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Reader Comments (11)

Posted: Oct 9th 2011 10:49AM Space Cobra said

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I generaly agree about the Immersion thing; it can be a tricky thing to do in any MMO, especially a long-running title. Sometimes it's in the "eye of the beholder". Some folks are more lenient, some don't care ("It's just a game!") and others may follow it too strictly. Then there is just general chat. At some point, especially late at night, people will talk about the News or a Sporting event or whatever: People just being people. Sometimes that goes too far and other times you can get into the spirit of it.

At least with chat, one can generally turn off the channel, although some people forget that (or they are trying to use it for something else game-related).

For Star Wars' "on rails space flight", that doesn't bother me as much. While SWG has something very nice and free, I was mainly looking at the ground stuff because really, the space stuff is a whole other game system; it's almost an MMO in an MMO (You used to see this in STO via graphical bugs of your avatar walking in space or your space-ship miniaturized on land). I kinda want them to focus on one thing or another, even though I've talked much about the need for immersive experiences and "mini-games" to keep a player interested and logged in. Really, even SWG added space flight sometime after launch.

In retrospect, maybe Bioware should've done the same and added space flight sometime after launch. Being an MMO, it constantly evolves. I could see a possible future that they may, of course, if they do, they will get complaints of those liking the rail-version mini-game (My solution would be to provide both, since their are probably now achievements linked to the rail-version: One can choose one or the other for space travel). While I love a good combat space-game, I think Bioware had its hands full with the ground stuff.

And remember, Wing Commander didn't have much/any of a ground-version, either. In fact, many games (with exceptions) until the last few years, don't really have space/air and ground combined in great ways.

Posted: Oct 9th 2011 11:23AM (Unverified) said

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@Space Cobra Also, regarding STO, I would say it's the opposite idea. Everything is in space, and ground missions are very directed and enclosed. But that is Star Trek, it is called STAR Trek after all (as opposed to Ground Trek).

I agree with you about mini-games. A Rail-Shooter is a good way to break up typical game mechanics.
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Posted: Oct 9th 2011 11:15AM hereafter said

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The space combat complaint was always odd to me. Not because they're wrong, I agree that 3D flight and space battles would be better, but because it's kind of a mild complaint. "I wish this optional section were larger and not just a mini-game" is a rather tame and agreeable criticism compared to other things people say about TOR. But for some people it's like THE reason they refuse to try it.

To each their own though. I'd love a PvP battle styled after Star Wars: Battlefront 2 space battles, with a mix of space combat and ground combat after boarding a capital ship, but luckily it's an MMO and that can still totally happen.

Posted: Oct 9th 2011 11:37AM Pingles said

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@hereafter

It's interesting to me that currently the two comments above me are:

1. Why complain about the ground combat in a Star Trek MMO? Star Trek is about space!
2. Why complain about space combat in a Star Wars MMO. MMO's are about ground combat!

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Posted: Oct 9th 2011 2:26PM hereafter said

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@Pingles

I guess I never had a problem with limited space combat in a KoTOR MMO because KoTOR itself had very little in the way of space combat. I guess I'm just surprised it's so high on the priority list for some people.

STO has issues across the board, but I guess if I had to choose one thing as more important, it'd be the space combat. It's a bit of a different situation though because Star Trek is big on away teams and there's a fair amount of ground exploration in the source material. Skimping on that wasn't a good idea on Cryptic's part. I suppose there's plenty of space action in Star Wars as well, but again, the KoTOR precedent...
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Posted: Oct 9th 2011 12:16PM Poordevil said

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I think Age of Conan does a fantastic job of being faithful to the IP. Funcom is very consistent with their content, never straying from the Conan theme. Also the art work, which is top tier, is faithful to Hyboria as revealed by REH in his stories. For the immersion factor I don't think you can find a better example than AoC, at least currently. If Star Was does as well, fans should be happy, even thankful.

Posted: Oct 9th 2011 12:19PM Poordevil said

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@Poordevil
*Star Wars
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Posted: Oct 9th 2011 3:17PM drunkingamebar said

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@Poordevil hehe, Star Was.. I got a chuckles out of that - even if it was a typo, twas funny.

Thanks.
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Posted: Oct 9th 2011 12:19PM (Unverified) said

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WOW, this is what replaced One Shots???

Is it April 1st or something?

Posted: Oct 9th 2011 12:24PM Rubi said

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@(Unverified) What? Global Chat has been a weekly feature here for eight months.
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Posted: Oct 11th 2011 1:42PM (Unverified) said

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In my younger years immersion never really mattered much to me in MMOs. When I first started playing MMOs I was mainly just interested in killing stuff, leveling, and getting loot. It was all about combat and action for me.

A game like Aion would have been perfect for me a 5-10 years ago. These days a game like that bores me quite a bit. If it doesn't pull me into the world and give me a reason to care about what I'm doing, I usually won't stick with it long.

This is the main reason why games like SWTOR, TSW, and other upcoming MMOs that focus on storytelling in some way are so compelling to me. I want to feel like that kill ten rats quest actually has some sort of meaning behind it, even if it's only an illusion and the quest itself is the same old stuff. Granted, all MMOs give you a reason for what you're doing but is it compelling and immersive? Not usually.

It seems, for example, that a lot of people have been quick to write off the VO in TOR as not that important or not worth betting on as the main feature for an mmo. I couldn't disagree with that sentiment more. If the story and dialogue does nothing more then give me a sense of immersion and makes the quests feel meaningful I some way, then this game will be a huge success in my book, and I think a lot of other people will feel the same way as me.

Other games are taking somewhat different approaches to the same solution. The Secret Worlds take on storytelling is more and more interesting to me every time I hear more about it. The idea of working ARG type puzzles into the story that has me looking at webpages or other sources outside of the game sounds very fun and immersive. This approach allows the world they create to bleed over into the real world somewhat.

I think that mmo developers are going to have an increasingly harder time making games that don't contain a high level of immersion as we move forward. TOR, TSW, and GW 2 could be setting standards in this generation of titles that will affect all of our mmo's forever and I couldn't be happier.

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