a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

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launcher
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby launcher » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:01 pm

the quests would be to essentially rent your character from you, to do tasks for them obviously, in return you get compensated, and depending how good you are at what you do thats how well you will get compensated.

lets say a player pays you for using your character 12 hours while your sleeping, at work, on vacation whatever reason, but would allow you to generate money. the risk being this person gets you killed.

nice idea with xp and the tech tree. im guessing the more complex the task the higher the xp requirement? would you have a penalty for unlocking to many areas? for example lets say there is 12 unlockable professions would each additional profession have a penalty associated with it and require more xp to unlock them items. for example in some games you can go down a different path i think its a dungeons and dragons one (icewind dale 2?) where its a 5% increase required to get a level up outside your class?
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby Kukanani » Thu Sep 09, 2010 7:06 am

the quests would be to essentially rent your character from you, to do tasks for them obviously, in return you get compensated, and depending how good you are at what you do thats how well you will get compensated.

lets say a player pays you for using your character 12 hours while your sleeping, at work, on vacation whatever reason, but would allow you to generate money. the risk being this person gets you killed.
This is extremely hard to protect from malicious players. Unless there is NO penalty for death, a player will take a quest from another player and once they control the other character will deliberately kill them, to make them drop items that a friend can pick up or even just to be mean.

Also, who defines "and depending how good you are at what you do thats how well you will get compensated"? Does the server calculate that? What if you mine 1000 ore, but you die 5 times in the process and lose a few items? It would take a *lot* of work to calculate that kind of thing on a server.

But if the person who gives the quest decides, then again it's really easy to be a weasel. I could give a person a quest to mine 1000 ore for me, he does it perfectly, but I could say "That wasn't very good at all. I'm only going to give you 2 gold coins now." And there's nothing the other player can do about it.

MMORPGs are so difficult to make jerk-proof ;)
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby launcher » Thu Sep 09, 2010 8:56 am

no death penalty beyond whats items are on you. (why take a dead players skills away, they died obviously there low to begin with or they wouldnt die to begin with....) perhaps a small hit on avaliable xp.

obviously ore wont change based on skills, just the amount you can mine will increase.

a nice safe feature would be if you die the contract is over. dieing should be rare in your own territory. make it so you cant kill another person from your empire. (can be expelled from towns though and the empire if there bad enough). so for example lets say there is a person out there doing that and they kill your character so what you would do is tell the town commander and have them removed from the city.

it depends though you probably would only do jobs for people you are friends or allys with in the game once you got settled in (before that point probably nothing worth stealing off you in effect use the fact you have nothing of value as your get use to the people your with time, before theres anything of value to steal)

in your example what would likely happen is the person would kill the person after they did all there work, sell the goods really fast and leave, but at that point the player that killed them name is known, likely will be a bounty on there head so local patrols will try killing them for the reward. the guy who did that will probably come up with some unprobable story and will likely get caught and executed next time.

what would be a neat idea is when a player quits and deletes there character half there resources should go to the main governor of the empire and the rest to the local town governor/commander. so in effect no resources in the game where lost. also gives the town commanders money to do additional building and contracting of players to help them.
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby brownboot » Sat Sep 11, 2010 9:18 am

what would be a neat idea is when a player quits and deletes there character half there resources should go to the main governor of the empire and the rest to the local town governor/commander. so in effect no resources in the game where lost.


This is too exploitable. Bots would just create/delete characters to farm starting equipment.
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby RockinRickOwen » Fri Sep 24, 2010 9:10 am

OK, back. Sorry if I seem in a bad mood, but I am. Don't want to take it out on anybody in any way.

the 4 game-years to 1 real day has several purposes, one of which is that within a year, civilizations can rise and fall. The design isn't Sim City or Civilization, though. It looks like a standard mmorpg, only that the time-rate is different. The idea is that the players create the history, by establishing, conquering or destroying cities and nations (for those with this ambition), or by some other means.

I'd say the over-arching purpose to allow the creation (by the players) of a complex history--the sort that we read about in Tolkien, Lewis, and just about any fantasy series I can think of (right now I'm re-reading Robert Jordan's "Wheel of Time").

There are 7-9 classes for characters, each with their own contribution to history. Wizards can commission towers/dungeons to be built, create monsters. Clerics can establish religions or sects, and commission the building of temples. Warriors can establish their own military unit (for instance, "The Order of the White Rose" or "the Immortals" or something). Bards can create epic poems and establish theaters. Merchants (think Sindbad) can create trade routes, and establish inns. And so on and so forth.

QUESTS: Here's a good example--at some point, a kingdom winds up with "the Holy Grail." It was either given to them by the Game Angels (the developers), or commissioned from a really excellent NPC-smith by a player with a lot xp (contributes to the quality of the item commissioned). The item would then be blessed by a cleric-player with a lot of xp (contributes to the quality of the blessing), and possibly further enchanted by a mage-player with a lot of xp. So here's this really powerful item (I call it a megatem) in the possession of a kingdom. It's possible for the item to be lost to theft, or hidden away during some invasion. For the sake of the story, let's just say that the kingdom possesses the item for 120 years (about one month, real time). The same player has been ruling the kingdom for all this time, but his character is the great-grandson of the king who commissioned the Grail in the first place. By this time, the player has decided (for some reason) to be a wicked king. For the last month, various other king-players have commissioned other players to find to capture the Grail, and a couple of king-players have fought open wars against the kingdom. All have failed. The current player-character (same player, different character) is doing exceedingly wicked things, so the GAME ANGELS (the developers) find a worthy player-warrior and upgrade the character to a Paladin, with the commission of gathering a party together to find the Grail and bring it to the Shepherd's Land (the only kingdom run by the developers, and it's neutral).

If the Paladin succeeds, then the Grail stays in the Shepherd's Land until some worthy kingdom is in desperate need of it, and the Paladin himself receives xp, as well as a place in history. If he fails... the Grail remains. If he dies, another player-character will be upgraded to Paladan, Prophet or Pilgrim, and asked to seek the Grail.

ON MONSTERS: It would be ridiculous and cumbersome to allow player-wizards to create as many respawnable monsters as they can, especially boss-monsters. There are no respawnable unique monsters in the game. A unique monster stays DEAD, and the player who killed it gets the glory for it. The more "successful" the monster was in whatever mayhem it created, the more glory that player will get for taking it down. But wizards can also create monster species (such as orcs or some species of dangerous animal or plant). The species can respawn, of course, but it can potentially be wiped out.

ON KINGS: Any player-character can become a king (by a variety of means, the most popular being by combat), and once they do so, they may change the laws of the kingdom as they see fit, as often as they want. This includes the tax code, and establishing/disestablishing a national religion, and outlawing or legalizing slavery. They may also commission buildings and items to be built and made. They may also issue open quests (anybody can try) or commission specific players to go on quests. They may also answer petitions from citizen-players. As well, they can also issue bounties for citizen-players. And of course, they can go to war.

ON CITIES AND BUILDINGS: One of the benefits for the 4 game-years to 1 real day is that cities can grow more rapidly, populations can expand (and therefore armies can grow), and ALSO the reverse: cities can decay, populations decline, and buildings age.

OUR TIME
JANUARY year 0-a city is established by a player-king.
FEBRUARY year 124-the city flourishes, under the same player-dynasty
MARCH year 236-the city is conquered and left to rot by the new player. The old player-dynasty continues dethroned either as refugees in another land, or citizens of the new kingdom.
APRIL year 360-the ruins are discovered by a player-mage, whose evil sorcery extends his life, allowing him to breed more monsters and gather more gold and items.
MAY year 480-the player mage is finally slain by a group of players commissioned to do so by a neighboring player-king. Other players have tried, and failed, and their items are discovered in the mage's vaults, and distributed to the victors. One of the player-characters is the heir of one of the player-characters slain by the wizard many years ago. This means that the player has recaptured his old equipment, albeit with a new character.
JUNE year 564-a player-king establishes a colony over the ruins of the dungeon.
JULY year 634-the colony is a flourishing city
AUGUST year 728-the city is having problems with monsters in their sewers. The player-lord of the city, with the authority invested in him by the player-king of the kingdom, commissions a group of player-questers to investigate. They discover the dungeon and it's grisly inhabitants, and also make contact with a long-lost dwarf colony. At the bottom-most level of the dungeon they discover, fight, and battle, a Beholder. Along the way, they also recover various items left behind by other player-characters (ones who failed). OKAY, SOMEHOW THIS TURNED INTO THE CLASSIC "EYE OF THE BEHOLDER" GAME, but that's okay--my point is to demonstrate the potentialities of the design.

In a normal RPG, all that would have to be written in by the developers, and the quests would be repeatable. Not in this game. Those who defeat the beholder (and live to tell about it) have their place set in history. As do the names of the player-kings who established the cities, and lost them.
Then said Jesus unto the twelve, "Will ye also go away?" Then Simon Peter answered Him, "Lord, to whom shall we go? Thou hast the words of eternal life. And we believe and are sure that Thou art that Christ, the Son of the Living God." John 6:67-69
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby brownboot » Sat Sep 25, 2010 6:45 am

@RRO: This sounds pretty rad, extremely niche, but rad.

Thoughts & Questions:

1. What is the perspective of the player? 3rd person? RTS/God-Cam? It sounds like the latter but I don't want to assume.

2. I like the idea of creating a family or heritage as opposed to creating a character. You could really milk this for a sweet mini-faction type setup. But, girls will never (ok, not never but super rarely) play this game. For the same reasons girls play pen-n-paper RPGs but don't play Miniature-Wargames, its easier to relate and care about "me, the character" than it is to care about your really abstracted relationship with tiny dudes scooting around a board. Is this wrong? No. Is this wrong for an MMO? maybe.

3. Everything in your step-by-step description sounds fun. If I'm not mistaken this will all occur over ~4 months RL? This kind of gets back to number 1 but I don't get what the player does when he logs on for 2 hrs at a time, several times a week. That's what makes a game fun.

4. You say history, I say achievement board. This is cool, but it has a finite supply which means you have to be constantly producing content to give late bloomers the same experience the early adopters got. Which is a drag. The value to a player of "place in history" is really questionable as well and I suspect caters to only one player type. Now if its the only player type you're appealing to anyway, you're fine, but again the odds of MMO working may be reduced. In which case just go with MO and a single player mode as well.

5. How are you giving players goals? Dev involvement is not the answer. While the Grail story sounds nice you're blurring the line between emergent storytelling and straight up meddling. It may make for a good story, but you could shaft a player or two along the way who doesn't care as much as you do. This is an issue for player kings, they still need quests and skill trees to be working on.

6. Beholders and a few other monsters are D&D copyrights :(. On this note, fantasy games are a dime a dozen, I encourage you to come up with a new angle. The roles and types don't have to change but the veneer should.
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby RockinRickOwen » Sat Sep 25, 2010 11:20 am

1. The player's perspective is... hmmm actually hadn't thought about the graphics angle, but either 3rd person (which is standard) or 1st person.

2. OK, I gave the wrong impression. Players will play a CHARACTER, but when that character dies (and that character WILL die, of old age or otherwise), the player can create an heir, use an already created heir, or create an entirely new character. There's nothing miniature-wargames about this. In terms of actual warfare, it's more like WoW, except that everything the players do changes the course of history, and therefore the game itself.

3. What the player does when he logs on for 2 hours at a time: same any other rpg-goes on adventures, presumably. No harvesting of anything is required, unless the player actually wants his character to spend its virtual life as a shepherd or a fisherman in a small village, or something. I personally don't find that compelling, but I suppose some people do.

4. No new content needs to be produced except new lands on new servers. Because the game includes time (and history), there will be a constant turnover of characters. XP comes from a variety of sources. Achievements in the game, like in real life, may last centuries, but are ultimately ephemeral. Very few of the ancient wonders of the world exist today, and rarer still is the knowledge of those who built them. The idea is that the players (and their actions) generate content. Monsters can be created, and wiped out. Those who create them gain xp according to victims, and those who slay them get xp by that very act.

5. Goals are generated by the story itself, and by the devs, as I mentioned previously. Player Kings will have the same goals as real life kings: survival, improvement and expansion. I think it's a natural thing for a player to ask himself "OK, where do I go to get a quest?" Not only are there a number of places to go, there's also plenty of areas to explore. My philosophy of "meddling" is that it should be rare, and an issue of consequence. Just as God sent prophets to Israel, and the nations, that kind of thing should happen in the game as well. I think it to be a better way for GMs to enforce the rules.

6. Beholders are indeed D&D critters. The point was, monsters can occupy abandoned dungeons... the game sort of takes care of itself, and there are no infinitely re-winnable quests. Sort of a pet peeve of mine.

6b. A new angle? I thought the whole player-generated history (and therefore death, culture, trade, etc) was a new angle.
Then said Jesus unto the twelve, "Will ye also go away?" Then Simon Peter answered Him, "Lord, to whom shall we go? Thou hast the words of eternal life. And we believe and are sure that Thou art that Christ, the Son of the Living God." John 6:67-69
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby christo » Sat Sep 25, 2010 1:18 pm

here is a question. how will new monsters be created? Are you going to have some sort of giant pool to choose from(opens things for more people,low originality). Are you going to let players upload models for new monsters(higher originality,fewer people that can do it). or a combination of the 2. Also do you plan on monsters that will be present regardless of weather or not someone has created them.

Another thing to point out is that you will probably want to limit or prevent the ability in newbie areas,it could be kind of discouraging to be a level 1 and get wiped out by a level 100 monster in your first minute. Though another idea is to shift the newbie areas depending on the monster layout.

Also another thing to watch out for would be too many areas containing high level monsters or large gaps between monster levels as this could hinder the ability of lower level players to attain higher levels.
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby brownboot » Sat Sep 25, 2010 7:45 pm

@christo: Good questions man!

@RRO:

1. Are you worried what a day night cycle/player speed is going to look like in 1st/3rd person given your time scale? If 4 years occur in a RL day.... That's a day every minute. I'm struggling to see how this could possibly make sense/be playable.

2. This means you'll be rolling a new character twice a month or about 44 hrs of playtime per character (based on average MMO player's logged time/week). As an rpg you could struggle to engage the player base when they can't become attached to anything. I only suggested creating a family to combat this, players would lose family members over time but their crest would persist and the family as a whole could have its own leveling system and tech tree. So you'd manage characters short-term and the mini-faction long-term. Not saying one way is right or wrong, just issues to think about.

3. I like the idea of keeping really pedrestian skills on the sidelines and focusing on action based experiences. Ideally you'd have a little of both. Again I think there's a disconnect between this and #1.

4. I guess I misunderstood you a little bit on this then. I was afraid once the 'Holy Grail' quest happened you would never allow that quest to occur in the game again. Which requires you to add content over time so a player that joins 6 months after launch has anything to do, assuming no content repeats, because the people that started day 1 will have finished all the quests.

5. I think we're both taking the idea of story for granted. Especially if you can't repeat content a player could concievably run out of content except what is created by other players, which, for the sake of arguement, we will assume is somewhat limited. Is it wrong for there to be an endgame? No way, every game with a leveling system usually has a cap. But, you still need content to support these players.

6. If a dungeon refills with random monsters this is repeatable content. Even if you seed a random dungeon with random monsters, its still repeatable content because the player experience is virtually the same. I really like the sound of a random tiling dungeon, but I just got done playing the new Castle Ravenloft board game :P, so its on my brain.

6b. You're probably right, although you could make an arguement for Second Life. Which dove headfirst into porn and cybersex faster than you can blink. So consider yourself warned about user generated content :P. Try writing out a skeleton of this kind of system. I think you could do it, but it will take a lot of checks and balances. Player volume per server is a big issue here. That problem almost tanked Warhammer Online.
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby brownboot » Sat Sep 25, 2010 7:50 pm

Sidenote!

For anyone that didn't read this; APB bit the dust last week, making it the shortest lived MMO in history. Servers were online a record low 79 days before the plug was pulled on the entire operation. Looks like Epic is going to buy off most of Realtime Worlds leftover tech and IP on the cheap (probably the customization systems).

APB had a $100 million budget and the lead designer created Lemmings and the original GTA.

I wanted to edit this in but I noticed the post boxes kind of wig out over a certain line count so it was too obnoxious to check my post for spelling errors so I just opted to break the unspoken forum code and double posted. Gasp.
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby launcher » Fri Oct 01, 2010 12:36 pm

my question is why stop with the holy grail? why not have multiple items.

for example moses staff... nice thing to have, the ark of the covenant, also sounds nice, point being there are other religious items which may prove as useful or more useful in a war based strategy game? have minor items aswell? so the game isnt king of the hill, where everyones end game goal is to take 1 item. more options allows the game to be spread out a bit and paints targets on more then 1 group. for example the inn keeper may have the shroud of (tourin?) and that boosts money to there inn for example.

if its going to be rooted in religion why not have play in to that for the monsters? like have demons, sucubuses, fallen angles and obviously lucifer or the devil being the big nasty boss for quests. could have goliath in there as a quest. could use your own type of monsters taking it beyond the normal dark ages game. perhaps a mission type for hunting down witches and wizards? could toss the crusades in there, or muslim aggression into spain and france, which was defeated by charles the hammer, perhaps gain relics from him as well?
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby RockinRickOwen » Tue Oct 05, 2010 9:06 am

MONSTER CREATION: Great questions (and challenges)! My thought is that there should be a special screen/lab only Wizards have access to. There, monsters can be bred, enchanted, etc using already existing animals and races. For instance, take a lizard, make him really really big, give him wings, have him breathe fire, up his intelligence, etc. The only monsters the game should begin with are "ordinary" animals. Wizards will have to create the rest. Species created by wizards will continue until wiped out (which might be as difficult as completely eradicating all cockroaches from our own insect-laden world). I'd like see a monster-creation scheme as nicely complex as the Champions Online character creator, or my own plan for one.

NOOBIE AREAS: No noobie areas. I wanted to set up the "skill tree" or "sphere grid" (been playing FFX lately, at long last) so that there are a limited number of skill levels, and the noobie can max out any one when he begins. That way, he can compete with veterans in terms of power, though not in real life playing skill.

THE HOLY GRAIL: lol, that was just an example... I like the inclusion of Biblical artifacts a LOT, but equally would enjoy some other things, like the Golden Fleece. Obviously players are going to want to commission the creation of all sorts of items, from mundane tools to ordinary weapons to extraordinary items to things like the Ark of the Covenant (which obviously would involve the game devs as well). I like the thought of an innkeeper acquiring a relic to boost tourism! Probably be highly troublesome (as some wealthy king or religious order would want it, not to mention an assortment of thieves). More than likely, innkeepers would keep some old sword or something that was supposedly used to kill some sort of monster way back when. Like when you go to Missouri, there's a number of places that allege to be the place where Jesse James was shot and killed, or in Jerusalem, there's at least three sites for every biblical event, and a few more for non-biblical events (like St. Anne's, who, according to Catholic tradition, emmaculately conceived Mary).

NON-PLAYER CREATED MONSTERS: Oh yeah. Forgot. There are demons, and the false gods (the Nephilim/Olympians/Asgardians).

SPECIAL MISSIONS: Cleric-Players can create their own religions or sects. That means they can select the structure, traditions, practices and beliefs of that religion. Those players who become kings would be able to make any religion (or none at all) the national religion of their kingdom. Combine a religion which believes in "evangelism by the sword" with a government that doesn't allow any other kind of religion within its borders... yeah, those missions would be naturally generated. There could easily be religious wars within the game, all player-generated. The only time game-devs would start one, or influence one, would be if there was a particulary nasty Aztec or Canaanite religion in need of a good smackdown. And in the grand tradition of RPG, monsters drop items from previous kills. Win a war, and... items?!?! YOU'VE JUST WON A WAR!!! For cryin' out loud, you can access the vaults of the treasure house! Anybody's treasure house! Anybody in your own kingdom that is. That might stir up rebellion, but that's another story.

FAMILIES VS ROLLING UP NEW CHARACTERS: I think most players roll up new characters all the time. But you're right, it's good to have a consistent thread, and the family thing is exactly right. That's what I wanted, anyways, was for the new character to inherit something from the old. Family tech-tree?! WOW, that's a good idea! I hadn't thought of that, and it fits right in with the genre, too. Not so long ago, most children (boys, anyways) were expected to take up their father's trade.

RECURRING MISSIONS: The Holy Grail quest can't exactly happen again, in the same way. I mean, one Grail quest might get it from one king, to another, but there it will remain until some other quester comes after it (and succeeds in getting it). And in any case, even if the Grail is taken to the Shepherd's Land (no stealing it from there, or conquering it), the Shepherd could just grant it to another nation, OR somewhere, somebody could make another Grail.

DUNGEONS: A dungeon refills with monsters as long as it remains abandoned. It can always cleaned out and reoccupied by somebody and their army. It's not repeatable content in the sense that it's a quest or a mission. In our own real world, caves and ruins fill up with wild-life on a regular basis, rather rapidly too.

PLAYER-CREATED CONTENT: There's nine different classes of players, even ten (if you include those who become kings). Several of those generate content, and not just monsters, either. No end-game either. Can't be. It's history. In the 20th century, defeating Adolf Hitler was kind of an end-game, but we still had the USSR to deal with, and the rise of communism in SE Asia & China. That's just on a global level. I guess I don't think of end-games because in a comic-book, even if one villain is defeated, there are others, and that defeated villain is probably going to make a come-back at some point. The fantasy genre is a bit different, but still, there's a turnover in history. There's no risk of becoming Second Life (and experiencing those problems) because the parameters of what can be created are limited to what is either pertinent to adventuring or creating something of cultural/historical value.

PLAYER-VOLUME PER SERVER: A big concern of mine, too. What is the average capacity of the average server, anyways? And how many servers would I have to have (ultimately) for a moderately successful game?
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby christo » Tue Oct 05, 2010 6:51 pm

That monster creation idea reminds me a lot of a game for the Playstation One called "Jade Cocoon". you might want to look into it if you can find it(it wasn't around for long and to my knowledge never became popular, I only know about it from a demo).
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby launcher » Fri Oct 08, 2010 7:36 pm

if you want a really good construction of units blue print (adaptable to monsters) try out the game warzone 2100... its a very intresting post apocolyptic world game. point being you search for research items, you research them and it unlocks new areas which you can build your units. its pretty complex to describe very easy and straight forward to use.

you already mentioned the main parts have the body of animal being the base, have the wings and things like that, pick its armor level, iq, in some cases what it breaths out (fire, ice, acid that hole area), the quality of claws... the quality of animal determins the slots on the animal your able to apply things to it.

you could add a nice economic feature to the game, introduce a ranger class to capture animals for the wizards. the wizards then breed them and manipulate them, with potions and things. allows for markets to sell the animals at to develope them, cages to store them. valuables for the fighter class to take adding more items to be sought after.

the wizard catagory seems to be quest orientated, perhaps have it so that they require resources all over the map?

the game has the potential of being a monster based game, where everyone is a wisard, ranger class where they surround there city with monsters and it takes on more of a command and conquere feel of people launching waves of monsters at eachother? for example if you make powerful creatures in your dungeon your going to want to store things in there.

you could make a really intresting game if you make dungeons partially floodable, where example you have crocodiles and anacondas in there, mixed with bats and things like that.

how would you limit the amount of monsters being built, it could get out of hand.
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby brownboot » Sat Oct 09, 2010 3:41 pm

Great posts guys!

First I'll try to answer some questions:

Server Volume: The only right answer here is the one that makes you the most money :P. Be careful though, poor balance almost killed Warhammer Online. Some QA time spent figuring out how many players per area are the most fun and what your business model looks like should clear this up.

Monster Creation: I think launcher makes a good point about balance. My initial reaction is a sort of "control points" pool that your family can increase as it levels up, gains items, etc. Every monster would have a control point cost that would draw from this pool. A dragon might cost a lot, so you could only have a few in the field at once, or a handful of lesser creatures, etc.

@christo: Made me think of Impossible Creatures!

Some other thoughts:

Family vs Character system: The family idea sounds really fun to me. You'd have a bit of entropy along the way but you'd be able to steer in broad strokes via the tech tree. Random children, marriages, etc would give each player a handful of characters (or a lot depending how the families lifespan is) to work with at a time. While you might be a family of wizards, there's always that one cousin that wants to be a bard or whatever. You could get carried away with this giving each one a personality or motivations that could function as side-quests. This has a lot of fun management potential.

the game has the potential of being a monster based game, where everyone is a wisard, ranger class where they surround there city with monsters and it takes on more of a command and conquere feel of people launching waves of monsters at eachother?
@launcher: Did you just suggest narrowing the scope of a game 0_0?! lol!
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby Mene-Mene » Mon Oct 11, 2010 4:10 pm

Heh, I had an idea for a core mechanic for a MMORPG that I figured I'd throw out. I intend to take this mechanic to a simple RPG, but it would work well in an MMO setting as well...

Oftentimes in an RPG, especially an MMO, players feel like they either have a cookie cutter character, or they have to make one in order to succeed, and oftentimes that's true. That's not to say that I don't respect the fact that players don't like too much freedom. (too much freedom leads to unfocused game play and players being confused, although there is a niche for games with a lot of freedom, like wurm online)

The customization offered is oftentimes picking branches on a skill tree, while that's kinda cool for a while, I'm a person who likes to not only become attached to my character, but also to his playstyle and abilities. If all the abilities progress in the same manner, it makes it impersonal. That's what I'm really getting at, the customization offered seems to be impersonal.

So, my idea is this... (I'm throwing in the setting I had in mind for the sake of simplicity) A game in which all the player characters are students or graduates of a school teaching mastery of fire. Each of these students is able to control three different sorts of fire. At the beginning of the game these are all the same, but as soon as you level-up, you can change one of them slightly. These three are two Palms of Fire and one Breath of Fire The Palms of Fire are identical, but as I mentioned before, all flames are mutable. The Breath of Fire lends itself to mutability, but is better aimed at being mutated in one path, whereas palms of fire might be better at another path.

As a character progresses, his physical attributes don't change a whole lot. A little, perhaps, but not nearly so drastic as typically seen in an MMO. (It's not uncommon to see after even ten levels to have many times the HP...) However, the strength of a character, is in the abilities that he wields.

So, to give an insight, let's take our character to level five. At this point he's undergone a few improvements... His breath of fire, now has a nice DoT effect and a debuff. (two lvl ups) In his left palm, he has added a stunning effect. In his right, he has amplified the damage. Typically when he goes into battle, he first stuns his opponent, then uses his breath to weaken, then he pounds him with his attack...

That was a pretty bland character... However, maybe you've got a hotshot who only cares about one ability, his right palm. He's also level five. His right palm has a debuff and a lot of amplified damage. So he pounds away at his opponents, the longer you fight him, the more damage he does. However, in order for him to deal with another damage dealer, he's going to need to be able to outlast his opponent, so he'll need to use his left palm to heal himself. (healing embers or whatever) Since his right palm is an attack ability, it wouldn't work well as a healing ability. Through stuff like this, you could encourage both creativity and diversification.

One more thing to note that is possible in this, that is really difficult to do when you upgrade the character himself. Traditionally, the visuals of the character only change based on his equipment and the visuals just don't change a whole lot. In this, due to the fact that it's fire, you could have the fire be algorithmically generated based upon the statistics of the ability. As a fire becomes more damaging, it could appear "hotter", even reaching the point where it turns into white, or even bluish fire. As the fire becomes more horrifying and stunning, it might become larger for an awe effect. And so on, in this, the player not only gets the reward of increasing in power and defeating more potent foes, but also blatant visual demonstration of his newfound power.
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby christo » Mon Oct 11, 2010 5:57 pm

Going along with the sample another thing that contributes to a character in some MMO's is the playing style. like in the example I would probably go with character with a strong breath of fire(long range) with a strong DoT effect(and good running ability if that was an option). palm would have very little dedicated to it unless it was for healing or stun(for when the opponents get to close).

The reason for this is that I use a strategy known as kiting. In this strategy I can take on opponents a few levels above me because the idea is to never get hit. you basically run large circles around the enemy(as large as the game allows and still keep them in range) and hit them with every stacking DoT you have. If you have to wait for the DoTs to recharge, use a cheap long range attack. and what ever you do don't let the opponent catch up if they out level you by much.

For this reason I don't like MMO's that after a short distance the enemy gives up it's chase and returns to it's path healing along the way. though I am somewhat ok with this if it is a distance with no damage that triggers it rather than distance from encounter. that means I can still keep an enemy on my tail as long as it takes to give it a nice slow death as I am doing continuous damage .
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby Mene-Mene » Mon Oct 11, 2010 7:04 pm

christo: That's what I think that this mechanic really exemplifies. See, me personally, I'd probably have DoT and stun, but follow it up with a heal... Although, a really good debuff with some nasty hits does sound really awesome... And there's a lot more things you could do... Maybe you'll have a buff which protects you and hurts the enemy when he attacks. Maybe your DoT effect will feed off of his attacks... I mean, the game designer has a lot of leeway, and the more tools you provide the player, the more he can do with them.
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby launcher » Wed Oct 13, 2010 6:19 pm

one question i have though is how does the economic system in the game work? wizards making monsters is neat but where does money coming into the equation? they should have at minimum to journey or require materials or animals? since this would be a major part of the game there should be lots of things needed other classes find to sell to wizards.

would the monsters be rideable? in some instances it could be benifical. not necesarily for land and air exclusively but by water, for example a giant turtle, which you use to visit islands. perhaps enchant the turtle or something like that.
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Re: a new MMO concept (overthrowing world of warcraft)

Postby Mene-Mene » Wed Oct 13, 2010 8:11 pm

A giant turtle? Isn't that a little overdone? Now riding on the beak of an enormous platypus. I have NEVER heard of ANYTHING like that.
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