There was a little talk about MMOs in this thread, and I think we should have a discussion about what you'd want in an MMO and how it could be done (looting system and PvP.
You want people to feel like they've earned something when they get a powerful item, but you don't want the item to be gamebreaking, you need a balance, but at what point is the best balance, rarity to power, because if an item is really rare, but very powerful compared to common items at that level, it becomes a big issue Pvp wise. However, if the (very rare) item is just as good, or only slightly better then the commons, you feel like youe effort has been wasted looking for the item.
I want more females in low amounts of armor showing of their breats. All I need.
Personally I think MMOs have been overdone and played out. I think there's a definite limit to what you can do in a world with several million people who all want to be the hero.
A hero, by his/her very definition, is only special in comparison to all the average people. So if nobody wants to be average, then nobody can be special, which makes MMOs retarded.
I feel like small-scale RPGs still have a lot of room for innovation and growth. One thing I'd really like to see (that I can't believe hasn't been done yet) is the actual presence of danger to towns and cities. How about when they say "clear the Den of Evil or they'll come kill us", they actually come kill you within a certain period of time. I was telling Apostate about this before: I dream of giant monster sieges on cities - thousands of enemies bearing down upon you while you and your friends defend the gates Helm's Deep style. I dream catapults smashing and guards dying while you rush frantically from gate to gate trying to hold the line so the enemy doesn't break through. I dream of an RPG where if you don't defend the city, all the townspeople die and aren't resurrected.
As I said, GW2 is doing this on a smaller scale, but it has so much less value because you're not a hero, you're just an average person in a huge world. The fact that no RPG designer has seriously considered the "city under siege" concept just shows how formulaic and stupid these games have become.
MMOFPSRPG. In the FUTURE! Eve is too slow and boring.
at the top of my head:
ive always wanted a huge emphasis on warfare/world pvp.
one of the things that first drew me to WoW (before it was released) was the idea of two factions battling it out in this huge open world.
yes i was interested in what happened to arthas but i really wanted to raid towns and stuff.
but it just wasnt rewarding enough to actually do it. yes people still attempted it once in awhile but the lag was terrible and the guards + players are too much to attack.
i always thought they should have added an instance or something where the faction leader would be in. the instance would be way in the back of the town and you shouldnt be able to use mounts once in the city so the players can help prevent you make it.
the leader would be a boss fight that was pretty difficult, if defeated then the opposing faction could implement penalties to the city for a week such as taxes on purchases or no auction house or something.
for world pvp, i always thought this was exciting but high level characters and guards ruined it.
i always thought the zone should be scaled down to the average level of characters that would be questing it. guards would be that level so they wouldnt one shot the enemy unlike WoW where the guards were like level 80 in a level 20 zone.
higher level characters would be scaled down to that level if they enter the zone with their gear-stats as well if possible.
i hate how time consuming the raids are. they always felt like a 2nd job. you are taking like 4-8 hours a night (depending on how hardcore you are) to attempt to clear new content or farm old.
i guess this would be something difficult to balance out.
i just always preferred doing heroic mode dungeons with friends.
I've written essays on this. I wish i was on my computer so i could share.
Hat truck almost articulated one of my key issues with mmos: if everyone is a hero, then no one will be.
I completely disagree that mmos are overdone and we need to move on. I just think people need to radically move away from the usual connotations of the term. All MMORPG means is that its a roleplaying game that's massively multiplayer and online.
Why does everyone have to be a hero? Because the game is based around almost moba like pvp which requires absolute balance. When you design the game so that balance is no longer structurally required you can create a truly immersive world.
In order to make a game like this you need a very different progression system. If everyone can level without stopping they will become heroes eventually. O think the best way to solve that is to use permanent death mechanics. Make the whole world harsh and unforgiving, so that you have to be pro to get anywhere beyond bandit thug or peasant.
The whole idea of an MMORPG needs to be reinvented. WoW did not invent the genre, and before it there were other thoughts that didn't include grinding for fifty hours and then playing combat minigames.
I think the idea of levelling being associated with roleplaying needs to die, followed swiftly by them moving out of and as far away from Tolkein fantasy worlds as possible. Commitment to the universe should be reinforced by increased political power and world knowledge, rather than tangible level bonuses. This really requires a living, breathing world that someone can become fully immersed in and even a part of, which is just not realistic.
The unfortunate truth is that the success behind modern MMOs is also their biggest flaw. Changing that would require more hubris than any developer with the capacity to change things has.
I'd sing you a song, but
I'm just a little hoarse.
MMOS are some of the highest budget games out there. It's very difficult to create a different type of experience that may or may not succeed when you have to find investors with huge pockets.
If it happens, it will probably be when a highly successful independent company that isn't publicly traded, like s2, decides to take their money from their previous endeavors and play a major gamble. Either that or they need really talented producers and a clever way of monetizing the game that sells it to the darling investors.
Last edited by Apostate; 07-11-2012 at 03:23 PM.
Another thing I liked about America's Army was that you had one life per match. When you died, you died. When you took damage, you couldn't heal it and it would hinder your combat abilities. It was realistic and hardcore and I liked that a lot. I would really like all out MMO warfare, with giant battles fighting it out with real death penalties. WoW doesn't actually have a PVP system outside of sanctioned arenas. I would love if elements like assassination, espionage, tactical skirmishes and such were available in an MMO. And instead of just factions, there could be guilds and nations with political elements involved. You could be involved in leadership, politics, strategy, or fighting. Obviously there's logistic restrictions, but I think it's still doable.
Very much agree about Tolkien universes getting quite dull. That and zombies.
edit: I feel, much like music, people will stick to design that creates addictive behavioral conditioning (grind and release highs from leveling and rare drops), instant appeal, and cliche thematic elements.
My thought is this: people buy the game at a low entry cost, say twenty bucks. Or fifteen. When they start they get a certain number of free lives. Every time their character dies, they essentially start over. Once they run out of free lives, every time they die they have to pay maybe five dollars to create a new character.
Now you have a nice way of making the game constant revenue, and you have a superb, very natural way of making people roleplay their characters more. Dying carries such a heavy price that everyone will avoid it, even with noob griefing toons.
The chess analogy is a good one. It demonstrates how silly balance is.
One thing i hate about most mmos is the class system. Why not give everyone the option to become anything? It's a cheap way of skipping the core part of heroes tales, the part where they are powerless orphans stealing bread.
The right game could make you feel like you were telling a truly heroic story, unique to yourself. Imagine what an accomplishment it would be to manage to become an ancient sorcerer who lives in a tower he built in the center of the city, advising the king-another player. And not only have you beaten everyone else to the position, but you invented the position. You designed the tower. No one will ever be another you.
Last edited by Apostate; 07-11-2012 at 04:00 PM.
I actually played a pretty neat (albeit bad, it had some good points) MMO called Flyff. It was Korean made, so much of the typical fantasy tropes weren't present despite it being fantasy themed. In it, you started as a Vagrant and after a certain amount of leveling up, you specialized into one of four classes. Then, after leveling up more, you specialized even further within those class branches. Picking your class at the start, immediately being a hero, and immediately skipping the hero's journey does take a lot away from connecting with your character. I'd definitely like more emphasis on the role-playing part of a role-playing game. I actually really like the RPG servers on WoW, come to mention it.
There's a text based rpg called urban dead that is mediocre in a lot of ways, but what it really does right is territorial warfare and emergent gameplay. Its a zombie game, and the core mechanic is that you can only do fifty actions a day, then your character passes out from exhaustion, helpless until you can log back in. So for humans the main goal is to survive by making buildings barricaded safehouses.
The whole map dynamically shifted between zombie and human control, and you had to be highly organized to survive. I thought it was a good model for what faction warfare should be like.
"home" doesn't mean much in any current mmo. It may offer some safety, but hardly. In order for faction battles over territory to mean anything, areas on the map need to offer way bigger benefits.
I want an MMO where I'm not paying hundreds of dollars just to realize I've wasted a lot of time and money grinding to a dead end in gameplay with the distinct lack of gratification over any sort of 'completion'.
I guess I don't want an MMO. I don't want Diablo IV either.
Last edited by Good_Apollo; 07-11-2012 at 06:45 PM.
The thing about making death permanent is higher leveled players farming little new players. I guess this can be worked around, though. With level progression being lower than "usual" and there being a sort of outlaw system? just two cents
Someone intent on griefing will always find a way.
The way i would do it is just make it not worth the time and risk. If most of the world is wilderness you should be able to avoid conflicts with dangerous foes when possible.
But in a brutal world, **** happens. Part of the rush is the heinous cruelty of the world. There doesn't need to be safety.
In the real world, the peasants are often murdered, but usually only with purpose. I think people who choose to ascend into power and then ride through the streets butchering innocents should have a right to do it. It gives a true hero the chance to stop a legitimate evil and do a truly good thing...something few games ever give you the chance of doing. The minute you start adding artificial protections and other "balance", you just have a game, no more significant than paddleball. But a game with actual moral choice? That's something that can actually be good for society, something that can make people feel good about being on this planet.