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Self-analysis: Why do I not feel the urge to log on anymore?

Discussion in 'UHall' started by hawkeye_pike, Apr 20, 2011.

  1. hawkeye_pike

    hawkeye_pike Babbling Loonie
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    A posting of Jonathan Baron made me write this (very good post btw.):

    The turning-point in my relation to UO was when I stopped doing things that would require a lot of investment of time. For example:
    • I wanted to become a legendary fisherman. I gave up after about 15 quests.
    • I wanted to engage the True Harrower in Felucca. I found nobody to do it with, now I'm not looking anymore.
    • I wanted to organize huge sea battles and boat races. I gave up on that cause hardly anybody would participate.
    • I wanted to make the United Pirates the most notorious and well-known evil RP guild in UO.
    • I wanted to run a famous vendor who sells good equipment for fair prices. Gave up due to a lack of customers, and because Luna-merchants bought my vendor empty and resold the stuff for 5 times the price.
    • And many more.
    I realized that all those activities that keep me busy in UO only are fun with a high server population. But the way it is now, these activities are frustrating, because I'd be doing these things mostly for myself. And I'm not a player who plays a computer game for himself, I only play because of the entertainment a healthy and active community would offer.

    What is now left?
    • Item collecting.
    • Learning new skills for no real purpose.
    • Making gold for no good reason (since gold has become irrelevant).
    • IDOCs (see item collecting).
    • Aiming for those rare end-game features like a Britannian Galleon or a house in Magincia, which nobody really needs because they do not in any way improve my gaming experience.
    • Waiting for the next booster and new features.
    The point is, new features like brewing don't do anything for me. (Brewing would be cool if there was an actual community that would roleplay around it.) When I log in I do not do this because I'm bored and want to kill time, but because I enjoy the friendship, adventure, quarrel, war, drama, company, fun and action in a huge and active community. Without such a community, there's not really a point in continuing to playing UO.

    I won't buy any new booster unless there is a promising concept to really do something about increasing the player subscriptions significantly.

    The Classic Client is just one reason why I have doubts that this will ever happen. Reading the requests towards the developers on this board is yet another. We worry only about items and features instead of worrying about the root of all problems. I remember times when boards contained mostly threads where people argued about PKs, looting, guild conflicts and other social aspects of UO. Unfortunately, these days seem to be over for good.
     
  2. Lord Raven

    Lord Raven Seasoned Veteran
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    I agree that it would be good for new features to be developed with RP in mind. I would like to see more things that require teamwork. Not fighting stuff, there plenty of that. But brewing would be a good example. I also suggested some ideas for housing customization that would allow for old style "barn raising" player events.

    One problem that I see now is that whenever the devs come up with something that could encourage players to get together, any items required just end up being sold on Luna vendors for huge fees.

    As convenient as vendors are, I feel that the game would be better without them.

    I remember when I was a young lad, I would go to the forge in Delucia or Moonglow and barter with the smiths and miners for armor. Now I just roam the streets of luna, the lonliest inhabited city in Sosaria...

    I'm not a big fan of bank-spamming to sell items, but there is some satisfaction with actually dealing with a live person to acquire or sell items.

    I hope that when the devs release the final plans for the Maginica Bazaar, it's designed as an open market where players and craftsmen can gather to exchange goods and services in person.

    I see folks describe this game as an MMOG and I can't help thinking... NO!, it's an MMORPG... I hope that EA can continue to develop content that keeps the RP in the game.

    Thanks for the post Hawkeye... you gave me inspiration for my blog today. ;)
     
  3. GalenKnighthawke

    GalenKnighthawke Grand Poobah
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    Hawkeye, I really respect you.

    But your post confuses me.

    You would rather do things by yourself yet you find meaning only in a community of players.

    Also:

    I have added emphasis; hopefully you'll see what sent up one of my red flags.

    There's also this:

    I can assure you that most of us, who never played PKs, did not consider PKing to be a social aspect of UO in any meaningful way. It's kind of time to get over Trammel, I'm sorry.

    I'll just stop there.

    -Galen's player
     
  4. hawkeye_pike

    hawkeye_pike Babbling Loonie
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    The point is, since there hardly are any players, and especially no crafters hanging out at the blacksmith shop all day, the only way to trade is through vendors. The importance and success of over-priced vendors is just a symptom for the dwindling community.
     
  5. hawkeye_pike

    hawkeye_pike Babbling Loonie
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    Oh my, this is really nitpicking. I don't even know what to say about this. :)
    I guess you do know what I meant.
     
  6. GalenKnighthawke

    GalenKnighthawke Grand Poobah
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    Honestly, no I don't.

    And it's not nit-picking.

    It is, potentially, about a philosophical orientation that says "I find no value in these things, hence I infer that nobody else does either."

    I will not become a brewer when it's introduced. But I know others will.

    -Galen's player
     
  7. Farsight

    Farsight Crazed Zealot
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    I thought of a big reply to every point, but it came back to the same thing.

    I want to know how the UO team will bring in new people. Without them, the game is slowly losing its luster for me.
     
  8. Capn Kranky

    Capn Kranky Guest

    I have to disagree with you on this. Many times I was the ghost and not the ghost-maker. I never went nor played red. But it did allow for others to assist me in hunting down the culprit and exacting revenge. That was a social time believe it or not.

    PKs did another thing (as did lack of insurance) ... when you dirtnapped, most likely a good part or all of your armor or goods were looted. You were then needing to re-equip and it was usually at the neighborhood smith or tailor - both player characters.

    I experienced both scenarios above on Pacific and Atlantic. On Pac several of us used to go hunting the Yew Peninsula area where (at the time) Reapers were plentiful as on Reaper Point now.

    Pac had a guildhouse of mostly reds on the point. More than once we battled our way to their doorstep (capture the flag) and garnered their protection for the evening as reward. Died? Oh hell, yes ... but it was social to the max in so many ways.

    The way to regain some of this social mixing and mingling would be disastrous today I suppose ... remove repair deeds, insurance and POF. Make crafters *required* to maintain upkeep on the armor and weaponry of the land.
     
  9. LoL/Sonoma

    LoL/Sonoma Guest

    This all sounds fine and dandy ... but there arent 50 players sitting around Moonglow bank (50 more at Brit ... 50 at ...) waiting for word of the latest PK anymore. If i got PK'd now i'd have to check my icq/guild list to see if anyone was on and by the time i could round up enough people the PK would be long gone.

    Same thing with the "finding a tailor or smith" ... good luck finding one when you need one.

    This all goes back to population problems, which i dont see being fixed anytime soon without substantial investment by EA (a long LONG shot). So if you can't fix the problems, then at least combat the symptoms for those of us left enjoying the game.

    A bazaar system would be absolutely useless (on Sonoma at least) if it required people standing around waiting for customers.
     
  10. Tjalle

    Tjalle Grand Inquisitor
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    I´m in.
     
  11. deadite

    deadite Sage
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    I think UO has just reached a towering level of mish-mashed systems and band-aids that it really just needs a complete overhaul to balance and smooth out the play experience. That will never happen for two reasons: 1) EA will never pay for it, and 2) The vocal majority of players would not go for it.

    I miss the days when the game was "simpler"... ironically, it felt much deeper to me in those days. But I know it's just because of the social aspects that you mentioned that have faded away... either because of systems implemented or from lack of population.
     
  12. Amber Moon

    Amber Moon Seasoned Veteran
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    Ah Hawkeye.. I've been continuously subscribed, more or less, since '98. Which is not to say I have played continuously.

    What you describe happens to me at pretty regular intervals. I go outside. I play something else. I live.

    But UO is like the best dog you ever owned. She is there waiting for me at my feet whenever I feel the urge play some more.
     
  13. Tina Small

    Tina Small Stratics Legend
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    Hawkeye, I really wish you'd give some thought to trying Siege before you give up completely. All the things you listed are things that I think you'd find people to join you in doing on Siege. It isn't at all the horrible place I thought it would be and in my opinion, really is the way UO was meant to be or as close to it as we're going to get with all the changes that have been made so far.

    Don't have time to write any more than that and I'm not sure anyone would read it anyway, but please give it some thought. There are many fine players there who would be delighted to help get you started and many fine players there that would love to participate in the activities you listed. Those activities happen now but not quite with the frequency that I think everyone would like.

    Siege needs more folks like you who are willing to work hard to build characters and who enjoy just getting out and experiencing all that the game has to offer.
     
  14. unified

    unified Guest

    Count me in, also, because it will make no difference. High prices charged by the elite crafters caused me and others to create our own crafters. It is the better investment when you can do it yourself. Removing repair deeds, insurance and POF will only cause the remaining players to create their own crafters. That's what we do with the remaining character slots.

    Siege and Mugen are the only shards that can make these moves make sense. Even so, if prices get out of hand there, others will create another account to have their own crafter.
     
  15. hawkeye_pike

    hawkeye_pike Babbling Loonie
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    P.S.: I didn't want to turn this into a Trammel/Felucca or PK thread. I'm just pointing out that discussions about social aspects (and yes, hatred against PKs is a social aspect too) has been replaced by discussions about items and features.
     
  16. Vyal

    Vyal Guest

    Atl is your only real option now a days... 1 shard out of how many?
     
  17. Lord Raven

    Lord Raven Seasoned Veteran
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    How long have you played? Do you forget the fun in handing your items to a smith for repair just to have him keep (steal) them?

    As much as I support buying new items directly from crafters, before anyone took repair deeds away I'd want a sure-fire method of getting my items back.

    Perhaps a modified trade window that allows items to be repaired, but not transferred to the recipients backpack. This is a whole new can of worms though, so please keep repair deeds until there is a secure repair method, thanks.
     
  18. Spiritless

    Spiritless Seasoned Veteran
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    Dunno why some people make such a big deal about losing interest in UO.

    UO is a game. If you've played for long enough, it gets boring like any other game too. This occurs more quickly for some than others. Personally, I'll play something for a couple of years at absolute most then find something else to try. I kinda pity the people who proudly state they've been playing for 13 years or whatever non-stop. To be conditioned to do the same repetitive stuff over that duration of time seems truly scary to me.

    So yeah. Maybe you should just cancel your account and play another, completely different game for awhile? It's hardly a big deal. Playing anything for a long duration and it should, if you've retained your sanity, get boring. There are plenty of other, good games out there to play for awhile. UO will still be here if you decide you wanna play again in 6 months or so, by that time playing might be a refreshing experience... or you might find that you've completely lost interest. One or the other.

    Take care.
     
  19. Hannes Erich

    Hannes Erich Seasoned Veteran
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    You should check out EUO! They're working on a COOL NEW 3D CLIENT!!!
     
  20. GalenKnighthawke

    GalenKnighthawke Grand Poobah
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    Anyone who thinks UO was never item-based before AoS has never sat through a PK whining about how his invulnerable armor was beaten off by a macer he attempted to victimize.

    Or has never been one-hit-killed by a Heavy Crossbow of Vanquishing.

    Or farmed skeletons for bone armor because bone armor offered great protection without the dex penalty.

    Or lamented not being able to find a vendor selling GM katanas.

    Or read debates on the UO usenet group about what the "best armor" for a warrior was. (A funny debate to have in a game that isn't item-based.)

    Anyone who thinks that UO was a crafter's paradise before never met an old guildmate of mine who would eschew crafted armor entirely and built a suit of armor with an unsightly hodgepodge of looted magical items. The result was a piece of awesomeness that no crated suit could possibly hope to duplicate until the "new leathers" came out. (Yes I still call barbed, horned, and spined the "new leathers.")

    Anyone else remember when Tribal Spears came out and they just-about killed GM-made spears? Or debates about what was better, orcish bows or GM bows?

    UO was always item-based, it is just moreso since AoS, and the item system more complex, which has both good and bad features. The current system makes item insurance a necessity, and removing it would result in UO recovering nothing good from its past, but many negative things from its past, most notably the frustration and great difficulty in recovery from loss.

    UO has always had a complex relationship between crafted items and looted items. Which one is predominant now depends upon your point of view.

    And, Hawkeye, when you cite PKs as a social aspect of the game, given the social problems they caused or exacerbated in the game and given that their activities drove people into Everuqest, turning it into a Fel/Tram debate is exactly what you're doing. PKs were mostly a social aspect of the game to the PKs themselves who used to hunt victims in packs. Thieves were along similar lines; looted house key plus about a dozen blue guards for the thief. To this day they will brag about it. The community rising up against PKs and controlling them was something I never experienced. I looked for it.

    But, at the end of the day, pre-Trammel I cannot think of an instance where another player helped me. Not once. I remember things like, a monster killing me, random person rezzing me only to kill me once I was rezzed. I remember being told things like "don't fight the PKs, it just makes them angry, just die." And, most of all, I remember "help me get my corpse" lures.

    Post-Trammel, I met people who behaved much better. It was fun to actually help people get their corpses and to know it wasn't a lure unless someone suddenly dropped a moonstone and said "my corpse is right through this gate."

    Your post boils down to two things.

    One, there are less people, and hence the meaning behind our characters' activities is less ascribed by other players and more by the game itself.

    Two, there is content in the game that doesn't appeal to you, and hence you generalize and assume that it appeals to no one.

    All I can say for the latter is that you are not the only player of this game.

    The former is, of course, a much more complex issue.

    I remember this very feature of the game, the "sandbox" environment wherein the meanings behind what your characters did was ascribed by other players or by yourself, being cited as both a point of criticism and a point of praise. I remember official content starting up in relatively short order, in fact one of the first House of Commons chat featured a lot of questions about the then-current storyline and future storylines.

    So contrary to popular belief, we had official content pretty early on.

    Also, at the end of the day, whether or not your character is farming skeletons for bone armor (and damn I can't remember if it even worked to farm skeletons or if you had to seek out bone knights) or farming dread spiders for gold or farming Corguls for a Helm of Vengeance....It's all farming.

    So, even that is not new.

    The solution for in-game meaning has always been and always will be, for me, role-playing. But that ain't new. I've role-played just about everything I've done in this game since I started. I can't conceive of not. And role-playing doesn't just mean interacting with the RP community, though of course it means that. It means being your character in-game. It means that just like IRL we have jobs from student to teacher to welder to writer to software engineer, our characters have jobs from orc killer to fisherman to imbuer.

    From here we could go into many areas....Population, quantity v. quality; directed experience v. sandbox; etc.

    -Galen's player
     
  21. LoL/Sonoma

    LoL/Sonoma Guest

    Wow. That was quite the trip down memory lane! The first time i was ever PK'd was by a blue thief in Moonglow (my old haunt). There was a scam back then to snoop/pickpocket (dont remember how, but you were still immune to guards) someone and wait for them to attack ... when WTFPWN them with the above mentioned Heavy Crossbow.

    I also remember trapped chests sitting outside of town, poisoned food everywhere, and basically needing a few guards to do any lumberjacking or mining ... as if *whack whack whack ... snore* isnt bad enough! =)

    Back on topic: EVery time i get a little bored with UO i either take a break for a week, or try something totally new. I'm working on my first Sampire and my first Ninja right now. Interesting stuff. When i tire of that (and nothing says i'll finish making them before i do) i still want to work cooking and maybe bowcraft (the only crafting skills i've never GM'd in all these years). I also need to deco my new house and it wouldnt hurt to try to get to a few EM events either.
     
  22. Capn Kranky

    Capn Kranky Guest

    I have a GM+ Tailor and GM+ Smith on LA. I have a GM Tinker there too. I would have no problem establishing repair facilities at any public forge area to effect repairs.

    Given that Imbuing is not yet developed to assist in creation of items and runics are low supply in my chests, this is the best I could do now. I would be more than happy to apply POF where possible to assist ... all of this for tips as in the old days.

    Given all that I see your point and raise you lots of empty landscape. <shrug> When posts of server merges are made I shudder yet can understand where something like that might help somewhat. But until someone can adequately tell me how housing would work fairly for all, I won't go there.
     
  23. Capn Kranky

    Capn Kranky Guest

    As Galen points out ... there was a level of itemization to UO even pre-Tram. I was there and I most wanted that Silver Katana of Vanquishing that one fellow had in his vendor. By the time I got the gp for it the darn thing was sold!

    If that ain't item envy I don't know what it is ... but I did get one eventually. My most prized possession and a trusted smith character always repaired it for me. Did I mention that smith was a regular feature at the Brit Forge on Mondays and Fridays, other ones on Tuesday & Saturdays with the rest of the days playing the game. That is social IMO - and item-related too.
     
  24. LoL/Sonoma

    LoL/Sonoma Guest

    Agreed. I am commonly the person getting yelled at for even saying i would like to see it happen. But as you point out (and has been discussed ad naseum) mergers are probably not a realistic possibility due to housing.
     
  25. hawkeye_pike

    hawkeye_pike Babbling Loonie
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    Merging servers would not solve the problem. It would stretch the life of UO for maybe 1 or 2 more years, but it would not bring new players to UO.
     
  26. Picus at the office

    Picus at the office Certifiable
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    Most of these thoughts of the old days were when this game had little else out there competing for players. Times have changed, bummer. I miss those days but such is life.
     
  27. jtw1984

    jtw1984 Seasoned Veteran
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    Well hawkeye, I do have some words of encouragement for you. The majority playing UO miss the "golden days" and therefore they want to relive it. So the majority makes sure UO stays the way it was in the late nineties.

    This means a crappy client that no new people will want to use on their widescreen monitors. This also means rampant cheating will continue to exist and drive people away from game.

    The devs mentioned working on the EC client, but I still don't hold much hope with how that will turn out.

    Anyways the main reason I'm responding here is that maybe you should try a new game. I began playing Rift and loved it except for the imbalances in pvp. However, I can tell you there is nothing better than playing a great game in a great modern client. There is also nothing better than playing a game with few bugs.

    Maybe you just need to play a new game, and quit being held back by the masses in UO. I have only played UO for about 3-4 years, but there is only so much I can take. I keep waiting for a new client that will work but I just don't believe it will come. I played many games before UO, and I believe UO is the better game. However, no good game can hold my commitment when it is overran with cheaters, bugs, imbalances, and the only stable client is from almost a 15 years ago.
     
  28. Petra Fyde

    Petra Fyde Peerless Chatterbox
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    How would you feel about a shard where you get nagged in General chat to go stock your vendors cos they've sold out? Or asked can you stock [item] cos they can't find it anywhere else?
    These are the kind of messages I get on Siege.
     
  29. Raptor85

    Raptor85 Certifiable
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    Not to mention the only shard where fishermen have to watch out for ACTUAL pirates :D

    And if you want to read threads with people complaining about PK's, hop over to the siege forums as well.
     
  30. Petra Fyde

    Petra Fyde Peerless Chatterbox
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    I had to ransom my box of seacharts! (well, I didn't have to, I could have just written some more, but paying a ransom for them was more fun)
     
  31. Im with you. The problem is you are trying to find things to do versus the game creating things for us to do that arent static.

    Want to be a pirate. The game should create random sea encounters that you will come across.

    Want to find something to fight. You and a group friends should be able to walk east and find challenging encounters the game creates.

    The game has become recall and do. If you dont have enough people, cant do this.

    Sad really.
     
  32. Philosophically speaking, this game, and others like it, has no real purpose. In fact, nothing does. Even the Earth itself could be taken out, at any moment, by a supernova. Leaving nothing left to mark our being here but a thin spray of cosmic ash... But I digress.

    One thing I've learned over the past decade or so is that, at least in terms of online communities, you really need to be the change you want to see in the game. If you can't seem to get people motivated, then gather a sizable group of likeminded individuals, grab some EM-backing, and off you go!
     
  33. Woodsman

    Woodsman Guest

    They are working on the client and working on high resolution graphics, and tying it into a new player experience and a better quest system. They've said this now three times. Do you want EA to issue a press release summing up those things that have now been mentioned three times?

    I know that sounds snarky, but those are four major systems that being specifically updated for new players.
     
  34. I think it's spring fever....i haven't felt like playing in days. The only problem with this is were still getting snow here. :(
     
  35. Tjalle

    Tjalle Grand Inquisitor
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    I guess his question still stands though. How will new people be aware of that?

    A new player experience and the other stuff you wrote won´t do much if they don´t advertise and find the new players that UO needs.
     
  36. Tjalle

    Tjalle Grand Inquisitor
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    I think I started in 2005 so unfortunately those days were before my time.

    The modified trade window you mentioned would be a nice substitute to repair deeds. Little risk involved but still encourages interaction between players...
     
  37. Woodsman

    Woodsman Guest

    The UO team has explained how they plan on bringing in new players.

    Advertising, that's a different problem, and one that's probably out of their hands just like the GM thing is. UO will get plenty of notice with a graphics update and everything else on the gaming sites, especially Curse.com, Massively.joystick.com and Gamasutra and the others, but that's not the same as active advertising. That's going to come down to probably having somebody in BioWare going to bat for them.

    EA PR took a very active interest in that butchered video we got, and they had obviously instructed them not to talk about certain things at the House of Commons, which really makes things weird. It's also made weird by the fact that we are getting these in stages, so they are probably not going to actively do anything until everything is complete. It would be dumb as hell to start advertising before the four systems are finished being updated.

    I was away from the game at the time, but I remember being very aware of Stygian Abyss's release from a lot of different websites. I have no idea if EA was actively advertising or they just did the cheap thing and sent out press releases and had the gaming sites talking to the devs. But I remember the gaming sites talking to devs and remember seeing plenty of articles. I was very tempted to come back, but I was heavily invested time wise in another MMO at the time.
     
  38. Lord Essex

    Lord Essex Journeyman
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    I have to say I can relate to what Hawkeye feeling.. recently came back and amazed in the lack of.. interaction between players.. I know some people well go to Atlantic.. others invite Siege.. Nothing against either.. (Well lil against Atlantic.. nm) but home is home.. 'N I really would rather not leave Lake Superior. That said.. it seems everyone is entrenched to where they are (as am I).. Yet I have a nice large area with multiple max storage homes including a second 18x18 in Tram, in an area perfect for quiet little community & I can't GIVE these places away.. All I'd like to do is bring together some people who enjoy the game and would apprciate logging on and having neighbors to visit. A chance to come together and have some sort of community. I dunno what to say other that I love the game for what it was.. The friends I had and the memories that were made..
     
  39. longshanks

    longshanks Guest

    there was a rival guild last nite doing a spawn on chessy. they had the boss up at ice west and my guild came in and had a very nice interaction with them. :p

    seriously i feel for hawkeye. i'v been through his site and lets face it. anyone who takes the time to make a site like that has a passion for the game.

    i really feel ea pooped the bed with the high seas booster. how they didnt make a water based champ spawn is beyond me.

    fishing for lobsters??? cmon. cant even eat them with a nice oak/vanilla scented chardonnay.
     
  40. Luvmylace

    Luvmylace Sage
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    That is just a need to take a break rearing it's ugly head. give a bit of time and you will miss UO :)
     
  41. UOKaiser

    UOKaiser Guest

    Imbued items. No if or what or even a little doubt about it. All others are as good as trash. Any thing crafted or anything looted are trash compare to imbued items. This is a very very bad thing. Thats all I wanted to point out. I agree with everything else you said.
     
  42. Kojak

    Kojak Lore Master
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    I guess his alliance leader ran out of new players to corrupt (begins with a P)
     
  43. Capn Kranky

    Capn Kranky Guest

    Oh gad! This brings back memories of my old training sessions on Pac! A buddy would put on looted plate and just stand there as I whacked my staves and maces on him - healing as needed. When a piece disintegrated, we'd stop while he got another and put it on.

    I so wish macing would destroy armor again.

    Huh. In 1998-2000 when I was on Pac, a bloke did repeatedly attack/kill me and would attempt rez-kills. He thought I was someone else and when he was finally made aware that I was not that person, he was all apologetic. He was a blue that ran 4 kills, macro/play off at least one then kill again.

    After that he took me to Brit Crossroads where all the reds just waited for unwary souls. Introduced me to a few he knew and I was then given some training in the fine art of dueling and PvP arts. I never excelled but it did give me an appreciation.

    I returned the favor by being the errand boy to any red who needed supplies that could not be gotten in towns. Oft times I got very generous tips in the form of gold or some looted piece of this or that. It is this that I recall as social interaction ... even tho it started out badly (for me).

    Other than these two comments, you make good points.
     
  44. Lord Urza

    Lord Urza Guest

    I can relate to the hawkeyes general feeling.
     
  45. HD2300

    HD2300 Certifiable
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    If you take out all EA paid EMs and the pr-astroturf-bots this board would be dead. I agree UO needs new blood.
     
  46. JC the Builder

    JC the Builder Crazed Zealot
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    I feel the exact same way. The developers keep focusing in the wrong areas or making poor decisions. For example, where is the jewelry box? Do they realize how frustrating it is to sort through dozens/hundreds of pieces of identical looking items. This is something that should have been available with Age of Shadows. Instead they make a brewing system which is going to look nice next to the aquarium and parrot.

    When are we going to have a producer who has the guts to tackle core game issues and not add new house decorations.