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VirginWorlds MMORPG News
Host: Brent
VirginWorlds is a weekly news podcast covering Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games (MMORPGs) such as World of Warcraft, EverQuest, Guild Wars, City of Heroes, Eve Online, Vanguard, Lord of the Rings Online and many many more. The VirginWorlds MMORPG Podcast is the flagship podcast of the VirginWorlds MMO Podcast Collective found at http://www.virginworlds.com

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VirginWorlds Podcast #37.5
Wed, 25 Oct 2006 04:11:00 GMT [download/play]



Mid-week edition, the VirginWorlds MMORPG Roadshow.  Join Brent as he discusses listener mail and feedback regarding the Top 10 MMOs List from podcasts #34 and 36, while driving across the Twin Cities.  Albie drops in for a few minutes to talk about MMORPG forums.  Consider this a casual show.

VirginWorlds is a weekly news podcast covering Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games (MMORPGS) such as World of Warcraft, EverQuest, Guild Wars, City of Heroes, Eve Online, Vanguard, and many many more. The main site can be found at http://www.VirginWorlds.com


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Episode 37.5 Discussion Thread

'WoW and PVP' by Gooney
Submitted on 2006-10-25 10:16:01 CST
I think your a bit off the mark with regards to PVP and WoW.

PvP has been a central design principle of Blizzards since the advent of Battlenet, the pvp in WoW is so good because of the inclusion of it from its initial design.

No other MMO has incorporated this type of PVP so successfully. There is of course nothing new about faction warfare, AO, DAoC etc have had that as a design principle too, but WoW took it a step further. The whole lore of the game-verse pivots around it.

Not to mention the simple fact that there are literally hundreds of PVP servers, more than all of the other MMOs combined. EQ1 and EQ2, and to some extent DAoC all released PVP servers looooong after launch with varying degrees of success, but you could count on one hand how many pvp servers were running for each game.

PvP is a HUGE component of WoW, truth be told, in my view the PVE servers are the odd ducks out.

Battlegrounds and Arenas were conceived to relieve the rampant world PVP that was occuring on the servers prior to the Honor system.

-Gooney

-Gooney



'But...' by vcn3wb05
Submitted on 2006-10-25 12:15:54 CST
What's the point though?


'See, now I have to defend UO...' by Psyik
Submitted on 2006-10-25 14:35:18 CST
(Feel free to skip this. It turned out to be much longer then I intended. I should just e-mail this.)

I completely agree that older MMO players can be split into UO, EQ, and AC players. But you're really understating UO's success. For a long time, EQ had almost twice or three times as many subscribers as UO, but AC was always less then half as large. DAoC was also bigger then UO, about 3/2 the size at their peak.

I understand EQ was more popular. I understand that more MMOs are based on EQ then UO, but it just doesn't work to say "Yeah, it did a lot of innovative things, but in the end it didn't matter." It did matter. It wasn't perfect. Quite honestly, after release it was almost all downhill (Thanks EA. Really. Thanks for that). Off the top of my head, I can think of a few ideas from UO that were in other MMOs.

1) Open PvP. That means no matter where you go, you can fight. You don't need to toggle a switch, you don't need to enter a battleground. The most notable implementation of this were a few PvP servers in AC, and I suppose SB and EVE. Many other games have PvP limited to specific areas, and I really credit that to DAoC.

2) Character customization. Not just changing your face and beard and hair, but actually looking unique. The only other game I can think of is SWG. In UO, you could basically wear what you wanted. You didn't need to wear heavy armor to fight, or a robe to cast. It was better if you did, but you could work a character around irregular ideas. You had many choices of armor, tons of clothing options, many colors, etc. I can only cite SWG as doing something like that. You have the same freedom in CoH (well, more), but the costume system is different from clothing.

Quick list of a few other innovations and an MMO that uses them: hirelings (GW), highly controllable able pets (all over the place, though never to same degree), player housing (SWG), realistic drops (Ryzom), skill system (...), player controlled ships (...), and so on. Also, I believe we came up with the term “carebears” to describe EQ players.

And of course, all of these things and more will be in the up-coming Darkfall Online, with the exception of clothing customization, I believe.



'Regarding PvP in WoW' by Brent
Submitted on 2006-10-25 14:52:27 CST
I couldn't possibly disagree more strongly.

Gooney said: "WoW is so good because of the inclusion of it from its initial design"

I'm not even sure how to respond to that. Both the "is so good" and the "inclusion from its initial design throw me for a loop. WoW PvP was so incredibly tacked, pointless, and broken at launch that I'm suspicious that it could be considered "good." Since them they've made some improvements, but hardly have made strides to cement it as a serious player in the PvP space. There is no doubt that Blizzard has a long history of strong competitive play within their games, but at launch WoW was anything but a landmark of PvP design. EQ2, L2, Eve, Ryzom, GuildWars, Shadowbane and DAoC all are largely regarded as head and shoulders above WoW when it comes to PvP system design. Ganking people in STV while they're fghting mobs hardly seems to qualify as a viable basis for PvP.

Gonney said: "No other MMO has incorporated this type of PVP so successfully."

I just about fell off my chair when I read this. You all know that I'm a moderate when it comes to arguement around MMOs in general and I'm also mired in the center when it comes to PvP ... BUT .... claims indicating WoW is the end-all-be-all of MMO PvP almost makes my head hurt when I try to process the idea.

WoW does indeed have many PvP servers though they didn't have quite as large of a share at launch and have grown since. Bear in mind, PvP server counts in WoW means next to nothing. 'REAL' PvP games don't have non-PvP servers at all (L2, Eve, Ryzom, SB) and the ones that do segment their servers need to be measured based on overall number of players in the game.

WoW: 384 Servers. 215 PvP Servers. Percentage of PvP Servers: 55%
EQ2: 25 Servers. 6 PvP Servers. Percentage of PvP Servers: 24%

WoW has more. No doubt about it. But you can see that the overall comparison isn't as dramatic as you indicated. Historically speaking, Blizard fans are more PvP fixated than SOE fans, so this comparison doesn't realyl surprise me. What does surprise me is that EQ2's PvP system is far and away more deftly executed than Blizzard's. That being said, even the 'good' PvP systems of today's MMOs will pale in comparsion with those to be introduced by the likes of Warhammer Online and Darkfall.



'PsicDark - regarding UO' by Brent
Submitted on 2006-10-25 14:55:49 CST
I don't think I disagree with anything you said there and if I indicated otherwise... I didn't mean to. There isn't any need to defend UO from me. I'm not attacking it, I was just explaining where Brenden and I were coming from. We're just a couple of yahoos anyway....


'WoW pvp' by kain
Submitted on 2006-10-25 22:19:00 CST
Responding to the fist post:
I think you are way off. WoW PvP is one meaningless and pointless. They act like they are doing us a favor by sectioning what little bit of PvP there is into battle grounds(zones also). Sure there is open PvP but it doesn't really help your honor score. PvP in WoW has no meaning, there are no raids on major cities, open PvP is usually done in very small groups, PvP rewards are crap.

WoW PvP was incorporated VERY BADLY compared to many games. Also I must point out that PvP was an after thought and not released in its true form till a month or more after release. 1v1 at a mob spawn is not PvP. I think BF2142 has more of a meaningful pvp reward system then wow..and its a fps.

This is why i think WoW is the gateway MMo for new players(not i) since it brings in people who do not have great experience in group oriented games that were release 2 years earlier. DAoC, SWG, EQ, and many many others all have or had better and more meaningful PvP.



'More on WoW PvP' by Psyik
Submitted on 2006-10-26 02:31:48 CST
Since I agree with Brent and Kain on this, you may want to just skip this post. I won't be anything new.

Okay, first of all, the lore of a universe and previous trends of a company have little to nothing to do with how PvP is implemented. GTA and Table Tennis where made by the same company. UO didn't have factions to begin with, and PvP was pretty important anyway.

Next, about the PvP and normal servers. I would like to first point out that they are called "normal" and "PvP." Not "normal" and "PvE." Next, I'd like to cite my own experience in WoW PvP servers (and I played on quite a few). All the real PvP takes place in a cut off part of the game (battlegrounds), and all world PvP is griefing and whining, because there was no reason to fight. You gained nothing.

Until they introduced honor. And honor is just another way to grind for gear. And I'm not even going to bother explaining why. Everyone has had to deal with BG macro AFKers and the like.

I will give this to WoW PvP: it is the most balanced class system there is. Unlike other MMOs, the devs did give thought to the functionality of classes in both PvE and PvP, so while PvP was an afterthought, it was done well. But that's polish, and no one is accusing WoW for lacking that.

But mainly, in order for PvP to really have meaning, there needs to be risk vs reward. Gear is the reward (as it is for PvE), and there is no risk. You lose nothing if you die or lose in battlegrounds. You can't gain or lose actual territory. The game just isn't built for that. And it can't be. This is an item-possession based game. You succeed by gaining gear. You can't risk gear that took months to obtain. And resetting a battleground is different from going back and forth in a territorial war.

WoW battlegrounds are just a a place to grind. Go play DAoC to see PvP battlegrounds.



'Brent - regarding UO' by Psyik
Submitted on 2006-10-26 02:41:28 CST
And I don't wanna come off as a nut who believes that UO is the end all be all of MMOs. Honestly, I just believe you need to back and play it a bit. And AC and DAoC as well, if you aren't familiar with them. Yahoo or not, I look forward to downloading the latest VirginWorlds podcast each week, I just wish you had more persective on where certain ideas came from.

UO, EQ, AC, and DAoC all had a serious impact, and I believe that anyone who considers themselves an "educated" MMO player should have played them all. I only played UO and DAoC. I tried AC, but I couldn't stand it (sorry Brenden), and I never even tried EQ (I was a UO player, so it was kind of taboo). In a week, I'm going to seriously do the trails for both these games, as well as revisit UO and DAoC. I know what server to go to in UO (Siege Perilious) and DAoC (Lancalot, if it's still there), but I'd love some suggestions on where I should go in EQ and AC.

Either way, I love the site and the show, no matter how much I complain about them. I actually agree with almost everything you say, and your analysis on most things; it's why I keep coming back for me. I'll just shut up now.



'Just a note to 37.5' by Iccanui
Submitted on 2006-10-26 15:51:04 CST
I think it was a great effort. Just dont get into a accident please. :)

But the audio was mostly good, sounded like maybe your AC hit the mic or something at some point and you kinda rebutled the WoW issue 2 times, but i can imagine the responses you got from making it so low on the list. But your agrument is just, its not new, its just polished.

Anyway, just wanted to let you know that it was great and as your podcast increases in poularity, this is a great way to handle the increase in e-mail and stuff. Plus next to twit this is my fav podcast so if you enjoy putting out more, thats just better. Just dont let it push you and burn you out. Dont let it turn into feeling like exp grinding if you know what i mean. Just do it as its fun, we can wait 2 weeks for another cast if you dont wanna do it this week. I know ho us MMO players are and there is no 60 to ding in this podcast game bro, dont forget that. :)

Anyway, take care, i hope this doesnt get lost and you get to read it and again, make sure you dont wreck your car. I would rather have less podcasts.

Peace.



'Burn Out' by Brent
Submitted on 2006-10-26 22:27:58 CST
I'll try not to burn myself out or crash my car. My feeling today is, not much chance of either. I appreciate your concern... believe me, your perspective is a refreshing and encouraging one. Many many thanks.


'PsicDark - Me and UO' by Brent
Submitted on 2006-10-26 22:28:53 CST
Ok, I'll go buy it. Shame on me for waiting this long. I'll drag Bman with me.


'All in due time' by Bman
Submitted on 2006-10-26 22:50:26 CST
Why not wait for the special, fancy 10th anniversary edition they're releasing next year? Plenty of things to play in the meantime.


'Too Easy!' by Wilhelm2451
Submitted on 2006-10-26 22:51:32 CST
You didn't even give PsicDark a chance to bring up the fact that you are selling a T-shirt that says, "I ganked Lord British in northeast Skara Brae!"

That should have been the closer!

*grin*



'Hey yeah!' by Brent
Submitted on 2006-10-27 05:51:32 CST
I am redeemed by the shirt I invented!


'Sound Quality' by Celestian
Submitted on 2006-10-31 13:19:19 CST
What I want to know is why your podcast in a car driving down the road sounds better than the mmorpg.com podcast. Do they shove their mic in a blender or something?

Good show, keep it up but stay safe!



'Magic' by Brent
Submitted on 2006-10-31 19:29:35 CST
This is a very good question, Celestian. I wonder the same. Suffice to say it isn't because I have any particular magic that I'm working.