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Alts: The Current Worst Thing, A Discussion On How To Better Cultivate The Cooperative Experience.

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18 hours ago, Berms said:

It's sad to say this but the answer is simple : Low population.

I'm inclined to agree, but i'd argue that people being complacent with a roundabout solution to low population, like alts, means that not enough is actually being stirred up to do anything about the low population.
I'd imagine if people didn't make alts, they'd be a lot more vocal about the various reasons as to why the population is as low as it is, or was, or might be. I'd expect there'd be a stronger effort to both gain and retain players, both from devs and players, and to resolve problems at play that might be responsible for low population.
Like, yeah, if the game had enough players this wouldn't be the case, but that doesn't address the possibility of alts working against the accumulation of more players.

 

19 hours ago, Shmeric said:

If creating an alt removes an obstacle, I will do that.

Why not bring up the obstacle itself, discuss it with others, suggest some change be made? If you perceive it as an obstacle, and the most immediate viable solution is to make a duplicate of yourself, is that not considered a problem? Especially in an online game where the design appears to be intended towards cooperation and helping each other with obstacles? Like, i get that i can't say that's the case objectively, maybe the design really isn't to cooperate, but in that case should it be?

19 hours ago, Shmeric said:

The problem is not in the alts; it's in the number of people.

Similar to the above response, would you not consider that alts may be actively hampering advancement towards greater number of people?

19 hours ago, Shmeric said:

as long as there's any kind of classing or branching in character/skill system, people will create alts.

It's worth mentioning here that i find no issue with wanting to play multiple characters. I expect this to be the case. I only perceive it as a problem when several characters exist at once doing the same things together by your input. Multiboxing/multilogging/whatever the term may be. Why not just, you know, make it all doable from one character? If you're still going to be one person doing it all.
Like, it's clear to me that there are reasons people are doing this, and people are pretty good about citing them, but not very good about stating whether or not change or adjustment should be made in relation. It seems like people are just being very deterministic and saying "Things are the way they are, and that's all there is to it".

 

19 hours ago, Chihuahua said:

tl;dr alts are cool I'v mined 1k stone In 30 min

Would you like that to be possible without alts though? Like, yeah, you're acknowledging that they have a use, this much is clear. Just not whether something should be done about those uses.
Unless you mean, "I've mined 1k stone in 30 mins with alts, and i'm actually totally alright with that and wouldn't want it any other way". But in that case, why? Why be complacent with multilogging instead of just unifying the experience to one singular character? If you are the singular person doing it all anyway, does it not make sense to make that possible through a single character?

 

On 4/18/2021 at 11:51 PM, Zuelatak said:

I thought it'd be pretty cool to have Uniques be a rare item that drops from hunting that you can then use to spawn a Unique.

Just wanted to point this out for anyone reading through:
We had an example of this for Unlimited, and it was actually really awesome. Uniques could drop treasure maps(there were other ways to get them too), if you dug up the treasure you'd get ambushed by various creatures, which did include more uniques. See Treasure Hunting by Sindusk (Original by Ulviirala)
So, I really like this idea a lot. It lines up with the idea of eggs pretty well while applying to more than just dragons.

On 4/18/2021 at 11:51 PM, Zuelatak said:

we just need to find ways to improve the New Player Experience so that people aren't just quitting in the first 2 hours. More players would bring the potential for more community and more community would probably result in less desire to have alts.

I'm inclined to agree with this, though it doesn't touch on the possibility that alts may be actively hampering the efforts made to draw in new players. I still feel that people would be much more vocal like this if not for the complacency at play. But, working on actually remedying the new player experience would definitely do a lot, yeah.

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Posted (edited)

A fresh analogy for today since my doll analogy doesn't seem to quite deliver on the thoughts of complacency:

I see a whole bunch of people in a lunchroom, with cafeteria shutters along the wall and a couple chefs behind them. I see a bunch of people sitting at tables, and occasionally getting food. It is clear that people want more food, or something else. Instead of getting up and banging on the shutters for something, they are sitting at the table and gnawing at the tables. And, although the chefs may occasionally be concerned about the people, they are opening the shutters and seeing people chewing at the tables and going "Oh! They're just eating the tables. I guess they don't want anything", and closing the shutters back.
Not only this, but people aren't actually discussing the situation with each other. Rather, new people are walking into the lunchroom, seeing other people around them chewing at the tables, and assuming that's all there is to eat and joining in doing the same.

When I say that people appear to be complacent by means of alts, I mean this. You are sitting at the table chewing away at something that was never intended to be the food here. You need to get up and bang on the shutters, discuss the chefs among'st yourselves, discuss the food. More directly, discuss what can be eaten besides the tables. Don't just settle for chewing on the tables.
Sure, you can still eat the tables if you want, but why not just get more actual food on the table instead?
More literally: Quit playing with alts and actually push for something to be done about why they are necessary. I don't know how else to deliver the message across really. I see everyone simply telling me that they are complacent instead of willing to see something done.
Only the chefs can put food on the table here. But they can't do that if you don't go banging on those shutters. More literally; the devs make actual change here, the only thing we can do is make some noise and approach them with our discussions and consensus.

Edited by Metallumere

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Although I appreciate the effort you made that massive incredible wall of text just popped the TLDR and I skimmed it.

 

Alts and I have 2 are used for these primary reasons.

  My mag priest as  I rebuild my canal and help a friend.

  With over 400 tiles collapsed and mined back out to new specifications

.  My secondary right hand man. 

IF i need ribbons made or nails or digging or mining or other then main activities I am doing he is the go to guy. 

Tonight it was great having two characters make support beams and cut the time down ALOT.

 

Some history when Xanadu came out I ended up running two alliances.  Big ones with 20+ people and  deeds.

Trying to get people together to finish a road or project or canal or anything was a ROYAL PAIN IN THE ASS.  Yes i used a bad word.

People play a game to relax and grind and build things they like not kowtow to every need driven player that has overwhelming needs.

More often then not they are doing little to learn how to fish per say they just keep asking for more free fish.

 

A years premium for all three accounts with some silver thrown in is about $300 bucks. 

Also 4 additional accounts for sermons so $32 more there.

My friend also has 6 accounts so we got together for sermon groups so I could get 100 Faith and she could get priest-ed and growing.

It works great if you ask me.  Wurm gets more money to stay around.  If people want to do community stuff they can some do some don't

Also the flexibility of  have a priest on hand to summon you back from a Rift or Summon people to it is fantastic. 

He just stands there and waits for you No other commitments.

 

At this point its much ado about something that will never change as long as it supports wurm financially and people enjoy using alts.

There is a very long list of other more pressing problems from what I can see.

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Leave my alts alone! If I want to play in my corner of Wurm without assistance from unreliable, untrustworthy, overly chatty people and do my own thing, who TF are you (OP and his sycophants) to force me to do otherwise? Just because you think the ideal Wurm experience is sitting around waiting for someone to show up when they said they were going to, only to find out they had something else come up, does not mean that I want that experience. I LOVE WURM. I love it because I can do what I want (within the rules) and don't have people like you telling me what I have to do, or how to play. Hands off my alts!

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, DaletheGood said:

If I want to play in my corner of Wurm without assistance from unreliable, untrustworthy, overly chatty people and do my own thing, who TF are you (OP and his sycophants) to force me to do otherwise?

You're misunderstanding the purpose of the discussion. If you wish to steer clear of cooperation at all, do you feel that doing more/getting more done as a single character would be something you desire?
Or, is there anything else you would like? Like, why is it that you want to have the experience spread across several characters all doing the same thing when you could be a single character doing all those things anyway? You're already the same person doing it all, why wouldn't you want that unified to a single instance of character?
And, just to be clear, my issue with alts is not people making multiple characters to play on Melody and Deliverance and Cadence, my issue is with something like having 4 characters logged in at once to mine the same tile of rock away. So, for something like that, do you not want to just be able to mine one tile of rock that effectively as one singular character without the need to multilog across alts for it?
The same applies to priests; If you're making another character to circumvent the priest restrictions so you can play normally without them, would you not want restrictions to just be lifted entirely? You're already playing as-if they don't matter or exist, why not unify that into a single-character experience? You're playing a priest and doing all the normal things you could be doing like imping. What is the divide here where making that work as a single character is a bad thing? Explain. Elaborate. Discuss.

I'm truly indifferent towards how you play, I only desire to know what it is you desire. You're not actually telling me anything here. You're providing no real input. You're just saying "How DARE you suggest something change at all that may or may not affect me", without actually explaining why you wouldn't want change of any kind.
Sure, you can do what you want, and although I cannot tell you what to do, there are still people at the top of this machine pulling all the levers and adjusting the cogs turning that will affect you whether you want it or not. I feel that as long as that is the case, that we are not actually in control of this machine but instead just getting to ride on it, then the only thing we can do is suggest change of some kind.

 

7 hours ago, puncher said:

IF i need ribbons made or nails or digging or mining or other then main activities I am doing he is the go to guy. 

Tonight it was great having two characters make support beams and cut the time down ALOT.

The above response is probably relevant to this too.
Why would you not want that productivity available to a single character if you're the singular person making that happen all the same? Why settle for having it split across multilogging? I'm not understanding this.

7 hours ago, puncher said:

Trying to get people together to finish a road or project or canal or anything was a ROYAL PAIN IN THE ASS.

You're skipping over the possibility of anything being done about that. Do you feel that there is anything at all that could be done to make bringing people together less of a royal pain in the ass? Do you feel there should be some greater incentive or mechanic at play to get people to do projects like that together? Or, anything at all? You're stating how things are, you're not stating how that could change.

7 hours ago, puncher said:

Wurm gets more money to stay around.

This is of course a valid point. But, I do still suspect that it's better to focus on the investment of playercount than player payment; one creates the other, not the other way around. In theory, aiming for a greater unique player count would do far more for the game than just having exponentially less people with exponentially less possibility for payments made. The more people you have, the more likely it is that someone is going to be really just dumping money into things. What are your thoughts on this? Do you truly feel that it is better to have 100 people making steady payments vs 1000 people possibly affecting eachother, provoking a more competitive environment, and paying more individually than each would have among only 100?
Like, we have empirical evidence of this being the case, that higher playercounts alone spawn greater payments from individuals over all. Something like CSGO skins wouldn't have been as hugely profitable otherwise. Maybe i'm wrong on that, but this is why I suspect that it's always better to aim for greater playercounts than steady player payments.
However, I see issue here in that alts are possibly being a detriment towards the expand of greater playercount, rather than encouraging it.

Like, I wouldn't be arguing for this if I didn't feel like everyone couldn't win here. We have something to gain as players, and so do staff. It's just a question on whether or not its worth being complacent like this and choosing to sit in stagnation rather than see something done. Do you have any thoughts on other ways more revenue could be generated perhaps?

Edited by Metallumere

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Posted (edited)

The people are seeing you and your view points as a threat.  When they see it as that, they do not want to interact or listen to what you have to say, only shut it down.  The best shut down is to just not reply anymore so that the topic fades away never to be seen again.

It follows along with this view point that if something has been a certain way for a long section of time then it becomes "A Part of the game"   like a game feature.  Like how people say "Wogic" when something does not actually make sense but hey ho, what can you do, its wurm. Wogic and all that. Just got to accept it and move on.  Or find some loop hole around it.  Then the loop holes become the game feature. Like alts.

 


An alt is a loop hole that tries to fill the gaps in poor game design.  People have gotten so used to it that they see it as being, "What makes wurm, wurm"  and without alts wurm will just "FALL OVER AND DIE!" because so many people prem all of those accounts.  I bet that also the real life payments for wurm accounts also drove that Alt craze as well.  Because if you can raise the skills on lots of accounts at the same time then more money can be made when you go to sell them because you will have more "Stock" 


The same for the other issues.  People want lots of unique items from slayings for example.  They want alot of stock in Rift and dragon gear so bring in the alts to increase the item count for that player.


Someone who is using multi accounts to mine resources at a fast rate can not only speed through their work but can also collect alot of resources for themselves "Only"

 

To raise certain priest skills one of the best things to do is sermons and you need so many accounts to do it, so bring in the alts to allow yourself to take full control of not only the skill gain loop hole but also the control over having the correct amount of people, AT ALL TIMES.  No waiting around for others.  No having to talk.  Just grinding and grinding to make those numbers go up.

 


I get the feeling that all of this also creates that anti social feeling.  In a multi player game.  I don't NEED to interact.  I can just focus on my own stuff.   In other MMO games you could go it alone if you wanted but it was far much more better to team up with others because you get through your goals at a much faster rate.

 

Anyway, even if people could do everything at a fast rate like how they could do before with alts, do you know what would happen?  People would moan and whine about how things need to go back to the good old days where things were hard and that meant that you actually earned something and felt pride.  Yeah sure.....but that also goes back to the days of stock piling items and treating alts and these loop holes as Gods or cheats.

You know, I might use alts now and again but this is more so when I can't be bothered with dealing with how long something is going to take.  I use them to speed things up.  If I could speed through things really fast then great!  but you know though, there has to be a balance.....  If things are too fast then it becomes boring.   I gave myself GM powers in Wurm Unlimited and could do everything at the snap of the fingers and set my skills to increase by 1 level every action I did.   It was so just like no challenge at all.

Here is another problem as well.....Because people have gotten so used to using alts and it is a game design now. A game feature.  That means it MUST NOT CHANGE.  EVER.    If you are going to change it though then it needs to give those same benefits to those players or otherwise they will ###### and moan to hell and back and more players may be lost.

This is because once people have got used to something, even if that something is bad game design, they will still want to cling on to it with all of their might. They won't even hear you.

 

 

TLDR: People cling to Alts like they are gods gift to wurm.
Alts = Wogic = Game Feature = Reject any suggestions that threaten alts = Leave topic.

Alts = More items for players, more stock, more actions performed and are a loophole for bad game design.

Alt could be changed or main characters could be changed to perform actions faster but the loyal alt crowd may still be unhappy.

 

I would like to perform actions at a faster rate.

Fixing the unique drops/system or even introducing something brand new would do wonders to clean up the mess. 

People need much more end game content.  So many players have been here for so bloody long that collecting dragon scales or whatever else, is one of the main goals to reach and focus on.

 

Could say the same for priests as well. Priest skills need changing so that you don't have to go through such a big loop hole with alts to try and increase your skill levels at a faster rate then normal.  Introduce some quests or something for priests where they have to use a certain spell on so many monsters or something to allow them to unlock a % increase to certain skill gains or just increase the skill gain for certain skills so that it does not take so long.  Or even introduce new features or options for priests to gain skills in other ways that can not be cheated with more alts. 

Edited by Zexos
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On 4/20/2021 at 9:06 AM, Metallumere said:

Would you like that to be possible without alts though? Like, yeah, you're acknowledging that they have a use, this much is clear. Just not whether something should be done about those uses.
Unless you mean, "I've mined 1k stone in 30 mins with alts, and i'm actually totally alright with that and wouldn't want it any other way". But in that case, why? Why be complacent with multilogging instead of just unifying the experience to one singular character? If you are the singular person doing it all anyway, does it not make sense to make that possible through a single character?

This was the big driver for majority of my alts. Other than priests of all breeds, doing the terraforming and mining more effectively in the same time frame.

Running 8 alts lets me work on those things very effectively.

 

If i could do the same things on one character just as effectively, would i drop the alts?

I probably wouldn't. If action timers got 4x faster or rock tile actions were halved to 25 per tile or surface mining had 100% success chance to offset the alts... i would simply do the same thing on 8 alts but faster.

 

Mass producing construction materials on an army of alts is a breeze as well. Only way i can think of which would make them obsolete is full automation (steam/mule powered lumber mill or mortar mixer or something, i'd give up my slave alts for that)

 

Having each of the priests is handy too. I don't have to look for someone who is willing to travel to collapse a tile or cast genesis for me and then wait for them to get to me from across the cluster. Just log on one of the minions, quick cast, done.

I doubt if even merging all spells in to one deity could fix that because i tunnel faster than i can strongwall, so, when priest-mining, i need 2 priests to be able to keep up after my mining toon.

 

With the population numbers on some of the servers, single person sermon groups are often the only way to go, unless someone is willing to abandon their deed and farms and animals to join a group elsewhere or host one and hope to find enough people to join.

And even then there is usually a schedule which you have to adhere to, a sermon queue so that everyone gets their chance. If you miss your slot - tuff, try again in few hours.

This could be changed so that sermon group isn't a must in order to get to 100 faith without going crazy but how it would be done, i don't have any good ideas. Increasing the gains from prayer is probably not the right way to do it.

Flipside of adjusting faith gains to facilitate single toon play is that people would travel less, at least those who do join sermons at remote places.

 

I think the reason many of us create dozens of alts isn't just that we want things done faster, part of the reason is that many of us want to be fully independent from another player's presence online.

 

On paper it does sound appealing. "Join a village, help others and they will help you, pick a skill and get better at it..."

Reality is that if i join a village and decide to be a farmer, i need a scythe, i need a rake.

Someone has to make them, someone has to improve them, maybe enchant it too. That's 2 people who can go on holidays or completely stop playing at any time right there. While market exists and there are more sellers than buyers, instead of sifting through Trade channel logs or posting my own WTB advert - Log on an alt for a couple of minutes and it's done. Without searching for the supplier, without the oh so annoying "offer" which you sometimes get instead of the price, without waiting for the order to be fulfilled.

 

Quote

instead of just unifying the experience to one singular character? If you are the singular person doing it all anyway, does it not make sense to make that possible through a single character?

Yes, most of us are a singular human being but lets face it, Wurm isn't exactly a fact paced game. If i queue some actions and then all that happens is a progress bar moving for then next few minutes, i might as well click in another window. And another one.

That isn't a bad thing though. If crafting here was like in some other games, many of us wouldn't be here (there would be others, i'm sure, but not us).

 

just my 2 pence.

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Look, Wurm is too vast and big to make one character that can do it all. There is simply not enough time to skill up all of the useful skills (however you want to define that). So, if I have 2 toons that are both digging, they can both queue up actions, or level, and I get double the amount of dirt dug in the same amount of time. Plus, my priest can do his casting, praying, meditating, or make planks or whatever. I can't run more than 3 toons at once due to a crappy computer, but I can get roughly 2.5 times as much done with my time by running toons.
Contrast that with having to communicate with other people about what needs to be done, overcoming the inherent difficulties of communicating a vision in your head with someone who might not view it the same way, or language barriers, or the myriad of other obstacles. I'd rather use my time in getting things done than trying to explain to someone what I think should be done and how. And as soon as you think you've explained it to them, they have to go, don't show back up for a couple days, forget everything you've talked about, and so the process has to start all over again.

Case in point. I hired 2 people to help with a project around the first of the year. They had advertised in classifieds, and we struck a deal. I built them shacks to use for sleep and a larder with food and some left over snowballs, gave them perms on a couple wagons, explained what I wanted, and set them to it. One only worked about an hour the first day, and over the course of 4 months has dug a total of 15 lg crates of dirt. The other, said he had a quick errand to run and would be back shortly, and I've not seen him again. Wasted probably 2 hrs or so getting them set up, hours that I would have rather used wurking. So yeah, I'll stick with my alts thank you very much, and you can go play with your one toon and rely on the unreliable masses to help you out.

I don't see why you can't just go play with Zueletak or whatever his name is, that has the NO ALTS village that I see him advertise. If you want to skill up one toon in everything, by all means, neither I nor anyone else, including the devs, is stopping you.

BUT LEAVE MY ALTS THE F ALONE!

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Posted (edited)
On 4/18/2021 at 11:26 AM, Metallumere said:

Alts are bad for Wurm.


Are you really expecting players who use alts to constructively engage when you begin your thread with that slap in the face in big, bold letters and follow it with a wall of text? 
 

Rather than putting the focus on alts as ‘bad’, which is obvious hyperbole and a strawman, you should focus on the individual things you think should be changed and why, ideally in separate suggestion threads for each. That you think these issues you have encourage alts is simply irrelevant. Discuss the issues on their own merits, not because they <grasps purse> ‘encourage alts’.

Edited by Calan
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My two cents?

 

(take a deep breath, you aren't gonna like this)

 

Just because YOU don't approve doesn't make it bad. 

 

I prem 4 toons on SFI: a main and three priests (vyn, fo and mag). Each of my priests has a specific job they do. Each CAN be played independently, and it is very common for me to have one of them on and not my main, depending on what mood I'm in.

 

What I am sick of is people constantly coming in and saying "this is too hard, make it easier" "I don't like xx, so therefore yy needs to be done". Enough. Wurm is a slow, grindy game. Priest restrictions are in place for a reason, and to make priest play easier just devalues all the work MANY of us have put into having a well rounded priest. As it is, with benediction having become so easy by removing the grueling grind to 70 prayer my priests would not be premium if they didn't offer some other value to me, because they sure don't support themselves casting, despite being high level priests.

 

(yea, I quit reading halfway through your wall of text. I get it, you hate alts, and want to take away even more from the value priests add. That's all I needed to read)

 

/end rant.

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4 hours ago, DaletheGood said:

Leave my alts alone! If I want to play in my corner of Wurm without assistance from unreliable, untrustworthy, overly chatty people and do my own thing, who TF are you (OP and his sycophants) to force me to do otherwise? Just because you think the ideal Wurm experience is sitting around waiting for someone to show up when they said they were going to, only to find out they had something else come up, does not mean that I want that experience. I LOVE WURM. I love it because I can do what I want (within the rules) and don't have people like you telling me what I have to do, or how to play. Hands off my alts!

Don't know you, but I I might have just fallen in love with you 

 

(kidding of course, but I do want to stand up and cheer!)

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I know plenty of people with plenty of alts, including myself. I don't think anyone ever feels like they're in their own little instance of the game when they're getting bombarded by 80kg projectiles sent from over 300m away. The co-operative experience is out there, if you want it.

It would be nice if there were more "coop requiring" aspects in the game on Freedom, where most folks spend most of their time, but I don't think heavily discouraging or making alts superfluous is the way to go. I want to make bricks and bows at the same time, and a second character is a great way to fulfill that desire.

You can make a village on your own, for you and your alts.. but you can also join a village if you want a more co-operative experience. Nothing is stopping anyone from doing that. I live in a village on Harmony, whenever I cross through the portal: The mayor has a nice collection of alts, and most villagers enjoy having one too, for whenever they want to put in double-time to finish that insanely long tunnel we've been planning.

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On 4/18/2021 at 1:26 PM, Metallumere said:

Alts are bad for Wurm for a myriad of reasons, but the simplest to understand is that they directly discourage cooperative play, which is a MASSIVE detriment to a strictly-online and open-world experience. As it is now with alts, people are playing as-if they are in their own little private instances of the game and doing their own thing. As such, they have no need to reach out to find assistance with some things nor provide their assistance in return. That is not the intended design, surely. While it is fine and dandy to be off somewhere doing your own thing in the world, there should always be good reason to seek or offer a helping hand in an online game.

 

Let's agree to disagree, shall we.

Alts have minimal negative effect on cooperative play.

 

Several in this thread have expressed that alts or no alts, it doesn't change our views towards social preferences. Many players would probably leave the game if they were forced to be more social.

Many players with multiple alts are very social and cooperative. Easiest example is the heavily hated unique slaying groups. Many, if not all of them, have alts and somehow they still manage to cooperate; find and kill all those dragons!

Also, I know nothing about PvP life, but I imagine that they're very cooperatively drinking beer next to catapults, while 5 alts are scouting and doing whatever other alty pvp things.

Even yours truly here is not as hermit as he may sound to be and loves the occasional group farting, with and without alts.

 

  

On 4/20/2021 at 11:06 AM, Metallumere said:

Why not just, you know, make it all doable from one character? If you're still going to be one person doing it all.

If your main agenda is to get me to play more cooperatively then how would that be of any help here?

I would have two characters as before, be double effective and require even less outside assitance. Enchant all the tunnels! \o/

 

Quote

there should always be good reason to seek or offer a helping hand in an online game

Says you! 😏

If you see world like that, then you're probably a good person. I get what you mean, but again, that's your perspective, why and how to play.

 

  

2 hours ago, Zexos said:

TLDR: People cling to Alts like they are gods gift to wurm.

I cant' see how an alt in Wurm is any different from an alt in WoW or Eve Online. Two characters always gives some kind of advantage over having just one.

/clings to his alt

/shrugs

 

Bottom (-1)  line, I do not see any relation in my friend list length and the number of characters I play.

 

Godspeed and let there be many dead windmills on your crusade!

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5 hours ago, Zexos said:

This is because once people have got used to something, even if that something is bad game design, they will still want to cling on to it with all of their might. They won't even hear you.

I suppose I didn't expect this nor was I prepared for it in the slightest. I guess this really is fruitless then.


 

5 hours ago, Locath said:

Mass producing construction materials on an army of alts is a breeze as well. Only way i can think of which would make them obsolete is full automation (steam/mule powered lumber mill or mortar mixer or something, i'd give up my slave alts for that)

Ooo. You know, automation might actually be a pretty solid solution. I like this.


 

4 hours ago, DaletheGood said:

Contrast that with having to communicate with other people about what needs to be done, overcoming the inherent difficulties of communicating a vision in your head with someone who might not view it the same way, or language barriers, or the myriad of other obstacles.

Ahh, okay. So, you conclude that it's a fundamental issue with human nature, not anything that can be resolved within the realm of game design alone. That is fair.

 

4 hours ago, Calan said:

Are you really expecting players who use alts to constructively engage when you begin your thread with that slap in the face in big, bold letters and follow it with a wall of text? 

Well yeah, that's how you provoke discussion; you shake the tables and get people polarized. I expect people to defend them and actually explain to me why it is they grip so tightly to them, because I don't understand otherwise. Maybe there's a somewhat nicer way to go about it, but a slap in the face is at least somewhat intentional here.
It's sort of like that one adage: "If you want to get correct information on the internet, tell people something wrong and everyone will jump at the chance to correct you".
It's not lost on me just what kind of posture I've assumed here.

4 hours ago, Calan said:

you should focus on the individual things you think should be changed and why

You're not the first to suggest that, but I find that difficult if not impossible when a majority of people already have the perception that no change is necessary or no problems are present. I figure it's better to first suggest that there are issues at play not being seen or addressed, than try and prop something up that does nothing to actually form a connection in peoples' minds.
Maybe i'm reading into it wrong, but it seems like what you suggest is the equivalent of suggesting that we're on a boat with holes in it, and the outer hull be reinforced or painted or expanded or engraved or whatever. And sure, maybe whoever paints the boat will notice its got holes and we're taking on water, but surely it's better to first say "Guys, I think there's a hole in the boat, but I can't tell for sure because you're all making holes in a lot of places, is this normal?"
Maybe i'm wrong though, maybe it is better to just suggest that the boat needs a new coat of paint and let people find the holes more organically.

 

4 hours ago, ChampagneDragon said:

to make priest play easier just devalues all the work MANY of us have put into having a well rounded priest.

4 hours ago, ChampagneDragon said:

yea, I quit reading halfway through your wall of text.

You probably missed the part where I said that nothing there should be considered real viable suggestions then. I'm strictly asking what you feel could or should be done, if anything. What I have posited is more or less intended to be an example of what a suggestion looks like. Not an actual viable suggestion. I think I even said that twice somewhere in there, but I do understand it's all muddy, my bad.
Still though, I genuinely don't grasp why anyone would desire the experience be split like that instead of unified. I'd swear that you're inherently devaluing the experience for yourself by playing as-if the restrictions and such aren't actually there. But, if you feel otherwise, that this is enriching the experience for you as it is, then I suppose I can't argue with that.
 

 

3 hours ago, John said:

I want to make bricks and bows at the same time

How would you feel if you could actually do that with one character then? Would you be opposed to it entirely? If so, why do you perceive handling it through two characters as being any different?

 

12 minutes ago, Shmeric said:

If your main agenda is to get me to play more cooperatively then how would that be of any help here?

I'm trying to remain impartial in the face of a majority. The intent isn't to turn people over to my side(That would never work of course), it's for me to understand why things are the way they are, and to point out that maybe things don't have to actually be that way. To spark discussion and scrutiny and examination of whether or not something is or isn't detrimental or beneficial is the aim here. So far it's been mostly a disaster with people mostly just telling me "Things are the way they are", instead of considering that maybe things don't have to be the way they are.

So, I post this in the hopes of actually coming to terms with it and attaining some better understanding on why things are the way they are.
I posted this thread under the basis that people are inherently for change, not stasis. Under the basis that this is fundamentally a cooperative experience above all else, not standalone. I've been cited as wrong in a few places now, and am now coming to terms with that.
This is also why I've chosen to poise myself as impartial; understanding that I can and will be wrong. Just not why.
You've rendered your points quite clear now though, thank you.

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Posted (edited)

To be honest, I don't see it as good game design if you feel "forced" or compelled to make multiple accounts or alts. 

 

Take Wow Classic for example. One of the reason people made alts were to have bank slots. Same for other games. This could easily be fixed by simply increasing bank space, which they later did. 

 

I remember my first alt was made 8 years ago on Epic simply for the reason to keep some valuable items safe. If Wurm had decent design and had the bank slots increased to say 30-40 pieces, that alt would have never been made. I only premmed her once and that was for sermons and that's it. 

 

Other uses of alts : Sermons . This seems to simply be game design to milk players to be honest. We could easily ditch the whole sermon mechanic in favour of something else that doesn't force players to dish out a hundred euros a month just so they can effectively level a priest. I'm against any game design that makes a player compelled to throw money in order to level something. That type of game design is never by accident. I get it. CC and Game Chest make money off of this. Is it a good practice? Not for me. 

 

Another use of alts. Path of love , enchanting grass. Really I don't see why we can't have both. Let's say you skill meditation to 70 in path of knowledge. Why can't we say....buy a token from the shop to allow us to go into path of love till we can enchant grass? 

 

Another huge use of alts : Priests. I initially understood the separation between making a crafter vs a priest. A priest comes with a lot of cool bonuses but at the penalty of not being able to do most things a normal account can. 

However 99% of wurmian's do not main a priest. You can't really do a lot of things on a priest. 

 

If the delineation between priests and normal accounts was removed everyone would be a priest. Not sure how pvp would look like then but I imagine it would turn in a spell flinging contest. Not that there's any huge difference from what we have now though. 

 

Would Wurm lose a lot of money if the game design was changed so you can do what you need on 1 account? Most likely. 

Would it improve quality of life overall ? I'd say yes in many regards. The priest vs crafter topic is a pretty big one to digest but really the rest of the use cases for alts can be "fixed" by changing Wurm's mechanics. 

 

And honest, my Wurm experience with alts has been mostly a negative one. People abused alts on pvp for years. They abused alts for valrei scenarios to get tickets to win more stuff vs the rest of us who only used 1 account.  Alts were used for spying, griefing or trolling. Or logging off alts on a sailboat for "extra speed". Alts are abused at unique hunts to dillute the reward for the rest of people. 

 

just my two cents, I don't like alts, I think they're bad game design , even If I own two of them, but "I feel I need to own" two of them because I don't have enough bank space and I need to enchant grass else my horses die. I don't like this system. 

 

TL/DR  : Alts are good for the owners financially (more income) but bad for the players overall. 

Edited by elentari
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30 minutes ago, elentari said:

Why can't we say....buy a token from the shop to allow us to go into path of love till we can enchant grass? 

Technically this is a thing. The Marks Shop provides a meditation path change, but it's gated behind eight months of premium.
But, I do feel like all meditation paths just need a rework to make them all equally as desirable/useful as path of love.

31 minutes ago, elentari said:

Not sure how pvp would look like then but I imagine it would turn in a spell flinging contest.

I seem to recall this having been the case a couple years ago. It's why spell resistance became a thing, though maybe it was always a problem and that change just took a very long time.
I also feel like, with spell resistance as it is, it probably wouldn't be too silly for everyone to be throwing spells around. If it was a little too much, favor regeneration could just be massively reduced during PVP, and crushing of gems could have a cooldown on it or maybe some sort of clumsiness debuff that makes chaining gem-crushing together have some sort of casting penalty. I can see something like that making spells in PVP a very tactical and mind-gamey kinda thing, it'd probably also encourage disengaging to get favor back which would theoretically be very risky but also beneficial for both sides of a fight since both would get the opportunity to recharge.

34 minutes ago, elentari said:

the rest of the use cases for alts can be "fixed" by changing Wurm's mechanics. 

What singular mechanic change do you think would have the biggest immediate impact in reducing need for alts?

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I feel like this thread is just entertaining somebody that got bored and wrote a TLDR just to get attention and be entertained.

 

The constant answering of a question with a question is a classic deflection technique .

 

Gathering tons of information to be used in whatever case in the future.  I think your better off talking to Gm's and Dev's as this thread won't change a thing about alts.

 

Much ado about noting as they say.

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My impression is that you haven't understood the concept, not only of Wurm, but of MMOs (and a couple of single user games too) altogether. Or have strong prejudice against alt usage because of PvP issues, once more trying to spoil and make miserable PvE for PvP self centredness.

 

Different from many other games, Wurm is a "classless" game. You do not have to choose at the beginning whether you want to be a melee fighter, often more specialized in the roles of paladin, mercenary, soldier, light and ranged combat fighter such as ranger, assassin, marksman etc., cleric (priest, druid etc.), magician (elemental, necromancer, conjurer) and so on. Most class based games offer up to ten choices which role to choose, and it cannot be changed. Instead, many offer the opportunity to play different roles on the same account (which is frequently more expensive than one or even more Wurm accounts) albeit usually not at the same time (some might allow or tolerate that as well). I only know one other classless game, Ryzom, there may be more.  R<zom, btw., was and is a game with strong roleplay where much alt usage was due to roleplay purposes.

 

Whatever the concept, you can never do everything at a time in any MMO. And nice as it is to do things together, it can always be a burden in case you depend on. RL takes precedence for every (reasonable) computer games player, and that can be job, classroom, friends ringing at the door, phone call, computer crash, network or mains failure, whatever. Everyone playing MMOs experienced abortion of cooperative activities like boss runs, raids etc. due to such causes. Routine work would be awfully delayed when always waiting for one another.

 

When on large projects, such as canals, large mines, large building, the question is not whether one can do all things an alt can. I cannot do priest things, and do not strive to. My priests are kind of roleplay in addition to their abilities. And I need my mag priest for strongwall, also he is helpful for leveling floors and ceilings. I fail to see any way to have that concentrated on my "main" character. Should it be able to strongwall, or to mine/level at double pace? That is ridiculous.

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2 minutes ago, puncher said:

The constant answering of a question with a question is a classic deflection technique .

I wouldn't be asking for further info if I didn't view a response as partially(or entirely) inconclusive on the subject. Surely you'd do the same?
By nature of us not being omniscient, we can only inquire further. I don't expect anyone to reply completely concisely or address every possible angle I could examine on the subject matter. Though it's pretty cool when that actually does happen.

 

4 minutes ago, Ekcin said:

Whatever the concept, you can never do everything at a time in any MMO.

This response is a lot more eloquent than your first one, thank you~
I suppose this means you, like some others, believe this to be an issue of human nature alone and not anything that can be resolved through game design. Which is understandable.
Thanks for mentioning another game too. It's pretty handy being made aware of something else to examine like that.

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, Metallumere said:

What singular mechanic change do you think would have the biggest immediate impact in reducing need for alts?

 

Well i'd probably say sermons to be honest. If sermons were reworked so instead of a "sermon system" we'd have something else that doesn't imply "let's open up a few clients to let them afk in order to level up someone's priest " (basically 99% afk gameplay, which I abhor ) maybe we could change it to ...

 

Random suggestion : Maybe ditch the sermon system and have priests "earn" favor points by doing other types of actions in line with their god. For mag, it could be killing mobs, for example kill 100 trolls then you get 0.5 faith. Kill 300 spiders , get 1 faith point. And so on. For fo priests, maybe they could heal a certain number of animals, prune trees, dunno, something that makes sense a priest would do , not just stay afk in a chapel all day. For vyn, dunno, something that makes sense a vyn would do.

 

If sermons would remove, a lot of alts would probably dissapear. 


Also I want to add, that when a player quits, his alts quit too. That's not just 1 account no longer subscribed. It's potentiallty 2-3 accounts. So our population data for wurm is skewed that way.

Edited by elentari
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I have sent my three priests to sermons, first was my then only priest alt, a Nahjo priest. He visited two sermon circles, one in south Xanadu, and when that dissolved, another one in west Pristine. A year later, when the player gods were abandoned, I had my Vynora and Fo priest alts, they attended a cycle in west Xanadu.

 

These sermon sessions, lasting for weeks, were very pleasant examples of inter player cooperation, starting by the hosts of the sermons, helpers from the neighbourhood bringing food, and the attending priests themselves. Up to ten different accounts cooperated there, helping one another, for several weeks.

 

I simply do not understand the hatred against alts. Nobody is forced to use them. But I cannot imagine how the functions alts fulfill at the moment, can ever be replaced by single accounts.

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On 4/19/2021 at 12:03 AM, Metallumere said:

I can't help but feel you're right, which is why I'd propose that skilling just be allowed for priests even partially. If they only exist now as mobile-situational-scenario-resolvers, then that means there's room to improve the experience. And if peoples' solution is to just play another character anyway, then nothing would actually be lost from unifying the experience, rather that there's value to be gained.

I'm inclined to agree that more restrictions isn't the solution, but rather that more can be done with restrictions than just "You can't do this ever, and that's all there is to it". I still feel that a system of penitence would work out better, or restrictions be lifted entirely, or something else entirely. There's a lot that can be done and i'm only seeking to spark discussion on what can be done. So far it seems that people are pretty good at pointing out why things are the way they are, but not actually examining how that could be effectively changed or made better, even when they cite that there exists a problem at play.

-

It seems like people are maybe just getting trapped in the mindset of "I've solved this problem for myself, and that's all there is to it", when literally everyone else is doing that too, so why not resolve it for everyone across the board?

More importantly: If we can acknowledge that things are the way they are for a reason and we share these common solutions individually, why not seek to apply solutions collectively?
Like priest restrictions, why settle for just making an alt to solve the problems at play instead of sitting down and provoking discussion and suggesting change? It is such a pothole towards progress to just settle for roundabout solutions to things people very obviously also take issue with. Just boycott it, seriously. I acknowledge that alts are a solution to problems at play, but that doesn't actually do anything to solve those issues, it just means we can be lazy about it.
Instead of making alts, try living life as a single character. If you're not happy with that, express why and what you feel should be done. Don't settle for alts, or any other sideways solution like that. Propose something be done.

 

First point, we're not really talking about alting here, we're talking about zerging (in the sense of multi-boxing to gain an advantage not possible to those who don't)

 

I've been around for quite a while, longer than most folks here. During that time I've played one (1) character with a (non-premium) storage alt who I sometimes use to cut trees that grow in my flower bed, and who used to also have to clear the tunnel down from my mountain home when it caved in and no-one could reach me easily. I don't use zergs as a rule, and not doing so puts me at a disadvantage if I want to "compete" with other players who do; in this way zergs do embody a zero sum pay to win system and could be construed in a negative light by anyone coming to the game for the first time. I don't dislike people who zerg (its the optimal strategy), but I feel that any game where zerging is the meta is poorly designed.

 

To pinpoint when massive numbers of zergs started to show up, one must look to the release of Wurm unlimited. It became very noticeable around a year after WU's release and, lets be honest, the massive population decline that brought with it.  About 2--3 players in a large alliance had a priest alt at that point (Nahjo of course), now most do.

 

However, to blame low population for the profligacy of zergs would be a grave error, for it is an open secret that priests are designed to be zerg-alts (their gameplay is so situational as to be pointless a large amount of the time). It is only through a massive amount of continual campaigning for changes that we've seen any loosening of restrictions at all (I spent years and years of making posts (as did a few others), constantly bringing it up, and pushing others to do the same before we saw ANY kind of change at all). We've gone about as far as we're likely to go without a complete overhaul to magic on wurm.

 

Why do I say this? Because every zerg-alt is a subscription, and every player who runs a lot of zergs enjoys the power that brings, so the game's "whales" are 100% against priests being de-alted. If their priests suddenly needed a high animal taming to cast charm, or decent animal husbandry to cast genesis, running a priest alt would become hard work.  Their optimal strategy would not longer function, and they'd be forced to rely upon others (which is not a situation the remaining scattering of wurmians enjoy; the social ones largely left when the population declined).

 

Finally, I must say, it is not that we "get used to things", and "find work arounds", it's just that the majority of us have lost faith in the developers as bringers of meaningful change. Especially when it comes to things that will empty their pockets in the short run, even if they benefit game health in the long run.  I've seen devs come and go, and only one really worked on priests during that time (their vision was never fully implemented or balanced, and much of that is reflected today).

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I have had multiple reactions while catching up on this topic, but here are a few of the things that came to mind:

 

We are encouraged to have alts by how the marks shop is coded and what "pays the most" in forms of marks.

Clearly more alts is better than buying silver.
 

Just because someone else thinks it is recreational to go to the park or the mall not all of us like it.

 

It is not reliable to think you can get people to chime in and work like idiots on your projects for months and months.

In fact, villagers tend to wander of and get own deeds so they can fullfill their visions.

While we love community driven events, those are more gatherings for fun than to build someones castle or something.

Even if people gladly want to help on mending a tunnel or dredgeing a canal, we tend to end up doing it fairly alone most of the time.

 

This game is not meant to be easy mode, making everything real fast would devaluate our toons and we'd be more inclined to abandon them and the game.

We have tried WU and the faster phase and the single player modes and see we came back, cause the easy mode or the alone mode is not what we want.

Not even us that prefer to play by ourselves most of the time.

 

I have found some awesome friends I can idle with for hours without speaking but I know they are there if I want to speak.

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3 hours ago, Cecci said:

This game is not meant to be easy mode, making everything real fast would devaluate our toons and we'd be more inclined to abandon them and the game.

 

Games in hard mode also need rewards scaled to their difficulty. There is nothing significantly rewarding in forcing people to stare at timers, encourage afk gameplay until X task is done. Repetition isn't difficulty. 

 

I'd rather have our toons be devaluated as long as we had ya know....maybe 5000 unique players in the game? Besides, with RMT gone, what value does your toon have anyway except to yourself? 

 

Artificially slowing down progress tends to make players reevaluate their time spent in Wurm. That tends to make people quit when they figure out there isn't much content past the first 4-6 months of playing. 

 

If something can be done to speed up the game and diversify content instead of padding it out, which leads to the creation of more alts,. then maybe Wurm would have more unique players, instead of whales as people have eloquently put. 

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