The dream scenario is to have 100-200 players (or possibly 1000+) fighting a war, some of them might rise up to be leaders, planning strategies and scoring minor victories
However, when trying to actually implement such a game, we run into many problems. For example:
1) As the number of players rises, the actions of individuals or even groups of individuals diminishes and no longer matters.
2) 1000+ players in an area leads to overcrowding and latency. E.g. if I recall correctly, eve online require massive battles to be scheduled in advance.
3) No one wants to be on the losing side. If one side starts to lose the war, people might all jump ship to the other side. Also, keep the number of players on both side balanced is challenging.
4) The side with the most players online tend to win the most. Some times, it boils down to one side having 100 players online while the other side has 50 and could not hold the fort.
I have played games that tries to implement a "massive battlefield" scenario, and they all resorted to very artificial mechanics.
E.g. one game made it so that while a faction can lose specific areas to another, the headquarters can never be taken. So, factions will go back and forth, each taking turn to win all the areas, except for the HQs, depending on who has the most players online.
E.g. another game pretended that there was a huge battle going on in the background, but players take part in skirmishes (FPS team death matches). No impact is actually made on the "battle" alluded to.
Is it truly possible to design a big battle game? Or is this a hopeless goal?
Edited by Legendre, 22 February 2014 - 09:27 AM.