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Dev Discussion #1 - Memorable Content

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  • codewarlockcodewarlock Member, Settler
    Rift did an amazing job sprinkling in random and hidden achievements and findables throughout the game world. As a player who enjoys exploring the boundaries of a world, both physical and from a technical aspect, these little surprises really fueled me to search every nook and cranny for hidden stuff.

    Each zone had a puzzle that could be completed for titles or prizes, often takes on classic games with a fantasy twist such as Codebreaker. Most were solo puzzles but a couple required bringing friends.

    Additionally there were "cairns" that could be found that in turn shared an awesome view of the surrounding landscape. Usually you had to intentionally hop and wall climb across what appeared to be inaccessible cliffs or areas to reach these spots.

    Occasionally there would be random achievements such as "jump off the highest point in the zone without dying". This involved a lot of trial and error but it was fun to experiment.

    One of my favorite memories was exploring a desert town and there was some bizarre "cock fight" between two dragons in an abandoned alley. You could bet on one and if you won, you got a title. This was a random event you wouldn't have found just going from quest giver to quest giver. There was also my favorite title "Merchant of Death" that could only be achieved by slaying a merchant who was being accosted by bandits. Evil? Sure. But the title was way cooler than the merchandise the merchant sold :P

    In WoW, I'd have to say the Karazhan (original) raid as a whole was pretty neat, just due to the monsters, music, and kooky/creepy atmosphere. I also liked fights that I got to tank as a warlock such as Leo the Blind in SSC and the Eredar Twins in SWP--just because it was different from straight DPSing as a clothie.

    WoW also had some pretty neat areas to explore beyond the boundaries such as the crypt near Kara, or flying into pre-cata Hyjal with a bit of wall hopping.
  • One thing I’ve always loved from GW2 events is the buildup to get to the end of each one as well as the increase in difficulty the more people join. The buildup makes the events seem much more alive than just a random boss appearing and then dying and the increase difficulty really promotes people grouping and working together which is good for the community as a whole.
  • mirthmirth Member
    I have played almost every English language MMO. By far the most memorable MMO experience for me has always been the open world exploration of Asheron's Call 1. Exploring the unknown with friends, without the aid of wiki write-ups, or gold "!" quest indicators, created the deepest sense of immersion I've ever experienced in an MMO.

    As far as quest archetypes: AC had a spontaneous quest archetype which hasn't been done much in other MMOs since, informally called "corpse runs" - where we would help friends recover their lost possessions in the middle of no where. Drop on death inventory is a crappy idea, but the spontaneous nature of these informal quests, combined with not really knowing what you were getting into, except that it was a dangerous enough situation to have killed one of your friends, made you invested in the experience, i.e. made it "meaningful".
  • branegamesbranegames Member, Braver of Worlds
    One of the quests that I found interesting and frankly quite bizarre in World of Warcraft is the one where you're essentially told to free people stuck in the ground neck down. The scenery is portrayed as this kind of farm, with the humans being the plants and ghouls walking around eating them and forsaken torturing them. You can free the humans in 1 of 2 ways. Either help them get up from the ground or brutally killing them by smashing their heads in, thus putting them out of their misery.
  • OrcLuckOrcLuck Member, Braver of Worlds
    I remember traveling the shore in world of warcraft, and seeing a sea giant walk out onto shore and it was just a cool first impression. Then there was the time in Albion Online where you can lose your loot, that I found a special mount and the moments getting back to town were so tense because this mount was so special and I had such a personal stake in wanting it.

    I wasn't even playing this, but I was watching my brother over his shoulder in Vanilla WoW with a full 40 people raid doing Molten Core for the first time, they were all so tense and clearing mobs and doing everything...it was just so fun.

    Then I got to do it myself with my own guild on my own Alliance faction and I had a different role, and it was like I'd finally succeeded.

    Didn't even care about the loot.

    The only quest I remember was one I did last year. There was a hyper intelligent Raptor called Subject 9 I think and at the end of a couple fetch quests gathering their kids, and finding a mate for her, I saw her fly off to a new planet to populate it with raptors.

    That was cool.

    Unfortunately I had lots of trouble with guilds and not being satisfied waiting for them to catch all the players up to be able to do raids, and it seemed like an impossible task, and I spent hours and hours waiting for groups to form for dungeons the majority of people had out leveled, putting me up against an impossible barrier to catch up.

    By the time the next expansion had come around, all the lessons the people who'd reached this content had learned, were things I had no clue about, and gear scores became a thing, and I felt like I knew nothing again, about a game I spent 4 years playing...I tried going back, but I'll never forget how people had changed and how less sociable everyone was.

    It made me realize that some experiences are truly once in a life time and that you can only get one shot at something sometimes.
  • All Woltk Raids. Hard mechanics a lot of them. Raids that feel like fighting against a Wall. These days raids are a joke and can be cleared in 2 to 3 IDs.
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  • The AaronThe Aaron Member, Staff, Avatar of the Phoenix
    seaber wrote: »
    Monkey Madness :sunglasses:
    but also, I can remember going through almost every single quest in runescape, even ones I completed 10 years ago.

    Oh yes! Monkey Madness, and Regicide were two of the most frustrating but fulfilling quests in that game.

    I recall putting 100+ hours in across skills just to get the requirements for the prerequisite quests, then literally slaving away for over a week to get them knocked out. All for that Scimitar.
  • I think that to be entertaining a quest should have a context. Nothing is more annoying than just doing errands without a purpose. They should have an impact on the surrounding world and gameplay should be linked to the story because it's the story that gets you in and the experience you live that sticks in your memory. The quests are always the same: gathering things, killing things, running from point A to point B. The story makes them unique and meaningful. Guild Wars has good mechanics in that regard with their living story. And the story isn't just the text that nearly nobody reads: it's the landscapes, the enemy, the design of the zone you're in, the atmosphere.

    It is the same with dungeons, at least in the first runs: you live a story with your friends/guild/random people. And it is especially memorable when each dungeon has something unique, a new mechanic you need to master to overcome the challenge.
  • gemiichangemiichan Member, Braver of Worlds
    Dev Discussion #1 - Memorable Content
    What makes a quest memorable? Are there any raids or events that you'll never forget? What made them unforgettable?

    I think what makes quest most memorable for me is when they actually impact the story in a drastic positive or negative way! Like when you have to help a character through some part of the story and they actually accompany you! Or when you need to save them but get there too late!

    Following a story-line where you have invested in a quirky character or a character that has given you the benefit of the doubt when everyone else didnt care too and then to watch them get promoted or murdered leaves a drastic mark that I think players like myself remember always!
    AoC's Fashion Queen
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    "I understand wanting formality, but is it worth tearing apart your community..?" </3
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  • There was a questline in swtor, where at one point, you have to jump around on vehicles. It made me think of the prequals and that i was part of it
  • I like quests where npc's return later down the line. For example a dlc comes out and you meet up with a character from a previous quest. It's better if they remember you and the choices you made and you can build from your previous experience with them.
    Also for smaller quests something along the lines of you help an npc to rescue her daughter as they flee a disaster. They have nothing to give you as a reward so instead she gives you a family necklace or ring. Instead of it being a useless item you'll pawn off at the next merchant have it be a housing item. Perhaps with a heart felt note written by the person who you help and you can read while at your house as a reminder of your good deed.
  • Give a straw hat as a reward and boom, never forget it
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  • crivelcrivel Member, Founder
    I must add a quest in Elder Scrolls Online here.
    Its the Keeper of Bones, where you are running around in the forest and stumble across a talking skull on the ground.
    His name is Dringoth and after I agreed to help him find the rest of his body I tie his skull to my belt.
    His first remark after that is "Ah, quite the view from up here. I meant the landscape—don't get any ideas." and from there its a hour or so of laughing while doing the quest.

    I loved the humor of that quest, and it was such surprise to just run across it in the middle of no where really.

    A side note, since I love to explore, and I am not the only one I guess, please hide things!
    I know you will, but i am talking about finding tunnels behind rocks you destroy while gathering ore, that might lead to a small cave with a large find of a rare ore or to something bigger, long forgotten.
    Perhaps a tunnel up to that mystical light you could see in some cracks during night, high up on the cliff side.



  • It would be a memorable quest if it rewarded me a rad cloak dyed with the blood of 10,000 Tulnar.
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  • PragmaticPragmatic Member, Founder
    In my case, a quest is memorable when the NPCs involved have emotion and consistency. I take on a quest where I help this guy stop bandits from burning down his farm and in a follow up quest the next npc makes jokes about his friend always needing help, having bad luck, etc. Feeling like the npcs in a given area know each other exist.
  • Massive props if puzzles are involved; real puzzles without keys hidden in the game world or obvious placards on walls to tell you the answer.

    Agree! Sometimes, I think developers might shy away from this kind of content in order to make the game more "accessible" to a wider range of audiences, but I think it's perfectly acceptable and quite engaging in a side quest. Honestly, I'd argue to put it into a main quest, but being an engineer in a corporate office, we often discuss how our decision impact the lowest common denominator, which often causes us to make some pretty uninspiring compromises.

  • Wandering MistWandering Mist Member, Founder
    I'm currently playing through FF14's main story, and yet one of the most memorable moments for me so far has come from the Arcanist class quest line. Early on you are introduced to a senior Arcanist who is a master tactician. Over the course of the first 5 missions you gradually learn more about her, until you reach a mission that requires you to go with her to inspect goods on a trading vessel. I won't go into too many details but during the inspection, the senior Arcanist loses her grimoire (the book that every Arcanist carries), which she had had since she first became an Arcanist. Needless to say this is a huge deal and it causes the senior Arcanist to emotionally break down. This was the first time in the game (and in fact for a very long time) where I have felt any real emotion for an NPC.

    It doesn't stop there though, because over the next few missions you help the senior Arcanist overcome this trauma, culminating in a final battle that resolves the whole plot point. The feeling of pride and satisfaction at doing this was something I have rarely witnessed in an mmorpg outside of progression raiding, and it was amazing. This was only able to happen because the game gave that NPC depth of character that I could relate with, then used that character to deliver an emotional experience.

    In other words, just having an epic quest is meaningless unless you build it up properly first. You have give the player time to develop the connection without it feeling too forced and then hit them with an emotional climax. In my opinion, that emotional climax, done properly, is far more rewarding than any rare item.
  • Quests:

    Personally i'm a fan of the odd quest, requiring you to travel the world filled with strange quirks and novelties along the way.

    I'm also a fan of exploration and finding a quest within the tight dark crevices of a zone, it just adds that bit of alluring mystery to them.

    a few examples: all from "vanilla wow" are:

    Cortello's Riddle - a quest item found on the floor of a ship, you need to solve the riddle to find the treasure

    Faldir's Cove - a small sub zone behind a mountainous wall, has about 5 difficult quests with good rewards.

    Dorn Plainstalker - a single NPC within a cave, that starts a quest chain called Test of... Faith, Endurance, Strength, and Lore, each requiring you to travel and fulfill unique tasks corresponding to type of test.

    Raids:

    When it comes to raids, i feel its most important to make sure each boss compliments a certain classes abilities, just to make the player feel more important as well as not making them feel like they're playing an under-powered class, especially if they spent so much time creating that single character.
  • CoTuKCoTuK Member
    edited April 19
    I don't remember game name. Basicly when you reach level 50 there you wont be able to do basic queasts anymore and the only way to get experience to reach level 80 was doing daily quests.
    One of three daily quests was to take a carriage (which will remove all your fast movement abilities) and go through HUGE PVP zones. If a player kills you- they get reward. If you get killed, you start over. Level 50 player cannot kill player that 10 levels above, gear scaling is insane in that game.
    Basicly when I reached level 50 I went for my first daily quest, in 1 min in PVP zone I met lvl 70 player, he killed me- I left game forever.
    Why I left? Cuz I saw through how much pain I would go, because of horrible game design. :s
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  • Wandering MistWandering Mist Member, Founder
    mcjenkins wrote: »
    Quests:
    Raids:

    When it comes to raids, i feel its most important to make sure each boss compliments a certain classes abilities, just to make the player feel more important as well as not making them feel like they're playing an under-powered class, especially if they spent so much time creating that single character.

    That kind of thing usually results in class-stacking, which as someone who has done progression raiding in both GW2 and WoW, is NOT a good thing. But then again, that's one of the biggest challenges for developers when it comes to class balancing and raid design. Make the classes too similar and players complain that all the classes are the same. Make the classes too unique and you get class-stacking on difficult encounters and players complaining that they can never get into groups because of the class they play.

  • ecabooecaboo Member
    Events where GM’s were actively involved, spawned event bosses or themselves became the event boss were so much fun that I still remember them about 15 years later (RF Online). It brought a sense of community to the game, a bond between GM and player. Would love to be able to experience something like that again.
  • SadrithSadrith Member, Pioneer
    edited April 20
    The very first quest that popped into my head when I read this was the "Gaerlan's Citadel" questline from Asheron's Call.

    The story arc leading up to the release of the citadel was excellent, but this particular quest was a hell of an adventure.

    When it released, no one knew anything about how to get to the various locations, or what to do once we were there. So we just clambered over mountains, leapt gorges, got stuck, portaled out, and started over many times, until we finally figured out how to get there. It was a group effort and a lot of fun figuring out the puzzles and riddles. Without an internet database containing every single detail datamined before it was released, if you wanted to do the quest, you had to figure it out or find a guide with experience.

    If you'd like to read more about the questline I'm referring to, you can read all about it here: https://asheron.fandom.com/wiki/Gaerlan's_Citadel_(Low)
    There's no place like 127.0.0.1
  • JazeriousJazerious Member, Warrior of Old
    I just hope that the more humanoid the enemy is, the more difficult the fight will be! I hate it when you are fighting bandits or humanoid mobs and they just: auto - auto - auto- cast skill - auto - auto - etc.
    I want more of a challenge. The more "human" the mob, the smarter they should be. Giving them blocks, counters, dispels, silences, and more then 1 dmg skill to cast would be fun. And i don't mean just for dungeons and raid, but out in the world as well.
  • What makes a quest memorable?
    Imo quests should be long, meaningful and rewarding. Best quests are usually lore-driven and those are easily the most memorable as well. Options how to accomplish the quest makes the player more interested of the content and he/she will follow what is actually happening. These kind of quest where outcome could change, would go nicely with Ashes node progression system as well.

    Are there any raids or events that you'll never forget? What made them unforgettable?
    I played WoW 5-6 years in past and I have really good raiding experiences from there, but I have two favourite concepts over others. Ice Crown Citadel and Firelands.

    Ice Crown Citadel (ICC)
    Ice Crown Citadel was absolutly fantastic. It is the most epic experience what I have faced in raiding. The lore behind this raid was build perfectly, and this last raid of WotLK was something what all players were waiting from the day one this expansion launched. Everybody followed the storyline of Arthas from the beginning to the final boss. This raid was also challenging and Arthas fight was really really hard, and after finally he was defeated, it felt sooo good. Like you were actually accomplished something special, it felt like you saved the Azeroth. That is the feeling what I have missed. Recipe is combination of epic lore, storyline, believable characters and challenge.

    Firelands
    Firelands was really good raid concept with great storyline. It felt meaningful travel to Firelands and stop Ragnaros invasion attempt in his homeland. Best in this raid was the open space. It was not a mazed dungeon, it actually felt like another world. Players had a lot of options how much they clear the trash, what bosses they kill and in what order. That freedom of choise was a really nice bonus. I guess I am trying to say, that raids does not need to be linear tunnels, those can have that open world feel even you are in instanced zone.

    Earth Mother
    I have one more memorable raid experience and it is from Albion Online. They have this Earth Mother raid, which has a spawn timer and it is in open world PvP area. We went there once with our guild and our group had almost 40 member if I remember right. There was other guilds as well and we fought with each other to see who can finally challenge the raid boss. That whole evening was so much fun, because of that mix of PvP and PvE at the same time. That raid area was also outside of reputation system, so something like this could be in Ashes too, where corruption system does not have any role and groups can PvP freely.
    Do you need a ride to the Underworld?
  • mcjenkins wrote: »
    Quests:
    Raids:

    When it comes to raids, i feel its most important to make sure each boss compliments a certain classes abilities, just to make the player feel more important as well as not making them feel like they're playing an under-powered class, especially if they spent so much time creating that single character.

    That kind of thing usually results in class-stacking, which as someone who has done progression raiding in both GW2 and WoW, is NOT a good thing. But then again, that's one of the biggest challenges for developers when it comes to class balancing and raid design. Make the classes too similar and players complain that all the classes are the same. Make the classes too unique and you get class-stacking on difficult encounters and players complaining that they can never get into groups because of the class they play.

    in regards to class stacking like that, there should be a sort of lockout mechanic, kinda like you can only enter that raid with the same players from when you started it that week, with a few swaps. This way they wont want to class stack for just ONE boss in the raid. Also i don't thinks "pugs" should exist when it comes to raiding anyways, further making this a possible solution.
  • Wandering MistWandering Mist Member, Founder
    mcjenkins wrote: »
    mcjenkins wrote: »
    Quests:
    Raids:

    When it comes to raids, i feel its most important to make sure each boss compliments a certain classes abilities, just to make the player feel more important as well as not making them feel like they're playing an under-powered class, especially if they spent so much time creating that single character.

    That kind of thing usually results in class-stacking, which as someone who has done progression raiding in both GW2 and WoW, is NOT a good thing. But then again, that's one of the biggest challenges for developers when it comes to class balancing and raid design. Make the classes too similar and players complain that all the classes are the same. Make the classes too unique and you get class-stacking on difficult encounters and players complaining that they can never get into groups because of the class they play.

    in regards to class stacking like that, there should be a sort of lockout mechanic, kinda like you can only enter that raid with the same players from when you started it that week, with a few swaps. This way they wont want to class stack for just ONE boss in the raid. Also i don't thinks "pugs" should exist when it comes to raiding anyways, further making this a possible solution.

    That's a really interesting suggestion that I'd like to discuss further with you, so I'm going to start a new thread for it as I don't want to derail this one.
  • trojotrojo Member
    mcjenkins wrote: »
    I'm also a fan of exploration and finding a quest within the tight dark crevices of a zone, it just adds that bit of alluring mystery to them.

    I like this type of quest as well (i.e. quests triggered from semi-rare drops in the wild). It breaks the well-worn paradigm of "check the job boards in town, which says bring 14 gnoll scalps to Farmer Joe" type of quest.

    Quests that are challenging, with a real chance of failure with consequences, are memorable. I'm thinking in particular of the Justice Trials in EQ1's Planes of Power.

    I also like quests that are solidly written. The Secret World had quite a few memorably well-written quests.

    Clever, unique scripted events can also make a quest memorable.
  • hacksawhacksaw Member, Braver of Worlds
    Quests

    I'll answer this in two parts.

    The most memorable story questline I can recall is playing through the Wrath of the Lich King and the retaking of Undercity. Seeing the familiar landscape change, the refugees in Orgrimmar, the heroic speeches given by the leaders of the Horde... Seeing the conclusions and the story pan out while feeling like I was witnessing the history and lore unfold. It was by far the most immersive questline I have ever taken part in.

    The use of personal instancing was clever: They didn't have to develop separate zone for you to travel to. Instead, they could just overlay the existing world with the new assets depending on where you were in the chain. Additionally, you could see other players at the same point in the story and work together. It was the first time in an MMO where I felt like I was helping to write the story rather than simply reading it in a book.

    The most fun quests are the ones that bend the rules or traditions of MMOs. Stuff that surprises you with new mechanics or unexpected rules. While not an MMO, I think the most fun quest I have ever done was in Elder Scrolls IV Oblivion, specifically in the Shivering Isles expansion where you get to be a dungeon master. A part of adventurers wanders into a dungeon and the mad god wants you to drive the party insane with the traps at your disposal and the information they share in casual conversation (e.g. "I hope there aren't spiders").

    What really sells it is the mad god and the world building up to that point. And I believe that is the takeaway from me on quests. The world itself needs to have a hook. If things are shifting, even in a preordained way, I should feel the shift. I should see, first hand, how that shift affects me and the place I'm in.

    I don't need to be the legendary chosen one hero with the Excalibur and a talking cat telling me my destiny. I just want to feel like I'm a part of it. I want to feel like I'm watching the story being written around me rather than reading the story that's already happened.

    Raids

    Raids are tricky, because people come at them with different goals. I'll try to break down the different mindsets.

    Loot
    Everyone loves loot. People want to do stuff because there's cool stuff at the end. I've done raids I've hated sometimes because there was loot I wanted. It's a strong motivator. But it's also a hard thing to balance. It'd suck if the good stuff was all gated behind RNG. I still remember agonizing over Illidan trying to get the stupid Warglaives, only to get just the offhand and never seeing the other drop.

    Challenge
    Many players want to be challenged. They want things to be hard, so they can have a sense of achievement. I still remember how proud I was when my 10 man group finally downed the Lich King. We were no where near server first or anything, but we were all casual players learning the ropes as we went. The challenge didn't feel arbitrary, either. It wasn't simply a gear check. There were lots of different mechanics that propped up the whole experience that required coordination and timing. Gear was important, but a geared group of idiots would still fail.

    Interactivity
    I feel like the introduction of Raid Finder in WoW killed a lot of what made raids so cool for me. They had to gear the design of raids such that PuGs could still clear them regularly. This means that coordination tuning took a hit in order to facilitate access. I honestly thought Naxx was one of the better raids in WoW because it required people to communicate well. You had to talk to each other in order to get through it. I didn't care for a lot of the content after WotLK because it felt very assembly line for me to just queue up for the finder and tank 'n spank everything.
  • LyonLyon Member
    What makes a quest memorable?
    For me its a few things. Either when it has a good background story like seperated lovers and you have to find the lost lover npc and bring him a letter or some lost friendship ring/ornament. Another thing is if it is a pretty basic quest so to speak with the task to kill x amount of mobs then the mobs have to either look heckin cute or really special like huge or colorful or have some unique effects around them like fog or lights. The last thing is that i remember quests that are annoying as fork. Like if you have two npcs standing like right next to each other and you need to deliver 10 messages in between them when you are like WHY CANT YOU JUST TALK TO EACH OTHER DAMNIT???? i got more important things to do like saving the world....

    Are there any raids or events that you'll never forget?
    For me personally a good raid or good event if it is not a one of a kind event is either memorable by having a good group around me i did it with like balanced skill and laid back attitude. You know you have some groups where it just flows and it seems that noone is really putting efford into it and then you have other groups where noone knows when to use a specific skill or debuff or the healer is just paper. Another thing that makes me remember events if it is a one time event is if the reward is amazing. Like if you have a valentines day event and you get a pink unicorn mount or pet or some cool lookin skeleton tiger mount from a halloween event. And i like to put effort into events and not talk to 5 npcs and kill 20 monsters and get my reward. A little bit difficulty and/or maybe solving a riddle like where to go or which mob exactly to kill or which npc exactly to talk to is a thing i like.

    What made them unforgettable?
    When it comes to mmorpgs i am always saying there is only one first time for everything. The first time you level a charakter and do the storylines. The first time you set foot into a new area and see new monsters. The first time you go into a specific dungeon. The first time you kill a worldboss. I dont think anyone remembers their 50th time of defending a city against some mob waves event cause its just not special anymore and you ve seen it already. The key for a good event is in my oppinion a mixture of the right difficulty and being unpredictable. And giving a player the impression that exactly HE is needed to make the event successful makes it unforgettable.
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