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Grouping/Raiding - Thinking long term

Discussion in 'Project Gorgon: Ask the Devs' started by ErasmusPrime, Aug 28, 2014.

  1. ErasmusPrime

    ErasmusPrime Visitor

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    Hey guys,

    I just searched around on the forums and used google to search on the blog and didn't see any discussion on the plan regarding group grinding, and raiding.

    My formative gaming years were spent playing EverQuest which may help people understand my perspective on the topic. Personally, I really really hope that the game, while leaving some soloing options in place that are fairly difficult/specialized (quad kiting, hell yea), does end up setting the design in a way that forces people to work together in longer term groups. While the time spent getting on a list to join one of the 3-4 groups farming HighKeep might have sucked to a degree the time spent with the group, hours if possible, and the regular interaction with people in the zone over weeks, really to me is what contributed to the strong social underpinnings of EQ.

    You had to work together. You had to spend time with people. And the people you spent time with were fairly regularly familiar faces. The forced continual interaction is what builds friendships and alliances and eventually naturally forming guilds.

    To me, one of the big factors that lead to these dynamics was the concepts of pulling and setting up camp. I think one of the things that has really broken this aspect of these games in more recent years, which I see in the current system in PG is tethered mobs. This, baring a fairly quick respawn time, almost completely eliminates the possibility of setting up camps.

    Further, tethered mobs, especially as implemented now, ends up being a combat strategy. Pull a few and just keep attacking one until the others back off then 1v1 the single mob that stayed because you were doing damage. This, to me, feels way to exploitable and broken.

    If tethers need to be in game for some reason the leash should be lengthed substantially. My suggestion would be to pair the length somewhat with re-spawn times. Balance it so that a full group can set up camp in an area and pull from a large enough area to have a functioning camp but make the leash short enough so that people can't pull the entire zone.

    Finally, I am just curious what the current thoughts are regarding group size, raiding in general, and raid size. I really really miss the days of large scale raiding in EverQuest. My server actually had a guild that was called "Third Wave Go" and they literally used a zerg tactic. They would have 2-3 full raid groups, no strategy at all, and would just non stop rez charge whatever mob they were targeting. It was a huge joke until they actually started to seriously clear some content. It was amazing. I know the size is going to be somewhat dependent on the success of the game and the server population size but I would love the intended size to err on the side of larger rather than smaller.

    Anyway, that is enough about that for now. Let me know what you all think!
     
  2. Ferines

    Ferines Visitor

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    Right now, there is little to no incentive to party with people unless you know them or you're looking to socialize.
    Content is simply too easy to solo with the correct gear I'M STARING AT YOU NECRO TOWER, and this kills a lot of need to group. Right now I group with players because I like to talk to people and just be around others, not because it helps me in any way (it actually hinders XP gain and splits loot).

    Incentivizing grouping is kinda awkward to do unless everything is implemented well.

    Why do players need to group in the first place? Do they gain something from grouping, or is it required to complete content?
    If it is required to complete content, then you need to introduce more content that doesn't box players into needing to form groups or failing outright (for flexibility and all). If we players gain something extra from grouping like EXP or direct power, will that hinder meaningful interaction and punish players for trying to solo content?
    We can't depend on social factors to push people towards grouping, only hold them together.

    Right now we don't have content difficult enough to warrant grouping, and adding EXP gains from grouping would only make content pathetically easy to clear.
     
  3. ErasmusPrime

    ErasmusPrime Visitor

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    Absolutely, which is why I added the "Thinking Long Term" part of the title.

    Like you indicate. The aspects of the group/raid system that make or break grouping and working together are going to be rather fundamental to the aspects of design, implemented mechanics, and balancing. This is a conversation that needs to be had relatively early. I imagine that the developer already has a pretty good idea of the direction he wants to take things in this arena though which is why I posed this here in the Ask The Devs section.

    Its always going to be hard to find a balance between solo-able content and the rewards and benefits of grouping. Personally, I think that soloing at the same efficiency as a "full group" (as far as I know we do not know what a full group constitutes yet) should be really difficult.

    Or maybe the general community prefers games where you play solo most of the time with limited interaction with the community at large. However, since the Dev mentions specifically EverQuest in his comparison for the game I would hope that he would take a page out of the social chapter of that book and design in a manner that facilitates community, coordination, and teamwork as much as possible. The best things about those aspects being developed are that they also provide the recipe necessary for some of the best competition and drama possible. I loved my early gaming years and I have lot of great memories from a number of great aspects of the games I played but what truly stands out the most are my memories of competition, conflict, and drama. In the best possible way. These memories would not have been possible without a strong sense of grouping, raiding, guilds, and contested spawns/camps/dungeons.

    I wrote about this in the past on my blog, the post can be found here: http://lofalexandria.com/2012/12/the-failures-of-modern-day-mmos/

    I don't know how much more it expands on what I have already typed in my two posts in this thread but might be worth checking out if you are on the fence about the topic.
     
  4. awollsd

    awollsd Adventurer

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    me personaly i'ld love to see some group content. i'ld also love to see instanced dungeons.... they would be beneficial to both solo and group situations... sometimes players want to be left alone go to a dungeon and just kill/grind by themselves. these open world dungeons don't allow that. I go to a place I'm still going to have other people there taking my kills taking my loot and simply annoying me when I want to be alone. while at the same time I might want to take a group of friends to a hard dungeon and try some speed or tactical runs... if another group is already there and killed half the mobs then I'm not able to do this. I understand that in life if I go to a cave it's possible other people will be in said cave but that's the perks of fantasy games :) we can accomidate things that life simply cant :)

    I also would love to see raid bosses... more specificly I think the game needs it... there is little that draws attention more than a vid of 20+ people working together to take down a really tough raid boss. (aslong as it's done right and it requires some tactics to kill not just overwhelm him with a lot of ppl)

    about raid bosses i'ld been thinking about it and REALLY what i'ld LOVE LOVE LOVE to see is that statue guy in serbule (where the dungeon under the hand is) if say every so often when players reached a certain milestone in serbule he would come to life and terrorize serbule until he was killed. he would have (avoidable) long range attacks that reach any location in serbule except in town. he would be activated by something like when the players of OG reached a total of 100k kills in serbule, it wouldn't announce that he was waking (or maybe there be a little earthshake and the npc's of serbule would say something)

    so basically be I'm walking threw serbule.
    the other players was killing things and reach the 100k mark and he awakes
    I get targeted by him and see a target under me or a large shadow.. I know to get out of the way to dodge the attack or I stand there and get killed. 1 attack per second or something targeting a random person in serbule...
    then we know he has awoke and we rally players to go take him down.
    all particpants receive some reward then player that did the most damage would receive a special prize and (possibly) the player that did the most healing would get a special prize aswell.


    I would also like to see some work on dungeons... they should be more like the crypts with a boss at each level and each one having multiple levels. (like crypt floor one and floor 2) the floor's being 10-20 levels apart so that you would need to go do other things and level up before proceeding to the next level OR you could group up and head there early. there could be some dungeons (like maybe Kur Tower) that are never ending and each level gets progressively harder and could have a ranking system for it for both solo attempt and group attempts.


    TLDR: I agree we need more reasons to group and raid bosses are a must. i'ld sugest getting one in game rapidly to get video's to help attract ppl to the KS and steam GL.
     
  5. ErasmusPrime

    ErasmusPrime Visitor

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    "i'ld sugest getting one in game rapidly to get video's to help attract ppl to the KS and steam GL."

    Absolutely.

    If the devs could scrape together some semblence of a raid that would require like 15-20 people to work together to finish it I could absolutely see video of that encounter helping get people to try it out.