Brainstorming solutions for PvP turnout

It’s better to be part of the solution instead of part of the problem. So here are my ideas on how to increase PvP turnout in games.

-Make introductory PvP low-impact, but low-risk. While increasing risk may increase satisfaction too much risk too early will drive off people.

-Give rewards for failing, if only small rewards for psychological effect.

-Include many more non-combat PvP roles: medic, respawn point maker, scout. Starsiege Tribes let players do so, letting them make shielded respawns closer to enemy bases, let them fix turret defense guns and vehicles, and more. This way if you suck at direct PvP you can be useful.

-balance PvP to avoid “one-shot syndrome.” This is where power levels and force multipliers are so great that it’s possible to be dead in one hit. Even the noobiest noob should be able to take hits before going down.

-Always make it opt-in. The player should know he is going into a fire zone.

-Use PvE to guide players to PvP, and reinforce trying at it. Don’t make both two separate games. This may mean drastically reworking mob AI to use player tactics, even if just one at a time. One mob tries to kite you, the other attacks in swarms, etc.

-PvP tutorials.

What ideas do you have?


2 Responses to Brainstorming solutions for PvP turnout

  1. Tesh says:

    You about covered all I’d suggest, save for one biggie that I’ll address directly (taking the “balance” notion you suggest a bit more specifically): Make the power differential very small and gear almost irrelevant, at least for PvP.

    The best PvP is based on player skill, not avatar grinding, gear or ganking. If that means normalizing it for arenas and leaving the PvE curves alone, so be it… though I might also go further and make the entire game’s power differential very small. Gear would be cosmetic, nothing more.

    I find it telling that Guild Wars was built to have solid PvP, and they indeed have a small power band and easily maxed gear stats. Oh, and instant PvP characters, no level grinding necessary. They did some things very differently from most MMOs, and I think that many of their game design decisions were based on making PvP good. Would that more games thought similarly, especially those that crow about PvP.

  2. Dblade says:

    That would bring up an interesting point, of whether or not we need progression at all in PvP games, and they should just go sub and f2p less and be more like a fantasy quake. Interesting idea.

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