The Talkback Challenge hosted by the NBI, is a feature that gets the community talking about the same subject. This was done in years past, and this year the topic at hand is: Do PvE and PvP mix? There is another topic as well, but that one hasn’t made its rounds yet, so let’s cover one at a time, shall we?
I read Doone’s post on the topic over at XP Chronicles, and that was the first one I commented on. Here’s what I had to say:
I’ve only experienced open world pvp in one game, and that was Everquest II. I started playing the game in ’06, and had been playing a month or so when the pvp servers opened. I rolled a fresh character on Nagafen with my then-roommate and we had a lot of fun, as everyone was on an even playing field. There weren’t players that much higher than you, and the rules kept you within a reasonable level range for pvp conflict. There were raids that would form in the world and massive battles would play out over hours. It was an epic feeling. But as I leveled, the mid-game was terrible, as it got to the point that you couldn’t complete quests without being consistently ganked. The frustration of trying to do both at the same time eventually had me seeing through the eyes of a “care bear.” This isn’t to say I don’t think pvp has its place — Players will always be more of a challenge than AI — but I like instanced pvp in a battlegrounds fashion.
Being a League player I like objective based pvp, so battlegrounds are a good way to have your MMO and eat it too. I do think that it would be better to do something like League does though, and give a pre-constructed character to play with. Like your appearance/class would still remain, but you would be given a few class-specific abilities and your gear wouldn’t change their effectiveness. That would keep it “fair” and “separate” from the pve game. People who don’t normally pvp might jump on that too, because they wouldn’t have to worry about not being geared right, and being on an even playing field is a true measure of skill.
This is to say that I enjoy PvP, but that I can acknowledge that it is annoying when being followed around by griefers while trying to finish up quests. In most cases, I get my PvP elsewhere, outside of the MMO sphere. I play games like League of Legends, Awesomenauts and Hearthstone, used to be big on FPS conflicts, and still love a good Street Fighter variant. When I play massive games, I tend to roll on PvE servers just like the rest of the carebears, because there has yet to be a system that keeps things fair.
Fair is a relative term. People think that everything is unfair when they are losing. That isn’t to say that PvP in inherently unfair, rather that developers have always seemed to add it in as an afterthought, or do very little to address the balance issues. In games like LoL, you are able to choose amongst many different pre-set champions. The only real affect you have on their power is your Rune/Mastery setups, along with what items you build during the game. However, those items are available to everyone, and Runes/Masteries are earned, but don’t provide huge gains. This keeps the players on a level field, where skill makes up for lack of knowledge of builds. In MMOs, there are either limitations due to gear discrepancy, or mechanics that allow for griefing of other players.
The easiest way to avoid the conflict between so called carebears and pvpers (assholes) is to keep the PvP element separate from the rest of the game. WoW and others have done just that, where you queue up for a separate game mode to have it out in PvP style. Some people would argue that this dilutes the PvP aspect, because they are restricted to instanced PvP. But how is that really different than any other game that pits player versus player? All of the games I listed above are purely PvP, and its conducted in a way that people who join the game know what they’re getting into. I suppose it is blind siding to create a character in an MMO and be killed by people you thought were on your team. But in this day and age, unless you have been living under a rock and don’t read anything about a game before you try it, I’d say you knew what you were getting into.
I think PvP works in MMOs, but it would be best to keep it to the battlegrounds. That way the PvE players can avoid it, and those who want the challenge can participate. Taking it a step further, I would make either pre-made champions to play with, or have gear not matter. This way, someone who plays a Druid can stay a Druid in PvP, but they will be homogenized into a generic version of the character. Their gear wouldn’t make a difference, and they would have the same skills as another Druid on the opposing team. Then skill would be paramount, and the arguments over gear scores could cease. PvP can be a mini-game or end-game activity for people who don’t want to raid. Or simply another option. I think a lot of people who don’t PvP might give it a shot if they knew it was only a mini-game, and knew that they would start on a level playing field.
One bit that I noticed while reading other’s writing on the topic, is that those who are against PvP are more adamant about it being the wrong way of doing things than those who are pro-PvP. It seems like PvE players think that all PvP players are assholes and are degrading their game. I find that somewhat insulting, because as a player who is pro-PvP, I can see both sides of the argument, and am trying to brainstorm ideas where we are all happy in the end. Of course, this is a small sampling of people, so I know that there are most likely people on both sides of the fence who are assholes and those who are reasonable. It just almost feels like a more social issue, like people being adamantly against gay marriage, when really it doesn’t affect them one bit.
Anything else I could say on the matter has already been covered. Here’s a list of some others participating in the discussion:
#pvp #nbi2014 #newbiebloggerinitiative #community #opinion