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Posted: Mar 8th 2011 11:40AM Poordevil said

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@relgoth Good point. It is hard to ignore a proven successful formula.The alternative is racking your collective brains trying to come up with some alternative that may or may not fly. Not only is that risky, it is also a lot more work. Much safer and easier to observe a success and build on that foundation.

Rather than a huge break out title that tries something revolutionary, we may see incremental changes over time as design decisions slowly drift away from the WoW template.
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Posted: Mar 8th 2011 1:04PM Angn said

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@Deadalon WoW's flying mounts have cheapened the feel, ways and means of an already mediocre game, but it does not surprise me one bit that WoW players can't see that.

Fly to quest giver, get quest, fly to quest area, kill mobs, fly back, collect loot. Sound familiar? The roads are deserted.

WoW is a testament to over-the-top absurdity and mediocrity. To claim in a deregatory voice that other MMOs are copies of WoW underscore a self-loathing WoW's subscriber base is too self-absorbed, dimwitted, and mediocre to notice.
That you think WoW's lore, game play, class design, and -- last but not least -- oversized, over-the-top flying mounts that have cheapened the feel, ways and means of an already mediocre game, is the epitome of contemporary MMO design, is proof
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Posted: Mar 8th 2011 1:11PM exe973 said

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@Deadalon

And yet WoW doesn't receive a lot of criticism for borrowing from other games. "WoW clones" do something better, WoW borrows it, and the "WoW clone" gets all the hate.
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Posted: Mar 8th 2011 2:05PM (Unverified) said

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@Angn

You know, your viewpoint would probably carry more weight if you held off the childish name calling. WoW is a "mediocre game"? It's "a testament to over-the-top absurdity and mediocrity"? WoW players are dim-witted? Oh please...
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Posted: Mar 8th 2011 2:11PM Deadalon said

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@Angn

As a person that played WOW from day 1. Flying mounts dont make WOW any "cheaper". It gives the game more variety. WOTLK for example made you do first part of the game without flying mounts. So running is still part of the game. Just not used to slow the phase of the game down.

Same goes for the underwaterworld in Vashj'ir. I was kinda scared it would feel slow and boring. They just improved the movement speed quite alot so it felt smooth. Just were not fun enough quests there. Like the Naga questline felt just dull and boring.

And yes... WOW is huge compared to most MMOs today. And they dont hide it with slowing down the movement of characters. Thats probably one of the key element of many liking the game.
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Posted: Mar 8th 2011 2:16PM Deadalon said

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Comparing that to RIFT where you run for few hundred meters and it takes forever just to get to next questhub. Thats just cheap and old trick to hide how small the maps are.
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Posted: Mar 8th 2011 2:31PM Lenn said

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@Deadalon If you played from day 1, you must surely remember how "tedious" the pre-40 questing was, since you didn't have a mount. Gold wasn't exactly growing on trees either, so for many people it was a struggle to even be able to afford a mount at 40. Not to mention the epic 60 mount.

Honestly, does it matter if you have to walk everywhere? As long as you have stuff to do and see on the way, it really doesn't matter. You're still playing the game.

But you're the perfect illustration of where WoW, and many other games, have gone terribly wrong: it is not about the journey, but the destination. Over the past few years Blizzard has done everything in their power to make the levelling process as quick and as painless as possible, just so people could get to the level cap and start raiding, raiding and raiding some more. Slip in a few rep grinds and dailies with sub-par epic rewards to appease the non-raiding crowd, and everyone's happy, right?

No, not really. Not I. That attitude of Blizzard's is what drove me away from WoW, and I see the same attitude in other dev teams. And it is ugly. I think that, ultimately, that's what WoW's legacy is: the raid-centric approach.

And it's odd, because time and again it is shown that the majority of an MMO's player base really don't raid at all.
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Posted: Mar 8th 2011 3:35PM Mystal said

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@exe973

Apart from Phasing, WoW hasn't innovated anything in years, that's true.

It's ALSO true, however, that WoW almost never gets praised for innovation. No one says "Blizzard's really turning the MMO industry upside down all of the time!" they're just saying "Blizzard's got a lot of customers, and they're making a bazillion dollars."

ALSO, WoW actually did innovate quite a bit when it was new, which most new MMOs don't really seem like they feel obligated to do. Of the last batch of big MMOs that came out, I think Age of Conan's "combo" system is the only thing that actually felt some what innovative (too bad I don't prefer melee characters, and the game had a ton of other issues to deal with). Other than that you see people either just copying WoW wholesale OR actually regressing their own past gameplay to dumb it down for the masses (WAR vs Dark Age of Camelot or FF14 vs FF11, etc).

No one with a mainstream budget has any ambition to do anything differently. I think the last major gamble some one took in terms of game structure was Star Wars Galaxies, and that ended hilariously when they took their modest success, and instead of building on it, threw it in the crapper so that they could fail at copying WoW.
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Posted: Mar 8th 2011 5:15PM Deadalon said

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@Lenn

I was there on day one with WOW ye... It was compeeting with EQ2 at the time ... and if you played EQ2 at start you would know why WOW became so populare.

Yes... I lvled to 60 and I got my epic paladin mount the hard way. I loved it. But I did NOT love the jorney. Cause lets face it... journey through ANY MMO game through text based quest will NEVER be intresting. Thats why BLizzard STOPPED doing just endless run there, kill that, gather this quests while running from 1 spot to antother. I did first 18 levles of RIFT and if you think they were thinking about the joyrney the OMG how bad it must be for the rest of it. Its horrible. Its thing of the past that noone should ever have to go through again.

MMos HAVE moved on in terms of journey through the content. DC universe is doing decent job of it. Alot of speech and good quests and more freedom to move around than most MMOs. RIFT just isn't there. Neither was AOC and neither was WAR.... THOSE are the games stuck in the past of 5 years ago with 1 dimentional quest system and boredom. So why on earth should ppl go back 5 years for that ? They simply wont. And thats a fact.
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Posted: Mar 8th 2011 5:37PM Lenn said

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@Deadalon Funny you should mention DCUO, because in that game I have absolutely no sense of belonging to a world. It's easy to get around in, you're right. But maybe it's too easy. Right off the bat, you can literally go all over Gotham and Metropolis, basically leaving nothing left to explore by the time you hit level 30. I encountered the exact same problem in Champions Online: getting your travel power so early made sure you never ever had to walk anywhere, making the world artificially smaller.

It's for that exact reason I got bored relatively quickly in both those games. There's just no sense of exploration to them.

Clearly, end-game is where it's at for you. To each his own. But I prefer the journey there. Probably the reason why I love questing and getting lost in Moria in LotRO, whereas end-game focused people like you can't wait to get out of it.
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Posted: Mar 8th 2011 8:01PM Deadalon said

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@Lenn

It sounds to me that you prefer gated leveling tbh. If you ran out of stuff to explore in DCU then I bet you didn't even lvl past 30 did you ? I dont have to move at 30% speed to see a horseshit on the ground. Some ppl find it intresting tho...

Anyway - my opinion is that RIFT is to slow paced to catch the next wave of MMOers looking for new game. I stand by that. We see in few months time.

But remember... you can get the turtle if you by the collector editon.. so I think the devs know exactly what they are doing....... making money rather than making a good and enjoyable game...
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Posted: Mar 8th 2011 10:54AM LizardSF said

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This article would be more useful/interesting if the author specified precisely which systems are "copied" from WoW, as opposed to being systems WoW copied from Everquest and from DikuMUD before it. I am innately distrustful of any article (on gaming or anything) that fails to mention specifics and instead leaves the reader to fill in the gaps with whatever "WoW-like" features he/she personally dislikes, and put them in the "shouldn't be copied" bin of their mind, while leaving any features they do likes as "What WoW does right", and thus, "should be copied". This leads to the phenomenon we see constantly, where people all claim they "don't want a WoW clone", but if actually pushed to describe what they DO want, it boils down to "A WoW clone, but without this one feature I can't stand". (Or, if you're on MMORPG.com, "Ultima Online as it was a week before release but with the ability to rip out someone's eyes while you're raping him with a spiked mace... while he's still on the character creation screen. Otherwise, you're a carebear wuss!")

One reason that class/level, tank/dps/healer remains so dominant is not pure lack of imagination, but the difficulty in building other systems that are actually balanced. Skill-based systems tend to degenerate into "Everyone has every skill" or "Flavor of the month uber-build". So called "player skill" systems (twitch reflexes) are fine if you want to play an FPS, but an RPG is about building up your character, not your thumbs. It's hardly impossible to design a freeform/skill based system that does work and works well, but it's a lot of effort for an unproven reward -- despite all the bitching and moaning, players keep PLAYING the class/level systems. This may be putting effect before cause , of course -- only a company without huge investors backing it will take a risk on a "different" style of game, and such small companies tend to produce games with little marketing and last-generation graphics, attracting few players from the Big New Shiny. (And they often release early out of desperation)

Posted: Mar 8th 2011 3:24PM Mystal said

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@LizardSF

Two obvious examples that every one copies:

1) Quest driven solo advancement where NPCs have an "I have a quest for you" symbol floating above their heads.

2) Loot that's color coded according to a "rarity" scheme along with the prefix/suffix random modifier system.

Both of these are systems that fit the core of what WoW was meant to be, but which don't necessarily fit what every MMO has to be or should be, yet every one copies blindly.
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Posted: Mar 8th 2011 11:51AM (Unverified) said

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I still don't quite get how rift is ''pushing the genre forward'' in any way...............

Posted: Mar 8th 2011 1:33PM (Unverified) said

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@Puremallace It's not as if those things haven't been done before.
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Posted: Mar 8th 2011 3:27PM Mystal said

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@(Unverified)

It's got a very cool class system, and umm, some times rifts appear with monsters to disrupt your normal leveling routine.

It does some good things, but it's moving the industry forward sort of in the same way that the 2010 Camry was a step forward from the 2009 Camry. It's improvement, and there's some innovation in there some place, but it's 99% the same as what's come before.
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Posted: Mar 8th 2011 1:45PM SgtBaker1234556 said

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I started playing/coding MUD's in the early 90's. Back then they were already borrowed and cloned concept hundred times over

I'm still playing them, they just have graphics, animations and other fluff these days. There are many variations of the MUD-system out today. Games like EVE, where the "ticks" are hidden so deep it's hard to know they're there unless you look really hard. But in the end, they're there.

And so we keep on sloughing towards the ultimate MUD. In small steps. And every now and then we fight over which system is "the best" and most "next gen" and which system is "old" or a "clone". Just like we fought over Diku- and Circle- and whatever other variations of the MUD codebase we had back then.

It gets old very fast though and it makes a about as good discussion topic as "Linux vs. Windows" or "PC vs. Mac".

Posted: Mar 8th 2011 1:55PM Xilmar said

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i honestly don't get it...wow has had very small innovative features in the past few years...well, actually since tbc...and yet we get news about it all the time.

who cares that much about the new bgs or arenas or whatever. it's the same old crap they've been putting out for the past 3-4 years, with a twist...now it's in space, now it's on the beach, now it's in a room, now it's underwater. wow is an old game with old ideas, easy as hell of anyone to be good. i have a friend how's mt/ot and he barely knows english...the spells are "red", "green", "circle", "sword" to him, and he's successfully tanking most of the content on hard. the hell is that?

there are enough games out there that differ a lot from the already worn out wow model if someone's interested. they're just not as easy to learn, not as polished, not as bug-free as wow, but they offer new things, some might even say better things. want depth and freedom in a sandbox -- play EVE. want a cool old-school narative to RP in -- DDO. want to race -- NFS world. want the hardcore grinding of your life -- legend of mir. want to hang out in chat and trade stuff at work -- jump on Nile online, on your browser --and the list goes on and on.

but don't play rift. it's wow. if you've played wow until now, try something else. so many F2P titles out there, so there's no reason not to at least try. if all you ever want from mmos is strictly what wow offers, that's great. but with s many smaller studios making some great games, it's a shame not to give them a shot.

and massively, i get it, you guys want to be in the cool kids group, site hits drive the internet forward...but enough with the rift and extremely similar games. for bunch of talented people on the inside or whatever, a lot of the time you guys don't have the best tastes when it comes to mmos.

Posted: Mar 8th 2011 2:51PM Xilmar said

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@Puremallace

Don't disagree with me boy, unless you know what you're talking about. Massively cover only the mainstream MMOs. Well over half the MMOs i've played in the last 9 or whatever years are not even hinted at for months, if ever. Sometimes one or two are mentioned in a comment about ze old dayz, but that's it.

EVE and DDO had nothing to do with massively...they were just examples of games that aren't like wow with a bunch of well designed addons (aka rift) and some new skins, and worth trying out till after the trial and noob stages. and props for the EVE columns, Brendan is the main reason why i read massively (almost) every day.

And don't get me wrong...like i said, there's nothing wrong with liking wow...but there's so much more out there, newer and better ideas, quite a few less polished gems that surpass wow and clones (haters gonna hate, i know i know) in brilliance. blizz proved one can think less of gamers and be the extremely successful, and hopefully massively will realize that it's on the downwards spiral. quantity should never be put above quality, yet a lot of people seem to disagree with me

P.S. please don't delete my post, nothing personal
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Posted: Mar 8th 2011 3:19PM IceStorm203 said

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@Xilmar

While I don't have much to contribute to because much of it has already been stated and I agree with a majority of what you've stated except one thing that really turned me off,

"Don't disagree with me boy, unless you know what you're talking about."

If you want to sound like a wise, experienced gamer, it helps not to sound like an arrogant ass.

My 2 cents
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