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Quote of the Day

November 24, 2012

In general, not everyone “gets” MMO mechanics and gaming mechanics in general. But something you only really fully appreciate if you play lots of other MMOs is the fact that honestly, our devs had almost *no idea* how to keep control of the game they developed, certainly initially, and to a significant extent even past that point. Our game engine and powers systems allow us to do so much relative to what other games allow you do to in large part because the game was originally written by people who literally had no idea how to limit performance and no idea how important it was to do so. Most MMOs have combat systems in which things are extremely predictable for the benefit of the developers. Attacks have very specific, impossible to alter DPS curves that cannot be mucked with except in proscribed ways. So the players know *exactly* how much damage they can put out when they use a bunch of attacks, and more importantly the *developers* also know that, so they can actually balance the game.

The notion of the attack sequence, the attack chain, “arcanatime”, and the optimal single target output? These things simply don’t exist in other games, because players don’t have the ability to switch slotting, change the order of their attacks, and *double* their output. They don’t have the ability to superbuff recharge and spam AoE. There’s no soft-cap to reach, and even if there is in theory, no level of effort gets you anywhere near it. Most of the time, you’re fighting over tenths of a percent improvement in performance, using tools everyone knows exactly the benefit of under all conditions.

The bane and boon of City of Heroes is that the devs tossed pistols and hand grenades into a room full of chimps and then charged admission. And we loved them for it.

And amazingly, against all conventional wisdom, it actually worked.

Arcanaville, City of Heroes forums. Original forum thread here.

Categories: City of Heroes, MMO Games
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