Global Chat: Being scared of devs ‘improving’ MMOs

    
15

Do you ever live in fear that the development team behind your favorite MMORPG might screw things up in the name of progress and improvement? Then you’re in good company, because MMO blogger Yeebo Fernbottom expressed the same in a recent post concerning Dungeons and Dragons Online’s reincarnation system.

“Years ago the developers in DDO proposed to all but remove any way of earning hearts for true reincarnation in game. This idea was not well received by players (to put it mildly), but at first the developers ignored them. To call attention to the issue, players staged a protest in game. Eventually some news sites even started covering the protests, and the developers finally relented. This is when the system that DDO has now was finalized.”

Read on for more MMO essays, including those that cover FFXIV beast tribes, Diablo II’s anniversary, and City of Heroes: Going Rogue.

The Nosy Gamer: Thoughts on FFXIV’s beast tribe quests

“Completing each tribes quest line results in making mounts, minions, and dyes available from each tribes’ store. The beast tribe vendors are also a source for crafting materials. Since I am into both the crafting and glamour systems, doing the beast tribe daily quests made sense.”

The Ancient Gaming Noob: Reflecting on Diablo II at twenty

“Back in 2000 we played a lot of it. People dropped out of EverQuest and TorilMUD to devote time to the game. I ended up owning two copies because we would play it at the office after hours together and you only have to forget your disk and miss a game night once to feel the need to have a second copy. It was, for its time, so engaging. I still marvel at the use of lighting, something that the games successors have really never matched.”

Tales of the Aggronaut: Of nickels and dimes

“There is a large part of me that longs for the era of MMORPGs when you purchased the box, purchased the occasional expansion every few years… and then had a simple subscription amount that you could budget for. The problem there is that this limits the amount of money that a game can drain from your pocket book, and even the bastion of the subscription model has found a way to add additional purchases to try and entice you to spend more.”

Kaylriene: Beautiful MMO zones and the players that love them

“My absolute favorite MMO zone at the moment is FFXIV’s The Tempest. The zone name is kept hidden on the Norvrandt world map for all of Shadowbringers, and it is not until the MSQ begins winding rapidly to its conclusion that the game even hints at the zone, so if you haven’t looked at the full Norvrandt map (which the game doesn’t give you reason to anyways), you can be genuinely surprised by it. ”

24 Hours In: City of Heroes Going Rogue

“When Going Rogue was announced I was already an active player of CoH. Well, active-ish, in that I already had one hero and one villain at level 50, and though I did spend some time on alts (no surprise there) I was only revisiting the game from time to time. The updates/issues that had been released since I’d started playing the game had all been fairly thin as far as new content was concerned, so I was excited to see what an actual expansion would bring. It didn’t disappoint.”

Every day there are tons of terrific, insightful, and unusual articles posted across the MMO gaming blogosphere — and every day, Justin reads as many as he can. Global Chat is a sampling of noteworthy essays, rants, and guides from the past few weeks of MMO discourse.

15
LEAVE A COMMENT

Please Login to comment
  Subscribe  
newest oldest most liked
Subscribe to:
Reader
Ben Stone

Yep, there are some developers you can’t trust to do the right thing, and dealing with the current flawed system is better than any “improvements” they will come up with.

Given the massive amount of past lives required to max out a character, DDO really should address this if they want to keep the latest influx of players. I think the following changes would generate a lot of good will:

1) Remove the XP penalty for 2nd and 3rd lives onward.
2) Make reincarnation free, aside from reaching the required level.

This will keep players in the game grinding for a long long time to come. The current XP level causes a bit of fatigue when you get stuck in the hell levels, where content is not great (Sands quests, I am looking at you). Obviously they want players to buy the XP potions, but again they would get more interest if that was a luxury rather than required to actually enjoy the game. Also I don’t think anyone enjoys grinding out Devil’s Assault for the 50th time every reincarnation.

Sure, spreading the newer fun content around those levels would also be good, or having scaling content. But the fix above would be a lot easier to implement.

Reader
Castagere Shaikura

I have always had a problem with this. Especially when devs listen to the vocal minority on the forums. These people always claim to speak for the whole player base when they only are speaking for themselves. This is why GW2 is such a mess.

Reader
Axetwin .

A forum based vocal minority doesn’t exist. If you’re not making your voice heard, then you don’t have the right to complain when changes are made that you don’t like.

Reader
Schmidt.Capela

It doesn’t quite work that way because players that aren’t vocal will often just walk away without giving feedback. Given that the players that join the forums are typically a very small minority of the game’s players, and usually don’t reflect the composition of the silent majority, it’s very much in the dev and publisher’s interest to figure out what the silent majority wants and implement that even if it’s at the expense of the most vocal players; not doing so can lead to a player exodus large enough to kill the game.

On the other hand, anyone that says to represent the silent majority is clearly lying.

Reader
EmberStar

Anyone on forums is almost by definition a minority of the playerbase. Devs and publishers make statements like “only 10% of players ever even register a forum account” as an excuse when they do something like delete their own forums (just let them go to Reddit.)

So if the devs are listening to *ANY* single faction on the forums, they are being swayed by a vocal minority. This is amplified when the ones being listened to are clearly a small fraction of people on the forums (who are already a small fraction of total players.)

Reader
Kickstarter Donor
Patreon Donor
Loyal Patron
Ashfyn Ninegold

My history with some LOTRO “improvements”:

Champion was my main in LOTRO for a long time. Then there were changes. Shing-shing became a joke. Began maining Minstrel (I’m a sucky healer) because they were better DPS than Champion. Then more changes, put Minstrel on shelf and started healing with Runekeeper, which was my main for over a year (still suck at healing, but kin had needs). More changes, Champion back in the DPS race, but back to maining new, improved Minstrel because of kin needs (no longer sucky at healing). Champions kneecapped again. Found out that because I had two LOTRO accounts I could dual box on my wide-screen. Began playing Champion and Minstrel together.

Happiness at last.

Reader
Jon Wax

Ya can’t polish a turd

More concerned about their lack of commitment to their own idea

Reader
Rndomuser

I am more afraid of developers not improving games in terms of graphical fidelity. It is pretty disappointing watching trailers for new games or graphical demos for new hardware features on new cards then coming back to your game which you have been playing for long time and seeing the ugly models with very little graphical details, poor lighting system and low-res textures, all of which becomes extremely noticeable after watching latest trailers.

I understand that graphical fidelity does not matter for many people but for me it really does, especially when it comes to interacting with live players.

Reader
Kickstarter Donor
Brazen Bondar

After Joel Bylos left the TSW team and Tilty took over, I worried about this every day. I know MJ liked Tilty, but every time he streamed he would say …”I never liked this [fill in the blank] . If we ever have time I’d like to revisit it.” I would cringe. He eventually left before SWL was launched, but many of the things Tilty didn’t like about TSW ended up “fixed” in SWL. Sometimes when things work devs should just leave them alone.

Reader
Loyal Patron
Patreon Donor
ogged451

He eventually left before SWL was launched

Tilty left after SWL launched. He posted the South Africa teaser picture in late 2017 and the announcement about him leaving came in April 2018.
Unless you mean the upcoming meta-relaunch in SWL (“make the trinity great again”), which perfectly fits into the topic here. “Improvement”, my arse.

Reader
J

I mean I had to live through SWG NGE. So yeah I am often terrified by some developers ideas. SWG leadership killed their own game and the players saw it coming. Our pleas fell on deaf (stupid) ears.

Reader
Kickstarter Donor
NeoWolf

“Improve” is entirely a subjective term :)

Reader
Jeremy Barnes

Dark Ages of Camelot went down that road. They had a happy accident and then released Trials of Atlantis. That didn’t kill it, but it started down the road and then they kept doubling down on bad ideas with New Frontiers proving they didn’t understand what made the game great.

They even spoke about how they weren’t able to ‘implement’ their vision at launch and it seemed like the more and more they implemented their vision that the worse the game got.

Reader
J

Atlantis is where I peaced out.

Reader
Bryan Turner

I don’t get scared if MMOs decide to reinvent the wheel, I have options so I can ditch that MMO and hope they learn from their mistakes before they reinvent them selves into a financial disaster.