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Reader Comments (10)

Posted: Feb 9th 2011 6:18PM Altruist said

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they just released a huge producers letter detailing what's coming in issue 20. it sounds like massive 48-person open group TFs, designed to be completed in 30-90mins, with no specific team composition required.

Posted: Feb 9th 2011 6:27PM Locus said

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@Altruist

Isn't that more commonly known as "Hamidon"?
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Posted: Feb 9th 2011 7:06PM Altruist said

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@Locus

Nope. Read the producer's letter, it explains it more clearly than I did.
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Posted: Feb 9th 2011 7:51PM Brianna Royce said

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Eliot's curse is that he's INCAPABLE of being late with his work, which sometimes leads to a little lag when the devs sneak out updates in between the writing and the publishing of columns, hehe.
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Posted: Feb 9th 2011 8:18PM Eliot Lefebvre said

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@Brianna Royce To be early is to be on time, to be on time is to be late, to be late is unacceptable.
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Posted: Feb 9th 2011 6:31PM DancingCow said

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I played COH for 2+ years. I haven't been back to check out the Incarnate system yet.

And based on everything I've read, including this, I wouldn't yet.

Personally I'm not a fan of daily/weekly stuff like this. It adds an obligatory work-like element to a game.

It sounds like nothing more than a cap to drag out how long it takes players to hit the new max level - i.e. it's an arbitrary limit designed to do nothing more than milk more money out of players for less content.

Posted: Feb 9th 2011 6:33PM JFink said

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"What we're seeing here is not really an attempt to get people to see content that isn't familiar or has long since dropped off their radars. (If that were the case, we'd be getting Hamidon raids pushed again.)"

I'm on the Justice Server, and we do Hami raids several times a week.

I agree with you on how Solo-Unfriendly the Incarnate system is right now, I'm hoping that I20 will have some way of getting the Incarnate Salvage that you can only currently get by completing the Weekly Task Force. On the plus side, this week's is Kahn, and that only took like 30 minutes for me to do last night, and most of that was spent fighting Reichman at the end.

Posted: Feb 9th 2011 6:52PM Katsiya Vell said

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The main problems I'm seeing with the weekly is that there's a distinct lack of people wanting to do OTHER Task forces during that week. I had a level 40 Dark/Sonic Defender that I was trying to level up all last week through ITFs and other such things, but everyone felt too busy with wanting to do STFs or LRSFs for their various alts, or just burned out for the time on TFs all together. Given that those two TFs are both a minimum of 45, I was forced to not bother with leveling my character up with my friends in one way or another.

The other problem, as I did insinuate there were multiple ones, won't really show up until the 22nd, when we go from the Lady Grey Task Force (which is next weeks) to the combo of Sister Psyche and Silver Mantis for our TFs. The problem here is, honestly, a minor one, but right now the main reason to run the weekly is for the Incarnate piece, and I'm worried that people might not have the patience they would normally have had before the Incarnate system came around and began moving our characters up in power level.

They cap at 25, so powers only to 30 and no Incarnate boost... I'm not saying that there will be lots of wipes and all, but it certainly will slow things down quite a bit just to do. Not sure if the double merit rewards for it (100 and 84 respectively) will be enough. This is, however, just me looking at the glass being half-empty mind you.

On a similar topic, I kind of wonder what they'll do when they end up having to do the Positron Task Force for the weekly. Would you have to do both parts, or just one?

Posted: Feb 9th 2011 8:47PM Jeromai said

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"Right now, the Incarnate system really does require it, and as a result it's much less comfortable. And I suspect most of the mumbling has less to do with the fact that you're expected to group and more to do with the fact that you don't have other options."

I think you've hit the proverbial nail on the head with this, Eliot. Part of why the WST rankles with me is the feeling that I don't have any other options besides knuckling down to seek a group purposefully, within a set time limit, if I want to let my greed and desire for a Notice of the Well as soon as possible get the better of me. The only other choice I have is not to do it at all and wait and wait until I20 hits.

It may be a similar thing to how the decision was made to delay the alpha slot until there was sufficient content options to accompany the alpha slot release. If it came out as Going Rogue hit, the only option would likely have been to farm (as in grind endless hordes of level 50 mobs) for incarnate shards. Instead, we were presented with two viable options (said slaughter of 50s, and completion of certain task forces for shard awards) and also something to do with the alpha slot once gotten (Apex and Tin Mage TFs.)

It may be that in a desire to rush something forward for CoH players, the WST that was meant as a well intentioned 'early-bird' reward, but unfortunately came without alternative options, is now seen as some kind of penalty for those who can't manage the WST pace (for whatever reason.)

Same thing with the whole 'reduced-debt within missions.' Yes, it incentivized players to run missions over anything else. But they very quickly got used to it as the regular scheme of things, and street-hunting outdoors is now perceived as having a double-debt penalty instead.

There were probably never enough pro-street hunting groups to really raise a hue and cry over this. (Besides, rate of xp flow is not really so easily discerned, and good street hunters don't die enough to make the "doubled-debt" much of a concern.) But now with WST, enough soloists are up in arms over a very perceptible reward out of their reach.

Posted: Feb 10th 2011 5:08PM Valdamar said

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While I like repeatable content at the end-game of an MMO (for those who want to continue playing their characters, or just want to be able to take a favourite character out for a spin occasionally without needing a new expansion release or holiday event to do so) I don't like this trend for daily quest grinds or providing "hotpots" where rewards will be improved in a certain zone or on a certain group quest for a week or so.

The biggest problem with it is that it pushes players towards doing content they may not want to do, just because they feel they should get the extra rewards while they're available - leading to a case where the playerbase starts to play only for rewards rather than what each player would choose to do for fun - and that way lies burnout and resentment of the game itself for dictating what you should be doing.

The other problem is that it skews the figures the devs get for how often a zone/TF is used - any CoH player will tell you that there are very good reasons why certain zones and TFs don't get used much - it's because they are either more hassle, take too long, are less fun, are more repetitive, or are far lower in quality/variety than the popular zones/TFs - in some cases they're all of those things (e.g. some of the Shadow Shard TFs).

Instead of improving rewards on underused content I would much prefer it if they just revamped the content to make it more appealing (like they did with Faultline in I8, RWZ in I10 and the Positron TF in I17).

Sure, in some old games with low populations it can be useful to funnel all players each week into the same zone/TF/dungeon just so that it's not hard to find a group there, but CoH isn't really that kind of game - groups generally form as a result of general chat conversations, either with a certain TF already decided or they decide that once they have 8 people.

What would have been much better is if you could use the "turnstile" system to just select your favourite TFs that you would like to do today and then you just get auto-matched with 7 other people who all want to do the same particular TF, e.g. so as soon as the system has 8 people who all have ITF on their own personal list of TFs they want to do today it automatically gives them the option to teleport to Imperious and start the TF.

What would also be useful is some kind of public quest style grouping (like I have experienced in Rift: Planes of Telara) for things like Hamidon and the Mothership Raid where players of the appropriate level could just turn up in RWZ or The Hive/Abyss and immediately have the option to join the public group for the raid. In fact I'd love to see some CoH events set in new zones where basically half the zone is given over to the event and the event scales in difficulty to the size of the public raid assembled against it - so have players defending an installation and the size/frequency of the attacking waves is decided by the size of the public raid assembled against it.

While the producer's letter infers that the new 48 player challenges will be something like that, the fact they're likely tied into the incarnate system is again forcing a lot of the population of a very alt-friendly/casual-friendly game into focusing on their L50 characters or missing out - and I just think that's dangerous as it could leave a lot of lower level zones a lot emptier - when one of the big advantages of CoH/CoV over almost every other progression-focused MMO in the west is that the newbie zones have continued to remain busy, filled with alts, so that new players are not forced into soloing to catch the veteran population - and all the players who have been happy replaying the game with alts over the last 6 years might feel pushed into this new "raiding" endgame and hit burnout a lot faster.

While I welcome having something to do with my L50s, this Incarnate system is not it because it threatens to separate players by what incarnate slots they need/have - personally I would rather the Devs had spent all their time just making tons and tons of L45-50 TFs/SFs that any L50 could access, maybe some new Mothership Raid style events, and added new rewards to the merit/vmerit system so we had something to spend the extra influx of merits on, and called the job done. Then they could have gone and added more TFs and more new mission content and new tilesets at other levels too, then more new powersets, to continue promoting the replaying of the game with alts as a way to keep the game buoyant at all levels.

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