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Dungeons and Dragons Online Beta Impressions

Zonk posted more than 8 years ago | from the rogues-with-meaning-ye-gods dept.

Role Playing (Games) 148

The NDA for the Dungeons and Dragons Online Beta is now a thing of the past. F13's piece prior to the lifting of the NDA is a good place to get started. They also have a lively discussion going, discussing all aspects of the upcoming game, which launches February 28th. From the f13 piece: "The most important thing to understand about DDO is Turbine is trying a different take on the genre. People looking strictly for a WoW clone in a D&D flavored wrapper won't find it. For some that may be a good thing, for others not so much. Oh to be sure, it has a lot of the same trappings as your previous favorite graphical-Diku-mud; after all, most fantasy computer role playing games owe a little or very large portion of their structure to the granddaddy of all pen and paper rpgs, Dungeon & Dragons. So it comes as no surprise to find this game with familiar fantasy races, defined character classes, and easily recognizable fantasy monsters, magic items and spells. But, as I have grown fond of saying these last several years, the devil's in the implementation. To that end, DDO is almost as easily defined by what it is NOT as by what it IS."

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148 comments

Great looking game (1, Insightful)

Gojira Shipi-Taro (465802) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433089)

and the basic game itself is pretty impressive in implementation.

Unfortunately, making any real progress while soloing is completely impossible. This has gone back and forth throughout beta. At the present time, due to "diminishing returns" when you re-enter a dungeon, you can forget "leveling through perseverence".

I don't group with strangers, and my friends are only available occasionally (and the chat system is abysmal, which makes identifying competent players with which to group extremely difficult), so I'll be passing on this one.

Re:Great looking game (3, Insightful)

sheared (21404) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433288)

The game seems to me to be Guild Wars with DnD rules. The meat of the game play is in an instanced dungeon with you and your party members. They should have taken the Guild Wars approach to henchmen and given you the option of several styles of NPC party members. I might consider doing it that way. I'm in the same boat as the original author: I don't group with strangers and my friends are on rarely (if at all).

Plus, I'm not paying monthly to play a game 2-4 hours per week (if that much). Either use Guild Wars payment approach or have some kind of tiered payment for the casual gamer such as myself. I'm not subsidizing server and bandwidth costs for all the folks with 80 hours/week available to play.

Re:Great looking game (1)

Gojira Shipi-Taro (465802) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433423)

I have to agree. If I could hire NPCs, the game might be salvageable. As it sits, I won't be subscribing. I (as you) will not pay the server fee for the players that can actually spare the time to group up all the time.

Re:Great looking game (4, Insightful)

MBraynard (653724) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433974)

You, your parent, and grandparent should note.

The problem is not with the game, it is with how you want to play a game.

Your criticism is Useless and meaningless. You cannot criticize an SUV for not going really really fast, and you should not critizice an MMO for not playing like a single-player RPG.

It almost seems incomplete without a similar line about "whaaaa - I paid for the game at the store why do I have to keep paying each month - whaaaaa" (though there are doubtlessly a few dozen of those posted below, no doubt)

Unfortunately, this moronic ejaculation by all three of you completely qualifies you to write game reviews for a living. Congratulations.

Re:Great looking game (2, Insightful)

KingSkippus (799657) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434759)

I'd kill for a mod point right now. I'm so glad that SOMEONE finally pointed out the obvious.

This is a source of some frustration to me. People buy an MMORPG, then complain that it's not soloable. If I wanted a soloable game, I wouldn't be buying an MMORPG! I guess these folks' reason for wanting an MMORPG is just so that they can see other avatars running around, not actually interact with them.

Jeez, as a computer geek, I'm about as antisocial as the rest of you, but at least I have the gumption to fire off an invitation to team up every once in a while. Frankly, this is precisely why one should want an MMORPG! I've met many cool strangers through MMORPGs, people I now consider new friends. There's hardly ever a shortage of these folks I know now online to team up with, and I enjoy doing so immensely.

So seriously, folks, stop complaining that your MMORPG is not conducive to solo play. Stop trying to convince the developers of MMORPGs that they should make your solo character so very powerful that you can accomplish anything in the game without having to (gasp!) talk to anyone else. As the parent said, if that's what you want, go buy a single-player RPG.

Have any of you complainers actually ever even played the old paper-and-pencil Dungeons and Dragons game? If so, how fun was it to solo that?

(sigh)

Re:Great looking game (1)

sheared (21404) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434931)

I assume then, that your life and schedule will allow you to spend hours on end playing the game online. I on the other hand do not have hours to spend waiting for invitations to be accepted, firing off more invitations when the first group had a some kind of freak who made the game unplayable or when half the group dropped, and then having to spend the time finishing the instanced, unsavable quest.

ON THE OTHER HAND. In Guild Wars, me and one, or maybe two friends, can pull in 3-4 NPC characters and have an enjoyable time without having to spend all the effort looking for 3-4 non-idiot real people to play with. I can do this once or twice a MONTH, and not worry about paying $15/month to do so.

Not solo play, but not forcing me into huge groups that I don't want to be in either, and not forcing me to play 50 hours to justify the expense. See the difference?

Re:Great looking game (2, Interesting)

owyn999 (856162) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435842)

So you have actually played the DnD Online. The groups don't need to be huge, usually a group of about 3-4 PC's of the quests level plus one of the next level up... and I played for 3-4 hours a night while my test machine was running and had no problem finding groups when I wanted them. The LFG option is a good one. My only problem with the game is that I am going to have to pay to play after the release date... I had a few problems during the beta but nothing to huge. The balance of characters is very good. The only down side was the fact that you almost always needed a Rogue for all the traps. Someone needs to think that one through. A few of the side quests were a pain though like the friggin boss parts of the Sewer Quest part III. now I'm not quite sure I liked the leveling scheme but that is something that I may find out more about once I get into the game better. I just hope that the world expands for some more outdoor quests ontop of everything else. And maybe even adding in a jobs function much like that in the old SW:Galaxies, for those that want to do something like that.

Re:Great looking game (0)

C0rinthian (770164) | more than 8 years ago | (#14438709)

No one is making you play the game. Seriously, if you don't have the time to play an MMO, don't play an MMO. There's no reason to expect the Developers to change a game that OTHERS might enjoy just because you don't. If Guild Wars fills your needs better, play that.

Games should not appeal to everyone. It's okay for games to be different, and to appeal to different people. The variety is interesting.

Re:Great looking game (3, Insightful)

Gojira Shipi-Taro (465802) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435035)

Thanks for your OPINION, but a significant number of players disagree with you.

I never said that I wanted to solo ALL the time, but I do want options when my friends are not available. I do not choose to include grouping with J Random Stranger as one of those options. I've played these games for YEARS and life (and my available gaming time) is too short to waste my time on what is 99% of the time a frustrating and fruitless effort. The chat system in DDO is absolutely horrible, and it's actually a vast improvement over the interface available in Alpha. Simply put, it makes the process of putting a party together even more painful and fruitless as it is in other games.

As to "soloing" PnP D&D, I've done it. Way back in the 80's when I was in High School, there were very few of us that played. Often only two of us had time to play. In those situations one would GM and the other would pad out his "party" with henchmen. Not ideal, but honestly what fucking business is it of yours what I or anyone other than yourself enjoy anyhow?

To those saying "you're playing it wrong": Bullshit. I'm playing the way I'm going to get maximum enjoyment out of it. I fucking well WILL judge a game and its suitability based on MY criteria.

It's not like I'm asking them to change the game to suit me. I'll simply take my dollar elsewhere. There are plenty of MMOs out there with content available for people who want to solo, rather than hang out and try to scrape up a group of griefers and AOL kiddies. I'll play one of those.

I will NOT be silent about why though.

Re:Great looking game (0)

drsquare (530038) | more than 8 years ago | (#14437097)

Not ideal, but honestly what fucking business is it of yours what I or anyone other than yourself enjoy anyhow?

It's not him who's telling people how to run their game. If you don't like it don't play it. I don't go into a butcher's complaining they don't sell vegetables, just because the one I used to go to sold them.

The original D&D wasn't a solo player game so I don't see why you should expect this one to be as well. Just the Slashdot sense of entitlement rearing its ugly head again.

Re:Great looking game (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14435104)

Being Massively Multiplayer shouldn't mean that you have to be in a group to make meaningful progress in the game.
What Guild Wars really provides you with is choice; wait until your friends are online, try to group with some of the less slack jawed randoms about the place, or just grab some henchmen and go.

Almost invariably, you are going to have a better experience if you choose to group with people than if you are forced to group with people.

Personally, having played several MMORPG's, I have neither the time nor inclination to pay a monthly fee for a game which is going to leave me feeling like I'm wasting money if I don't spend 20 hours a week trying to find a bunch of Norwegian teenagers who want to go into the same dungeon...

Anyway, they're not complaining that it's not condusive to solo play, they're saying they're not going to play it because (presumably) like me, that model doesn't fit the way they like to play.

Re:Great looking game (4, Insightful)

sdhankin (213671) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435125)

I've heard this comment (or others like them) many times, and I've never understood them. As much as it is a genre of games, a MMORPG is a game implementation. Why would anyone want to play it alone?

Let's see:

1) The world is vast and fun to explore
2) It's fun to play the character classes in that world
3) The battle system is varied and interesting
4) The story line is compelling

Get the picture? Notice how often I mentioned other on-line players?

A game is either fun or it's not; whether it happens to be implemented on-line is irrelevant. I've played Guild Wars since it came out, and I've had a blast. I haven't grouped at all. Horrors! I've been playing an on-line game like I'd have played it if it were off-line. My god - where are the police when you need them?

Re:Great looking game (1)

sakshale (598643) | more than 8 years ago | (#14438290)

1) The world is vast and fun to explore
2) It's fun to play the character classes in that world
3) The battle system is varied and interesting
4) The story line is compelling

I wish I had a mod point. You've hit the nail right on the head!

Spending 45 minutes to put together a group, followed by a half hour to get the group to the hunting location, only to have a wipeout because one player doesn't have a clue, followed by another half hour of recovery... then log off as my two hours of game time runs out... Definately fun, fun, fun.

My son, who started playing table top D&D at the age of ten, lasted two days in Beta. The lack of anyway to advance solo ended his interest in the game. I won't purchase an evaluation copy, for just that reason. I wish them success, but I won't be playing. It is simply not my style.

Re:Great looking game (1)

shaitand (626655) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435585)

Some people prefer the social interaction to occur outside of combat and combat to be solo. At the very least they want to be able to play for a bit when there is nobody they can group with. let's also not forget taht in every mmorpg there are classes that can get groups anytime and classes that are only picked if there is nobody else on. In this game there appears to be no social interaction outside of combat so that does knock out one of these reasons for soloing.

Re:Great looking game (1)

Lord_Pain (165272) | more than 8 years ago | (#14436091)

Have any of you complainers actually ever even played the old paper-and-pencil Dungeons and Dragons game? If so, how fun was it to solo that?

Amazing. I have played the old game. Before there was an Advanced Dungeons and Dragons.

So I realize how retarded your statement actually is. A Dungeon Master controls the interaction of NPC's and monsters with the player as well as "write" the story. A computer game has all that taken care of already. Including a MMORPG. So you cannot effectivly solo in a PnP game. But you can in a computer based game.

I have bumped into enough folks who seems to be awefully impressed with their own opinions. People can play a game anyway that they want. If the game doesn't match then they leave. Simple. The parent post only made an observation that is relevent to folks who view games the same way. Then we have self absorbed types getting all riled up.

To get bent out of shape over someone's opinion is sheer idiocy.

Re:Great looking game (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14435838)

Maybe you can't criticize an SUV for not going fast, but you certainly can say that you won't be purchasing an SUV BECAUSE it doesn't drive fast.

I doubt you've ever spent much time in an MMORPG or you'd know that much of your time is spent soloing.

The parent posters had valid points. If you want to be an apologist for this game, that's your issue, not theirs.

Re:Great looking game (0)

MBraynard (653724) | more than 8 years ago | (#14438996)

Maybe you can't criticize an SUV for not going fast, but you certainly can say that you won't be purchasing an SUV BECAUSE it doesn't drive fast.

It's just not a useful comment to anyone to say that. It's like me having posted here and saying 'there is no way I am playing this sucky game - I only like FPSs.' It would be modded troll, appropriatly so. It's the kind of comment you would expect from a socially inept fool.

I doubt you've ever spent much time in an MMORPG or you'd know that much of your time is spent soloing.

Au contraire. I have spent way to much time in them. Much of your time is spent soloing in them, true, but this is not a soloing MMORPG - and NO time is spent soloing playing D&D, which is what this game is suppose to reflect.

The parent posters had valid points. If you want to be an apologist for this game, that's your issue, not theirs.

Turbine sucks. I'd never buy anything from them. I just find these posts obnoxious where someone makes a game and rather than criticizing it on the merits, someone criticizes it for something entirely irrelevant. A lot of that goes on here. You don't like Halo 2? Why? Because you can't play it with a mouse and keyboard? Etc. (disclaimer, yeah, smarty pants, I know you can play with a mouse and keyboard if you want to).

Re:Great looking game (1)

Lonewolf666 (259450) | more than 8 years ago | (#14438947)

While I agree that a MMORPG is mainly for playing together, you may not always find a good group. In that case, it is quite OK if you can do some easier stuff on your own.

And the real reason for this reply:
Unfortunately, this moronic ejaculation by all three of you completely qualifies you to write game reviews for a living. Congratulations.
If I had mod points at the moment, this would bring you a -1, Flamebait. Insulting people because you disagree with them is really low and one of the reasons Slashdot sucks sometimes.

Re:Great looking game (1)

drsquare (530038) | more than 8 years ago | (#14436959)

I'm in the same boat as the original author: I don't group with strangers and my friends are on rarely (if at all).

Perhaps you're better off with a single RPG rather than a MORPG.

Considering how successful the subscription model is, why would they change it just to suit a few people who don't like it?

Anyway if it were free you'd just get all the kids who can't afford to play WoW.

Re:Great looking game (1)

Bellum Aeternus (891584) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433289)

"and the chat system is abysmal, which makes identifying competent players with which to group extremely difficult"

IMO, the entire UI is abysmal dark grey and tan with random amounts of transparency, too much chrome, and everything can be accidentally dragged about... I'm passing too.

I was a AD&D geek growing up and had high hopes for this game, but like AC2 this is another Turbine flop IMO. Of course you're welcome to your own, but I'm suggesting against this one for anybody who like the speed of CoH and/or the balance of WoW.

Re:Great looking game (1, Funny)

tsm_sf (545316) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433832)

but I'm suggesting against this one for anybody who like the speed of CoH and/or the balance of WoW.

With an opinion like that you can only be a Shaman.

Re:Great looking game (1)

Bellum Aeternus (891584) | more than 8 years ago | (#14437234)

With an opinion like that you can only be a Shaman.

Actually, a Mage. Go figure - still, WoW is the best balanced MMORPG, IMO.

Re:Great looking game (1)

Gojira Shipi-Taro (465802) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435052)

IMO, the entire UI is abysmal dark grey and tan with random amounts of transparency, too much chrome, and everything can be accidentally dragged about... I'm passing too.


It's a vast improvement over what was there in alpha (and at least now you can lock down the shortcut buttons), but yea it's hardly ready to ship... there's a lot of what I had assumed were place-holder graphics still in the UI.

the "lively discussion" (1)

kongjie (639414) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433113)

...seems to require registration on F13.net.

Re:the "lively discussion" (1)

schild (713993) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433170)

Fixed. Apologies. Toggle boxen are hard.

Re:the "lively discussion" (0, Troll)

kongjie (639414) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433265)

Cool, thanks. Could you also port the game to Mac please? LOL.

Re:the "lively discussion" (1)

kongjie (639414) | more than 8 years ago | (#14438674)

Cripes, get a sense of humor. I was joking that he fixed the link so quickly that perhaps he could get the game ported just as quickly...

Nerfing (3, Insightful)

Bios_Hakr (68586) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433123)

Here's what I see happening:

When the game is released, the classes and creatures will feel a lot like they are described in the rulebooks. After a while, they'll nerf this and boost that until we are left with a game that is D&D in name only.

You'd think that after what, 25 years, the rules would be fairly well tweaked out. But once you move from 5 friends on a table to 5,000,000 on a server, some things will have to change.

Not much difference (2, Informative)

Nasarius (593729) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433184)

But once you move from 5 friends on a table to 5,000,000 on a server, some things will have to change.

Not so much, really. From the article: all quests take place in private instances.

Re:Not much difference (1)

Bios_Hakr (68586) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433227)

As do WoWs. That still does not prevent instances where 50 or more people take part in a raid. How will D&D adapt in a landscape where 50+ people expect a 5+ hour raid culminating with a single bad guy?

Re:Not much difference (1)

VGPowerlord (621254) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433262)

Not so much, really. From the article: all quests take place in private instances.

As do WoWs.

All of WoWs quests take place in instances? You must be playing a different WoW than I am. Mine is World of Warcraft [worldofwarcraft.com] , and it has many more quests that take place outside of instances than inside of instances.

Re:Not much difference (1)

Wyatt Earp (1029) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433284)

I'd say that well over 90 percent of World of Warcraft's quests take place outside of Instances.

Re:Not much difference (5, Insightful)

aztektum (170569) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433317)

I'm in the beta for DnD. This isn't anything like WoW. It's more like Guild Wars. You create a party and get an instanced dungeon for your party. It has a lot of the DnD "atmosphere" with text descriptions of the scene quickly popping up when you move through areas to replicate the DM feel. All in all the feeling of the game is actually cool. Pubs and inns have wonderful atmosphere, the music is catchy, and you feel like you're really almost there. I haven't progressed too far into higher levels though, so I can't say much about that. I will need to find more free time to play before it launches though, so I can see if it will be worth it to buy. (and help report bugs too of couse)

Re:Not much difference (1)

Flendon (857337) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433324)

The most you will see on a raid is 12-18 people. The longest quests take slightly over an hour.

Re:Not much difference (1)

C0rinthian (770164) | more than 8 years ago | (#14439030)

Umm, raids are capped at 40. Still a lot of people, but there's no reason to exaggerate.

Re:Nerfing (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14433268)

But once you move from 5 friends on a table to 5,000,000 on a server, some things will have to change.

Not only that, but when you move from a flexible system limited only by the imaginations of the people playing it to a rigid system limited to what's been written in code, some things will definitely have to change.

Also, there is no DM in D&D Online. With the pencil and paper version of the game, players who exploit loopholes in the rules can be dealt with very quickly, because the DM is there to arbitrate. In the online game, the only option is to change things in a patch.

No computer game is ever going to perfectly reproduce pencil and paper role playing, but hopefully they can come pretty close. D&D Online doesn't seem to be the closest you can get to the tabletop game, but it's a step in the right direction at least.

Re:Nerfing (1)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433394)

Yes, because game rules in MMORPGs are implemented client side.

Re:Nerfing (2, Insightful)

thesandtiger (819476) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435438)

The person you're responding to didn't say that the rules were kept client side. He mentioned that players might exploit loopholes in the rules, not edit them to their whim.

The person's point seemed to be "If someone abuses a flaw in the rules in a Pen and Paper game, the DM can shut them down right away. If someone abuses a flaw in the rules of an on-line game, since there is no DM or omnipresent authority, they'll be able to get away with it."

Which I agree with. PnP is different from MMO, and ultimately the rules will have to change (on the server side, of course) in order to accomodate those differences and still keep things enjoyable.

Hack you DM for fun and profit! (1)

BlueHands (142945) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434438)

because lord knows that no DM can every be exploited either....

Re:Nerfing (1)

shaitand (626655) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435670)

I dunno. The perfect ruleset always seem to be a combination of 1st and 2nd Edition rules, most things went downhill in 2nd Ed. and continued to go downhill from there.

the fun doesn't last very long (2, Interesting)

papaver1 (846310) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433408)

it's really fun and addictive for about 2-3 months. Then the glory really just dies. The main problem with how the game is setup that as stated above you can only get xp by finishing a quest completely. and all of the early quests are geared for either full grps or lone fighters. try soloing a dungeon as a mage and you'll pretty much end up dead. This then leads to masses of people only playing the dungeons that grant the most XP. but ofcourse playing a dungeon to many time will lead to no xp. overall the graphics and sound is pretty good though. I loved my 3 months i played hard-core but i def. will not pay to play it.

Re:the fun doesn't last very long (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14434890)

try soloing a dungeon as a mage and you'll pretty much end up dead.

Uhhhhh No shit? Honestly you're playing a mage, they're not solo characters. None of the characters in D&D really are at all.

I enjoyed DDO! (4, Insightful)

kafka47 (801886) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433451)

To say it sweetly : the best aspect of DDO is the gameplay. It seems as though all of Turbine's efforts have been focussed on that. And you know what? GOOD ON THEM. Its not perfect, but once you get past the two biggest problems - a somewhat sputtery UI and the generally muddy character of the graphics, you'll have fun.

Combat : Here is where DDO shines. As a MMORPG, it blends click with dodge very nicely. I can backstab, jump, tumble, climb, and never feel like I'm doing "the WoW thing" (aggro-heal-tank repeat) by just standing there and pressing my combos. Firing my bow yields a satisfying woosh-thunk. Wielding my dagger from the shadows is a treat when I do it right. Its somewhat disappointing to hear there's no PvP in the game, but they promise it will come. In the end, the RPGs that are about fighting stuff should make sure that the task is fun. WoW is not. DDO most definitely is!

Gameplay : Aside from combat, the instances are very interesting. Even though the adventures I experienced were basically linear channels through a dungeon, I still felt like I was exploring and discovering. There are environment puzzles to solve and secret doors to find. Very different from every MMORPG that I've ever played, and I have to admit quite satisfying.

The World : The hub style of MMO really bums me out, for many reasons. Every aspect of the gameplay exists within private instances. Groups are found in the town areas, ala Guild Wars. Due to this, all open-ended gameplay disappears and is replaced by simple, directed instancing. Your mileage may vary, but I prefer plundering vast open plains and mountains. Worlds are fun. Boxes less so.

Story : Hrm. I saw very little "story" in the game. None of the NPCs even speak, so this generally bleeds away any characterization or drama from the experience. Perhaps there will be larger "world arcs" to follow in the actual game.. I'm hoping so.

And thats about all I have time to say. Will I get the game? Well, seeing as how I'm a fan of Dungeons and Dragons and RPGs I will definitely be there on opening night. Whether I see enough to justify the monthly fee remains to be seen. I have high hopes, and my experience thus far has been quite positive. Will it unseat WoW? Doubtful. But rest assured, its the best WoW alternative out there.

Just my humble opinion.

./kafka

Re:I enjoyed DDO! (1)

mthornton (928418) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433551)

They WILL NOT be including PvP in the game, the devs have said this repeatedly on the betaforums. I think the gameplay is sorely lacking just because combat is just a right-click fest and all a session goes as follows:
                Log in try to find group
                Go to portal and warp into the instance
                Run around right clicking
                Repeat ad nauseum.
The couple months I played it were all right but overall the game isn't that fun.
   

Re:I enjoyed DDO! (1)

Thedeviluno (903528) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433981)

I say save your cash and buy NWN2 when it comes out. I have barely scratched the surface of NWN, nevermind the expansions and 1000+ modules. D&D has always depended on strong story telling for its atmosphere and furthermore Turbine had no problem killing its last child to produce this abomonation.

Re:I enjoyed DDO! (1)

nanowired (881497) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434577)

"D&D has always depended on strong story telling for its atmosphere"

This will seem like a troll, but its based off 3rd ed. If you check the Dungeon Masters Manual for that monstrosity, it says specificly "The Primary job of the DM is to make sure combat runs smoothely" - not to create an awesome adventure. There are thousands of adventeres I have seen where combat is what happens when you screw up.

Re:I enjoyed DDO! (3, Interesting)

FictionPimp (712802) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435000)

I wont be buying either. I bought NWN because it had a linux client. In fact I bought it 2 times. Once for NWN, then the 2 expansions, and once to get them all on a single DVD. But I wont buy NWN2 becuase there will be no linux client.

Guild Wars with a monthly fee (0, Troll)

analog_line (465182) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433615)

I didn't like Guild Wars enough to buy it in the first place (friends bought it, I didn't steal it). I can't think of a single reason why I'd want to pay a monthly fee for basically the exact same thing.

Re:Guild Wars with a monthly fee (1)

I(rispee_I(reme (310391) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434929)

Won't somebody think of the Beholders?

My thoughts... (5, Informative)

garylian (870843) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433704)

I got into the closed beta a day after the FilePlanet Stress Test was over.

Don't get this game expecting to solo. A lot of folks have pissed and moaned about that, but they are trying to be pretty true to the Pen and Paper (PnP) rules and designs. You almost never see a DM spend all this time to create a world, dungeons, and the like, and then have them sit down at a table with a lone player with a lone character. Get over your wish to solo. It's a MMO. You are supposed to be grouping!

With the launch set for the 28th, there are a ton of bugs still in the game. They finally got the party and voicechat server fixed after a week of downtime. They have a good half dozen important quests that are broken. They have had to close one dungeon due to an exploit that was being done ad naseum by players abusing invisibility. Characters are still in their skivvies on the Character Select screen. Some characters die and can't rez when they release from their corpse. Some folks have gotten stuck in the Marketplace for more than a week. And the bank has been known to randomly lose items.

They are taking their time in between beta patches. I'd like to see some of these things tested in house and then pushed into the beta quicker, but they are making progress. The fix some things, and have proven to be cautious in how they work. Circle-strafing was a huge problem, so they did a tweak to make the mobs work better against it. Now it is a little less effective, but still works darn well. I expect another fix to that tactic.

There is a significant lack of content. While Turbine expects characters to repeat dungeons to gain XP and gear, it almost borders on the ridiculous. It is so bad that same folks deliberately don't level up, so they can gain XP at their last trained level, instead of the level they could be. Instead of losing out on groups due to their level, they just make sure they form their own groups. This lack of content means that they will have to have some expansions ready to go within 3 months, to keep customers happy. Not a healthy sign.

The system of collectables to gain minor magic items gets really old after a while. They fill up your inventory, and many of them aren't worth the time, especially as you gain levels. By lvl 5, over half of them aren't worth the effort, but unless I keep a list out, I end up collecting the stupid things.

Inventory space can be crowded, depending on your class and other things. But, there is a reason. Fighter types tend to carry one of every type of Bane weapon they can find, so they can whip out whatever works best for every mob. It borders on the absurd, really. Realistically, a character carrying a half dozen 2-handed weapons would trip over them constantly.

Mob AI is pretty darn good. The mobs tend to choose spells to much better effectiveness than most MMOs, where they just cast 1-2 spells. Having an Arcane Skeleton cast CloudKill on your group, then switch to Fireball or Lightning Bolt is pretty effective. Ray of Enfeeblement, Curses, and the like are also thrown about liberally.

There are more traps than you can shake a stick out. Rogues become a necessity for once in MMOs. However, trap placements are static in a dungeon. Do that dungeon a few times, and you start to remember where they all are. Really hurts, since the previously mentioned lack of content means you learn those dungeons by heart. I think I can find my way through some easier than I can get to the grocery store, now.

The social part of the game leaves a lot to be desired right now. I hope it improves. Pickup groups, like in most MMOs, sucks. And at release, new players are going to get stuck playing with beta testers that know all the lvl 1-5 dungeons by memory, and are going to push through at breakneck speed in the grand effort to be highest level of that class, first. (The MMO version of the e-penis award, I guess.)

I really want to track down my old PnP group, which has scattered around the country after college, and play with those folks. This game is going to be very rewarding for a group of 6 people that want to play DDO as a cohesive group 2-3 times a week for a few hours each time, with maybe a Saturday session that lasts 4+ hours for those longer missions.

WoW won't be threatened. Even EQ2 will not feel much of a hit. If you don't or haven't played DnD ever, then you may not like this. If you haven't played in years (like myself, who never went past the 2.0 ruleset), it can be a little awkward at first, but then it falls into place. For those that still froth at the mouth for their weekly session, you may enjoy this a lot, or may not.

Me, I am going to buy it, but I don't see my wife playing it, and that will be a big negative. We've played EQ together, WoW together, and CoH/V together. And that is a major reason I am tracking down old friends!

Pickup groups, vs. henchmen in Guild Wars (3, Insightful)

Morgaine (4316) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434339)

>> Pickup groups, like in most MMOs, sucks.

Sadly, that's a universal truth. :-)

After suffering the trials and tribulations of pickup groups in various MMOGs for some years now, I've finally found a solution that avoids the problems of pickup groups entirely: henchmen in Guild Wars:

  • Henchies don't leave in the middle of battle because Mum's called them for supper.

  • Henchies don't rush ahead and agro half the zone when the rest of the team isn't ready.

  • Henchies use strategy and tactics, and of course it's 100% compatible with your own strategy and tactics.

  • Henchies obey your unquestioned authority, and conversely, if anyone dies then you carry the full responsibility. It's refreshing that you can only blame yourself if things go wrong, and it makes success very rewarding.

  • Henchies do not give you the verbal crap that spews out of the mouths of 11 year olds and makes online multiplayer gaming so tedious.

  • Henchies of the various classes are always available, and will happily fill in for missing professions within player teams.

  • Henchies provide terrific support for "soloing" in the sense that no other players need be involved. Casual MMO-type gaming is at last possible.

Henchmen are a wonderful answer to the many problems of building and playing with teams in MMOGs. It's sad to see that DDO doesn't provide their own version of GW's henchies, and therefore suffers all the old problems that player teams bring with them.

Re:Pickup groups, vs. henchmen in Guild Wars (1)

nanowired (881497) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434604)

Honostly they should of done a Hackmaster online game. Much better game system, plus you can make a hysterical yet serious game out of it, with plenty of fun things to build content around.

That, and Henchmen are a built in part of the game, and you have to make sure they stay happy, less you have a revolt :p

Re:Pickup groups, vs. henchmen in Guild Wars (1)

simpsone (830935) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434822)

Doesn't that kind of defeat the purpose of playing an MMO. I guess you get all of the content that may continue to be created, but otherwise what's the purpose?

Re:Pickup groups, vs. henchmen in Guild Wars (1)

NicklessXed (897466) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434948)

Why? There's still PvP. There is still questing with my guild. Only because henchmen are available doesn't mean you don't play with other humans anymore. It just means you aren't forced to group with a bunch of idiots if there is no one online you'd like to group with (friends, members of your guild...).

Re:Pickup groups, vs. henchmen in Guild Wars (1)

shaitand (626655) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435720)

According to TFA none of these things exist in this game. There is no social interaction outside of dungeons, no pvp, and no trade either.

Re:Pickup groups, vs. henchmen in Guild Wars (1)

drsquare (530038) | more than 8 years ago | (#14437904)

Please, can you never use the word 'henchies' ever again?

Re:My thoughts... (2, Informative)

nanowired (881497) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434594)

"There is a significant lack of content. While Turbine expects characters to repeat dungeons to gain XP and gear, it almost borders on the ridiculous. It is so bad that same folks deliberately don't level up, so they can gain XP at their last trained level, instead of the level they could be. Instead of losing out on groups due to their level, they just make sure they form their own groups. This lack of content means that they will have to have some expansions ready to go within 3 months, to keep customers happy. Not a healthy sign."

Actually I believe what has happened with this, is that theres Stunted content for the Beta. From what I understand, when the game opens up, there will even be such things as Prestige classes in the game.

Re:My thoughts... (2, Insightful)

adam.skinner (721432) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434690)

Right. So once it goes live, they're going to introduce a bunch of untested stuff? I find that hard to believe.

Re:My thoughts... (1)

Breakfast Pants (323698) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434878)

One thing that is significant is that Turbine recently closed Asheron's Call 2 for good. After seeing where they took AC1 and where AC2 went, I have a strange feeling that most of the people responsible for AC1 don't exist at Turbine anymore.

Re:My thoughts... (1)

shaitand (626655) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435706)

"Don't get this game expecting to solo. A lot of folks have pissed and moaned about that, but they are trying to be pretty true to the Pen and Paper (PnP) rules and designs. You almost never see a DM spend all this time to create a world, dungeons, and the like, and then have them sit down at a table with a lone player with a lone character. Get over your wish to solo. It's a MMO. You are supposed to be grouping!"

You must have played 2nd edition or higher. Somewhere they got obsessed with charts, rolls, and complex design and lost focus on gameplay. We always played with a combination of 1st and 2nd edition rules (mostly 1st ed) that allowed for simplified gameplay. If someone had a quest prepared then great, otherwise whoever felt like it would be the DM and approve characters of the level he felt like dming. Then he would game by the seat of his pants.

We could never play those stupid box sets right because they limited actions that could be taken.

What a letdown! (2, Interesting)

Dr. Spork (142693) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433705)

The non dungeon areas are basically public spaces for meeting up with other people and getting quests. There is no player economy to speak of (and no easy mechanism for one), no housing, no exploration beyond exploring the quest instances themselves, no pvp, no crafting, no elder game, and no wookie table dancing. In short, it's a D&D quest and combat game. Some people have said it's not even a "real" mmorpg at all, just a public hub and instance system like Guild Wars...

So basically, it can't do anything new, anything Neverwinter Nights hasn't done for years. Plus, the review says combat rules are nothing like D&D and more like Diablo?!? Oh my, what a letdown. Wake me up when there is a persistent world that obeys D&D (or better: Hackmaster) rules.

Re:What a letdown! (1)

NBarnes (586109) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434352)

The bizzare fondness some people retain for D&D's core mechanics is a continual source of bafflement in my life. 3.0 and 3.5 represented a massive improvement over the honestly hallucinatory AD&D, but, really, you can't think of better systems?

I'm interested in some of what I've heard about D&DO, but for me, the less slavishly adherant to a ruleset designed to make table-top play easier and more fun the game is, the more I'm inclined to give it a chance.

Re:What a letdown! (3, Insightful)

nanowired (881497) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434611)

Trust me, if it followed 3.5 rules to a letter, the world would be made up of squares, And even though tehre would be open space to the side of a mob, you wouldnt be able to pass because his square of space is too big.

Re:What a letdown! (1)

nanowired (881497) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434619)

"Oh my, what a letdown. Wake me up when there is a persistent world that obeys D&D (or better: Hackmaster) rules."

Amen! I've got my hack frenzy and my hacklust :p

Here's a suggestion for soloers... (4, Insightful)

Hitto (913085) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433861)

DO NOT PLAY MASSIVELY MULTIPLAYER ONLINE GAMES!

Please understand that this is not a troll, but there's nothing more infuriating than trying to talk to some running-around asshat who won't even acknowledge you. Totally ruins the atmosphere, dontcha think?
I mean, why log on to a server with well over thousands of players if it's only to do quests alone, play alone, and not even interact with other people? It's the basic premise of an MMORPG, roleplaying! Talking, drinking an ale at the inn while sharing stories, discussing current events, exchanging gossip, political information, creating ties between guilds/factions/whatnot, haggling for prices with a player craftsman, going in to feel how it would really be if you lived there! Not a chatroom with a fantasy backdrop! Not an FPS for people who can't aim, either.

Soapbox session over.

Re:Here's a suggestion for soloers... (1)

ebrandsberg (75344) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434001)

You need to try Eve Online from your complaints.

Guild Wars supports soloing very well (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14434190)

Here's a suggestion for soloers... DO NOT PLAY MASSIVELY MULTIPLAYER ONLINE GAMES!

Wrong. A better suggestion is to find a MMOG that supports soloing. They do exist.

Guild Wars supports solo and casual play fantastically well, because henchmen are available in towns for you to recruit into your team in place of other players. This eliminates at a stroke the "LFG downtime" problem that is so common in traditional MMOGs.

And what's more, the AI of henchies in GW is extremely good, often better then the natural intelligence of players, and certainly more responsive to your demands and direction. It makes playing a pleasure.

Re:Here's a suggestion for soloers... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14434263)

I'll make this simple for you.

Most days, I have several hours, and want to group. Yes, WANT to group.

Some days, I don't. I have a half hour.

Grouping generally takes, at minimum, a half hour, to find a reasonably good group of even TWO people.

Simply put, a good MMO -requires- the basicability to solo for at least half the content, even if its hard. Because most players will have to solo at some point. Period.

When I have a half hour, I need to solo for that half hour, and actually gain something.

It doesn't have to be nearly as much as grouping, but it does have to be something. End of story.

Re:Here's a suggestion for soloers... (0, Troll)

Hitto (913085) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434541)

This is exactly what I am talking about.
Basically, MMORPG's were not supposed to be "quick, gotta run through this dungeon and gain XP and gold", they were supposed to be social interaction on a massive scale. You played a role, in a game. Get it?
But nowadays, it's a fucking FPS for lousy shooters.

But hey, if your idea of fun is treadmilling, don't let me stop you, and have fun being the brooding loner type, among the 50,000 other dark, brooding, loner types.

Thanks for ruining the atmosphere everywhere you are, anonymous. GB2/b/!

Re:Here's a suggestion for soloers... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14434869)

but there's nothing more infuriating than trying to talk to some running-around asshat who won't even acknowledge you. Totally ruins the atmosphere, dontcha think?

Maybe the asshat is role-playing the village idiot or maybe he doesn't know the GUI. Or just maybe the person has /ignored you. I know I make liberal use of the /ignore function and never clean out my ignore list.

Maybe the person is role-playing an important person and they can't be bothered by a peon like yourself.

Maybe just maybe you need to take a break and go outside. It really is just a game. The first step in beating any addiction is admitting you have a problem.

Re:Here's a suggestion for soloers... (1)

Gojira Shipi-Taro (465802) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435100)

Here's a suggestion for you. Fuck off and mind your own business.

What you like about MMOs is not the same as what I like, or what many others like. Soloers do not detract from your game, so why bitch about them?

When I go to a bar, I go there to be in a place where other people are. I don't go to hook up with the first sorry hag that thinks I look lonely. Sometimes I go to meet up with friends, sometimes I go to have a drink.

Same thing with MMOs.

Not everyone is just like you. Those of us who are slightly less gregarious want, will pay for, and will continue to be a target market for these sorts of games.

DDO has made a decision not to target soloers and that's fine. To make statements like "don't play any MMO if you ever want to solo" is simply assinine.

Re:Here's a suggestion for soloers... (1)

Jaeph (710098) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435215)

I prefer to solo xp, group in PvP, and I enjoy trading on occasion.

Am I allowed to play an MMO? Or are you really saying that I have to engage in your XP rituals your way in order to play?

-Jeff

P.S. Note that I have had more interaction with my guild then the PUG I was with on more than one occasion. Grouping together for XP is not the heigh of interaction by any extent.

Re:Here's a suggestion for soloers... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14435489)

I mean, why log on to a server with well over thousands of players if it's only to do quests alone, play alone, and not even interact with other people?

Oh, they do plan to interact with you, it's just a matter of time before they gank you. :)

Re:Here's a suggestion for soloers... (1)

Winterblink (575267) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435602)

I've played a LOT of MMOs, and I have to say that the only reason one is ever going to be able to RP properly is to find an RP guild to play with. At least those specific interactions can be reasonably guaranteed to be RP. Otherwise you're at the mercy of playing with everyone else out there, the vast majority of which do not want to RP.

Re:Here's a suggestion for soloers... (1)

tribentwrks (807384) | more than 8 years ago | (#14436669)

I wouldn't mind stopping to chat, if people had something to say other than, "Do you know where I can rub my knob on the magical girth stone to gain level 5 Throbbing?" Or they've been playing the game so long that they can only speak in slang, which usually ends in "y" or "ie" - "Take your henchie to the blog circle where the draze grub on the numbies .." What?!!?

So forgive me if I run past you in the future, I'm just trying to get my adventure fix or finish a task, until i can hook up with people I know.

Re:Here's a suggestion for soloers... (1)

Micklaine (944721) | more than 8 years ago | (#14437469)

While I agree with you on general principles, in the end, Turbine/WotC are out to make money. And there is money to be had with subscribers who are casual players who want to solo game most of the time (if not all). I am an MMO player myself who tends to group, but I also like to solo sometimes. I've never played DDO, but if there is little solo game it had better be very easy to form parties and quest together, or they will lose a chunk of subscribers that just don't care to socialize to play the game. Some just want to play alone (regardless of the fact that it is massively multiplayer). It's just good business to have a strong solo game even in a multiplayer scenario.

-Mick

MMORPG players are a weird bunch (4, Insightful)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | more than 8 years ago | (#14433996)

Designing an MMORPG must be a bitch. It doesn't matter wich choice you make it will always upset someone who will bitterly complain that your game wich they have no intention of really paying for anyway is not exactly like the game they are paying for.

Look at the reactions so far to DDO. It ain't WoW. Well no fucking shit sherlock. It never tried to be. In fact if you looked at the design docs it is very clear that they pretty much designed the game to be not WoW.

The world doesn't need another WoW or EQ or Guild Wars or Age of Camelot or Lineage because all these games already exist.

We get countless articles bemoaning that games are just endless sequels with no originilaty but beware the company that actually tries to do something different.

So DDO does not have PvP. Must every MMORPG game have PvP? It reminds me of a few years ago when every game had to have a multiplayer mode no matter how silly. Or the days of the bubble when even the local bakery had to have a website.

DDO also seems to want to get rid of the level grind. Levels are the bane of MMORPG games. Why? How much trouble do you have in forming a team for Capture the Flag in quake? Oh none? Just join and your in a group? Might this because there is no level in quake and anyone can group with anyone else?

Now imagine quake where the longer you have had the game the more damage you do with your weapons. How attractive would it be to buy the game 3 months after launch? Yet this is exactly what happens in games like EQ1/2 and SWG NGE has added it as well. If your a real newbie then good luck. You will maybe wonder where the hell everyone is. Well they are in the high level areas wondering why there are no new players. Grouping up with a high level was added to EQ2 with the high level then lowering his level to yours but it is a pain. You got to find a really nice person who is willing to help you level up and that is exactly what they will be doing, trying to get you to level up as fast as possible. You even get more XP when being mentored to make the grind faster. The notion that its is the journey that matters not arriving seems not to exist in MMORPG land. Perhaps I am just a weirdo who likes to quest and doesn't care if it is at level 1 or level 1000th.

Levels create yet more problems. If you have crafting then high levels usually have no need for low level crafters items. Low level crafters can only gain XP by grinding low level items. CUE SWG and its "bought" crafter levels where a player would get money being a combat class to then pay for grinding to master crafter. No new player wanted to be a pure crafter could make it work. You would simply go bankrupt.

DDO seems to have dropped crafting altogether. Bad news for those who like a player run economy but at least it saves them a lot of problems. Since no game has ever gotten it right before.

PvP is yet another Level nightmare. Obviously a level 10 is goint to beat a level 1. Great fun for the level 10 especially if the level 1 was AFK because noobs just deserve it you know (there may be nice PvP fans but I never seen one). PvP fans want to race to the highest level and then wack their e-penis at lower level players. Nothing a PvPer enjoys more then challenging players in the starter area to duels.

DDO so far has 10 levels. Or does it? With 4 mini levels it could be said to have 40 levels. What of course really matters is how much difference there is between levels. Lets just say that a level 1 ddo player will get his ass handed back to him by a level 10 in the same way as a level 1 EQ player will get his ass handed to him by a level 60 EQ player. Oh and the ruleset for DDO allows for far higher classes. If they come you will have peasant players and virtual gods trying to exist in the same world.

Will it avoid the level grinding trap of other MMORPG games or will it to have endless walktrhoughs for levelling up the fastest and then complaining there is not enough high level content and there just don't seem to be new players coming into the game?

The trick for me in enjoying a MMORPG lies in finding a guild of non-grinder monkeys who do stuff for fun and do not care about the loot or xp rewards. EQ2 has some naff armour. It just doesn't look sexy. Except for the monk armour. Do not however keep wearing it at say level 40 (it is level 20 equipment) not because of the bad stats but because everyone will tell you your a noob and you should upgrade to some horrible out of character looking armour.

I want a Lord of the Rings MMORPG and that means that a near god level wizard can team up with a bunch of level 0 (no combat class chosen yet) and bunch of mid levels and just have an adventure. DDO real challenge will be resisting the pressure to become another level grinder. It can only do this by repulsing the WoW monkeys while attracting the more bearded players. Will it succeed? Doubt it. So far all the reviews seem to clammer for it being more WoW/EQ like. PvP was supposed to be never included now it will apparently be added later. Soloing was supposed to be impossible now it is merely hard. What never. Hell you even get Clerics who can solo. WTF? Oh well, anyone know another upcoming game that may deliver on the true PnP experience?

Re:MMORPG players are a weird bunch (1)

MBraynard (653724) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434069)

DDO seems to have dropped crafting altogether. Bad news for those who like a player run economy but at least it saves them a lot of problems. Since no game has ever gotten it right before.

Despite having a _steep_ learning curve, Eve does seem to have gotten the player run economy right.

Re:MMORPG players are a weird bunch (1)

nanowired (881497) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434540)

"DDO also seems to want to get rid of the level grind. Levels are the bane of MMORPG games. Why? How much trouble do you have in forming a team for Capture the Flag in quake? Oh none? Just join and your in a group? Might this because there is no level in quake and anyone can group with anyone else?" Warning: theres an inflamatory tone to this - I do not have any ill will to the parent or his words, this is just part of the game taht gets my goat. Wait, did I miss something? Let me check...Nope, Theres still 10 times the amount of experience to level in DDO than in the game its based off of. For those who dont keep track, in 3rd ed, to get from lvl 1 to 2, you need 1000 exp. In this wonderful Masterpiece of Group-required Treadmilling, its 10,000. They TRY to balance this out by adding action points, but as you'll find out you can easily lose action points by mistake, or by trying to get something better out of the deal. Action points are spent on little things like a special racial or skill bonus. and to top this up more, if you play a straight fighter, you have no problems soloing stuff. If you play a creative class, like a bard or a wizard, you get throught the first few quests by the skin of your teeth, than out of nowhere you become unable to even finish a quest alone. sorry to the parent, I'm not trying to flame, this was just a big part of the game that got my goat.

Re:MMORPG players are a weird bunch (1)

daygore (923858) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434680)

actualy there is one mmo that has "crafting" "right" EVE its almost entirely a player based enconime
also i do think that the only game that has the hole leveling with others thing "right" is also eve there may be other games but its the only game that ive played were the only grip (witch all mmos suffer from at high use) is lag

Re:MMORPG players are a weird bunch (2, Interesting)

grimwell (141031) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435117)

Grouping up with a high level was added to EQ2 with the high level then lowering his level to yours but it is a pain. You got to find a really nice person who is willing to help you level up and that is exactly what they will be doing, trying to get you to level up as fast as possible.

Actually City of Heroes was the first to have this feature. If I'm remembering right, originally it allowed lower level toons to be a higher level toon's sidekick, artifically inflating the lower level's fighting abilities while near-by the high level character. Later they added the "reverse" sidekick/mentor option, allowing a high level character to be a low level character's sidekick and thus reducing the higher level's fighting abilities & available skills.

Will it avoid the level grinding trap of other MMORPG games or will it to have endless walktrhoughs for levelling up the fastest

I think levels in MMORPGs are here to stay, even if the game is more skills based(e.g. Asheron's Call) than level based(e.g Everquest). The levels are goals, something to be accomplished and from a publisher's point of view a reason to charge a monthly fee. It is also a "hook"... so close to leveling, must stay awake.

FPS(e.g. Quake) don't charge a monthly fee to play. Well, maybe do now... I haven't played a FPS regularly since the FvF mod for Quake.

Comparing FPS to MMORPG isn't really an apples-to-apples comparsion. MMORPG are basically graphical muds or at least that is how they started. Today's call for more PvP is moving MMORPG closer to FPS. The most interesting FPS+MMORPG hybrid I've played was Endless Ages. It was point&shoot combat, not point&click. A lvl 1 player could beat a lvl 10 player.

On the crafting front, the biggest problem I've seen is the crafter is rarely able to make stuff usable(or desirable to use) at his level and/or better than loot drops. Crafting always seems to be an after-thought and no dicussion with loot devs. Haven't played enough Eve to comment on its crafting.

Re:MMORPG players are a weird bunch (1)

drsquare (530038) | more than 8 years ago | (#14437984)

Designing an MMORPG must be a bitch. It doesn't matter wich choice you make it will always upset someone who will bitterly complain that your game wich they have no intention of really paying for anyway is not exactly like the game they are paying for.

You mean the way you're bitching about every single MMORPG? You don't like fighting mobs (levelling), you don't like fighting other players, you don't like crafting, maybe that genre of game just isn't your thing.

Who did Turbine make this game for? (1)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434421)

themselves! One of the major things that killed their last game, AC2, is that they made the game they wanted to play, not what the players were asking for.

---
Ken Troop's comment (he is one of the mains behind this game)

A large part of the lack of randomness in DDO is deliberate. Our philosophy has typically been very "anti-random". Personally, I have a very hard time caring or enjoying content that is either completely random, or scaled in difficulty based on, say, the size of my party. Where is the challenge? Where is the learnable/masterable experience? (Some of my best memories of early online MUD play are playing an area over and over again, learning how to succeed, learning how to master it -- if an experience is endlessly mutable, that thrill of mastery is gone).
---

In other words, if he don't like it you ain't going to get it.

Turbine is going to have to hope people see the "D&DO" part before their name. Too many gamers associate Turbine with cheating and exploiting for good reason.

Turbine used to be run by dreamers, now its run my egotist and marketers.

Re:Who did Turbine make this game for? (1)

NBarnes (586109) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434555)

Death to creative vision! Design by polling the userbase! What do these so-called 'designers' know? Power to the playerbase! Content design by committee! Make sure that Gokuu, Drizzizzttzz, Lagoles, and Pokeumaam have the same vote that you and I do!

Re:Who did Turbine make this game for? (1)

nanowired (881497) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434625)

Its more like Drizzizizizizizizizzt 32847238472389472389472398.

Well considering their track record (1)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435388)

these designers know very little at Turbine.

The issue isn't that designers don't what they are doing, it becomes an issue when one of them becomes the overriding force behind what happens.

Re:Who did Turbine make this game for? (1)

drsquare (530038) | more than 8 years ago | (#14438049)

Hang on, on one hand you're criticising the developers for making a game that they'd enjoy playing. Then you're criticising them for making games based on marketing. Those two criticisms don't go together, you can have one or the other.

What would you describe as a 'dreamer'? I'd guess someone who aimed for something they wanted, but according to you that's a negative so I really don't know what the fuck your opinion is, unless you've just got an agenda against Turbine that you can't really verbalise.

Regarding Instanced Dungeons: (2, Interesting)

Arivia (783328) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434565)

The core idea of D&D has always been the adventuring group venturing into the dungeon to face the dangers, alone. There's possibly only ever been 1 dungeon in D&D that receives enough traffic to make a non-instanced dungeon feel right, and that's not in Eberron(Undermountain). As Turbine seems to be going to great lengths to make it feel authentic, the instanced quests make perfect sense.

I know I've posted a lot of replies... (2, Interesting)

nanowired (881497) | more than 8 years ago | (#14434643)

So heres the final word as to why I dont like this game:

The art style.

Its not about weither or not its gritty. Its about the artist copying the bad dnd 3rd ed art. I can quote atleast one friend saying that the Elves look like they all have downs Syndrome. I know, probably spelt that wrong, but you get the picture. The art is just plain Ugly overall, and stickfigury.

The only plus I've seen to it, is that it avoids the "Busty Female with no pants" syndrome. If the character = female, than they're armored to the gills just the same as the male counterparts.

My experience with the stress test... (2, Informative)

antdude (79039) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435145)

I played and posted my two cents on Blue's News [bluesnews.com] on 12/14/2005:

"I played it last night for an hour. It looks pretty especially the indoor places, but for some reason the engine wasn't smooth like WoW. I thought it was lags, but it was still not smooth even at 6 AM PST. Taverns (those are cool -- better than WoW's inns) are so laggy for me. Solo instances(?) are smoother, but not that smooth. Outdoor areas lag too for me. The game was choppy for me with everything ON and without antialias on my XFX NVIDIA GeForce 6800 (128 MB), Athlon 64 3200+, and 1.5 GB of RAM. I had turn things down like use billinear, distance view lowered, etc.

I did not like its GUI. I think it was just too big especially when my maximum screen resolution is 1152x864. I prefer WoW's.

I loved the character setup. I made a hot chick with red long hair [grin]. Its setup reminds me of City of Heroes and City of Villain's. I also like the video clips (I wonder how much disk space these took up) showing each player class. I played as a barbarian since I like meelee fightings. I only got off the second boat after training. I will play more later hopefully. A lot of commands are similiar if you know WoW like: /laugh, /dance, /p for party talk, etc.

To compare, I still like WoW more so far."

I wonder how much has changed since then.

Question about the game... (1)

faloi (738831) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435218)

Ok, I've got some questions about the game in general. I didn't participate in beta, but I'm always looking for some MMORPG to satisfy my "jones." I've looked at some of the comments, so I'm not going to ask if it's solo-friendly...

Is there a level grind? It looks like there is, but you have to complete the dungeons to earn the xp to progress toward a level.

Does the game lend itself to the holy trinity-style of group that EQ led to, or is it pretty forgiving of class makeup? I don't want to select a class to get pounced on by the anti-necro "u guyz sux n grpz" crowd that seems to spring up in MMORPGS. Similarly, I'm not wild about having to hang around in town forever as we bid on the next cleric to log in. In PnP D&D clerics were more than just healers, and a group could get by (maybe not perfectly) without having a tank, healer and damage dealer (especially because DMs could get mean and totally ignore the agro rules that are common in MMORPGS).

Re:Question about the game... (1)

Telepathetic Man (237975) | more than 8 years ago | (#14436257)

There is no must have for classes. DDO classes are more or less templates, the resulting characters get vary drastically enough that an entire party of fighters could make a good showing in a dungeon.

No PVP (1, Troll)

doomicon (5310) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435339)

I was totally turned off by the no PvP announcement. The same company is also developing the LOTR MMO, which by the way has no PvP either. PvP for me is a requirement, teaming with buddies to fight NPCs just seems... pointless. I can do that with NWN. I'm not one to go on a gankfest, but PvP just provides more "realism" and opportunities in between mission/quest grinds.

I was even more disappointed with the No PvP annoucement with the LOTR MMO. When LOTR was first announced, I imagined the possibilities of joining an Orc Band, raiding, and pillaging.

It makes me wonder if they even have the necessary experience to develop a good PvP system within an MMO.

Re:No PVP (1)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 8 years ago | (#14435772)

Some people like PvP, some don't.

You're welcome to play any of the games out there that have PvP.

One of the problems with having DDO be PvP is class-balancing for PvP. Quite simply, they'd have to break the game mechanics to do it.

I'd rather have a more traditional D&D experience than have thieves be buffed for combat just so some kid doesn't bitch about the lack of balance. When I want PvP, I'll play a different game.

Re:No PVP (1)

drsquare (530038) | more than 8 years ago | (#14438109)

LOTR without pvp? The most memorable parts of the books/films were the big battles, and the game's not going to have them. I suppose you'll just go round killing boring mobs like in every other game.

It's just an attempt by the company to make money off the name with an off-the-shelf MMORPG.

Zzzzzzzzzzz

Not sure at all.... (1)

argStyopa (232550) | more than 8 years ago | (#14437252)

It sounded very interesting from the promo text, but I dug a little further, and found some other comments from various Beta testers as well as above:
The World : The hub style of MMO really bums me out, for many reasons. Every aspect of the gameplay exists within private instances. Groups are found in the town areas, ala Guild Wars. Due to this, all open-ended gameplay disappears and is replaced by simple, directed instancing. Your mileage may vary, but I prefer plundering vast open plains and mountains. Worlds are fun. Boxes less so.

I agree. While CoH handled zone transitions cleverly, they were still there. Personally, I *like* just exploring, seeing new things, even if there isn't a 'game value' to the exploration. I know many people that pretty much mainly jsut do that. Having everything be intanced is, well, so artifical and constantly reminds you of that.

Don't get this game expecting to solo. A lot of folks have pissed and moaned about that, but they are trying to be pretty true to the Pen and Paper (PnP) rules and designs. You almost never see a DM spend all this time to create a world, dungeons, and the like, and then have them sit down at a table with a lone player with a lone character. Get over your wish to solo. It's a MMO. You are supposed to be grouping!
Uh oh. Frankly, I'm NOT a gigantic fan of grouping. I play MMOs for the unpredictability, the variety of content, NOT to make new friends and gain social interaction. Frankly, most of the groups I've been in sucked, WW2OL being the great exception. I *really* like the idea that they have an integrated voicecomm system - that genuinely may make all the difference.

Finally, I'm simply not convinced that the D&D mechanics really work. I mean, I think I've seen a fair share of RPGs in my time, and *every* one of them had rationalizations, shortcuts, and RubeGoldberg(tm) tables to minimize number crunching and speed play and get back to the interactions. With computers, it's ENTIRELY the opposite - you can have them auto-calculate the ballistic path of an arrow, but they can't make a bartender that will give you a decent conversation.
Does such a system scale to realtime? Doesn't it make more sense to get, say, a Steve Perrin or Robin Laws to design the rules around the capabilities of the venue, rather than shoehorning the rules to work in contexts where they really don't?
Problems: (and if you've read more than me, and found the answers to these already addressed - I'd love the links)
- Woohoo - I'm a wizard, I get 2 spells and then I might as well logoff for the day? How does that work in a realtime world?
- Deaths: in MMOs, deaths are frequent and annoying but in PnP D&D, if you died below level what, 6-7-8 it was rarely worth the trouble to rez you. Even healing in true DnD was a matter of DAYS.
I guess for me a lot of the mechanical questions revolve around the ability of a PnP game to compress time freely, which is absolutely verboten in an MMO.

This game is going to be very rewarding for a group of 6 people that want to play DDO as a cohesive group 2-3 times a week for a few hours each time, with maybe a Saturday session that lasts 4+ hours for those longer missions.
Then why not just get together and play, if one has the schedule time for this?

I don't see any crafting at all - that's a HUGE loss of potential customer base, right there. I've realized that, since playing CoH, this is sort of a subgame that drives a lot of activity, and (for me) is quite fun.

One plus: no "inter mission travel", thus no areas strangely devoid of trees, thus no sleeping on the ground in the middle of nowhere, thus no being eaten by a passing bonesnapper when the DMs pissed at you for something or other.

DDO is going to face some challenges. (3, Interesting)

MaWeiTao (908546) | more than 8 years ago | (#14437403)

While I didn't much like DDO, a friend of mine, who is an avid pen and paper D&D gamer, did like the game. It provided the kind of D&D experience he's been looking for. For comparison, we both tried the World of Warcraft free trial, and while I very much liked that game he didn't care for it in the least. His main concern with DDO was the feeling that there was a lack of content especially given the low level cap.

I'm convinced DDO is going to cater to a very specific group of gamers. I don't expect many are going to be lured from WoW, perhaps more will come from EQ/EQ2. One big problem is that the game made me feel very isolated from the larger world. First of all the game is very linear, at least initially. I'm stuck in one small section of the city until I complete a number of quests. Then I can only move on by completing another set of quests or by levelling up, which takes an excruciatingly huge amount of time. The second problem is that the player teleports to every instance. There's some dungeon hundreds of miles away and the hero materializes there suddenly. It hurts immersion.

Of course, there's a more significant problem here with all the instancing. Guild Wars instances all quests just like DDO, but that game is free to play. Furthermore, there's more of a sense of location in that game because you actually travel through the lands outside towns and forts. That game also progresses a lot more quickly than DDO does, but it does provide a very different experience from DDO.

I think Neverwinter Nights provided a very similar, but more fast-paced and entertaining experience than Dungeons & Dragons Online. That's not to say DDO is necessarily a bad game, but I don't think it's going to appeal to most people and given that it's a subscription-based game it's going to be even more difficult to attract gamers, especially given the competition. I guess this game will show whether or not there's a market for a reasonably faithful D&D experience in PC gaming.

If they really want this to take off (1)

mshensley (944787) | more than 8 years ago | (#14437788)

They should have designed it so that you could sign up to dm as well as play. You could design your own dungeons or even your own section of the world. This would provide a lot more content for players and give people that like to dm something to do.

Re:If they really want this to take off (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14438435)

I'm sure they thought of that, but constraining such a system would be a huge effort in and of itself. How do you stop the "Dungeon of Infinite Gold"? The "Dungeon of the Unsolvable Puzzle"? The "Dungeon Designed to look like a Giant Wang"?

Besides, given the ratio of slackwits to worthwhile individuals in your average MMO, I'd be reluctant to step into someone's pick-up dungeon.

Setting (3, Insightful)

etherlad (410990) | more than 8 years ago | (#14438043)

Now maybe it's just me, but when I think of "Dungeons & Dragons," I primarily think of settings such as Greyhawk, Dragonlance and Forgotten Realms. When I think of an MMORPG which uses the D&D brand, I'd expect it to use one of these iconic D&D settings (probably Forgotten Realms due to the higher magical content) rather than a newish pseudo-pulp fantasy setting.

Unfortunately, they've decided the latter, and are using Eberron. Not that there's anything wrong with Eberron: If they marketed it as "Eberron Online," I'd be all over it. But D&D Online? Gimme something classic. Something with staying power. Something that D&D fans from five, ten, fifteen years ago will still be familiar with.

Of course, I'd kill for a Planescape MMORPG, but that's neither here nor there.
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