Ashes of Creation’s Steven Sharif gives an impromptu talk on the game’s mechanics

    
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Ashes of Creation’s Steven Sharif gives an impromptu talk on the game’s mechanics

So a funny thing happened during a Summit1g livestream on Saturday. The streamer was checking out a recent LazyPeon breakdown video for Ashes of Creation, when who showed up but Steven Sharif himself.

The stream then went from a look at another person’s video to a sort of impromptu interview, where Sharif talked about a variety of Ashes of Creation’s mechanics like inter-node and inter-guild warfare, how open PvP works and how it encourages players to fight back by having less raw materials and processed goods drop if they fight back and die, the Corruption mechanic and how it’s meant to punish griefing, the node system, and character progression systems among other things.

Sharif also talked about the negative reaction to Apocalypse battle royale mode, once more explaining how the mode was ultimately used to test and refine combat for the full MMORPG. “If we had not done Apocalypse as a testing ground for many of the background systems and the architectures that we’re building in the MMORPG, we would not have discovered a significant issue that we did which we had to re-architect a lot of the backend systems for,” explains Sharif. “And if we had continued development of the MMORPG until alpha and then discovered that issue, it would have been a whole different beast to fix.”

source: Twitch via Reddit

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Solaris

I love how people who obviously don’t like PvP comment on every PvP MMO in disdain and badmouth the design.

Almost like being a griefer to those that enjoy PvP games. Hmmm…

Hurbster
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Hurbster

So there is absolutely no way I can avoid PvP ?

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G I G A B E A R

Basically, no.

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Tom Gray

Not completely correct. You can be killed by a player but there is a heavy and accumulative penalty for them doing so. If you do not fight back, you are not penalized at all. It’s not really PvP if you aren’t engaging..lol. There’s no incentive for doing it to an unflagged person. Aside from being or taking care of an asshole.

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rk70534

It’s griefing then.

Annoying and causes loss of time that could be spent better, if not anything else.

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Tom Gray

Griefing that essentially destroys the griefer and causes them to be unable to go into town, drop loot, and have a building debuff to their attack effectiveness. So, it can never be actual griefing.. just pvp.

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Bruno Brito

That happened in Dark Eden too.

You know what the griefers did? Spawncamped the exits of the towns with aoes for onehit KOs.

You’re underestimating the capability of a griefer being a dick. They don’t give a shit about their gaming quality when they’re pk’ing you. Their fun is derivative from your suffering.

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Tom Gray

You’re not understanding the mechanics. They will not be able to function in combat after so many kills. Their gear will drop on death and their stats are reduced increasingly as they kill more.. they will become ineffectual in combat. They won’t be door camping for very long when they start hitting like a level 1.

There won’t be newbie zones.. nodes upgrade with the players contributing. So, there will always be higher players in populated nodes. There’s no negative to killing a red flagged player (pker). There are negatives to killing blue/green (non-combatant/combatant). The PKers penalty for griefing is to no longer be able to effectively play their character until they work it off.

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Arktouros

The thing to also undersatnd however is that no matter how harsh the penalties are and how effective they actually are there are always going to be a group of people who refuse to play any game where people can engage them in PvP. There is no acceptable scenario for them in which they can be PK’d.

There are also always players who revel in any system and will find ways to exploit it. For example if you put some sort of corruption mechanic where repeatedly killing people for goods will too drastically impair me, but I can kill X players every Y amount of time (time spent grinding, or just a flat timer, etc) then people will still just casually murder each other only at a limited rate.

I don’t think I’ve run into a single system yet I can’t take advantage of but many cases these kinds of systems only succeed if there’s no real advantage to gain from killing other players. For example in Black Desert it also offers an extremely punishing system (lose experience, lose crystals that cost hundreds of millions of silver, etc) but there’s no reward in killing people. People can always just come right back and they lose nothing. This deters people because even if you kill someone casually if they come back you have nothing to gain by repeatedly murdering them only things to lose.

However if I can always just casually murder people and take their stuff…well that’s just a PK system with a time limit on the number of people I can murder.

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Rndomuser

From what I have seen in videos, it’s similar to EVE Online’s system. Technically you can be attacked everywhere, in practice you can always avoid PvP if you are not lazy or antisocial. For example you can join a large guild/corporation which will guard their territory and allow you to do non-PvP stuff and there will also be NPC guards in some areas. Or hire a group of players to guard you if you do not want to join any guild/corporation. There is also a “criminal” system where attackers of peaceful players will be punished through different mechanics and where if you won’t fight back – you do not lose anything (in EVE you lose everything).

This system does have its faults (it eliminates the antisocial non-PvP players who do not want to join any large guilds or pay for services of player guards so they can do non-PvP stuff, and these type of players are still a good source of potential income even if they are a minority) but it may still keep a large amount of players interested in playing game for a very long time. We just have to wait and see. It is possible that they may still add territories where you cannot be attacked if you do not want to.

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Bruno Brito

you can always avoid PvP if you are not lazy or antisocial

Translation: Join the biggest guild in the server because they’re the ones who will protect you if they’re not busy, and all it’ll cost you is your sanity having to withstand the awful guildchat of 300 mouthbreathers spamming racist ephitets and 4chan memes.

Yeah. No.

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Tom Gray

Sounds like you need to pick your guild better. Though, with that attitude I can see why you’re not invited.

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Rndomuser

the awful guildchat of 300 mouthbreathers spamming racist ephitets and 4chan memes

I’ve been playing online games as a member of various communities since 1996, never had issue finding a group or guild or corporation or whatever it is called in particular game without racist or sexists or any other kind of undesirable behavior. Maybe it’s because I was not lazy? ;-)

Like I said, it will definitely alienate certain group of players, including lazy people or antisocial people since this type of gameplay heavily encourages interaction with others and it is definitely a loss of part of the potential income but hey, maybe they are aware of this and do not mind that. Or maybe they will fix this in one way or another.

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Rhime

…sounds antisocial to me lol

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agemyth 😩

The Lazy Peon generally seems like a decent content creator at least in our fairly small pool of MMO content creators (of which most of the big names are just awful human beings like Asmong0ld), but I can’t really get behind a video like this because there was little to no criticism or skepticism in the almost 30min video. Even though TLP said this video wasn’t an ad at the start I had to pause the video in the middle to check the video description for #ad tags just in case.

I’ll give TLP the benefit of the doubt for now, but the language they use in the video all seems to take Intrepid and Sharif’s word at face value. They describe many features using the present tense like “Ashes *has* a node system that does X, Y, and Z extremely promising features that MMO players want” but as far as I know the only non-NDA’d product that has come from Intrepid so far is their extremely unambitious Battle Royale spinoff. Picking on the use of the present tense might sound petty, but nobody knows when this game will actually come out and how many features will be delayed for months/years after “release” or cut from the game’s roadmap entirely because they just couldn’t make it work.

We all know the routine. Don’t just assume everything the game is being advertised to be is going to be in the game when it launches.

Maybe the worst part of all is this darn referral program that has made this game smell fishy from day one. Anybody who tells me this game sounds cool and shares a referral code with me is untrustworthy. People can make or save money by preaching the good word of Sharif. In the hands of influencers and content creators it just creates an unavoidable ethical dilemma. This is good old fashioned payola: the act that much of the games media has been accused of committing even though that almost never actually happened. This is the new norm though. I doubt very many people even thought twice about TLP sharing a referral code in the vid and in the video description. The Epic Games Store has had a program since day 1 (I think) to allow influencers to get a minimum of 5% revenue share whenever they get someone to use their referral program to purchase a game.

Again, I don’t have any reason to assume TLP is doing anything especially dirty here, but this referral program ruins anything people have to say about the game like this.

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Leiloni

Steven also showed up and spoke to Asmongold for a while.

Zulika Mi-Nam
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Zulika Mi-Nam

The same occurred yesterday on Asmongold’s stream. I just happened to come across it live.

For those interested, possibly there are some other questions/answers there.

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Rndomuser

Steven Sharif is a very smart man to use Asmon for promoting it in this way ;-) This will definitely attract more WoW players and make some of them invest into game.

Hurbster
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Hurbster

Catching Asmon at the right time as well. He’s becoming increasingly frustrated with how Shadowlands is turning out.

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Bruno Brito

Maybe. Doesn’t matter tho, Zack is extremely reluctant to play anything else. It took McConnell a huge ammount of time and frustration to convince him to play Dark Souls.

Asmon is not a MMO player. He’s a WoW player. There’s no ammount of wishful thinking from his or his fans’ part, or his own snarky remarks disguised as common knowledge that will change that.

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G I G A B E A R

Really hope they deliver on this alpha. It’s just been one setback after another for a game so many of us had a lot of hope for.

It’s unreal how they thought making a BR was a good thing for the community. But, as long as the alpha isn’t bad, people will likely warm up to it in time.

If it is bad though, well, probably all she wrote for this franchise and company. It’s pretty much their last chance to get it right.

Believe it or not I am rooting for that outcome. But I’m also being realistic on their chances. Not going to be easy for them.

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Rndomuser

That was interesting to hear. I don’t know if this game will be successful or not and I am not investing any money until it is released but I appreciate when developers interact with various communities and are not afraid answering questions in this way.

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Jahlon

There was a lot of good stuff that came out of the two interviews he did this weekend.

It was good stuff.

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Life_Isnt_Just_Dank_Memes

He’s so full of crap about the BR thing. If it really was some benevolent test to make the game better, the monetization wouldn’t have been so rotten lol.

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G I G A B E A R

I wish he’d just own that mistake already. But even after having to shut it down because nobody was playing it, he still refuses to admit he messed up.

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Dug From The Earth

Again, this game has one turn off for me… That the few will be able to benefit more than the many.

Multiplayer games struggle more and more with keeping the accessibility of content and experience equal to all customers. Yes.. customers… not players. Everyone is paying the same amount for the game (not counting pay 2 win games). If I buy a game for 60 dollars, and someone else buys the same game for 60 dollars, we should BOTH be able to acquire and achieve all that the game has to offer if we put in the time and effort.

Ashes, however, has many elements which are completely against the above concept. For example, no matter how hard I try, or how much time I put into it, I will never be high enough rank to own a flying mount. I will never be able to be in charge of a city. Especially in this day and age of streamers and their thousands of followers.

This means that before the game even comes out, I can look at some of the cool things in the game and say, “That sucks, I will never be able to have/do/experience that”.

——–

As a side note… there has NEVER been a system that has prevented griefing in open world in PvP. Jerks will be jerks, regardless of penalties and consequences. There are always loops holes such as just having another character to play after you get the debuffs on your ganker.

And it appealing to a streamer who says things like “I miss being able to just kill who ever I want when ever I want…” really doesnt bode well. How is this concept even a good concept for game design when it comes to an mmorpg?

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Arktouros

I think of the goal/objective is to 100% prevent anyone from griefing that just isn’t going to be a realistic goal/objective. You have grief players who play in games where there is no PvP or even very little PvE objectives. Those who are truly determined to make others miserable will find a way regardless of game.

However one the biggest hurdles is getting people to also understand what griefing actually is. Many people erroneously call just killing other people as griefing someone which in a PvP based environment is within the rules of the way the game can be played.

With that in mind what is a realistic objective is reducing the desire to grief in games and that has been made very effective in a number of titles. For example in Black Desert repeatedly engaging someone in PvP is considered so punishing that those who PK others call it griefing when the person keeps coming back to be killed. There are others who still do it, but the number of them is extremely small compared to most games where you can PvP and flag up.

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Bruno Brito

Griefing, to me , is what happened in Dark Eden. Vampires or PK-Hunters stood outside the newbie city spamming aoes in groups. You couldn’t get out without takking a humongous ammount of damage and getting killed by one of them. They kept just outside leashing range, and they did that for HOURS.

One free kill isn’t griefing. Dying four times to the same idiot in a zone isn’t griefing if the kills are spaced enough.

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Arktouros

The issue comes back to game design.

If there was something to be gained in that scenario, such as the game design actively rewarded camping noobs and AOE killing them as they spawned in then that’s really a big failure of game design. People are just playing the game the way that the developers designed it and we can fully blame those same devs for their terrible game design. A lot of devs think people want good, clean and even competition when the reality is people just want to win and if they design the game so you can win against noobs they will do so because it’s low risk vs reward.

Now if there was nothing to be gained from that scenario and they were doing it just to “welcome people to the game” or because they thought killing noobs and making them miserable was amusing then yea that’s pretty much textbook grief play. There’s some slippery slope arguments that can be made here as well but generally speaking not in the killing noobs scenario.