Dynamic player driven story.

Do excuse me if I appear to be barking up a tree that does not exist however as I have been reviewing information about Ashes of Creation over the last few days, I note that a key aspect of the game is the nodes system.

As a node develops, so too do the quests and foes available in the node develop. This says to me therefore that a node will grow, evolve and change on one server, but on another server a different node will grow and evolve leading to a different variety of quests and foes on each server.

This seems to be a grand aspect of the game, the idea that you could do simultaneous play throughs on multiple servers and effective get entirely unique experiences. This is all very well and good if someone is on the server from the get go and is making an effort to lean of the goings on across the many many nodes to learn the story of the world as it grows, however for those who have less time to be well informed, or those who are moving from one server to another or start later on into the game it will no doubt be daunting or annoying to feel as though one has missed out on a chunk of history to that point.

So, my question here is "What methods of story catch up will be available to uninformed or new players on a server?"

To me, there seems to be an excellent opportunity for say, a Chronicler NPC who can be hired maybe to inform a player on a bit of history from that node. Or maybe a functionality for a library in high level nodes that may contain newspapers for example with bits of information about that server for example.

Headline: Dragon's flame burns no more!
Filler: "On the 21st of April, 2017 an evil dragon awakened in the mountains to the south and began harassing the villagers for miles around! However the mighty heroes [insert player names from say, the first kill of the dragon if it's a re-spawning boss, if it isn't then those who contributed to defeating it] traveled there and on the day of 3rd of May 2017 the dragon was defeated an our peoples saved! Let the 3rd of May be known as Dragonfall hence forth!"

A little bit of lore, giving some info about the death of a big threat, some players earning the right to boast their names, and for those who might want to, an excuse to hold a celebration in that node on the 3rd of may.

So to just TL;DR my above question and suggestion.
When a new person comes to the game / server, will there be a news paper archive or NPC kind of system to catch players up with the unique story experienced in the nodes of that server thus far?

Comments

  • I feel that the chronicling of the individual servers will fall to the community rather than the developers. This is actually something I'm hoping to do in the future where we have a player-run website/wiki dedicated to keeping a record of the events on each server.
  • [quote quote=11991]I feel that the chronicling of the individual servers will fall to the community rather than the developers. This is actually something I’m hoping to do in the future where we have a player-run website/wiki dedicated to keeping a record of the events on each server. [/quote]

    Then perhaps a way of integrating that into the game so that it is easier to get your hands on. A player run wiki dedicated to keeping a record of the events is, I think, the most natural method and the method most true to the information the developers are providing in their vision so far, however it the wiki is outside of the game engine, I feel that may make it too great a hurdle for some people, where as if that wiki could be integrated into the game engine through some method or another, it would be easier for newer and maybe less dedicated players to get their teeth into, if you follow?

    To look back at my newspaper point from before, rather than having it be generated by the game engine based on the achievements of players, maybe giving players the ability to publish works that can be peer reviewed for profanity and then accessed would not only be a more interesting method than the maintenance of a wiki, but also feel more organic in the game world.
  • I think that's an awesome idea, especially because it gives that feeling of reality and importance to the achievements you accomplish during your game experience. This way older player can be renowned for their actions and new player can get a grasp on what's actually going on on the server. I don't know how this can be controlled if you give the players themselves the possibility to write the history of the server, but for bigger events an internal system can be used. For example if a dragon spawns, it has to have been generated by the game, so the game itself can create a chronicle if it's successfully defeated. But again, i really love your idea and i think this should be discussed deeper.
  • Great idea. Was thinking about something along the same lines as this. The whole idea that each server will be unique does merit some sort of server lore recall, be it with chroniclers or through books, newspapers and the like. Even if it just is for big world spawns.

    There could be a system where the server automatically chronicles some massive event such as a Dragon spawning at X node, but I also think that each node could OR should have a way in which the PC can write their own lore, or even just their own stories in that node. Think of it as a type of novelization of their specific journey in that node, doing a grand quest or even just a diary reading of their day transporting goods from one node to another. Player driven lore could be a massive stepping stone for MMO's in general, and it could be a good thing to see.
  • [quote quote=12022]I think that’s an awesome idea, especially because it gives that feeling of reality and importance to the achievements you accomplish during your game experience. This way older player can be renowned for their actions and new player can get a grasp on what’s actually going on on the server. I don’t know how this can be controlled if you give the players themselves the possibility to write the history of the server, but for bigger events an internal system can be used. For example if a dragon spawns, it has to have been generated by the game, so the game itself can create a chronicle if it’s successfully defeated. But again, i really love your idea and i think this should be discussed deeper.

    [/quote]

    Not just that but if you read about these players achievements and actions it might spur you to specific action yourself. A new player reads about how BillyTheBrute defeated a dragon pretty much alone, and it's an old old entry, but he's inspired and one day, he defeats a different boss and now he's listed in the chronicles. Theres then just as much story to the player himself as there is to the game world going on. Goals, aspirations, inspirations etc.

    Though I think your suggestion, correct me if I read you wrong, of having a mix between player recorded information and notable events recorded by the system itself is one of significant merit. Guilds will no doubt have achievements of their own, hosting a parade for example, or maybe a player has run a node for a long period of time and gone undefeated in attempts to usurp him.

    These are spectacles in their own right that inevitably cannot be easily noticed by the game system, so having the ability for players to effective act as historians, recording the events as they go, but the game making big notes for major successes, all accessed in the game engine, would provide, I think a level of consistency that will really spell a nice progression to a server.



    Now to break away from my reply to BestLuke;

    I do wonder, if a node reaching a high level triggers a dragon world boss to spawn, and then that node is attacked and de-leveled. Should that node reach the high level that triggered the dragon world boss, will that world boss be spawned again? Or is there a small variety of world bosses per node to ensure that the same six or seven metropolises don't tick up and down keeping 5 metropolises at any one time, but spawning the same circle of six or seven world bosses over, and over?
  • I'm talking purely based on assumption, but i think there's gonna be some kind of variety for this events. It would be kind of strange if as soon as a node levels up a world boss spawns, so there's probably going to be a bit of time and maybe a criteria to spawn a boss. But again i don't know how the devs will handle this problem, so we'd better wait for some more information. And thanks for your reply Lander, this chronicle thing is convincing me more and more.
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