[Suggestions] "Arcade Mode" for Living World Episodes — Guild Wars 2 Forums

[Suggestions] "Arcade Mode" for Living World Episodes

Short Version

What I would like to suggest is an option to do Living World Episodes without there being any exposition. Maybe a little checkbox in the Story Journal that would result in no slow walking, talking, NPC comments/hints, cutscenes and waiting but just the challenges that involve the player's actions.

I would also like to suggest a similar option (maybe in Hero Panel) to turn off our character's dialogue except for useful things like calling for help when trying to recover from downed state(things like entering combat, boons, combos etc. already have effective visual and audio cues without our characters announcing them).

Long Version

I always found living world episodes to be a bit tedious and challenging patience rather than player ability. I believe the main appeal of Guild Wars 2 is having own adventures, tackling various challenges with other people and getting rewards. Players are most definitely able to do that but a significant part of those things requires waiting, watching unskippable cutscenes and listening to lots of exposition first. There is a substantial number of people who like to listen to dialogue and watch cutscenes in a game but I am quite sure there is also a lot of people who just want to play the game and be involved in what is happening. I recently played through Heart of Thorns story and noticed that compared to personal story and earlier episodes there are even more cutscenes and voiced dialogue for my character giving them personality and relationships with NPCs I never thought they had which makes me feel even less involved and more like a bystander.

I do want to play through all the interesting encounters those episodes offer and I probably will at some point to unlock new areas. However I would prefer if it wasn't a chore that made me space out and stop paying attention to the environmental storytelling. There is no way for me to know how much work would be involved in adding a functionality like that but seems it would make this part of the game appealing to wider audience without diminishing story content.

The chance that this idea will be considered is probably low but I am quite interested in game design so I would like to hear some arguments for or against something like this and similar ideas.

Comments

  • Leo G.4501Leo G.4501 Member ✭✭✭✭

    I like it.

    As a fan of old skool arcade beat em ups, I'd add an arrow that pops up and points you in the right direction after you defeat all the mobs in an area. Heck, maybe even a score keeping mechanic when you play with friends.

    I'm just adding my two cents, not really high jacking your idea. Just thought it would be neat and stream lined is it felt like a pure action game for those trying to get through missions for the achievements.

  • Gorzagorz.3291Gorzagorz.3291 Member ✭✭
    edited January 11, 2019

    I would be into having a score for defeating enemies so you can compete in co op and maybe an overall timer like in adventures. That would add some replay ability for sure and I would want to play through the episodes with my other characters to see If I can do something better or differently.

  • I thought I may elaborate a bit more on how I imagine "arcade mode". The general idea is to make the story more to the point like the rest of the game. I would still have all the parts with NPCs for the sake of context and continuity but instead of just watching a conversation it could be one sentence in a dialogue box or maybe instant completion of the talking/meeting stage so you can run to the next area. The cutscenes could just happen quickly in real time and the ones that are happening somewere else or the longer cinematics could just be skippable if you don't want spoilers.

  • Unfortunately for this suggestion, the reason we don't already have cut-scenes that can be skipped/shortened is the technical limitation. Much goes on behind the (cut)scenes.
    A search would bring up the Dev statements on the topic (either in this forum, or the archived one).

    Good luck.

  • Rauderi.8706Rauderi.8706 Member ✭✭✭✭

    Anything to get past the usual tedium and give achievements a proper go. Especially Season 2.
    It's not worth having the achievements if getting to them involves 10 minutes of exposition and failing them after a stray tap of damage. It seems like there's a huge disconnect between those designing the episodes and those weaving in the achievements.

    Many alts! Handle it!

    "A condescending answer might as well not be an answer at all."
    -Eloc Freidon.5692

  • Gorzagorz.3291Gorzagorz.3291 Member ✭✭
    edited January 11, 2019

    @Inculpatus cedo.9234 said:
    Unfortunately for this suggestion, the reason we don't already have cut-scenes that can be skipped/shortened is the technical limitation. Much goes on behind the (cut)scenes.
    A search would bring up the Dev statements on the topic (either in this forum, or the archived one).

    Good luck.

    I did a search as you suggested and while I didn't find a specific dev response(links I found led to "page not found") I saw mentions of it. I roughly understand the limitations and I guess if an "arcade mode" is toggled on you may just have whatever needs to change during a cutscene happen instantly. For example if after a cutscene you would fight a boss in a different location then teleport the player and spawn a boss etc. Another idea if a cutscene absolutely needs to happen then remove the camera animation, don't take away control from the player and spawn some appropriate monsters for player to fight while it finishes(maybe if you defeat a certain minimum of monsters during a sequence like that you would get a boon power up for the rest of the instance). Somewhat similar to ending credits in Devil May Cry 3 and 4.

  • Leo G.4501Leo G.4501 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Inculpatus cedo.9234 said:
    Unfortunately for this suggestion, the reason we don't already have cut-scenes that can be skipped/shortened is the technical limitation. Much goes on behind the (cut)scenes.
    A search would bring up the Dev statements on the topic (either in this forum, or the archived one).

    Good luck.

    I'm pretty sure this suggestion would require them to basically remake all those instances as their own unique instances...but I think it's likely much easier to start with a full instance and then remove aspects of it. The portion that would be tough is the testing.

    Still, even if it is more work, it is something worthwhile. Think about it: it's only adding even greater QoL features to a game people complain is dry on content. Repurposing already made content for achievements gave players a need to replay old content but it didn't iron out the annoying QoL issues such a repurposing caused. Rebranding their living story instances with an Acrade Mode with new options (likely unlocked through that same achievement system, so after completing a set of instances in "Story Mode") seems like a brilliant proposition, one that I think deserves an actual dev statement.

  • Well, there's the 'Dev (actually President) statement' that the studio feels that working on old content isn't as studio/player-satisfactory as working on (creating) new content.
    But, you never know when a Dev might post in a thread.

    Good luck.

  • Leo G.4501Leo G.4501 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Inculpatus cedo.9234 said:
    Well, there's the 'Dev (actually President) statement' that the studio feels that working on old content isn't as studio/player-satisfactory as working on (creating) new content.
    But, you never know when a Dev might post in a thread.

    Good luck.

    I understand that, which is why I suggested creating (new) features in addition to re-doing the old content.

    Aiming for an action-game feel to the pacing is only a goal. What new features they could add could be the part you're mentioning.

    Imagine if they added a "score" to the instance that took certain criteria into account, you could then make boards for instances just like adventures with rankings like gold, silver, bronze, etc. What if you also expanded this scoring system so that you could use those "points" to purchase power-ups in those instances? Some players do complain about troubles with certain instances, imagine if an Acrade Mode gave those players the option to spend their points (lowering their score) to make those instances easier?

  • @Leo G.4501 said:

    @Inculpatus cedo.9234 said:
    Well, there's the 'Dev (actually President) statement' that the studio feels that working on old content isn't as studio/player-satisfactory as working on (creating) new content.
    But, you never know when a Dev might post in a thread.

    Good luck.

    I understand that, which is why I suggested creating (new) features in addition to re-doing the old content.

    Aiming for an action-game feel to the pacing is only a goal. What new features they could add could be the part you're mentioning.

    Imagine if they added a "score" to the instance that took certain criteria into account, you could then make boards for instances just like adventures with rankings like gold, silver, bronze, etc. What if you also expanded this scoring system so that you could use those "points" to purchase power-ups in those instances? Some players do complain about troubles with certain instances, imagine if an Acrade Mode gave those players the option to spend their points (lowering their score) to make those instances easier?

    I wasn't aware of a statement like that but I was guessing that the devs wouldn't be too keen to revisit old content to completely rework it. That's why I was trying to keep the proposed changes to the minimum that would be required to make the episodes engaging. But if it's better to pitch something more new and complex then I kinda want to start up video editing software and make a rough edit of a playthrough with a bunch of arcadey things added. I didn't play SAB in a few years but I enjoyed just playing that clunky thing repeatedly trying to get as many baubles as I can in a single run.

  • Wyrd.1432Wyrd.1432 Member ✭✭

    Amen. NPCs yacking on and on and on before and after the actual game action in stories kill the entire experience for me and keep me playing living stories again. There really needs to be a TLDR option for all the dialogue, at least after the first time. I understand there are those who love the way things are, but I'm not one of them.

  • Leo G.4501Leo G.4501 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Gorzagorz.3291 said:

    @Leo G.4501 said:

    @Inculpatus cedo.9234 said:
    Well, there's the 'Dev (actually President) statement' that the studio feels that working on old content isn't as studio/player-satisfactory as working on (creating) new content.
    But, you never know when a Dev might post in a thread.

    Good luck.

    I understand that, which is why I suggested creating (new) features in addition to re-doing the old content.

    Aiming for an action-game feel to the pacing is only a goal. What new features they could add could be the part you're mentioning.

    Imagine if they added a "score" to the instance that took certain criteria into account, you could then make boards for instances just like adventures with rankings like gold, silver, bronze, etc. What if you also expanded this scoring system so that you could use those "points" to purchase power-ups in those instances? Some players do complain about troubles with certain instances, imagine if an Acrade Mode gave those players the option to spend their points (lowering their score) to make those instances easier?

    I wasn't aware of a statement like that but I was guessing that the devs wouldn't be too keen to revisit old content to completely rework it. That's why I was trying to keep the proposed changes to the minimum that would be required to make the episodes engaging. But if it's better to pitch something more new and complex then I kinda want to start up video editing software and make a rough edit of a playthrough with a bunch of arcadey things added. I didn't play SAB in a few years but I enjoyed just playing that clunky thing repeatedly trying to get as many baubles as I can in a single run.

    I wasn't aware of the statement but I understood the mentality. It's why they stopped poking at certain zones or dungeons and focused instead on new fractals and new zones and the permanent living world chapter set-up.

    I think one healthy angle to aim for is content replayability when we're talking about the longevity of an MMO. At some point, either in the near or less-near future, GW2 is not going to be as popular and there will be less (or no) budget to make all these shiny maps and mounts and skins and living world chapters and you're going to want to lean on your backlog of old content. Why not start rolling the ball on what that polish should look like now?

  • Gorzagorz.3291Gorzagorz.3291 Member ✭✭
    edited January 15, 2019

    @Leo G.4501 said:

    @Gorzagorz.3291 said:

    @Leo G.4501 said:

    @Inculpatus cedo.9234 said:
    Well, there's the 'Dev (actually President) statement' that the studio feels that working on old content isn't as studio/player-satisfactory as working on (creating) new content.
    But, you never know when a Dev might post in a thread.

    Good luck.

    I understand that, which is why I suggested creating (new) features in addition to re-doing the old content.

    Aiming for an action-game feel to the pacing is only a goal. What new features they could add could be the part you're mentioning.

    Imagine if they added a "score" to the instance that took certain criteria into account, you could then make boards for instances just like adventures with rankings like gold, silver, bronze, etc. What if you also expanded this scoring system so that you could use those "points" to purchase power-ups in those instances? Some players do complain about troubles with certain instances, imagine if an Acrade Mode gave those players the option to spend their points (lowering their score) to make those instances easier?

    I wasn't aware of a statement like that but I was guessing that the devs wouldn't be too keen to revisit old content to completely rework it. That's why I was trying to keep the proposed changes to the minimum that would be required to make the episodes engaging. But if it's better to pitch something more new and complex then I kinda want to start up video editing software and make a rough edit of a playthrough with a bunch of arcadey things added. I didn't play SAB in a few years but I enjoyed just playing that clunky thing repeatedly trying to get as many baubles as I can in a single run.

    I wasn't aware of the statement but I understood the mentality. It's why they stopped poking at certain zones or dungeons and focused instead on new fractals and new zones and the permanent living world chapter set-up.

    I think one healthy angle to aim for is content replayability when we're talking about the longevity of an MMO. At some point, either in the near or less-near future, GW2 is not going to be as popular and there will be less (or no) budget to make all these shiny maps and mounts and skins and living world chapters and you're going to want to lean on your backlog of old content. Why not start rolling the ball on what that polish should look like now?

    With the way season 1 worked and also with talk about "living story" or "living world" I did expect that vanilla content would be getting some upgrades to make it last before there being a lot of new zones being added. Always thought it would be cool to have multiple states for vanilla maps like Queensdale etc tied to a meta event where if a zone was neglected it could lead to being partly overrun by creatures and bandits resulting in some new combat events and variations of old ones. Maybe a meta event for all Kryta that could lead to pushing all centaurs out and having more celebration type events(maybe similar or tied to the pavilion/gauntlet) and after some time period a coordinated centaur attack which if failed would make all those zones go back to default state. Also some mist/time distortions once in a while to have zones do Season 1 stuff again.

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