Is anyone out there…?

[Lineage 2] I am completely enjoying my time in Lineage2, with the exception of one thing. It is impossible to find anyone. There is absolutely no method for locating another player. In fact, there are not even topic centered chat channels. The only communication one has is spatial, private whisper, and clan.

To put this into perspective, I have about 50 hours of game play in L2 right now. I have grouped twice, and once was with my roommate. Never have I been in a group with over three players (including myself). The only way to possibly meet new people is to yell at them while they are running past you and hope they notice, and then have the kindness to actually respond.

The players who do respond are never interested in grouping. L2 is primarily intended as a PvP environment; however the lack of social interaction leaves you with a big hole.

A person I happen to have on my friends list because of a long wait for the ferry to arrive one day, recently told me that he was very lonely in L2. I cannot agree more.

In EQ2 the game would just completely bore me quite often. Then I would get in a full group of good people and would be reminded as to why I enjoyed the game so much. I could easily waste an entire Sunday playing EQ2 with a good group.

My next assumption from the perspective of a designer is that this is designed to push you toward a clan. Makes sense, and is most likely working. The only problem there is that even with the highest level clans there is a member cap of 40 players. That means if you live in the U.S. and play pretty late at night most of the time (like me), your clan is never on, therefore putting you back at the beginning.

I am not as annoyed over this lack of interaction as I am interested in its purpose. Many things exist beyond our understanding, which is why the world is such a colorful place. :)


6 thoughts on “Is anyone out there…?”

  1. I played L2 during its beta and found it to be way too grind heavy. I would sit there calculating the amount of kills till next level or next item, and then determine the rate I was killing at, and use that to come up with the amount of time I had left, and I actually found that excercise more fun than the game. I liked the idea of open PVP, and the game looked really nice, but I really didn’t enjoy my time there, what is it about the gameplay/design that you actually like?

  2. Krones, it is actually a great game, if they could fix that one thing it would be wonderful. The point I was making is that I am not sure if it is a ‘bug’. It seems such an obvious thing that the designers must have left it out on purpose.

  3. Elbows, from a design perspective I think it is wonderful in the way that it has the most realism out of any MMO I have experienced. I will be covering it more in a paper I am publishing soon (it may appear here if it’s not too long) on Realism vs. Capitalism in games.

    That is one of the points however. Technically in that time period, mass communication would not have existed, or at least there is nothing to justify it. Therefore, it is actually more realistic for you to have trouble communicating with others.

    My question is does that ultimately help or hurt a game? Which is what I discuss in my upcoming paper.

  4. I’ve considered no mass communication for MMO design, mainly cause global/shout/trade etc channels are all horrible features when used with internet anonymity and large server populations – however concessions should be made, such as LFG flags, and tools which promote the multiplayer part of it.

    Also, one thing annoyed me from the L2 beta – trying to enter a town was very slow due to all the people advertising items there – does this still happen?

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