Thursday, April 27, 2006

Overworld Action-able NPC

In the past few days when I've had time enough to sit down and enjoy EQ2 I have pondered about NPC's and various actions. It kind of hit me even more when reading about Nerfbats Virtual worlds vs. MMO's. I won't get into the little debate I just brought it up because it made me think about my MMO world. I like emersion and the feeling as if something is going on. Like the feeling the first time you go into Nektulos castle or the ability to actually enjoy DFC with out the lag. Only this feeling is much stronger, a sense of real work is being done. Like the feeling I first experienced in Greater Faydark and finding Kelethin for the first time.

Picture Zek - a nice peaceful yet busy zone depending on what time of the day you go there. Zek is a relatively under used zone unless you're like me and Love to kill Orc's over Halflings or Goblins. I run around Zek completing all the notable quests I can complete to include Access to DFC and 2 Heritage quests (as I'm sure others have) and still have walked away with a feeling that the Orc's there could be farther along then they are. Now picture them actually getting things accomplished in the zone even when no one is around. Like the lumberjacks actually cutting down trees for the builders to build houses or weapons of war (catapults). Now when we the Player come upon these Orc's for the first time they could be very difficult if left unchecked. Such as the Catapult operators are actually lobbing Rocks and we as the PC have the possibility of being damaged if we don't charge up the hill to destroy the Catapult. Also the houses that are left undestroyed could spawn a series of Orc to continually barrage you until the house is destroyed. These Orc's could also be more powerful while the houses are left unchecked. I know these idea's are left for instances but I don't see anything wrong with a repetitive world rebuilding itself if left un-disturbed that can continually rejuvenate. They have very distinguishable traps like falling rocks in Waling caves so I know that it's not impossible to have some things like this implemented. I believe that if the team starts to make the actual over world more interactive and not just leave it to instances it will be more immersive in some cases. I feel that if NPC's are doing more then just sitting around arbitrarily chopping at a tree it would make the world feel more alive. Yes, I know that if some of the over world is to interactive it can be a bore or a camp/KS/grieve frenzy.

Mainly I would like to see more NPC doing things they would actually do in some cases actually do what their name suggests. (Lumberjack - Cutting trees in the game) (Centurions - Actually guarding something other then dead space) Some do seem as if they are doing these actions so don't get me wrong. I would just love to see them actually building up a war machine against us and maybe have a faction of these Orc's so we can side with them and help them to further there plan.

These principles can be applied to many areas in EQ2 and I would love it more then anything if they were used in Everfrost. This zone more then any others seems more like a lifeless and somewhat bleh zone. The Barbarians aimlessly walk up and down the path awaiting adverntures to kill them for writs. I understand the lore of Halas - it was swallowed into the sea- but, you don't think that they would also have a village being built? It could be continuous or a quest to protect the village from being destroyed by nearby PC's or Giants? These little areas could be safe havens for those that wish to help the Barbarian village in continually warding off Giants from destroying their houses. As to deture some PC's from attacking there could be a faction involved (Giants vs Everfrost barbarians). The giants could also have an actual area they are trying to fortify other then just aimlessly sitting on icebergs with the Goblins. These are just ideas from the top of my head but I'm sure ideas like these would make Norath more immersive.

EQ2 has a lot of things that's going for it and I have enjoyed a lot of what I've done in the past and now in the present with PVP. I would just like to spice it up a little bit more here and there by doing nice overhauls to the over worlds. It's wonderful they are redoing a lot of dungeons and the changes thus far that I've seen have been great. Since it's been said creating more zones for low to mid levels would create a grouping problem then I say they create more stuff to do in the existing zones.


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