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Author Topic: User Created Content [CoH]  (Read 26491 times)
skolor
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Reply #35 on: March 03, 2009, 03:17:29 PM

Seems to me the consensus is that User Created Content generally isn't that great, which I've  got to agree with. Sure, occasionally something cool comes out of it, but not very often.

I do have to say though, the more admin/GM/other phrase for the same concept involvement there is, the cooler of an game it ends up being. I've played two MMO style games with gobs of it, Kingdom of Loathing and Puzzle Pirates (Shut up. It was a phase...). KoL doesn't have much direct involvement, seeing as its mostly a single player game that other people can look in on, but the way the devs got into it with the events, got active on the forums and would make appearances in chat made it super cool, and made things really unique. Puzzle Pirates wasn't quite as cool with their methodology, but it was definitely something people could get into. They would have a GM get on, and start a tournament of some sort with a crazy rare fluff item as the prize. As I remember, good fun was had all around (especially by the people who won the tournaments, the prizes often went for $250+ in game currency).

The current sharding of games into separate servers kind of ruins the effectiveness of this though. Its hard to say "This server gets this, this one gets that" and not have constant complaints about how some servers are getting unfair treatment. And if you had everything be the same, you'll either get complaints that someone got to do it first, and ruined the surprise, or there will be complaints that it was all at the same time and you didn't get an opportunity.  The only way I can think of to fix it is to make each server unique and separate, and largely driven by these kind of scripted events. While there would have to be some sort of daily grind players can do, if there were weekly random events that passed through, lasting several hours at a time (Generally targeted around that servers peak times), with unique (or somewhat unique, at least only available from the events) rewards that were not bound to a character, I think there is a lot of possibility.

But it would have to be built from the ground up with this kind of a concept.
Nebu
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Reply #36 on: March 03, 2009, 03:48:56 PM

I'm surprised that tools like these aren't made available to players in beta.  You have to think that there are some VERY creative souls out there that could do some free area design.  So many people want to break into gaming that a tool like this could provide a carrot for those looking for even the smallest level of recognition. 

"Always do what is right. It will gratify half of mankind and astound the other."

-  Mark Twain
Trippy
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Reply #37 on: March 03, 2009, 05:32:16 PM

I'm surprised that tools like these aren't made available to players in beta.  You have to think that there are some VERY creative souls out there that could do some free area design.  So many people want to break into gaming that a tool like this could provide a carrot for those looking for even the smallest level of recognition. 
They aren't made available to players in beta because the internal tools are:

1) generally very difficult for player builders to use (read: complicated UIs)

2) too powerful (read: ripe for abuse)

3) constantly changing during development (read: players would constantly be tweaking their levels to match the latest build)

And it would require too much supervision of the player builders (e.g. all the player written stories would have to be reviewed for "coherency" to the planned storylines) during a time when developers are just trying to get the game out

Modules built with NWN, levels built with UnrealEd or other level designers, etc. are suitable for submission as part of your portfolio of work when applying for a level designer/mission designer job so it's not like there's no way for budding game world creators to express themselves now.
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Reply #38 on: March 03, 2009, 07:16:43 PM

My understanding for CoH/V is that this system meant they updated and refined a lot of their internal tools which should make the internal process of mission development easier. Except for cutscenes. Apparently those are a PITA.

Of course, CoH/V is using a toolset that I don't think is being updated anymore (Cryptic Tools v1.0 - at least, by anyone outside of NC^2, who would then probably have to give the improvements back to Cryptic, so I don't think a lot of time working on the tools would be spent). So they can be more easily 'refined' to a public state.

Delmania
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Reply #39 on: March 03, 2009, 07:32:43 PM

A friend of mine told me he used to play a MUD that was based off the LPMud system.  A friend of his built a zone in which casting a spell would either cause the spell to fire correctly, fail, have double the effect, or not go off at all.  I could see something like this for a PvE game for players who prove they aren't idiots.  However, depending on the change, you'd need to apply this change to all world servers.

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Reply #40 on: March 05, 2009, 06:23:52 PM

Apparently the MA system / I14 is being supported by a boxed release and will also coincide with the launch of the next Booster content pack. Not that it is well advertised yet, especially since I14 is still in closed beta. As such, I'm expecting this to come out May-ish, to be on the shelves ahead of ChampO's proposed launch in June.

Jimbo
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Reply #41 on: March 13, 2009, 09:03:59 PM

Anyone else in the closed beta for it besides me?
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Reply #42 on: March 13, 2009, 10:46:26 PM

I never saw any point to try out for CoH/V closed betas before since I actually wanted to be surprised when I played through new content on my main.

However, I will be open beta-ing this issue to death.

Glazius
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Reply #43 on: March 15, 2009, 02:22:48 AM

Anyone else in the closed beta for it besides me?


NDA man, NDA
Glazius
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Reply #44 on: March 17, 2009, 06:16:08 PM

Hey guess what? Open beta happened.

So, uh, here's a quick overview of what the Architect system lets you do.

Character Creation
  • Design appearances with the costume creator
  • Create threats from Minion through Archvillain
  • Pick any two powersets in the game for your creations, with three levels of difficulty to select more powers
  • Build enemy groups out of any foes in the game and anything you create

Mission Creation
Create arcs of up to 5 chained missions.
Use any contact or mob in the game for an arc contact - all arcs launched from the Architect building.
Set missions on any instance map in the game. Pick a specific one or a random pull from a large pool]
Up to 25 objectives per mission. What's an objective?
  • Clear the map/the boss room
  • Defeat a boss
  • Rescue a hostage - any mob in the game, including your own creations
  • Click an object - anything, floor-mounted or wall-mounted
  • Destroy/defend an object
  • Join up with an ally - any mob in the game, including your own creations
  • Escort a hostage/ally (currently only to mission door)
  • Take out a patrol
  • Fend off an ambush
Every mission has to have at least one objective that's mandatory for mission complete. Patrols and ambushes can't be mandatory for pathing issues. An objective can include multiples of itself (place 3 bombs, defeat 4 Freak tanks, 10 patrols) and each map generally only has so many "slots" which are used up by placing objects to click on or for special enemy spawns. Each objective will generally only use one model, but you can lump display of objectives together by giving them the same quick text, so you can place 10 different things to click on but have the nav bar counting down from "10 pieces of evidence".

Everything except collectible objects can be triggered off the completion of another objective. Anything but taking out a patrol or an ambush can be used as a trigger. Every mandatory objective that's triggered needs a mandatory trigger, so you can't have a boss show up after you try to defend 4 precious artifacts, whether you succeed or fail.

Oh yeah, and you can write like hell. Descriptions for enemies, chatter text for everything, intro/accept/success from your contact, a souvenir for the arc, and a giant variety of static emotes for special spawns. You can have a boss meditating while his flunkies are on lookout with bows drawn, f'rex.

Ah right, limitations. 3 ambushes per map, so you can't just turn on autofire and defeat a neverending stream of them.
Arcs are limited to 100K of data, which in practice means you can't go all-out with customized enemies, though a group with 9 or 10 seems to work out pretty well.
You can have as many arcs created as you want, but you can only play them in test mode, which means no rewards.
You can publish three arcs for everyone to play, and they get normal XP and "architect tickets" which can be cashed in for recipe/salvage drops etc.
If an arc is picked by the devs or receives popular acclaim, it moves on to "devs choice" or "hall of fame" status which means it rewards just like a normal mission would, drops and all. No tickets though.
And anything in the costume creator that's unlockable, in addition to certain enemies and maps, needs to be purchased with architect tickets, so even on a level 1 you could design a character with capes and auras. Generally the unlocks are pretty cheap though, a couple arcs gets you enough.
« Last Edit: March 17, 2009, 06:22:58 PM by Glazius »
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Reply #45 on: April 06, 2009, 08:52:44 PM

This issue is apparently going to go live on the 8th.

A quote about the power of user-created content:

Quote
Before this meeting, I did a little data-mining and I realized that in the three weeks Mission Architect has been out [on the test servers], players have managed to actually surpass the amount of content we've been able to make in five years as developers. And we're still in beta!

Not all of it good, of course, but there will be diamonds among the rough.

Malakili
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Reply #46 on: April 06, 2009, 10:56:36 PM


Quote
Before this meeting, I did a little data-mining and I realized that in the three weeks Mission Architect has been out [on the test servers], players have managed to actually surpass the amount of content we've been able to make in five years as developers. And we're still in beta!

Not all of it good, of course, but there will be diamonds among the rough.

This is why I've been saying that user created content is going to be the wave of the future.  I imagine there will be lots of trial and error for trying out how to implement a system properly that isn't easily abused.   However, give me an MMO with solid game mechanics and effectively endless amounts of content, and I'm in, I don't care what the setting is.

EDIT: Yes, I brushed off "solid game mechanics" there, which of course, is the trick.  Most MMOs, even if they have fantastic worlds to explore and neat looking armor, weapons, and graphics in general, play like ass.
Kageru
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Reply #47 on: April 07, 2009, 03:09:02 AM


It suits CoH well given it has always had decent mechanics but not nearly enough content to make the grind bearable. In addition the city environment suits this. There's so many "doors" and areas in a city a development team can never hope to actually put something behind even a small number of them. The disadvantage is that CoH is an old game now, dev-bucks are probably limited and the idea is going to need some iteration (and possibly a game designed around it) to mature.

I do look forward to seeing it in action though.

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Glazius
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Reply #48 on: April 07, 2009, 02:57:54 PM


It suits CoH well given it has always had decent mechanics but not nearly enough content to make the grind bearable. In addition the city environment suits this. There's so many "doors" and areas in a city a development team can never hope to actually put something behind even a small number of them. The disadvantage is that CoH is an old game now, dev-bucks are probably limited and the idea is going to need some iteration (and possibly a game designed around it) to mature.

I do look forward to seeing it in action though.


Actually, Cryptic was using CoH to fund its other undertakings. They actually brought more people on board when ownership formally transferred over to NCSoft.
stark
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Reply #49 on: April 07, 2009, 03:39:57 PM

It suits CoH well given it has always had decent mechanics but not nearly enough content to make the grind bearable.

You can level from 1 to 50 entirely on player created missions.  Even on the test server, the rate new missions were added to the system outpaced my ability to play them.  So theorhetically you could level with no grind at all.
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Reply #50 on: April 07, 2009, 05:54:39 PM

It suits CoH well given it has always had decent mechanics but not nearly enough content to make the grind bearable.

You can level from 1 to 50 entirely on player created missions.  Even on the test server, the rate new missions were added to the system outpaced my ability to play them.  So theorhetically you could level with no grind at all.
If Kageru was referring to a "grind" Hero-side pre-MA that's not going to change with I14. Hero-side has *way* more contacts than you could possibly do going from 1-50 (unless you turn off exp), not even counting all the "duplicates" (different contacts with the same sets of missions). Villain-side definitely has many fewer contacts.

Ingmar
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Reply #51 on: April 07, 2009, 05:57:33 PM

Yeah when I hear people talk about grind in CoX it isn't of the 'I ran out of missions/quests/whatever so I have to grind mobs to level' variety, its of the 'oh god how many more warehouses full of Freakshow til I ding' variety.

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Fordel
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Reply #52 on: April 07, 2009, 07:34:39 PM

Yeah when I hear people talk about grind in CoX it isn't of the 'I ran out of missions/quests/whatever so I have to grind mobs to level' variety, its of the 'oh god how many more warehouses full of Freakshow til I ding' variety.


It was the mobster faction, whoever they are.

and the gate is like I TOO AM CAPABLE OF SPEECH
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Reply #53 on: April 07, 2009, 07:49:28 PM

Yeah when I hear people talk about grind in CoX it isn't of the 'I ran out of missions/quests/whatever so I have to grind mobs to level' variety, its of the 'oh god how many more warehouses full of Freakshow til I ding' variety.


It was the mobster faction, whoever they are.

The Family.

That players can create custom mob groups for the custom missions should help fix this problem a bit. There are meant to be 7000 maps available too, but I'm sure the issue of map repetition is still going to be a factor until custom map creation comes in.

stark
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Reply #54 on: April 10, 2009, 05:29:59 PM

Over 10,000 published arcs in 3 days.    shocked
Simond
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Reply #55 on: April 10, 2009, 06:09:34 PM

..and 99,999 of them will suck.  Oh ho ho ho. Reallllly?

"You're really a good person, aren't you? So, there's no path for you to take here. Go home. This isn't a place for someone like you."
Kail
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Reply #56 on: April 10, 2009, 08:22:21 PM

Over 10,000 published arcs in 3 days.    shocked
..and 99,999 of them will suck.  Oh ho ho ho. Reallllly?

You know you need some serious QA when you have a negative nine hundred percent success rate, I suppose.
PalmTrees
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Reply #57 on: April 11, 2009, 07:12:56 AM

Over 10,000 published arcs in 3 days.    shocked

Three of those were mine!

Got a couple of positive comments about one of them. I was all   smiley
Of course my most played has 7 while the ones on the front page have hundreds. It's so easy to get buried.
Valmorian
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Reply #58 on: April 12, 2009, 08:52:05 PM

Over 10,000 published arcs in 3 days.    shocked

Three of those were mine!

Got a couple of positive comments about one of them. I was all   smiley
Of course my most played has 7 while the ones on the front page have hundreds. It's so easy to get buried.

What are they called?  I resubbed for this..
Glazius
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Reply #59 on: April 12, 2009, 11:19:38 PM

I've got two sub-20 hero arcs - "Dream Paper" #1874 and "Bricked Electronics" #2180 - and one 20-30 villain arc, "The Bravuran Jobs" #5073
PalmTrees
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Reply #60 on: April 13, 2009, 02:54:06 AM

I got a single mish villain: 28084
A 4 mish hero: 10175
A 4 mish villain: 32560

Glazius
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Reply #61 on: April 14, 2009, 01:02:15 PM

Arc IDs are used forever, so when people unpublish an arc its ID remains used. But that said...

In a development that should surprise no one, players have now created in 5 days more missions than the devs have made in 5 years.
Sky
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Reply #62 on: April 14, 2009, 03:02:23 PM

How many are to rescue someone's penis?  why so serious?
stark
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Reply #63 on: April 14, 2009, 03:37:18 PM

My experience with the mission architect has been refreshingly cock-free.

Edit:  Also over 20k cocks missions published now.
Glazius
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Reply #64 on: April 14, 2009, 07:16:34 PM

There is a content filter, so you have to get creative, and a user-reporting system as well.
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Reply #65 on: April 14, 2009, 08:02:45 PM

How many are to rescue someone's penis?  why so serious?

Your avatar gives this comment extra punch.

justdave
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Reply #66 on: April 15, 2009, 12:08:35 AM

Having played with it, now...Man, so disappointing...No, that's not right...Underwhelming? No...Hmm.

I'm at a loss for an english word that means 'Exceeds my original expectations of what was promised in a lot of significant ways, and yet does not succeed in it's overall thrust of revitalizing a fading interest due to lack of introduction of anything really new, or at the very least empowerment to create anything new'.

All I can say is, I love the slickness of the toolset. However, if this is really a refined version of the developer tools, I finally understand why I've gotten bored. :\ And I say this as someone who loves CoV/H, and actually likes the Mission Architect.

"They started to resist with a crust that was welded with human brain and willpower."
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Reply #67 on: April 15, 2009, 01:55:19 AM

I made a mission, just to see how it was...

It's way too hard to find a mission. They need better search tools for finding missions.

justdave
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Reply #68 on: April 15, 2009, 02:35:18 AM

No they don't. You've played all of them already, really.

"They started to resist with a crust that was welded with human brain and willpower."
Trippy
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Reply #69 on: April 15, 2009, 02:43:53 AM

Oh no you haven't. There's some pretty strange ones out there. Like the one where all the "normal" mobs (minions/lts/bosses) are actually AVs. Yes that means with a big enough team there are like a hundred of them on the map awesome, for real

Good for PLing if you have a group that can survive fighting 6 - 8 AVs at once (it's like an amped up version of the first mission in the KHTF).
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