelle.

    I, too, am nostalgic for the old Everquest days, where getting to 50 in and of itself was the end of a long, arduous journey. The leveling speed in Everquest was never important, really, to anyone who played it. I know when I played my druid, the goal for me was never to level. You'd drive yourself crazy! I focused on exploration. Ferrying people from place to place with my ports, making platnium. Occasionally, I'd make an awesome discovery off the beaten trail... and drag a reluctant Monk/Shadow Knight/Rogue with me, away from his usual grind spots, to fear kite animals no one else knew about.

    And the community was just awesome for this game, because it had to be. Bad apples didn't make it above level 20 for the most part... as only a handful of classes could actually progress outside of a full group.

    But here's the problem: Everquest and the whole MMO Genre was a niche back then. In its current format, it didn't appeal to many but the most hardcore players. Didn't EQ have only like a couple of hundred of thousands of players at its peak? A far cry from the 10 Million WoW has .

    It took a game like WoW, which made everything so much easier to do, in order to bring it into the main stream and be enjoyable to the rest of the gaming community.

    We'll always remember games like EQ fondly, but we have to accept we're the minority on that. This day and age, people expect to reach level cap in 6 days and have end game content that will last them until the next expansion. It makes companies try to rush and you get absolute CRAP updates like SWTOR 1.1 that drive people away in droves and that put the whole team back another week just trying to fix the stuff they broke, trying to appease the locusts, as you call them.

    That's the market nowadays. Either MMO companies have to understand that and do it well, or we're all "going back to WoW." The sad refrain that, even more sadly, holds too much weight.

    -Matt

     



     

  • DredphyreDredphyre Member Posts: 601

    Originally posted by aranha

    "that small percentage of players whose goal isn’t to experience content but to consume it as fast as possible as they race inexorably through a game."

    Thats the majority since WoW. We call them casuals for a reason as most never played the older mmorpgs!


     

    No.  Those are decidedly NOT casuals.  A casual player has real life commitments outside of the game and can only play maybe 5 hours of the game a week.  These players don't race anywhere, lol.   But yes, the modern MMO caters to these people, as well they should because it's a huge market.  It's the players with no life who then 'abuse' the casual system, and race to max level.  Those are NOT casual players.

    Learn the difference.

  • JounarJounar Member UncommonPosts: 142

    The problem with SWTOR is not how fast you level through the content its the quality of the content you level through. Apart from the fancy cutscenes in SWTOR everything else about the game is lackluster and feels rushed. The same kill X amount of rats type quests from EQ1 is handled no differently than the kill X amount of sandpeople missions in SWTOR and whats worse the dev team added nothing new to the mix like olders MMO's have done with vechile combat, public quests or true epic level quests.

  • VotanVotan Member UncommonPosts: 291

    Isabelle , I have been poking around this site since 2004 and this is perhaps the best column I have ever read here. Thank You.   

  • KalmarthKalmarth Member Posts: 443

    ADHD killed MMO's it your not max level in a week then its to hard, only thing that kills me is the players that just PVP 24/7 then complain its boring, hell anything you do over and over and over is boring.

  • BossalinieBossalinie Member UncommonPosts: 724

    Soooooooo many people agreeing with the OP...

     

     

     

     

    Yet soooooooooooo many different views of the perfect MMO...

  • UNH0LYEV1LUNH0LYEV1L Member UncommonPosts: 539

    Hands down the best written most true article on this website. Ever. MMORPG's DID used to be about the Journey and now games aren't.  SWTOR made all those planets and once you hit max level there is zero reason to visit them ever again.  

    The problem with games and gamers today is that games that take a long time to do anything are considered grindy but I think its actually because of the horrible job mmo developers do in creating fun content.  it wouldnt be grindy if it was fun and challenging.

  • blythegablythega Member UncommonPosts: 174
    In my day (before fast food, fast travel and disposable everything), it was about the journey, not the destination.

    I blame our current consumer culture that has bred a generation of "are we there yet, are we there?" children with attention spans of nats.

    How about they lift there heads up, unplug the iPod and look out the window on your next train/car trip, you might actually enjoy the scenery.


  • giga1000giga1000 Member Posts: 98

    I think they need to bring back mobs that drop gear they are wearing and to get rid of BoE. In EQ you can get sick gear that is rare droped from named mobs that you will remember for the rest of you MMO life FBSS anyone?. The best part was after you found an upgrade you could still sell or trade that rare item. Every item in game counted for something, but not just dev dumping massive amounts of VT gear that has no use but to trash after you find a fast upgrade. Bring back RAID feel gear that drops off Named mobs and you will fill that void of wanting the best gear in game and the whole raid gear thing gets curved.

    P.S. what happened to normal mobs that gave good exp and felt like a challenge?



     

  • Paradigm68Paradigm68 Member UncommonPosts: 890

    I think of mmo's as world simulators, so if people run out of things to do in a month or two and are bored, its the game's fault for failing to live up to the expectations of the genre.

    If finishing all the quests 'finishes' the mmo, then it wasn't much of an mmo.

    The community and world should provide the bulk of the content. If the game doesn't support that then the game is a failure, imo.

  • GwynbleiddGwynbleidd Member UncommonPosts: 9

    Originally posted by uidCaustic

    Been playing since about 3 days after release.  I have a lvl 28 sniper ( 200 armormech, 190+ gathering skills, lvl 23 valor ) and a lvl 12 marauder ( 300 slicing ).  I enjoy, ENJOYING games instead of the rushing to the end to be "bored" with the other "31337" "n00b hating" "pro-gamerZZz".

    It's a simple idea, play for a few hours when you get home from work, spend time with your girl/boyfriend/wife, cook and enjoy dinner, get some house work done, play for a few more hours... theeeeennnnn goto bed!

    Or rush to the end of the game and blame BioWare for your failed life choices.

    Whichever you prefer.

    I actually like your comment. Although, this won't apply to everyone. But I understand it perfectly. Level progression is not something I would wanna do for 2 months to get to the end game, so I agree with what you said.

    I for one haven't played SWTOR yet, mainly because BioWare decided to block IP addresses of my country (Iran), and lock up Iranian gamers who love MMORPG out of SWTOR. I don't want to bore you with my whining about the issue and say that the people who want to play SWTOR are actually those who pay for a legal copy of it and subscribe to the game using gamecards and stuff, so I skip this part and go to my personal experience with my early days of WoW which happened to be during the TBC era.


    When I joined WoW, all my friends were already at the end game content and mastered their class, while I was experimenting with what I really want to be for a few days. After I decided that I want to be a Hunter (cool story we had mana those days), I felt this rush that I need to level my character fast because I'm too far behind everyone else. I really tried hard for a month and my progression was really slow mainly because I had to work 8 to 10 hours a day and when I got home I was too tired and I couldn't play more than a couple of hours, and back then we didn't have Dungeon Finder feature, if you wanted to do a dungeon you had to get there on foot after you could manage to find yourself a party. That meant no questing, you had to take a break from questing and find a group of people around your level and get in an instance. I was fortunate enough to have my friends boost me every now and then in the dungeons were close to major cities. All in all due to the time consuming process I felt less and less interested in WoW and eventually bid the game farewell until Wrath of the Lich King, which I badly wanted because of the Death Knight class. You see it was all I ever wanted to be, a death knight.


    I think I talk too much, but you get the idea now that why the rush of getting to end game content is important for many people and they have a legitimate claim if they feel unsatisfied with the end-game content of a game they're spending time and money to play.


    But playing style and the time people can spare to play a game can vary. You and I work and we have less time to put in our game. Some people might have less issue with the amount of free time they have and they'd rather spend it on their game. It's not fair to say they made poor life choices because they're not enjoying their game as much as you do.

  • DredphyreDredphyre Member Posts: 601

    LOL at all the 'walked to school barefoot in the snow up hill both ways' crowd here. Yeah, your generation was SO much better..... :rolleyes:

     

    /getoffmylawn

  • ChrisboxChrisbox Member UncommonPosts: 1,729

    This guy obviously had no clue about themeparks, he even said hes a sandbox player.  The reason people rush to endgame now in WoW is because leveling isnt fun after your first max level, its boring and stupid.  I found SWTOR's leveling to be very fun and just hit cap like an hour ago but im hoping that replay value stays with all characters [ which is should because unique storylines and new decisions. Bottom line is- Unless You make leveling stupid fun and add much more content to it then the current gen of themeparks have, there will always be content locusts.

    Played-Everything
    Playing-LoL

  • kakasakikakasaki Member UncommonPosts: 1,205

    @ dredphyre

     

    Yes, our generation was so much better. Thank you for acknowledging it!

     

    A man is his own easiest dupe, for what he wishes to be true he generally believes to be true...

  • BossalinieBossalinie Member UncommonPosts: 724

    Originally posted by kakasaki

    @ dredphyre

     

    Yes, our generation was so much better. Thank you for acknowledging it!

     

    Probably went to the beach because no one was playing Bingo anymore...

  • RohnRohn Member UncommonPosts: 3,730

    Originally posted by Paradigm68

    I think of mmo's as world simulators, so if people run out of things to do in a month or two and are bored, its the game's fault for failing to live up to the expectations of the genre.

    If finishing all the quests 'finishes' the mmo, then it wasn't much of an mmo.

    The community and world should provide the bulk of the content. If the game doesn't support that then the game is a failure, imo.


     

     

    I think this is the problem with most current MMOs - they make no pretense to being a virtual world.

    Seriously, isn't the persistent world, with a persistent community in that world, the most defining feature of an MMO, in contrast to other RPGs?

    Game designers spend millions of dollars to design worlds where hundreds or thousands of players all coexist, and the only thing they can come up with to take advantage of that burgeoning e-society is gear grinds in instances?  When boiled down, that's all that most themepark MMOs provide.

    Regarding the article, I agree that leveling speed, and pacing in general (including the pacing on instance rewards) is too fast.  Still, I think back to the release of Aion, where one of the biggest complaints was that it leveled too slowly.  Go figure.

    Hell hath no fury like an MMORPG player scorned.

  • ValkaernValkaern Member UncommonPosts: 497

    The article sums up my feelings pretty well.

    This game was another perfect example of how creating a scenerio in which my characters feel totally disposable by offering insanely fast levelling speed, very little content and zero challenge leads to me quickly feeling it's also a  disposable game.

    I'm not tied to my level 50 battlemaster. He's of  very little worth to me and I didn't get to spend much time with him before running out of things worth doing.  I hardly even got to play this character before he'd seen all the operations & flashpoints on hard mode (where available) and was dripping in the best gear available.

    Now what? I bit the bullet and tried making an alt, and toughed it out to 36 before I was convinced the game had nothing more to offer me. I was just playing through most of these quests just a week or two ago, that's a bit too soon to swallow them all over again.

    Perhaps if there was the option of a less forced path of progression open world dynamics would suffice as content and encourage me to carry on. But there isn't. The world clearly only exists as a place for them to drop their click 10 jug stories in, not for me to adventure in. Plus you'd be shooting yourself in the foot in terms of crafting and companions if you dared to stray from the story they're forcing on you.

    It's amazing the lengths themeparks go to creating content only for it to pale in comparison to games that had less linear paths and far less content yet managed to keep me coming back for years due to simple open world dynamics, interactions and the fact they were worlds I could have *MY* adventures in. The dynamics inherent in an open world mmo (pre-instanced/no forced path) would be a great thing to see revisited with modern technology.

    This game absolutely proved to me without a doubt that MMOs in which I can have my own experiences that lead to great stories in and of themselves are far better than ones that strictly force you to play through someone elses story; even when that story is provided by the so called kings of rpg story.

    Story as the fourth pillar is clearly not a sustainable form of content for anyone intending to play the game as a long term hobby and also failed to make me feel he was *my* character, to be honest it felt like I was renting him. 

    It's a shame. I wasn't as over the moon about SWG as some of its true and dedicated fans were, and yet I got NINE months out of that one.

    Can we go back to having good MMOs now?

     

  • ValkaernValkaern Member UncommonPosts: 497

    Originally posted by Rohn



    Originally posted by Paradigm68



    I think of mmo's as world simulators, so if people run out of things to do in a month or two and are bored, its the game's fault for failing to live up to the expectations of the genre.

    If finishing all the quests 'finishes' the mmo, then it wasn't much of an mmo.

    The community and world should provide the bulk of the content. If the game doesn't support that then the game is a failure, imo.






     

     

    I think this is the problem with most current MMOs - they make no pretense to being a virtual world.

    Seriously, isn't the persistent world, with a persistent community in that world, the most defining feature of an MMO, in contrast to other RPGs?

    Game designers spend millions of dollars to design worlds where hundreds or thousands of players all coexist, and the only thing they can come up with to take advantage of that burgeoning e-society is gear grinds in instances?  When boiled down, that's all that most themepark MMOs provide.

    Regarding the article, I agree that leveling speed, and pacing in general (including the pacing on instance rewards) is too fast.  Still, I think back to the release of Aion, where one of the biggest complaints was that it leveled too slowly.  Go figure.

    For me the problem with Aion was, yes levelling took a long time, but I was only aware of it because I was spending the entire time walking down a predetermined hallway path of repetative tasks.

    I can say with certainty that if the game world was open and allowed for me to progress outside of their predefined path, by exploring, adventuring, hunting and delving into dungeons, levelling speed wouldn't have been on my mind.

    To be honest I didn't even mind that it was slow, I minded that it was a slow walk down a long tedious hallway. 

  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 5,330

    Originally posted by Dredphyre

    LOL at all the 'walked to school barefoot in the snow up hill both ways' crowd here. Yeah, your generation was SO much better..... :rolleyes:

     

    /getoffmylawn

    You don't know the half of it. We didn't tell you about the wolves because your school psychologist didn't think it was a good idea.

    Once upon a time....

  • Angier2758Angier2758 Member UncommonPosts: 1,026

    Originally posted by Laserwolf

    Skill-Based instead of Level-Based = Problem Solved.





    I played UO near constantly for at least 4-5 years. There was no "end-game" because the game never ended.  How can an MMO released 14 years ago get it so right while every MMO released now does it wrong?










     




     

    You know you don't have to come to this article with an agenda.  Skill based systems are not better or worse; its just a different style.

  • orsonstfuorsonstfu Member Posts: 203

    Originally posted by Angier2758



    Originally posted by Laserwolf



    Skill-Based instead of Level-Based = Problem Solved.













    I played UO near constantly for at least 4-5 years. There was no "end-game" because the game never ended.  How can an MMO released 14 years ago get it so right while every MMO released now does it wrong?






















     










     

    You know you don't have to come to this article with an agenda.  Skill based systems are not better or worse; its just a different style.

    There isn't an agenda there. It's not an agenda simply because you disagree with it or make an inference there.

     

    The truth is that there wasn't an end game to Ultima Online. I defy you to find one. Not to mention you weren't pigeon holed into sticking with a single character you made years ago.

  • Xeno326Xeno326 Member UncommonPosts: 77

    Originally posted by Wodge

    You read my mind.  Devs need to move the emphasis from "endgame" (read: "Raiding") and focus on all the other stuff.  

    I really emphasise with you on the topic of striving for awesome gear.  I couldn't tell you off the top of my head what my Rift or Old Republic characters are wearing, but i know my EQ1 Iksar Beastlord is wearing a Phase Spider Carapace, Lodizal Shell Shield, Waning Light Katar, Trak Bracer and JBoots, and I haven't played in years.  Theres no identity any more, its just a treadmill of incrementally better equipment with forgettable names.




     

    Because EQ had the best item system in place. You could make use of all the gear you collected on all your characters. Except for the no-drop stuff; which I wished were tradeable at that time. (but for reasons on how PVP worked on some of the servers (Rallos Zek anyone?) it made sense to have some no drop gear so players wouldn't lose all their gear when getting killed by other players.)

    items like what you mentioned plus the infamous "Fungi Tunic" were not overpowered, but very useful for leveling up a new character and actually had worth and value because those items were rare and provided beneficial value to the player (health regen, combat procs, beneficial buffs on click, etc), due to the god awful 4hr spawn time with a chance of the named mob spawning or a regular npc spawning in his place made those items that valuable and sought after.

    Not everyone could sit there forever camping the mob for hours on end, people back then respected other players who were camping a mob and waited in line to camp it next when that player left. Sometimes people would attempt to kill steal, but it wasn't worth it if you didn't know when it spawned exactly because you would of had to know when it was last killed exactly. Sometimes because of peoples schedules especially early in the morning the spawn was free for grabs. A lot of the time people logged out around the spawn just to check if the spawn was free.

    Another aspect, trains to zone, when mobs aggro'd you regardless of your level even if it's con level to you was gray actually chased you across the zone until you zoned out. The mobs would then stay there for awhile, confused where you went and would either walk back to their spawn points or attack other nearby players. Those mobs who walked back were still available to get attacked, we had no (Evade, Evade, Evade, Evade) and weird super speed back to their spawn points like we do now.

    Then the player controlled economy was pretty fun before they implemented bazaar's (auction house). People gathered in the commons tunnel posting what they were selling in chat. Was a very social and special environment, players dueling, showing off their characters, little visual trinkets, etc. Really made the experience even for how boring it could have been. Because you had no prices to match up with what others were selling the same item at, it became more of a bargain type of situation, where you could negotiate prices even trade coin + other valuable gear for the item you were wanting. Sometimes because there was no bazaar, people could really work the market by buying low and selling high at different times of the day.

    These are some of the memories I remember from my beginning experiences of MMO'ing mainly with EQ, even though there were some annoying parts and hard grind issues with leveling the overall atmosphere of the game and the life it had socially was very effective in accomplishing that goal.

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