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BladedThesis
01-15-2011, 06:19 PM
I was just thinking as I stood aboard my guild's airship that something could to be done to make the whole experience a little more dynamic. I found myself thinking back to some of the airship battles in old Final Fantasy games and how much more technology we have now. So I got to thinking that an interesting idea for a new adventure pack could be involving our awesome guild airships. Something like quests where a guild would have to defend our airship from, say, attacking mercenaries or a portal from Xoriat. I recall a TBC mission where we have to attack and board another ship while defending our own. The quest-lines could even involve some of the NPC's on board the ships. A good example would be the beholder navigator, or even House Lyrandar. It could be tied to the favor system so if you do quests from a House P NPC it could give House P favor. It would be a good way to get guilds together more often and get more people to join guilds.

A large issue I see is level difference between guild members. Many players are mid-TR or leveling alts or are new. Not everyone has a 20 to bring. There would have to be a level scaling system that would bring lower players up to high, but not give them the feats/powers/spells etc. A lvl 2 would have the HP/SP/saves/BAB etc of a lvl 20 of their main class but not have new feats and such. It would certainly take more balancing than just that to make lowbies useful but it's the base of how to get it.

Now I feel and I'm sure many would agree that there are lots of people on DDO who don't join guilds or don't have large airships. While I feel it's good to encourage players to join a guild it's not so good to exclude those that don't want a guild, from an entire adventure pack. Guilds should have the option to pug players if they so choose so anyone can join. It would also need to be either cheap or F2P due to many guilds having a large mix of free, premium and vip players. The profit for Turbine would lie in the time sink players would invest into it while not accomplishing the rest of the game.

The other issue is incentive. Why do we want to do this other than just for jollies? Turbine has gone through great lengths to prevent power leveling in the usual MMO sense and so we can't just set up an unlimited xp zerg line that lvl 20's run all the scrubs through for mass xp. The quest xp should be mediocre or scale based on how many 20's are there. So a group with a max lvl of 8 would get way more xp than a group w/ a max lvl of 20 but the group w/ the 20's would have an easier time. Another thing would be possibly removing XP but having high favor rewards and new items. Another would be keeping the items, making scaling for lvl's 1-19, and just adding an Epic mode for all the overgeared uberpowerful guilds who have the 20's to pull it off.

I think the amount of quest options to be quite high and the idea of bringing guilds together more often and encouraging team play are good for profit as far as a business perspective goes. The amount of time sink Turbine could get would be much higher than the current airship system. We just do what we always did and play the game to lvl our guilds up. No time sink whatsoever. If the quests are engaging enough and the loot good enough people will keep running these quests, and sink lots of time into it. Then as people do the quests they would keep getting more guild renown thus unlocking more ship NPC's and getting more quests. The options would be almost too many. If Turbine really wanted to cash in they could make the first couple batches free and then the high end stuff for high lvl guilds to cost TP.

Anyways sorry thats so longwinded, feedback would be appreciated.

jwdaniels
01-15-2011, 06:24 PM
I think that a quest/raid that involved airship to airship combat would be awesome, however I would absolutely not want this to involve the guild airship in any way. Limiting content only to people who choose to join a guild and level that guild until it gets an airship is a bad idea, as is trying to temporarily level up/level down characters in a balanced way so that every guildie can participate together. How would you even reward that? With experience and loot based on the lowest level? The highest? No reward?

Airships provide an excellent setting for adventure, but the guild airship does not.

Gorbadoc
01-15-2011, 10:07 PM
I think that a quest/raid that involved airship to airship combat would be awesome, however I would absolutely not want this to involve the guild airship in any way. Limiting content only to people who choose to join a guild and level that guild until it gets an airship is a bad idea, as is trying to temporarily level up/level down characters in a balanced way so that every guildie can participate together. How would you even reward that? With experience and loot based on the lowest level? The highest? No reward?

Airships provide an excellent setting for adventure, but the guild airship does not.

^^ That. I'm not going to say there can't be a guild airship combat event; I just can't think of a way to make it deal with the issues mentioned in the OP and by jwdaniels.

Airship combat could be incredibly cool, though. Imagine: Multiple airships circling and weaving over and under each other. You move from ship to ship either with an air jet (or ballista, as in Frame Work) or by jumping to a lower ship. If you botch a jump and you fall past the lowest airship, you drop to ground level, where there's an air jet, cannon, or teleporter that sends you either to a specific ship or to a point above all the ships.

oradafu
01-16-2011, 01:02 AM
^^ That. I'm not going to say there can't be a guild airship combat event; I just can't think of a way to make it deal with the issues mentioned in the OP and by jwdaniels.

Airship combat could be incredibly cool, though. Imagine: Multiple airships circling and weaving over and under each other. You move from ship to ship either with an air jet (or ballista, as in Frame Work) or by jumping to a lower ship. If you botch a jump and you fall past the lowest airship, you drop to ground level, where there's an air jet, cannon, or teleporter that sends you either to a specific ship or to a point above all the ships.

When I heard that you destroy a airship in The Tide Turns, I was thinking that it was by attacking the crew and "engine" of the airship. Boy, was I a bit disappointed that it was something completely different when the Crimson Moon was blown up.

Since my first run in that quest, I had hoped for a quest in which you attacked airships by jumping from one airship to another. But I disagree on having a safety net if you miss an airship when jumping down to one (which I think would be the easiest way to implement this type of quest). Miss the ship, you plummet to the earth (or ocean) and die...much like slipping off the edge in Restless Isles.

Gorbadoc
01-16-2011, 03:00 AM
But I disagree on having a safety net if you miss an airship when jumping down to one

In addition to the quest being a platformer, entire sections of the map would be in constant motion relative to each other. I want the jumps to be tricky enough that I'll inevitably miss them sometimes. I solo The Pit at-level in just under an hour, half an hour if I'm overleveled. If the jumps are a good challenge for me, then other people will definitely have trouble with them.

Of course, falling off should still be penalized. Getting back to the skies should require fighting one's way through monsters at ground level. These monsters should be more powerful than those on the ships, they should respawn, and the only advantage to killing them should be that, if they spot you and you DON'T kill them, you'll be eaten alive by dungeon alert.

Here's a possible scenario:
Operation: Save Your Allies' Butts.
Thanks to your valiant efforts, the fight against the Droaam is being taken to Khorvaire. Your allies have managed to set up a teleporter within Droaam's borders, to allow additional troops to be sent in. Unfortunately, things have gone wrong (the story of RPGs everywhere), and the teleporter has fallen under Droaam attack.

The teleporter itself is in a small redoubt. The terrain outside the redoubt is covered with Droaam heavy infantry, while the skies overhead are occupied by five Droaam airships, which continually bombard the redoubt. If you find yourself on the ground outside the redoubt, you'll have to contend both with Droaam infantry (who are much stronger than the sailors and mechanics manning the airships) and with bombardment from the ships overhead.

Under the circumstances, your allies are unwilling to risk additional troops on the teleporter, and the order to evacuate via the teleporter is expected to come in about an hour. Fortunately, the redoubt's commander has a clever idea that may turn the tide of battle. If you can plant a teleportation beacon in a particular location on each of the five Droaam airships overhead, then your allies will send additional troops to the redoubt, and these troops will be able to quickly teleport into and capture the airships.

There you have a mechanic for screw-ups-- if you fall to the ground, once you fight your way back to the redoubt, you can teleport directly to whichever air ships you have completed.

Of course, reaching the first air ship needs a story explanation. There's a crashed air ship nearby (the redoubt has SOME firepower). Use its still-functional ballistae to launch yourself to the first airborne ship. As you complete each ship, use its ballistae to launch your party to the next ship up.

So you plant the beacons, and the day is apparently saved, and you start the next mission:

Operation: Save Your Allies' Butts. Again.
It turns out that, oh darn, the air ships were attacked by magic super-regenerating harpies right when the first of your ally's troops started warping to the beacons. You must return to the skies quickly to hunt down these harpies so they can't ambush the troops warping in. This involves beating on a bird-lady, then watching which ship she runs to next and pursuing, sometimes jumping into an ambush. Because of their super-regeneration, you can't actually kill the harpies just by beating on them. Instead, the quest gives you weighted nets as a throwing weapon, which you must use while the harpies are airborne. Make all the harpies fall to the ground, and your allies can successfully board the ships. Oh, and, to keep life interesting, the harpies will man the ship-mounted cannons and shoot at you and whatever ship you're on. Extra chest if you can keep all five ships alive.

BladedThesis
01-16-2011, 05:30 PM
As I said I don't want to exclude any specific player base, so they could skip the part about it being for guild airships and just add a quest pack that centers around airships and/or House Lyrandar. A bunch of mid-level stuff with epic versions and a good raid would do nicely. I liked the idea of bringing guilds together for it, but I can't think of really good way to make it work. There are other MMO's that do lvl scaling and do it pretty well but it's hard to make work in DDO.

I like some of the ideas presented, and I think this could really be fun. I imagine groups of tethered ships with waves of attackers going both ways. Chaos in the air! Yaar! Raids could have the team using 2 airships and they could make the airships useful as well in that there could be cannons or other things to use at specific times or places.

EDIT: Oh and I agree with no safety nets for falling. I dont know about having them have to fight if they fall, but there should be some penalty even if it just means running back all the way, and of course for the raid, if you fall you're done.

Kaeldur
01-16-2011, 05:40 PM
I liked the idea, but disagree with having lvl 20's with lowbies. We have Chronoscope for that... ¬¬"

It should be more like Devil Assault, with a wide level span (say N-5, H-10, E-15, Epic-20)... I like the idea of having it on the guild airship (which would mean several versions of the quest, one for each possible airship - meaning a lot of work for the devs). But should be available for unguilded toons (even if it means they have to be in a guild group via ship invite, for example).

I also liked one idea of having it sort of a platformer, with several jumps back and forth several ships.

That said, I doubt we'll see anything of the sort implemented in a near future.

coolpenguin410
01-16-2011, 05:42 PM
In addition to the quest being a platformer, entire sections of the map would be in constant motion relative to each other. I want the jumps to be tricky enough that I'll inevitably miss them sometimes. I solo The Pit at-level in just under an hour, half an hour if I'm overleveled. If the jumps are a good challenge for me, then other people will definitely have trouble with them.

Of course, falling off should still be penalized. Getting back to the skies should require fighting one's way through monsters at ground level. These monsters should be more powerful than those on the ships, they should respawn, and the only advantage to killing them should be that, if they spot you and you DON'T kill them, you'll be eaten alive by dungeon alert.

Here's a possible scenario:
Operation: Save Your Allies' Butts.
Thanks to your valiant efforts, the fight against the Droaam is being taken to Khorvaire. Your allies have managed to set up a teleporter within Droaam's borders, to allow additional troops to be sent in. Unfortunately, things have gone wrong (the story of RPGs everywhere), and the teleporter has fallen under Droaam attack.

The teleporter itself is in a small redoubt. The terrain outside the redoubt is covered with Droaam heavy infantry, while the skies overhead are occupied by five Droaam airships, which continually bombard the redoubt. If you find yourself on the ground outside the redoubt, you'll have to contend both with Droaam infantry (who are much stronger than the sailors and mechanics manning the airships) and with bombardment from the ships overhead.

Under the circumstances, your allies are unwilling to risk additional troops on the teleporter, and the order to evacuate via the teleporter is expected to come in about an hour. Fortunately, the redoubt's commander has a clever idea that may turn the tide of battle. If you can plant a teleportation beacon in a particular location on each of the five Droaam airships overhead, then your allies will send additional troops to the redoubt, and these troops will be able to quickly teleport into and capture the airships.

There you have a mechanic for screw-ups-- if you fall to the ground, once you fight your way back to the redoubt, you can teleport directly to whichever air ships you have completed.

Of course, reaching the first air ship needs a story explanation. There's a crashed air ship nearby (the redoubt has SOME firepower). Use its still-functional ballistae to launch yourself to the first airborne ship. As you complete each ship, use its ballistae to launch your party to the next ship up.

So you plant the beacons, and the day is apparently saved, and you start the next mission:

Operation: Save Your Allies' Butts. Again.
It turns out that, oh darn, the air ships were attacked by magic super-regenerating harpies right when the first of your ally's troops started warping to the beacons. You must return to the skies quickly to hunt down these harpies so they can't ambush the troops warping in. This involves beating on a bird-lady, then watching which ship she runs to next and pursuing, sometimes jumping into an ambush. Because of their super-regeneration, you can't actually kill the harpies just by beating on them. Instead, the quest gives you weighted nets as a throwing weapon, which you must use while the harpies are airborne. Make all the harpies fall to the ground, and your allies can successfully board the ships. Oh, and, to keep life interesting, the harpies will man the ship-mounted cannons and shoot at you and whatever ship you're on. Extra chest if you can keep all five ships alive.

+1. Love the ideas/story lines.

donfilibuster
01-16-2011, 05:56 PM
A public airship shall solve the must-have-guild issue.