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  1. Yes, this post! Your first sentence is such an excellent concise point. Your whole post is an excellent point. Unfortunately, I already agree with this point, so there's nothing to discuss. Still, I hope others read it and see from a new point-of-view. Agreed. There's a reason people get addicted to slots, even though they're a waste of time & money... You bring an interesting point up with Wildstar. I tried it. I thought I loved it. I stopped playing after a month. I never thought too much about why. Don't get me wrong, I don't honestly want loot drops. I just hope there's an equivalent, but less detrimental system in place. My example of a more engaging combat system is just an idea. It may not be possible. I'm just brainstorming. Interesting idea, I like it. Unfortunately, even if it was implemented like this or better, it may not be enough. The strength of loot drops is the immediate feeling of accomplishment you get by equipping the item that's dropped. Feeling yourself progress in that moment reinforces the conditioning, despite the thousands of drops with items you can't equip. Elaboration: The rewards help condition players to grind through the in-between moments of huge payoffs that those unique combat situations have. This conditioning is why people will spend hours at a casino losing $1000 for the moment they win $100.
  2. Wow, thank you for the discussion. Whether you agree or disagree with my points, I appreciate the well-thought discussion of ideas this thread has spawned. Honestly, I'm glad there are counterpoints to my fears. Unfortunately, some replies didn't understand what I was trying to say and I apologize for not being concise and clear enough with my post. @Eaden I agree, Artcraft definitely has shown themselves with a spine and honestly, Artcraft doesn't have to worry about a publisher stepping in and requiring 'safe' features. You've helped me get over my fears quite a bit. There may be a thousand voices asking for things, and I apologize if this thread is one of those, but I think they can separate the fascinating seeds from the chaff. My point is not to add another 'want' for the game, but rather to steer the development focus on what may be lacking, to give them another point of view they may be missing. Never assume. @APE while your post was filled with truisms, you do bring up a good point with MOBA combat. With four abilities and a passive, yes each character is pretty streamlined to a role. I don't want them to copy MOBAs, but rather learn from their successes ...and I think? we agree on this point. @Bramble YES I love your thoughts. There are more even. don't forget: Senses - The feeling you get from amazing visuals (more-so the aesthetic rather than fidelity) and a strong soundtrack. The way memorable music can give you nostalgia of game-days long past. Fantasy - whether this is filling a void reality doesn't, like a power fantasy, or simply being in a world outside of the mundane Narrative - this doesn't mean just lore, but an engaging story. Other MMOs have tried this, but it doesn't feel quite right when you face the same boss the sixth time after thousands of others who have come before. Crowfall has a real chance of bringing organic narrative. Each world has a beginning, middle, and end. Cooperation - playing with my friends is the only reason I continue to play any game past a certain point. Burnout happens with everyone in any game. It's your friends that still play, the friends you made in game, and the loss of that feeling of community that brings you back. Competition - the primal feeling from dominating another human can be strong. I remember PvP use to make my heart race, the adrenaline to surge. With real consequences from death, I hope I feel this again. Expression - your Home/Persistence. I just wanted to elaborate a little more on it. it's the reason we spend hours in character creation, real-world money for digital hats, hours decorating a virtual home in a virtual world... i hope no one discounts this as simple fluff. This can be a very powerful reason people enjoy playing a game.
  3. Danger of Breaking Convention So recently, I've been watching an old series of videos on game design (and related topics) called Extra Credits. One of the episodes made me worry a little about Crowfall. I hope my fears are misplaced, but by posting this I hope they are not realized. You'd do better to watch the source material, but to summarize it JC Penny's tried to stop marketing practices that preyed on consumers' psychology and sales suffered immensely because of it. Extra Credits made the correlation between World of Warcraft's loot system and how it plays on our psychology to want instantaneous feedback. We kill a monster: we get an item that we equip then and there to boost our stats and thus, feel like we've progressed. A game that tried to break this convention, instead opting for resource drops, was called Firefall. Now, I understand Crowfall is not Firefall and it's not trying to fight WoW. Let me be blatant here and say I’m not comparing it to WoW. In fact, this is why I'm so ready to fall in love with Crowfall. But, it's hard to ignore the traits both Crowfall & Firefall share. Firefall also focused on a player-driven economy in a MMO PvP world aimed at a niche market. I just don’t want Crowfall to meet the same fate Firefall has. According to steam charts, it took 7 months for the Firefall playerbase average to drop below 1000. Crowfall's Future Will combat be intrinsically rewarding enough for players to stay when the novelty's worn off, since it won't the conventional loot drop system? I'm personally incredibly excited for the crafting system of this game, and the depths and complexities that come with the planned system, but it will be for naught if no one brings the crafting materials in, or if there are no customers to buy from me. What will happen when all my customers get bored of the combat. If Crowfall wants to have engaging combat, then I don't think it can do combat like traditional MMORPGs. If we are going to break conventions like loot drops, then we need a better combat system. A combat system that can be boiled down to damage-- DPS, mitigation, healing, etc.--is not good enough since everything can ultimately be compared with the question: How will this increase my [team's] DPS. Now you might be wondering, how else would you build a combat system without a focus on damage? Damage is an important tool, but it is not the only tool. One possible solution is focusing more on the incomparables: game mechanics that belong to each archetype. For instance, look at how MOBAs like League of Legends make each of their 100+ characters feel unique. They each have a different feel from their ability kits. Like how assassins have stealth, tanks have pulls, mages have blink etc. As the archetypes are now, I feel like they're all just different ways to deal, mitigate, or heal damage without enough focus on their unique incomparables. I don't want Crowfall to end up like other failed MMOs that broke conventions like loot drops, even though that's the very reason I came here. To do so, Crowfall needs a replacement system for people to continue playing it--something intrinsic. Combat is such a key aspect of Crowfall that I hope it is enjoyable without the need for rewards like loot drops. I very much want Crowfall to succeed. I want to enjoy it’s worlds and systems with everyone else for years after release and not months. I hope by posting this, that in case these thoughts somehow slipped the spectacular minds at Artcraft, they will be reminded of them by the community. Thank you for reading my thoughts. TL;DR Breaking longstanding conventions like loot drop systems can kill MMOs, even niche ones. Crowfall needs to make up for that by not using a boring combat system. Combat must be engaging enough for people to enjoy without loot drops, example: League of Legends. Video Source: https://youtu.be/QxfkWZPAUg4 Steam Charts: http://steamcharts.com/app/227700
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