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That "world" feeling?

Discussion in 'WildStar General' started by SirRobin, Aug 14, 2012.

  1. SirRobin

    SirRobin Cupcake-About-Town

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    I've seen the videos like most of us have, I imagine, and one word has sort of "jumped" out at me.

    Crowded

    Do the zones seem a bit too crowded with mobs to anyone else? I'm still searching for an MMORPG that resurrects the feeling I got in early WoW. That early game felt like a "world" to me. I could run around a lot and not have to worry about aggro. I had "elbow room," so to speak. In fact I could end up in places I really shouldn't be, and that added so much to the in-game experience.

    One of my favorite zones in early WoW was The Barrens and one of the main reasons was how wide open it was plus how much of the digital wildlife was not actively hostile. Not to mention that I had multiple paths I could take for progression with each one being perfectly valid. I could go north, west, or south and keep questing on up. Lots of pathing by the mobs made them feel much less static too and, again, added a lot to the experience.

    In so many games since, the zones felt crowded with hostiles and there was only one path to go onward and upward. Is anyone else getting that too "static" and "linear" feeling, or is that also just me?
  2. ObliviousPrime

    ObliviousPrime "That" Cupcake

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    On the reverse side if not a lot of things are happening in an area people complain its boring.
  3. Chrilin

    Chrilin Cupcake-About-Town

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    Early WoW didn't have pathing either. I remember when they put it in. The world felt so much more alive.

    I know exactly what you are saying about WoW. I remember getting truly lost. I haven't played a single mmo since that has made me really feel like I was in a endless world.

    I wonder though is it because the worlds really are smaller? (Swtor was awful, I never felt as confined as in that game) Or is it something else? Maybe it's that mmo worlds all seem to follow a general recipe and it's just familiar to me.

    Either way I do miss that feeling of awe. As for the videos, remember it's only the starter area that we have seen. Think how small the lvl 1-8ish? areas were in WoW.
  4. Billco

    Billco Cupcake-About-Town

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    Here's the catch that a lot of mmo's suffer from. They launch and thousands of people descend on the servers, roll their toons and all level together.

    It takes weeks, even months for the level gap to spread out, hardcore's hit 50 in 2 days and the rest of us amble on at our own pace.

    Then , zones start to lower in population and things thin out to a more manageable level.

    The problem is, a lot of people have ragequit already because of too much spawn contention.
  5. Dyraele

    Dyraele "That" Cupcake

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    So true Billco. Add to that the problems that occur when they add servers to relieve the logon stress because of complaints then later having to merge the servers back then ... (I guess most know the story)

    Maybe if they had multiple areas for the same level avatars even for the same race. If one area is too crowded go to a different area. Have access based on a central area. I don't know, just throwing stuff out there.
  6. JarNod

    JarNod WildStar Haiku Winner 2012 / Lead Guinea Pig

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    I would say that you just shouldn't cave in and open up a bunch of new servers. I understand the frustration of having to wait to logon to a game that you want to play right now, but, imho, it is far better than being a part of a ghost server right after launch.
  7. Chrilin

    Chrilin Cupcake-About-Town

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    Too many servers at launch = Bad PR 3 months after launch.
    Too few servers at launch = Bad PR 1 month after launch.
    Has any mmo managed to master this dilemma?

    I agree, too many servers is super bad after the initial push... Look at Swtor. I will say though a successful game will grow over time making dead servers less of an issue as long as they balance it at the beginning. To
    me the sweet spot for Q times is 10-15 minutes. It just seems indicative of a healthy pop down the road based on what I have seen.
  8. snappyllama

    snappyllama Cupcake

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    One of the best ways I've seen mob spawn competition handled was in TERA. You could switch to a different channel if there were too many folks fighting over the same mob kills. The number of channels available increased/decreased per the number of players in a zone.

    That game had plenty of other things wrong with it... but they got that right. I'm sure other MMOs have used similar mechanisms... TERA is just the only one that springs to mind.

    As far as world size and mob activity goes, I do hope WS takes it cues from WoW... It was never a beautiful game, ahem... but it felt 'alive' in a way that a lot of mmos do not. Of course, WS looks vibrant and adorable. Here's to hoping they keep it alive.
  9. Black Wolf

    Black Wolf Super Cupcake

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    I just want a couple of giant servers like in EVE. Except because of the separation of types (pve, pvp, etc.) and languages (en, de, fr) we need more then one. With Tera channels. That worked great indeed.
    SiegaPlays likes this.
  10. Chrilin

    Chrilin Cupcake-About-Town

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    I have never played a game that was set up like that.... The more I hear about it the more appealing it sounds.

    I wonder though because of the way the game-play must be designed for that to work is a little different than the traditional pve,pve,rp setup. Will a smaller pop game succeed? Please excuse my noobness on this subject I don't understand all of the details.
  11. Billco

    Billco Cupcake-About-Town

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    I think the easiest solution is to set up a temporary instancing for zones.

    So have each zone's pop cap set high, so it always feels populated but not crowded. However during the first month or so, allow it to split into 3 or 4 instances.

    Then, when the pop settles, it goes back into being one zone. (I'm not a fan of instancing long term)

    Saves from having to open servers/do transfers etc.

    Course, this all depends on the back-end, to which we know nothing about at this point ;)
  12. Black Wolf

    Black Wolf Super Cupcake

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    Yeah, that is like the system Tera uses.

    And the back end? Shouldn't be a problem in these days. If CCP can do it why not someone else? I know it's a different type of game, but EVE is 9, almost 10 years old now and they were able to do it back then already. And now that the hardware has become so much better, so I don't see any problems. The population will be split anyway, unlike EVE. Like I said, there will be splits in language and types. That puts my server count on 12. And if they have regions like EU/US/Oceania, etc. it will be even more. The latter to keep latency down.

    Blizzard is implementing a system in MoP that works the other way around to counter empty feeling servers. They are starting to dynamically phase servers together in zones that are empty. So it's possible that you see players from other servers. This system is just one step away from several giant servers. But Wildstar doesn't have WoW's history and can do it 'right' in the beginning.
  13. SiegaPlays

    SiegaPlays "That" Cupcake

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    Instancing makes sense to me to buffer large pop and peak hours and avoid the segregation into realms. Instancing is far better than realms imho, because they do pretty much the same thing, it is just very much easier to switch instance than realm. So I don't really get why people prefer realms, I am the "more options" type myself.
  14. Tiktak

    Tiktak Cupcake-About-Town

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    Isn't it a technical issue? EvE is a collection of servers all linked. The Jump-gates are simply the mechanism for swapping servers in real-time.

    It would be nice for a small collection of realms though. Based on RP/PvE/PvP and Languages/Regions...
  15. SirRobin

    SirRobin Cupcake-About-Town

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    When did they add it? Its been years but I thought it was always in. It helps a lot and the lack or relative lack of it in other MMORPG's has always been very noticeable to me.

    I don't think they were so much "smaller" per se as they were more linear. In games like WAR and TOR the content seemed excessively linear. You went to A then B then C. Early WoW felt more dispersed to me.

    Well they showed bits of later zones in that one video and the mob density seemed pretty high.

    Yep, that's what I loved most about early WoW. Really hoping they can resurrect that feeling in Wildstar.

    Zone instancing was supposed to be a a big part of TOR but they didn't use it much and what they had wasn't very dynamic. "Overflow" zones are part of GW2 and I do like the way they work in that game.
  16. Black Wolf

    Black Wolf Super Cupcake

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    That was patch 1.6.0 > http://www.wowpedia.org/Patch_1.6.0. "The Barrens should now feel more alive."

    Can you explain more about how that 'overflow' works?
  17. SirRobin

    SirRobin Cupcake-About-Town

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    Guess I'm just getting old. Could have sworn it was earlier than that. Overflow works similar to instancing but it actually tells you the zone is full and if I recall correctly tells when the zone is light enough for you to enter the main one again.
  18. Chrilin

    Chrilin Cupcake-About-Town

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    Thanks Black Wolf, I would never have found that.

    Maybe so.... Vanilla was cool in the sense that you could stumble upon quests out in a zone seemingly at random. It did make the exploring aspect of the game a lot of fun.

    Yeah I saw that too... I am hoping that the small bit we did see was just a particular area within that zone.

    You've probably seen it, but there is a video with Carbine talking about zone fatigue. I took some comfort when I watched it.

    here is a snibbit of an interview with Jeremy Gaffney talking about the same thing.

    MMORPG: You mention in the video that you throw a lot of curve balls at the players to keep them on their toes. Tell us your design idea behind these changes.
    Jeremy Gaffney: In the video I was talking about a concept we blatantly took from a really smart testing team we partner with in our headquarters – it’s called zone fatigue. As it turns out, when you see the same environments over and over for a huge stretch, it just wears you out and bores you to death. Shocking, right? So as a developer, we think it’s wise to make sure that we are breaking that monotony.
    So we do a ton to avoid this fatigue – for visuals, it’s lots of different subzones, lots of different micro dungeons, a host of monumental Eldan technologies gone wrong, lots of different environmental hazards (windspouts hurling you around) and benefits (Loftite gives you superjump!). Add to that a collection of monsters with a ton of variety –unique attacks, and combinations of those attacks. And then there better be great variety in the end games as well.
    Variety, variety, variety. We’ve all played a ton of MMOs, and it takes a lot to keep our interest to hit max level. That’s what we are trying to build for you.
  19. Black Wolf

    Black Wolf Super Cupcake

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    Google Powah!
  20. Chrilin

    Chrilin Cupcake-About-Town

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    SirRobbin.... I just found confirmation on another subject that was being discussed that might be relevant to zones being overcrowded with mobs.

    WS will have both tab target and live target gameplay.

    I thought this might matter because live targeting games tend to have dense mob pops. If WS has tab and target gameplay they will have to tune the environment for both playstyles lending to fewer mobs. Of course this is pure conjecture, but it makes sense imo.

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