Tuesday, May 31, 2011

less skill = more need of xp and rewards

If I could change one thing in Black Ops, I would attempt to better separate casual and hardcore gamers from each other. One way would be to offer them different contracts.

The current system makes all contracts available to all players. Only the most skilled players even attempt the most difficult contracts which offer the best rewards. This is silly, because more skilled players have an easier time leveling up, anyway. They also tend to be achievement-oriented gamers (challenge junkies) who would be more tolerant of a slower pace of leveling. It's the less skilled players who most appreciate and need the bonus XP and CoD Points.

So separate them.

Black Ops
already allows players to sacrifice all progression for Prestige. Offer players interested in Prestige more difficult contracts. Make it so that the hardcore's "easy" contracts are similar to the casuals' "difficult" contracts.

This would lessen the frustration of casual players by giving them contracts which are both within their ability and worth plenty of XP. More accessible contracts would provide more short-term enjoyment, and more XP would increase long-term enjoyment.

Currently, too many CoD players are frustrated because they are lobbed in with players of vastly different skill levels.


  1. I'm just frustrated by the arcadey aspect of the COD series. I don't consider someone more "skilled" than me when I empty a clip dead center into their face and they laugh then one shot me with their pinky. That's crappy networking. Hence all the lag spikes and host migrations.

    I don't mind dying (as much) when I can flat-out see that it was my fault, such as I was in sprint and didn't have time for the animation to slow then draw my gun, etc. or if I didn't see some guy to my side/behind, or if I fired wildly and the guy honestly hit me.

    But the crap I see in BLOPS is why I get so mad. Dying when the guy wasn't shooting anywhere near me (and the occasional reversal like last night where I killed a guy I didn't actually hit). And I just don't understand the "need" for lying prone in an arcade shooter. Save the "realism" *cough* like prone and lean for more "realistic" or tactical shooters.

  2. You don't have a worse kill:death ratio than others because the lag is worse for you. =P

    But you're right that there are plenty of nonsense kills in CoD. I generally don't mind the prone because the maps are small.

    The arcade design rewards quick reflexes. I think that's the main difference between players. Reflexes aren't really skill, but I bet hardcore players do tend to have quicker reactions than casual players.

  3. As a comparison FIFA tries to match skill levels when matchmaking also but this doesn't mean you get to play amongst the same skill set. It would be interesting to see what algorithms devs use to class players together.


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