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QUESTION OF THE WEEK : The first hour of gameplay

Postby Triadian » Sun Oct 14, 2012 1:00 am

so imagine this you see yourself shipwrecked on an island.

should you get a tutorial on how to make the first weapon and kill your first critter then skin it and craft yourself a t-shirt - or should we just dump you in the middle of the beach and leave you figure stuff out for yourself.

should we tell you that pressing W will make you walk - just how stupid should we treat you in your first hour of game play ???

describe to us what you would want to do/see when you first login for the first time and how much hand holding would you need ???

for some additional background on this topic READ HERE, that was about what do you want to do, this one is about how much hand holding should we do while your doing it.. feel free to answer in that one aswell if you feel its more a what to do than a how to do it

Some points to remember - although we have no NPC's in the game we may consider a few special ones for the tutorial possibly on a sharded area until you have completed a tutorial if thats the way we decide to go.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK : The first hour of gameplay

Postby Tony » Sun Oct 14, 2012 9:02 pm

I think you should just give us a quick run down on the basics on how to make something, nothing else. If you're too lazy to figure out W is used to move forward I dont think this would be the game for you.
Galileo Galilei wrote:All truths are easy to understand once they are discovered; the point is to discover them.

Albert Einstein wrote:Before God we are all equally wise - and equally foolish.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK : The first hour of gameplay

Postby Triadian » Mon Oct 15, 2012 12:37 am

so what exactly would you consider the basics ? just how to craft an item, or also how to get the mats for the first item etc ? lets say the first item was a very crude wooden dagger and in order to create it you needed a decent twig and a stone capable of sharpening.

should we just say "Find a decent twig and a sharpen stone to make your first dagger"
or should it be more indepth like goto 25,23 scavenger the ground for a decent twig then goto 20,15 and scavenge for a sharp stone"

in essence how basic is basic ?
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK : The first hour of gameplay

Postby a1pha0m3g4 » Tue Oct 16, 2012 5:30 pm

That's actually a difficult question. I despise games that make you go torugh the tutorial, even when creating another character, so first there should be a way to skip it, even if that's not what this post is about.
The best way to ease players in would be learning by doing, make a simple quest that would introduce to the basics of the game.
In guild wars 2, the player starts in the middle of the action, and you get to kill a boss at the end of the tutorial. And not a small boss mind you. From a forest dragon to a golem the size of a tower, even if the only thing you do is press 1 all the time you do feel badass when he falls, for the first time at least.
Runescape eases you in also. When you create a new account you are placed at the middle of a conflict between humans and ... trolls I belive. First they teach you moving and combat, then every profession is introduced. For example, you learn ranged combat, mining, crafting, smelting and smithing in a ... i dont want to call it quest, lets go with task, to make a bronze helmet and leather gloves for a guy that is seeking revenge on the trolls. Everyone has a problem that needs fixing using each one of the skills. It does drag on cause there are sooooo many skills, but you're not forced to do it. Just walk away, simple as that.
Also, completly relevant, heres a video that at least until 5:50 may have something of use.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK : The first hour of gameplay

Postby TheeLord » Tue Oct 16, 2012 9:32 pm

I'm going to weigh in with my ideal "tutorial" and also give everyone a little background as to what a new player will experience when entering the world for the first time so that you may formulate more in-depth answers to this question of the week.

When a new character is created these are the steps the player will go through:
-First choose the appearance of your character.
-Next you will be given a choice of starting at a random point along the shore or starting as part of a faction which welcomes new players.

---Starting on your own is a much more difficult option for new players and we will make this known to you. However you will be in complete control of your own destiny and will be in an utter fight for survival from the moment you enter the game which will appeal to many players.
---When selecting to start as part of a welcoming faction, you will have the option of being placed in a random faction (which we will Probably weight a bit towards the smaller factions as to not help already dominant factions even more) or selecting a faction from a list so you can join with friends or join a faction with similar goals as you. This option will be more entertaining for most of our players and will immerse players in the social side of Factions immediately. Of course players can leave this faction at any time to start their own or join a different one.

-After selecting your starting location option you will be given the opportunity to select your beginning skills. Since Faction's character advancement system is based on learning times you will be given something like 10 hours worth of research time to spend in whichever manner you choose. If you want to get a broad range of survival skills and build off that base of abilities, you can do that. If you want to specialize in combat, magic, gathering abilities, woodworking, stoneworking, blacksmithing, cooking, construction, etc... etc... you have that option also. This will allow you to do interesting things as soon as you enter the game.


Lets take this scenario.. Your friend tells you all about Factions and how his faction is growing rapidly. He tells you they have a horrible shortage of quality arrows however and all the members of the faction are too busy with their own skills to learn fletching. After hearing all the great details of the game you decide to join the game. You start your character in his faction and spend your free10 hours worth of research time to skill right up to fletching and you begin practicing your art to hone the skills and produce excellent arrows, all the while you are learning other skills to do a range of other things in game also, but you are able to make a good living, have a great start, and have a real impact in game, all from making arrows. These sort of scenarios should be commonplace with new players using this character creation system.

So given this information, I envision the tutorial to not give the player exact instructions (ie: attack this, make that) but rather tell them how to access the tools they need. I really liked the classic WoW approach of tooltips that players can choose to click on, ignore, dismiss, or disable. When you enter the game you can click a tooltip showing you how to move, when you move you are shown a tooltip how to open the character or inventory screens, when you open inventory you are told how to move items around.. When you see a monster you are told where to find your attacking abilities, when approaching a rival's territory you are told about factions and how they interact together. I personally think this would be the best fit for Factions.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK : The first hour of gameplay

Postby Recon » Mon Dec 10, 2012 12:11 pm

What I have seen through the years is alot of Tool tips and some with nothing, Mortal online did this and a few others, and people screamed there head off. SOme loved it, but they lost alot of people because some people are used to there hand held, I for one hate my hand held, I wanna do it all myself.

But I'm not most people, I feel you should show them how to do the basic things, walking , moving, controls, and start them off a bit, anything advance no, they should be doing on there own period. Just start them off so they can get there feet wet and then send them on there way, sandboxs should be this way, I think nothing but I know how the world of Game Design is, that won't work for alot of people so, they need to be shown some things, I get that.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK : The first hour of gameplay

Postby Triadian » Mon Dec 10, 2012 1:33 pm

thats kinda why were looking at a two fold start, 1 with a major hand holding scenario, i hate to say rollercoaster area but.... and then another with no ride just a few clues.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK : The first hour of gameplay

Postby TheeLord » Mon Dec 10, 2012 8:22 pm

If we did this tutorial area it would be seperate from the main continent and also it would be COMPLETELY optional. If you didn't want the full tutorial, our tooltip guidance would also be optional.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK : The first hour of gameplay

Postby Mostai » Sun Jan 13, 2013 1:16 am

Maybe you could impliment a sort of "Spirit Ghost" that they see? and it offers a tutorial If they say no they carry on if they say "Guide Me" or what ever then they take the tutorial. Or something like that (If not a spirit Ghost) maybe a lost knight or something.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK : The first hour of gameplay

Postby TheeLord » Sun Jan 13, 2013 7:52 am

For the optional full tutorial we will be segregating the scripted tutorial area from the main world.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK : The first hour of gameplay

Postby RajCaj » Mon Jul 06, 2015 10:55 pm

I like the idea of giving players the option to skip it, but since the current idea is to limit players to 1 account per IP, 1 character per account....I don't see a lot of re-rolling or use cases where a person is already familiar with the game and doesn't need the intro.

IMO most folks could benefit from some basic fundamental instructions on how to get around & function.

In deep MMORPGs, UIs & core systems are not always completely intuitive.

While folks might not want exact cords of the items they need to harvest, a basic description of the item and the general area they might be found could be useful.

I think the intent should be to get their legs steady with the new game, as to empower them to explore and figure out the rest on their own. It'd be a shame to lose a prospective customer because they got frustrated with the game before getting to experience all the stuff you guys are working so hard to put together. These games sometimes take time to grow on people...but when it does, they are in it for the long haul.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK : The first hour of gameplay

Postby Triadian » Mon Jul 06, 2015 11:21 pm

RajCaj wrote:I like the idea of giving players the option to skip it, but since the current idea is to limit players to 1 account per IP, 1 character per account....I don't see a lot of re-rolling or use cases where a person is already familiar with the game and doesn't need the intro.


we currently have a hardcore mode that players can choose if they wish - they no doubt will want to get back to the mainland asap.

we would also like to cater to those that dont read any instructions and just want to get in and play straight away. we may ask some testers to skip the tutorial and ask us what they could and couldn't do based on their limited knowledge of the systems to better help us make them more intuitive etc.

RajCaj wrote:IMO most folks could benefit from some basic fundamental instructions on how to get around & function.

In deep MMORPGs, UIs & core systems are not always completely intuitive.

While folks might not want exact cords of the items they need to harvest, a basic description of the item and the general area they might be found could be useful.

we hope to make factions as simple as possible and thus you should already know how to do everything for example to craft an axe you should know you need wood, some form of sharp object and some rope.

for things like resources its not rocket science of where to find food when you see a bush with berries on it.
the question is are they edible? how would you find out ?

RajCaj wrote:I think the intent should be to get their legs steady with the new game, as to empower them to explore and figure out the rest on their own. It'd be a shame to lose a prospective customer because they got frustrated with the game before getting to experience all the stuff you guys are working so hard to put together. These games sometimes take time to grow on people...but when it does, they are in it for the long haul.

thats the direction we plan most people will take - the short tutorial sequence ( pretty much typical themepark stuff go there do this from npc's we created ) then afterwards dropped into the world with whatever skills you managed to remember to fend for yourselves.
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