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Modifying Heroic Quests for Greater Player Availability


mguidry

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To whom it may concern,

 

As someone who has played this game for a while (2 max level juggernauts and a max level assassin) as well as someone who likes to do the planets' respective heroic quests (thanks to OCD I assume), I've become well aware of, arguably, the quests greatest issue. That issue being available players to perform the quests with.

 

I'm sure most players who've been at this long enough to get into the mid to late game has experienced the same issue of finding other players for the 2 and 4 man heroics. While it is true that in the best of times it may take only a few minutes to find a group, many, many times it can take 10 to 15 minutes or more to get a party formed. This problem tends to arise doubly so for the 4 man heroics, and trebly so for the bonus series heroics.

 

Now, I am fully against getting rid of the quests in their entirely. However I do believe in modifying the heroic quests to make them more available to the player base.

 

The first idea is the easiest and is simply lowering the difficulty so that 2 players is all that's needed to complete every heroic quest. While this obviously wouldn't completely solve the group finding issue, it would greatly reduce the problem by only needing 1 other player to complete the quests rather than 2 or 3. Additionally it would remove the need to have specific classes in the group (namely tank and healer) to have a painless completion. Finally it would be the simplest to perform, being a adjustment of mob difficulty rather than the addition of a new feature, ability, etc.

 

The second idea is a bit more complex, and involves the players companions. Essentially, in heroic zones or mission areas the player would be able to summon multiple, if not all, of his/her companions which would be stat buffed (along with the player, possibly) to be able to deal with the mobs.

 

Now, while this idea would obviously turn the heroics into potentially a cakewalk, and be a bit complex to implement, I think it does have a few good points. First of all, it would completely remove the need for other players while doing the quests, which would be a bit of a godsend in the case of the bonus series heroics, where in many cases you may only have 1 or 2 people on the respective planets doing the bonus series, much less their heroics. Secondly, it would actually allow the player and their companions to work together as a team, rather than having the player cart their preferred companion around while the rest wait on the ship. And finally, there is simply the cool factor of having your entire crew running around, blasting, burning, and bashing the beezeejus out of everything with you.

 

Finally there is one last point I'd like to make. This suggestion isn't an attempt to reduce the heroic quests' difficulty simply because they are too hard for me or others, because they aren't, in the slightest. I've completed just about all of them on the Empires side, save the daily heroics on Makeb, so I know a decent group can take on all save a few while only half awake. My issue with the heroics is simply finding people to do them with.

 

The heroic quest are a good break from the tedium while you are leveling and some of them (i.e. The Observer on Makeb) are quite fun. As such, I find it to be a shame that so many players simply skip the quests because finding others to do them with can be such a pain, and I hope that my suggestions might help increasing the number of the people participating in these quest before the heroics go the way of the starship missions.

 

Thank you for reading and please comment and critique.

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In other topics on this issue another idea that has come up has been to introduce some system of bolstering heroics in some way. I don't know if that could be done for all heroic areas or only within instances for heroic missions or what, but the idea would be that when you put out your call for a group there might be more people who will just agree on a whim to go out and join you for it instead of ignoring the call because they haven't picked it up themselves yet and/or the level of the mission is over their level. Although that line of thinking would work even better if they were to introduce a cheaper version of the group summon feature. (Make it only require that the player has their class ship (not guild ship, no guild required), pull the fee from their personal account (not guild account), and limit it to only working on normal groups (not ops groups.))

 

The main line of thinking on the bolster suggestion is to bolster everyone to the level of the mission if they aren't already there. We could take it further though (and make the implementation much simpler, probably) and have them always bolster to max level. This idea would bring the high level players in as potential group members as well. Of course, that idea will meet some resistance since it's quite nice to be able to just quickly solo that stuff when you're overleveled for it and this idea would kill that practice and require that heroics ALWAYS require groups no matter what.

 

I don't know if it helps the main issue much because of that point about higher levels being able to solo old heroics, but conquests have actually brought some attention back to heroics by awarding points for them. They need to have this actually cover EVERY planet in that week's conquest instead of only covering one planet though. They could also expand interest in old heroics by introducing reputation for them like they did with the Voss heroics.

 

Another thought on the topic of heroics, possibly wandering off topic from the main point a bit... They need to tweak those heroics at the end of the seeker droid and macrobinocular questlines to either:

1) be able to pick them up again from a terminal and repeat them

or 2) tweak them a bit to rebrand them as flashpoints and add them to group finder as tacticals or something.

Either of these approaches ought to make it waaaaaay easier (or just plain make it possible) for people to find groups for these.

Edited by Muljo_Stpho
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Now, I am fully against getting rid of the quests in their entirely. However I do believe in modifying the heroic quests to make them more available to the player base.

Why? If people wanted to do them, they'd be doing them. They obviously don't care if they are "more available" or not.

 

If you are so keen to do them you can easily do the H2s when your character is slightly above their level and H4s a bit later than that, or when they are grey to make them really easy.

 

A total non-issue completely unworthy of even one micro-second of development resources.

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Why? If people wanted to do them, they'd be doing them. They obviously don't care if they are "more available" or not.

 

If you are so keen to do them you can easily do the H2s when your character is slightly above their level and H4s a bit later than that, or when they are grey to make them really easy.

 

A total non-issue completely unworthy of even one micro-second of development resources.

 

I personally never do them because the wait time for a group is eternity, since i play at odd hours most of the time....it would be cool if there were solo versions that were complete-able once per character.

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Hooray for entertaining and well made Heroic Missions. 3x Boo's for Optional nerf buff that's available for everyone who adventures in Makeb. *Thanks the Force that it's optional.* I wonder how many lazy as* ez mode whiners whined about Makeb being too harsh and Bioware rubbed their backs and made that Buff available. Heard that right after that buff came there was lvl 47 in Makeb crying for help..hah damn.. :D :/

 

- Long time Subber and Old Republic / Kotor fan -

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In other topics on this issue another idea that has come up has been to introduce some system of bolstering heroics in some way. I don't know if that could be done for all heroic areas or only within instances for heroic missions or what, but the idea would be that when you put out your call for a group there might be more people who will just agree on a whim to go out and join you for it instead of ignoring the call because they haven't picked it up themselves yet and/or the level of the mission is over their level. Although that line of thinking would work even better if they were to introduce a cheaper version of the group summon feature. (Make it only require that the player has their class ship (not guild ship, no guild required), pull the fee from their personal account (not guild account), and limit it to only working on normal groups (not ops groups.))

 

The main line of thinking on the bolster suggestion is to bolster everyone to the level of the mission if they aren't already there. We could take it further though (and make the implementation much simpler, probably) and have them always bolster to max level. This idea would bring the high level players in as potential group members as well. Of course, that idea will meet some resistance since it's quite nice to be able to just quickly solo that stuff when you're overleveled for it and this idea would kill that practice and require that heroics ALWAYS require groups no matter what.

 

I don't know if it helps the main issue much because of that point about higher levels being able to solo old heroics, but conquests have actually brought some attention back to heroics by awarding points for them. They need to have this actually cover EVERY planet in that week's conquest instead of only covering one planet though. They could also expand interest in old heroics by introducing reputation for them like they did with the Voss heroics.

 

Another thought on the topic of heroics, possibly wandering off topic from the main point a bit... They need to tweak those heroics at the end of the seeker droid and macrobinocular questlines to either:

1) be able to pick them up again from a terminal and repeat them

or 2) tweak them a bit to rebrand them as flashpoints and add them to group finder as tacticals or something.

Either of these approaches ought to make it waaaaaay easier (or just plain make it possible) for people to find groups for these.

 

A bolster option that would allow lower level players to do higher level heroics could work to some degree, but I think it would be situational at best. Its biggest benefit would be that it would allow the players' groups to do all the heroics on a planet without having to replace members that were too low level. However, you would still run into personnel issues during low population times where you would simply not have people to recruit. Additionally, as you pointed out, if the bolster function would work like pvp where everyone was set to roughly max level upon entering a heroic zone or area, those players that speed run lower level heroics for commendations would be displeased to say the least.

 

Also thank you for pointing out the group finding issues with the Seeker Droid and Macro Binocular heroics. Those two quests could be held up and the "Exhibit A" in regards to this predicament. At one point, it took me a week to find a group to perform those quests and one of the players had apparently been trying to get that quest done for months prior. If nothing else is done, those two quests ought to be added to the group finder to alleviate the issue.

 

Why? If people wanted to do them, they'd be doing them. They obviously don't care if they are "more available" or not.

 

If you are so keen to do them you can easily do the H2s when your character is slightly above their level and H4s a bit later than that, or when they are grey to make them really easy.

 

A total non-issue completely unworthy of even one micro-second of development resources.

 

I personally never do them because the wait time for a group is eternity, since i play at odd hours most of the time....it would be cool if there were solo versions that were complete-able once per character.

 

@branmakmuffin

I will have to disagree with your opinion about the heroics, sir. While it is true that many players skip the heroics at the moment, I don't think that it is because they do not care about them, rather that, as JamieKirby points out, it is because getting a group together for them is, at many times, ponderous at best. Also, while it is true that one can simply solo the quests once you are at a sufficient level, (something I've had to do for more than a few bonus series heroics) it should not be necessary.

 

The heroics should be something that a player should be able to accomplish as soon as its available, provided he or she has the sufficient skill to do so. It is not something that a player should have to return 5 or 10 levels later to do because there was too few of their fellows around. Now while I do agree that the issue with heroics is not so critical that it needs immediate focus by the developers, it is a game function that is currently flawed and needs work, if not now, then at some point down the line. As such, it is my hope that the suggestions here will at least give the developers some ideas should the time and resources become available.

Edited by mguidry
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Hmmm, this topic is reminding me of the general gameplay mechanic where it will (supposedly) scale the difficulty of missions with group size. (I say supposedly because aside from a bugged example in an Inquisitor story area on Balmorra where being in a group of 4 turned the swarm of half a dozen weak colicoids that spawns in into an infinite number of waves that slaughtered us just because there were too many to keep up with... I don't know that I've ever noticed a difference in things with or without a group causing that "enemy reinforcements arriving" warning.)

 

Anyway, I wonder if that concept can be used to redesign heroics a bit. This would only apply to heroics inside instanced areas, but... Make them by default designed to be a bit more challenging than a regular solo mission, more like an easy Heroic 2. And then if you're playing in a group of 2 or 3 or 4 people it will instead be balanced to be challenging for a group of that size. They'd definitely need to scale rewards down if it's run solo or in a smaller group to match the reduced difficulty though. I'm not sure that that would work with the way that missions and rewards are handled though... That might actually call for a slightly different approach...

 

The other idea there would be to build the difficulty choice into the mission pick-up and actually have different versions of the mission that can be picked up. (So the solo version might lack the Heroic label, and then there would also be versions marked Heroic 2+, and Heroic 4.) Consider the selection of story mode and hard mode that's added to the end of flashpoint pick-up conversations when you're at a high enough level. Make it like that where the scaling of the mission as being meant for solo, duo, or full group play is built into the mission log entry instead of relying on a potentially glitchy on-the-fly group scaling system. A problem with this approach is that not every heroic is neatly contained within an instanced area where this would be relevant so there would still be missions that can only be exactly what they were originally designed to be, but on the other hand they could potentially consider creating heroic versions of other sidequests that are currently only available as solo missions. Take advantage of those instanced areas wherever possible to provide as many of these choices as possible.

Edited by Muljo_Stpho
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i have 8 lvl 55 chars, most of them at 1st year of game's release

never done any H4 in those during lvl up simply coz i can do solo space missions that gives more XP and no armor damage and are repeatable for XPs, can do FPs

the now days the game that have and the tacticals and the boosts and the rested XP and the guild XP boost you ask for more?

raise a bit your lvl with somwe tactical fps or space missiosn and do them solo or with another one more

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