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Level Grind: can we finally admit that this turns off most players in New MMOs?

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  • IselinIselin Member LegendaryPosts: 12,895
    Kyleran said:
    Well, I don't really agree with the OP but the only MMO that seems to have solved this issue is ESO since the One Tamriel update. You can do anything you want at level 1. You can do it easier at CP600. At last, an MMO where you actually get stronger.. instead of everything just scaling along with you, getting downscaled or enemies going 'grey'. There's no grind but there's still meaningful progression. Whether or not ESO is your type of game, this type of progression system is, IMO, what should direct the evolution of MMOs.
    Some people argue this system is no progression at all.
    I suspect that's mostly people who haven't experienced it. The progression is real.
    “Microtransactions? In a single player role-playing game? Are you nuts?” 
    ― CD PROJEKT RED
  • IselinIselin Member LegendaryPosts: 12,895
    edited April 2017
    Loke666 said:
    Well, I don't really agree with the OP but the only MMO that seems to have solved this issue is ESO since the One Tamriel update. You can do anything you want at level 1. You can do it easier at CP600. At last, an MMO where you actually get stronger.. instead of everything just scaling along with you, getting downscaled or enemies going 'grey'. There's no grind but there's still meaningful progression. Whether or not ESO is your type of game, this type of progression system is, IMO, what should direct the evolution of MMOs.
    Why bother with levels at all then? Just skipping them and making a horizontal progression would actually work better.

    I am not saying that the idea that making the content possible with a new character is a bad idea, as long as you make some areas harder then others but the whole level concept seems ridiculous in a game like that.
    Because levels can mean different things in different games. Traditionally in MMOs levels are huge things that are game changers when you reach certain milestones that unlock powerful new things.

    But in ESO levels have never been done that way... even before One Tamriel.

    What they do is give you slight buffs to one of the 3 stats of your choice and is just one of the ways (there are far more skill points gained through things other than levels that there are by leveling... 64 out of 366 skill points by leveling to be exact) to acquire a skill point that you can then use to train an active or passive ability of your choice... IF you qualify for it by having used that skill line enough to progress it. That's where the real "leveling" in ESO happens not in the legacy character level.

    In that context, no it's not silly at all. It is just one of the ways that your character progresses through the game but it isn't THE way it happens as is the case in most other MMOs.


    “Microtransactions? In a single player role-playing game? Are you nuts?” 
    ― CD PROJEKT RED
  • Loke666Loke666 Member EpicPosts: 21,441
    Iselin said:
    Because levels can mean different things in different games. Traditionally in MMOs levels are huge things that are game changers when you reach certain milestones that unlock powerful new things.

    But in ESO levels have never been done that way... even before One Tamriel.

    What they do is give you slight buffs to one of the 3 stats of your choice and is just one of the ways (there are far more skill points gained through things other than levels that there are by leveling... 64 out of 366 skill points by leveling to be exact) to acquire a skill point that you can then use to train an active or passive ability of your choice... IF you qualify for it by having used that skill line enough to progress it. That's where the real "leveling" in ESO happens not in the legacy character level.

    In that context, no it's not silly at all. It is just one of the ways that your character progresses through the game but it isn't THE way it happens as is the case in most other MMOs.
    And I still don't see the need of them in the game. To me it feels like they kept them just because "MMOs are supposed to have levels".

    Just get rid of them, you already have other ways to get the skillpoints, improve that system instead. The focus is already on skillpoints so most of the work is already done.

    And it is not unlikely that Zenimax is moving in that direction but taking it slowly so they don't change everything too fast (we do know what happened when SOE did too much too fast in SWG).

    ESO is like a few other MMOs not dependent on levels (Guildwars wasn't either) so why bother keeping them?

    You never really answered why ESO need levels, you just say that they matters little. The reason it is silly is because they aren't needed.

    I am not giving any bad critique to ESO, I rather have more MMOs without levels at all. Levels really only makes good sense in a game like Everquest where the whole point of playing was leveling, it was the main  progress players had for months and often years. Same with Lineage 2. But more then a few games like ESO have other points and levels really doesn't fill any purpose in those games, it is just an appendicitis that they left from earlier games.

    I basically want levels out of the majority of modern MMOs, let games like Pantheon keep them (I like that kind of MMOs as well BTW and back Pantheon). ESO is just the one modern that have it easiest to start.
  • Loke666Loke666 Member EpicPosts: 21,441
    EQ's AA is basically levels though isn't it? You have to kill things, do quests and gain experience to unlock more AA. That's exactly the same as levels... 

    I got this much experience and was awarded an AA point. I got this much experience and was awarded a level. Same thing.

    .. and that's exactly what ESO levels are for; unlocking attribute and skill points. The level number 'is' meaningless in terms of skills since you can gain more skill points from quests and skyshards than you can from levels so it doesn't even indicate how many skill points you have. However, the attribute points do matter as they give you gradual progression. Enemies do 'not' scale with your attribute points or anything like that. They are a straight and permanent advantage over every enemy in the game compared to a level 1 character.. as are upgraded items.. as are more skill points.

    They could change the name of levels to alternate advancement if you like.. but it doesn't change anything.
    Not exactly, AAs is more like achievements then levels, something you do once to get the bonus so there is no grind involved. With levels you usually repeat most of what you do several time for XP, like killing the same boss over and over.

    AAs give you the buff only once, then you need to move to something new.

    In ESOs case you could get stat points, either fixed by a specific achievement or by a speccing table. 

    AAs encourage the players to explore the game while levels tend to teach the players to grind the easiest areas instead because it is faster. That is why I like AAs better then levels. And I promise you, it will change the way people would play.
  • IselinIselin Member LegendaryPosts: 12,895
    Loke666 said:
    Iselin said:
    Because levels can mean different things in different games. Traditionally in MMOs levels are huge things that are game changers when you reach certain milestones that unlock powerful new things.

    But in ESO levels have never been done that way... even before One Tamriel.

    What they do is give you slight buffs to one of the 3 stats of your choice and is just one of the ways (there are far more skill points gained through things other than levels that there are by leveling... 64 out of 366 skill points by leveling to be exact) to acquire a skill point that you can then use to train an active or passive ability of your choice... IF you qualify for it by having used that skill line enough to progress it. That's where the real "leveling" in ESO happens not in the legacy character level.

    In that context, no it's not silly at all. It is just one of the ways that your character progresses through the game but it isn't THE way it happens as is the case in most other MMOs.
    And I still don't see the need of them in the game. To me it feels like they kept them just because "MMOs are supposed to have levels".

    Just get rid of them, you already have other ways to get the skillpoints, improve that system instead. The focus is already on skillpoints so most of the work is already done.

    And it is not unlikely that Zenimax is moving in that direction but taking it slowly so they don't change everything too fast (we do know what happened when SOE did too much too fast in SWG).

    ESO is like a few other MMOs not dependent on levels (Guildwars wasn't either) so why bother keeping them?

    You never really answered why ESO need levels, you just say that they matters little. The reason it is silly is because they aren't needed.

    I am not giving any bad critique to ESO, I rather have more MMOs without levels at all. Levels really only makes good sense in a game like Everquest where the whole point of playing was leveling, it was the main  progress players had for months and often years. Same with Lineage 2. But more then a few games like ESO have other points and levels really doesn't fill any purpose in those games, it is just an appendicitis that they left from earlier games.

    I basically want levels out of the majority of modern MMOs, let games like Pantheon keep them (I like that kind of MMOs as well BTW and back Pantheon). ESO is just the one modern that have it easiest to start.
    A better question is why the inclusion of watered down levels offends you so much :)

    Why include them? Legacy? Because players like milestones and the "ding!" sound? I neither know nor care as long as the game as a whole - with or without numbers - plays and feels like a progressive journey. That's the essence or RPGs, whether of the MMO variety or not. The sense of growing and developing is what makes them fun. Anything else, including levels, is just detail.
    “Microtransactions? In a single player role-playing game? Are you nuts?” 
    ― CD PROJEKT RED
  • Loke666Loke666 Member EpicPosts: 21,441
    Iselin said:
    A better question is why the inclusion of watered down levels offends you so much :)

    Why include them? Legacy? Because players like milestones and the "ding!" sound? I neither know nor care as long as the game as a whole - with or without numbers - plays and feels like a progressive journey. That's the essence or RPGs, whether of the MMO variety or not. The sense of growing and developing is what makes them fun. Anything else, including levels, is just detail.
    Basically because they fill no purpose. If publishers see a successful MMO without levels they might actually try to make a leveless system from the beginning and figure out new mechanics.

    The ding sound has been removed a long time and as far as I know to people get the same kick for gaining a new skill, a skillpoint or some new useful gear.

    Keeping old mechanics as a legacy thing just stop the progression of new ideas. And lets face it, MMOs are in a downslide right now, we need new ideas to get the interest up. Too many old mechanics from Meridian 59 and EQ are left in games not really meant to be played that way and as long as we keep them the evolution of the genre will be really slow.
  • TheDarkrayneTheDarkrayne Member EpicPosts: 5,189
    edited April 2017
    Loke666 said:
    EQ's AA is basically levels though isn't it? You have to kill things, do quests and gain experience to unlock more AA. That's exactly the same as levels... 

    I got this much experience and was awarded an AA point. I got this much experience and was awarded a level. Same thing.

    .. and that's exactly what ESO levels are for; unlocking attribute and skill points. The level number 'is' meaningless in terms of skills since you can gain more skill points from quests and skyshards than you can from levels so it doesn't even indicate how many skill points you have. However, the attribute points do matter as they give you gradual progression. Enemies do 'not' scale with your attribute points or anything like that. They are a straight and permanent advantage over every enemy in the game compared to a level 1 character.. as are upgraded items.. as are more skill points.

    They could change the name of levels to alternate advancement if you like.. but it doesn't change anything.
    Not exactly, AAs is more like achievements then levels, something you do once to get the bonus so there is no grind involved. With levels you usually repeat most of what you do several time for XP, like killing the same boss over and over.

    AAs give you the buff only once, then you need to move to something new.

    In ESOs case you could get stat points, either fixed by a specific achievement or by a speccing table. 

    AAs encourage the players to explore the game while levels tend to teach the players to grind the easiest areas instead because it is faster. That is why I like AAs better then levels. And I promise you, it will change the way people would play.
    I see what you're saying in terms of grinding. Even though people don't need to grind in ESO they do tend to do it..just because, more skill points more easily/lazily. ESO does have the content based skill gains as well through major quests and the skyshards.. which is the larger portion of obtainable skill points.. so I suppose it's halfway there. They could remove levels completely and add the attribute points and skill points usually gained that way into quests or collectables without damaging the game.

    Still, I still think ESO is the closest to changing this MMO trend for the better.
    I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.
  • IselinIselin Member LegendaryPosts: 12,895
    Loke666 said:
    Iselin said:
    A better question is why the inclusion of watered down levels offends you so much :)

    Why include them? Legacy? Because players like milestones and the "ding!" sound? I neither know nor care as long as the game as a whole - with or without numbers - plays and feels like a progressive journey. That's the essence or RPGs, whether of the MMO variety or not. The sense of growing and developing is what makes them fun. Anything else, including levels, is just detail.
    Basically because they fill no purpose. If publishers see a successful MMO without levels they might actually try to make a leveless system from the beginning and figure out new mechanics.

    The ding sound has been removed a long time and as far as I know to people get the same kick for gaining a new skill, a skillpoint or some new useful gear.

    Keeping old mechanics as a legacy thing just stop the progression of new ideas. And lets face it, MMOs are in a downslide right now, we need new ideas to get the interest up. Too many old mechanics from Meridian 59 and EQ are left in games not really meant to be played that way and as long as we keep them the evolution of the genre will be really slow.
    This discussion reminds me a bit of the talk in another forum I visit daily.

    It's a sports subreddit about a currently hapless team, the Vancouver Canucks. Some fans are dissatisfied with the way management is going about trying to rebuild the team into a contender and much semantic debate goes on about "re-tooling" vs. "re-building."

    Some of the more radical fans talk about "blowing the team up" and starting over as if that was a better solution to keeping what good you do have and adding to it as you can through free-agency or the draft.

    It sounds like you want to blow-up MMOs and start fresh. That's one option, I suppose, but a radical one.

    Levels, like I said, are just a detail. It is not a roadblock to progress. Progress can be made on what levels do or don't so as is the case with the ESO example. There is no need for them to totally go away.

    And BTW, ESO does have a ding GFX :)
    “Microtransactions? In a single player role-playing game? Are you nuts?” 
    ― CD PROJEKT RED
  • PapasmervPapasmerv Member UncommonPosts: 63
    Everyone that's replied to my comment obviously doesn't know much about how ESO works. That mob is not the same level of challenge when you're CP300, it is easier because you do a lot more damage, have more health and have a lot more skills to use. YOU get more powerful, the enemies don't. At level 1, some enemies are a challenge.. but killable with effort if you are a decent player and manage how much you take on at a time. At CP600 with top gear you will destroy all normal enemies, even 10 at a time, and the more challenging things become easier to tackle. You can even solo things like world bosses or even group dungeons, things you would never be able to solo at level 1, but a group of level 1's could beat it. You guys seriously don't understand how it works in ESO at all.

    The system has more meaningful progression than any other MMO I've ever played.

    What is the point of gaining levels when each time you do you have to move on to a zone full of enemies that are the same level and the previous enemies become worthless to you as you outlevel content... over and over again. 'That' is false progression. Every time you get stronger, you're presented with an equally matched enemy. Why bother having levels in the first place?
    Maybe you are right.  So let's set the record straight.

    In case people are not familiar, ESO has a level cap of 50 and then you no longer gain levels but rather Champion Points.  There are a few games out there e.g. Diablo3 which allow you to further specialize your character after the cap.  People who play no longer use the old term Veteran or even say L50, they just refer to the number of CP as a way of defining their relative character power.  These CPs are at the account level and not tied to the character who earns them.  So, the most powerful character on your account passes on the CP to any new character you roll.  Since CPs enhance existing skill powers to increase capabilities typically by percentages, 100 CP on a brand new character provides much less benefit than those same 100 CP on a fully leveled character wearing appropriate gear.

    I'm also going to use the age old term CON, short for consider, to get away from a focus on levels.

    New player on new account, L3 enters Vulkhel Guard(AD) and runs out to the East past the Harborage.  They see a crab.  How does the crab CON to the character?  ANSWER: The crab appears to be the same relative level as the character.

    New character on an account with 160 CP at L3 enters Vulkhel Guard(AD) and runs out to the East past the Harborage.  They see a crab.  How does the crab CON to the character?  ANSWER: The crab appears to be the same relative level as the character.

    L50 (CP160) character on the same account enters  Vulkhel Guard(AD) and runs out to the East past the Harborage.  They see a crab.  How does the crab CON to the character?  ANSWER: The crab appears to be the same relative level as the character.

    Now that L50 (CP160) character has been the Harborage many many times for the main questline and every time the crabs there pose the same challenge.  So, if you disagree, please explain.
    What every dev/pub should stand behind: "We're committed to creating a fair playing field for all players. You cannot gain gameplay advantage by spending real money in [INSERT GAME NAME]."
  • IselinIselin Member LegendaryPosts: 12,895
    Papasmerv said:
    Now that L50 (CP160) character has been the Harborage many many times for the main questline and every time the crabs there pose the same challenge.  So, if you disagree, please explain.
    If that crab is posing the same challenge at 50 /160 you are doing something terribly wrong with both gear and skill use.

    The only way that would be even remotely possible is if you use no skills whatsoever and just light attack and heavy attack while using garbage gear.

    I'm not saying it doesn't happen because sadly, I have indeed seen people playing the game just like that.
    “Microtransactions? In a single player role-playing game? Are you nuts?” 
    ― CD PROJEKT RED
  • Loke666Loke666 Member EpicPosts: 21,441
    Iselin said:
    This discussion reminds me a bit of the talk in another forum I visit daily.

    It's a sports subreddit about a currently hapless team, the Vancouver Canucks. Some fans are dissatisfied with the way management is going about trying to rebuild the team into a contender and much semantic debate goes on about "re-tooling" vs. "re-building."

    Some of the more radical fans talk about "blowing the team up" and starting over as if that was a better solution to keeping what good you do have and adding to it as you can through free-agency or the draft.

    It sounds like you want to blow-up MMOs and start fresh. That's one option, I suppose, but a radical one.

    Levels, like I said, are just a detail. It is not a roadblock to progress. Progress can be made on what levels do or don't so as is the case with the ESO example. There is no need for them to totally go away.

    And BTW, ESO does have a ding GFX :)
    The basic of MMOs is that they are basically large scale pen and paper RPG simulators. I don't want to change that, that would be blowing things up. But I certainly wouldn't call removing levels (or trinity, raids or similar things) radical. It is one legacy rest from D&D, heck, more then half of the pen and paper systems I played didn't have levels at all. Of course removing all those things at the same time would be radical but none of them are a must.

    Removing the levels from ESO (it is just an example but one of the games it would be easiest in) would not really require you to re-build the entire game.

    As for no need for them totally go away, there is no need for them to stay either. and if there is no need for them why keep them?
    TheDarkrayne said:
    Loke666 said:
    Not exactly, AAs is more like achievements then levels, something you do once to get the bonus so there is no grind involved. With levels you usually repeat most of what you do several time for XP, like killing the same boss over and over.

    AAs give you the buff only once, then you need to move to something new.

    In ESOs case you could get stat points, either fixed by a specific achievement or by a speccing table. 

    AAs encourage the players to explore the game while levels tend to teach the players to grind the easiest areas instead because it is faster. That is why I like AAs better then levels. And I promise you, it will change the way people would play.
    I see what you're saying in terms of grinding. Even though people don't need to grind in ESO they do tend to do it..just because, more skill points more easily/lazily. ESO does have the content based skill gains as well through major quests and the skyshards.. which is the larger portion of obtainable skill points.. so I suppose it's halfway there. They could remove levels completely and add the attribute points and skill points usually gained that way into quests or collectables without damaging the game.

    Still, I still think ESO is the closest to changing this MMO trend for the better.
    My opinion is that players tend to be lazy and choose the easiest way for progression no matter if it is boring or not. And when they play the game in a boring way they are more likely to tire. Games that reward players for exploration instead of grinding have in my opinion better chance to keep it's player longer.

    ESO is certainly one of a few games that are trying to change the genre in a good game but all of them are too slow. We need something that is extremely good yesterday (ESO, GW2 and a few more are good but not extremely so) to spark new interest in the genre. I certainly think the game is moving in the right direction and Zenimax have done a great job since launch to improve the game.

    If I would mix 2 games with some changes I would like a mix between ESO and GW2 without the levels and a bit harder and maybe with a bit more DaoC in as well for the PvP, both games have some DaoC influence but not enough. PvE wise are ESO and GW2 the only ones I seen that introduced new ideas that actually works even if both can be improved more.

    MMOs need some degree of grinding but far too often players grind far more then needed because it is faster and that is basically the game telling them to play that way. It is a huge shame since they miss a lot of the best content that way and the game should encourage the players to see as much of the game as possible, not discourage it. AA or quest/collections instead of levels do just that.
  • RasiemRasiem Member UncommonPosts: 316
    When it comes to "Level Grind" in new released MMOs, can we finally admit that this turns off most players in New MMOs?

    Especially when your game is marketed as a huge PvP game with off the chart Faction vs Faction wars, yet its totally locked behind a Level gate that say 

    "Sorry, but you can not play this Faction vs Faction battle until you are level XYZ"....

    Now you start to look at each level as a force of labor , rather than a fun journey. Hence why this is the age of Power Grinding. 

    I will admit, when I was new to MMOs, and didnt know how the system of MMOs work, and all the Filler illusions, I thought levels were the coolest element. Then one day I reached the level I wanted, which was max, and played all the features I wanted to play, and realized that all that leveling and false pride of being a higher level than my friends, was just an illusion of filler, to keep me busy while developers make content.

    that may be a legit reason, but at max level I still enjoyed long periods of gameplay even though I wasnt leveling. So its not like Levels are the only way to do filler. 
      I dont agree thats true at all, the fact the grind hasnt changed in some way over the years may be a problem.
  • KanethKaneth Member RarePosts: 2,282
    Loke666 said:
    Iselin said:
    A better question is why the inclusion of watered down levels offends you so much :)

    Why include them? Legacy? Because players like milestones and the "ding!" sound? I neither know nor care as long as the game as a whole - with or without numbers - plays and feels like a progressive journey. That's the essence or RPGs, whether of the MMO variety or not. The sense of growing and developing is what makes them fun. Anything else, including levels, is just detail.
    Basically because they fill no purpose. If publishers see a successful MMO without levels they might actually try to make a leveless system from the beginning and figure out new mechanics.

    The ding sound has been removed a long time and as far as I know to people get the same kick for gaining a new skill, a skillpoint or some new useful gear.

    Keeping old mechanics as a legacy thing just stop the progression of new ideas. And lets face it, MMOs are in a downslide right now, we need new ideas to get the interest up. Too many old mechanics from Meridian 59 and EQ are left in games not really meant to be played that way and as long as we keep them the evolution of the genre will be really slow.
    I feel you are severely underestimating the value of levels, even in a system where levels aren't as important.

    Take ESO for example. Every level you get to choose to increase health, magicka or stamina. Without a classic leveling system, when you get those points can become convoluted. Do you start everyone out at the same stats and then allow gear to determine? Do you allow folks to do quests to get increases in those areas? What about folks who don't want to quest?

    Gear drops are also something handled by leveling in ESO. The level of gear that is dropped is relative to your character level. Gear stats are determined by the level of the gear. If you did away with the level progression system, what gear you can wear also becomes convoluted. So what if your skill with the armor type determines what drops and what you can wear? That's great, but then if someone doesn't wear at least a piece of heavy, medium and light armor while grinding out skill levels, then what drops for them specifically becomes wildly different for each type of armor. If I am maxed in Heavy, but never wore light, I'd effectively get a piece of max level heavy and then starter light all off the same corpse/chest/quest. Additionally, without this leveling "gate" so to speak, people would go out and find the spots to grind out the best gear and be set potentially in a few days. If you're making gear that drops for you dependent on your skill level, then you've just added a leveling system, albeit a different looking one, but still a leveling system regardless.

    Other games like Asheron's Call had areas that were only usable by characters of a specific level range. There was a dungeon that needed a team of levels 10-20 characters and a team of level 40+ characters, iirc, in order to complete. Each team had to open gates for the other team while fighting through level appropriate mobs. Super interesting mechanic, and one that could be considered designed to have veteran players interact with new players. Without a simple character level system, entry into those areas is then determined by what? Combat skill level? Now the tool tip has to read something like, usable by characters with combat skill levels between X and Y, vs. just Levels 10-20 only. I imagine the coding behind such a restriction would be come more complex since you'd most likely need to create checks for each individual combat skill vs. just a general character level.

    Additionally, familiarity is a tremendous thing for humans. We're very good at learning new things, but we also tend to not take on multiple new tasks all at once very well. Which is why pretty much any type of training starts with the basics and slowly ramps up to more advanced. A leveling system is a super familiar thing for pretty much any RPG gamer. Making giant, sweeping changes, that make the game basically completely unfamiliar in any way is a good way to turn off a ton of people. ESO is a good example of a game that has a familiar enough system to make people feel comfortable, with also just enough slightly different variations on classic ideas to make the game feel different enough.

    Finally, a leveling system is a clear road to progression. Something else humans love is to have goals and see progress towards those goals. If you enter a game and say, first I want to hit max level, then any subsequent level you earn towards that goal is a little reminder that you're making progress. That's a nice and simple early goal. Once you're max level you can determine your next set of goals, and make those more complex, like specific set of gear, certain achievements, having all of the crafting recipes, etc. Don't discount the absolute focus of hitting max level as your first goal too. Without that, people can become mired in the problem of choice. Too many goals to work on all at once, and not sure which one to do first, is a problem for many people. This also coincides with the idea of starting simple and ramping up as you learn.
  • TheDarkrayneTheDarkrayne Member EpicPosts: 5,189
    edited April 2017
    Papasmerv said:
    Everyone that's replied to my comment obviously doesn't know much about how ESO works. That mob is not the same level of challenge when you're CP300, it is easier because you do a lot more damage, have more health and have a lot more skills to use. YOU get more powerful, the enemies don't. At level 1, some enemies are a challenge.. but killable with effort if you are a decent player and manage how much you take on at a time. At CP600 with top gear you will destroy all normal enemies, even 10 at a time, and the more challenging things become easier to tackle. You can even solo things like world bosses or even group dungeons, things you would never be able to solo at level 1, but a group of level 1's could beat it. You guys seriously don't understand how it works in ESO at all.

    The system has more meaningful progression than any other MMO I've ever played.

    What is the point of gaining levels when each time you do you have to move on to a zone full of enemies that are the same level and the previous enemies become worthless to you as you outlevel content... over and over again. 'That' is false progression. Every time you get stronger, you're presented with an equally matched enemy. Why bother having levels in the first place?
    Maybe you are right.  So let's set the record straight.

    In case people are not familiar, ESO has a level cap of 50 and then you no longer gain levels but rather Champion Points.  There are a few games out there e.g. Diablo3 which allow you to further specialize your character after the cap.  People who play no longer use the old term Veteran or even say L50, they just refer to the number of CP as a way of defining their relative character power.  These CPs are at the account level and not tied to the character who earns them.  So, the most powerful character on your account passes on the CP to any new character you roll.  Since CPs enhance existing skill powers to increase capabilities typically by percentages, 100 CP on a brand new character provides much less benefit than those same 100 CP on a fully leveled character wearing appropriate gear.

    I'm also going to use the age old term CON, short for consider, to get away from a focus on levels.

    New player on new account, L3 enters Vulkhel Guard(AD) and runs out to the East past the Harborage.  They see a crab.  How does the crab CON to the character?  ANSWER: The crab appears to be the same relative level as the character.

    New character on an account with 160 CP at L3 enters Vulkhel Guard(AD) and runs out to the East past the Harborage.  They see a crab.  How does the crab CON to the character?  ANSWER: The crab appears to be the same relative level as the character.

    L50 (CP160) character on the same account enters  Vulkhel Guard(AD) and runs out to the East past the Harborage.  They see a crab.  How does the crab CON to the character?  ANSWER: The crab appears to be the same relative level as the character.

    Now that L50 (CP160) character has been the Harborage many many times for the main questline and every time the crabs there pose the same challenge.  So, if you disagree, please explain.
    Your understanding of the system is completely wrong. Enemies are not scaled to your level. All enemies are level 50 CP160. Players and equipment lower than level 50 CP160 are scaled UP and extra skills, champion points, better quality items, item sets, attribute points and passives enhance the player beyond base level 50 CP160 stats. The crab never changes, the player does.

    So, the level 50 CP160 character will smash the crab in one hit.. unless they haven't spent any skill points and are still using white quality gear. I'm not theorising here or guessing, I have the characters to prove it and know it as absolute fact.

    When you make a new character now, all your starting stats are in the thousands. As you outlevel your equipment, the equipment's stats actually go down so you still need to find level appropriate gear. This seems strange at first but you realise it's no different than usual gear progression once you get used to it.

    Also, because players are scaled up.. extra champion points on new characters provide a massive benefit. Pretty much everything you just said is incorrect except for the new player on a new account example.
    Post edited by TheDarkrayne on
    I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.
  • kitaradkitarad Member EpicPosts: 5,116
    edited April 2017
    I think varied systems work you do not have to do away with stuff. 

    Also when you progress through life we age it's like levelling we are allowed to do things as we grow older and I think levels are similar. They mark your progress through the game and open access to areas and content similar to how we level through life.

    Alternate achievements was introduced in Everquest 2 first if I am not mistaken and it gave a very deep way to enrich and develop your character further but I don't think you need to do away with levels though we can have different systems all running at the same time where a skill based system can be used for crafting/combat and levels for combat and AA for further development. By combining them you can have a much more complex and rewarding system.

  • Loke666Loke666 Member EpicPosts: 21,441
    Kaneth said:
    I feel you are severely underestimating the value of levels, even in a system where levels aren't as important.

    Take ESO for example. Every level you get to choose to increase health, magicka or stamina. Without a classic leveling system, when you get those points can become convoluted. Do you start everyone out at the same stats and then allow gear to determine? Do you allow folks to do quests to get increases in those areas? What about folks who don't want to quest?

    Gear drops are also something handled by leveling in ESO. The level of gear that is dropped is relative to your character level. Gear stats are determined by the level of the gear. If you did away with the level progression system, what gear you can wear also becomes convoluted. So what if your skill with the armor type determines what drops and what you can wear? That's great, but then if someone doesn't wear at least a piece of heavy, medium and light armor while grinding out skill levels, then what drops for them specifically becomes wildly different for each type of armor. If I am maxed in Heavy, but never wore light, I'd effectively get a piece of max level heavy and then starter light all off the same corpse/chest/quest. Additionally, without this leveling "gate" so to speak, people would go out and find the spots to grind out the best gear and be set potentially in a few days. If you're making gear that drops for you dependent on your skill level, then you've just added a leveling system, albeit a different looking one, but still a leveling system regardless.

    Other games like Asheron's Call had areas that were only usable by characters of a specific level range. There was a dungeon that needed a team of levels 10-20 characters and a team of level 40+ characters, iirc, in order to complete. Each team had to open gates for the other team while fighting through level appropriate mobs. Super interesting mechanic, and one that could be considered designed to have veteran players interact with new players. Without a simple character level system, entry into those areas is then determined by what? Combat skill level? Now the tool tip has to read something like, usable by characters with combat skill levels between X and Y, vs. just Levels 10-20 only. I imagine the coding behind such a restriction would be come more complex since you'd most likely need to create checks for each individual combat skill vs. just a general character level.

    Additionally, familiarity is a tremendous thing for humans. We're very good at learning new things, but we also tend to not take on multiple new tasks all at once very well. Which is why pretty much any type of training starts with the basics and slowly ramps up to more advanced. A leveling system is a super familiar thing for pretty much any RPG gamer. Making giant, sweeping changes, that make the game basically completely unfamiliar in any way is a good way to turn off a ton of people. ESO is a good example of a game that has a familiar enough system to make people feel comfortable, with also just enough slightly different variations on classic ideas to make the game feel different enough.

    Finally, a leveling system is a clear road to progression. Something else humans love is to have goals and see progress towards those goals. If you enter a game and say, first I want to hit max level, then any subsequent level you earn towards that goal is a little reminder that you're making progress. That's a nice and simple early goal. Once you're max level you can determine your next set of goals, and make those more complex, like specific set of gear, certain achievements, having all of the crafting recipes, etc. Don't discount the absolute focus of hitting max level as your first goal too. Without that, people can become mired in the problem of choice. Too many goals to work on all at once, and not sure which one to do first, is a problem for many people. This also coincides with the idea of starting simple and ramping up as you learn.
    As I said before, you could lock upgrades in hp, stats and similar to achievements easily enough.

    With gear you set a stat requirement like the first Diablo did and you can easily lock drops to that  instead of levels. That means you still need to unlock enough stat points from game activities to use the good stuff but you could focus more on specific stats that way.

    If you must have something that shows you the challenge level of a mob the game could rather easily compare your average DPS and hp with the mobs, it wouldn't be perfect but levelrange comparisions rarely are either.

    As for familiarity, what you say used to be true for MMOs and that a game was similar to Wow was actually a selling point in 2007. 2017 the same thing is not true, people stay shorter time in a game today then back then and while some people say more people play MMOs more then ever I doubt that, if you mentioned MMOs with regular gamers 10 years back most had tried it and didn't mind talking about it. Today it is mainly us old farts that play.

    Finally: a large amount of people indeed think a leveling process is a clear goal but the problem is that the whole thing backfire, because those people tend to quit as soon as they max that out. When you set a single easy goal in front of people far too many wont bother finding new goals, they just consider themselves done with the game and move to the next.

    The huge difference between the average MMO players today and 10 or 20 years ago is the longevity in the same game. If you started to play Wow in 2005 you probably played Wow in 2006 as well (if you stayed longer then a few hours that is some just hate it), same with EQ back in '99. Today the majority is gone after 3 weeks.

    And while the games being still so similar to eachother and using old mechanics that not always work well anymore is hardly the only problem it is a problem.

    Look on pen and paper RPGs, while D&D still is popular and Pathfinder is rather huge the majority of the P&P games (Vampire, Shadowrun, CoC, Cyberpunk, GURPS, BRP among others) use more modern and flexible mechanics instead. Leveless systems there is at least as popular as games with levels.

    Levels in MMOs as a general have turned into a long tutorial, if the genre want to last another 20 years they will need to go or at least change dramatically (a levelsystem like the P&P game R.I.F.T.S could still work). I will not say that the genre is dying or anything but it is slowly losing players and the one we got more often jumps game every month or so.
    Steelhelm
  • centkincentkin Member RarePosts: 1,461
    I dislike gearscore grind far worse than level grind.  Having to do a straight linear progression portaled simply by "do you have enough stuff from the last dungeon?" isn't fun.
  • etharnetharn Member UncommonPosts: 152
    I find those that are against it are lazy haha. I say lets go back to the days of swg where you can only lvl up certain skills by using them hehe. 
    Steelhelm

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  • DammamDammam Member UncommonPosts: 39
    I like the sense of journey I get playing RPGs (MMO or otherwise). I like the fantasy of setting out into some world, green and untested, and growing into an experienced (something). How restricted or free that journey should be is a separate discussion, but somehow I'd like to see my character transform in the process.

    In as much as levels provide a gauge and structure for this growth, then I am perfectly fine with them. However, levels are not the only way to provide this sense of growth, and a number ticking away, only to boost your stats relative to "lower level content", is not the kind of growth I'm looking for. Using levels to gate content is not necessarily the problem, but if encounters become indistinguishable at different stages, then I feel my journey has become stagnant.

    From a leveling stand point, GW2's levels seemed pointless to me. The first few levels felt significant, mostly due to unlocking skills. From level 30 to 80, however, the numbers ticking away felt pointless. My play style didn't change much throughout, nor was it necessary for it to change. Sure, the increasing access to traits allowed for some modification, but that was hardly necessary for most of the PvE. Yet even if the levels were removed, it wouldn't change the fact that my character's growth is cut short, early in the game. Having access to "end game" earlier is not a solution, as most forms of end game lack any meaningful progress. Gear grinds don't make for much of a journey since you are always revisiting the same experience (hence treadmill).

    So no, for me, leveling itself is not a turnoff; a lack of "meaningful" progress is.
  • t0nydt0nyd Member UncommonPosts: 504
    Playing a lot of grim dawn lately. As I experience content, I level. I almost don't even notice the leveling because it's a biproduct of experiencing the game. I play, I have fun, and I level. Mmorpg seem to stand against this organic way of playing and leveling. With an mmorpg you play, experience content, reach an area you are under leveled for due to a poor leveling curve or you level up to fast making current and future content trivial. 
  • TheDarkrayneTheDarkrayne Member EpicPosts: 5,189
    The problem I see with getting rid of levels and locking things behind achievements or content instead is that it forces players to do things they might not want to. Allowing progression through experience gain gives the player the option of doing whatever they like, whenever they like.

    TBH, I think that's the nail on the head right there. That's why it exists and that's why it won't ever go away.
    I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.
  • Loke666Loke666 Member EpicPosts: 21,441
    The problem I see with getting rid of levels and locking things behind achievements or content instead is that it forces players to do things they might not want to. Allowing progression through experience gain gives the player the option of doing whatever they like, whenever they like.

    TBH, I think that's the nail on the head right there. That's why it exists and that's why it won't ever go away.
    I am well aware of that, it is the best argument against it just like it works against locking the good gear behind dungeons and raids.

    But I think people would have more fun at average this way then by picking the easiest and fastest content. Everybody will play things they wouldn't otherwise play, some you wont like but other things can surprise you and actually turn out to be really fun.

    One thing though is that if you have instanced PvP like most games today you would be smart to only put PvP only things behind PvP achievement or too have 2 ways to unlocking those achievements, one PvP and one PvE. Having a achievements that forces PvE fans to try PvP a little is fine but I would stay away from forcing them to play as much time in PvP as PvE.
  • ShishamoShishamo Member UncommonPosts: 26
    I really don't see the point of a massive world without a grind. Just go play call of duty if you want it fast.
    Steelhelm
  • waynejr2waynejr2 Member EpicPosts: 7,768


    The problem I see with getting rid of levels and locking things behind achievements or content instead is that it forces players to do things they might not want to. Allowing progression through experience gain gives the player the option of doing whatever they like, whenever they like.

    TBH, I think that's the nail on the head right there. That's why it exists and that's why it won't ever go away.


    IMO, that kind of player is always going to find a way to bitch and moan about something.  They might cry/whine in the forums about being forced to do something for example.  They don't want to play the game, they want a game catered to their stupid whims.  We don't  need those types around.
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  • iixviiiixiixviiiix Member RarePosts: 1,968
    Why don't we take it easy and remove "bind on whatever" and stupid level restriction lock ?
    Those lock wasn't "fun" at all , heh .
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