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Old 09-04-2002, 09:26 AM   #62
ArtifeX's Avatar
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 946
Re: well...

Originally posted by NeJJa
well, first off the thing that generally sustains the life of an online shooter after the first few "ooh ahh" months is the competetion. my definition of a game being "alive" are online clans/leagues/ladders, and since JK2 is really competitively inferior (which saddens me more than anything) do to a number of things, the game just doesnt have that big of a following. so disappointing too, JK1 was like a very competitive scene, and now this crap. well, my 2 cents.
You've perfectly described why i wrote ProMod. The true life of an online FPS is determined by the ladder competitions. ProMod was created to revitalize the game in that respect by making the game more suited to it in the following ways:

1. Adding more skill-based outcomes. The original version takes little skill to block and only a little more to hit someone *cough*hit from behind bug*cough*. I think ProMod's come a long way in forcing players to concentrate and practice to get good.

2. Adding depth of play. Most people had nearly the same force power layouts for every game mode. Get absorb level 3, sight level 1, Saber Throw, Jump, blah blah blah. Most of the Force Powers were totally ignored. CTF players ignored the saber completely and just got a projectile weapons and either Absorb and Speed or Dark Rage and Speed (if they wanted to make flag runs). Beta 2 includes the first wave of force power changes that aim to make all powers useful, thereby making each player's Force loadout unique.

3. Empowering the game's most-loved feature: the lightsaber. How many people ran to their software store saying to themselves, "Wow! I'm going to get to use the Rocket Launcher in this game!" I didn't. I don't know anybody that did. I admit some play for the Force Powers alone, but I don't think those people will stick around long. They can always go play some RuneQuake, which has all the same effects and better guns, to boot. I'm constantly working with the saber to make it viewed as something more than a glowing Quake axe.

There's been a lot of resistance among some of the top players to adopting ProMod over the vanilla 1.04 version of the game. Most have said they don't want to relearn how to play. I can understand their perspective. They've spent a lot of practice time getting to the top, and they'd rather not jeopardize that by switching to a different set of skills.

What they need to understand is that people are going to continue to drop out of the game due to its lack of depth if something is not done. They'll find being at the top of their CTF ladder is far less rewarding when all of their challengers have moved on.

If some other mod comes along that's better geared towards ladder play, great. Use it instead of ProMod, but use something else! I haven't seen any other mods that deal with these issues, though. Until I do, I think that any ladder that wants to truly prolong the life of the game should switch over to ProMod, even in its beta state.

One last thought

We have enough tweak/window-dressing mods! All of the mods that are coming out that only make small changes are doing nothing to expand the community. They are only serving to confuse those new to mod-playing. I've heard tons of people say that they hate playing mods. When I ask why, they say that all the mods do is change "stupid" stuff like their saber color, or make their model a midget or a giant, or that they add the completely unnecessary grappling hook.

I think the worst thing that ever happened to the community was the release of the JediMod source code. Every 10 year old with a text editor seems to have their own brand. How many corrupted versions of JediMod do we have now? Can you look at the server listings and know exactly what to expect in each mod? If you, as a forum-goer, don't know what to expect, then how is a n00b supposed to know? Those same n00bs are going to get frustrated and leave.

Please, if you're going to release a mod, do something different. Don't just add some emotes to somebody else's source code and release it under some name starting with the letter, "J". You'll just increase the chaos, and in doing so, worsen the situation for those already contemplating an exodus from the game.

Sigh. End Rant.

Artifex *ASC*
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