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The Saga of Lucimia - The Meaning Of Group-Based Gameplay
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The Immortals
Tue Jul 28 2015, 08:45PM
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THE MEANING OF GROUP-BASED GAMEPLAY
Tim "Renfail" Anderson 4 comments artist, development, gaming, MMORPG, Unity3D,
The Fellowship of the Ring was not just one character. Jason had his Argonauts. Zeus went up against The Titans alongside The Olympians. History and mythology is full of examples of epic battles waged in the battle of good versus evil…and none of them are fought single-handed.
Modern-day television enraptures this essence as well, with shows like Firefly, Lost, The Walking Dead all showcasing a team of players facing up against the odds. And we’ve seen it over the years as well; Star Trek, Babylon 5, Battlestar Galactica (both the original and re-imagined), Stargate and beyond.

The greatest adventures are undertaken by groups. The greatest challenges can only be overcome with allies. The greatest rewards come from deeds performed alongside your peers. Dragons aren’t slain by lone heroes; it takes a team of well-oiled champions battling together to bring it down…and then share in the spoils of war together.

The Saga of Lucimia is not a single-player game. There are already dozens of solo-friendly MMORPGs out there offering players the instant gratification that the entitled hipster generation of ADD players need in order to stay subscribed.

Instead, we are building a group-based game, one that focuses on the epic battles, challenges and rewards that come about as a direct result of being part of something epic in scope…not a single-player storyline where every player gets to become The Hero.
We are focusing on 8-man groups for our standard group size. While many players are familiar with the 6-man party size, we feel it’s been done to death, and when we started looking at our favorite lore and legends (see the above books, myths and television shows), the parties always revolve around a party of 8-15 or 20 members.

The only single-player content that will exist within our game is what you’ll find within cities and outposts in between adventuring expeditions. Everything else is reserved for players who have taken the time to build up the relevant skills and earned/stockpiled the necessary gear and equipment to handle expeditions in the wild.

The moment you step outside the safety of the city walls and the guards…danger and epic adventure awaits. This is a game where players understand that you never leave home without a coil of rope, stockpiles of arrows, sharpened swords and oiled leather/armor….and that pack mules and horses are always the first to go when the trolls come hunting.

We understand that this will limit our subscriber numbers. We are OK with that. We are building a niche game, an independent title, something that caters to those of you who – like us – cut your teeth on 1st and 2nd edition Advanced Dungeons and Dragons and early MMORPGs like Ultima Online and EverQuest, where everything was about the group and the community, not about the single player 1st place medals.

Will you still be able to do things if your guild, friends or static group aren’t around for the evening? Sure. Crafting will be one aspect of the game that you can do on your own in downtime between adventuring sessions. Or you can do it full-time if you desire.

And you’ll be able to hang out in taverns, roleplay with your fellow players, explore the depth of the lore in-game, follow specific quest-lines that have in-city conversation points…and you’ll be able to go back to low-level content that no longer poses a threat to you as a higher-level adventurer if you so desire.

Plus, with the Camps and Caravan system we’re designing, you’ll be able to stick with your friends, allies, family, and guildmates even if you have to log out for a night or few to take care of Real Life when it rears its ugly head.

But anything that is on-level with you, anything outside the city walls, requires a group to overcome. From 3-4 man content in the overland world (with scattered 8-man encampments plus roaming pathers that will require multiple groups to take down), to the full 8 man dungeons and the multi-group raids beyond that, everything you do in Saga of Lucimia revolves around grouping up with other players to achieve something far beyond what you could ever dream of accomplishing on your own.

We’ll obviously be tweaking balance as we go along, but what we envision at this point is a balanced group being four “primary” Adventurer Archetypes, two hybrid/support Scholar/Adventurer Archetypes, and two pure support types, such as an Archaeologist Scholar whose main role is to find hidden doorways, unlock sarcophagi, decipher runes and get the adventuring party deeper into the dungeon. Or a master mechanic Thief who can do a medium amount of DPS but his primary role is in trap detection, removal, and picking locks/finding secret entrances.

More information on Archetypes can be found here.
In an overland bandit camp with room to kite, you might be able to get away with just having a group of three or four players who are well-equipped, highly-skilled, and work well together leveraging voice chat and coordination. Or a group of four to six players who are pure Adventurer Archetypes; without the need to open locks or find secret entrances, it’s all about the take-down power, rather than needing support.
It’s impossible to estimate at this point how much content will be geared towards the full group and how much will be geared towards the smaller groups. I’d like to think that we’ll cater heavily to the former, with 85 to 90 percent of the game designed specifically with the 8-man team in mind.
But what about if you only have a limited amount of time to play? Or what if one of your static group has to log for the evening because his wife is sick or they have to work? What about when you can only field three or four people in your guild for the night?

While we are working on designing some interesting ways to help work around these types of issues: custom waypoints to pick up where you left off; fast-travel options such as encampments; the previously mentioned camps/caravan system; other things as well, with limitations in place to make sure they aren’t abused.

Can’t field a full team tonight? Get over your fear of grouping with people. Make friends. Allies. Recruit people into your guild or your static group. Don’t be an anti-social baby; get out there and use your charm to your advantage. Go old-school; be community-oriented as opposed to anti-group.
We are also designing our dungeons with longevity in mind; we want a dungeon to take players weeks to months to crawl through. There won’t be any bullshit 15 minute hard-mode runs to grind tokens for gear in our game. More on dungeons in a later installment, but suffice to say, our dungeons will have multiple levels, multiple tiers, and will take players a significant amount of time to complete.

And finally, we want players to have to work for their rewards. It is a simple fact that the harder you work for something, the sweeter the feeling when you finally get to hold the fruits of your labor in your bare hands. And when you can share that feeling, that excitement, with a close team of allies? It makes the moment that much more epic



“We don’t stop playing because we grow old, we grow old because we stop playing.”
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Harmony
Thu Aug 06 2015, 04:28PM
Harmony
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Joined: Sun Oct 28 2012, 09:34AM
Posts: 21
TIm is a friend of mine with whom I played in EQ2 we were in the same guild.
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Nemeses
Thu Aug 06 2015, 07:04PM
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Joined: Tue Feb 12 2008, 09:07PM
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Harmony wrote ...

TIm is a friend of mine with whom I played in EQ2 we were in the same guild.

Cool get us in early :D

We lived a thousand lives united we stand!
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