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Thread: Player Impact and Incentive for World PvP and Dynamic Events - Four Ideas

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    Plane Touched
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    Default Player Impact and Incentive for World PvP and Dynamic Events - Four Ideas

    I will attempt to analyze a serious problem that most other MMO's have faced and offer some suggestions on how it can be avoided:

    The lack of incentive in the long run for players to participate in non-instanced World PvP and Dynamic PvE Events.

    Table of Contents:

    1. The Analysis of the Problem:

    a) Incentive in MMO's.
    b) PvE Raid Incentive in Rift
    c) How instancing has harmed the formation of true Communities and why Incentive for World PvP and Dynamic Events is necessary

    2. The Potential Solutions:

    a) Incentive of Renown - Fame and Competition.
    b) Incentive of Faction Pride - Making Your Faction Superior.
    c) Incentive of Claiming Wardstones/Towns/Keeps - More Glory and unique merchants.
    d) Incentive of Fairness: PvP in a balanced environment.

    3. Conclusion / TL;DR Summary

    4. Feedback from the Community and other Suggestions.


    1. The Analysis of the Problem:

    a) What is Incentive in MMO's and how is it achieved?

    Why exactly do we hack and slash at those colorful collections of pixels on our monitors? I think part of the reason why is similar to why a soldier fights in the real life.. It could be,

    - material gains, in the form of currencies or items;
    - feeling of glory or achievement, either in the competitive or personal sense;
    - and sometimes to contribute to a community effort and partake in sharing the responsibilities of a society. We are the social animals, afterall..

    b) PvE Raid Incentive in Rift.

    In an instanced-raid oriented MMO, the formula for the incentive is simple: You give the players a few instanced raid dungeons, and you tell them to rinse and repeat those until they get to the item lvl 100, which is required for the next "set of dungeons". When they finish those, they start working to get to the item lvl 200, which is required for the next "set of dungeons". Then you come up with an expansion, and you introduce lvl 300, 400, etc. Episode 30 of the Rift Podcast confirmed this is the direction Raids are taking in Rift.

    With the promise of ever more powerful items, and ever differing complexity and necessity for strategy, you reward the players in the sense of material gains and feeling of glory or achievement. Also with expansions and fresh new content in the forms of more and more dungeons, the player is kept satisfied and given incentive to continue.

    This is not true of the World PvP and DyC. World PvP and DyC, will be mostly taking place in the same zones. The innovation or constant influx of new content is always limited, because the dynamic is based on the player actions in a Persistent World that every single person experiences (where change/addition is harder and has to take place carefully).

    c) How instancing has hurt the feeling of Community and why Incentive for World PvP and Dynamic Events is Necessary

    Instanced Battlegrounds and Instanced Raids have taken away the concept of item rewards from the Open World PvP, and DyC - They are much easier to join, and are faster ways to obtain guaranteed item rewards. The ease at which a player can participate at the instanced content, is a blessing for the casual player, but a subtle and dangerous curse for the community: The result is huge crowds of strangers logging on and off in front of the auction house in the main cities, never having to move further away from the closest mailbox, without any feeling of a community or a society. Sure, with the Raids you can have amazing small groups of communities in the form of Guilds, but those Guilds never become a part of a greater society, the real backbone necessary for long term success of a Shard (thus the game). This is actually the “LANRPG-ization of the MMORPG”, where each guild has his small World, and is independent of each other, without the need or the taste for cooperation in a significant portion of the content the game has to offer.

    We therefore have to look into ways of creating incentive for players to get out of the safety and convenience of their capital cities and actually participate in World PvP and Dynamic Events, to foster the concept of participation in an interdependent community.



    2. Getting out to play: Potential Incentives:

    Rift's (potential) success lies in its selective adaptation of past successful concepts in other games and fusing those with their innovative ideas. Here are some suggestions involving past success stories and ideas from the community:

    a) Incentive of Renown - Fame and Competition.

    If every other motivation fails, men will still go out and try the hard and the impossible for the concept of fame: Give us weekly updates of who has done what, and stir that competitive spirit in all of us, at personal and guild levels. Like Dark Age of Camelot's lists, post which player in which calling has done most damage, healing or has received most damage in a given week. Tell us which GUILD collectively achieved highest in these. Give us lists for all this statistics for PvP, and for the Dynamic Content. Which guy tanked most invasion mobs? Which guild closed most rifts? Killed most of enemy faction? Stole most of enemy faction relic? (explained below) etc. Fame and competition in "top 10" lists not only gives your community an incentive to go out there, but also creates a cross-faction shard-wide community: people get curious about their faction’s hero, who to rally under, who to fear in the battle field. Those who play against each other in the evenings go talk on the forums during the day at work. A MMO only becomes legendary if it has a legendary community to keep it alive in the long run.

    b) Incentive of Faction Pride - Making Your Faction Superior thru Faction-wide Buffs.

    DaoC had the concept of Relics built around realm vs realm PvP conflict. Let's take this idea, and adapt this to Rifts, Open World PvP and Dynamic Content:

    Each faction will have four relics:

    - Relic of Damage (PvP) - %5 bonus to whole factions damage in both PvP and PvE.
    - Relic of Defense (PvP) - %5 less damage taken by whole faction in both PvP and PvE.
    - Relic of Experience (PvE) - %5 more exp gained from both PvP and PvE.
    - Relic of Reputation (PvE) - %5 more reputation gained from both PvP and PvE.

    The Relics of Damage and Defense are kept in Relic Keeps in the contested zones, and are primary PvP targets.

    The Relics of Experience and Reputation are kept in the Capitals (or other safer PvE zones), invulnerable to PvP attacks.

    We have been complaining that the major invasions have no repercussions. Here is an idea:

    Each time a faction fails a major invasion, one seal holding a boss from the other planes is broken (Wheel of Time style). When the number of failed major invasions reach 10, an otherworldly boss is spawned. The boss heads straight to the faction’sPvE Relics, and if the players are not able to defeat it on time, he steals one of your PvE Relics and ports out. The boss does not stop and fight players: This is a timed event where everyone on the server would be encouraged to stop whatever they are doing to go after this guy before he reaches his target.

    So how do we get our PvE Relics back? In come the Ancient Wardstones in the contested zones. Ancient Wardstones, if controlled in a certain amount, allow a faction to "summon" the otherwordly boss that stole its PvE Relic. So the faction has to go do PvP, take all Wardstones, summon the boss, and defeat it to get the relic back. PvP and PvE combined, in the Persistent World.

    Meanwhile, the PvP relics are up for grabs in a standard siege the castle style warfare between the factions.

    The PvP Relics give us incentive to go raid the other faction's castle, the PvE Relics give us the incentive to defend our realm from invasions and to take Ancient Wardstones in contested zones, if we fail in the first job.

    What happens when everyone has their relics? The failed invasions give us other less dire penalties: Scared and kidnapped merchants resulting in an increase in vendor prices, or slowed spawn rate of mobs that were killed by the invaders.

    Bonus Idea: After you defeat the ancient wardstone summoned boss to recover one of your PvE relics, one player has to carry it back to the city, without being able to use any speed enhancing abilities: giving an opportunity for enemy faction to delay or prevent the recovery of their PvE relic.

    OR

    Allow the enemy to attack the carrier and take their PvE relic too! (The only way to get it back being waiting for the enemy to fail 10 invasions so that they have to re-summon the boss)

    Bonus Idea #2 (Credit to Bugri): If a faction is not able to get back its PvP or PvE relic within 1 month, the relic is returned automatically to the originating faction. This prevents long term possession of relics on a "stronger faction", where the "weaker faction" somehow just cannot get it back.

    c) Incentive of Claiming Wardstones/Towns/Keeps: More Glory and unique merchants

    Each guild would be able to claim an ancient wardstone/town or keep in the contested or main PvP zones: If a guild is able to defend a claimed location for more than 1 or 2 hours (edit after community response), a special vendor spawns, which sells limited (5 or 10 quanitity) items or materials for players or the crafters in game. The guild is given a special prestige point for the number of hours they hold their claimed location, and there are weekly listings on who has the most. Of course, to make sure the other faction attacks, successful conquest of a claimed location will give a super-bonus-reward to the attackers (and of course, a separate toplist of the most successful conquerors..)

    Combine this idea with the PvP Relic idea: such as, require 4 locations to be claimed by a factions guilds for x amount of hours, before the PvP Relic would be vulnerable in its keep.

    d) Incentive of Fairness: PvP in a balanced environment.

    Another very important aspect of successful long term PvP in the Persistent World in a game is the concept of fairness through the balance of active populations in each Shard. The devs have to ensure ways of directly or indirectly controlling the balance of populations. Methods employed in the past were locking of a high population faction to prevent character creation, to offering bonus exp to those who start in a faction having low population problems.

    3. Conclusion TL;DR Summary

    PvE Raid and Instanced Battleground fans will have everything they need in Rift, tiered item rewards, progression, and glory. However, instanced content is an impediment in the formation of a healthy, active and interacting society on a given shard, which is vital for the long term survival of the game. The developers have to give us reasons to get out of our cities at lvl 50, and to do this there has to be incentives in the forms of rewards and penalties that will affect the whole faction. Dark Age of Camelot's relic system adapted in a world of Dynamic Content and PvP, the unique merchant spawn from taking a PvP keep, and weekly posting of the top lists of the Persistent World activities and guilds are some ways the Devs can add incentive for World PvP and Dynamic Events in Rift.


    4. Feedback from the Community and other Suggestions.

    Please tell me of ideas or suggestions on how we can promote incentives and motivation to go out and play in the Persistent World, and I will post them here.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheHangman View Post
    Off the top of my head,

    "If a guild is able to defend a claimed location for more than 24 hours,"

    I like the idea, I'm not sure the 24 hours works, it's not likely a guild would have someone online to defend a point 24 hours a day, nor would most people want to camp a point for that long. This also caters to the giant, take anybody PVP guilds that would attack or defend zerg style. It would almost have to be a faction capture instead of a guild capture, I think, with rewards for guilds based on how long and how active members of that guild helped to defend that point.

    Of course this brings up the point tat on unbalanced servers one faction would never hold a point for 24 hours, and other concerns. Still, a good point to work from.

    Quote Originally Posted by Qaedyan View Post
    Having said that, I'd prefer to see an open world PvP system that works from the ground up, instead of top down ala relics. Something along the lines of achieving open world PvP objectives nets loot for both players and guilds that can be used to purchase immediate stuff and longer term/durable stuff. Also, it's important that the open world PvP objectives themselves are actually fun. They need to be things that players would want to do normally.
    Quote Originally Posted by Mordrain View Post
    I know it might go against your reasoning, but there may have to be an "opt-out" option for people. For example, say if someone only has a couple hours every other day to play and they have certain objectives they need to accomplish during a certain period, having it interrupted and having no choice in the matter could be frustrating.

    Would there be opportunity for abuse? Like if an opposing faction planned attacks on cities during this period? Assuming word would get out about pending invasions, that is.
    Quote Originally Posted by Bugri View Post
    The idea of stealing a PvE relic from a runner is good, only problem one side would keep both of them indefinitely if population difference is big enough. Solution - 2 weeks, then relic goes back to original city.

    Some people don't spend much time online but want to contribute to the community. They could be crafters who make special items to fortify wardstones/keeps etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by Roastage View Post
    I like it when these ideas take in all the niche sections of a gaming society for example;

    Crafters- In between these large scale planar relic invasions crafter could complete daily/weekly crafing tasks (and be rewarded marks etc.) and these items help outfit guards/siege equipment that will slow or stall the invasion, giving them an extra hour or so.
    Last edited by Iseldiena; 02-14-2011 at 08:09 PM.

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    Champion ShezUK's Avatar
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    Well thought out and well written, and again I find myself agreeing with the call for development in the aspect of World PvP.

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    Plane Touched
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    thank you, its too long, and is getting lost in the torrent of threads ;(

    Any suggestions Shez? How can they improve the player impact on the world and make us go outside the safety of our capitals?

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    Ascendant TheHangman's Avatar
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    Off the top of my head,

    "If a guild is able to defend a claimed location for more than 24 hours,"

    I like the idea, I'm not sure the 24 hours works, it's not likely a guild would have someone online to defend a point 24 hours a day, nor would most people want to camp a point for that long. This also caters to the giant, take anybody PVP guilds that would attack or defend zerg style. It would almost have to be a faction capture instead of a guild capture, I think, with rewards for guilds based on how long and how active members of that guild helped to defend that point.

    Of course this brings up the point tat on unbalanced servers one faction would never hold a point for 24 hours, and other concerns. Still, a good point to work from.

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    Soulwalker
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    Well written and worth the bump.

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    Plane Touched
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    Thanks Hangman,

    The idea with the 24 hours was to ensure that a guild would not run, claim, and then leave the area to do other stuff due to insta-benefits of claiming. But after your reply I think you are right that 24 might be too much. Perhaps a more realistic 1 hour or 2 hour defense would give enough reason to stick around.

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    Rift Disciple Skorm's Avatar
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    Im an alien

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    Telaran JocoShadow's Avatar
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    Long, but well written. And well thought out too, seeing as you've provided ways to make each incentive work at least well enough, if not better than just "good enough". Have you tried posting these suggestions on the beta forums??
    I play a Defiant. Yes, I am an atheist, but I'm playing Defiant because I prefer to take my fate into my own hands rather than depend on the "gods". And I also like being able to build high tech machines.

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    Plane Touched
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    Hi Joco,

    It seems like the beta section of the forums is closed before the open beta - I will definitely post them there as well, just wanted to get some more ideas or tweaks to the things I posted before I do so.

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    I'm not sure that overlaying DAOC's RvR system is the best prescription here. I liked DAOC as much as the next guy, but it also had issues. For one thing, relic raids were a major pain; the playerbase would actually get fatigued by them. I also don't think Trion's PvPvE system for wardstones will work: it's a PITA to PvE and PvP at the same time.

    You've made a very well-written post and I'm not going to crap all over it. Having said that, I'd prefer to see an open world PvP system that works from the ground up, instead of top down ala relics. Something along the lines of achieving open world PvP objectives nets loot for both players and guilds that can be used to purchase immediate stuff and longer term/durable stuff. Also, it's important that the open world PvP objectives themselves are actually fun. They need to be things that players would want to do normally.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheHangman View Post
    Off the top of my head,

    "If a guild is able to defend a claimed location for more than 24 hours,"

    I like the idea, I'm not sure the 24 hours works, it's not likely a guild would have someone online to defend a point 24 hours a day, nor would most people want to camp a point for that long. This also caters to the giant, take anybody PVP guilds that would attack or defend zerg style. It would almost have to be a faction capture instead of a guild capture, I think, with rewards for guilds based on how long and how active members of that guild helped to defend that point.

    Of course this brings up the point tat on unbalanced servers one faction would never hold a point for 24 hours, and other concerns. Still, a good point to work from.
    We used to do it in UO (can't remember if it was 12 or 24..think it was 24) for sigil taking which is more or less the same idea. If they grabbed it the timer would reset. I think anything from 9-12 hours would be reasonable. We were like 16 then though.
    Last edited by jca1982; 02-14-2011 at 11:05 AM.

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    Default Some nice Ideas

    First , I enjoy how well written the OP was. It wasn't a chore to read the whole thing.

    Dropping the suggested relic hold time was probably best. The time to hold the relic could be proportional to the amount of items or the quality of items that a vendor would sell or proportional to any other rewards. Maybe some objectives could have a longer timer than others.

    For world PvP overall, I'm not too knowledgeable on what can make or break it. This will be the first game that i play fully that has this large scale PvP. But, it seems, in theory, that the more people running around doing stuff, the better the environment. Incentives seems to be a great way to accomplish this. It'll just be up to the devs to balance these incentives to get the most benefit without making them too powerful or squashing another aspect of the game.

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    Rift Disciple Nydaweth's Avatar
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    Excellent ideas. Very well written as well. IMO if RIFT dev team doesn't incorporate this, which they probably won't given how little time is left before launch, go petition it as a game idea to some company and see if they like it ;P

    Seriously though, if this thread is read and taken seriously by developers, perhaps a patch could incorporate this idea, if nowhere else, than on PvP servers.
    Nydaweth, Midgard Gawaine
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    Plane Touched Mordrain's Avatar
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    Well thought out and very creative. Some very cool ideas! I think there wouldn't be time to implement some of this before release, but something could be patched in for sure.

    I know it might go against your reasoning, but there may have to be an "opt-out" option for people. For example, say if someone only has a couple hours every other day to play and they have certain objectives they need to accomplish during a certain period, having it interrupted and having no choice in the matter could be frustrating.

    Would there be opportunity for abuse? Like if an opposing faction planned attacks on cities during this period? Assuming word would get out about pending invasions, that is.

  15. #15
    Soulwalker Tumael's Avatar
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    Well worth the read and consideration. As with many other open-world incentive proposals, hopefully they at least see some merit in implementing such a system between all the feedback.
    Last edited by Tumael; 02-14-2011 at 11:55 AM.

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