Questing

It has been a long time since I have posted any thing here but I feel the time has come for me to write this.

I have been playing MMOs for a long time. I started with UO and have played almost every major MMO since then.

Questing in MMOs has a strange history.  UO did not have any questing to mention, it was a sandbox game and you did what you wanted to.

Everquest dispite what the name implies also did not have much questing and the questing that it did have was fairly difficult. You had to actually read the quest text and figure out what you needed to do next. Most of the time you would have your browser open and you would alt tab to get hints. Unless you really wanted the reward you pretty much ignored questing.

There were a few other games that came out that tried to improve on the everquest model but all of them were still pretty much like EQ.

The major breakthrough in questing was made when WoW came out. They decided to stop being so hard and put a big fat yellow exclamation point above the heads of quest givers. They also decided to make questing the primary way of advancement. This pretty much eliminated the old grind of camping and made a new grind of running around and completing quests.

This was the greatest advancement in MMOs made in years. This was the creation of the theme park. You were now led by the hand from quest hub to quest hub. It took all of the imagination out of it. I loved it.

Now years latter every game I play follows the same exact theme, quest hub to quest hub, level to level. There is no imagination in it. I long for a game that lets me grind again, like the old days. I want to sit in one spot for a hours and massacre innocent orcs. This gave me time to chat and get to know my fellow gamer. Now I don’t have time to chat because I am always RUNNING to complete another quest.  I dont have time to explore, I have no reason to go off the beaten path.

I want a game that lets you quest or farm and gives you equal reward for each. I want an incentive to explore and not just some stupid badge, reward, or achievement.

I am not sure that the two types of games can coexist.  I am not sure what I even want. I just know that I am very sick and tired of the WoW way of questing. There has to be something better.

Every sandbox game that has come out since UO has been about PVP. Open world PVP sucks no one likes to be ganked and all of their stuff taken. I want a sandbox game that is primarily a pve game with some very structured PVP built in. Like WAR and UO all mixed up into one great a glorious game.

Paying for crap!

Syncaine wrote a very good post on his blog Hardcore Casual and while I do not agree with him most of the time he is right on the money this time. People bitch and moan about something in a game but continue to pay for the game they are complaining about.

People cry for a new ideas and new franchises but when a company tries a new idea they just pirate it and then bitch when developers start gimping the PC version of the game. If you want new ideas you need to take risks with your money and purchase them.

Mirrors Edge was probably my favorite game last season. It was fresh and original just what every one was asking for. But no one bought it and I doubt that EA is going to put the resources into making another one. Be we did get 2 more Call of Duty games since then. CoD is a great franchise but is more of the same and I don’t think we need 1 a year.

If you want publishers to take more risks you must give them money for trying. If you want PC versions of the game to be better than the console version you need to buy it and stop pirating. The gaming industry exists to make money.

Rumor: Mythic layoffs affect QA, customer support

Go here to read original Story

Is it wise for EA to cut people from the QA department of a game that requires updates often? I could be over reacting here, but it looks like EA is giving up on WAR. Giving up may be a little harsh but this game needs all of the support from its publisher that it can get to continue to grow.

According to this site, as of October WAR had 700k active subscribers. This is a very impressive number and it deserves some attention. EA should be putting more money into it trying to get more players. Taking people out of the QA department is a good way to piss off your current customers.

WAR by pre WoW standards would be a very successful game. There are lots of games out there that are great games, but just don’t have the subscription base of WoW and it saddens me that they are hurt by this. LOTRO is a great game but it is not viewed as a success because it did not make the numbers of WoW.

EA could just be transferring QA of WAR to another QA department to save cost.