Should "Gate" Nodes Level?

AzathothAzathoth Member, Braver of Worlds
Another recent thread had the following post by @damokles:

"IS said that every race will have its own specific starting node with an divine gateway (we have no idea which level these nodes will have, but i think they will be level1). The players can then freely choose between these startingpoints, except for the tulnar. So it would be reasonable to say that we will have around 9 starting points.
These starting nodes will be most likely be setup by the scouts and should be then in the expeditionary state, meaning that we will have to recruit npcs and care for the overall safety of the surrounding area."

My question is related to this.
Do you think the initial nodes we start in should level beyond whatever level they start at?

I think I would prefer them not to level. Having them remain static and lower level could push more players further from the starting locations. If the starting nodes did level, then they would likely level quickly and be hubs for a lot of players for quite some time. If they were the first nodes to level 3, 5, or 6 then new players might have fewer reasons to go outwards, explore, and help level other nodes.

Maybe not, I am not sure what all has been confirmed about the starting locations, except that they will be a safe zone. Perhaps this indicates they will be static and not like regular nodes that develop into towns/cities/etc.
+1 Skull & Crown metal coin


  • WololoWololo Member, Leader of Men
    Based on the info we have , I think the starting areas themselves will not be a node but in between them. Togethere with 'international waters' these would be the only places not covered by a node. The first node you walk into would have the same potential for growth then any other node. Ofcource the first wave of players might occupy the closest nodes but this should balance out over time.
    So the NPC's you find around the starting gateway in the starting area are not necessarily setting up expedition to grow into a node but more to accommodate players with some starting gear/quests, begin the process of starting a guild or perhaps a introduction tutorial to some base mechanics of the game.

    "A problem that a lot of MMOs have is that those starting areas become just kind of vacant of players and it's so sad because the greatest aspect of an MMO is that community that you get to experience, so one of the great things about the node system is that it really works from new player acquisition standpoint, where these nodes tend to develop larger near the starting location areas around the world; and it brings these players back to those locations if they're citizens and want services within those cities. So, as new players enter the world they're going to actually be surrounded most likely by more population because people are coming back to those larger nodes"

    "There will be small NPC settlements at the starting areas. These represent scouts that were sent ahead of the main expedition back to Verra. These settlements are designed to acclimatize new players entering the world"

    I think that the starting nodes should be able to level to the mtropolis level tbh.
  • unknownsystemerrorunknownsystemerror Member, Leader of Men
    The starting areas are meant to be static. If what we saw in Alpha 0 is any indication they are just a cluster of tents that have npcs explaining basic starter quests to new players where they get a feel for the game. The placeholder that we saw was based in the ruins of an old city. Since node encampments at level 1 have a couple of choices(server chooses, people don't) of where they initially generate this will mean those vary from server to server also. If they made the 5 starter camps able to be governed and level up it would be confusing as hell to new players. "I just popped into this sprawling city. What do I do?" The nodes surrounding them will be the first to develop just because as people spread, they will be killing stuff, giving exp to the node. People are lazy and will go the path of least resistance when leveling, so when they see an encampment pop up in the node next to a starter area in the first few hours they will flock to it, giving it more experience, thus leveling faster, creating a feed cycle that will reinforce that. If the starter areas are able to level, then basically you have people able to base out of a node that can never be destroyed since they are not going to be moving ancient gates around the map.
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds
    The starting areas will eventually fall within the ZOI of a Metro.
    I don’t think the starting areas need to level. The adjacent regions will be dynamic and that should be enough to make the starting areas to feel a bit dynamic as well.

    Since, any race can start at any starting area it would also be interesting to see how the Dwarf starting area feels if a horde of Elves start characters there.
    When I make new character in WoW or EQ, I usually run that character over to the starting area of a different race. I’ll run a Forsaken over to the Tauren starting area immediately after character creation.

    Does make me wonder if the perpetual winter caused by the Winter Dragon would also affect a starting area.
  • ApokApok Member, Settler
    My theory is that it's probably a waste of dev time to spend to much time on a starting point for a big MMO, it's gonna be easier for the devs to copy and paste a node and lock it in at lv1 then to create whole camps/towns around a starting point. It's also a great way of the game training you of the mechanics it has to offer without getting deep into it being at those low levels you won't need a progressed node at that time because you should just be focusing on simple things like hunting and gathering.
  • noaaninoaani Member
    From an immersion perspective I'd like to see these areas level up like the rest of the game. However, from a logical perspective, I think the initial content itself needs to be totally static.

    The first thing that players expect when entering a new games world is basic directions on how to play, and how major systems of the game work. The starting areas in Ashes need to inform players of how nodes work and how that affects the level of the content, and that all needs to happen before level 5 imo.

    Those few small pieces of the world are the only place that need to always offer the same function to characters of exactly the same overall power level, and as such it seems reasonable for it to be static content.
  • Samiel AurousSamiel Aurous Member, Braver of Worlds
    Personally I think they should be allowed to level naturally, It would allow for a greater level of immersion and would force the players to make better choices, as Steven said the larger a population grows the more resources it will need and the more active an area is the more likely it is that it will be the focal point for world changing events.

    That to me means that it could go either way:
    1. They allow the starting zones for each race to grow naturally and have them potentially be attacked by dragons, other cities, etc.
    2. They don't allow it to grow to keep lowbies from starting their game during a world event they can't participate in.

    either way I am excited to see how it goes.
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