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Author Topic: Tabula Rasa Previewed at GameSpy  (Read 17093 times)
schild
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Reply #35 on: May 18, 2004, 07:07:43 AM

I just watched the ~100MB gameplay video of the game. One word, hyphenated: su-weet.
Riggswolfe
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Reply #36 on: May 18, 2004, 09:12:29 AM

I have to admit Tabula Rosa has me semi-interested. Sorry but I am quite cautious about these games now after the anal raping that was SWG. Still it does have potential.

"We live in a country, where John Lennon takes six bullets in the chest, Yoko Ono was standing right next to him and not one fucking bullet! Explain that to me! Explain that to me, God! Explain it to me, God!" - Denis Leary summing up my feelings about the nature of the universe.
schild
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Reply #37 on: May 18, 2004, 09:16:51 AM

I like what Garriot is saying on paper. I like the shiny of it. Will the game suck? I don't know. It's WAY too early to tell. It looks like they are far enough along however that we'll know sooner rather than later.
Riggswolfe
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Reply #38 on: May 18, 2004, 09:20:58 AM

Well I would give the beta a try at this point if I could. That's about as far as I'm willing to commit.

"We live in a country, where John Lennon takes six bullets in the chest, Yoko Ono was standing right next to him and not one fucking bullet! Explain that to me! Explain that to me, God! Explain it to me, God!" - Denis Leary summing up my feelings about the nature of the universe.
Sky
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Reply #39 on: May 18, 2004, 11:21:46 AM

He's been mulling over these ideas since 1998 or so, when it was Project X. I think with his position at NCSoft, and the success he's having in the NA market for them, if he is ever going to make a kickass online game, this is his shot. Good or bad, it should be interesting for anyone who was an ultima fan.

Quote
When I kill something, ideally, I want it to stay dead

DQ, were you in the UO beta? My character back then was named 'Slim Pickens', he was doing lowbie deer hunting for hides. With the virtual ecosystem, that meant no deer. Great concept, all but impossible to realize.

Venkman
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Reply #40 on: May 18, 2004, 03:52:40 PM

I realize that hunting to extinction only works for the folks playing on opening day, and only if they all play at the same pace and for the same time and quit that night :)

I prefer migration patterns. It's something that Ryzom is saying they have and iirc, was something on the long ass list of over promised hype in Horizons. It's also in Hollowshade Moor in EQ, where overhunting Owlbears will result in Sonic Wolves to spawn in greater quantity.

That can work system wide. It's like automated crop-rotation. It could have worked in UO, but I imagine there was some technical bandwidth-related reason why they didn't do migration though. I doubt they didn't think of it.

However, this is all but impossible in reward-per-kill games. It's not fun. Players want to kill and kill and kill some more to build their stock of hides for bulk crafting/sales, or gain their XP to ensure new character levels.

This is why I lament the predominance of reward-per-kill games. It makes mob AI irrelevant. It makes rating the fun of a combat engine irrelevant. It makes combat itself really irrelevant. Mobs are just gates, and devs let themselves get lazy about putting fun into their combat mechanics because they figure players will just find the quickest way to devolve the whole experience into a turn-key operation of achievement.

We really do need a return to reward-per-attempt. This could open up an entire new area of MMOGing.
Pug
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Reply #41 on: May 19, 2004, 10:51:58 AM

Quote from: Darniaq
I prefer migration patterns. It's something that Ryzom is saying they have and iirc, was something on the long ass list of over promised hype in Horizons. It's also in Hollowshade Moor in EQ, where overhunting Owlbears will result in Sonic Wolves to spawn in greater quantity.

Back when I played EQ we called mobs that spawn in place of other mobs "placeholders". Killing placeholders hardly felt like I was witnessing mob migration.

DAOC's Undead Seedsmen are a great example of player impact on mob population. If you left the Seedsman alone then they would spawn trees. The trees were easy kills. It was beneficial to keep the Seedsman alive even though you could kill him. Players also had to protect the grove from another type of mob who's name escapes me or else they'd kill off the trees.

What you couldn't do in DAOC is kill off all of the Seedsmen and prevent more from spawning or loot/harvest seeds and grow trees-mobs where you pleased. Every attempt will seem half-ass until the games are designed so that players can make lasting changes that amount to more than killing off mobs and spawning placeholders.

Instancing won't fix this problem. Sure, you can plant a flower garden next to your instanced house and spell out the words "BEND ME OVER" but nobody else will see it unless they come to your detached area. Asking people to come see your flower garden just isn't the same as being able to do the same thing in a public area where other players will come across it.

I'm told the reason that players are not allowed to impact their worlds is due to bandwidth. I have trouble believing this since DAoC's housing area allows a great deal of customization and I use to drop items to spell out words on the ground in both EQ and AC. I think the real reason that we players are not allowed to make world altering changes is because the devs don't want us coloring in their coloring book.

Another thing that I don't like about instancing is that it devalues encounters. It can be exciting to find a named mob that isn't camped. Being able to camp a popular named mob has value because nobody else can camp that mob so long as you control the spawn. Instancing can make rare encounters too common. Don't get me wrong, showing up in Guk to find every named mob camped sucked, but players only wanted to camp the named mobs because they had value in part due to the fact that you had to share them with the entire server's population.

Instancing will make these online games play much more like single player games with a cooperation mode. If that's the intention then it's working.
Sky
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Reply #42 on: May 19, 2004, 12:01:45 PM

Quote
I'm told the reason that players are not allowed to impact their worlds is due to bandwidth.

No, it's because people don't want to live next to some assmunch who spelled out "BEND ME OVER" in his garden.

I've said it since the beginning, it's all about accountability. PvP flags, murder counts, justice zones, pve only servers, instancing, every single one and many more instituted because people can't be mature adults online.

Pug
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Reply #43 on: May 19, 2004, 01:04:15 PM

Quote from: Sky
Quote
I'm told the reason that players are not allowed to impact their worlds is due to bandwidth.

No, it's because people don't want to live next to some assmunch who spelled out "BEND ME OVER" in his garden.


That's why I said:
Quote
I think the real reason that we players are not allowed to make world altering changes is because the devs don't want us coloring in their coloring book.

Multi-player game developers fear our creativity. Sure, my "BEND ME OVER" flower garden is an eye sore, but my neighbor's garden is in the shape of a giant cock (no, not a bird).

Accountability is huge. If multi-player game developers could nail down accountability then it would help to open up several options.

An easy fix to the garden delima is to allow anyone to transform public areas. I wrote "BEND ME OVER" in flowers by the NPC armor smith and anyone who doesn't like it can mow them down. It is after all a public area and shouldn't be reserved as one player's creative outlet.

Unfortunately developers feel responsible for user created content and fear litigation from Tipper Gore. Good 'ol Tipper, always looking out for my moral safety. Where would I be without people like her? Yes, likely living in a van down by the river surrounded by my own filth.
HaemishM
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Reply #44 on: May 19, 2004, 02:04:16 PM

Quote from: Soukyan
The first problem of persistence in these onine game worlds would be extinction. Because the sole driving factor for leveling is often combat of the local wildlife, lack of respawn would lead to extinction of the mobs, especially if the developers went for a real life cycle that took time for more creatures to be born and grow, not necessarily in real time, but perhaps by game time which would still take some time. I think it would be an interesting experiment to do. Implement full PvP with it and see how long it would take for players to totally destroy the world. I'd put my money on a single day, a week tops.


Ask Raph about that kind of shit from UO. They HAD that and took it out because everything was dead inside of a week. Monsters weren't spawning, harvesting resources were gone, the place was a used-up husk of a world, kind of like a veteran game dev's soul.

EDIT: Accountability would help with the "BEND ME OVER" problem, but it wouldn't solve the problem. The real problem is that when someone gets offended, they cancel the game. One person who is a Cockmuncher Extraordinaire can ruin the game experience for an exponentially large group of people. The ability to affect someone else's game experience far outweighs the ability to punish said person for negative actions.

And game developers would have to actually DEFINE what is a negative action, which they are loathe to do. They don't want to do it because that is essentially telling some customers that their business is not wanted. This is the last resort of someone who wants to make money. Accountability means shit unless there is a final arbitrator who can define negative or positive actions.

I have no problem with allowing people to affect other people's game experience, if as Sky said, the majority of people could be counted on to act maturely. They cannot be. Not only that, the dev companies cannot be counted on to act maturely when it comes to defining the community standards. Devs build these games without any idea of what building a community entails. In order to build a community, you have to instill rules, not just on the physical world, but on the actions of the community's inhabitants. Players cannot be the ones to establish these community rules because as I said above, players cannot be trusted to NOT be cockmunchers.

Pug
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Reply #45 on: May 19, 2004, 04:10:56 PM

If accountability itself is an unattainable pipe dream then so is the perfect MMOG.

I don't believe that player accountability is unatainable. Creating player accountability will be difficult but not impossible. It will likely take some creative game systems to empower players so that they are able to enforce decency.

Immature behavior comes from anonymity. Take the recent Guild Wars demo as an example. How many players did you see running about either naked, offering to cyber, or spouting off some racist comment in town? Those players weren't acting that way because that's how they act in real life, they were acting that way because they were anonymous.

Now imagine if the Guild Wars demo required a valid credit card before you could play and your character's name was the name on the credit card. How many people do you think would run about screaming, "Fuck me in the ass!!!1!" while using their real name?

I don't think developers need to resort to publishing personal information but they do need to take steps to ensure that there is a lot less anonymity in their games. Make sure that every character on an account can be traced back to that account by other players, allow players to controll areas and exclude misfits (KOS lists if it's PvP), allow players to post 100% verified chat logs on in-game bulletin boards for everyone to see, and do what it takes to make sure that players want to protect their account's reputation as if it were their own.

If I plant a phallic garden in the middle of town then let players delve my plants to see that I planted them and post an in-game screen shot on an in-game board. Players who think it's funny might become my friend and players who disapprove will ban me from groups, raids, guilds, and player controlled towns.

If you want a game world that has real freedom then you have to learn to take the good with the bad. So long as developers are trying to sanitize their worlds we'll never have any more impact on these game worlds than what we already have. Players are saying, "Let me do more to impact the game world!" not, "Let me do more to impact the game world so long as there is no chance that I might offend someone else or become offended by someone else!" Freedom from other players enjoying their freedom is not freedom.

Besides, what's the difference between me planting a questionable floral arrangement and me spouting the exact same stuff out in a chat box? I can draw boobies (. )( .) and caek (  y  ) with ascii, too. I don't need flowers.
HaemishM
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Reply #46 on: May 19, 2004, 04:31:49 PM

Quote from: Pug
If you want a game world that has real freedom then you have to learn to take the good with the bad. So long as developers are trying to sanitize their worlds we'll never have any more impact on these game worlds than what we already have. Players are saying, "Let me do more to impact the game world!" not, "Let me do more to impact the game world so long as there is no chance that I might offend someone else or become offended by someone else!" Freedom from other players enjoying their freedom is not freedom.


If players were saying the former in profitable enough numbers, EQ would not be king, Shadowbane would be.

Player accountability can work, but only by taking some seriously stringent (read: expensive) steps that no developer is willing to take. Players will not make other players accountable; what you will end up having is tyranny of the many. For the best example, see Shadowbane and DHL. They took over the server and imposed their will over everyone by destroying anyone who would not submit or obey. In MMOG's, MIGHT MAKES RIGHT, and MIGHT comes from organization, which is mostly gained by those who have the most time. Yes, they smell of feline rectum.

Krakrok
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Reply #47 on: May 19, 2004, 05:22:46 PM

eBay style feedback system. Aka a karmic system outside the scope of the "game".

You interact with me, I get to rate your ACCOUNT for your interaction with me with a 128 character comment and a 1 through 5 stars YMMV. You only get to rate my ACCOUNT if I interact with you back.

Interaction could be defined as anything but I would define it as everything from sending me a private message to wacking me with a sword.

Optional: The weight of your rating is relative to your current rating. If you have a bad rating your ratings don't hold very much weight.


Scenario's:

#1
You send me a private message out of the blue that says "fuck you".

I can rate your ACCOUNT with 0 stars and a comment that relates the above.

You can NOT rate me back because I did not interact with you.

#2
You PK me. I don't fight back.

I can rate your ACCOUNT with 0 stars and a comment that relates the above.

You can NOT rate me back because I did not interact with you.

#3
You PK me. I fight back.

I can rate your ACCOUNT with 0 stars and a comment that relates the above.

You CAN rate me back because I interacted with you.
Venkman
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Reply #48 on: May 19, 2004, 07:27:11 PM

Quote from: Pug
Back when I played EQ we called mobs that spawn in place of other mobs "placeholders". Killing placeholders hardly felt like I was witnessing mob migration.

Heh. They're still called placeholders. And I certainly wasn't implying EQlive was perfect. It's just that this later concept affects the spawn (and therefore loot-) tables of the entire zone. That was unique. Blow that out to cover the entire seamless landscape (which Ryzom is), and it starts to be compelling. Add in the fact that mobs actually walk to their new location, and it gets more so. Whether that actually makes the game better, I have no idea. But it's an interesting concept.

Quote from: Pug
It can be exciting to find a named mob that isn't camped

That's just being happily surprised. I wouldn't design a game around campable mobs and then expect players to be happy when the ubers who got their first are done camping them. Camping is a stupid idea. Being able to prevent others from achieving their own goals is just elitist risk-free indirect PvP. I agree instancing can devalue some encounters, but entirely disagree campable static content is a valuable encounter worth keeping. It only matters to the few who enjoy keeping content from other players.

Quote from: Haemish
They HAD that and took it out because everything was dead inside of a week

They had it in SWG too, where worlds could be entirely strip mined of all of their resources. They learned, again, just how quickly players can mine.

As to accountability, good luck. I imagine developers would lose more players if they required some level of accountability in their games than the amount of folks they lose because they got pissed someone put BEND ME OVER in their next door garden.

People who get riled by those childish antics have no business playing in online multiplayer games anyway. But that's an aside because that sort of crap is just a symptom of truly off-putting shit like racism and ethnocentrism. /Ignore only goes so far.

I don't for a minute buy that Shadowbane compels any more accountability than any other game. Talk to anyone who travels alone through NPC populated towns. Ganking happens as often as anywhere else. The only difference is whether you compel your nation to add the nation of your killer's to their KOS list. It doesn't compel more accountability. It just starts more fights... which, of course, is the entire point.

Companies first have to do more than pay lip service to caring. Leaving it to player justice is just requires the Good Guys play precisely the same game as the Bad Guys. Fun if you like it, but there's ample proof that too many don't.
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Reply #49 on: May 19, 2004, 08:05:05 PM

Krakrok, it's not a bad idea except that people tend to ignore alignment and rating systems and go with personal experiences. Watch L2. Alignment will not have the same meaning in another few weeks. What will matter is who you know, not what you have done.

Imagine, if you will, the most grand epic adventure possible. Now imagine every other player in the game being able to complete the same mission at the same time in separate instanced spaces. Who cares if you just killed Vox, so did I. In fact we can kill Vox all day and night. All we have to do is keep loading the Vox mission. It's kind of like completing a single player game and then bragging about it on a message board. Meh. This is why shared static camps are so popular in MMOGs. It (was) a big deal to kill the Ancient Cyclops and score a rare component needed for jboots.

People like Tipper aren't satisfied ignoring what others are doing, they feel as if it is their life's purpose to stop anyone from doing anything that they don't like even if it isn't affecting them. It's not enough to boycott an offensive album, Tipper has to make sure that nobody else can buy an offensive album. These are the same people who can't just /squelch an offensive player and move on. These self riteous bastards who forcefully impose their mores on everyone else should never be catered to. It's only a matter of time before they find something that you are doing unacceptable and then come for you.

Gonna have to cut this short, I think I heard Tipper rustling in the bushes outside my window.
Krakrok
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Reply #50 on: May 19, 2004, 11:10:11 PM

Not quite sure how your response relates to my post, Pug. My post may have been off topic somewhat as all it entailed was an example of an digital accountability mechanism that for the most part works (for eBay). It's griefable, but what isn't.

It would be up to the developer to say "ok, this person is a total fuck based on their feedback and we don't need them as a customer anymore". They do the same thing to exploiter accounts so it isn't much of a stretch to apply it to someone who falls below X threshold in the rating system.

As far as instancing goes, instancing is great and everything if all one is signing on to a MMO for is to play a single player game in co-op mode. Instancing feels like Xbox Live. Savage/Guild Wars/CoH are all fun and for the most part I like playing them but they aren't really what I signed up for when I wanted to play in a persistant world.
eldaec
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Reply #51 on: May 20, 2004, 03:02:20 AM

Quote from: Darniaq
This is why I lament the predominance of reward-per-kill games. It makes mob AI irrelevant. It makes rating the fun of a combat engine irrelevant. It makes combat itself really irrelevant. Mobs are just gates, and devs let themselves get lazy about putting fun into their combat mechanics because they figure players will just find the quickest way to devolve the whole experience into a turn-key operation of achievement.

We really do need a return to reward-per-attempt. This could open up an entire new area of MMOGing.


I agree that reward-per-kill is the problem.

But personally I'd go for reward-per-objective-achieved for the solution.

In CoH you should get the vast bulk of xp for preventing crime or for completing missions, not for killing passing mobs.

Currently completing 'save the hostage'/'defuse the bomb' etc missions the smart way - without massacring everything in sight nets cosiderably less xp.

Similarly, I've long since thought DAOC RP rewards need moving from non-contextual deaths of the opposition and to taking and holding keeps/objectives.

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RipSnort
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Reply #52 on: May 20, 2004, 04:15:52 PM

I don't mind the trend. Instancing is cool because it offers you a choice if you dont have the time or desire to form a group for that particular game session you can solo an instanced mission.
What most MMOs aren't doing is offering diversity in the way you adventure. Most games out there are one dimensional in that they only give you one way to adventure. You kill to level to kill more and level again.
When I used to log on to UO I'd have to deliberate what I'd do that evening. Maybe I'd take the boat out, knock heads at the crosssroads, get some buds and roam for pvp, hit the dungeons.. I never really felt "obligated" to treadmill my character in one particular fashion. It was an adventure just being in the world and knockin' around till some activity caught your fancy that night.
DAOC was the worst one in my book for repetition. Until the end game you would log on find a group, camp and grind till you logged off. There was nothing else to do in that world.
Whether a game has instancing, pvp, crafting or anythting else, what I want most is lots of choices on how to adventure in the world. I dont want a sole method of leveling my avatar to the end game. I want many routes and side tracks on my way there. I want to forget about watching my level bar go up because I'm having fun. I dont give a shit if the mob I just killed gave good xp I had a ball killing him.
A mod like tribes or CS shuold focus on one type of game play be all about that one thing.
A massive online world should be all about diversity and multiple ways to interact.
Venkman
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Reply #53 on: May 20, 2004, 07:00:11 PM

Quote from: eldaec
But personally I'd go for reward-per-objective-achieved for the solution..

/agree. I've been hoping a game would reward Questing more than Killing since I started EQ (never had to worry about it in UO). I don't know why devs continually choose the mob formula. Killing killing killing. Gets boring after awhile, in all MMOGs.

WoW is on the right track. It does reward more for a quest than just the sum total of mobs killed therein. EverQuest should have done this so very long ago. Maybe they were scared there weren't enough quests to keep people playing or something.

DAoC was on the right path with Tasks. But even they wimped out, allowing only half (or 2/3?) one's total level to be paid off for with task missions. CoH is the same way. Foolish. People who advance by questing, particularly when that questing reveals story elements, don't bitch about grinding mobs near as much as those that have no choice but to grind mobs.
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Reply #54 on: May 21, 2004, 02:30:12 PM

http://pc.gamespy.com/pc/tabula-rasa/512085p5.html

Anyone else think that Tabula Rasa's lore seems as if it might mirror Richard Garriott's MMOG experience?

The lore starts off in an era where everyone dreams of doing something impossible and they eventually find a way to make it work. Things go bad because people don't always play nice. There's a power struggle between two groups of people, one wanting absolute control and the other holding out hope for freedom. And here's where we enter and help to determine which way it will go.

Hmmm... we are actually playing out what will happen both in his game and in his real life at the same time! Now that's deep.
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