Problem 2: We have our new map, but now we need to accurately balance players accross all 3 wurms. Generally we feel an ideal number is 35-40 players per wurm + the outlying jobs such as condition dealers and egg reflection (5-6 players depending on what you have available at each wurm). This by far takes the longest amount of time to setup our kill attempt. Commanders have to be in constant communication with each other and the group as a whole. They have to report their playercounts and ask (usually begging) players to move between wurms to achieve a balanced playercount. This stems from the fact that individual players cannot actually see what the count of each stack actually is besides their commander telling them.
Proposed Solution: Players need to see at a glance just how many are with them on their event. Each wurm should have a circle drawn in the game world that counts players standing within it and shows this count in the event UI, the same idea as Siegerazer.
It could say:
Ok its pretty self evident there that the game is suggesting that cobalt and crimson wurms and overstacked and a few players need to move to Amber wurms circle as it is lower on the player count. The beauty is this can happen without input from the commander/organiser. The players can be self-organising and take the event into their own hands. They don’t have to be spoonfed information they need access to. This information should persist through the whole event, a continual running count of the players participating at each wurm that can be seen by players map-wide.
This could have the interesting side-effect that pug maps could genuinely have a shot at completing the event on their own backs. There should be nothing stopping PuGs from self-organising without the need for an organisational overlord who micromanages every player for 30 minutes before the event starts. Commanders are nice to have to maintain cohesion and teach the event to an extent, but the game can do alot more to provide the information players need to play efficiently.
Risks: Overcomplicated or information overload for new players. However, i’d say if the event UI shows 3 playercounts for each wurm and its confusing then the event isn’t for them anyway. Player’s shouting at each other to ‘MOVE!!!’ to balance the stacks is also a possibility but our commanders have to do this at the minute anyway in Teamspeak, so no real difference there.
Problem 3: Other time-critical information is hard to communicate without the use of fast comunication like VOIP. The fact that another wurm is in its ‘burn phase’ is critical for players on other wurms to know. But they have no idea! They have to hope and pray the commanders are doing their jobs well and are synchronising the final burns behind the scenes.
Solution: Show that other wurms are burning, mapwide so all players know. Change the healthbars to red or something.
Risks: Again, information overload. However, you can be smart about how you convey the information. A block of text that flashes up “Amber is burning!” in the middle of the screen is jarring and crude. A changing healthbar colour is subtle but enough I think.
The manifesto said the game “doesn’t make you spend hours preparing to have fun rather than just having fun”. I always thought that pertained to the hours of preparation leading up to raid content. I HATE that in mmo’s. It is a fundamental problem of organising large-scale raid-like content. But this game can do so much more to assist its players.
Tequatl could also benefit massively from UI assistance as well. Its always pretty unclear whether you have all your turrets manned at Tequatl. Show us in the UI! 4/6 turrets manned. Show how many players are attending each battery during the defence phase. If these events are supposed to be the next-level open world content then they need some next-level ingame UI. A healthbar and a timer just doesnt cut it for the amount of information that the player actually needs to do these events successfully. They are so much more complicated and they need to convey the information required to complete them.