posted by wolfe
Players will say "grinding sux" but on the other hand what would they be thinking about the game if they hadnt been "forced" to grind through the game together? The time it takes of fighting mobs together as a team to reach the endgame in any MMORPG is the tool that the players unknowingly use to become familiar with eachother and the social structures that keep the game enjoyable for a longer time than it takes to learn everything and do everything.
this is a very good point. i recently started playing a game called eve where you dont level up by doing things, but instead you pick a skill, and after a certain amount of time, in game or not in game, you will get the skill. this is a pretty good idea i think, but since im used to most where you have to constantly be killing things, i found myself a little lost for things to do. i still dont think this means they should resort to the level grind. grinding is such a mindless waste of time, in FPS yougrind through the levels and kill th hordes but that is at least a little bit exciting. in mmorpgs it is mainly a click here and push a button type fighting. mmorpgs should have other content to keep people from getting bored when they arnt grinding. player polotics and NPC attacks on mining villiages and other stuff. i dont wanna take the time right now to come up with a lot of good content ideas but that should be the first thing on the to do list for a new game. and a lot of times the content should come from other players. but the devs should put in the devices for players to make that content. just putting in a good storyline doesnt cut it. although it does help.
posted by wolfe
The social structures that a MMOG needs to survive always create conflicts and friendships, without these you wont have a MMOG. The problem here is that one group that internally considers eachother as friends will consider some of the other groups as "enemies" and this will lead to fighting. In most games you are unable to directly fight your enemy (what most call PvP) so the players resort to other "tactics" such as training monsters on them, stealing loot, saying bad things etc. This in some cases goes far enough to where people make up lies about their enemies (when an organised player group with 600 members make up a lie about an enemy player and backs their version of things its very hard to stand against it and prove yourself innocent).
Regardless of how you approach the development of means to settle conflict you'll always end up in a system that can and will be abused by the players. The best sollution is then to give them the tools that will let the players settle their conflicts in the most "honourable" manner.
things need conflict to be interesting. and conflict between people is always more interesting than conflict between peeople and NPCs. and settling the conflict is have to fun of having one. a game needs to provide a good platform for conflicts. and then it needs to provide a way for people to solve them. a game must have both halves to be good. if one team of players picks a fight by ninja looting or kill stealing or what not, another team should be able to deal with them by killing them, or mugging them and taking all there stuff. if you provide a good way to deal with conflicts, like open PvP and permadeath, you can also provide alot of new ways to start conflicts. you could never have a thief or bandits in a game without permadeath. because the bandits and thieves always have the advantage. they can steal from people, but then they stash or sell the stuff and you can do anything back to them. with permadeath. you provide means for way more freedom to be a good guy or a bad guy.
posted by wolfe
Introducing perma-death as a sollution to griefing is d00m3d to fail. There will always be one group of players who is stronger (read stronger as having more manhours) and will strongarm another group through whatever means your game provides. An organized group of players could for example decide to set up 10 shared accounts which they play and level on "secondary" computers with the sole purpouse of killing all players outside their own organisation who possibly can reach enough power to become a threat. Even if you remove direct PvP from the game you'll see this group of players abusing other loopholes on your system to bring about the demise of their enemies. Whenever one of the 10 mules die the organised group of players will rebuild a character by working together and share that burden.
If you want perma death you'll have to implement it so only a player who decides to take their risks are safe from perma death until he needs to raise the stakes for some particular occation where he knows that failure means perma death, basically players will need invulnerability to this in all situations except for exceptions.
games without permadeath are the ones where people can get a group of people, twink them out with the best stuff, and then pilliage everyone else. in a game with permadeath, you could do this, and yes, you would kill alot of people, a lot of people would be mad, but you would be just asking to be killed, and then you would loose you uber character with your uber stuff. making large amounts of enemys isnt something you would want to do, thus, you would be careful who you gave the deathblow. however in a game with no permadeath, your guild can be an asshole to
everyone, and it doesnt matter. they could camp a spot where they think you will be comming, wait there for hours, and finally they spot a member of your asshole guild. everyone rushes him roots him and he is dead. big deal. he looses some xp maybe he looses an item, but he respawns. was it really worth organizing a group to camp a chokepoint for hours on end?
ahhh i hope all this makes sense. and i hope theres not too many typos. im really tired and im on pain meds for my missing wisdom teeth. ill respond to the rest later but here is some stuff to read till then ttfn