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After seeing this thread in the MMO-C blue tracker (http://blue.mmo-champion.com/topic/1...formance-based), I started thinking about ways in which we could help judge a players performance with their class.
And trying to avoid the idea of gearscore, where it was simply a number on which to judge a player.
I certainly thought about role-based solutions, but instead opted for class-based solutions. I come from the school of thinking that the WoW classes are being slowly homogenised, in a lazy attempt at balancing from the WoW dev's. I'm not calling them lazy, just that they're no SC devs when it comes to balancing. But this is another discussion entirely.
After delving into bringing back class quests and potentially class factions, I instead came up with class achievements.
If anyone here has or plays Team Fortress 2, then that was my inspiration. If you haven't, let me explain.
In TF2, there are a few different classes; the usual suspects. Heavy, Medic, Spy, Sniper, Soldier, Engineer, etc. And each perform unique actions (aside from the similar ethos of 'KILL'). For example, a Soldier has a rocket launcher, a shotgun and a spade. A Pyro has a flamethrower, shotgun and axe. And so it goes on.
However there are things that each class can do, which others can't. For example, the soldier can use the RL to rocket jump; the pyro can use the alternate fire feature of the flamethrower to 'blow' or 'reflect' back rockets, arrows or other missiles (not bullets) to defend themselves and hurt others.
There are achievements for doing these sorts of things for each class, and they are unique to that class. Like, kill 50 enemies using the 'reflect' feature of the flamethrower. They're a bit more classic-style achievements.
I propose bringing something like this into WoW and the achievement system.
Some example have been outlined below...
- 'block' 100k worth of incoming damage using the 'Feint' ability in dungeon encounters.
- using the 'Vanish' ability, remove aggro from 50 creatures during dungeon encounters.
- remove aggro from 50 creatures using the 'Feign Death' ability during dungeon encounters.
- replenish 150k worth of other players' mana using your 'Innervate' ability.
- cause 100k worth of damage to creatures using your 'Spell Reflect' ability.
- after dropping below 35% mana, use your 'Mana tide totem' 5 times during dungeon encounters.
These are only a few I have thought up off the top of my head, and I'm sure there can be many more. I also really only know Rogues and Warriors in a raid/hc dungeon environment, so my other class ones might be well off the right lines.
But as you can see, they are not too difficult to achieve, especially for someone who knows what they are doing; but for others, it may help people learn better how to use their classes skills, especially utility skills.
There could obviously be some really difficult ones in there, as there always should be in achievements (hell whoever came up with the achievements to get 'Salty' should be shot), and perhaps even keep them separate from the normal achievements because of their very nature.
As I said, I don't want to go near gearscore because I loathed the idea of a single number telling everyone else just how good that person was as a player. Whilst this simplifies things a bit, it gives some freedom and shows you a player can actually think about what they are doing; i.e. the achievements come from the player actively doing something beneficial and useful in a dungeon. None of these are passive that you will just get if you're rubbish.
Currently there is a barrier on gear (the ilvl), but currently not one on skill. And the gear barrier can, and has been exploited by using PvP gear, and the AH.
What do people think of this idea? Any suggestions for further achievements are welcome.
Wow, I'm really impressed. Yes, I believe this could work very well. I never really thought about how achievements might be used i this way, but now you got me all excited.
As a hunter, I could imagine making an achievement for a certain amount of enemies frost-trapped, or some kind of kiting achievement. Interupting of casters (by wyvern sting, silencing shot, intimidate), or the number of times you free yourself with master's call. Posiibilities are manyfold
Actually this could work, but should they be visible to people who inspect you somehow so they can check you status/experience?
Bleh, thanks to crashing PC I lost a list of achievment suggestions but I'll apply some:
- Interrupt spellcasting x times with <insert spell / ability>.
- Cast "table" x times in dungeons.
- Dispel/remove debuff from friendly player x times.
- Ice block a lethal damage, so you survive it x times.
- <Insert a CC ability> x times a mob in dungeons / enemy player on battleground/arena.
Edited by Vilpo on 07/01/2011 00:30 GMT
It's a really cool idea, but one that they'd have to be really careful with.
For example, if you give rogues an achievement for dropping aggro through vanish, there are plenty of people out there who will overaggro and cause trouble for their group precisely for a chance to do it.
There are plenty of abilities that don't really cause anyone major hassle though, like the innervate example, so this is definitely something that could be done.
I'm not sure I'm behind it from the perspective of yet another way to instantly judge players, but as an achievement addict I'd sign the petition :p
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Casual raiders, hardcore fishermen - http://fightingmongooses.co.uk
90 Human Warrior
This! Same with the hunter and FD suggestion above.
Otherwise I think it's a fantastic suggestion. With some careful thought blizz may be able to teach players their useful abilities they may not have though about while levling, but which are quite good in dungeons.
I think this is the main thinking behind it. It would look to show players how, when and why utility abilities will be used; at the end of the day, utility skills can really define an okay player from a good player.
My rogue suggestion wasn't entirely serious, but just trying to highlight the kind of thinking for the achievements. As you say, it may cause over-aggro which is then counter-productive. But for example, the feint one is solid I think.
but also I believe it needs to be kept away from simply routine process players go through, such as providing a table, dispelling, casting tricks of the trade - unless they had extra criteria.
Dispel debuffs X number of times from ally players within X seconds of it being applied during dungeon boss encounters.
That'd really stop people simply spamming an ability x times to get an achievement and instead show an efficient and quick dispeller. Perhaps it'd need completion of the boss encounter as well, so people don't do encounters just to fail but get class achievements.
I love this idea! It would however have to be balanced, since some classes might complain about their achievments being harder than other classes :P
There should, however, be some which are considerably easier, or only doable, in certain specs, like there are in the real achievment system. How many healers get Wrecking Ball in heal spec? (20 killing blows without dying a single time)
But I'll try to come up with some priest ones :D
Denyin' the damage
- Use Gaurdian Spirit to save an ally from dying X times OR Use your Pain Suppression or Power Word: Barrier to absorb a total damage of X OR Use your dispersion ability to absorb X damage
- While having Spirit of Redemption active, do X amount of healing
- Use your Leap of Faith to pull X allies who are staying in "fire"
Beacon of Hope
- Use Hymn of Hope to restore X mana to your allies
*Wait for it...* More DoTs! Again!
- Have 10 DoTs active at the same time
Master of Minds
- Deal X damage with a mind controlled target
- Use your fade X times after getting aggro
- Use your Mind Soothe X times
Oh certainly the number would need to be balanced in order to prevent QQ.
Whilst I like the ideas, as said, we need to keep away simple routine achievements where people simply do X, X number of times, unless they have extra conditions.
E.g. dispel party/raid members 100 times within X seconds of a dispellable debuff being applied during a successful dungeon/raid encounter.
Makes it useful, not too easy, do-able, and will improve the player.
Had a big long response typed out here before, but then then my PC ate my homework! I've been chatting about this idea with Koosh and some of the others over at Wowhead and I really think it has merit, but also has some stumbling blocks:
- Achievements, even ones in the official Blizz interface, can be faked using the likes of UnderAchiever. Even if Blizz would decide to adopt this, its not going to be a be-all and end-all gearscore-killer. It's probably still going to be open to abuse.
- I looked into LUA programming to see if would be possible to code something along these lines as an addon. I even bought a book! I've spent all weekend reading the book and to be honest, I can't even tell you if it is possible, let alone how to do it. Unless we were to get some experienced LUA coders, then it's going to take a long, long time...
- However, even discounting the fact that some people will fake achievements, I feel that these would be popular. Everbody likes to feel like they're good at their class.
- There could be different "tiers" of achievements. Tier one are realtively simple and show that a player knows how to use the fundamental abilities of a class. Tier two would show that a player has a higher amount of skill and can use more uncommon, or multiple abilities to achieve results. Tier three would show a player as an expert in a class, or even just a particular talent tree within a class. The tiers will not be mutually exclusive - there will be no need to complete tier one to then move onto tier two, for example. In this way, hardcore players can just complete tier three and go back to raiding (or will likely just get the achievements BY raiding). More casual players and completionists can work through them more methodically.
- The achievements should have no rewards. No points, no titles, NOTHING. The only reason for collecting them would be a desire to prove your ability to play your class. Ideally in the same style as feats of strength (Can Underachiever fake FoS's??) As soon as you introduce anything else into the mix, you're going to make people want to "collect" them. Whilst I appreciate that some people will still want to collect them regardless, we want to make them as unappealing as possible outside of the actual act of obtaining them. In doing this, we ensure that people have finished them purely because someone wants to show their skill.
None of these things are going to replace bads, or gearscore, or any of those things. However, with luck, and if implemented accurately and with integrity then they should at least give a viable alternative to intelligent pug leaders looking to balance a group.
Very interesting suggestion.
I see the added value of incentivizing people to learn about the neat, yet less obvious tricks their class boasts. The achievement system being as popular as it is will ensure this hitting the spot with many players, as long as it's implemented with careful consideration.
To be redundant: You'd look for mechanics that good players use by default (because they work), but that would otherwise not be in every player's toolbox. This would require some depth to the system, but it'd be most rewarding this way.
For instance, instead of an achievement like "heal x damage using only Healing over Time spells" make something like:
"Refresh a [Renew] thrice using the [Holy word: Serenity] effect on three different party-members without letting one of the spells expire."
Just an example, don't shoot me for it if it's bad :).
Also: Since achievements are easily forged (as said) and players do like reward (I agree skill should be the only reward sought, but bear with me), you could add a title for completing all achievements of a single spec. Something like "...the Wise" or "..the Adept".
This way, players would have a tangible incentive, though nothing over the top. More importantly however, the smart raid leader looking for a balanced group could simply ask people to meet him in x location, wearing their "..the Adept" title. Not much to fake there.
Love the idea, interested in hearing what you think about my addition.
Give this one some thought Blizz.. I know you're out there :).
Sancti, I agree completely.
I really like the idea of titles. Certainly something in keeping with the class itself.
Someone suggest for Rogues:
Tier 1 - "...the Footpad"
Tier 2 - "...the Thief"
Tier 3 - "...of the Shadow"
For a Priest:
T1 - "...the Disciple"
T2 - "...the Monk"
T3 - "...the Saint"
Priest would obviously need to be fixed a bit. Someone dealing shadow damage is hardly a saint.
But when I first started this idea, I had in mind something similar to perhaps what they thought Path of the Titans would be. A way of levelling the class skill of a player and skill indication. The tier suggestion isn't a bad way of going about it. Though perhaps more tiers, but fewer more tuned achievements?
I think the high-end achievements would need to be super hard. So that it becomes entirely unfeasible for guilds to be searching for a 'Saint' Priest only.
But as said, this is an entirely extra thing on top of the concept of class achievements, which I think is a real go-er.
I'd love to hear a Blizz thought on this tbh. They alluded to some long-term plans for the LFD and it's criteria, etc. Is this something involved? Probably not, but it'd be nice to see if I've hit on something.
Keep coming with the suggestions on actual achievements for classes. I should really start to compiling suggestions for classes into a handy little document.
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