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Posts tagged game-design

Raph Koster on Origin's Privateer Online

Raph Koster's thrown up a fairly fascinating blog post detailing one of his Origin projects that never saw the light of day. It was originally codenamed Star Settlers and it featured procedurally generated planets, exploration, resource management, and more. Koster's executive bosses "blew up a...

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MMO Mechanics: Predicting the future of MMO game mechanics

I've been thinking heavily about the future since our parent network's budget cuts were announced, so I decided it would be very apt to pen my last edition of MMO Mechanics with that same train of thought. The industry has changed remarkably over the last decade with trends like the free-to-play...

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MMO Mechanics: Procedural generation is the future

MMOs are infamous for the exorbitant amount of both time and money that is required to make a fantastic end product. Much of this effort and expenditure goes into producing very specific content such as leveling zones, quest chains, and dungeons. The classic themepark MMO in which all the rides are...

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MMO Mechanics: Three old mechanics I want back

My column has typically heralded modern MMOs as superior advancements of the genre we all adore, but in this week's MMO Mechanics I want to share a small list of some old mechanics I still mourn today. Many older MMOs featured gameplay that could simultaneously exasperate and impress players,...

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MMO Mechanics: Comparing vertical and horizontal progression

MMO players strive to obtain some kind of tangible progression each play session, but the method by which that progression is delivered varies greatly across the genre. Archetypal themepark titles frequently rely on level-based progression that culminates in climbing through gear tiers at endgame,...

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MMO Mechanics: Encouraging the daily grind

I've written before about how developers use clever mechanics to lower the barrier to entry in order to encourage more people to play MMOs, but how do they keep players interested after they have rolled a new character? More often than not, MMOs greatly benefit from hanging onto players for as long...

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WildStar's Stephan Frost on creating content and keeping within deadlines

Developing an MMO is not an easy process. We know that intellectually, but most of us have not actually built a game ourselves, so we don't know exactly how or why it's not difficult. Design producer Stephan Frost recently penned an article taking a look at the process of design in WildStar,...

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EVE Evolved: EVE needs real colonisation now

MMOs have absolutely exploded in popularity over the past decade, with online gaming growing from a niche hobby to a global market worth billions of dollars each year. Once dominated by subscription games like EverQuest and World of Warcraft, recent years have seen free-to-play games take centre...

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MMO Mechanics: Balancing game economies

Most players won't need an economics degree to play an MMO, but strong mechanical forces under the bonnet still guide our actions in our favourite titles. Virtually every financial exchange can be broken down into an effort equals economic gain equation: We put in our hours, and the game economy...

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The Soapbox: The Raid Finder ruined raiding

I don't typically limit myself to ranting about only one game at a time, but I decided to make an exception this week and speak out against World of Warcraft's Raid Finder mechanic. I was running a small and modestly successful raiding guild when this system was introduced, and my team definitely...

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