Thursday, September 20, 2007

Henchmen

My recently returned paladin friend respec'ed to protection, and has loved every minute of it. "I can actually solo quests again", he says. Protection Paladins using damage to keep agro makes sense that he can solo better than a Holy Paladin. But what about some of the other classes that are "forced" to take a specific role? What does the Holy Priest do to farm primals? What does the Protection Warrior do to the same?

The sad truth, it seems, is that most people roll an alt. So, you'll have your warrior for raiding, but your hunter for supplying your warrior with money. Hardly seems fair that a "pure" class has a huge advantage in this solo area. Oh, sure... the other class/spec will be able to kill the mobs, eventually. It just doesn't seem "fair".

So, I started thinking about other games I've played and how they've done things differently. How they've leveled the playing field, if you will. My first thought was that of Neverwinter Nights. I know, I know... it's not an MMO, but still. You got to hire a henchman that could do what you couldn't. If you were a barbarian (I think that's what they called it), you could hire a healer or mage-type to heal you or blast your enemies away, but you could only hire one.

In Guild Wars, the same type of thing was true. Depending on which area you were going in, you could hire one or more people (NPC's) to go help you out. Sure, they NPC's were way weaker than an actual player. Part of that was in design, I'm sure. It gave an incentive to group with another real player or two. And there's many, many more games that have somebody to help you out like this; although again, I'm well aware that they aren't MMO's.

Is World of Warcraft going to implement something like this? Extremely unlikely. The way that quests and mobs are tuned, it would completely unbalance the game. They've made the game much more solo friendly, which, I'm sure, was one of the initial draws of so many people. Where as other games forced people to group past a certain point, I think Blizzard has made the point that that's just not fun to the masses.

Never having had a high level non-DPS toon myself, I'm really not sure what one would do. I guess if you have friends to come do damage for you, it'd make everything better. But... What do you do?

5 comments:

Lichas said...

I kind of liked how FFXI Online handled that situation. They allowed a toon have a main 'Job' and eventually a 'Subjob'. They also let you switch between 'Jobs' so I could start out as a warrior, get him up to lvl 15, then switch my job to a level 1 white mage (healer)and level that. Eventually I could Main Job my Warrior and Subjob my White Mage essentially enabling me to heal myself. It would be nice if WoW did the same thing with talent trees, allowing you to save off a spec and switch between them, that way you would only need to collect armor sets and allow everyone to PvE, Raid, and PvP with one toon of a class.

Nibuca said...

I'm spec'd as a holy Paladin but I wiggled enough points into my spec to get some use out of +spell stuff in solo. I'm not one-shotting stuff. but I do peak out at 285 dps.

It does make gathering mats harder.. but I'm resigned to that.

Minion would be nice..

DadGuy said...

From what I hear, they are trying to come up with a way to get rid of +healing and just have +damage take over in that aspect. So casters would have more benefit that way. (The healing classes tend to be the problem) They have recently boosted the protection warrior's damage output, which I hear takes the edge off.

I've decided that questing is the way to go. I can go do a couple of quests (daily quests or otherwise) and then purchase from the AH about the same amount as what I could get from farming. So it's a trade-off, depending on what you are doing and what you enjoy nowadays.

Unfortunately there's no easy answer to this problem or they'd have done it.

Notlok said...

Having leveled my priest as holy from 60 to 70, I have felt the pain talked about. The decision that I had to make is what aspect of the game did I enjoy more. Questing or instances.
Sure I could quest as holy... but anyone that has been there... do you really want too :)

Galoheart said...

As a Protection Paladin, all i can say is i farm just fine and i grind just fine also. Maybe its a bit perspective maybe. But i'm so used to my paladin i can farm and grind the dirt no problem.

All i do is have fun when i'm doing it and often i'm experimenting doing different things when i'm grinding to see how daring or what i can maybe pull off grinding. Perspective is different to each person i guess. Some find it hard to grind another do it just fine. But then again i leveled entirely as a Protection Paladin also.