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Aircraft. Flight and why it could be awesome.

Discussion in 'WildStar General' started by WakeskaterX, May 25, 2013.

  1. WakeskaterX

    WakeskaterX Cupcake-About-Town

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    I've been lurking on Reddit a lot and have gathered some ideas and wanted to put them all into a sort of big post on my thoughts about flying, how it can be good, some pros and cons and some ideas. I'm new to these forums so if there is a big mega thread like this, then sorry, I didn't see it on the front general page.

    The Nexus Telegraph actually prompted this post and I got a bunch of ideas from what Eliot posted there:

    From Nexus Telegraph
    "Of course, in the real world people don't fly everywhere because you can't just land anywhere or take flight on a dime. If we as players have access to flight in WildStar, it should have the same restrictions. Your flying shuttle needs space to land and time to lift off, and it shouldn't be immune to wear or damage. In hilly territory, you might be better off taking a ground mount because there's nowhere to land that hovering beast outside of a handful of ports. It should provide recon opportunities, definitely, and some speed increases, but flight should never be trivial and easy."

    I posted a sort of mish mash of ideas in response on the website but I wanted to organize a few of these thoughts here and talk about some pros/cons of flying and things that can be done to solve these problems and/or alternate solutions:
    Flying
    Pros:
    • It's fun!
    • It allows access to cool areas and some great views
    • Allows for quick travel to locations you've travelled through before
    • Opens up lots of cool world opportunities
    • Fits in with the idea of a Space Frontier very well
    Cons:
    • Can mess with PvP by letting people AFK in the air / escape easily
    • Trivializes jumping puzzles and exploration
    • Can make areas antisocial as players afk in the sky alone waiting for groups / etc.
    • Can break immersion if not implemented properly.
    • Can be abused to farm gathering nodes without any risk (or find nodes that are less risky)
    If you have anything to add on the pro and con list, feel free to add your thoughts too.
    So, solutions, additions and ideas to the flying concept that can really make it great:
    1. Gliding: Players would have to jump from high locations, making exploration necessary and actually puts emphasis on Jumping puzzles. Also makes AFKing in the air impossible. Can even have pockets of rising air to extend flight time, and gliding puzzles throughout.
    2. Fuel Restriction: Gas tanks, flying dragon food, etc. What this does is make flying a cost choice. If you want to fly you will have to judge if it is truly cost worth to do so. Also a nice gold sink. Also removes AFKing in the air.
    3. Landing Pads: Adding launch/landing pads in towns, cities, housing plots (if non instanced), and having them made by settlers would allow only certain areas to be landed in. Landing outside of a landing pad would crash land your plane damaging it.
      1. Alternative Idea: Launch Pads and Landing Sequence: So, instead of landing pads being the only place you could land safely, an alternative idea would be to have Launch Pads being the only place you can take off (in towns/cities/etc) and have a landing sequence which requires a wide, flat area in order to land. This would make flight more than a glorified taxi service by allowing you the freedom to land anywhere that is a wide open space, but doesn't allow you to land on top of mountains or in narrow spaces (which they can make for jumping quests). This would allow more freedom without making it so you can take off from anywhere. (Except with the use of the Skyhook).
    4. Aircraft HP/Durability: Adding a HP/Dura factor to aircraft would be nice in conjuction with a system that allowed air combat, crash landings, etc. Crash landing your plane would allow you to land in an area not designated, but you would have to dish out cash to repair it later. Do it too many times and it breaks and you have to really dish out cash to repair it.
    5. Aerial Combat: Playing on the HP and Landing pad ideas, this could open up some amazing PvP options with air to air combat, destroy the other plane and send the other faction crashing to the ground / parachuting without a plane and with a heavy cost to repair their craft. Also some ideas were anti air turrets in no fly zones. Could also be used to combat flying bosses around the world.
    6. Air Beacon/Skyhook: (credit to francis775) Every 30 min to an hour you can call down your craft to your location and beam/hook your way up to it (THINK HEARTHSTONE). Probably would have to be used out of combat, and have a long cast time to avoid it being abused in PvP.
    7. Ship Building Mini Game: Added this one on the end because it would tie in really well with the above ideas. Basically you construct your aircraft from parts crafted and gathered across the world to make a custom vessel. Combined with air combat you could mount various weapons, flight systems and armors to truly make your own personal intraplanetary combat vessel. I'd imagine the parts would be expensive which would make aerial combat dangerous and exciting.
    These are just a few of the ideas that have been accumulating in my head reading over discussions about flying. If all of these were implemented it would make for one really awesome system in my humblest of opinions. I know that Carbine has stated they are considering all the options, but what else do you guys have to add?

    While WoW seemed to add Flying mounts later on, like Eliot said, Wildstar seems to have the perfect start for making them a core, synergistic part of the game.

    I just wanted to share some of the ideas I had, I know there are probably a few posts like this, but what do you guys think? I think Flying Mounts could be really damn awesome, as long as they aren't chucked in WoW style and are thought through.

    TL;DR: Flying mounts could work, but there are pros and cons and some things that can help fix the cons are: Gliding, Fuel Cost and Landing Pads/Aerial Combat/Aircraft Durability.

    edit: formatting/color
  2. Kataryna

    Kataryna Super Cupcake

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  3. WakeskaterX

    WakeskaterX Cupcake-About-Town

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    Cool! Thanks, I just had some ideas and wanted to share them too :) I'll read some of that post and try to find some of the gems there.

    I think it's definitely viable but I do have the same concerns as everyone else about it trivializing the game.

    Edit: Oh I see the other thread was closed. :(

    Well I saw some of the stuff I posted here in that forum but didn't see anything about HP / Aerial Combat. Any opinions on what that might bring to the game?

    It'd even be cool to see a ship building sort of sub game. Collect/Build parts and craft your own intraplanetary cruiser to jettison around the world. Avoiding other Enemy Aircraft and AA guns of course :) And if it breaks, you gotta repair it / fix it!
  4. TheJackalSwitch

    TheJackalSwitch New Cupcake

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    I certainly like the idea of aerial combat, having a ship that you have to build/maintain and repair would add a lot more depth to the game and hopefully remove people using them willy nilly. Though straight out of the gate on release I'd be happy not to have flying mounts at all, since Wildstar is already promising enough content without adding an entire combat system on top of the current one that needs constant maintenance/balancing. And if it is released then certainly restricted to the highest levels, so people have to travel through the entire game on foot before getting the benefit of flying mounts to skip everything :).
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  5. Sawpaw

    Sawpaw Cupcake-About-Town

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    I think everything was said in the other thread, which is why it was closed, as everything had been said.
  6. WakeskaterX

    WakeskaterX Cupcake-About-Town

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    It would be a game unto itself really if done right. And it fixes a lot of the problems with flight being abused. As long as it's an expensive hobby it won't be abused except by people who have lots of money and then it's a gold sink / reinforces trade if people can craft parts/fuel for aircraft.

    Of course it'd be something later, but it would fit into wildstar so well. I know something this complex is unlikely to be at launch, but man it'd be cool.

    Agreed. That's one of the problems about flying mounts ya?

    _______
    Well, if a mod wants to close the thread that's fine. But not everyone has had a chance to participate in the discussion (the CIVIL discussion let's keep it) and that's really most of the fun. I made this to be more of a "Let's think about cool ideas" thread and less of a "Let's debate about if we should have flying" thread.

    But if it's pushing it, mods feel free to lock it, I'm not trying to break any rules here.
  7. Sabre070

    Sabre070 Cupcake-About-Town

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    That's what the other thread started out as, then people just started not having discussions.

    Personally I like either Gliding, "Skyroads", Mounts with abilities and/or aerial combat. I think with a few of these added together it could be pretty awesome for fun travel.

    Overall I would prefer gliders, but having boost so you can fly really far if you are still there (so you can't just fly up and AFK and you have to use skill to get long distances), couple this with skyroads (areas in the sky where you don't drop down) and you can make long distance transport possible and quick, but not trivialize everything.
  8. WakeskaterX

    WakeskaterX Cupcake-About-Town

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    I think removing exiting your aircraft while it's flying makes sense anyway except for an emergency eject (if your plane crashes). It would make actually leaving your plane a bad idea instead of dismount anywhere and then slowfall/etc.

    If you had settler built starports in towns / cities it would make it so players could choose where they wanted places to land and take off from and maintain those locations. Also I think it would be cool for Settlers to have tech built stuff (like starports) that could be Calibrated/Improved by Scientists.

    There are so many possiblities with the path system, but in this circumstance it'd make a dynamic airport system and people could build in the places they want to travel as a community.
  9. HooliganBFLO

    HooliganBFLO New Cupcake

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    Really nice post!

    I think gliding would be a great mechanic. I'm pretty sure an Explorer is one of the first Paths I'll be selecting and the thought of players cheapening that experience by flying past the obstacles on jump puzzles concerns me. Gliding seems to be a way to make these puzzles even more complex, perhaps they might choose to do something similar to the AR missions in Arkham City.

    Example:
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  10. WakeskaterX

    WakeskaterX Cupcake-About-Town

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    Gliding puzzles would be really cool! I'm for sure making an Explorer/Stalker for my first class. BUT! I REALLY like the Settler Class and Scientist. I'll probably have a Healer/Settler and a Mage Type/Scientist (or Engineer/Sci if that is indeed one of the new classes). Oh I'll make a Warrior/Soldier too but he'll be my last alt :)

    But yeah that's a nice example of Gliding puzzles. Explorers ARE getting a jetpack IIRC at some point during your path quests.
  11. Yakzan

    Yakzan "That" Cupcake

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    Hi, I'm that guy who closed that other thread. This thread is perfectly fine. So please, do continue! Just don't go as wildly off-topic and aggressive as the last one got.
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  12. Sulli

    Sulli New Cupcake

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    I for one don't really like the idea of flying mounts, I mean, wouldn't it just completely take away the aspect of exploring the game and reaching new heights etc.

    I know this sounds stupid but, could you imagine flying in a game like Assassins Creed. The feeling you get when you reach the top of a huge ass building in that game, and look over the view of the city, is much more impressive then just flying over it.
  13. SniperCT

    SniperCT Cupcake-About-Town

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    ...I really, really like those ideas. One of the things that bothered me in wow was how trivial flying became.

    The idea of maintaining your own aircraft would be awesome. It was a dream of mine to have engineers build and upkeep their own ships/subs/zepplins but that'll never happen.

    I like the gliding minigame, too.

    Really, anything that adds extra mini-games is never a bad thing.

    Also, it's a sci-fi game with advanced technology. Flying makes sense. Even if it's just rocket packs with limited fuel.
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  14. WakeskaterX

    WakeskaterX Cupcake-About-Town

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    I agree. Minigames are good. Board games in game, card games, anything to make the world seem alive and spend time with your friends in game between the more intense moments of the game (dungeons, raids, etc). All in all I think effort spent on stuff like this is NOT wasted.

    I would totally be down for them delaying flying mounts in order to make them super cool.
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  15. SniperCT

    SniperCT Cupcake-About-Town

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    I'd rather not have any flying if they don't fit or somehow feel trivialized. I just find the idea of having a real mechanical craft to play with kind of exciting!
  16. WakeskaterX

    WakeskaterX Cupcake-About-Town

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    I feel the same way. BUT I think there is so much potential ESPECIALLY in a space themed universe. They could really make some neat systems that don't trivialize the game but RATHER add more flavor and make the game feel more "real". I guess viable is a better word. AFKing in the air for 2 hours does not feel "viable" in a game. It promotes disbelief instead of suspending it.

    I am 99% sure that what I would love to see with flying requires way too much development time to be in the release. It would probably take entire teams to work in landing, durability, air combat, customizeable ships into the game, but GOSH DANG IT, it would be the coolest thing ever.
  17. Ohoni

    Ohoni Cupcake-About-Town

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    I think free air travel can be fine. I'm not opposed to glding and other "not-flights" as a purely optional ingame activity, just as Super Speed and Acrobatics were options in DCUO, but a pure "VTOL, fly wherever you like and land whenever you like" airbike/jetpack/hoverboard of some kind should also be in the game. Let's address the cons directly:

    1. Can mess with PvP by letting people AFK in the air / escape easily
    First, this is only a problem on PvP servers. Even if this problem proves impossible to solve, which I don't believe it is, it should not in any way impede the use of airbikes on a PvE server.

    Second, even on PvP servers, it's solvable. AFKing in the air is not actually a problem of any kind. If people can get airborn, let them stay that way. No worries. As for using it as an escape tool, give it a ten second casting time that can be interrupted by taking player damage and cannot be actiated at all while in combat (meaning if you hit them before they start using it or they've hit you then the option doesn't work at all).

    Third, if there are areas of the game where you wouldn't want players to fly at all, like say being able to fly into opposing homelands, then just ring the area with anti-aircraft turrets that will shoot them out of the sky.

    2. Trivializes jumping puzzles and exploration
    No, it really wouldn't. If there is an area that's meant to be a jump puzzle or difficult to explore terrain, just surround it with loftite crystals. This can be used as a sort of kryptonite to the anti-grav systems in the flight vehicles. If you came anywhere within 100ft or so of the JP it would give you fair warning to turn back, and if you persisted, your vehicle would fall from the sky (safely but surely), preventing you from in any way advancing the jump puzzle using your flight vehicle.If you want to reactivate your flight vehicle, you'd first have to leave the radius of the disruption.

    3. Can make areas antisocial as players afk in the sky alone waiting for groups / etc.
    It's no more social for people to AFK in a city or outside a dungeon than it is for them to AFK in the sky. The AFKing would be the problem there. Likewise, there is nothing better about running from a city to a dungeon than it is to fly or teleport there, no matter what means you choose, you're moving from A to B, and there's no value to be had in between. If anyone wants stuff to happen between A and B, the trick is not to make travel slower or less convenient, it is to make interesting stuff happen between A and B that people would want to do. If you can't manage that then there's nothing to be gained by making travel any less convenient.

    On top of that, I had another plan to address the idea of people flying to places and skipping content below, which is to implement a system of anti-aircraft towers. These towers, like in the loftite example above, would shoot you out of the sky if you got too close. These would be designed to cover every zone in the game, and preventing flight entirely, but you could walk up to them, and either easily or through a difficult event, disable these towers, and enabling flight within their zone of control. This would ensure that anywhere you can reach by air, you'd have gone their on foot at least once.

    There are numerous ways to implement this sort of thing, there could either be a single central control tower to disable, or there could be dozens of them throughout the zone that each control a small portion of the zone, similar to vantage points in Assassin's Creed. The more there are in a given area, the easier they should be to shut off, if there's only one it could be a mini-dungeon to unlock. Ideally this would be phased content, something that applies to each character separately, and turning one off in your game is a permanent thing. Flight should not be "random" in the sense that towers would pop up randomly and need to be shut back down, it should be a convenience system, not a pointless hassle.
  18. WakeskaterX

    WakeskaterX Cupcake-About-Town

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    Then you would have to build them around EVERY jumping puzzle and that's really a design pain in the neck. Not quite so feasible. AA Turrets are better but then if you want to make it so that you can't just pop down, kill the one mob you need and fly off, you need to put them almost everywhere, so then why have flying?

    Also unlimited flying for no cost is completely unrealistic, to the extent that it ruins immersion. It makes no sense. Even with an animal / flying beast, they would need to rest/eat at some point. Aircraft need fuel, etc etc.

    There SHOULD be cost for convenience. That's how the world works, when you make things so convenient for no cost, it detracts from meaningfulness of doing anything.

    Also, using flying mounts makes it easy for botters to farm up nodes. W* ofc has a tougher system to stop this with the randomness of nodes, but still flying mounts don't help the cause if they are free to use.

    Unlimited flight in PvP is a problem. You probably have never played on a PvP server but it's easy to gank someone, fly up in the air, wait just out of sight for them to respawn (while you are 100% safe from any counter ganks) and then jump down and gank them again when they tag a mob or aggro something. If there is no cost to flying it can be abused. It was in WoW and it wasn't a very good system. Do I think flying is awesome and fun? Yes. Should it evolve into something more than free form flight? Absolutely.
  19. Teehk

    Teehk Cupcake-About-Town

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    i think aircraft should all be on rails! ahaha just kidding look at SWTOR
  20. WakeskaterX

    WakeskaterX Cupcake-About-Town

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    I was dissapointed by space missions in ToR too. I mean if they added a medal system for doing better/worse at a mission it would have made it at least bearable running them over and over LoL. For a space game where you had your own ship, I never really felt like it in ToR.

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