Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Re: What makes AN MMO unappealing to you?

 Originally posted on reddit.

Too grindy. I don't mind if there's some grinding, but I hate it when the grind is the 'content' of the game. This is what turned me off of Black Desert. All of the content was just grinding. Money grind, gear grind, level grind, skill point grind, CP grind, etc... You grind just so you could grind some more.

Too gear based. I like the idea of upgrading my gear. I don't like the idea that I have to spend tens of hours grinding just to get a single piece of equipment so that I won't be completely obliterated in PVP. I liked Darkfall and Mortal Online because all of the gear was relatively easy to get. Sure, there were some 'premium' options that took a lot more effort, but they honestly weren't worth the effort. The standard sets of armor and steel weapons were more than good enough to be on par with the rest of the community, allowing for a nice even play ground where your ability to play did more than how much you could grind. This turned me off of Black Desert and ArcheAge.

Generic Stories. I hate it when I have to do a world-saving quest... that every player does at some point. That's why I tend to prefer sandbox games. You can be an amazing player and a huge part of the games history, but not because some sub-par game writer set up some quest that every player is going to do, making them all into the Chosen One. This is why I can't stand most themepark MMOs.

Bad Crafting. I hate generic, copy-paste crafting systems that almost every single MMO has. The type where you go out and grab a resource from a node out in the world, go into a menu, select a recipe, and then click for the product. I like it when there's some challenge... Like the PVP in Darkfall, the interesting mechanics of Mortal Online, the vastness and complexity of Wurm.

Persistent, non-changing world. I hate it when the world is always the same. No matter how many times players defeat the epic end-of-game raid boss, or how often two large guilds that contain 30% of the servers population go to war. This is why I can't stand playing themeparks for too long. Things don't get changed, the game gets stale, and I have to move on.

Reply: Istaria?

Originally posted on reddit.

 Posted by Laleeloolee
So tried this game out for the first time today. Seems decent. Has an EQ feel to it but with better crafting. I'm really liking it so far and I'm kind of wondering if I should invest my time into this game and would ask anyone who has experience with it to share their thoughts? How big is the world? Seems kind of small from the map on the wiki. Any big disappointments I should prepare for?

Also if anyone is interested in giving it a try with me, shoot me a message.

My reply to this thread was as follows;

Playing a dragon in Istaria isn't comparable to any other MMO experience I've had. I've never been much of an RPer, but I about five years ago I played a dragon on the Istaria RP server. I dabbled, but never really got into the RP community (a majority of which were content with logging on just to RP in the chat rooms and forums). However, I did still have a blast.

Leveling up in that game has a very nostalgic feel, because it's basically the embodiment of old school themepark. But the experience of going from a hatchling, to an adult, to an ancient is one of those gaming memories that will stick with you. Others are right in that it was grindy, but each step of the grind felt like it had a purpose, something most games can't manage.

The album uploaded backwards for some reason, so start from the bottom. I'm not sure, but I believe you can attain a similar experience as we did. I met the two other hatchlings that I ascended with early on. Both were more dedicated than I was, but we bonded because we had a similar goal. I've yet to have such a click as I did with those two in any other game. Sure, I've had great guilds and fantastic friends, but what we had in that game was more basic.

I knew nothing about them, they knew nothing about me. Yet we spent months together playing and enjoying the game. We were almost like siblings, which is something odd to say. The only game where I've managed to have interactions so pure was The Endless Forest, where there is no typing for communication. It was a true journey and achieving ascension to adulthood was a true quest. I'm doing a bad job of fully explaining the experience, but it's not something that can be really put into words. Almost like how a screenshot of VR can't really portray what the experience is truly like.

There was also a couple of older dragons, who I wish I could remember. I'm fairly certain they were German and a couple in real life. I could be wrong. But in-game they were always together. They acted as a sort of guide for me. They helped me a great deal, especially with some of the harder quests. They spent a lot of time sitting around in certain locations in the game, such as their lairs. Despite being able to PM them whenever, more often than not I would just visit the few places I knew I could normally find them and would talk to them in-person instead.

Another memorable player was a biped who I got help from repeatedly. He lent our group money so we could finance our first lairs. Myself and the other male of the group could pay for it ourselves, but the female of our group was a lower level and hadn't yet amassed enough gold in her journeys. I always felt bad that I never got to pay him back before I ended up quitting. He English wasn't the greatest, so trying to interpret what he was trying to say was an interesting experience.

The only reason I quit was because I moved to a different state and it wasn't until a few weeks after the move that I was in a position to start playing MMOs again. By time that happened, I had a much better computer. That, combined with the extended break from the game, made me more inclined to want to play other MMOs. I don't necessarily regret it... I ended up playing Mortal Online and arguably had more meaningful experiences in that game.

The world is... of a decent size. A lot of the game world seems rather barren, but that's because there is a land ownership/housing system. The games population isn't very big, so that means there's a lot of places that would have normally been populated left empty. During the months I played, though, I got the feeling I had only become familiar with a fraction of the locations. That could just be perspective, though.

As for disappointments, I would say there are two. First, the games population is quite small. Dedicated, but small. And second, the people that own and 'develop' the game are mostly in tweak mode. They aren't large enough or active enough to introduce much in the way of new features. So, that means if you like it when a game is constantly being updated and getting new content, you'll be disappointed. These two combined can make it feel like a dead game. I still suggest you at least try it, though. Preferably with a friend.