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[Column] General: Questing to Monotony

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  • Trudge34Trudge34 Member UncommonPosts: 392

    This is why I preferred the grinding / questing of pre GoD EQ1 to be honest. Could go off and explore and adventure with a group, come across a weird item that would be for  a quest and that was basically the start of your quest for that if you chose to do. Dungeon crawling was basically a quest in itself that you set your own goals and priorities for.  Could still do the "daillies" type quests like the CB belts, bandit sashes etc or could take on a bigger quest for a better piece of equipment.

    Felt much more natural and free than the on rails post WoW games. Think it allows for a lot more freedom for other systems as well that feel natural and a part of the world if the game isn't centered around the typical task hub from beginning to end system to be honest.

    Played: EQ1 (10 Years), Guild Wars, Rift, TERA
    Tried: EQ2, Vanguard, Lord of the Rings Online, Dungeons and Dragons Online, Runes of Magic and countless others...
    Currently Playing: GW2

    Nytlok Sylas
    80 Sylvari Ranger

  • hfamgamerhfamgamer Member UncommonPosts: 64

    This has reminded me of my Ascheron's call days. There were a few quests but they were never marked by an ! hovering over the NPC's head. You had to talk to the town cryer (multiple times in some cases) to find out who needed help, track down that NPC and carefully read through the chat text. Once you gathered the clues on where to go and who to kill to collect the shiny (often taking days and much begging for help in Allegiance chat) you would enter the dungeon to find 40 other players waiting in line to kill the boss.

    The community was nice and would usually help each other out and organize the "who's next" list so no kill stealing ensued. and after every thing was said and done you were left thinking "YES I DID IT....now who the !@#$! do I turn this into again????"

  • movros99movros99 Member UncommonPosts: 125
    I approve of this article.  I refuse to do one more leveling quest.
  • daltaniousdaltanious Member UncommonPosts: 2,381

    So far NOTHING comes even close to good old questing Wow, Swtor, ... style. As much as I loved Gw2 and played close to half year in one shot (very long by my standard) I find that hearts and so called dynamic random events or whatever incredibly boring and not comparable.

     

    I love to try any new game out there as long as have 3rd person view, can move avatars with both mouse buttons (wasd bye bye for ever), have good and fun questing, good combat, nice spells that works best when combined, does not limit me to 1 toolbar (sorry, WS, as it looks I'm leaving after 1 month of sub, same happened to TSW for this sole reason), .... But at the end as long as there are Wow and Swtor to alternate playing I actually does not really need anything else.

  • JorendoJorendo Member UncommonPosts: 275

    I think the problem isn't much of a MMO problem but something that is a general issue with games over the last 8 years.

     

    With the wii, PS3 and Xbox 360 we saw a huge increase in gamers. No longer was it a "nerd" thing to do. It was cool to have a PS3 and Xbox 360 and many people who didn't game before bought a Wii. The casual gamer was suddenly outnumbering the core gamer.

     

    On the PS3 and Xbox 360 we saw another type of gamer growing like mad, the mainstream gamer. The mainstream gamer played different games then the casual gamer, but they didn't really matched the know how the core gamer had. The mainstream gamer became the biggest group of gamer out there. And sadly for us all this meant that publishers looked at us all and said "Thanks for all the money you invested in us, thanks for all those years you where there to keep us alive, but now we can get big money so euhm....screw you alright?" and spit on our face. They found out that if you made games more easy that the mainstream gamer was gonna buy it.

    How did you make games more easy? Remove the parts where the gamer has to think of course, use giant arrows to point the way, design levels so the player never can get lost, keep the AI dumb, make boss battles look awesome but use quicktime events so the battle looks epic but as player it doesn't take you much effort to kill a boss, etc.

     

    The mainstream gamer also had this nasty habit to go play the popular games. WoW was known for being are more user friendly MMORPG when it came out. But even so it still required you to read the quests to find out where you had to go. You still had to look for your objectives. Sure it gave you a direction where too look but only in text. There where no arrows helping you out, no marked zone on the map. In fact you could only see what was on the map once you explored it.

    WoW might attracted the less core MMORPG gamer, but it where still core gamers who played it when it was vanilla. As said it was about 8 years ago that it changed and that also counts for WoW. The game required effort, raids where hard, you couldn't solo every part, you could pick your own skills and distribute you points in a skill tree, etc. And then the Burning Crusade came out and Activision was bought by vivendi and for some reason Activision was in control over Blizzard. Activision was a mainstream pleaser and boom WoW from that point on was on the path to become "let me play you". More and more aid was inserted into the game. The more help they build into the game the more boring it became. No longer was reading quests required cause you could just follow the arrow or look at the map that would tell you where to go, even if you hadn't explored that part of the map yet.

     

    I don't think the fetch quests are boring persé. I mean you use GW2 as a example how questing can be great but i found them rather boring too. You where still killing x of that or collect so many of those. The difference was you could choose a little what to do, often two or three things would make you able to complete the quest and you no longer had to go to a NPC to pick the quest up and deliver the quest too. Other then that i was still doing the same things.

    Even singleplayer rpg's do the same thing. The difference however is that singleplayer RPG's make it part of a story. And that is what WoW used to do, what SWToR does.

     

    WoW made me read the quests so i knew where to go. This way i also got a little story and it felt more like it had a purpose i was going to kill 10 pigs. Yeah SWToR also points me the way where to go for my quest, but thanks to the spoken quests i get involved into the quest, even the small ones cause i hear the story again.

    Yeah Wildstar does it as well, but after two months of playing it hasn't grabbed me yet.

     

    They need to make questing more fun again by making it meaningful. Remove all those assists, i don't want a giant arrow or a marked zone on my map. Let me find out again by listening to the quest giver and have to read it again to find out where it is exactly i have to go to. I miss the day's of WoW where i would go to thotbot to figure out where my target exactly was if i was stuck. I miss buying the atlas for WoW so i had the maps in nice detail and able to find out where the quests where. Yeah it was a sort of assist, but more immersive and i only used it if i couldn't find it myself anymore. It also required some effort still unlike just pressing m and seeing where to go.

    Games need to stop holding our hands, we are not mainstream gamers. Mainstream gamers can't ever become core gamers if they don't get any challenge either...if they don't like a challenge then that's fine but they should go play another title then instead of our core games being simplefied so the mainstream gamer can play it.....they are betraying core gamers time after time and not carring one bit that is thanks to the core gamer that their companies even still excist as we kept buying their games in a time gaming was something to be ashamed about cause people would think you where a social outcast. A lot more then today.

  • SemielSemiel Member UncommonPosts: 94


    Originally posted by syriinx
    Originally posted by zzax What is wrong with MMOs is not questing, its levels. Leveling is core element of singleplayer games that simply wont work in MMOs no matter what.   Remove levels = questing sorted out by itself.        
    You are 100% wrong.

    Levelling is a great mechanic (though it doesn't need to be the only mechanic)

    It worked great in EQ, WoW, and many other games.

    You know what other game it worked in?  SWG.  Yes, SWG had leveling.  You still had to get exp to grow stronger. 
     


    He is not completely wrong, remove levels and introduce skills. Your character can pickup x number of skills and if you want to improve that skill, you use it. In this system everything is a skill, crafting, swimming, combat etc. Pretty simple really.

  • FingzFingz Member UncommonPosts: 139

    Games with questing and leveling: Rift, Wildstar and Lord of the Rings Online.

    Games without questing and leveling: Second LIfe, Minecraft.

    As a player, I don't mind which system a dev uses, but I do want my character to progress and become more powerful over time. And a lot of people don't consider Minecraft or Second Life MMOs for some reason.

    It all boils down to: give me a fun game I can have fun in.

     

  • sketocafesketocafe Member UncommonPosts: 950

    Ugh. GW2 questing is quests for people who always click through quest dialog. Main story was okay, but hearts were just a list of chores with no context behind them.

     

  • ShaighShaigh Member EpicPosts: 2,129

    The problems aren't really quests, and the solution aren't really dynamic events.

     

    The actual problem and solution lies in how B.Murphy describes certain activities, interesting, engaging, heroic, thought provoking, exciting, and that it involved perilous tasks for great reward and glory. Compare this to monotony, yet another task, busy-work, species-killing errand boy, copy/paste.

     

    You can have tasks but you also need engaging quests, you can have changing world, but its more important to change what players do, and within all monotony you need nuggets of heroism, glory and great reward.

    Iselin: And the next person who says "but it's a business, they need to make money" can just go fuck yourself.
  • Cramit845Cramit845 Member UncommonPosts: 395

    First, I was not impressed with GW2 at all.  Now this could be that it's just not a game for me but I find it very bland.  The pvp and pve, and this coming from a EQ and DAoC vet.  In any case, I keep it installed to keep my 8yro busy, he enjoys it.

     

    Dynamic content I think is really the way to combat this.  I have been having a blast in the bug ridden game Firefall with their dynamic content.  There isn't enough of it, especially compared to how it was in 2012, but they are the best missions and provide the most fun for lvling that I have found in that game.  Partly why most of the community is screaming for them to increase the spawn rates of this content.

     

    If other games can continue to look at how to make questing more of a system that s automatic rather then manual I think it will help push the genre into that mind set.  Some games are ahead of others in this aspect, but I think this is the cure.  However I do think there is a balance to be had, have the automatic quests that pop up depending on where you are in the world and then have a couple truly EPIC quests that you get and find from NPC's.  I like that system.

  • jbombardjbombard Member UncommonPosts: 597

    You can't really compare single player RPGs to MMORPGs.  It is much harder to have a compelling world and story in an MMORPG due to the fact you and millions of other players are either all "the one", or you are all just bystanders to the story.   Permanent changes to the world are very hard to do, and when you have millions of players you can't have everyone being able to  affect the world at the same time.  So it is usually thrown together with things like phasing or instancing, that reset on a timer anyway.   It is hard to feel you live in a realistic world when the mob you just killed nearly instantly respawns in the same place.  Not to mention the fact that no matter how awesome you manage to make the story, idiotic players are always guaranteed to break your immersion.

     

    There are ways to make an MMORPG fun, but comparing them to single player RPGs is senseless,.

  • FourplayFourplay Member UncommonPosts: 216
    Originally posted by jbombard

    You can't really compare single player RPGs to MMORPGs.  It is much harder to have a compelling world and story in an MMORPG due to the fact you and millions of other players are either all "the one", or you are all just bystanders to the story.   Permanent changes to the world are very hard to do, and when you have millions of players you can't have everyone being able to  affect the world at the same time.  So it is usually thrown together with things like phasing or instancing, that reset on a timer anyway.   It is hard to feel you live in a realistic world when the mob you just killed nearly instantly respawns in the same place.  Not to mention the fact that no matter how awesome you manage to make the story, idiotic players are always guaranteed to break your immersion.

     

    There are ways to make an MMORPG fun, but comparing them to single player RPGs is senseless,.

    Actually it should be easier to have a compelling world and story in an mmorpg due to the millions of other players and constantly updated world. Developers and players make this more difficult than it has to be. It should work just like real life. Things happen all over the world. Some of it affects you greatly, some affects you indirectly, and some doesn't affect you at all. You can either progress in your bubble or contribute to the greater whole. Change is permanent unless we change things. If the statue of liberty gets destroyed, it is never coming back unless it is rebuilt.

     

    The problem is developers are having to conform to progression and making sure everyone gets to be an effect in everything.

     

    What happens if everything gets confined into a bubble of conformity, safety, accessibility? 

    1.Predictability, because nothing can break the laws of safety.

    2.Repetitiveness, because nothing can break the laws of conformity.

    3.Boredom, because nothing can break the laws of accessibility.

     

    We as humans can be destructive or harmonious by nature, but usually not one or the other at all times. So when we play games that adhere to some bubble. A shackle is set by developers and us and the chains must be loosened for things to change.

     

    "Let my people go"

  • tharkthark Member UncommonPosts: 1,188
    I see a solution to the endless questing in games like Wizard 101 and pirates 101 heck even toontown, yes they have quest hubs and levels but they have ALOT of small games and other activivities . All these small activivities breaks the boredom and lets you do something else, but most importantly it keeps you in game...
  • AldersAlders Member RarePosts: 2,207

    I'd personally take GW2 leveling over WoW leveling any day.

    I just don't care about quests.  I don't read them and they slow me down.

    I'd much rather go exploring and run into things to do.

  • tharkthark Member UncommonPosts: 1,188
    I see a solution to the endless questing in games like Wizard 101 and pirates 101 heck even toontown, yes they have quest hubs and levels but they have ALOT of small games and other activivities . All these small activivities breaks the boredom and lets you do something else, but most importantly it keeps you in game...
  • acidbloodacidblood Member RarePosts: 878

    Quests don't need to be gotten ride of completely, but the style of them needs to change. WildStar is a recent (and really good) example of how to do quests badly.. that is: fill a hub with 10-15 mostly meaningless milk runs that are by far the best way to get XP, gear, rep, etc. It makes the world feel small and the player unimportant, despite (and completely to the contrary) of repeated insistence that thier actions are heroic and s*** is getting 'real'.

     

    FFXIV is a good middle ground IMO, by having a repeatable quest system in the form of leves (and fates) it made (and meant) that 'normal' quests could be fewer in number and (mostly) a bit more meaningful as a result. Quests are still a good way to get stuff, instances / fates are better, and even just farming was OK. It made it fell like less of a grind having meaningful choices about what to do.

     

    As mentioned in the article the best quests are the ones that stand out, and I think that's the key; keep quests 'special'. Make them tell a story, not* the players story, but someone else's which the player can be (and feel) a part of. Also provide other, less scripted, activities to 'fill the gaps', whether it be dynamic events, job boards, well design dungeons, challenges, or preferably all of them and more (but do them well or not at all).

     

    *I say not the players story because nothing makes me fell less heroic than being told I'm 'the one' in a crowd of other 'ones'. Let me write my own story through my own actions,  interactions and discoveries.

     
  • Stuka1000Stuka1000 Member UncommonPosts: 955

    If quests are going to be a part of the game then they need to mean something.  The characters that we play in MMO's or any other RPG are the worlds elite.  The special few that can do things that the normal mortals find impossible.  They are certainly not the kind of people that would go out after a dozen rat tails in order to get themselves a new pair of boots as a reward. 

     

    By the same measure, if someone has a problem that is so serious that they need to hire one of these elite ( and expensive ) people then it should be reflected as such.  Someone that has a fetish for rat tails could hire a couple of full time employees for less than what one of these elite guys cost and have rat tails by the hundred.  Someone who has had their only child kidnapped however has a problem that means so much that they would be willing to part with the family jewels to get a happy resolution.  This is also a quest that should take days or even a few weeks to resolve with many steps along the way, mostly tracking down the said bad guys and finding out what they have done with the kid.  It could end there or go on for longer if the child has for instance been sold into slavery etc.

     

    That kind of quest is something that would engage the player and immerse them into the world in a way that your average ten minute kill or fedex quest could never do.

     

    Mix the above with a sandbox that also offered the tools to advance in different ways and you would have a game worth playing, if it was done right.  My CH/BE in SWG would decide sometimes to go out and gather genetic samples from some rare species.  On other occasions he would create some vanity pets to order or just create some to sell down at the spaceport.  On another day he might go out exploring or join up with a group to help them get krayt dragon pearls.  That kind of freedom to decide a course of action on a whim has been lost in the constant search for a bite of WoW pie, and most devs have not realised yet that the pie is now more green mold than wholesome filling.

     
  • UlorikUlorik Member UncommonPosts: 179
    Integration of quests in a larger storyline are critical. No one does that better then LotRo, where questing is a joy.
  • PioneerStewPioneerStew Member Posts: 874

    I would argue that the quests in GW2 are tedious because they are meaningless.  I never feel any story arc or sense of an over-riding reason to do what I am doing.  I turn up in some oddly rectangular zone and get a message to kill x of y for no apparent reason, then I climb to the top of a hill and look at a view.  Then i jump to another zone via the ubiquitous fast travel and get told to gather x of y.  

    Why am I doing this?  Why should I care?  In GW1 there was a sense of advancement; there was an over-riding story arc.  In GW2 there is just trivial crap flashing on your screen without rhyme or reason.  I dislike almost everything about GW2 questing.  

    And what I dislike most is the level scaling... Why bother having levels if you then render them entirely meaningless by arbitrarily altering them to suit the zone.  Why?  In GW1 you could hit cap in two hours (once Factions was released) but it did not matter because the game was fun so you kept playing.  In GW2 you have a level cap three times higher and to get there is hard work because the game is fundamentally dull.   

  • AtrayoAtrayo Member UncommonPosts: 64

    A breathable MMO that plays itself independent if a gamer / player is present or not. Following the over arching events pushed forward by the meta progress of players throughout the game universe.

    Superb AI with npcs and dynamic events is just one aspect. Explorable regions where not every mob is a combat encounter of fisty cuffs. Perhaps something closer to the former diplomacy system now gone from Vanguard: Saga of Heroes. Where optional dialogue trees replace the generic slaying of mobs out right. Factional tensions that aren't tied to the rails of a fixed storyline, but shift because of the meta actions of the player population.

    Vibrant content creation performed by the players supported by the developers in a game world. Etc....

    ----------------------
    The Older Gamers

  • shawn01shawn01 Member UncommonPosts: 166

    The problem with questing is that it is a solo activity. Even when you try to group with others to do quests you are really still just soloing in a grp.

     

    MMO's should be about community and working together with other people.

     

     

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