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Mutantgun

Design MMORPG - Map Progression

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Hi Everyone,

Hopefully all of this makes sense at the end, but if you need anymore clarification please let me know.

Background: My MMORPG is a sword playstyle based game, where players need to complete a dungeon at the end of each floor to be able to progress to the next. (Players can go back to lower floors / Specific floors will have specific resources needed for crafting as to give players a reason to go back / Player skill progression will also require them to do specific quests/tasks on specific floors, again giving them reason to go back)

Inspiration: Sword Art Online (Anime) - Aincrad game that the players were stuck in

My map progression issue is this: I'm split between having all players locked to a specific floor until they/or the party they are in, completes the dungeon, then those players unlock the next floor OR if as soon as a party clears the floors dungeon and unlocks the next floor, that floor is unlocked for everyone on the server.

I'm going to split these into options 1 (Individual Progression) and 2 (Server Progression).

Option 1:

Benefits:

  • Allows the more dedicated/end-game player base to progress at a faster pace.
  • Allows for end-game guilds to form and recruit from a more end-game player pool, I.e. Players from that specific floor
  • Allows end-game players to sell their services to help newer players to progress through the lower floors

Drawbacks:

  • Possibility of new players being stuck in lower floors as there might not be good enough players left on those floors to help them make a party and progress through the dungeon
  • ?

Option 2:

Benefits:

  • Allows new players to skip floor progression to be with their friends that have progressed further in the game
  • ?

Drawbacks:

  • Players will be on floors where they might not be able to survive or complete solo content because of their lack of skill, items, game knowledge
  • Complains from new players saying the content is too difficult, as they are skipping floors
  • New/lower player base will essentially just be waiting on the end-game players to finish the new floor unlocking it for the rest of the server, basically letting them sponge off of the top players progress

After typing all of this out it's starting to become more clear cut as to which option I should take, but I'd like to check with the community here as I'm sure there are other benefits/drawbacks that I'm missing that might change my view of things.

Edited by Mutantgun

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You list it as beneficial when high level players can monopolize more content (and therefore items) for a longer time, but its not.

They will downsell the items and gain an exponential advantage, as they can basically ask for any price, buy anything else to progress even faster and widen the gap to average people more and more.

The lower level people will just grind away at low income locations until they can afford the gear, much more than they otherwise would. This leads to making the game boring and increases mudflation.

IMO you should keep people near each other, so they have more options for partymembers and allow people to gain stuff without grinding too much.

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4 minutes ago, wintertime said:

1. You list it as beneficial when high level players can monopolize more content (and therefore items) for a longer time, but its not.

2. They will downsell the items and gain an exponential advantage, as they can basically ask for any price, buy anything else to progress even faster and widen the gap to average people more and more.

3. The lower level people will just grind away at low income locations until they can afford the gear, much more than they otherwise would. This leads to making the game boring and increases mudflation.

4. IMO you should keep people near each other, so they have more options for partymembers and allow people to gain stuff without grinding too much.

Going to break things into points to keep track of it all XD

1/2. Content can still be done by any normal player on that specific floor. You don't need gear from higher floors to be able to complete your floors dungeon, same as the players who did it for the first time. Monopolizing higher tier items is unavoidable no? There will always be end-game players who farm items and try to play the market. Personal example is the new Trial in Neverwinter Online, where there are about 150 payers out of the entire player base who's actually completed the content and selling the items from it. (Trial's been out for a few months now.)

3. Same as above, they don't need higher tier items from other floors to complete their floor dungeons, it will be a lot of help sure, but it's not needed. The Floor progression rates won't be the same, so a new player can easily complete the lower floors that what the first players on the server did.

4. So no grinding in an mmorpg? Not completely sure as to what you mean with this one.

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1/2. People being able to monopolize something for a week means they are on a timer and have to do affordable pricing.

People being able to monopolize for months or years means they can ask any price.

3. Even if you don't need the items they will still allow each for x% faster game progress.

4. Not no grinding but no excessive grinding (for example incited through monopolization).

Edited by wintertime

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12 minutes ago, wintertime said:

1. People being able to monopolize something for a week means they are on a timer and have to do affordable pricing.

People being able to monopolize for months or years means they can ask any price.

2. Even if you don't need the items they will still allow each for x% faster game progress.

3. Not no grinding but no excessive grinding (for example incited through monopolization).

1/2. Okay that gives me an idea, how about item restrictions in terms of which floor you got that item from. So items dropped on floor 4, can only be used by players who've unlocked that floor? This means that the lower floor players can't use those items anyway and those people selling them only have a few weeks to make a profit as the rest of the player base will be moving to that floor soon. So this will only happen if say the first 10 players on a floor, get a good drop and place it on auction house. Once another party comes along and gains access to that floor they can either decide to buy that item, or simply grind for it and undercut the original price. As to which items will have these restrictions I'll need to spend more time on that and fine tune it.

EDIT: This would have been easier to prevent with a level system, but as there isn't one I'll need to start with other restrictions like this.

3. There will essentially only be 3 grinding aspects to the game, crafting, dungeons and skill progression.

Edited by Mutantgun

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