All About Xentarim
As most of ya'll know, multiplayer's all the rage these days. With the internet becoming so prevalent, it seems like every game wants in on the multiplayer aspect. Even traditionally single player games are getting in on it.
Now, while I do enjoy multiplayer game modes, there are a few things that really, really irk me.
This is most likely a carryover from MMOs. I personally know of quite a few people who just LOVE levelling. In fact, levelling in itself isn't such a bad thing. In fact, quite a few single player games incorporate it in their gameplay. What bothers me, though, is that often, levelling in a multiplayer game doesn't require any skill whatsoever. For the most part, you can level just by throwing enough hours into the game. Sure, maybe you level faster if you are skillful (Bad Company 2, for example), but it still doesn't change the fact that skill is not a requirement. Of course, I do understand that spending more hours in a game is probably what the developers want you to do, but it still bothers me that farming is a viable strategy. This wouldn't be so much of a problem if it weren't for my next point...
Levelling wouldn't be much of an issue or carry so much weight if not for how it is generally used: to unlock stuff. Again, we all like unlockables. It helps keep things fresh as you progress. It keeps us wanting to play, just so we can see what cool stuff will pop up next, or so that we can finally use that piece of equipment we've had stashed up for so long. The problem is that developers these days make it such that some equipment are outright more powerful than others. When coupled with the time-based, no-skills-required levelling, this means that, regardless of how good a player you are, there is absolutely no chance in hell that you can beat a player who has spammed more hours into the game than you. I find this downright depressing. I play games to relieve stress, to get away from the daily hustle and bustle of trying to get ahead of everyone else. And yet, here I am, running around in a game where I basically deal no damage and get killed in single blows simply because I have not spent quite as much time gaming as everyone else.
In single player games, if you level and gain new equips, it's because they unlock new ways to play, and are sometimes even required to progress. What would be the point of getting a super-powered-ogre-slaying-lightning-enhanced-exploding-chainsaw if all you're gonna do is just whack the same old rabbits you've been whacking since the starting stage?
Yes, I fully realise that I sound like a whiny baby. But, hey, it's honestly how I feel. But truly, the problem can be fixed with a little tweaking of the concept. Ok, so maybe totally skill-based levelling is out of the question. Then how about not making equipment overpowered? Make them more flexible, perhaps. Instead of having a weapon that outranks another in all aspects, maybe make it more powerful, but less accurate, or make it have an unusual status-effect. Something that lets you have more options, instead of making you a one-man army. Something that would require some THOUGHT to put into use, instead of having a straightforward advantage.
Alright, I suppose I've ranted enough. What about you? What do you think about the gripes I've listed? Or perhaps you have some of your own? Let's hear it then.
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