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Reader Comments (12)

Posted: Jul 27th 2010 9:08AM (Unverified) said

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I think it would be interesting to try various experimental changes to the economy (such as it is), things like:

"no -trade" server (chars can't trade anything). None of the usual trade mules, auction mules, twinked chars, etc. The items you have are the items you found or you made.

"self-sufficient" server (can only trade between chars on your account). Similar to above but now people can only craft stuff for their various chars, no farming ad nauseum for gold since you can't buy anything from others.

If you can't guess, I'm down on the economy in certain games that are fairly well established... the economy in that unnamed game is out of control for players just starting out like myself.

As somebody who usually plays 2 or more classes, one of which is a healing class even though that isn't my favorite, I'd LOVE to see a server with the following rule:

"Healer Level Cap" - you cannot have a DPS/tank higher level than your max level healer. Share the enjoyment of playing a healer by forcing everybody to have one of a meaningful level. No more DPS boneheads without a clue of what it is like to heal.

Posted: Jul 27th 2010 9:41AM hatori1181 said

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If Aion had a PvE only server, I would go back to it in a heartbeat. I loved the game, but the unbalanced PvP ruined it for me.

Posted: Jul 27th 2010 9:46AM (Unverified) said

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Unless you have a large number of players, multiple servers have the negative effect of splitting your population. For a lot of modern games, there's also concern about splitting your progress between too many characters. Aion (depicted in the screenshot) is based heavily around very time consuming tasks and quests. The last thing those players want is to start over to try a new server. Allowing players to switch between servers with special rules defeats the point of the special rules (usually) so it must be done sparingly.

For World of Warcraft, a server with very unusual rules could give the game a whole new light and attract new players. The level grind isn't very challenging, and some new rules could make it feel like a whole new game to all but the most grizzled of vets.

Posted: Jul 27th 2010 12:51PM (Unverified) said

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If Aion used the XP curve and drop rates of the test server, and no limits on the total characters you can have instead of the 8 it is now, they could have some different servers:

1. A mostly PvE only server (have both factions compete by fighting against a much more aggressive AI-Balaur) would bring back a lot of players. Rewards for killing the most Baluar, taking the most forts, etc. Then you'd have to defend against the Balaur retaking them (have the other side get to play Balaur when that happens?) They even did Balaur invasions of the non-Abyss areas (including Altgard and Verteron) during the beta, so it can be done. Players could still rift, but instead of killing each other, they can collect drops and petals from the other side (for armor and dyes), but the more people that rift in, the more likely it triggers a Balaur invasion in that zone, and doesn't stop until the rifters are all gone (less rifts would open over a given time period than now). PvP would be tournaments held in the capital cities, with contests within your own faction, and fights between Asmo and Elyos too. Imagine those arena seats actually filled with players watching the contests (you could wager on the outcomes, but only if you were there in the seats).

2. Action Aion - keep most everything the same as now, lower the hit points of monsters by quite a bit, but increase their spawn time and aggro ranges. I actually did an experiment, taking a higher level character into a low level zone with closely spaced mobs, then just went crazy killing and pulling large numbers at once. It was a lot of fun! In fact, this could be added to the above PvE server too.

3. unlimited PvP, anywhere and anytime (rifts into the starter areas and capital cities too), but the difference is the world is filled with AI-bot players. The challenge would be telling the real players from the thousands of bots, but the gankers would be in heaven. They could stun and 1-shot the bots (who would actually be re-spawned at level 1 in starter zone) just like they do the real players trying to level. XP/AP is based on difference of levels, so you get more for killing bots/players near your level or higher. The bots would level up if they survived, automatically getting better gear as they did. If a bot reached level cap, it would become a boss bot and start a bot invasion of the Abyss, attacking opposite faction player controlled and Balaur forts. Real players on that side could join the bot army, for massive combats. Could also have special bots that collect drops and mats from regular bots, then try to get back to town without getting killed (bonuses for rifting real players that kill them), and put the items up for sale on the AH. Real players could place orders with crafting bots for items they need that don't drop, so they can spend more time out killing.

NCSoft should hire me! :D :D :D
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Posted: Jul 27th 2010 12:53PM (Unverified) said

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That should be "increase their spawn RATE" for number 2 above. :)
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Posted: Jul 27th 2010 9:50AM (Unverified) said

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One server type that is sadly missing these days is the FFA-PvP server where there are no pre-made factions, and only inter-guild diplomacy determine who you are at war with and who you can stand peacefully next to.

Posted: Jul 27th 2010 10:06AM (Unverified) said

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I am an altoholic but I enjoyed played on an RP server in EQ, Firiona Vie, that only allowed a single character per account and there were *no* NoTrade items. It really forced you to concentrate on and develop a reputation for your character since you could only have one.

Posted: Jul 27th 2010 1:07PM Valdamar said

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Yeah I liked that too - I played on FV for a bit in 2002 when it was still a fairly new server - I was trying to rekindle my love for EQ1 after too much guild raiding had burned me out, after 3 years subscribed to the game since launch.

What I'd like to see is a variant on that where you're allowed one character until you hit the level cap with it, then a slot opens up for you to make another alternate character if you want to. It would help people to focus on levelling one character (I've had so many groups of friends in MMOs that have fallen apart as people fell prey to altitis and/or restarted characters). And because people were restricted on the number of characters they would be far more likely to be polite and care about their reputation.
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Posted: Jul 27th 2010 10:31AM (Unverified) said

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Most MMOs these days shouldn't even have more than one server, they don't have the playerbase to justify it and they just serve to splinter the community. Even WoW has many more servers than it needs. The concept of "shards" or "realms" was created as a work-around to times when thousands of people couldn't connect to the same server, those days are gone, realms should be too.

Posted: Jul 27th 2010 10:45AM (Unverified) said

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I'd be interested in seeing a Guild based server. Where no player regardless of level can go without being in a guild. Then on top of that keep the guilds small perhaps around the size of 2 raid groups. This way guilds would be forced into a player draft and there would be yet another reason to be social in a MMO.

Devs need to really think of a way to kill the notion of a single player experience in a MMO game. I'm all for being able to quest on my own but lately that experience has come at a price of finding new friends and having fun Massively Multiplayer experiences.

Posted: Jul 27th 2010 2:51PM (Unverified) said

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Democratic servers - Community-Elected volunteer act as GMs rather than some operator-provided staff.

Advantages would include more "common sense" in incident handling, rather than some corporate guide followed to the letter. Of course, it might turn into "Lord of the Flies, online" - but if you keep election cycles short (maybe 3 weeks?) and limit ban lengths it might just work.

Posted: Jul 27th 2010 1:31PM Valdamar said

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I'd like to see servers where all of the gameplay on each server was co-op PvE, but the PvP portion of the game was competing against all of the other servers, in special zones built for factional PvP. So the community on a server would all be united and helpful to each other - it would be in your interest to help other players on your server to level - and the only rivalry would be against other servers that you faced off against in PvP.

The PvP could be based on ongoing territorial control (like Planetside's 3-way war for outposts on continents, to control that continent), so you were competing with all of the other servers to take over PvP zones. Each conquerable PvP territory could be based on a different battleground map/zone which could only be entered from a neighbouring territory that your server had already conquered, with variable objectives that each side would need to complete to take control.

Every 3 hours or so the results from the previous 3 hours would be tallied (like which server had held a certain central castle/outpost for the longest time, or had slain more of the enemy, or had taken possession of the most resources, or whatever the objective was for that zone) and the zone would change possession and become a territory owned by the winning server. There could be bonuses for the server that actually owned the territory to help them defend it (such as being able to spawn inside/near the main objective), just to make up for the fact they could have multiple servers coming at them. Because the map would be based on squares you could potentially have up to 4 servers competing for a territory (or base it on hexagons and have 6!).

Perhaps in lore each PvE server could be a different alternate universe, while the territory the PvP was fought over could be some kind of nexus reality that linked all those universes.

Every month's end the server that had control of the most territories would "win" for that month, and would gain benefits on their own server (like, say... experience bonuses, cheaper vendor prices, lower auction house commissions, etc.) for the following month, and the global PvP map would be wiped clear and the battle would start again, with each server beginning with an equal number of territories (with their positions randomised, so you might not be neighbouring the same servers again).

Effectively it would be like DAoC or Planetside, but with each side being a different server rather than a different Empire on the same server - and there would be more than 3 "sides" - basically as many sides as there were servers for that game.

I just don't like PvP in MMORPGs when it comes down to mainly personal victories, because the bragging and nastiness that results just isn't pretty and is a lot of hassle, but I think uniting a whole server in an "us vs them" situation would make for really strong server communities.

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