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Balancing guilds with solo play

I have seen a lot about the exciting guild incentives and mechanics planned for AOC which I am all for. My only concern is that this may require an environment whereby you HAVE to align yourself with a guild to be relevant in the game. Personally as a solo player I'm of the opinion that joining a guild should always be out of choice, not necessity. In which ways do you think solo play can be balanced so that solo players/small teams of friends can still choose this path?

One idea I propose is that solo players could carry out as questline to become a mercenary. Mercenaries would be neutral alignment but could be hired by guilds to assist in seiges and bosses etc. This way solo players are not gated away from content but likewise are still able to enjoy soloplay when they choose to.

Just as guilds can acquire reputation, so could mercenaries. At higher reputation levels your price as a mercanary would automatically increase. Reputation would be based on successful "missions"(hires) and feedback from guild seniors (e.g. a simple rating system).

Just as there will be a leaderboard for guilds, there could be s leaderboard for mercenaries. Perhaps this system would be tied to military nodes.

What are your thoughts?
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Comments

  • AzheraeAzherae Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    I dislike any system where the game has any role in mandating how much someone is hired for and in what way they are 'contracted'.

    But I come from a 'main' game where there are no 'Guilds' and the only benefit you get from grouping together in the equivalent way is an ingame chat channel.

    Guilds are a convenient way for games to offer ease of communication and management to people. Therefore I think any system that is built to help 'players who don't want to join guilds' must be convenient for both sides.

    I don't view a full mercenary system as MORE convenient for both sides.
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  • PenguinPaladinPenguinPaladin Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    edited June 17
    I think you can do all of this without a system coded in place. Make your own solo "guild". Become reputable on your own. Take contracts from larger guilds... Demand your own pay based on what you know you are worth.... i mean, can you make a system better than just talking to and being familiar with those around you?
  • NiKrNiKr Member
    And as an addition to what Penguin said, there'll definitely be solo-friendly guilds that will be completely fine with you running on your own or with your friends and just support you in whatever ways the guild can. I know this for sure because that'll be my guild in my node and I'm sure as hell I'm not the only one who'd want to support solos.

    MMOs are meant to be played in a company and not alone. There's way better games for solo or limited multiplayer gameplay, so why turn the only genre that supports huge groups of people working together towards one goal with adding mechanics and features that splinter that group into singular characters.
  • KarthosKarthos Member, Braver of Worlds, Kickstarter, Alpha One
    edited June 17
    "I don't want to be social in a game that at it's central core requires the players to interact with others and be social".

    I've never understood what people with this mentality even see when they look at an MMO, what makes them want to play a game that basically all but REQUIRES you to get involved with other people, group up, be social, rely on other players, ect. There's other games that will cater to this style of game play much better, we don't need to water down games to accommodate these confused people.

    Maybe you just don't want to play MMORPGs.... This is like going to a Mexican Restaurant and saying "I don't like Mexican food, please make me a hamburger".

    I hear Bethesda is releasing Elder Scrolls 6 soon-ish, and I'm sure you can probably play Skyrim on your Apple Watch here soon.
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  • LinikerLiniker Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    This game will not be solo-player friendly at all, if you want to progress and be relevant, you will need a guild.
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  • FerrymanFerryman Member
    edited June 17
    A good amount of players plays MMORPGs more or less as solo. Additionally, games have turned more solo-friendly (averagely) and players are more interested to do things alone as well. There are a lot of reason but here is a good video sharing some valid thoughts:



    If I do some self-reflection related to the socialization, I can see how my behaviour has changed from past 10 to 15 years. I have less will to group up nowadays even that was a daily behaviour back in the golden days. That does not mean that I would ever do group content or that I would not interact with other people. Interacting can be small chatting, trading and even ganking, for example. I do not have time to group up all the time or will to do so after the working day but I like to do that sometimes, especially if the activities are related to group content such dungeons and raids or open world PvP.
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  • derpderp Member
    There seems to be some confusion here - I as a player enjoy playing solo or in small teams but that's not to say I don't enjoy the Social aspects of MMOs. I personally just don't want to be tied down to a guild and get sucked into having to do dailys/activities that the guild dictates to me. I like having the freedom to do what I want in an mmo and pvm/pve with my close friends not as a zerg. I'm sure there are slots if players like me.
  • derpderp Member
    Ferryman wrote: »
    A good amount of players plays MMORPGs more or less as solo. Additionally, games have turned more solo-friendly (averagely) and players are more interested to do things alone as well. There are a lot of reason but here is a good video sharing some valid thoughts:



    If I do some self-reflection related to the socialization, I can see how my behaviour has changed from past 10 to 15 years. I have less will to group up nowadays even that was a daily behaviour back in the golden days. That does not mean that I would ever do group content or that I would not interact with other people. Interacting can be small chatting, trading and even ganking, for example. I do not have time to group up all the time or will to do so after the working day but I like to do that sometimes, especially if the activities are related to group content such dungeons and raids or open world PvP.

    Exactly this - Its ok to group up when I feel like it but I don't necessarily want to be attached to a guild 24/7.. I think it would be a mistake to overpower guild buffs and leave players with no choice in how they want to play because that's what guilds do. Empowering the solo player/small group can only be a good thing. If you read my initial post you'll see the mercanary system I mentioned allows for solo players to still enjoy group content but it would be optional rather than enforced by a guild leader.
  • derpderp Member
    edited June 17
    NiKr wrote: »
    And as an addition to what Penguin said, there'll definitely be solo-friendly guilds that will be completely fine with you running on your own or with your friends and just support you in whatever ways the guild can. I know this for sure because that'll be my guild in my node and I'm sure as hell I'm not the only one who'd want to support solos.

    MMOs are meant to be played in a company and not alone. There's way better games for solo or limited multiplayer gameplay, so why turn the only genre that supports huge groups of people working together towards one goal with adding mechanics and features that splinter that group into singular characters.

    I've played MMOs for 20 years and no, they don't only require you to play in a guild/zerg.. there are plenty of MMOs that thrive from solo/group content. In fact, I would say that MOST MMOs have a lackluster guild system therefore people end up playing solo/small groups anyway. So no, your point does not stand.
  • derpderp Member
    Liniker wrote: »
    This game will not be solo-player friendly at all, if you want to progress and be relevant, you will need a guild.

    I think this approach would be a mistake
  • derpderp Member
    I think you can do all of this without a system coded in place. Make your own solo "guild". Become reputable on your own. Take contracts from larger guilds... Demand your own pay based on what you know you are worth.... i mean, can you make a system better than just talking to and being familiar with those around you?

    I like your approach but why should it be necessary for a solo player to create a guild to play solo? Also a solo player would definitely not progress the guild quick enough. I read that they are planning to have a sliding scale of buffs Vs number of players, if this is the case i would love for the scale to slide all the way down to 1 so a solo player gets the most buffs at the expense of not having other guildies to enjoy guild content with
  • derpderp Member
    Azherae wrote: »
    I dislike any system where the game has any role in mandating how much someone is hired for and in what way they are 'contracted'.

    But I come from a 'main' game where there are no 'Guilds' and the only benefit you get from grouping together in the equivalent way is an ingame chat channel.

    Guilds are a convenient way for games to offer ease of communication and management to people. Therefore I think any system that is built to help 'players who don't want to join guilds' must be convenient for both sides.

    I don't view a full mercenary system as MORE convenient for both sides.

    What if the player could set their own rate and the guilds could "bid" on whoever they felt was most suitable?
  • OtrOtr Member
    I think being in a guild should offer advantages. And well organized guilds should have advantages over the weakly bound ones.
    However if solo players forfeit those benefits, they should be able to survive.
    But solo players should not demand to be able to fully experience all aspects of the game. Is like telling developers to not add content specific for guilds.
  • derpderp Member
    Otr wrote: »
    I think being in a guild should offer advantages. And well organized guilds should have advantages over the weakly bound ones.
    However if solo players forfeit those benefits, they should be able to survive.
    But solo players should not demand to be able to fully experience all aspects of the game. Is like telling developers to not add content specific for guilds.

    I'm not against guild content but they're talking about straight up stat buffs via enchantments and stuff. The moment this happens it makes it impossible for a solo/small team to be viable in PvP/pve, therefore making it MANDATORY to be in a guild.
  • Mag7spyMag7spy Member
    derp wrote: »
    There seems to be some confusion here - I as a player enjoy playing solo or in small teams but that's not to say I don't enjoy the Social aspects of MMOs. I personally just don't want to be tied down to a guild and get sucked into having to do dailys/activities that the guild dictates to me. I like having the freedom to do what I want in an mmo and pvm/pve with my close friends not as a zerg. I'm sure there are slots if players like me.

    There shouldn't be a mmo that caters to people that don't want to have any commitments to a guild. That just ruins the point of guild system, and why i think Lost ark guilds are complete trash and annoying to build up.

    If you don't want to be in a guild don't join a guild, if you want to be in a guild talk and find out about the guild if it matches your style. What you are pretty much saying is "Hey i don't want to help your guild at all but I want all the perks you guys work towards, thanks."

    End of the day that is on you, if you don't want to be social even if it benefits you and want to run around as a solo player. Though i respect powerful solo players and though it can be fun if you are a social solo player.

    BDO is a great game if you want a single player mmo where you don't interact with people i hear. Me im TIRED of solo player mmorpgs, i want the entire game to be like you need a group, i want it to be that you can always be in a group, and you always have group content from hour one to hour 8+ every single day of the week, Exactly why though NW was lacking it was great because i can always group and docontent with my friends when I want.

    100% believe if someone wants to solo just t avoid social interaction and working together with people they better be geared and skilled to tackle things. No system should be in place to allow them to have a single player mmo experience from lvl 1 to end game. System should be in place where you want to find a group and need to, and of you refuse its only your own loss.
  • OtrOtr Member
    derp wrote: »
    Otr wrote: »
    I think being in a guild should offer advantages. And well organized guilds should have advantages over the weakly bound ones.
    However if solo players forfeit those benefits, they should be able to survive.
    But solo players should not demand to be able to fully experience all aspects of the game. Is like telling developers to not add content specific for guilds.

    I'm not against guild content but they're talking about straight up stat buffs via enchantments and stuff. The moment this happens it makes it impossible for a solo/small team to be viable in PvP/pve, therefore making it MANDATORY to be in a guild.

    What other benefits or game content would you give to a guild?
  • derpderp Member
    Guild pets, cosmetics, shared crafting in guild stronghold, shared items via coffer, people to zerg bosses with, guild events, seiges, large boats for guilds.. anything that allows for cooperation after all that's why people join a guild surely?
  • CROW3CROW3 Member
    I'll be in a guild with people I like playing with, and will still solo like 70% of the time. Solo play and guild association are not mutually exclusive.
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  • NiKrNiKr Member
    derp wrote: »
    The moment this happens it makes it impossible for a solo/small team to be viable in PvP/pve, therefore making it MANDATORY to be in a guild.
    ckwbflvuxgaa.gif

  • derpderp Member
    Mag7spy wrote: »
    derp wrote: »
    There seems to be some confusion here - I as a player enjoy playing solo or in small teams but that's not to say I don't enjoy the Social aspects of MMOs. I personally just don't want to be tied down to a guild and get sucked into having to do dailys/activities that the guild dictates to me. I like having the freedom to do what I want in an mmo and pvm/pve with my close friends not as a zerg. I'm sure there are slots if players like me.

    There shouldn't be a mmo that caters to people that don't want to have any commitments to a guild. That just ruins the point of guild system, and why i think Lost ark guilds are complete trash and annoying to build up.

    If you don't want to be in a guild don't join a guild, if you want to be in a guild talk and find out about the guild if it matches your style. What you are pretty much saying is "Hey i don't want to help your guild at all but I want all the perks you guys work towards, thanks."

    End of the day that is on you, if you don't want to be social even if it benefits you and want to run around as a solo player. Though i respect powerful solo players and though it can be fun if you are a social solo player.

    BDO is a great game if you want a single player mmo where you don't interact with people i hear. Me im TIRED of solo player mmorpgs, i want the entire game to be like you need a group, i want it to be that you can always be in a group, and you always have group content from hour one to hour 8+ every single day of the week, Exactly why though NW was lacking it was great because i can always group and docontent with my friends when I want.

    100% believe if someone wants to solo just t avoid social interaction and working together with people they better be geared and skilled to tackle things. No system should be in place to allow them to have a single player mmo experience from lvl 1 to end game. System should be in place where you want to find a group and need to, and of you refuse its only your own loss.

    Again, it's not that I NEVER want to do group content. I just don't think that it's good for players to have the flexibility in whether or not they want to join s guild
  • derpderp Member
    NiKr wrote: »
    derp wrote: »
    The moment this happens it makes it impossible for a solo/small team to be viable in PvP/pve, therefore making it MANDATORY to be in a guild.
    ckwbflvuxgaa.gif

    Why is this good? :S 1v1 PvP can be the most exciting PvP. Again mass PvP will be really fun but why should it not be viable for solo player to 1v1 a guild player?
  • NiKrNiKr Member
    CROW3 wrote: »
    I'll be in a guild with people I like playing with, and will still solo like 70% of the time. Solo play and guild association are not mutually exclusive.
    And I've known a ton of guild that never made their members do anything they didn't want. What they did do is help out each other way faster than you would've gotten help from some rando in chat.

    Some's PKing you while you're out and about alone? Ask someone in the guild to help out. You're having problems crafting smth? Ask someone in the guild to help. You wanna fight some small boss? Same shit. All it takes is just finding a guild that'll be good for your playstyle.
  • derpderp Member
    CROW3 wrote: »
    I'll be in a guild with people I like playing with, and will still solo like 70% of the time. Solo play and guild association are not mutually exclusive.

    Maybe I just had a bad experience with guilds in the past. My guilds were always hyper competitive and it turns playing a game for fun into a full-time job (less fun)
  • derpderp Member
    NiKr wrote: »
    CROW3 wrote: »
    I'll be in a guild with people I like playing with, and will still solo like 70% of the time. Solo play and guild association are not mutually exclusive.
    And I've known a ton of guild that never made their members do anything they didn't want. What they did do is help out each other way faster than you would've gotten help from some rando in chat.

    Some's PKing you while you're out and about alone? Ask someone in the guild to help out. You're having problems crafting smth? Ask someone in the guild to help. You wanna fight some small boss? Same shit. All it takes is just finding a guild that'll be good for your playstyle.

    Again - not against guilds, just don't want it forced upon me :persevere:
  • NiKrNiKr Member
    derp wrote: »
    Why is this good? :S 1v1 PvP can be the most exciting PvP. Again mass PvP will be really fun but why should it not be viable for solo player to 1v1 a guild player?
    The whole game will be group-balanced. Most likely you won't enjoy 1v1 pvp because there'll be classes that will annihilate you even w/o guild skills.
    derp wrote: »
    Again - not against guilds, just don't want it forced upon me :persevere:
    Yeah, and you already have a choice. You play alone and have limited solo content or you play in a guild as the game was designed and meant to be played and you enjoy all of the content.
  • derpderp Member
    NiKr wrote: »
    derp wrote: »
    Why is this good? :S 1v1 PvP can be the most exciting PvP. Again mass PvP will be really fun but why should it not be viable for solo player to 1v1 a guild player?
    The whole game will be group-balanced. Most likely you won't enjoy 1v1 pvp because there'll be classes that will annihilate you even w/o guild skills.
    derp wrote: »
    Again - not against guilds, just don't want it forced upon me :persevere:
    Yeah, and you already have a choice. You play alone and have limited solo content or you play in a guild as the game was designed and meant to be played and you enjoy all of the content.

    Do you think there will be any solo content? Some of my best experiences have been solo pve. Again, I know I'm harping on about solo stuff but I do love group content too. I'm only asking about solo stuff because I think it's important to have variety in gameplay
  • NiKrNiKr Member
    derp wrote: »
    Do you think there will be any solo content? Some of my best experiences have been solo pve. Again, I know I'm harping on about solo stuff but I do love group content too. I'm only asking about solo stuff because I think it's important to have variety in gameplay
    There'll be some solo mobs. Probably 50+% of the artisan profession could be done solo. But you won't be killing bosses, you won't win against stronger players in pvp. You most likely won't be able to defend your caravan alone. And even the artisan stuff will still require you to cooperate with other people because you'll need other professions to support you or other people to defend you if you decide to gather some rare resources alone.

    Oh, and those solo mobs won't give you BiS and I highly doubt they'd give you pre-top either. This is an oldschool mmo that requires you to participate in social structures in the game. If everyone could just farm their shit solo - why would they be social?
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds, Kickstarter, Alpha One
    edited June 17
    derp wrote: »
    I think this approach would be a mistake
    Liniker exaggerates greatly.
    Ashes supports solo play.
    Of course, solo is not the same thing as not being social - it just means you are adventuring while not joined systemically to a group.

    It is possible to kill bosses while not joined systemically to a group.
    It's also possible to acquire BiS gear, in several ways, without being joined systemically to a group.
    Solo does not mean you do not have friends who will help you acquire BiS gear.
  • Mag7spyMag7spy Member
    Otr wrote: »
    derp wrote: »
    Otr wrote: »
    I think being in a guild should offer advantages. And well organized guilds should have advantages over the weakly bound ones.
    However if solo players forfeit those benefits, they should be able to survive.
    But solo players should not demand to be able to fully experience all aspects of the game. Is like telling developers to not add content specific for guilds.

    I'm not against guild content but they're talking about straight up stat buffs via enchantments and stuff. The moment this happens it makes it impossible for a solo/small team to be viable in PvP/pve, therefore making it MANDATORY to be in a guild.

    What other benefits or game content would you give to a guild?

    Literally nothing just wants the benefits of being in the guild for whatever amount of time, some reward and prob helps in some form of pvp.
    derp wrote: »
    NiKr wrote: »
    CROW3 wrote: »
    I'll be in a guild with people I like playing with, and will still solo like 70% of the time. Solo play and guild association are not mutually exclusive.
    And I've known a ton of guild that never made their members do anything they didn't want. What they did do is help out each other way faster than you would've gotten help from some rando in chat.

    Some's PKing you while you're out and about alone? Ask someone in the guild to help out. You're having problems crafting smth? Ask someone in the guild to help. You wanna fight some small boss? Same shit. All it takes is just finding a guild that'll be good for your playstyle.

    Again - not against guilds, just don't want it forced upon me :persevere:

    Joining a guild isn't forced you will just have a ton of negatives if you don't. If you have a bad experience with a guild then join another guild it isn't hard to do that. Not everyone guild is try hard, but if you are joining a top guild that gives you a insane amount of perks and you don't want to do any kind of group things to help them its not surprising if one gets a boot.

    You simply need to join a guild that is at your level with your play style.

    As for me my guild will 100% have discord as mandatory as well as voice chat, because its easier to form groups and do things together and have fun. As well as how important it will be for pvp sieges. Besides that people are free to do whatever they want and people naturally group up and do content with each other when people are within voice and guild.

    I understand being introverted because I am as well, but just because you are in a guild and in discord doesn't mean you need to talk much or be forced to do much. People simply want people to hang out around so the hard content is do able and have fun together. Elite guilds are trash though that force heavy things on you because they deem its effective / meta.
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds, Kickstarter, Alpha One
    Anyway... to answer the OP...
    There will be some small, casual guilds that don't require members to do stuff - if you want guild perks.
    Might be possible that Social Orgs or Religions will have something like your proposed Mercenary mechanic.
    Might also be able to do something like that via Taverns.
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