[MUD-Dev] How much is enough?

Damion Schubert damion at ninjaneering.com
Fri Apr 26 11:23:15 New Zealand Standard Time 2002

>From Daniel.Harman at barclayscapital.com

> If one were to look at why EQ is such a numbers game, a major
> factor would be the simplicity of its mechanics. It doesn't give
> you enough choices.  Beating the hardest monsters in the game is
> mostly about equipment and getting the healers into a timed
> rotation so that (monster dmg) < (healing output). Its lacking in
> a certain richness isn't it?

EverQuest is a game that is fundamentally about deconstructing the
very simple AI of monsters.  If you want to encourage players to
group and socialize in a combat heavy game, you mostly just need to
ensure that different skillsets are required to deconstruct your AI
and defeat the monsters.

I do think EQ's combat could have been richer - my ideal combat
system would end up 'tetris-like', in the sense that all of the
available tools are there at any given time, but the challenge is
different each time you play it, ensuring that some amount of
problem solving and teamwork has to happen for each fight.

That being said, I'm going to go out on a limb and say that most of
the people who play EverQuest don't like risk, and while they don't
say so, they find something idyllic about sitting around with
friends chatting and waiting for a spawn.  Knowing that you _know_
how to solve a monster's AI, and only a screwup on someone's part
will mess that up.

Remembering back to my EQ days, I'd say I spent about 10% of my time
in 'risky' places.  Those were the days that, when I came home from
work, I had enough energy to deal with monsters bigger than me and
zones I'd never been in before.  But most of the time, when I came
home, I logged on to be with my guildmates, and I must say, making
progress with your character, chatting with your buds, and taking no
risk was often the perfect remedy when work had blown out all
available brain cells.
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