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July 18, 2005


Joel Martinez

so ... Guild Wars?


I don't know about currently, but back in the day with Ultima Online, after a brief walk through a dungeon that explaind the basics, you entered an instanced relatively small 'welcome area' for lack of a better word. They even had users (not sure if they were paid or not,) to be there and help people. It was a great way to meet people who were also just starting the game (or restarting.) The problem there was that often you would spawn in the welcome area with either no or few people in it.

I love the idea of each hero being one player per server. And if that person quits playing the hero 'dies', only to be 'reborn' when the next player starts playing him. But you say instanced servers, I'm thinking you mean like Diabo.

I'd much prefer a different kind of server. Where they are created on users whims, but after creation, are persistant. 'Open servers' would be where anyone can jump in and grab any available hero. 'Closed servers' being where groups of friends can create their own Marvel Manhatten and admittance be invite only. If someone quits the server entirely (like leaving a server in WoW,) their hero 'dies', but not if they simply log out. I don't know, but I assume this would be costlier to run as it requires some world info stored on servers so that if everyone logged out of a server, the world-state would be kept or advanced to a degree. (If an Onslaught instance is spawned and everyone logs out, they should log back in to a city that's been largely trashed, etc.) I have no clue how much that would cost the developers.

This way the comic community CBR (comicbookresources.com) can have their own server with just CBRers, the gaming communities like EvilAvatar could have their own, etc.

But man, if they wrapped that up in a selection screen with The Watcher (from What if...?) helping the player choose a Multiverse... I'd be in geek heaven.


Hmm, from playing MMOs I also agree that the MM bit is highly overrated. Back in the MUD days when the genre was formed, only the biggest muds could even get close to the numbers of ppl on one server of a modern MMO.
Many of the problems that affect modern day MMOs could be fixed by going back to small population servers. Farmers, for instance would prolly not have such a good time of many smaller markets, and reputation would be somewhat more important. You can get rid of instancing, since the overcrowding problems will not exist. You could also prolly have characters affecting the game world too, and they could prolly be smaller.
OTOH you'd prolly have to make it easier to group with characters of different levels (or possibly remove restrictions altogether) and you'd have to have some way for ppl to move between servers, to allow guilds and player friends to meet up. Oh and it would prolly require more computing resources to handle many smaller servers, rather than a few large servers.

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Jamie's Bragging Rights

  • Spider-Man 2
    The best superhero games of all time Game Informer
    Top five games of all time Yahtzee Croshaw
    Top five superhero games of all time MSNBC
    Top 100 PS2 games of all time Official Playstation 2 Magazine
    1001 Games You Must Play Before You Die Nomination for Excellence in Gameplay Engineering Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences
  • Schizoid
    Penny Arcade PAX 10 Award
    Nominated for XBLA Best Original Game
    Nominated for XBLA Best Co-Op Game