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Viable incentive to party?Follow

#52 Jun 14 2009 at 10:39 AM Rating: Default
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AureliusSir wrote:
Maldavian wrote:
AureliusSir wrote:
Maldavian wrote:

I would say that a majority of the content in a MMO _IS_ the endgame. Let’s take WoW as an example. As posted previously it doesn’t take more then 1-2 weeks to reach max level in that game, and then usually, if you want to progress you have to join group or raid activities to further advance you character. So according to your logic that would mean WoW is a failure?


There's a very substantial amount of content suited to solo players at the level cap. Players often tend to spend the majority of their time in group content, but that doesn't mean group content comprises the majority of end-game content.


Then enlighten me as to how I can progress my character when I have reach level 80 through solo in WoW?


Rep, achievements, and accumulating gold to name 3.


I meant gear/equipment wise.
#53 Jun 14 2009 at 10:41 AM Rating: Default
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Achievements are so artificial 'progression' it's not even funny.. Blizzard is genius to make up such a method.. and sad thing is that many fall for it too.
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#54 Jun 14 2009 at 10:44 AM Rating: Excellent
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Maldavian wrote:
AureliusSir wrote:
Rep, achievements, and accumulating gold to name 3.


I meant gear/equipment wise.


Rep factions have epic items you can buy if your rep is high enough and there are BoE world drops and crafted items as well.
#55 Jun 14 2009 at 10:44 AM Rating: Excellent
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Maldavian wrote:
I meant gear/equipment wise.

Arena is, or was when I last checked, a viable alternative to raid content. Yes, yes, it is technically group, but there is a difference between getting 25-40 people together and getting 1 or two other people together.
#56Maldavian, Posted: Jun 14 2009 at 10:48 AM, Rating: Sub-Default, (Expand Post) I meant PvE wise, solo content, that rules out PvP as a hole and also SE has statet there won’t be any PvP system.
#57 Jun 14 2009 at 10:50 AM Rating: Excellent
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Maldavian wrote:
Allegory wrote:
Maldavian wrote:
I meant gear/equipment wise.

Arena is, or was when I last checked, a viable alternative to raid content. Yes, yes, it is technically group, but there is a difference between getting 25-40 people together and getting 1 or two other people together.


I meant PvE wise, solo content, that rules out PvP as a hole and also SE has statet there won’t be any PvP system.


Are you talking about WoW or FFXIV? Don't interchange the two...it makes an already weak argument that much weaker.
#58Maldavian, Posted: Jun 14 2009 at 10:54 AM, Rating: Sub-Default, (Expand Post) Do you even bother reading the posts before making a reply ?
#59 Jun 14 2009 at 10:56 AM Rating: Excellent
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Maldavian wrote:
AureliusSir wrote:
Maldavian wrote:

Then enlighten me as to how I can progress my character when I have reach level 80 through solo in WoW?


Rep, achievements, and accumulating gold to name 3.


Quote:
Are you talking about WoW or FFXIV? Don't interchange the two...it makes an already weak argument that much weaker.


Do you even bother reading the posts before making a reply ?


Ya...you were talking about WoW. Then all of a sudden you bring up SE's stance on PvP. Don't interchange the two.
#60Maldavian, Posted: Jun 14 2009 at 11:01 AM, Rating: Sub-Default, (Expand Post) That was a reply to Allegory, since he considers PvP Arena end game solo content.
#61 Jun 14 2009 at 11:10 AM Rating: Excellent
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Maldavian wrote:


That was a reply to Allegory, since he considers PvP Arena end game solo content.


If you read what they wrote, you'd see that they acknowledged that it wasn't technically solo. Still doesn't mean tying it to SE's position on PvP was in any way relevant when you're the one digging for an angle on WoW's end-game content.

Enough with the derail. You're so far off on your anti-WoW, anti-solo crusade that you appear to have forgotten what this thread is about.

The solution that has been implemented in other MMOs to make both solo and group content rewarding and viable is to tune content so that it's possible to achieve better rewards for participating in group content, but you don't get the rewards for just showing up in a group. You (and your group) have to perform. You have to succeed. You have to accomplish something that merits a reward. If you are incapable of doing that because you and/or the others in your group aren't focused and/or skilled enough to make it happen, a solo player will come out ahead.
#62 Jun 14 2009 at 11:12 AM Rating: Decent
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Honestly, you two need to get a room. Only lovers quarrel this much.
#63 Jun 14 2009 at 7:23 PM Rating: Good
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IMO the incentive should simply be the ability to tackle tougher/more rewarding mobs or to go into instances. Ultimately, partying should give faster advancement, whatever form that takes.

Solo should be an option for when you can't find a party, or you've reached your daily limit of tolerance for other people.

Since a party of 5-6 can kill mobs 5-6 times as quickly/efficiently, I'm not sure that increasing item drops dramatically would be a good idea. However you tune that, you're either going to end up with parties being a crafting loot pinata, or solo farming is going to become impossible/pointless.
#64 Jun 14 2009 at 10:02 PM Rating: Default
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Is it just me, or is the OP's idea EXACTLY what I posted in another thread at one point?

Oh and let's face it, endgame in WOW is either Raid or PVP-to-death.

Who really has fun just amassing gold, achievements, and reputation with no social contact? If that is the game you want, go play a ton of games on Xbox or PS3, and leave the MMO community alone. There will be consents made by the developers to get your dollar as well, but they won't have an impact on the things that the majority of the playerbase will care about.

In before 'they like to play the AH'... your 15 dollars a month would be better spent learning to play poker online.

Edited, Jun 15th 2009 2:03am by Shazaamemt
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#65 Jun 14 2009 at 11:06 PM Rating: Decent
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I have no idea, but the best way in my opinion would be to make fewer people parties, maybe a 3-4 person party to have things done(questing, item gathering...), and of course, make it fun an enjoyable, no the senseless pull-kill-rest that FFXI has us accustomed to.




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#66 Jun 15 2009 at 1:03 AM Rating: Decent
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You can look at soloing and partying as 2 balloons next to each other, sharing the same amount of air. If you inflate one of the balloons, the other one will shrink. This will hold true in almost every case. Since resources are limited, and the fact that there's only so much a developer can do to try and satisfy a broad variety of players, it'll always be an issue to try and balance the two in harmony. We can all remember some of the more tedious things we had to be forced to do in FFXI, which pretty much always required us to find a group for and complete. On the other hand, having the same things tuned as 1-player events might not have yielded nearly the same amount of enjoyment and sense of accomplishment once you did them.

What for example SirAurelies says about segregating content, some with grouping and the rest with soloing in mind doesn't really work out. Isn't there a game which kind of did like that already? Yes, hello WoW. If you want to group for XP and a few better drops, go to instances. 95% opt to solo their way through anyway. Why? Why the **** would you bother trying to find people who mostly suck at playing their class in a group environment for a few "blue" quality items when you'll replace those in a few levels anyway? What is the result of said game? Empty desolate zones where you once grinded, just so you could get to the next zone. The majority of the gaming population at max level, where barely 10% knows how to utilize and play their class to the fullest when it comes to grouping and raiding. A terrible community with people shouting in public channels, with no regard or respect for anyone else. If you ever felt slightly offended in FFXI, come check out WoW, and you'll wonder what the **** is going on. It has by FAR the worst community of any game I've previously played.

Someone mentioned earlier that party-oriented mmo's are a thing of the past, and that the casual/solo market is the only way to go when it comes to MMO's, but I'll have to disagree on that one. I don't think nearly as many players would object to grouping all the time if they only fixed so that many classes are left in the cold, and they made travel times much shorter than they currently are. Making a better looking for group tool would also help out. We've seen other mmo's come and go, which tried the route of WoW, but really failed in the end. Why would we play a game when there's a game that's similar yet miles ahead in all areas?

While grouping was one of the aspects people had many issue with in FFXI, it was also one of the things that really has kept the game interesting throughout the years. Unlike WoW, where you embark on that journey alone, quickly grinding all the zones off with the "kill x, deliver y, collect z" quests throughout the game with the crappy music turned off, always completing with that "******" that killed your quest mobs. FFXI made those things quite enjoyable once you got started. The long journey towards max-level, the experience and the milestones along the way made the game truly fun and deep (like most Final Fantasies). The diversity of the classes, the beautiful and interesting scenery, the music, the lore and the missions made the game what it is. Even before TP-burns, where we actually did do skill-chains and magic burst because it was somewhat worthwhile made FFXI what it is.

What about now? What will happen to all that? Instead of even having the 3-4 player(I'd prefer 5-6 players) parties in previous Final Fantasies, people come in here and suggest that they remove the need to group in favour of becoming a tuned 1-man killing machine, regardless of class. No offence, but a bard or similar class in FFXIV won't be able to sing a mob to death without some heavy altering to the core mechanics of the class and the game itself. What people must start to understand now is that it's hard to have every good thing from both worlds. You'd arrive at where World of Warcraft is to today, with all caster-type classes being carbon copies of each other, one shooting an orange ball of fire instead of a black swirly ball of shadow. A game where so many things have been homogenized in order to appeal to the broad mass with seemingly have no time on their hands and yetwishes to accomplish everything and be amongst the best geared and furthest progressed on the server.

Even with the recent Q & A's, interviews and articles, we still know really nothing about how "growth" of your character is accomplished, and what things you must do in order to "level up". I fear it'll just become another form of WoW clone, just with the FF music and possibly lore (mostly in form of missions and cut scenes). I keep getting this idea of Final Fantasy 12 in my head all the time, just in an MMO world. A game where there was no real "clear-cut" classes, but instead a license board with a myriad of abilities, spells and skills, which you could get all of in a short amount of time. You ended up with the healing katana-wielding thief and that wouldn't be the weirdest thing. Or how about the bow-using black mage and group-buffer, that was really a nice thing. After having finished it, I thought to myself that it was a somewhat boring experience and absolutely one of the lesser ones I've had from any Final Fantasy as I removed the disc from my PS2.

In the end, I do hope S-E can find some kind of middle ground. Even with FFXI today, they've tried to implement some solo-aspects into the game, but it's always a struggle in a dying MMO with aged technology. It was also mostly done to be able to help the few people that still actually pick up the game, an ever decreasing number I might add. If they fixed the class-balance issues amongst DPS, lessened the need to have class x or y in every group, and perhaps added another tank-class or two, things might not be as bad. With improved travelling times, and adding a better looking for group tool, things will vastly improve. There's also many other areas which can be improved upon, and only time will tell if S-E manages to make another compelling MMO, just like FFXI back in the days.

Edited, Jun 15th 2009 5:12am by muppenz
#67 Jun 15 2009 at 1:32 AM Rating: Decent
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What about now? What will happen to all that? Instead of even having the 3-4 player(I'd prefer 5-6 players) parties in previous Final Fantasies, people come in here and suggest that they remove the need to group in favour of becoming a tuned 1-man killing machine, regardless of class. No offence, but a bard or similar class in FFXIV won't be able to sing a mob to death without some heavy altering to the core mechanics of the class and the game itself. What people must start to understand now is that it's hard to have every good thing from both worlds. You'd arrive at where World of Warcraft is to today, with all caster-type classes being carbon copies of each other, one shooting an orange ball of fire instead of a black swirly ball of shadow. A game where so many things have been homogenized in order to appeal to the broad mass with seemingly have no time on their hands and yetwishes to accomplish everything and be amongst the best geared and furthest progressed on the server.


Actually, what WoW did might be the only way to make a party based MMO work (well). In FFXI every job had dedicated roles, but in the end the partying factor suffered because of it: What if no tanks were lfp, or healers? The party would have disbanded or you had to wait until you got that healer. I don't think that a good party MMO can be made with strict roles on jobs like in FFXI. And why? Because it makes partying overly stressful. It won't be "casual", it'll be FFXI all over again. They can make search system better and travel times shorter but it will still be a bottleneck if you need a specific job to function as a party, be it tank DD healer or support. If they want to make partying the main way of progressing your character (without forgetting soloing of course), this system as it is now can't function without problems.

WoW homogenized the classes in order to make partying easier- they homogenized it in the wrong direction though. There's still a lack of tanks and healers when you're looking for group, so that has to be changed as well.

If everyone could do damage and heal, the system wouldn't be so restrictive when it comes to looking for members. They could toss away the normal DD/Tank/Healer a system and use a Support/Crowd control system instead. Support heals a bit better, crowd control does a bit more damage, but everyone could do the things you need. Making parties would become exponentially easier if you didn't have to look for a specific job and could invite just about anyone.

This system is not without flaws either, though. Usually if you let a normal player do damage that's what he will focus on. Nobody likes to heal. So if everyone will do damage, who is going to heal? It might still be hard to find a healer although anyone could do it. It's all theorizing at this point but that's what would probably happen. Especially if you need gear to heal well, there won't be any good healers around since most players would go for DD build, so gear shouldn't matter when it comes to healing either.

So, I really don't know what could be done. Either they keep the specific job roles and partying suffers, or homogenize the jobs and thus make partying easier (in theory). I can't think of a way to solve it myself, I hope the devs have an answer..
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#68 Jun 15 2009 at 2:23 AM Rating: Decent
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4 out of the 10 classes in WoW can heal, and 4 out of 10 can also tank. It's not as much of an issue as being able to, it's just that people do not want to, or never been properly taught how to. That is a direct result of the leveling process in WoW. Everyone is soloing to max level, through their DPS specs, so they arrive at the end with no tanking experience nor healing experience. I totally agree that S-E should try to increase the amount of classes that can fulfill the various roles, this is a key thing in making a more party-oriented MMO work. With so many different classes in FFXI, I just found it odd that there were so few healers and tanks amongst them. This is an area which I think can be vastly improved upon.

That being said, I do not think they should push this too far. Just look at what happend with /nin in FFXI. It's become mandatory recently, and it's a very boring mechanic and half-assed trick people use to get around the need for a real tank. I don't blaim people though, that's an issue S-E has neglected, and people are just trying to get around it. What you are proposing is the same thing, just replace blink with a spell that'll heal. That's an outright homogenization, which in turn makes a lot of the game lose its flavour and appeal. However, with S-E stating that they are trying to expand on the job system, the one thing that comes to mind instead of the main job/sub job is some kind of license board/sphere grid, where all classes have been dismantled and broken down into their core abilities, spells and skills. Having something like a set amount of points to pick the things you want, which lets people create their own kind of classes and fulfill a broader range of needs in a group. That's a discussion for another topic though.

I feel that with the right amount of support, and the tools to make a group, travel to the area you wish to go, and the time it takes get going being shortened, grouping will be much more pleasant for most people. In FFXI, I felt the most enjoyment doing things up to max level, and some time after that. Would S-E take the route of Blizzard, and shuffle everyone to max level in the fastest timeframe possible, I'd feel a disheartened, knowing that the good old days of exploration and progression are only things of the past. That being said, I do not wish for a return for all of the old FFXI mechanics, where taking the airship sometimes meant 20 minutes of waiting, or finding a group could take an hour since you didn't roll the right class or there were no tanks/healers/bards/x online that wanted to group. The logistical aspects in FFXIV can be very much improved, and so can the time vs reward aspect.

Edited, Jun 15th 2009 6:26am by muppenz
#69 Jun 15 2009 at 2:56 AM Rating: Decent
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I wonder if it'd work better in a party based environment rather than WoW where most people solo to cap anyway. If they're being taught how to, would that fix the problem? And if the solo option isn't that "good", would players be willing to cope and heal/tank if needed if it means good exp?

I don't mind Utsusemi too much, since even though it homogenizes jobs it makes the group play less restrictive and easier in that way as well. It is a broken spell, but I wouldn't mind seeing it "fixed" in XIV as well. I wouldn't want to look for Ninja or Paladin every time I want to do something that "requires" a tank. It's nice that as some other job I can also suffice as a tank because of /nin (or /sam).

I'm sure SE will be able to make grouping a more pleasant process in XIV, but if it can be pleasant enough to justify a mainly group based MMO would still be uncertain, IMO. They'd have to find a solution to this problem first I think.
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#70 Jun 15 2009 at 6:05 AM Rating: Good
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I think a key thing here is the "many vs. many" aspect that has been alluded to in the interviews with FFXIV developers. I expect that when partying in FFXIV your group will be fighting multiple mobs at the same time. What this implies is that each individual mob probably won't be too hard for a single player to kill quickly. Each party member (except support) might end up killing 2-3 (or more) mobs in the course of a single battle.

If you want to solo, the enemies will probably be weak enough that they won't be too hard to kill by themselves, even for a white mage, at a respectable pace. However, you'll probably advance faster somehow by gaining benefits from the actions of the whole party.

As someone else stated, some job abilities will probably have to be gained by working with a group. If you wanted to learn "Provoke" for example, it might be learned faster if you're provoking a mob that has hate for someone in your party, rather than one that's just wandering around. Likewise, mages might learn cure faster (or gain more materia, movement credits on the sphere grid, etc) by curing someone other than themselves.

I also think there will be some areas where you'll have to have a party. If the mobs are so dense and link together that you can't fight them all by yourself, it might make for great "xp" (or the ffxiv equivalent) for a party, but death for a solo player.
#71 Jun 15 2009 at 7:59 AM Rating: Decent
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muppenz wrote:
4 out of the 10 classes in WoW can heal, and 4 out of 10 can also tank. It's not as much of an issue as being able to, it's just that people do not want to, or never been properly taught how to. That is a direct result of the leveling process in WoW. Everyone is soloing to max level, through their DPS specs, so they arrive at the end with no tanking experience nor healing experience. I totally agree that S-E should try to increase the amount of classes that can fulfill the various roles, this is a key thing in making a more party-oriented MMO work. With so many different classes in FFXI, I just found it odd that there were so few healers and tanks amongst them. This is an area which I think can be vastly improved upon.

That being said, I do not think they should push this too far. Just look at what happend with /nin in FFXI. It's become mandatory recently, and it's a very boring mechanic and half-assed trick people use to get around the need for a real tank. I don't blaim people though, that's an issue S-E has neglected, and people are just trying to get around it. What you are proposing is the same thing, just replace blink with a spell that'll heal. That's an outright homogenization, which in turn makes a lot of the game lose its flavour and appeal. However, with S-E stating that they are trying to expand on the job system, the one thing that comes to mind instead of the main job/sub job is some kind of license board/sphere grid, where all classes have been dismantled and broken down into their core abilities, spells and skills. Having something like a set amount of points to pick the things you want, which lets people create their own kind of classes and fulfill a broader range of needs in a group. That's a discussion for another topic though.

I feel that with the right amount of support, and the tools to make a group, travel to the area you wish to go, and the time it takes get going being shortened, grouping will be much more pleasant for most people. In FFXI, I felt the most enjoyment doing things up to max level, and some time after that. Would S-E take the route of Blizzard, and shuffle everyone to max level in the fastest timeframe possible, I'd feel a disheartened, knowing that the good old days of exploration and progression are only things of the past. That being said, I do not wish for a return for all of the old FFXI mechanics, where taking the airship sometimes meant 20 minutes of waiting, or finding a group could take an hour since you didn't roll the right class or there were no tanks/healers/bards/x online that wanted to group. The logistical aspects in FFXIV can be very much improved, and so can the time vs reward aspect.

Edited, Jun 15th 2009 6:26am by muppenz


Muppenz, great posts.

In my opinion, the flood of solo oriented MMO's coming out these days are from developers blinded by WoW's success. If people look closely, they'd notice that most of these WoW clones fail miserably. A good MMO with rewarding party play and a good community like EQ or FFXI are the ones that have the potential to last. That's kind of the point of playing an MMO versus a single player game. It's a lot harder to make friends in a game where everyone would rather play by themselves, and people are alot more likely to continue paying for a game where they've developed lasting friendships. WoW is only successful because of the Warcraft property and the luring of new players with an easy button.

It was really a poison for the MMO genre, and after attempting to play EQ2 during the push for solo content I never want to play a 'massively solo game' again. Groups disappeared and the dunegeons were subsequently emptied out. We only need one WoW, I'm hoping the developers at SE realize that community is important (it's keeping their last game alive) and focus on cooperation.

As you've mentioned already, the real solution is to improve the ability to put groups together by improving the tools and spreading out the jobs better across each of the group archtypes. I don't want to see a homogenized job system either. The different role each job brings to a party situation are what makes them all fun to play. If XIV uses anything like the license board in XII, it will make the game boring to play. With all characters ending nearly identical and the gambit system to play the game for you, I don't know what the developers were thinking there.

#72 Jun 15 2009 at 8:18 AM Rating: Decent
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As you've mentioned already, the real solution is to improve the ability to put groups together by improving the tools and spreading out the jobs better across each of the group archtypes. I don't want to see a homogenized job system either. The different role each job brings to a party situation are what makes them all fun to play.


I still don't think that both good ("casual") party system and specific roles can be achieved at the same time without something revolutionary. Having as many healer jobs as DD's and tanks won't really solve the situation imo, although it May help.
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#73 Jun 15 2009 at 8:24 AM Rating: Decent
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i liked how FFXI kinda forced you to party around level 10 or so
#74 Jun 15 2009 at 8:54 AM Rating: Good
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Hyanmen wrote:
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As you've mentioned already, the real solution is to improve the ability to put groups together by improving the tools and spreading out the jobs better across each of the group archtypes. I don't want to see a homogenized job system either. The different role each job brings to a party situation are what makes them all fun to play.


I still don't think that both good ("casual") party system and specific roles can be achieved at the same time without something revolutionary. Having as many healer jobs as DD's and tanks won't really solve the situation imo, although it May help.


The only thing I've found frustrating about FFXI's forced party system over the years is that at times there will be no tanks or healers available, and occasionally as a DD in a sea of many DD's you could be seeking for 5-6+ hours at a time. Most people don't have that much free time to waste. This was somewhat mitigated with the level sync system (broadening the level range you could search for), but a well balanced job spectrum would improve this dramatically. It every job had the potential to fill a party spot within 15-20 minutes, playing a group-centric game wouldn't feel like such a chore.

That doesn't mean each job can't bring something unique to the table though. Tanking or healing is just a basic role that can be expanded upon, and there's always room for a support role which can be any number of things.
#75 Jun 15 2009 at 9:02 AM Rating: Decent
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The only thing I've found frustrating about FFXI's forced party system over the years is that at times there will be no tanks or healers available, and occasionally as a DD in a sea of many DD's you could be seeking for 5-6+ hours at a time. Most people don't have that much free time to waste. This was somewhat mitigated with the level sync system (broadening the level range you could search for), but a well balanced job spectrum would improve this dramatically. It every job had the potential to fill a party spot within 15-20 minutes, playing a group-centric game wouldn't feel like such a chore.

That doesn't mean each job can't bring something unique to the table though. Tanking or healing is just a basic role that can be expanded upon, and there's always room for a support role which can be any number of things.


I'm not quite sure what you mean by the bolded part, can you explain?
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#76 Jun 15 2009 at 9:12 AM Rating: Excellent
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Hyanmen wrote:

I think that partying should be made so good or soloing so bad that players would want to group up at all times- I don't think that player should get "good enough" exp as solo, so that he may think that partying would be meaningless. I thought like this when playing WoW, and I didn't really like how easy soloing really was in the end. Of course partying could have been better exp, but the levels went by so fast that I didn't see a reason to bother.


This is the mentality that simply has to go. I don't know why people are so obsessed with forcing group play or why they are so afraid of solo play, but this is exactly the reason that WoW is more successful than FFXI. This is what will bring down XIV, because this is the stigma that it's already carrying from the bad reputation of XI.

Some of you have been playing XI for far too long. Just because there is essentially one path in one game to get to the goal, doesn't mean that a new game cannot have multiple viable paths and still be a good game. Is XI a less good game because of Campaign and FoV? It's actually a better game now, because of the solo content. Now more people can enjoy it.

The fact is that sometimes people just do not have time for a freaking party. I've already waited around for an hour for a party to get put together (not counting the time lfg) only to have it fall apart after a few minutes because the tank had to go, or the healer dc'd, or something else happened. That's a ridiculous waste of time, all because the group play was so forced that there was no other way for me to reach my goals without putting up with this kind of crap. Now add to that some folks who may only have a couple nights a week to play to begin with, and we start to see how the game feels more like a punishment than a hobby.

Now instead of standing around waiting for a party invite, waiting for the party to get together, scouting out camps and hoping that there is one open, camping on top of other players if it's not, hoping that everyone gets along together and no one is wearing level 1 gear and is underskilled... You can just skip all that nonsense and go campaign or hit up some FoV where the only person you are accountable to is yourself. No one is saying take out the ability to party, we are just saying that partying isn't this ******* fantastic thing that the game would fall apart without. Ofttimes is a complete dramafest that most of us really could do without and some of you need to take off the rose colored glasses.

Step back and look at all the drama that goes into your average party and then try to say with a straight face that party play is always > than solo play.

Large-scale missions, events, and quests I would say should still be group oriented efforts, but for ***** sake stop trying to force it on every aspect of the game.
#77 Jun 15 2009 at 9:37 AM Rating: Decent
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Torrence wrote:
Hyanmen wrote:

I think that partying should be made so good or soloing so bad that players would want to group up at all times- I don't think that player should get "good enough" exp as solo, so that he may think that partying would be meaningless. I thought like this when playing WoW, and I didn't really like how easy soloing really was in the end. Of course partying could have been better exp, but the levels went by so fast that I didn't see a reason to bother.


This is the mentality that simply has to go. I don't know why people are so obsessed with forcing group play or why they are so afraid of solo play, but this is exactly the reason that WoW is more successful than FFXI. This is what will bring down XIV, because this is the stigma that it's already carrying from the bad reputation of XI.

Some of you have been playing XI for far too long. Just because there is essentially one path in one game to get to the goal, doesn't mean that a new game cannot have multiple viable paths and still be a good game. Is XI a less good game because of Campaign and FoV? It's actually a better game now, because of the solo content. Now more people can enjoy it.

The fact is that sometimes people just do not have time for a freaking party. I've already waited around for an hour for a party to get put together (not counting the time lfg) only to have it fall apart after a few minutes because the tank had to go, or the healer dc'd, or something else happened. That's a ridiculous waste of time, all because the group play was so forced that there was no other way for me to reach my goals without putting up with this kind of crap. Now add to that some folks who may only have a couple nights a week to play to begin with, and we start to see how the game feels more like a punishment than a hobby.

Now instead of standing around waiting for a party invite, waiting for the party to get together, scouting out camps and hoping that there is one open, camping on top of other players if it's not, hoping that everyone gets along together and no one is wearing level 1 gear and is underskilled... You can just skip all that nonsense and go campaign or hit up some FoV where the only person you are accountable to is yourself. No one is saying take out the ability to party, we are just saying that partying isn't this @#%^ing fantastic thing that the game would fall apart without. Ofttimes is a complete dramafest that most of us really could do without and some of you need to take off the rose colored glasses.

Step back and look at all the drama that goes into your average party and then try to say with a straight face that party play is always > than solo play.

Large-scale missions, events, and quests I would say should still be group oriented efforts, but for @#%^s sake stop trying to force it on every aspect of the game.


Actually no one is forcing you to party, I really hate people saying that they are forced to party, no, you are not forced, it was your decision to buy the game that was party based. How hard is it to understand that you make your choice in the beginning when buying the game, check it out if it does contain the elements that you like or even dislike and if you don’t like it nothing is stopping from changing the game.

So stop this nonsense about anyone FORCING you to do anything, that is a pure fabrication from your side.

If the game is group oriented then it is MEANT TO FORCE YOU to group, meaning THAT IS INTENDED from the developers. FFXI was MEANT TO FORCE you to group because that was a game design and was intended from the game developers.

If SE will have the majority of the content in FF14 being group oriented it will be so because that is how the developers have indented the game to be. You might like it or hate it, but in the end you have to live it. We have a free market in this world, meaning if a game does not satisfy you, you can always find something else that will suit your needs better.


Edited, Jun 15th 2009 1:40pm by Maldavian
#78 Jun 15 2009 at 9:51 AM Rating: Decent
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I agree with the last poster...in the end there is no RIGHT or WRONG gameplay.

Unfortunately it goes both ways as most WoW players will scream bloody murder if there is a death penalty (Of any type) a slant towards grouping, non-instanced dungeons, or difficulty that they perceive as 'no fun'.

Having played a LOT of both games, and now retired from both...I can say honestly that FFXI is the game I truly love. I miss WoW, mostly for the friends who still play and the ease of jumping in and out. Being a married Father of two now I truly appreciate the 'perma-easy' setting WoW seems to have when coming straight from FFXI...but I missed the difficulty or more the sense of accomplishment that FFXI gave me as opposed to WoW.

To get back on track, grouping vs. solo...I agree that both should be in game but I hope Squinex decides to still focus mostly on grouping. Make it possible for every class to solo to the top, but make it that grouping will either be faster/easier or more rewarding.

**** even a system where it is harder to solo (To get to the areas best to solo, grind up, fight faster, etc...) but the tradeoff is you get skills or items groupers would never get and make grouping faster and safer but with less reward outside of progression. I am game for any system that has both but I would be disappointed if XIV felt very different from XI.

We'll see...

Edited, Jun 15th 2009 1:52pm by Noigel
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#79 Jun 15 2009 at 10:01 AM Rating: Decent
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Hyanmen wrote:
Quote:
The only thing I've found frustrating about FFXI's forced party system over the years is that at times there will be no tanks or healers available, and occasionally as a DD in a sea of many DD's you could be seeking for 5-6+ hours at a time. Most people don't have that much free time to waste. This was somewhat mitigated with the level sync system (broadening the level range you could search for), but a well balanced job spectrum would improve this dramatically. It every job had the potential to fill a party spot within 15-20 minutes, playing a group-centric game wouldn't feel like such a chore.

That doesn't mean each job can't bring something unique to the table though. Tanking or healing is just a basic role that can be expanded upon, and there's always room for a support role which can be any number of things.


I'm not quite sure what you mean by the bolded part, can you explain?


Sorry, what I meant by that is that with a more balanced job spectrum any specific job would have an equal chance of getting invited by a party. In FFXI you have the majority of jobs as DPS, so the majority of players are competing for limited slots, which in the end leads to long waits and wasted time. On the other hand, tanks and healers are rare enough that they often get party invites when they aren't even looking for them. A lot of that leads to the perception that the party system in general is bad design. Cooperative play in itself is never bad design, it was the unbalanced spread of roles throughout the job spectrum that caused grief.
#80 Jun 15 2009 at 10:10 AM Rating: Decent
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Some of you have been playing XI for far too long. Just because there is essentially one path in one game to get to the goal, doesn't mean that a new game cannot have multiple viable paths and still be a good game. Is XI a less good game because of Campaign and FoV? It's actually a better game now, because of the solo content. Now more people can enjoy it.


FoV and Campaign are exactly what the part you bolded meant. Even if you FoV or Campaign, you're going to be lfp if you have more than 1 hour of playtime. The solo exp from both is "so bad" that people prefer to party at all times when possible. It is quite perfect right now imo, the game just has to be remade with soloers in mind as well as the party players so the exp could be more consistent (only campaigns problem though) and that every job in the game could solo at about the same pace (mage jobs generally get the short stick especially if there aren't any pet camps open).

While the bolded part may seem like I don't want soloing options, it's not what it means. The "forced" grouping XI does now with a bit of soloing flavor is what I'd consider to be an ideal situation.

The rest of the issues (scouting camps, hoping that one is open..etc) can be fixed by making partying so stressless and convenient in XIV that it'd be like a completely different game (!), thus more "casual" as well.

Think of it like a reversed WoW. Less solo, more group-play, without making either impossible.
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#81 Jun 15 2009 at 10:15 AM Rating: Decent
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Quote:
Sorry, what I meant by that is that with a more balanced job spectrum any specific job would have an equal chance of getting invited by a party. In FFXI you have the majority of jobs as DPS, so the majority of players are competing for limited slots, which in the end leads to long waits and wasted time. On the other hand, tanks and healers are rare enough that they often get party invites when they aren't even looking for them. A lot of that leads to the perception that the party system in general is bad design. Cooperative play in itself is never bad design, it was the unbalanced spread of roles throughout the job spectrum that caused grief.


One thing to note though, is that you generally need less tanks and healers in a party than DD's. In FFXI it's most of the time 3 DD's, 1 tank, 1 healer and 1 support? So if I understand it right, there would have to be on average at least twice as many DD's lfp as there are healers and tanks? From that perspective, isn't XI kind of balanced? I don't know how it would change the situation if you took away DD jobs, and added healer and tank jobs as a replacement so there'd be just as many of each, while you'd still require only one tank, one healer, one support and 3 DD's in a party. Something about that bugs me, but I can't say for sure what would happen.
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#82 Jun 15 2009 at 10:16 AM Rating: Default
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Torrence wrote:

This is the mentality that simply has to go. I don't know why people are so obsessed with forcing group play or why they are so afraid of solo play, but this is exactly the reason that WoW is more successful than FFXI. This is what will bring down XIV, because this is the stigma that it's already carrying from the bad reputation of XI.

Some of you have been playing XI for far too long. Just because there is essentially one path in one game to get to the goal, doesn't mean that a new game cannot have multiple viable paths and still be a good game. Is XI a less good game because of Campaign and FoV? It's actually a better game now, because of the solo content. Now more people can enjoy it.

The fact is that sometimes people just do not have time for a freaking party. I've already waited around for an hour for a party to get put together (not counting the time lfg) only to have it fall apart after a few minutes because the tank had to go, or the healer dc'd, or something else happened. That's a ridiculous waste of time, all because the group play was so forced that there was no other way for me to reach my goals without putting up with this kind of crap. Now add to that some folks who may only have a couple nights a week to play to begin with, and we start to see how the game feels more like a punishment than a hobby.

Now instead of standing around waiting for a party invite, waiting for the party to get together, scouting out camps and hoping that there is one open, camping on top of other players if it's not, hoping that everyone gets along together and no one is wearing level 1 gear and is underskilled... You can just skip all that nonsense and go campaign or hit up some FoV where the only person you are accountable to is yourself. No one is saying take out the ability to party, we are just saying that partying isn't this @#%^ing fantastic thing that the game would fall apart without. Ofttimes is a complete dramafest that most of us really could do without and some of you need to take off the rose colored glasses.

Step back and look at all the drama that goes into your average party and then try to say with a straight face that party play is always > than solo play.

Large-scale missions, events, and quests I would say should still be group oriented efforts, but for @#%^s sake stop trying to force it on every aspect of the game.


I'd say 90% of the time group play is more fun than solo play AFTER the group has been put together and is in position to begin. Most of the hassles with group play revolve around waiting for the group to be assembled and traveling to the desired camp. Both of those problems can be remedied by better group finding/building tools, a more balanced job spectrum, and better travel options. Just letting everyone say "***** it" and go play by themselves instead is not really the best way to improve a multiplayer game.

The problem is that most people, given the option, will choose the easier path and solo - even if it's not as much fun. So regardless of how balanced SE makes the solo and group content, those who want to group will be forced to solo because that's what everyone else is doing. It's hard to build a party when nobody wants to wait for you put one together. In this case, convenience takes precedence over fun.

I would like to see separate goals for solo and group oriented play. That way there is something to do regardless of whether you have an hour to play one day or five hours the next.
#83 Jun 15 2009 at 10:32 AM Rating: Decent
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Hyanmen wrote:

One thing to note though, is that you generally need less tanks and healers in a party than DD's. In FFXI it's most of the time 3 DD's, 1 tank, 1 healer and 1 support? So if I understand it right, there would have to be on average at least twice as many DD's lfp as there are healers and tanks? From that perspective, isn't XI kind of balanced? I don't know how it would change the situation if you took away DD jobs, and added healer and tank jobs as a replacement so there'd be just as many of each, while you'd still require only one tank, one healer, one support and 3 DD's in a party. Something about that bugs me, but I can't say for sure what would happen.


That's true, but even with those ratios I don't think FFXI has the proper balance. For tanks you pretty much have PLD or NIN only. Other jobs can fill the role situationally but most parties will never move on unless they get one or the other. There are probably closer to five times as many jobs that would be considered DPS as tanks currently. I admit it's not an easy thing to balance, but there is definately room for improvement here. You'd probably also have to take into account that people generally enjoy playing DPS jobs more than healers or tanks, so having more tank jobs than needed to fit the ratio might work just fine.
#84 Jun 15 2009 at 10:41 AM Rating: Decent
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That's true, but even with those ratios I don't think FFXI has the proper balance. For tanks you pretty much have PLD or NIN only. Other jobs can fill the role situationally but most parties will never move on unless they get one or the other. There are probably closer to five times as many jobs that would be considered DPS as tanks currently. I admit it's not an easy thing to balance, but there is definately room for improvement here. You'd probably also have to take into account that people generally enjoy playing DPS jobs more than healers or tanks, so having more tank jobs than needed to fit the ratio might work just fine.


Yeah, I don't think SE has the balance right either, and that there's room for improvement. However I think that if they want to make it a group based MMO, only fixing the balance won't be enough this time (if they want to have a successful game). It'd be more hardcore than would be considered necessary in today's MMO world, and keep things still a bit too far from the casual they could aim for.

Do you think, though, that people will take the bait and level those tank jobs if there's many of them, or just be one of the fewer DD jobs that are available instead?
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#85 Jun 15 2009 at 10:59 AM Rating: Good
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Hyanmen wrote:
Quote:
That's true, but even with those ratios I don't think FFXI has the proper balance. For tanks you pretty much have PLD or NIN only. Other jobs can fill the role situationally but most parties will never move on unless they get one or the other. There are probably closer to five times as many jobs that would be considered DPS as tanks currently. I admit it's not an easy thing to balance, but there is definately room for improvement here. You'd probably also have to take into account that people generally enjoy playing DPS jobs more than healers or tanks, so having more tank jobs than needed to fit the ratio might work just fine.


Yeah, I don't think SE has the balance right either, and that there's room for improvement. However I think that if they want to make it a group based MMO, only fixing the balance won't be enough this time (if they want to have a successful game). It'd be more hardcore than would be considered necessary in today's MMO world, and keep things still a bit too far from the casual they could aim for.

Do you think, though, that people will take the bait and level those tank jobs if there's many of them, or just be one of the fewer DD jobs that are available instead?


There is a problem generally with group based MMO's as well. And that is the human factor. If we made only 4 classes available in FF14, 1 tank, 1 healer, 1 support and the last one DD, most will go for the DD since people for some reason likes to DD. So even if you balance the jobs to extreme, say like you have 16 classes that are divided into 4 tank, 4 healer, 4 support and 4 DD, you will still end up with *people* choosing DD mostly and thus no matter what you do the imbalance will always be there.

Again nothing can be done with perfection, you just have to weigh the fun and advantages of group play vs. solo play if you intend to make an MMO group based. The other way applies as well if you want to make a MMO that is intended for solo you have to make room for solo at the cost of group play.
#86 Jun 15 2009 at 11:02 AM Rating: Decent
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If there's a valid reason to party (e.g. access to the best gear, the "coolest" experiences, etc.), I would happily level a class thats party oriented (tank/healer). I enjoy party play, and getting a group together is infinitely easier when you already have the staple needs met. At least in WoW, I definitely found getting a group together to be much smoother when I played my tank than my DD.
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#87 Jun 15 2009 at 12:10 PM Rating: Default
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Maldavian wrote:


There is a problem generally with group based MMO's as well. And that is the human factor. If we made only 4 classes available in FF14, 1 tank, 1 healer, 1 support and the last one DD, most will go for the DD since people for some reason likes to DD. So even if you balance the jobs to extreme, say like you have 16 classes that are divided into 4 tank, 4 healer, 4 support and 4 DD, you will still end up with *people* choosing DD mostly and thus no matter what you do the imbalance will always be there.

Again nothing can be done with perfection, you just have to weigh the fun and advantages of group play vs. solo play if you intend to make an MMO group based. The other way applies as well if you want to make a MMO that is intended for solo you have to make room for solo at the cost of group play.


That's true, but it's worth noting that SE exacerbated the issue by having the vast majority of jobs fall into the DD category. One of the biggest arguments people make for adding casual play is that putting a party together in FFXI can take a lot of time and work, so it should be said that this can be partially alleviated by having a better job distrubution. Of course it will never be perfect, but the imbalance in FFXI took the hassles of group play to the extreme.

Perhaps if they made the process of getting a group together less painful people wouldn't be so opposed to it. Personally if I didn't have the time to play with other people I wouldn't be paying for that experience in an MMO. I don't like the idea of added exp or loot as an incentive to party either as it will take quite a bit to overcome peoples' draw to the convenience and ease of soloing. The best way is to provide separate goals for each play style so that people will have a reason to do both. I'd like to see a system where I can advance my character's rank through missions or quests by myself when I don't have much time to play, but also need to advance my combat skills through cooperative play. Especially with SE's excellent cut scenes, it would be nice to not have a party rushing you through that content.



Edited, Jun 15th 2009 4:13pm by Calispel
#88 Jun 15 2009 at 1:02 PM Rating: Good
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Calispel wrote:
I'd say 90% of the time group play is more fun than solo play AFTER the group has been put together and is in position to begin. Most of the hassles with group play revolve around waiting for the group to be assembled and traveling to the desired camp. Both of those problems can be remedied by better group finding/building tools, a more balanced job spectrum, and better travel options. Just letting everyone say "***** it" and go play by themselves instead is not really the best way to improve a multiplayer game.

The problem is that most people, given the option, will choose the easier path and solo - even if it's not as much fun. So regardless of how balanced SE makes the solo and group content, those who want to group will be forced to solo because that's what everyone else is doing. It's hard to build a party when nobody wants to wait for you put one together. In this case, convenience takes precedence over fun.

I would like to see separate goals for solo and group oriented play. That way there is something to do regardless of whether you have an hour to play one day or five hours the next.


That 90% isn't really a straight up figure though. What you are talking about is a good party, with people you get along with, where the xp flows smoothly, no one is wearing gimp or incorrect armor, everyone's skill levels are up to par, and you have a good setup that is appropriate for the monsters you are taking on and there aren't numerous deaths due to stupidity. In this regard, yes I will agree that playing with 5 other people under good circumstances is a very fun thing to do.

However....

Those instances are few and far between and the time it sometimes takes to put those kinds of parties together is not proportionate to the reward. I've said it before and I will say it again, just because other random people happen to also be playing the game doesn't mean that I should have no other options but to group with 5 of them every night in order to reach my goals.

I also disagree that people will do solo content if it is less fun just because it's *easier*. If something isn't fun I am not going to do it unless there is no other choice. If there was no other choice, then you would have a legitimate beef. Right now XI leans in the direction of party play over solo play, and that's fine for what that game is. But the next game should take into account the millions of other people who might also want to enjoy the experience of an online Final Fantasy game and couldn't make it work in FFXI because it is just over the top in terms of requiring a certain playstyle.

The over-emphasis on group play in XI and the penalties for not playing in that style are two of the reasons that the millions upon millions of other online gamers are playing other online games.

I like playing with other people too, but most of the time I don't want to deal with Jackass #43423423423's epeen ego and I shouldn't be forced to just because a handful of XI players think that playing in a group is the only way to learn how to play properly. I got news for you: I can name and shame dozens of people who did nothing but party and haven't got a ******* clue how to play their jobs.
#89 Jun 15 2009 at 1:05 PM Rating: Default
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The over-emphasis on group play in XI and the penalties for not playing in that style are two of the reasons that the millions upon millions of other online gamers are playing other online games.


I think the reason has nothing to do with at least the former of those 2 points. The latter can be fixed, too.
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#90 Jun 15 2009 at 2:04 PM Rating: Excellent
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Quote:

Actually no one is forcing you to party, I really hate people saying that they are forced to party, no, you are not forced, it was your decision to buy the game that was party based. How hard is it to understand that you make your choice in the beginning when buying the game, check it out if it does contain the elements that you like or even dislike and if you don’t like it nothing is stopping from changing the game.


Maldavian. If you're not going to actually engage in rounded discussion, it would be better if you don't participate at all. We've done this dance already on the last page and you don't seem to want to respond to anyone who actually makes a good point and doesn't mention WoW.

Soloing in FFXI was nigh ineffectual which meant that it was practically a non-choice.

And Final Fantasy XI was not advertised as being "A consistent online world that can ONLY EFFECTUALLY BE ENJOYED BY GROUPING WITH RANDOM STRANGERS". The only information most players had to go off of at the time was the fact that it was Final Fantasy and multiplayer, which is more than enough for many people.

Quote:
So stop this nonsense about anyone FORCING you to do anything, that is a pure fabrication from your side.


Soloing in FFXI was nigh ineffectual to the point of being practically a non-choice. If you want to play FFXI and enjoy yourself, after a certain early point you have to party.

And who the heck do you think you are, to repeatedly tell people what games they should and shouldn't play, and how they should play them?

Quote:

If the game is group oriented then it is MEANT TO FORCE YOU to group, meaning THAT IS INTENDED from the developers. FFXI was MEANT TO FORCE you to group because that was a game design and was intended from the game developers.


For one, this only became apparent once you had sunk into the game about 10-20 levels. So there have been undoubtedly many players that got to this point fine and then abandoned the game shortly because parties simply weren't working as they'd like and they couldn't manage without. That's already one strike against it.

For two, you probably are completely unaware of this, but there are cultural differences at hand, and developers aren't superhuman. They can't anticipate everything.

This is a Japanese game we're talking about, and Japan is a much more polite culture, so your odds of finding decent people for a party are much higher. America (and other western territories less-so) is not a polite culture, and finding a party of reasonable people is...rare. So the "group-centric" idea wasn't even developed with this difference in mind, which is already one failure.

The next would be that group-centric games in general are seemingly built around the assumption that, on average, players are polite, communicate well, and play well. You can't blame developers for this shortsightedness. They can only predict so far in terms of how sour a community can go.

In any case, there are other games out there besides FFXI and WoW, and some of those games do allow you to solo and yet still make partying the more efficient option, and it works. People solo when they just want to effing level up without trouble, and they still party when want it, which is often enough.

Quote:

If SE will have the majority of the content in FF14 being group oriented it will be so because that is how the developers have indented the game to be. You might like it or hate it, but in the end you have to live it. We have a free market in this world, meaning if a game does not satisfy you, you can always find something else that will suit your needs better.


Yeah, the only person who should enjoy FFXIV is you, and who cares how anyone else feels, right?

How many games have you made, anyway? Since you're so insistent on telling everyone how to play their games and what the perfect MMO is like?
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#91 Jun 15 2009 at 2:08 PM Rating: Default
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AureliusSir wrote:
Maldavian wrote:
Wrath of the Leech King was released in November 13, 2008 and he finished it in about 7 days, meaning November 20, 2008.

From November 20, 2008 until April 14, 2009 (which was the date of the next patch containing new end game content) he had nothing to do, roughly 4 months and 3 weeks.


I'll take an armory link for 2000, Alex. Something tells me I won't see achievement dates that back up the claim.


I don't see how this is relevant, but the game was released on November 13th. I leveled from 70-80 in a 32 hour session with 6 hours of sleep somewhere inbetween there. Our guild then proceeded to clear all the endgame content (3 raidinstances, Naxxramas, Malygos, Sartharion) that was available. That added another 6 hours to the table. So after around 2 days after release, all the end-game content had been cleared by us. The following day, we proceeded to do every 5man content the game had to offer, in form of instances and random heroics (skipping perhaps 1-2 instances, which we did the day after). By this time, I had also done about 90% of the quests the expansion had to offer.

Regardless of my guild, all in all, I spent perhaps 50-60 hours to clear a full expansion we had waited nearly 2 years for. Also, content patches =/= expansions. Feel free to check the dates of when we cleared heroic instances + naxxramas, sartharion and malygos.

http://armory.wow-europe.com/character-achievements.xml?r=Magtheridon&cn=Muqq&gn=Ensidia




Edited, Jun 15th 2009 6:09pm by muppenz
#92 Jun 15 2009 at 2:25 PM Rating: Default
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Torrence wrote:

That 90% isn't really a straight up figure though. What you are talking about is a good party, with people you get along with, where the xp flows smoothly, no one is wearing gimp or incorrect armor, everyone's skill levels are up to par, and you have a good setup that is appropriate for the monsters you are taking on and there aren't numerous deaths due to stupidity. In this regard, yes I will agree that playing with 5 other people under good circumstances is a very fun thing to do.

However....

Those instances are few and far between and the time it sometimes takes to put those kinds of parties together is not proportionate to the reward. I've said it before and I will say it again, just because other random people happen to also be playing the game doesn't mean that I should have no other options but to group with 5 of them every night in order to reach my goals.

I also disagree that people will do solo content if it is less fun just because it's *easier*. If something isn't fun I am not going to do it unless there is no other choice. If there was no other choice, then you would have a legitimate beef. Right now XI leans in the direction of party play over solo play, and that's fine for what that game is. But the next game should take into account the millions of other people who might also want to enjoy the experience of an online Final Fantasy game and couldn't make it work in FFXI because it is just over the top in terms of requiring a certain playstyle.

The over-emphasis on group play in XI and the penalties for not playing in that style are two of the reasons that the millions upon millions of other online gamers are playing other online games.

I like playing with other people too, but most of the time I don't want to deal with Jackass #43423423423's epeen ego and I shouldn't be forced to just because a handful of XI players think that playing in a group is the only way to learn how to play properly. I got news for you: I can name and shame dozens of people who did nothing but party and haven't got a @#%^ing clue how to play their jobs.


My 90% figure was taking into account the bad parties where everyone died repeatedly or someone was a jerk. Maybe I've just been lucky, but in my experience the party usually functions just fine. If every party flowed smoothly, I'd say it's more fun than soloing 100% of the time (not counting the hassle to put the party together). Even with a mediocre party I still enjoy the interaction with other players more than I would soloing. For every jerk I run into, I find at least 2-3 fun people that I end up playing with again - which I never would have met in a game where solo equals group exp.

This isn't going to change until they can release an MMO with scripted events/story and gameplay equivelant to an offline FF title, which isn't going to happen because all this is sacrificed to facilitate multiplayer cooperative gameplay (where people want to play by themselves?).

The biggest problem with FFXI is the hassle involved with putting a party together, which can be remedied in a number of ways. If you add solo content, people WILL do it even though it is less fun, just because it is convenient. I had these same arguments on the EQ2 boards when they started trying to copy WoW, and I've experienced the frustration of trying to put together a group in a game where everyone can play by themselves. People will solo out of convenience even if it is only more fun 10% of the time, and then once the players head in that direction there is no other choice. I've seen it happen. They add more solo content to appease the disproportionate solo player base and it goes from there.

Can we not have a MMO where you can put a group together and make progress in an hour or two? That doesn't seem that limiting to me. The biggest problem with FFXI is not grouping itself, but the amount of time involved setting one up. Heaven forbid having to interact with other players in a multiplayer game.

Also, I don't recall mentioning anything about grouping and player skill. Yeah grouping won't make every player a master at their jobs, but you won't learn how to tank, be a party healer, or play a job like bard if you solo all the time either. Learning tactics like those just takes practice.

Edited, Jun 15th 2009 6:34pm by Calispel
#93 Jun 15 2009 at 3:25 PM Rating: Decent
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AureliusSir wrote:
abzzuk wrote:
maybe theyll implement something where there are certain skillsets for example that can only be attained in group play like skillchain skill? or something lol that is a bad example but yeh if you get where im coming from



There's a lot of speculation right now about how characters will actually develop. Based on what SE has said and what they've implemented in recent releases as well as the systems offered by other successful RPGs, an on-use character progression system is not all that far fetched. SE has said they prefer the idea of balanced parties going into FFXIV (ie. tank, healer, dps/support). Combine an on-use development system with party roles and it's not too hard to see how players would develop differently in groups than they would in a solo environment. Tanks and healers would likely see the most substantial difference over time in how their character develops in groups compared to solo play. Group players would likely end up more specialized, whereas solo players would tend to be more rounded.


This fits pretty well with what little we know from the dev team's cryptic references so far, and isn't a bad idea in it's own right. It brings up the question if the solo focused player would have the skillset they are expected to bring to an end game function at a level where they would be as effective as their group focused conterpart would.

Personally, I wouldn't like to spend my time soloing most of my advancement period only to find that I'm less able to perform than others more able to group. In that instance, many more specialized jobs would seem to be "solo-unfriendly".
#94 Jun 15 2009 at 3:56 PM Rating: Excellent
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Calispel wrote:

Can we not have a MMO where you can put a group together and make progress in an hour or two? That doesn't seem that limiting to me. The biggest problem with FFXI is not grouping itself, but the amount of time involved setting one up. Heaven forbid having to interact with other players in a multiplayer game.


I think a big part of the trouble with XI was indeed the grouping system. I think if it's more efficient in XIV, the status of partying will be vastly improved.

Though that doesn't change the fact that soloing should be viable.

And where does this idea come from that not wanting to party is the same as playing an offline game, or that it means that you want to be completely isolated from people? There's a huge difference between soloing and not playing with people at all.

And yes, heaven forbid I don't want to deal with people who:
-Call things "***."
-Have no sense of humor.
-Are outright rude.
-Care more about doing "good" in the game and getting "phat l00t" than they do making friends.
-Can't communicate properly enough to hold one decent conversation.

I still fail to see why I'm repeatedly told that I should "just play something else" even though I love practically every aspect of the game except the annoying nature of some of the community.
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#95 Jun 15 2009 at 4:15 PM Rating: Good
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muppenz wrote:

Regardless of my guild, all in all, I spent perhaps 50-60 hours to clear a full expansion we had waited nearly 2 years for. Also, content patches =/= expansions. Feel free to check the dates of when we cleared heroic instances + naxxramas, sartharion and malygos.

http://armory.wow-europe.com/character-achievements.xml?r=Magtheridon&cn=Muqq&gn=Ensidia


So assuming that you actually are/were a member of Ensidia and not just another top-dog wanna-be linking guild achievements and claiming to have been a member, I'd hardly say that the accomplishments of a guild with paid leadership are representative of the average. WotLK content was developed to appeal to a broad spectrum of players, not just the top 5%. Blizzard announced as such. They were pretty open about what they learned with SWP, specifically how they felt it was a poor use of development time and money to create raid content that only 5% of the playerbase would ever see.. I'd like to think that you're bright enough to be able to make the distinction between hardcore people blasting through content and the average Joe plugging away at it in their spare time. You can argue the semantics of expansions vs. content patches all you want...as long as the current version starts with '3.', it's part of the same expansion.
#96 Jun 15 2009 at 5:21 PM Rating: Good
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Calispel wrote:
The biggest problem with FFXI is the hassle involved with putting a party together, which can be remedied in a number of ways. If you add solo content, people WILL do it even though it is less fun, just because it is convenient. I had these same arguments on the EQ2 boards when they started trying to copy WoW, and I've experienced the frustration of trying to put together a group in a game where everyone can play by themselves. People will solo out of convenience even if it is only more fun 10% of the time, and then once the players head in that direction there is no other choice. I've seen it happen. They add more solo content to appease the disproportionate solo player base and it goes from there.


Did it ever occur to you that maybe those people just didn't want to party with a stranger and were already enjoying themselves? That's what this boils down to - you afraid you won't be able to put together a PUG because people would rather do something else. Who are you to force people to play a certain way? It doesn't matter if they would rather choose the *easier* path to leveling. You can choose the harder path without forcing it on the rest of the world. That's why it's called a choice. You want to take away any hope for a choice when everything SE has done in XI this past year has been to add more choice. I highly doubt they are going to carbon copy XI: The Early Years.

When you force only group play, you only get subscribers who have the time to always group or are ok with not making much progress. When you give options for solo play in addition to that group play, you get everyone. The numbers aren't all that hard to figure out you know.

I also think that you are taking a pretty big leap with saying that people who would prefer to solo aren't enjoying the game content. I've had my fair share of parties and done my fair share of soloing and overall, the good parties were good when they happened some of the time, but the soloing was equally as fun all of time and I didn't have to deal with people if I didn't want to. I could chill out talking in my linkshell with people I knew and not have to worry about someone complaining that I wasn't wearing all HQ gear and was hurting his stupid xp/hr.

I think that people enjoy both grouping and solo play, and will do both as the mood suits them. And you know what? That's ok.

#97 Jun 15 2009 at 5:46 PM Rating: Default
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Well no matter how much everyone is fighting the solo vs group gameplay; SE will, and mostly likely already has, made FFXIV as they see fit. They are taking everything learned during FFXI and using it to create 14. If it'll be any games clone it'll be tthat of FFXI and Final Fantasy as a whole.
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#98 Jun 15 2009 at 6:46 PM Rating: Good
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The crazy thing is that if you toddle on over to the WoW boards (simply because they're some of the more lively boards for a solo-friendly MMO on Alla) and read a little bit in the general forums, you'll find that the people who do and enjoy the most group content outside of end-game are the ones who play the game with RL friends/relatives and the ones who have good guilds and a decent amount of friends. I've been in guilds in WoW where getting a group for anything was as easy as saying, "Hey, anyone feel like running <whatever>?"

If you don't know anyone, don't care to know anyone, and/or behave in such a way that nobody really wants to get to know you then ya, solo-friendly games can be a pretty lonely place to be. I actually had more difficulty keeping static groups together in FFXI than I ever did in WoW. It takes time to meet and get to know people who share similar interests in the game and play at a compatible skill level, and even though you might meet someone today who is around when you are and is interested in the sames things as you, there's no guarantee that's going to be the case a month from now. Schedules change. Interests change. Lots of things can change.

I've found that if content is tuned to be manageable it's a lot easier to keep people together and working from the same page. If everything is such an enormous grind and time sink, it becomes harder and harder to set aside time to help out everyone you know in the myriad different things they could use help with. Limit breaks were a fantastic example of this in FFXI. I lost track of how many hours I spent in the crappiest corners of Vana'diel helping people farm friggin' Papyrus long after I had gotten mine. ****, it took me over 4 hours to get mine and I was lucky...I won the roll on the first one that dropped. When each and every major progression roadblock is such an enormous chore and the first thing you think to yourself when it's done is, "Thank GAWD that's finally over...I don't ever want to go through that again..."....ya...that's a problem.

If you've got a decent guild/LS/whatever and a healthy friends list, you needn't ever worry about difficulty finding a group. It's when a person relies entirely (or even just mostly) on strangers to fill their groups that it becomes a struggle, and that situation exists no matter what MMO you're playing or how solo friendly it might be. To then take that next step and insist that content be tuned in such a way as to restrict solo options or make them such a trivial way to progress compared to group content specifically for the purpose of making it so the antisocial amongst us have an easier time filling out a PUG...please.

It's almost ironic. The people whining about how much harder it will be to find a group if grouping isn't tuned to be the clearly superior option for character development are the kinds of people who, if they demonstrated that same kind of self-absorbed, controlling nonsense in one of my parties would get the boot in a heartbeat. You'd think the people most rabid about group content would be the kinds who could actually survive in a group without making an **** of themselves, but when I see folks suggesting such a measure of control vs. incentive, ya...that would get you a swift kick back to the solo content you so loathe.

Live and let live. Make friends. Be a team player and a good sport. The groups will happen whether there's solo content or not. Be a dork, try to control people (explicitly or implicitly), and put your objectives ahead of those of the people around you and no MMO is going to be able to overcome the social consequences of your own deranged asshattery.
#99 Jun 17 2009 at 5:55 PM Rating: Good
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prinnyflute wrote:
For two, you probably are completely unaware of this, but there are cultural differences at hand, and developers aren't superhuman. They can't anticipate everything.

This is a Japanese game we're talking about, and Japan is a much more polite culture, so your odds of finding decent people for a party are much higher. America (and other western territories less-so) is not a polite culture, and finding a party of reasonable people is...rare. So the "group-centric" idea wasn't even developed with this difference in mind, which is already one failure.

The next would be that group-centric games in general are seemingly built around the assumption that, on average, players are polite, communicate well, and play well. You can't blame developers for this shortsightedness. They can only predict so far in terms of how sour a community can go.


The cultural differences you bring up is valid, however, it is due to a more psychological and societal factor than the "politeness" you bring up.
Firstly, SE is targeting the Japanese audience first and foremost. The Japanese (and, for that matter most Eastern societies) are a collectivist society whereas Westerners tend to be more individualistic. Again, as SE is primarily targeting the Japanese audience, it will appeal to the collectivist attitude present there. RE: PARTYING.
I realize that SE has stated that they are gearing this game for more "casual-friendly" game play, but, "casual-friendly" does not point towards the removable of partying. I believe that partying will be a the "optimal" route in the game, but options for soloing will be offered.
Also, this back and forth between Sylpyh, Aurelius vs. seemingly the majority of the other posters is pointless. Most would agree that soloing would add depth to the game- partying should not be the only option (but again, it will be geared towards partying). The main point I feel Aurelius is trying to make is (I wish I could find it so I could quote it) that soloing should be more viable than a crappy party. I honestly don't get why this is not acceptable? Why should a crappy party get more exp than a capable "solo-er."
#100 Jun 17 2009 at 10:17 PM Rating: Decent
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I highly doubt that "equality" between solo and grouped play will be achieved by making specific "instances" or areas which only parties can access and vice versa for solo play.

More realistically, there will be either variations of mobs or different varieties of mobs such that different camps for solo and group play will exist in the same map, which will make it easy to switch in and out of solo play.

I agree that the hardest part of ffxi is forming a balanced party for exp purposes. For this reason, I anticipate that the new equipment/weapons system will mean that party members can switch between front line / back line simply by switching weapons or setting different abilities they have acquired/mastered.

This is more realistic than having to run back to a house and switch your personality and abilities by changing your "job" (imagine a wimpy mage instantly "changing" into a heavy plate mail lugging paladin). It will be "organic", which is what SE is aiming for this time (as in you retain what you've learned, it just won't all be available at the same time).
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#101 Jun 17 2009 at 10:55 PM Rating: Excellent
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Agreeing on the party-stance. My repeated statement is that I simply want to be able to get ahead at an acceptable rate on days when I don't feel like partying. Not that I want to be able to do everything on my own (especially not end-game content), or that soloing should be as good as or better than partying... Just that I'd like to have it as an option.

And though it might be picking nits at this point, I still think you could call Japan "polite"; it's simply somewhat of a result of the community-centric culture you've mentioned, which I am aware of.
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