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Fantasy MMORPG in Development

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Good evening ladies and gentlemen,

I am currently developing a fantasy mmorpg as a hobbyist. The game is still in the conceptual stage and i am in need of assistance in the form of debate. I am currently fervently working on the Character Development, World Development, Economy, and Social Hierarchy/Interactions. 

I have much to say and would love to hash out some stuff with anybody interested; However, i'd rather not post everything on a public forum and would much rather speak in private chatroom's in an attempt to ensure my work is not stolen etc. This may or may not be a huge issue but one can never be too safe. If interested please contact me through the forum and we can move from there. 

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I'm working on my own MMORPG. However I'm mainly working on the engine at the moment. My goal is to have the world be a very large single shard seamless planet. It will even orbit a sun, have real day/night cycles and have a moon or two with some pseudo astrophysics.  

To be honest I wouldn't worry too much about people steeling your ideas. There are so many MMOs out there and so many people working on them, that nobody really cares that much about "ideas". Everyone has ideas and most of them are not new.  My theory is a good game is going to use the right combination of existing ideas with perhaps a few small new ones.

The bottom line is going to be making the damned thing work and that's a huge task.  You will need to have some serious development skills yourself (either that or a lot of money) and also most likely you will need to get some serious help.

Strangely enough I was thinking of starting this kind of thread soon for my game, just to  get a head start on the game play aspects while I'm working on the engine, however I don't really feel the need for secrecy.

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In consideration of Gnollrunner here i am posting my ideas plainly so i may get some insight to what people think of the systems i am attempting to use to run my game. Of course this is ever expanding and i still have a ton of work to do on it but please enjoy and i look forward to your ideas.

*As a side note nothing is concrete and everything can be changed including the placeholder names i will be using*

Character Development:

Character Development is based on Attributes, Classes, Race, and Social Interactions. I will explain these separately since everything ties into each other.

 

Attributes:

To unlock Attributes you use Experience and as the total of your base attributes rises *no class bonuses* they will become more expensive regardless of which attribute you upgrade.

 

1. Strength

2. Dexterity

3. Vitality

4. Intelligence

5. Wisdom

 

Each of the attributes give bonuses inherent to their names as well as unlock classes once the pre-reqs are met. *say paladin requires 15 str and 12 vit once your attributes reach that level you will have the necessary attributes to unlock the class* However classes will not unlock until every requirement is passed. *for a paladin there will be a holy quest line to prove your faith and purity to uphold the paladin laws and commandments etc*

Classes:

At the start of the game you will choose a Race, Class and also a social status. Your class may be one of the 3 starter classes. This only changes how your beginning attribute points are allocated and the starting skills you have access to. Any of the 3 starter classes may be unlocked by using the main currency of the game *placeholder name* Experience.

Experience is given when monsters are defeated as well as quests are completed. Experience may be used in a multitude of ways. It may be used to purchase attribute points, class points, in game currency *placeholder name* gold, skills, upgrade skills, and upgrade skill passives.

Lets break this down a little bit, when upgrading attributes, classes, and skills you dont need to save up the entirety of the amount needed you can just slowly funnel experience towards whatever youd like to upgrade so you dont feel like the "money is burning a hole in your pocket."

Class points are a bit different though and to describe them we will have to bring to your attention Classes and how they will work. This game will function fully with multi class and class successions. When your first class is unlocked via, reaching your milestone for attributes and quest line, you will be awarded your one and only free class point. You may choose to spend this class point on this class or save it for the class you are waiting for. Once you unlock a class you may choose to either multi class *for example Fire Mage and Archer* or you may choose to succeed your current class which is essentially the same class but with attribute boosts skill upgrades some nice new skills and the same focus as your previous class ie *Squire, Knight, Knight Lord*. There will always be a total of 2 Class successions for every class making it beneficial to focus your strengths. Of course to unlock more classes or to succeed your current class you will need more Class Points, and for this you will need Experience. Each class point costs experience to purchase and just like everything else you may funnel experience into purchasing a Class Point whenever and will only receive your class point once all the experience required is deposited. There is a soft cap of 3 Class Points meaning once you reach 3 Class Points the cost of purchasing a Class Point will start increasing exponentially. This is an attempt to slow down the inevitable min max strategy that will happen with this system in place. As well every single class after the 3rd class will increase the cost for every skill in every class and as well the overall level of that class. Each class with function the same You may level up a class with experience boosting the class bonuses. When the class reaches a certain level you will unlock skills. You may upgrade skills and once a skill reaches a certain level it will unlock passives attached to the skill that upgrade it in various ways. You may upgrade the skill passives to increase the power or functionality of the skill. Everything is based on the level of the class overall and skills and skill passives may not overlevel the class level. When you succeed your current class you will be rewarded with new class bonuses for your character as well as new skills and new skill passives. Sometimes the older skills may be upgraded as well or more skill passives added to increase the power and functionality of the older skills. Of course you can multiclass as well and when multiclassing there will always be multiclass skills. For example if you chose to multiclass as an archer and a fire mage you would have access to the 2 skill trees normally for fire mage and archer but as well a skill tree available only to a Fire mage/Archer. This is true for every single combination of multiclassing and even dips into classes that are combined with Class Successions. For exmaple you may have used 2 class points to become a Knight and 1 class point to become a Fire Mage. You would have unlocked the class skill trees for Squire, Knight, Fire Mage, and Knight/FireMage. If you have a class succession the multiclass skill tree will always choose the most powerful iteration of class succession and pair that with the multiclass for a stronger version. Now lets give another exmaple and say for instance you decided to go over your soft cap for class points and invested in a 4th class. Everything will be more expensive but you will have the options for plenty of rare and powerful skills. Lets say the classes looked like this Squire, Knight, Fire Mage, and Berserker. Now the class skill tress you have available are even more expansive even though they are more expensive they will look like this Squire, Knight, Fire Mage, Berserker, Knight/Fire Mage, Knight/Berserker, and finally Knight/Fire Mage/Berserker. As you can see as you unlock more and more classes the combinations although expensive can be very devestating.

 

 

Race:

Each race will have a capital that they spawn into when a person creates their character. Each race has a huge impact on World Development and Social Interactions.

Social Interactions:

In a fantasy world segregation is a big thing. There are obvious races and religions that do not enjoy the company of one another nd then on a more serious note will kill the other race just for seeing them. This will play a large role in social interactions like available dialogue or potential combat strategies and bonuses.

 

World Development:

In most MMO’s there is a set world and you are interacting in this world as best you can and you end up having to figure out the intricacies of this world from nothing or tutorials. I would rather have a dynamic world that is ever changing and gives the player the ability to learn as they help build the world around them so they feel more involved instead of like an outsider. The best way to describe how this will happen is simply there will be levels of civilizations. All the way down to 1 house and a family or 2 starting out a farm out in the middle of nowhere and all the way up to a huge metropolis with millions of citizens and plenty of land and food for everyone. Of course the world will not begin like this. The world will start when at *0 AD* for reference. Each race will have a capital city that is not huge but big enough to reasonably pass as the capital for that race. Of course each race will have their capital in a location best suited for their lifestyle whether that be the forest, desert, mountains, plains, or beaches. On the outlying lands from the capitals there will be farms, small towns, villages, and single family homes living off the land. The people inhabiting these places will mostly be the race that the capital belongs to except for the odd travelers that are welcome and merchants bringing goods. As a player you may interact with the NPC’s and other players for quests. These quests may be something simple but always have a progression to them. For example maybe an old lady that controls the market in a little town needs some help with her market. You end up helping her with a multitude of quests that seem trivial and only a little time consuming that end up making her market prosper. In addition you make friends with the other townsfolk and end up helping them all with some stuff here and there even the ones who wouldn’t talk to you until you had built up some reputation with the other townsfolk first. While you are increasing your amity in this town an NPC traveler passes through and sees that this little town is an ideal place to live or do business. When this NPC leaves and inevitably reaches their destination they cant help but blurt out to people about how nice of a place this little town was. This in turn creates migration and people start flocking to this little town to either live or do business. This increases the amount of available quests as the town is in the midst of development. You may then help the carpenters and stone masons and literally help build this little town up into a thriving city brick for brick. This in turn will increase the strength and influence of whatever capital this town is located near unless it’s a town in a neutral territory and since its neutral they may enact some type of government or appoint a leader and become a trade nation or join sides with a race they enjoy *possibly the race that helped them the most* expanding the territory and influence of a certain race. When a town/city/village/etc are under development in an attempt to stifle expansive growth there will be a system to reduce the speed of growth. Each settlement will have milestones based on P.O.P once this location hits that milestone there will be a list of things that may happen and a die will be tossed to see which of them happens. There will be negative sides of the die and positive sides of the die. If a negative side hits there may be something to halt progress or even destroy the lands. Picture that the lands are under construction and now 100 people are living in a little town. Then a scout returns and informs the town there is a goblin invasion force on their way to the town. This will trigger a player event where given 2 weeks on Saturday the invasion will take place. You may help the town during the time before the invasion with supplies etc, and you may as well participate in the actual invasion and help the town from being destroyed. This will be a mass PVE event and any race that participates garnishes favor from the settlement. This can also be a favorable event where there is a market fair put on at the town and people from all over come to the town and increase the P.O.P even more. This goes from something as simple to a goblin force all the way to Races going to war and an invasion force sent to take over/Raze the town. The event can even include non-playable races such as Dragons etc. Players may not purchase lands inside of towns or other settlements however when a player wishes to purchase real estate they may purchase a Guild House. This is simply starting from the ground up a new settlement. The same trajectory needed to build the NPC villages will be needed to build this Guild House. Guild Houses may be built up all the way to a citadel with outlying lands and declare themselves an Independent nation like all of the Races capitals are. When a Guild gets to such a level they may declare wars and send invasion forces that are mostly made up of their loyal subjects *NPC’s* under the protection of their House. Invasions and wars are lengthy matters and there will be a process similar to the 2 week warning of the invasion of goblins. We want people to be able to react to the invasion forces and wars instead of being taken by surprise. Of course there are different tactics that are not full invasion forces. These are typically used to whittle opponents down until they cant live, basically a battle of attrition. These war moves will be discussed at a later date but as of right now we do not have any system in place for them.

Economy:

To be discussed

Social Hierarchy/Interactions:

Continuing from the brief description in the Class Development section we will introduce that Social Hierarchy as well. In medieval time and even in current times there is Societal Status. This is simply where you stand in society's eyes. This is huge for character development as well as any social interaction throughout the world based on your upbringing you may or may not have access to certain requests because in your mind you wouldn’t let yourself go down to that level and participate in such a thing. Or the dialogue you have available when speaking to others will change. This is even true to how you hold yourself in combat and what strategies and skills you have available to use. As well as the classes you may learn *this may be changed if you follow the class pre req questline* However if you happen to abandon your ideals you may lose access to certain classes that require a certain discipline ie *paladins hold that they must be true and virtuous and uphold the laws of their deity* if you so happen to give up this discipline and choose to forsake your deity then you shall lose the ability to use your class. This does not affect any skills that do not require special paladin powers however. For instance if the class offered a sword skill and a turn undead skill youd have access to the sword skill without the added bonuses but you wouldn’t have access to the turn undead skill. NPC interactions and Player interactions will directly influence the world, so you must be careful what you choose to say and whom you choose to say it to. If warring races meet in a neutral territory and end up fighting *either NPC or player vs player* the side that instigates will more than likely receive infamy and distrust from the townsfolk. This leads to the defending side winning the trust of the townsfolk easier and if they Races lands get big enough maybe even swear fealty to them. This is where the world development comes into play as races capitals become larger and larger and require more lands and food.

 

Guilds:

See World Development above for current Guild status.

 

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All I care about is if gnolls are playable characters: D

OK just kidding ……..My main comment is that I think you need a document with a few charts and pictures to explain things better.  I’m sure it makes sense in your head, but the wall of text is a little hard to parse, at least for me.  So as an example, if you play table top RPGs the rules have to be clear enough that a player can generate a character, understand how he interacts in the game, and level him up.  Of course a computer game is somewhat different, but still I think you should try to aim for a document similar to that.

The rules themselves seem not so far from the standard fair.  That’s not really a bad thing. As I said before, I think the key thing is the implementation.  Also the main thing for an MMORPG is immersion.  The origjnal EverQuest had pretty basic game mechanics, but it had a great game world that you could get lost in. That’s what made the game great.

WoW added a more or less seamless world which again gave a big boot to immersion. This is where I think a lot of subsequent games that came out soon after fell down. I remember playing WoW when Age of Conan came out.  Before its release there was a lot of hype and a lot of people were saying it’s going to kill wow. However the world design was horrible. Everything was instanced and again it went back to hard zone boundaries which were confusing and far worse than the original EverQuest. Also the high end contents just wasn’t there, but me and my friends had figured out the game was sub-par long before we ever got that far. So I guess what I’m saying is the rules and game play while important, are not the most important thing with MMORPGs.

One thing I will specially mention is I don’t like it when players can raise their starting states a lot. I’ve seen games where it seems the starting stats hardly matter because at high level, they play such a small part in your character. People are born with certain traits and while you can modify them to some extent they still have a major impact on the person.  A guy who is genetically muscular will retain that trait into adulthood. Same goes for someone who is very intelligent.  Of course this is only a game, but it’s just kind of my take and I think it’s one more little thing that adds to immersion. One idea I had is to even base the character model on the strength stat.

In any case that’s all I have for now. I’ll give it another read and maybe I’ll post some more specifics later.  I’ll probably also put a few game design entries in my blog at some point when I get the time. Good luck with your project BTW….

 

 

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16 hours ago, Gnollrunner said:

the wall of text is a little hard to parse

Yes. I recommend the OP edit the post, add line breaks. (It's UX design.)

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Noted, I will be updating the post  hopefully once a week with more development and clearer notes etc, again any feedback is welcome criticism. 

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I didn't read over your second very large post but skimmed it and noticed you have intelligence and wisdom.  Now I've not played a ton of RPGs (more an FPS/survival guy) but are those not the same thing?  Wouldn't cunning or something steal related be better?  Again, this is not my forte but thought I would mention it.

And like @Gnollrunner pointed out, so few people steal ideas, they're a dime a dozen as everyone has their own, people might get inspired by a subset of one of your ideas, but helping others is the point of these forums :)

Now, on to reality, as I'm sure you know a 3D MMO takes dozens upon dozens (Triple A easily into the few hundreds) to make and years upon years.  Even a 2D is a many year project with a not so small team.

Best of luck in your endeavors though! 

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Posted (edited)
39 minutes ago, CrazyCdn said:

I didn't read over your second very large post but skimmed it and noticed you have intelligence and wisdom.  Now I've not played a ton of RPGs (more an FPS/survival guy) but are those not the same thing?  Wouldn't cunning or something steal related be better?  Again, this is not my forte but thought I would mention it.

You know I thought the same thing .......... 40 years ago :D. Intelligence and wisdom are two of the original Dungeons & Dragons stats, the very first RPG (I still have my white box set). They are still used to today. Intelligence is supposed to be more like Einstein type stuff while Wisdom is supposed to be like the horse sense your father teaches you (or something like that) .  It's really just Intelligence for healers though. In any case people have gotten very used to them at this point, so it's more or less accepted. For my game I was thinking of changing it up however. I want to make the physical and mental stats parallel to each other. So we have:
 

Strength:        Physical power
Dexterity:       Physical quickness
Constitution:    Physical toughness

Intelligence:    Mental power
Acuity:          Mental quickness 
Will:            Mental toughness

Charisma:        Physical/Mental

 

This is just my first take however.


 

Edited by Gnollrunner

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