Thursday 10 March 2011

WAR, doors and pigs?

I'm still keeping a close eye on WAR and if you ignore the usual doom and gloom being spewed all over the place, you'll find a few interesting topics for discussion.

First off Mythic appear to be getting more and more into their developer discussion threads. People seem to view these threads in rather varying lights, but personally I would suggest that is dependent on how grounded you are mentally. With the rough times WAR has been through I would say it’s a very good thing and people should consider reading and chiming in with their ideas. I must admit I’m not a big poster in those threads and I tend to only add brief points, but then if I go into detail on things I’d often be repeating what has already been posted here :P I do always read the threads though and can recommend them as interesting debates. I won’t link each post, but you can find the developer forum section here.

Of those recent threads the ones I’ve been particularly interested in are the one about the campaign and the more recent one specifically about keep doors. I don’t know where Mythic will go with the campaign, but I’ve banged on about it enough here before. I’ll just reiterate that for me it needs to be made a LOT more like DAoCs and regain that epic feeling. It’s time for less ping-pong zone/siege swapping and to move towards something where winning feels like an achievement.

As for the door… I’ll quote my brief reply from the door thread:
It's not the door that matters, it’s the fact that the only thing that matters is the door.
That for me is the single biggest issue for WAR’s keep sieges, and it has been the same since launch. The game will never escape its RvDoor label until it takes a big step away from everything essentially being based around those doors. It doesn’t matter if the ultimate goal is to kill a Keep Lord, capture a flag or steal some magic spoons, when everything determining if that ultimate goal is possible is reliant on destroying the health bar of a door.

That’s not to say things should be changed so much that the door is not relevant, they should remain important and be the most straight forward way of breaching a keep’s defences, but there should be other things and areas for both attackers and defenders to focus on. If you watched a keep siege in both WAR and DAoC you’ll see one pretty stark difference straight away. In WAR everyone is huddled round a single doorway, perhaps with some postern guards thrown in. In DAoC the defenders are spread all round the keep walls and have to mount much more mobile defences. This is because of all the factors that share importance with that door. Ladders, siege towers, destructible walls, climbing abilities, etc give attackers viable options of properly breaching the defences and take emphasis away from the door’s health bar.

Flying mounts, rat and bypass postern do not compare in any way to those options and as such, unfortunately the door is the only thing that matters. That is the nut that Mythic need to crack, if they want to move WAR on from RvDoor.

In other news, Testpig has gone to quite some effort with his latest WAR video. Interesting ideas and well worth considering.

1 comment:

  1. I would prefer to scale up the issue and say that WAR was conceived as a PvE game but evolved into RvR game late into it's development. Keeps where added late in the development due to tester feedback. However with the limited time left the implimenation was poorly done. Mythic then changed the campaign many times adding more focus on to the lakes. Yet whilst mythic have a good record for pulling content they don't really strive to improve what remains. So now WAR has a RvDoor label which to be honest it has had for some time and ideally patch 1.4 should have fixed this instead it made the situation worse. Mythic struggle at a fundamental level to understand player needs and to successfully implement changes to address them. I am guessing that won't get ladders or destructible terrain for keeps because the coding is a hack job and undoing all of that require too many resources


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Half man half pixel. Music obsessive, likes a drink, occasional bastard.