The Flaw of MMORPG's

Discussion in 'MMORPG Games: The Realms' started by Sorath, May 3, 2005.

  1. Sorath

    Sorath Well-Known Member

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  2. PeteG

    PeteG Well-Known Member

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    Interesting post, and you're certainly on the money. I've also pretty much lost interest in running on a treadmill for no apparent point (not that games have any point other than entertainment, but at least games like Rome Total War, Silent Hunter III or Battlefield 1942 have objectives beyond "level up so I can level up again"), and cancelled my WoW sub earlier today.

    There are a few MMORPGs on the horizon that look to be moving away from EQ's model, and my fingers are crossed that one of them will be good. Pirates of the Burning Sea (beta in Fall for a late 2005 release) and Darkfall Online (probably an even chance of being vapourware) are the ones I'm most interested in.
     
  3. Valdis

    Valdis Active Member

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    MMORPGs

    I largely agree with you, but I do think there are MMORPGs that do stretch the boundaries. A game like A Tale in the Desert II sounds like what you're aiming for somewhat. I know its not a more popular game, and I've never played it, but from what I've read it might be more along the lines of what you're looking for. The other game is City of Heroes. This game was truely fun to play. It looked good, it flowed good, the abilities were fun, and the costumes outrageous. While it could be a levelling treadmill, it avoided "loot" by making items fairly common. It also had a very nice interface and excellent group-seeking. In the end though, I did it all. I saw everything, I'd been everywhere. So it was time to move on.

    Joining TOG has been great for MMORPGs. Playing with Ventrillo running is getting closer to PnP (which I still play with some locals - actually DMing a 3rd edition DnD game now). You have friends to chat with, you have challenges out there (even if they are simplistic).

    My main complaint with MMORPGs is that you can't change the world really. Maybe you could build a house or take over a castle, but you can't really change the game. You can kill 10,000 orcs, it won't matter, there are 10,000 more waiting for you. In CoH you can arrest Dr. Vahzilok 50 times, and he'll still be out there doing evil. The game worlds aren't really dynamic like DnD was, and of course, they lack a large variety of challenges like DnD had. Traps, monsters, social situations, the environment, stealth, etc...

    Some day maybe they'll begin to approach the level of DnD, but it'll probably be a while. In the meantime, keep them dice rolling.
     
  4. Portents

    Portents Getting Started

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    Power Gamers Exist in RPGs As Ever

    Generally, Power Gamers began with RPGs.

    Personally I knew many RPGers who do not play rpgs for rp'ing fun who are essentially RPG Power Gamers.

    Not All DMs/GMs emphasise on rp'ing.

    Power Gamers began with RPGs. Power Gamers take a RPG, buy/borrow all the books/manuals, study the system and create a power gaming char who do all the thing today's Power Gamers do, they set to be the best and Pawn everyone and eberything.

    So in a way, MMORPGs do not differe much from RL RPGs.

    rgds
     
  5. Karmajay

    Karmajay Retired Advisor

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    If you are tired of the 'treadmill' you should give Guild Wars a shot.

    There is NO treadmill.

    Check out the GW forum for more info or questions.
     
  6. RedMan

    RedMan Retired Advisor

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    I'd disagree with what is said.
    I've never played EQ, so perhaps thats where it comes from, but, WoW was a huge leap in gaming from SWG

    Issues with 'games' that I've accepted for the time, and won't instantly chance

    a) World will be static, it may have some changing elements (eg SWG's new Rebel/Imperial's control)

    b) You are limited to what you can see, but not limited to what you can imagine. If the world doesn't let you turn door handles, can't mean you aren't imagining doing it.

    c) Games will have loopholes, you leap through them by your own choice, SWG had plenty, haven't seen that many in WoW. Some loopholes end you in a situation where any RPG is out the window

    Now, for just those points
    a) WoW hasn't moved forward much, SWG has started too, where a winning faction switches to controlling certain area's
    Where WoW has moved forward is the 'sense' of accomplishment, you pass on notes to a new seciton saying "This guys helped out here, you might be able to use him", but, it still indicates where you are coming from still have a problem. Which is expected, you fixed something but the main problem is there, lack of army.

    For the big quests where you go kill person Z, but afterwards, Z is still alive for others, just picture some new hotshot taking the place, you are not a 'hero' as such in WoW, merely a person doing tasks and heroic things, great, you overthrew Z, doesn't mean V wasn't ready to step up.

    Just how you look at it and accept the short commings of a computer.

    You could 'fix' the Defias problem by hiring players to continually clear the camps, thus, new players have no defias problem. Not exactly the point of the game though, its to continue on, there still aren't enough gaurds to keep the smugglers down, but you've done some good.

    b) Goes back to A, you see Z die, killed him, but see Z still alive for someone else, or see their armies still around. Just imagine V's stepped up to the plate. You did a great good, but you're only one adventurer, or a small group. Not a king leading armies.

    c) There's always that shortcut sitting there, you take it, you take the shortcut. If pen and paper gave you 10 wishes to get out of situations, and you take them, then the game losses its sense of challenge, well, there it is. Its just a person can cut off those shortcuts instantly if such a situation. a Game is much slower.


    Overall MMORPG from whence I started have changed. They are nowhere near what the human imagination can accomplish, but for me with 2 kids and the inability to getout and get friends together nightly, MMORPG are in no way bad :D. Which I'm sure you weren't saying.

    For advancement. WoW has catered for the average gamer.

    For 'graphics' or 'puzzles'

    Walking into Uldaman's ending chamber, well, you can not stop and think about it, or you can look around, make assumptions, ADVENTURE. I've been in plenty of groups where we've looked at a room and had to stop and think about it. And plenty of situations to call for that.

    Caves falling in around you, spilling out Trolls.
    Statues being brought to life
    Escorting people
    Bombs being throw around
    Alerters alerting people about
    Finding items (books on tables that start quests, bottles on the ground)


    All that can be built on and has been. All that needs thinking, but, its not a case of, oh, the caves are falling in, what do we do, as its real time, you have to work together and trust the other person as an individual, in Pen and Paper you would normally have the person next to you casting a spell, and no 'immediate' danger to yourself, so you have more time to collaborate or discuss. I think you include this in your problem solving problem. Well, in a game it can't be analyzed and solved, you have to react, and react differently to other scenarios where you can stop and think. If you do so, its likely you'll die in game. If you do with someone in front of you, you won't
    Unless your DM says times up, roll now, roll now, roll now.
    So, for puzzle solving I think you would have to exclude anything that involves something happening where you have to react.
    MMORPG considerably different to other comparisons.

    Only think of a puzzle where nothing happens at the start.

    Would I like to see more of 'stop and pause' puzzles, sure, and I seriously expect I will.
    I'm not sure about the Deadmines with the cannon, didn't do that part but I'm pretty sure you had to stop and put two and two together. It didn't tell you.
    But I think you'll fine MMORPG are where you have to real time react, with a group. Where decisions will not always be passed to you to discuss. And you are on a story, a story that yes, eventually peaks and, pretty much the game ends.

    For a MMORPG the story has to evolve. As they have gotten more complicated they have been bottled down with bugs that stop new content. But, from recent EQII and WoW, new content seems to be coming in enough. PLUS
    You can always experience a new adventure in another MMORPG, if you can get over the fact that to enjoy the game, you don't need to be the peak level.

    A sight often lost on players, who start the grind, then get disappointed at the end. When they should've been thrilled with the grind. And disappointed its stopped.
     
  7. RedMan

    RedMan Retired Advisor

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    Another thing I left off about EQII was the instant reaction stuff, something like heoric strikes, or something where a team had to co-ordinate things.

    SWG as well had changeable house, cities, mayors, a whole dynamic structure for RP.
     
  8. txamin

    txamin Getting Started

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    Looks like we are in the same boat, i've left all the new generation MMORPGs i've tried in just a couple of months, Lineage 2 being the record, i was bored after just a couple of days.

    I think games are only part of the problem, I think I'm too burnt with MMORPGs to keep playing them for long.

    Anyway, your article was a good read, you've got some points there.
     
  9. mackevili

    mackevili Getting Started

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    You guys should really take a look at EVE.

    The game has the same type of treadmill feel, but you dont even have to be playing for your skills to increase.

    Also the game focuses a lot on building an empire. You can build your own stations and then run your corp from your station. And then from there you product your products and sell to the rest of the people on the server.

    Its a lot of fun to build and to expand without having that feeling of OHHH MAN I HAVE TO PLAY ALL DAY TO BE BETTER THEN THOOOSEE GUYZ.

    Its very relaxing to play the game, and its going to be the only MMOG I will play (after playing WoW) and play action games when I feel the need. I thing that I love the most about MMOGs are the fact that they are persistant. Most action games make you feel like you are doign the same fun thing over and over. While fun, it leaves that solidity that a lot of people like.

    Give EVE a try if you are still the slightest bit interested in playing MMOGs. So far I am enjoying it very much!

    I will also agree, that any EQ clones out there are really boring. You grind and you grind for no reason at all.

    If you are still looking for that RPG feel of a game, give Guild Wars a try. Its basically Diablo 3, and it doesn't follow the normal MMOG equation of "Get The Biggest Sword Be the Biggest Warrior". Its very skill dependent and there is no best combination, seeing that there are 150 skills that your character can acquire, but you can only use 8 of them when you go into combat.

    Very fun stuff!

    -MACK
     
  10. shawn23233

    shawn23233 Getting Started

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    While I agree with you basically (came from a 4 year love affair with EQ) these new games are just too flat, too simple, too newb. They were created to attract the people that found EQ (and others Lineage2 etc) just too hard (they usually erroneously refer to these people as "casual gamers" and any game that is tough to level in is called a "grind" as if leveling were not actually THE GAME LOL.

    Games in general cost so much to develop today that noone is really willing to take a chance – they just do what they already know works. So they basically have taken an "ala cart" approach to development - keeping what EVERYONE likes - and dropping what ANYONE doesn’t like. I also call this the LCD or "lowest common denominator" syndrom and it is a direct evolution of the business mechanics behind these games and there distribution.

    So while the term MMORPG was used to define a game genre it is really more of a marketing direction now more then anything else (so they know what shelf to put the box on . . . etc). This same thing happened in the movie industry in the 70s & 80s and eventually the small developers who have to take chances will develop a structure for distributing and supporting there games outside the "major system" (ie ARENANET and NCSoft - although the retail chain is still a lockdown for indies). Once that happens we should see alot of real innovation in this industry.

    Finally I would say don’t stop playing MMORPGs, just stop playing games you don’t like. The marketers call Guildwars an MMORPG and it really isn’t either MM or RPG LOL. They have the problem of doing something somewhat innovative and taking a chance, so noone knows what exactly to market it as, and that’s a shame.

    However if Guild Wars is a success and it sure seems to be, it can help forge the development model (and create investment capital ) for others willing to take a risk and create a game with some elements that (hang on tight) some people may not like!
     
  11. Doresaad

    Doresaad Just Joined

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    I think one key failing of MMORPGs is the need to sink in huge amounts of time to compete with others (either directly via PvP or indirectly for loot and such). Some games (including WoW) have tinkered at the edges of this issue, but none to date have really addressed it. a MMORPG should allow you to compete against someone no matter how large the difference between time played. To put it simply, it should come down to making the right decisions, not how many hours in a day you're online.
     
  12. Gatoc

    Gatoc Active Member

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    me and my wife; vamplexi/py-or are still playing swg, and will be there till it dies. We tried eq2 for about a month, but lost interest
     
  13. blitcz

    blitcz Active Member

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    Sorath, I have read your article with interest.

    Having been on the other side of the producer/consumer table for some time, I can tell you that game industry execs, or "money backers" as you call them, care about only one aspect of RP: for them, it means "regular payment".

    (smileys omitted for a reason: none are due here)
     
  14. Kaindii

    Kaindii Active Member

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    You need to have a look at:

    http://www.progressquest.com

    The new breed of "fire and forget" RPG. :p

    Seriously, the problem I see with these games is they lack something the better old-time MUDs had - the ability for users to become wizards and build their own realms and quests. Of course it led to horrendous problems of game balance, but this could often be nutted out.
     

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