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The Appeal of An Easy PvX MMORPG

AzheraeAzherae Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
edited January 25 in General Discussion
So, I was thinking that if Ashes is Easy and not otherwise offensive to my sensibilities, I might play it for way longer than I would play an easy single player game.

A PvX MMORPG that isn't too grindy but is technically easy (or just easy for a specific type of person or group) seems like it can go one of two ways. Either the disparity between the 'naturally talented' and the 'not' keeps getting bigger and all the competition becomes similar to grinding to outpace the other 'naturally talented players', which makes it very mechanics/balance dependent...

Or basically everyone manages some level of relative success and it becomes more or less a big RP game dependent on its PvE content or roleplaying community.

Ashes isn't supposed to be easy, but within gaming, I always say that's a complex claim. The main definition of 'easy' vs 'hard' in games is 'can most people do it' because some humans are mechanical/analytic savants after a while exposed to something. Most games that get around this do it by challenging the aspect of human capability that we (so far) don't think changes easily, your working memory.

So just a random thought today. Assume Ashes turns out to be super easy for you and your group personally. So 'easy' that if it were a single player game or a single-group game, you'd probably get bored of it. Are you likely to keep playing it? In a single/smallgroup player game once you've reached the top, there's no more challenge. In an MMORPG though, you gain prestige and power within the game if you happen to find it really easy. Would you 'give that up just because it's not challenging enough?'

People who don't play MMORPGs to be challenged, a different question. Do you stop playing significantly challenging single player games even if they are otherwise fun/immersive?
Sorry, my native language is Erlang.
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Comments

  • NoaaniNoaani Member, Intrepid Pack
    edited January 25
    I'm unlikely to play an MMO that offers no challenge, regardless of if it is single player or multiplayer.

    The only thing that keeps me in any single player game I play (Factorio and Civ 6 currently) are mods. The base games are fairly easy and boring, but with the right selection of mods you can not only make an interesting and challenging game, but you can have a totally different type of fame every time you start one up. Current MMO's simply don't offer up that kind of variation - this is something that older games did well (as I've said in the past).

    So, to me, challenge is important, but so is variation. A non-challenging game with mass of variation could perhaps hold my attention for a while.
  • NishUKNishUK Member
    edited January 24
    I sometimes fall into the trap with my free time to see how I believe the "community" is potentially swaying the minds of development through the forums or discord and I've already somewhat clearly stated in a thread I made of my hard shelled opinion on what I would consider a possible angle to consider to up the gameplay of an mmo in 2025 + I will very much enjoy replying to your post within that thread when I can aspire the energy within myself...

    I digress,
    Azherae wrote: »
    A PvX MMORPG that isn't too grindy but is technically easy (or just easy for a specific type of person or group) seems like it can go one of two ways. Either the disparity between the 'naturally talented' and the 'not' keeps getting bigger and all the competition becomes similar to grinding to outpace the other 'naturally talented players', which makes it very mechanics/balance dependent...

    Or basically everyone manages some level of relative success and it becomes more or less a big RP game dependent on its PvE content or roleplaying community.

    Toward this I can only say with confidence that we yet to see an mmorpg game take on to any degree the gaming space of the likes of LoL/Valorant/Call of Duty/Sports Games, where PvP and replay-ability dominate and I am very against the notion, still that for an mmorpg to succeed at mass it can only be a "social hub" that heavily promotes and incentivizes PvE and quest based activity.

    The trouble is for competitive mmo's of the past is that players are able to easily see and feel the scope of how behind or helpless they are. They see the marketplace and think only "OOOF!" or how behind they are in levelling and knowledge and the quit is likely imminent but in LoL you are confined to the space of opponents of similar standing to you, not at the mercy of the highest and their skill and knowledge driving your face to the dirt.
    There are many ideas and concepts I could spin to relieve the stress and make players feel better about their current situation, no matter in what time they join the game at.
    Also in relation to the skill disparity present mainly in these competitive mmo's, they're far too rewarding toward the skilled and they can easily afford to care a lot less about the higher end playerbase, these guys live for a long time on status and fame!

    That's my slamdunk anyway toward perhaps a crowd of people who believe the likes of Josh Strife Hayes principles are the holy gospel and I my only faith in this game being somewhat suitable to my desires for a "main game" is that Steven has enjoyed conquest in the likes Archeage and L2 which I believe to be a handful of mmorpg's that had any potential of being able to break the mold of taking the mmorpg scene out of the sewers of "streamlined PvE+Quest is the only attraction to see here and if you don't like it wither away in the likes of LoL!"
  • NerrorNerror Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    edited January 25
    I don't mind some things being easy, but without challenges, including some I might never be able to defeat, I lose interest in the game. A great community will keep me much longer though, for sure, but easy content and RP cannot keep me by itself. Nor can prestige and power.

    PvP will be providing most of the more challenging stuff most likely, but I hope they make some really challenging PvE oriented things too of varying nature. This can be mechanically or intellectually challenging encounters, or very, very grindy goals that can take a year or more of dedicated /played time to complete.

    My ideal and hope for Ashes is that we get a smorgasbord of things we can do and goals we can set on our own. Some easy, some hard. I hope they lean towards the sandbox side of things, in other words, with lots of content options. That's one of the things I loved about playing Eve Online. You were kind of forced to make your own goals unless you wanted to be a corporate drone.

    Some days I just want to do easy shit, because I am tired, so I am definitely not against having those elements in Ashes. They are nice and relaxing and I hope we get both solo and group oriented easy content too, depending on my mood.
  • OkeydokeOkeydoke Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    edited January 25
    Yes, in general a game that I find to be too easy will eventually make me lose interest. The power and prestige you reference could delay that some, depending on the game. But even power and prestige...I mean it's a video game. It's only worth so much to me in a video game. It's only worth so much to me period.

    I need my games to be games, to be competitions. I want to lose sometimes. I want to be challenged. Those are the things that make winning feel good. Otherwise winning feels hollow, predetermined. I showed up and pressed my buttons and "won." I will generally get bored of that pretty quickly.
  • NiKrNiKr Member
    I'll judge this by my current semi-burnout with Genshin. The game is piss-easy outside of a single feature, so the hardcoreness is not really one of its draws. I played it for 12++h every single day for several months on release. I was grinding every possible material in the game and exploring every nook and cranny of its world.

    Later on I played only for a few hours a day, mainly because I'd explored pretty much everything already and just needed to farm up some of the rarer mats to keep up pace with any potential new characters. But I still went super hardcore on hour zero of a new patch. I'd binge it for days, if there was enough new content.

    In the past few months I've not only started doing the bare minimum, but even not doing some of the newer quests as soon as they came out. This might've been pure burnout with the game or my current mental condition, considering what's happening around me, but I've definitely started playing the game less and less. BUT EVEN STILL, I explored the latest new location for 14h straight. My eyes were hurting from strain of barely blinking for minutes on end and my head was pounding from not enough sleep, but I loved the process.

    So what I'm trying to say is, as long as Intrepid manage to add explorative content to the game (genshin's pace is around 2-3 months between such updates, but I think an mmo could stretch that to 6m periods) - I'd be completely content with the game. I'll spend several months just doing literally everything I can in the game. Then months on alts of different professions (and quests, if they differ per race/class). And I'll obviously have all the pvp content I could get too. In other words, I doubt the difficulty of content would dissuade me from playing the game.

    And on top of all of that, a party-based pvp game with guilds provides endless difficulty imo. You'll just need to be ready to adapt to it. The pvp has become too easy for your guild because you're overgeared and have 300 people on your side? Reduce the number of members and try again. Still easy? Reduce it again until you're challenged. STILL EASY? Move half of your overgeared mates into the enemy's ranks and try again. If by now you're still managing to beat your opponents so easily that you're getting bored - I think it'd be time to limit yourself to either solo play against hundreds of people or, indeed, find a better-designed game, cause ooh boi would I think Ashes has shitty balancing if a single group of people can overwhelm a full guild of equally-gear players.
  • SolvrynSolvryn Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    I find easy offensive to my sensibilities. I like a challenge and I would like Ashes to rise to have that challenge in it. Constant need for game mastery and efficacy.

  • novercalisnovercalis Member, Founder, Kickstarter
    I'm in it for the harship. I'm in it for the RP - a 2nd life that consumes my life. Slow, Tedious & Immersive.
    {UPK} United Player Killer - All your loot belongs to us.
  • tautautautau Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    Doesn't the 'easy' versus 'hard' depend on your personal goals? AoC will give us a multitude of personal goals to choose from, whether we choose a few of them or lots of them. As pointed out above, what is easy for one player is hard for another and we each have quite different goals.
  • There will be plenty of aspects within ashes that are "easy". You can take your time and casually stroll around gathering resources and crafting at your own pace. I'm sure the main storyline will be easy enough that everyone, regardless of skill level, can complete it. And decorating my house is always a fun pastime for me. If you want "easy", I'm sure it will be there. Just don't expect to be at the top of any leaderboards, don't expect to be setting any server firsts, don't expect to be competitive in PvP, etc. The game will be what you make of it.
  • Azherae wrote: »
    Either the disparity between the 'naturally talented' and the 'not' keeps getting bigger and all the competition becomes similar to grinding to outpace the other 'naturally talented players', which makes it very mechanics/balance dependent...

    Or basically everyone manages some level of relative success and it becomes more or less a big RP game dependent on its PvE content or roleplaying community.

    I believe the former to be way more likely for Ashes than the later.
    Azherae wrote: »
    So just a random thought today. Assume Ashes turns out to be super easy for you personally. So 'easy' that if it were a single player game, you'd probably get bored of it. Are you likely to keep playing it?

    Yes, even if Ashes PvE(considering the concept of "can most people do it") ends up unbelivably easy, i'm still likely to keep playing it because of its PvP aspects, which i believe can fulfill my desire for PvP challenge and can keep me entertained.
    Azherae wrote: »
    In a single player game once you've reached the top, there's no more challenge. In an MMORPG though, you gain prestige and power within the game if you happen to find it really easy. Would you 'give that up just because it's not challenging enough?'

    Some people who really likes a specific single player game and seeks challenge beyond doing 100% of it usually ends up reaching for "indirect pvp" in the form of competing in Speedrun communities.
    I personally wouldn't give up on a game i like even if i find it not challenging enough in any regard other than PvP.
    Azherae wrote: »
    People who don't play MMORPGs to be challenged, a different question. Do you stop playing significantly challenging single player games even if they are otherwise fun/immersive?

    Even tho i prefer MMORPGs PvE to be challenging, i don't play MMORPGs especifically to be challenged by it's PvE aspects, not sure if it counts but no, i do not stop playing single player games if they significantly challenging if they are fun/immersive.

    The first MMORPG i tried right after quitting Lineage 2 Official servers was Archeage, which was leaps and bounds easier than Lineage 2 in the absolute majority of its aspects, and i still enjoyed it alot because of its PvP Aspects.

    In general i expect Ashes to be reasonably harder than AA in most aspects and nowhere near as hard as Lineage 2.

    6wtxguK.jpg
    Aren't we all sinners?
  • Ace1234Ace1234 Member
    edited January 25
    I prefer if it is "hard for most players". I don't necessarily mind if the gameplay eventually becomes "easy" for specifically me personally through mastery/optimization, as long as there is a pretty large skill gap and it takes a lot of work to get to the top. That enough can prevent anything from becoming stale, simply through the satisfaction of taking the journey to improve- that others havent managed to do, and the nature of competition against real players usually creates a dynamic environment even amongst gameplay that is optimized well, as long as the gameplay is deep enough.

    Even considering these things, I do however, think its important to have something to strive for no matter your level of skill, and always have a slight room for improvement. My preferred way of doing this is to make the difficulty just hard enough that it requires near perfection in some aspects, to where even the most seasoned veterans have trouble consistently performing at max potential, even if they know exactly what to do. But it needs to remain achievable and realistic to reach full potential, so there is a fine balance to this.

    So my answer is that I prefer it to be difficult enough that it is
    1. "hard enough that there is a pretty large skill gap in terms of percentage of players who can peform at max efficiency"
    -while simultaneously being:
    2. "Easy to me once mastered, but too difficult for me to consistently perform at max potential, but always within reach and in my control to do so"
  • AzheraeAzherae Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    tautau wrote: »
    Doesn't the 'easy' versus 'hard' depend on your personal goals? AoC will give us a multitude of personal goals to choose from, whether we choose a few of them or lots of them. As pointed out above, what is easy for one player is hard for another and we each have quite different goals.

    Yes, therefore I say 'easy for you personally'.
    There will be plenty of aspects within ashes that are "easy". You can take your time and casually stroll around gathering resources and crafting at your own pace. I'm sure the main storyline will be easy enough that everyone, regardless of skill level, can complete it. And decorating my house is always a fun pastime for me. If you want "easy", I'm sure it will be there. Just don't expect to be at the top of any leaderboards, don't expect to be setting any server firsts, don't expect to be competitive in PvP, etc. The game will be what you make of it.

    This is quite clearly expressed, but not what I'm referring to. I'd appreciate any input on how to potentially edit the OP so that it's clearer that it's not what I'm referring to.

    @JamesSunderland - please feel free to consider it through the lens of 'finding the PvP easy also' as this is a meaningful possibility, and as you noted, if you happened to be one who found it easy, the gap would potentially extend to make it even easier.

    @Ace1234 - For you, similarly, please assume that everyone starts at the same time, and in this 'random scenario', you happen to immediately BE the top player in PvP and PvE with your own natural playtime and skill. Would the fact that it was easy for you to maintain top position naturally, then influence your will to continue?

    @NiKr - Clarify for me, I believe that you are one of those people who does not make the distinction between 'challenging' and 'mathematically impossible' for games, right? For example, 'winning a fight in Monster Hunter without ever taking damage' is 'challenging' but it 'caps', you can do it different WAYS and maybe take more risks, but you could get to the point where the only way to 'fail the challenge' would be to do so intentionally.

    Similarly, defeating the monster during a time limit using a weaker-than-intended weapon for its tier is challenging right up until the point where you downgrade to a weapon type where your DPS is too low for it to be POSSIBLE, but at that point, your skill can no longer be improved. I believe my data indicates that you either 'don't think about this' or kinda 'don't believe in it' and I'd like to frame your answer correctly.
    Sorry, my native language is Erlang.
    
  • edited January 25
    Azherae wrote: »
    @JamesSunderland - please feel free to consider it through the lens of 'finding the PvP easy also' as this is a meaningful possibility, and as you noted, if you happened to be one who found it easy, the gap would potentially extend to make it even easier.

    If i found the PvP too easy and found no meaningful PvP challengers to standoff against it would most definitely kill the game for me reasonably fast, to the point where i would most likely put the game aside or focus on the PvE Challenges more(if existent) till reasonable PvP competition show up.

    Lack of PvP challenge would most likely make me push myself into self-imposed disadvantages like going 1v9/1vX like i did many times back in the day in lineage 2
    6wtxguK.jpg
    Aren't we all sinners?
  • Ace1234Ace1234 Member
    edited January 25
    @Azherae
    For you, similarly, please assume that everyone starts at the same time, and in this 'random scenario', you happen to immediately BE the top player in PvP and PvE with your own natural playtime and skill. Would the fact that it was easy for you to maintain top position naturally, then influence your will to continue?

    No, fun to me isn't reliant on others to challenge me, its more about self-improvement, and mastering the game systems themselves, so as long as the gameplay itself is engaging and fun, then it doesn't neccessarily bother me if it was "easy" for me to do so. At that point, its just about seeing how I measure up against others that is interesting- it doesn't matter if that results in specific players giving me a challenge during that process, or me dominating certain players during that process- in that regard a variety of experiences/dynamic challenge is more interesting to me. I would prefer if there are situations where I am challenged by others, like I was explaining my initial response, but as to the question of "Would the fact that it was easy for you to maintain top position naturally, then influence your will to continue?" Then it would not influence it I don't believe.
  • Azherae wrote: »
    So, I was thinking that if Ashes is Easy and not otherwise offensive to my sensibilities, I might play it for way longer than I would play an easy single player game.

    A PvX MMORPG that isn't too grindy but is technically easy (or just easy for a specific type of person or group) seems like it can go one of two ways. Either the disparity between the 'naturally talented' and the 'not' keeps getting bigger and all the competition becomes similar to grinding to outpace the other 'naturally talented players', which makes it very mechanics/balance dependent...

    Or basically everyone manages some level of relative success and it becomes more or less a big RP game dependent on its PvE content or roleplaying community.

    Ashes isn't supposed to be easy, but within gaming, I always say that's a complex claim. The main definition of 'easy' vs 'hard' in games is 'can most people do it' because some humans are mechanical/analytic savants after a while exposed to something. Most games that get around this do it by challenging the aspect of human capability that we (so far) don't think changes easily, your working memory.

    So just a random thought today. Assume Ashes turns out to be super easy for you personally. So 'easy' that if it were a single player game, you'd probably get bored of it. Are you likely to keep playing it? In a single player game once you've reached the top, there's no more challenge. In an MMORPG though, you gain prestige and power within the game if you happen to find it really easy. Would you 'give that up just because it's not challenging enough?'

    People who don't play MMORPGs to be challenged, a different question. Do you stop playing significantly challenging single player games even if they are otherwise fun/immersive?


    It seems to me that something is missing in the assumption here and that is: There is a ton of variety in this game that is impossible to cover alone. The easiest example of that is in the artisan field, where you are only able to master 1 of 3 general fields and in that field only 2 of up to 9 possible jobs.

    Sure, some aspect of the game might come to you easy, but EVERYTHING being easy? That's for once unlikely but even if it all were easy to you, it's irrelevant because the systems are designed - and it seemed rather clear to me from the statements Intrepid had made so far - that no single player can do it all because there is no time for it while others are making their impact on the world. If solo playing was possible it would mean that Ashes became the absolute opposite of what an MMORPG wants to be. This game is designed to be a group challenge.
  • AzheraeAzherae Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    Kilion wrote: »
    Azherae wrote: »
    So, I was thinking that if Ashes is Easy and not otherwise offensive to my sensibilities, I might play it for way longer than I would play an easy single player game.

    A PvX MMORPG that isn't too grindy but is technically easy (or just easy for a specific type of person or group) seems like it can go one of two ways. Either the disparity between the 'naturally talented' and the 'not' keeps getting bigger and all the competition becomes similar to grinding to outpace the other 'naturally talented players', which makes it very mechanics/balance dependent...

    Or basically everyone manages some level of relative success and it becomes more or less a big RP game dependent on its PvE content or roleplaying community.

    Ashes isn't supposed to be easy, but within gaming, I always say that's a complex claim. The main definition of 'easy' vs 'hard' in games is 'can most people do it' because some humans are mechanical/analytic savants after a while exposed to something. Most games that get around this do it by challenging the aspect of human capability that we (so far) don't think changes easily, your working memory.

    So just a random thought today. Assume Ashes turns out to be super easy for you personally. So 'easy' that if it were a single player game, you'd probably get bored of it. Are you likely to keep playing it? In a single player game once you've reached the top, there's no more challenge. In an MMORPG though, you gain prestige and power within the game if you happen to find it really easy. Would you 'give that up just because it's not challenging enough?'

    People who don't play MMORPGs to be challenged, a different question. Do you stop playing significantly challenging single player games even if they are otherwise fun/immersive?


    It seems to me that something is missing in the assumption here and that is: There is a ton of variety in this game that is impossible to cover alone. The easiest example of that is in the artisan field, where you are only able to master 1 of 3 general fields and in that field only 2 of up to 9 possible jobs.

    Sure, some aspect of the game might come to you easy, but EVERYTHING being easy? That's for once unlikely but even if it all were easy to you, it's irrelevant because the systems are designed - and it seemed rather clear to me from the statements Intrepid had made so far - that no single player can do it all because there is no time for it while others are making their impact on the world. If solo playing was possible it would mean that Ashes became the absolute opposite of what an MMORPG wants to be. This game is designed to be a group challenge.

    Thank you, I'll change the OP to say 'you and your group'.
    Sorry, my native language is Erlang.
    
  • NiKrNiKr Member
    Azherae wrote: »
    NiKr - Clarify for me, I believe that you are one of those people who does not make the distinction between 'challenging' and 'mathematically impossible' for games, right? For example, 'winning a fight in Monster Hunter without ever taking damage' is 'challenging' but it 'caps', you can do it different WAYS and maybe take more risks, but you could get to the point where the only way to 'fail the challenge' would be to do so intentionally.

    Similarly, defeating the monster during a time limit using a weaker-than-intended weapon for its tier is challenging right up until the point where you downgrade to a weapon type where your DPS is too low for it to be POSSIBLE, but at that point, your skill can no longer be improved. I believe my data indicates that you either 'don't think about this' or kinda 'don't believe in it' and I'd like to frame your answer correctly.
    Yep, pretty much. I wouldn't really care about the difficulty along the way to my initial goal (right that being 100% exploration of the world, pretty much all possible quests, and as good a gear as I could get along the way, including any potential guild/party-related content).

    Getting to that goal might get super hard at times, which would just require me to "git gud" until I win. In the context of literally all the content in the game being easy for me to clear (including all the guild stuff) - I'd start PvPing against harder and harder enemies. And just as James said, I'd just start going on 1xX attacks to make it more challenging. And if it's truly impossible to win against a party as a solo player - that's where the fun for me would be. And if I happen to burn out of those attempts - I can always just make the game easier by partying up.

    In other words, I'll play the true sandbox part of the game after I'm finished with the themepark part. And the only "rules" in the sandbox are the ones you impose on yourself. And I like those rules to be as dumb as possible :D
  • Lack of PvP challenge would most likely make me push myself into self-imposed disadvantages like going 1v9/1vX like i did many times back in the day in lineage 2

    The same can be done in PvE. It's always easy to make things more difficult or challenging. Anyone who truly wants things to be hard can always imposed themselves an handicap. Don't optimize. Do encounters of a higher level than you should. Etc.
    Be bold. Be brave. Roll a Tulnar !
  • AzheraeAzherae Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    Percimes wrote: »
    Lack of PvP challenge would most likely make me push myself into self-imposed disadvantages like going 1v9/1vX like i did many times back in the day in lineage 2

    The same can be done in PvE. It's always easy to make things more difficult or challenging. Anyone who truly wants things to be hard can always imposed themselves an handicap. Don't optimize. Do encounters of a higher level than you should. Etc.

    That's useful information in a way, but without getting too much into a debate on 'what is difficulty', as I was saying to NiKr, this hits a cap.

    There's 'I have made this more challenging' and there's "I have made this impossible/entirely RNG dependent".

    I am not one of those lucky people who can 'attempt to do a known impossible thing and derive joy from failing at it'. The joy is knowing that I COULD win if I did it perfectly. Once I can do it perfectly, that's it, and depending on the game's complexity, PvE and sometimes PvP can just be 'done perfectly'.

    When there is nothing you could do better, I'd hope you were winning or that your opponent was in the same boat at which point the Balance Team or the RNG is the one deciding the outcome. Because of the way I experience games, to me this still counts as 'easy', I'm just spending my time doing something easy and still losing.

    I know NiKr can enjoy this for some reason, James might have been implying the opposite. What about you? If you can play perfectly against a boss, and the difference is that if you take off half your armor you lose and if you don't you win (even considering that you have to change strategy when you take off the armor, but you still are playing perfectly relative to half-armor), is this more challenging and THEREFORE more fun/engaging? When you get good enough at half-armor do you take off all but one piece?

    At some point it becomes impossible to do even when playing perfectly because this is an MMORPG. The gear is part of the point. Taking the gear off is explicitly 'not playing well' in many cases. Taking less people than intended to a fight is a challenge but you can only lower that number to one. But I'm still asking, I guess, do you personally enjoy that anyway, or even 'think that people who are not challenged should generally just spend their time attempting to do that which might be actually impossible with handicaps'?

    Can't say you'd be wrong, after all, that's just 'the difference between me and NiKr'.
    Sorry, my native language is Erlang.
    
  • Wandering MistWandering Mist Moderator, Member, Founder, Kickstarter, Alpha One
    Difficulty in an mmorpg is definitely a factor. If the game only requires me to spam a single button mindlessly for hours to reach max level, I lose interest pretty quickly. BUT it's not the only factor.

    volunteer_moderator.gif
  • KilionKilion Member
    edited January 25
    Azherae wrote: »
    Kilion wrote: »
    Azherae wrote: »
    So, I was thinking that if Ashes is Easy and not otherwise offensive to my sensibilities, I might play it for way longer than I would play an easy single player game.

    A PvX MMORPG that isn't too grindy but is technically easy (or just easy for a specific type of person or group) seems like it can go one of two ways. Either the disparity between the 'naturally talented' and the 'not' keeps getting bigger and all the competition becomes similar to grinding to outpace the other 'naturally talented players', which makes it very mechanics/balance dependent...

    Or basically everyone manages some level of relative success and it becomes more or less a big RP game dependent on its PvE content or roleplaying community.

    Ashes isn't supposed to be easy, but within gaming, I always say that's a complex claim. The main definition of 'easy' vs 'hard' in games is 'can most people do it' because some humans are mechanical/analytic savants after a while exposed to something. Most games that get around this do it by challenging the aspect of human capability that we (so far) don't think changes easily, your working memory.

    So just a random thought today. Assume Ashes turns out to be super easy for you personally. So 'easy' that if it were a single player game, you'd probably get bored of it. Are you likely to keep playing it? In a single player game once you've reached the top, there's no more challenge. In an MMORPG though, you gain prestige and power within the game if you happen to find it really easy. Would you 'give that up just because it's not challenging enough?'

    People who don't play MMORPGs to be challenged, a different question. Do you stop playing significantly challenging single player games even if they are otherwise fun/immersive?


    It seems to me that something is missing in the assumption here and that is: There is a ton of variety in this game that is impossible to cover alone. The easiest example of that is in the artisan field, where you are only able to master 1 of 3 general fields and in that field only 2 of up to 9 possible jobs.

    Sure, some aspect of the game might come to you easy, but EVERYTHING being easy? That's for once unlikely but even if it all were easy to you, it's irrelevant because the systems are designed - and it seemed rather clear to me from the statements Intrepid had made so far - that no single player can do it all because there is no time for it while others are making their impact on the world. If solo playing was possible it would mean that Ashes became the absolute opposite of what an MMORPG wants to be. This game is designed to be a group challenge.

    Thank you, I'll change the OP to say 'you and your group'.

    I thought about the changed question again and came to this conclusion: I could still see myself very much enjoying such a game, provided that the story is engaging to me. Sure, under the given premise it won't be very difficult make the steps forward, but they still have to be made, it still will take time and some form of effort to actually do it and along this path I can get served juicy bits of lore. If the story fragments are spread around the world and require big nodes to be in their vicinity to be unlocked it would mean me and my group still have quite the task at our hands: Build up a node to a metropolis to find the story pieces in that region, then tear it down and motivate the masses to build up a new metropolis at the next spot where we suspect more important pieces of the story to be hidden. Doing that alone would - with the time constrains on building a metropolis - mean years of game play, which in that time will expand and change with expansions and patches.

    Basically a good, engaging story with alluring mysteries in Ashes could motivate me to manipulate the whole server to help me unveil the these bits of story. And because that already makes me sound like a science-villian from almost every movie, it would probably result in the push back against my plans to tear down what others have come to hold dear - like their freeholds and cities. So I think just because the game mechanics might come easy to some there is still a lot of room left for players to enjoy themselves for years.
  • AzheraeAzherae Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    Kilion wrote: »
    Azherae wrote: »
    Kilion wrote: »
    Azherae wrote: »
    So, I was thinking that if Ashes is Easy and not otherwise offensive to my sensibilities, I might play it for way longer than I would play an easy single player game.

    A PvX MMORPG that isn't too grindy but is technically easy (or just easy for a specific type of person or group) seems like it can go one of two ways. Either the disparity between the 'naturally talented' and the 'not' keeps getting bigger and all the competition becomes similar to grinding to outpace the other 'naturally talented players', which makes it very mechanics/balance dependent...

    Or basically everyone manages some level of relative success and it becomes more or less a big RP game dependent on its PvE content or roleplaying community.

    Ashes isn't supposed to be easy, but within gaming, I always say that's a complex claim. The main definition of 'easy' vs 'hard' in games is 'can most people do it' because some humans are mechanical/analytic savants after a while exposed to something. Most games that get around this do it by challenging the aspect of human capability that we (so far) don't think changes easily, your working memory.

    So just a random thought today. Assume Ashes turns out to be super easy for you personally. So 'easy' that if it were a single player game, you'd probably get bored of it. Are you likely to keep playing it? In a single player game once you've reached the top, there's no more challenge. In an MMORPG though, you gain prestige and power within the game if you happen to find it really easy. Would you 'give that up just because it's not challenging enough?'

    People who don't play MMORPGs to be challenged, a different question. Do you stop playing significantly challenging single player games even if they are otherwise fun/immersive?


    It seems to me that something is missing in the assumption here and that is: There is a ton of variety in this game that is impossible to cover alone. The easiest example of that is in the artisan field, where you are only able to master 1 of 3 general fields and in that field only 2 of up to 9 possible jobs.

    Sure, some aspect of the game might come to you easy, but EVERYTHING being easy? That's for once unlikely but even if it all were easy to you, it's irrelevant because the systems are designed - and it seemed rather clear to me from the statements Intrepid had made so far - that no single player can do it all because there is no time for it while others are making their impact on the world. If solo playing was possible it would mean that Ashes became the absolute opposite of what an MMORPG wants to be. This game is designed to be a group challenge.

    Thank you, I'll change the OP to say 'you and your group'.

    I thought about the changed question again and came to this conclusion: I could still see myself very much enjoying such a game, provided that the story is engaging to me. Sure, under the given premise it won't be very difficult make the steps forward, but they still have to be made, it still will take time and some form of effort to actually do it and along this path I can get served juicy bits of lore. If the story fragments are spread around the world and require big nodes to be in their vicinity to be unlocked it would mean me and my group still have quite the task at our hands: Build up a node to a metropolis to find the story pieces in that region, then tear it down and motivate the masses to build up a new metropolis at the next spot where we suspect more important pieces of the story to be hidden. Doing that alone would - with the time constrains on building a metropolis - mean years of game play, which in that time will expand and change with expansions and patches.

    Basically a good, engaging story with alluring mysteries in Ashes could motivate me to manipulate the whole server to help me unveil the these bits of story. And because that already makes me sound like a science-villian from almost every movie, it would probably result in the push back against my plans to tear down what others have come to hold dear - like their freeholds and cities. So I think just because the game mechanics might come easy to some there is still a lot of room left for players to enjoy themselves for years.

    For your data then, I'm treating this as a very 'roundabout' assent of situation #2 "It becomes an RP game".

    Oversimplifying of course. I have been noticing lately that this is a good way to get some decent 'mass appeal' into an MMO without making it too hard. It's hard to fault the formula being used too much, but since Ashes is specifically trying to be at least a little different than the standard "Easy game for casuals! PvP Optional sections for Competitives! Throw in some good story for people who find it too easy!", I wondered what would happen if they tried to keep the first part of it.

    Grati pur data.
    Sorry, my native language is Erlang.
    
  • PercimesPercimes Member
    edited January 25
    Azherae wrote: »
    I know NiKr can enjoy this for some reason, James might have been implying the opposite. What about you? If you can play perfectly against a boss, and the difference is that if you take off half your armor you lose and if you don't you win (even considering that you have to change strategy when you take off the armor, but you still are playing perfectly relative to half-armor), is this more challenging and THEREFORE more fun/engaging? When you get good enough at half-armor do you take off all but one piece?

    At some point it becomes impossible to do even when playing perfectly because this is an MMORPG. The gear is part of the point. Taking the gear off is explicitly 'not playing well' in many cases. Taking less people than intended to a fight is a challenge but you can only lower that number to one. But I'm still asking, I guess, do you personally enjoy that anyway, or even 'think that people who are not challenged should generally just spend their time attempting to do that which might be actually impossible with handicaps'?

    Can't say you'd be wrong, after all, that's just 'the difference between me and NiKr'.

    Oh I don't think many people want to handicap themselves to up the challenges. Usually when they say they want things to be hard, it imply it must be universally hard. If it's only difficult for themselves (and by their own design no less) it's meaninglessly hard. At the same time, there are some people running marathons wearing costumes or odd footwear as if marathons were not challenging enough. In games, there are people like the "Let Me Solo Her" guy in Elden Rings. Exceptions, not the rules.

    On a personal level, I don't tend to repeat content or bosses enough for me to even consider making it more difficult out of boredom. My fun is more about finding what is possible or what could make something impossible possible (and in the MMOs I've played the line between the two is too often limited by level mechanics that make it sharp and easy to anticipate) . Instead of considering removing armour I'm more likely to not stress about improving it. I never look for the best in slot, I make do with what I can get or stumble upon. I've always been drawn to classes or spec others say are underpowered, that's how I handicap myself.

    In open PvP, I handicap myself by rarely initiating fights, and never against someone I have an advantage upon. Battlegrounds are another story.
    Be bold. Be brave. Roll a Tulnar !
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds, Kickstarter, Alpha One
    I don't understand why a single-player RPG would be so boring that I stop playing.

    I play MMORPGs so that I can see how other players are playing and so we can cooperate to defeat mobs and NPCs. Together, we can emulate the stories in Fantasy and Sci-Fi novels.

    In terms of Easy v Hard...
    My playstyle is Casual Challenge/Hardcore Time.
    So... I'm going to spend more time playing a Casual Challenge RPG than a Hardcore Challenge RPG, because I'm more interested in the RP aspect of RPG than I am the Game aspect of RPG.
    Which is why I refer to myself as a player, rather than as a gamer.

    I can't think of a single-player RPG that I found so Hardcore Challenge I couldn't/wouldn't finish it.
    But, sure, I suppose it's not impossible for one to be created.
    MMORPGs typically just become too tedious to play - and then I wait for that content to be nerfed or an expansion to provide gear that allows me to complete the Hardcore content.
    Of course... I consider PvP to be a form of Hardcore Challenge which I can only stomach for short periods of time, so...
  • NeurathNeurath Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    I'd rather have a hard game that's easier to play than an easy game that's hard to play. Thus, I believe I can be put off by control systems that are difficult to use rather than enthused by the difficulty of overcoming the control system just to be mediocre.
  • AzheraeAzherae Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    Neurath wrote: »
    I'd rather have a hard game that's easier to play than an easy game that's hard to play. Thus, I believe I can be put off by control systems that are difficult to use rather than enthused by the difficulty of overcoming the control system just to be mediocre.

    Grati, but the question is more specifically about 'an easy game that's easy to play'.

    Take James' example in this case. L2, as I understand it, is not a terribly 'hard' game, from the perspective of control system.

    And it's possible that around your Node in Ashes, no strong PvP players appear, no alternate Guild forms. You're just 'allowed to be the Champion Warlord Regent of The Jundark', in the sense that no one would dare challenge you even in 1v3 because they would STILL lose due to your superior skill and gear.

    Now that you are unchallenged (not in the sense that no one ever attacks you, but no one ever wins and it isn't terribly hard to beat them) politically, in personal combat, and possibly by the PvE targets...

    Will you keep playing the game just because you ARE currently 'Champion Warlord Regent Of The Jundark', or will you diminish your attention in search of a challenge in another game?
    Sorry, my native language is Erlang.
    
  • NeurathNeurath Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    I would aim to become Mayor of a military node via the arena there. The challenge would also be large scale vs large scale. If I am the best and I keep my abode intact then I would be pleased rather than disconnected. Eventually, we would lose large vs large and that day would turn pride against me.

    In effect, I don't see Ashes as being able to be simple in all spheres. I do often get bored with pve on farm but I'm trying to be focused on pvp and to buy my gear etc. I'm not saying I won't raid but I would aim to make alliances with crafters more than raiders. I will raid to gather materials though being a gatherer in trade. Perhaps challenge will come from the natural degradation in familiar areas.
  • AzheraeAzherae Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    Dygz wrote: »
    I don't understand why a single-player RPG would be so boring that I stop playing.

    I play MMORPGs so that I can see how other players are playing and so we can cooperate to defeat mobs and NPCs. Together, we can emulate the stories in Fantasy and Sci-Fi novels.

    In terms of Easy v Hard...
    My playstyle is Casual Challenge/Hardcore Time.
    So... I'm going to spend more time playing a Casual Challenge RPG than a Hardcore Challenge RPG, because I'm more interested in the RP aspect of RPG than I am the Game aspect of RPG.
    Which is why I refer to myself as a player, rather than as a gamer.

    I can't think of a single-player RPG that I found so Hardcore Challenge I couldn't/wouldn't finish it.
    But, sure, I suppose it's not impossible for one to be created.
    MMORPGs typically just become too tedious to play - and then I wait for that content to be nerfed or an expansion to provide gear that allows me to complete the Hardcore content.
    Of course... I consider PvP to be a form of Hardcore Challenge which I can only stomach for short periods of time, so...

    Would it be fair to say that you don't care how 'low' the challenge rating drops for games?

    I believe that a person can still have fun choosing a character style, performing the actions for that character style to live out the class fantasy of it, and still entirely enjoy it, so I am not surprised, but I want to make sure I don't misunderstand you.

    A single player or small group game, that still counts as an RPG because you have chosen a way of existence/role within the group/game world, but that contains minimal challenge of ANY kind and basically tells you the story of the character like a book and you occasionally press a button to confirm or start an event...

    This can hold your attention too, you don't find yourself 'wishing that the game were more challenging', right?
    Sorry, my native language is Erlang.
    
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds, Kickstarter, Alpha One
    edited January 25
    Azherae wrote: »
    Would it be fair to say that you don't care how 'low' the challenge rating drops for games?
    I think so? Because I'm really trying to emulate playing a role in a film or novel, rather than experience a challenging game. I am non-competitive, so I'm definitely not interested in the challenge of being the best gamer. Even when I PvP (or play sports), that's mostly just to be social.
    In an RPG, I mostly care about the storytelling rather than having difficult challenges.

    Azherae wrote: »
    I believe that a person can still have fun choosing a character style, performing the actions for that character style to live out the class fantasy of it, and still entirely enjoy it, so I am not surprised, but I want to make sure I don't misunderstand you.
    I think you did not misunderstand.

    Azherae wrote: »
    A single player or small group game, that still counts as an RPG because you have chosen a way of existence/role within the group/game world, but that contains minimal challenge of ANY kind and basically tells you the story of the character like a book and you occasionally press a button to confirm or start an event...
    I think single-player and small group RPGs could still have very difficult challenges.
    Morrowind back in the day....
    Champions of Norrath...
    KOA: Reckoning...
    Baldur's Gate - Especially, Baldur's Gate 3...
    Primary difference in those and an MMORPG is that there is no multiplayer.
    They don't simply tell you a story like a book and you just occassionally press a button to confirm or start an event.

    Myst kinda tells you a story like a book, the way you describe.
    The TellTale video games....
    Those are not RPGs.

    Azherae wrote: »
    This can hold your attention too, you don't find yourself 'wishing that the game were more challenging', right?
    I am pretty sure that I have never had the thought that I wish an RPG were more challenging.
  • NiKrNiKr Member
    Azherae wrote: »
    I am not one of those lucky people who can 'attempt to do a known impossible thing and derive joy from failing at it'. The joy is knowing that I COULD win if I did it perfectly. Once I can do it perfectly, that's it, and depending on the game's complexity, PvE and sometimes PvP can just be 'done perfectly'.

    When there is nothing you could do better, I'd hope you were winning or that your opponent was in the same boat at which point the Balance Team or the RNG is the one deciding the outcome. Because of the way I experience games, to me this still counts as 'easy', I'm just spending my time doing something easy and still losing.

    I know NiKr can enjoy this for some reason.
    I think it's because to me it becomes a puzzle of "finding the lowest limit of my power that's still enough to clear the content". In the context of the game being super easy, you'd already have cleared all the content in the game, so, if you then had to redo that content - you'd be playing a sandbox of "make your own fun".

    And removing gear is not really necessary in an mmo. You can go down in tiers, you can limit the amount of resources you have (if they come into play during the content), you can limit the abilities you use. You, pretty much, just become your own biggest enemy. And any potential rng just blurs the line of the possible, but that is the case with pretty much all content (if it has rng of course).

    In other words, I play my own game within the game that devs made for me B) I find it quite interesting that you don't really like this kind of approach to sandboxy games. Though I guess that's just the difference in the games we play and, most likely, our skill lvls.
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