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Author Topic: Age of Conan Impressions  (Read 37490 times)
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Blackjack
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« Reply #240 on: June 18, 2008, 05:16:49 PM »

While I'm sure there are better ways to spend $24.99, I spent that to pick up the official Age of Conan strategy guide. Like most MMO guides, it's no doubt going to be out of date in terms of sheer numbers, but I think some of the instances maps, and NPC location listings will be useful at least (I constantly forget where the Wayfarers and Trainers are in zones, and these are marked in this).

I certainly am visiting the various fan sites, database sites and Wikis cropping up for Aoc but I haven't so far found something that's well rounded in terms of info (for example, there's a database site I like, but some of its entries are maddeningly vague).

fwiw, the guide is far cheaper online at Target ($16.80) and Amazon ($16.49). But hey, it was an impulse buy (only copy I could find at Best Buy), and I'm trying to stimulate the economy afterall.  icon_razz
« Last Edit: June 18, 2008, 06:34:19 PM by Blackjack » Logged

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« Reply #241 on: June 19, 2008, 01:19:59 PM »

TenTonHammer, which likes to give MMOs a few weeks to breathe and to play long enough to some characters into higher levels (I'm suspicious of MMO reviews that seem to have reviewed it the day it launched - just in terms of, how does a reviewer see any substantial portion of what a game has to offer in that little time, unless he's basing his review off his beta experience? icon_confused), posted its AoC Review:
http://www.tentonhammer.com/node/35908

For my part, I enjoy the game's combat and quest variety enough that I (again) canceled my City of Heroes/Villains account yesterday. It's the only fantasy MMO I've played where the combat felt (in a different way) as fun and lively as COH/COV (just imho), and I think the the fact the character models have real heft to them (not clipping though each other, except at resurrection platforms) is something I enjoy and that it does have in common with CoX. Along with at least some ability to tackle larger mobs, and send them flying.  icon_cool

I just haven't found myself up to playing more than one of these at a time, and I like my AoC experience enough to feel I can enjoy it for quite some time. Whether that's 3+ years (like COH) or only 2-3 months (Tabula Rasa most recently), it's too early to say.  icon_neutral

I certainly have all sorts of complaints:
-50 gold for a good mount? (I'm gonna have to settle for the 2G "starter horse." Do they want me to just live at the auction house? disgust
-Too many instances have broken bosses, quests, etc. though some of these are gradually getting fixed.
-Too many of us have wildly erratic frame rate problems as if certain areas and quests introduce a gigantic memory leak or something.
-Crafting, which I enjoyed in LOTORO (maybe the first time I ever did) feels baffling to me, and poorly explained here. The latest Game Director notes indicate some bugs were "covering some crafting features up" so maybe there's some hope there.

-There's a Cimmeria chat channel and a Stygia chat channel etc., yet no specific chat channel for say, Old Tarantia, Field of the Dead, etc. You end up hawking the quest you want to do there (me at level 48) and the channel could be well full of level 20s. Why not have specific chat channels for specific areas? [If there is, clue me in - I don't see one on the chat channel listings options]
-There's no Trading chat channel, there's no Looking for Group or Team Recruiting channel, you end up with a lot of people throwing out LFMs and LFGs in OOC and "Regional" chat channels, getting nowhere.

I could go on and on, but at the core, I manage to have a good time with it (and i'm strictly PvE fwiw). That's really what it comes down to.  icon_smile I can beat them over the head about the launch state of the game but it's out of Pandora's Box, you can't stuff it back in. If they get lazy about fixing some of this stuff, I'll be the first to throw salmonella-ridden tomatoes at them.  icon_twisted

If they do a paid expansion well down the road, I do hope they'll learn some things from the original launch.
« Last Edit: June 19, 2008, 01:23:41 PM by Blackjack » Logged

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« Reply #242 on: June 19, 2008, 01:33:14 PM »

Quote
-50 gold for a good mount? (I'm gonna have to settle for the 2G "starter horse." Do they want me to just live at the auction house?

I remember feeling the same way (and seeing similar complaints) about WoW's 100g for the first mount, then 1000g for epic, 5000g for flying, etc. These numbers often seem so unrealistic, you always think there is no way I can get that much, and yet everyone is having those mounts now.

I heard an opinion, for example, that in AoC one makes more money during lvs 50-55 than during 1-50. I think (hope) a bit of leveling, a bit of balancing, a bit of inflation and somewhat settled economy will help us to get those mounts.
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« Reply #243 on: June 19, 2008, 02:42:42 PM »

Our higher level players in the guild are making a killing on tier 2 resources right now.  They said granite and yew (?) are selling on Cimmeria for about a gold/stack of 100. 

We have a guild keep built along with a few other buildings and they gather from nodes around our own city.
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« Reply #244 on: June 19, 2008, 02:53:40 PM »

I'm stuck at level 38, and just have lost all desire to play pretty much.  I'll probably just cancel my subscription.  Starts off great, but i seem to be stuck in a rut already.
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« Reply #245 on: June 19, 2008, 03:13:11 PM »

I hit level 51 last night and I'm still loving the game despite it's warts.  This is going to be the first time I've made it past the free month, and t's definitely the highest level I've ever had a character in a MMO.
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Arclight
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« Reply #246 on: June 19, 2008, 05:31:10 PM »

Quote from: CeeKay on June 19, 2008, 03:13:11 PM

I hit level 51 last night and I'm still loving the game despite it's warts.  This is going to be the first time I've made it past the free month, and t's definitely the highest level I've ever had a character in a MMO.

Really? Why did I think you were a die-hard MMO player? Anyway, thats good news. Glad the game grabbed ya......I'm thinking of giving it another go just to see where its at these days. Seems funny saying that seeing as its barely a month old.. saywhat
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« Reply #247 on: June 19, 2008, 05:32:07 PM »

Quote from: QP on June 19, 2008, 02:53:40 PM

I'm stuck at level 38, and just have lost all desire to play pretty much.  I'll probably just cancel my subscription.  Starts off great, but i seem to be stuck in a rut already.

Best MMO experience bar-none for the first 20 levels..........but molly bar the door, does the bottom ever fall out fast after that...
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« Reply #248 on: June 19, 2008, 05:48:24 PM »

It truly boggles my mind how if a single player shooter doesn't have multiplayer, people bitch and moan. Yet plop them down in the middle of a massively multiplayer world with thousands of other people, and all they want to do is solo quests.

And I say that because I know exactly why the first 20 levels appeal so much to people. It's structured like a single player game, and people nowadays don't want to be bothered with the "massively multiplayer" aspect of their MMOs.

Personally I can't f*****ing STAND Tortage (granted, I've been through it a dozen times). The game really doesn't get fun for me until you hit late 20s, early 30s and can really bounce around the different zones. People bitching about content just aren't bothering to seek out anything besides green solo quests.
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« Reply #249 on: June 19, 2008, 06:03:04 PM »

Quote from: YellowKing on June 19, 2008, 05:48:24 PM

It truly boggles my mind how if a single player shooter doesn't have multiplayer, people bitch and moan. Yet plop them down in the middle of a massively multiplayer world with thousands of other people, and all they want to do is solo quests.

And I say that because I know exactly why the first 20 levels appeal so much to people. It's structured like a single player game, and people nowadays don't want to be bothered with the "massively multiplayer" aspect of their MMOs.

Personally I can't f*****ing STAND Tortage (granted, I've been through it a dozen times). The game really doesn't get fun for me until you hit late 20s, early 30s and can really bounce around the different zones. People bitching about content just aren't bothering to seek out anything besides green solo quests.


Because many of us only have a few hours at a time. It's really not that hard to understand why.
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« Reply #250 on: June 19, 2008, 06:15:01 PM »

Quote from: YellowKing on June 19, 2008, 05:48:24 PM

It truly boggles my mind how if a single player shooter doesn't have multiplayer, people bitch and moan. Yet plop them down in the middle of a massively multiplayer world with thousands of other people, and all they want to do is solo quests.

And I say that because I know exactly why the first 20 levels appeal so much to people. It's structured like a single player game, and people nowadays don't want to be bothered with the "massively multiplayer" aspect of their MMOs.

Personally I can't f*****ing STAND Tortage (granted, I've been through it a dozen times). The game really doesn't get fun for me until you hit late 20s, early 30s and can really bounce around the different zones. People bitching about content just aren't bothering to seek out anything besides green solo quests.

Actually i hate Tortage also...so it's really levels 20-35 that were fun smile  I guess though, the issue is seeing the wizard behind the curtains earlier and earlier in MMOs.  Oh and I was playing a bear shaman so I was actually doing solo yellow/orange quests slywink
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« Reply #251 on: June 19, 2008, 06:29:26 PM »

Quote from: jersoc on June 19, 2008, 06:03:04 PM

Quote from: YellowKing on June 19, 2008, 05:48:24 PM

It truly boggles my mind how if a single player shooter doesn't have multiplayer, people bitch and moan. Yet plop them down in the middle of a massively multiplayer world with thousands of other people, and all they want to do is solo quests.

And I say that because I know exactly why the first 20 levels appeal so much to people. It's structured like a single player game, and people nowadays don't want to be bothered with the "massively multiplayer" aspect of their MMOs.

Personally I can't f*****ing STAND Tortage (granted, I've been through it a dozen times). The game really doesn't get fun for me until you hit late 20s, early 30s and can really bounce around the different zones. People bitching about content just aren't bothering to seek out anything besides green solo quests.


Because many of us only have a few hours at a time. It's really not that hard to understand why.

Yeah, or less.  In a shooter I can log in for 20 minutes and play a match or four.  In a MMO I won't bother getting a group unless I know I'll have at least an hour uninterrupted.  And then you're so out of practice finding groups that you figure what the heck, might as well solo.
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YellowKing
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« Reply #252 on: June 19, 2008, 08:06:45 PM »

Quote
Because many of us only have a few hours at a time.

I don't totally buy that excuse, just from my observation.

The reason I say that is that I don't think the massive inclination to solo existed in the state it does today before World of Warcraft came along. I played many, many MMOs before WoW - EQ1, AC, AC2, DAoC, Horizons, etc. and grouping was a significant part of all of them.

The world didn't suddenly change, and everybody who gamed suddenly had no free time left. What changed is that WoW came along and made solo play viable - I would argue *more* viable - than group play. Then what happens? EQ2, which launched as a very group-oriented game, suddenly makes an 180 degree turn and pushes more and more solo content. LOTRO follows the same model, with solo content far outweighing group content. Age of Conan, ditto.

What's frustrating to me as an old school MMOer is that it's painfully obvious that MMOs have basically shifted away from their entire reason for existence, entirely on the basis of one successful game. That sucks. It's likely that we will never get back to the "multiplayer" portion of MMOs because WoW let the genie out of the bottle. Now people expect to not only be able to solo their way through the content, they expect to level fast with no grinding, and get comparable gear. I feel that the soul of MMOs has been robbed.  I genuinely miss the days when part of playing an MMO was meeting new people, or when being in a guild meant feeling like part of a real family. Things were unexpected and surprising then. You didn't log on thinking, "I'm just gonna go turn in quest A, B, and C which will get me to Level 20." You logged on not knowing what the heck you were going to get into - you'd just go exploring, run into some people, and see what happened from there.

A buddy and fellow old-school gamer friend of mine has the right idea I think. He's decided to play only on PvP servers from now on in his MMOs. Why? Because that's the only real way to feel challenged, and because it forces a group mentality for survival like the old games did. I think I may be giving that a shot as well, since it's obvious the old ways aren't coming back and the casual crowd has completely taken over the genre.
« Last Edit: June 19, 2008, 08:54:28 PM by YellowKing » Logged
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« Reply #253 on: June 20, 2008, 09:48:41 AM »

Quote from: YellowKing on June 19, 2008, 08:06:45 PM

Quote
Because many of us only have a few hours at a time.

I don't totally buy that excuse, just from my observation.

The reason I say that is that I don't think the massive inclination to solo existed in the state it does today before World of Warcraft came along. I played many, many MMOs before WoW - EQ1, AC, AC2, DAoC, Horizons, etc. and grouping was a significant part of all of them.

The world didn't suddenly change, and everybody who gamed suddenly had no free time left. What changed is that WoW came along and made solo play viable - I would argue *more* viable - than group play. Then what happens? EQ2, which launched as a very group-oriented game, suddenly makes an 180 degree turn and pushes more and more solo content. LOTRO follows the same model, with solo content far outweighing group content. Age of Conan, ditto.

What's frustrating to me as an old school MMOer is that it's painfully obvious that MMOs have basically shifted away from their entire reason for existence, entirely on the basis of one successful game. That sucks. It's likely that we will never get back to the "multiplayer" portion of MMOs because WoW let the genie out of the bottle. Now people expect to not only be able to solo their way through the content, they expect to level fast with no grinding, and get comparable gear. I feel that the soul of MMOs has been robbed.  I genuinely miss the days when part of playing an MMO was meeting new people, or when being in a guild meant feeling like part of a real family. Things were unexpected and surprising then. You didn't log on thinking, "I'm just gonna go turn in quest A, B, and C which will get me to Level 20." You logged on not knowing what the heck you were going to get into - you'd just go exploring, run into some people, and see what happened from there.

A buddy and fellow old-school gamer friend of mine has the right idea I think. He's decided to play only on PvP servers from now on in his MMOs. Why? Because that's the only real way to feel challenged, and because it forces a group mentality for survival like the old games did. I think I may be giving that a shot as well, since it's obvious the old ways aren't coming back and the casual crowd has completely taken over the genre.

Blessed are the flexible for they shall not be broken. Change comes hard. But lets not in theory throw out the baby with the bath water. Casuals get a bad wrap from every angle. But for most of us branded "casual" its because of our lives and schedules, not choice. But even if choice is the reason for wanting content thats soloable, then so be it. MMO's like anything else that charges a fee is a business with one goal in mind.......to make money. The only thing WoW let out of the bag was a better business model. If like you say the more hardcore players want more from their MMO's surely there are developers who are gamers at heart who want that too. Niche' markets are viable if the makers of the game don't want to rule the world. I still think the MMO market can handle the niche-type games.
But like most businesses most of the MMO's will cater to the common-denominator. Which is people who can't or wont devote hour upon hour of nonstop sessions just to get the belt of awesomeness.

You can please some of the people all of the time
All of the people some of the time
But you cant please all the people, all the time.

Cheesy? Yeah, but true.
« Last Edit: June 20, 2008, 09:51:24 AM by Arclight » Logged

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DArtagnan
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« Reply #254 on: June 20, 2008, 10:20:23 AM »

Quote from: YellowKing on June 19, 2008, 08:06:45 PM

Quote
Because many of us only have a few hours at a time.

I don't totally buy that excuse, just from my observation.

The reason I say that is that I don't think the massive inclination to solo existed in the state it does today before World of Warcraft came along. I played many, many MMOs before WoW - EQ1, AC, AC2, DAoC, Horizons, etc. and grouping was a significant part of all of them.

The world didn't suddenly change, and everybody who gamed suddenly had no free time left. What changed is that WoW came along and made solo play viable - I would argue *more* viable - than group play. Then what happens? EQ2, which launched as a very group-oriented game, suddenly makes an 180 degree turn and pushes more and more solo content. LOTRO follows the same model, with solo content far outweighing group content. Age of Conan, ditto.

What's frustrating to me as an old school MMOer is that it's painfully obvious that MMOs have basically shifted away from their entire reason for existence, entirely on the basis of one successful game. That sucks. It's likely that we will never get back to the "multiplayer" portion of MMOs because WoW let the genie out of the bottle. Now people expect to not only be able to solo their way through the content, they expect to level fast with no grinding, and get comparable gear. I feel that the soul of MMOs has been robbed.  I genuinely miss the days when part of playing an MMO was meeting new people, or when being in a guild meant feeling like part of a real family. Things were unexpected and surprising then. You didn't log on thinking, "I'm just gonna go turn in quest A, B, and C which will get me to Level 20." You logged on not knowing what the heck you were going to get into - you'd just go exploring, run into some people, and see what happened from there.

A buddy and fellow old-school gamer friend of mine has the right idea I think. He's decided to play only on PvP servers from now on in his MMOs. Why? Because that's the only real way to feel challenged, and because it forces a group mentality for survival like the old games did. I think I may be giving that a shot as well, since it's obvious the old ways aren't coming back and the casual crowd has completely taken over the genre.

The desire to solo was always there.

WoW didn't change things because it's solo friendly, though it is to an extent. However, everything worth doing in WoW requires a group, which includes everything from group quests, instances, PvP, raids, and so on. It's not solo friendly except for the actual levelling process - which is STILL much more interesting to do in a group.

WoW changed the genre by making it accessible, primarily by being very forgiving in the beginning and by not having high hardware requirements.

But at heart, WoW is still VERY much a social and group oriented game. MUCH more so than Age of Conan, which is just incredibly under-designed - meaning it was never thought through or balanced properly. That's why some classes can do everything solo - including tough group quests, whilst others struggle. The game is totally raw in terms of game design. Even the most basic mechanics are flawed, like the combo system. It's entertaining, to be sure, but it's obvious that it was never fully worked out.

I don't think the state of AoC or other contemporary games can be blamed on WoW. Whatever you may think of Blizzard and their approach to game design, at least they know what the hell they're doing.
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« Reply #255 on: June 20, 2008, 12:05:55 PM »

Quote from: DArtagnan on June 20, 2008, 10:20:23 AM


I don't think the state of AoC or other contemporary games can be blamed on WoW. Whatever you may think of Blizzard and their approach to game design, at least they know what the hell they're doing.


Maybe not blamed on WoW per se, but certainly some of the "blame", if we are calling it that, can be leveled at joe-gamer.  joe-gamer is the one going into the forums of all these games post-WoW and being the squeaky wheel.  He's the one bitching and moaning like a 12 year old girl that he can't solo and the game sucks, and throws out the dreaded, "I'm going back to WoW" gauntlet.  So indirectly at least, Blizzard's MMO is absolutely the impression leader here.  I'm surprised that anyone honestly underestimates Blizzard's insane influence on the genre.  If EQ2 (SoE) changing their entire design philosophy isn't proof enough of that alone, I don't know what is.

I will agree that the desire to solo has probably always been there, though.  I believe Blizzard's (outstanding) game design model just helped to bring it to the forefront.  Smart business leaders don't generally ignore such an unprecedented success story.
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DArtagnan
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« Reply #256 on: June 20, 2008, 12:56:31 PM »

Quote from: Lockdown on June 20, 2008, 12:05:55 PM

Quote from: DArtagnan on June 20, 2008, 10:20:23 AM


I don't think the state of AoC or other contemporary games can be blamed on WoW. Whatever you may think of Blizzard and their approach to game design, at least they know what the hell they're doing.


Maybe not blamed on WoW per se, but certainly some of the "blame", if we are calling it that, can be leveled at joe-gamer.  joe-gamer is the one going into the forums of all these games post-WoW and being the squeaky wheel.  He's the one bitching and moaning like a 12 year old girl that he can't solo and the game sucks, and throws out the dreaded, "I'm going back to WoW" gauntlet.  So indirectly at least, Blizzard's MMO is absolutely the impression leader here.  I'm surprised that anyone honestly underestimates Blizzard's insane influence on the genre.  If EQ2 (SoE) changing their entire design philosophy isn't proof enough of that alone, I don't know what is.

I will agree that the desire to solo has probably always been there, though.  I believe Blizzard's (outstanding) game design model just helped to bring it to the forefront.  Smart business leaders don't generally ignore such an unprecedented success story.

Oh, I'm not underestimating the influence of WoW. I don't think anyone could do that after what's happened to the genre in the past years.

No, I'm simply saying that WoW isn't the reason that AoC is such a horrible grouping experience. AoC is clearly MEANT to be a group oriented game, because otherwise they wouldn't have made so many group instances or done all that work on PvP and Siege Battles, and they certainly wouldn't have made group quests throughout the levels. Maybe we're not seeing much of it right now - but given their promises and the very strong emphasis on certain features in adverts - the game isn't what it SHOULD have been as is.

The problem is that, in its current state, it's simply not balanced for group play - as half the mechanics are either missing or broken - and many of the classes are completely imbalanced and obviously not functioning as intended. The result is that the intended difficulty for most quests is WAY off - made even worse with the ton of exploits and what not. The game is just not done.

I don't think Funcom INTENDED the game to be played solo to the extent its done, but they've completely botched group functionality and game balance, and they haven't figured out a proper way to handle the instances and chat channels either.

It's for sure that WoW has had a BIG influence on the genre - and in my mind it's both good and bad - but blaming it for the emphasis on solo play is a bit off. Sure, because WoW was forgiving with death penalties and early quest difficulty - soloing the levelling game was a possibility. They also balanced classes so they could all handle most things at their level - but they've also strongly emphasised the advantages of group play - as everything worthwhile can ONLY be gotten in groups. WoW has arguably the best dungeon/raid design of any MMO - and it also happens to be extremely gear oriented, which means you're going to have to step inside those dungeons if you want to be anywhere near a level playing field.

I agree that the old MMOs were different - but I don't think you should strive to punish players for wanting to solo now and again - which is really what they did.

But again, blame WoW for being accessible and introducing the genre to the mainstream.

As we all know, the mainstream audience is not like the hardcore audience. That's something I've been lamenting for ages, but I can't really say I don't understand most developers when they try to maximize their profits. Greed is a universal motivator, afterall.
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« Reply #257 on: June 20, 2008, 02:05:22 PM »

I wouldn't call it greed. Just smart business. After all unless you're a charity you don't offer a service just to break even. You do it for profit. I'm absolutely ok with that.

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« Reply #258 on: June 20, 2008, 02:39:12 PM »

Quote from: Arclight on June 20, 2008, 02:05:22 PM

I wouldn't call it greed. Just smart business. After all unless you're a charity you don't offer a service just to break even. You do it for profit. I'm absolutely ok with that.



Here are 3 concepts:

Breaking even
Profit
Maximizing profit

The first two I'm ok with, the last one I'm only ok with as long as it's not a serious compromise.

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« Reply #259 on: June 20, 2008, 03:08:05 PM »

Quote
That's why some classes can do everything solo - including tough group quests, whilst others struggle.

DArtagnan, care to elaborate? I am playing AoC (not sure if you do) and I am seeing the group oriented content. There is no way ANY of the classes "can do everything solo", unless they are 30 levels above the content.

Quote
No, I'm simply saying that WoW isn't the reason that AoC is such a horrible grouping experience.

Horrible? Again, not sure if you are speaking from experience or are theorycrafting, but even if you look at YK's original post (that sparked this discussion), you will see that the guy is clearly enjoying grouping in AoC. He is upset that MMOs IN GENERAL, including AoC, have made soloing a viable, if not preferable, style of playing for levels 1 to max. In other words, it's easier and more productive (leveling-wise) to solo in every MMO since WoW.

I personally think AoC is offeric a terrific grouping experience.

Quote
The problem is that, in its current state, it's simply not balanced for group play - as half the mechanics are either missing or broken - and many of the classes are completely imbalanced and obviously not functioning as intended. The result is that the intended difficulty for most quests is WAY off - made even worse with the ton of exploits and what not. The game is just not done.

I don't think Funcom INTENDED the game to be played solo to the extent its done, but they've completely botched group functionality and game balance, and they haven't figured out a proper way to handle the instances and chat channels either.

Again, I couldn't disagree more. Grouping in AoC is a fun and challenging experience, unless you are grouping to do quests designed to be soloed.

You can defend WoW all you want, but the fact remains - WoW introduced the game concept that makes soloing a viable and PREFERABLE way to level up. You can justify it by saying that's what was required by a casual majority, but it doesn't change the fact that Blizzard invented a new genre - Simplified Single Player MMO RPG (SSP MMO).

The problem is that most of the game developers (or rather the suits behind every game) are thinking that since WoW is making shitload of money, SSP MMO must be the only viable way to design MMOs now.

The scary thing is that most likely they are correct. smile
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Blackjack
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« Reply #260 on: June 20, 2008, 03:17:34 PM »

Can't we all just get along?  The Weghted Companion Cube will never threaten to stab you.

I've mostly found AoC grouping fun, but the sheer number of classes, different ways people play, and different ways the game plays from others I've played (I only played WoW about 3 weeks, but I was a big LOTORO fan for maybe 6-7 months) makes it challenging. Whether that's by design or because it's over ambitious and buggy, I can't really say yet myself.  icon_confused

If you read the latest official AoC newsletter, the Game Director admits to a different kind of "failure to anticipate," which is that they simply didn't have enough support people and people to take care of in-game petitions and the like (they're "staffing up," and relying on an influx of temps in the short-term). Now I can't really see how you can hype a game as much as they hyped AoC and not anticipate a massive amount of players in the opening weeks, but it did remind me of Blizzard somehow not anticipating how popular WoW would be when it launched and the whole server-que thing. I agree that wasn't a technical error, it was a marketing-forecasting goof, and a sort of "failure to anticipate how popular the Blizzard brand is."

So I'd really like if the Big Budget MMO-Makers would be realistic, but I guess they can't really justify hiring a bunch of people or having a huge number of servers at launch to their investors/CEOs unless they really have The Proof. You can end up with something like Auto Assault's situation (8 mostly empty servers at launch rapidly consolidated to one).

From my own more limited MMO experience, LOTORO was by far the smoothest launch I'd experienced (though I'm sure you could Google and find all sorts of complaints still). COH in 2004 went relatively smoothly too (imho) though there was much grumbling about No Capes, a Level 40 cap, there's no PVP, there's no "end game," etc. etc.

I'm really not into bashing other games to make a point. I think most MMOs have different strengths and weaknesses. Part of the challenge when I switch to another one is altering my combat style and expectations. What it comes down to for me is I have a lot of fun with AoC, enough to recommend it to people with solid systems and lots of RAM who like a heavy combat focus, but I'm well aware Funcom has a lot of work to do. I guess I sound like a politician. So be it.  icon_neutral

One thing I would like with the group-focused quests is maybe a little better indication in the description whether it's a quest that physically, absolutely requires a group (i.e., epic hit point level enemies), or if it's suggesting a group because of the heavy enemy population and patrols in the area (but regular hp-level enemies). The latter, when I figure out it's the situation, I can usually tackle solo with a little bit of caution and precision (it's even fun in a way that way). It's just, you can't really tell from the description (I either find out by asking, or by investigating the area a bit). I dunno - maybe they can have 3 of those "stick figure heads" to indicate you mathematically *must* have teammates to do it, and 2 heads to indicate "we recommend you have a team, but you might be able to find a way solo." icon_smile
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StriderGG
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« Reply #261 on: June 20, 2008, 03:22:04 PM »

I just wanted to add that I think we will all agree that in WoW (and in every game since), grouping is a hindrence to leveling, not help. It is faster to get to the cap if you DON't do any of the group quests/instances.

That's the problem. Grouping doesn't allow for faster (or at least as fast) leveling as soloing. Balancing the two is a difficult and expensive task, and MMOs, being business ventures first and foremost, just don't see it as a cost effective activity. It's much easier and cheaper (and brings more dough) to pump out tons of single player content without worrying about balancing it.

While we can all thank Blizzard and WOW for demonstrating this fact, they in no way invented it. Maybe McDonalds did, when they decided to sell tons of cheap lower quality food instead of smaller amounts of higher quality.
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QP
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« Reply #262 on: June 20, 2008, 05:45:57 PM »

Well i did do a sanctum quests (group) and got piles of xp for it (like maybe 4 bubbles?)
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skystride
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« Reply #263 on: June 20, 2008, 05:56:59 PM »

Quote from: StriderGG on June 20, 2008, 03:22:04 PM

That's the problem. Grouping doesn't allow for faster (or at least as fast) leveling as soloing. Balancing the two is a difficult and expensive task, and MMOs, being business ventures first and foremost, just don't see it as a cost effective activity. It's much easier and cheaper (and brings more dough) to pump out tons of single player content without worrying about balancing it.

It's not really that difficult or expensive.  In AoC, all they have to do is lower the HP of group mobs and give a bit more bonus to group xp.  Problem solved.

There are lots of MMOs out there where soloing is totally possible but grouping is still a more efficient way to xp.  This is nothing new that WoW discovered, older games (e.g. Shadowbane) worked like that too.
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YellowKing
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« Reply #264 on: June 20, 2008, 05:59:18 PM »

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Grouping doesn't allow for faster (or at least as fast) leveling as soloing.

That's the crux of the issue right there. Because pre-WoW, grouping was *always* faster than soloing. Nobody in their right mind would try to solo one of those games, because it would take ages.

It all ultimately comes down to the quest system. WoW's quest system was utterly revolutionary. I remember reading previews of WoW and the devs were saying you could level solely on quests alone. I remember thinking WTF are they smoking? Little did I realize that would change the entire focus of MMOs. It's no longer about killing mobs, it's about finishing quests. And that just opened the floodgates to solo/casual play.

Don't get me wrong. There are times when I like to solo too. There are times I want to pop on for 20 minutes and feel like I made some progress. It just saddens me that my ability to do that came at a cost, and that cost was a shift of MMOs away from the social mentality that they were born with.

Oh, I think WoW tried to balance things out. Obviously they made sure group/raid instances gave the best loot. But what happens there I think is that people say, "Well, I'll just rush to end-game, and *then* I'll mess around with groups." So yeah, that grouping mentality comes back eventually, but not until you've maxed out and basically have nothing else to do.

Maybe the push to PvP ala Warhammer is the next evolution. I've never been a big fan of PvP in the past, but if that's the only way to get my group fix maybe it's the way to go.
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StriderGG
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« Reply #265 on: June 20, 2008, 06:26:11 PM »

Quote
Well i did do a sanctum quests (group) and got piles of xp for it (like maybe 4 bubbles?)

I agree, you do get very nice exp while grouping in AoC.

On average though, it is much more faster to level if you are just grinding quests solo.

Not to mention effort/reward ratio. You can choose to spend time getting a group of people together, traveling, preparations, communications, waiting for people to sell their junk, learning to play your class in a way that does not kill the rest of the group and THEN you will start getting pretty good exp.

OR. You go to your quest area and start getting pretty good exp right away by soloing.

Don't forget the price (and probability) of failure too. While soloing, you depend on yourself only and having spent lots of time soloing, everyone gets reasonably good at it. While grouping there is a pretty good chance that some guy just doesn't have much experience playing in groups (duh! everyone's soloing), the group may get wiped time after time and there will be no exp, items or fun to be had.

Oh and then the guys from that group will go to some forum to complain how horrible, broken or unbalanced grouping is in this game. biggrin

All of the above creates a PERCEPTION that soloing is the only viable way to level.

Quote
Maybe the push to PvP ala Warhammer is the next evolution. I've never been a big fan of PvP in the past, but if that's the only way to get my group fix maybe it's the way to go.

Oh yeah, YK, I forgot to comment on that PvP thing you posted a few posts back.

I don't think going PvP is going to resolve any issues, not for me anyway. The problem is that majority of the game world is designed with a soloer in mind. Yes, playing on PvP gives an incentive to play in groups, but you won't see any resemblance of a PvE challenge while duoing in areas designed for soloers.

As much as I like grouping, I want it to be challenging, so grouping in a soloer's world is not solving anything.
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rittchard
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« Reply #266 on: June 20, 2008, 06:30:32 PM »

While I agree with the statements on how WoW has changed the latest batch of MMORPGs, the thing about grouping, in my mind, all still boils down to the people who are playing and what amount of effort they are willing to put in to make things happen naturally and regularly.  When a bunch of us in WoW decided to try an Alliance server together (after a year of Horde), we were grouping ALL the time, regardless of effectiveness, and we had a blast.  Same thing in DAOC, CoX series, etc etc.  There were periods of gameplay in all these games, again depending on the specific people playing, that as soon as someone logged in they would get a group invite.  Even if nothing specific was going on, we'd group and find a way to get together and make things happen.  The general mentality has changed a lot in the years since WoW, but I submit if you get the right group of people together, grouping will still happen and will still be the most effective and fun way to play these games.  

AoC in particular, as much as it's been touted a solo-focused game, is much easier (and more fun) to level up grouped.  There are multiple ways to group and be more effective, but it takes people trying different things and finding effective ways to do it, then taking the lead and starting groups on a regular basis.  This was actually the same in every MMO I've played.  Frankly, though, in any MMORPG, this takes some effort and the majority of players don't seem to want to take the initiative.  Ultimately, my feeling is, if you want the "group fix", lead by example and make things happen.
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YellowKing
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« Reply #267 on: June 20, 2008, 06:59:05 PM »

Quote
As much as I like grouping, I want it to be challenging, so grouping in a soloer's world is not solving anything.

Well, I was thinking more along the lines of the realm vs realm/siege type PvP where your group is actively engaging in battle with other groups. I agree, however, that this doesn't solve the desire for group-based PvE stuff - going to fight a dragon or whatever.
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DArtagnan
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« Reply #268 on: June 20, 2008, 07:03:19 PM »

Well, I'd like to try and clarify my opinion about AoC - but it seems somewhat a lost cause based on your experiences. I might as well say that the car is yellow, but to you it's blue.

But I'll give it a try:

The main point I'm making is that AoC is NOT balanced or working properly RIGHT NOW. That means that itemization is crap, balance is crap, and the quests are mostly WAY too easy.

You seem to be talking about the actual levelling process, while I'm talking about what you get out of grouping in general. Yes, WoW was easy to solo in terms of levelling. AoC is easy to solo while levelling, only MUCH more so.

The thing is that WoW was carefully balanced around gear, and to get good gear you NEEDED to do group quests or instances. The amount of group content you could solo in WoW was EXTREMELY limited - simply because Blizzard had worked hard on getting the balance right.

I admit, I've only played my assassin to his mid 30s, but in that time I've done plenty of group quests and boss encounters. I've yet to encounter the slightest challenge, and I've done several things that were beyond my level. I have to play carefully, though, but that's because the assassin is arguably the most gimped class currently in the game. I've played a barbarian to 20, and he seemed to just wade through everything.

Granted, I haven't personally done any of the big instances, but people are saying they're simply not working properly except a select few. The reason I haven't done it, is because all my research into the game - so far - has told me it's unfinished to such an extent that it would be a waste to go through an instance without it being properly balanced and itemized - and since nothing has challenged me even 3-4 levels above me, I don't really see the point in going through an instance when rewards won't matter. Let me know if you've been in a group instance, apart from Sanctum, that didn't have a serious balance problem or lack of reward. Then I'll dig up several posts stating the opposite or I'll gladly accept that people have been lying about that.

There are guilds out there who have one-shot bosses in what was supposed to be end-game raids. Of course, if you choose to believe that's a lie and that they've just fabricated the screenshots, there's not much I can do to convince you otherwise. I've seen a screenshot of a GM admitting that the raids weren't meant to be done at this stage - which is just another part of the content they forgot to actually implement.

But my point is that I've yet to see any content WORTH doing in groups in AoC - simply because they haven't itemized things properly, nor have they balanced the game to require good gear. I have plenty of crap gear on my assassin, and no upgrade so far has made any kind of detectable difference. That's something I most definitely couldn't say about WoW - where the right weapon at the right time could almost double your DPS, even at the lower levels.

That's why - TO ME - the grouping experience is horrible because there's NO point. That will change once they figure out how to handle itemization and class balance, but I'm EXCLUSIVELY talking about the game in its current condition.

When I said there are classes that can solo everything, I didn't mean literally as in doing an entire raid by themselves. But based only on my own experience with the assassin and the barbarian, it's obvious that the barbarian can handle himself through pretty much all group quests except the group instances - though I wouldn't be surprised if he could do some of those too.

Apart from my own experience, the forums are littered with people explaining in detail how balance is broken - and since I have that same impression, it's not hard to believe them. The videos of certain casters clearing major groups by spamming a single AoE spell aren't helping, either.

If you've had a nice experience and haven't detected that balance was off in any way, then of course you'd be inclined to consider them and someone like myself as whining haters.

Quote
You can defend WoW all you want, but the fact remains - WoW introduced the game concept that makes soloing a viable and PREFERABLE way to level up. You can justify it by saying that's what was required by a casual majority, but it doesn't change the fact that Blizzard invented a new genre - Simplified Single Player MMO RPG (SSP MMO).

No, that fact doesn't remain. I don't see how WoW introduced the concept that soloing was preferable - that's just your own personal opinion. Personally, I despise soloing unless I'm forced to do it. I play these games almost exclusively with my GF and the friends we make along the way, and we always go for the exciting content. In WoW, we had A LOT more fun whenever we grouped in a new instance, because the rewards were always great and Blizzard made some damn fine and balanced content. My experience with AoC has been quite the opposite, and it's almost as if they wanted people to solo based on the balance and the pointless item mechanics.

Naturally, they're going to change that, and hopefully soon. But as it is RIGHT NOW, there is zero incentive to group in terms of game balance. You can do it because it's fun, but it's only fun because of the people.

---

Finally, I can't fathom how anyone who played WoW seriously could call it a singleplayer MMO. That's just beyond me - especially when I think of all those truly superb experiences I had grouping in instances and raids. I have a very hard time thinking of a more socially fulfilling computer game than WoW. Note that I haven't touched it 6 months and am thoroughly done with that. But I can't tell myself it wasn't a brilliant game while it lasted, and the last thing I would ever call it was singleplayer.
« Last Edit: June 20, 2008, 07:12:07 PM by DArtagnan » Logged
Fez
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« Reply #269 on: June 20, 2008, 07:04:43 PM »

Yeah, it's always a tricky balance in these games to create a balance between grouping and solo content.  You should always provide additional encouragement to make people want to group, because it is always difficult to bring people together.  I think, ideally, that a new game should look at EQ2 and WoW and take the best aspects of both to create the best balances.  Something that might include the following features for PvE:

1.  Grouping gives an exp bonus the escalates slightly by the number in the group  (EQ2);
2.  Questlines that are group based that result in substantial rewards (EQ2 - Heritage Quests);
3.  Group instances that net you solid item rewards from bosses (WoW, less so in EQ2);
4.  Summoning stones by group instance entrances (WoW);
5.  MENTORING, whereby others in the group can decrease their level to someone else in the group and still get exp and do quests (EQ2).

It seems like most games have determined that standard group questlines that result in standard quest rewards are on the way out as it becomes hard down the line to find people to help you complete them.  Sure, at the beginning of the lifespan of the game there should be enough people doing them to help, but later they are much harder to finish.  I know EQ2 changed a number of group quests to be completable solo later.

I'm looking forward to better use of group instances in the future in these games - namely, randomized dungeons for groups to enter that still have a good selection of bosses and loot.  Randomized dungeons would make each new dungeon experience fresh and exciting.  I was always hoping that D&D online would have randomized dungeons to make it more intersesting, but they failed in that regard.
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skystride
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« Reply #270 on: June 20, 2008, 07:29:29 PM »

I'm so glad those days are gone where you'd be sitting in chat spamming "LFG" for hours especially if you didn't play one of the trifecta classes.  I think people complaining about lack of grouping are just lazy.  They love grouping yet they don't want to make an effort to get a group going.  In AoC during primetime, everytime I see someone make a group suggestion there are almost always people responding to join.  Maybe there is a little bit more coaxing necessary in the new "solo friendly" MMO world but ultimately, people who love to group are still able to group up.   People who like to solo aren't forced to group.  I fail to see why this voluntary grouping model is worse than forced grouping.  I think if you were to take a poll, most people would probably favour grouping even when the solo option is available.  Personally ,I'd rather group when I have the time even if it meant taking an xp hit for it simply because it's more fun.
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Cragmyre
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« Reply #271 on: June 20, 2008, 07:54:57 PM »

There is another difference between then...and now.  A lot of us have gotten married and have kids.  I enjoy grouping, but mostly with friends or guildmates that I know also have kids.  If my son or daughter require me, my group will suffer, but my kids will come first.

I like the fact that with these games I have options now.  Sometimes I know I can't depend upon my time being completely free, and it is nice to craft, or do something solo...of course, an understanding group goes a long way too! smile
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« Reply #272 on: June 20, 2008, 08:10:58 PM »

I solo most of the time, I just don't seem to know how to play in a group (as I've been told a few times).  I do like the quick pugs for those short but hard quests.  I do like knowing that there are other people running around to help out and not just NPC's. I enjoy the chatter and overall, with others around it helps make playing more enjoyable. I've been playing AOC although I'm mostly on LOTRO. 


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StriderGG
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« Reply #273 on: June 20, 2008, 08:25:03 PM »

Wow, DArtagnan, our posts are so long, it becomes difficult to keep track of everything we are discussing. Especially considering other people's input. smile

By the way, I really enjoy discussing this kind of stuff with you.

To keep it simple, I am just going to get a bunch of quotes from you and answer/criticise them one by one.

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You seem to be talking about the actual levelling process, while I'm talking about what you get out of grouping in general.

Exactly. This seems to be a fundamental difference in our points of view. Except you are trying to dimish my point of view by calling it "actual leveling process", while yours is "grouping in general".

If I understand what you said later correctly, to you grouping experience is horrible because you get no loot with big meaningful numbers. To me, grouping experience is great because it's challenging, is different enough from other games, requires skill, gives great exp and nice loot.

Yes, loot too. Most of the stuff I am wearing right now I got from grouping. It was/is superior to what was available while soloing. You can argue there is not enough of loot, or that some of the stats didn't work (they do now), but I'll just say, hey look at my char. It has loot from grouping, it has more dps/health/mana/+damage/+regen/etc. (even you don't consider broken until recently str, wis and dex).

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The thing is that WoW was carefully balanced around gear, and to get good gear you NEEDED to do group quests or instances.

But you didn't NEED any of the good loot. I (and others as well) have leveled a bunch of chars by STRICLY soloing. I had various reasons for that, which are irrelevant here, but I have done that. I had zero issues getting to lvl 60 with whatever was aquirable solo.

As much as having all that blue loot from instances helped our internet ego, it really didn't matter one bit. Yes, it helped to shave off a few seconds here and there by allowing to kill a mob faster. But ultimately it didn't matter.

Quote
admit, I've only played my assassin to his mid 30s, but in that time I've done plenty of group quests and boss encounters. I've yet to encounter the slightest challenge, and I've done several things that were beyond my level.

It's exactly like me talking to my RL friend about something PvP related (who is playing on a PvP server only) and saying "yeah, I know a lot about PvP, I read tons of stuff about it". To which he answered, "well, I haven't read as much, but I do play there every day and I can tell you - you are wrong".

I honestly don't remember if there is any content for groups prior to mid 30's. Sure, there might be some quests marked as "group" even in Tortage, but those are introductionary (unless you play them in Epic mode, I bet you can't solo there with any efficiency, unless all mobs are grey to you).

After mid 30's though, I bet you can't solo group quests in the northern part of the Valley (cimmerian zone, forgot its name). Not even if you are a few levels higher. I bet you can't solo Sanctum. Or northern part of Fields of the Dead (we are getting into mid 40's here). Or the 24hr instances off the resources zones.

And that's from my personal experience. Sure, some guild could have one-shotted some raid boss. I don't know. I don't care. And you shouldn't care either in your mid 30's. If you like referencing to WoW, you should remember that, at first, Molten Core also didn't work as intended.

Quote
Granted, I haven't personally done any of the big instances, but people are saying they're simply not working properly except a select few. The reason I haven't done it, is because all my research into the game - so far - has told me it's unfinished to such an extent that it would be a waste to go through an instance without it being properly balanced and itemized - and since nothing has challenged me even 3-4 levels above me, I don't really see the point in going through an instance when rewards won't matter.

See you are talking about loot again, as well as saying that you don't really have any experience with the subject. People in low 50's used to farm Sanctum for items (until grey mobs' damage was fixed), there was some nice loot.

Quote
Let me know if you've been in a group instance, apart from Sanctum, that didn't have a serious balance problem or lack of reward.

All of the places I mentioned above. And they all had nice rewards either dropping form one of the bosses or through a quest that led you there. You can add the group arena to the list. Not only it's nice and challenging (no way you can do solo), it gives a nice epic item in the end. My barb can't wait to have that 1h sword.

Quote
I've seen a screenshot of a GM admitting that the raids weren't meant to be done at this stage - which is just another part of the content they forgot to actually implement.

I wonder if it was the same GM that told you the disappearence bug was intended. The one they fixed last week. biggrin

I have a screenshot of a WoW GM handing out loot that was supposed to drop from one of the Molten Core bosses, but didn't because the boss bugged out and couldn't be killed. Which by the way, happened about 2 years after release, not within the first month.

Quote
But my point is that I've yet to see any content WORTH doing in groups in AoC - simply because they haven't itemized things properly, nor have they balanced the game to require good gear.

That's because you haven't seen any group content period.

As for the game requiring good gear, see my first paragraph. My last char - pally - at lvl 50 was running around in a crappy green lvl 30 chest piece, my friends were laughing at me, but I didn't have any troubles leveling/soloing. [edit] Obviously I am talking about WoW here smile

Although, I have to admit, having that nice axe I looted in Sanctum did help me stay alive a few times.

Quote
That's something I most definitely couldn't say about WoW - where the right weapon at the right time could almost double your DPS, even at the lower levels.

Same about Aoc as well, just yesterday I looted a sword that brought my dps from 10 to 21.6 on my low level Dark Templar. I already mentioned the blue axe my Barb looted in Sanctum, it was a nice bump in dps.

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I don't see how WoW introduced the concept that soloing was preferable - that's just your own personal opinion.

If on the way to lvl 70, you do all instances and I will do none, I will have less time /played (providing that we both are playng efficiently with a goal to level up faster, i.e. no crafting, etc.). It's a well established fact, although you can choose to disagree of course (not that you need a permission from me, obviously smile).

And since the original discussion was about leveling progress, not loot, hence the conclusion - WOW is the first game where it was more effective (i.e. faster to level) to solo.

And I definitely agree that WoW has superb grouping content. Amazingly good actually. The point, however, was that it was the only MMO in its time that allowed to get (fast and efficiently) to the level cap 100% solo. That's why it's the first Single Player MMO, not because it didn't have group content, don't be silly.
« Last Edit: June 20, 2008, 08:35:33 PM by StriderGG » Logged
DArtagnan
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« Reply #274 on: June 20, 2008, 09:35:57 PM »

StriderGG

Yes, our posts are long smile

It really boils down to the difference in our perceptions. I'm not sure why you think I'm diminishing your point by stating it. I'm simply saying that you're talking about levelling, and I'm talking about grouping overall. I'm not agreeing that because levelling is easy and comfortable, the game is preferable to play solo - that's the key point I'm making.

Quote
If I understand what you said later correctly, to you grouping experience is horrible because you get no loot with big meaningful numbers. To me, grouping experience is great because it's challenging, is different enough from other games, requires skill, gives great exp and nice loot.

Now who's diminishing the point?

Big meaningful numbers... Nice.

Anyway, I enjoy those other things as well - but the primary standout in terms of solo vs grouping in WoW WAS the loot. In AoC, that part is missing - along with all the others.

I've done some seriously challenging group quests in WoW - and you always gain more XP because you complete quests faster in a group. You also kill faster, which means shared XP amounts to about the same. If you group efficiently in WoW - you will level up faster than if you solo. Not MUCH faster, but faster.

That said, it takes practice to group efficiently, and you need discipline to stay away from awful drop quests and the like.

You say you didn't need blue gear in WoW during levelling, and you're right - you didn't. But again, there's literal need and there's what you might call the illusion of need.

You can say that you didn't go through instances with your first chars in WoW because you knew gear wasn't needed to level. That makes you rather special, because wherever I looked people were after groups so they could gear up so they had a chance during the harder quests, or even better could go through the challenging instances.

When I played WoW - being an absurdly obsessed competitive and powergaming freak - numbers meant a LOT to me. I like to challenge myself, and I loved to maximise my damage output from the very beginning, even though I didn't understand anything about the mechanics originally. The difference between blue and green gear was night and day - and if you claim the same is the case in AoC - then I have to call bullshit. That's just plain untrue.

Naturally, I would never go through instances in WoW - today - if I were to level a new character, because as you say, you don't REALLY need gear to level up and I've seen it all now. The same is the case for AoC - only the difference is that I wouldn't even go through the instances during the very first playthrough - because it's OBVIOUS the mechanics aren't working and the balance is off.

If you claim that blue items shave off a few seconds and nothing more in WoW, then you're displaying ignorance in terms of the game balance. Blizzard know how to handle game balance, and they know how to make gear a satisfying reward. We won't agree that because you CAN level to 60 or 70 with relative ease, it doesn't matter what kind of gear you're carrying. Your efficiency is GREATLY increased by wearing good gear, and if you want to experience the group content you NEEDED that gear unless you were a very competent player - and none of us knew what the hell we were doing with our first chars.

It's simply not fair to look at WoW in hindsight, pretending you knew what you know now when you first started playing.

You again claim that you had zero issues soloing characters in WoW, and that's good. I guess that means you had zero issues missing out on the best part of WoW, which is the extremely competently designed and balanced instances. That's another reason we're not agreeing, because to me the game isn't worth playing if you miss out on that.

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I honestly don't remember if there is any content for groups prior to mid 30's. Sure, there might be some quests marked as "group" even in Tortage, but those are introductionary (unless you play them in Epic mode, I bet you can't solo there with any efficiency, unless all mobs are grey to you).

There are several group quests prior to the mid-30s, yes.

I can't say whether they are intro-quests or not, but I think having intro quests into the 30s is a bad design decision, because I should be able to get a feel for the game by then.

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After mid 30's though, I bet you can't solo group quests in the northern part of the Valley (cimmerian zone, forgot its name). Not even if you are a few levels higher. I bet you can't solo Sanctum. Or northern part of Fields of the Dead (we are getting into mid 40's here). Or the 24hr instances off the resources zones

I bet I CAN solo most group quests - and I'll get back to you on that.

About the instances, no I can't solo them nor did I claim that I could.

Again - I'm saying that there's no POINT in doing the instances - because gear balance is screwed. I never said I could solo them.

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And that's from my personal experience. Sure, some guild could have one-shotted some raid boss. I don't know. I don't care. And you shouldn't care either in your mid 30's. If you like referencing to WoW, you should remember that, at first, Molten Core also didn't work as intended.

I'm glad you don't care - but I do. I like it when the games I play are made by people who understand game balance.

I don't remember anyone one-shotting Ragnaros in WoW - but maybe you can dig up a link?


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See you are talking about loot again, as well as saying that you don't really have any experience with the subject. People in low 50's used to farm Sanctum for items (until grey mobs' damage was fixed), there was some nice loot.

Why do you put it like that?

"See..."

I never even got to retort on anything you said, and you go on like I denied I was talking about loot.

Yes, I'm talking about loot - and in fact it's probably my biggest problem with the group content. You don't need whatever reward you get, because the balance is missing.


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I wonder if it was the same GM that told you the disappearence bug was intended. The one they fixed last week.


First, it wasn't a GM who told me, it was a CM.

Second, they didn't fix it - they reduced the problem.

Third, yes it IS intended.

smile

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I have a screenshot of a WoW GM handing out loot that was supposed to drop from one of the Molten Core bosses, but didn't because the boss bugged out and couldn't be killed. Which by the way, happened about 2 years after release, not within the first month.

That's nice, but do you have a screenshot of a GM from WoW admitting that they didn't expect anyone to reach the end-game and actually do the content they had in place?

You see, we're talking about different levels of incompetence here.

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That's because you haven't seen any group content period.

Are you saying group quests aren't group content?

That's incredibly silly.

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Same about Aoc as well, just yesterday I looted a sword that brought my dps from 10 to 21.6 on my low level Dark Templar. I already mentioned the blue axe my Barb looted in Sanctum, it was a nice bump in dps.

Are you aware that the majority of the damage you do in AoC comes from the actual combo/spell and not the item itself? The DPS listed on your weapon isn't your actual DPS.

In WoW, gear made a huge difference because the abilities scaled with your weapons. In AoC - you have end-game abilities that deal the same damage as low-level abilities because gear isn't affecting the damage output like it should.


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If on the way to lvl 70, you do all instances and I will do none, I will have less time /played (providing that we both are playng efficiently with a goal to level up faster, i.e. no crafting, etc.). It's a well established fact, although you can choose to disagree of course (not that you need a permission from me, obviously ).

And since the original discussion was about leveling progress, not loot, hence the conclusion - WOW is the first game where it was more effective (i.e. faster to level) to solo.

You seem to be under the impression that I've claimed that doing instances would level you up faster.

I'm not sure why.

Anyway, whatever you think the original discussion was about is hardly relevant now.

We've expanded the discussion.

WoW didn't introduce the emphasis on solo content which is what I perceived the original discussion to be about. WoW simply didn't force people to group - and if that changed anything, then the people are to blame - not the game.

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And I definitely agree that WoW has superb grouping content. Amazingly good actually. The point, however, was that it was the only MMO in its time that allowed to get (fast and efficiently) to the level cap 100% solo. That's why it's the first Single Player MMO, not because it didn't have group content, don't be silly.

At least I'm not as silly as the term single player MMO used to define an MMO with soloable content.
« Last Edit: June 20, 2008, 09:46:10 PM by DArtagnan » Logged
YellowKing
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« Reply #275 on: June 20, 2008, 10:10:41 PM »

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I bet I CAN solo most group quests - and I'll get back to you on that.

No, you can't. Trust me.  icon_biggrin

I'm a Conqueror, which is a tank class, so I should be able to take a beating. But even green group quests are often impossible to solo, not to mention ones that are appropriate for your level. I'm not saying *all* group quests are impossible to solo, but the vast majority do indeed require a group simply because they usually involve group-level mobs.

I won't get into discussing all the points involved, because you guys going back and forth is entertaining enough on its own.  icon_biggrin

However, let me boil it down to an analogy that pretty much sums up my thoughts.

It's sort of like if some FPS developer came along and added a way to play the game without shooting people, because they wanted to capture the "non-violent familiy" market that didn't like first-person shooters. And it was wildly successful, because they sold tons of copies to people who didn't buy shooters. And then every other FPS developer said, "Hey, we want some of that money, we're making all of our shooters non-violent too!" Pretty soon, everyone is shooting Nazis in Call of Duty 6 with Nerf guns and water pistols. The people new to shooters are thrilled - wow, look at this new experience, this is cool! But the poor guy over here who grew up on original violent FPS is shit outta luck. His genre has been hijacked by people who never liked his genre in the first place. That's the frustration I feel (and StriderGG as well, if I'm reading him right).

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DArtagnan
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« Reply #276 on: June 20, 2008, 10:30:57 PM »

Quote from: YellowKing on June 20, 2008, 10:10:41 PM

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I bet I CAN solo most group quests - and I'll get back to you on that.

No, you can't. Trust me.  icon_biggrin

I'm a Conqueror, which is a tank class, so I should be able to take a beating. But even green group quests are often impossible to solo, not to mention ones that are appropriate for your level. I'm not saying *all* group quests are impossible to solo, but the vast majority do indeed require a group simply because they usually involve group-level mobs.

I won't get into discussing all the points involved, because you guys going back and forth is entertaining enough on its own.  icon_biggrin

However, let me boil it down to an analogy that pretty much sums up my thoughts.

It's sort of like if some FPS developer came along and added a way to play the game without shooting people, because they wanted to capture the "non-violent familiy" market that didn't like first-person shooters. And it was wildly successful, because they sold tons of copies to people who didn't buy shooters. And then every other FPS developer said, "Hey, we want some of that money, we're making all of our shooters non-violent too!" Pretty soon, everyone is shooting Nazis in Call of Duty 6 with Nerf guns and water pistols. The people new to shooters are thrilled - wow, look at this new experience, this is cool! But the poor guy over here who grew up on original violent FPS is shit outta luck. His genre has been hijacked by people who never liked his genre in the first place. That's the frustration I feel (and StriderGG as well, if I'm reading him right).



I'm glad to be of entertainment service smile

Oh, and I'm pleased that you and StriderGG stand together in your times of great distress slywink

Anyway, I'll win the "mainstream destroyed my hobby" award when we all start crying for real  crybaby
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Sparhawk
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« Reply #277 on: June 20, 2008, 11:36:27 PM »

I canceled my AoC account today for a number of reasons. But I'll list the number one right here and now...

I don't feel compelled to explore the world. To log in and help out the virtual people that inhabit the world of Hyboria. Everything seems stale, dry, and plastic. There is no emotional content and no sense of a community.  AoC as it is today is a hodgepodge of ideas without a clear focus as to what it wants to be. Sieges, Raids, and higher level content from what I hear is so unfinished or broken that is isn't worth spending the time to level up to 80. I want large scale PvP like in DAoC and not a counter-strike clone with swords and sorcery. 

Also the combo system is a neat idea but the execution is poor. Melee classes fail at PvP since they can barely get combos off leaving casters/ranged dps as kings of the hill right now.

This game screams console MMO right now and I don't think that'll change with patches or updates. We'll see in time but it'll be too little too late for a lot of us.



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Arclight
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« Reply #278 on: June 20, 2008, 11:39:11 PM »

I guess I'm just not as put out or worried by the way games are going as some of you here. Change is certain! In everything.
My Dad shook his head over my music I shake my head of my son's choice........."The good old days"....is always something we can refer to when we don't like the way things are changing.
Table top pen n paper players lamented the fact that PC's would now be running Role Playing Games.......Bah, the injustice of it all!!!! They don't know hard core Role Playing until they've drunk 4 pints of hot chocolate around a friends table battling gelatenous slime.

Bend but dont break.......sooner or later someone will make the niche game you guys crave. But you have to realize that thats what it will be........Niche.
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Sparhawk
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« Reply #279 on: June 21, 2008, 12:00:35 AM »

Quote from: Arclight on June 20, 2008, 11:39:11 PM

I guess I'm just not as put out or worried by the way games are going as some of you here. Change is certain! In everything.
My Dad shook his head over my music I shake my head of my son's choice........."The good old days"....is always something we can refer to when we don't like the way things are changing.
Table top pen n paper players lamented the fact that PC's would now be running Role Playing Games.......Bah, the injustice of it all!!!! They don't know hard core Role Playing until they've drunk 4 pints of hot chocolate around a friends table battling gelatenous slime.

Bend but dont break.......sooner or later someone will make the niche game you guys crave. But you have to realize that thats what it will be........Niche.

I don't crave a niche game, I crave a game that has the basics of MMO's down. AoC is a niche game as it stands imo. Playing a tank class it sure would be nice to know wtf my armor class is. Armor doesn't even show what the AC is and that is bothersome. Stats weren't even working properly and it took the community to figure this out. The devs actually thought they were working properly! Not displaying stat changes on the character inventory screen = fail. making me jump back an forth between two different windows is silly.

AoC is a niche title. It has a "new game" high right now but when the smoke clears it'll have a sub par subscriber base in a few months unless they seriously start adding a lot more content and fleshing out the game world.

I'm not giving up on AoC I just don't want to pay the developers money for a game that lacks the MMO basics.

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