Moo Tang Clan: August 2008

Thursday, August 14, 2008

hindering the grinding of professions?

A thought offered for debate...

Given the mostly negative impact that grinding/power-leveling professions in WoW have, what might be done to alleviate, hinder, or prevent that activity? (Not necessarily in WoW itself, but in some hypothetical game design).

Previously, I've proposed a textured skill tree system, one where you could fast track your the scope of your profession at the cost of expertise in crafting each individual item.

Another idea to throw on the table today: put a cap or diminishing returns on how many skill ups occur in a given time period. This could be explained in-game as “learning new skills is taxing on the mind and body, the harder you study the more you will need to rest”. Grinding 10 skill points will still be as easy as before, but grinding the next 10 might be difficult or impossible that same day .. or as easy as the first 10 if you wait until the next day.

If a diminishing returns model is used there will inevitably be that one crazy fool that will grind out 10,000 swords for that last skill point (where he could wait 24 hours, grind one sword, and 100% chance get that same point). Most min/maxers wouldn't do that because, by definition, they use a cost/benefits analysis approach in all that they do. Just in case someone does though the game could be designed to give some kind of debilitating debuff - plenty of real world examples to draw from here (headline: gamer dies of exhaustion after playing non-stop for 72 hours).

I'm led to understand that something like this was implemented on the Siege Perilous and Mugen shards of UO - anyone got experience with that?

Friday, August 8, 2008

variable quest rewards for variable performance?

I'm back, fresh from another bombing run through the dead scar. As a daily, I can just about do this one with my eyes shut ... as it is I end up killing off a few extra just for the heck of it. Which got me thinking - how come I don't get extra gold for overkills?

Now, this has got me thinking even further - I can't think of a single quest in WoW which doesn't have a variable reward depending on skill - no wonder players strive to optimise their effort rather than improve their skill. Actually, there are two that come to mind: the Dire Maul tribute run, and the Zul'Aman timed event .. both provide more rewards depending on how you go about them, and a highly skilled (or more likely a highly geared) team will reap more rewards for their efforts.

Seriously though .. can you imagine the deep psychological effect of a wholesale changing of quest rewards to a system depending on skill-based accomplishment?