Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Quests in a Sandbox World

24

Comments

  • olepiolepi Member EpicPosts: 2,432
    Ryzom is the only real sandbox MMO that Ive played. It has no quests of the normal type.

    It does start out with some tuturial quests, on the starter island, to show you the mechanics of the game.  They are short and simply show how to do certain things, like craft things, find resources, etc.

    Once on the mainland, the only quests available are the "craft X for a reward" type.  These are totally optional. There is a quest line to increase faction with one of the sides. These are also optional.

    The only other guidance you get is to find certain portal markers, so that you can quickly teleport around. These are gated by faction standing, so there is some reason to do the faction quests.

    There are no "story" quests, no storylines. There are no quest NPC's at all, except for the ones who ask for crafted items to buy.

    Another big feature is that mobs don't drop any weapons or armor, and weapons and armor for sale at vendors is inferior. Everything of real value is made by the players.
    [Deleted User]AmarantharAlBQuirky

    ------------
    2023: 46 years on the Net.


  • QbertqQbertq Member UncommonPosts: 399
    I think there is a disconnect from what people say or think they want and what they really want. I play mostly sandboxy type games. I do play themepark also, but those usually are much shorter timeframes because of just how I play. When I am in sandboxes, if you watch chat, there are more than a few people who thought they wanted a sandbox, but had trouble and ultimately dropped off because they didn't really know how or have the desire to create their own goals and such. Obviously, the less themeparky and more sandparky played into that. If I had my with, it would probably be an 80/20 sandpark/themeish hybrid. It would be enough for me to do my own thing and also follow a little story if I wanted, but not required to. It would also give people who are new to sandboxes a starting point until they get a feel for what others do and how to develop your own goals.
    AmarantharAlBQuirkyPhaserlight
  • TheocritusTheocritus Member LegendaryPosts: 9,457
    edited October 2022
    Dibdabs said:
    Akulas said:
    Just put me in the middle of nowhere and let me figure it out. 

    My favorite way to play an MMO!
    Exactly.  I guess some players like being led by the hand along linear quest trails that will be the same for every character they ever make in their game.  Weird.

    Most of us have played at least a dozen MMOs...Its not like we have to be taught every single time unless the game has something very odd about it......As for quests, the best one I saw I think was in Perfect World? You just had a list of objectives (kill quests iirc) and as you did them you just click "complete", gained your reward, and moved on to the next one.....No having to constantly run back and forth to quest givers and quest hubs.
    AlBQuirky
  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 5,331
    Qbertq said:
    I think there is a disconnect from what people say or think they want and what they really want. I play mostly sandboxy type games. I do play themepark also, but those usually are much shorter timeframes because of just how I play. When I am in sandboxes, if you watch chat, there are more than a few people who thought they wanted a sandbox, but had trouble and ultimately dropped off because they didn't really know how or have the desire to create their own goals and such. Obviously, the less themeparky and more sandparky played into that. If I had my with, it would probably be an 80/20 sandpark/themeish hybrid. It would be enough for me to do my own thing and also follow a little story if I wanted, but not required to. It would also give people who are new to sandboxes a starting point until they get a feel for what others do and how to develop your own goals.
    I think the phrase "make your own goals" sounds harder than it should be. 
    It depends on the game design, though. Most games aren't made for that, so it's hard for Gamers to understand how it would work in a game that is. 
    It's really pretty simple. You want something, you go places and do things to get it. 
    AlBQuirky

    Once upon a time....

  • UwakionnaUwakionna Member RarePosts: 792
    Think part of the issue that comes up with "make your own goals" is the ability to ascribe value to a given task. When you define a task for yourself, it's value is entirely intrinsic and the task of building value is on you to generate from your own headcanon/context.

    Community helps, as you can build a sort of roleplayed or contextual value that others support, otherwise it's just your own thoughts on it.

    A quest gives you an external motivator and it's subjectively easier to defer the value of it to an implied urgency or weight, as you're substituting community with an automated prompt. Largely this helps the individual, but as you all have already discussed, there's also balance in how much a quest guides or controls things which needs to be managed, especially if the goal is to lead the players into exploring the sandbox element of a game more rather than linearly dragging them through it.
    AlBQuirky
  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 5,331
    edited October 2022
    @Uwakionna , while I see value in things without intrinsic value, especially for collectors, I'm also thinking of useful things that do have value. 
    Such as spells and scrolls. It depends on the game design, but if the design says that you have to find a spell's instructions to learn from, or maybe a scroll of that spell to learn from, to gain a new spell, then knowing where that particular spell is more likely to spawn (MOB and/or chests) gives that player helpful information, and it's become part of a "quest" for said Player. 
    It could be anything else besides spell related items, too. 

    If that spell or scroll is widely available for some reason (likely to happen at some point), it still has value in getting it for free rather than paying gold coin for it. Or to sell. 

    Most importantly is that I've been talking about the basic way of doing this sort of Sandbox Quest. But it can be used for upscale "quests" too. 
    That is to say that the designers may want to add in special quests where the player gathers the information needed to get a specific unusual item, whatever that may be. 
    More powerful spells, unusual magic, special gear, even one-of-a-kind rare art, for example. 

    These could be "ticket items." These can be tomes or notes, but don't have to be. 
    A loot table for a MOB might give a 5% chance to drop a "ticket items", and on that list can be anything from common to rare things, depending on power or usefulness. 
    These can be instructions or information. 
    - Instructions might be anything from "go here and look there."
    - Information can be "look for (MOB Name or Tomb) in X Valley." 
    These can be found inside the present Dungeon or near the present location for lesser ticket items, or much more detailed for powerful items such as finding more information along a path towards the final goal. 
    The holder of the ticket gets a special drop added to their loot, or knows the means to the location of a secret cubbyhole, and maybe even needs to speak a Wyrd of Power (found in the "quest") to open it. 
    This stuff can be very easy, or very hard. 

    A lot depends on game design. 
    AlBQuirky

    Once upon a time....

  • QbertqQbertq Member UncommonPosts: 399
    Qbertq said:
    I think there is a disconnect from what people say or think they want and what they really want. I play mostly sandboxy type games. I do play themepark also, but those usually are much shorter timeframes because of just how I play. When I am in sandboxes, if you watch chat, there are more than a few people who thought they wanted a sandbox, but had trouble and ultimately dropped off because they didn't really know how or have the desire to create their own goals and such. Obviously, the less themeparky and more sandparky played into that. If I had my with, it would probably be an 80/20 sandpark/themeish hybrid. It would be enough for me to do my own thing and also follow a little story if I wanted, but not required to. It would also give people who are new to sandboxes a starting point until they get a feel for what others do and how to develop your own goals.
    I think the phrase "make your own goals" sounds harder than it should be. 
    It depends on the game design, though. Most games aren't made for that, so it's hard for Gamers to understand how it would work in a game that is. 
    It's really pretty simple. You want something, you go places and do things to get it. 
    It could be, but from my experience some people don't find it easy.  If there is enough 'sand', I always find something to do.  I have a goal of getting a house, or an item, or raise a skill or.....  Some people have a hard time.  It's like our corporeal selves.  Some people can't seem to figure their goals in life.

    AlBQuirky
  • giantessfangiantessfan Member UncommonPosts: 184
    I don't know if it will ever release, I am however part of Alpha 2 if it ever comes, but its kind of why I am excited for Ashes of creation it sounds like a sandbox with actual quests. If I understand correctly
    AlBQuirky
  • DarkZorvanReturnsDarkZorvanReturns Member RarePosts: 654
    olepi said:
    Ryzom is the only real sandbox MMO that Ive played. It has no quests of the normal type.

    It does start out with some tuturial quests, on the starter island, to show you the mechanics of the game.  They are short and simply show how to do certain things, like craft things, find resources, etc.

    Once on the mainland, the only quests available are the "craft X for a reward" type.  These are totally optional. There is a quest line to increase faction with one of the sides. These are also optional.

    The only other guidance you get is to find certain portal markers, so that you can quickly teleport around. These are gated by faction standing, so there is some reason to do the faction quests.

    There are no "story" quests, no storylines. There are no quest NPC's at all, except for the ones who ask for crafted items to buy.

    Another big feature is that mobs don't drop any weapons or armor, and weapons and armor for sale at vendors is inferior. Everything of real value is made by the players.

    This is like calling Runescape a sandbox game. Ryzom is not and never was a sandbox.
    If players don't shape and change the world then it is not a sandbox.
    I liked Ryzom for what it wanted to be. Unfortunately, it had very little theme and almost no sand in its park.
    AlBQuirky
  • UwakionnaUwakionna Member RarePosts: 792
    @Uwakionna , while I see value in things without intrinsic value, especially for collectors, I'm also thinking of useful things that do have value. 
    I was referring to the ability to ascribe value to the quest itself, not any sort of reward or lootable.

    Like if a quest giver offers you a task, it's often with implied urgency. With a personally assigned quest, the entire context of your actions and why you are doing it is up to you to generate, compared to an assigned quest or a community driven assignment where there is an external force shaping it. Even if you understand it to be superficial on that end, you generally have more motivation to achieve it as an assigned task, as opposed to one you gave yourself.

    This isn't to say assigned quests are necessarily better, but that it alleviates issue around "self motivation" to have an external voice prompting players to do things, even if that voice is just a prompt generator the player has control over.
    AlBQuirky
  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 5,331
    Uwakionna said:
    @Uwakionna , while I see value in things without intrinsic value, especially for collectors, I'm also thinking of useful things that do have value. 
    I was referring to the ability to ascribe value to the quest itself, not any sort of reward or lootable.

    Like if a quest giver offers you a task, it's often with implied urgency. With a personally assigned quest, the entire context of your actions and why you are doing it is up to you to generate, compared to an assigned quest or a community driven assignment where there is an external force shaping it. Even if you understand it to be superficial on that end, you generally have more motivation to achieve it as an assigned task, as opposed to one you gave yourself.

    This isn't to say assigned quests are necessarily better, but that it alleviates issue around "self motivation" to have an external voice prompting players to do things, even if that voice is just a prompt generator the player has control over.
    Is that still a question these days? That players want the directed game play as we see it? Fixed quests with fixed rewards, that are made "required" to one degree or another, to advance? 
    As opposed to another way to design MMORPGs. 

    For some, the answer is yes. 
    But the MMORPG genre, as is, has stagnated. And that shows us that that's not the answer for many. 
    Where do we go from here? 
    The answer is not found in those old beliefs. 
    AlBQuirkyBrainy

    Once upon a time....

  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 5,331
    Qbertq said:
    Qbertq said:
    I think there is a disconnect from what people say or think they want and what they really want. I play mostly sandboxy type games. I do play themepark also, but those usually are much shorter timeframes because of just how I play. When I am in sandboxes, if you watch chat, there are more than a few people who thought they wanted a sandbox, but had trouble and ultimately dropped off because they didn't really know how or have the desire to create their own goals and such. Obviously, the less themeparky and more sandparky played into that. If I had my with, it would probably be an 80/20 sandpark/themeish hybrid. It would be enough for me to do my own thing and also follow a little story if I wanted, but not required to. It would also give people who are new to sandboxes a starting point until they get a feel for what others do and how to develop your own goals.
    I think the phrase "make your own goals" sounds harder than it should be. 
    It depends on the game design, though. Most games aren't made for that, so it's hard for Gamers to understand how it would work in a game that is. 
    It's really pretty simple. You want something, you go places and do things to get it. 
    It could be, but from my experience some people don't find it easy.  If there is enough 'sand', I always find something to do.  I have a goal of getting a house, or an item, or raise a skill or.....  Some people have a hard time.  It's like our corporeal selves.  Some people can't seem to figure their goals in life.

    There will always be games like the current for those people. 
    What about everyone else? 
    AlBQuirky

    Once upon a time....

  • UwakionnaUwakionna Member RarePosts: 792
    Uwakionna said:
    while I see value in things without intrinsic value, especially for collectors, I'm also thinking of useful things that do have value. 
    I was referring to the ability to ascribe value to the quest itself, not any sort of reward or lootable.

    Like if a quest giver offers you a task, it's often with implied urgency. With a personally assigned quest, the entire context of your actions and why you are doing it is up to you to generate, compared to an assigned quest or a community driven assignment where there is an external force shaping it. Even if you understand it to be superficial on that end, you generally have more motivation to achieve it as an assigned task, as opposed to one you gave yourself.

    This isn't to say assigned quests are necessarily better, but that it alleviates issue around "self motivation" to have an external voice prompting players to do things, even if that voice is just a prompt generator the player has control over.
    Is that still a question these days? That players want the directed game play as we see it? Fixed quests with fixed rewards, that are made "required" to one degree or another, to advance? 
    As opposed to another way to design MMORPGs. 

    For some, the answer is yes. 
    But the MMORPG genre, as is, has stagnated. And that shows us that that's not the answer for many. 
    Where do we go from here? 
    The answer is not found in those old beliefs. 
    Point wasn't for the quests in this context to be expressly linear or use fixed rewards/progression.

    It's why I pointed to prompts and was talking about them in the context of ascribing value as an extrinsic versus intrinsic element.

    Point there being how one is contextualizing their reason to do things. You seem to be thinking of motivators in terms of loot, which I would argue is not really different between quest or not. You kill goblins for a quest for XP/quest reward, or you kill goblins without a quest for combat xp/drops. 

    But is there any motivation there beyond raw mechanical value? Is there any narrative or social value?

    In the vacuum on just you messing around in a sandbox, how many decisions are being contextualized to broader ideas and goals, versus being a step-wise objective of crafting things?

    That's the context I'm referring to in ascribing value to actions with quests. Where the motivator is something more narrative or subject to setting than a raw mechanical motivator.

    I also was speaking to the point of who assigns the tasks, and consequently how much one finds them important. If you value self-ascribed tasks over someone else prompting them for you, then you likely don't need quests, but as I noted with the first comment and "implied urgency", tasks offered by an external element can be framed in a timed or visually persistent way that pushes a player to do those activities more.
    AlBQuirky
  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 5,331
    Uwakionna said:
    Uwakionna said:
    while I see value in things without intrinsic value, especially for collectors, I'm also thinking of useful things that do have value. 
    I was referring to the ability to ascribe value to the quest itself, not any sort of reward or lootable.

    Like if a quest giver offers you a task, it's often with implied urgency. With a personally assigned quest, the entire context of your actions and why you are doing it is up to you to generate, compared to an assigned quest or a community driven assignment where there is an external force shaping it. Even if you understand it to be superficial on that end, you generally have more motivation to achieve it as an assigned task, as opposed to one you gave yourself.

    This isn't to say assigned quests are necessarily better, but that it alleviates issue around "self motivation" to have an external voice prompting players to do things, even if that voice is just a prompt generator the player has control over.
    Is that still a question these days? That players want the directed game play as we see it? Fixed quests with fixed rewards, that are made "required" to one degree or another, to advance? 
    As opposed to another way to design MMORPGs. 

    For some, the answer is yes. 
    But the MMORPG genre, as is, has stagnated. And that shows us that that's not the answer for many. 
    Where do we go from here? 
    The answer is not found in those old beliefs. 
    Point wasn't for the quests in this context to be expressly linear or use fixed rewards/progression.

    It's why I pointed to prompts and was talking about them in the context of ascribing value as an extrinsic versus intrinsic element.

    Point there being how one is contextualizing their reason to do things. You seem to be thinking of motivators in terms of loot, which I would argue is not really different between quest or not. You kill goblins for a quest for XP/quest reward, or you kill goblins without a quest for combat xp/drops. 

    But is there any motivation there beyond raw mechanical value? Is there any narrative or social value?

    In the vacuum on just you messing around in a sandbox, how many decisions are being contextualized to broader ideas and goals, versus being a step-wise objective of crafting things?

    That's the context I'm referring to in ascribing value to actions with quests. Where the motivator is something more narrative or subject to setting than a raw mechanical motivator.

    I also was speaking to the point of who assigns the tasks, and consequently how much one finds them important. If you value self-ascribed tasks over someone else prompting them for you, then you likely don't need quests, but as I noted with the first comment and "implied urgency", tasks offered by an external element can be framed in a timed or visually persistent way that pushes a player to do those activities more.
    Oh, ok. I see this type of important actions as something different than "quests." 
    My thinking on this is really loaded on the concept design part. 
    It's part GM Events, part of what I think of as "Common Events", and part of a wider reward system of a "Favor System" (lower prices, special offers, Titles, etc.) from various sources such as NPC persona, Cities, and even a Realm. 

    Remember, "Living, Breathing, World."

    I'm going to need to gather my thoughts on this one. The concept is wide in scope (although I don't believe it to be unusually expansive in code).  I may do it in a separate post. 

    AlBQuirky

    Once upon a time....

  • AlBQuirkyAlBQuirky Member EpicPosts: 7,388
    Dibdabs said:
    Akulas said:
    Just put me in the middle of nowhere and let me figure it out. 

    My favorite way to play an MMO!
    Exactly.  I guess some players like being led by the hand along linear quest trails that will be the same for every character they ever make in their game.  Weird.

    Some to like have some clue as "how the world works", where we were just dropped into. Number one question for me is how hurtful my mistakes will be. As I'm "just figuring it out", how much more than just progress will I be losing? Will I lose "some amount" of what I've collected? How much? Will I have to find my corpse, which may be in the middle of a pack of monsters?

    No one can "shame me" into thinking "their way" is the mostest manliest way, Dibdabs. Of course there is LOTS of middle ground to explore before "being lead by the hand" occurs.

    I don't play games for others, but my own enjoyment. Attempt to shame away :)

    - Al

    Personally the only modern MMORPG trend that annoys me is the idea that MMOs need to be designed in a way to attract people who don't actually like MMOs. Which to me makes about as much sense as someone trying to figure out a way to get vegetarians to eat at their steakhouse.
    - FARGIN_WAR


  • AlBQuirkyAlBQuirky Member EpicPosts: 7,388
    Qbertq said:
    Qbertq said:
    I think there is a disconnect from what people say or think they want and what they really want. I play mostly sandboxy type games. I do play themepark also, but those usually are much shorter timeframes because of just how I play. When I am in sandboxes, if you watch chat, there are more than a few people who thought they wanted a sandbox, but had trouble and ultimately dropped off because they didn't really know how or have the desire to create their own goals and such. Obviously, the less themeparky and more sandparky played into that. If I had my with, it would probably be an 80/20 sandpark/themeish hybrid. It would be enough for me to do my own thing and also follow a little story if I wanted, but not required to. It would also give people who are new to sandboxes a starting point until they get a feel for what others do and how to develop your own goals.
    I think the phrase "make your own goals" sounds harder than it should be. 
    It depends on the game design, though. Most games aren't made for that, so it's hard for Gamers to understand how it would work in a game that is. 
    It's really pretty simple. You want something, you go places and do things to get it. 
    It could be, but from my experience some people don't find it easy.  If there is enough 'sand', I always find something to do.  I have a goal of getting a house, or an item, or raise a skill or.....  Some people have a hard time.  It's like our corporeal selves.  Some people can't seem to figure their goals in life.


    I keep on thinking more about survival games rather than MMOs.

    Possible goals to start:
    Food
    Water
    Shelter

    How long will berry picking sustain me? Days?
    How many trees will I be punching to get a handle for an axe?
    Will a cave be enough shelter for awhile?
    Can I occupy an abandoned house?

    Easier goals are upgrades to what a player has already accomplished.

    It's not as easy people here make it out to be.

    As Vizinni said, "Never bet against a Sicilian when DEATH is on the line!" :)

    - Al

    Personally the only modern MMORPG trend that annoys me is the idea that MMOs need to be designed in a way to attract people who don't actually like MMOs. Which to me makes about as much sense as someone trying to figure out a way to get vegetarians to eat at their steakhouse.
    - FARGIN_WAR


  • MMOExposedMMOExposed Member RarePosts: 7,346
    People have made the comment that Sandbox games are harder to play because without Quests, there's no direction. 

    I don't subscribe to that thinking. I think a good Sandbox game would simply change the way you get "quests." 
    Instead of going to some NPC and picking up a rinse-and-repeat quest, you pick up your quests by playing the game. 

    You hear NPCs say that something happened or they need a certain resource, that's a quest.
    That NPC may even be a "town crier" (UO had them). 
    You go to a dungeon, and see a wall carving with either stories or distinctive images, that's a quest. 
    Rewards would be included in the drops and chests, etc. 

    There are loads of ways for a game World to set in motion things, quests, for players to do. And adding in new stuff into the existing world can keep such a game very interesting for a very long time. 
    I don't see the purpose of doing all this just to call quest something else or to get rid of the quest icon just to have the exact same thing but only without a quest icon. Just keep the traditional quest if your game is going to have quest. I like GW2 method of doing Hearts. But taking away Quest icons just for sake, I don't agree with that
    AlBQuirky

    Philosophy of MMO Game Design

  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 5,331
    People have made the comment that Sandbox games are harder to play because without Quests, there's no direction. 

    I don't subscribe to that thinking. I think a good Sandbox game would simply change the way you get "quests." 
    Instead of going to some NPC and picking up a rinse-and-repeat quest, you pick up your quests by playing the game. 

    You hear NPCs say that something happened or they need a certain resource, that's a quest.
    That NPC may even be a "town crier" (UO had them). 
    You go to a dungeon, and see a wall carving with either stories or distinctive images, that's a quest. 
    Rewards would be included in the drops and chests, etc. 

    There are loads of ways for a game World to set in motion things, quests, for players to do. And adding in new stuff into the existing world can keep such a game very interesting for a very long time. 
    I don't see the purpose of doing all this just to call quest something else or to get rid of the quest icon just to have the exact same thing but only without a quest icon. Just keep the traditional quest if your game is going to have quest. I like GW2 method of doing Hearts. But taking away Quest icons just for sake, I don't agree with that
    My point is that it's just a switch-over, but one that allows the Sandbox World game to give players a lot more. In the form of a world that acts like a world to "live in", rather than fixed repetitive content and not much else. 

    I was addressing the claim that not having fixed directions throughout the Themepark style of games is "a problem." It's not. 

    I mean, if you have an exciting world full of interesting and exciting content to choose from, how freaking hard is it to choose one?
    Who needs "quests-on-a-rope", aka "paint by numbers"? 
    SovrathAlBQuirky

    Once upon a time....

  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 5,331
    edited November 2022
    Uwakionna said:
    Uwakionna said:
    while I see value in things without intrinsic value, especially for collectors, I'm also thinking of useful things that do have value. 
    I was referring to the ability to ascribe value to the quest itself, not any sort of reward or lootable.

    Like if a quest giver offers you a task, it's often with implied urgency. With a personally assigned quest, the entire context of your actions and why you are doing it is up to you to generate, compared to an assigned quest or a community driven assignment where there is an external force shaping it. Even if you understand it to be superficial on that end, you generally have more motivation to achieve it as an assigned task, as opposed to one you gave yourself.

    This isn't to say assigned quests are necessarily better, but that it alleviates issue around "self motivation" to have an external voice prompting players to do things, even if that voice is just a prompt generator the player has control over.
    Is that still a question these days? That players want the directed game play as we see it? Fixed quests with fixed rewards, that are made "required" to one degree or another, to advance? 
    As opposed to another way to design MMORPGs. 

    For some, the answer is yes. 
    But the MMORPG genre, as is, has stagnated. And that shows us that that's not the answer for many. 
    Where do we go from here? 
    The answer is not found in those old beliefs. 
    Point wasn't for the quests in this context to be expressly linear or use fixed rewards/progression.

    It's why I pointed to prompts and was talking about them in the context of ascribing value as an extrinsic versus intrinsic element.

    Point there being how one is contextualizing their reason to do things. You seem to be thinking of motivators in terms of loot, which I would argue is not really different between quest or not. You kill goblins for a quest for XP/quest reward, or you kill goblins without a quest for combat xp/drops. 

    But is there any motivation there beyond raw mechanical value? Is there any narrative or social value?

    In the vacuum on just you messing around in a sandbox, how many decisions are being contextualized to broader ideas and goals, versus being a step-wise objective of crafting things?

    That's the context I'm referring to in ascribing value to actions with quests. Where the motivator is something more narrative or subject to setting than a raw mechanical motivator.

    I also was speaking to the point of who assigns the tasks, and consequently how much one finds them important. If you value self-ascribed tasks over someone else prompting them for you, then you likely don't need quests, but as I noted with the first comment and "implied urgency", tasks offered by an external element can be framed in a timed or visually persistent way that pushes a player to do those activities more.
    Ya know, I've been having a hard time understanding what you are getting at. 
    The only thing I can think of is related to social organization. 
    There are any number of things that players can join together for, as long as there's something in the game that can be used as a foundation. 

    In UO, players did things like:
    - Kazola's Tavern, a completely player run tavern, with waiters. Games like darts, chess and checkers. A meeting place where players just eased back and told stories and jokes, etc. 
    It was popular and became a GM staging point for GM Events. 

    - The Fishinjg CFouncil of Britannia, even when fishing was really bare bones and pretty much useless. Eventually the game added a system where you could deep sea fish and pull up sea-MOBs as well as treasures. 

    - The Museum of Memories. UO had unique rare items, semi rares, and a lot of things from GM events, some of them also ubique by having the NPC Leader's name on them (like "so and so's Sword), and also with a unique color). 
    The one player organized a Museum to show it all, on loan from the player-owners. 

    I also saw a Player gather a bunch of semi rare giant spider webs, and create a temple to a made up Spider Deity. It was well done, and he had an "evil" guild for it. 

    I was involved in a college organization attempt, but that fell through because there really wasn't much to do as far as colleges. But that would be another option if a game is tailored to it. Or it can be a mix of a college and training center if a game has a lot of hard to find special attacks, defenses, mage spells, etc. 

    I'd love to see a game that was built towards this kind of stuff, beyond a UO style Sandbox. Built so that player cooperation can actually mean something. 


    Maybe you can give an idea of what you mean? 
    AlBQuirky

    Once upon a time....

  • UwakionnaUwakionna Member RarePosts: 792
    My point mostly was around scope. You point anecdotally to things players have done in the likes of UO, but that leads to the question of how many players were directly involved in creating and operating those endeavors, versus how many players were there in the game more broadly.

    It's also in your college example on the point that the mechanics were not there to support the concept. You could set up a college, you could RP in it, but the game wouldn't really reciprocate. That's a failing in many sandbox games, where the RP is just a veneer and easily wears thin fast because the mechanics are not there to support it.

    But looping back to the first paragraph, more pointedly to the subject of quests than RP in general, was the point that people finding or creating an internal motivation and building something larger off of that, is arguably not the common state of play. IT's a smaller group of people, or even individuals, that are doing something for the broader community.

    And the situation then asks "what do you do when those types of players aren't present"? Because ultimately you can't rely on such people always being around. Motivation to go and engage with the game world has to still come from somewhere. It needs a surrogate to offer that, and that then ends up being NPCs.

    Shorthand being, NPCs are a still fundamentally beneficial mechanic and component of sandbox play, both in prompting players to to on quests, even in a more loosely defined sense, as well as for fleshing out situations like the spider cult or otherwise.

    Because it's a component of play to help pad out the overall world, and offer some sort of fallback when the creative driving forces behind something aren't around.
    AlBQuirky
  • ScotScot Member LegendaryPosts: 19,959
    Uwakionna said:
    My point mostly was around scope. You point anecdotally to things players have done in the likes of UO, but that leads to the question of how many players were directly involved in creating and operating those endeavors, versus how many players were there in the game more broadly.

    It's also in your college example on the point that the mechanics were not there to support the concept. You could set up a college, you could RP in it, but the game wouldn't really reciprocate. That's a failing in many sandbox games, where the RP is just a veneer and easily wears thin fast because the mechanics are not there to support it.

    But looping back to the first paragraph, more pointedly to the subject of quests than RP in general, was the point that people finding or creating an internal motivation and building something larger off of that, is arguably not the common state of play. IT's a smaller group of people, or even individuals, that are doing something for the broader community.

    And the situation then asks "what do you do when those types of players aren't present"? Because ultimately you can't rely on such people always being around. Motivation to go and engage with the game world has to still come from somewhere. It needs a surrogate to offer that, and that then ends up being NPCs.

    Shorthand being, NPCs are a still fundamentally beneficial mechanic and component of sandbox play, both in prompting players to to on quests, even in a more loosely defined sense, as well as for fleshing out situations like the spider cult or otherwise.

    Because it's a component of play to help pad out the overall world, and offer some sort of fallback when the creative driving forces behind something aren't around.
    UO had a college of mages or something, but a game can't rely on roleplaying alone, you have to have the quests and everything else to back it up. 
    AlBQuirky
  • MendelMendel Member LegendaryPosts: 5,511
    Uwakionna said:
    <snip>

    It's also in your college example on the point that the mechanics were not there to support the concept. You could set up a college, you could RP in it, but the game wouldn't really reciprocate. That's a failing in many sandbox games, where the RP is just a veneer and easily wears thin fast because the mechanics are not there to support it.

    <snip>
    It has been a complete failing in MMORPGs to actually reward the RP aspect of it.  Toss in a chat box, and the developers think they've made an MMORPG.  By that standard, Total Annihilation was an RPG.

    How difficult would it be to have players 'vote' on how well others played?  Most of the problem would be controlling the 'vote' to prevent harassment/exploiting.  If 'social media' can do that, what is the problem with coding that to generate reputations?  You could even include factions and player run organizations.  It could be especially relevant to religion.

    What really hurts is that no company has really tried.  Define RP in some way, and we'll try it.  If we like it, we'll do it.



    AmarantharBrainyAlBQuirkyUwakionna

    Logic, my dear, merely enables one to be wrong with great authority.

  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 5,331
    Uwakionna said:
    My point mostly was around scope. You point anecdotally to things players have done in the likes of UO, but that leads to the question of how many players were directly involved in creating and operating those endeavors, versus how many players were there in the game more broadly.

    It's also in your college example on the point that the mechanics were not there to support the concept. You could set up a college, you could RP in it, but the game wouldn't really reciprocate. That's a failing in many sandbox games, where the RP is just a veneer and easily wears thin fast because the mechanics are not there to support it.

    But looping back to the first paragraph, more pointedly to the subject of quests than RP in general, was the point that people finding or creating an internal motivation and building something larger off of that, is arguably not the common state of play. IT's a smaller group of people, or even individuals, that are doing something for the broader community.

    And the situation then asks "what do you do when those types of players aren't present"? Because ultimately you can't rely on such people always being around. Motivation to go and engage with the game world has to still come from somewhere. It needs a surrogate to offer that, and that then ends up being NPCs.

    Shorthand being, NPCs are a still fundamentally beneficial mechanic and component of sandbox play, both in prompting players to to on quests, even in a more loosely defined sense, as well as for fleshing out situations like the spider cult or otherwise.

    Because it's a component of play to help pad out the overall world, and offer some sort of fallback when the creative driving forces behind something aren't around.
    "Creative driving forces"? 
    How much does that take? Decide to go to a dungeon (you like it or never been there, where the world isn't divided by levels and is mostly open to your whim). Get supplies (reagents, feathers for arrows, leathers, etc.) to make your own. Follow up on a lead you already have. Explore. DISCOVERY (through exploration or not, as clues might be missed until something else is known). Etc., etc., etc. 

    Keep in mind here that what I'm trying hard to explain is the Sandbox side of things 
    vs. the same-old-same-old. 
    That doesn't mean that the Sandbox game can't have typical quests, as long as they don't have large numbers of Characters all being "the one", which sort of breaks the world simulation down. 

    With that in mind, of course a Sandbox game can have NPC quests. That would help smooth the issue out on this roll-over of gaming styles. 
    But that's not what this topic is about. 

    AlBQuirky

    Once upon a time....

  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 5,331
    edited November 2022
    Scot said:
    Uwakionna said:
    My point mostly was around scope. You point anecdotally to things players have done in the likes of UO, but that leads to the question of how many players were directly involved in creating and operating those endeavors, versus how many players were there in the game more broadly.

    It's also in your college example on the point that the mechanics were not there to support the concept. You could set up a college, you could RP in it, but the game wouldn't really reciprocate. That's a failing in many sandbox games, where the RP is just a veneer and easily wears thin fast because the mechanics are not there to support it.

    But looping back to the first paragraph, more pointedly to the subject of quests than RP in general, was the point that people finding or creating an internal motivation and building something larger off of that, is arguably not the common state of play. IT's a smaller group of people, or even individuals, that are doing something for the broader community.

    And the situation then asks "what do you do when those types of players aren't present"? Because ultimately you can't rely on such people always being around. Motivation to go and engage with the game world has to still come from somewhere. It needs a surrogate to offer that, and that then ends up being NPCs.

    Shorthand being, NPCs are a still fundamentally beneficial mechanic and component of sandbox play, both in prompting players to to on quests, even in a more loosely defined sense, as well as for fleshing out situations like the spider cult or otherwise.

    Because it's a component of play to help pad out the overall world, and offer some sort of fallback when the creative driving forces behind something aren't around.
    UO had a college of mages or something, but a game can't rely on roleplaying alone, you have to have the quests and everything else to back it up. 
    That's another gaming story that you won't find in Themepark games.
    On a UO dedicated website, they had a Mage Forum called "The Mage Tower." 
    A popular Mod there, in beta days, named Spectre organized mage players there to pool gold and build the first Tower in the game. 
    They accomplished that and built this tower, and used it for Mage Training as well as organizing parties to explore the world. 

    But people do what people do. It was like the story of Camelot. Differences between Players turned ugly, fights broke out, and the Mage Tower declined and eventually went unused and decayed. 
    Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. 
    Such a typical story of humanity. And yet, that wasn't a "simulation of realism", it happened as an example of what people do in the real world. 


    Personal note,
    I met Spectre several times in-game. He eventually went on to take over and lead one of the biggest and most powerful PK guilds (The Shadows of Britannia). I was asked to join by he and a few others I knew from that Mage Tower forum (after they PKed me, lol), but declined. 


    They made a lot of discoveries in UO, such as a secret underground Tunnels that was supposed to be used by GMs in future Events, and took it over. They even built houses down there before GMs got P.O.ed at them and removed the houses. 
    They also figured out a way to kill the ultra powerful NPC Guards and take their Uber Powerful Swords. 
    They had a member known as "og" that some might recognize because he played with that same name in lots of PvP games. 

    UO was a unique game, no doubt about it. 

    ScotAlBQuirky

    Once upon a time....

  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 5,331
    Mendel said:
    Uwakionna said:
    <snip>

    It's also in your college example on the point that the mechanics were not there to support the concept. You could set up a college, you could RP in it, but the game wouldn't really reciprocate. That's a failing in many sandbox games, where the RP is just a veneer and easily wears thin fast because the mechanics are not there to support it.

    <snip>
    It has been a complete failing in MMORPGs to actually reward the RP aspect of it.  Toss in a chat box, and the developers think they've made an MMORPG.  By that standard, Total Annihilation was an RPG.

    How difficult would it be to have players 'vote' on how well others played?  Most of the problem would be controlling the 'vote' to prevent harassment/exploiting.  If 'social media' can do that, what is the problem with coding that to generate reputations?  You could even include factions and player run organizations.  It could be especially relevant to religion.

    What really hurts is that no company has really tried.  Define RP in some way, and we'll try it.  If we like it, we'll do it.



    I agree, except for the player voting part of it. 
    Yes, lots can be done to reward RP efforts in games. 
    UO did reward the few who made accomplishments by GM "blessings." But that's a problem in itself because other RP groups didn't get that "blessing." 

    An actual system that rewards (any group) for building RP things would be a breath of fresh air. 
    Player run cities with the tools to manage.
    Temples, with special powers based on a deity of choice, think Paladins here, but in many other forms. 

    AlBQuirkyMendel

    Once upon a time....

Sign In or Register to comment.