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Humble Hobo

How does an 'Exploration MMO' sound?

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Hey, they did an MMO exclusively for the 'killers'. (Fury) A 'socializer' MMO would be a RP chat room. Every other MMO is pretty much for the 'achievers'. So, how does an MMO for the explorers sound? Obviously the long and short-term goals would be discovering. What would you discover? Here's my suggestion: (1) The world is basically a vault or maze, (single server like EVE), where your exploration is limited by puzzles. Some are easy, some are difficult and lead to entire cities. The community might not discover all the puzzles and secrets. The key would be developing content faster than the players could access it. (2) Expansive magic system. Possibly a rune-combo or something that allows for many possibilities. Hidden scrolls that reveal unknown combinations. (a) obviously the system can't allow for people just randomly trying every possibility, it has to be learned in-game. (3) 'Blueprint' crafting. Such that there are many combinations of interchangeable parts that make crafting 'explore-able'. Obviously coupled with parts that are hidden or rare in the world. Yes there are problems. It's really complicated, so it's likely to be unbalanced. Either (2) or (3) would undoubtedly be cut from the launch, and added in an expansion. One server would be difficult to implement (technically and theoretically), but this is a niche game, so there probably wouldn't be too many players. My question is: Is this a viable niche game? (if done well, of course) Second question: If it is viable, do you see it being done in the next five years? ... next ten? ... because I really want to play this game. -Humblest of Hobos

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I have a solid idea for the world as well... It's not just a 'dungeon', but a mine/excavation.
And the great thing about a mine is you can always go further down. (No new landmasses or worlds).

It wold be a very different development system, trying to pump out content faster then players can discover it.
I think it would be more enjoyable, to hide secrets instead of just painting that lvl1 wolf blue and calling it a 'dire wolf'.

It might also encourage a strong community of people working in-game and in the forums to solve the big puzzles.

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it's a good idea and a new one..
Only creating more puuzzles and faster than the community fixing them.
I bet you thats not possible and puzzle based MMO's are not done.

Why?? imagina you have a 100.000 people server or even 1000 for that matter , as long as 1 guy fixes a puzzle it will be online on a forum somewhere and everyone already has a solution.

If you have 20 out of hundred brainiacs on your server you have to outsmart people who probably do nothing all day long than fix puzzles.
Good luck keeping that up..

But it's a good thing.
Make puzzles random with the same algoritmes and you got yourself something new .

As i have been saying for a loooooong time .

MMO's NEED TO CHANGE!! they are just been repeating concepts for a decade now

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Sounds great. I love that genre so I would definitely play it.

Have you played Myst URU? It's an MMO where all you do is explore and solve puzzles. Sadly I just looked at the website and it looks like they are being shut down (again).

The biggest problem (I think) that URU had was not enough content. Altogether I think they had about 20 hours of content, which is great for a single-player game, but for an MMO it doesn't really make sense. Once you ran out of stuff to explore, there wasn't much to do. All their content was hand-created (and very beautiful), so the speed at which they released new content was nowhere near the speed at which an average player would consume that content.

So, for this kind of game to work, it's almost required that you use some kind of procedural generation to spin out new levels and new puzzles. Creating everything by hand is never going to be fast enough.

Also I kind of worry about your (2) and (3) things. Just creating an exploration & puzzle solving game on its own is a difficult and noble goal. Trying to create some crazy magic system on top of that, might not be wise. Unless those extra features are really vital to your core vision, I would think about cutting them. Maybe stick them in a file called "for version 2.0"

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Quote:
Original post by razoorsharp
Only creating more puuzzles and faster than the community fixing them.
I bet you thats not possible and puzzle based MMO's are not done.


Yes, that's definitely the big challenge. There would definitely have to be some procedural generation thrown in.
However, remember that this game is an explorer MMO, not a puzzle MMO. The whole game should not just be about solving puzzles, but exploring aspects of the game instead of just places. (hence crafting, magic...)

Quote:
Original post by razoorsharp
Why?? imagina you have a 100.000 people server or even 1000 for that matter , as long as 1 guy fixes a puzzle it will be online on a forum somewhere and everyone already has a solution.


Again, this is the point. That 1 guy is going to get some serious recognition among the community. This means that you have an impact on the world. Hence the 1 server world.

Of course there may be darker reasons to keep a secret to yourself. If you've figured out the combination to an NPC bank safe, you might want to keep it down, and get the cash for yourself. It's cool, but it might lead to too much deceit and forum drama (like EvE).

Quote:
Original post by razoorsharp
they are just been repeating concepts for a decade now


*applause*

Quote:
Original post by razoorsharp
The biggest problem (I think) that URU had was not enough content. Altogether I think they had about 20 hours of content


Hence the necessity of crafting and magic. I never played, but it sounds like it was a pure puzzle/exploration MMO. An MMO MUST be able to last you for years, and obviously you can't just make 2-3 years worth of content for launch. The cheap way is to make some repeatable grind that will last. Pure exploration is not a grind, and so it will not make a good MMO.

I'll have to look into it. Have there been any other attempts at an exploration MMO before?

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I'd like to see more focus on cooperation, and specialization. EvE's almost there with the exploration sites, where you need a scanning ship to find the site, a combat ship to secure it and a science ship to exploit the resources therein. If you could put together an expedition to have a look at the ruins on the northern island, consisting of survivalist, cartographer, engineer, archaeologist and cryptographer character types, with a jeep and some good hats and flashlights, then I'd be in heaven.

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Quote:
Original post by Iron Chef Carnage
If you could put together an expedition to have a look at the ruins on the northern island, consisting of survivalist, cartographer, engineer, archaeologist and cryptographer character types, with a jeep and some good hats and flashlights, then I'd be in heaven.


Just that alone sounds so much more fun to me.

The possibilities for classes, mechanics, even how we play an MMO are all up for grabs. Nothing is pre-defined in an exploration MMO.

And I would so be a cryptographer class! Just imagine the skills.

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Quote:
Original post by Humble Hobo
(2) Expansive magic system. Possibly a rune-combo or something that allows for many possibilities. Hidden scrolls that reveal unknown combinations.


I think you may be on to something...
At the risk of sounding like a complete good.., when I was reading Harry Potter, stop laughing :P, one of the things that really caught my imagination in the latter books was the whole idea of studying deep parts of magic that few understand. However, I could not find a satisfactory way of recreating this feeling in a game. So, if you work it out so people feel like they are actually discovering something, I take my hat off to you. You would need to add new stuff to discover quicker than people can discover it, and keep doing that.

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