Blade & Soul Dojo: The Party & Individual - Blade & Soul Dojo

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The Party & Individual Since this seems to be such a hot topic... Rate Topic: -----

#1
User is offline   Kogane 

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Posted Dec 03, 2012 - 12:54 PM

I'm not sure where I read it but I remember there being notice of solo instances being more popular than party instances...which in turn caused me to think more after responding to one of the many trinity system discussion threads. Due to how Blade & Soul is designed there are no specific 'roles' for classes and as such I suppose this means all classes can be expected to stand alone just as much as work in a party.

For me this opens a lot of doors---because as some of you might be well aware I've commonly found myself defaulting to the healer class due to my social nature and desire to protect and heal things. 8D Yet...this class choice caused many doors to close to me mostly because: I'm not fond of the idea of starting another character just so I can do one thing that I wont' enjoy doing because I'm bored.

Yet...it makes me wonder.

If soloing instances is the most popular to what extent do these numbers fall? Is it simply just the common sense thing that people will do what they can alone until finally they find something that does require a party or is it that this game bestows a little too much power to the soloer? Now before any misunderstandings are made--I've nothing against soloing...as a matter of fact, unfortunately I do it quite often due to it being partially my nature just as much as it is to help others. (I'm a complex self contradicting individual. Haha) Yet---I wonder...How much is too much? The lack of the trinity system is one thing, and personally I vouch for it---because I like the added power it gives to the 'understanding mind'...but at the same-time---could it possibly defeat the purpose of an MMO?

This purpose as far as I've always thought in my own opinion was to play a game with friends, meet new people, and experience a fantasy world (Or any kind of world) together and conquer the trials that follow together.

I suppose now you see my conflicted feelings here. ( and also why I felt it necessary to make a separate thread about this)

While I realize there are instances that will require you have a party, things you can do that will require a guild----I wonder how intensive it is. Is it possible to hop on BnS and never party EVER and yet still become this self-sufficient one-man army without half the difficulty you'd normally experience? Even if not---how do you feel about that kind of thing?

Perhaps it's merely my assumptions as far as what an MMO is to me. Maybe it's more---maybe it's less. That's your opinion vs mine---but I'd like to see what everyone else's thoughts on this as well.

MMOs in general seem to be taking on this trend.

How bad can it be? How good can it be?

What do you imagine this will do for BnS as a whole in the distant future should it survive?

I wonder just how much it'll change the common train of thought I see in games.
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User is offline   Zahad 

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Posted Dec 03, 2012 - 1:17 PM

Haha I don't know why, but while reading this post, it reminded me of Sword art online. It really is up to you I guess. Wouldn't the whole purpose of the party system be to experience less difficulty in dungeons and level up faster? If you're okay with spending chunk of time killing a boss, then why not?

This post has been edited by Zahad: Dec 03, 2012 - 1:23 PM

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#3
User is offline   Kogane 

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Posted Dec 03, 2012 - 1:21 PM

View PostZahad, on Dec 03, 2012 - 1:17 PM, said:

Haha I don't know why, but while reading this post, it reminded me of Sword art online.


Lol Well that's an easy one: Kirito! Soloist Extraordinaire ~.

Edit: Well sure. You can do that---but there's also the experience of taking on a boss with a team on it's own. Ever got on skype with a bunch of friends and took on a really difficult boss?

Actually managing it and having teamwork be the source leaves such a wonderful sense of accomplishment for the whole group I find. It's sort of one of the defining things about MMOs for me.

While yes it does make things easier---and yes you can be fine with a snail's pace kill (Heck I don't mind at all myself.) I don't feel one can gain that kind of experience any other way.

This post has been edited by Kogane: Dec 03, 2012 - 1:51 PM

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User is offline   Di'el 

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Posted Dec 03, 2012 - 1:57 PM

I've played a bit in the Korean servers so here's what I think.

Soloing is only for leveling.

Partying is almost a must in this game. It's the only way to get decent gear with the exception of Tower of Mushin. I don't know where you've heard solo instances being more popular than party instances because in fact there are not that many solo instances at all. In end game the only solo instance I can think of is Tower of Mushin. You can solo your way up through the story to lv45 but beyond that most of it is partying. Tower of Mushin is only one of the ways to get geared up for Bloody Shark Harbor and the Labyrinth in the upcoming patch. Even while leveling there are tons of instances that cannot be soloed unless you come back later or you are skilled enough to memorize all patterns and time blocks perfectly.

Also just because the trinity system isn't there doesn't mean there aren't rolls each member has to play. It is makes gameplay more open, that's for sure but each class has their own unique set of skills that brings some utility to the team. For example destroyers have their iconic grab move that grabs a cc'ed target and make them open for an all out attack. Assassins have sets of dots and bleed. Blademasters have skills that raise aggro and make the best tanks. Forcemasters are the only true ranged class and can kite enemies effectively with top dps and a few support skills.

Blade and Soul is all about teamwork at end game.
Parties are limited to 4 members (if one member dies in a boss fight you lose a lot of dps and probably hit the rage/wipe timer).
Since there is no healer everybody has a responsibility to stay alive.
Bosses in this game require different strategies and coordination with the rest of the team is a must.
Some bosses can only be cc'ed when two consecutive cc's are pulled at the right time. This is very important especially when you have to cancel a boss move that can wipe out the team.
There is an in-game voice chat system to make coordination easier.

Since Blade and Soul more of a fast action passed action game, rather than a traditional point and click game, an individual's level of skill and how well they can control their character is really important. More important than your current gear.
When finding a party (at least in the Korean servers) people would check if you've done the raid before before looking at your gear and how many times you've done it.
This is to ensure the other players that you know what to do when fighting bosses. And they will go over the strategies again anyway just to make sure.
But since it is harder to trust strangers, many people like to friend each other or join guilds so that they can just party with the same people again later. It makes things much smoother and faster since everybody knows what they are doing and are aware of each person's level of skill.

BnS doesn't force you to party much when leveling. (Farming gear at lv20 and 36 in the 4 man heroic instances do make life easier though and more fun) But when you do reach end game, it is like the only way to continue playing. Perhaps more solo content is needed (which is one of the reasons why they included Tower of Mushin recently.)

I believe partying makes this game really fun. That feeling you get when you use teamwork to overcome a really hard challenge is immensely satisfying. I think the whole point of MMORPGs is to play with other people. Otherwise why would they make it online?

Hope this helps :D
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User is offline   Jayrune 

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Posted Dec 03, 2012 - 2:20 PM

I think that the move away from the trinity system to where any particular class could theoretically down a simple boss solo is going to eventually cause instance design to change.

The popularity of solo instances over group instances is a little unfair in my opinion, solo instances are going to have an advantage due to the fact that you do not need to coordinate with a group of people just to get started, so the entrance barrier is lower. Plus if you got the time, what's to stop you from doing one and then the other?

Plus, of course, if you factor in pugging, the advantage of a solo instance becomes a bit more apparent. Especially if the gear output is comparable to a group instance (comparable in power and speed of acquisition). Personally i think that a group instance should be more lucrative than a solo instance, and i'm betting that's the case with B&S.

The other aspect though, is how boss encounters in a group instance work. If the boss is essentially tank and spank, you could conceivably solo it by being a flawless tank. It would just take a long time. Now if the boss encounter has multi-person mechanics, now that's a different story. Although that opens the question of what would be a good multi-person design, requiring 4 people to stand on 4 different floor plates periodically to not die seems a tad lazy, but then again tank and spank can be similarly lazy.

What i really want to see is boss encounters worth doing for the sake of the encounter (at least once) that don't seem like cookie cutters.

This post has been edited by Jayrune: Dec 03, 2012 - 2:22 PM

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User is offline   Ghastly 

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Posted Dec 03, 2012 - 5:26 PM

Di'el described it perfectly. For dungeon and instances partying is the only real smart way to go. You can quest and level solo but the better you are with a party the more you'll be able to accomplish in B&S instead of getting stuck in one place for a day :laugh:

In beta I realized how alone you can feel if you don't party but how fun interesting things get when you do party.
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