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An Appeal to Bioware Regarding Operations Difficulty and Design

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Flashpoints, Operations, and Heroic Missions
An Appeal to Bioware Regarding Operations Difficulty and Design

jingadingdangdo's Avatar


jingadingdangdo
02.22.2012 , 01:42 PM | #121
Quote: Originally Posted by Bloodymoon View Post
Kanana, you are quite offensive. Labeling hardcore gamers as no-lifers, teenagers, etc. is at best trolling and at worst an insult.

Our guild is under the top 10 - 15 world, top 5 eu. Yet we do not have a single person you are describing - all of us are working or studying, the age is 24 in average.

Personally, I am 26 years old and work at least 40 hours a week and party much on the weekends. We currently need 1-2 days for 10/10 NM 16 man and do maximal raid 4 days a 4 hours in progress.

We are aware that not everybody can or want to raid 4x times a week , but we can afford to be present at 3 of those 4 days in progress times.

Please take that to heart and overthink your prejudice of hardcore gamers.
I was actually going to post something similar to this. It simply isn't productive for this dissolve into name calling where people call raiders basement dwellers who need to get a job and on the flip side casual players being referred to as people who want to be rewarded without putting in any effort.

If anything this thread shows that these stereotypes are far too simplistic and almost meaningless as labels. There has been support from a broad spectrum of players, casual, hardcore and even those in-between, for the suggested changes. Opposition and criticism of the suggested changes has mostly come from more casual players but I have absolutely no doubt that there are raiders out there would not agree with the changes that I and others have proposed. That these players have not posted in disagreement in this thread does not mean that they do not exist.

I would urge people coming from both sides of this argument to really think about what you are saying and to make compelling arguments for your case rather than resort to childish name calling. Resorting to insults is essentially an indicator that your argument has no substance or foundation. You are doing a disservice to the view you are trying to promote by resorting to this kind of behaviour.
Jinga - Raid Leader of <Retribution>

16 man - World 5th clear of EC Hard Mode. World ranked 6th overall.
Seeking exceptional applicants, apply now at retribution-guild.net

chronosxx's Avatar


chronosxx
02.22.2012 , 01:55 PM | #122
agree 100 percent! +1 for such a constructive post

lordhelmos's Avatar


lordhelmos
02.22.2012 , 03:21 PM | #123
Although I can see the point of view being held by the OP, what people need to understand is that the opinion and POV of a hardcore progression guild raid leader does not necessarily reflect the general opinions and values of everyone else playing the game, especially the vast population of casual gamers who really cares little for progression raiding and instead enjoys other aspects of the game including but not limited to:

-instanced and competitive PVP
-open world PVP
-crafting
-exploration and collecting
-raising alts
-storyline immersion and role-playing
-social and guild aspects
-mentoring or assisting under-levels
-using the game as a medium to connect with friends and family
-other options I have not mentioned

The OP directs his post as if endgame progression is the "end to all" to SWTOR's success. The reality of it is, yes SWTOR is not a raid-centric game like Word of Warcraft or RIFT.

I was a player who came from a hardcore progression guild in RIFT, people don't know the meaning of hard until they have gotten up to akylios and spend a good 60-80 wipes in one week just to get him to 20%. That is hardcore raiding.

Speaking from the perspective of RIFT, RIFT is an extremely successful hardcore progression game that caters to veteran and competitive raiders.

SWTOR has a very broad audience appeal and as a player who enjoys multiple aspects of the game outside of just raiding, this game is a very nice change of pace for me in comparison to RIFT which became so hardcore that it essentially became a job without a paycheck.

I personally DO NOT think that SWTOR needs to become a raid centric game in order to maintain it's success. Although I do not speak for them or necessarily reflect their ideals, I believe that the developer games have a semblance of my understanding concerning this as well.

Examples of this include the extreme effort put into the voice acting and multiple storylines, lore immersion, and the hyped legacy system that promotes the incentive to role multiple alternate characters in order to experience a varying degree of story content.

One can say you have not really experienced all of SWTOR until you have raised a 50 of each class and seen how everything in the story universe ties together. While this playstyle may not suit everyone, the options for new content are there.

With such a story driven campaign system, hype on legacy, and the introduction of new content that ties into story and conclusive events, it is safe to assume that SWTOR will not become a "raid-centric" game any time soon.

That focus may change in the future as Bioware and the developers master their own world building tools.

I will agree that operations are fun, but the problem with creating a raid centric game and upping the difficulty of the content is that is LOCKS END-GAME CONTENT TO ALL BUT AN ELITE FEW OF THE COMMUNITY.

I think this fact in combination with evidence that the player base of SWTOR is comprised from a large amount of people that have not necessarily come from raiding MMOs leads the developers to (rightfully) believe that creating a "raid-centric" game is not in the best interest of the majority population.

Many players have come from star wars galaxies and may have rolled characters that have never even seen combat, let alone raid mechanics.

The raids and operations, the ease of gaining gear and equipment, is directed at allowing the ENTIRE community to enjoy raids and operations without having to dedicate their entire focus of game enjoyment on a raiding guild, DKP system, and other forms of rules most actively seen in "raid-centric" games.

Even the destiny gear distribution system screams "casual" friendly, and although it might not be ideal for progression guilds, it is idea for pick up group communities trying to casually enjoy content without dealing with raid politics or "point systems" like suicide kings or DKP.

While I agree that hard content and options for hardcore raiders should be implemented in the game, a player should not have to be FORCED to conform to this standard in order to enjoy all the content.

This is where nightmare mores and insane versions of the content come in that should reward hardcore players with cosmetic items (such as speeders, unique items, slightly more powerful stuff but only minimally more powerful) in order to appease that elite handful of players.

However, the general direction of the game and focus of SWTOR should not cater towards that minority community. The option to do content of that difficulty should always be optional and not give extreme rewards or result in story or game progression that implies that the rest of the communities is forced to rise to that level in order to enjoy endgame at all.

I personally like the layout of raids, the ease of gearing to experience content and see that the big challenge that bioware faces with a community friendly model is to push out content fast enough to keep the general population from being bored.

The incentive to roll alts for legacy and not just focus on an endgame 50 is one of the many strategies that Bioware has employed to keep players interested in the game.

I like SWTOR as it is, and yes improvements can be made and the hardcore players should have options, but I don't think a large amount of manpower needs to be dedicated to them.

I do agree with bugfixes as being priority one to eliminate bad taste and unfairness in the game. Yea community service is terrible, but those guys are probably outsourced and swamped by requests.

Most of the MAJOR problems in the game will likely be fixed in time.

I think it is important for Bioware not to delve too deeply into posts like the OPs and not model their game strictly for the enjoyment of hardcore players, as this would destroy the community, promote elitism, and take the focus away from the story driven magic and already successful casual model that is currently keeping players filling the servers.

jingadingdangdo's Avatar


jingadingdangdo
02.22.2012 , 03:48 PM | #124
Quote: Originally Posted by lordhelmos View Post
I will agree that operations are fun, but the problem with creating a raid centric game and upping the difficulty of the content is that is LOCKS END-GAME CONTENT TO ALL BUT AN ELITE FEW OF THE COMMUNITY.
This I don't really agree with. Essentially your post seems to be grounded in your experience in Rift high end raiding and assumes that we are asking for a similar raiding environment to be established in SW:TOR but this is simply not the case. The raiding system is fundamentally different and it boils down to the thing we have been talking about quite extensively in this thread - SW:TOR has 3 difficulty modes to work with. Rift simply did not have this feature in any form.

We are not asking that end game content be locked to an elite few. My post and several others have basically indicated that the normal modes of said content are very well tuned and offer just about every play the chance to experience the content. I even state in my post that hard mode also should be a point of aspiration for even the casual raider and something that can be accomplished by the casual raider with time and effort. Nightmare mode however should represent a significantly higher challenge for the people that want that challenge. This takes absolutely nothing away from the casual player's capacity to tackle end game content. All this does is use a system that is already in place to try and satisfy two different audiences with divergent interests.

I would really like for someone using this argument to explain how making the higher difficulty modes more difficult detracts from their ability to enjoy end game content - I simply don't see it. Using the existing capacity to differentiate difficulty in end game content actually opens up end game content to a broader audience in total than simply saying raid content should be designed either for the casual or for the hardcore raider.

Quote: Originally Posted by lordhelmos View Post
The incentive to roll alts for legacy and not just focus on an endgame 50 is one of the many strategies that Bioware has employed to keep players interested in the game.
To me this feels like an especially poor strategy if this is truly what they are aiming to do. For one thing the legacy system is not even active at present so the incentive is currently non-existent. Even when the legacy system is implemented the incentive of playing through what are the same quests, apart from the storyline, just to unlock a few new races or other legacy vanity items will not keep players interested. I am not even talking about hardcore raiders with this - I simply don't see how such a weak incentive and repetitive content can keep long term subscriptions.

Worse still is the fact that the leveling process is for the most part solo oriented content. If rolling alts is the content that is intended to keep players active and even if this were to actually work - which I firmly believe it would not - it would render the strong multi-player emphasis of the end game obsolete. This would be a major design problem in an MMO given that such games are inherently geared toward groups of players rather than individuals.
Jinga - Raid Leader of <Retribution>

16 man - World 5th clear of EC Hard Mode. World ranked 6th overall.
Seeking exceptional applicants, apply now at retribution-guild.net

The_Duck's Avatar


The_Duck
02.22.2012 , 04:35 PM | #125
What's wrong with noticably higher difficulty per tier?
Sounds good to me. Everyone can enjoy a more difficult experience if they choose to.

Same in real life. This is why sports teams have a Freshman/JV/Varsity type setup.
Higher difficulty and better gear (or game experience in this case).

What does Varsity (Nightmare) have over Freshman (normal)?
1. better geared individuals (gotten from normal/hard)
2. tougher individuals (more hps from gear)
3. tougher mobs/teams (more plays, more difficult playsets/strats)
4. individuals have more experience with the environment (better overall knowledge on how to work as a team)

i don't see anything wrong with this.
affects all individuals the same
gears everyone the same

if this was the progression then there wouldn't be any talk of "casual" vs. "hardcore".
the statement would be irrelevant.

work your way through normal.
get geared up.
gear and experience necessary to complete next step
gear and experience necessary to complete final step

unfortunately, other MMOs have the 3 steps in SEPARATE raiding areas and not the exact SAME raid and mobs.

I think that's where SWTOR/BW went wrong and thus we are all confused as to the vision of the gear progression as compared to the 3 levels of difficulty.

other MMOs you gear up and move through the raid content and unlock other areas by gaining experience in the zone and slowly getting gear (and implement CRAFTING in to MAKING the next tier of gear). instead ... BOOM ... here's some gear! instant gratification!

SWTOR is somewhat of a hodgepodge/all-over-the-place and doesn't seem to be thought out very well in this regard.

"hey! are you done? do it AGAIN but HARDER!"

WHAT?
- The Duck

RSReaver's Avatar


RSReaver
02.23.2012 , 03:34 AM | #126
I generally agree with the OP and resent the idea that the game should provide rewards to everyone with very little input.

My guild recently stepped up from 8-man Hard to Nightmare and one shot the first 4 bosses in EV in a little over an hour on our very first attempt (still having trouble with the buggy, RNG nature of Soa). As the content stands we have been able to (nearly) down the hardest content in the game by raiding once a week. It just doesn't make sense that it should be so easy for a semi-casual guild.

My personal MMO experience has ranged from very casual to hardcore progression and ultimately the lack of challenge present in the endgame (regardless of reward) doesn't keep me interested.

I love having an easy difficulty setting for casual players to step into at their leisure. There should also be a very difficult setting for skilled players that wish to challenge themselves. And the higher challenge should absolutely come with a higher reward. There is nothing wrong with being proud of what you've accomplished and having something to show for it.

rkopczak's Avatar


rkopczak
02.23.2012 , 08:18 AM | #127
I really hope the new operation will be much harder and make us busy for longer then current rakata tier, which is on farm since first clear.

I must admit I like what they did, EV and KP are very good raids in my opinion, some new and interesting mechanics, change of scenery, puzzle solving, that's really great. but what I dont like is the lack of diversity in loot, This boss drops boots, this one drops offhands and so on, this is really borring, loot table should be much bigger.

In next raid I would also like to have 2 new tier of gear. Let normal mode drop rakata, hard drop t4, and nightmare t5, or at least t4.5. make significant change in difficulity level between hard and nightmare, so people dont skip hardmode before entering nightmare and we will all be happy and busy.
For Hope, for Freedom, For the Republic!

jingadingdangdo's Avatar


jingadingdangdo
02.23.2012 , 02:20 PM | #128
I do have to admit the puzzle bosses were pretty fun (Ancient Pylons & G4-B3 Heavy Fabricator). Something a little different from the norm. These fights also do have slightly different mechanics on the higher difficulty modes which is one of the things we're really pushing for. I think the issue on these puzzle fights is more in tuning than anything else - the new mechanics don't really make the fight much harder if at all but it's definitely a step in the right direction.
Jinga - Raid Leader of <Retribution>

16 man - World 5th clear of EC Hard Mode. World ranked 6th overall.
Seeking exceptional applicants, apply now at retribution-guild.net

Rollento's Avatar


Rollento
02.23.2012 , 02:52 PM | #129
Quote:
unfortunately, other MMOs have the 3 steps in SEPARATE raiding areas and not the exact SAME raid and mobs.

I think that's where SWTOR/BW went wrong and thus we are all confused as to the vision of the gear progression as compared to the 3 levels of difficulty.

other MMOs you gear up and move through the raid content and unlock other areas by gaining experience in the zone and slowly getting gear (and implement CRAFTING in to MAKING the next tier of gear). instead ... BOOM ... here's some gear! instant gratification!

SWTOR is somewhat of a hodgepodge/all-over-the-place and doesn't seem to be thought out very well in this regard.

"hey! are you done? do it AGAIN but HARDER!"
Ahh, you bring up nostalgic times of BC in WoW. This was the design setup they did, but lets be honest... The resources needed to do something such as this isn't worth it for the company.

The hardcore player group is very miniscule compared to the casual player, and to develop an entire raid instance for them wouldn't be economical. Don't get me wrong! I miss the "attunement" days of EQ1/WoW BC, where you had to run the gambit of dungeons to gear up for the next one, but I don't see them making a comeback due to budget constraints for developers. The tree tiers of difficulty system seems to be the best way to appease everyone. The best thing they could do to give the Hardcore Player-group a shout out like "we care about you guys too" would be to make a hidden boss in the raid that could only be engaged with certain difficult tasks being performed. WoW did this in Ulduar with Algalon, and he's still revered as one of the toughest, most exciting boss encounters in WoW history.

monimoni's Avatar


monimoni
02.24.2012 , 11:12 AM | #130
Sticky this.