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#1 Baron von Scrufflebutt

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 07:52 AM

I keep bringing up solo, repeatable on-demand content here and I figured I'd actually make a thread about. This probably won't be just about that, but with a title that's "slightly" open to interpretation, I figured I'd put this up here.
What I mean by that phrase is content that players can experience solo, it can be repeated and they can experience at any time they want - it's player started content. With dynamic events being the bread and butter of the open world game (which is where solo players should be), GW2 has a bit of a lack of such content - the players are expected to adjust to the world, instead of the world bending backwards to make the player feel welcome.

And it's this, that is creating problems for me - with content being either present or not, I am having issue seeing why should I be in a certain area. If I am in an area with no events happening, why should I be there? If I want to move to a different area, and I don't know if I'll have DEs to do, why should I go there? To kill trash? In a game in which the devs stated that they don't want you killing trash?
Clearly, DEs have some absolutely amazing features (compared to traditional quests) - the fact that you can join in on "someone else's" DE and the fact that you can repeat them goes a very long way to creating a point for the player to be in a certain location. In games with more traditional quests, after you complete all quests in an area, there's only killing trash left. There's no chance of something else happening, it's just trash that's left over. But to get there, you first need to complete certain on-demand content, and until you do, you know you will always have content waiting for you in an area. The switch to DEs creates a game where you go from certain content, followed by certainly no content (outside of trash), to a game where you just have potential content.

And it's the potential content that seems to just create a potential point. And I am not sure this is enough.
(Hearts clearly add a point, but they aren't repeatable, and, given the design of hearts, they are basically all just variations of killing ten rats. Not only that, they also force you to stay in a fairly small area - there's no heart that would send you looking for a young mesmer's remains a few maps away. They just represent the more boring type of on-demand content.)

#2 Coren

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 09:30 AM

Ok, so... What exactly do you want us to add and discuss? Yes there's good, yes there's bad. That's been established in a lot of threads.

#3 Baron von Scrufflebutt

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 10:10 AM

The problem is that DEs seem to be designed as a replacement for quests, but they better function as a replacement for killing trash. And if we view DEs as a replacement for killing trash, we end up with a void (a lack of content) that is filled by quests in other games: we end up with a game that is all about killing trash.
You do end up killing some fantastic trash, but you are still just killing trash.

(I think the game would function better if, for instance, after completing a heart, the heart-guy turns into a quest-guy: a guy that will have a small selection of quests (some 5 quests or so), that can be started by the player (on-demand) and are repeatable. That way players would ALWAYS have certain solo, on-demand, repeatable content available to them. And while they'd be doing that, there would be a chance that they'd run into DEs.)

#4 Mastruq

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 10:12 AM

This might take this off-topic, but personally I feel the whol point of a persistant MMORPG is the player reacting to the world and fitting into whatever is going on. I feel the genre isnt suited to focusing on "content on demand" for the single player or even a group (though GW2 supports the group part). Myself, if I want content on demand just for me I play a single player game or a non-persistant multiplayer game (lately Skyrim or Tomb Raider).

I feel GW2 banked alot on people just exploring for the sake of it, and that falls a bit flat with a large part of the playerbase. While I am not bothered with the content availability, usually I waypoint into a zone with a certain goal and get sidetracked three times on the way, eating up a good amount of time but having fun doing so. I think that is what a.net build for. and instant gratification both in rewards and always having things to do that you consider "worth it" take a backseat to it.

#5 Baron von Scrufflebutt

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 10:26 AM

View PostMastruq, on 19 April 2013 - 10:12 AM, said:

... usually I waypoint into a zone with a certain goal ...

This is the point I was asking about and it is this goal that I have trouble seeing. (Hence the title.) There needs to be a reason to go into a map, to be in a certain location and with the whole game being so focused on DEs, that goal might or might not be there.
As I said before, I quite like boss-chests as a form of creating a point to being in a map. I check the timers, I jump into a map, I run around, gather stuff, explore, ... and all that is framed with the boss. Even if I don't run into a single DE or am able to only mine a few nodes, the primary point of me being in that location is the boss.
But without that boss, logging into a location and not running into a DE or not running across many gathering nodes or ... just doesn't make for a good game. And repeatable, on-demand content creates a reason to be in that location regardless of what else is going on.

Edited by Ritualist, 19 April 2013 - 10:27 AM.


#6 Mastruq

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 10:53 AM

Goals could be a couple of things and different for everyone, I'm just gonna list some that apply to me:

- continuing world completion
- doing things that are part of temporary events (Xmas/halloween/ currently living story)
- harvesting Ori
- checking out pathing or locations for guild events (we do those weekly)
- heading to a bonus chest boss
- heading to a jumping puzzle or similar special area

I will submit that world completion is a large draw in this, and if you already have it complete that incentive is gone or at least diminished (on alts). And if you play ALOT you might not see any draw in the things I listed simply because you've done them all ad nauseum. This is a cliche reply but maybe then you've actually exhausted the content and need to play something else until GW2 offers new things, or at least dial back the GW2 playing to the point where you dont get "wtf am I even doing this/here" feeling. GW2 isnt a very hardcore game that you can pour endless hours into with tangible rewards to show, be that for good or bad.

#7 MazingerZ

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 11:13 AM

The point of the game is le gems.
It's okay to enjoy crap if you're willing to admit it's crap.
Every patch is like ArenaNet walking out onto the stage of the International Don't Kitten Up Championship, and then proceeding to shiv itself in the stomach 30 times while screaming "IT'S FOR YOUR OWN GOOD! IT'S FOR YOUR OWN GOOD!"

#8 Baron von Scrufflebutt

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 11:14 AM

View PostMastruq, on 19 April 2013 - 10:53 AM, said:

Goals could be a couple of things and different for everyone, I'm just gonna list some that apply to me:


I think that jumping puzzles (and activities similar to it) should be a potential alternative to endgame in an action game, rather than THE endgame. It would be nice if those of us that like to run around killing shit (which is kind of what the game is about) would have some alternatives outside of dragons and CoF, especially in the open-world.

Edited by Ritualist, 19 April 2013 - 11:14 AM.


#9 pumpkin pie

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 11:33 AM

This is what I kept saying, the Dynamic in this game isn't Dynamic enough, whatever that word Dynamic means.

Every NPC in the game is a potential "Heart" person. When a character has completed the initial round of hearts the game opens up another tier of possibility, now that we are well known Tyrian's Hero, killing the dragon and all, everyone wants us to do something for them. make use of the existing NPCs in all the towns. Best still, have them move around.

For Instant, Lyasa (She sings too.... Chicken on the table soon) in Fort Salma, we could have met her husband on our journey in Tyria, he  would probably ask us to take home a Chicken that he found to be the most beautiful chicken in Tyria. And to make sure we are who we say we are, he made us sing the chicken song before trusting us.

Sometime simply letting players find a letter or a picture of love ones with names written on the back is a clue as to what to do with the thing we find.

Endless possibility.

#10 FoxBat

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 11:41 AM

This is what the rotating dailies are supposed to do to some degree. You get different combinations every day to encourage you to go to different places, and spend time grinding in zones until you hit some events. (daily quests really) To what degree it works is debateable, but I think Anet is aware of this issue. Same motivation behind the dragon bosses likely. (Albeit that's getting a little out of hand now, following the dragon timer site you can hop from one to the next to the next, never really stopping in any one area to do anything.)

Edited by FoxBat, 19 April 2013 - 11:43 AM.


#11 pumpkin pie

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 11:52 AM

I don't mind rotating dailies trying to spread players across low level areas, I welcome the rewards, at the same  time, it helps new players in some way, but how many times can you stand repeating shadow behemoth or Helping Scholar Brogun, or go to lowland burns to kill a dragon you killed yesterday? While we are repeating all those static dynamic events, Caden and Nellie from fort salma could have gotten married and had children !

#12 Baron von Scrufflebutt

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 12:19 PM

View PostFoxBat, on 19 April 2013 - 11:41 AM, said:

This is what the rotating dailies are supposed to do to some degree.

The problem with dailies is that they don't create content, they just count it. I get what you were going at and I can see the benefit in it, but it certainly shouldn't be viewed as a solution to this issue.
We either need to be given so much dynamic content that it feels like it's always present, or we simply need to be given some content that is actually always present. And since I am fully aware that creating the amount of DEs that would satisfy PuPie is nearly impossible, on-demand content is basically the only choice we are left with.

#13 infisio

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 01:40 PM

View PostRitualist, on 19 April 2013 - 07:52 AM, said:

If I am in an area with no events happening, why should I be there? If I want to move to a different area, and I don't know if I'll have DEs to do, why should I go there? To kill trash? In a game in which the devs stated that they don't want you killing trash?

One thing I was wishing for last night is a "whole area" view of where DEs are taking place.  Now, if you select the map you'll see DEs in your immediate area, but not the entire area (all of Queensdale for example).  I have to rely on map chat to see if anyone is reporting any events.  So if I want to do DEs in an area I end up wandering around killing mobs until something randomly pops up, or someone in chat reports something.

#14 Kuskah

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 02:02 PM

WPs for the capital cities only + ground mounts = reason to travel through the maps, join whatever is going on.

#15 Captain Bulldozer

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 02:22 PM

I tend to agree that on-demand solo content is incredibly lacking.  That being said, I don't usually have much trouble finding events, especially thanks to the online timers that are available.  But it does mean me mapping all over the place (or switching to characters that are already in the right place) to find something I want to do.  With the costs of Way-pointing that can get pretty annoying.

Honestly, (and I've said this plenty of times before)  I feel the problem with the open world in GW2 is not lack of stuff to do... its a huge lack of reward.  Killing stuff in the open world, while fun, rewards very little XP, no Karma and almost always terrible loot.  Why would anyone who's already been through an area go back to the same place (on the same character) if not for the events?  Sure there are other reasons, like helping out a friend or boredom, both those reasons are not going to be recurring with much frequency.  Open world farming in GW2 is just plain awful... and farming is one of the big on-demand solo activities in a lot of other MMOs, but in GW2 it hardly feels viable.  Add to that the fact that story missions aren't even repeatable (not that I'd want to experience most of them again anyway I guess) and I can totally see where you are coming from OP.  I guess you'll just have to do jumping puzzles over and over again.

#16 Captain Bulldozer

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Posted 20 April 2013 - 01:53 AM

View Postinfisio, on 19 April 2013 - 01:40 PM, said:

One thing I was wishing for last night is a "whole area" view of where DEs are taking place.  Now, if you select the map you'll see DEs in your immediate area, but not the entire area (all of Queensdale for example).  I have to rely on map chat to see if anyone is reporting any events.  So if I want to do DEs in an area I end up wandering around killing mobs until something randomly pops up, or someone in chat reports something.

I suggested this on the official forums way back during BW2, as well as the ability to see players approaching you when you're dead/downed... but alas... it doesn't seem like Anet thinks its a worthwhile idea.

#17 Dasviidonja

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Posted 20 April 2013 - 03:00 AM

The point is basically the same as it is for all the other MMO's. Just to waste time and wish there was something better. After playing these things for like 15 years now it's easy to see the same thing in every one of them. Oh they change a few this's and that's but basically the same thing is in all of them when you really disect them. Just time wasters or ego trippers or inferiority complex boosters for those that have no life or no friends in real life and these games puff them up in PVP and ladders.

#18 Raagar Deathclaw

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 11:43 PM

Well my understanding was that DE's would simulate real world events that happen, which means that no they won't bend over backward to make a character feel welcome because that'd be the opposite of intent. You can however go and trigger DE's quite easily but no one does because they don't take the time to learn how, that's why queensdale is always full of event farmers while the other starter areas are barren of all but beginning characters

#19 AKGeo

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 03:47 AM

The world should not bend to the whim of the players. You'd be having these events happening all the time in that case and they'd be easily farmed. Solo instances would require a lot of work, so that might be doable. But claiming that the PvE open world content needs to be on-demand and soloable is being out of touch with the MMO world. The rewards for the on-demand content need to be one-time or simply abysmal in order for people to not abuse it. Then what's the point in repeating it?

You as a person do not control much of the world around you. Why should you be able to do that in-game?

#20 Baron von Scrufflebutt

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 07:10 AM

View PostRaagar Deathclaw, on 23 April 2013 - 11:43 PM, said:

You can however go and trigger DE's quite easily but no one does because they don't take the time to learn how ...

As far as I understand, (all?) DEs have an internal cooldown, during which they can not be activated, followed by a spawn window, in which they can either be activated by players or they start on their own. And the problem is doing content in an area while the events there are on a cooldown.



View PostAKGeo, on 24 April 2013 - 03:47 AM, said:

You as a person do not control much of the world around you. Why should you be able to do that in-game?

Because games do not always operate on the same rules as real-life and some rules are intentionally omitted to make for a better game? For instance, I doubt many in real life would congratulate you on winning real-life, if you'd go on a killing spree similar to the ones needed to win a lot of games.

As for rewards for solo and on-demand content needing to be abysmal, that's basically how trash is designed in GW2. And since trash ends up on a player's menu on numerous occasions, it basically means players are forced to play something that is designed to be shit.

#21 MrIllusion

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 08:20 AM

View PostRitualist, on 19 April 2013 - 10:26 AM, said:

This is the point I was asking about and it is this goal that I have trouble seeing. (Hence the title.) There needs to be a reason to go into a map, to be in a certain location and with the whole game being so focused on DEs, that goal might or might not be there.
As I said before, I quite like boss-chests as a form of creating a point to being in a map. I check the timers, I jump into a map, I run around, gather stuff, explore, ... and all that is framed with the boss. Even if I don't run into a single DE or am able to only mine a few nodes, the primary point of me being in that location is the boss.
But without that boss, logging into a location and not running into a DE or not running across many gathering nodes or ... just doesn't make for a good game. And repeatable, on-demand content creates a reason to be in that location regardless of what else is going on.

Perhaps they can build on this and make use of the Heralds in the game. I find it discomforting that Dragon Timer dictates so much of what we do and where we want to be.

Maybe the ingame Heralds can forecast where some of the action will be (in the next 30 min or so) so players can go. It also gives us a "lobby" to hangout so people can mingle and organise themselves. I think I'd rather chill at someplace than keep alt-tabbing to a website.

Edited by MrIllusion, 24 April 2013 - 08:22 AM.


#22 Acolyte

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 09:22 AM

I would like to see event chains span for much longer time sequences, or at least chain together better like the more developed ones. It seems like  a design choice for the sake of releasing the game faster that they do not do this already. But events that develop and move across entire maps to tell a story really seems what they had intended when they first sought to create this game. It's just a much more lengthy development process than cranking out dungeons and kill 10 rat quests.

#23 Baron von Scrufflebutt

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 09:28 AM

View PostCaptain Bulldozer, on 19 April 2013 - 02:22 PM, said:

Honestly, (and I've said this plenty of times before)  I feel the problem with the open world in GW2 is not lack of stuff to do... its a huge lack of reward.  Killing stuff in the open world, while fun, rewards very little XP, no Karma and almost always terrible loot.

I don't think this is the best thing we could do, but it would certainly be better than the current situation. By handing out better rewards from trash, trash becomes this game's on-demand content.
On the other hand, I was pointing out that I like the fact that killing trash isn't considered on-demand content in this game. But, and this is where A.Net failed, one can't stop here - there needs to be a replacement for not making trash the game's on-demand content.

Clearly, both way have positives and negatives to them: trash as on-demand content means you have on-demand content in every corner of the world, but "quests" as on-demand content allow A.Net to easier control the amount of resources introduced into the game and the there's a bigger chance that the content will be of higher quality.



View PostMrIllusion, on 24 April 2013 - 08:20 AM, said:

Perhaps they can build on this and make use of the Heralds in the game. I find it discomforting that Dragon Timer dictates so much of what we do and where we want to be.

As infisio suggested, I think just showing events on the explored part of your map would go a very long way. Especially, if they'd also show the events progress so that you don't jump all over the map, just to have the event end as you get there.

#24 Susanoh

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 08:01 PM

Quote

the players are expected to adjust to the world, instead of the world bending backwards to make the player feel welcome.


This is something I enjoy in online games. When I play a massive online game consisting of several thousand or million people, I don't expect to be treated like I'm the center of attention as if it were a single player game. I can't speak for everyone, but I personally would rather see events expanded upon and possibly more reasons to want to actually group up with other players outside of dungeons, so that the game world begins to feel more expansive with a greater sense of community.

#25 Bjukya

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Posted 26 April 2013 - 11:51 AM

Having personal story/missions be reputable would give me incentive to go back (if the stories were better).

Having waypoints only by portals and one or two in the middle of the map, would make people walk around a bit and do events they wouldn't otherwise do. and also would encourage grouping since everyone only comes in from those places, since you know they too just got there you might as well as if anyone wants to team up and quest together.

Having events start for a particular player, maybe you got an adoring fan somewhere...  could trigger depending on an achievement you got.

I miss quests in gw1 that you shared a lot of special conversations and moments during quests, and got to know the NPCs very well. Made you feel closer to them, as if they were real persons. That's missing a lot in gw2 open world content.

#26 lmaonade

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Posted 26 April 2013 - 11:25 PM

I feel like they didn't flesh out the DE's as much as they could have, or wanted to, or even said they would. I think the major problem that's holding DE's back is the lack of memorable/important places, in GW1 in addition to major cities like Ascalon and Lion's Arch you also had some nice and interesting places that created a feeling of importance, such as Yak's Bend or Temple of the Ages.

Now, if they actually had some small city/outpost in GW2 that was important and that we actually cared about, they could really use the DE system to create some fantastic short stories. Before release, Anet talked about how DE's would be changing and varying, and how it makes the world seem alive, well that fell short in implementation imo, there's too little variation, every DE chain in the game is absolutely linear, there is no variation or branching stories.
That is something they should definitely look at in the future. They should have certain DEs kick off a multitude of events across the map, not just the next part of the chain. But one thing Arenanet really needs to change is their philosophy of (in)convenience, I mean it's nice that they designed GW2 so that you wouldn't have to look too far or too hard for anything, which makes it very easy to get into the game. But at the same time, if you want true depth for longevity, you're going to have to make the players work for something, which is something the game lacks overall. They need to have events which take away something on the map that is worthwhile, important, or needed to progress in some way, they did it with Orr, which is arguably the most active/vibrant place in the GW2 game world.
That being said, there are indeed some good DE chains out there, the kind that you'd remember and connect with. The DE I am talking about is the "Protect Webb as he gathers family heirlooms" in Kessex Hills, each of the stopping points spawn a spirit of his family, really gave me the feels, the absolute best Event in the entire game imo

And while we're on the topic of boring content, personal stories are a major let down, they are too enclosed, like, I know that what is happening in the mission is supposed to have an impact on the overall story, but it doesn't feel that way, they all feel like some random and small isolated instances. And they all suffer from phase 4 terminal "Kormir" syndrome, Trahearne completely takes over your "personal" story from the moment you meet him.
In GW1 story missions were long, sometimes difficult, and they actually took you somewhere, you would start at the outpost and literally end up at the end, unlike GW2's personal story quests where you just walk in small circles in a couple of different places. GW1 story missions felt like a trek, a journey, and were satisfying to complete. I understand that they can't really replace the personal story missions now, especially with something that requires to a group to complete (since the philosophy is that you should be able to solo it). But I very very VERY much hope that they implement some kind of journey type group missions when they implement new areas into new places (Crystal Desert is one of the next places that will open up according to speculation), a series of instanced journeys to cross from Tyria into the Crystal Desert, several stops along the way, each with something unique and exciting to discover.
Also, Elite Missions (or "raids" for some), they have to have something like that eventually.

TL;DR more depth to DE chains, especially in lower level areas, long instanced missions that take you on a journey, elite missions.

Edited by lmaonade, 26 April 2013 - 11:33 PM.


#27 Dasviidonja

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Posted 27 April 2013 - 12:29 AM

They need to create something like Factions but with even more dynamic play in that if one group controlled a town,city or outpost the other players couldn't enter it without permission. This would give waaaaay more to fight for in the PVE game than just kill woody woodpecker over n over. I always did like Fort Aspenwood battles and moving the line in Factions back n forth but in GW1 they just wouldn't let you buy/sell in the cities, outposts and town. I want a little more than that in that you can't even go in them until you drive the enemy out.




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