Something that we were promised early out of the gate was consistent content updates from Carbine on a near monthly basis. It is certainly an interesting idea and one that few MMOs have been able to do, let alone do well. Guild Wars 2 has been the only MMO, from my experience, to have a consistent “Living Story” that provides interesting plot continuations. While I no longer play the game, I’m sure they keep the roleplaying community entertained.
Now, with the new content Ultra-Drop “Strain,” it seems that we already have a new threat, new plot and more mysteries to solve. What does this all mean for Roleplayers, not just The Strain, but new content and world story on a monthly basis?
One of the main issues I noticed during my time in Warcraft was: when a large content patch dropped, the RP community, like the rest of the MMO community, started to flourish. People came back to the game, guilds moved RP bases around, people were working together more frequently, and WPvP games against enemy faction guilds increased. It was always fun.
But then that shiny new patch loses its shine. People are maxed out on daily quests in new zones, everyone gets bored, tired, and worn-out on content. There was only so long we could spend on the Isle of Thunder. I have seen many-a-guild fall apart during these times.
But sometimes something strange happens during the time between patches…
During these silent lulls it allows guild leaders and players to get creative with plot. People come up with their own story. They evolve from what the developers and writers have given us and turn it into an intense world of their own creation. Some of the most interesting roleplay events I have heard about or been apart of have been when everyone has everything they need from the new content and want something interesting to do. Side plots begin and some of the most insightful roleplay occurs.
With Carbine’s commitment to consistent content updates, so much so that we’re likely to see a new patch drop every month or two, world story is going to be moving very, very quickly. We’ll see the world change fast and guilds will need to keep up the pace to match their own roleplay plots with it and others that may not have the time to create their own story. Let’s go over some of the pros and cons of these consistent updates.
Most guilds that are keeping with the current story, usually those that are extensions of their own factions groups (Like the Black Hoods or ICI) are making their way toward areas with the Strain. This will become the center focus when it comes to counteract these threats. Guilds like mercenary groups, pirates, cartels, all of them will still be affected by the Strain even if they remain in other zones like Whitevale or Farscape. The Strain is a threat, a huge threat, that could destroy Nexus before we get our roots in.
This will be a consistent theme. Areas that are highlighted in patches will become central areas for RP bases. Many groups will move in the same direction to follow the action. With this comes fantastic opportunities for RP. It allows RP guilds to align their overall guild story with world story and makes new story content that feels current, relevant and new.
This prevents repetition from repeating the same content and same stories over and over again. With a changing world and changing story the entire community will feel the energy that comes with a new patch and new information about the world our characters live in.
While new world story keeps the world feeling fresh and the story moving quickly. It keeps us all on our toys. But what if your character isn’t ready to head into Blighthaven? Heck, my Medic is only level 35. I’m nowhere near ready for new max level content.
The worry with consistent and constant content updates from Carbine leaves the fear that we won’t be able to keep up. That three patches from now we’ll only just now be finishing up The Strain ultra drop.
This also hinders the stew of creativity. Sometimes out of boredom and repetition comes some very interesting and creative plots from roleplayers. It allows us time to think for ourselves and come up with side plots that have nothing to do with world story. After all, we’re not all directly affected by some of the events that happen. Unless the Strain attacks Illium and Thayd like the zombie event in Warcraft, those in faction capitals will only hear about what’s happening in other parts of the world, not experience it.
The main thing about roleplay is character interaction. We’re not all diving into the deep wells of Eldan exo labs. Some of us are sitting on our housing plots with a wrench in our hand talking to our Mechari buddy about what it was like to raid Arboria. Or hanging out in the trees of Celestion laughing at the Granok trying to climb up to the highest branch.
So! What do you think? Do you think these consistent updates will be helpful or hurtful to the roleplay community? Tell us what you think! You can tweet me @Coolkidmitch or shoot me an ask on my tumblr at Coolkidmitch.tumblr.com
Next week we’ll be talking about housing and how it is affecting Roleplaying within Wildstar. Until next time!