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Reader Comments (67)

Posted: Feb 27th 2010 6:31PM Graill440 said

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Its personal preference really and what an individual will put up with in any particular situation.

As for what i would do in an MMO. Permadeath. Nuff said. But my mechanics would be fun, and adventures in their own way, not that i would allow any company to even consider using what i just typed in any way shape or form no matter how remote, unlike or similar in circumstances.

(grin)

Posted: Feb 27th 2010 7:59PM (Unverified) said

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I think it depends on the game. In sandbox style games, I tend to prefer "harsh" deaths. Because the game is a do-anything miniature world, it makes sense that death should be painful. I mean, imagine if Eve Online had no death penalty and just had you re-spawn with your ship. It would be a never ending nightmare of ships exploding everywhere. Because you have increased freedom in these games, I feel there 'ought to be increased risk associated with that.

In theme park games, I prefer trivial deaths. You can't walk around indiscriminately killing people in most theme park games. Risk vs. reward is mostly centered around PvE and PvP environments. In either situation, dying or re-spawning is already a punishment, as you are removed from the action. As such, I prefer simple penalties, like Warhammer Online. Just cough up some cash and run your way back to the action.

Posted: Feb 27th 2010 9:21PM Addfwyn said

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While I think that WoW is too light, it does have advantages in allowing the player to experiment, something that would be insane to do in a game like EVE.

On the other hand, too harsh a death penalty, like EVE, makes you unwilling to really do anything in the game. I played EVE for about 6 months (maybe a bit longer), and the death mechanic in that game (though I never actually died) was just too harsh to make any part of that game any fun (Especially when 90% of the player base's goal was just to make your life hell).

I think there are very few games that have struck much of a middle ground. FFXI was pretty good, death was harsh and you never wanted to die but it wasn't the end of the world if you did. Another game I think that has decent death mechanics (though not quite an MMO) is Borderlands. You lose a % of your current cash, so you never lose too much if you're already broke, but it can be very painful if you're sitting on 10 million dollars. In the latest expansion, the amount of death has put a serious damper on my bank account.

So I think it needs to be somewhere in a middle ground, though if the death penalty has to err one way or the other, I'd rather it be too light a death penalty than too heavy. Too heavy a death penalty ruins games except for the griefers, too light just makes death feel inconsequential but at least doesn't ruin the rest of the game.

Posted: Feb 27th 2010 10:53PM Lionhearted said

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I like death penalties where there's a little bite to it, but nothing earth shattering. EQ always seemed good to me -- with a res, which no long requires begging a cleric to travel with you for 15 minutes (and often shelling out a couple hundred plat to entice them), you lose 4% of your exp and (of course) your buffs. In EQ, especially in a raiding situation, when so many buffs are done in cycles and raid-wide, that's a real hit (and if too many people die, can really stop a raid in its tracks). Losing 4% of your exp isn't much, but it is something tangible and can certainly add up (I once did an open raid where I died 6 times and swore off ever doing open raids ever again -- it also alters risk/reward calculations when picking where to exp/play).

I also like the idea of CoH's exp debt... which seems basically the same as EQ in terms of 'punishment' (assuming you get a res), but with the bonus that you can't possibly lose a level (which is rare in EQ, and easily fixable, but *does* happen).

Posted: Feb 28th 2010 3:17AM (Unverified) said

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If you don't like a death penalty, avoid Demon's Soul's on ps3.

It IS an mmo, sorta ... there's temporary grouping and PVP.

But damn, it's old school challenging. You lose 50% of your health when you die, and all the souls you've collected (the game's currency). You have to fight your way back to where you died as all enemies have respawned. If you die before you get to your blood stain, you lose those souls permanently. If you make it to your stain, you recover your souls, but not your HP.

It's harsh, but the combat is incredible.
It's like Bushido Blade 2 in HD, with dragons and shit.
1 hit kills and everything.

Posted: Feb 28th 2010 5:59AM (Unverified) said

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I care about life, not about death. In RL death is the End. Period.

If you want an adrenaline rush (and that's the thing all you "hardcore" players are really craving for) well... buy Kamasutra, study it, use it :)

Death must not be completely harmless in virtual MMO Games, yet spending hours upon hours to grind back what you had... may be realistic, but not very exciting. It is Game, you know. It should complement your life, not the other way around.

Posted: Feb 28th 2010 1:20PM (Unverified) said

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After having played almost every MMO from the early days (Ultima Online Beta) I can tell you I do not feel there should be a penalty on death at all. I think STO got it right, you die a little count down window pops up and you click a button and are back in the game. We play these games to have fun not to pull our hair out.

I remember back in the days of EQ, you would have ground for hours and hours (we are taking vanilla EQ, no Kunark even) and then get killed by a random wandering mob, loose three times that effort and want to break your keyboard. No thank you don't need those days again.

One of the major factors I look at when considering an MMO these days is the death system. If there is some kind of harsh penalty or stupid mechanic I don't bother picking it up. We will all die many many many times in an MMO, and when the death takes away the fun then the game is a failure. I have no desire to spend money to make myself frustrated and angry, I can just put in some over time at work to get the same effect, the difference being that at the end of that I will have increased my money and not decreased it.

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