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Why Are All "Sandboxy PVP Included" MMOs not meeting expectations, excecpt(MAYBE) one?

Flari-Merchant
Decius
From an in-universe viewpoint, if the guards are being paid in coin they don't care who controls the holding, and anyone with the coin can hire the guards to keep the peace. If they are being paid for by their use of the holding itself, that should be sufficient.

From the design viewpoint, having to pay for control both by PvP and then a supplemental payment is two different costs. The cost to control an area and determine 'security level' there should not change based on the desired security level. (They maybe should change with location, level of opposition, or some other factors not considered).
With a higher "security rating" or in other words more effective guards charged with more complete and specific duties, you really do not feel that they would cost more in ANY world?

Edit: Also, though I don't recall GW confirming this, some players have theorized that Thorn Guards(for example) do not interfere in feuds because they are not really in the employ of The Settlement. Which I think is mistaken. Guards obviously defend Company Holdings. I am proposing that some level of player protection be available in the employ of ALL The Settlement whether it be players or NPCs or a combo. Just that the option be there rather than expecting Players to play Cops and be enthusiastic about it. It isn't easy(by any regular means) to catch hooligans in your territory. It certainly is frustrating to try. I'll grant that much.
"I buy Azoth for 5sp/ea. I will trade Enchanting or other rare materials/anything for Azoth. Contact me if interested. GET YOUR COIN EASY!"
uotopia@msn.com
Lisa Stevens
I do want to point something out from the "Road Forward" blog.

"Opt-In PvP
Allow more PvP in Monster hexes.
Allow less PvP in Shield/NPC hexes.
Give Holding owners control of PvP rules in their hexes."

This is coming in EE12 in less than a month. If you control the hex, you will be able to control the PVP rules for that hex. This speaks to a lot of what Bringslite is talking about in his original post.

-Lisa
Flari-Merchant
Lisa Stevens
I do want to point something out from the "Road Forward" blog.

"Opt-In PvP
Allow more PvP in Monster hexes.
Allow less PvP in Shield/NPC hexes.
Give Holding owners control of PvP rules in their hexes."

This is coming in EE12 in less than a month. If you control the hex, you will be able to control the PVP rules for that hex. This speaks to a lot of what Bringslite is talking about in his original post.

-Lisa
Thanks Lisa! As a "Crazy Theorist" it is VERY nice to see that you read these forums.
Details on this have been scant. Any chance that someone can find the time to elaborate on it? "Too busy right now but soon is fine !" smile
"I buy Azoth for 5sp/ea. I will trade Enchanting or other rare materials/anything for Azoth. Contact me if interested. GET YOUR COIN EASY!"
uotopia@msn.com
Duffy Swiftshadow
As Lisa pointed out one of the things that EVE does well is create layers where the rules slightly change at each step regarding how much and in what way you can affect each other. It's good that PFO is moving some things in that direction, I wouldn't say they need to exactly copy how EVE did it, but they need those layers and varied approaches to solving conflict to make things interesting.

While that stuff is of course very important, ultimately how the game plays day to day is still really important for retaining players. There will always be some diehard people that will stick with a game (I believe that would be most of us in PFO's case smile ), but ultimately we are outliers. The main body of players has to find themselves enjoying the day to day gameplay options to stick around and that's what I find lacking in most of the sandboxes I've tried out recently.
Paddy Fitzpatrick
Bringslite of Staalgard
Why do they always devolve to Open World PVP fests and never really get successful except for maybe one example(which is Sci Fi)? It could be inexperience in design, lack of money, poor concepts, but I think it is that each alienates too many of the possible "niche base" of potential customers with too narrow an Open World PVP concept.

It is both.

Combine that with waves of AAA titles trying to emulate the success of the most successful MMOs (like WoW killers) and indie/niche MMOs trying to emulate the success of Star Citizen or Minecraft in regards to crowdfunding and paying for alpha or pre alpha access. For every one of those there is 10-20 more that never make it off the ground, and additional ones that never last beyond the first 3-12 months.

The paying for pre-alpha trend has also created a situation of people paying for games that are incredibly unstable, unfinished, and prevented from getting finished due to a very tiny budget. There are so many places where something can go wrong due to instability that could lead to the player base leaving or becoming unstable long before the game is ready for prime time. A few games can weather it until then, many usually wind up DOA.

I wouldn't go so far as to say MMOs and in particular sandbox MMOs are dead, but they are certainly going through a dead period. We keep seeing more and more of them pop up all the time but very few last for any length of time. I personally would rather see fewer MMOs being made on the whole if it meant that they would come out more complete with all the main systems feature complete (even if there are still kinks to be worked out), working in synergy with one another, and don't feel like a second and less enjoyable job instead of a game.
Paddy Fitzpatrick - Rí Ruírec of Fianna, roaming bands of noble warriors!
Member of the Kathalpas Coalition and home of bandits, privateers, and anyone looking to get away from the shackles of law.
Find us on PFO Discord
Paddy Fitzpatrick
Lisa Stevens
If you control the hex, you will be able to control the PVP rules for that hex. .

-Lisa

I am curious to hear more about the details of this. What types of control will be available and how will they work?
Paddy Fitzpatrick - Rí Ruírec of Fianna, roaming bands of noble warriors!
Member of the Kathalpas Coalition and home of bandits, privateers, and anyone looking to get away from the shackles of law.
Find us on PFO Discord
Decius
The Thornguard work for the Lords of Thornkeep. They have decided that too much random murder is Bad For Business and sent their agents out to keep the murders down to a reasonable level.

They don't get involved in feuds because feuds aren't Bad For Business.

Holding guards work for the owner of the holding. They attack PvP flagged players because of gameplay logic.
goldenradish
Bringslite of Staalgard
I know, the topic's been done to death! Yet the TRUE problems have never been addressed by anyone(Developers) with ALL of the issues in focus.

#1: Trying to build with a lack of funds leading to buggy, feature lacking, graphically/(eye/ear candy) inferior results.
#1 You could build a game with no-texture primitives to work out gameplay issues. Graphics have almost nothing to do with good gameplay.
#2 and below?

The financial failure of every north american fantasy-themed pvp-focused MMO to date boils down to one thing, in my experience:
Most customers will not pay to be victims, indefinitely.

Now, it's true, some customers will pay to be victims, but they are a very very small target demographic, and evidently not enough to cover expenses, never mind make a profit, for an MMO. I don't see this ever changing, given it's been true for over 20 years.

Conflating sandbox with FFA PVP will continue to produce the failures of the past 20 years.

There are hundreds of good ideas for MMO's that will be popular, hell, if PFO was actually a pure PvE implementation of Pathfinder Modules Online? There would be more than 10k subs right now.

To your question of Why Are All "Sandboxy PVP Included" MMOs not meeting expectations? Because developers keep repeating the mistakes of history. FFA PVP does not make a sandbox. FFA PVP does not guarantee financial success or subscriptions. Maybe, just maybe, FFA PVP needs to stay in first person shooters, RTS, and other short-lived trivial games? Yeah, maybe.

I saw dozens of posters trying to talk Ryan Dancey out of this exact situation almost 5 years ago, on the Paizo forums. He dismissed them all and now we have another failure. Almost like 100, 1000, or 10,000 humans ARE wiser than one hubris-filled human. :|

http://paizo.com/threads/rzs2orp6?Is-the-game-still-Open-PvP
https://goblinworks.com/blog/to-live-and-die-in-the-river-kingdoms/
http://paizo.com/threads/rzs2nh19?Goblinworks-Blog-To-Live-and-Die-in-the-River
Fox
Well said Mr(s). Radish.
Paddy Fitzpatrick
But…This game in particular is not a no holds barred ffa pvp game. It is far from perfect and the quality may not be the best I have seen. Still, there are definitely limitations both mechanically and regarding ToS here. This ain't full open looting, this ain't a kill or be killed gank fest, and they are adding more ways to mitigate open ffa pvp stuff this month.

Trust me, this is nowhere close to that stuff. There is some conflict expected regarding competing for resources and stuff. However, war mechanics, while they need serious improvement in this game, banditry mechanics if they are ever implemented, and assassinations are a far cry from the murderhobo dystopia being described here.

This of course touches back to my point before about unstable systems that don't work with each other. The outlets we do have need serious improvement, they do not work together we'll, and the day to day content is either not that great or not present at all. I think PvE and additional NPC conent would be great for this game considering most other systems depend on it. Not sure when that will happen though.

These problems are not unique to PFO or even sandbox MMOs.

People WILL pay for territory sandboxes (EVE is an example of that), they WILL pay for UO like games (like Albion Online or the upcoming Legends of Aria), they will pay for faction vs. faction (Gloria Victis being one of several) and people will pay for all out killzone games I am sure (though those I admit tend to be a bit more rare). There are markets for these games if there were games with good designs, stable implementations, and sufficient resources to complete them and make good day to day content.

Part of it also requires a stable player base, which is hard to come by in any Indy or crowdfunded MMO, sandbox or otherwise.
Paddy Fitzpatrick - Rí Ruírec of Fianna, roaming bands of noble warriors!
Member of the Kathalpas Coalition and home of bandits, privateers, and anyone looking to get away from the shackles of law.
Find us on PFO Discord
 
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