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"45 days of play to max level" ... let's discuss a bit. (possible controversy here tbh)

Hello! I want to debate a bit the comment made by Steven (i think), that max level would be reached after 45 days of playing 4-6 hours a day.

So, here is my problem. I think its too fast:)))) Let me explain.

45x5 (average) is 225 hours or about 9 days and change.

That seems like a lot, but lets be honest, we gamers aren't .... "sane" people. When a new game comes out, people take time off from work, prepare to do marathons, do massive 18h stretches.

I think realistically we can look at the first max level to be reached in about 14 days. Or maybe sooner, tbh.

Is this a problem? I say yes and I'll explain.

Depending on how important leveling up is, especially if it is mandatory to be a certain level to do in-game events ( looking at you NW!!), people will rush the levels. How is that going to affect the overall balance? There will be guilds that will no-life the game and then other guild will feel that they need to do it as well to remain competitive. In a way forcing their pace of the game to everyone else.

Second problem would be those that play like madmen, get to max level, complain there isnt shit to do and leave. While its easy to say "just don't do that", those are players that would be amazing to have in the community long term, as they (usually) understand the game well and like the game, just want more of it.

I get that I sound a bit weird, I find it hard to explain the feeling i had when playing NW for example, where as soon as a guild member of mine got to 60 in the first week, it became a proper rush for everyone to get there. I really feel that the early rush to max is bad for a game.

So, solutions.

You all won't like this. Not one bit.

I think max level should not be achievable in the first 30 days. At all.

I am talking about a xp nerf for the first 30 days.

And just to be clear, I am talking about something serious, maybe 50% less xp.

It sounds bad, i know. I am talking about making the grind longer. But I want you all to keep an open mind for a bit, as I feel this could benefit all players.

Having an xp nerf at the start of a game will do the following:

-give the devs time to address the server issues and game bugs that will be there at the start. As much polish as you can put on a game, there will be bugs, exploits etc. Having to deal with them piecemeal, first week see what is broken level 1-15, next week, 15-20 and so on, will make the workload easier and patches more frequent , compared to having to deal with all bugs from all levels and all quests at the same time.

-Give the devs extra time to prepare for the endgame loop. MMOs need regular content and for months before the launch and probably months after it, all focus would be on the launch, leaving new content kinda in limbo, This breather, knowing that its going to take a month to reach max cannot be bad for them. Less stress for them means a better game

-give players time to explore the mechanics and familiarize themselves with how everything works. This one is really important. How often have you completely missed a mechanic in a game because you were in a rush. Because you know that there is no way to reach max at the start and it will be easier in a few weeks, you will take it slower, put more time in professions (rather than have them feel like they are eating into your leveling time), get to know the people on your server, find a guild, set goals, make decisions calmly rather than rushed.

By the time you get to 25, 2 weeks into the game, you would have a way better grasp on how your class is played, what secondary archetype you want, maybe even decide to swap, because the punishment for doing so is way smaller. Deciding to be a tank at lvl 1 and rushing without thinking "am i really enjoying tank?" and getting to max level and realizing the answer is "no" can be heartbreaking, the realization you need to do it all over again might just make people quit. Realizing at 20 that the answer is "no", sure might mean the same amount of time played (!), but swapping then means you still have 30 levels to experience with your desired class. Time-wise, its the same. Content-wise, not the same. Redoing content just bc you swapped sucks!

So, how would this be implemented without making the game a grindfest of absolute epic proportions?

My current idea would be making a bunch of side-quests part of the main one for the duration. This would need proper, interesting and unique side-missions to keep players hooked. Not "collect 500 wood"!

But done right, having the first month be slower pace, keeping the progression slow and give everyone, players and devs, time to acclimate to the live game would, in my opinion have a positive effect on the overall experience.

One other point would be "why would players want to start playing at the start rather than wait for the nerf to be lifted?"

The answer is quite simple and ill give an example.

Player A joins after the nerf. Plays a week, does 100 quests and gets to 25.
Player B joins at the start. Plays 2 weeks, does 200 quests and gets to 25.

Player B at this point has: more gold, more gear, a better understand of the world and of their class and more experience in the game. This is a big advantage.

This is about it right now, its a weird idea, i know. However, I think my logic is pretty sound. What do you all think?
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Comments

  • George BlackGeorge Black Member, Intrepid Pack
    I skipped but I agree. I didnt see the point for the analysis.
    I think 45 days is not enough time to fully enjoy the progression of your character, the new skills of your class and your weapon, as well, spare time to partake in the economy and craft your gear, while also taking in the scenery of the world. Dont forget that PvP will be unavoidable plus nodes need to be developed.

    It cant be done in 45 days, unless the game is that easy, which will be dissapointing.

    I think we need at least three months with 4-6h a day. Make the journey harder. 45 days seems easy and rushed without feeling the achievement of it all when we get there.

    It's a new mmo. Let us take our time IS, and by that I dont mean "play at a casual pace".
  • Well, the analysis is because my solution is....let's go with different :smiley:
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  • Taleof2CitiesTaleof2Cities Member
    edited November 20
    At the end of the day, Ashes isn't going to be anything like New World, @Schmuky.

    With as much testing as the game is going through, I doubt an XP nerf or "acclimation period" at release will really be needed.

    If Steven says that max level would be reached after 45 days of playing 4-6 hours a day that's probably what it will be. No doubt players can accelerate that timeline if they have more time in the day to play.
  • Yes, and that acceleration is what i am "afraid" of. Sure, i might be scarred by NW, but my point still stands, did a whole deep dive to explain it:))
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  • 4-6 hours of gaming per day is a lot. If you ask me, putting 20 hours per week (averaging to 3 hours per day) into gaming is already higher than average. When the game is new for you, yeah sure, but sustaining that over a long period? Not as typical. Not judging people choosing to spend their free times that way, just asking that they don't expect others to do the same.

    Is 225 hours too much or not enough? I guess it depends of the power progression curve. If the first x levels pass really easily and you power increase a lot but then they both plateau into a slow progression to the max, you could then double or triple the time to reach the max level because anyone attaining the level x could participate and not be dominated from raw stats alone. Higher levels would have an advantage, but they wouldn't be invulnerable from those below.

    If the power progression is exponential, anyone unwilling or unable to race for the top level will soon face impossible odds. Players not starting on day 1 will have a much harder time vs anyone ahead level-wise. If this was a PvE only game, who cares. But weeks or months of PvP irrelevance and powerlessness doesn't convert many to the concept, it just shoo them away.
    Be bold. Be brave. Roll a Tulnar !
  • TalentsTalents Member, Intrepid Pack
    edited November 20
    I dont think the max level will be hit in 14 days at the start of the game because there's a time-gate at the start of the game that prevents people from levelling fast, the time-gate being the fact that Nodes are planned to take quite a while to level up and higher level Nodes are required for higher level quests and mobs to spawn.
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  • As long as the leveling experience is fun, it taking longer is a great idea and something I completely agree with.


  • Considering the fact that ashes will not be for everybody I highly doubt they will make it easy to lvl up. I mean there are many ways to decrease the progression even if some people play all day and im pretty sure they will consider implementing them.
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  • RamirezRamirez Member
    edited November 20
    i would be ok even if was an year to reach max lvl if you have enought content to do in every lvl and not everything locked in the endgame, that was how old mmorpg used to be...

    Nowdays mmorpg your are doing like 10/20 lvls per the, gear while progressing have no valor you are always replacing like trash, just endgame gear matters, is just an pointless experience, lvling used to have meaning, every piece of gear you get or.crafted even in early lvl used to have meaning
  • tautautautau Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    A year to max would also be my preference.
  • SweatycupSweatycup Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    edited November 20
    Note i did not use your math instead just used the 45 days times 24hours. The math you provided seemed too quick.

    Its 1080 hours of game-time. And if your not a hardcore player putting in more then 4 hours a day its still a little under a year 2/3rds give or take. Again thats probably not counting all the things you must do inbetween like getting in a pvp fight while doing quests. Seems about right for the average players. I think a 50/50 split would be nice. If not alot longer then most mmos when people hit max level in a week. A slow grind sounds right but the more time it takes also the more difference in level vs game-time can be seen. In a game that revolves around pvp this isnt a good thing. Too little time and there is no meaning to it other then to speedrun. And too much and people will have burnt out before max level and hardcore players putting in 8hour-10 hour days regularly will prolly harrass lower levels who cant put the hours in. Seems about right assuming your knowledge is correct.
  • KarthosKarthos Member, Braver of Worlds, Alpha One
    edited November 22
    They should just make max level impossible to reach, when you hit level 49, your XP bar will only ever move half the remaining distance to level 50, meaning you never reach it, and thus you can't rush to level cap and then complain about not having enough to do.

    Innovate or die right?
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  • CaerylCaeryl Member
    edited November 22
    45 days seems plenty fair. Idk what kind of psychos want to spend a whole ass year just getting to lvl50, but that would make the game an empty wasteland due to the vast and unresolvable power differences due to level. Low levels characters aren’t going to be able to compete with characters three times their level, and they wouldn’t be able to push for levels because earning that exp requires pushing out competition. Instead of dedication gap, it now becomes a huge grind and a massive time sink just to get remotely even with established players.
  • George BlackGeorge Black Member, Intrepid Pack
    Caeryl wrote: »
    45 days seems plenty fair. Idk what kind of psychos want to spend a whole ass year just getting to lvl50, but that would make the game an empty wasteland due to the vast and unresolvable power differences due to level. Low levels characters aren’t going to be able to compete with characters three times their level, and they wouldn’t be able to push for levels because earning that exp requires pushing out competition. Instead of dedication gap, it now becomes a huge grind and a massive time sink just to get remotely even with established players.


    Why would you want to race through the map within 45 days?

    "Just getting to lv50?"
    It's not about getting to lv50. It's about logging in every day and adventuring; fighting against other people whose interests conflict with ours, taking down strong mobs, leveling up in nice areas for a while and take in the environment and all its secrets. Finding time to partake in the economy and craft our gear.

    Why would low lv characters be in the same area as high lv?
    They can compete against other low characters in their low lv areas.
    Why would high lv characters want to get xp from the same areas as low?
  • George BlackGeorge Black Member, Intrepid Pack
    edited November 22
    Time sink? Here is what I find time sink:
    Ticking off achievements on your log by doing something easy and meaningless.
    Doing ez quest after ez quest after ez quest alone, basically playing with npcs instead of ppl, getting to lv50 in 45 days.
    Playing battlegrounds.
    Doing the same instanced pve dungeons over and over again for whatever reasons.
  • George BlackGeorge Black Member, Intrepid Pack
    Maybe you will think every day "I am not lv50 yet", but I think about all the unexpected, unscripted adventures I had each day.

    I dont want people that logged in "yesterday" to be the same lv as me. I want it to reflect my progress.
  • I have argued and will continue to argue for separating character level and combat power. The more combat you participate in, the more powerful you should become. No reason to tie that to some arbitrary number that you can level up by doing things that are not even combat.

    OSRS sounds like a good character level system, but tbh i have not played that game. I also enjoyed how Albion does their level system.

    To the point of saying "45 days", who knows long it will take in the actual game will have. We have to test it yet and see what the community thinks of it before it gets finalized. It's probably a rough estimate of what will actually be.
  • AzheraeAzherae Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    McShave wrote: »
    I have argued and will continue to argue for separating character level and combat power. The more combat you participate in, the more powerful you should become. No reason to tie that to some arbitrary number that you can level up by doing things that are not even combat.

    OSRS sounds like a good character level system, but tbh i have not played that game. I also enjoyed how Albion does their level system.

    To the point of saying "45 days", who knows long it will take in the actual game will have. We have to test it yet and see what the community thinks of it before it gets finalized. It's probably a rough estimate of what will actually be.

    But MMOs are supposed to be the genre where you can be given power through time invested in some way other than raw skill.

    The gaps between people who are good at games and people who are not, are really really large. If you make leveling harder, then the result is normally even weirder.

    "Players who would be great but have less time to play, don't end up in competition with other great players who do have more time to play."

    Competitive games with both 'this design style' and 'permanent growth' lose their lower level players so fast your head wouldn't even have time to spin.
    Sorry, my native language is Erlang.
    
  • George BlackGeorge Black Member, Intrepid Pack
    McShave wrote: »
    I have argued and will continue to argue for separating character level and combat power. The more combat you participate in, the more powerful you should become. No reason to tie that to some arbitrary number that you can level up by doing things that are not even combat.

    OSRS sounds like a good character level system, but tbh i have not played that game. I also enjoyed how Albion does their level system.

    To the point of saying "45 days", who knows long it will take in the actual game will have. We have to test it yet and see what the community thinks of it before it gets finalized. It's probably a rough estimate of what will actually be.

    Disagree. Core feature of mmorpg is character progression.
    It may be more realistic for combat prowness to come from combat activities, but it's a video game and it all builds up upon each system.
  • Guys, guys please - you're reminding me of current wow dev team - create arbitrary obstacles that are in theory supposed to work against nolifing tryhards, but in reality only punish the average player

    Why xp nerf of any kind is really bad
    global xp nerf at launch is super bad - i hope nobody needs an explanation on why. Targetted xp nerf on long sessions is super bad, because it punishes those guys that took time off of work.

    Also giving xp nerfs for the highest level players is only feels shit punishment.

    Not to mention that any kind of a direct xp nerf (that is just a punishment for playing the game a lot) is only antagonizing the players that are subject to it - and mind you that there will be average player casulties

    Why assuming that there is no endgame on launch is bad
    Endgame is considered in the design philosophy for many years now and there is absolutely no chance that there will be nothing to do at max level. The game is focused on developing the world through nodes and as such you have an endgame system that you are engaging with from the first level.

    Honestly if you think there is no endgame on launch for ashes then you have no clue on what the game wants to do.

    There is no doubt that the endgame will be bigger in scope a few years after the launch, but the system of spawning raids through upgrading the nodes will be in the game from the getgo. That is from pve standpoint - and from pvp? You will most likely have to be the dominant guild on the realm and/or in your node (depends if guilds can control raids outside of the node they reside in) to create a monopoly over it. The game philosophy about it is still unclear, but kinda points this way (dominate pvp -> get pve opportunities -> get easier time dominating pvp).

    So just from the current philosophy you see that the plan for the endgame is clear and it is not planned to be about content drops like in themepark mmos

    Why making the achievement of getting max level take longer is bad
    If you take the ridiculous example that was mentioned in the posts above of taking a year to get to max level even with 3h daily playtime then you get a total of 1095 hours needed for a max level

    When you take into the account the tendencies of the majority of players - which are not optimizing their leveling route, getting sidetracked, participating in pvp, etc. Then those players could legit take up 1300-1500 hours total.

    When you take a look at the players that aim to be the best on the realm then those players then you can't deny that those players will take this beast of a time investment and minmax everything they can about it coming from the last beta available. Also there is almost a certainty that some sort of aoe grinding will be among the best xp/hr strategies - unless there will be mechanics making solo aoe grinding impossible and grouping for aoe grinding will have party xp penalty

    So with this you can say that those players could realistically get at minimum to 700 hours or even faster. This means that those players will start hitting max level inside first two months of the game being out. Which gives them a much bigger headstart on all endgame things.

    So from this is quite clear that what was supposed to be something that gives the advantage to the majority turned out to be an advantage to the nolifer

    Why having a soft cap on the amount of xp you get each day is bad
    If you want to artificially force players level all those 45 days with 6 hours sessions then you come to a point where you are forcing players to play the way you want them to play which is a complete antithesis to a sandbox philosophy.

    I could elaborate a lot on this topic for limiting players choice, but that would just devolve into a "they ruined wow rant"

    Why I don't even like daily login rewards or temporary xp buffs
    Because those things force you to play every day - otherwise you "missed out" on them.

    Why can't the playtime be totally in the players hands? No bad feelings for missed rewards because you didnt play at all that day, or feeling like shit, because the game starts being more grindy and tedious after 6 hours being online.

    I definitely hold the opinion that there should be no systems that are trying to dictate when you should play - leave that decision purely in the players hands

    tldr: Making leveling take longer just makes players that are rich richer and players that are poor poorer.

    Also mmo isnt just about the leveling process, but about the world it creates and leveling is just a rewarding tutorial for players to learn the world and the character they are playing. So the leveling should take just the right amount and not to be some arbitrary time sink for the sake of it being a time sink
    “Ignorance, the root and stem of all evil.”

    ― Plato
  • VhaeyneVhaeyne Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    It's too fast.

    I'll play 12-16 hours a day, and be capped in a few weeks.

    Still, better than WOW and FFIXV which gets me about 1-2 days of leveling per alt tops...
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    If I had more time, I would write a shorter post.
  • Vhaeyne wrote: »
    It's too fast.

    I'll play 12-16 hours a day, and be capped in a few weeks.

    Still, better than WOW and FFIXV which gets me about 1-2 days of leveling per alt tops...

    Wow, I want your job...
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  • insomniainsomnia Member
    edited November 22
    Quite a bit of people don't have time to play 4-6 hours each day. And proberly won't have time to play everyday. Then there are those that will nolife it. 45 days seems fine. If the progression is to slow, some might quit, as they don't feel like they are getting anywhere.
    It is still 100-150 hours of game time. And the is proberly without getting sidetracked
  • VhaeyneVhaeyne Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    daveywavey wrote: »
    Vhaeyne wrote: »
    It's too fast.

    I'll play 12-16 hours a day, and be capped in a few weeks.

    Still, better than WOW and FFIXV which gets me about 1-2 days of leveling per alt tops...

    Wow, I want your job...

    I take two weeks leave...

    Race to get as far ahead as I can until I go back to work...

    Come back from leave exhausted...

    It seems like the rational thing anyone who grew up playing MMOs would do.
    TVMenSP.png
    If I had more time, I would write a shorter post.
  • two weeks leave is just enough for the current leveling time requirement as it is planned

    i know that i'll take the leave for ashes if the game doesnt disappoint me massively with the alpha/beta system reveals
    “Ignorance, the root and stem of all evil.”

    ― Plato
  • Vhaeyne wrote: »
    daveywavey wrote: »
    Vhaeyne wrote: »
    It's too fast.

    I'll play 12-16 hours a day, and be capped in a few weeks.

    Still, better than WOW and FFIXV which gets me about 1-2 days of leveling per alt tops...

    Wow, I want your job...

    I take two weeks leave...

    Race to get as far ahead as I can until I go back to work...

    Come back from leave exhausted...

    It seems like the rational thing anyone who grew up playing MMOs would do.

    Ahhhh, I thought you meant you'd be doing that as standard!
    Daveywavey-member.png
  • Your vision for how leveling should go is nice and everything but I'm not sure your proposed solution will achieve it. How long it should feel to level is something that is very difficult to predict without playing the game and seeing the wealth/dearth of content available and what is locked behind character level.

    You also fail to take a major variable into account which is node progression. Node progression is related to character progression since the node lvl unlocks higher lvl content/mobs which then give more xp. Also, if you have no new content to look forward to by increasing your character level, only some % of the playerbase will focus on levels because there is not point for the rest of players until nodes level up too. Metros are said to take "many weeks" to be achieved. This simple fact could already lead to the outcomes you hope. Since there is little point to being max level before a metro is achieved, maybe players will naturally slow down and/or focus more on leveling the node than their character.

    Lastly, no matter what you do, there will be some % of the playerbase that will rush to max just 'because'. I don't think it makes sense or is a worthwhile endeavor to just raise the time commitment for those 'psychos' as you put it when they will not be able to impact the rest of the game that much. I say this because node level will determine content and resources available and we know some 40-50% of character power is from gear and only a portion of the remaining % is from character level. Although I'm actually not sure if node level is related to the level of resources that can spawn.
  • I think a lot of people like to hit that max level so they can turn around and start griefing all those people that have jobs, families, lives etc, and take longer to level up.
  • George BlackGeorge Black Member, Intrepid Pack
    Wyborn wrote: »
    I think a lot of people like to hit that max level so they can turn around and start griefing all those people that have jobs, families, lives etc, and take longer to level up.

    Ye ok.
  • edited November 22
    180-270 hours of focused leveling is not that long to many gamers who play MMORPG's. As @Vhaeyne mentioned, most people take time off when a new game or expansion is released. I imagine AoC will not be any different especially since your contributions when leveling in a zone will aid in the evolution of the node which will in turn provide more players to group with for pve, pvp and crafting. Many vertical progression games make leveling too fast which in turn just makes vertical progression seem pointless as you're just wasting time with the leveling system.
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