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RPG Superstar 2015

Game Skill / Level system suggestions


Pathfinder Online


1 person marked this as a favorite.

I want to begin that I am very thrilled with the idea that there may be a Pathfinder MMO in the future. Being that this is still at such an early stage the more input of ideas you at Paizo and Goblinworks have access to I believe can drastically improve the game to something everyone can enjoy. Being from several different MMOs myself I'd like to suggest a simple critique of past games and what was not liked and what was for the friendly staff to observe.

It will go simply as such:
Choose the ONE favorite MMO you've played.
Explain no more than five reasons why you greatly enjoyed it.
Explain no more than five reasons why you got bored with it / didn't like about it / thought could be done better.
Give one or two specific and major things you are most afraid of seeing take place or implemented in this potential MMO and why. Does not have to relate to your favorite MMO.

I will go first.

My most favorite, in the early days of MMOs, would be Ultima Online.
What I enjoyed about it:
1) Skill based system to allow flexibility and immersion not seen in MMOs these days. Yes, I get that the Core game of Pathfinder is a level based game itself. However, if for some reason that specific system is problematic in conversion over to a computer platform, at least consider this.

2) I could explore the world and surroundings irregardless of my "level/skills".

3) Store bought items were good enough for majority of my gaming experience. I did not need the new epic item or magic items to compete or participate in anything.

4) Guild stone system: I personally enjoyed the fact you could buy a tent or house and place a guild stone inside it that people's names would be inscribed to. The myriad of options to declare faction alliances or friend/enemy guilds for PvP without involving in game guards to kill us for fighting.

5) Seers: At one point early on the initial owners had a volunteer group of roleplayers called Seers whom were green robed game masters essentially. They did server-specific story lines to involve players and give special in-game benefits to roleplaying groups. Example: I was apart of a guild known as the Shadowclan who were simply a group of us who threw on Orc attire and had a roleplay system to be the "bad guy orcs" for "human roleplayers". The seers at one point saw the dedication and awarded a simple note declaring a specific orc fort as the Shadowclan's. Nothing amazing - but enough of an acknowledgement to those of us who made the game something more.

What I didn't enjoy or thought could be improved:
1) The trammel / felucca split. I understand PvP could get tedious for many but the threat grew communities for self-preservation. If you are going to do something so big, simply integrate it early and not later.

2) They made it where special ore had to be mined to make that epic gear that was necessary to be competitive or able to participate in things. Store bought stuff, when EA took over, became obsolete. If that is the case save us all the time and don't have vendors selling basic armor and weapons.

3) Houses upon houses kept getting in the way. You sometimes had to go a ways around to venture to that single dungeon because jimjoebob placed a castle right in front of it's entrance. I honestly don't know what the best way to handle this would be. In game taxes so if they aren't paid due to inactivity the house goes away?

4) Horses were way to darn common. You could tame or buy a horse, but early on it was too much of a hassle to get one that none really had them except those who really took the time. They normally died too easy. The moment that horses and mounts became super-easy to obtain, everyone used them. The point here is that they used horses in combat as well as for travel. Other than improved speed there was no difference in how a person played on horseback than on foot. I don't know how you can improve upon this if you include mount classes. Possibly have the mounts have a cooldown to do their charging or harder to maneuver?

That is all I can think of concerning UO that I liked and disliked. Now for the next point of what I am afraid of seeing that killed MMOs for me in the recent games using World of Warcraft and RIFT as examples.

1) The grind. zomg the grind. Please do either a skill system like UO where you can go anywhere and able to do SOMETHING (Skyrim probably would be the 3d version of this). I always hated coming in and doing the whole "Get livers from the boars over there so I can make some stew". But killing and killing some more. If at all possible make any grind that has to happen as painless as possible. RIFT had me hooked for a bit simply due to their RIFT invasions. But outside of those it is the same grind where I don't even have to bother reading the story to do the quest. I simply want to get past that leveling grind to get to the end game where my buddies are waiting so I can play with them.

2) Roleplaying Servers' Terms of Use rarely, if ever, being enforced. If you have a Role-play server with special naming rules and guidelines - please have a staff to observe and maintain those guidelines. I hated being in rp servers where roleplayers were mocked, harassed and dealing with stupidly named Parizbehot avatars that ruined the experience. Or you have the Goldshire situation on Moonguard (I think that was the rp server's name) where you had tons of nude avatars dancing and acting stupid. If you dedicate a server to RP, PLEASE help make it a RP friendly atmosphere.

Well, that was my two coppers. Your turn!

Liberty's Edge Goblin Squad Member

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Something I feel is very important for a MMORPG:
don't make our growth in skills dependant on hitting a target n times, using skill x n times or some similar mechanic.
People using bots to skill up is one of the worse maladies for computer games.


Two things I hope won't be in the Pathfinder MMO.

1. Taxes on Player Housing. Rent sucks IRL, it sucks even more in a game.

2. Armor durability. Something else that is just blatantly annoying and doesn't add anything to the game. And no, "adding realism" is not a valid reason in a game that features Elves shooting fireballs at giant flying iguanas.

/endrant.

As for the stuff I want in the game. I'm really hoping that PFO is going to be the game that Darkfall should have been, Before they went back on all their promised awesomeness >>


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Fasinating.

1)Choose the ONE favorite MMO you've played.

World of Warcraft.

2)Explain no more than five reasons why you greatly enjoyed it.

Accessibility. My previous experience with MMOs was that if I wasn't prepared to devote the entirety of my spare time (and more), then I wouldn't progress. At no point did WoW ever take over my life. (To be fair, I never did much in the way of Vanilla PvP.) The fact that one can play WoW for a few hours a week and progress is an essential aspect of what makes it a hobby rather than a lifestyle choice.

Variety. There are so many different things to do in the game. Level to max and raid. Level alts. Collect any number of non-essentials, from pets to hats. Level tradeskills. Do lore quests. Do daily quests. Play the auction house. PvP. Explore. Basically, if you're sitting around Orgrimmar/Stormwind bored, it's your own fault.

Counter-obsolescence. My computer is a cheap one from 2005. I can still play WoW on it. A forced upgrade would likely end my subscription.

Game evolution and player initiated change. When I started playing WoW (open beta 2004), there was one viable spec per class for endgame, and you specced that way because it was the only viable option. People didn't like that, and Blizzard made significant changes. Now, every spec is more or less viable. Similarly, when players started complaining--and rightfully so--about the endless stream of useless boss drops, Blizzard implemented a token system. This can be a double-edged sword, however. Players are fickle, and what they want one day will change the next.

3)Explain no more than five reasons why you got bored with it / didn't like about it / thought could be done better.

The first time I got bored was when TBC's 25 raids destroyed my Vanilla guild. Although my guild's inability to adapt said more about it than the change, it nevertheless left me homeless for over a year, and I unsubbed.

Solution: Decide on a raid size and stick with it. WoW has evolved from 40 to 25 to 10 (25 is effectively dead). 10 is a good place to start and not deviate from. 5-man dungeons and 10-man raids is a good model, and staffing a guild for 10s makes a nice sized guild.

The design philosophy shift from Wrath to Cata put my current guild in a tough spot. A few core players quit the game altogether, people I'd known since Vanilla--primarily due to the difficulty increase and the toxic atmosphere in random dungeons. My guild's progression ground to an immediate halt. Not wanting to quit my guild, I've spent my time in Cata on alts.

Solution: Don't attempt to create multiple "sweet spots" by swinging the pendulum. Having easy, normal and hard modes would have solved the Wrath problem (if you can call it a problem). Forcing everyone into what from Wrath looked like hard/harder modes did not solve the problem. Aniticpate the wideness of the skill spectrum, decide how you want to challenge/reward everyone on that spectrum, and don't sweat the super-elite players--they are your most fickle customers.

Guild levels and perks. Great idea on paper, terrible in implementation. Starting a new guild is now an uphill battle--no good for a supposedly social game. No one wants to join someone's level 1 guild with no perks when they can join a level 25 guild--just for the asking--and gain a 10% experience bonus, shorter hearth time, less repairs, more materials, group resurrection, etc. Not only that, but if you do manage to get a guild off the ground, good luck leveling it. Even worse, rewarding people for participating in guild runs diverts quality players away from the pool for randoms, further toxifying that environment.

Solution: My solution for WoW (since I don't know anything about PFO) is to implement guild "specs." The GM can spec their guild as a leveling guild, a raiding guild, or a PvP guild. Each spec would start with different upfront bonuses most beneficial to their spec, gaining the others, and the most powerful perks, at high level. Further, encourage people to do things outside of their guild, with the rest of the community--maybe a reward for being your guild's sole representative, or in the minority, rather than the majority. Guild isolationism poisons the community.

4)Give one or two specific and major things you are most afraid of seeing take place or implemented in this potential MMO and why. Does not have to relate to your favorite MMO.

My number one concern is your balance philosophy, particularly concering dps (hey, I can say dps about PF and it's not wrong!). I find the idea that "class X should do more/less damage because" to be weak and outdated. All DPS classes need to be on par with each other. If they are there to deal damage, they should be able to. I know nothing of your class structure. But I strongly feel it isn't a good idea to handicap any class merely to justify another.

My second concern is being overwhelmed with classes/archetypes/whatever. I very much like the WoW model of having several classes with unique specs. I also like the RIFT model, with the four uber classes and many subclasses. What I don't want is to get to the character creation screen and see 20 classes.

Liberty's Edge

I'd like to see the MMO use the same system as the tabletop RPG. It already has all the rules you need for the MMO.

RENT:
And for a mid-level PC who owns property, and possibly has followers, paying rent shouldn't be a problem. If management of budget is a problem, there should be an option to automate the monthly gold. You have to think of this from the landlord's position as well, who may be a PC. If a PC owns land, he or she would probably want to charge tax for other PCs using it.

EXPERIENCE:
Why can't the already established rules of xp and advancement be kept?

As far as item condition goes, any specific reasons? Why can't I sunder anymore?

Liberty's Edge

Hudax wrote:

Fasinating.

1)Choose the ONE favorite MMO you've played.

World of Warcraft.

2)Explain no more than five reasons why you greatly enjoyed it.

Accessibility. My previous experience with MMOs was that if I wasn't prepared to devote the entirety of my spare time (and more), then I wouldn't progress. At no point did WoW ever take over my life. (To be fair, I never did much in the way of Vanilla PvP.) The fact that one can play WoW for a few hours a week and progress is an essential aspect of what makes it a hobby rather than a lifestyle choice.

Variety. There are so many different things to do in the game. Level to max and raid. Level alts. Collect any number of non-essentials, from pets to hats. Level tradeskills. Do lore quests. Do daily quests. Play the auction house. PvP. Explore. Basically, if you're sitting around Orgrimmar/Stormwind bored, it's your own fault.

Counter-obsolescence. My computer is a cheap one from 2005. I can still play WoW on it. A forced upgrade would likely end my subscription.

Game evolution and player initiated change. When I started playing WoW (open beta 2004), there was one viable spec per class for endgame, and you specced that way because it was the only viable option. People didn't like that, and Blizzard made significant changes. Now, every spec is more or less viable. Similarly, when players started complaining--and rightfully so--about the endless stream of useless boss drops, Blizzard implemented a token system. This can be a double-edged sword, however. Players are fickle, and what they want one day will change the next.

3)Explain no more than five reasons why you got bored with it / didn't like about it / thought could be done better.

The first time I got bored was when TBC's 25 raids destroyed my Vanilla guild. Although my guild's inability to adapt said more about it than the change, it nevertheless left me homeless for over a year, and I unsubbed.

Solution: Decide on a raid size and stick with it. WoW has evolved from 40...

Well spoken, I definitely agree!


Choose the ONE favorite MMO you've played.

Neverwinter Nights 1.

Maybe not a full out MMO but close enough. At least it looks a whole lot better than UO ;-)

Explain no more than five reasons why you greatly enjoyed it.

A bit complicated as each and every server can differ quite a lot...but something like this:

- It is a hardcore D&D no bs fantasy game.
- Lovely co-op and roleplay.
- Mix of slow roleplay and semi-fast action/strategy.
- Real fantasy feeling.
- The community itself that keeps on building the game.
- Well....I could go on....

Explain no more than five reasons why you got bored with it / didn't like about it / thought could be done better.

I actually haven't got bored of it yet. Maybe didn't play it much the last month but I'm sure I'll pick it up soon again.

Well...there are some things:

- The community is working hard to add new graphics to the game but naturally it still is a bit dated.

- There are not enough players to fill thoose servers that I am interested in playing in and even some of thoose have been closed down.

- The technical side with the persistency is a bit dated. The community thing is not fully integrated into the game. I mean like world economy or whatever.

- Also another technical thing is that it needs to be a lot more sandbox.

- The many servers where roleplay has gone "over the top" and become = sitting in a tavern and talking about who will be the next mayor instead of going out on an actualy adventure.

Give one or two specific and major things you are most afraid of seeing take place or implemented in this potential MMO and why. Does not have to relate to your favorite MMO.

Well...naturally...the general dumbing down and childish look of computer games today as well as "action-ification".

I mean MMORPG's are like shooters almost aren't they...same default camera view and whatnot...

All of the games are the same....even when the developers say that they wont be. All of them have the recharg-o-meters for skill and thats just for starters.

Then we have the "rules-masterbation". I think that the rules they have in Pathfinder could probably and without too much altering be used straight out. Just like D&D in NWN. Theese kinds of rules DO fit well in computer-games. The computers are adept at making all kinds of dice-throws in the background...

Then also going over the top in making the game "fun". There is no shortcut really. You have to make interesting, beautiful, dangerous and
divere adventures. Its all about that. It doesn't help if you say you dont have a level system because you will have it one way or the other. That just hollows the rules-system.

So yeah...thoose are some of the fears...that it will be like the rest...in an attempt to get a part of the market.

Only a small and somewhat unknown computer games developer has a chance at doing something of interest...something truly ground-breaking, hardcore and fresh.

Liberty's Edge

Choose the ONE favorite MMO you've played.
EVE Online.

Explain no more than five reasons why you greatly enjoyed it.
1.) One world. All players inhabit the same place.
2.) A mostly player run world. While NPCs do exist, they don't influence much of the actual organization or operations of the world.
3.) PVP. While I do not care to engage in PvP unless provoked (which is a topic which deserves it's own post), I believe it should be an element. Players themselves are capable of creating controls on this.
4.) Sandbox. I want to get out there and think outside of the box. I want to create something which hasn't necessarily been suggested as something that can be done. In Shores of Hazeron, another favorite MMO of mine, I'm trying to build a courier and bank system. No one else is doing this. For competitive reasons, I will not state publicly my goals in EVE.
5.) Economy. For someone who has observed the workings of the beautiful creation that is EVE's economy, I must say that it's rather simple in its workings. You must put forth significant effort to gain significant reward. PVP ties into this, but not in the way you'd think. The threat of violence keeps people minding their Ps and Qs.

Explain no more than five reasons why you got bored with it / didn't like about it / thought could be done better.
1.) Spaceships. I'm a fan of sci-fi, but I'd like to run around on solid ground with my character, for most if not all of my playtime. With EVE, you don't really do that. I want to run and jump around, swinging a sword, climbing mountains, and swimming through underwater ruins.

That's about it.

Give one or two specific and major things you are most afraid of seeing take place or implemented in this potential MMO and why. Does not have to relate to your favorite MMO.
1.) I'm "most" afraid of a big departure from the mechanics of the PFRPG. I would be ecstatic if they simply kept the current system, for everything. Why? It works. There's a reason we're all here, isn't there? This, I believe, is the common ground we all share. We all like Pathfinder as it currently exists.
2.) I'm also a little afraid of, but not really too worried about, multiple servers. As with EVE, I would love to see all players in the same world. If PFO doesn't decide to go that way, I won't be too disappointed, but I'll think "It could have been better". A life size recreation of the river kingdoms is plenty of space I think for all the players the game will have.

Star Voter 2013, Dedicated Voter 2014, Star Voter 2015

Choose the ONE favorite MMO you've played
Ragnarok Online

Explain no more than five reasons why you greatly enjoyed it.

#1 Ability Scores Distribution, whenever you level up you attain a certain amount of "stats points", which you can distribute as you wish among your basic ability scores. Classes only provide a bonus to certain attributes (like wizards providing a high bonus for Intelligence), but, you can build a high Str low Int Wizard, would you actually want to (I guess most people would choose not to, but you get the point).

#2 Classes' Role, The game isn't quite balanced, it never was, there were always overpowered and underpowered classes, absurd gear, and skills... But, every class used to have a place, Wizards would be good at Crowd Control, Assasins would destroy Emperiums Faster than the eye could see, Rogue would infiltrate castle with ease, and so on.

#3 Gear, Level, Statistics, and Skills didn't make a character, playing Smart was rewarding. I remember, beating a Lv.99 Sniper, with a Lv.60 Mage, because i Knew how to use the surrounding area better than him.

#4 Skill-Tree, every class had a set of skills, every skill had a number of levels, (some capped at 3, others at 5, 7, 10 or even 1. Advanced skills had requirements, etc...). You were Given a certain amount of skill points based on your class level, and you could choose what to have at what level.

#5 Teamwork, Guilds, Party Play. There was a limited amount of things you could accomplish alone, teamwork was really important to the game, and WoE (War of Emperium), was the epitome of teamwork.

Explain no more than five reasons why you got bored with it / didn't like about it / thought could be done better.

#1 Cash Items, they killed the game with really unbalanced things there.

#2 Overhauling/Renewal, they said they would make the game better, but it was simply changed into another MMORPG where everyone does damage, and whoever deals more damage is King...

#3 Teamwork is no longer needed, unless you play some of the low-tier classes.

#4 Grinding, the grind needed to make items, level up, or find loots is retarded.

#5 Not enough skills, spells, quests, or the like, bad storytelling.

Give one or two specific and major things you are most afraid of seeing take place or implemented in this potential MMO and why. Does not have to relate to your favorite MMO.

#1 Masters of all trades, I don't really care that much about balance, Flavor > Balance, however, since they are opting for a Skill-based game I'm afraid they might end up doing the same mistake most developers do when going that way - no limit to what one can max. I mean, most skill-based games, have skills/specialties that become stronger as you progress, you are totally free to customize them, but most of these games enable you to max all of the skills/specialty at some point (given enough time), resulting in characters that are master assasins, archmage, archers, etc... I hope, they limit what you can max in a good way (Say, you can only master one thing 100%, and have space for another specialty at 25%, or, two specialties at 50% and one at 25%, or any possible combination within a limited amount of specialties). I want to specialize in a character, or be a jack of all trades master of none, i don't want to be a master of everything.

#2 WoW-trend, I have played WoW, I love its map, they are awesome. However, Blizzard decided to make an easy game everyone could play effectively so they could make more money. There is no Elemental efficiency in WoW (meaning you kill Fire elemental with Fire balls, as easy as you would kill an Ice elemental, you hit ghosts creatures with normal melee attacks without any special property...), the game has also made everything gear-dependant, and almost every character wishes for the same gear/talent-tree at max level (one for PvP, one for PvE), this leads to a fixed and low amount of different characters and play-styles among players of the same class.


*Choose the ONE favorite MMO you've played.
The Wheel of Time MUD!

*Explain no more than five reasons why you greatly enjoyed it.
1) It is based on one of my favorite book series.
2) It had full PvP, but still managed to be PvE player friendly. Specifically, Most of the PvP was contained to one area, where Trollocs and Fades fought Borderlanders, Aes Sedai, and Warders... but either side could push past that to launch raids on usually safe areas. So while most of the time you would be safe chilling out in Caemlyn or Tear, there was still a chance that a group of Dark-side players (or later, Seanchean) might actually plan a major offensive into the heart of Light-Side territory.
3) Heavy on roleplay. They had specific channels for OOC activity, that you could turn off, but the default was that you were playing in-character.
4) Lots of secrets to explore. Starting out, you could follow major roads and cities and do okay. If you left the road, though, either accidentally or intentionally, there were all kinds of stuff to do. Some of it might get your character killed, if you weren't ready for it, but even that just gave you an incentive to come back and see what you had stumbled into when you were stronger.

*Explain no more than five reasons why you got bored with it / didn't like about it / thought could be done better.
1) Leveling up. You didn't even get your stats until level 5, and if they were subpar you'd then have to start a new character and get that one to level 5 as well... Also, you couldn't do a whole lot until about level 15 - low level characters are safest in and around cities. Finally, you generally wanted to be at least level 25 before you actively sought out PvP.
2) Fatigue, Hunger, and Darkness. The game really sucked at times, when you had no food, water, or light (either through negligence or just because you ran out), you couldn't see, and you were waiting a full minute to move to the next room... and it was 20 rooms until you reached a place to buy any of these things. And even then, assuming you didn't get lost in the dark and stumble across something that could kill you.
3) Sameness of characters! Certain character builds were so far superior to others (or required very rare equipment to work) that there was no variety. You either played a huge tank armed with swords, or a dodgy character armed with knives. Or, if you were lucky, had friends who could get you the rare equipment you needed to compete and had trained in. And why spend your training points on a weapon or ability that wasn't useful without those friends?

*Give one or two specific and major things you are most afraid of seeing take place or implemented in this potential MMO and why. Does not have to relate to your favorite MMO.
1) Pure focus on one player type. There was an article I read awhile back, that put MUD players into 4 categories, and each of them had different desires and interacted in a certain way. These were socializers, explorers, killers, and achievers.
See: http://www.mud.co.uk/richard/wiremud3.htm
http://www.mud.co.uk/richard/hcds.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bartle_Test
2) Lack of immersion. The more I think, "This is just a game," the less I will enjoy playing it.

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