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Do you think this is as far as MMORPGs will evolve?

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    KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    I think one reason why WOW has been successful is that it gives certainty for raiding - while I like the idea above, about a dynamic raid boss that wanders about that isn't really that practical for a lot of people. Like the people I used to raid with - a lot of them were (like me) working full time or had kids (not like me) and so they just wanted challenging raid activities that could be scheduled a week in advance, if not longer. I don't think you can do that with dynamic/random non instanced bosses so easily, so you'd lose a fair chunk of the adult raider market, perhaps.

    Kalkino on
    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
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    piLpiL Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    D1K has similar ideas to mine. I honestly would totally love being just a member of some player city, fighting off things that attacked the city, helping the NPCs build and rebuild, going off to deal with the troubles that plague that one town etc. For a change of pace, we'd be able to visit other people's cities help them with their problems or just try to sell our services for money for better equipment (or better yet, to sink into said player city) interactive player quests, where goblins periodically attack a town and maybe some player offers a bounty on them so that players will come to their town and kill off the goblins so the quest-giver doesn't have to deal with dead NPCs and damaged property. Epic events like the dragon attack mentioned above all-the-better!


    Things like this thread make me want to get back into MUDs. I always wonder what cool new idea someone has for one--I remember stumbling upon a turnbased tactical PVP SRPG one once that was great. It got harder and harder for me to find the unique ones though, and I wonder if anyone is still doing unique interesting things with it. What's the replacement? I always thought it was funny seeing innovations released in EQ patches or in the Next Great MMO (TM) that I saw six years ago in text. I suppose some people were (are?) doing things like that with NWN and NWN2 but there doesn't seem to be as much flexibility there. There's things like BYOND, which from what I've seen is so ugly and dated it might as well be text-based.

    I guess everyone with a hunger for indie MMO just makes their own from scratch or quits, unless there's some thriving something somewhere I don't know about.


    Edit: Post above: That is the sad balance of the entertainment industries. What DarkOne and I want, I beleive are arthouse games with blockbuster budgets. We want this depth--this change, but a game that takes the kind of money that only comes from appealing to everyone. I'm not sure if that metaphor quite works out but I explained so nyah. But just because its not likely doesn't mean I can't stop liking it. Of course, I think an idea to mesh with DarkOnes and be a semi-solution to your problem is to have other things to do. WoW is linear progression; one goal to "win": get better stuff (once you hit max level).

    There's a bit of side-"goals" such as acquire rare recepies, unique rep, and "trophies" (rare drop vanity pets, one level 70 of every class, etc), but the game is dominated by the one goal meaning that everyone who plays needs to shoot for that one thing, and so not being able to raid effectively means not being able to play (not entirely obviously, but you get the idea), and so translated means not getting to go fight the dragon means you can't good stuff and you're stuck. If you elaborate on the idea, then you might always be able to go find trouble with some friends, fight some international war vs players or NPCs, etc.

    Dark One referenced EvE, and having an erratic schedule or not being able to plan when your buddies are going to have their things raided doesn't keep people from playing that game, and so I think that's a good direction to look.

    piL on
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    Eat it You Nasty Pig.Eat it You Nasty Pig. tell homeland security 'we are the bomb'Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    The problem with that idea is that it if there's any kind of repetitiveness at all to the content, it'll just wind up farmed.

    In the dragon attack example, you'd wind up with "hardcore" player groups hunting down the dragon's lair early on and killing it off. Possible spawn points for the lair would be known, and checked once the dragon was attacking again, etc. And probably no one is going to invest the resources in developers to generate a ton of truly new content every few weeks.

    It's hard to have dynamic content unless it has some PvP component, even if it's just two sides competing to finish PvE content.

    Eat it You Nasty Pig. on
    hold your head high soldier, it ain't over yet
    that's why we call it the struggle, you're supposed to sweat
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    GlalGlal AiredaleRegistered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Also, isn't the entire point of an MMO that AI is redundant? A good MMO should be focusing on more PvP, not more believable PvE.

    Glal on
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    PoketpixiePoketpixie Siege Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    The point is to make it more challenging but it's a moot point because super awesome AI churns too many cpu cycles and brings the servers to a crawl. They almost have to focus on player interaction because of that...which may be a good thing for us in the long run.

    Poketpixie on
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    GlalGlal AiredaleRegistered User regular
    edited November 2007
    What single player RPG has super awesome AI, exactly?

    Glal on
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    PoketpixiePoketpixie Siege Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    I can't think of any off the top of my head. I do know that back in the day the UO devs tried to do some things with AI and it bogged the servers down so they had to turn those functions off. I suspect that while hardware has advanced it's still a limiting factor in providing top notch AI.

    Poketpixie on
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    SzechuanosaurusSzechuanosaurus Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited November 2007
    Glal wrote: »
    What single player RPG has super awesome AI, exactly?

    D...Deus Ex? Sort of?


    I get your point, though. D&D style RPGs aren't really about AI. They are about dice rolls and stats. I think I can revise my stance on MMOs. Really, I think the genre needs to become more divergent.

    Down one route, you get the 'classic' MMO, which is basically the online equivalent of getting together in the garage with a bag full of dice and a stack of hardbacked manuals and going on quests together. This takes advantage of the MMOs multiplayerness by giving you others to help you out with what would otherwise just be a very difficult single-player RPG. This could benefit from more believable AI - although the fun is primarily derived from questing together with friends and perfectly balancing a million different stats, I don't see why that wouldn't be more fun with a more challenging opponent.

    Down the other route, you get the PvP MMO. Games like Planetside and EvE have already laid the tracks for this, where the PvE is non-existent or is overshadowed by the PvP. This takes advantage of the MMOs multiplayerness by giving you more believable and meaningful battles.

    There's no gameplay reason why you couldn't necessarily combine the two in the same universe - EvE does and all on one cluster - but the technical constraints of better NPC AI and more tactile combat may prove restrictive as well as the focus of the development team being essentially split between two different types of game.

    Szechuanosaurus on
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    GlalGlal AiredaleRegistered User regular
    edited November 2007
    With regards to PVP, there's also the target market to consider- if you base the game on PVP then it's likely not worth having a fleshed out PVE system in place, since the PVP folks (mostly) won't care for it much, and PVE people (mostly) won't play it regardless.

    Glal on
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    Eat it You Nasty Pig.Eat it You Nasty Pig. tell homeland security 'we are the bomb'Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Glal wrote: »
    With regards to PVP, there's also the target market to consider- if you base the game on PVP then it's likely not worth having a fleshed out PVE system in place, since the PVP folks (mostly) won't care for it much, and PVE people (mostly) won't play it regardless.

    I think everyone can agree that WoW's system of seperate-but-equal means of pvp and pve progression is a design failure. It really balkanizes the population of the game world (although they've got the playerbase to support it), which is a Bad Thing.

    EVE's system is a good counter-example: it's largely a PvP game, but there's some PvE activity that goes alongside that, and they coexist because progression, such as it is, is pretty much PvP based. If EVE suddenly installed a completely PvE-oriented means of progressing, that wouldn't be a good thing for the game (especially when the playerbase is already fairly sparse.)

    Fusing PvP and PvE smoothly isn't something that anyone's figured out how to do yet, I don't think. You either wind up with games like EVE or Planetside (no PvE, or vestigal PvE as a basic grind/training tool), or like WoW (fundamentally a PvE game with PvP tacked on as a marketing gimmick.) The result is either a game without significant PvE, or a game that's made up of two seperate meta-games.

    The trick is that PvP's the cheapest, easiest way of making a game compelling and fresh in the long term, but the majority if the market seems to want a significant PvE or cooperative experience.

    The best way I can think of to merge the two gametypes would be to make a PvP oriented game like EVE, but incentivize some PvE activity. Like, if you've got a game with three set factions, your goal could be to capture and hold some territory so that your faction could exploit it for whatever resource or reward. The serious PvPers could concern themselves with controlling and defending an area, while PvEers did whatever was required to exploit it's resource (mining, building things, maybe operating warmachines that would give the people on the front lines an advantage, etc.)

    Basically, EVE with more structure. Give the PvPers regular objectives to fight over and compelling combat, and give the PvEers the incentive to play and be skilled at what they do. You'd never be totally "safe" as a PvEer in this game, because the enemies could always break through your lines somewhere or maybe there could be NJPC resistance leftover from the area's previous controllers, but you could do the PvE thang in a dynamic and interesting environment depending on how the PvP game was going.

    Eat it You Nasty Pig. on
    hold your head high soldier, it ain't over yet
    that's why we call it the struggle, you're supposed to sweat
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    delrolanddelroland Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Glal wrote: »
    With regards to PVP, there's also the target market to consider- if you base the game on PVP then it's likely not worth having a fleshed out PVE system in place, since the PVP folks (mostly) won't care for it much, and PVE people (mostly) won't play it regardless.

    PvE players outnumber PvP players. So if you "base a game on PvP" and leave out a fleshed-out PvE system, your game will essentially alienate about 70% of the MMO player market. Sorry folks, Carebear with optional PvP is where it is at in the future. And I won't be the least bit sad to see PvP go.

    On another note, solo and small group oriented guilds FAR outnumber raid guilds. Unfortunately, current games (*cough* WoW) relegate all the highest level content to solely raids. This elitist attitude segregates the casual player and tells him, "You aren't good enough for our game." Which brings up another irony: I find it vastly amusing that hardcore PvP'ers whine whenever high-end equipment is easy to get for the casual player. I thought PvP'ers prided themselves on their skills in PvP combat, but instead I see those so-called players whining like babies because now they actually have to play well to stay on top. Could you imagine TF2, only the person who has unlocked all of his achievements would start with double health? That would never work in an FPS, and so why do people expect it to work in MMO PvP content? That doesn't make much sense to me, and it sure as hell isn't fair.

    Back to addressing the OP, the next evolution in MMO's will be mostly PvE oriented with dynamic NPC's who not only fill the world with a believably-sized population, but who also react in a way that makes them more believable. Furthermore, the game will cater to small groups, from two to, say, eight people, and will feature unique content, whereas not everyone does quests XYZ. Either through a random content generator or through a dedicated writing staff (possibly players), or both, new content will be added constantly to fill gaps left by the completion of existing quests by players.
    Dyscord wrote: »
    EVE's system is a good counter-example: it's largely a PvP game, but there's some PvE activity that goes alongside that, and they coexist because progression, such as it is, is pretty much PvP based. If EVE suddenly installed a completely PvE-oriented means of progressing, that wouldn't be a good thing for the game (especially when the playerbase is already fairly sparse.)

    Perhaps the playerbase is sparse because the PvP-mostly standpoint doesn't work for a mainstream MMO. I mean, let's look at what PvP players want: no XP or gear grinds, no raid drama, instant action with no queues... Really, if someone wants TRUE PvP, they only have to look as far as the closest good online FPS.

    In MMO's, Cooperation > Competition. That's not to say PvP should be eliminated entirely, but there will never be an MMO anywhere near the scale of WoW that only caters to PvP, because Call of Duty 4 (or 5, or 6, w/e) will do it better every time.

    delroland on
    EVE: Online - the most fun you will ever have not playing a game.
    "Go up, thou bald head." -2 Kings 2:23
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    SzechuanosaurusSzechuanosaurus Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited November 2007
    delroland wrote: »
    In MMO's, Cooperation > Competition. That's not to say PvP should be eliminated entirely, but there will never be an MMO anywhere near the scale of WoW that only caters to PvP, because Call of Duty 4 (or 5, or 6, w/e) will do it better every time.

    I kind of half do, half don't agree with you there. Or 30/70 or something. I see the PvP MMOs going down the route of Planetside in the future. FPS is the single most popular genre on PCs (and probably consoles) by a massive margin. Online FPSs are massively popular. Planetside jumped the gun slightly and put a lot of FPS players off by it's limited damage model and considerable lag. Recent, non-persistent online FPS games have begun to redress the issue, with games like BF2 spanning huge maps and pushing the player numbers up. Ultimately, it doesn't take much imagination to predict that in probably only a few years time there will be an online MMO FPS with a persistent world and hundreds of thousands of players online at one time (most likely controlled by sharding the battlefields across several servers, so essentially you are playing Battlefield 3 only each map is part of a larger persistent world and you can travel between them provided the population cap hasn't been hit at your destination).

    Whether this type of game is likely to include content that would also attract the traditional MMO players, such as a player-driven economy, industrial careers, stat-based character, skill progressions etc. I couldn't guess at (although BF2 already does the later, so I'd imagine it'll be something we see more of in online FPSs). That might be overly ambitious in the near future but simply making a persistent world, massively multiplayer, combat orientated FPS is a completely likely prediction.

    Of course, then people will argue over whether it actually is an MMO or not more than they actually play the game.

    Szechuanosaurus on
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    GlalGlal AiredaleRegistered User regular
    edited November 2007
    FPS is the single most popular genre on PCs (and probably consoles) by a massive margin.
    Far, far from the truth.

    Glal on
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    SzechuanosaurusSzechuanosaurus Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited November 2007
    Glal wrote: »
    FPS is the single most popular genre on PCs (and probably consoles) by a massive margin.
    Far, far from the truth.

    Not that far from the truth. Ok, so consoles yeah maybe, but that PC list is basically all time ever. Right now, or on a month by month basis The Sims is always going to be top of the PC chart because people are faggots, but total number of FPS sales is still going to be second place at least. Maybe not for any one FPS, but total number sold over a month or year of all games in the FPS genre. FPS is basically the second most mainstream game type. Or third, perhaps after puzzle games and The Sims. But puzzle games and The Sims have a very limited MMO potential.

    For evidence, search for PC games charts for this week. There's typically between four and six FPS games in there. Every chart I can find has at least one FPS for every Sims expansion pack on the list and at the moment FPS games are sometimes topping the chart, knocking The Sims down to third or fourth position.

    It's no secret that if you make a half-competent FPS, you'll make bread but for most other genres you really need to either have a well-known IP as a crutch or make and outstanding game (or both) to get the sales in. Anybody who can successfully combine an FPS with a workable MMO model is going to be rich. It's a no-brainer (just like most FPS games).

    Szechuanosaurus on
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    ArgusArgus Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Talking about the dragon-attacking-the-village example from the last page, there was something similar to that that FFXI got right. I don't remember the name, but I do remember that there used to be this huge tree mob that was like a normal monster but 3x as large, super high health, and had no limit on where it could go, so it would wander through various areas, with brave players attempting to kill it. It could even go into town, with hilarity ensuing as a group of people inevitably surrounded it and slowly got slaughtered since it was so high level. That sort of thing seems like it would be an easy thing to design, and I'd like to see more of that in MMO's.

    Argus on
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    AxenAxen My avatar is Excalibur. Yes, the sword.Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    I can certainly see room to improve quests. Take BGII for example. I want quests like that in an MMO. Quests that don't always involve fighting. Quests that you can talk your way out of. Quests that involve puzzles and traps. When I go into a dungeon I want it to feel like one. I don't need to have an enemy every 5-feet. Why not a crypt that is empty of monsters, but halfway through or hell when you get to the end and loot all the awesome treasure, all the corpses rise up and you have to fight your way out?

    Little bit of a rant there. Anyway, point is quests in MMOs can stand to be improved substantially.

    Axen on
    A Capellan's favorite sheath for any blade is your back.
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    SabreMauSabreMau ネトゲしよう 판다리아Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    One thing I'd like to see more of is actual AI-directed organizations with dynamic interaction with players helpful enough or notorious enough to cross their notice. At the highest scale, kingdoms remembering specific heroes of renown and contacting them for special missions that further their goals (and which put them in direct conflict with foreign nations doing the same thing with mercenary players of their own). With local, less wealthy and influential NPCs or NPC organizations offering similar things all the way down to entry-level players. A place where shopkeeper competes against rival shopkeeper, tradesman guild against rival tradesman guild, manor against manor, kingdom against kingdom, empire against empire, hostile outside forces against all. And within this system, the NPC organizations make decisions; how best to increase influence, expand territory, gain power, and which players do they trust with the task of helping them do so? And, while reacting to outside forces,

    As with many hurdles of this nature, the difficulty would be technology and scale. Without people behind the scenes, manually directing the overall course of each group, dynamically simulating that many of them in competition with each other (while still retaining overall game balance) would probably require a lot more processing power than is available. Not to mention that dynamic generation of quests and tasks that expire once completed (the Everstill Bridge has been under construction for three years now, and players have more than supplied the requisite pikes and rivets by now) would need a lot of robust AI scriptwriting.

    SabreMau on
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    GlalGlal AiredaleRegistered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Glal wrote: »
    FPS is the single most popular genre on PCs (and probably consoles) by a massive margin.
    Far, far from the truth.
    Not that far from the truth. Ok, so consoles yeah maybe, but that PC list is basically all time ever.
    Yes, and it has 12 first person shooters on a list of 58 games. And those first person shooters include gems like Doom 1, Doom 2, Duke Nukem 3d and other games so old they're nigh irrelevant to current maket trends.

    Glal on
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    SzechuanosaurusSzechuanosaurus Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited November 2007
    Glal wrote: »
    Glal wrote: »
    FPS is the single most popular genre on PCs (and probably consoles) by a massive margin.
    Far, far from the truth.
    Not that far from the truth. Ok, so consoles yeah maybe, but that PC list is basically all time ever.
    Yes, and it has 12 first person shooters on a list of 58 games. And those first person shooters include gems like Doom 1, Doom 2, Duke Nukem 3d and other games so old they're nigh irrelevant to current maket trends.

    Exactly, the whole list is irrelevant to current market trends. As per the topic of the rest of my post.


    WTF? VO_oV

    Szechuanosaurus on
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    GlalGlal AiredaleRegistered User regular
    edited November 2007
    How is the history of game sales irrelevant? But, baby steps.

    Historically, first person shooters have been the domain of more serious gamers, both because they're not instantly approachable and because they need a rather hefty machine to play compared to a lot of the other genres. Said gamers are also a documented minority in the grand scheme. So, either you're suggesting that FPSs have surged in popularity with the crowd who plays The Sims and PopCap games, or that said serious gamer population has overtaken the casual gamers'.
    Elaborate, please.

    Glal on
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    ScooterScooter Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    PVE RANT:

    However, if by chance some player stumbles on the dragon's lair, which will be a difficult to find, in game location, they can then bring a massive raid and actually kill the dragon. It will still be noninstanced, but it will need to be an epic, coordinated effort by some of the game's best heroes. When that happens, the dragon will actually stay dead. Only one player will get to hack off it's head and bring it into town, but any players in the same raid will automatically gain a share of the reward regardless of when that player turns it in. There would be an actual graphic (ie, the dragon's head would literally be lashed to a cart or something).

    The dragon will remain dead for a couple of weeks, but after a while, another dragon with a completely different name/possible color scheme will begin havok anew).

    Stuff like that would be awesome.


    Uh-huh...so, in a game with thousands of players on every server, you want developers to spend time making content that only 2 or 3 dozen people are going to be able to experience every few weeks? I suppose it'd feel real fun if you were one of the guys who can play 12 hours a day and can join the most leet raiding guild...


    Also, the whole concept of something being "rumored" or "hard to find" for more than 2 hours is silly. This is the internet, and there's file-divers, forums and wikipedias. In CoX, for example, there are exploration badges. A lot of these would be basically impossible to find by looking for them in-game or stumbling on them. But by time the new badges show up on live servers, their location has been known to everyone who cares for weeks already. There's only so many locations a dragon's cave should be, and with hundreds or thousands of people checking them, the dragon will be dead the same day it's born.

    Scooter on
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    SabreMauSabreMau ネトゲしよう 판다리아Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Scooter wrote: »
    PVE RANT:

    However, if by chance some player stumbles on the dragon's lair, which will be a difficult to find, in game location, they can then bring a massive raid and actually kill the dragon. It will still be noninstanced, but it will need to be an epic, coordinated effort by some of the game's best heroes. When that happens, the dragon will actually stay dead. Only one player will get to hack off it's head and bring it into town, but any players in the same raid will automatically gain a share of the reward regardless of when that player turns it in. There would be an actual graphic (ie, the dragon's head would literally be lashed to a cart or something).

    The dragon will remain dead for a couple of weeks, but after a while, another dragon with a completely different name/possible color scheme will begin havok anew).

    Stuff like that would be awesome.


    Uh-huh...so, in a game with thousands of players on every server, you want developers to spend time making content that only 2 or 3 dozen people are going to be able to experience every few weeks? I suppose it'd feel real fun if you were one of the guys who can play 12 hours a day and can join the most leet raiding guild...


    Also, the whole concept of something being "rumored" or "hard to find" for more than 2 hours is silly. This is the internet, and there's file-divers, forums and wikipedias. In CoX, for example, there are exploration badges. A lot of these would be basically impossible to find by looking for them in-game or stumbling on them. But by time the new badges show up on live servers, their location has been known to everyone who cares for weeks already. There's only so many locations a dragon's cave should be, and with hundreds or thousands of people checking them, the dragon will be dead the same day it's born.
    With current MMO world sizes, yeah, but if you had a big world, a very big world, with concentrated population centers but a WHOLE lot of wilderness space around, you may be able to pull it off. Not empty-space, every-field-looks-the-same kind of thing, but enough unoccupied space that it's feasible for a band of brigands or a rogue wizard or even a dragon to move through, stop for a while, and move on. Most of the time, nothing's there. Maybe some wild animals or trash mobs or whatnot. But if you know how to track what you're looking for and you come across their trail, you'd be able to find it.

    Stuff like this would almost have to be dynamically generated so that it doesn't have a chance to be a simple look-it-up-online exercise to solve quests. Say the dragon carved his own cave out of a secluded hillside last night. This hill is maybe an hour's walk out of the closest town, which itself isn't the most important town in its region. There was nothing there yesterday, but now there's a cave, sometimes with a dragon in it. You could stumble into it, you could track him to his lair, you could hear rumors, you could have scout reports, etc....

    SabreMau on
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    PonyPony Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    am i the only person who is looking forward to a day when augmented reality and geocaching combine to form some kind of crazy new style mmorpg

    Pony on
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    SzechuanosaurusSzechuanosaurus Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited November 2007
    Glal wrote: »
    How is the history of game sales irrelevant? But, baby steps.

    Historically, first person shooters have been the domain of more serious gamers, both because they're not instantly approachable and because they need a rather hefty machine to play compared to a lot of the other genres. Said gamers are also a documented minority in the grand scheme. So, either you're suggesting that FPSs have surged in popularity with the crowd who plays The Sims and PopCap games, or that said serious gamer population has overtaken the casual gamers'.
    Elaborate, please.

    I did elaborate, in my earlier post. Here's your baby steps saying as you're finding my point hard to comprehend

    1) FPS games feature in weekly top ten sales charts in quantities matching that of Sim expansions.
    2) They typically outnumber RPG games/expansions (including MMO RPGs) 2:1 in said charts and sports titles, at minimum, 4:1.

    Conclusion: FPS games sell well on the PC.

    3) FPS games which feature a good online component sell particularly well (eg - Half Life was third in your top ten all time game sales and this is due to it's extended popularity thanks to the Counter Strike online mod which extended the games sales lifespan years longer than it would've lasted. Games such as the Unreal Tournament tend to be ever-present in the charts).

    Assumption: It's not a forgone conclusion, but considering the tact that certain FPS games are taking with their online component (eg BF2, Planetside) it's not a stretch to imagine that certain developers consider a FPS MMO to be a potential money machine.


    Does that...I dunno...does that seem like a hard concept to grasp?

    Szechuanosaurus on
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    GlalGlal AiredaleRegistered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Maybe if you didn't base all your conclusions on anecdotal evidence I would stop ignoring it as irrelevant. More so if it didn't fly in the face of every easily-Googlable PC game sales chart for the past few years.
    That said, even those numbers ignore games not sold on shelves or via larger distribution networks. PopCap alone has had over 150 million of its games downloaded, then there's sites like Neopets, Flash games, and at the end of the day, Solitaire and Minesweeper. Claiming first person shooters are more popular than something like webgames is just loco.

    As an aside, having the first FPS on the list of best sold games take 5th places doesn't exactly chime with "the single most popular genre on PCs". Unless you're going to argue that there are simply so many first person shooters being played that their individual numbers don't add up enough.

    Glal on
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    meekermeeker Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    reVerse wrote: »
    Arkady wrote: »
    Or hell, maybe MMO devs just don't give 2 shits about AI.

    They really don't. What's the point of having complex AI when simple

    1) if Player comes within 20 yards, Attack
    2) whenever cooldown is complete, use Spell
    3) When health is below 20%, Flee

    is more than enough.

    I see this and realize I love it when Bane hide behind cover and try to flank me in Tabula Rasa.

    meeker on
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    EliteLamerEliteLamer __BANNED USERS regular
    edited November 2007
    delroland wrote: »
    Glal wrote: »
    With regards to PVP, there's also the target market to consider- if you base the game on PVP then it's likely not worth having a fleshed out PVE system in place, since the PVP folks (mostly) won't care for it much, and PVE people (mostly) won't play it regardless.

    PvE players outnumber PvP players. So if you "base a game on PvP" and leave out a fleshed-out PvE system, your game will essentially alienate about 70% of the MMO player market. Sorry folks, Carebear with optional PvP is where it is at in the future. And I won't be the least bit sad to see PvP go.

    On another note, solo and small group oriented guilds FAR outnumber raid guilds. Unfortunately, current games (*cough* WoW) relegate all the highest level content to solely raids. This elitist attitude segregates the casual player and tells him, "You aren't good enough for our game." Which brings up another irony: I find it vastly amusing that hardcore PvP'ers whine whenever high-end equipment is easy to get for the casual player. I thought PvP'ers prided themselves on their skills in PvP combat, but instead I see those so-called players whining like babies because now they actually have to play well to stay on top. Could you imagine TF2, only the person who has unlocked all of his achievements would start with double health? That would never work in an FPS, and so why do people expect it to work in MMO PvP content? That doesn't make much sense to me, and it sure as hell isn't fair.

    Back to addressing the OP, the next evolution in MMO's will be mostly PvE oriented with dynamic NPC's who not only fill the world with a believably-sized population, but who also react in a way that makes them more believable. Furthermore, the game will cater to small groups, from two to, say, eight people, and will feature unique content, whereas not everyone does quests XYZ. Either through a random content generator or through a dedicated writing staff (possibly players), or both, new content will be added constantly to fill gaps left by the completion of existing quests by players.

    Dyscord wrote: »
    EVE's system is a good counter-example: it's largely a PvP game, but there's some PvE activity that goes alongside that, and they coexist because progression, such as it is, is pretty much PvP based. If EVE suddenly installed a completely PvE-oriented means of progressing, that wouldn't be a good thing for the game (especially when the playerbase is already fairly sparse.)

    Perhaps the playerbase is sparse because the PvP-mostly standpoint doesn't work for a mainstream MMO. I mean, let's look at what PvP players want: no XP or gear grinds, no raid drama, instant action with no queues... Really, if someone wants TRUE PvP, they only have to look as far as the closest good online FPS.

    In MMO's, Cooperation > Competition. That's not to say PvP should be eliminated entirely, but there will never be an MMO anywhere near the scale of WoW that only caters to PvP, because Call of Duty 4 (or 5, or 6, w/e) will do it better every time.

    I don't much like NPCs and I wish they would do away with most of them. If the game is NPC driven might as well be single player. I really want a game that forces player interaction like EverQuest or Anarchy online which forces you to look for a group to do things.

    EliteLamer on
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    delrolanddelroland Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    EliteLamer wrote: »
    I don't much like NPCs and I wish they would do away with most of them. If the game is NPC driven might as well be single player. I really want a game that forces player interaction like EverQuest or Anarchy online which forces you to look for a group to do things.

    So rather than going forward, you want to go backward. I can tell you, right here, right now, that isn't going to happen.

    Let's look at an MMO as a sandbox. Designer-made content would be the equivalent of giant, elaborate sand castles, whereas most player-made content would be a big mound of dirt with some holes in it and a nice, juicy turd sitting on top, with the player standing nearby, chortling, "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Poo! Huh huh huh!"

    Look at the various NWN modules out there. Where there are a select few that are done really well, for the most part, they are garbage. Could you imagine amplifying that to the number of tens of thousands of characters per server?

    You have to think of NPC's as the window dressing. If done right, they can help create a very immersive environment. Because most players don't want to be the shopkeeper. They would rather be out in the wilderness questing. That, or you would get the problem that you see in Ragnarok Online, where the shopkeepers clutter main cities so badly that it is almost impossible to navigate in town.

    That's not to say there should be no player made content, but if there is, it should be limited in scope, and it should definitely be overseen by a company quality control team.

    What I would rather see is a player driven society. I remember a MUD I was goofing off with a while back where the GM's in the game were an actual character class that could go out and adventure as well as resolve player disputes on the spot. Furthermore, there was no abuse of the system, because these Sentinels (the name of the class) were self-policing, and the penalties for screwing up as a Sentinel were greater than the penalties that a Sentinel could inflict.

    Also, in MUD's, a player could attain the status of "Wizard", which essentially made the player a GM at that point, allowing him to add new content. He could also throw down and go through a dungeon if he wanted to flex his godlike muscle, and many continued to do so. So imagine if, rather than raid content, once a player hit the cap, they could go through a series of quests significantly harder than what is normal, and if they complete those quests, and gain the approval of the company GM's and fellow "Wizards", they graduate to this status. This would give hardcore players something to do besides browbeating less experienced players in the Arena and joining raid guilds in which everyone is a big asshole towards each other all in an attempt to grind gear.

    delroland on
    EVE: Online - the most fun you will ever have not playing a game.
    "Go up, thou bald head." -2 Kings 2:23
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    delrolanddelroland Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Glal wrote: »
    and at the end of the day, Solitaire and Minesweeper

    :lol:

    That's what we need: Microsoft should make a shitty MMO, bundle it with Windows Vista XP09, and make everyone subscribe to Vista Online for $20/mo just to be able to use the operating system. Largest subscriber base EVER.

    delroland on
    EVE: Online - the most fun you will ever have not playing a game.
    "Go up, thou bald head." -2 Kings 2:23
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    claxtonclaxton ClubPA regular
    edited November 2007
    Glal wrote: »
    With regards to PVP, there's also the target market to consider- if you base the game on PVP then it's likely not worth having a fleshed out PVE system in place, since the PVP folks (mostly) won't care for it much, and PVE people (mostly) won't play it regardless.

    you've never played eve. The PvE is the worst I've ever seen but people still do it.

    claxton on
    Its not enough to win. You want nothing left of your enemy but a skull nailed to a fence post so everybody understands the cost of crossing you. -Durga
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    EliteLamerEliteLamer __BANNED USERS regular
    edited November 2007
    What I would rather see is a player driven society. I remember a MUD I was goofing off with a while back where the GM's in the game were an actual character class that could go out and adventure as well as resolve player disputes on the spot. Furthermore, there was no abuse of the system, because these Sentinels (the name of the class) were self-policing, and the penalties for screwing up as a Sentinel were greater than the penalties that a Sentinel could inflict.

    Also, in MUD's, a player could attain the status of "Wizard", which essentially made the player a GM at that point, allowing him to add new content. He could also throw down and go through a dungeon if he wanted to flex his godlike muscle, and many continued to do so. So imagine if, rather than raid content, once a player hit the cap, they could go through a series of quests significantly harder than what is normal, and if they complete those quests, and gain the approval of the company GM's and fellow "Wizards", they graduate to this status. This would give hardcore players something to do besides browbeating less experienced players in the Arena and joining raid guilds in which everyone is a big asshole towards each other all in an attempt to grind gear.

    I have played muds like that too but getting GM mode is just about impossible with a small player base. Think about how hard it would be with a huge player base. Think of Jedi on SWG, everyone hated it because it was just about impossible.

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    delrolanddelroland Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    EliteLamer wrote: »
    I have played muds like that too but getting GM mode is just about impossible with a small player base. Think about how hard it would be with a huge player base. Think of Jedi on SWG, everyone hated it because it was just about impossible.

    The difference is that everyone wants to play a jedi, whereas not everyone wants the responsibility that comes with being a Wizard. It also offers the possibility of controlling the direction of the game for those players with the time and the desire to do so. Jedi sure as heck couldn't, because they were just another class option. Plus, in a self-policing system, Wizards who are abusive of their abilities or who slack off too much would just lose their Wizard status.

    delroland on
    EVE: Online - the most fun you will ever have not playing a game.
    "Go up, thou bald head." -2 Kings 2:23
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    piLpiL Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    delroland wrote: »
    Also, in MUD's, a player could attain the status of "Wizard", which essentially made the player a GM at that point, allowing him to add new content. He could also throw down and go through a dungeon if he wanted to flex his godlike muscle, and many continued to do so. So imagine if, rather than raid content, once a player hit the cap, they could go through a series of quests significantly harder than what is normal, and if they complete those quests, and gain the approval of the company GM's and fellow "Wizards", they graduate to this status. This would give hardcore players something to do besides browbeating less experienced players in the Arena and joining raid guilds in which everyone is a big asshole towards each other all in an attempt to grind gear.


    Sort of. I'm not denying that MUDs existed where you could just get to be a wizard, but mostly becoming a wizard was a matter of being like one of forty people that played that game and one of ten people that played long enough to get to that level, so the GMs would know you and decide to let you become a GM. Totally unattainable in an MMO environment, but not quite something to be expected. In most of the large (200+) MUDs, you could probably get to max level play for two years and still never become part of the team. In some MUDs, you could get to level 10, but the place is new and the GM likes you enough to go ahead and say, "Why don't you build some stuff for us." It's really just a result of smaller playerbase.

    That said, while not quite wizbit level, it would be cool if you could get to a point where you could make things for people. Unfortunately, the two playstyles aren't necessarily related, and most people that would be willing to grind and work and play the game probably wont care about that, and most people that would want to just build cool things for other players would run into the fact they have to shit into socks to get there.

    Of course dispute settlers is kind of nice but ultimately pointless. There aren't really any disputes in WoW except for ones that would require a person that couldn't really be a player (ex. "Uh, my gold disappeared." "That guy threatened my mother's life.") There are others in other games I suppose, but most of them are taken care of by good trade systems.

    I do think I remember hearing stories of people becoming GMs in EQ just because they hung out in the chatroom at downtime, and then later at other times and made friends with the other GMs. I think that's most similar to MUD-style wizards, simply because that's usually the motivation for making you a wizard, not that you managed to poopsock to 120.

    piL on
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    KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    I'd like to see a game with sophisticated yet guided social structures playing as much as a part as personal classes or w/e your MMO of reference has. The social organisations/structures would ideally be as much of a focus of player energies as say their class is in a WOW type MMO

    Each of the organisations would have a bunch of rules and rights that would make them attractive as a pooler of resources/protection/status/etc, so one might have to belong to a bank corporation in order to loan money to someone else. Or to craft a MegaDeathBot one might need to join a crafter corporation. Or perhaps only Clans could own land, but they could lease it out to other organisations or players. Or to kill dragons one must belong to a Adventurer's Company. Etc

    Then on top of that there would be guild organisations that regulated/policed the organisation classes - these would be selected/elected/appointed from/by the players/organisations. They would be able to set rules (in limited areas) for that organisation class. For example, that all banks must keep 5% of their networth in magic sparkle diamonds, or be dissolved; or whatever.

    In theory one could build an elaborate social structure that might be quite engaging. Or it could just be guild drama x 1million.

    Kalkino on
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    GlalGlal AiredaleRegistered User regular
    edited November 2007
    claxton wrote: »
    Glal wrote: »
    With regards to PVP, there's also the target market to consider- if you base the game on PVP then it's likely not worth having a fleshed out PVE system in place, since the PVP folks (mostly) won't care for it much, and PVE people (mostly) won't play it regardless.
    you've never played eve. The PvE is the worst I've ever seen but people still do it.
    I did play it, and this is why I said mostly. You're not gonna tell me that more than a fraction of EVE's population does PVE-only?

    Glal on
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    SzechuanosaurusSzechuanosaurus Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited November 2007
    Glal wrote: »
    Maybe if you didn't base all your conclusions on anecdotal evidence I would stop ignoring it as irrelevant. More so if it didn't fly in the face of every easily-Googlable PC game sales chart for the past few years.

    Maybe I have a different google from you. Ever time I google PC Game sales chart I get a slew of hits with several FPSs in the top then.
    That said, even those numbers ignore games not sold on shelves or via larger distribution networks. PopCap alone has had over 150 million of its games downloaded, then there's sites like Neopets, Flash games, and at the end of the day, Solitaire and Minesweeper. Claiming first person shooters are more popular than something like webgames is just loco.

    Yes, well, where exactely are you going with this? You think the future of MMOs is a free flash-based minesweeper clone? M'kay. I'm sure the major software houses are going to be pleased as punch to hear that. Nice and cheap to make. Not sure about the revenue options though.
    As an aside, having the first FPS on the list of best sold games take 5th places doesn't exactly chime with "the single most popular genre on PCs". Unless you're going to argue that there are simply so many first person shooters being played that their individual numbers don't add up enough.

    The 'single most popular' was a moment of madness. You're arguing an irrelevant point though, unless you think the future of MMOs is The Sims Online, because we've been there and all agreed it wasn't the future.

    Szechuanosaurus on
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    OtakingOtaking Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    I've always envisioned a game with multiple levels of power and complexity.

    You start off as a regular warrior, playing the standard MMO whackamole in dungeons.

    When you have mastered that game you get the opportunity to do something else, like maybe being a general in an army or exploration force and using the army to play a small scale tactical game including liberating new dungeons from the Dark Overlord for less advanced players to go delve.

    When you have mastered *that* game maybe you have the opportunity to become king and play a high level strategy game involving taxations, crops, fealty, wars, etc.

    When you have mastered king maybe you can become the God of War.

    Also, more powerful players *always* need the support of lesser players to function and support their level of gameplay.

    The king needs the swearing of fealty and gold from the dungeons for which he must provide security to the people, the gods need worshippers for which they must grant favors etc.

    The Dark Overlord needs his scallywags to take over territory to advance his game.

    The Goddess of Nature needs wildlife and forests protected to advance hers.

    So you have a lot of different games in one with overlapping and opposing motivations to give people something to do always. Make the motivations interesting and rewarding at all levels of play. Players can go up, down, or sideways in the strata as they are able to earn or are able to defeat another player in the spot they want to knock them out of.

    The more powerful a role is the more it must be actively managed also, so no absentee gods etc or they get replaced by the next player fairly quickly. You can always just adventure too with no responsibilities other than to yourself in the 'standard' MMO type game. You will always be affiliated with one or more players in the forms of your gods, kingdom, maybe even local goverment like sherriff even however. Much more immersive than the ever so boring 'guilds'.

    Otaking on
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    MarioGMarioG Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    An awesome mmo is where you and a stealthy team of spy must sneak against another team of players and get to the core of their base. No such game has yet been made to my knowledge.

    MarioG on
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    GarthorGarthor Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    An awesome mmo is where you and a bunch of guys sit around in a base so that some spies may or may not get to its core.

    Garthor on
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    MarioGMarioG Registered User regular
    edited November 2007
    Yep.

    MarioG on
    Kay wrote:
    Mario, if Slenderman had a face, I would punch him in it.

    Hey, I have a blog! (Actually being updated again!)

    3DS: 0860-3240-2604
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