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baerin

Holding on to the Crowfall Vision

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ArcheAge and now it would seem Black Desert are excellent examples of giving in to the WoW Crowd and getting Wowtenidus.  Rather than creating a more niche game that would attract hundreds of thousands of MMO nomads going from game to game seeking that harder, more worldy, more open, more sandbox, more community oriented game we just see everyone give in to the ploy of easy money.  I just don't get it.  Look at Eve.  Now look at every game out there with Wowtenidus.  If you make it, they will come, and WoW Crowd games only earn what they do because most of their player base are people who don't like WoW but still want to play WoW.  Excellent example: Tera has been among the highest grossing premium model MMOs every year in NA.  Why?  It's not trying to be WoW.  And Tera would be so easy to knock off the charts, it's riddled with flaws and limited systems.  BDO was looking like ArcheAge with Tera combat.  It'd have grossed a million active subs by the end of its first year.  Now it's just World of Teracraft.  I sincerely doubt it will be nearly as successful as it should have been.

 

Welp, if anyone can avoid Wowtenidus, I'm sure it'd be devs responsible for Shadowbane and Star Wars Galaxies.  If even they funk it up, we all might as well just stop trying and pick our poison among the trash or get a new hobby.

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I think it's less daum and more customer demand. There was a lot of tears shed over the ruthlessness of the pvp system, so they watered it down.

They should have dev'd for a NA market first, then.  The only hope is our NA publisher restores the original vision, but I doubt they'll have the freedom to.  Tera could go off in leaps and bounds if EME had more creative input, they're keeping BHS afloat I bet.

 

Makes me wonder why more devs don't follow (old) Nexon's model with Nexus?  That game gave each Nexon franchise freedom to do what they wished with the resources provided.  NA Nexus was vastly different from KR Nexus, or Baram.  There was even a relaunch for the French version of Nexus that took it all in an entirely different direction but it sadly didn't get enough attention, if I recall it never hit release or closed up shortly after.  There was also a Japanese version and if I recall an India version.  No idea if any of them are still active, I think just NA Nexus and Baram these days, but they all took different development paths using resources created by Nexon in Korea.  Really makes me wonder why no one else seems to do this?

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ArcheAge and now it would seem Black Desert are excellent examples of giving in to the WoW Crowd and getting Wowtenidus.  Rather than creating a more niche game that would attract hundreds of thousands of MMO nomads going from game to game seeking that harder, more worldy, more open, more sandbox, more community oriented game we just see everyone give in to the ploy of easy money.  I just don't get it.  Look at Eve.  Now look at every game out there with Wowtenidus.  If you make it, they will come, and WoW Crowd games only earn what they do because most of their player base are people who don't like WoW but still want to play WoW.  Excellent example: Tera has been among the highest grossing premium model MMOs every year in NA.  Why?  It's not trying to be WoW.  And Tera would be so easy to knock off the charts, it's riddled with flaws and limited systems.  BDO was looking like ArcheAge with Tera combat.  It'd have grossed a million active subs by the end of its first year.  Now it's just World of Teracraft.  I sincerely doubt it will be nearly as successful as it should have been.

 

Welp, if anyone can avoid Wowtenidus, I'm sure it'd be devs responsible for Shadowbane and Star Wars Galaxies.  If even they funk it up, we all might as well just stop trying and pick our poison among the trash or get a new hobby.

The problem is devs start thinking one or two concessions, one or two convenience features won't do harm... but it just leaves the door open for the post vanilla wow mentality, and then you eventually end up with a shallow game with too many handholdy "features". 

 

I've already seen crowfall with some features that seem to be convenience oriented... but the game has a long time to develop still, way too early to freak out over anything....


Skeggold, Skalmold, Skildir ro Klofnir

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Crowfall has some big ideas and bigger challenges.

 

 Their stated objective is to make a "fun game".

 

But fun for who? They have already stated "not everyone"

 

The most used word from the Devs is "iteration" and that implies that things will change. Will it change their core philosophy? Who knows.

 

All games are produced because someone wants to make money, it's a product.

 

Like most gamers I will play Crowfall till I am bored.

 

Boredom is the real game killer not publishers or expanded markets.

Edited by corvax

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The personal computer gaming industry is roughly 30 years old now and in that time it has seen the addition of personal internet, broadband and computer advancements that are accelerating faster every year. We now have personal access to gigabit internet connections, solid state drives, and a majority of the population of first world countries are plugged into the internet close to 100% of their lives.

With the acclimation to faster technology and more conveniences, we fill the extra time on our days by engaging in more activities. Our parents may have accomplished 5-10 things during a day and we're now used to doing 5-10 things at at time just to stay interested. Large scale games like an MMO that take long hours of personal focus to fully enjoy are something that appeals to a now aging demographic. A lot of the people interested in Crowfall fall between the ages of 25-45 and their brains were formed on and around the genre.
 

I believe the move to the free-to-play model isn't necessarily just because people don't want to pay money for games but, more because people don't want to feel responsible getting value out of their investment. If you can sit down and play a game during your lunch break and pay 5 bucks to level up, you get instant value out of your investment through progression and time saved.

 

Crowfall caters to the tastes of a specific demographic but, it also has features that make it accessible to the younger generation. You get instant value out of paying for the game because it allows you to play it forever at no extra charge, your characters train their skills automatically while you're logged out and the world isn't persistent so you can't fall behind.

ACE has no reason to change their game because their vision of the game is already the most balanced and lucrative version possible. If you make the game easier, you lose your initial backers. If you make the game harder or charge a fee, you lose your more casual crowd.

I think a lot of thought went into this vision before it was announced and I wouldn't worry too much about outside pressure. 

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What I wanted to add to my post but totally forgot:

 

With the 4 rulesets they already cater a broader audience of pvp interested people. With no meaning of offending someone, my view here is that the God's reach worlds are a more relaxed pvp situation than the Dregs. So they already opened up their game to more people without corrupting their initial vision as they can build separate versions of the game within the game. 


You get the wolves...lots of wolves...and sheep that wear armor and have developed an appetite for blood soaked grass - dubanka

Even insects smell good when roasted - a random confessor

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Like most gamers I will play Crowfall till I am bored.

 

Boredom is the real game killer not publishers or expanded markets.

 

The problem is boredom like fun is highly subjective as well. Generally though repetitive tasks can cause it but not always - some people love the grind game and what surrounds it.

 

Risk can eliminate boredom however if the risks are too great for some players they will quickly become frustrated and leave but if they win too much they get bored and leave.

 

The worst part is the players themselves don't even generally know what they really want and will rail against change because it's different or embrace a new concept initially but soon they stop using the feature completely. 

 

Which is why CF is going down a good path with the very early access to testing, they can see what people are actually doing and playing by their numbers. It's early and they have ample time can experiment with different things to see how people react just by how many are using such and such skill or feature or other system and over time too so they can measure drop off. 

 

They are off to a good start but the real challenge for Todd and Gordon will be remaining self critical and having the foresight plus a bit of fortitude to either stick to your guns on something or make changes to ensure the game becomes enjoyable long term and not just for a quick cash grab.

Edited by Zandur

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The personal computer gaming industry is roughly 30 years old now and in that time it has seen the addition of personal internet, broadband and computer advancements that are accelerating faster every year. We now have personal access to gigabit internet connections, solid state drives, and a majority of the population of first world countries are plugged into the internet close to 100% of their lives.

 

With the acclimation to faster technology and more conveniences, we fill the extra time on our days by engaging in more activities. Our parents may have accomplished 5-10 things during a day and we're now used to doing 5-10 things at at time just to stay interested. Large scale games like an MMO that take long hours of personal focus to fully enjoy are something that appeals to a now aging demographic. A lot of the people interested in Crowfall fall between the ages of 25-45 and their brains were formed on and around the genre.

 

I believe the move to the free-to-play model isn't necessarily just because people don't want to pay money for games but, more because people don't want to feel responsible getting value out of their investment. If you can sit down and play a game during your lunch break and pay 5 bucks to level up, you get instant value out of your investment through progression and time saved.

 

Crowfall caters to the tastes of a specific demographic but, it also has features that make it accessible to the younger generation. You get instant value out of paying for the game because it allows you to play it forever at no extra charge, your characters train their skills automatically while you're logged out and the world isn't persistent so you can't fall behind.

 

ACE has no reason to change their game because their vision of the game is already the most balanced and lucrative version possible. If you make the game easier, you lose your initial backers. If you make the game harder or charge a fee, you lose your more casual crowd.

 

I think a lot of thought went into this vision before it was announced and I wouldn't worry too much about outside pressure. 

 

You Sir have covered the topic quite smartly. I would just like to add from the Crowfall FAQ

 

4: WILL YOU BE TRYING OUT DIFFERENT ATTRIBUTES AND MODULES OVER TIME?

 

As long as we can continue to support the game service, yes!  We would love nothing better than to keeping adding new Attributes and trying out new Modules, as we believe this will keep the game fresh and innovative. In fact, it should make the game evolve over time, more than we have ever seen in an MMO.

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You can tell there is real passion going into it. I don't think I'd be worried about this at this point. I would think the only thing that could compromise it would be if it ran into financial issues and they had to sell.

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Exactly, most of the concerns are unfounded at this time but if a "publisher" stepped in then people would be very justified in having a cause for concern on the direction of the game. 

Edited by Zandur

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Crowfall has some big ideas and bigger challenges.

 

 Their stated objective is to make a "fun game".

 

But fun for who? They have already stated "not everyone"

 

The most used word from the Devs is "iteration" and that implies that things will change. Will it change their core philosophy? Who knows.

 

All games are produced because someone wants to make money, it's a product.

 

Like most gamers I will play Crowfall till I am bored.

 

Boredom is the real game killer not publishers or expanded markets.

Yea well there's also a problem that when you condition gamers to convenience and dumb games down for the most casual of gamers you are dumbing it down for an audience that has a shorter attention span (they are casual and less invested after all) and in turn you end up cranking out games that usually get people bored very quickly...


Skeggold, Skalmold, Skildir ro Klofnir

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The problem is boredom like fun is highly subjective as well. Generally though repetitive tasks can cause it but not always - some people love the grind game and what surrounds it.

 

Risk can eliminate boredom however if the risks are too great for some players they will quickly become frustrated and leave but if they win too much they get bored and leave.

 

The worst part is the players themselves don't even generally know what they really want and will rail against change because it's different or embrace a new concept initially but soon they stop using the feature completely. 

 

Which is why CF is going down a good path with the very early access to testing, they can see what people are actually doing and playing by their numbers. It's early and they have ample time can experiment with different things to see how people react just by how many are using such and such skill or feature or other system and over time too so they can measure drop off. 

 

They are off to a good start but the real challenge for Todd and Gordon will be remaining self critical and having the foresight plus a bit of fortitude to either stick to your guns on something or make changes to ensure the game becomes enjoyable long term and not just for a quick cash grab.

 

Good points Zandur,

 

However what defines 'Fun' and 'not everyone' in this particular instance are the Developers themselves. People like Tully, Blair, JTodd, Gordon, et al, they are making a game they themselves want to play. 

 

What ArtCraft thinks is fun in a game is what we as gamers are going to start off playing, but because the game campaigns are modular and customized the highest population campaigns will determine a consensus on the definition of fun.

 

I'm just glad they are starting off pvp centric and developing those systems first, I cannot think of any other major mmo that actually started there.

 

Cheers,

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There are actually quite a few that developed their PvP systems first but this is really the first that has allowed such a large amount of external testers so early from a development standpoint with no NDA and streaming.

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Yea well there's also a problem that when you condition gamers to convenience and dumb games down for the most casual of gamers you are dumbing it down for an audience that has a shorter attention span (they are casual and less invested after all) and in turn you end up cranking out games that usually get people bored very quickly...

 

That is a good supposition. Do gamers get the games they deserve because of their own actions.

 

You can play DREGS and I can play in GODS REACH, and Artcraft can collect money from us both.

 

Could ArtCraft start pumping out soft campaigns? If DREGS becomes deserted after 2 months probably.

 

How many games have you and I played where the 'Talented 10 Percent' quit in the first month, and the better guilds did a total disappearing act in 3 months, and server merges in 6 months.

 

I'm not so sure those where the results the developers and publishers built into their products from concept. But it sucks for you and I anyway.     

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That is a good supposition. Do gamers get the games they deserve because of their own actions.

 

You can play DREGS and I can play in GODS REACH, and Artcraft can collect money from us both.

 

Could ArtCraft start pumping out soft campaigns? If DREGS becomes deserted after 2 months probably.

 

How many games have you and I played where the 'Talented 10 Percent' quit in the first month, and the better guilds did a total disappearing act in 3 months, and server merges in 6 months.

 

I'm not so sure those where the results the developers and publishers built into their products from concept. But it sucks for you and I anyway.     

GW2 was a great example of the easy mode games.  Designed for super casual players, had no real substance because of it... top mmorpg players and guilds were bored with it after a matter of weeks....


Skeggold, Skalmold, Skildir ro Klofnir

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That is a good supposition. Do gamers get the games they deserve because of their own actions.

 

You can play DREGS and I can play in GODS REACH, and Artcraft can collect money from us both.

 

Could ArtCraft start pumping out soft campaigns? If DREGS becomes deserted after 2 months probably.

 

How many games have you and I played where the 'Talented 10 Percent' quit in the first month, and the better guilds did a total disappearing act in 3 months, and server merges in 6 months.

 

I'm not so sure those where the results the developers and publishers built into their products from concept. But it sucks for you and I anyway.     

 

well my guess is that at least one of each campaign-rulesets will run per region. And with more interest come more campaigns however I think the iteration players will do - for example start with the Dregs and end up with the God's reach or so - will also be there. 

 

But with no persistent worlds you don't have to worry about the campaign worlds as they will end up anyway. And the next cycle will show what the players want or doesn't or how much campaign worlds per ruleset are necessary. 


You get the wolves...lots of wolves...and sheep that wear armor and have developed an appetite for blood soaked grass - dubanka

Even insects smell good when roasted - a random confessor

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GW2 was a great example of the easy mode games.  Designed for super casual players, had no real substance because of it... top mmorpg players and guilds were bored with it after a matter of weeks....

 

Perpetuum was a great example of hard core. It was designed off of Eve's source code, it had everything pvp enthusiast say they want in a sandbox game... top players and guilds in the game were bored with it in a matter of weeks. The biggest community complaint about the game was the almost nonexistent poorly implemented PvE. 

 

The food chain broke down, the PvE players who depend on environmental content for fun, left the game fast, they were bored.

 

Then the PvP players who depend on the carebears to kill for fun, had very little to hunt, and they were bored.

 

Then once our corporate alliance established total dominance over the other large corporations through warfare, we could roam for days at a time and never see a target on the entire world map, We left the game. 

 

It just wasn't fun with nobody to kill. 

 

The common tread between your example and mine... Boredom.

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well my guess is that at least one of each campaign-rulesets will run per region. And with more interest come more campaigns however I think the iteration players will do - for example start with the Dregs and end up with the God's reach or so - will also be there. 

 

But with no persistent worlds you don't have to worry about the campaign worlds as they will end up anyway. And the next cycle will show what the players want or doesn't or how much campaign worlds per ruleset are necessary. 

 

I agree,

 

I made comment somewhere on these forums the other day about how fast they are moving out of Hunger Dome rule-set. Now it may be that they just can't test new systems in that mode so they need a larger incubator. 

 

But I wonder how many pre-alpha testers are getting bored already and if the same players keep winning. I'll jump on teamspeak tonight to find out.

 

Thank you for your comment Thyr

Edited by corvax

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I think that there's a lot of good analysis in this thread.  A few thoughts -

---We're missing one aspect of the game's success/failure formula though - and that's the community and ingame experience and it's mostly separate from the logistics of gameplay. There's a strata of players that play because it's a community/home/great group of friends ingame and they look forward to seeing their crew ingame so they log in.  This camaraderie is forged by mutual ingame experiences.  I played SWG way past its shelf life because of my ingame guild (and yeah, ok, my house).   I stopped playing LOTRO after going from alpha to Rohan because no one I knew was playing anymore and the newer players were solo/grind oriented.  I'm having a blast in ESO right now because there's a group of us that keep showing up every night and decimating a very, very small area in Imperial City.  I am still learning to like PvP but I already love playing with a bunch of people.

This community feel is by no means the entire reason that games fail or succeed but it's a part of it.  Games that might dwindle will stay strong for years and new games that might teeter on the edge of instant F2P get a solid core of stability from people that find their home and tribe within the game.  There are some folks that may dismiss community as having any impact on the success of a game but it's a part of what makes a game work.

---As far as boredom goes - it's a low skill gamer's issue tbh and a rather vicious cycle.   If a game is built so that it requires X number of people to be stable, the devs make sure there's a good chance that X*3 number of people will show up at launch.  To get that X*3 number the game experience is homogenized until it is easily playable for a certain percentage of players.  That dumbing down causes the higher skill group of players to leave as the game no longer holds their interest - not from lack of attention on their part, but because of the sheer lack of challenge.  The lower skilled players hang on until the skill curve climbs past their attention span and they leave - and the game winds up insipid and empty.

---I'm keenly aware that CF so far has been quite clear that their vision requires skilled players with decent attention spans and a willingness to invest time/energy and take risks.  I don't see any disaster in shifting archetype's roles or changing up combat structures as it's pre-alpha.  If they pull a Wildstar and freak out 3 months before launch and suddenly try to backpedal on the difficulty of the game (making a hellish brew of too easy followed by too hard cause they can't make up their mind what the magic balance is) then I'll worry.  At this point I am experiencing them holding firmly to their PvP centric vision and I don't see that changing.



 


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The Chronicles of Crowfall           The Free Lands of Azure            RIP Doc Gonzo.

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---I'm keenly aware that CF so far has been quite clear that their vision requires skilled players with decent attention spans and a willingness to invest time/energy and take risks.  I don't see any disaster in shifting archetype's roles or changing up combat structures as it's pre-alpha.  If they pull a Wildstar and freak out 3 months before launch and suddenly try to backpedal on the difficulty of the game (making a hellish brew of too easy followed by too hard cause they can't make up their mind what the magic balance is) then I'll worry.  At this point I am experiencing them holding firmly to their PvP centric vision and I don't see that changing.

 

Well there's already a bit of concern, not for their vision, but for the implementation of it.... When they say they want skill to matter, they need to show me a system that allows skill to matter... so far the combat looks very easy. 

 

It's too early to freak out, but let's face it, tons of games coming out claim they are the new hot thing and want player skill to matter, and very rarely does player skill actually matter very much. 

 

It will be interesting to see what kinda tweaks they make in the next 6 months, it will show whether their words from before hold true with them wanting to discard what doesn't work quickly and find what does work, or if they are hellbent on certain things that may not be all that good. 


Skeggold, Skalmold, Skildir ro Klofnir

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