Monday, May 24, 2010

Semi-Persistent Worlds

Traditional MMO's are persistent worlds. But Players are only Semi-Persistent. We have to do Real Life.

This means traditional MMO's are always seeing a flux of players entering and leaving, and the likelihood of you seeing the same players consistently is diminished.

Also, when events happen, they have to last days or weeks to make sure everybody has a chance to take advantage of them.

I propose Semi-Persistent MMO's.

Imagine upon entering your new MMO, you discover a list of servers which are not only organized by time zone and population, but also by play schedules.

You could choose a server that only plays Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9 to midnight for example. But there would also be some that play from 8pm to 2am every day of the week. Or even morning servers. If you wanted to play even MORE you could play on multiple servers with different schedules.

Just think...In a world where ALL players are present every time the game is running, you could create consistent rivalries, and player-made factions. In-game events could happen every night. Nobody on the server would miss an event.

Sports teams and clubs have operated this way forever. Why not run a server this way?


Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Eve's Secret to Success

In case you missed it, Gamasutra recently published a very good article on EVE and how it succeeded and continues to succeed and most importantly, how any other developing group with big ideas and who can scrape together 12 million in starting funds from various sources, can probably do the same thing. Just thought I'd share. the world needs more Sandbox MMO's. I'm waiting for a space one where I actually feel like a pilot. EVE doesn't give me that. But maybe yours will..

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Guild Wars 2 - Is Someone Actually Listening to Us?

Here it is. An article on ign, today. Guild Wars 2 reveals plans to create a truly dynamic world--where quest chains have massive repurcussions on the world itself. Where you don't read a block of quest text, but the man from up the hill runs at you with "Help! We're under attack!" Read the article!

Is someone actually listening to bloggers' complaints about how static and pre-packaged the current MMO model is? I sure hope it turns out great! We could be playing this sometime next year!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Big Reminder: Mother's Day Sunday!

Take a break from Video Games this Sunday! It's Mother's Day! And remember, your wife will expect the following (even if you do not have children, this should apply):

1 flowers (Must)
2 a treat
3 a favor (extra chore from normal)
4 some embarrassing creative thing like a poem, song, drawing, etc.
5 a card
6 your spare time all day
7 a simple (or elaborate) gift

Personally, I think you can get all of this for $15 (Single rose, small chocolates, make your own card, small gift), but if you have the money, by all means, go nuts.

Enjoy Mother's Day!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

DM Experience

Having hosted a weekly DM'd Neverwinter Nights campaign for the last 8 months straight, I have picked out some observations about gamers.

1 Players have more fun interacting with each other than with my world. Even though the world is necessary to provide a place to do so.

2 If a player doesn't have a choice, don't give them a choice.

3 Prepared adventures are never as exciting as adventures that are improvised around the players' current situation.

4 All you need for an adventure are friends, something to do, people to see, places to go, prizes to earn, and stuff to kill.

5 Some players can initiate their own quests proactively, but MOST are not accustomed to that privilege. Generally, offer varied choices and make it clear what their choices are, or you might just find yourself sitting their doing nothing.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Monster Hunter 3 So Far

I finally got it! And loving it!

Only played maybe 2 hours so far. But I can see all the ways the game is improved from number 1 that I enjoyed so much for all those late nights 3 years back.

I'll just give the lowdown on the features I was most intested in. The bottom-line is...everything I anticipated and learned from online research was correct. So this is a happy report. There are also some bonuses I didn't expect.

Game control: either wii remote or classic controller. Does NOT work with Gamecube controller, but I'm finding the wii remote controls are actually quite nice.

Offline mode: Better guided and more RPG-like than the original. In a good way. There are long walls of text in npc dialogues, though, which might have been interesting to read if I weren't trying to play while my son was around.

2-Player mode: Arena battle mode is split-screen combat. You can earn money for your character while completing arena challenges. A good addition to the game (though I wish offline 2-player questing were available...oh well)

Online mode: Logging into servers is very easy. Just go to City instead of Village, and choose a server. You don't actually have to log in with a username and password, it just lets you go right in, which speeds things up. To connect with friends, just communicate beforehand which server to meet in. There's probably a friends list feature built-in, though I haven't looked into it (MH1 had a friends list, so it's gotta be there).

Online chat: Wii Speak or any USB keyboard works. There's also the onscreen keyboard.

Excited to keep playing! If anyone else has this game and wants to try to play together, let me know!