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Does an MMO need a story?


Gankdalf_

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I played WOW for 6 years and have no idea who any of the NPC characters are except that I know Thrall is leader of the Orcs and some woman is leader of Undercity, that is all I know.

 

If you don't know any of the NPC characters, that was your choice not to remember them. And in that, how is TOR any different? You can choose to remember quest givers and so forth or you can choose not to.

 

You see in a good MMO you can make your own stories up if you are provided with the tools, . . .

 

I agree on that point. At least that's what some of us think makes a good MMO--others don't care about story at all.

 

WOW gave me the tools: A thriving world, great world pvp (I could attack anywhere with my guild and have a chance), it had cross server pvp, LFG tools, excellent crafting...it had IMMERSION!

 

Two things which really don't belong in a summary of WoW are excellent crafting and immersion. I'm guessing you've never played an MMO that had an excellent crafting system--TOR is slightly better than some other MMOs--and while many agree that TOR has greater immersion than WoW, that immersion is still mostly linear. There are/have been other MMOs out there with far more well-rounded immersion.

 

Taking it one step further, WoW may have more activities but those should not be confused with tools to make up your own story. Both WoW and TOR are limited in that regard.

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My opinion of this game. I am playing through my 1st character. The story line is good but towards the end of chapter one I was thinking rinse and repeat on next planet. Luckily I got to Chapter 2..

 

I like the voice acting as it has dragged me into the story, but after my 1st character if I was to level alts, I will be disabling that. It doesn't seem u need anyone to group with (Yes WoW nerfed a lot so u don't need to either)....

 

In regards to the LFG Cross server tool for flashpoints etc.. People ask for it, but just go over to the WoW forums to see all the whinging it creates as well. So that issue is a lose / lose situation. IMO I think it's a good idea as I hate sitting in a hub and spamming LFG in chat.

 

As long as SWTOR has good end game with PVE and PVP then the journey to get there at the moment is fun due to the story more than just the kill X, Collect Y and activate Z.

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MMO's need a story (multiple stories) and they need to be told well. Otherwise all you have is combat grinding. It's quite pointless; as pointless as an RPG that has no story and only combat (it becomes an action game only).

 

The whole point of an MMORPG is that it is an RPG, which means it needs story telling.

 

However, I agree that the resource given to the cut scenes and dialogues should have been better spent on building out the basic system.

 

There's no reason at all to take us out of a perpetual world constantly and into cutscene after cutscene. Or, just as bad, loading screen after loading screen. There are signs all over the place that bioware, when they started this project, doesn't understand the essence of what an MMORPG is. They get the RPG but not the MMO and more importantly, the synthesis of MMO-RPG.

 

Personally I enjoy the stories but I skip everything. I read the text. It's great the first run through, but tedious (more tedious than mob grinding) with the constant cuts and load. There's no reason they couldn't have been a bit more balanced about it; rather than constant cut/dialogue scenes, they could have just voice the NPC and given us transcription ala traditional RPG quests. They also didn't need ALL that verbose dialogue. Frankly, they could cut 20% of each dialogue and still retain the essence of the conversation.

 

It's overly much and it's apparent that too much of the resources went to just this ONE system.

 

I think the number of conversation options were done to enhance grouping and the social aspects in general.

 

If grouped with other people, it gives other people a chance to voice out their opinion. You get to see and hear them speak. Some people also put a lot of work in their appearance, and this way you get to show off how you look. It was also funny to hear some of the responses that other classes make.

 

One time we were face to face with an enemy where half of his face was disfigured. The trooper won the roll and said "Would you like me to match the other half of your face for you?". It was a tough guy moment.

 

It is probably tedious to a player soloing the content. Things can be done better.

Edited by ConradLionhart
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I played Anarchy Online for 5 years and got thoroughly fed up with repeating the same content again and again, without any real motive other than leveling up, and then leveling up some more. SW:TOR gives me actual reasons to do stuff, and tools to give each of my characters a unique personality. In fact, if I hadn't heard such great things about the story and conversations, I wouldn't have started playing at all.

 

I avoided playing any kind of FPS game for a long time since I felt they were just thinly veiled excuses for virtual violence. I'm still not too fond of the genre, even though the storytelling has improved.

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i tell you an mmorpg without a story is like a person without a personality. That is what cataclysm has become for wow.

 

I have to admit that I'm getting used to the voice over that going back to text base questing like in wow would be very boring.

 

Every thing you listed except the more responsive combat and space combat I agree. However, I don't agree on the flash point, operation, lfg, and more warzones. If you played wow before lfg you would realize wow was more story base than what it is now or even in woltk. Wow has no immersion at moment. That is why a lot of people are leaving.

 

As for making your own story that is unacceptable to me. Any game including wow should have a rigid story. That's another grip I have with wow. The more wow drifted from warcraft 3 the worst the story became due to the fact that Blizzard was creating the story to fit with their raid instances. A raid instance is epic if it has an excellent story and game mechanics. That is why ulduar and Naxxramas were unique. Ice crown was another good raid instance in part cause it mark the end of the warcraft series story with the death of arthas.

 

Cataclysm and that panda expansion will never match up to vanilla, bc, or woltk due to the lack of story. Each raid instance and boss feels hollow almost like Blizzard wants each boss to be a loot pinata. Thus, Blizzard wants you to become a gear whore cause it's easier to create new bosses that drops higher level gear, but with very little story and poor mechanics like what we have in cataclysm. The opposite is more difficult and requires a good story and mechanics.

 

A good story for a raid doesn't just start when you enter the raid, but is the culmination of many quest and is built into the story to be final encounter of a story arc. That is what naxxramas, icecrown citadel, black temple, tk, and ssc had that was unique. Each of hose raid had a unique end raid boss that was rich with lore/story.

 

BW isn't there. They need to improve game mechanics and have better boss mechanics. BW has the story part down, but needs to improve in other areas as I mention. Also needs to come out with non-buggy raid instances.

 

Personally, I think naxxramas 40 man in vanilla was epitome of end game raiding. You needed 40 people to coordinate and every single person needed to play perfect to defeat Kel'Thuzad.

 

Here is link to the original boss fight not the dump down version of woltk:

 

Edited by Knockerz
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As the lore in WoW is what really drew me in. If it was just me as (I mained a warlock 5ish years) an undead shooting shadow bolts at stupid stuff I didn't care about I would have never stuck. Sylvanna Windrunner was the head of the undercity. I forget how she got turned into a banshee... Something to do with Arthas I think..

 

What swtor has going for it is the story, people will stick around ad long as they feel the game elements are improving, which they seem to be with the upcoming 1.2 and the story is continued and expanded. You discount story and lore way too much.

 

I forgot to answer the question posted so I'm editing. Yes an MMO most definetely needs a story. A dang good one in fact.

Edited by Macabakur
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I played Anarchy Online for 5 years and got thoroughly fed up with repeating the same content again and again, without any real motive other than leveling up, and then leveling up some more. SW:TOR gives me actual reasons to do stuff, and tools to give each of my characters a unique personality. In fact, if I hadn't heard such great things about the story and conversations, I wouldn't have started playing at all..

 

Then they go a ruin the entire experience with the grind of repeating dailies and that the Flashpoints, Warzones and Operations are all instanced (with teleports/queues into warzones).

 

So we have the makings of a good MMORPG and the end game is a bunch of FPS style mini games.

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Then they go a ruin the entire experience with the grind of repeating dailies and that the Flashpoints, Warzones and Operations are all instanced (with teleports/queues into warzones).

 

So we have the makings of a good MMORPG and the end game is a bunch of FPS style mini games.

Can't say I'm surprised by that. It's an unfortunate fact that artificial imagination hasn't been invented yet, so endgame content will inevitably start to repeat itself sooner or later. And since this is still a relatively new game, it's more likely to be sooner than later. I'm hoping that with time, the storylines will be extended with new human-created content and the variety of endgame content will be increased to offset the onset of boredom.

 

Anarchy Online has a mission generation system that supposedly produces unique content on demand, but in reality it's based on a very limited set of rules. There's five different basic types of missions, but the gameplay in each of them is mostly the same, with the only difference being the action needed to complete the mission. Each type has two or three different backstories (with randomly filled names, serial numbers and such), but these are irrelevant and not really worth paying attention to after you've seen them once or twice. It's a fairly similar system to SW:TOR's crew skills in fact, except that you get to run the missions yourself instead of letting your crew handle them while you concentrate on something more important.

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Does an MMO need a story? No. No game does.

 

Bioware has blurred the distinction between games and movies. This is a trend in all Bioware games, not just TOR. Bioware always had games with great stories to tell, but with more recent games the focus has shifted far too much into the story telling direction.

 

When creating a game the first and most important aspect is gameplay. Story telling always comes second. Bioware seems to have forgotten about this.

 

Yes. Fully agreed.

 

Is this policy of BioWare good or bad? Hard to say. It's a choice. Don't call it a game, call it an interactive movie, or a story with some gameplay in the mid... But it works. Sales of ME3 show it.

 

Once people were reading books. Or going to cinema. Or watching a painting. Or listening to a symphony. Now they play an electronic application, which has lots of different languages combined. Wagner would be pleased.

 

Personally I like it in single-player games. In multiplayer it promises well, as I pointed out some pages before. It just needs some more opening to other players, and would be just perfect.

Edited by DelopHora
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Sadly today/tomorrow is going to be a very dark time in the life of SWTOR as a huge amount of subs will be due, these are the people who got into the game just before launch.

 

We are three months down the road and it's fair to say it's been a total disaster for Bioware and EA. The more experienced gamers like myself predicted this back in December with uncanny accuracy http://www.swtor.com/community/showthread.php?t=89529 but am not here to gloat.

 

I just think that this whole game is a great example of what a well oiled PR machine is capable of doing. Now that the game has been played and reviewed it's clear that the PR hype was a load of rubbish as usual.

 

So why has it failed then?

 

I get a shivver when I think of how amazing this game could have been if the voice and story telling budget had been spent on actual gameplay. It's the story that has killed this game as an MMO, it just cost too much of the budget. That money could have funded so much more MMOness to the game such as LFG tools, more warzones, better planets, no server instancing, more flashpoints, guild banks, beter space combat, smooth gameplay without ability delays, the list could go on and on.

 

I played WOW for 6 years and have no idea who any of the NPC characters are except that I know Thrall is leader of the Orcs and some woman is leader of Undercity, that is all I know. You see in a good MMO you can make your own stories up if you are provided with the tools, WOW gave me the tools: A thriving world, great world pvp (I could attack anywhere with my guild and have a chance), it had cross server pvp, LFG tools, excellent crafting...it had IMMERSION!

 

My first ever computer game adventure was called twin kingdom valley, it was a basic text adventure, then I got lords of Midnight and played it for years :) It had no moving graphics at all but the gameplay was amazing, games back then had to have good gameplay. I think game designers now focus far to much on story, gloss and other asthetics and forget about having fun. Hopefully this games failure will be the kick up the arse the gaming industry needs.

 

 

... wow... i did not realise that i was able to disagree so strongly with any one person... Thank you for helping me reach an entire new level of silent disagreement.

 

You sir, are not my favorite person.

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okay, reading through this thread... I know many of you where not around for pre-cu, you look at swg after life support, before, it was still thriving.

1.7 million comes up alot, that was in december, the month it opened.

Many of you have no idea what MMO meant, just what it means now. And it ain't anything for me.

-as for roles, yeah choose either healer,dps or tank. Don't actually Roleplay, cause that seemed to vanish some where when wow opened its doors.

-for those around for SWG pre-cu Patch 14 to be exact, that game was getting to the point of awesomeness, just needed some form of fixes, i've never played such a great game, other than EQ1, if you looked at it like a grind, you werent living or thriving in the world at all.

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There is a fine line between being part of a great story and watching it.

^ this.

 

 

I like a good story, everyone does. Problem is, I want to be a factor in that story in an MMO, not merely a bystander that observes it. One of the most innovative ideas in gaming came in WOW where the world changed based on whether you had completed a quest in the game. That's a good idea- what you do affects the world.

 

Problem was , it affected it only one way, and so therefore once again became irrelevant.

 

When I first started playing SWTOR I paid attention to every nuance in my choices thinking there was significance to them. Later on, I just started smacking the space bar when I realized nothing made any real difference in the end. Even now, the development staff is starting to remove restrictions on high end lightsaber crystals to cater to the whiners. In the end light and dark will simply mean the color of your skin.

 

As the Emperor says: "Anakin, you have long desired to be jedi of importance and lead a life of some relevance"

 

I agree. While its fun to be jedi, its far more entertaining to be THE jedi.

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the sad truth about the voice acting that I have not notice many people mention is have you ever actaully counted how many NPC quest givers don't speak basic

 

fully voice MMO is utter rubbish its not even close they did do a lot of VO work but they used just as many if not more random made up alien languages with subtitles

 

smoke and mirrors

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the sad truth about the voice acting that I have not notice many people mention is have you ever actaully counted how many NPC quest givers don't speak basic

 

fully voice MMO is utter rubbish its not even close they did do a lot of VO work but they used just as many if not more random made up alien languages with subtitles

 

smoke and mirrors

 

This would be a Star Wars game if every NPC talked Basic though.. I have to admit I do notice it being much more present in some areas of the game like dailies.

 

Normally though, it is a good excuse to spacebar through them especially if they are those dailies. You are not missing anything in the voice acting department then.

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Isn't that the truth, buggy, broken and beyond repair but still an amazing game.

 

I hate running round Tatooine sometimes in ToR as i can't help wishing i could scan for Aluminium or go check on my wind farm :(

 

Man that's not fair, now you've made me wanna go milk some cupas.

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the sad truth about the voice acting that I have not notice many people mention is have you ever actaully counted how many NPC quest givers don't speak basic

 

fully voice MMO is utter rubbish its not even close they did do a lot of VO work but they used just as many if not more random made up alien languages with subtitles

 

smoke and mirrors

 

What I do find a bit puzzling in Star Wars is why one guy talks in a strange language that that the other obviously understands but then answers in their native tongue and the other guy who obviously understands then talks again in his native tongue. Now either they physically can't speak English or they all are oblivious to language differences. The ones I hate the most are the pig people.. I keep thinking the things going to be sick.

 

PS In Star Trek they get by cus the badge is a translator. My guess is this must work the same. ... Personally I would prefer no subtitles... I don't think the garbled nonsense has any real purpose. Saying that I do know a smattering of Klingon. Not sure Star Wars uses an actual alien dictionary for their words. Puzzling.

 

PPS This is a Droid thing I guess given that everyone can understand the R2 units. Why they didn't program them to speak English I will never know. ...:)

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I would much more prefer the dailies to be 'terminal missions' since its annoying to hear the same dialogue over and over or spacebar through it.

 

It was probably done to 'easy mode' your affection up on companions but then what's the point of gifts?

 

None-- and that's annoying.

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Who cares! Why is this even a topic! And OP, I thought you un-subbed way back in January, don't you have a life outside of being a Debbie Downer to the SWTOR community?

 

I have been playing since the 1st Day of Early access and yesterday I just hit L50 for the first time and I am still having a blast and this is just my first character! I still have at least 3 more characters planned! Then there is 1.2 and the future updates.

 

Who cares what you think, but I cannot wait to see what else Bioware adds to SWTOR in the future.

 

Oh and yeah, I LOVE the story and it is the ONLY reason why I plan on creating 3-4 new characters because without story, I would not be hyped up to go back and do other classes. I'll just stick with my lone L50 character and continue to do Warzones and craft and endlessly become bored waiting for the next expansion to add more story and levels.

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An MMo dosnt need a story no. TOR does because it isnt an MMo its an rpg multiplayer game.

 

An MMo has to give you a reason to interact with other players and make it meen something. TOR does not offer that mechanic. Players do not depend on other players for anything unless you want to do a hard mode flashpoint.

 

True MMo's let the player base use the tools of the game to create an eviroment that is unique to that server/world . It may be slightly differnt on another server where different rules apply due to player story lines.

 

EVE is the only true MMo left . You live and die by your actions towards others . You need other people to progress and get involved in the EVE universe.

 

To even call TOR, WOW or any of those games MMO's in the true sense of the word is just insulting to true MMo's. This is no more an MMo than call of duty is , Its a multiplayer game nothing more .

 

Not saying that I dont mind loggin in running a couple hard modes and logging off with my mates of course just saying dont confuse this game with an MMo . The again lots of you have never played a real MMo of course so I guess you wouldnt know. Hopefully one day someone will be brave enough to make one.

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Who cares! Why is this even a topic! And OP, I thought you un-subbed way back in January, don't you have a life outside of being a Debbie Downer to the SWTOR community?

 

I have been playing since the 1st Day of Early access and yesterday I just hit L50 for the first time and I am still having a blast and this is just my first character! I still have at least 3 more characters planned! Then there is 1.2 and the future updates.

 

Who cares what you think, but I cannot wait to see what else Bioware adds to SWTOR in the future.

 

Oh and yeah, I LOVE the story and it is the ONLY reason why I plan on creating 3-4 new characters because without story, I would not be hyped up to go back and do other classes. I'll just stick with my lone L50 character and continue to do Warzones and craft and endlessly become bored waiting for the next expansion to add more story and levels.

 

It's a great game, but its important that players express their dissatisfaction with elements of the game they aren't happy with. In this way, the development staff can get a feel for what players want or don't want and balance that against what is good for the game and what isn't.

 

My aunt used to have a saying-- when you get offered food at a relative's house, and it's lousy, you should always say so. Otherwise you'll just get it served to you again.

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Does a MMO need a story? Depends on the MMO. In a sandbox MMO the answer would probably be no it would not, or very little. In a themepark yes. Just because you didn't pay attention to the storylines in WOW doesn't mean it wasn't there.

 

If you want a sci-fi sandbox game go play EVE. It has no story to speak of. You should be quite happy there.

 

I for one like the story in this game. I also didn't think this would launch and be awesome out of the box, so very few MMO's are. I have this thing called patience and a life both help me understand why the game is the way it is. People whined and complained fro BW to release this. So they did probably before it was ready, but they did a year of beta testing and none of the beta testers complained nearly as much as i see on these forums nowadays.

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