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Reader Comments (34)

Posted: Jun 13th 2011 8:07AM (Unverified) said

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Yes! More interactive modalities period. It's like in most MMOs the "world" is a cardboard backdrop.

Posted: Jun 13th 2011 8:09AM BigAndShiny said

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Even though there is a fairly visible world map, i love just looking over a dusty hill in Vanguard, seeing a deep canyon with strange red trees, running down there, taking some strange elevator up the other side and looking over a lush jungle valley. And that's just a tiny part of one half of one of the 3 continents in the game.

Posted: Jun 13th 2011 8:22AM pcgneurotic said

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@BigAndShiny

VG is the ultimate explorer's game, love me some VG.
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Posted: Jun 13th 2011 8:19AM (Unverified) said

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yes like URU, or other adventure games, would be awesome if some one knew how to implement those into an mmo game. But still have action/pvp and the usual stuff. Only mmo i played with a few such options was Warhammer online, but the other aspects of the game where not so great.

Posted: Jun 13th 2011 8:39AM Aganazer said

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YES! Endless MOB grind with a thin gravy of combo-crafting is what is keeping me out of the genre at the moment.

Posted: Jun 13th 2011 8:57AM Bhagpuss said

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If the exploration areas were purely for exploration, then yes, it would be excellent. I have no interest in exploring to complete puzzles or gain achievements or any of the other supposed rewards, though.

An MMO which consisted purely of environments rich and interesting enough to spend countless hours just exploring for the sheer pleasure of seeing what was there would be ideal.

Posted: Jun 13th 2011 9:11AM redsolar said

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Definitely. There should be more than just the usual MMO aspect to exploration. Puzzles are a great thing, too. What would make them even better is to randomize them in some way so that it doesn't get wikied or youtubed as soon as someone figures it out. Still curious what the Secret World has to offer since it comes from a guy who has done Adventure games and even has promoted their game using puzzles. Another one is watching the building and sailing of a ship to remote islands in Arche Age, which looks pretty cool in a way that feels more exploration-like. I hope to see MMOs look outside the box some more in the future to come.

Posted: Jun 13th 2011 9:12AM meancheez said

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Exploration is huge for me. I was excited to hear about TOR's Datacron system, which will reward players with stat increases and unique lore for finding hidden items.

I've always enjoyed exploring the nooks and crannies of worlds, and rewards like this add extra incentive.

Posted: Jun 13th 2011 9:56AM Pingles said

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I always love when you're questing, get lost and come across some peculiar area with no mobs or NPCs. I like thinking the world has a story BESIDES the Quest Stories.

Posted: Jun 13th 2011 10:00AM Malagarr said

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A resounding "yes"!

Posted: Jun 13th 2011 10:12AM Tiresias said

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Everyone knows that the answer to this question is a resounding "Yes!". There is no doubt in my mind -- or the minds of developers -- that MMO players, by and large, not the obsessively goal-oriented, next-level, new-gear, more-power stereotype that is so often pressed upon their community.

I would argue that the vast majority of MMO players would like to have the "RPG" put back into their games. Perhaps that is why there is so much excitement behind upcoming games like Guild Wars 2, which aims to provide a seemless transition between exploration and questing -- an environment where you discover events in motion simply by traveling around the world.

I'm pretty sure that there are other people out there who are as tired as I am with seeing the same old NPCs standing in one location with punctuation marks over their heads. I know that I would like to have MMOs with asymmetrical questlines, dungeons, raids, and advancement options.

Posted: Jun 13th 2011 11:07AM Irem said

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@Tiresias
All of this. One thing I've been struck by time and time again when new MMOs are announced is that even when the "power gamers" talk about their hopes for them, there'll always be at least a few speaking wistfully of wanting a game where they can just wander around and explore and not feel compelled to do the MMO equivalent of keeping up with the Joneses.
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Posted: Jun 13th 2011 10:13AM PaperSpeaks said

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Yes, I would like more exploration, but call me spoiled... I usually want to see something fruitful from going off the path into a corner.

Rift tried to amend this with its collectibles but the system and reward, which is mundane and purely cosmetic, doesn't satisfy me too much.
In WoW, before flying mount was abound in azeroth, I found enjoyment in discovering lore-areas in game that had me reminiscent or just appreciative of the story that blizzard had built up...

I have never enjoyed sandbox to the point where I could explore dangerous terrains, much to my shame, I am from a new generation of gamers who started MMOs with wow.

I don't know what to say, it's like something is missing from the idea of exploration in today's mmos, Perhaps a mix of reward and satiation of some sort of geeky aspect?

Bah, too tired to think.

Posted: Jun 13th 2011 11:16AM Irem said

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@PaperSpeaks
I feel like rewarding exporation is important because it's a legitimate mode of gameplay. In most MMOs you have plenty of things to do, but combat is really the only way to advance your character. When it's possible to find rare and valuable things through exploration, more people do it, but developers are starting to creep toward the idea that no activity in the game should be "required" aside from--sigh--combat, and so the rewards from anything other than combat are appropriately fluffy so as not to make anyone feel compelled to step out of their favorite dungeon.
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Posted: Jun 13th 2011 10:27AM Liltawen said

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Yes. It's one of the main reasons to play MMOs rather than other 'on the rails' type of games.It's one of the really great things about LOTRo-in spite of Turbines recent efforts to make it the opposite with XP weekends and all that.

Posted: Jun 13th 2011 10:48AM Yarr said

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Yes, yes, yes and no!

How about areas that are nothing but exploration! Not a mob to kill, just vast expanses to explore and/or mysteries to solve. Lost temples that you need to puzzle your way through, perhaps even Indiana Jones style with death traps. Places that can only be found at certain times of day or maybe even once per week or month (game time, not real time); or can only be accessed once you've found all the pieces to some item (that isn't a mob drop but also found via exploration), etc.

Rewards could be achievements in some cases, cosmetic armor, or maybe parts to create a decent weapon or armor set that could be changed or updated with other exploration only pieces. Games with player housing would be ideal for having house decorations to display your travels and finds.

Constant combat gets old fast and probably leads to a lot of people quitting when they feel the game is just becoming a boring combat grind.

Posted: Jun 13th 2011 11:04AM DeadlyAccurate said

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Yes. I want books, scrolls, plaques, emails, whatever that give a little more world-building. It kills me when a game puts their lore on their website in story form, when they could spread it out across the continents, hidden in abandoned houses, caves, and dungeons that exist for no other reason than to be found.

Posted: Jun 13th 2011 11:06AM DeadlyAccurate said

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@DeadlyAccurate I made a mod for Fallout 3 that did nothing but add notes and letters around the game world. They weren't quest items. Most were documents from the pre-Fall era. It's been well-received. That's the kind of stuff I'd like to see more of in MMOs.
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Posted: Jun 13th 2011 11:24AM urgan said

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Exploration? Yes please. Puzzles? Woe to anyone who puts puzzles in a game I might play (Granted, some people like puzzles. Others like me loathe them. It's a major reason why I don't play DDO).

Posted: Jun 13th 2011 11:42AM Dumac said

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Of course...
I want to go places that will make me reach for the screenshot button. I don't want to go digging for treasure though, Rift tried this and it pretty much sucked out all the emotion of finding beautiful places if there weren't something in it for you. Or it may just have been the bland world design... Maybe some puzzles, scrolls with lore, pages of diaries of heroes who passed through there, something cerebral to find.

As far as visuals go Guild Wars was great for exploration, once you get used to not being able to jump over the puddle and go explore that castle on the hill... At least the artists did a fantastic job of teasing with beautiful scenery.

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