The Daily Grind: Would you appreciate the option to swap your MMO class?

I’m no stranger to the allure of alts in MMO, but there are some games where the content is so massive that I don’t have the time nor energy to level up a new character even if I truly wish to be playing a different class at endgame. As such, I really wish that there was an option — free or paid — to swap out a class for another one of equal level in my games (a feature that FFXIV does quite well).

I put this out on Twitter and got a lot of positive responses to it, with Bree chipping in, “This was one of the major perks of Star Wars Galaxies’ NGE, eventually — the ability to just pay in-game cash to switch combat classes and keep your levels/etc. It’s always slightly jarring to me that so few other MMORPGs have this feature.”

Trion Worlds’ Nicholas McDowell rebutted my wish by saying, “I understand the desire to switch, but that starts getting tricky to do in a way that doesn’t lead to an unsatisfactory experience. Instant level boost is probably the best way to do this in any RPG.”

What do you think? Would you appreciate the option to swap your MMO class, especially if you don’t want to lose your other achievements and progression?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!
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69 Comments on "The Daily Grind: Would you appreciate the option to swap your MMO class?"

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Bruno Brito

Yes. The best thing that would happen to my altitis is if every alt was also my main.

mosselyn
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mosselyn

I’m not sure I would avail myself of the ability to do this, but I think you should be able to.

I like leveling, so I don’t mind level alts. Also, though I know many people would disagree, I believe you DO learn something about how to play your class while leveling. I do, anyway.

There’s a middle ground between the “It teaches you your class” and “You don’t learn anything about playing your class” positions I see many people taking. No, it doesn’t make you pro, but, yes, you know a lot more about your class when you get to cap than you do when you inhale it all in one gulp.

However, many people loathe leveling, and some of them even have the chops to competently absorb a new class all at once. Why shouldn’t they be able to do so? Go for it.

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Carebear

but in ffxiv you do level your alt class… and you do so without the quests that you consumed on your first… I think the best paradigm here is ESO… you can reset you skill points and attributes and try many different “classes”. Of course you still dont have access to other class trees…

Anyway, I agree that we should be able to do so… and most times the problem is not just the leveling part but all the things you have accomplished on your main… Reputations, dungeon/raid curves, outfits, etc…. in that sense yes, FFXIV did it right… as BDO too, since all is on “family”… energy, contribution points…

But I doubt this will ever happen… MMOs lately straggle to find ways to extend your game time, mostly by putting in game stupid time gates… I doubt they will make it that simple to re-roll…

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Rolan Storm

Yes! Please?

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Michael18

One of the first things that fascinated me about MMOs was that the game world is shared by players who do NOT experience the game in exact the same way and therefore bring in different perspectives, view points, and tales to share when sitting around the camp fire. If classes could be changed any time without any significant effort this would effectively make all characters the same and you’d lose this nice aspect of MMOs.

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Carebear

On the contrary, I feel that what you say is better achieved if we can have 1 character instead of 10… the different classes will not make the person behind the monitor different too, or his stories or his capabilities to RP.

You can more easily create a reputation and background on 1 character than 10. Besides, those who would like to have more characters for RP reasons they can do that as well.

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Vunak

FFXIV does it fine. If you are talking about its multiclass on one character system.

If you are talking about level boosts. No thanks. I think they open the flood gates for shitty players at level cap because they will literally have 0 experience with the class and get thrown in at the deep end causing issues for other players when it comes to progressing/dungeons/pvp etc.

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Carebear

I dont think that leveling content is there to prepare your character for difficult endgame content. I leveled my mage on Vanilla wow and hit 60 some months before TBC.. I was completely noob… even in TBC, I leveled to 70 and entered a dungeon and someone told me to use “counterspell” and I didnt even knew I had such a spell :P… 3-4 months of leveling didnt make me a dungeon guru, so I doubt the current leveling can do that too..

In my opinion, leveling is there to create an adventure, a journey. Not to prepare you for the difficult stuff. If a player is not good at endgame is because the game dont have the required endgame content to teach him, like proving grounds etc.

plannick
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plannick

exactly, ff14 doesn’t allow you to flip between classes/jobs of same level, unless you happen to have gained those levels with each class/job.

in some ways, one of the worst thing about alts is going through the exact same stories ad nauseam as games tend to gate stuff that way. granted.. without stories giving big chunks of xp, levelling can be a bit grindy, but that’s another story.

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XSetiX

You make it sound like you learn how to play a class going to max in FFXIV, All you do is spam AoE’s in fate’s for 50hr’s and you are capped, you don’t learn anything about the class or how it works.

xpsync
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xpsync

What kills me is how against multiclass character’s i was when i first played FFXIV, i could not have been more opposed to the entire concept. It felt less, ruined the mmo in ways for me.

Today I’m like every game should be like this, i could never lobby or recommend this concept enough. The game world is so much richer feeling and so much more robust, and you are you, Always!

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Dug From The Earth

Id rather they just allow a quicker advancement for alts you have if you have already done the grind to max level on a character already.

Marvel Heroes had a good idea. The more characters you got the max level, the bigger boost to XP you got on your next alt. (which was optional in the settings for those who didnt want to speed through)

xpsync
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xpsync

EQ2 did,
wait yea they still around, hang on… sec…. umm…. more news coming in………. hold on…. yep ok;

does do that too. It’s a really good idea actually when it comes to alts.

xpsync
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xpsync

I always loved alts, to reroll a new class, new feeling, new look, tackle that familiar leveling path with new tactics and or sometimes provided an entire different starting ground to cover.

Alts were one of the most integral features to me within the entire mmorpg genre.

When i first played FFXIV, it was so jarring to me, ok i can roll an alt but why? There is no reason too, like zero. That seriously messed with my psyche. OK i can make an alt but all i’m doing is holding up progression on my main, but that’s ok it’s an alt, but no you can do all that on your main and majorly benefit from doing that alt stuff on your main.

Then SWL was like that and at first i made alts but i guess it’s here where i finally fell in love with the one toon to rule them all.

Now playing Shroud of the Avatar, and tbh i’m not sure, but i don’t think you can even roll an alt? That’s how much I’ve fallen in love with the one toon can do it all, I’ve not checked so maybe you can make one.

So… would i appreciate to swap your class, yea i already play those games it’s not a problem. Oh you mean games like ESO, well no then. ESO as an example if you are a templar then you are a templar, you want to be a warden then go roll one. It’s an alt supported game.

When Morrowind launched, probably the last time i popped into ESO, i read much about peeps saying they would like to simply switch their class to a Warden. I dunno? i chimed in and did not support the idea, you have to earn it is my stance.

I mean if you are really in love with character then i can see this being a problem, that’s what I’ve discovered, i really love that character, as that is me in the game, for example i’m know in SWL as (Most Awesome Dungeon runner of all time) and in FFXIV as (The Legendary Healer), Shroud of the Avatar as (still working on that).

What my drift is in ESO i’m know as (Best DPS that ever played the game; still to this day), but also, and also, and also, you lose your identity somewhat with alts you know when you are thinned out… stretched. Like butter scraped over too much bread. Who are you? Really.

So i dunno, pros and cons but one thing for sure is people tastes do change and i really prefer the one toon to rule them all now. Say in ESO, if you were in love with your character and really did want to become a warden, they should do something similar to EQ2 when you Betray, work for that change.

Logging in one day and on a whim say i want to be this class, no way, no one should appreciate an option like that.

Dantos
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Dantos

With ESO, I wish classes just added some flavor and not have some classes and especially races be blatantly better than others at certain roles, Templar healers/DK tanks, Altmer magika DPS ect. It took away some of the perceived freedom that had defined the elderscrolls games for me.

xpsync
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xpsync

For the record and to everyone, i know i come off jerky about certain games and blablabla, but it’s much to do with what is in my reply to rafael12104.

I take my games seriously, and then to run into peeps who don’t, or just boost and have no clue… I like to learn, be challenged, be tested, it’s what i loved about mmorpg’s it’s why i fell in love with them over a decade ago.

The industry has literally gone in the complete opposite direction 180 degrees. At the end of the day do i hate ESO, No!!! it’s…. tbh a very fun game actually, i really enjoy it when i do play, i mean of all the modern mmo’s to me it’s #1, where SWL is my all time fav but for a very specific reason not so much in a mmorpg way. So yea take me with many grains of salt, i’m sure most already do anyway.

xpsync
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xpsync

OMG yea you just opened an entire new can of worms which had not even crossed my mind.

So yea i really see that now, where was my freedom of choice.

Lets roll in everybody’s favorite..
FLAVOR OF THE MONTH! and the crowd goes wild.

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Castagere Shaikura

Aeria games has a game called Twin Saga that i loved for this. You created one character and it could play every class in the game. Grouping was so much fun because you switch class on the fly to whatever your group needed. Very fun to play. No need to worry about what gear you had as drops and quest reward would always be useful. I wish more games would do this. Also some advance classes you had to unlock through a quest if you wanted to play them.

xpsync
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xpsync

Might check that out, thx, sounds fun.

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rafael12104

I said my piece below but I do want to add one more thing. Experience playing a unique class is very important and satisfying. So is the uniqueness of the class that makes it your own. I wouldn’t sacrifice that for convenience.

Isn’t that what many of us were railing against just yesterday in the “hostile mechanics” article? Convenience compromising what makes these games unique and special?

xpsync
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xpsync

Exactly, super boosts… ugggg.

Always loved in ESO other games too, but really stands out in ESO are the players you meet in end game dungeon and they have no dungeon awareness, at all.

To me, and no not being elitist, it literally feels insulting to me. Insulting to me that you sign up as a tank or a healer just so you can get into a dung fast but you’re a dps. Then when the tank barks at you about signing up as a healer who can only dps, you reply with crap like i do this all the time and no one complained before.

I mean you are wasting everyone’s time. Then the whole group falls apart because you all of a sudden u r 50 one day, and you didn’t even need boosts, the game is so easy, and you level so freaking fast you literally had no time to learn your roll, so whose fault is it really, the player or Fisher-Price’s fault?

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rafael12104

Exactly. We see it more and more these days. Players in end game grouping scenarios that do not know their class. I’m talking about basic skills.

I’m not an elitist either. I welcome all especially the newbies. But games are setting them up to fail.

Quick class change can work when combat is generic or when it is used by someone who is experienced.

If the learning curve isn’t important, might as well play Fortnite or Sim City. Lol