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4-19-2008 @ 11:33AM
Blackrock Depths is one of my favorite instances. Yes, I've run it many times and any instance you run over and over will get stale. However, the layout of the instance and grand size give it an "epic" feeling that I think is missing in most instances in the game. Also the tavern in the middle of an instance is fantastic.Blizzard seems to get tunnel vision when they design things. The Burning Crusade instances all seem like relatively short hallways. It would be great to have a mixture of different types of instances. Short hallway, multi-wing, sprawling complex, etc. This caters to multiple playstyles at the same time while providing a richer experience for players.I'd like to see an underground city complex that is only accessible to those who have travelled through an instance. As a sort of reward and adventure hub for players in advanced progression.
4-19-2008 @ 11:51AM
I actually wrote up a set of design theories for a portable MMO that was almost just that. Basically, the principle of it's instances was to combine that epic feel, with short wings. Because people expect being able to play a portable game for 15-30 minutes, dungeons can't be long. So, every 15 to 20 minutes, there would be a bit of a pit stop, be it a town, a big city, or a refugee camp. This would have repairs, reagents, etc. Also, it wouldn't be instanced, so if you had someone who had to go, you could pick somebody up. This way, I could continue the same dungeon for 2-3 hours to get to the end. Also, this game would use a meeting stone kind of thing, but with different requirements for inner-stones. If I have never made it to the 5th pit stop, I can't be summoned there. However, if I've been to the 4th pit stop, I could be summoned, or fly on my own, to there. That way you wouldn't have to play for 3 hours in one session to see the final boss in a dungeon.
4-19-2008 @ 12:07PM
I hope never to run an instance like Black Rock Depths again. Granted it was epic feeling, it was cohesive in vibe and design regardless of what area you were in, unlike the Coilfang instances. There is one huge problem with BRD - pugging it is a nightmare.No one I've grouped with was ever on the same quest chains. Pugging BRD required a level of compromise that usually meant you could turn in the crumpled note for the Windsor chain but not do the escort quest. You could go kill Incidius but not much else. Everyone wanted to do the arena, but no one ever seem to want to get the Shadowforge key.It was also annoying that no one ever seem to know their way around the map (Atlas didn't help much with that either). If you're new at running BRD, being with a party that got lost sucked.Granted BRD was not designed to full clear in a session, but having pugged BRD everyday for a full week just to get a handful of quests done (and never seeing the emperor), was just too exhausting and leaves that place with a bitter taste in my mouth.While BC instances may not feel epic, I think players like having a sense of accomplishment of doing a full clear and being able to accomplish divergent goals like getting Kara key frags without big compromises.
4-19-2008 @ 12:13PM
@EternalpaynThat sounds brilliant! And, I totally agree with the 15-30 minute time window.
4-19-2008 @ 1:02PM
@WhomeThanks, glad you liked it. I'm always happy to hear feedback on it, especially when it's good! :P@GeoI feel you with the pugging of BRD being a nightmare. I hated pugging that. It wasn't necessarily the lack of being on the same quests, but after the first quest, or the second quest, people would leave, because they did what they wanted. Then we'd have to find someone to replace them, go out, resummon, and they'd only do one quest and then leave.
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