The Daily Grind: Is ‘god mode’ fun for MMO play?

Unlike some console and PC titles, online RPGs don’t typically offer “god mode” (despite what you may have heard about certain classes). We don’t get to flip a switch and suddenly be invincible and uber-powerful to rofflestomp all over our enemies.

Except… sometimes we do, thanks to over-leveling. The other night I had a great amount of fun revisiting World of Warcraft’s Northrend raids, steamrolling through these old endgame instances without any challenge. Seeing hordes of enemies die at a single spell while not being able to touch me at all was pretty amusing, but I enjoyed the ability to explore and experience these raids far more.

Do you think that god mode is fun for MMO play? If so, when and how should it work in games — and to what purpose?

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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Ken from Chicago

Yeah, it’s great for letting you revisit areas just to explore without the fear of dying any second by some sneak attack. Bonus: If you have pets, letting them romple stomp mobs and even bosses while you kick back and enjoy the view is rather calming.

“Yes, minions, do my bidding and *deal* with my foes! Muwahahaha!!!”

Mewmew
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Mewmew

It’s not at all fun for me. I already struggle with enjoying all the too easy monsters we usually deal with 95% of the time we play an MMORPG. Although they are a nice break in between bosses and I don’t want every fight to be a major boss battle and struggle, they’re also quite pointless most of the time and not very fun for me.

There’s a reason the bad guys usually have their underlings deal with the lesser challenges for them :D Though as the “hero” we normally deal with everything from the lowest of lows up. I mean we often start out killing rodents and such. I get that we would have done that as kids growing up, but normally our game heroes are of a set higher age (not always, but normally).

I don’t really enjoy games where there is zero challenge most of the time until you hit an elite or boss but that’s the way it goes in so many of them. I guess that’s why I play multiple games at the same time when I do play them, as a way to up the challenge and rid myself of the boredom.

I want it to be fun and not frustrating, but breezing through stuff isn’t fun for me.

As I said though I don’t want every fight to be a boss fight. I do like those kinds of games sometimes for sure (The new Dauntless or the Monster Hunter type games) but I also like the small breaks that killing lighter enemies gives you. I just don’t enjoy it for as much of the time or as easy of a time as we usually get.

Actually Shroud of the Avatar has been pretty good in this respect. It’s held a nice balance for me so far.

Hikari Kenzaki
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Hikari Kenzaki

When I started streaming my best of Secret World Legends stuff, I tried doing some of the streams with a lowbie and some with a max level, moderately geared character.
The former was fun enough, but you could get bogged down in a dps check or ‘you must be this level to proceed’ blocks.
Using the max level character helped get the mechanics out of the way so I could focus on the best part of SWL, the story.

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Ben Stone

EQ2 has an interesting approach where ‘grey’ mobs actually cower in fear of you. Although you dont get any loot from them unless you scale yourself to their level.

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Axetwin .

You’re not really talking about “God Mode” as much as it’s just being over leveled. Going back to do stuff when you’re overleveled can be fun. With WOW’s new legacy drop system, I would say yeah, it’s fun.

God Mode on the other hand, where you’re decimating hordes of enemies of equal level with minimal effort isn’t fun. That means either the content hasn’t been balanced well, or the class(es) haven’t been.

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silverlock

Simply put yes it’s fun now and then to come back and stomp things that used to give you trouble.

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Roger Melly

I think MMO’s should have different difficulty modes in the same way single player games have . I would return to WoW in a shot if they had a similar hard mode option as they have now with their war mode for pvp that makes open world pve questing challenging and fun again .

And no I don’t think god mode is fun for me . I get bored to tears if there is no chance of failure in a game or if the mechanics are so simple I can kill by spamming one spell for 3 or 4 shots like you can in WoW .

I wouldn’t exactly say I am a hardcore gamer but I do like to a bit of a challenge .

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Dug From The Earth

Many do, but they are only limited to group content. IE: heroic and mythic modes in WoW dungeons and raids.

Division has a difficulty slider however for its single player gameplay, which I wish other mmorpgs would adopt… although it would have to rely on heavy instancing in the game to do so.

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Koshelkin

Actually, one of my biggest gripes with WoW is that you can use just one skill and do 99% of the solo content, probably even 100%. The skill system is lacking depth but you’ll fail to put more than 3-4 skills to good use while soloing. Dungeons only take a tad more, and that’s mostly for healers. WoW is the pinnacle of simplification.

If I can do content like that I don’t feel “godlike” after a while but rather like a braindead chimp pushing buttons for a nebulous reward.

Exploring old content like that can be interesting but probably only once.

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Dug From The Earth

Maybe at 110, after you have gotten high ilevel gear, but after the rescaling of all the leveling content, if you try to play those lower levels with just one skill, you are gonna be pretty challenged.

Normal mobs, even when in heirlooms, will take a good 15 seconds to kill just one… and thats using an assortment of skills.

The irony of course is that at super low levels you actually have fewer skills/talents at your disposal.

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Kickstarter Donor
Serrenity

My experience has been that spamming a single ability will get you dead rather quickly. Granted, I play Monk, Disc priest mostly and both of those has a little more complex rotations, but just spamming tiger palm as a monk and you die because you don’t do enough damage.

I think maybe that was loosely the case (disclaimer: I don’t think it was ever 1 button win, but combat was easier), but that was definitely in the past. Combat has a lot more depth, but there’s a pretty steep stratification between people who just spam abilities and those who play the class well.

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Koshelkin

Maybe I exaggerate when I say 1 button but I never had to use any micro or follow the flow of combat in any way to succeed. It’s ridiculously easy to solo(not talking about HM dungeons here), so easy that I felt exactly zero challenge or even threat at any point in time. So easy that I had the feeling that the devs tried to make the game accessible to even the most simple-minded of players. I never dropped much below ~90% hp and never had to use a certain rotation, rhytm or any kind of reactive gameplay(as in reacting to the situation at hand through the right application of skills).

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Ben Stone

Have you actually played since 7.3.5 and the heirloom nerf?

That was the case before 7.3.5, not so much now. It’s easy enough to die if you pull too many and dont use crowd control and interrupts properly.

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Koshelkin

I don’t have any heirlooms.

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alienlegion

High level characters moving through a low level zone should not have to stop and fight everything along the way.

Imaging you are Bob the Guard freshly graduated from the Stormwind academy and tasked to guard the bridge by the Eastvale Logging Camp. And one day you see Garrosh Hellscream stroll down the road. How is it ‘immersive’ to think that guard will do anything to engage? Let alone immersive breaking to think that guard wants nothing do with that fight?

Now when Garrosh tries to walk into Stormwind and there is General Hammond Clay and others … completely different, because it is a high level zone and it makes sense.

That is the #1 reason I quit SWTOR. Level scaling. The most power Sith in a generation, and you are scaled down the same level as John Q. Guard or Misc. Cave Bat #3. And no, in my opinion the skills you gained have in no way offset the ridiculous level scaling.

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sophiskiai

It’s fun in small doses when there’s a good story justification for it.

When you’re a high level character moving through a low level zone where the mobs are scared to approach you and die if you glance at them, I hate how immersion breaking that is.
I’m not a fan of level scaling where you never feel like you’re getting stronger, but prefer a middle-ground approach where low level mobs are much easier to kill but not negligible.