Many people here know that I am very much against the leveling mechanic as I believe it simply doesn't belong in modern video games let alone today's MMOs. Now I'm not saying I am against personal progression (PP), I am not. I don't see leveling a necessity to personal progression. Anyway getting that out of the way, I wanted to get some ideas I had about PP without using the traditional leveling mechanic.
We all know how the leveling mechanic works, but for the sake of fair discussion allow me to explain the basics. You gain points(XP) for killing mobs and use the XP to increase your stats or purchase skills that are unique to your class.
Now as you can see this kind of activity doesn't require or even benefit other players to be involved with each other's PP. This is why I feel that the leveling mechanic is flawed for multiplayer games. It might work dandy for single player RPGs, but for MMOs it's a very selfish mechanic and it doesn't fit in the whole notion of being in a virtual world with other players. Most players want to see other players on equal footing, and simply having a "level 1" player with a "level 75" player doing a PvE quest or playing in a PvP competitive match just isn't going to work. So essentially the leveling mechanic has created a bunch of single player gamers in a multiplayer world and nobody can fairly interact with each other without something that alters the leveling experience.
One such alteration is down-scaling that GW2 is currently using, but it still has it's problems and hasn't changed the fact that players generally "level up" on their own. This problem is mostly due to fact that mobs hold the rewards, so players do not need each other to gain XP.
I been thinking, What if the leveling system were changed to where players interaction with others players reaps the XP reward, not the mobs. You would still get loot drops but the XP would come from playing with other players. This would encourage grouping and foster better guild interaction. The XP could be divided into 2 unique types depending on the professions that you group up with. One type of XP would be for Power & Vitality (P&V), the other type would be Toughness and Precision (T&P). Each profession would offer specific type of XP. Warrior, Guardian, Elementalist, and Necromancer would offer P&V xp. The Ranger, Thief, Engineer, and Mesmer would offer T&P xp.
So if you're a Warrior and you group up with a Ranger, you are likely going to gain Toughness & Precision, and the Ranger will gain Power & Vitality from your profession. So you would be acting as conduit for leveling each other's profession.
Now in advent that you are unable to find a player with particular type of XP, then you can hire an NPCs (henchmen), but the quality of their XP gain would be dramatically less than a real player.
Combine this system with down-scaling and you have a more rewarding "leveling" experience as you're not dictated by amount of kills.
This only a small part of what I would do to change the way personal progression works in multiplayer games. I would love to hear thoughts, maybe even your own alternative ideas to the traditional leveling system.
CraywulfMember Since 20 Aug 2009
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