EQ2 Forum Archive @ EQ2Wire

 

Go Back   EQ2 Forum Archive @ EQ2Wire > EverQuest II > General EverQuest II Discussion > General Gameplay Discussion
Members List Search Mark Forums Read

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 06-04-2012, 04:37 PM   #1
7foggynites

Lord
7foggynites's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 112
Default

Lately I've been thinking about the stat consolidation that came with DOV and the removal of critical mitigation and other things that have happened over the years in response to bugs or changes in development goals. The main thing that got me going was that I like stats and I hate to see them go. I understand the various reasons for removal of things. Whether it's to help progression or to simplify to make character development more accessible to a wider audience or to combat the inflation of stats or so on, I don't really care to comment about all of that in this post. This post is not a rant about what EQ2 did wrong and how it should remand its previous game changes. This post is about what I'd like to see in the future to resolve some of gaps and/or conflicts I percieve in games.

Something else on my mind is the Achievement System and how it differs from more standard competitive gaming. For example, if your guild raids and it's in the top 10 then you will be one of the best in the game with respect to your stats and your knowledge of modern/raid gameplay. However, this is different from the achievement system becaise if you've acquired many or most of the achievements, this does not necessarily translate to you having the best stats or the most gameplay knowledge. Why? Because most old(er) content is not useful anymore and doesn't make you much better, if at all. This results from mudflation which devalues older content and increases the value of newer content. For example, one only has to glance at the vast amounts of content pre-90 as compared to post-90. So completing old(er) content just to fill up your achievements list is not benefitting you even remotely efficiently and if looked at purely from this perspective then there's no reason to do it whatsoever. However, players do the achievement system for a different reason than players compete in the best guilds to have the best gear and to defeat the most difficult raids. Players do the achievement system, in my estimate, because: a - they want to see -all- the content, b - other players can view their achievements rating and this means it's a status symbol. So while the achievements system does not mean you have better stats and can compete in the toughest zones, it doesn't also mean you're not competing. You're just competing for a status symbol when someone inspects your character that says "I did a lot of things!"

What I'm imagining is a game that takes the achievement system concept and applies it to the rest of the game.

How?

I'll start with stats and gear.

Lets say that hypothetically your gear only has a 10% influence on your offense/defense and ability selection. This means that the topmost player with the highest stats and best gear will only have a 10% gain in numeric situations at best over the worst player that has the worst stats and worst gear. Let us also say that the content is made such that even the worst player statwise can complete it. Impossible, you say! Ahh, maybe. But the player that has the highest stats and best gear will do so because: a - they will have a small performance gain in-game no matter what their choices are, b - when other players examine them they will see that they're in the top 10 or top 100 or top 1000 of stats. This, I argue, is all the incentive this type of player will need to acquire gear and improve their stats.

One of the benefits of disconnecting stats from being a heavy influence on the game is that they can be as complex as desired. So we could have 100's of stats and players mostly wouldn't care because stats are so insignificant. I mean, the only gain players would attain is a small 10% numeric factor and the status gained from when others inspect them. Players who don't like to analyze numbers could just select gear based on a rough understanding and wouldn't be expected to dig deeper or to find their old math books or to scour the internet for advice. This would allow people who like to do those things to do that and not infringe so heavily on the players who do not.

Just take the same idea and apply to all aspects of the game.

Now I'm going to consider strategy and difficulty. These're the tactics that players use to defeat an encounter in-game. An easy encounter is something everyone can do. A hard encounter is something only the most disciplined players can do. If this were made to be as I am suggesting it should be, all players could defeat all encounters and the most disiciplined players would only gain a very small but measurable advantage in-game. It might only be a 10% advantage such that they finish it 10% faster. For example, lets say that there's a puzzle in-game which requires a person to have 150 IQ to solve. Once the player(s) solve it, it gives them a small encounter-specific bonus to their stats. It's so small that it doesn't stop people with 80 IQ from defeating the encounter. The rest of the advantage that the most disciplined (or able) would gain is that their performance score would be stored on their character. This information could be inspected just as achievements are currently inspected. It would be a status symbol, not a absolute numeric advantage in-game.

Get what I'm explaining? I'm tired of always playing games and seeing them changed inevitably so that everyone can play them no matter their skill level or devotion or where they come from or what they're used to. What I want is a way to play the game MY WAY and be scored fairly while at the same time allowing everyone to play and not stopping them from enjoying -all- of the content.

The essence of MMORPGs is to enjoy the story and participate with others. Not to be blocked from it because your stats are too low. I believe that stats can be insignificant yet still have a meaningful role in the game for stats-oriented players. The same can be said for every other system in-game. Give everybody a status symbol (score) that mostly replaces the current non-permeable scoring system.

Think of a game that (fairly) scores everyone (to their ability) and lets everyone defeat the highest level. Players use their score as the main (competitive) reason to play, but the score itself does not stop others from also defeating the game. It's permeable.

(in case you guessed it, yes, i love to mathematically dissect stats on gear and i love lots of em! i like choosing based on results.)

__________________
"Get up and feel the freedom, stay down and feel the tyranny."
7foggynites is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-04-2012, 05:35 PM   #2
thorn

Loremaster
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 59
Default

Looks like you gave it alot of thought before  you wrote all this out, personally I didnt read all of it.  It sounds like your own insight on what you think soe is doing but i beg to differ.  The rule for making a mmo is MAKE CONTENT THAT LASTS.  Look at Staw Wars, people can get max level and everything in the game in a month, Diablo 3 in less time than that, with no forseeable expac in the future yet.  People get bored and leave.  Soe has done the same but is making changes here and there with Game Updates, some without very much foresight (like the ongoing class balancing, gear itemization etc).  Its just that Soe has been doing this mmo thing a lot longer than some. Its just to make money and try to please the masses.. in that order.

thorn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-04-2012, 06:00 PM   #3
Mermut

Loremaster
Mermut's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 852
Default

The biggest problem, I see, with your idea: Gear is only part of the equation. Player skill is more important. If you make all encounters and content at every level so the person in the worse gear with the least amount of skill can complete it without too much struggle, you make it horrifically easy and boring for even the moderately geared and moderately skilled player.

I think it is good to have a variety of difficulties in content. Sometimes I enjoy something quick and easy, but in the long term, that gets boring. The zones/fights that take multiple tries over multiple days.. yes, they're frustrating sometimes, but the sense of accomplishment when the group succeeds more then makes up for it. I don't think all content should be that hard, not even close. Having the variety of difficulties is important for the health and longevity of the game.

__________________
I'm willing to suspend my disbelief, But not hang it by the neck until dead.
Mermut is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-06-2012, 12:46 PM   #4
agnott

Loremaster
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 710
Default

7foggynites wrote:

(in case you guessed it, yes, i love to mathematically dissect stats on gear and i love lots of em! i like choosing based on results.)

Part of me thinks the game would be better served with as much as the numbers as possible be hidden for stats and gear.

Make it a tier system where you have a general idea of the level of stats or gear. Let trial and error be the guide as the the best of the best gear. Knowing the math down to the last penny so to speak of stats & gear takes some of the mystery away.

There always should be a great debate between players on what is the best gear for whatever situation ..instead of it being crystal clear and EVERYBODY wearing the same gear.

agnott is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-06-2012, 01:21 PM   #5
inspire1444568

Loremaster
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 59
Default

Mermut wrote:

The biggest problem, I see, with your idea: Gear is only part of the equation. Player skill is more important.

I see, that some trivial classes have more options than more advanced classes =

inspire1444568 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-06-2012, 01:56 PM   #6
Ulrichvon

Loremaster
Ulrichvon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 641
Default

inspire1444568 wrote:

Mermut wrote:

The biggest problem, I see, with your idea: Gear is only part of the equation. Player skill is more important.

I see, that some trivial classes have more options than more advanced classes =

There are no trivial classes, and there are no advanced classes.

All can be played with excellence or like a novice.

__________________
Hey, where's my random act of kindness?
Ulrichvon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-07-2012, 12:33 AM   #7
Zeuteno

Loremaster
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 2
Default

We have to remember content is generated based off of gameplay factors that affect the players; for example:

Player Skill: Skill greatly affects gameplay, and the community of players in any given game have a predictable curve of skills when it comes to gaming. Very few are poorly skilled or extremely skilled with most players fitting into average or above average skilled catagory. If one wanted to create content based on Player Skill they would do best to create the most content based on the curve to keep the largest population of players happy.

Gear: The ability to gain gear has several non-game factors: Time, Skill, Knowledge of the Game, Ability to Socialize, etc. To allows all players access to content one would have to create content that these factors have limited influence on. SS solo dailys seem to have been done for those who are hindered the most by these factors. Raid content is available to those who are not hindered as much by these factors. Again, one would generate content for the largest population. I am sure game companys have done studies for these factors and base content on them.

Experence: Only way to get this is to play the game. No matter how good a player is, or how good their gear is, if they run into a encounter with a special do or die gimic they don't know they will likely lose the encounter. With this you have to think about the learning curve and class balance. Do we need a MT who can block the aoe? Do we need more ranged on this fight? How many tries will it take to get the timing down? What set of players do these things affect the most? Content is generated with these ideas in mine.

There is more but the point is gaming is a business. Businesses want to make a profit. This usually means they will generate content based on what brings in the most profit. Anything outside of this scope is usually just wishful thinking.

Zeuteno is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-28-2012, 11:17 PM   #8
7foggynites

Lord
7foggynites's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 112
Default

Mermut wrote:

The biggest problem, I see, with your idea: Gear is only part of the equation. Player skill is more important. If you make all encounters and content at every level so the person in the worse gear with the least amount of skill can complete it without too much struggle, you make it horrifically easy and boring for even the moderately geared and moderately skilled player.

I think it is good to have a variety of difficulties in content. Sometimes I enjoy something quick and easy, but in the long term, that gets boring. The zones/fights that take multiple tries over multiple days.. yes, they're frustrating sometimes, but the sense of accomplishment when the group succeeds more then makes up for it. I don't think all content should be that hard, not even close. Having the variety of difficulties is important for the health and longevity of the game.

I'm late in responding to this. I left for a while to exhale.

I'm thinking of a game where the competition is based on your score. I tried to explain that this is different from your hp/ac/resist/dps/etc score because it's permeable. Permable means that it doesn't give you any significant bonus in-game.

In the current game - which is non-permable - you have to be able to defeat the highest level most difficult encounters to have the highest HP/dps/ac/etc score. This requires you to raid and invest a lot of time. For raid guilds, it requires a lot of management/administrative skills. In general, players of this rank have to have a high commitment to the game and tend to have the best attributes for it as a person. But what if you don't like raiding and/or you do not have a lot of time to play and/or what if you have vision or motory or auditory problems that prevent you from acting rapidly in response to the game? What if your guild doesn't manage itself well? A long list of things can stand between yourself and a high hp/ac/etc score. These things will prevent you from seeing ALL the content. So your HP/AC/etc score indicates not only your overall achievments, but it stands as a barrier to the remaining content in the game.

What I'm imagining is that the game allows everyone to beat it. They can see all its content in whatever way they want to see it. They can rush through certain zones. They can go to -all- the zones, if they choose. Whatever. It's up to them how they do it, really. Numbers won't stop you from eventually seeing everything, including the top-level raids.

What the game doesn't do is ignore the details. Instead it scores everything. Just like the achievment system scores you when you complete certain quests or go to certain dungeons or explore a certain amount of things. Even though stats only have a 10% impact in-game, they're still scored so you can see who has the highest hp/ac/dps/etc stat rating. Even though combat encounters do not require high iq or fast motory reflexes or comprehensive gameplay knowledge or long chains of connected quests to access them (or whatever else) to defeat them, the game will still score you on your reflexes and intelligence and gameplay knowledge and completed quest chains and so on.

You might ask how can the game score players of all skill levels and types and not also have easy-mode gameplay that makes it impossible to score them? Picture this: there's a race and everybody finishes at different times yet they -all- pass the finish line. How do you score them? You time them and give them their times. But they all finished, didn't they? Yes, they did! Now picture a dungeon that has traps and puzzles and every trick in the book. Except the traps are light hitting and the puzzles aren't required to finish and the tricks aren't either. HOWEVER, the player is scored appropriately if they dismantle the traps and complete the puzzles and use all the tricks right. None of those things are required to finish the content, but in the end they'll give you a higher score. Now imagine that there's a complex combat script where adds pop at various times and complex charming/mezzing/etc takes place and various aoe's trigger and so on. Responding corrctly to each challenge is not required to finish the encounter. HOWEVER, the game will score you if you do respond correctly to the adds, the aoe's, the charming/mezzing/etc, and so on. This is how it works. The game might give players who play the best a 10% factor just as it might give stats on gear a 10% factor, but ultimately, the scoring system does not prevent anybody from finishing the game.

The take hom message is to examine the achievment system and understand it. See how most of the content that contributes to it's effectively mudflated and not useful anymore. Yet players still do it! Because that's what they like to do. A big reason they do it is because it gives them a higher achievment score. While this doesn't mean they have any hard in-game advantage, it does give them that butterfly feeling in their stomach and it also allows accompanies their seeing -all- the content for its lore and mystery. It's a win-win situation for them. Once you see that a hard numerical benefit in-game is not needed, you'll see where I'm coming from with all this.

This is likely the only way to have hugely inflated numbers of stats on gear using complex super high level mathematics and not have it annoy almost every player in the game! It's the only way to have something for the highest and the lowest of us. It's the only way to have the hardest of the hardcore content while at the same time not having it be an obstacle to the most casual users.

I'm exhausted, sick and tired of most games I play ending up having to meet the common denominator. If we can find a way to mostly detach the score from the in-game hard mechanics (like whether you complete the combat encounter or not) then we can allow for players to play at whatever skill level or aptitude they're able or want to reach without this also impacting the ability of other players to pass the finish line. A lot of hte complaints about todays games has to do with the requirements to reach max level or max stats or whatever (grinding, raids, etc). This is precisely because the scoring mechanism is tied to the hard progression so tightly without any elbow room.

It's possible that someone will take this idea but they WON'T add the detailed scoring aspect. So what this will result in is an easy-mode game with a simplified/slimmed-down scoring system. This would probably just be the result of lack of money and/or consumer interest. It requires a lot development time (read: $$$) to create the scoring system I'm referencing in various places here. Making a "hardcore" game requires a lot of developer skill. When I say "hardcore", I don't mean tough penalties, I mean expansive gameplay with lots of tricks (tricks = strategies = tactics). Developing gameplay with less tricks = less money required. More tricks means more development and more testing of their stability. Ultimately, this might be futile. But I have to try. So I have ot come here and write it down.

For  clarification:

A soft numerical benefit/score is only loosely tied or not connected at all to dps/ac/hp/etc. This is permeable.

A hard numerical benefit/score is either mostly or completely tied to dps/ac/hp/etc. This isn't permeable.

Dps/ac/hp/etc are traditionally a major contributing factor to whether you finish an encounter or not.

(sorry for the long post, but there's no simple & short way of saying all this at this point in time. i just don't have my mind fully wrapped around hte concept. maybe i'm dumb and hopeless and the thread readers aren't. who cares though. i enjoyed writing it.)

__________________
"Get up and feel the freedom, stay down and feel the tyranny."
7foggynites is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 06:35 PM.

vBulletin skin by: CompleteGFX.com
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
All threads and posts originally from the EQ2 and Station forums operated by Sony Online Entertainment. Their use is by express written permission.