PvP – Give back the world to the players

Another raving from Grimwell.

Sadly, the truth is that “It’s going to be great, glorious fun”. Those with the resources to actually realize some of these ideas are heading elsewhere and are not interested to search for some potential. And we are left to write down fancy, useless ideas in blogs and forums.

This is at odds with the concepts of PvP. PvP is about the fun fight. Why call out Player vs Player otherwise?

Yes, but you are leaving out the context here.

A discussion about the PvP has to consider the context because the context is the part that defines the genre itself. I mean the genre in its original principle (simulating a world) against the new paradigm (combat simulations).

The point isn’t just that another player “fights better”. The point is that in a complex environment you can have a deeper interaction. Have a different, more complete experience. Something that is able to involve you more deeply and directly instead of watching yet another more or less fast “shooter”.

Without a context the PvP is just another combat simulation derivative (ported) of other genres already consolidated. That’s why we have the CTF in WoW. It’s a quick way to avoid to plan something new and risky or more complex and go, instead, with a predictable model that you already know will be somewhat successful.

It’s a way to detach the genre from its premises to bring it back on a safer territory. Easier to control.

My point of view is different from yours because I’m one of those believing that the innovation doesn’t come from absurd ideas that appear all at the sudden in the mind of a genius. Instead all I do when imagining something new is to observe what’s already around and try to discover and learn what is wrong, what can be improved, possible new directions to develop and so on. So I base everything just on the observation along with with my own desires about what I’d like to see.

About the PvP my ideas develop from a simple point: give back the world to the players.

I don’t want to see PvP caged in protected zones, cities made of NPCs that you cannot affect in any way. We are supposed to simulate worlds but the players have absolutely zero power on what happens and on the place where they live. The RP is faked because the whole lore is a “pretension” or an excuse to fake and repeat an artificial model. So the basic idea is to give back the world to the players in the real sense.

Allow them to conquer those towns, to manage and give orders to the NPCs, declare war to other guilds, conquer the zones and so on. Allow the players to become the real center and subject of what is happening instead of forcing them to follow orders from improbable NPCs sending you all over the world to save it from a pretentious menace. Shadowbane already moved in this direction but with a model that is still flawed in many points and again just as a combat simulator. That was a first step of a long journey.

What I’d like to see is a world where the combat exists but just as ONE of the parts. And where the world itself comes to life as a whole. Where the players live and experience different types of interaction and not just one limited aspect.

The point is to make the world really persistent. If you fight in PvP, it won’t be to collect points to grab new loot and skills, but to FIGHT FOR A PURPOSE. Fight to take back your house from a band of orcs, fight with your guild to save a town from a pillage, fight to defend a caravan with precious resources.

All these situations are possible ONLY if the game provides a context and only if these games become something else than a simplified, fantasy combat simulator.

The key is on what Tobold writes. But REVERSED:

The very idea of a persistent world requires character development in which an old character is better than a new one.

It’s the opposite. It’s not the character development that should be the real focus. But the development of the context. Of the world where you live.

It’s the possibility of interaction with what you have around yourself instead than your own endless treadmill of power.

Players like to “win”. Yeah. But they like even more if a victory has a context, a purpose. If they have a role within a world. If their presence has a meaning.

A victory within a context is way more rewarding than just a generic, extemporary feeling.

It’s like if you open your eyes after years playing in the dark. Finally what’s around you gains a shape. It has a purpose and a depth and you aren’t anymore focused on just yourself.

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