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GameBlog Announces Sandbox Articles

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by RaDian FlGith, Sep 15, 2010.

  1. RaDian FlGith

    RaDian FlGith Babbling Loonie
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    GameBlog @ jimsnyder.info is going to be posting a series of articles regarding sandbox MMO design, and today posted a prologue to that series just giving an idea of sandbox background.

    Obviously, this is relevant to UO as it stands presently as the best example of sandbox gaming out there (Second Life aside... explained in the article as to why Second Life doesn't count... hehe).

    So I wanted to extend the same invitation here that's on the blog too, which is to come take a look, keep up on the articles as they're posted, and share in the discussion about what makes sandbox games tick. One of the primary purposes of the series of articles is to sort of provide some skeletal framework for correcting some of the issues that plague the sandbox genre, and in order to do that effectively, I either need to become really good at guessing the best intents, or, more easily, I need to invite people to come play a part in discussing some of the thoughts I have which might open up strong, creative dialogues about what the genre truly needs.

    So anyhow, I figured I'd post this here and invite folks to come check it out. I'm sure as future articles are written, as long as they apply to UO, I'll announce them here, but I wanted to get the word out in advance.

    And as well in advance, thanks for reading!
     
  2. Lord Frodo

    Lord Frodo Grand Poobah
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  3. Nok

    Nok Lore Master
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    Hi RaDian,

    More often then not in the discussions I've been in concerning what is and is not a sandbox game... the two leading titles that get mentioned as defining a sandbox genre, are Ultima Online and EVE Online. What is your opinion of EVE Online as a sandbox? And where does it fit in the category with UO and SWG?
     
  4. Trebr Drab

    Trebr Drab Guest

    I'll be sure to check it out, Ra'D. I've got my 10' pole to prod it with. rolleyes:
     
  5. Beer_Cayse

    Beer_Cayse Guest

    I clicked and it is an innocent site. Rather good article, too! Several articles on AHS as well.
     
  6. RaDian FlGith

    RaDian FlGith Babbling Loonie
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  7. RaDian FlGith

    RaDian FlGith Babbling Loonie
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    Truth be told, I'll have to do a little bit of looking into EVE again. The last time I played it was during Beta Test, and I wasn't sufficiently drawn in by it to continue playing.

    I will do a little research on it -- and maybe even give it a whirl. Certainly wouldn't hurt to have a fresh perspective on it, because using one from a beta version of the game probably wouldn't be particularly fair either. hehe

    Have you happened to play EVE though? If so, are there any features that stand out in it that are different from, more uniquely implemented, or at least in line with some of the basics of either UO or SWG? Or anything in particular you'd suggest looking at? If you haven't played, that's okay, I'll still poke around... just figured I'd get your thoughts too. :)
     
  8. Nok

    Nok Lore Master
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    I have a lot of users that live & breath EVE, but I haven't played EVE enough to have a fair opinion myself... I only spent a few days or so with the trial demo a few years & several expansions ago. What I saw then was overwhelming, even for myself (gaming for decades, UO 13 years, etc.)... EVE has an intense and steep learning curve, something that EVE doesn't shy away from. Talking to the CCP devs at GDC, the players and the devs relish having a hardcore sandbox reputation.

    I believe UO is actually easier to get into, UO's learning curve not as steep. In big general themes, EVE and UO have some things in common... but when you get down to the details of the systems, it is hard to make a comparison because so much is so different.

    If there is one thing I would like to see UO take from EVE, is the attention to detail... the perfecting, polishing, redefining, and tweaking of existing systems within the game. This is one of the things that I hope I've been correctly reading between the lines of Cal's producer updates, the town hall, and the booster packs.
     
  9. Babble

    Babble Guest

    I read EVE's learning curve is easier these days, as they have Missions or Tutorials explaining things.

    EVE is a very interesting game with interesting concepts (offline skill gaining) and most importantly ONE SERVER for all.

    Will be interesting what points you will make in those articles as the sandbox discussion is recurring over at mmorpg boards very often.
     
  10. JC the Builder

    JC the Builder Crazed Zealot
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    I disagree that UO is the best example of a sandbox game. Eve Online takes the prize simply because it has a functioning economy.
     
  11. Petra Fyde

    Petra Fyde Peerless Chatterbox
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    hmm
    No offence, but I think this topic is more suitable for the Off Topic board.
     
  12. Trebr Drab

    Trebr Drab Guest

    I agree that a functioning economy is very important. But I don't know how Eve's works. Does their economy have a place for lower end and new players?

    What about at the top, is there a balance?

    Does the top feed off the bottom in a way that works?

    Or does their economy only work for well established players?
     
  13. Trebr Drab

    Trebr Drab Guest

    But what we say here does relate to UO, I think.
     
  14. Taylor

    Taylor Former Stratics CEO (2011-2014)
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    Hmm...interesting. Good article.
     
  15. Beer_Cayse

    Beer_Cayse Guest

    As Trebr points out and UO is being held up in the article as an example.

    Oh well ... whut-EVUH! <strolls of to lunch>
     
  16. Trebr Drab

    Trebr Drab Guest

    Not only that, but the conversation can be a help to UO Devs as we proceed. The economics in particular, at this juncture, is a very important aspect as UO moves forwards.
     
  17. Kiminality

    Kiminality Guest

    Lines do need to be drawn somewhere - Like, at which point does a mention of UO make it on-topic for Uhall.
    Since UO isn't the primary topic of the article, and only a prominent example of the article's topic, then it certainly deviates further from "on topic for Uhall" than a pure-UO topic.

    Y'all can still discuss it here.
     
  18. Taylor

    Taylor Former Stratics CEO (2011-2014)
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    It's safe in here. I showered. *sniffs self*
     
  19. Kiminality

    Kiminality Guest

    Finally! :p
     
  20. Taylor

    Taylor Former Stratics CEO (2011-2014)
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    Yeah, well, it's fall and annual traditions are important.
     
  21. JC the Builder

    JC the Builder Crazed Zealot
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    From day one you can craft items and have them sell. Every item in Eve is used up and destroyed at some point. Ammo, ships, modules, stations, crafting tools, etc.

    If you decide on a career as a crafter you can get skills to make T2 items (basically artifacts). Or you could try and build the biggest ships in the game which go for thousands of real life dollars.

    You never outgrow any item in Eve Online, it is always useful no matter who you are. A 8 year player will sometimes fly a Frigate (starting ship) and need that thruster you made.

    Eve Online's economy is so good because stuff decays and is destroyed. UO took this out with Age of Shadows without much considering and now we are in a big mess.
     
  22. Beer_Cayse

    Beer_Cayse Guest

    no problem on that score ... but do the Devs look here at all for any tidbits that may be amongst the chaff?
     
  23. Kiminality

    Kiminality Guest

    I'd say one problem with things currently in UO, in addition to the decay of items, is the product of two factors:
    1.) Stuff doesn't generally decay, or otherwise degrade. This includes being lost outright.
    2.) There is no limit on what equipment you can use.

    The first point stands simply - Barring bugs or carelessness, there is very little reason for me to lose any of my equipment. Keep it repaired, insured and powdered, and theoretically, it'll last forever.
    The second point bears a little explaining. The only progression of equipment lies with the player's overall means. Within a level-based system, there is a minimum level requirement that restricts the player from equipping anything but relatively good armour at any stage in the game (this prevents overpower at the lower levels, and the availability of better armour drives people to improve their kit). In UO, the only limitation is with player means - their ability to acquire the best equipment. That's a progression that usually only happens once per player (not character, or account), so the demand for anything short of the best (or near-best) equipment is reduced to trivial (especially with the prevalence of crafters).

    (Also, yeah, the devs do read here ;))
     
  24. Taylor

    Taylor Former Stratics CEO (2011-2014)
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    Prolly less chaff here than in UHall, lol. Also, Cal's posted here a few times, most recently on Mesanna's b-day. :thumbup1: