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Sell me on an Asian fantasy MMORPG

Afterburner

Remarkably expressive bandages
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The problem with the forced-grouping paradigm is that it makes the game mostly unplayable more than 9 months after launch. Not enough population. After the failure of Wildstar I don't think we'll ever see another such game, and Wildstar only barely fit the critera. I don't think even Actual EQ 1 is still like that.
Project 1999 is still alive and kicking though, so there's some small market out there for that kind of gameplay. And while modern EQ with all the trimmings isn't much like the classic days of yore, they've rolled out a few classic gameplay servers which have been a big hit. Project 1999 showed 'em there was money to be made there.

I know everybody hated the forced grouping, and that I am part of a tiny minority who actually liked it. But forced grouping leads to actual socializing in a way that the solo-everything model doesn't. I am still very close with my old EQ guild 20 years later. I've never built those kinds of social ties in any other game since then, because every other game since then has moved away from the forced grouping model and towards a "never have to socialize unless you really want to" model.


While I don't really have much interest in Tera, I do have to applaud them for at least getting the overly-sexualized men into the same general ballpark as the overly-sexualized women -- though the images provided suggest there's still some distance between them. At least they're trying, though.
Well, to be fair, the image I posted was probably the best (worst?) of the bunch. The human and high elf females will often show skin, but not to the ludicrous degree of the Castanics. In the case of both genders, Castanic armor is much more revealing than equivalent armor for the other races. The dudes are fond of armor that shows off their abs and obliques and occasionally their backs.

But yes, they have clearly constructed the male models for the Castanic and high elf males to be eye candy.

Spoiler: Show










By contrast, the human male is a pure "I wanna be this guy!" power fantasy. Big, burly, powerful. Mighty thews. Never shows any skin aside from the "unclothed" model you get in the character select screen.

Spoiler: Show



All armor and all robes (that I've seen, anyways) cover them completely, head to toe.



On the other hand, it did remind me of one of the few things I'd heard about Tera back in the day -- that their 'cute childlike' race are just as oversexualized as the races that actually look more than ten years old, and they'd even had to be covered up a bit to make the game more palatable for the US market. I kind of dread to look for images of that...
Yeah, they're pretty loli-riffic. They are probably not as bad as you imagine, but they're firmly on the "not good" side of the "are we sexualizing pre-pubescent girls?" spectrum. Doesn't help that there are in-game costumes you can acquire that will turn them into anime schoolgirls.

I am not a fan.
 

Rabbit Éclair

high in vital bunnytonium
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Validated User
Project 1999 is still alive and kicking though, so there's some small market out there for that kind of gameplay. And while modern EQ with all the trimmings isn't much like the classic days of yore, they've rolled out a few classic gameplay servers which have been a big hit. Project 1999 showed 'em there was money to be made there.

I know everybody hated the forced grouping, and that I am part of a tiny minority who actually liked it. But forced grouping leads to actual socializing in a way that the solo-everything model doesn't. I am still very close with my old EQ guild 20 years later. I've never built those kinds of social ties in any other game since then, because every other game since then has moved away from the forced grouping model and towards a "never have to socialize unless you really want to" model.
FFXIV may be able to scratch your itch there, or may not. The core main story content itself is solo, but Dungeons and Trials (standalone bigger boss fights) are essentially group-only* content. Past level 15 or so, you have to run one every few levels to progress in the main story, and at higher levels you often need to run a few back to back. If you level additional combat classes after you finish the main story, you'll probably do that almost entirely through dungeons. However, the socialization aspect is cut down a bit from EQ days--there's a group finder that will automatically sort you into a balanced group, and since a dungeon is usually about half an hour of steady fighting, people don't necessarily talk much. It varies a lot, really. I've had groups where nobody said a word the whole time, and I've had groups where we were cracking jokes every spawn and some of us exchanged friend invites at the end. You can run dungeons with static groups of friends and stuff, though.

* There is a system for soloing dungeons with a party of NPCs, but it's 1) only available in the dungeons in the newest expansion, level 70+, and 2) slow enough that it's only really an attractive alternative if you really want to avoid people.
 

TheGrog

Registered User
Validated User
Project 1999 is still alive and kicking though, so there's some small market out there for that kind of gameplay. And while modern EQ with all the trimmings isn't much like the classic days of yore, they've rolled out a few classic gameplay servers which have been a big hit. Project 1999 showed 'em there was money to be made there.

I know everybody hated the forced grouping, and that I am part of a tiny minority who actually liked it. But forced grouping leads to actual socializing in a way that the solo-everything model doesn't. I am still very close with my old EQ guild 20 years later. I've never built those kinds of social ties in any other game since then, because every other game since then has moved away from the forced grouping model and towards a "never have to socialize unless you really want to" model.
I understand the effect even though I didn't play EQ or other MMOs of that era enough to really experience it. If you play at the same times in a small population you get to know those people even if you aren't in the same guild. I do remember the impact from when WoW went to a multi-server group finder model, which rapidly eroded what social ties there were for PvE content.

There's just not going to be a new game aimed at that market, and MMOs are generally too expensive for pet heartbreakers (which is why I brough up Wildstar, which was basically the pet heartbreaker for people who grew up on EQ). Even the people who would play it mostly don't have the time for it anymore.

FF14's game pace is slower, and it's not action-y in the way that Tera or I guess the newer one would be Blade & Soul.
 

Kredoc

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There are a few EQ-throwback, forced grouping MMOs in the works by indie developers, who are taking aim at smaller servers and populations. I wish I could remember some names, but it's not really my thing. I'm pretty sure TheHiveLeader on youtube has covered a couple.
 

Tanka

We See You
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FFXIV's newest expansion, Shadowbringers, has a 91 on metacritic for average critic reviews, and it earned the hell out of that score.

It does take some time going from the first quest in the game to that expansion, but it is so worth it.

That said!

The first 30-35 levels of the game are kinda... sloggy. There's a notorious quest chain to go fight a boss that is between 20-30 quests long and each step is pretty much one little step like "take this thing over there" then the next is "now go get this thing" ad nauseum.

Once you hit Heavensward they really lock into pacing and the quality of the game improves so so much.

The combat feels a little slower at first, because the GCD is 2.5s instead of 1.5s (so if you've played WoW or SWTOR, which IIRC you have(?), you'll know that feel), but once you start getting oGCDs it flows a lot better.
 

Afterburner

Remarkably expressive bandages
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FFXIV's newest expansion, Shadowbringers, has a 91 on metacritic for average critic reviews, and it earned the hell out of that score.

It does take some time going from the first quest in the game to that expansion, but it is so worth it.

That said!

The first 30-35 levels of the game are kinda... sloggy. There's a notorious quest chain to go fight a boss that is between 20-30 quests long and each step is pretty much one little step like "take this thing over there" then the next is "now go get this thing" ad nauseum.

Once you hit Heavensward they really lock into pacing and the quality of the game improves so so much.

The combat feels a little slower at first, because the GCD is 2.5s instead of 1.5s (so if you've played WoW or SWTOR, which IIRC you have(?), you'll know that feel), but once you start getting oGCDs it flows a lot better.
Well, I am probably going to piddle around with Tera for a while longer. But I don't think I will be in it for the long haul.

Once I get bored with it, I will probably check out FFXIV. Lots of things in this thread which have piqued my interest.
 

Balac

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The problem with the forced-grouping paradigm is that it makes the game mostly unplayable more than 9 months after launch. Not enough population. After the failure of Wildstar I don't think we'll ever see another such game, and Wildstar only barely fit the critera. I don't think even Actual EQ 1 is still like that.
I'd say you can still do limited forced grouping successfully but you need something along the lines of FF14's model to make it work.
 

TheGrog

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I'd say you can still do limited forced grouping successfully but you need something along the lines of FF14's model to make it work.
14 had more forced grouping than most MMOs. If I remember right the storyline quests forced it for several dungeons and the Primal fights, which was more than WoW does these days.

Every MMO turns into forced grouping at the level cap, but I believe Afterburner meant where leveling required groups like in EQ. WoW more or less killed that idea.
 
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Afterburner

Remarkably expressive bandages
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Easter egg in Tera Online, at the top of a hill off the beaten path:

23212
 

PenguinZero

Wark!
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If you do end up picking up FFXIV, check in with the thread here before you buy a full copy and start a subscription. There's a Recruit-a-Friend system which can get both the recruiter and recruit some nice little rewards, but once you've paid for a month of game time, it's off the table forever.
 
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