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Stormynature

Outside the box - different professions that would work within an MMO

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Okay I have been wrestling with an idea in recent days. At the heart of it is the idea of a breeding game/creation game. The general gist of the idea is that you are able to either:

  1. Breed existing pairs of same creatures to continue the same breed.
  2. Create new breeds through magic and pieces of other animals eg: the creation of a hypogriff requires pieces of an eagle and a horse.

Whilst I can see this to a degree being done as a social game I must admit this falls more into the vein of my thinking about different crafting ideas that could be implemented into MMO’s (Holy Crap I said the MMO word!). The breeding profession being used as a source for mount and pet creation in-game, as well acting in its own way as a mini-game within a larger game.

Using the above example as a guide I would be interested in other “crafting” professions can people think of that could work in a similar vein. Something out of the ordinary or perhaps even so ordinary that people haven’t thought of it. Also am open to suggestions on how you would think the above example might work in practical terms i.e. timewise limitations etc. but truthfully am more interested in the idea of unique professions, and please expand on your ideas. smile.png

Edit: I forgot to mention -- I am interested in the idea of how these professions suggested would be utilisable as effective and ongoing timesinks (without the drudgery that seems prevalent in a lot of the existing MMO's) i.e. a mini-game within a game but as a profession.

Edit: An earlier thread on breeding game within an MMO http://www.gamedev.n...mo-marketplace/


An overview of discussion so far:

Jbadams
A defining of points relating to professions within the context of a game world

Stormynature:
A breeder profession involving the breeding and creation of new/old species developing ingame mounts and companion pets.

Jeffereytitan
A spell system combining a unique affinity for each spellcaster in combination with environmental factors and spell components in which to cast.

Kyan
A robotics/mechanoid engineer that creates multi-functional mechanoids that can be broken down and rebuilt to service multiple different functions dependant on design used.

Zethariel
A teaching profession which could be used to impart skills from other professions over to other players. Contributions: AltarofScience
Locksmith/puzzle masters that solve puzzles in-game to unlock lockboxes/doors etc as well as a design aspect to create locking systems
Piloting/taxi profession in an environment of inherent risk associated.

Altarofscience
A number of different suggestions not truly explored but included:
Alchemy
Operating a sailing/trade ship (or similar type vehicle)

ImmoralAtheist and Hughinn
A crafting system for weaponry and armour utilising a “rather unique” perspective adapted from the "World of Goo".

Mratthew
A bard profession that is probably truer to the principle of a bard than any implementation I have seen in a game.

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How about a spellcrafter or magical artefact maker? You could have a spell system which essentially has a technical spell language with it's own grammar. Brave but foolish individuals could just try out new spells and see what happens. Or more serious casters could figure out the rules for themselves and make new spells on demand. Based on knowledge of the properties of spells, they could find materials for and craft artefacts that can hold an instance of a spell well, e.g. a protective amulet against fire spells.

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You could have a spell system which essentially has a technical spell language with it's own grammar. Brave but foolish individuals could just try out new spells and see what happens. Or more serious casters could figure out the rules for themselves and make new spells on demand.


I like this idea but how would you combat such a system being put on the web once solved and thus reducing the timesink/mini-game aspect? Not so much about the stopping of webposts but rather varying in-game mechanics that make such actions negligible. Off the top of my head I see something along the lines of each person's affinity with magic being a unique relationship and thus applying a different subset of rules for learning magic. For example a strong fire affinity might mean adding more water elements in a water-based spell to offset the players extra fire affinity (dumbed down version). Do you have an alternative?

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Offtopic:
Reading your other topics I would say making breeding minigame within MMO won't make sense in your case. You obviously like breeding pets a lot, why not making a full blown game about breeding pets only then? You don't need this whole RPG thing added to your beloved breeding :) It's not like you can't do it or that it would be unpopular, the pet games genre is relatively well known and you will surely find players for it.

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Offtopic:
Reading your other topics I would say making breeding minigame within MMO won't make sense in your case. You obviously like breeding pets a lot, why not making a full blown game about breeding pets only then? You don't need this whole RPG thing added to your beloved breeding smile.png It's not like you can't do it or that it would be unpopular, the pet games genre is relatively well known and you will surely find players for it.


Actually I don't really have any strong opinions one way or the other with regard breeding games. If my other posts gave that impression I apologise. I tend to ask questions of other posters at times to smooth out or enlighten me as to logical inconsistencies or story/game flows. The context of this post was not so much about the breeding game idea though I welcome feedback - It was more about defining professions within an MMO environment that had the capacity to act as long-term time sinks with a slant towards mini-games being the theme rather than for example: the classical armour crafter who grinds his/her skill up but then might spend half an MMO expansion never truly utilising it and thus not a very effective long-term time sink.


edits: grammatical

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Ah, I wrote that before the "ongoing timesinks" edit. Hmm, not sure. Well, you could turn it into a combo crafting/exploration thing, e.g. you can hunt for ancient spells that use new words/grammar that you haven't encountered before, then use them in your own spells. Find new materials for crafting artefacts out of. Maybe even be somewhat of an architect, e.g. create a one-off spell to protect a castle which is powered by nearby magma. I think it would be good to have affinities for spells, e.g. either affected by the environment or by the caster.

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I think it would be good to have affinities for spells, e.g. either affected by the environment or by the caster.


Actually a combination of environmental factors as well a unique spell caster affinity with the aforementioned language and spell components would probably serve to create a deep enough set of variables that would work well as an ongoing time-sink. Thank you

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Interesting question...

It might help to look at things in a more general way rather than trying to pull specific examples out of nowhere -- formulate a set of "guidelines" if you will, for what would constitute an interesting and playable profession. Off the top of my head, a couple of initial guidelines might be:

  • A profession must be useful. It needs to produce something, whether that product be a tangible in-game item (swords, armour, creatures) or the addition of new abilities (like the spell-crafting example above). If the profession doesn't produce something that players consider to be valuable then the overwhelming majority will have no interest in trying it out, and if they do decide to give it a go will unlikely be motivated to continue for very long.
  • A profession should present players with some sort of meaningful choice. That is to say, it needs to be interesting. In the spell-crafting example above which elements to use and how you combine them would be your meaningful choices, or in your breeding example it would be which creatures to try to combine. Even a simple mining profession features the choice of where to dig. Preferably there should be more than one desirable outcome, to encourage experimentation with different choices and combinations.
  • An interesting profession should ideally offer different gameplay. If different professions just involve doing the same actions with different graphics, then we won't engage different skills in the players, and being good at one profession will make the player good with others. We want to provide a different experience, not just the same experience in a different skin.

    What do you think? Are those good guidelines for an interesting profession? What else makes for a good profession?

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Lol I had already created a thread for Lasting PvE features.
It had lots of replies too and still not old.

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Lol I had already created a thread for Lasting PvE features.
It had lots of replies too and still not old.

For anyone interested, I believe he means the topic "[MMO] Meaningful, fun and lasting PvE system(s)?", in which there does indeed appear to be some relevant discussion.


One idea mentioned in the other topic is the idea of including some player created content; if you can come up with a sensible way of allowing players to create additional content for the game, then you might be able to keep things interesting and stay a step ahead of online guides by making use of a steady flow of new content. If we consider the spell-casting idea above, players could be given a way of creating new components, so that there are constantly new combinations becoming possible.

Changing environmental influences could also be an excellent way of keeping such as system fresh and interesting, as could limiting and then replenishing the availability of certain components over time.

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