Ashes, Endgame, and The Neverending Story

DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds
edited June 21 in General Discussion
Cross-post from another thread regarding Ashes putting an end to endgame:

@caelron wrote:
[This is] essentially a never-ending theory discussion until we actually receive in-game statistics.

What I mean by statistics is, strength, will, dexterity, health, mana, energy, etc. For players as well as pve monsters/creatures. I also think that armor and weapon stats should be included. And most importantly: progression.

Will it be like d&d? In terms of raw stats, a Rogue could potentially have 12 Strength at level 1, and still only 12 Strength at level 20, or even in to epic levels. It's also possible for one of the most powerful dragons in the game at a Great Wyrm age/size to have less than 10 Dexterity.
So if the leveling system only really adds one or two character stats every 3-4 levels, then progression will have to come from other areas: skills, abilities, spells, items, magic, etc.

As a different example, in many of the original RPGs, such as Final Fantasy - it's possible to "beat" the entire game without ever reaching max level. Of course, max level makes things much easier and faster to deal with.

Sooo, if the story never really ends, then there's no "end game". And if almost everything is going to be open world, then really clever or skillful players will be able to compete with a min/max character, or still able to provide a benefit other than a numbers game.

A different example: Nexus TK is a game where once you reach max level (level 99), you sell your character's accumulated experience for more stat points - health and mana in particular. There's essentially no limit to how much health or mana you can have - and since many abilities are based on health/mana, there's no limit on how strong you can be (basically). However, a crazy stat warrior will be able to kill things MUCH faster and more efficiently than a Rogue. So much so that the only purpose a Rogue has at the high-end stat game is to lay down traps that benefit the warrior. This also means that a very low stat Rogue can do the exact same job as a high stat one - the only difference being the high health/mana Rogue has more survivability.

This actually relates to the discussion of DPS meters. If the classes are balanced around utility instead of numbers - then it's possible for a lower level character to raid high-end content if he/she is adept at bringing their utility. Based on all of the discussions about the Bard - the entire class is essentially built around its ability to help other classes. So if a level 4 bard somehow has the ability to afford a maxed-level buffing spell ('cause we don't know if there's level restrictions on anything - only node-level restrictions based on accessibility), it should still be useful to bring that level 4 bard to the hardest raid there is - assuming he/she can survive.
«1

Comments

  • CaelronCaelron Member, Braver of Worlds
    Thanks for the new topic creation @dygz
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds
    haha
    Now I have to try to speed through work so I can respond to your awesome ideas!!
  • Wandering MistWandering Mist Member, Founder
    I really like the way this kind of thing is handled in most pokemon games, where you have the main story (usually involving becoming the pokemon champion) and then you have the post game. In the post game you can continue to level up your pokemon, catch new pokemon, do Multiplayer stuff, etc. There are also usually special features, areas and items only available in the post game.

    Of course, this kind of thing requires some kind of linear storyline with a beginning and end. If you never start or finish the story, you can't have a post game.

    Will Ashes of Creation have such a storyline? It doesn't seem like it. Unlike the pokemon games, your ability to do things will be dictated by your character level, stats and gear, rather than any story progression.
  • DamoklesDamokles Member
    I really like the approach of the "older" elder scrolls entries (oblivion and skyrim).
    If you use a specific action or skill, if you carry a large amount of items constantly, then you will get stronger in this specific action/skill/ability.
    You use mainly one handed weapons? Then you get better with one handed weapons. You use a specific type of magic? Then you get better in this specific magic.
    It was also always cool to find books that gave you advancements in specific fields. You read a book about duelling and you get a better one handed weapon skill. You read a book about a skilled thief, then you get a better sneaking skill.
    They tried to incorporate this in ESO but it somehow felt lacking...
    uQHKizC.gif
  • KarthosKarthos Member, Braver of Worlds
    It's always fun to run into Nexus TK in current gaming discussions. I used to play it and my roommate still does. It put an interesting twist on how you play the game at max level. The amount of that game that's truely controlled by players is astounding, and the ability to continue "hunting" to get even buffer and buffer is kind cool.

    "Endgame" and the desert of content often found when you get there in many games is what turned me from a strictly PvE to a PvP player. There's always someone to kill.

    However, getting back to Nexus, my roommate has been playing that game off and on since 1997. That is literally 2 decades of life out of an MMO. So is their something to their model? Possibly, but not in the sense you'd think in my opinion. It's more the people, the fact the game invests so much into weaving actual players into the game's worlds by giving them positions like judges or class "elders", I feel is what helps it.

    Giving the players the ability to build their own endgame is my idea of a good time.
    Aq0KG2f.png
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds
    (Still finishing up some stuff at work, but, real quick responses...)
    Yes. With Ashes, in addition to adventurer and crafting progression, we have racial progression (which includes character stat progression) religious progression, social organization progression - and Node progression.
    Since Node progression can rise and fall and also differ based on the racial demographics and buildings the government chooses to build, the game doesn't end when players hit max adventurer level.
    Also, the stories don't end because which players control the castles, nodes and governments are key story points - and the NPCs, mobs and bosses change as each Node advances or declines and particular buildings are built by the players.
    If there comes a point where a server feels stagnant, the players can just delevel or destroy some Nodes, progress them differently and thereby change the current story and available quests/dungeons and raids.
  • RavudhaRavudha Member
    I really like the idea of utility being useful regardless of level. I hope abilities we've seen to reveal hidden natural formations etc will retain focus and be expanded upon. I do like the possibility of encounters being defeated by mixed-level parties actually thinking through a strategy with good execution rather than players beginning with the mindset "ok well all need to be max level with a gear score of x".

    From a different angle, AoC could also have the potential to expand character power along any of its horizontal progression systems. E.g. characters can now own business chains instead of single establishments, characters having dual citizenship, etc. This would really set the game's future expansions apart from other MMOs and serve as a real homage to traditional RPGs.
  • ryuujiryuuji Member, Founder, Braver of Worlds
    Very good idea of utilities since player that leave in node can call for help some one from there node and he maybe low level but he has for example fire resist spell. It gonna make filling that you leave in node with another citizens.
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds
    edited June 21
    Caelron wrote: »
    [This is] essentially a never-ending theory discussion until we actually receive in-game statistics.

    What I mean by statistics is, strength, will, dexterity, health, mana, energy, etc. For players as well as pve monsters/creatures. I also think that armor and weapon stats should be included. And most importantly: progression.

    Will it be like d&d? In terms of raw stats, a Rogue could potentially have 12 Strength at level 1, and still only 12 Strength at level 20, or even in to epic levels. It's also possible for one of the most powerful dragons in the game at a Great Wyrm age/size to have less than 10 Dexterity.
    So if the leveling system only really adds one or two character stats every 3-4 levels, then progression will have to come from other areas: skills, abilities, spells, items, magic, etc.
    Yes. Ashes racial progression is supposed to allow us to change these kinds of character stats.
    Seems like Vek would be more likely to have racial progression that advances Strength but not Dexterity.
    While Py'Rai would be more likely to have racial progression that advances Dexterity but not Strength.
    I'm not sure how gear factors into that.

    One of the aspects of Node progression that greatly intrigues me is the seemingly likely possibility that we will have to have a Metro with our racial type in order to have access to the content that will max our racial progression. Which should be one of the motivations to siege existing Metros in the hopes of getting the racial Metro we need to complete our racial progression.

    Stat progression isn't necessarily tied to class/archetype progression as it is in D&D.


    Caelron wrote: »
    As a different example, in many of the original RPGs, such as Final Fantasy - it's possible to "beat" the entire game without ever reaching max level. Of course, max level makes things much easier and faster to deal with.

    Sooo, if the story never really ends, then there's no "end game". And if almost everything is going to be open world, then really clever or skillful players will be able to compete with a min/max character, or still able to provide a benefit other than a numbers game.
    Right. And another benefit of the story never ending as the Nodes rise and fall and as Castles change hands is: we should constantly have new stuff to talk about with each other in-game. Traditionally, there's not a lot of motivation to talk in MMORPGs because everyone has done the exact same quests week after week and month after month.
    The content that appears as Nodes progress or delevel - how different leaders affect taxes and construct buildings, how different religions and social organizations change the status quo... all of that should keep new stories churning for more months and years than we have typically experienced.


    Caelron wrote: »
    This actually relates to the discussion of DPS meters. If the classes are balanced around utility instead of numbers - then it's possible for a lower level character to raid high-end content if he/she is adept at bringing their utility. Based on all of the discussions about the Bard - the entire class is essentially built around its ability to help other classes. So if a level 4 bard somehow has the ability to afford a maxed-level buffing spell ('cause we don't know if there's level restrictions on anything - only node-level restrictions based on accessibility), it should still be useful to bring that level 4 bard to the hardest raid there is - assuming he/she can survive.
    Right. Especially because the bulk of gameplay - even dungeons and raids - are open world rather than instanced. Hopefully, lower level characters can focus on minions and adds, while max level characters focus on the bosses.
    I'm hoping we see lots of ways to have a group of the all the same archetype channeling to achieve some grand effect. We know that Summoners can channel together to mass summon an Epic Golem. Maybe that can be more about number of Summoners rather than the level(s) of the individual Summoners.
    Maybe it sometimes takes 8+ Clerics channeling together to succeed at an epic Cleanse.

    Rather than be concerned about DPS meters - I'd prefer to have mechanics that allow us to compliment out battles-mates tactics... strengthening their damage or debuffs... based on our knowledge of the abilities each individual likes to use.
    So that we have combat plays like the X-Men's Fastball Special, where Colossus tosses Wolverines across the room and into group of opponents. Maybe one group has a go-to tactic of having the Mage trap opponents in an Ice Prison followed by the Ranger hitting them with hail of Arrows.
    Maybe that specific tactic doesn't work so well against a Fire Drake or Skeletal Drake, so we have to use a different ploy. But, that's what I would prefer to focus on rather than DPS meters or DPS at all.
  • VarkunVarkun Member, Braver of Worlds
    Let us just call it the never-ending story because in all honesty that is what I want from my MMO's. This endgame needs to go the way of the dodo quick rush to max level so I can start to play the real game, I cringe every time I hear someone say that now.

    I am still playing ESO and with the new Necromancer class there has been a flurry of leveling new characters and I saw a youtube video spruiking hit max level in 45 minutes and my first thought was wow you people really don't like MMO's do you. Great, you hit max level but you have nothing no skills leveled no skill points and so many other things you will have to go grind out. Kind of stupid IMO.

    This is where ashes I hope will differ greatly, I want to log in and say to myself now what do I want to do and not feel obligated to do some specific daily quest or such because its reward is too good to pass up. I want to follow my own path and feel like I am having an impact right from level one and for the first time ashes might just be able to achieve this IMO. We will be contributing to node progression at the very least finding our way in the world exploring pursuing artisan professions raiding dungeon delving trading and overarching all of this will be the conflict driven by us the players.

    There is an aspect to ashes that I feel has been somewhat ignored by most of the potential players and that is the economy. It has been said that the economy is one of the pillars of the game and it seems to me most people are completely underestimating just how important the AOC economy will be to how nodes function and IMO it's going to smack a lot of people in the face once we get into the late alpha and beta stages.

    Resources will be needed by nodes to build the structures they need declaring a siege we know will require a similar amount of resources as it took to build the node will there be upkeep for a nodes buildings, siege equipment and probably other needs for resources we have no idea about at this point. Then consider the player need for resources oh I want to build my freehold and all of its associated buildings then there is that ship I want too. There is going to be a huge demand for resources and as we know harvesting will deplete resources from nodes and may take some time to respawn thus they will need to be imported and we all know the best way to import resources is in bulk and that is done by caravan.

    I guess the point I am trying to make is that those who focus on the economic side of the game in all likelihood will be the most powerful people in the game they will have the resources and means to influence the shape of the world by either supplying or withholding resources and no doubt will have wealth the average player could only dream of. There will be power in the hands of players who may not pursue the adventuring side of the game and this I find quite exciting.
    3KAqRIf.png
    Close your eyes spread your arms and always trust your cape.
  • noaaninoaani Member
    I really like the way this kind of thing is handled in most pokemon games, where you have the main story (usually involving becoming the pokemon champion) and then you have the post game. In the post game you can continue to level up your pokemon, catch new pokemon, do Multiplayer stuff, etc. There are also usually special features, areas and items only available in the post game.

    Of course, this kind of thing requires some kind of linear storyline with a beginning and end. If you never start or finish the story, you can't have a post game.

    Will Ashes of Creation have such a storyline? It doesn't seem like it. Unlike the pokemon games, your ability to do things will be dictated by your character level, stats and gear, rather than any story progression.

    I'm actually intrigued to see how they do a story at all in Ashes.

    I mean, we are supposed to be the first people in Verra for a really long time - so there can't be that much of an existing story other than the story from thousands of years prior.
  • Wandering MistWandering Mist Member, Founder
    edited June 22
    noaani wrote: »
    I really like the way this kind of thing is handled in most pokemon games, where you have the main story (usually involving becoming the pokemon champion) and then you have the post game. In the post game you can continue to level up your pokemon, catch new pokemon, do Multiplayer stuff, etc. There are also usually special features, areas and items only available in the post game.

    Of course, this kind of thing requires some kind of linear storyline with a beginning and end. If you never start or finish the story, you can't have a post game.

    Will Ashes of Creation have such a storyline? It doesn't seem like it. Unlike the pokemon games, your ability to do things will be dictated by your character level, stats and gear, rather than any story progression.

    I'm actually intrigued to see how they do a story at all in Ashes.

    I mean, we are supposed to be the first people in Verra for a really long time - so there can't be that much of an existing story other than the story from thousands of years prior.

    At the start there probably won't be too much story content, at least until the nodes start levelling up more. I'm guessing the story (if there is one) will revolve around exploring the ruins and caves around the world to find out what happened in the past. After that we will probably inadvertently discover something that causes a big event (like disturbing a dragon) and have to deal with it.

    If I were making the game though I would take inspiration from the oldschool runescape questing system but that's just me. Either way, having a linear cohesive storyline like in FFXIV or GW2 wouldn't really work in Ashes in my opinion.
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds
    We aren't even the very first to return to Verra.
    And NPC settlers appear when the Nodes hit Stage 1 - at least some of them will have quests which will include story elements. We can also expect NPCs with quests leading to story elements for racial, religious and social organization progression.
    The Castles will be populated with NPC occupants we players will need rout - they will have story elements.
    As will the mobs that appear as we progress the Nodes.

    But, a lot of the story will be about the rise and fall of Nodes. What the player governments are doing. Who is in a guild war. Which bosses are active when and where and how those bosses are impacting the world.
    How long did the perpetual winter caused by the Winter Dragon last?
    Was it a horde of mobs that destroyed that town last month or was it a siege?
  • whitedude31whitedude31 Member, Founder
    Varkun wrote: »
    Let us just call it the never-ending story because in all honesty that is what I want from my MMO's. This endgame needs to go the way of the dodo quick rush to max level so I can start to play the real game, I cringe every time I hear someone say that now.

    I am still playing ESO and with the new Necromancer class there has been a flurry of leveling new characters and I saw a youtube video spruiking hit max level in 45 minutes and my first thought was wow you people really don't like MMO's do you. Great, you hit max level but you have nothing no skills leveled no skill points and so many other things you will have to go grind out. Kind of stupid IMO.

    This is where ashes I hope will differ greatly, I want to log in and say to myself now what do I want to do and not feel obligated to do some specific daily quest or such because its reward is too good to pass up. I want to follow my own path and feel like I am having an impact right from level one and for the first time ashes might just be able to achieve this IMO. We will be contributing to node progression at the very least finding our way in the world exploring pursuing artisan professions raiding dungeon delving trading and overarching all of this will be the conflict driven by us the players.

    There is an aspect to ashes that I feel has been somewhat ignored by most of the potential players and that is the economy. It has been said that the economy is one of the pillars of the game and it seems to me most people are completely underestimating just how important the AOC economy will be to how nodes function and IMO it's going to smack a lot of people in the face once we get into the late alpha and beta stages.

    Resources will be needed by nodes to build the structures they need declaring a siege we know will require a similar amount of resources as it took to build the node will there be upkeep for a nodes buildings, siege equipment and probably other needs for resources we have no idea about at this point. Then consider the player need for resources oh I want to build my freehold and all of its associated buildings then there is that ship I want too. There is going to be a huge demand for resources and as we know harvesting will deplete resources from nodes and may take some time to respawn thus they will need to be imported and we all know the best way to import resources is in bulk and that is done by caravan.

    I guess the point I am trying to make is that those who focus on the economic side of the game in all likelihood will be the most powerful people in the game they will have the resources and means to influence the shape of the world by either supplying or withholding resources and no doubt will have wealth the average player could only dream of. There will be power in the hands of players who may not pursue the adventuring side of the game and this I find quite exciting.

    I am pretty sure a lot of the people on the forums are tired of discussing economics in AoC until we get more info. I have read several forum threads over the last year about economics and it sounds like people just want more info at this point. I won't be underestimating the economy, but instead abusing its players. I will be a mercenary and will make sure to have good relationships with the big players in the economy to make that good money :smiley:
  • VarkunVarkun Member, Braver of Worlds
    Varkun wrote: »
    Let us just call it the never-ending story because in all honesty that is what I want from my MMO's. This endgame needs to go the way of the dodo quick rush to max level so I can start to play the real game, I cringe every time I hear someone say that now.

    I am still playing ESO and with the new Necromancer class there has been a flurry of leveling new characters and I saw a youtube video spruiking hit max level in 45 minutes and my first thought was wow you people really don't like MMO's do you. Great, you hit max level but you have nothing no skills leveled no skill points and so many other things you will have to go grind out. Kind of stupid IMO.

    This is where ashes I hope will differ greatly, I want to log in and say to myself now what do I want to do and not feel obligated to do some specific daily quest or such because its reward is too good to pass up. I want to follow my own path and feel like I am having an impact right from level one and for the first time ashes might just be able to achieve this IMO. We will be contributing to node progression at the very least finding our way in the world exploring pursuing artisan professions raiding dungeon delving trading and overarching all of this will be the conflict driven by us the players.

    There is an aspect to ashes that I feel has been somewhat ignored by most of the potential players and that is the economy. It has been said that the economy is one of the pillars of the game and it seems to me most people are completely underestimating just how important the AOC economy will be to how nodes function and IMO it's going to smack a lot of people in the face once we get into the late alpha and beta stages.

    Resources will be needed by nodes to build the structures they need declaring a siege we know will require a similar amount of resources as it took to build the node will there be upkeep for a nodes buildings, siege equipment and probably other needs for resources we have no idea about at this point. Then consider the player need for resources oh I want to build my freehold and all of its associated buildings then there is that ship I want too. There is going to be a huge demand for resources and as we know harvesting will deplete resources from nodes and may take some time to respawn thus they will need to be imported and we all know the best way to import resources is in bulk and that is done by caravan.

    I guess the point I am trying to make is that those who focus on the economic side of the game in all likelihood will be the most powerful people in the game they will have the resources and means to influence the shape of the world by either supplying or withholding resources and no doubt will have wealth the average player could only dream of. There will be power in the hands of players who may not pursue the adventuring side of the game and this I find quite exciting.

    I am pretty sure a lot of the people on the forums are tired of discussing economics in AoC until we get more info. I have read several forum threads over the last year about economics and it sounds like people just want more info at this point. I won't be underestimating the economy, but instead abusing its players. I will be a mercenary and will make sure to have good relationships with the big players in the economy to make that good money :smiley:

    Yes, we have discussed things like the economy here on the forums and on discord as well but we are such a small fraction of the player base. Intrepid is in some sort of cone of silence at the moment which is fine they will regale us with information when they are ready until then all we can do is add a bit of theory to what we do know. ;)
    3KAqRIf.png
    Close your eyes spread your arms and always trust your cape.
  • DamoklesDamokles Member
    Dygz wrote: »
    We aren't even the very first to return to Verra.
    And NPC settlers appear when the Nodes hit Stage 1 - at least some of them will have quests which will include story elements. We can also expect NPCs with quests leading to story elements for racial, religious and social organization progression.

    How do you know that the players are not going to be the first to return?
    The wiki states that the players are part of the vast expeditions that go through the portal first.

    I think that all races will start at their respective starting node in a stage 1-2 node, with a divine gateway.
    (Tulnar are an exception here because they dont have a divine gateway, because they dont need one)

    "There will be small NPC settlements at the starting areas. These represent the scouts that were sent ahead of the main expedition back to Verra."


    All of that can be read in the ashesofcreation.wiki/Starting_areas and ashesofcreafion.wiki/Lore#The_return

    They stated that every server will have the same storyline, but each server will most likely have a different approach, which tbh sounds really interesting!
    uQHKizC.gif
  • WololoWololo Member, Leader of Men
    players will be among the first to return. but i think what dygz means is they are not the very first simply because you can find some NPC's that entered before us ( most likely around the starting portal to start off the story and begin the process to start a guild )
    Wololo.png
  • CaelronCaelron Member, Braver of Worlds
    shkevi wrote: »
    players will be among the first to return. but i think what dygz means is they are not the very first simply because you can find some NPC's that entered before us ( most likely around the starting portal to start off the story and begin the process to start a guild )

    Possibly. But you have to remember nodes start as inactive, or level 0. The NPCs for a level 1 node don't arrive until enough player experience has been gained in the area. Those NPCs come after us through the portal - we're the first.

    As for the Keep's and Castle NPCs - as we saw in some of the demo's, it's basically an open-world dungeon with occupants that have probably survived the corruption. I believe the demo had these elemental type creatures with weapons and shields. I imagine it's basically going to be set up like an outdoor raid.

    Even if we're not "the" first, it will be good story to discover. Maybe somebody already came back and somehow mapped out the land for us? Or maybe somebody was exiled back to the world secretly as a death sentence, but survived? There's basically limitless story potential - whether we're the first to come back to Verra or not.
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds
    edited June 22
    As stated in the quote @damokles posted, the NPC scouts at the starting areas were the very first through the portal -before any players- and they come with story elements to help acclimatize new players to the world.
    If players were first through the portal, there would be no NPCs at the starting areas when the very first players log in. And we would have to create our own stories as we interact with the existing mobs and environments - until NPCs that dole out quests and tasks arrived.


    Actually, I don't think we know whether the NPCs that appear at Stage 1 Nodes are scouts who arrived before players or whether they arrived through the portal after players. That's a great clarification to ask the devs!
    But, either way, they will come with quests and story elements.
  • DamoklesDamokles Member
    @dygz
    IS said that every race will have its own specific starting node with an divine gateway (we have no idea which level these nodes will have, but i think they will be level1). The players can then freely choose between these startingpoints, except for the tulnar. So it would be reasonable to say that we will have around 9 starting points.
    These starting nodes will be most likely be setup by the scouts and should be then in the expeditionary state, meaning that we will have to recruit npcs and care for the overall safety of the surrounding area.
    uQHKizC.gif
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds
    edited June 23
    Yeah.
    I’m not sure what you mean by recruiting NPCs, other than establishing new settlements, but...
    I expect we will be providing safety and gathering a variety of resources.
    And... we’ll have to see whether quests/tasks for racial, religious and social progression are available at the starting areas, in addition to quests/tasks for adventuring and crafting progression.
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds
    noaani wrote: »
    Dygz wrote: »
    This shouldn't be as much of an issue in Ashes because dungeons and raids are, by design, more dynamic than in typical MMORPGs. Speed runs should be rare because dungeons and raids will usually be changing too much to be able to use cookie-cutter strategies repeatedly.
    I'm not so sure all content will always change all that much.

    Since content is tied to the nodes around it (purely to the level of the node as far as I am aware), once a metropolis is established, it is absolutely feasible that the node and those around it would stay as is for months on end - meaning the content in that area will stay the same for months on end.

    The above said, this won't be the case at the start of the game, nor will it ever be the case further away from the more popular nodes on a given server. Those nodes - and thus the content around them - will change often and so in these areas I do agree that things like that will be less of an issue (or not an issue at all).

    However, as a metropolis being taken down is an event that literally changes the shape of the server, I personally don't expect it to happen more than once every 6 months on any given server - not due to any limit other than the difficulty (in terms of material needs and player desire) in actually taking down a metropolis
    We can’t be certain what it truly will be until we play and see how much of the design goals are fulfilled.
    So, my comments are about the design goals as stated by the devs; not about actual gameplay. Too early to comment about actual gameplay.

    Content isn’t just tied to nearby Nodes. Progression of a Node can also affect content several regions away from that Node.

    It’s not just the Metro(s) that will be affecting content. The rise and fall of vassal Nodes will also be affecting content. So, we won’t have to destroy the Metro(s) to significantly change the content, we can do that even with successful sieges of the Stage 1 and Stage 2 vassal Nodes - especially destroying and rebuilding Stage 3 and above vassal Nodes.
    Even with Metros, we can change the content by constructing different buildings.

    Regardless of all that, for the most part, boss battles, by design, will change session to session, raid to raid and in between combat.
    And once the boss is defeated, it will move to a new location/region/environment.
    That Winter Dragon causing the perpetual winter is not going to remain where it is after it’s defeated just so people can improve their DPS scores.
    If a Winter Dragon reappears, it will be in a new location/environment.


    noaani wrote: »
    Dygz wrote: »
    That's content for max character level, for sure. But, in Ashes, that's not indicative of the end of the game.
    This may be a part of the miscommunication or misunderstanding, but end game content does not, despite the name, have to signify the end of the game.

    In fact, all good end game content is in itself a progression path (often a horizontal one, though not always), so simply can't all be the end of the game, as there is still progress to be made.
    Right. Technically, Endgame is only figuratively the end of the game.
    Endgame is when a character has reached max character level, completed all the available storyline quests and all that’s left are repeatable dailies, weeklies, dungeons and raids.
    For at least the last 6 years, many people will say that Endgame is the start of the real game.

    When devs say they are putting an end to Endgame, they mean reaching max character level does not put an end to experiencing new storyline quests - a key part of making that happen is by requiring the players to build the cities and making it possible for those cities to be destroyed. Another is by introducing forms of “meaningful” PvP conflict. More meaningful than just race wars or stealing loot.
    With Ashes, the addition of racial, religious and social progression provides more to after reaching max level than repeatable dailies, weeklies, dungeons and raids.
    And on top of that, all the permutations of quests and tasks that can arise from race/type/region/stage combos churning out new NPCs and new mobs (the stats and abilities of those individual NPCs and mobs also changing with Node progression.

    Putting an end to Endgame does not mean there will be no max level content or there will be no raids.
    It means the opposite: that at max character level there will be a plethora of new, dynamic content beyond being restricted to repeatable dailies, weeklies, dungeons and raids.

    The reason to raid the Winter Dragon won’t just be to achieve a server first or acquire BiS gear or top a leaderboard. People will also be raising the Winter Dragon to put an end to the perpetual winter so they can obtain resources only attainable during non-winter seasons.
    For the most part, that Winter Dragon is not going to re-pop a couple hours after it’s been defeated. And it’s not going to re-pop the next winter or every other winter. When and if it re-pops, it won’t re-pop in the same location.
    Even from battle to battle, before it’s finally defeated, it likely won’t have the same minions and may not use the exact same abilities and tactics.
    According to the design goals.
    Won’t always be the case - you are the one stating always - but it will be the case for the most part.

    With regard to DPS meters and combat trackers - since the devs don’t want to support them, that means they should be superfluous to defeating bosses.
    We should expect defeating raid bosses to be more organic and immersive than relying on dry data from DPS meters and combat trackers.

    At the end of the day, I just care that we found a way to end the perpetual winter, I don’t really care about how efficiently we accomplished it.
    Hopefully, it results in a great story.
    Great stories often also include overcoming epic fails and adversity, but still rallying to find a winning strategy.
  • CaelronCaelron Member, Braver of Worlds
    I imagine quite a bit of the gameplay will change through the Alpha and Beta testing - but not by a whole lot.

    I'm sure Intrepid Studios is reading these threads and doing their best to get a good understanding of what people like and what people don't... especially the Dev questions they've been asking.

    I even find conflict in myself - I want something lasting and meaningful with my character. I want to adventure and explore and have a meaningful character progression - especially even at lower levels. One of the best ways to do that is make sure the time invested means something.

    On the other side of things, I've grown up! I have a job and a family, and just now have a 3-month old newborn! It's exciting and it's own wonderful adventure. But, that also means that I have a LOT less time than I used to - so I also want things that I can do quickly and easily and still get enjoyment out of it.

    An example - I've started playing Overwatch at times because I can have quick and easy matches - 5-10 minutes of gameplay, and then I probably have to attend to the baby. Trying to get through a dungeon in WoW is rarely ever that quick, and if it is - you better be at the top of the tier in gear with other people who know what they're doing and probably play a lot together... i.e. it will never happen now, since I can't grind for hours a day just to keep up with things.

    I want the things I collect in Ashes to be meaningful a few months after I get it, too.
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds
    edited June 23
    Hmmn. That last bit has me thinking about advanced weapons.
    I prefer having signature weapons and gear so that I can be easily recognized from a distance.

    Advanced weapons can have up to 5 weapon abilities. Weapon combos lead up to an ultimate effect.
    Along the lines of what I’m hoping for is that players who know this weapon will know how to get the most bang for the buck out my ultimate attack. Maybe the ultimate from my Winter Hammer causes victims to be more vulnerable to Ice abilities, so the best time for Mages to cast Ice Prison is after I hit an opponent with that Winter Hammer ultimate.

    Especially during Sieges or Caravans, I might want to swap that out with a different weapon if there are adversarial players who know the weapon abilities of my Winter Hammer.

    But, that’s another example of the type of gameplay I’d prefer to encounter, rather than relying on DPS meters and combat trackers.

    Might be that Ice-based mobs aren’t affected by, or are highly resistant to, my Winter Hammer ultimate, so I’ll want to swap weapons on those occasions, too, but...
    In general, the items I collect would be useful throughout the game.
    I hope for that, too. Yes.

    I see two spectra of hardcore and casual: time and challenge.

    I am still hardcore time/casual challenge. I’m single with no kids.

    I think 20 years ago, a major portion of the MMORPG playerbase was hardcore time/hardcore challenge.
    But, now most MMORPG players are some form of casual.
    Even players who would prefer to experience hardcore challenges only have casual time, thus quite a lot of them have to limit themselves to more casual challenges.
    Harcdcore time/harcdcore challenge players are probably a small percentage of the MMORPG playerbase these days.
    And MMORPG devs will have to design for that phenomenon.

    I don’t know that time investment has to be paramount to have a meaningful experience in Ashes.
    Could be that being voted in as a leader of a Scientific Node feels meaningful, especially as you see the Node and region progress based on your governing decisions.
    That might feel fulfilling even without 10+ hours in the game each week.
  • grisugrisu Member
    You can call it whatever you want, loot boxes, surprise mechanics, endgame, the devil, the stuff you do the most after reaching a certain point of playtime.
    I for once don't see why people are so avert to end game as a concept and I certainly find it silly to disregard it as a timefiller to wait for the next major update. Is that where the bad rep comes from?
    Just because you don't want to see that the node concept in itself is the endgame doesn't make it any less true. Your majority of your time will be spent around it, raising it, maintaining it, defending it, razing it to the ground.
    Building your character, equiping it, honing your skills, raiding, dungeoneering, exploring, crafting. It all will aid or guide your decisions in keeping your chosen node alive. Endgame might take on more divers forms as, let's say WoW, but for the individual it will be the endgame.

    The sentiment about utility seems interesting, but if the sole dividing factor is surviving then what's crafting about and the myriad of stats/-combinations/-weights that they want to have to individualize yourself? How would that matter? Vertical progression exists, it was talked about, you will max out at some point in a major regard, it will probably be what is commonly refered to as, the soft cap. Utility will come after that/at the same time in the form of horizontal progression.
    "Multiple playstyles should be relevant and viable. Additionally, you have a spread between casual players and hard-core players; and most of us exist somewhere on that spectrum. The progression path in a society or religion is more conducive to the time we have to play. Whereas, someone else may be playing several hours a day, and they have a better opportunity for the raid/level progression that might require some more dedication."
    - Steven Sharif

    Raiding might not be the BE ALL END ALL of the game, but if it drops amazing materials to make stuff for your character, everyone who can will be doing it for as long as the raid is available, If that is tied to the lifespan of a node, even if it's just for 2 months, it will be their endgame until it is replaced with a different activity that is on the same level, or steps will be taken to progress a node to make it happen.

    If you don't want to call that end game, fine by me, but it sure looks like it.

    tenor.gif
    I can be a life fulfilling dream. Grisu
    I can be a life devouring nightmare. Zekece#1819
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds
    edited June 24
    What I am adverse to is being stuck in an MMORPG in a state where the only stuff to do at max level for years is repeatable dailies, weeklies, dungeons and raids. You can call that a lootbox instead of endgame if you want, I suppose.
    Whether that is bad or not depends on the individual. Just like it depends on the individual whether loot boxes or the devil are bad.
    Lots of people love endgame - which is why the phrase "endgame is the real game" is so popular.


    grisu wrote: »
    Just because you don't want to see that the node concept in itself is the endgame doesn't make it any less true.
    This is like saying, "just because bad means bad that doesn't mean bad can't mean good" or "just because shit is typically thought to be bad that doesn't mean there can't be some 'good shit'."


    grisu wrote: »
    Your majority of your time will be spent around it, raising it, maintaining it, defending it, razing it to the ground.
    Building your character, equipping it, honing your skills, raiding, dungeoneering, exploring, crafting. It all will aid or guide your decisions in keeping your chosen node alive. Endgame might take on more divers forms as, let's say WoW, but for the individual it will be the endgame.
    You are the only individual I've seen define endgame as "the stuff you spend the majority of your time doing in an MMORPG". That's not what Daybreak/Intrepid devs mean when they refer to endgame. And that's not what Steven and Jeffrey mean when they refer to endgame. It's also not what I mean when I refer to endgame.

    I don't agree with your definition of endgame, but what's most important is that I understand what you mean when you use the label endgame. Because the label is just a shortcut to a concept.
    Even if we don't agree on how we label the concepts, we can agree that the Ashes devs are putting an end to being stuck in a state for years where the only thing to do at max level is repeatable dailies, weeklies, dungeons and raids and that Nodes is one of the mechanisms in the design to accomplish that.


    grisu wrote: »
    The sentiment about utility seems interesting, but if the sole dividing factor is surviving then what's crafting about and the myriad of stats/-combinations/-weights that they want to have to individualize yourself? How would that matter? Vertical progression exists, it was talked about, you will max out at some point in a major regard, it will probably be what is commonly refered to as, the soft cap. Utility will come after that/at the same time in the form of horizontal progression.
    The sole dividing factor of what?
    Vertical progression exists and horizontal progression exists. I fail to see to see your point.
    Horizontal character progression will be a thing before and after vertical character progression caps.
    Vertical Node progression will continue to rise and fall after vertical character progression caps. Same with horizontal Node progression. Especially the myriad of new content combinations created by the rise and fall of Nodes is what will put an end to endgame.


    grisu wrote: »
    Raiding might not be the BE ALL END ALL of the game, but if it drops amazing materials to make stuff for your character, everyone who can will be doing it for as long as the raid is available, If that is tied to the lifespan of a node, even if it's just for 2 months, it will be their endgame until it is replaced with a different activity that is on the same level, or steps will be taken to progress a node to make it happen.
    Right. If I understand your point though, the thing of it is that in Ashes, for the most, a raid won't be sticking around for 2 months. And even when/if it does stick around for 2 months, the mechanics of that raid will change from session to session and have significant variance between combat.
    Saying the raid "will be their endgame" doesn't make much sense because people could be in that raid who are not even close to max character level, let alone, the "end of the game".


    grisu wrote: »
    If you don't want to call that end game, fine by me, but it sure looks like it.
    Again, what we call something isn't as important as understanding the referents. I speak 4 languages and read even more languages - at the end of the day, what something is called is inconsequential.

    The OG meaning of endgame was -back in the early days of vanilla EQ- the end of the game: reaching max character level, having completed all the storyline quests...where the only stuff left to do is repeat the same dungeons and raids, until the devs provide an expansion.
    In pen and paper RPGs, like D&D, reaching max level does not equate with reaching the end of the game because new content can be introduced even after reaching max level. Even while waiting for devs to create new official modules, DMs would be able to create their own NPCs, mobs and adventures...instead of players being stuck just repeating the same dungeon or module until the devs provide a new one.

    Sure, over the span of 20 years, lots of people use the term endgame to just mean "the stuff you focus on at max level." And we all understand what it means when people do so. Apparently, some people no longer understand how to separate the concepts of max level content and endgame content. (Kinda reminds me of when I was a kid and I couldn't understand that when my mom told me told be to be quiet while I was crying she wasn't telling me to stop crying - she was telling me to cry silently. At the time, the noises I made while crying seemed to be an inseparable feature of the act.)

    Back in the days of vanilla EQ and vanilla WoW, endgame didn't feel so bad.
    It was cool just to play an RPG with other players whenever you want, rather than having to wait for everyone to be available. Last year, I joined a weekly D&D game that the lead designer of CoE is DMing. It stayed weekly for several months. This year it switched to every other week. And, the last few months it's really ended up being once a month. Which is fairly typical scheduling for pen and paper RPG sessions.
    Being able to play anytime in an MMORPG was a blast! Even medding was fun in comparison to only being able to play in the world once or twice a month - we could play 3-6 hours per day, rather than just 3-6 hours per month.
    Once we hit "the end of the game" - which took several months back then... we could extend our fun by trying out different races and different classes and exploring the lands and stories available for the opposite factions. Which, again, would take months. By the time we explored the entire world and maxed a few characters, a new expansion would be out. So, endgame didn't feel like a prison.

    Over the years, leveling has become much quicker - especially moving through expansions since expansions only cover a handful of levels, rather than 50+ levels and the new areas to explore is just a small fraction of the entire game world. So, instead of it taking several months to reach endgame, it typically only takes a few weeks to reach endgame. But, the wait for new content is the same - if not longer.
    And, the dev reaction to ensuring that people maintain their subscriptions while new content is in production is to provide us with lots of repeatable content: dailies, weeklies and lengthy BiS gear hunts in dungeons and raids.
    To me, that's like re-reading the final chapter of fantasy novel over-and-over-and-over-and over again while I wait for the author to release a new novel.
    Since 2013, I've been burnt out jumping on the themepark treadmill and hitting the endgame wall when it comes to new stories and new content - in addition to hitting the all-too-transparent time-sinks implemented to prolong the journey to endgame.
    I'm waiting on MMORPGs that put an end to endgame via the features in designs like those for EQNext, Revival, Ashes of Creation and Chronicles of Elyria.

    TL:DR
    You can define endgame however you like. We don't necessarily have to agree on the label.
    But, when I talk about putting an end to endgame or Ashes not having an endgame, I'm not talking about not having max level content. If I were talking about that, I would state "no max level content" instead of stating "no endgame". If I were talking about not having raids, I would say "no raids" instead of "no endgame".
    Endgame isn't just hitting max level. It's possible to use it that way just as some people use coke to refer to all soda/tonic/pop, sure.
    Endgame isn't simply "the stuff you focus on when you reach max level".
    Endgame isn't simply raiding - in Ashes, raiding and large group based content will be available at every stage of the game.

    "Part of the whole experience with nodes is that there is no real end-game, in that the world is constantly shifting every day. Month one is going to be really different from month two; and that's for the level 50s and level 1s." – Jeffrey Bard

    But, at the end of the day the labels we choose to use are not as important as the actual concepts.
  • grisugrisu Member
    Sure if you rip sentences out of context and don't threat it as one whole you will miss points, but I have seen you write for 2 years now, I'm kinda used to it. <shrug> Lootbox -surprise mechanics was a reference to the UK hearing recently. It was a joke on labeling. Which was the whole point of my post.

    You are just reinforcing that this whole discussion about the novelty of not having an "endgame"-label is just pretty dressing and nice words, nothing else. Your own example comes down to, they released content fast enough to hide that they have nothing fun in place. You just happen to keep yourself busy with something you personally found enjoyable. That's just bad game design and again weird labeling to call that part end game.

    Anyway apparently it's all just about how slow you progress vs how fast content is added. Nice, good premise for a long living game instead of just having enjoyable and repeatable content. (not really)
    I can be a life fulfilling dream. Grisu
    I can be a life devouring nightmare. Zekece#1819
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds
    edited June 25
    Endgame is just a word.
    Whether endgame is fun is a matter of perspective.
    The Ashes devs are getting rid of being stuck at max level with nothing to do but repeatable dailies, weeklies, dungeons and raids.
    The Ashes devs and I call that endgame. If endgame means something different for you - that’s OK.

    Devs releasing content fast enough to hide that they have nothing fun in place is really more your perspective than mine.
    The concept of endgame isn’t really about what’s fun. Lots of MMORPG players consider endgame to be the most fun.
    For me, enjoyable, repeatable content is an oxymoron.

    What I enjoy in RPGs is a never-ending story, so I’m glad the Ashes devs are striving to provide that for us... thereby getting rid of endgame.

    It’s not really about slow progression v “new content”.
    It’s about having a steady flow of new stuff to do for months and/or years even at max character level rather than just being stuck with static, repeatable content.
  • CaelronCaelron Member, Braver of Worlds
    grisu wrote: »
    ...<shrug> Lootbox -surprise mechanics was a reference to the UK hearing recently. It was a joke on labeling. Which was the whole point of my post.

    I actually caught that reference! Thankfully, Intrepid Studios isn't doing anything crazy like that just yet. As far as I'm concerned, bosses should have defined loot. Hopefully what Intrepid Studios said will be more akin to "If I kill a rabbit, I should expect parts of a rabbit to drop... then I can take those rabbit bits and turn them in to rabbit stew or armor (if it's the fur/skin), etc." Not a random "loot table" where there's a percentage chance an item for each class "might" drop, even though the creature is essentially naked.... maybe it ate an adventurer a long time ago (if it's big enough), or it hordes treasure in a chest somewhere else in its cave, if it's intelligent. Even then, there should be a solid structure - this boss drops this item.

    Basically, I think a boss loot table system like WoW is not much different than a loot box and "surprise mechanics".

    Don't forget that she also believes that there's no such thing as a gaming addiction, and the loot box system is a moral good. -hard eye roll-
  • KarthosKarthos Member, Braver of Worlds
    Caelron wrote: »

    Basically, I think a boss loot table system like WoW is not much different than a loot box and "surprise mechanics".

    Although I can understand this point I don't agree fully. Loot from a boss is a reward for teamwork, strategy and time put into the game. You don't generally obtain boss loot from an item shop or other out of game mechanics (I'm sure some P2W games do somewhere).

    A loot box is not a reward for time spend in the game. It's a reward for time spent out of the game. Why should I spend 8hrs grinding out a full raid clear when I can spend that 8hrs at work and buy the gear I need instead?

    Therefore, I see a big difference in a boss loot table and a loot box.
    Aq0KG2f.png
Sign In or Register to comment.