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Letter from the Producer, XLIV (03/19/2013) Follow

#52 Mar 19 2013 at 2:48 PM Rating: Decent
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DamienSScott wrote:
KaneKitty wrote:
I'm pretty happy with the small numbers on the damage and HP that I see in these shots. I've always thought it was stupid when MMOs have characters with 129,864 HP... it feels like it's done merely to make people say "woo!" when a big number shows up on their screen. For readability and balance, you may as well just drop the final couple digits in every case, since they're never doing anything significant. Smiley: nod


The arbitrarily large numbers tend to be because of power creep. This was/is one of WoW's bigger development issues. Their plan didn't involve side-upgrades or anything like that so every time new content came out they had to increase the numbers on it. But they had to increase them enough to make it seem like it was worth it to pretty much go through the same stuff over and over again every patch/expansion. I'm sure it's part of the reason they had to standardize mob stats and jobs. I really hope FFXIV doesn't go this route.


One of the many reasons I think sidegrades are generally superior to upgrades. You upgrade when you want to make significant alterations to the gameplay experience. The delicate balance of the endgame is generally best left where it is until it starts to break down or the fundamental gameplay experience becomes boring.

For that matter, most of the level spectrum is kind of superfluous, too. There's no real inherent difference between having 50 levels or 10 levels or 10000 levels. The only difference is usually how often you're rewarded with a minor upgrade. While the 50-100 range is standard and generally works pretty well, games could easily work with fewer (there's no real advantage to using larger numbers other than the aforementioned "big numbers syndrome"). In most MMOs that are on the market, you could easily reduce all of the leveling to 5-10 levels. Then, rather than a pretty insignificant bonus during most levels, you get a huge bonus at each level... a slew of new abilities and gear, and a really noticeable statistical advantage. Each level becomes that much more meaningful. And it's infinitely easier to balance a game with units of 10 levels than with units that range from 50-100, which inevitably leads to the larger numbers that KaneKitty is referring to.

This also produces a better "fun curve." It takes longer between each level, but just as players start to grow bored with all of their new toys and goodies, they become closer to the next batch.

And then of course, if you do want to add more upgrades, like a level 11 and 12, it's much easier to avoid those balance issues and power creep.

Little numbers are definitely where it's at. And they make designing so much easier.
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Hyrist wrote:
Ok, now we're going to get slash fiction of Wint x Kachi somehere... rule 34 and all...

Never confuse your inference as the listener for an implication of the speaker.

Good games are subjective like good food is subjective. You're not going to seriously tell me that there's not a psychological basis for why pizza is great and lutefisk is revolting. The thing about subjectivity is that, as subjects go, humans actually have a great deal in common.
#53 Mar 19 2013 at 3:06 PM Rating: Default
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Why are the screenshots always so tiny
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#54 Mar 19 2013 at 3:11 PM Rating: Excellent
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Poubelle wrote:
Why are the screenshots always so tiny


Does it matter?
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#55 Mar 19 2013 at 3:12 PM Rating: Good
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Poubelle wrote:
Why are the screenshots always so tiny


Would rather them be a little bit smaller so I can click on it to enlarge it if I want. This way a single post doesn't take up as much room.
Why i even responded I have no clue. Maybe it was the 8"+ of snow I have to go deal with now.
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#56 Mar 19 2013 at 3:13 PM Rating: Excellent
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Poubelle wrote:
Why are the screenshots always so tiny


Because they size them down for blog formatting. I agree though, I wish they would have links to larger sizes.
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#57 Mar 19 2013 at 3:24 PM Rating: Decent
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Teravibe wrote:
Poubelle wrote:
Why are the screenshots always so tiny


Does it matter?


since I want to see them clearly, yes, it does matter. I have no use for thumbnails
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#58 Mar 19 2013 at 3:28 PM Rating: Default
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SillyHawk wrote:
Poubelle wrote:
Why are the screenshots always so tiny


Would rather them be a little bit smaller so I can click on it to enlarge it if I want. This way a single post doesn't take up as much room.
Why i even responded I have no clue. Maybe it was the 8"+ of snow I have to go deal with now.


thats what I was saying too. I know they need to small, but I can't click them to see the full resolution, which makes it kinda pointless since I can't see crap
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#59 Mar 19 2013 at 7:20 PM Rating: Good
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I would say concurrent about 2,500 - 6,000 due to it's being beta, but not all 10,000 people are online at the same time. EVE have a concurrent of 35,000 and it's loads of difference to having 35,000 players. I don't think even WoW ever had more than 1,000,000 concurrent players on all servers across the world (or around that mark).
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#60 Mar 19 2013 at 9:30 PM Rating: Good
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Rinsui wrote:
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Do you think he's quoting invites sent or people actually logging in?

I think it may be 100k all right, but I doubt it's 100k at the same time.


If the servers can survive 100K people logging in all at the same time, maybe they will avoid the EA SimCity disaster of the last few weeks.
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#61 Mar 19 2013 at 9:37 PM Rating: Good
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WoW used to have percentage bonuses for critical strikes and to-hit chance (among others). This was changed from 1.0 to 2.0 to a scaling method called 'Rating'. So anytime you see a stat in a MMO that has a 'rating', it means it's a stat that devalues as your level increases. Which is an unfortunate strategy, because it means as you level, you actually become weaker assuming your core gear remains the same.
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#62 Mar 19 2013 at 10:02 PM Rating: Good
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100k testers in the 4th week of beta testing isn't nearly the same as the first week or two as well. Several people have just popped in to look at it and decide if they want to buy it or not (which is not a good idea because phase 3 is really where it's at). With the announcement that there's another week of phase 1, followed by minimalistic changes of phase 2, means you're going to see a lot of tester burnout. People might not want to level a character for the short test period available for phase 2. Which is why they're talking about increasing tester count. Also by forcing character wipes and putting 10-20k people on a server, they force massive starting area congestion which puts tremendous stress on the servers (in addition to making the game unplayable), but this allows them to test their ability to hotfix problems related to server ability without impacting the release game.
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#63 Mar 20 2013 at 1:55 AM Rating: Decent
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DamienSScott wrote:
The arbitrarily large numbers tend to be because of power creep. This was/is one of WoW's bigger development issues. Their plan didn't involve side-upgrades or anything like that so every time new content came out they had to increase the numbers on it.
The issue with sidegrades is that you need a design model to make the sidegrades worth it (which doesn't really work in an MMO without gear swaps; in FFXI the sidegrades were pretty much "inventory +1" for the most part).

The real issue I think was just how drastically the devs wanted to level the playing field when TBC hit. In retrospect they did go overboard by having lv61 greens have better stats than gear from AQ and Naxx.

This is not to deny the power creep, because it is/was imminent. It just would have prolongued it for later.
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I'm sure it's part of the reason they had to standardize mob stats and jobs.
Mob stats and abilities was more to standardize tank design to not repeat what happened in black temple, where you had to be a warrior or a paladin to tank Illidan (because he had an ability that required the tank to have a shield block mechanic, which druid tanks did not have). That's not mentioning crap like bosses being entirely immune to certain classes and specs (Curator in Karazhan was immune to almost all Moonkin spells, for example).

Edited, Mar 20th 2013 3:57am by Ruisu
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#64 Mar 20 2013 at 2:14 PM Rating: Decent
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Sidegrades don't have to mean gearswaps, though they do generally have to involve the swapping of something, since you're making your character more flexible rather than more powerful. If the only source of statistical bonuses in your game is gear, then yeah, that leaves gearswapping. But you can put statistical bonuses in any number of things. Materia would be an easy example. FF8 also did a lot of this (though rather poorly imo).
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Hyrist wrote:
Ok, now we're going to get slash fiction of Wint x Kachi somehere... rule 34 and all...

Never confuse your inference as the listener for an implication of the speaker.

Good games are subjective like good food is subjective. You're not going to seriously tell me that there's not a psychological basis for why pizza is great and lutefisk is revolting. The thing about subjectivity is that, as subjects go, humans actually have a great deal in common.
#65 Mar 20 2013 at 6:38 PM Rating: Decent
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Woah, I come back here to see that there quite a few fans of arbitrarily large numbers, lol.
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#66 Mar 20 2013 at 6:52 PM Rating: Decent
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Really? It didn't seem that way to me. At least, I didn't get to argue with anyone about it. :c
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Hyrist wrote:
Ok, now we're going to get slash fiction of Wint x Kachi somehere... rule 34 and all...

Never confuse your inference as the listener for an implication of the speaker.

Good games are subjective like good food is subjective. You're not going to seriously tell me that there's not a psychological basis for why pizza is great and lutefisk is revolting. The thing about subjectivity is that, as subjects go, humans actually have a great deal in common.
#67 Mar 20 2013 at 7:42 PM Rating: Good
Kachi wrote:
At least, I didn't get to argue with anyone about it. :c


K

Kachi wrote:
Sidegrades don't have to mean gearswaps, though they do generally have to involve the swapping of something, since you're making your character more flexible rather than more powerful. If the only source of statistical bonuses in your game is gear, then yeah, that leaves gearswapping. But you can put statistical bonuses in any number of things. Materia would be an easy example. FF8 also did a lot of this (though rather poorly imo).


*chug Crown Royal*

Sidegrades not only mean gearswaps, but complete overhaul swaps! If this game wants to be successful, then I need to be able to carry 3 sets of gear at a time (acc, eva, and att) along with enough materia options to have 2+ versions of each gearset. I'm also going to need pure asthetic gear, so I can hit 3 macros to get my evasion set on, but then another 3 macros to make my Star Onion Brigade outfit on while I run away. I mean, how else does SE intend to pique my interest? How am I going to stay interested in this game if it doesn't take me 2 days to set my macros, just to have to redo them when I get a new piece of gear? I happen to enjoy the Junction system. You didn't like overleveling so that you could survive the ordeal that was drawing 297 Triples from Cerberus? Smiley: sly

Kachi wrote:
Little numbers are definitely where it's at. And they make designing so much easier.


Real men hit for OVER 9000!
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#68 Mar 20 2013 at 7:44 PM Rating: Excellent
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Wint wrote:
DuoMaxwellxx wrote:
Wint wrote:
DuoMaxwellxx wrote:
I dont care what anyone says but I prefer the macros and menu look of FFXIs GUI than FFXIV use of WoW like (and just about every other MMO like) hotkeys and "click on this picture icon a million times to spam this ability" look of the GUI

though the graphics (like any other SE game) look great.. Im gonna spend the first 24 hours of the game just walking around exploring lol.

Edited, Mar 19th 2013 9:50am by DuoMaxwellxx


XIV has macros...you can assign them to CTRL or ALT + Number combinations, exactly like XI...



yeah Im sure XIV has macros too I was mainly referring to the hotkey icon boxes look of the GUI as opposed to the attack/magic/item etc etc more traditional RPG menu look of FFXIs GUI


From my hands on I can tell you that those things can be turned off, you can literally make the UI look like anything you want. Even more so once they launch addons I bet, so you could certainly go for a more minimalist feel if that's what trips your trigger Smiley: thumbsup

Personally I never click on those, but I usually rely on them to remind me which ability is tied to which hotkey. Might be interesting to hide it and see if I can remember which is which.


First task for Wint and ZAM create a throwback UI for XI users in XIV! Accessible only to Premium members at ZAM. :P
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#69 Mar 20 2013 at 7:48 PM Rating: Decent
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Quote:

*chug Crown Royal*

Sidegrades not only mean gearswaps, but complete overhaul swaps! If this game wants to be successful, then I need to be able to carry 3 sets of gear at a time (acc, eva, and att) along with enough materia options to have 2+ versions of each gearset. I'm also going to need pure asthetic gear, so I can hit 3 macros to get my evasion set on, but then another 3 macros to make my Star Onion Brigade outfit on while I run away. I mean, how else does SE intend to pique my interest? How am I going to stay interested in this game if it doesn't take me 2 days to set my macros, just to have to redo them when I get a new piece of gear? I happen to enjoy the Junction system. You didn't like overleveling so that you could survive the ordeal that was drawing 297 Triples from Cerberus? Smiley: sly


What is... I don't even...

wut
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Hyrist wrote:
Ok, now we're going to get slash fiction of Wint x Kachi somehere... rule 34 and all...

Never confuse your inference as the listener for an implication of the speaker.

Good games are subjective like good food is subjective. You're not going to seriously tell me that there's not a psychological basis for why pizza is great and lutefisk is revolting. The thing about subjectivity is that, as subjects go, humans actually have a great deal in common.
#70 Mar 20 2013 at 7:52 PM Rating: Good
Kachi wrote:
Quote:

*chug Crown Royal*

Sidegrades not only mean gearswaps, but complete overhaul swaps! If this game wants to be successful, then I need to be able to carry 3 sets of gear at a time (acc, eva, and att) along with enough materia options to have 2+ versions of each gearset. I'm also going to need pure asthetic gear, so I can hit 3 macros to get my evasion set on, but then another 3 macros to make my Star Onion Brigade outfit on while I run away. I mean, how else does SE intend to pique my interest? How am I going to stay interested in this game if it doesn't take me 2 days to set my macros, just to have to redo them when I get a new piece of gear? I happen to enjoy the Junction system. You didn't like overleveling so that you could survive the ordeal that was drawing 297 Triples from Cerberus? Smiley: sly


What is... I don't even...

wut


Well that was anti-climactic Smiley: frown
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#71 Mar 20 2013 at 7:53 PM Rating: Decent
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Am I still muted?

I'm happy that he decided to update the world. I was wondering when Phase 1 would be over and I was wondering how things were going. I mean, even if you're in the Beta, its still hard to tell how the developers feel about things. Adding a week and having that high amount of logins, seems to be a good thing. As some of you said, that's a **** of a sever stress test. I bet they could do the final hours of 1.0 again if they wanted too and not have it fail...

I'm happy to see he's happy. I am really excited to see more details on how the controller is going to work, so its cool they want testers to use them as a main playing point. That one video isn't enough. Time will tell.
#72 Mar 20 2013 at 7:56 PM Rating: Decent
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IKickYoDog wrote:
Kachi wrote:
Quote:

*chug Crown Royal*

Sidegrades not only mean gearswaps, but complete overhaul swaps! If this game wants to be successful, then I need to be able to carry 3 sets of gear at a time (acc, eva, and att) along with enough materia options to have 2+ versions of each gearset. I'm also going to need pure asthetic gear, so I can hit 3 macros to get my evasion set on, but then another 3 macros to make my Star Onion Brigade outfit on while I run away. I mean, how else does SE intend to pique my interest? How am I going to stay interested in this game if it doesn't take me 2 days to set my macros, just to have to redo them when I get a new piece of gear? I happen to enjoy the Junction system. You didn't like overleveling so that you could survive the ordeal that was drawing 297 Triples from Cerberus? Smiley: sly


What is... I don't even...

wut


Well that was anti-climactic Smiley: frown


There was so much indistinguishably sarcastic/hyperbolic/something in there, I wasn't sure whether I was supposed to argue, or agree sarcastically Smiley: frown
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Hyrist wrote:
Ok, now we're going to get slash fiction of Wint x Kachi somehere... rule 34 and all...

Never confuse your inference as the listener for an implication of the speaker.

Good games are subjective like good food is subjective. You're not going to seriously tell me that there's not a psychological basis for why pizza is great and lutefisk is revolting. The thing about subjectivity is that, as subjects go, humans actually have a great deal in common.
#73 Mar 20 2013 at 7:57 PM Rating: Decent
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Quote:
Am I still muted?


Yes. Only I can see you because I have special eyes.
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Hyrist wrote:
Ok, now we're going to get slash fiction of Wint x Kachi somehere... rule 34 and all...

Never confuse your inference as the listener for an implication of the speaker.

Good games are subjective like good food is subjective. You're not going to seriously tell me that there's not a psychological basis for why pizza is great and lutefisk is revolting. The thing about subjectivity is that, as subjects go, humans actually have a great deal in common.
#74 Mar 20 2013 at 8:05 PM Rating: Good
Kachi wrote:
I have special eyes.


I work at an eye clinic and we make fun of that commercial to this day.

Edited, Mar 20th 2013 10:05pm by IKickYoDog
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Our team is like a flock of woodpeckers in a petrified forest. We just need to keep working and keep an eye open for opportunity.

FFXI
Toofar - Asura (Formerly of Lakshmi (Garuda)) - WHM BLM SMN
Rafoot - Asura (Formerly of Lakshmi (Garuda)) - THF SAM BRD
#75 Mar 20 2013 at 8:06 PM Rating: Good
Kachi wrote:
IKickYoDog wrote:
Kachi wrote:
Quote:

*chug Crown Royal*

Sidegrades not only mean gearswaps, but complete overhaul swaps! If this game wants to be successful, then I need to be able to carry 3 sets of gear at a time (acc, eva, and att) along with enough materia options to have 2+ versions of each gearset. I'm also going to need pure asthetic gear, so I can hit 3 macros to get my evasion set on, but then another 3 macros to make my Star Onion Brigade outfit on while I run away. I mean, how else does SE intend to pique my interest? How am I going to stay interested in this game if it doesn't take me 2 days to set my macros, just to have to redo them when I get a new piece of gear? I happen to enjoy the Junction system. You didn't like overleveling so that you could survive the ordeal that was drawing 297 Triples from Cerberus? Smiley: sly


What is... I don't even...

wut


Well that was anti-climactic Smiley: frown


There was so much indistinguishably sarcastic/hyperbolic/something in there, I wasn't sure whether I was supposed to argue, or agree sarcastically Smiley: frown


Well I was personally expecting sarcastic argument right back, but apparently my barometer on the situation wasn't calibrated correctly.
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Our team is like a flock of woodpeckers in a petrified forest. We just need to keep working and keep an eye open for opportunity.

FFXI
Toofar - Asura (Formerly of Lakshmi (Garuda)) - WHM BLM SMN
Rafoot - Asura (Formerly of Lakshmi (Garuda)) - THF SAM BRD
#76 Mar 20 2013 at 8:08 PM Rating: Decent
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IKickYoDog wrote:
Kachi wrote:
I have special eyes.


I work at an eye clinic and we make fun of that commercial to this day.

Edited, Mar 20th 2013 10:05pm by IKickYoDog


You guys must love HD glasses and HD paint.

Personally I'm waiting for a retina-compatible version.
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Hyrist wrote:
Ok, now we're going to get slash fiction of Wint x Kachi somehere... rule 34 and all...

Never confuse your inference as the listener for an implication of the speaker.

Good games are subjective like good food is subjective. You're not going to seriously tell me that there's not a psychological basis for why pizza is great and lutefisk is revolting. The thing about subjectivity is that, as subjects go, humans actually have a great deal in common.
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