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Reader Comments (119)

Posted: Dec 12th 2011 4:09PM DarkWalker said

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@dudemanjac

While most (though not all) MMOs do grant a respec when major changes are made, there are a lot that won't let a player change his spec if the player actually made a mistake. The player's choices would be to either wait for one of the "free" respecs (something that could be multiple months, perhaps even a year, in coming), live with a gimped character, or discard the character and start anew.

As for me, the moment I want to make a change to my character, and find I can't, I'm most likely unsubscribing the same day. I don't play to be bound to my errors, or even to my previous choices; and given that there are plenty of games that let me change previous spec decisions at will, I see no reason to keep playing a game that won't let me change them.
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Posted: Dec 12th 2011 8:57AM (Unverified) said

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In real life, you can stop the path youre on and start a new one. Say you choose the wrong career. You can learn a new one. In the same way, toons should be able to give up the life they are living and take up a new one. Theres no reason a sword master cant drop the sword and take up magic. Or vice versa. Its simply a matter of practice. And I dont see how it hurts anyone else. It only helps make the game fun for the player, which is the point of MMOS.

Posted: Dec 12th 2011 8:58AM Matix said

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If someone fouls up or finds that the class isn't what was expected and wants to respec, that's one thing. On that point, I'm sort of on the fence as to whether a game company should allow respeccing or just tell the player to level another character.

HOWEVER, if (ha!) developers make changes to the game such that a class' play style is hampered and/or altered, then that's hardly what someone bargained for. Quite the opposite, it's yanking the rug out from under someone--sometimes as the class is on the edge of a gaming cliff.

In that second scenario, in my humble opinion--

(as far as what my opinion's worth, keep in mind that if you try to buy penny candy with my opinion and $1.00, the cashier will demand another quarter)

--the developers have a moral obligation to allow respeccing EVERY TIME THEY DO THAT. Some people will disagree and say the players should suck it up, but I'm from the school that says the multi-million dollar gaming company should get its biz together before dropping a patch-bomb.

Posted: Dec 12th 2011 9:00AM Malagarr said

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I'll assume for now that you have not had a chance to play TOR and really do not understand the difference between an Advanced Class and a Specialization, and you aren't just trying to troll us today.

You most definitely CAN respec in TOR. What you can't do is swap your class. Of course, you can't do that in most games, so this shouldn't be a surprise. What confuses people is that you don't really choose your class until level 10 or so.

Now, on to your actual topic: I'm all for respecs. But I think they should be prohibitively expensive, so that, as you say, you choices actually have meaning. This, however, should go hand in hand with dual speccing (something I am looking forward to being added to TOR in the near future), since players should have the right to swap between tank and dps, or healer and dps, or a PvP and PvE build, whatever. RIFTS five specs were entirely too much (and come to think of it, maybe it's RIFTS that has given you the impression that swapping classes is the same as respeccing), since you could do pretty much anything you wanted to without any consequences. I know on my rogue I had a tank build (Riftstalker), a healing/support build (Bard), a ranged dps build (Saboteur), a melee dps/solo build (Bladedancer) and a PvP build. So I had no need to level any other characters and I could literally fill any role that was required of me in any group. Sounded good at first, but the result was that it got boring quick.

So, to recap:

1- Respecs are a good thing.

2- TOR does permit respecs. It does not permit you to change classes, however.

Posted: Dec 12th 2011 9:04AM KvanCetre said

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Maybe I'm misremembering, but isn't the advanced class system nearly the same thing EQ2 had, with one less tier? Then it was changed so you chose your "advanced" class at level 1.
I chose Monk, I should have chose Bruiser! I want a respec!

Or, you could argue that in many games, you choose your class at level 1, before you have any information.

Posted: Dec 12th 2011 9:06AM McFear said

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SWTOR already has a respect system that works just fine. Some people call it a reroll, or new toon. What ever you call it, it allows people who decide that they'd like to try a different Advanced Class to do so without making class choice irrelevant. For everything else? Call a whaaaaaambulance.

Posted: Dec 12th 2011 9:08AM BarGamer said

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In Guild Wars, you could respec for every mission, every area, and have PVP specs, without any penalty whatsoever. In short, it comes to mechanics design. The option to respec is just another choice, it doesn't make choice irrelevant.

Posted: Dec 12th 2011 9:57AM Clemalum07 said

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@BarGamer Guild Wars isnt a MMO.
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Posted: Dec 12th 2011 2:57PM Amlin said

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@BarGamer Not a lot of mmos use the CCG style skill customization as their central gameplay like GW and The Secret World does. For a lot of people they tend to like more clearly defined to almost strict role definition which is fine for themepark mmo fans. The fans of Magic and other card games though nothing beats having the skys the limit to customizing.
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Posted: Dec 12th 2011 4:18PM DarkWalker said

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@Amlin

While not a lot do it like this, one that is getting closer to the TSW/GW2 model is WoW. It will abolish the old talent trees, and allow players to reassign their talents without going back to a trainer (though for a price), in the next patch.

Also, TSW and GW2 are the highest profile MMO launches on the horizon after TOR. The fact both of them are going for easy to change specs (to the point GW2 will allow a limited form of spec changing during combat, by swapping one's weapon and the associated skills) should mean something.
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Posted: Dec 12th 2011 4:19PM DarkWalker said

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@DarkWalker
* For wow, make that next expansion (MoP), not next patch.
WTB a proper comment system that allows edits.
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Posted: Dec 12th 2011 9:10AM avidlurker said

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I'm very much on the fence on this question.

On the one hand, I can't count how often I wished I had my SP back in eve to go a different route (granted in that game you can "respec" by simply picking up other skills... but the time involved...)

On the other hand, if respeccs are cheap, you end up with only few builds being used and most people end up being the same.

The fact this question actually pops up I think is the real problem.
Apart from complete role changes, like if you find out that you actually do prefer to play a healer instead of say a melee dpser, ideally most builds should be viable and it should then boil down to style more than raw capability.

Alas, FOTM and inherently stronger builds seem to be par for the course in most MMOs, leading to the desire to change ones own character.

Posted: Dec 12th 2011 9:26AM jsweck said

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There’ a simple way to solve this problem: anchor all skills in corresponding quests. Nobody likes just getting skills from nowhere anyway. The quest part acts as a tutorial and teaches you all about the skill so you can see it in action. But takes a while to do, and is scaled to your level.

Posted: Dec 12th 2011 4:21PM DarkWalker said

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@jsweck

It's mostly what GW already does.

While it allows free respeccing whenever in a city, the player has to first collect the skills he will be using from around the world.

Seems like ANet didn't like the result, though. They intend to change this system for GW2. The going around the world part will remain, but instead of getting specific skills, the player will get skill points.
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Posted: Dec 12th 2011 9:26AM Misterlee said

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I feel like 'respec' and class choice are two different things. Respec is more about re spending the points you allotted in whatever skills/talents/whatever you picked from a tree. Class choice is a whole other thing.
Aion had the same thing and I don't recall a big deal about that. You start off as an achetype and choose your 'class' when you ascend at lvl 10.
I guess people want to make a bigger deal out of it because it's Star Wows.

Posted: Dec 12th 2011 9:35AM MaddZ said

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Developers are always tweaking and adjusting talents. If players aren't allowed to respec, then they will end up being punished for reasons beyond their control.

MMOs need a respec system, as long as they aren't an eve type system, which works pretty well imo.

Posted: Dec 12th 2011 9:53AM Ulfgaar said

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I'm all for respeccing, and I feel that in most cases, it is necessary.

Posted: Dec 12th 2011 9:58AM Clemalum07 said

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You should be able to respec ONCE at max level. If you want to respec again it should be a long quest that requires a good bit of change. Only other cheap respecs should be following big patches.

Posted: Dec 12th 2011 12:58PM StClair said

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@Clemalum07
And if you realize at level [one-third of the way to cap] that you screwed up and took some power(s) that really aren't that good, you should either reroll (giving up that time) or struggle on (making the remaining time less fun)?
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Posted: Dec 12th 2011 1:52PM Clemalum07 said

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@StClair You are right no one should be responsible for their actions.
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