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Thread: MMOs are nothing but a game lobby? Discuss!

  1. #1
    Shield of Telara merrier's Avatar
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    Default MMOs are nothing but a game lobby? Discuss!

    I've seen a lot of people talk about how unless they log into Rift and within a few minutes end up in an instance, it's not playing the game.

    I just don't get it. I started MMOs with UO. We didn't have no stinking instances! *laugh*

    In EQ when I played, no instances there, either. You banded together with whoever you could to take on the world, not some copy of a corner of it.

    When I moved on to games that did have instanced content, it was about getting together with your friends to have fun doing that part of the game. When you weren't doing that, you were doing things in the larger world. It was never about the 'pocket worlds'.

    For me, and my experience in MMOs, it's all about a world that you exist in. Sometimes you take your friends or allies off into this little corner and do your own thing. However, the main reason for playing an MMO is to have fun in a different world with a lot of other people around you.

    If all you ever do is head off to that little corner, why bother playing in a large world? Why not just play a game like Diablo?

  2. #2
    Telaran Dark Exile's Avatar
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    all western mmo's i have ever played hav had a serious lack of actual "mmo".
    5/10/20 mans are not MMO, they're an expensive LAN network, and thats the extent of it.
    The days of running around a massive world with 100 other people on a daily basis seem to have confined themselves to the asian market, the american/western market has gone down the dark path of sitting in town, porting to instance 1-2-3, kill boss, rejoin Q or stayu in group, rinse and repeat.
    Thres nothing left to explore, nothing new to be seen.
    TBH i miss the days of only going in dungeons to do the story, also the pvp of a more "open" world, but even that was stolen by instanced games.
    Guess "mmo's" these days are more or less just interactive game lobby's when it comes to the western market.

  3. #3
    Rift Disciple Bobjohnson's Avatar
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    It comes down to the fact that the RPG element took over MMOs.

    If people aren't progressing their characters development in some way shape or form during their play time, they feel as if it's been wasted.

    The majority of MMOers use to play for fun and community, now days it's 95% progression and the vast majority of those believe fun is not possible without progression.

  4. #4
    Rift Chaser Deadpc's Avatar
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    this is why guild wars 2 is coming this year, it will open the world up, even after you quest all the way to lvl 80 you can go back to where you started and do quest there at lvl 80, questing comes to you as where you feel like going, your not going to be on a track. gosh i cant wait, its going to be such a refresh from other mmo games.
    Last edited by Deadpc; 05-20-2011 at 07:44 PM.

  5. #5
    Rift Disciple Bobjohnson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deadpc View Post
    this is why guild wars 2 is coming this year, it will open the world up, even after you quest all the way to lvl 80 you can go back to where you started and do quest there at lvl 80
    I dont see how this is different from WoW or this game. You can always do low level quests. Unless they all scale with your level, then that would be cool.

  6. #6
    Rift Chaser Deadpc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bobjohnson View Post
    I dont see how this is different from WoW or this game. You can always do low level quests. Unless they all scale with your level, then that would be cool.
    they scale as you go, they said it will be your world and the places you go will remember your honer with things. really read up on gw2, its really seems good. dont take my word for it.i think there website shows how its going to be in the best fashion
    Last edited by Deadpc; 05-20-2011 at 08:00 PM.

  7. #7
    Champion of Telara Silverangel69's Avatar
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    Agree with the OP's points. I like public dungeons. I can enjoy going in and grinding and hunting in a dynamic environment. Imagine Rift technology applied to a dynamic indoors dungeon, with different factions in the dungeon spawning invasion parties and creating footholds with barricades, or just wandering monsters with certain objectives, like getting food or going for water. This would be really amazing.

    I don't like the lobby thing either. It's something I really didn't like in Guild Wars. I don't know why someone is saying Guild Wars 2, when GW was the biggest lobby fest I've ever played in.

    There is a lot to say for "set piece" adventures though, which enable the highest quality of scripted experiences. I wonder if it's a server architecture optimization thing. I always wonder why games don't have more open landscape. Why is the Rift world so modest? Why isn't it 50% bigger? How hard can it be to make a zone once you've got the software infrastructure and the art process is more or less an assembly line?

  8. #8
    Rift Chaser Deadpc's Avatar
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    gw2 is going to be a new animal. ill end it here because this is a rift form

  9. #9
    Plane Touched Taemien's Avatar
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    "Camp check"
    Glad it died in a fire. Everquest had public dungeons but even EQ1 went to the instance model and there was a reason for it.

    Public dungeons are more annoying then anything else. They're fine if the game is a little older and you're not max level. But once you reach max level, thats when patience outweighs any sort of skill with your class you might have. If you want loot, you've got to wait your turn.. and this is AFTER you get a group together.

    Groups back then were just as difficult and time consuming to form. Now imagine that plus going into say AP and then having to wait your turn to hit each boss. Usually you have to wait until the group who's farming it gives up and leaves. Which could be in about 4-6 hours.

    Also content would be much much easier. Because of the public nature of these types of dungeons. The content has to be toned down. Cleaves, ground effects (fire), and other special mechanics (think first boss of AP) are not available in public dungeons.

    The majority of bosses are tank and spank with maybe some cleansing of debuffs.

    The instance model was the best thing conceived thus far. It allows a group to go explore a dungeon without competing with others (causing server drama in the process), without outside interference, and providing for dynamic encounters.

    Does it cause a sort of disconnect with the world? Yes it does. But thats the whole idea. Its a break from the sandbox that everyone is dumped into together. If anything there should be 1, 2, and 3 man instances in addition to 5 man (though the lower numbers should be regulated to just appearance item drops and storyline type things).

  10. #10
    Champion
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bobjohnson View Post
    It comes down to the fact that the RPG element took over MMOs.

    If people aren't progressing their characters development in some way shape or form during their play time, they feel as if it's been wasted.

    The majority of MMOers use to play for fun and community, now days it's 95% progression and the vast majority of those believe fun is not possible without progression.
    I'd have to say the opposite. To me it comes down to the fact that the RPG element got removed from MMOs.

    Look at early MMOs - they ran much more closely to traditional table top RPG rules than they do now. Your character was tossed into the world as some guy that pretty much decided he was bored with being nobody and wanted to go out and be An Adventurer. You started off almost entirely powerless - snakes and beetles sometimes could give you a major challenge. You didn't know where much of anything was, nobody sat down and explained how everything worked with you, there were no predrawn, labeled maps of the entire world, no minimap with convenient highlights to telepathically convey exactly where the book that some dude lost is located, none of that.

    The game worlds were designed to be explored - now they're designed to be a succession of set pieces to host the next group of NPCs relevant to the quests in the area.

    Dungeons were open world creations with hordes of NPCs that respawned and were vastly more powerful than you individually - now they're basically Dungeons On Rails with one path, no respawns, guaranteed bosses, and neatly set up packs of NPCs designed to always be manageable.

    Quests weren't conveniently marked out for you, you had to actually interact with NPCs to find them, and when you did find them the most they did was point you in a direction.

    Gear beyond basic quality was something to be coveted - now it's handed to you to make sure you're appropriately geared at every level of character progression without any real effort beyond completing quests that are trivial in difficulty and time investment.

    Death was something to be feared - experience loss, corpse runs that were actually dangerous, etc. This is one piece that's been removed that I genuinely mourn the loss of, because frankly death mattering made people play smarter. Now death is frequently used as a quick travel method.

    Old school MMOs were heavily invested in immersion. That, to me, is what's lacking nowadays. I feel little to no investment in my characters. The game world doesn't feel alive. There's never a sense of panic at frantically trying to make it out of an area alive. Other than being impressed by the graphics I can't even remember the last time I rounded a corner and stopped in awe of what I'd just found.

    So yeah - at this point MMOs have devolved pretty much into game lobbies with minigames to pass the time between matches.

  11. #11
    Sword of Telara corrin's Avatar
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    I came here expecting full-on, char-broiled flames, but there are actually some really good posts here.

  12. #12
    Shadowlander
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flarestar View Post
    I'd have to say the opposite. To me it comes down to the fact that the RPG element got removed from MMOs.

    The game worlds were designed to be explored - now they're designed to be a succession of set pieces to host the next group of NPCs relevant to the quests in the area.

    Dungeons were open world creations with hordes of NPCs that respawned and were vastly more powerful than you individually - now they're basically Dungeons On Rails with one path, no respawns, guaranteed bosses, and neatly set up packs of NPCs designed to always be manageable.

    So yeah - at this point MMOs have devolved pretty much into game lobbies with minigames to pass the time between matches.
    While I disagree with the PnP side of snakes & beetles (and I'm sorry, but my PnP characters were never one-shotted by innkeepers or random street merchants), I agree with everything else you say.

    This is why I'm keeping an eye on GW2 and EQ Next as far as upcoming games go - one of the quotes I saw about EQN was how they're going back to design a "world" and not a "game." This can of course just be mindless PR, much like we've seen in every other MMO to hit the market, but I like the theory behind it at least.

    I love the lore behind Rift (and other MMOs out there), but in the end the lore is meaningless to me when it becomes nothing more than an excuse to justify me running endless errands on rails.

  13. #13
    Rift Disciple Numtini's Avatar
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    I agree, there's far too little world and far too much game lobby matching. The worst offender is probably World of Tanks. It's a great game, but it's claiming to be the largest single shard MMO, but it's not, it's just a game matching lobby.

    I do have a certain sympathy for why this is. When you're in a virtual world things happen and your life interferes. Right now, my alliance in Eve has an op to save a moon. Instead I'm here at work typing on this forum. But while I have a certain sympathy and I would love to be able to be there, there's something just completely different about a world that really lives and breathes even when you're not there. I'm enjoying Rift, but I'm never going to sit and work refreshing a browser to find out how something came out in the game, which is something that during the various wars in Eve I do regularly.

    What I'd really like to see is the game matching lobby type of game play as its own genre, which despite it's claims of being an MMO is kind of what WOT has done. Just get rid of the grinding and the subscription fee and match us to dungeons. It would be fun.

  14. #14
    Shadowlander
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    Quote Originally Posted by Numtini View Post
    I do have a certain sympathy for why this is. When you're in a virtual world things happen and your life interferes. Right now, my alliance in Eve has an op to save a moon. Instead I'm here at work typing on this forum. But while I have a certain sympathy and I would love to be able to be there, there's something just completely different about a world that really lives and breathes even when you're not there. I'm enjoying Rift, but I'm never going to sit and work refreshing a browser to find out how something came out in the game, which is something that during the various wars in Eve I do regularly.

    What I'd really like to see is the game matching lobby type of game play as its own genre, which despite it's claims of being an MMO is kind of what WOT has done. Just get rid of the grinding and the subscription fee and match us to dungeons. It would be fun.
    Yeah, I've probably gotten more enjoyment out of reading all the crazy corp backstabbing/giant war drama with Eve than I have playing the endless repeat-o-matic quests in most MMOs these days.

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