Author Topic: DungeonGrind  (Read 5723 times)

Offline askrius

  • Acquaintance
  • *
  • Posts: 33
    • View Profile
    • Audit.Purge::under::construction
DungeonGrind
« on: September 25, 2007, 12:25:20 PM »
So, I played (still do, though not too often anymore) table-top RPGs for a while, a long while. Most of the sessions involved complex arching storylines, fleshed out NPCs, well designed traps, etc. Alot of these games were "off the cuff" on my part (as a DM anyhow) and I used a backlog of "modular" material I had been cultivating over the years. Many hours were spent in character....

...however, RP is not something I look for (or really like) in a MUD. I want a hack-n-slash dungeon-grind.

Perhaps my legacy DikuMUD experiences (ImperialDiku) and love of FPS (DayOfDefeat) games influences this.

Question is this:

How many folks enjoy a good spell-laden-magic-weapon-in-both-hands-wielding troll-bashing good time?

Offline cratylus

  • Your favorite and best
  • Administrator
  • ***
  • Posts: 1020
  • Cratylus@Dead Souls <ds> np
    • View Profile
    • About Cratylus
Re: DungeonGrind
« Reply #1 on: September 25, 2007, 12:42:19 PM »
Quote
How many folks enjoy a good spell-laden-magic-weapon-in-both-hands-wielding troll-bashing good time?

It's common to hear people moaning about how "grinding" is boring etc. And
yet it's what a heckuva lot of people do, presumably because they like it.

I think it's fine when you're in the mood for it. It's kinda fun beating things
up...that's why you beat monsters with combat systems, as opposed
to challenging them with collectible trading cards.

On the other hand, when you're bored of it, it's REALLY boring. I think it's nice
for a mud to have things to do other than killing orcs for when you're just not
up for that...but lacking that, at least have quests or even just complicated
monsters so that killing involves some measure of strategy or skill.

-Crat

Offline askrius

  • Acquaintance
  • *
  • Posts: 33
    • View Profile
    • Audit.Purge::under::construction
Re: DungeonGrind
« Reply #2 on: September 25, 2007, 12:51:19 PM »
Quote
It's common to hear people moaning about how "grinding" is boring etc. And
yet it's what a heckuva lot of people do, presumably because they like it.

Well, from what I have seen alot of people grind because they "have to". Alot of games require large XP counts at high levels. WoW, for instance.

Quote
On the other hand, when you're bored of it, it's REALLY boring. I think it's nice
for a mud to have things to do other than killing orcs for when you're just not
up for that...but lacking that, at least have quests or even just complicated
monsters so that killing involves some measure of strategy or skill.

I have noticed that some games (once again WoW) have quests that amount to a grind. Run an instance filled with monsters, hack your way to the "boss". Kill said boss and hope for the drop you want/need.

Granted I have also seen far more complex quests in MUDs (LPMuds in particular).

I just dont like RP MUDs I guess.



~ask


Offline detah

  • BFF
  • ***
  • Posts: 190
  • Ruler of 2D
    • View Profile
Re: DungeonGrind
« Reply #3 on: September 25, 2007, 01:20:32 PM »
Im not sure if you are asking about the RP vs hack/slash dimension or the RP vs RTS dimension.

RPing does not appeal to me. *maybe its my fear of losing my ever so soft grip on reality*
I have designed Arcania with three gameplay aspects in mind. 1) the common leveling/acheivement aspect eg. "HAHA, I got to L100." 2) puzzle solving. eg. almost every area has at least one quest. 3) entertainment via storytelling.  Every area has a story of some kind to tell. A player can learn about the story thru the NPCs and even the terrain.

I love hack/slash when there is a goal at the end.  When that term is used nowadays, it usually is used about a mud which has nothing but hack/slash. This has a very negative connotation, because it has nothing else to offer the player.  I find it glorious to wade through 3 rooms of 75 orcs to get to the evil altar on the other side and smash it to pieces before the orc shaman can use it to raise a volcano on the local human town. But just killing the orcs for the xp would not give me that much enjoyment. If you can integrate 2 or 3 of the 3 gameplay aspects, then I think you can make the area/monsters appeal to a larger number of players.

Long live hack/slash.

Detah@Arcania

Offline askrius

  • Acquaintance
  • *
  • Posts: 33
    • View Profile
    • Audit.Purge::under::construction
Re: DungeonGrind
« Reply #4 on: September 25, 2007, 05:49:19 PM »
Indeed.

I always enjoyed the "quests" that involved clearing out an area of XXX monsters that threaten YYY townfolk then getting a reward of NNN which leads to another "quest" of clearing out ZZZ monsters...so on and so on....

I guess I am easily entertained.

Offline quixadhal

  • BFF
  • ***
  • Posts: 620
    • View Profile
    • A Waste of Time
Re: DungeonGrind
« Reply #5 on: September 25, 2007, 06:08:59 PM »
As Cratylus said, when I'm in the mood for a grind, I'm more than happy to whip out Diablo II and mindless chop away at things in the hopes of finding some rare drop or something I haven't seen before.  But I have to be in the right mood, and that mood usually requires that there be something on TV that is interesting, but not so interesting that I give it my full attention. :)

Also, in typing that, I realized that even there, I'm not just grinding for exp... I'm hoping something will drop.  If that chance of finding random treasure weren't there, I don't think there would be any allure for me at all.

I much prefer games which have storyline quests or clever puzzles to figure out.  It's probably worth noting that I divide puzzles up into two types.  There are the leisure puzzles, which might not be optional, but which can be solved at your own pace.  These are most like the old Infocom games, which often required you to do a number of things before you could progress in the game... but nothing was directly forcing you to do them.  If you wandered around looking at other things, you'd simply have a lower score.  The other kind is the death puzzle.  These are more like finding a boss mob which can only be killed by a combination of things, and if you haven't figured out which things you need, he'll probably kill you.  It's also the style of the vocabulary quest... which is where you had to guess the right verb to use an object (quaff a potion vs. drink an ale).

Perhaps ironically, I also enjoy sandbox games which often require the player themselves figure out what to do.  EVE-Online is probably my favorite of these... lots of grinding if you want it, lots of quests (which, honestly, are more grinding than anything else), but you can ignore the whole thing and go join a player corporation to conquer parts of the rim, or go harass macro miners, or even hunt down traders and steal their goods for profit.

For those who like the grind for its own sake, I cheekily point you to Progress Quest.  It's pretty amusing to watch for a bit once in a while. :)

Offline Nulvect

  • BFF
  • ***
  • Posts: 127
    • View Profile
Re: DungeonGrind
« Reply #6 on: September 25, 2007, 09:05:07 PM »
I agree that there's a certain mood people get in that goes well with grinding. Every once in a while I'll go find a diku mud and grind up for a while. Of course, having a point to it is far better... finding items, finishing a quest, whatever. Killing things is fun, but mindless repetition can make anything bad.

On a game I used to play, there were invisible monsters in one area that hung out behind rocks. If you started messing with a monster's rock (by, you know, looking at it or something), the monster would not only attack you, but follow you around for a long time trying to drive you away from its rock. These monsters were worth a fair bit of exp so it was worth it to kill them, but at the same time you had to be careful you didn't get ganged up on by a large group of angry, invisible things that could possibly knock you on your rear end and tear you to bits. While I had done this a hundred times, the fact that I had to pay attention made it feel less like grinding, even though it technically was.

Of course, balancing the grind with plenty of things to explore and quests to do is the real trick.

Offline askrius

  • Acquaintance
  • *
  • Posts: 33
    • View Profile
    • Audit.Purge::under::construction
Re: DungeonGrind
« Reply #7 on: September 26, 2007, 10:20:55 AM »
As Cratylus said, when I'm in the mood for a grind, I'm more than happy to whip out Diablo II and mindless chop away at things in the hopes of finding some rare drop or something I haven't seen before. 

D2! Yeah, one of the finest grinders I have played.

I much prefer games which have storyline quests or clever puzzles to figure out.  It's probably worth noting that I divide puzzles up into two types.  There are the leisure puzzles, which might not be optional, but which can be solved at your own pace.  These are most like the old Infocom games, which often required you to do a number of things before you could progress in the game... but nothing was directly forcing you to do them.  If you wandered around looking at other things, you'd simply have a lower score.  The other kind is the death puzzle.  These are more like finding a boss mob which can only be killed by a combination of things, and if you haven't figured out which things you need, he'll probably kill you.  It's also the style of the vocabulary quest... which is where you had to guess the right verb to use an object (quaff a potion vs. drink an ale).

I think I misrepresented myself with the original post. The focus should have been on RP vs Non-RP MUDs. And personally I do not enjoy the "guess the verb" quests/items.

~ask

Offline detah

  • BFF
  • ***
  • Posts: 190
  • Ruler of 2D
    • View Profile
Re: DungeonGrind
« Reply #8 on: September 26, 2007, 01:49:17 PM »
In my opinion, syntax quests are 1 of the top 3 reasons why muds lose players before they get to L10.

Offline askrius

  • Acquaintance
  • *
  • Posts: 33
    • View Profile
    • Audit.Purge::under::construction
Re: DungeonGrind
« Reply #9 on: September 26, 2007, 02:01:02 PM »
I believe a key reason why DikuMUD branches are so popular (or atleast were,  not sure what the climate is like now....) was the ROM-esque command parser.


Offline JohnOC

  • Acquaintance
  • *
  • Posts: 10
    • View Profile
Re: DungeonGrind
« Reply #10 on: September 26, 2007, 03:07:52 PM »
This discussion reminds me of thoughts on game and MUD design from Richard Bartle - one of the designers and ao-authors of the original MUD - (homepage) in his book and other places.   These thoughts were turned into a test that scores peoples preferences on game playing into ratings in 4 categories.

Quote
   
* Achievers, "Diamonds", who prefer to gain "points," levels, equipment and other concrete measurements of succeeding in a game.
* Explorers, "Spades", who prefer discovering areas, creating maps and learning about hidden places.
* Socializers, "Hearts", who prefer to interact with other players.
* Killers, "Clubs", who prefer to be in conflict with other players.

In my own experience, my preferences can change with my mood, but aren't really highly variable away from EASK.  I like to visit lots of rooms or areas and see whats there.  Kill things in each area, collect the widgets, complete the quests, get the Shiny Sword of Uber, group with friends, and virtually never PvP.



Offline askrius

  • Acquaintance
  • *
  • Posts: 33
    • View Profile
    • Audit.Purge::under::construction
Re: DungeonGrind
« Reply #11 on: September 26, 2007, 03:28:21 PM »

In my own experience, my preferences can change with my mood, but aren't really highly variable away from EASK.  I like to visit lots of rooms or areas and see whats there.  Kill things in each area, collect the widgets, complete the quests, get the Shiny Sword of Uber, group with friends, and virtually never PvP.


Ah, I was actually a PVP addict at one point. The thrill of sitting crouched over my keyboard, waiting to fire off the macro chain that will signal my partner in "crime", cast the spells to (hopefully) stun my intended target, quaff a stat-boosting potion and wield my Swords of Chaos (one for each hand) then begin to pummle the hell out of a quasi-unsuspecting Mage several levels higher than myself was awesome.

Now, in this case PVP was present, but was not the objective and by and large was only practiced by people who were willing to participate. Also, mostly it was people I could look over my monitor at in the computer lab and grin an evil grin as I looted thier corpes. Main reason I like FPS as well....

 :o