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Elemental Equipment, Resistances, Npc's In Pvp And A Codex


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Where has elemental equipment gone in MMO's today? What about NPC's having certain strengths and weaknesses to specific elements and damage types? It seems to me that there is little thought about gear choice today and how it impacts the activity I plan on doing.


When I say elemental equipment I mean equipment that lets you increase your resistance to a specific element and weapons that allow you to deal some elemental damage instead of purely physical damage, elemental weapons could turn a percentage of your physical damage into the respective element. By NPC strengths and weaknesses I mean things like Fire Elemental's being highly resistant to Fire based attacks if not completely absorbing it and being healed, but the Fire Elemental takes x2-x4 damage from water/ice based attacks. Rock monsters/elementals having exceptionally high physical resist but low elemental resist. Give NPC's varying amounts of strengths and weaknesses, it doesn't always have to be as extreme as those two examples.


Before I go out farming for X crafting material by killing Y npc I should have to consider it's strengths and weakness relative to my own. Based on those strengths and weaknesses I could choose different types of equipment to counter that and make farming easier and quicker. This would also stimulate the economy and add more depth to the crafting system by allowing crafters to craft different types of elemental gear, enchanting could also be another source. PvP would become more interesting too since you would have to consider what gear your opponent is wearing before engaging.


If the elements are arranged into opposing pairs you could also make resistance gear cause you to be extra vulnerable to the opposing element. Resist gear could have stat pairs, something like +50 Fire resist/-50 Ice resist, you cannot have one without the other.


If I'm wearing a Fire Resist set and using an Ice element weapon in order to farm Fire Elementals it would make me an easy target for physical damage type classes or and Ice mage since the Fire Resist gear would have lower than normal armor. One could also go to the Fire Elemental area looking for PvP wearing Ice Resist since it's likely your targets, the people farming the Fire Elementals, will be using Ice based weapons. Theoretically one could also use the NPC's to their advantage if they know their opponents are vulnerable to specific types, imagine wearing a high fire resist set while being chased 3 or 4 players wearing normal armor, you run into an area where you know that the NPC's deal exceptionally high amounts of fire damage, your pursuers follow you in and get slaughtered by the NPC's because they lack the fire resist.


The doesn't just apply to PvE but can be used in large scale PvP too, During sieges guilds can build strike teams geared to counter certain strategies. With Friendly fire in the game there is going to be some very interesting strategies that players use. One idea is this, you outfit a bunch of front line combatants with extremely high Ice resistance, get them to start attacking a bunch of players in a small area. Normally in this case due to friendly fire you wouldn't be able to use aoe on the enemy since you would also do significant damage to your allies, but since they have high Ice resistance you could have some mages unleash a devestating Blizzard on top of the battlefield. Your team takes minimal damage because of the Ice resist and you either decimate your opponents or cause them to scatter breaking through their defensive line.


The above examples are intentionally extreme but it gives you an idea of what I mean by elemental resists. I've always thought that systems like this, while they can suck when you're on the receiving end, add increased variety. It feels really good to apply your knowledge of the game in order to leverage the situation to give you the biggest advantage and it makes it feel like your choices actually matter.


Player skill would still be important, it should always be important but I think it would be good to also have preparation play an important role in who wins the fight. Since when is gathering good intel, predicting your opponent, formulating strategies to counter them and good preparation not part of player skill? Resist gear fits perfectly into all these different aspects of player skill. Controlling your avatar in combat isn't the only type of player skill that matters and there are many players out there that kind of suck on the battlefield but they make excellent battlefield strategists.



Now to cover what I mean by Codex.


The best example I can think of is the journal in The Witcher, a simple journal in-game that has background lore and information about the races, wildlife and monsters that inhabit the world. This journal could also include the various strengths and weakness of each subject and a brief overview on effective tactics to combat them. You could also include what environments you are likely to find them in and what useful crafting materials they are likely to drop.


Important: The codex would start out completely empty, you would slowly fill this thing through various means as you play the game, just like in The Witcher. Maybe you buy a book for part of one entry, kill 100 of a specific npc for another, gather 1000 of a specific type of crafting material for another. The point is that it would take a very long time to complete this journal and it holds useful information for those interested in it. You could also tie some of the resource loot drops to journal entries too just like the Witcher does. If your journal lacks the entry on how to harvest wolf eye's for instance then no matter how many wolves you kill you you will not get any wolf eyes, your character doesn't know how to harvest them after-all. Gain the wolf eye journal entry and wolf eyes will start to drop when you kill them.


...just had an idea regarding skills. There could be a series of passively trained skills(like Eve online) that allow you to gain certain resources from various activities.


  • Prospecting, allows you to sometimes find gems used in crafting when refining/smelting various ores. 5 levels with a 5% chance per level of finding gems whenever you refine/smelt.
  • Wolf Fang Gathering, allows you to sometimes successfully gather Wolf Fangs whenever looting wolf-like creatures. 5 levels with a 4% chance per level of looting fangs from a corpse.

If you haven't taken the time to train the respective skill then you will never gain that resource when performing those actions.


Too often do I find that all the wonderful background lore of these mmo game worlds is lost because it's not readily accessible, if I find a book or something in some ruins or dungeon while in a party I quite often don't read it, I'd like to but I don't because I'm usually pressed for time when I find it. Automatically add that book to the Codex and allow me to read it at a more opportune time when I'm not in a hurry. If you create official short stories about the world to post on your website then be sure to add them to the game in the form of a book or something.


Many people would read these stories if only they new about them, not everyone subscribes to and regularly checks game websites. Exceptionally interesting wars between players could also be made into short stories and be immortalized in the codex too, players would LOVE this. Imagine being a player who took part in said war, being able to point to this Codex entry and say "I was part of that!" A Codex like this that allows you to gather these short stories would also give players something to do while waiting for some friends before heading out on a group operation of some kind, players would become more invested in the worlds around them.


The Codex would also synergise with the above elemental resist/vulnerablity mechanic above as it would give everyone a readily available in-game source of useful information. You don't want your players to have to go to Google or a wiki to find the information they are looking for, especially if they already know it and just need to jog their memory.




...maybe I should have split this up into multiple threads, it's a lot longer and more in depth than I originally planned.

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i think you may be pleasantly surprised when it comes to the Elemental part of your concerns...


some of the Devs involved created a Game in which exactly what you are talking about was implemented quite nicely....even at the very end of said Game's lifespan, stacking your Resists properly could be the difference between winning and losing your City...


as for the Codex idea...yeah, i like it....and if this was a mostly PvE fame, it makes perfect sense


but since there are no Raids, and the main focus revo9lves around competition between Players...i'm not certain how that could be worked out well...an in Game journal you could make entries in and possibly sell/share with other Players could be some fun


we should know more tuesday, eh?


let the Code build the World and it's Laws....let the Players build the rest...

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  • 2 weeks later...

100% agreed. This seems like a relative easy way to add a lot of depth to the game. It also makes scouting spawn points of certian monster typs more important.

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