Daily Archives: December 13, 2006

Wrestling MMO

Why isn’t there one?  Seriously.  Is somebody working on one?  I couldn’t find one.

This seems like a natural to me.  Smackdown City, or whatever you would choose to name a wrestling MMO would seem to spring naturally from work that has already been done on some non-space, non-high fantasy MMOs. 

A wrestling MMO would not be equipment based, so having great character creation/customization tools is a requirement.  And what company has a game with the best such tool? 

Cryptic Studios, makers of City of Heroes/City of Villains.

When I played the City of Heroes trial, I spent most of my time in the character editor because it is about as feature filled as you would ever desire.  And, since wrestling costumes and personas are about as many and varied as super hero costumes and personas, Cryptic looks pretty close to having that base covered.

So what do you do in a wrestling MMO? 

You certainly have to have the “becoming a wrestler” story-line.  Maybe you start off at the county fair or other small town venue as somebody who was on the wrestling team in high school and knows some basic moves and wants to break into the big time.  You get into matches, which would presumable also be the tutorial, until you win the notice of some wrestling organization, school, agent, or whatever. 

Of course, there is the bad guy version of this, where you’re in a gang or just live in a bad part of town and you want to get into wrestling.  You have your own route.

This leads into missions, some in the ring, some outside.  Your stature grows, you gain new moves, you have more fans, each of which can drive quest-like story lines.  Those who choose the “good” path get more fancy moves, while those on the “evil” path learn how to do things like distract the ref and then whack their opponent with a metal folding chair.

Of course, the PvP system is a natural.  You can have different classes, different types of matches, even competing associations.

The day to day life of a wrestler has to be ironed out.  You cannot be in the ring all the time.  What else do you do, how do you interact with other players, how big is the world?  There would have to be other quest paths to follow, perhaps things that open up new skills, venues, or fan bases. 

You can take this and go completely camp with it and build up rivalries and all sorts of out of the ring drama.  You can have “good” faction wrestlers switch to the “evil” faction.  You can have rivalries which make for matches that earn more for the players.

This is something where the oft-mentioned 13 year old player would actually add to the game with his trash talking and fierce competitive attitude.  And wouldn’t it feel good taking him down?  Of course, when it looks like you’re going to win he’ll probably smack you with that metal folding chair.

I could not see a wrestling MMO ever being huge (then again, I could never see professional wrestling being huge), but I bet it could pull in a fan base at least in the City of Heroes range. 

Cryptic?  Are you listening? Get on the phone with Vince McMahon.

20-20 Fae and Friends

I hit 20 with Blintz last weekend.  He was, at that point, a level 20 swashbuckler and a level 20 armorer. 

It was a bit of a let down because, in the old days, hitting level 20 had some significance.  Now it is just the gateway to another tier.  And it also means I have to get back to working on my armoring trade skill because I need a new tier of equipment.  If my first trips into Butcherblock are any indication, I really need the upgrade.  Things my level in there were killing me dead very quickly.

As luck would have it, I had an opportunity to use my skills.  Two friends from the WoW instance night group, Skronk and Ula, picked up Echoes of Faydwer and made characters in Greater Faydark.  There is probably a whole article to be written on how to play EQ2 if you’ve come from WoW, since how to navigate the differences can be pretty obscure.

As they were approaching 10, I went about putting together tier 2 (level 10-19) armor sets for them.  I had the materials and I needed the experience so I could start making my own level 20 set of armor.

It is a good thing I had the materials from harvesting.  The market on Crushbone definitely reflects a population bulge around tier 2 and tier 3, as all of the raws in that zone seem to be considerably over priced.  I have to get out and harvest some more with Blintz.  That will probably mean another trip back to the Thundering Steppes, as the harvest nodes there are more plentiful than what I have seen in my brief foray’s into Butcherblock.

Making two armor sets, a couple of weapons, and then the first few tier 3 items for myself pushed me to level 23 armorer.  At level 25 I think I will be set on all of the chain items for my swashbuckler.  I will post a picture of the tier 3 fairy chain armor look.

This did mean going back and making some items I had made before, so my plan to level up my armorer via the most efficient route, making the minimum number of items, has fallen by the wayside.  But that is fine, I was bound to do it at some time. 

I am also glad that either Eqsig.com or SOE cleared up the problem that was causing Blitz’s sig file to show some really extreme stats.  I took a screen shot of it the other day:

uberblintz.png

1,529 quests completed, 59,224 NPC kills, and still only level 18!  What Korean port from Hell am I playing? 

If you look at the characters page, you’ll see it is reporting more accurate figures now.

I might also end up making a couple more armor sets for friends in the future.  In one of those small world events, I ran into one of my old coworkers with whom I played EverQuest back in 1999.  He was literally standing on the street corner as I came out of the building into which our company recently moved.  It turns out the company for which he works now is just up the street.

So there, on the corner, with my boss standing with us, we spent 45 seconds coming up to on each others lives and then launched into who is playing what game for the next five minutes.  It turns out that he and another old coworker are still playing EverQuest.  I, of course, mentioned EverQuest II.  After a few minutes on each game, my boss began to fidget, being more of a consol player, so we moved on. 

It would be great if they came over to EQ2.  They are fun to play with.  But even if they don’t, there is somebody working up the street I can have lunch with and talk about games with now.  Whee!