Home > Uncategorized > The Case for Grinding?

The Case for Grinding?

September 15, 2009 Leave a comment Go to comments

It seems that quite a few people are coming to the same conclusions regarding Champion Online’s content. While high on quality, it’s noticeably low on quantity. Something my own limited experience has mirrored.  Early reports are that you’ll need to finish virtually every quest in order to reach max level.

Which would not be a problem if CO wasn’t so alt driven.  I find myself constantly wanting to crank out a new character concept or to try out new powerset combinations; but half the time I can’t bring myself to even slog my way through the tutorial invasion (started 12 times, finished it 6 times) and that’s only 5 levels. Let alone the mutated desert or zombie filled Canada. Then on to MC:

“Best help defeat those escaped prisoners…”

“Hey, the Foxbat quest…”

“Is that Burt Jackson?…”

And so on.

What was amusing content the first time through becomes cliché real quick on subsequent trips. This feels like a trend carrying over from single player games, where developers want you to experience everything in one playthrough.

grindIs this something that MOB grinding could fix?

The backlash against grinding came out during the EQ and early WoW days, at least as far as I can remember. EQ, in is infancy, was built around the concept of having you, and your group, camping a set of monsters all night for XP. Pull, Kill, Rest, Repeat. Sure there were quests but at the same time there really wasn’t; not as we think of them these days and not nearly enough. WoW pushed forward the concept of questing as we know it exists today, but even they had problems in the early days with forcing players to grind – I think it’s something most MMOs have been accused of at some time.

And there was a outcry against the grind. And rightfully so, that shit was boring. I think my head would explode if I had to go back to DoT, Root, Nuke, DoT, Root, Nuke, Meditate (the norm for my EQ Enchanter back in the day). But it’s gotten to the point where you shouldn’t even bother to defeat a creature you’re not on a quest to kill the XP is so low. You’d be wasting your time.

But is defeating MOB after MOB for seemingly no reason other than to level dull, or was it just a sign that combat in those games (at least the non-boss fights) was so lacking?

I don’t think that I would mind an area in an MMO, where you could just go and defeat MOBs for a decent amount of XP. Not everywhere and not mandatory for leveling, but available. If you’re finding your pickings slim or you just don’t want to rehash a certain set of quests.

I guess what I’m asking is; if the combat is fun enough and XP good enough, would you mind the grind coming back to MMOs?

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. Tesh
    September 16, 2009 at 1:47 pm

    I come at it from a different direction. I say it’s perfectly fine to *finish* an MMO. If the content is only fun a couple of times through, then great, I’ve had my fun and can move on. If a dev pads out the play time (let’s be honest, subscription time and thus money stream) with grindy repetition, that’s bad form in my book, and I don’t bother with the game.

    • September 16, 2009 at 9:15 pm

      Finish an MMO!? What is this blasphemy!?

  2. September 17, 2009 at 1:47 pm

    For myself, I only define something as a grind if I find it boring. Repetitive in and of itself isn’t necessarily grindy — Asheron’s Call was, basically, buff up–go out–kill stuff–come back sell phat lewt–rebuff, and so on for (back then) 126 levels. There were very few formal quests at all. And yet it was a blast. When we got bored killing stuff, we’d go hang out somewhere and chat, or we would (shocking, I know :D) log off and do something else for a bit.

    Seems to me that the predominantly quest-driven MMO mechanic is what’s causing any other activity to be described as grindy, whether it’s tedious or not. Well, that and the insane amount of faction work (I’d call *that* a definite grind) most MMOs seem to have put in these last few years. Faction grind is the new black.

  3. Plastic Rat
    September 17, 2009 at 11:52 pm

    “Seems to me that the predominantly quest-driven MMO mechanic is what’s causing any other activity to be described as grindy, whether it’s tedious or not.”


    The thing with grindy stuff was that it was also very ‘sandbox’. You chose where, when and what you wanted to grind, and with who. You hung out with friends and paved your own path.

    Grinding is very much about social interaction. Grinding alone is horrible and boring and I totally understand why people are against it lately. Modern games discourage grouping more and more, thus people grind on their own and find it horrible.

    Currently it seems anything short of having rewards delivered to your in-game mailbox is considered a grind.

    If people are constantly finding vast parts of a game boring, it might just be that it’s the wrong game for them.

  1. September 17, 2009 at 12:54 pm

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