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Reader Comments (35)

Posted: Jan 29th 2012 8:15AM (Unverified) said

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How often I get new abilities is irrelevant to me. What matters is how many abilities I have overall. Personally I do not like swimming in abilities. EQ2 for example gives you a ton of abilities. Most of the damage abilities do about the same thing. I had WAY too many useless damage abilities.

TOR has me swimming in abilities, but they're varied enough that I fill at least 3 hot bars up on my characters. I could do with a few less, but overall they do a pretty good job. The same could be said about WoW for the most part.

I do prefer slower group combat myself. I enjoy having less abilities that mean more. EQ1 and FFXI for example. Your abilities in those games meant a lot, and you weren't constantly spamming abilities just because they were available and it was "their turn" to fire off. Combat was quite a bit more situational. At least, it was in my experience with the classes I played in those games.

Posted: Jan 30th 2012 4:04AM Choca said

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@(Unverified)

Yeah I agree, I don't mind waiting before I get some abilities but I want my character to feel "whole" without havnig to use two hundred different keybinds.
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Posted: Jan 29th 2012 8:18AM Lobotomist said

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At the moment i stop getting new abilities, i quit the game.

Thats it for me.

Posted: Jan 29th 2012 1:11PM Vgk said

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@Lobotomist

So you'll quit an MMO because you hit the level cap?
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Posted: Jan 29th 2012 8:29AM DarkWalker said

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I would say it's more a matter of how many abilities a player is expected to have at max level, and if the game allows players to use any ability they own at any time (WoW) or if it limits the player to a small selection that can't be changed during combat (DCUO, GW).

With a WoW-like model, I prefer a small number of meaningful abilities. It makes the game simpler to learn (which is great when you are trying to grow the player base) while making each individual ability more fun. Blizzard seems to think this, too; they tend to cut (or combine) abilities that can't be worked into the rotation and don't have a situational but meaningful role.

With a GW-like model, there's no real limit. When the player can't bring their whole ability arsenal to bear at a single target, there's no need to keep any ability mild, no matter how many abilities the character can collect. Thus, a game that follows that model could have a few hundred abilities available for the characters, each one a potent and meaningful ability. It's what GW2 (200 abilities per class, I believe, with roughly 15 available at a time) and TSW (500 abilities available to everyone, but only 7 active abilities equipped at a time) are aiming at.

Posted: Jan 29th 2012 8:30AM MMOaddict said

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How about we stop limiting ourselves to the leveling system. Or at least the way it is now. I prefer the game to have 1000s of skills that I can buy, find, quest for, etc. and then I can "level" them up by using them or having a loadout. Games like The Secret World are going to do that, Darkfall Online does it and it's addicting as all get out, for me at least, to try and get them all. TSW is doing it right I think though with letting you only use a handful of those skills at any one time. But at least I can still work on all of them and not worry about level and why level 21 didn't give me a new skill but 22 does.

Posted: Jan 29th 2012 8:30AM Vinzix said

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A lot of abilities isn't my preferred way to go. Loads of abilities means mapping, mapping means scratching your head at how to bind sets. Getting new abilities is neat, but working for them as well. What happens as well, with getting a lot of new abilities, is that you have to learn them at a faster pace. That can be a downside a lot of the times. Personally, I don't mind relearning rotations each level, or situational awareness for each set of skills you get. The only part that is annoying to me, is the rebinding.

Posted: Jan 29th 2012 8:33AM Vinzix said

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Edit; The thing is, at the end you only use half of your abilities if you get loads of them anyways.

Posted: Jan 29th 2012 8:33AM Wisdomandlore said

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I would rather have less abilities that are more versatile. A simple example would be a Fireball skill. Press it once and it shoots a small damage spell quickly. Hold it down and it charges up for a bigger, higher damage, AOE
spell. Make us interact with the game at the same time you reduce skill bar clutter.

Posted: Jan 29th 2012 10:17AM (Unverified) said

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@Wisdomandlore

Along those same lines, I like the chain skills approach that Aion took. You only had access to certain abilities once other abilities were fired off. You had to pay attention to what you're doing, as these chain skills did not have 100% proc rates all the time.

On topic though, if there are levels in a game, damn right I'd better get something out of the "ding." Otherwise what's the point?
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Posted: Jan 30th 2012 12:48AM Raaqa said

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@(Unverified)

Similarly, I absolutely love the way skills work in Vindictus.
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Posted: Jan 29th 2012 8:45AM Raikulxox said

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I'd rather have a system like Guild Wars. Tons of usefull skills, but only a certain amount to use at one time.

Posted: Jan 29th 2012 8:46AM smartstep said

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Frequency on getting new abilities is not really important.

Developers should design system that is complementatory , logical and make sense.

How often player get abilities is secondary.

Posted: Jan 29th 2012 8:47AM Skyydragonn said

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I prefer the open-ended skill system used in EVE now. I used to enjoy the level up aspects of themepark MMO's now I think I've grown beyond that. I enjoy being able to plot a characters advancement as it lends a sense of "learning process" to the gameplay not just oh hey I hit this arbitrary number and can now do some random cool attack with no real reason how/why I know this.

Posted: Jan 29th 2012 8:49AM Hammerbeard said

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Yeah I'd agree less abilities but have them increase in power, EQ2 does that (not the less but the power) somewhat probably others as well. Having 4 spells that do 20-10 damage with very little difference is pointless, unless the REALLY have some situational modifiers. Though I don't like being limited to one hotbar.

Posted: Jan 29th 2012 8:58AM (Unverified) said

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Funny that you mention this, since I've been playing Vanguard recently, you only get abilities every other level and I find myself missing more frequent upgrades. The fact that you're not assured of getting anything USEFUL every other level is not very assuring either, like on my sorcerer it seems like you only get better nukes every other every other level so generally I come out using a nuke that's four levels behind in damage compared to what I'm killing =[

I think ultimately though it matters more what the abilities do than when you get them, cuz I really do not like systems where you are given lots of abilities that do the same thing or nothing, essentially, except varying degrees of damage or healing. Like EQ2, or various korean things I have tried. Or games where they give you more abilities than it feels like you can use comfortably within the control scheme or pace of the game, like Dragon's Nest.

Posted: Jan 29th 2012 9:01AM (Unverified) said

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I like abilities more frequently. It gives me a sense of progression and something to look forward to as I level up. But, I don't mind if they're spaced apart if it's designed well enough. As you said, if the abilities you get are interesting and useful, then let them come out less frequently. Just give something else to continue that sense of progression.

Posted: Jan 29th 2012 9:44AM MrKnify said

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I love Abilitys. but too many abilities are useless, depending on the speed the levels are gained (this plays on linear gameplay) for a progression time chart (time required for a level) if its an average (at the beginning of a game) for 1 level every 2 hrs (approx) then i would give an abilitie point every level. then you have the option of min/max and saving points for later abilities.

After level 10 (training is over) you should get 1-2 ability choices every 1-2 levels, these choices will help define your character and make it unique, also focuses on style of play (your build).

Posted: Jan 29th 2012 9:50AM MrKnify said

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the recap, if levels gain fast then new abilities every couple levels.. (2-3) (with a max level cap at like 500 to 1000).

now if its a slow progression, 1-2 abilities every 2 levels
(max level 99)

i'm in favour of a rapid progression, ability points on odd levels and a bilitys every 4th-6th level, but you will gain at least 2 levels a day. (2hrs of play) with max level being around the 800+ mark. this will give an elitism feel at the higher levels, a pvp teir each 100 levels, and this adds a control element for the developer/GM knowing what powerlevel players will be at in order to combat ill gotten gains.

but everyone likes to be able to feel special like they got an item well above their stature....

Posted: Jan 29th 2012 9:52AM jealouspirate said

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Personally I think most MMOs have way too many abilities, so I'd like fewer overall but have them more or less front loaded in handing them out.


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