D20: The Grind

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D20: The Grind

Unread postby News Portal » 21 May 12, 11:52 am

Like everybody else in the world, Daniel Wilks has been playing [app=4089]Diablo III[/app] non-stop for the last week. And it's got him thinking - why is this type of item-grinding so appealing, when it's such a chore in MMO's?

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Re: D20: The Grind

Unread postby Cyrinno » 21 May 12, 2:53 pm

I still wish there was more of a skill system that allowed for customisation.

The need for gear does push one to play more but skill customisation makes me play again.

From the frost sorc, to the melee sorc and fire sorc I've done them all. There is something just as enticing as seeing if you can "make it work".

I hate that this whole thing has been removed from D3. They do only have a 10 character limit too so they probably can't support it. If I want to play many different types of a wizard I can do it all on 1 character with no questions to if something works or not. Once that character is done why play anymore?
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Re: D20: The Grind

Unread postby AndyWho » 21 May 12, 3:09 pm

Seriously? The skill system in D3 is 500x more interesting, complex and engaging than D2's. And yes the whole point of it is that you don't have to spend 50 hours levelling the exact same character again to try out a different build. Which would be absurd with this many viable builds in the game because you'd need to level 20 of each class to even try stuff out. The skill system really shines once you hit 60 and have to keep a build btw, before that it's a little too forgiving.

Rofl @ lvl 40 monk, I'd be seriously pissed if that was me.

Regarding your hours stats, I wouldn't be too ashamed of that. I've put 65 hours or something into D3 so far and I've been working full time as well.
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Re: D20: The Grind

Unread postby Cyrinno » 21 May 12, 3:18 pm

I need something when levelling at the moment it's skill spam with no threat of death, there are no intersting choices. I havn't found myself should I use this or that, hard choices between two different skills as they want you to do. It's been this skill is worse then the one I got I'll keep using my current.
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Re: D20: The Grind

Unread postby RSOblivion » 21 May 12, 4:08 pm

It is to a degree but I've found some of the boss combinations in Hell Difficulty utterly devastating as a monk. I'm intrigued to see if some of them are even killable in Inferno difficulty.
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Re: D20: The Grind

Unread postby xanarax » 21 May 12, 4:10 pm

I find Diablo 3 a lot more fun than most MMOs simply because it's a lot more action orientated with a single quest line. While this sounds "streamlined" allow me to explain.

There's no "LF3M to do instance, need healer and tank" it's just go play the game and get loot, if people join it gets harder for more rewards. When your friends drop in, they're taken to where you are and there's no sorting out what to do.

The skill system allows you quick tuning with at least what I've played from the Witch Doctor some serious build decisions. What's the best way to AoE? What's the best elite killer? How do I not die and kite around something that'll beat me to a pulp if it catches me? (Hell difficulty gets scary)

I don't get in MMOs why you need to pay for respecs, it's a huge kick in the pants if you play something like a tank or a healer. You want your PVP spec, you want your DPS spec for solo grinding and you want your spec for groups. Even in WoW where it has dual spec, I'm frustrated with my priest who I want to holy heal in groups, shadow for solo grind and discipline for PVP.

Diablo 3 allows for a much quicker pick up and play than MMOs and because I'm out of the house for 11 hours a day during the working week I find it's a lot more rewarding.
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Re: D20: The Grind

Unread postby Loophole_62ndFF » 21 May 12, 4:14 pm

One difference I observe, between the Diablo / Borderlands style action-RPG, and the typical MMO style RPGs like DDO, is this:
In the former I don't feel I am repeating the same task over and over, whereas in the latter I do.

In the 'Diablo-like' games, there is still a feeling of narrative direction - you are striving (albeit knee-deep in corpses), towards a final goal; an ultimate victory. Each adventure, dungeon and side-quest brings you a step closer, and each one is, at least in some way, a new experience. In the MMOs I have tried (with DDO being the one with which I have spent the most time), there seems almost no ongoing direction; you grind the same dungeons over and over at increasing difficulty levels until you have enough stats to take on the next-most-difficult set of dungeons, and grind away at them. There is no feeling of being part of a story, and no sense that your labors are having the slightest influence on the game world.

I think it is that meta-level, as the game world gradually changes through the indirect influence of your actions, that brings an ongoing sense of achievement and satisfaction beyond that of immediate loot and level-ups.
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Re: D20: The Grind

Unread postby XViper » 21 May 12, 4:30 pm

Loot grinding is more appealing in Diablo, Torchlight, etc than in MMO's because its easier.
ALOT easier, and quicker.
You can spend a lot of time killing enemies in MMO's. "Champion/Boss" mobs aren't as common, and decent loot drops alot less frequently.

When its not as tedious, it doesn't bother you as much.
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Re: D20: The Grind

Unread postby Ashigaru » 21 May 12, 5:19 pm

I have to say for someone like me who is pre-disposed to thinking MMOs etc are boring (I have never hit the level cap in any :B), D3 gets me because it's so fun to watch everything around you get reduced to rubble. Instead of having to sit there timing between pressing 1-2-3-4 like in wow, I can just spam spam spam the left click and watch stuff explode! It just seems more visceral than clicking numbers the whole time.

Also running around extra dungeons and getting that extra item is awesome. Makes exploring everything worth it :)
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Re: D20: The Grind

Unread postby vcatkiller » 21 May 12, 5:22 pm

Cyrinno wrote:I still wish there was more of a skill system that allowed for customisation.

The need for gear does push one to play more but skill customisation makes me play again.

From the frost sorc, to the melee sorc and fire sorc I've done them all. There is something just as enticing as seeing if you can "make it work".

I hate that this whole thing has been removed from D3. They do only have a 10 character limit too so they probably can't support it. If I want to play many different types of a wizard I can do it all on 1 character with no questions to if something works or not. Once that character is done why play anymore?

You know I said this during the open beta, and still think it now. I found it more engaging to be able to create specialist characters, you can't do that any more everybody has the exact same access to everything. In D2 it felt like you earned the ability to use skills, you plot how you were going to place skill points, held back for a few levels to get the skill you wanted. In D3 they just throw skills and runes at you and you earn nothing. It just feels like the game's building the character for you, rather than you carefully customizing the character the way you like.

Not that it ruins the whole gameplay experience, I just wish I had some say in the direction my character went. Leveling just doesn't have the kick it used to.
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Re: D20: The Grind

Unread postby DjVu » 21 May 12, 5:33 pm

Ashigaru wrote:I have to say for someone like me who is pre-disposed to thinking MMOs etc are boring (I have never hit the level cap in any :B), D3 gets me because it's so fun to watch everything around you get reduced to rubble. Instead of having to sit there timing between pressing 1-2-3-4 like in wow, I can just spam spam spam the left click and watch stuff explode! It just seems more visceral than clicking numbers the whole time.

Sums up exactly my feelings towards MMO gameplay. Its just so static and boring compared to the fast nature and visceral nastiness of Diablo-type gameplay.

I wasn't entirely sold on the new skill system in the beta (and I put a good amount of hours into it), but haven't played the full version I think it works pretty great. You can tell its got great customisation when I've played with people running the same class but using different skills. That very rarely occured in D2.
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Re: D20: The Grind

Unread postby XViper » 21 May 12, 6:28 pm

vcatkiller wrote:
Cyrinno wrote:I still wish there was more of a skill system that allowed for customisation.

The need for gear does push one to play more but skill customisation makes me play again.

From the frost sorc, to the melee sorc and fire sorc I've done them all. There is something just as enticing as seeing if you can "make it work".

I hate that this whole thing has been removed from D3. They do only have a 10 character limit too so they probably can't support it. If I want to play many different types of a wizard I can do it all on 1 character with no questions to if something works or not. Once that character is done why play anymore?

You know I said this during the open beta, and still think it now. I found it more engaging to be able to create specialist characters, you can't do that any more everybody has the exact same access to everything. In D2 it felt like you earned the ability to use skills, you plot how you were going to place skill points, held back for a few levels to get the skill you wanted. In D3 they just throw skills and runes at you and you earn nothing. It just feels like the game's building the character for you, rather than you carefully customizing the character the way you like.

Not that it ruins the whole gameplay experience, I just wish I had some say in the direction my character went. Leveling just doesn't have the kick it used to.


This post has peaked my curiousity.
Does anyone have any info on how the levelling/skill system works in D3?
Do you not get to choose your skill path? I don't really like the sound of that.
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Re: D20: The Grind

Unread postby Cyrinno » 21 May 12, 7:03 pm

I think they'll add another layer of complexity in an expansion.
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Re: D20: The Grind

Unread postby André Axe'm » 21 May 12, 7:04 pm

Where have you been all year, xviper???

http://us.battle.net/d3/en/class/barbarian/progression
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Re: D20: The Grind

Unread postby SA soldier » 21 May 12, 8:01 pm

Cheers Dan, I liked this article, thanks for the good read.

D3 is great so far, I see plenty of people talking about how they are playing the game pretty solidly and trying out a lot of characters and venturing into hell mode, with utterings of the nightmare experience and what it'll be like when reached.

I represent the player base who has that tendency to tortoise their way through the game on the first character or two, literally picking apart each nook and cranny of every single instance, smashing every barrel, parting the guts of every corpse and even lapping each zone again before moving on with the wagoner to the next part of the world.

For me its not all about leveling as fast as possible, its about discovering the world, reading up on the lore and tracking my way through the map. I don't know why I do this, but it has something to do with that little dark spot on the map still covered in shadow... what lays there? Did I miss a boss that was just ten paces further... Maybe? So I turn back cross half the level and find that there was instead a dungeon tucked into the edge of the map - with 2 floors and not only a boss but a significant amount of money and blue gear to be broken down for my crafting endeavors. Glad I came back... but of course you do this sometimes and there was nothing but a pond. Not even a barrel. Just a pond. But that's exactly it, the exploration is just as important as the loot itself because not all the rare items drop on the path to the next quest... we all know just a few paces off the beaten track there are things to be found, critters to crush and even a side quest or two.

This evening (after a painstaking 3 day absence from the game due to work) I logged on an ran through an old level in Caldeum and found a quest from a Necromancer that I couldn't have possibly missed when running that instance the first time round... or could I have? Or was this a randomly spawning side quest... I don't know. I didn't even know the Necromancer was going to show up in this title, but there he was with a little quest marker and we had quite a decent chat. I listened to what he had to say and completed his quest wondering... If I didn't come back to Caldeum, I never would have run into him. The little skeleton minions he had summoned joined in as we bashed some demon heads together and I got quite a laugh out of it. That I can say was an experience worth the time and effort. Clearly I was sacrificing gaining XP at the fastest rate by backtracking but to just see that unfold was great.

In summation, it's about finding a play style which suits you. The fact I can look at a pair of boots with +8% movement speed and find nothing makes me happier than breaking them down for materials because I'd rather run a little slower and gain ever more strength and vitality with the other boots than rush through at a blistering pace and miss all the subtle content. These decisions are entirely your own, the game is meant to be fun and I encourage everyone to take a step back and ask themselves what they really want from their experience. Realistically, in a years time... I'll probably be speed leveling my tenth toon through Hell with a pair of +20% movement speed boots and skipping all the extra quests and corridors, because pvp got a little stale and I wanted a witch doctor to change things up a bit. But for now, its off to cut another lap of Caldeum.
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