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MUD Variant


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#1 AlanSmithee   Members   -  Reputation: 1064

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Posted 10 May 2012 - 03:41 AM

Hello!


Here's a little background:

So, I'm a huge fan of Dungeons And Dragons (the boardgame) even though I've never had the chance to play it.
I love watching sessions on youtube where the players breath life into their characters and the game itself. It looks like so much fun.

Playing alot(!) of MMORPG:s I've always been chasing that fealing, that epic adventure where you embark on a journey with a group of friends and concour challanges and grow (your characters) together.

The thing is that I always end up grinding for X amount of hours/days alone and then occassionally face-rolling a dungeon with random people whom I never met only becous I had X mount of quests in said dungeon.

I've been listening to a lot of speaches by Jonathan Blow (creator of Braid) lately and it really opened my eyes to a lot of things regarding responsible game design. Now I won't go into details reGarding that but it's relevant to my question so if you've also heard speaches by him you migh be able to relate easier.


So, to the question (idea):

What do you think of a MUD where you start a campaign as a group of people (every person playing at their own computer over the internet like any other MMO) and whenever you want to play the game everyone in that group have to be connected to the campaign so there is no induvidual progress and a sitting/session actually requires the entire group to advance together? Also once a campaign is started you cannot change the group comoposition or add/remove a player.

I realise there is a lot more to it then just forcing players to play as a co-op, such as character development, actual game-play etc, but im trying to think of a means to re-create the "sessions" of a DnD game.

Also, I tried to look up games implementing a simIlar system and came across the game "Magicka" but I'm not sure if it actually forces groups to play, or if you are able to change the group whenever you want, so I also wanted to ask anyone who played it (or any other game with a simalar system) if it is indeed a system like the one I'm talking about, and if so what was your experience of it? Good? Bad? :-)

Thanks in advance / AS.

Edit: Spelling

Edited by AlanSmithee, 10 May 2012 - 03:46 AM.


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#2 Ashaman73   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 8005

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Posted 10 May 2012 - 04:54 AM

Also once a campaign is started you cannot change the group comoposition or add/remove a player.

I would recomment to play some of the co-op games like L4D to see, that adding/removing a player in a running session is really necessary, else your game session will stop quite fast, in other words: campaigns will 99% of the time not be finished.

Although take a look at NWN, it supports session play to some degree (not sure how much).

The basic idea is not really clear, where's the difference to existing ad-hoc dungeon groups in a MMORPG like WoW ?

#3 AlanSmithee   Members   -  Reputation: 1064

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Posted 10 May 2012 - 05:15 AM

Hi Ashaman (That name wouldn't happened to be from Wheel of Time huh? :) )

Thanks for your reply, I will def. check out NWN, I am familiar with the title since a long time ago but it didn't come to mind, I must have forgotten about it.

What you say in regards to campaigns not being finished might very well be true, but would you reccon it is more likely to not be finished in relation to a normal DnD campaign? Since that is what I am aiming at recreating. What I have in mind is campaigns of varius length from maybe 8 hours to 20 hours (character development would be stored between campaigns.)

The difference between what I am refferign to in regards to a "normal" MMORPG like WoW is that the game-play would gravitate around the dungeon experince itself rather then having a free-roaming world with dungeons or instances scattered around sort of as a past-time or something that you just "down".
Between the campaigns the heros (playable characters) would sit in a tavern or hideout until a new quest (camapign) is started.

The aim, or idea, is to enhance the group-play and set a scenario where you really interact with your friends and grow with them with no independant player-development, you actually hae to play with your friends to play. Such a restriction makes a warning-bell ring in my head but i really want some way to enforce the group play. I do not want a MMORPG which is actually more like a single-player grind fest 70% of actual game time.

If I am vauge in my explanation it is becaus I don't have a clear vision as to what exactly the game-play would look like, it's only an idea so far, but what I i am invisioning is a very different experience then say WoW.

#4 Ashaman73   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 8005

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Posted 10 May 2012 - 07:19 AM

Hi Ashaman (That name wouldn't happened to be from Wheel of Time huh? :) )

I was young and needed a nick name ..Posted Image

but i really want some way to enforce the group play

Enforcing is always difficult, encouraging is better.

What I have in mind is campaigns of varius length from maybe 8 hours to 20 hours (character development would be stored between campaigns.)

I think that will only really work for close friends or a really fix group of gamers. But even when you take a pen'n'paper there's sometimes the need to divide a single campaign into more than a single session. Sometimes, when a party member is not available (not everyone is a student Posted Image ) , you take someone else and introduce them into the game to continue the campaign (i.e. you free a prisioner[new player] deep inside a dungeon). Synchronizing people is really hard business.

Best to take a look at NWN/2 and read some experience reports of the multiplayer part, what does work and what does not work. This way you can iron out your vision.

#5 AlanSmithee   Members   -  Reputation: 1064

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Posted 10 May 2012 - 08:06 AM

Hi again!

Thanks for sharing your insight.

What I was actually aiming for was that the campaign as a whole would be maybe 10 hours or so but you didn't have to finish it in one sitting.
So maybe you can decide with your friends that you play 2 hours every sunday evening or something and when you log out, progression is saved, but you can never continue the campaign unless everyone in the group is logged in.

What you say is true though, a more dynamic approach is needed. There should be no absolutes like what I was proposing. To much can go wrong that would hinder one member of the group to play and the rest of the group shouldn't be penatalised for it. In real life you can actually exchange members. Scenarios like "freeing a prisoner" sounds like something that would fit the idea in a natural way.

I'm at work atm that's why I haven't already checked out NWN in any detail but I def will when I get home. :)

Thanks for your advice.

#6 Acharis   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 4004

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Posted 10 May 2012 - 12:00 PM

Critical question, do you:
a) have a group of friends already and you all join the game to play it?
b) don't have friends and want to find them ingame?

The first scenario is what you described, but the second is the most probable one. People rarely have like dozen of friends that happen to be interested in playing the same game they want to play and at the same time. If you have like 3 you are very lucky, and for a full blown campaign you need more...

Another thing with the first scenario. If you already have friends in your real life that share your hobby and you found the same time slot to play, why not simply go to the same physical place and play pen and paper RPG? The computer version simply does not provide much additional conveniences and have a lot of disadvantages (like no snacks you can eat together).

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#7 AlanSmithee   Members   -  Reputation: 1064

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Posted 10 May 2012 - 12:36 PM

Hi Acharis.

Initially, the scenario I was (subliminally) imagining was IRL friends playing together.
The drive behind that train of thought was to be able to cater to the people who simply do not like boardgames or prefer videogames over boardgames. I have tried for a long period of time to persuade my friends to play DnD but they simply do not want to, they don't like boardgames and think that RP:ing boardgames are just for nerds. >.<"

After "listening" to Ashaman's arguments, I realized how flawed, and far from a realistic scenario, this idea is and thus made me see that I have to re-think it.
I think I'll need some time to think about it before I can give you a definate answer to your question, but I am pretty sure the game would be steered towards alternative b rather then a, simply by necessity.

On another note, any thoughts on such a MUD?
NWN was sucessfull, was it not? And magicka also seems to be rather populare and apriciated.

Thanks / AS.

Edit: spelling

Edited by AlanSmithee, 10 May 2012 - 12:45 PM.





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