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Reader Comments (54)

Posted: Jun 14th 2011 12:35PM Dethdlr said

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My 2c. Long travel times and long respawn times are tricks used by MMO developers to keep players from blowing through the content too quickly. When an MMO is fairly new, it needs these speed bumps to slow players down. Ever bought a game (non-MMO) and blown through the whole thing in a couple of hours? My usual reaction to that is, "this game sucks". If they didn't put these artificial road blocks in place, people would blow through the content too quick and would be standing around going "this game sucks". That's why the run speeds are slower at launch, the transportation more time consuming, the mob spawns more rare, etc. All things to slow you down and make you wait instead of blowing through the content.

But there comes a time in an MMOs lifespan when there is plenty of content to keep you occupied. The artificial road blocks are no longer needed. Players start noticing that there are tons of things that they want to do, but they're wasting a lot of time actually getting to the places they want to be. Lets say you're playing EQ2 many years ago, you're standing in Qeynos, and someone wants to go kill General Drull for the return of the light HQ. You take a bell to Antonica, then run to the griffon tower, take a griffon to the TS station, run to the TS door, zone into TS, run to the TS docks, wait for a boat to Nek Forest, get off the boat in Nek Forest, run to the Commonlands door, zone in to Commonlands, and then make your way to the zone in for killing General Drull. Today, you click on a bell and zone directly to Commonlands. Instead of you and everyone else waiting 15 minutes for everyone to make it to the Commonlands, it's like one minute for everybody to get there no matter where they started from and then you're playing actual content.

The problem is, some people got so fooled by these tricks to slow down players that they are actually nostalgic about wasting 15 minutes waiting around doing nothing.

The same thing holds true for flying mounts. They're faster. They get you to the actual content quicker so you can do what you want to do quicker. Saying it spoils the immersion doesn't make sense to me either. If YOU want to walk from point A to point B, there is nothing keeping you from doing so. If YOU don't want to avoid the mobs on the way to your next quest update, DON'T! Feel free to dismount and stroll right through them all. For that matter, you can still hoof it from Qeynos to Commonlands if you'd like. Nothing is keeping you from doing so (other than groupmates yelling at you for being nuts for wanting to take 15 minutes to get somewhere instead of a single click). But there are many of us that would like the option to get where we want to go quicker so we can get to the actual content. Cars, trains, planes, etc. all allow us to get where we want to get quicker IRL. They don't prevent you from walking, they just give you the option of getting there quicker. Given the option of walking for 2.5 hours each way to and from the local movie theater, or driving for 15 minutes each way, I personally choose to drive. It doesn't mean I've taken away your ability to spend 5 hours traveling just because I choose to do it in 30 minutes. These same decisions about travel time have occured in the real world and speed and convenience have repeatedly won out over the slower methods, even though you may miss out on checking out the really cool things along the way. You can still choose to take that slow stroll when you're in the mood for that immersion.

As for PvP, I don't get that either. I don't play on a PvP server myself so it's quite possible that I simply don't know what I'm talking about. But if the complaint is that people are avoiding PvP combat, doesn't that say more about PvP combat than the reason/method being used to avoid it? If PvP combat were what it should be, wouldn't people on a PvP server WANT to engage in PvP combat? If people actually WANTED to do PvP combat, they wouldn't try to avoid it so there wouldn't be any issues with HOW they are avoiding it. But I guess maybe what you all really mean is that YOU want to attack THEM and they're running away or avoiding you. It's making it harder for you to go gank someone who had no desire to fight you in the first place. But I guess that's part of what playing on a PvP server is all about and also why I don't play on one.

Posted: Jun 14th 2011 12:54PM Ordegar said

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The "leapers and glider" mounts are not flying mounts. The only flying mounts are still going to be level 90 only.

I see no reason not to have flying mounts at end-game if the zones there are built for it, including mobs that fly and aggro, and mobs that can pull you down to the ground. Level 90 players flying in lower-level areas don't bother me because they've already passed the content and are likely there for crafting purposes or to help friends, and they wouldn't aggro anything there anyway.

If you want to glide now, can roll a character with a race that has the racial to do that. High Elf, Dark Elf, Arasai, Fae, and Erudite races all have gliding racials. You can also get an item with "slowfall" which will provide a similar experience. The difference, I believe, will be that the mounts can jump high up in the air before gliding. Not that big of a difference in my opinion.

Posted: Jun 14th 2011 1:59PM (Unverified) said

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I really enjoy my flying mount. Everyquest 2 for me has become "The Halfling-on-a-griffon" game. I've always loved the aesthetic of EQ2, it's like walking through a renaissance painting, IMO, but now I get to fly through it, find vistas never before thought possible. I don't find it diminishes my enjoyment of the game. I still need to fight the mobs for quests, I need to crawl through dungeons, I need to avoid agro (cleric here) and figure out puzzles, I just don't need to hack through a bunch of pissed-off giant beetles just to get where I'm supposed to be.

Posted: Jun 14th 2011 2:05PM Laguna said

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I disapprove of anything that let's you avoid other players. I mean that's what mmo's are for right? Or maybe I just missed the memo that mmo's are turned into lobby games were you can fly between the queue's to kill the time.

Posted: Jun 14th 2011 2:43PM Dethdlr said

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It was the same memo that said that running for 15 minutes was a lot less fun than actually playing the content at the destination. It also clarified that MMOs are not just designed for running.

Posted: Jun 14th 2011 2:09PM The Minn said

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If you're crying about immersion. quit the game and enjoy real life. Flying mounts are great.

Posted: Jun 14th 2011 3:24PM Borick said

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Flying mounts bad?

NO. Flying mounts GOOD.

What's bad is that we've had flying mounts for half a decade now and we still have no flying combat to speak of in MMO worlds.

We had mounted combat in EverQuest. I'm tired of noncombat travel forms.

Posted: Jun 14th 2011 4:08PM Nepentheia said

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Oh heck no! One of the best things was being able to fly around in a Yalm in Anarchy Online. Absolutely fantastic! :-D

Posted: Jun 14th 2011 5:06PM (Unverified) said

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i'm sure they're bad for games that add them to content that wasn't designed for them, but good for games that mitigate the benefits of flight with landscape and quest design.

for example, it may benefit you to fly directly to a named enemy to complete a quest, but if that enemy is difficult to kill, or surrounded by enough minions to make landing near at hand impossible, then it hardly matters whether you flew or rode there in the first place.

i think you can see this a bit in WoW over the years, where BC flight was cool, but admittedly sped up questing to breakneck speeds, dropping in on single kill quest completes or gathering quest items. now that quests and questlines are significantly better scripted, mobs better placed and/or with quest items in caves, boats, inns and other places where flight is forbidden, even though you can now zip around Azeroth and still reap the travel benefit, actually completing each quest still takes a similar amount of time and effort.

but it seems like this is becoming the norm for most games, which is understandable. while riding/walking seems so fitting for a hardcore, low-fantasy setting, it definitely works to alienate the casual player.

Posted: Jun 14th 2011 6:31PM (Unverified) said

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Actually YES!!!

If you are at max level, getting a flying mount is a great reward for all the hard work(most of us) it took to get to the level cap.

But, having flying mounts for those under the max level, and regular mounts for those below midway through the levels, DESTROYS THE GAME - and ill explain why.

A few years ago, mmorpgs still had the majority of players actually ENJOYING their games and loved every bit of the games. But, with more and more "no life" players constantly playing mmos and gaining burnout(their own fault) they have turned into bitter, jaded and a bit scary players. Also, over the last 4-5 years there has been a massive influx of console players coming over to mmos and as we all know, a majority of console games are all about getting to the end or "beating" that game.

So, now having the jaded, biased and burnt out mmo vets, along with the console junkie imports all playing current mmos, we have created a monster without realizing it. Most of these players care not about exploration, quest text, stories, lore, combat or anything in the games EXCEPT for getting to the highest level and being powerful or "beating" the mmo(which doesnt really exist)

So, with flying mounts being available at lower levels and regular mounts being available even lower, we are handing these players more ways to skip the entirety of an mmo just so they can rush to end. The scary thing is I am being 100% honest and this is all fact. There are wayyyyyyyyyyyy too many mmo gamers nowadays that play games THEY ABSOLUTELY HATE and only play them because they are at or can be at the highest level or have many alts or whatever it is, they play not for the game itself, but for the little number next to their name. These players rush through all instances and content, dont read quest text(even their first time around) and do everything possible to race through an mmo. The sad thing is most of these players have high level characters and might raid or pvp in endgame, and have NO CLUE what the names of the zones they have been in are or cant even name a few npcs. They block it all out to rush through the game, act like they have skill and then leave for a new game.

Now along with this, Devs are actually CATERING to players that dont even play their games correctly and always leave/return when they see something new and shiny.

The way to fix this?? a few options...

A - Slow down the speed at which they level (wow is a good example since it contains enough xp and content(EQ2 also) to allow players to get to level cap 4-5 times over. So having players complete more than half a games content before they can get to endgame is a fgood idea and it populates more areas)

b- STOP REWARDING RUSHERS!!! Have mounts and gear be EARNED by skill , not time - like things used to be. I know that devs want to make games more accessible to the masses but this just destoys the game by having more and more rushers join their games and abuse the systems

c - my favorite and the EASIEST to implement - have servers strictly for rushers . Let them play with eachother. Noone wants to run an instance./dungeon in 5 mins - its not fun. Noone wants to skip 99% of a game to have a little number next to their game. No REAL players I mean. Get them away from the majority

Lastly, Devs need to realize something VERY IMPORTANT.... All the players that they discuss the game with on their forums and on mmo sites like this are THE VOCAL MinORITY!!! More than 75% of REAL players dont even bother with forums(or know they exist) and only browse sites like these because when they get free time they ACTUALLY PLAY THEGAME.

If something isnt done soon stop players from rushing, then you will see mmorpgs FAIL and shutdown not because of low populations, but because of the sheer amount of scumbag players that are destroying their games on a daily basis.

Mmorpgs are not what they used to be because there are wayyy too many players with no REAL lives that either play 20hrs a day, every day or that only play certain mmos to abuse and take advantage of their systems.

so in short, make flying mounts REWARDS as they used to be.

if a player has a problem with EARNING things in an mmo, let them quit!!! These are mmorpgs, not single player games on xbox or ps3. Its good that mmos are become more mainstream, but at what cost? The integrity of MANY mmos are already dwindling or lost completely.

We need to go back to creating mmos that actually reward SKILL and let players EARN things correctly. If someone wants to "grind" mobs to get to level cap, thats fine. but let it be A LOT slower to get to level cap, not equal or faster - same with only pvping or only running dungeons.

You cant keep catering to people that only play 5% of a massive mmo.

Or, just create a game where players start out and stay at one level and can run deungeons and pvp from teh start, have no REAL content and let them do what they want.. ie - a single player xbox/ps3 game! lol

PLEASE SAVE MMORPGS - remove the rushers or put them on their own server

The funny thing is they are THE VOCAL MINORITY, yet devs STILL listen to them instead of the 99% that are actually PLAYING.

Posted: Jun 14th 2011 8:29PM Graill440 said

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Anything related to gameplay should be left up to the players choice, given they are even allowed a choice in the first place, which is most often not the case. Other people should simply watch their own lanes, being busy bodies is what MMOs are all about nowadays.

Posted: Jun 15th 2011 1:22AM kdognumba1 said

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I feel 2 ways about this and see both sides. I feel they should be in the game at a certain point where you should of completed a continents contents or are moving onto more epic grounds that require you to move through increasingly difficult areas.

On that same note, I don't think they should be obtained at arguably low levels or they should added to the game as a skip for content. Progression needs to be there, all characters need to work for what they get, even alternative characters. But this is how I feel about all aspects of the game, giving the player a free ride to the max level, easily obtainable gear, quick travel early on, "invulnerability" through flying mounts, and other things cheapen the game.

On the case of flying mounts, there needs to be flying mobs, dangerous areas, and epic bosses in the air. Low levels shouldn't be having flying mounts and it should be something you work for to obtain, not just sold by a vendor. All games need progression, taking that away kills the game.

Posted: Jun 16th 2011 7:08AM blackcat7k said

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A lot of these MMOs use mounts and travel systems are just status symbols and not things that can actually add real lasting gameplay to the their game.

Using it as a reward is valid for certain worlds where all it is something to help you traverse the land quicker.

However, what I think it boils down to is that enemies in the worlds become cannon fodder after a while and to have the player continue to slog through them at higher levels becomes a major annoyance instead of adding to the game itself.

This is what flying in many MMOs do, and it’s a good thing because the developers make many of these MMOs linear instead of circular. Games like Ever Quest can benefit from flying because too many of the lower level areas become useless to players at high level.

Now circular worlds, like pre-Trammel Ultima Online, where an orc you met at the beginning of the game can still be of some challenge to you when your character was maxed would not need flight to skip around the world since the challenge is all around the player constantly.

Some games, like WoW, take it a bit to the extreme since the game world was not made with flight in mind. In many of these MMOs there is no danger to flying (no enemies that patrol the skies, or there is a significant lack of ground based enemies that are aware of the flying player.) Even if the player was to have danger in the skies a lot of these MMOs have no combat system for the player to counter being attacked.

This is highly detrimental especially if the world is open PvP as the players can now play “GOTCHA!” by jumping in out of nowhere, ganking a player, and taking off.

If designers want to put flying mounts in then their game world should be aware of the mounts and present serious dangers to flying that exist to ground based mounts.

Sadly very few of the MMOs have any real robust flying (or even ground) mount combat systems and the few that do tend to use the mount combat as a minigame. DC Online has actual flight attacks but they’re primarily used to fight ground based mobs.

I’m hoping in the future that MMOs will actually start using mounts as more than a runspeed or flight spell. I would be quite impressed if any MMO would make mount systems similar to games like Mount & Blade or Darkstalkers, where the mount is just as integral to combat as a sword and shield.

Posted: Aug 25th 2011 9:18PM Lumin said

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I actually liked the gliding in Aion far more than the flying. Gliding is an interesting mechanic that uses a bit of physics and a bit of lucky updrafts and really makes traveling downhill and interesting experience.

Gliding also didn't allow you to bypass all mobs, unless you started your glide from the highest point in the map or something. On the contrary it made your traveling more breathtaking and fun.

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