Gamers without Remorse
When doing some research about Elder Scrolls Online, I came across a bit of information that made me a sad panda. Group size will be limited to 5 people and will not have any kind of organized raid content.
It seems like it’s the current trend of the MMO market to just not develop raid content. While I can understand that it doesn’t seem like a good source of development time to focus that many resources to developing for a very small portion of the playerbase of your game. The number I hear being thrown around WoW these days is about 5% compete in end-game raid content outside of the raid finder. Not a lot.
Perhaps I’m biased, but I believe that the key to a successful MMO is to cater to all types of play. Which includes competitive instanced raid content that challenges both the players and the developers to new levels. End game raiders are what challenge developers to make new content that is engaging and challenging. What they learn from those challenges can translate to new content for non-raiders.
Not only do raiders push developers to make new content, they also help developers identify balance issues. If something is over powered, you can guess that it’s either a hardcore PVP player or a hardcore PVE raider who reports it in the forums and submits a ticket.
Raiders aren’t just a minority, they’re the top tier of players. They’re a resource to be utilized and not tossed aside.
Too many games have launched without Raiding or have launched with Raiding as an afterthought. Many of those have gone free to play as a result or haven’t gained the mainstream traction they were hoping.
It seems with 1.3 “Allies” that Bioware is adding a truckload of new content. In addition to new content, they’re increasing the level cap. While from their perspective, that sounds like a great idea, but from a player perspective, I have to disagree with them.
By raising the level cap, you’re making end-game content prior to the cap trivial. Gear you worked for, useless, etc. This only alienates your end-game player base. Something that Bioware cannot afford to do any more than they already have.
Raiding in SW:TOR has been lackluster already. There’s not much to it. The encounters aren’t innovative and much of the End Game guilds have already started looking for another game to challenge them. The guilds that remain that have been working on the new content and getting gear are now faced with having to level up again and making older content easier by virtue of levels and gear less than optimal because it doesn’t provide enough stats to scale properly.
Again, I can see what they want to do. The game is praised for it’s story and the leveling process. Why not add to it?
What do you think?
It’s been a recent trend for new AAA MMOs to launch without End Game raiding like that found in games such as World of Warcraft, Rift, Lord of the Rings Online and Star Wars: The Old Republic. Being that my roots in MMO communities are in guilds that Raid, I can say I’m fairly concerned about this trend. Part of being part of a guild for me is the ability to make a larger team of guild players and take on difficult content. To me, this is the pinnacle of being in a guild.
Many veteran players of games like Guild Wars and other games without End Game raiding will tell me that there’s no need for it in the modern day MMO. Personally I’ve not yet been sold on this opinion. En Masse/Bluehole Studios used to take this stance with TERA, but have since opened up to the idea of Raiding, experimenting with it using the Nexus mechanics. But still, this is not guild organized raiding.
Playing through the Guild Wars 2 beta this last weekend, I was impressed with the level of gameplay and polish put into this MMO. The Dynamic events seem fun and very much “Raid Like” in some cases (such as the Shadow Behemoth event). However, there aren’t going to be any raids in this game. This seems like a complete shame, as the game lends itself very well to a raiding environment.
If there’s no raiding in the end game of MMOs like Guild Wars 2, what will they provide us to occupy our time at Max Level? I’ve heard people say PVP and Doing 5 man dungeons. But this seems a bit short sighted to me. With a game title such as “Guild Wars” I imagine doing more with our guild as a team.
I ask you, do you think End Game Raiding is necessary?
If not, what would you do for guilds wanting End Game content that the guild can do together in games like Guild Wars 2.
Please avoid telling me to play something else, etc. Let’s brain storm together.
I didn’t get to play TERA this weekend with everyone else at Despair since I was engrossed in the GW2 beta. I will say that I’m happy that TERA is finally coming out. It’s been a fun experience during beta and I’ll be playing it largely non-stop.
The game has a fun gameplay that feels a lot like other action RPG style games, but in an MMO setting. Something I know has been done before, but this is my first experience with it. Having only played my current character in open beta he’s only 17. But with no real End Game just yet, there’s no huge rush to get to 60.
Since battle grounds aren’t in the game right now I’ve not played any PVP yet. Not sure that I will. I love the combat, but for PVP it feels like it might be a bit clunky vs. other games I’ve played.
This is going to be an amazing year for MMOs. I think with all the amazing games coming out this year I know that the MMO industry can finally grow past the WoW factor.
The Guild Wars 2 beta was everything I had hoped it would be. I played around with the Thief, Engineer, Guardian, Warrior and Ranger. So far, I am really liking my Guardian and Ranger.
The game plays like a traditional MMO (unlike GW1 which was only an MMO when in cities). The questing system was fun and felt dynamic. There were static quests for you to go and do on the map. Just walk within the quest range and the quest activates with instructions. Then there’s the dynamic events that happen from time to time.
The game is free to play after you buy the game. To fund the games servers and development there’s a Cash Shop. They offer things like costumes, the ability to keep the stats from one item and the look of another. There’s also some XP bonus items that provide XP bonuses from killing monsters. This SOUNDS like a big bonus, but when you see how little XP you get from killing things, it’s not a huge deal. You can also trade in gems for gold. This wasn’t active yet, so I don’t know the exchange rate, so this could be game breaking or it could be really expensive. With as much thought as ArenaNet put into the other parts of the game, I imagine they will experiment on this and find a nice balance.
Didn’t get to PVP much (too engrossed in the beginning areas for the 3 races available at start). Leveling was slow for me, but I also spent a lot of time trying out the different classes to see what I want to spend time playing next time around.
All in all, I’m very impressed with the game and I’m torn on where my time will be spent. But without end game raids I’m not sure what I’ll be doing when I hit 80.