More games need to
steal adapt fellowship maneuvers from The Lord of the Rings Online. It is a great mechanic that raises the skill ceiling and rewards group play without punishing soloers.
For those who have never played LotRO, a “conjunction” or “fellowship maneuver” is a group bonus opportunity. They randomly trigger occasionally in groups, and some classes have the ability to trigger them (notably Burglars). When they happen, the target is stunned for a few seconds, and everyone in the group can pick a color. The combination of colors creates an effect, with bonuses for coordinated maneuvers (mostly poker hands, order matters). A green-blue full house gives your group a big heal and mana refill, while a long straight can wipe trash mobs, put a big DoT on the boss, give you that heal and mana refill, and/or summon NPC allies.
This is a great way to support group play. It takes nothing away from solo players, but it provides a bonus to being in a group, and the bonus scales up with the group size. Playing with a couple of friends, you can occasionally get a nice little bonus. Playing with a full, organized group, you hit big bonuses all the time and steamroll.
Consistently hitting big fellowship maneuvers is the difference between a good group and a great group in LotRO. FMs encourage exactly the right sort of great group: clear communication, identifying roles, coordinating effort, and providing flexible support when circumstances knock someone out of a planned role. Groups that make good use of the system would be great groups anyway. This rewards them for doing things right and encourages players to group more and to group well. If you don’t talk to your group, you probably cannot hit those FMs. If you find a group you like playing with consistently, you will probably be in better practice at hitting FMs.
The mechanical particulars may not lend themselves to every game, but the fundamental idea and in-game execution are excellent. Full kudos to whoever designed and implemented that system.