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How to reinvigorate an old MMO?

Old players have ran the content and new players are not interested in starting "late". One can argue that new content can be added to pique the interest of old players, but is there any other way to bring new people into an old MMO without starting the entire thing over again? 
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Comments

  • iixviiiixiixviiiix Member RarePosts: 2,087
    Depend on catch up mechanic and how player interface. Problem with most MMORPG to get new player is the power gap are too big and no catch up mechanic .

    Let say,  for example able to equip max level 50 gears at level 1 is pretty helpful . It don't need to be top gears , but normal gear offer great catch up , and the gears are cheap . A cheap max level gears can be throw as trash to NPC for a little of gold can be helpful for new players

    And free to access all contents no matter level is also a perk to get new player . You don't need to scale level of the content , just allow player to support each other is fine .
  • AmatheAmathe Member LegendaryPosts: 6,678
    Adding cool new races and classes helps. Oldsers don't have a max version of those and new people may be attracted to the new opportunities. 
    alkarionlog

    EQ1, EQ2, SWG, SWTOR, GW, GW2 CoH, CoV, FFXI, WoW, CO, War,TSW and a slew of free trials and beta tests

  • LithuanianLithuanian Member UncommonPosts: 413
    To add things that spice it up.
    Istaria's early days: there were events, like "Want to unlock this race? Fine, finish bridge to race continent". As far as I read - folks were happy, pitty developers failed to continue.
    SWTOR's choices that matter. Be dark side Sith, your companion may not romance such monster. Make choice and see it develops. See that wounded scumbag Republican marshall? End his miserable "life" for the glory of the Empire...or show that Empire rules by understanding even such douchebags and let him live, let him be a manifest of Sith Emperor's good will. If you let him live - well, he will mail you about his respect.

    Or add quests that require re-visiting old lands. Lotro had such content.

    There are many ideas, developers just need to look at existing games and see some cool things.
  • GorweGorwe Member EpicPosts: 6,489
    edited October 2019
    There are actually two problems here. (don't you dare Blight Town me... :) )

    1. Same old gameplay - this concerns mostly vets, but vets could feel like they've experienced everything a game has to offer. New modes of gameplay need to be present regularly. This is a more difficult problem imo. By far.

    2. Too much of a gap - speed up leveling and focus on the most important / impactful quests. Players wouldn't really miss helping a random Hobbit(or Twi'lek), but missing an opportunity to help Aragorn(or Keeper)...? Yes, that shouldn't be missed. Keep newbies immersed while involving them in all the activities the game has to offer. Voluntary activities, ofc.
    alkarionlog
  • NorseGodNorseGod Member EpicPosts: 2,634
    I don't know the answer.

    Using AO as an example, starting a fresh server, was like a dream. It was amazing and jammed packed with people. The future looked great.

    Then Funcom mismanaged it and the server died. They had it all and just threw it away. I still can't believe what happened.
    Hariken
    To talk about games without the censorship, check out https://www.reddit.com/r/MMORPG/
  • SovrathSovrath Member LegendaryPosts: 27,915
    NorseGod said:
    I don't know the answer.

    Using AO as an example, starting a fresh server, was like a dream. It was amazing and jammed packed with people. The future looked great.

    Then Funcom mismanaged it and the server died. They had it all and just threw it away. I still can't believe what happened.
    How did they mismanage it?



  • XiaokiXiaoki Member RarePosts: 3,358
    Expansions with new classes and new races and other new stuff usually grab people's attention.

    But, the biggest hurdle for any old MMO to attract and retain new players are the current players.

    I recently tried to get a friend into FF14 because of all the hype around Shadowbringers and it didn't go well. He picked Paladin, and when tanking dungeons didn't know the dungeon lay outs or boss mechanics so he got a lot of insults from max level people that were doing the Leveling roulette and kicked a couple times.

    I've had similar experiences when trying to go back to other old MMOs like ESO, SWTOR, EQ2 and Neverwinter.
    anemo
  • kitaradkitarad Member EpicPosts: 5,505
    NorseGod said:
    I don't know the answer.

    Using AO as an example, starting a fresh server, was like a dream. It was amazing and jammed packed with people. The future looked great.

    Then Funcom mismanaged it and the server died. They had it all and just threw it away. I still can't believe what happened.
    Okay I had meant to go back and play just got involved in life you know how that goes. So I too am very interested to know how they ruined it. I was about level 70 on like 8 characters and was slowly levelling them and I got a bit burnt out obviously, 8 is a lot. Same thing happened in City of Heroes I got 12 toons and I burnt out.

    What for heaven's sake did Funcom do?

  • MendelMendel Member EpicPosts: 3,665
    I'd think that revamping an old game would still be constrained by the mechanics, game play, and conventions of the original game.

    Using EQ1 as an example, they couldn't really add a new mechanic, such as Religion, without providing a lot of content that responded to the Religion functions instead of Combat and Magic.  There would need to be a lot of end game content altered to incorporate the need for Religion abilities so that there would be a reason for players to take on these new roles.

    It would be far simpler to create a new game featuring Combat, Magic and Religion than revamp (and test) all existing content.

    So, there appear to be practical restrictions to enhancing a game.  If the content revamp were changed drastically, players could feel that their characters were somehow diminished.  The raid tank that always dealt with the main threat couldn't handle the new/modified Religious mobs.  Guilds would immediately need to have high-level Religion characters (with high-end gear) to meet these new challenges.  Given an equal difficulty rate to level/acquire gear, such a radical change would effectively stop the game for most players until enough Religion characters were available.  Tanky McTank who only wants to tank, would have nothing to do for quite some time and may simply quit.  Significant, drastic changes could hurt retention; hurting revenue isn't in a company's best interest, which subsequently makes it very unlikely to see change at this scale.

    So, an older game has to be appreciated for what it is.  Changes can only come in minor doses, new races (cosmetic), new classes (functionality), expansions to add new content.  The game couldn't really add anything that changes (or departs from) the original game mechanics.  Companies are far more comfortable with "more of the same" than "original and innovative".

    It is difficult to really advance the genre while living under past ideas.



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

  • SovrathSovrath Member LegendaryPosts: 27,915
    Mendel said:


    So, an older game has to be appreciated for what it is.  



    pretty much this.
    Amathe



  • kitaradkitarad Member EpicPosts: 5,505
    edited October 2019
    Sovrath said:
    Mendel said:


    So, an older game has to be appreciated for what it is.  



    pretty much this.
    Of course it is . The game is warts and all the game you liked to play. Even the awful parts are what made the game memorable and enjoyable. If you take the bad parts away you dilute the experience and the game is no longer something you will remember and want. It is a hard thing to compromise and sometimes people say the best thing is not to go back because your memory preserves things way better than when you try to relive it. It just ruins the memory even if things aren't how you remember them.
    AmatheAlBQuirky

  • GeekyGeeky Member UncommonPosts: 399
    edited October 2019
    I think if Istaria: Chronicles of the Gifted did a complete engine overhaul and new/updated graphics.  The game would be great.  They should close it for a year.  Redo it all and relaunch.  I believe it would do great in todays market.
  • DibdabsDibdabs Member RarePosts: 2,879
    Really, without new suff, old games aren't going to attract myriads of new player.  Even then, new stuff is sometimes trying to revive something that has had it's heyday and it's never coming back.  I played EQ for years and loved it a lot, and a couple of years ago I thought "what the hell" and fired it up just to return to my forst love and try some 'new' expansions that had been released a few years before that.  The game stank. 
    AlBQuirky
  • NorseGodNorseGod Member EpicPosts: 2,634
    edited October 2019
    Sovrath said:
    NorseGod said:

    How did they mismanage it?
    kitarad said:
    NorseGod said:


    What for heaven's sake did Funcom do?
    The server is planned to be open for a year, with no transfers to RK5 when it closes. Keeping it open longer, depends if Funcom deems they are making money and players are interested. No idea what that benchmark is.

    They time-locked level caps for weeks at a time.

    They held a survey for when to launch expansions, which overwhelmingly was a "yes", but didn't launch SL expansion until months later.

    There are still many expansions and level caps to go.

    No way you will get a geared out toon to 220/30/70 before server closes.

    People lost interest and left overnight, seemingly. The only ones who remain are hardcore multiboxers who AFK in front of Miir in ICC. They do not talk, they will not help anybody. They are their own raid and control prices on all the important loot.

    I was in one of the last remaining active omni orgs. As per usual with guilds, the core group of friends do all the fun stuff, while the rest of us get left behind. 

    I even offered 10s of millions of credits for high-level org orgmates, to include the org pres directly, to kill ql210 pocket bosses (that I collected and tradeskilled) so that I could gear up my main with symbs. Nobody ever came. Hell, nobody even said a word in org chat. They just log off in hopes that I won't be online when they come back 30-45 minutes later.

    But, let me tell you the bitching I get if I don't log in my NT and level up their lowbie alts for hours while they go afk.

    Or "hey, you better not lose our towers". At lvl 150 in my lvl 60 gear.

    Then I offered $100M credits for an IS run in Trade Chat, which I thought was a trolling amount. But as it turns out, replies were mostly laughs and stating "lol that's too low".

    So while standing there in ICC for the second day, I realized I was begging. I thought to myself, "Wait a minute, I don't beg for shit."

    I didn't /orgleave, I didn't say anything in chat. I simply logged off. Unsubbed. Uninstalled. It was over.

    And that's the short explanation, check their forums and reddit to read more from other players.
    Hariken
    To talk about games without the censorship, check out https://www.reddit.com/r/MMORPG/
  • Reaver4525Reaver4525 Member UncommonPosts: 33
    edited October 2019
    I feel that most games fail not because of a lack of content, but because the mechanics were shit to begin with.

    That said, let's assume that a game is solid. Then the clear way forward is to produce more content. I'll give you a perfect example: What the Diablo 2 expansion pack was to Diablo 2. People agree it was a masterpiece. It added two new classes, and an entirely new riveting campaign.

    What does that tell you? You expand on the formula that worked before. You add classes, you add content. And you do it properly, not with garbage DLCs or simply raising the level cap (looking at you WoW). You do it the old way, you produce an expansion pack that's nearly the same size as the damn original game.

    But eventually, all games even masterpieces need to die. When a game just gets too old and there are graphical limitations to growth...Its more worth it to actually produce a sequel or remake than continue producing content.
    AlBQuirky
  • anemoanemo Member RarePosts: 1,862
    They could always make it a case of "It doesn't matter" like Guildwars 1 did.   You got to max levels and the simple/non-tradeoff version of gears before 40 hours were up (later expansions that was like less than 20).    Then you got to the end game where you pursued your own objectives like finishing the main stories, unlocking skills, or pursuing achievements.

    They could also work on a system similar to fighting games.   Where you just have a huge blob of skills at level 0.   Though to go through newbie content you only need to know a few things like a simple strike, an antiair, and your character's antifireball.    But at max skill levels you could see a few dozen mechanics shared between two people in a five minute fight.

    Practice doesn't make perfect, practice makes permanent.

    "At one point technology meant making tech that could get to the moon, now it means making tech that could get you a taxi."

  • kitaradkitarad Member EpicPosts: 5,505
    @NorseGod wow that is so bad. It went downhill fast. I left a few months ago. Sorry to hear that your hard work and time were squandered by your careless orgmates.

  • Reaver4525Reaver4525 Member UncommonPosts: 33
    Dibdabs said:
    Really, without new suff, old games aren't going to attract myriads of new player.  Even then, new stuff is sometimes trying to revive something that has had it's heyday and it's never coming back.  I played EQ for years and loved it a lot, and a couple of years ago I thought "what the hell" and fired it up just to return to my forst love and try some 'new' expansions that had been released a few years before that.  The game stank. 
    It really depends on the quality of the expansion packs. If they are really good, it can really reinvigorate a game.
  • MargaretavilleMargaretaville Member UncommonPosts: 56
    What for heaven's sake did Funcom do?
    What for heaven's sake has Funcom ever done?
    NorseGodHariken
  • DMKanoDMKano Member LegendaryPosts: 22,272
    In vast majority of MMOs- it's just not worth the effort nor development cost to try to reinvigorate the game by adding a ton of new content - especially if the game has already had 3 or more expansions

    This is why most studios will drastically reduce the dev team and only have about half a dozen of devs working on an aging game.

    What works the best are progression servers etc.. those tend to bring more players back than new content for an old game
    AlBQuirky
  • NorseGodNorseGod Member EpicPosts: 2,634
    kitarad said:
    @NorseGod wow that is so bad. It went downhill fast. I left a few months ago. Sorry to hear that your hard work and time were squandered by your careless orgmates.
    Thanks, but don't feel bad for me. Feel bad for AO. It's a really good game that deserves better management and direction.
    Hariken
    To talk about games without the censorship, check out https://www.reddit.com/r/MMORPG/
  • delete5230delete5230 Member EpicPosts: 6,181
    You people just reminded me of something.  It says if you have your old Vanguard disc you can play on our server.  I'm ripping my house apart trying to find the disc.... where is it !... I know I still have it..... Wife has a lot of junk !!!
  • AmatheAmathe Member LegendaryPosts: 6,678
    You people just reminded me of something.  It says if you have your old Vanguard disc you can play on our server.  I'm ripping my house apart trying to find the disc.... where is it !... I know I still have it..... Wife has a lot of junk !!!
    Try the garage. In a box full of old computer stuff. That's where it would be in my house. Trouble is, that box is buried under a ton of my wife's stuff. 

    EQ1, EQ2, SWG, SWTOR, GW, GW2 CoH, CoV, FFXI, WoW, CO, War,TSW and a slew of free trials and beta tests

  • delete5230delete5230 Member EpicPosts: 6,181
    Amathe said:
    You people just reminded me of something.  It says if you have your old Vanguard disc you can play on our server.  I'm ripping my house apart trying to find the disc.... where is it !... I know I still have it..... Wife has a lot of junk !!!
    Try the garage. In a box full of old computer stuff. That's where it would be in my house. Trouble is, that box is buried under a ton of my wife's stuff. 
    No just checked there, attic of the garage too... If I semi forget about it it will come to me at some point....Most likely at 2 am when I;m trying to sleep.

  • bcbullybcbully Member EpicPosts: 9,974
    I keep seeing these themes over and over all would be Answered if Wushu was played for a month. From PvP and pve coexistence to levels to OPs thread here.

    What a shame the p2w got so strong after 2 years.
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