+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 13 1 2 3 4 5 11 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 195

Thread: MMOs Designed to please players are doomed to fail!

  1. #1
    Plane Touched MacDeath's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Tucson, AZ & Skåne, EU
    Posts
    0

    Default MMOs Designed to please players are doomed to fail!

    Richard Bartle got it right and years ago too. Many features that players think they like are bad for the game and many features that players think they don't like are good for the game. What's a designer to do? Well, how about building a GREAT game and convincing the players it has the feature set its supposed to have? I think we'll get that from Trion.

    Here is the short form of RBs thoughts: http://www.gamasutra.com/view/featur...orlds_are_.php
    "Soapbox: Why Virtual Worlds are Designed By Newbies - No, Really!
    by Richard Bartle "

    for the long form read Richard's book.

    More info on Richard:
    Richard Bartle

    Richard Bartle co-wrote the first virtual world, MUD ("Multi-User Dungeon") in 1978, and has thus been at the forefront of the online games industry from its very inception. A former lecturer in Artificial Intelligence and current Visiting Professor in Computer Game Design (both at the University of Essex, U.K.), he is an influential writer on all aspects of virtual world design, development, and management. As an independent consultant, he has worked with most of the major online game companies in the UK and the U.S. over the past 20 years. His 2003 book, Designing Virtual Worlds, has already established itself as a foundation text for researchers and developers of virtual worlds alike.

    More about THE BOOK here: http://mud.co.uk/dvw/
    Last edited by MacDeath; 08-09-2010 at 03:53 AM.
    Mac

  2. #2
    Shield of Telara Vesavius's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Bristol, England
    Posts
    744

    Default

    Awesome read, and yeah i think i will look for his book. He seems to have his head screwed on.

    Devs need to stop trying to design games for the 'everyman' in order to maximise sales and focus on just making what they consider to be a great game and letting that do the talking.

    Using music as an analagy, it's usually much better to be the underground band that breaks through on the strength of their material then the processed pop star designed built by computer to tick all the boxes in terms of long term longevity and, ultimately, sales..

    Staying on the music thing, as the Stones said;

    You can't always get what you want (no, no baby)
    You can't always get what you want
    You can't always get what you want
    But if you try sometimes you just might find
    You just might find
    You get what you need, ah yes...

  3. #3
    Rift Disciple xmojo1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    135

    Default

    Point # 6: very few people ever return to games they previously played.

    Some good points in the article, and mostly correct overall, IMHO. I have been searching for a game that is similar to the first MMO I played, and that first MMO was the one I played the longest. And I have seen instances where "player outrage" have forced designers to take back or scale-down short-term bad long-term good changes.

    I think what Trion could take from this article, is that they had better get right the balance between keeping the players happy and keeping the game close to what they have in mind; and be firm with decisions that can change the game but at the same time don't run roughshod over the players.

  4. #4
    Plane Touched MacDeath's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Tucson, AZ & Skåne, EU
    Posts
    0

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Vesavius View Post
    Awesome read, and yeah i think i will look for his book. He seems to have his head screwed on.

    Devs need to stop trying to design games for the 'everyman' in order to maximise sales and focus on just making what they consider to be a great game and letting that do the talking.

    Using music as an analagy, it's usually much better to be the underground band that breaks through on the strength of their material then the processed pop star designed built by computer to tick all the boxes in terms of long term longevity and, ultimately, sales..

    Staying on the music thing, as the Stones said;

    You can't always get what you want (no, no baby)
    You can't always get what you want
    You can't always get what you want
    But if you try sometimes you just might find
    You just might find
    You get what you need, ah yes...
    RB lives in England, and I think he's back from his holiday in Rome now, so...
    Why not look him up? Maybe you buy his book first and then ask if he would autograph it for you? BTW, if he gets REALLY missed at the intrusion on his private life... do NOT say MacDeath sent ya, ok?
    Mac

  5. #5
    Rift Chaser Slacka's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    303

    Default

    While I agree with the general point that you should always leave them wanting more when designing an mmo, it is a severely thin line between that and alienating your target audience.

    Too many times have I seen a community and game wither and die because the developer just hasn't listened to genuine problems and been too stubborn rather than atempting to address imbalance or adjust simple things such as progression curves and droprates.

    I just hope Trion is able to stay on the right side of that fine line.

  6. #6
    Rift Master charlionfire's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    The Glow
    Posts
    647

    Default

    Really interesting read, nice find!

    How about a game is "newbie" friendly at start, with many familiar features and then slowly as you level the developers start sticking in more and more diverse features. Have some instanced dungeons in low levels, add 1 outdoor dungeon at lvl 20, and then increase the ratio of open vs instanced towards end level.

    Perhaps the noobs are already hooked by then?

  7. #7
    Soulwalker Gonada's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    9

    Default

    hes spot on about the reality of mmorpg, I myself have seen it happen( negative change thru incessant whining) over the years.

    kinda sad too, to see how hard pixle death hits people, UO, even everquest at the beginning was excellent at having death mean something.

  8. #8
    Ascendant Europe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    East Lansing, Michigan
    Posts
    1,957

    Default

    I think he unintentionally makes a good point with his distinction between newbies and expert players. The problem with his thinking is that the expert players and newbies are diverging. The problem is that the games newbies like are NO LONGER the same kind of games that experts like. Experts cause themselves all manner of grief by continually worrying about what newbies are doing, when the newbies just want to play their games as they are.

    I think the expert gamers should come to see that their sandboxy, innovative games will be more enjoyable for them without the newbie gamers anyway. IMO, there's just some lingering resentment, memories of a time when they were the majority in the genre and were catered to. That keeps them on the path of conversion, fighting "the good fight" until they're blue in the face. But the newbies aren't interested in fighting; only playing.

    This brings us to now: newbies catered to, experts in a state of almost permanent consternation. I think if experts could have their own niche game, at least one, they could join the newbies in their state of satisfied gaming and give up the fight.

    TL;DR version:

    THEN: EQ1=experts+newbies
    NOW: All MMOs except Eve=Newbies
    ???=Experts
    whereas ???=$$$
    Last edited by Europe; 08-09-2010 at 04:20 AM.
    <a href=http://www.trinityguild.org target=_blank>http://www.trinityguild.org/images/signatures/rift/sig_final.png</a>
    I mean, I guess it would just be a guy who you know, grabs bananas and runs. Or, um, a banana that grabs things. I don’t know.
    Why would a banana grab another banana? I mean, those are the kind of questions I don’t want to answer.

  9. #9
    Prophet of Telara Ravenwolf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Tasmania AUS
    Posts
    1,052

    Default

    I Aggree with Slacka,

    Although it is important for a company to maintain its goal, target, and ultimate vision for the game, it does become blatantly obvious when a company begins to disregard their "clients" and "customers" and takes them for granted.
    However having been watching Trion since E3 2009 and intermingling with members of their devs/spokesmen (admittedly most are now former company members) back in the "HoT" days I like to think they will not fall into this corporate "elitist" trap.
    So far they seem like an extremely down to earth and at least semi-transparent company and I hope it remains that way.

  10. #10
    Ascendant Kula's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    1,412

    Default

    This article impressed me the first time I read it and I think that the last 6 years have proven just how correct the author was.

  11. #11
    Plane Touched MacDeath's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Tucson, AZ & Skåne, EU
    Posts
    0

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by charlionfire View Post
    Really interesting read, nice find!

    How about a game is "newbie" friendly at start, with many familiar features and then slowly as you level the developers start sticking in more and more diverse features. Have some instanced dungeons in low levels, add 1 outdoor dungeon at lvl 20, and then increase the ratio of open vs instanced towards end level.

    Perhaps the noobs are already hooked by then?
    Sounds like a great plan CoF
    Mac

  12. #12
    Plane Touched MacDeath's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Tucson, AZ & Skåne, EU
    Posts
    0

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Europe View Post
    I think he unintentionally makes a good point with his distinction between newbies and expert players. The problem with his thinking is that the expert players and newbies are diverging. The problem is that the games newbies like are NO LONGER the same kind of games that experts like. Experts cause themselves all manner of grief by continually worrying about what newbies are doing, when the newbies just want to play their games as they are.

    I think the expert gamers should come to see that their sandboxy, innovative games will be more enjoyable for them without the newbie gamers anyway. IMO, there's just some lingering resentment, memories of a time when they were the majority in the genre and were catered to. That keeps them on the path of conversion, fighting "the good fight" until they're blue in the face. But the newbies aren't interested in fighting; only playing.

    This brings us to now: newbies catered to, experts in a state of almost permanent consternation. I think if experts could have their own niche game, at least one, they could join the newbies in their state of satisfied gaming and give up the fight.

    TL;DR version:

    THEN: EQ1=experts+newbies
    NOW: All MMOs except Eve=Newbies
    ???=Experts
    whereas ???=$$$
    It just doesn't work with subscription based games that the "experts" could have their "own niche game". People WILL leave games over time, and if there aren't new players coming in to replace em, the game becomes deserted. A deserted world does NOT fit the experts well, they tend to NEED to group for adventures. So, the game dies.
    Mac

  13. #13
    Ascendant Europe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    East Lansing, Michigan
    Posts
    1,957

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MacDeath View Post
    It just doesn't work with subscription based games that the "experts" could have their "own niche game". People WILL leave games over time, and if there aren't new players coming in to replace em, the game becomes deserted. A deserted world does NOT fit the experts well, they tend to NEED to group for adventures. So, the game dies.
    I think his assertion that players leave games and don't come back is a little overblown. WoW is a fantastic example that players will quit and come back again and again if your product is the best. That happens in WoW at the end of every large patch; players clear the raid content, gear up, and pack it in until the next patch.

    As for expert games having retention issues, what about Eve? Eve is arguably the most difficult MMO for a new player to grasp ever, and yet they have a very healthy population.
    <a href=http://www.trinityguild.org target=_blank>http://www.trinityguild.org/images/signatures/rift/sig_final.png</a>
    I mean, I guess it would just be a guy who you know, grabs bananas and runs. Or, um, a banana that grabs things. I don’t know.
    Why would a banana grab another banana? I mean, those are the kind of questions I don’t want to answer.

  14. #14
    Telaran Kuju's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    92

    Default

    I agree with the author for the most part. Mostly that a de-evolution from MUDs to earlier MMOs present day MMOs has been occurring. Instant gratification over long-term enjoyability. A lot of MMOs that come out now are definently more geared toward a console gamer. I wouldn't even consider a lot these games that come out now much of an MMO - being that I can play most of the game without ever having to interact with another player (in some cases encouraged it may seem). Sort of defeats the whole purpose of the MMO part. I mean I don't necessarily want to be forced into groups for ever single aspect of the game, but it sure is a lot more fun to accomplish something with two or more players than by myself. The concept of wanting an MMO to be as solo-friendly as possible has always made me wonder why would you want to play an MMO anyway with that type of approach?
    When darkness falls it is because we have brought it upon ourselves.


    KASE Breakdown: Achiever 46.67%, Explorer 46.67%, Killer 66.67%, Socializer 46.67%

  15. #15
    Plane Walker Skorne's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    England
    Posts
    415

    Default

    Wow this guy thinks like I do, I've tried to explain much less eloquently than he does how short-term features that seem great in on the face of them are actually very bad for the long term game once you look at the bigger picture. And he is right games just can't be developed like that anymore because very few would play them, very few would make it past the noob zone; most don't care to look at the long term or the bigger picture they just focus on their immediate experience and their next few hours of fun and not the years of fun they might potentially have playing.

    It's sad to see but nothing we can do unless someone takes some risks and makes a long term thinking oriented game again.
    Last edited by Skorne; 08-09-2010 at 05:02 AM.

+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 13 1 2 3 4 5 11 ... LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts