After much frustration questing, I finally got something more interesting than “go kill x amount of these monsters” or “gather x amount of plants”, and it seemed to have more story to it, where you go discover these totems and a spirit shows up and gives you a cool effect to help get you to the next totem. However it still has a grinding feeling that I just can’t get into. That may be personal preference, since I feel like watching some TV shows gives me the same feeling of repetition where it’s the same thing just with a slightly different look, and it’s the same here in WoW.
So far I’ve had to slay at least 15 different animals for their meat/antlers/etc with the only goal in mind being experience and sometimes a cool item. It would be interesting to take a psychological approach to the release of dopamine experienced by player when completing quests, because I’ve heard about how much people used to play this game when it first came out and how they basically became addicted to it in some cases. All in all I just don’t understand the appeal of the questing, I find it much more satisfying and rewarding discovering new areas of the map and new mechanics rather than grinding constantly.
People don’t seem very social when they are out and about trying to complete quests, they seem to be there to complete the quest as quickly as possible and leave which I can understand since doing these quests has become a grind, where you dread seeing “0/8” or worse when you get a quest. A side note about the quest system: it seems as though the higher level reach, the less chance there is for the quest monsters to drop the items you need which is extremely frustrating after you’ve slain five of them with no harvest from your efforts. So in that regard I can understand other players determination to get them done as soon as possible.
By far the highest volume of other players I have seen were gathered around to turn in a quest, which reminded me a lot of when you stand in line at a fast food place getting ready to place an order. Everyone keeps to themselves with their own mission and “order” in mind. As I mentioned earlier I also see people in the quest areas but beyond that the world seems pretty barren, I have yet to come across someone else on the road or socializing in a part of one of the hubs. However you do come across wildlife in your journeys, sometimes slain by other players that have passed through.
I’ve discovered that there is PVP and PVE which is player vs player and player vs enemies, luckily no one else has decided to fight me yet but I am not going to hold out hope that someone will not. As for PVE, I have saved lower level players questing away a couple times now without so much as a “thx”, and on one instance they just left me to die after saving them and attracting a large number of enemies which sums up the attitude player seem to carry towards one another. As a side note: the respawn system is cool looking but the slow walk to your death point was a little annoying.
I decided to play World of Warcraft since I have an affinity to fantasy settings and I have some family members that used to play it often so I figured it would be a good opportunity to play so I can join in on some of their conversations. I’ve played a little bit of Hearthstone so I went for my favorite class of Paladin, and the race I chose was Draenei. So far the game is relatively simple to play with relatively simple mechanics, with a typical WASD movement system and combat is somewhat automated until you use a special ability. The quest system is simple as well, where you get the quest from a NPC who is offering one, you go complete the tasks, then come back for your reward.
So far I have only seen some people in the distance, but I familiarized myself with the communication system of chat rooms that change depending on what area of the map you are in, in the event that I come across someone to talk to, which I imagine will happen when I get to other areas of the seemingly gigantic map. From what I can tell the busiest areas will be quest areas since that seems to be the bulk of what there is to do in the game.
In the book “Watch Me Play”, T.L Taylor discussed that gaming has the power to shape our work, play, and interaction with other people. The culture of gaming plays an important role in emerging media. She uses the rise of the game lives streaming to develop her discussion.
Every day numerous game players broadcast their game streaming on the popular platform, Twitch, which builds an online audience of subscribers.
However, I have never watched a “real” game live streaming. I only watched a few funny clips about the mobile PUBG game. For example, a man uses a voice changer to pretend as a girl and play pranks to his team buddies. So, I went to watch a recording from the Neverwinter game live. However, I didn’t get attracted. I do see the interaction between the speaker and audiences through comments.
I think the main reason that I didn’t get attracted is that I’m not a fan of computer games. Even so, it doesn’t mean that the live stream is not effective. I fairly believe game lives streaming is important in the culture of gaming.
The reaching out of real-time audience shows its liveliness and authenticity. This instant gratification brings traffic and creates a deep connection between the viewers and the speaker.
When I spawned back into playing, I was still in the Caille University and was trying to figure out how to undock when I found that I could see who else was at Caille University. In the image below you can see how I can add, message, and track the other players that were in the University with me. I decided not to because I didn’t see any urge to add someone that I didn’t know as a friend. What I did find there was a way to join an alliance like group who you couldn’t fight but you could go to for help.
I found these alliances interesting because I was not at the point of the game were, I would be fighting people everywhere I went, but these alliances hinted at the fact that this might be happening in the future. That is the only reason why I would think it was necessary for an alliance with someone. I thought about trade as a reason, but you could already trade with people that were in the same place as you as I found out when I was at the Caille University. Also, in my previous blog post I talked about the police I saw but they were really members of an alliance patrolling their area.
I then went on to explore the world more and if there was one thing that I can change about this game is the traveling speed. It is insanely slow for no reason that I can see at the moment, I just can’t understand why you can’t just transport immediately to the place that you want to go.
Once I got to where I was wanted to be, I found some interesting things out. Where I was going was to a fellow game players ship. Once I got their I tried to attack him but learned that there was some sort of restriction on who I could attack and who I couldn’t. I also learned that I couldn’t interact with someone out of base whether that was trading or messaging.
Finishing the tutorial for me was taking a long time and I did not see it as a good use for my time, so I decided to skip it and start exploring the world and completing missions. At first, I regretted that decision, but I eventually figured out what I was doing and was able to transport around the world.
One of the places I was able to go was Caille University. I thought this would be the first place that I would actually be able to see other players playing but it wasn’t. When I was warping to the University, which took forever no idea why but took a solid 10 minutes just to get close to it, I saw ships flying around with blue dots. I thought these would be other game players like me but when I moved my mouse over them, I learned that they were police which was quite the letdown.
I thought that Caille University would be a place for me to get out of my ship and show off this character I customized but nope. What I did find at Caille was a place to customize you ship or add insurance. I was unable to buy any of the upgrades, maybe I should’ve finished the tutorial it would’ve given me more money. The other part that I found interesting was that I could buy insurance. When I went to go buy it the game told me that my ship wasn’t worth upgrade. I took that to offense but decided it was probably right and I should start doing missions to earn money.
One part of the game that I really struggled with was controlling my camera and view of my screen. I had left my mouse at school so my I only had my mouse pad on my computer to control. I would accidently right click instead of left click to move the screen and end up getting information about a random object floating around in space.
I really find the games tutorial helpful for learning how to play the game. In previous games I have played the tutorial had been very controlling in the way it showed you how to play, forcing you to choose a certain outcome in order to teach you how to play the game. In EVE they somewhat control what you do but leave you to figure out how to do must of the objective. They will give you arrows pointing you in a direction to help you get to the next section but for the most part you have to put your skills to use and figure out how to past that stage. I really enjoy this style because it really forces me to play the game and figure out what I have to do to be good at it. A lot of times I just click through the tutorial and find myself lost once the tutorial is over. The way that this game really forces me to play the tutorial will not leave me lost when I go to play on my own once the tutorial is over. I am not sure if I have seen anyone else in the game yet. When I have been floating in space before going to my next objective, I have seen what seems to be friendly ships but have not made contact with them. I know that there are other players playing at the moment because as you can see in the image below there is chat section with next chats every minute.
The games that I played growing up were mostly games like Madden, NHL, Minecraft, Call of Duty, and different Mario games. All of them were played on a game consul like a Wii, Xbox, or Nintendo DS. When I played EVE for the first time I felt out of place, if I am going to be honest. Other than playing a little bit of Minecraft on my computer this had been the first time that I had used my computer as a way to play video games. It was tough for me to figure out how to control my movement with my keyboard because I had been so used to using a controller my whole life. But I did eventually find comfort in EVE.
Growing up playing games like Madden and NHL I would always do a game setting called be a pro mode. This allowed me to leave out my dream of being a professional athlete whether that was a football player or a hockey player. I could customize the character to have my name, traits, and equipment. This would make me feel like I was the one playing, and this was my shot at the NHL. In the Image below you can see all of the specific things that you can change. I would love to make my character look exactly like me and even use the same equipment that I would use when I played. EVE had some of these similarities.
I had this same ability to customize my character in EVE. I could make my character what I thought look the most resembling to me. This brought a certain interest to the game because I started to believe that it was me playing the game not just doing it for an assignment for a class. In the picture below you can see how you can change the characters clothing, hair, and other features.
Just out of curiosity, I started to play Star Trek Online. Adam form class first told me about this game a while back and asked if I played. I responded with a no because at that time I was not interested in playing another MMORPG always-online game. I had enough. After looking into it and seeing that you can start playing for free, it got me curious.
Do most of these always online MMORPG’s have grindable daily/weekly quests, bounties, activities that you can do in order to gain experience or new stuff?
So I went about and created a new character. Not that much different than any other RPG. You created a character, choose how they look, what faction or class they are and an alliance to be a part of. After which the game takes you through the tutorial. Honestly, it wasn’t different than every other game. You start off at the central hub and you go from point A to point B. Getting the tutorial text on the screen telling you how to do different things.
After which there has to be a certain point in which your character gets put into this world. In this instance, you get assigned to your ship and it gets attacked by “Bad Guys”. In this case, the Klingons, attack the ship that you are on, the caption of the ship gets taken and then killed. So NATURALLY, your character gets made caption. You take control of this ship than it takes you through the ship combat tutorial.
This this tutorial takes you through different missions. In these missions you learn ship combat and a brief history of some of the prominent enemies within the game such as the Borg.
This is a picture of Adam streaming his gameplay through Discord to me, to just show me his game. He is much further than I am and at a much higher level. On the top right-hand side of the screen below the map, it the quest objective box. The type of quests do change as you progress through the game. The quests get harder, make you do different types, give you progressively better rewards and currency in order for you to upgrade your ship, crew, character and so on.
This has not been any different in any MMORPG that I have played outside this class or during this class. Destiny, WOW, ESO, Star Trek Online. All have activities for you to do in order to gain experience and loot. Some more mundane than others but all of them have the same undercurrent.
-Put repeatable activities in the game that rotate on a daily or weekly basis in order to keep the player base constantly involved within the game. No matter the cost. –
I understand this idea is the core of all always online games. keeping the player base involved and always doing stuff within the game. But like I have said in my white paper. This isn’t a good means of keeping the community happy or engaged. More meaningful activities have to be put within the game that gives the players invested time, value, and meaning.
Sadly, we aren’t there. Although many games are changing the bounty/quest/mission system to be more valuable towards the players, this is something that takes time. It will happen, progressively, as we the community, continue to be invested within the games that we love, and spend many hours playing. But this is a slow process and we as players have to be patient and understandable in the technological limitations or resource constraints that these different developers have to overcome. So-be patient-.
In this play session, I played as my first character, Mitchel. I believe that you get 8 character slots total, before you have to pay to get more. When it loaded, I was in space, but it was the area where everyone spawns after beaming up to their ships. I thought Picture 1 was a funny screenshot because my little ship is saying “Hi” to this whole fleet of ships, some of them much larger than mine.
Anyway, I had forgotten that my ship on this account had better mobility than the starting ship did, and I also had to review what space abilities I had equipped on this one.
I used a feature called “Transwarp” to instantly travel to a new mission location. I hadn’t used it before, but it creates a portal that takes you pretty much anywhere, I think. I noticed at one point though, that transwarping, there was like a 14-minute cooldown on the transwarp, which was interesting and was something else I learned.
The mission was called “Researcher Rescue” in the Kassae system. Picture 2 illustrates the only briefing you receive after beginning the mission.
I suffered no hull damage, and the three ships weren’t difficult to destroy. I had to extinguish fires, rescue scientists, and defeat the Gorn. Then I beamed out to my ship. I destroyed more ships, and then beamed back down to the surface. Back on the surface, we were in a sort of swamp, and we had to defeat aliens and disable three shield generators.
At 2 out of the 3 shield generators, I found a big loot box item, but it requires a master key to open. I didn’t have one, so the game offered for me to buy one from the store. I’d never heard of a master key before. Disabling the shields allowed us to invade a base and defeat the commander. Picture 3 was taken the moment just before I attacked the enemies in the base.
We defeated the captain of the base but some archaeologists were taken, forcing us to chase the ships in space that took them.
After battling in space for a bit, we finally defeated the enemy ship, and saved the hostages! The ship used some sort of weapon that drained my shields down to nothing, which I’d never seen before…I didn’t know something like that existed. Because of this shield-draining device, my ship took quite a bit of damage, down to (I think) 60% hull health.
Something else I found in this mission were collectibles of dust particles. It was really strange, but I could find elements and dust that I think I would later use to craft. I’d never seen them before. With each cloud you could interact with, there was a mini-game of matching 2 wave-forms to each other. You had to match them within 3 or 4 seconds, or else you’d fail the challenge. I think I started getting better at it, though. If you successfully matched them, you would be able to take the material itself (in hard form). If you failed, you would only be left with the dust of the material (which you could still take with you, but I assume is less valuable).
Summary of things I discovered: Big loot box and the existence of master keys, the Transwarp animation and use, and element clouds that you could interact with to attempt to get some material to research with.