Darkfall: Rise of Agon is at a ‘pivotal’ design moment

From the sound of things, it doesn’t appear that Darkfall: Rise of Agon is doing quite as well as its indie team was hoping. The PvP sandbox launched in May and posted a roadmap just a few weeks ago, but now Big Picture Games is acknowledging that a drastic course correction might be needed.

In a short and slightly unnerving post on Rise of Agon’s site this week, the team acknowledged that the game’s direction is “underwhelming” to many players and is reassessing the MMO from the top down and bottom up.

“We came to the conclusion that much of what we have been trying desperately to hold onto were the roots of what Darkfall had become,” the team wrote. “This was a game that involved a heavy time sink, required perseverance, and tolerating insane amounts of tedium. What we attempted to do was walk a line between casual and hardcore play times, and we now know this was a mistake.”

Big Picture said that it will be evaluating how it can remove grind and inaccessibility, starting with “a series of design discussions” this weekend.

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8 Comments on "Darkfall: Rise of Agon is at a ‘pivotal’ design moment"

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Aelzen
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Aelzen

For me, Darkfall came too late. By the time it came out, I had a job and family and no longer had 30+ hours a week to put into a single video game. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t have a problem with that kind of thing – I’ve done oldschool UO, Everquest, DAoC, and plenty more that were built on boring, repetitive gameplay – but that was kind of the problem too: I’d already done that.

These days I’m more content to just be a casual and enjoy my time instead of feeling like I’m falling behind or being forced into menial tasks in order to participate. As weird as it sounds, it’s why I like Eve online; I log in, shoot some people, get shot, spend 15-30 minutes messing around on the market to make back my losses if I have any, and log off for the day (I readily accept there’s two sides to the opinion that eve is casual-friendly). I also play Overwatch for this same reason: I log in, get some fun done, log off. Quick, easy, entertaining. It’s also the reason I no longer play D3.

There’s just too many options on the market these days to make ‘repetitive’, ‘grindy’ and ‘casual-non-friendly’ the sort of words you want associated with your title.

nvidia
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nvidia

I think their biggest mistake is thinking that tedium and grind is the problem. There are plenty of games out there now that involve tedium and grind (looking at you, Black Desert), and yet people still play them. The difference? They aren’t dinosaurs that look terrible and feel terrible to play.

No amount of gameplay improvement is going to bring the crowds back to such an old and decrepit game, sorry to say. They need to gut it from the inside out, do a complete visual overhaul, and drastically improve the UI and animations. Then maybe it’ll stand a fighting chance.

Fnights
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Fnights

“I think their biggest mistake is thinking that tedium and grind is the problem.”

Exactly, this will solve nothing.
The huge issue for new players are:
– unpractial GUI that require to smash and roating so much skills that is really confusing
– consequence of the point above is caused by lacks of specializations and roles that force you to be everything on a single character and so use 30+ utilities, abilities and spells
– lasck of sandbox elements, expecially pve and crafting standalone playstyles
– lack of local banks and local resources, instead they go with an arenaish gankbox concept with fast traveling

As i said in other places, this game with this mindset is beyond salvation, reducing timesink and time to pvp will nto save this game, they aren’t the main issue.

Move to New Dawn if you like the Darkfall franchise or true sandbox mmorpg when will be released later this year/next year, seems Ub3rgames understood the foundamentals issues upon Darkfall.

wandris
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wandris

That has been done before and it was rejected because of some misplaced love for the original version. Unholy wars was better in many ways, although it was missing a few of the charms the original had. I agree with the grind not being the problem, without the grind you don’t really have much to keep you playing for years. The biggest problem both this game and new dawn will face will be getting a critical mass of players, otherwise there will only be stagnation. Without players there is no politics, no sieges, no large scale global interactions. At this point I know I am going to have difficulties making any significant time for new dawn. There is simply a whole lot of other things to be doing right now other than starting over in darkfall for the 5th time.

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life_isnt_just_dank_memes

so hardcore equals willing to tolerate tedium? who was the genius that thought that was the path to a fun game?

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Pi Er

It’s sad to see that… But I do believe that Darkfall can make it.

Personally I’m waiting for NewDawn, I prefer their direction and I believe that it will manage to hold a steady community long term.

Although I do hope that Rise of Agon finds a way to keep on and succeed.

It’s a game with lots of potential!

Xijit
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Kickstarter Donor
Xijit

As has been said a billion ass times before, if not two billion ass times: make a care bear server and I will give it a shot.

Crafters and gankers will never be a “thing” … Stop trying to ship it.

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Castagere Shaikura

Devs will never learn. They are great at making games just not great at understanding people. That’s why they keep making gank boxes that fail.

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