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[Column] General: Is Instancing Bad for MMOs?

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  • FacelessSaviorFacelessSavior Member UncommonPosts: 188
    Couldn't have said it better Dullahan.
  • Morgenes83Morgenes83 Member UncommonPosts: 176

    No Instances are always better, period. 

    (Assuming that it actually works, e.g. no loading times/lag during chunk switches)

    1997 Meridian 59 'til 2019 ESO 

    Waiting for Camelot Unchained & Pantheon

  • KanethKaneth Member RarePosts: 2,284
    Originally posted by Iselin
    Originally posted by gasperk

    I cant stand instancing, I hate it so much. There is no place for that in MMORPG's :!!!!!!!

    Thats why WoW is still played and loved so much, its the only MMORPG with a real WORLD.

    They might suck at everything else but they created the best worlds in this genre.

    What's the population limit of a WOW server instance? They seem to have a whole shitpile of those.

     

    Within the server itself, aren't phased areas where you only see the people fighting through your own "before" phase instance and then see a whole different set of people after you finish, instances? Are dungeons and raids and PVP scenarios not instanced?

     

    There hasn't been an MMO with zero instances in a long, long time. Even DAoC had one very large instance inside theiir server instance: Darkness Falls.

    Darkness Falls certainly wasn't an instance is the traditional sense though. Yes you had to load into it, but access was only granted to the realm that held the most keeps in RvR. You could log out there and stay in even when your realm didn't have access, and you had access to kill players of the other realms as well. Instanced from the rest of the world sure, but nothing like a dungeon or raid instance.

    WoW's phased areas are pretty limited to specific areas within the server and are used to deliver story related content (before and after scenarios basically). They were used to get rid of complaints about story not having a direct impact upon the world itself, which it didn't for the longest time. At least with phasing, you enter in a before state and upon completion you then access the after state which is what exists in the "real world" for the majority of characters. Being locked away from other players in those phases is limited specifically to whatever state your character is locked into (before or after states) vs. everyone else immediately around you. There are a few downsides to phasing, but as a story delivering content goes, it works well.

    Instancing is a necessary evil in many regards. I remember playing Asheron's Call and having to wait in a virtual line for hours to have my "turn" at fighting a specific mob at the end of a dungeon in order to get the loot from it. In many regards the projected difficulty of those dungeons was negated by the sheer number of players within the area, so someone of a low level could get in there and get bridged with a higher level and get in on xp share groups for some pretty quick powerleveling. Which has both it's ups and downs. However, in order to deliver good scripted encounters with a certain level of difficulty, instancing is the tool that's needed to deliver that properly.

    As technology grows this will all change of course.

  • observerobserver Member RarePosts: 3,685
    Originally posted by Dullahan

    First and foremost, the genre is called MMORPG, with the MM standing for Massively Multiplayer.  The principle behind instancing is antithetical to massively multiplayer gameplay.  You are literally removing the massively multiplayer element for the sake of convenience.

    Instancing breaks down the immersive qualities of a virtual world.  I know convenience and accessibility are all the rage today, but its come at a very steep price for me, one which I've seldom been willing to pay.  That price has been the elements of realism which make a virtual fantasy world believable.  You have to wait for good things in life, so removing that principle from a virtual world will inevitably leave your accomplishments feeling hollow.

    Instancing removes opportunities for socialization and variation in static content.  Mechanics like instancing are the antithesis of emergent or dynamic gameplay.

    Instancing removes the competitive aspect from content and progression.

    Instancing hurts the economy by introducing an unlimited number of items and/or cash into the world.  With an open world, the number of items that exist on any given server is limited by the number of players and the time it takes for both contested mobs to respawn, and by the amount of time and effort necessary to acquire said items.  Those same constraints don't exist in instanced, cross server, globalized economy, lobby game mmos, so of course its necessary to add artificial restrictions for the sake of balance.  Designers then must go through the trouble of balancing this influx by creating further unrealistic classifications for items like bind on equip and bind on pick up to prevent mudflation.  If thats not enough, they then have to counter the gold generated by said uncontested items with other money sinks.

    Instancing and convenience in general trivializes progression and creates a greater burden for developers to produce new content.

    I think this covers at least the basic reasons why I believe instances have no place in an MMORPG.

     Are you talking about instanced dungeons/raids/pvp?

    This article is mostly talking about the typical adventuring, themepark open-world.

    Skyforge is basically like GW1.  There are hubs, then you go out in the world solo or with a group.  If you're against this, then i agree with you.  I can't agree with you about instanced dungeons/raids/pvp though.

  • AlomarAlomar Member RarePosts: 1,223

    I no longer participate in instanced pvp. Of course there are those who say open world pvp is all about gankers or organized guilds destroying "pugs". Yet, as a hardcore pvper I want the most realistic type of pvp, that isn't some linear instanced engagement with equal numbers. I've fought and won against 3-5+ to 1 odds and won in open world pvp mmo's, that is where the real challenge and thrill is at imo.

     

    Games that go even further and include pvp in pve zones, more than just designated open world pvp areas, are even more exhilarating. I've never enjoyed pve'ing as much as when I am on my toes at all times just waiting to get attacked by another player.

    Fortes Fortuna Iuvat

    18 year MMO veteran 
    Retired PvP Raid Leader 
    Lover of The Witcher & CD Projekt Red

  • bamwallabamwalla Member UncommonPosts: 203

    I realize this is a point / counterpoint article but why does it have to be yes or no?

     

     There is a case for instance and a case for not.   Let's go a little farther back than GW2 shall we?  The game of Asherons Call.  A huge seamless world.  It started all dandy for sure, with hilarious naked level 1 runs across the baddest of the bad areas.  You could take a level whatever toon  to where ever and get in way over your head, real quick like.  But that was part of the fun.  Then the a-holes showed up.  AC was/is full of quests that take hours to complete.  Steps to reach other steps.  Well peeps soon figured they could just wait at the end and quest-jump.  Being a non-open pvp game all you could do is show up late to your own quest that you spent all night completing.  It was beyond aggravating.   All part of the game you say?  How many real-life friends have you kept that consistently and blatantly steal from you?  It's not fun and it's not someone you want to be around.

     

    The key, as it is with all things, is balance. 

     

    Perhaps player story or quests that are important to the progress of your particular character can be instanced, where the world does not?  Maybe key quest dungeons can be instanced but classic xp/loot dungeons are not?    Is the city instanced as to avoid frame rate drops or completely un-instanced to cause a few stutters but feel crowded and alive?  Do you like to go to a restaurant that's pretty much empty or would you rather walk into a mad-house packed with people but there's a wait to be seated?  Pepsi or Coke?  Do you wipe front to back or back to front?  Really the choice is yours, there's plenty of different answers and plenty of different games.

  • danwest58danwest58 Member RarePosts: 2,011
    This is a BS discussion.  Instances are not bad for MMOs.  People who say o its bad for MMOs never spent hours trying to find a spot to farm.  In UO there was 1 Shadow Wyrm room, me and a few friends controlled it for hours on end and kept other players from farming this room.  Problem is in todays MMO world where we have millions of players not just 1 or 2 million you cannot have open world content like this.  You need to instance the content and make people do it as a group.  If ever the MMOs go back to the days of UO with open world dungeons were people have to compete for Monsters I am done.  I know how many hours I kept people from being able to do stuff and I also been kept from doing stuff.  Instances resolved this issue.  Talking how its bad is BS better discussion is talk about how developers made AOE farm instances so dam easy vs having instances that required about 45 minutes to an hour to complete and group coordination.  When you talk about that let me know thats a real issue.  
  • IselinIselin Member LegendaryPosts: 14,025
    Originally posted by Kaneth
    Originally posted by Iselin
    Originally posted by gasperk

    I cant stand instancing, I hate it so much. There is no place for that in MMORPG's :!!!!!!!

    Thats why WoW is still played and loved so much, its the only MMORPG with a real WORLD.

    They might suck at everything else but they created the best worlds in this genre.

    What's the population limit of a WOW server instance? They seem to have a whole shitpile of those.

     

    Within the server itself, aren't phased areas where you only see the people fighting through your own "before" phase instance and then see a whole different set of people after you finish, instances? Are dungeons and raids and PVP scenarios not instanced?

     

    There hasn't been an MMO with zero instances in a long, long time. Even DAoC had one very large instance inside theiir server instance: Darkness Falls.

    Darkness Falls certainly wasn't an instance is the traditional sense though. Yes you had to load into it, but access was only granted to the realm that held the most keeps in RvR. You could log out there and stay in even when your realm didn't have access, and you had access to kill players of the other realms as well. Instanced from the rest of the world sure, but nothing like a dungeon or raid instance.

    WoW's phased areas are pretty limited to specific areas within the server and are used to deliver story related content (before and after scenarios basically). They were used to get rid of complaints about story not having a direct impact upon the world itself, which it didn't for the longest time. At least with phasing, you enter in a before state and upon completion you then access the after state which is what exists in the "real world" for the majority of characters. Being locked away from other players in those phases is limited specifically to whatever state your character is locked into (before or after states) vs. everyone else immediately around you. There are a few downsides to phasing, but as a story delivering content goes, it works well.

    Instancing is a necessary evil in many regards. I remember playing Asheron's Call and having to wait in a virtual line for hours to have my "turn" at fighting a specific mob at the end of a dungeon in order to get the loot from it. In many regards the projected difficulty of those dungeons was negated by the sheer number of players within the area, so someone of a low level could get in there and get bridged with a higher level and get in on xp share groups for some pretty quick powerleveling. Which has both it's ups and downs. However, in order to deliver good scripted encounters with a certain level of difficulty, instancing is the tool that's needed to deliver that properly.

    As technology grows this will all change of course.

    I'm an old Asheron's Call player too. I also remember waiting in a virtual line to loot a chest back in the early days when some chests were known to spawn outrageously good gear. It was actually also a good example of the player base then vs. now in how well that worked and how few ninja loot incidents there were. We were a remarkably polite bunch :)

     

    But even AC had it's very own unique way of addressing overloaded areas with those wacky "portal storms" that randomly teleported a number of players away from the area that had become a problem.

     

    And anyone who played DAoC RVR surely also remembers the large fights where performance deteriorated to 1 frame every 5 seconds.

     

    There is always a trade-off and even though we all have faster internet and more capable PCs, the poly counts of the world and characters has also increased tremendously so that load balancing schemes still need to be used. It's actually an underappreciated technological wonder that ESO AvA with several hundred people in the same general area around a keep works as well as it does.

     

    In a perfect world there would be no instancing or phasing or servers -- sure, that'd be great and more immersive. But we ain't running quantum computers linked with unlimited bandwidth.

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

    "... the "influencers" which is the tech name we call sell outs now..."
    __ Wizardry, 2020
  • vadio123vadio123 Member UncommonPosts: 593

    I against phase

     

    But i agree if you netcode cant support many people 

    If dev in this days dont consider netcode important , project trend failed 

     

    Server and Client need be good enough to handle many connections and actions or dont can call mmorpg 

  • ArglebargleArglebargle Member RarePosts: 2,743

    In a perfect world, everything works perfectly.  

     

    Instances solve certain problems and create some of their own.   There is always a trade off.

    If you are holding out for the perfect game, the only game you play will be the waiting one.

  • DullahanDullahan Member EpicPosts: 4,527
    Originally posted by danwest58
    This is a BS discussion.  Instances are not bad for MMOs.  People who say o its bad for MMOs never spent hours trying to find a spot to farm.  In UO there was 1 Shadow Wyrm room, me and a few friends controlled it for hours on end and kept other players from farming this room.  Problem is in todays MMO world where we have millions of players not just 1 or 2 million you cannot have open world content like this.  You need to instance the content and make people do it as a group.  If ever the MMOs go back to the days of UO with open world dungeons were people have to compete for Monsters I am done.  I know how many hours I kept people from being able to do stuff and I also been kept from doing stuff.  Instances resolved this issue.  Talking how its bad is BS better discussion is talk about how developers made AOE farm instances so dam easy vs having instances that required about 45 minutes to an hour to complete and group coordination.  When you talk about that let me know thats a real issue.  

    Generally I agree with you, but I adamantly disagree on this.

    The fact that there are million of more players is irrelevant.  Millions of players means dozens if not hundreds of servers.  Contested content was part of virtual worlds.  If there was only 1 shadow wyrm room, perhaps there should be more, but instancing it and removing the contested aspect is not a solution.

    In an mmorpg, developers have the option of increasing content, spreading out content, or creating more servers.  Those are all better solutions than instancing.


  • KabonKabon Member UncommonPosts: 76
    i Believe creating a Mmorpg with a World that doesnt have any instances is possible ..and i believe it would be the game i would like to play most. Its all about size diversity and max population. surely it wont support 1 million players but it doesnt have to.....since 5000online at once on a server is huge enough to be called mmorpg to me and that should be more then possible. All you need to do is create enough Spots that are interesting for alot of lvl ranges so ppls can spread out / want to spread out. Not just one best spot. Everything should have its drawbacks or good points. Different servers are kind of ok to me they dont count as an instance as long as you cant switch between them easily theyre ecosystems / own parralell worlds. But instancing feels like cheating to me. And ppls that have cheated in games might know you loose your interest quickly once you cheated and got it all.
  • IselinIselin Member LegendaryPosts: 14,025
    Originally posted by Dullahan
    Originally posted by danwest58
    This is a BS discussion.  Instances are not bad for MMOs.  People who say o its bad for MMOs never spent hours trying to find a spot to farm.  In UO there was 1 Shadow Wyrm room, me and a few friends controlled it for hours on end and kept other players from farming this room.  Problem is in todays MMO world where we have millions of players not just 1 or 2 million you cannot have open world content like this.  You need to instance the content and make people do it as a group.  If ever the MMOs go back to the days of UO with open world dungeons were people have to compete for Monsters I am done.  I know how many hours I kept people from being able to do stuff and I also been kept from doing stuff.  Instances resolved this issue.  Talking how its bad is BS better discussion is talk about how developers made AOE farm instances so dam easy vs having instances that required about 45 minutes to an hour to complete and group coordination.  When you talk about that let me know thats a real issue.  

    Generally I agree with you, but I adamantly disagree on this.

    The fact that there are million of more players is irrelevant.  Millions of players means dozens if not hundreds of servers.  Contested content was part of virtual worlds.  If there was only 1 shadow wyrm room, perhaps there should be more, but instancing it and removing the contested aspect is not a solution.

    In an mmorpg, developers have the option of increasing content, spreading out content, or creating more servers.  Those are all better solutions than instancing.

    I find it funny that players consider the grandaddy of all instancing schemes, servers, to not be instancing. All you have to do is look at MMOs with megaserver tech like TSW and ESO to understand that logical fallacy. ESO is considered to be heavily instanced because it creates versions of areas, i.e. obvious instances, on the fly as needed and then dissolves them when not needed.

     

    A traditional server based MMO creates those instances and they're permanent. Or permanentish since all of them except maybe WOW end up merging those sooner or later when the population gets too low.

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

    "... the "influencers" which is the tech name we call sell outs now..."
    __ Wizardry, 2020
  • DullahanDullahan Member EpicPosts: 4,527
    Originally posted by Iselin
    Originally posted by Dullahan
    Originally posted by danwest58
    This is a BS discussion.  Instances are not bad for MMOs.  People who say o its bad for MMOs never spent hours trying to find a spot to farm.  In UO there was 1 Shadow Wyrm room, me and a few friends controlled it for hours on end and kept other players from farming this room.  Problem is in todays MMO world where we have millions of players not just 1 or 2 million you cannot have open world content like this.  You need to instance the content and make people do it as a group.  If ever the MMOs go back to the days of UO with open world dungeons were people have to compete for Monsters I am done.  I know how many hours I kept people from being able to do stuff and I also been kept from doing stuff.  Instances resolved this issue.  Talking how its bad is BS better discussion is talk about how developers made AOE farm instances so dam easy vs having instances that required about 45 minutes to an hour to complete and group coordination.  When you talk about that let me know thats a real issue.  

    Generally I agree with you, but I adamantly disagree on this.

    The fact that there are million of more players is irrelevant.  Millions of players means dozens if not hundreds of servers.  Contested content was part of virtual worlds.  If there was only 1 shadow wyrm room, perhaps there should be more, but instancing it and removing the contested aspect is not a solution.

    In an mmorpg, developers have the option of increasing content, spreading out content, or creating more servers.  Those are all better solutions than instancing.

    I find it funny that players consider the grandaddy of all instancing schemes, servers, to not be instancing. All you have to do is look at MMOs with megaserver tech like TSW and ESO to understand that logical fallacy. ESO is considered to be heavily instanced because it creates versions of areas, i.e. obvious instances, on the fly as needed and then dissolves them when not needed.

     

    A traditional server based MMO creates those instances and they're permanent. Or permanentish since all of them except maybe WOW end up merging those sooner or later when the population gets too low.

    Except creating different servers does not completely remove the contested nature of content.  Thats sort of huge, and by sort of, it basically nullifies the analogy.


  • IselinIselin Member LegendaryPosts: 14,025
    Originally posted by Dullahan
     

    Except creating different servers does not completely remove the contested nature of content.  Thats sort of huge, and by sort of, it basically nullifies the analogy.

    What is this "contested nature of content" you speak of? Resource farming? Boss mob tagging? Quest rat farming? Important stuff like that? image

     

     

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

    "... the "influencers" which is the tech name we call sell outs now..."
    __ Wizardry, 2020
  • observerobserver Member RarePosts: 3,685
    Originally posted by Mithrundir

    I no longer participate in instanced pvp. Of course there are those who say open world pvp is all about gankers or organized guilds destroying "pugs". Yet, as a hardcore pvper I want the most realistic type of pvp, that isn't some linear instanced engagement with equal numbers. I've fought and won against 3-5+ to 1 odds and won in open world pvp mmo's, that is where the real challenge and thrill is at imo.

     

    Games that go even further and include pvp in pve zones, more than just designated open world pvp areas, are even more exhilarating. I've never enjoyed pve'ing as much as when I am on my toes at all times just waiting to get attacked by another player.

    More realistic?  Ancient gladiator arenas were a controlled environment.  Random noobs weren't allowed to join from the stands.  Conventional warfare, where units and formations are strategic, don't allow random people to join their squads in a military campaign.  If anything, randomized open-world pvp is unrealistic.

    I get your point though.  You want an uncontrolled environment with arbitrary numbers, where spontaneous action happens.  Sounds good in theory, but it usually doesn't work out in practice.  There will always be unorganized hordes of people making pvp erratic and unorganized.

  • WarlyxWarlyx Member RarePosts: 2,995

    what? ppl dont remember how was before instancing

    exp camps : GL finding any

    boss : overcamped , lvl 1 alts in everycamp , nowadays ? teleport hacks to boss and claim fights, dont forget MPK ect.

    PVP ppl still has a point , but gankers and cheaters will control pvp , or huge guilds can kill any fun in pvp...

    a RvRvR can work (Daoc , Gw2 , and TESO) but open world pvp like L2 uhmmm is a risk to create a mmorpg like that today.

     

     

  • kjempffkjempff Member RarePosts: 1,654

    Instancing as a method does not ruin anything or make games less immersive for me. HOWEVER, themepark with linear gameplay and story telling which often use instancing does. This does not mean instancing or even phasing as a method is the problem, it has just become the evul to beat on because people mistakenly puts a equal between themeparking/linear gameplay and instancing.

    Ofcourse if the majority of a game is instanced without offering other ways of making players interact with eachother and feel in a world, then instancing becomes one of the problems. For example there is really no good reason why raid areas should not be instanced, but there is reason why instances which are by definition pretty linear, should not be the dominating form of adventuring, not because they are instances but because linear gameplay kills freedom, and therefore personal experiences and immersion.

     

  • observerobserver Member RarePosts: 3,685
    Originally posted by Iselin
    Originally posted by Dullahan
    Originally posted by danwest58
    This is a BS discussion.  Instances are not bad for MMOs.  People who say o its bad for MMOs never spent hours trying to find a spot to farm.  In UO there was 1 Shadow Wyrm room, me and a few friends controlled it for hours on end and kept other players from farming this room.  Problem is in todays MMO world where we have millions of players not just 1 or 2 million you cannot have open world content like this.  You need to instance the content and make people do it as a group.  If ever the MMOs go back to the days of UO with open world dungeons were people have to compete for Monsters I am done.  I know how many hours I kept people from being able to do stuff and I also been kept from doing stuff.  Instances resolved this issue.  Talking how its bad is BS better discussion is talk about how developers made AOE farm instances so dam easy vs having instances that required about 45 minutes to an hour to complete and group coordination.  When you talk about that let me know thats a real issue.  

    Generally I agree with you, but I adamantly disagree on this.

    The fact that there are million of more players is irrelevant.  Millions of players means dozens if not hundreds of servers.  Contested content was part of virtual worlds.  If there was only 1 shadow wyrm room, perhaps there should be more, but instancing it and removing the contested aspect is not a solution.

    In an mmorpg, developers have the option of increasing content, spreading out content, or creating more servers.  Those are all better solutions than instancing.

    I find it funny that players consider the grandaddy of all instancing schemes, servers, to not be instancing. All you have to do is look at MMOs with megaserver tech like TSW and ESO to understand that logical fallacy. ESO is considered to be heavily instanced because it creates versions of areas, i.e. obvious instances, on the fly as needed and then dissolves them when not needed.

     

    A traditional server based MMO creates those instances and they're permanent. Or permanentish since all of them except maybe WOW end up merging those sooner or later when the population gets too low.

    Agreed.  Servers are basically instances of the entire game.  It's even worse than multiple instances on one server, since you cannot travel between servers.

    With megaservers, like in GW2 or ESO, there is at least the possibility of players converging as an entire community, instead of being segregated.  Even WoW has "cross-realm" technology, and it has done wonders for their lesser populated servers.

    It's actually better than instanced copies of the world, like it is in Swtor when you're on the fleet, because it blends people together, working automatically behind the scenes, which is really amazing when you think about it.

  • DullahanDullahan Member EpicPosts: 4,527
    Originally posted by Skuall

    what? ppl dont remember how was before instancing

    exp camps : GL finding any

    boss : overcamped , lvl 1 alts in everycamp , nowadays ? teleport hacks to boss and claim fights, dont forget MPK ect.

    PVP ppl still has a point , but gankers and cheaters will control pvp , or huge guilds can kill any fun in pvp...

    a RvRvR can work (Daoc , Gw2 , and TESO) but open world pvp like L2 uhmmm is a risk to create a mmorpg like that today.

     

     

    So instancing is necessary because before it was A) impossible to find a camp and B) everyone hacks.  Cool story.

    Too bad that isn't what actually happened, and there is hack detection.  Did we always get the camps we want?  Nope, but there were plenty of alternatives.  It only made getting the camp and item more rewarding and memorable.  Rarity also increased item value and because it wasn't instanced, you could camp something else and barter, once again promoting interaction between players, none of which would be an option if devs took the lazy approach and instanced the content.

    Its not for everyone.  Some people can't imagine gaming without convenience and instant gratification.


  • DullahanDullahan Member EpicPosts: 4,527
    Originally posted by observer
    Originally posted by Iselin
    Originally posted by Dullahan
    Originally posted by danwest58
    This is a BS discussion.  Instances are not bad for MMOs.  People who say o its bad for MMOs never spent hours trying to find a spot to farm.  In UO there was 1 Shadow Wyrm room, me and a few friends controlled it for hours on end and kept other players from farming this room.  Problem is in todays MMO world where we have millions of players not just 1 or 2 million you cannot have open world content like this.  You need to instance the content and make people do it as a group.  If ever the MMOs go back to the days of UO with open world dungeons were people have to compete for Monsters I am done.  I know how many hours I kept people from being able to do stuff and I also been kept from doing stuff.  Instances resolved this issue.  Talking how its bad is BS better discussion is talk about how developers made AOE farm instances so dam easy vs having instances that required about 45 minutes to an hour to complete and group coordination.  When you talk about that let me know thats a real issue.  

    Generally I agree with you, but I adamantly disagree on this.

    The fact that there are million of more players is irrelevant.  Millions of players means dozens if not hundreds of servers.  Contested content was part of virtual worlds.  If there was only 1 shadow wyrm room, perhaps there should be more, but instancing it and removing the contested aspect is not a solution.

    In an mmorpg, developers have the option of increasing content, spreading out content, or creating more servers.  Those are all better solutions than instancing.

    I find it funny that players consider the grandaddy of all instancing schemes, servers, to not be instancing. All you have to do is look at MMOs with megaserver tech like TSW and ESO to understand that logical fallacy. ESO is considered to be heavily instanced because it creates versions of areas, i.e. obvious instances, on the fly as needed and then dissolves them when not needed.

     

    A traditional server based MMO creates those instances and they're permanent. Or permanentish since all of them except maybe WOW end up merging those sooner or later when the population gets too low.

    Agreed.  Servers are basically instances of the entire game.  It's even worse than multiple instances on one server, since you cannot travel between servers.

    With megaservers, like in GW2 or ESO, there is at least the possibility of players converging as an entire community, instead of being segregated.  Even WoW has "cross-realm" technology, and it has done wonders for their lesser populated servers.

    It's actually better than instanced copies of the world, like it is in Swtor when you're on the fleet, because it blends people together, working automatically behind the scenes, which is really amazing when you think about it.

    Done wonders in that it destroyed local communities and increased the feeling that you were merely a face in a crowd?

    We have very different definitions of what is better.  I personally can't see how never seeing the same people in a place stands to make a more appealing virtual world.

    Upon google searching "cross server destroyed WoW", I found its a common opinion.


  • danwest58danwest58 Member RarePosts: 2,011
    Originally posted by Dullahan
    Originally posted by observer
    Originally posted by Iselin
    Originally posted by Dullahan
    Originally posted by danwest58
    This is a BS discussion.  Instances are not bad for MMOs.  People who say o its bad for MMOs never spent hours trying to find a spot to farm.  In UO there was 1 Shadow Wyrm room, me and a few friends controlled it for hours on end and kept other players from farming this room.  Problem is in todays MMO world where we have millions of players not just 1 or 2 million you cannot have open world content like this.  You need to instance the content and make people do it as a group.  If ever the MMOs go back to the days of UO with open world dungeons were people have to compete for Monsters I am done.  I know how many hours I kept people from being able to do stuff and I also been kept from doing stuff.  Instances resolved this issue.  Talking how its bad is BS better discussion is talk about how developers made AOE farm instances so dam easy vs having instances that required about 45 minutes to an hour to complete and group coordination.  When you talk about that let me know thats a real issue.  

    Generally I agree with you, but I adamantly disagree on this.

    The fact that there are million of more players is irrelevant.  Millions of players means dozens if not hundreds of servers.  Contested content was part of virtual worlds.  If there was only 1 shadow wyrm room, perhaps there should be more, but instancing it and removing the contested aspect is not a solution.

    In an mmorpg, developers have the option of increasing content, spreading out content, or creating more servers.  Those are all better solutions than instancing.

    I find it funny that players consider the grandaddy of all instancing schemes, servers, to not be instancing. All you have to do is look at MMOs with megaserver tech like TSW and ESO to understand that logical fallacy. ESO is considered to be heavily instanced because it creates versions of areas, i.e. obvious instances, on the fly as needed and then dissolves them when not needed.

     

    A traditional server based MMO creates those instances and they're permanent. Or permanentish since all of them except maybe WOW end up merging those sooner or later when the population gets too low.

    Agreed.  Servers are basically instances of the entire game.  It's even worse than multiple instances on one server, since you cannot travel between servers.

    With megaservers, like in GW2 or ESO, there is at least the possibility of players converging as an entire community, instead of being segregated.  Even WoW has "cross-realm" technology, and it has done wonders for their lesser populated servers.

    It's actually better than instanced copies of the world, like it is in Swtor when you're on the fleet, because it blends people together, working automatically behind the scenes, which is really amazing when you think about it.

    Done wonders in that it destroyed local communities and increased the feeling that you were merely a face in a crowd?

    We have very different definitions of what is better.  I personally can't see how never seeing the same people in a place stands to make a more appealing virtual world.

    Upon google searching "cross server destroyed WoW", I found its a common opinion.

    Your Right its not the instances that destroyed WOW is the Cross server LFD tool that did.  Instances had shit to do with hurting MMOs.  I remember knowing some people in the Guild Scion on Khadgar who would always call on me to tank instances for them because I was a good tank.  Not a Top tank like they had in their guild however good enough and one they liked to chat with.  Instances are not the problem.  Todays LFD tools are.  FFXIV's Party finder is a great tool.  It helps people make groups on the same server with the same goals and people like me friend these people after a run and talk to them again.  

     

    Again Instances are not the problem people.  LFD tools are.  Like I said I use to run the Shadow Wyrm room in UO and I can tell you I pissed off many people that could never farm it when I was there with friends.  Its a Dick move yes however Thats what you get when you have No instances.  Sorry But its Dam true.  Instances Fixed this stuff.  No one ever bitched during Vanilla or TBC about instances they loved them.  However you have Cake walk /afk instances with cross realm automated group finder tools?  You got what you have today.  

  • DullahanDullahan Member EpicPosts: 4,527
    Originally posted by danwest58
    Originally posted by Dullahan
    Originally posted by observer
    Originally posted by Iselin
    Originally posted by Dullahan
    Originally posted by danwest58
    This is a BS discussion.  Instances are not bad for MMOs.  People who say o its bad for MMOs never spent hours trying to find a spot to farm.  In UO there was 1 Shadow Wyrm room, me and a few friends controlled it for hours on end and kept other players from farming this room.  Problem is in todays MMO world where we have millions of players not just 1 or 2 million you cannot have open world content like this.  You need to instance the content and make people do it as a group.  If ever the MMOs go back to the days of UO with open world dungeons were people have to compete for Monsters I am done.  I know how many hours I kept people from being able to do stuff and I also been kept from doing stuff.  Instances resolved this issue.  Talking how its bad is BS better discussion is talk about how developers made AOE farm instances so dam easy vs having instances that required about 45 minutes to an hour to complete and group coordination.  When you talk about that let me know thats a real issue.  

    Generally I agree with you, but I adamantly disagree on this.

    The fact that there are million of more players is irrelevant.  Millions of players means dozens if not hundreds of servers.  Contested content was part of virtual worlds.  If there was only 1 shadow wyrm room, perhaps there should be more, but instancing it and removing the contested aspect is not a solution.

    In an mmorpg, developers have the option of increasing content, spreading out content, or creating more servers.  Those are all better solutions than instancing.

    I find it funny that players consider the grandaddy of all instancing schemes, servers, to not be instancing. All you have to do is look at MMOs with megaserver tech like TSW and ESO to understand that logical fallacy. ESO is considered to be heavily instanced because it creates versions of areas, i.e. obvious instances, on the fly as needed and then dissolves them when not needed.

     

    A traditional server based MMO creates those instances and they're permanent. Or permanentish since all of them except maybe WOW end up merging those sooner or later when the population gets too low.

    Agreed.  Servers are basically instances of the entire game.  It's even worse than multiple instances on one server, since you cannot travel between servers.

    With megaservers, like in GW2 or ESO, there is at least the possibility of players converging as an entire community, instead of being segregated.  Even WoW has "cross-realm" technology, and it has done wonders for their lesser populated servers.

    It's actually better than instanced copies of the world, like it is in Swtor when you're on the fleet, because it blends people together, working automatically behind the scenes, which is really amazing when you think about it.

    Done wonders in that it destroyed local communities and increased the feeling that you were merely a face in a crowd?

    We have very different definitions of what is better.  I personally can't see how never seeing the same people in a place stands to make a more appealing virtual world.

    Upon google searching "cross server destroyed WoW", I found its a common opinion.

    Your Right its not the instances that destroyed WOW is the Cross server LFD tool that did.  Instances had shit to do with hurting MMOs.  I remember knowing some people in the Guild Scion on Khadgar who would always call on me to tank instances for them because I was a good tank.  Not a Top tank like they had in their guild however good enough and one they liked to chat with.  Instances are not the problem.  Todays LFD tools are.  FFXIV's Party finder is a great tool.  It helps people make groups on the same server with the same goals and people like me friend these people after a run and talk to them again.  

     

    Again Instances are not the problem people.  LFD tools are.  Like I said I use to run the Shadow Wyrm room in UO and I can tell you I pissed off many people that could never farm it when I was there with friends.  Its a Dick move yes however Thats what you get when you have No instances.  Sorry But its Dam true.  Instances Fixed this stuff.  No one ever bitched during Vanilla or TBC about instances they loved them.  However you have Cake walk /afk instances with cross realm automated group finder tools?  You got what you have today.  

    I respect your opinion, but you are revising history.  Theres always been naysayers and drama about instancing mechanics, including with WoW.  It just became accepted as WoW became popular and other games continued to adopt (or replicate) this design.

    If you remove dungeons and replace them with "levels" from other gaming genres like WoW did, it basically forced them to go with instancing.  It becomes even more problematic when the progression path is linear, and there are only a couple instances every 5-10 levels.  Instancing is just necessary when your ultimate goal is convenience and your design is linear.


  • KilrainKilrain Member RarePosts: 1,178

    This website and/or its editors need to figure out what an MMO is before asking this question.

     

    Personal opinion: I want an MMO that is a living world with realistic mechanics. If people complain about not being able to run a dungeon because of other players then the designers need to create more content.

  • ElikalElikal Member UncommonPosts: 7,912

    YES!

    /thread

     

    Seriously, about a great many things I can see both sides, the pro and the con, but instancing is one the really few features which I can geniunly say they ruin a MMO for me.

    I go to an MMO to meet people, to SEE them around me in the world. My faction, the enemy faction. Like in WOW. It is the major incentive for me to play, this feeling of a world, where everyone is around me. Every single instance, no matter how small, not matter how scarce, drains a bit people of the world. Instances are the One Ring of MMOs: they promise power to control the player's doing, but it is always and inescapably evil. Period. Paragraph. There is really few I am so adament about.

    They can be a tolerated evil in one very small dose: as element of a story climax, a turning point. Like the LOTRO Book quests, the end or beginning of a major plot arc, something where you don't get any loot, maybe besides cosmetic, something that does not reward repetition, something you solely do ONE time to further the story. Then, and only then, do I tolerate instances, and even then it is a necessary evil of story-telling and like salt or pepper something you use in cooking sparsely.

    Dark Ages of Camelot had the imfarmous dungeon instance expansion, and it destroyed the game; from one day to the other, the majority of the population vanished in the instance grind. For me, it depletes the reason why I am playing MMOs. So I never got into GW1, I never considered Neverwinter a valid MMO for me, and ESO with the factions never being together, only in PVP, felt greatly devoid of atmosphere and faction pride.

     

    Clarification: I do not mind zones! A MMO can have tiered zones, like Azeroth, Kalimdor and all the continents are zones seperated via loadscreens. That is ok, unless every few levels are loadscreens, that would be too much. The areas have to cover the map entirely. I don't like to be able to visit just hot spots, like in FF14. I prefer a totally loadscreen free world like Vanguard, but that's not a must, if the zones cover the entire map, and the zones are really large enough to feel like a world. Like the SWG planets for instance. Or the WOW continents.

    People don't ask questions to get answers - they ask questions to show how smart they are. - Dogbert

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