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View Full Version : MMO Theory: You're Supposed to Throw Away Your Equipment



InfamousBrad
04-09-2014, 12:11 PM
After playing with the changes on the Alpha server, especially after trying to level up a new character from scratch on Alpha, I've become even more convinced of a theory I have about Defiance's root-level design philosophy: We were always supposed to throw away all of our equipment, and accept randomly rolled new equipment, every 50 to 100 EGO levels.

When Defiance first went live, there was no "Reset Weapon Mastery" option in the Salvage Matrix. If you find an old enough player-written guide, they'll tell you that in Defiance, until you have 20 weapon skill in a weapon type, if you master a weapon, you're supposed to sell it to a vendor and use a different weapon. But people complained like mad. And for an understandable reason: what if I've got a sweet rare weapon, and no more rare weapons of that type have dropped? am I supposed to just accept that my character got less powerful? Trion never answered that question, and instead (I think, grudgingly) gave us a way to reset weapon mastery XP on an item. But (I think) they soon (or maybe even immediately) started plotting to take it back away from us.

If you play on Alpha, now, it jumps right out at you: a level 50 weapon, no matter how good the bonuses and the nano and the rarity and any mods you put on it, is completely worthless once you hit EGO 100. (Honestly, it's useless before that.) Your level 100 weapon similarly becomes completely useless once you get EGO 200. Every 100 EGO or so (maybe less at higher levels), it won't matter how good your (EGO n minus 100) weapon was, it won't matter if it was a legendary weapon with multiple damage and crit boosts, bio nano, and four full mod slots, once enemies scale up to your new level, that weapon isn't going to hurt them any more. And I think that's on purpose.

Compare Defiance to almost literally every other MMO that has shipped, at least as far back as Everquest: in almost literally every other MMO, your level cap is around 40 to 60, and of those levels, if your gear was acquired more than 4 levels ago, the stats on it drop to zero. Every other MMO on the planet takes all of your (non-endgame) loot away from you, and makes you roll for random new loot, every five levels. Until the end game, when they make you start rolling for new loot every time they come out with a new end boss. Either way, the same principle applies: making you throw away equipment, no matter how good, and making you accept newly looted equipment, however inferior, is how MMOs keep you on the loot treadmill ... and the loot treadmill is the game in an MMO.

Bonus explainer: Cash shop weapons. Other MMOs let you buy lockboxes that give you new random rare loot rolls. So does Defiance, already. Other MMOs, however, also frequently let you buy very good quality weapons, pre-rolled, for very high prices in the cash shop. Defiance does not do this. Instead, if you want to keep your lower level very lucky dice-rolled weapon after you've outleveled it, they charge you cash to let you bring it up to your level. Oh, in theory you can earn that currency: but until the end game, you cannot earn 100 EGO level's worth of it, for all 10 weapons and 5 shields in your five layouts, in 100 EGO levels' worth of gameplay. Can't be done. Want to keep every blue or purple item you rolled for at earlier levels? Pay cash.

Don't want to pay cash? Between the vendors scattered at Bloodbath Turnout, Shondu's Consulate, Top-Notch Toolworks, Muir Processing Plant, Last Chance, Bug'n'Chug, The Fork, and The Overpass there are always, always Uncommon quality pistols, sniper rifles, SMGs, assault rifles, light machine guns, and combat shotguns; two models of each, and they're all fairly cheap. That won't help you level any of the other seven weapon skills, but at least they'll let you keep damaging mobs and (slowly) earning the scrip, salvage, and keys you'll need to roll for (hopefully) better weapons.

(Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for shields. I think that's a design flaw. I would argue for one set of vendors to always have a green Respark and the other to always have a green Ironclad at each level range, but they don't do that now.)

Iceberg
04-09-2014, 12:16 PM
Before they allowed us to re master our guns, we had to toss our gear if we wanted to level up our skill levels. So in theory, it was a core aspect of the game from the start we had to always toss our gear.

BIEBERyoloSWAG
04-09-2014, 12:30 PM
i like this thread a lot. Its what ive been saying all along...this new process is part of the game to make you continue working on something. if you are ego 5000 and are using ego 1000 weapons then that means for 4000 ego points you did not advance in any aspect of your main weapons, where is the fun in that?? Its more practical to keep working on your weapons. BE THANKFUL that they added the feature to even make your current guns better by upping the ego for arkforge, they could have said F these guys and just made it so guns couldn't be upped in ego and just been garbage.

Quebra Regra
04-09-2014, 12:54 PM
At launch it was a real pain trashing weapons before the remastery was added. Frankly that mechanic bothered my a lot, and here we are coming full circle again so to speak.

Welcome to F2P, or rather Pay2Play.

OttawaREDBLACKS
04-09-2014, 01:00 PM
At launch it was a real pain trashing weapons before the remastery was added. Frankly that mechanic bothered my a lot, and here we are coming full circle again so to speak.

Welcome to F2P, or rather Pay2Play.

you dont have to pay to even play, its pay2win complete difference.

Quebra Regra
04-09-2014, 01:07 PM
you dont have to pay to even play, its pay2win complete difference.

Touche, I stand corrected, you are correct kind sir/madam/sentient!

...this actually makes me feel a bit worse. So we got that goin for us, which is nice :(

Ashlocke
04-09-2014, 01:25 PM
One thing I never quite understood about MMO economics. Companies have a sort of choice or balancing act if you will between making the game fun and earning profit.

Options A: Having a large player base to earn money from, which in turn would limit the things they could charge money from the players because doing certain things would make the game feel, well, not fun.

Or option B: Charging players for every little thing, thus making a much larger profit per player, but this profit would come from a much smaller base of extremely loyal players who feel that those charges are worth it and continue to pay them in order to continue playing a game they still like.

I'm not an economics major, but it just seems like option B only works for a short time. I would think that having a game that's appealing to a larger group of players is, financially speaking, a more sound business model especially in the long run.

But really, what do I know, I'm just a faceless, mindless, internet talking head with an opinion, which are a dime a dozen.
But... I do have a wallet, and it's much smarter than me, and it stops paying for things that are no longer worth it's while.

Overwatch
04-09-2014, 01:43 PM
Option C : listen to the player base on how to bring in more players. Remember you have a large player base of average non-professional gamers and you want their money. Make the game enjoyable by making rewards more attractive.
400 bits for 4.99US$ is not attractive. Then for 400 bits you can purchase an epic mode box that I am sure will give you 4 epic mods you can not use on your weapons. Before someone chimes in and says " you can always trade them ". As if I have all that time to search offers and bids. Just as easy to break down to salvage or re-sell at a loss and never spend 4.99$ again. Lessen learned.
Now I am back to TRION never getting money from me, I a sure many people feel the same way.
WHY SPEND MONEY IF YOU CAN NOT GET WHAT YOU WANT, THIS IS NOT A CASINO.

Atticus Batman
04-09-2014, 04:42 PM
Option C : listen to the player base on how to bring in more players. Remember you have a large player base of average non-professional gamers and you want their money. Make the game enjoyable by making rewards more attractive.
400 bits for 4.99US$ is not attractive. Then for 400 bits you can purchase an epic mode box that I am sure will give you 4 epic mods you can not use on your weapons. Before someone chimes in and says " you can always trade them ". As if I have all that time to search offers and bids. Just as easy to break down to salvage or re-sell at a loss and never spend 4.99$ again. Lessen learned.
Now I am back to TRION never getting money from me, I a sure many people feel the same way.
WHY SPEND MONEY IF YOU CAN NOT GET WHAT YOU WANT, THIS IS NOT A CASINO.

Fill your inventory, before buying boxes, The items will go into your claims. Then if somebody mentions later that they want em, you can look in claims and pull out just the one they will buy. If you bought LOTS of inventory space, I am sorry for you, because at it's core this game was made for you to junk/sale most things and go back to killing.

Bonehead
04-09-2014, 05:58 PM
Well stated OP.
Another in a list of reasons that the creative team just either does not "get" shooters or just doesn't like them.

With the stims and spikes they seemed to be following a Firefall guide.
I guess now it's Borderlands time.
Bad news is, this aint Borderlands.
So much for having any original or unique ideas in the game.
I have never thought before now that the game was in real trouble of going away but with the new bullet sponge patch driving away all but high level players and hardcore types...
Lets see how they do with such a small percentage of the gaming community.

oasis387
04-09-2014, 06:28 PM
I liked this game bc it was like borderlands, red dead red, rpg, all rolled into one... I personally like the idea of having a weapon be used from ego 1 to 2000... And that you could play with an ego 200 player and youre an ego 2000 player and each be side by side un-affected. Theres something about getting those orange weapons that is satisfying... Now it seems as if theyre just getting in line, and being just like every other game out there (less better version anyway)... Ill give the new dlca shot, but im not optimistic. I thoroughly enjoy defiance, and cant believe im still playing after a year... Have a feeling this new dlc may turn me away though, I hope not... But hey, at least theres a new borderlands "prequel" coming out later on in the year!

Bonehead
04-09-2014, 07:01 PM
But hey, at least theres a new borderlands "prequel" coming out later on in the year!

Please PM me with the details? Please please please?

EDIT;
never mind...

http://www.forbes.com/sites/davidthier/2014/04/09/new-borderlands-prequel-coming-in-the-fall/


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=smFJaRWwvRs

oasis387
04-09-2014, 07:22 PM
Please PM me with the details? Please please please?

EDIT;
never mind...

http://www.forbes.com/sites/davidthier/2014/04/09/new-borderlands-prequel-coming-in-the-fall/


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=smFJaRWwvRs


was just about to pm ya that link.

eaglepowers
04-09-2014, 10:02 PM
Give us each 10 upgrades on top of the 1,000 arkforge. The upgrades should allow us to level 10 items to our current ego. This would at least ease the sting of Trion's new game changing mechanic.

If not at least lower the upgrade cost and slowly work it up.

Who knows maybe they want to thin out the population by making current players quit? I suppose that's 1 way to fix the server issues.

Bonehead
04-09-2014, 10:28 PM
Give us each 10 upgrades on top of the 1,000 arkforge. The upgrades should allow us to level 10 items to our current ego. This would at least ease the sting of Trion's new game changing mechanic.



That would violate the "longer more fulfilling chase" paradigm.

TANKballs
04-09-2014, 10:44 PM
i like this thread a lot. Its what ive been saying all along...this new process is part of the game to make you continue working on something. if you are ego 5000 and are using ego 1000 weapons then that means for 4000 ego points you did not advance in any aspect of your main weapons, where is the fun in that??

Not necessarily true... I have absolutely none of the weapons I possessed as an ego 1000 player. I do, however, have a bunch of ego 1000 and 2000 weapons for which I have traded my higher ego gear. When one of the game mechanics (i.e., you can only use a weapon once you're above that weapon's ego) created an economy where lower ego weapons were more valuable on the trade market, many of us exchanged our higher ego gear for lower ego weapons with better rolls/nanos. Now we're stuck with what we have and get to grind for the forge to bring our gear up to par. Cheers to a longer, more fulfilling chase...that is, getting back to square 1.

Amun Ra
04-10-2014, 05:44 AM
WHY SPEND MONEY IF YOU CAN NOT GET WHAT YOU WANT, THIS IS NOT A CASINO.Wait... it's not?????
Now I get it!
And I was always looking for the poker table, DAMN!
Seems I entered the wrong room, figures.

Oh well, of to Diablo then...

Clarity Page
04-10-2014, 11:36 AM
As much as i see the point of constantly replacing you inventory with better gear, helping to keep things fresh and giving you a sense of progression,
that system simply does not work with defiance when it rarely gives you a good weapon and rarer still gives you a weapon you actually want.

Borderlands seems to be quite good a generating great guns that you want but Defiance just plain sucks when it come to dishing out nice loot, so I'm glad that Trion had to change there tactics