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SWToR Addons, a good or a bad thing?

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posted on Dec, 30 2011 @ 03:42 AM
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I came across Tobold's MMORPG Blog that had an entry regarding SWToR and how it would be a bad thing for the game if they were introduced (I reccomend reading the original post) and saw the debate it sparked on the subject and decided to bring it over to ATS (I did use the search and didn't find the subject, so apologies if it has already been covered).

The debate has started basically because of World of Warcraft (WoW) which is the most well known and arguably popular MMORPG on the market and as such, all other MMORPG's are pretty much compared to it as a result.

Backround

Basically, Blizzard (the makers of WoW) have allowed the general public to write their own addons which interface with the game, in order to enhance the players experience of the game. Addons range from anything from DPS meters to social emotes and the number now available for the game has reached literally thousands and as a result, some of these addons have become 'must have' players but also, in some cases, the functionality of these addons (like gearscore for example) have actually been adopted by Blizzard and added into the game, albeit with their own take on the subject (ilevel as it is currently).

Star Wars the Old Republic is,as the name suggests is the long awaited MMORPG that is set in the Starwars universe and is a must have for any Star Wars geek (like me!) which was launched on the 20th of December 2011. Like all MMORPG's it has the usual questing, PvP and storyline that you would expect (though ToR is more story driven and contains a heck of a lot more in terms of cutscenes than WoW) but unlike WoW, which at its launch 7 years ago started out with the ability for users to write addons for it, has no such interface.

As a result, a lot of WoW players (like myself) whilst enjoying the game thoroughly are already starting to miss the added functionality that the WoW addons provided, some of which I believe are essential; like tools to allow you to measure your peformance and see where gear changes, talent changes effect your performance.

Disclaimer

Now some people will automatically say that I am not comparing 'apples with apples' because WoW has had 7 years of development whereas ToR hasn't even been out for a month, but this is not what this post is about. I am not comparing the games, they are two different games and I am also not one of those people who will complain that the standard UI is rubbish, I personally don't think it is, it's just different. The discussion isn't even about what Bioware (ToR writers) should or shouldnt have in their game persay either, just purely about the ability for users to be able to write addons to help themselves and other players get more out of the game.

My Experience

I have played WoW for about 3 or 4 years now and I initially played for probably a third of that time without addons. I also wasnt in a guild and did very little in the way of group content, I just happily pottered around and did my own thing. This was fine although I did become a little bored (which lead to 4 month break) and when I came back to the game later, I decided to join a guild and as a result a whole new side of the game was exposed to me. Not only did I learn a lot more about the game and discover new game experiences but I was also introduced to the addons, which, as time went by; added a further dimension to my gameplay experience. I got the oppertunity to learn from more experienced players which helped my performance but I also got the oppertunity, through using the addons, to measure my own performance. This performance measurement wasn't just in my ability to do better dps, but also things like the amount of money I made or with my crafting and so on. I also quickly found that if there was something I wanted to do, change or measure that there was likely an addon to help me do that.

Now starting with ToR, I was under no illusion that I would have to go through a learning curve in terms of where things were, how the game worked for the different classes and what things meant. This of course was no problem for me, its the same when you get any new game. However, in the last 10 days I have started to miss some of the things that the addons gave me and specifically, the ability to know what my actual damage output was. Tor, like wow, gives each player more abilities as they level and also upgrades abilities ot make them more powerful; on top of that there is a talent tree that once you hit level 10 (as in WoW) you are able to put points into to further enhance your characters abilities, with a lot of options (as per WoW pre-cataclysm expansion, since cata things are a lot less configurable) that benefit different aspects of your charachters abilities. This, in itself is great but without being able to measure your output and how said talents effect that (not to mention your gear or your rotation) they are, in many respects, a bit pointless. Granted, if your happy to go with "a higher level and better gear means I must do more damage" approach, then your probably satisfed but for those of us who are used to being able to meausre ourselves in order to improve, it isnt good enough.

The Argument

The first thing that could be said here is that Bioware could just add a dps meter and that would solve my particular gripe above and in many respects, thats true. However, I have only touched upon one particular facet in WoW that was enhanced by the use of an addon and there are many many more. As I mentioned earlier, the fact that there was most likely an addon for anthying you would want available meant that the individual user could effectivley craft his own gaming experience to his liking. This meant that the game to could be expanded without the users relying on Blizzard to alter their game in the next patch to provide us with what we wanted, it left us free to do that ourselves as long as we stayed within Blizzards boundaries (ie things like autoplay bots were banned and so on). So having experienced somethign like that, it is not surprising that people who now play ToR would like to see the same option open to them, for things like the particular gripe I mentioned above to all of the other enhancements, big and small.

The blog basically states that addons are a bad thing because they encourage seperation of the playing base and ultimately cause people to miss out / be excluded from aspects of the game due to their dps or gearscore or whatever. On top of that, it states that those people who do the excluding are elitest and ruin the game for the others and basically, I do not agree with this statement.

The fact of the matter is, this is a social game which allows players to embark on raids, dungeons pvp in a group environment and in the event of not being able to complete one of these activities is dependant on the ability and performance of each player. As with WoW, the lower the level of instance, the easier it is and thus, performance is less of a factor, but as you progress and the content becomes harder (even in solo play) performace becomes more and more of a factor to your success and as you are in a group, each member of that group is relying on the other 4 or 9 or whatever, to fulfill their role and if one or two people are the reason for failure, is that fair to the rest? Of course not. Spock said: the needs of the many outway the needs of the few.




posted on Dec, 30 2011 @ 03:51 AM
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No disrespect, but coming from a true Star Wars fan and former MMORPG player.... GO OUTSIDE!

You're just a giant hamster on a money generating wheel for these corporations pumping out substandard video game development. They don't care about what you or I want, it's all about the money, if it takes years for you to realize that, then I hope you learned something.



posted on Dec, 30 2011 @ 04:02 AM
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Elitist Jerks and Unfair Advantages

So, does me wanting to be successful in a raid or instance make me an elitest jerk? No, of course it doesn't. I have spent plenty of time in WoW with other guild members advising them on gemming, enchanting, rotation and gear in order to help them improve (as people did with me before) and reccomending addons that may help their gaming experience. The fact is I do not judge other people unfavourably if their gear means their dps is low or their rotation isn't quite right, I do my best to help them out if I can. However, if I am going to lead a raid which I want to be successful at, I will choose those people who have the better gear and the higher dps; it's the logical approach and I will help those who are not quite there yet in order to reach the mark too, if they are interested, none of that is a problem and in order for me to help them, tools of measurement are very helpful.

An elitist jerk though, is someone who is rude, mean, bad mannered and insulting when it comes to the above situation. These idiots want to be successful too, but instead of having the attitude that they could help that person out, they just prefer to insult them for not being as good as they are. Yelling at someone and calling them a 'noob' is something I never partake in and something I hate seeing in the game but once thing is for sure, these people exist regardless of being able to measure performance or not. I have already seen a couple of them in ToR already, blaming other people because things are not going their way and I don't think for one minute that the addons or lack there of; have any impact on their existance (other than maybe making them easier to spot!).

The WoW addons are also freely available to anyone. This means that any player can have them, which by definition, means that a level playing field exists for those people who chose to learn how to use the addons. Granted, some people do not choose to use addons, but this does not mean that players who do have an unfair advantage, again, for the very simple reason that they could if they wanted to. Granted, if you had to pay for them, it would be a different matter, but you dont, they are free.

Conclusion

Addons themselves, like apps on your iphone are there to enchance, they don't create divides in players or turn people into a-holes, these people are like this already and to suggest that ToR shouldnt have addons for this reason or because they create an inbalance, in my honest opinion, is rubbish.

Any thoughts?



posted on Dec, 30 2011 @ 04:09 AM
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Originally posted by JibbyJedi
No disrespect, but coming from a true Star Wars fan and former MMORPG player.... GO OUTSIDE!

You're just a giant hamster on a money generating wheel for these corporations pumping out substandard video game development. They don't care about what you or I want, it's all about the money, if it takes years for you to realize that, then I hope you learned something.


Ok troll
, you start by saying 'no disrespect' and proceed to insult anyone who chooses to play these games for fun? really?
You are right that it is a money generating wheel, but does that mean the people who enjoy playing MMORPG's and indeed other games should stop just because you say so? I think not and also you tell ME to go outside? Yet here you are trolling at my thread
hilarious!



posted on Dec, 30 2011 @ 05:02 AM
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In vanilla wow, there was no gear score. Rogues stood in green Volcanic gear and killed Ragnaros. There was a time when RaidAssist didnt exist, and you actually had to learn the boss tactics yourself. Addons are a double edged sword and tbh I welcome their absence from TOR.

Player > Gear

Player > Addons



posted on Dec, 30 2011 @ 05:08 AM
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reply to post by AtlantisX99
 


I think he's just giving you some honest advice regarding his experience. There is truth to what he says, mmo's are a huge time sink, but IMO you get much more than you pay for in terms of playability. A console game which costs $60 might take you 20 hours of played time to beat, while an avid MMO player could rack up a few days of played time in one month, for only $15.

But there is wisdom in the "go outside" argument, but this usually applies to people who let MMO's take over their lives. As long as you keep it a hobby, and not turn it into a full time job, I see no problem with MMO's.



posted on Dec, 30 2011 @ 05:12 AM
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reply to post by Mudja
 


The difference between current wow and vanilla wow is so huge you can't even compare the two. They are different games. Play on a 1.12.1 private server and then try playing cataclysm, you'll see the difference. Vanilla is a more fun game but Cataclysm's UI is far superior.



posted on Dec, 30 2011 @ 05:36 AM
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What's the point? Raiders are already at 4/5 hard mode in Eternity Vault. And that was 2 weeks after servers opened. Play Skyrim for some real fun addons
.

/TOA



posted on Dec, 30 2011 @ 08:37 AM
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swtor is amazing.

made my xmas, as a fan of the original and someone who had become very tired of wow.



posted on Dec, 30 2011 @ 11:31 PM
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Originally posted by AtlantisX99

Originally posted by JibbyJedi
No disrespect, but coming from a true Star Wars fan and former MMORPG player.... GO OUTSIDE!

You're just a giant hamster on a money generating wheel for these corporations pumping out substandard video game development. They don't care about what you or I want, it's all about the money, if it takes years for you to realize that, then I hope you learned something.


Ok troll
, you start by saying 'no disrespect' and proceed to insult anyone who chooses to play these games for fun? really?
You are right that it is a money generating wheel, but does that mean the people who enjoy playing MMORPG's and indeed other games should stop just because you say so? I think not and also you tell ME to go outside? Yet here you are trolling at my thread
hilarious!


Take it easy, relax. I didn't say any of that, but your outburst does tell a story of the intensity these games have upon you. Good luck with that.



posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 01:45 AM
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Originally posted by DestroyDestroyDestroy
reply to post by AtlantisX99
 


A console game which costs $60 might take you 20 hours of played time to beat, while an avid MMO player could rack up a few days of played time in one month, for only $15.





15$, yeah right, you mean (here in UK) £40.00 ,plus £15.00 every month you want to play.
I don't think it's worth the money at all...

£220.00 for first year, then £180.00 a year to play a game. I'd much rather $40.00 subscripstion fee's on XBL.
edit on 31-12-2011 by Chukkles because: (no reason given)

edit on 31-12-2011 by Chukkles because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 1 2012 @ 02:38 AM
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Originally posted by JibbyJedi
No disrespect, but coming from a true Star Wars fan and former MMORPG player.... GO OUTSIDE!

You're just a giant hamster on a money generating wheel for these corporations pumping out substandard video game development. They don't care about what you or I want, it's all about the money, if it takes years for you to realize that, then I hope you learned something.

Man oh man, I would go outside if it wasn't -15 with a -25 wind chill. Summer has come and gone and now starts increased gaming season. That's how it has always worked!

I'll be 50 years old pissed off at the wife and still indulging in some online gaming come winter.



posted on Jan, 1 2012 @ 04:49 AM
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reply to post by Chukkles
 


In terms of entertainment value per dollar spent, MMO's are the cheapest choice. 220 a year compared to buying 1-2 games a month at $60 dollars each? The thing with MMO's is that you can't beat them, you just play until you get bored then you quit. Most MMO's constantly release new content every few months to keep the game fresh and to keep players from getting bored.

I can see your argument with buying something like Halo 3 or COD and just playing it on Xbox live, I'm not much of a console gamer so I haven't bothered trying that.



posted on Jan, 3 2012 @ 11:09 AM
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reply to post by AtlantisX99
 


Honestly, I don't see a need for add-ons. I played WoW for like 4 years with CTMod for UI changes (moving bars around), Gatherer and Auctioneer addons, specifically because I enjoyed mining and gathering and then reselling my tradeskill-created wares.

Once Recount & GearScore became "requirements", I lost most interest in grouping. I have never been a fan of raiding, although I have participated in many just for gear or to see new content.

Honestly, once Blizzard started adding features of mods into the game options, I was able to get rid of any incidental mods I'd picked up (scrolling combat text, etc).

I am liking SWTOR mod-free. It doesn't feel like a "job" to play. I am enjoying learning the new game mechanics and not having to rely on mods to tell me whether I'm playing "right" or not. I'm already seeing elitists (those folks who got max lvl within 24hrs, I guess) trying to discriminate... but I don't care. I'm there for entertainment, not stress.

I guess the only thing I could ask for are breakable bars, I'd like to have skill kits and med packs more easily accessible.



posted on Jan, 3 2012 @ 11:16 AM
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reply to post by DestroyDestroyDestroy
 


I totally agree. I can't see how console gaming is cheaper at all - I think this is just something console lovers throw out there because they can't see the benefits of PC gaming. $15/mo vs $40+/mo (depending on what type and number of games purchased)? No contest. Even if you only purchased 1 console game every 3 months, the costs are basically the same.

I'd say console users are more system-oriented, because they're stuck having to follow the other gamers around from game to game as the "better" games come out.

I'll admit I like console gaming to an extent, but once you beat a console game, you've seen it all. Playing live might keep my interest for a little while, but it just becomes repetitive. I guess because I only like FPS or fighting games when playing with friends? I don't know.



posted on Jan, 7 2012 @ 05:28 PM
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3+ year wow player

I used to enjoy playing the game till every one went nuts with the GS bs.

Now if i play it's just solo questing and gathering.

I was kicked from a few raids, they where asking me why my DPS was low, My response was i play to have fun and enjoy the game........ Kick,



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