On Mythic’s implementation of relics/artifacts

I promised myself to not comment or criticize DAoC anymore, but since it deals with one of my ideas I want to add something.

Reading the boards I see the players complaining about two main points when the relic system is discussed:

1- Adding another RvR space was stupid. PvP action needs to converge, not being spread even more.
2- The bonuses aren’t appealing enough to remain interesting in the longer term.

The point is that while Mythic copied exactly my idea (you can compare their official description page with my original idea to see that one is the carbon copy of the other) those two points are the only ones who were left out and that represent the ONLY difference between Mythic’s implementation and my original design.

Mythic: These relics provide temporary bonuses, but in order to keep the mino-relic, the wielder must actively participate in RvR.

The wielder (and his group, if not solo) of the mino-relic must participate in RvR combat in order to maintain the mino-relic and its effect. Each mino-relic has a feed rate (the number of enemy kills required over a specific time period); there are different feed rates for different mino-relics.

HRose: In order to keep them on your character, you need to “feed” them by killing the players on the opposite factions and have a role in the conquest, participating actively in the PvP. Exposing yourself. If you are hiding you won’t be able to fulfill the “feed” requirements and you’ll lose the artifact.

Mythic: If the wielder of the mino-relic does not get sufficient kills to sustain the mino-relic’s feed rate timer, the mino-relic “decays” from the player and it is returned to its encounter location in its locked state.

HRose: If the feeding requirement aren’t met, or if the player with the artifact has been logged out for too long, not meeting the active requirements, the artifact is reset to the original PvE instance that will remain sealed for a set amount of time depending on the type of the artifact.

Mythic: Mino-relics cannot be taken out of RvR areas and cannot be stored in keeps.

HRose: They artifacts aren’t usable in PvE, they lose all their properties if they are brought in a PvE instance.

Note: since the relics need to be “fed” the prohibition to take them out of RvR zones that Mythic added is superfluous.

Mythic: The wielder of the mino-relic is visible on the RvR map and the zone map (or dungeon map) via a special icon.

HRose: The other faction will also know that one of the artifacts was summoned and will be able to “divinate” your position in the map. They can track you down. you will be hunted.

Mythic: If a player is carrying a relic upon death, LD, or logging, the relic will drop to the ground. Due to this, mino-relics will constantly change hands while they are active. This complex game of “hot potato” will present a fresh new twist for standard RvR play.

HRose: If you die in a PvP battle, your artifact will be dropped on the ground and one of the players in the opposite faction can loot it and use it, acquiring the powers that were yours.

So. I’m paranoid, egocentric, or maybe my “feelings” are a bit justified?

Let’s see these differences concretely.

1- Adding another RvR space. Even if my idea wasn’t traced upon DAoC, it still avoided that mistake. While in Mythic’s implementation these relics are taken from PvE encounters in another, huge, RvR space (the labyrinth). In my idea the relics/artifacts were taken from an instanced PvE-only space. The players could “race” toward a relic. When a relic was captured, all the instances would be sealed.

This effectively removed the mistake of adding another RvR space while providing a perfect environment for truly challenging encounters. Getting an artifact, in my idea, was really the “hardcore” part (to then be brought back to the rest of the community via the full-loot system and feed reqs). The harder PvE experience in any game. Something that happens rarely, not every day. Plus it was also planned to be tied to an innovative, different placement of “PvE raids” (more about the new form of raids).

2- Mythic’s relics aren’t all that desirable. They are relatively small bonuses to skills, nothing that created directly new forms of gameplay and that the players carve. It’s just about adding yet another kind of items to loot and toy with. Completely forgivable after the novelty wears off, as they don’t really have a “place” in the gameplay. They are a transitory “cool” system. A gimmick. Instead in my idea the role of relic/artifacts was more significant. I often described them as the “heroes” in Warcraft 3. It was something planned with a strong impact and, instead of small bonuses to skills, each relic/artifact was supposed to infuse and channel new powers. Not just significant for their impact in a battle, but also graphically spectacular.

One interesting part of my ideas is that a relic/artifact would mutate graphically the aspect of the player. And this idea of “mutation” and “corruption” was taken directly from my own source of inspiration, Michael Moorcock’s Elric.

This second point is particularly important because it’s not the first time that Mythic wastes good ideas with a poor or inadequate implementation.

The ideas were valid, and not because they were my own. The idea of the “hunt”, of the mutation and the collaborative, “epic” effort to take down a player demi-god, with a spectacular graphic impact on the battlefield. Those were seeds and they needed water, not sand.

Conclusion: while there are parts of my idea that would have required more work than what Mythic has allocated to it, from the other side the “divergencies” between Mythic’s implementation and my idea are what the players are complaining about. Some of them required more work, but some of them are blatant design flaws that I had avoided.

Moreover I also proposed Mythic in another context to add another RvR zone. So was I stupid too? No, because I proposed a special zone that wasn’t “always on”, but that would open only on special occasions. When the new zone was open all the players were supposed to converge there and leave the classic frontiers deserted, this zone would remain open for one, two or three days and after the event was complete the zone would be sealed till the next “event”, that could trigger one week or more later (for example you could set it open for 36 hours and triggering every 10 days). With the purpose to not overlap with the standard RvR activity while offering a different kind of gameplay (physics system in that case) and also giving the feel of “epic” and “uniqueness”. Something that the players could “wait for” with anticipation.

And also something that has never been seen before.

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