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My hopes ... No instances ... No "levels" ... Slow combatFollow

#102 Feb 24 2010 at 10:41 PM Rating: Good
Louiscool wrote:
UNLIKE WoW, a players can't just solo everything in that dungeon on the way to a party, questing for something, going ANYWHERE.


He's talking about using sneak/invis to get by mobs that are much higher level than you. You're not going to be fighting your way through level 50 mobs to get to a level 30 dungeon.
#103 Feb 25 2010 at 8:16 AM Rating: Default
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AureliusSir the Irrelevant wrote:
Louiscool wrote:
UNLIKE WoW, a players can't just solo everything in that dungeon on the way to a party, questing for something, going ANYWHERE.


He's talking about using sneak/invis to get by mobs that are much higher level than you. You're not going to be fighting your way through level 50 mobs to get to a level 30 dungeon.


Aah, misunderstood.


I could argee with that. SE kinda remedied that in the last 2 expansions by giving practically everything True Sight, Sound, and Job ability Aggro.

But then they stupidly made anyone who wanted the new jobs have to sneak by the true sight mobs... god that was a lot of deaths to unlock puppetmaster...
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#104 Feb 25 2010 at 8:20 AM Rating: Good
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One reason I feel many of you don't recognize the value of instanced games is from the lack of exposure to Monster Hunter


Seriously?
You're justification for Instanced MMO's being awesome is Monster Hunter?

Just stop.

A lot of people have said they want to see instanced bosses, or instanced dungeons, but I think you're the only one here that seams to really hate having an open world. All I can say is thank god you aren't a Dev for 14.

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#105 Feb 25 2010 at 10:32 AM Rating: Decent
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Elmyrsun wrote:
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One reason I feel many of you don't recognize the value of instanced games is from the lack of exposure to Monster Hunter


Seriously?
You're justification for Instanced MMO's being awesome is Monster Hunter?

Just stop.

A lot of people have said they want to see instanced bosses, or instanced dungeons, but I think you're the only one here that seams to really hate having an open world. All I can say is thank god you aren't a Dev for 14.



Yeah, and if anyone else has experience with Phantasy Star Universe, you'll hate instances as much as I do.

EVERY area besides the main hub was instanced.... yuck.
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#106 Feb 25 2010 at 12:58 PM Rating: Decent
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PSU, MH and Guild Wars are MO's not MMO's, for the simple fact that they don't have a massive world to play in.

They share some similarities and offer decent experiences for what they offer but they aren't the same as a real MMO world, if FF14 turned out like MH I would be pretty disappointed.

I do think instancing will feature heavily in guildleve missions though.

There has to be a compromise between the two for any MMO world to work IMO, I think both concepts bring value to the game and that's what I expect to see in FF14.


Edited, Feb 25th 2010 1:58pm by Diakar
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#107 Feb 25 2010 at 5:38 PM Rating: Decent
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Seriously?
You're justification for Instanced MMO's being awesome is Monster Hunter?

Just stop.

A lot of people have said they want to see instanced bosses, or instanced dungeons, but I think you're the only one here that seams to really hate having an open world. All I can say is thank god you aren't a Dev for 14.


Not an instanced MMO, a multiplayer online game (MO). Monster hunter is not an MMO.

I never said I wanted ffxiv to be an instanced game, I'm just being devils advocate for instanced games. There are way more open-world games over Instanced games and there is no reason they can't coexist. Players like me who can deal with instanced games are under-served due to the masses compulsive desire for an open-world environment. Theres a niche market here that Devs could save money and/or their businesses serving rather than investing into a saturated and dubious market.

I personally like where ffxiv is going right now, everything we know about it right now reminds me a lot of what already exists in Monster Hunter but brought to an open-world setting. I find it funny that a lot of peeps don't understand much of what was announced, which I can only attribute to their lack of playing an instanced game such as MH.

In ffxi with the introduction of FoV, it plays a little more like Monster Hunter now lol People are either soloing or playing in smaller groups than they normally would. I'm sure most of you have only played MMOs and haven't played games like PSO or MH so its difficult to relate. Guild Wars was close but after I played it for 2 weeks I realized it wasn't as interesting as PSO or MH.

Quote:
Yeah, and if anyone else has experience with Phantasy Star Universe, you'll hate instances as much as I do.

EVERY area besides the main hub was instanced.... yuck.


Don't tell me the only reason you disliked PSU was because of the instances.. Plus what were you expecting? Tho I do recall almost every game editorial calling PSU an MMO and even some PSU fans swear up and down it is one.

PSU was definitely garbage tho, Phantasy Star Online was much better. From what I can tell they were caught up in the mentality of "progression" on the next iteration. The problem being that PSO was a decent game (as in I had little or no complaints about it) other than how old it was getting. They likely had trouble improving on what basically had nothing wrong with it, I personally would have settled for updated graphics and woulda been content.

PSO had a very nice visual style and had the most dynamic music from an aesthetically and technical standpoint than anything else I've played. apparently they had a lot of riffs that the game would transition thru based on the players location and/or enemy encounters. You'd get a better understanding of this if you had the PC version and rummaged through the music folder. Basically PSO has done the best job of setting the mood of a dungeon run. PSU's music on the other hand was un-dynamic, repetitive, and loud.

The game play became very spammy and upgrading weapons and "crafting" was very retarded in contrast with PSO. They got rid of "MAGS" which were one of the best parts of PSO and put in these lame as partner robots.

I just think its a shame that instancing is largely seen as a negative thing, or even a deal breaker. Shouldn't the quality of the experience make or rbeak the game?

Edited, Feb 25th 2010 7:02pm by baltz
#108 Feb 25 2010 at 5:53 PM Rating: Decent
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I'm sure most of you have only played MMOs and haven't played games like PSO or MH so its difficult to relate.


Guna go out on a limb here and say that's not the case, although I don't think that matters, I'm sure most can understand the concept well enough to know that its not what they want.
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#109 Feb 25 2010 at 6:12 PM Rating: Decent
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Guna go out on a limb here and say that's not the case, although I don't think that matters, I'm sure most can understand the concept well enough to know that its not what they want.


I feel it does matter since back when all I was able to play was instanced games and used to think that making them into open-world experiences would make them a lot more enjoyable. I've been playing Open-world games for a while now and I have been yearning for some of the advantages of instanced games to transfer to the Open-world environment, or at the least for another good instanced game to come out in the US since I've been largely disappointed when I think back to the level of enjoyability I had with instanced games.

FFXIV gives me hope for the future of open-world gaming and MH gives me hope for the future of Instanced gaming. I would like for both of these games to be a major influence on online adventure gaming as a whole(assuming FFXIV lives up to my, and everyone else's expectations).

MH offers 2/3 of what the OP wants in a game, the other 1/3 being instancing. surely the fact its instanced can be over-looked.

Edited, Feb 25th 2010 7:47pm by baltz
#110 Feb 25 2010 at 6:51 PM Rating: Decent
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Diakar wrote:
PSU, MH and Guild Wars are MO's not MMO's, for the simple fact that they don't have a massive world to play in.

They share some similarities and offer decent experiences for what they offer but they aren't the same as a real MMO world, if FF14 turned out like MH I would be pretty disappointed.

I do think instancing will feature heavily in guildleve missions though.

There has to be a compromise between the two for any MMO world to work IMO, I think both concepts bring value to the game and that's what I expect to see in FF14.


Edited, Feb 25th 2010 1:58pm by Diakar


Well just ask anyone who bought the three "mini-expansions" for FFXI if they enjoyed fighting with 50 other campers for the next spawn of some generic goblin in one of the mid-level areas just to complete one of the many fetch quests..

I'll be happy if they instance guildleves like that because there's nothing fun about having to kill a specific monster and having to compete for what should be a simple quest.
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#111 Feb 26 2010 at 12:08 AM Rating: Excellent
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Not really sure what to say about all this. You'll have to forgive me. It's been about a year since I played FFXI and I've only witnessed my brother play WOW and a tiny bit of Star Wars Galaxies, all of them pretty much open world.

Seems like as far as "No Levels" go, people generally are all for it, but instances seems to be hit 'n miss because of the whole "Open world realism" feel of which every player wants to feel. Basically, it's the feel of being a Roleplayer, imagining yourself as in an actual real world environment. I believe this is the one thing that many people as a whole want to experience as they first step into the game, and that's probably the most important feel to any newcomer.

But then we stop being Roleplayers, and become just plain "players". We start wanting optimum equipment, the best skills, the best abilities, the best stats, and the best rewards. At this point, you stop playing the game for it's environment and you start getting into the nitty gritty of the whole thing, the meat of the game, and essentially what you'll be integrated in the most. If we go back to FFXI and look at the community, you see the problems they keep calling out isn't that the environments are too bland or the zones aren't seamless (though that has came up more than once), you'll see the outcries are basically the lack of job updates, increasing drop rates, and most of all increased legitimate content. All of these are linked to gameplay content, though the latter is arguable.

When you look at the game, you see breathtaking enviornments, many people running around, a variety of monsters and "beastmen", and you're just in awe of all of the content you're bathed in... when it's new. That's the value of being a roleplayer, but once you're done gazing at the stars, you start looking at numbers, your stats, and making objectives to optimize yourself. When designing an MMO like FFXIV, you have to take both perspectives into account and make a legitimate balance. Honestly, a game of all instances would be bad, but I would find that a game with nothing but open world exploration with no ease of access would be even worse unless you truely like the time sink. I can easily say I don't.

I look forward to see how FFXIV will handle instances. With how FFXI's campfest of all NMs and HNMs worked out, it's a wonder how FFXIV will improve on it. If anything that was 11's biggest problem in that the designers never expected players to actually camp the spawn points of that certain NM, of that dynamis, or even of that BCNM, and it would be foolhardy to not think it'd happen in FFXIV. It may not be "realistic" in terms of an open-world experience, but in the end we're all going to be players, and not "roleplayers" further down the road.

Edited, Feb 26th 2010 1:13am by TerisaFenrir
#112 Feb 26 2010 at 12:57 AM Rating: Decent
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If you want purely instanced gameplay, I'd say go play a single player game. You're pretty much reducing player interaction to such an extent it may as well not even be there.
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#113 Feb 26 2010 at 3:02 AM Rating: Decent
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I look forward to see how FFXIV will handle instances. With how FFXI's campfest of all NMs and HNMs worked out, it's a wonder how FFXIV will improve on it. If anything that was 11's biggest problem in that the designers never expected players to actually camp the spawn points of that certain NM, of that dynamis, or even of that BCNM, and it would be foolhardy to not think it'd happen in FFXIV. It may not be "realistic" in terms of an open-world experience, but in the end we're all going to be players, and not "roleplayers" further down the road.


I feel the biggest problem with FFXI was how disjointed every single aspect of the game turned out to be. You were hard pressed to get several things done at one (at least not without doing some research)such as: making gil, earning exp, completing missions, farming, skilling up. generally you have to set aside a lot of time to do any of these things, in other words, there is no synergy. I find it appalling that they added an updated referred to as "synergy" when they designed an entire online world that contradict the principals of synergy.

If you do campaign, forget about skilling up or getting weapon skill points. Helping someone complete a mission? forget about sort of gil or exp reward outside a few specified cases. Be prepared to be turned down by peeps who don't feel like helping you get a mission done due to the lack of incentive, or prepare to shout for hours to form a party to get a mission done. prepare to dump gil into skilling up a craft on a synth that does not sell well or at all nor NPCs very well. prepare to settle for crafting the 5 items your craft can make money synthing out of the 200 BS recipes available.

FFXI is riddle with so much disjointedness that it makes it like like a giant clock tower where the gears were designed not to touch one another to make the clock work. Instead you got these people come in who are expected to turn the gears manually to make the clock work, sometimes peeps fight over gears because they aren't big enough to accommodate everyone who wants a turn. Some are too far out of the way or too dangerous to get to to turn. Some are too hard compared to others to turn and some give enough incentive to bother turning.

Regardless of if a game is instanced or not, the top priority should always be synergy and sensibility. Not some self righteous culturally obscure design principals that makes the rest of the world raise an eyebrow when these obscurities are discovered.

Quote:
If you want purely instanced gameplay, I'd say go play a single player game. You're pretty much reducing player interaction to such an extent it may as well not even be there.


Who are you talking to? I don't recall anyone in this thread saying they wanted a pure instanced game. Also you make it sound like if you can;t play with more than a handful of players you'd rather not play with anyone, wtf kind of stance is that? lol
#114 Feb 26 2010 at 7:24 AM Rating: Good
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baltz wrote:


I just think its a shame that instancing is largely seen as a negative thing, or even a deal breaker. Shouldn't the quality of the experience make or rbeak the game?



What is the difference between a shared central hub and a lobby window?

I'm not paying $15/mo to play Diablo with a fancier lobby. Guild Wars is great if you're up for a fully instanced game with shared hubs. Guild Wars 2 is out on the horizon. Your "mini-demographic" is getting served quite nicely by games without monthly fees. Guild Wars is supposed to be a great game (I wouldn't know, I don't play it) and they managed to turn a profit on box sales, expansion sales and a few time-saving microtransactions.

... and I sure don't want to start paying monthly fees to play one. It's a lower-tier game than a true MMORPG, plain and simple.
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#115 Feb 26 2010 at 1:56 PM Rating: Good
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Jordster wrote:
baltz wrote:


I just think its a shame that instancing is largely seen as a negative thing, or even a deal breaker. Shouldn't the quality of the experience make or rbeak the game?



What is the difference between a shared central hub and a lobby window?

I'm not paying $15/mo to play Diablo with a fancier lobby. Guild Wars is great if you're up for a fully instanced game with shared hubs. Guild Wars 2 is out on the horizon. Your "mini-demographic" is getting served quite nicely by games without monthly fees. Guild Wars is supposed to be a great game (I wouldn't know, I don't play it) and they managed to turn a profit on box sales, expansion sales and a few time-saving microtransactions.

... and I sure don't want to start paying monthly fees to play one. It's a lower-tier game than a true MMORPG, plain and simple.


This. I do support instancing for certain things, like FFXI's BCNMs and such, but the bulk of the world should be open content. As I said before, the solution is not to have 36 people in 6 different instances of one zone, but to have 3 comparable zones with two parties each.

Some FFXI players are so used to the bottlenecking that occurs during xp due to the bulk of the player base all going to the same area; the solution is not to just replicate the same exact area into a dozen sandboxes, it is to provide alternatives such that if Area A is too crowded for you, your options aren't "Fight for mobs or disband party", your options are "Area B or Area C".

One of the things I really enjoy about playing MMORPGs are the people you run in to and the friends you make. FFXI had so many opportunities that it inherently presents you with to make friends or invite people to your LS; how many of us think back to the first time we ran into someone in Vana'diel who was soloing and decided to make our first group with them? My first LS was a 4 way split of 8000 gil between myself and some people I met while soloing, and we became good friends over the years. If West Ronfaure was an instance that was empty of anyone but me, I'd have never met them, and all the stories I have as a result of those three people (and people they invited to the LS) over the next several years would never have happened.

I want a game that encourages (forces, if necessary) me to play with other people, in a world that is conducive to meeting said people. I don't want a world where I can solo my way to the level cap in completely empty zones. I don't want to play a Massively Single Player Online Role Playing Game. Otherwise I'd go play Diablo.
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#116 Feb 26 2010 at 3:00 PM Rating: Decent
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Some FFXI players are so used to the bottlenecking that occurs during xp due to the bulk of the player base all going to the same area; the solution is not to just replicate the same exact area into a dozen sandboxes, it is to provide alternatives such that if Area A is too crowded for you, your options aren't "Fight for mobs or disband party", your options are "Area B or Area C".


Bubumiru Peninsula.

Players don’t always behave rationally, have knowledge, or do what is right.


/edit: Just to be clear, my stance is pro instanced dungeons or areas for the sake of population control in a cost effective way, that's also conducive to storytelling tools yet utilized in MMOs (but mastered in other games).



Edited, Feb 26th 2010 5:19pm by Zemzelette
#117 Feb 26 2010 at 3:16 PM Rating: Default
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Now some good reasons have been brought up, scale versus subscription. I agree about not finding value in paying to play smaller scaled games. The example games brought up tho aren't games I've played though. PSO has what people would refer to as Diablo style game play which I guess is close enough. I also only play GW1 and only for 2 weeks due to lack of interest. PSO (or at least PSO version 1) and MH were free to play. Monster Hunter Tri will also be free to play, I was ****** off about Sega getting any money out of me for the online portion of PSU since they have to pay for the first month, then you get 15 free days after the fact, wtf.

Also this again points out how many, if any of have yet to play either of these franchises since very few use them as examples. I'm only restating this because this means that its fruitless for me to try and push my points because of this. I'm not saying to go out and play them, I'm just saying they are/were worth it, PSO is old tho so I'd focus on MH. I intend to play both FFXIV and MH:Tri(announced to be free to play in the West) where I will (hopefully) get to indulge in the best of both worlds.

MH:T prolly wouldn't have been free had it not been for peeps negative opinions about instanced games in the West so thats something to be thankful for.

Zemzelette wrote:
Quote:
Some FFXI players are so used to the bottlenecking that occurs during xp due to the bulk of the player base all going to the same area; the solution is not to just replicate the same exact area into a dozen sandboxes, it is to provide alternatives such that if Area A is too crowded for you, your options aren't "Fight for mobs or disband party", your options are "Area B or Area C".


Bubumiru Peninsula.

Players don’t always behave rationally, have knowledge, or do what is right.


This somewhat proves my point that no matter how open a world is, the player base will degrade to play styles or mentalities best satiated by instanced games lol

Peeps may think they want an open-world but if the game itself isn't designed to adequately justify the principals of the world, there will be much pigeon holing.

This is the fault of The Developers.

When we are presented various choices/options, it is in our nature to try and determine what is "best". This is why Levels and Jobs will be left out in games like ffxiv, players won't have to worry about how to get the "best exp" or choose the "best job". Although I do expect players to develop standards for the "best skill set" based on ones desired role. The mentality would/should shift to "What skills will compliment my play style and also provide value to a group scenario?"

For the record for peeps who think I prefer instanced games(MH specifically of course) because I prefer to solo, that is not the case, I like instanced games(MH) for how seamless grouping is. This makes player skill level a non-issue since playing with less skilled players makes things a little more challenging and gives you the chance to show off and pass on some tips. The combat is also way more dynamic (in MH) compared to ATB auto-attack BS that peeps put up with for some reason. They use this to keep down server congestion, another inherent flaw of the Open-world design.

yet for some reason that still makes them more enjoyable.

*mind boggled*

Edited, Feb 27th 2010 12:34am by baltz
#118 Feb 26 2010 at 8:57 PM Rating: Decent
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I feel the biggest problem with FFXI was how disjointed every single aspect of the game turned out to be. You were hard pressed to get several things done at one (at least not without doing some research)such as: making gil, earning exp, completing missions, farming, skilling up. generally you have to set aside a lot of time to do any of these things, in other words, there is no synergy. I find it appalling that they added an updated referred to as "synergy" when they designed an entire online world that contradict the principals of synergy.

If you do campaign, forget about skilling up or getting weapon skill points. Helping someone complete a mission? forget about sort of gil or exp reward outside a few specified cases. Be prepared to be turned down by peeps who don't feel like helping you get a mission done due to the lack of incentive, or prepare to shout for hours to form a party to get a mission done. prepare to dump gil into skilling up a craft on a synth that does not sell well or at all nor NPCs very well. prepare to settle for crafting the 5 items your craft can make money synthing out of the 200 BS recipes available.


^^^ That!
I couldn't agree more! As someone who has a full time job, a wife and kids, I did not want to sit around waiting for everything to line up just right. I wanted to log on and play. That's part of the reason I enjoyed campaign. But as you said, you couldn't do anything except gain XP in campaign. If I wanted gil, I had to set aside time to farm, party invited be darned.
Ideally, in FFXIV I really want to actually go on quests with other people. I don't mean get to a lower level in a dungeon and fight until 2 of our 6 need to leave. I mean I want to get a group of people together to go to a certain location with a specific goal in mind, fight our way into that place, fight a boss, and all get what we wanted out of it fairly.
I've heard this is the case with Dungeons & Dragons On-line, but I don't play it so I can't say for sure. Maybe (hopefully) Guildlevels can make that possible.
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#119 Feb 26 2010 at 11:32 PM Rating: Decent
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^^^
Agree with that also, which reminds me of the major reasons I left FF11 was the inability to make a party to complete missions and quests, you could spend an hour and get 4 people together only for it to fall apart because there was no real system to find the last 2 members.

Yea I know they had the LFP system but that was more designed around XPing, granted you could add notes but it was still pretty terrible, WoW has made massive headway with it's latest cross server LFP system for instancing and also has a LFM for quests (not that anyone uses it :P) and I really hope FF14 has something not just so we can look for XP parties (or the equivalent) but questing/guildleve parties and possibly even looking to have an item made or skill up a craft.

I just hope SE realise that there is more to an MMO then mindless grinding XP, I forgave FF11 for many of its flaws because it was made in a time when a lot of those things weren't thought of, but the days of timesink MMO's are long gone.

Edited, Feb 27th 2010 12:33am by Diakar
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#120 Feb 27 2010 at 11:33 AM Rating: Excellent
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Transit is still an issue if you insist on a super huge world. Just looking at XI, we had teleports and outposts aside from getting there on foot. Teleports weren't available until you had a WHM 36+, and even then what they offered wasn't exceptionally useful to leveling at that range. Outposts cost gil, and also had requirements like nation control for a small quest and a minimum level requirement. The latter was tweaked late in the game's life, but beforehand, the situation was rather similar to WHM's teleports. Finally, going on foot, or by chocobo, is simply time consuming. Can take five minutes to trot from a newbie zone to the next adjacent area. ****, Grauberg probably takes something like 10 minutes.

With the above in mind, to nail the point home, nothing sucks more than spending time or money to go somewhere only to see another group had wiggled in while you were on the way. One player scouting can helping minimize this, but they usually have to be out and about before a group's formation is completed. And even then, you have to contend with 6 people thinking their presence outweighs that of 1 guy just standing there, even if he says he has others incoming.

Now, if you're someone who can only play in 2-3 hour spurts, losing an hour of time trying to get the perfect group and then the perfect camp is something that can too often lead to frustration and getting little done. Even worse when you do finally get something going, but RL rears its head and you have to bail. Collectively speaking, sparing hundreds of thousands of people of such wasted time is far more beneficial to the game's health than seeing a random group or party now and then that probably won't give a crap about you being there unless you start interfering with their own objectives.
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#121 Feb 27 2010 at 3:25 PM Rating: Decent
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To me travel time wouldn't actually be a big deal if the there were actual gains of getting to once destination were much more worthwhile. This is why I put emphasis on justification and/or sensibility, The hurdles/tediums wouldn't come off so bad if they appealed to our sensibilities or had adequate gains/incentives. The Devs at SE seem to have some compulsive give and take complex where for every one thing we get, they are inclined to either limit, or take something else away.

This is usually justified for the sake of balance, but I personally see it as an oversight that many additions have contradictions to go with them.
#122 Feb 28 2010 at 11:07 AM Rating: Decent
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baltz wrote:
Now some good reasons have been brought up, scale versus subscription. I agree about not finding value in paying to play smaller scaled games. The example games brought up tho aren't games I've played though. PSO has what people would refer to as Diablo style game play which I guess is close enough. I also only play GW1 and only for 2 weeks due to lack of interest. PSO (or at least PSO version 1) and MH were free to play. Monster Hunter Tri will also be free to play, I was ****** off about Sega getting any money out of me for the online portion of PSU since they have to pay for the first month, then you get 15 free days after the fact, wtf.

Also this again points out how many, if any of have yet to play either of these franchises since very few use them as examples. I'm only restating this because this means that its fruitless for me to try and push my points because of this. I'm not saying to go out and play them, I'm just saying they are/were worth it, PSO is old tho so I'd focus on MH. I intend to play both FFXIV and MH:Tri(announced to be free to play in the West) where I will (hopefully) get to indulge in the best of both worlds.

MH:T prolly wouldn't have been free had it not been for peeps negative opinions about instanced games in the West so thats something to be thankful for.

Zemzelette wrote:
Quote:
Some FFXI players are so used to the bottlenecking that occurs during xp due to the bulk of the player base all going to the same area; the solution is not to just replicate the same exact area into a dozen sandboxes, it is to provide alternatives such that if Area A is too crowded for you, your options aren't "Fight for mobs or disband party", your options are "Area B or Area C".


Bubumiru Peninsula.

Players don’t always behave rationally, have knowledge, or do what is right.


This somewhat proves my point that no matter how open a world is, the player base will degrade to play styles or mentalities best satiated by instanced games lol


Buburmi sucked though. It was only close to Windurst, while the 2 other starting areas are very close to Valkurm. So you could make a Windy only party, or have people travel THROUGH the dunes, take a 10 minute boat right + time waiting for the boat, or just have everyone meet in the closest to the majority leveling spot.

Also, Dhamels are a pain with their healing spell, and they link. Crabs do not.

It's an inferior leveling spot and everyone wants to get out of there as soon as possible.
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#123 Feb 28 2010 at 1:21 PM Rating: Decent
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Quote:
Buburmi sucked though. It was only close to Windurst, while the 2 other starting areas are very close to Valkurm. So you could make a Windy only party, or have people travel THROUGH the dunes, take a 10 minute boat right + time waiting for the boat, or just have everyone meet in the closest to the majority leveling spot.

Also, Dhamels are a pain with their healing spell, and they link. Crabs do not.

It's an inferior leveling spot and everyone wants to get out of there as soon as possible.


In open world games you get to choose which zones you will never want to go. Empty zones make the world feel alive.
#124 Feb 28 2010 at 3:06 PM Rating: Good
baltz wrote:
In open world games you get to choose which zones you will never want to go. Empty zones make the world feel alive.


Empty zones are good places to go grind or farm. No other players = no competition. The idea, however, is that it's empty because there are other "mainstream" alternatives that are just as productive but not quite so out of the way. If a zone is empty because it's a pain in the *** to navigate for any reason and/or is functionally devoid of resources, that's a failure on the part of the developer. If the zone is empty because it's just as "useful" as <name of populated zone here> but is less trafficked because it takes a little longer to get there, you have yourself some prime stomping grounds for those times when you just want to be off doing your own thing without competing for spawns or resource nodes. Open world zones also tend to be substantially larger than instanced zones, which can make for greater variety in the previously mentioned farming shenanigans.
#125 Feb 28 2010 at 3:48 PM Rating: Decent
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Quote:
Buburmi sucked though. It was only close to Windurst, while the 2 other starting areas are very close to Valkurm. So you could make a Windy only party, or have people travel THROUGH the dunes, take a 10 minute boat right + time waiting for the boat, or just have everyone meet in the closest to the majority leveling spot.

Also, Dhamels are a pain with their healing spell, and they link. Crabs do not.

It's an inferior leveling spot and everyone wants to get out of there as soon as possible.


What and sheep don't suck to EXP from ?

I think the Mandragora's are supposed to be the crab equivalent and the birds = damsels.

You are right though Bubu is still a pain in the *** as there are very few safe spots to make a party as.

Edited, Feb 28th 2010 4:49pm by Diakar
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#126 Feb 28 2010 at 4:31 PM Rating: Excellent
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The designer behind Bubumiru had just as much intention to have his environment be useful as the designer behind Dunes. The intention to provide parallel leveling places is already present, has been since the time of MUDs. We know exactly how effective it is.

If you make zones similar enough to be functionally equal, you've made them copies in all but name. If you make them different, they become victims to the Path of Least Resistance. Just saying "they need to do it better!" isn't enough. This philosophy has been trying to have it's cake and eat it too for so long it's old enough to drink, drive and die for it's country.

A game shouldn't be trying so hard to make people go against the grain of human nature. If we can observe people following a largely herd-like path through zones in spite of their options, the answer isn't to fight against it tooth and nail. Whatever the solution to the problem may be, it need to embrace what players naturally already do.





Edited, Feb 28th 2010 6:42pm by Zemzelette
#127 Mar 01 2010 at 2:10 AM Rating: Decent
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237 posts
Quote:
Empty zones are good places to go grind or farm. No other players = no competition. The idea, however, is that it's empty because there are other "mainstream" alternatives that are just as productive but not quite so out of the way. If a zone is empty because it's a pain in the *** to navigate for any reason and/or is functionally devoid of resources, that's a failure on the part of the developer. If the zone is empty because it's just as "useful" as <name of populated zone here> but is less trafficked because it takes a little longer to get there, you have yourself some prime stomping grounds for those times when you just want to be off doing your own thing without competing for spawns or resource nodes. Open world zones also tend to be substantially larger than instanced zones, which can make for greater variety in the previously mentioned farming shenanigans.


Yes I made these same points in another thread. We also have to consider what the players have a habit of doing since this is a 2-way road. Players have a habit of pigeon-holing and looking for a reason to ignore as much of the "fluff" aspects as they can in order to streamline progress. If aspects of the game aren't completely symmetrical someone somewhere will find a reason to say why something is better than something else. This is why I put a lot of emphasis on "sensibility" and "justification" since if these characteristics will drive our decisions of what is valuable and what isn't

Even ina game like MH where skill has way more bearing than the attributes of your armor and weapons, there was always a subset of "noobs" who would berate those with "worse" gear. Yet these same peeps would turn out to be some of the worst players in the game who would cause the team to fail the mission despite wearing the "better"/"best" gear. No matter how moot it is there will always be this trying to polarize whatever aspect they can in these games.

Like those who feel Open-world > Instanced :P

Edited, Mar 1st 2010 3:37am by baltz
#128 Mar 01 2010 at 5:34 AM Rating: Good
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Zemzelette wrote:
The designer behind Bubumiru had just as much intention to have his environment be useful as the designer behind Dunes. The intention to provide parallel leveling places is already present, has been since the time of MUDs. We know exactly how effective it is.

If you make zones similar enough to be functionally equal, you've made them copies in all but name. If you make them different, they become victims to the Path of Least Resistance. Just saying "they need to do it better!" isn't enough. This philosophy has been trying to have it's cake and eat it too for so long it's old enough to drink, drive and die for it's country.

A game shouldn't be trying so hard to make people go against the grain of human nature. If we can observe people following a largely herd-like path through zones in spite of their options, the answer isn't to fight against it tooth and nail. Whatever the solution to the problem may be, it need to embrace what players naturally already do.


The design of the game can have a huge effect here.

For example, the easier travel is, the less it matters which specific zone you go to, and thus the more spread out people will be; conversely, the more time-consuming travel is, the more location matters.

The more group-centric a game is, the better it is (to an extent) to go where everyone else is; the more solo-friendly it is, the less it matters where everyone else is (and at some level, the better it is to go where no one else is.

So in a solo-friendly fast-travel game (like WoW), people will tend to level in zones they simply LIKE better, mostly regardless of what everyone else is doing, while in a group-centric slow-travel game (like FFXI), the bulk of the population in a given level range will be in one specific zone, because that's where everyone goes.

And that's before including the effects of other FFXI design decisions that reinforce the community's herd mentality, such as the need to research camp spots in less popular or totally unused zones (because camps need to be relatively safe to allow resting, but with enough mobs close by to sustain the party) and the wildly unbalanced mob difficulty (for example, imps and colibri being significantly easier than other mobs of the same level, or eruca and spiders being far more capable of wiping a group than crabs and crawlers).

For example, with regards to Valkurm vs. Buburimu, the design deck was stacked against Buburimu pretty much from the get-go. Valkurm is fed by two nations, compared to one for Buburimu, so there's already going to be more people there. Before the level requirement for outpost warps were lowered, the fastest way to get between the two zones (barring higher-level help) takes 20-40 minutes, placing great value on picking one over the other. The placement of guilds and vendors makes it harder to gear a tank in Windurst compared to the other nations, and since parties need tanks (and the party's success is affected more by the tank's gear than anyone else's), this is another strike against Buburimu. So by time the player base was in a position where partying Buburimu was less of a hassle, they were already in the habit of going to Valkurm by default or were using better options.

If San d'Oria and Bastok led to separate Valkurm-level zones, if Windurst had a blacksmithing guild, if you could outpost warp to those zones at level 10 from the get go, if the game had stressed unlocking outpost warps to new players, if it were easier to obtain outpost warps (instead of needing to perform a supply run during a week you nation controls the zone), if the boat ride was shorter and the boats came more often, (heck, if the chocobo license was obtained at 15 in your home nation rather than at 20 in Jeuno) the 10-18 levelling experience would have turned out very different.

Newbie zone -> Valkurm -> Qufim -> Khazam -> Garlaige -> CN -> Kuftal -> Boyahda -> Terrigan -> Onzozo -> Boyahda -> Ro'Maeve (or later Newbie zone -> Valkurm -> Qufim -> Khazam -> Garlaige -> CN -> Kuftal -> Bhaflau/Wajaom/Caedarva) was not a foregone conclusion.
#129 Mar 01 2010 at 7:07 AM Rating: Good
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BastokFL wrote:
A bunch of stuff I rated up


Exactly my point. If Zone A is easy to get to and Zone B takes twice as long, it doesn't matter if Zone A and Zone B have the same level mobs, people will crowd into Zone A. As he said, Buburimu was cursed from the start. If two or three zones require equal travel time and neither has mobs that are significantly more difficult than the other, the population will even out between them. The population only bottlenecks in one area when it has significantly weaker mobs (Colibri vs Eruca) or where the options are not equidistant (Jeuno > Suromugue > Garlaige vs Jeuno > Kazham > Yhoator Jungle > Yuhtunga Jungle).
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#130 Mar 03 2010 at 7:27 AM Rating: Decent
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I just thought of one....

I don't wanna see any "Real Numbers"

I'm ok with stuff being just +1 or "of the Dragon" but I really don't want to see any real Numbers like 15.7 dps, or 71% bonus. I used to think real #'s would be awesome back when I played 11(5yrs ago), and then I played a few real#'s games.

In City of Heroes, which is a fun *** game I highly recommend, the implementation of real #'s made the builds way too tight. Without real #'s you could enhance your characters in all manner of ways and it all still "felt" the same, but with real #'s the #'s became too important and builds tightened up so that instead of having maybe 2X's and a Z or maybe an X, Y, and a Z, with real #'s you end up always with XZZ because the #'s prove it's more efficient.

And of course there's wow. I've been playing it for a while now, and I'm nowhere near endgame and already the #'s have overwhelmed any sort of community or flexibility that place might have had. I see shouts all the time like, "LFM 5000 DPM or kicked" or "LF3M SEND GEAR SPEC", "LF4M 3MIN RUN". It almost feels military how obsessed they are with the #'s there.

I think I'll be fine with some kind of obscure bonus system that takes adds a little guesswork into the gear mixes. Maybe something much less numbers based, I don't know what they could do to deal with this but really i think real #'s have become a bad thing in these games.
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#131 Mar 03 2010 at 12:24 PM Rating: Good
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You want to structure the map in such a way that every zone has to be connected to it's next logical level range, each level range has three zone options, and each zone for each level range is of an equal distance from the Hub city and from the previous level range spot?

Imagine what that map would actually look like.
Only the first zone would have 3 options, the rest would be multiples of 3. If there are 75 levels, and each zone handles 10 levels - that 2,187 zones for the 70-75 stretch. The zones themselves start out large in the starting zones but become progressively more Tiny, there are caves and cliffs everywhere as designers try to find a reason to stack zones on top of eachother, and with 3,279 zones on the dev team's plate, you know your going to be seeing alot of repetition and a suffering of quality.

Unless of course, you could introduce an instantaneous travel mechanic. In this way you can have 3 options for each level range that are an equal distance from the starting hub city and the previous level range without having the number balloon past that or run into space issues. That sounds pretty reasonable. I mean WoW created more timely travel, and more zones were utilized, surely instantaneous means all the zones are equally viable. (actually, that's not true. What makes you travel hither and yon in WoW has as much to do with travel as it does Questing and Soloplay, and we're working with a Grouping and Camping hypothetical. But for the sake of argument...)

But how does that compare to an instance? In a game about camping, if travel is structured in this way, then 'passing through' is a thing of the past. Your sense of a cohesive world is undermined, things maybe be connected, but they'll be treated like instances. Most of your spontaneous socialization is going to be with your direct competition. Is that really the kind of social environment we want to take such pains to foster?


Although we have no idea whether or not Guildleves are instanced (although it appears that way at Gamescon), we do know Aetherlyte exsists, we do know Endgame content will be instanced, and we do know Camping has been openly scorned by the Devs and the questhub that is Guildleves has been touted as the core game mechanic. Zones are important for controlling the population in a camping game, but for a questing game it's the resources that have to be controlled - which don't nessisarily relate to game space because not all quests have killing mobs as their goal. This discussion is interesting, I think you both have a good debate and we fundamentally agree there is value to the openworld (just for completely different reasons), but we've kind of strayed from the point of relevancy.



Edited, Mar 3rd 2010 2:35pm by Zemzelette
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