@james (only tagging bc this has gotten sooo long.)
So I’ve been avoiding jumping into this thread and just voicing whatever comes to mind that annoys me. All games have annoyances, we just have to deal with them.
I waited to give it time and thought and boil it down to the biggest thing/s.
First is the skill sets being one of the biggest wastes of cubits and time I see here. There is no point in it as it’s easier and faster to just go make a new character.
However, this I can simply turn my head away from and ignore. It does not affect my playtime.
What does affect my playtime and is my biggest turn off is the death penalty.
Wait, before jumping the gun, I am aware that it was worse. You used to loose durability on all your items on you, and possibly some other past penalties I am unaware of. I will agree that this is loads better.
But better does not mean it’s right.
Some looking back on history and all the vets with their “back in my day” stories might help put things into perspective.
First, yes, there have been people here playing since it was Oort Online. (We used to be orange blobs? Wow!) I’m not in any way saying this in a negative sense, but these people know how to play the game, and they’ve played it well. Hats off to them.
This also means they know how to level the fastest, and even though there was a pre-launch wipe, they used that knowledge and rocketed their leveling within days. Possibly less. I’m not saying they did wrong. They knew what they had to do and they did so to get the ball rolling.
Yes, I’m getting to a point.
So, these vets are now level 50, maybe 50+, or very close. Getting experience is not as important.
Couple weeks later, scores of newbie players start coming in with wide eyes and no knowledge of the game. Many ppl don’t watch hours of YouTube videos before even starting up the game. Some come in wanting a fresh experience. Hence, no knowledge. I myself am one of these people. I only seek knowledge outside the game if I’m stuck in the game. (Which, funnily enough, is how I ended up here.)
They are slow, possibly struggling, but starting to see how things work, then nerf-aggedon starts happening bc the experience exploits start coming to light. Some got to use it, others didn’t.
This is not a big issue to the players that got their levels so it kinda got swept under the rug with the “deal with it” attitude.
(I realize there’s the crafting table/rock leveling method but I see it as an exploit. I’m not saying take it out, and I hope that’s not the only thing ppl will take from this. It was due to someone putting their thinking cap on and using in game mechanics on an extreme level and should not be nerfed, simply because of the extremes you have to take for this. )
Ok, so back on topic, this does have to do with the death penalty. Because now that those kinks were worked out, new players have to go out and play the game the long way, no fast leveling (aside from the one mentioned earlier).
Seeing how this game needs to keep existing players while attracting new ones, this is extremely important!
Bluntly, it is extremely harsh. Exact percentages fail to come to mind right now, but only half experience until it wears off? Having to actively work it off, only to sometimes die immediately after doing so, or never working it off to begin with? Coming back with such low health as well. You could step out of the portal only to die from a mob that was behind you and never even see it. I’ve heard players who pretty much go through the game with permanent death penalty. This isnt right.
The game suddenly becomes a chore. It’s a punishment. No one wants to play a game that punishes so harshly, especially when it can happen for so little.
I have stood outside my base, when I suddenly blew up and died. Wtf happened? I wasn’t starving. I thought maybe a hopper, but my husband was looking right at my char as we talked and he said there was nothing. I decided I was just done for the night, because I wasn’t in the mood for that chore.
This also creates a fear to go out and actually do stuff. There are also ppl who have one char go out and gather, hunt, mine, whatever, possibly in that permanent death penalty loop, and bring back the goods to alts who sit safely in bases and never leave. Their alts might as well be NPCs. They have accepted this char will frequently have the death penalty and work it so their alts don’t have to deal with that.
I don’t want to give the impression I’m sick of dying. I’m a very, very cautious player who avoids dying in games when I can, even pointlessly resetting because I know I can do it without dying. I’ve played Breath of the Wild without dying all right up to the final fight. (Very easy to die in that game. Most suicidal Link ever)
In fact, only recently since launch have I had to start counting on my toes all my deaths, but those last 4-5 were also pretty much back-to-back.
I also want to say games were you can flat out kamikaze yourself are insanely fun.
And lastly, this is not a request to get rid of the death penalty, but rather rethink it. Again.
Let’s look at some MMOs for examples.
Rappelz. Let’s start with a harsh one. You lose experience when you die and it’s actually possible to de-level. Not advised, but I’m just listing it as an example.
Minecraft, Ark, Conan, you lose your items on death, or drop a loot bag. Or under server options nothing lost at all. Seeing how hard some items can be to get and how far you’d have to travel, still not advised. I will say, though, this did make me plan my trips wisely and I made sure to put away all unnecessary items. I also had no problem punching a ferocious beast then getting snacked on for the giggles.
World of Warcraft. This one is a good one. (And I hate that game so… yeah. They’ve had to work this out for years so I’ll give credit where it’s due) On death you can either warp back to a city with a 10-min debuff, or you can necro run from a distance back to your corpse, and the only penalty you had was ressing at about 25% health. It gets the players right back into the game and having fun.
Elemental Knights Online. Automatically sends you back to a safety zone with a harsh weakening penalty for about a minute.
Final Fantasy XIV. Sends you back to your predetermined safe zone, but your gear was damaged. However, repairing gear was not hard, and even if the item completely broke, you could still repair it, just at a higher cost. (Either coins, or materials if you were a crafter.)
I can’t think of any other MMOs I’ve had experience with off the top of my head, or I can’t remember how they handled the penalty.
Out of all these examples, I think World of Warcraft has made the best decisions on how to implement a death penalty.
You have two choices. Either you accept to lose where you were and go back to a city/safe place and eat your timed debuff, (Im gonna put in the detail that technically you show up as a ghost in front of an angel in a remote, mob-free area and once respawned players typically hearthstone to town) or you spawn as a non-corporeal entity and have to run back to your corpse with lowered hp and run the risk of dying again in exchange for staying where you were. The necro run doesn’t stay the same either. Each death increases the time until you can respawn again, with a maximum of 30 minutes between death/respawn wait. I don’t remember when that stack reset.
So this method is not without punishment, but it also doesn’t make you feel like you’re working off a chore for the next however long it takes.
Heck, use that wait time and make a sandwich. Take a shower. Use the restroom. Say hello to the people you live with. Maybe even get some fresh air!
I’d also like to say a big part keeping me in the game is actually this forum. Some people make me grit my teeth, but others make me smile and laugh and I remember those people are in game.
And then the WS team, who actually listens. They take our groaning and snark, criticism and sometimes outright anger and instead of getting defensive, use it to strengthen themselves and their goals.
So thank you, all of you. Keep being you.