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Why did you make the game worse?

CheryonCheryon
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As a returning player I am very confused and concerned about the state of the game. I started playing way back, back in old school maple and the last time I played was a few years ago. As much as I missed the old world I thought the Big Bag did a great job of rebalancing the game. It was streamlined, a lot faster to level, yet still felt challenging and rewarding. There were quests and theme dungeons to do at almost every level so you didn't feel bored.

What on earth happened? Why did we abandon that great balance? One could easily get to 70 in a week and move on to the 4th job from there in a reasonable bracket of time. Was it necessary to cut that journey down to a matter of hours? Now you level so quickly that you don't have the time to get involved with any theme dungeons or quests before you've out-leveled the area, and you're just teleported back and forth across the world without a chance to experience any of it. It feels utterly meaningless. If I can get to the fourth job in a matter of hours or days, what's the point of playing after that? Grinding?

This feels like a huge step back, and it's so sad to see after the great changes that BigBang brought. You have turned the game back into a meaningless grind-fest worse than it ever was in the early days.

I often take breaks from Maple, but this is the first time that I feel completely unmotivated to play on the very first day of returning. It breaks my heart. Please fix this.

Comments

  • AggraphineAggraphine
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    edited May 2019
    The game's changed. What you see as a step back, others see as cutting out the fluff. What you see as going too fast and missing all the content, others see as not having to waste their time.

    You seem fixated on the sub-100 content, on slowly meandering through everything until you get to 100 and 4th job. Then what? You say there's no point playing just to grind if you can hit 4th job in a matter of hours or days, but what would you realistically do at that point regardless of how long it took you to get there? By the sound of things you dislike grinding just for its own sake.

    I used to do all of the low-level theme dungeons on damn near every character I made. I'd go through ellinel, gold beach, riena strait; hell I would even slog through mushroom castle. And in those two-dozen trips through the same theme dungeons, I saw other people maybe 30% of the time, never more than three people in any one given place. There really isn't much to miss, other than a few hundred spell traces, a couple million mesos or so and some equips that are replaced by the time one hits 100.

    The shortest way to put it is that the game has changed. The pacing was sped up and the meta is essentially grinding as efficiently as possible.

    Party quests are dead, partying to grind is dead. Most people only care about getting where they're going quickly. You may not like it, and there's nothing wrong with that, but to say that they ought to "fix" the game is pretty much just "I don't like this, make the game how I want it" wearing Groucho Marx glasses. It's fine to dislike the direction the game has gone, and you would be far from the first to walk away from it for that reason, and no one would blame you.

    That being said, you still ought to give things a chance. Have you actually done anything in the game yet since coming back? Seen all there is to see beyond level 100? There are theme dungeons above 100 too, if you didn't already know. There's the grand athenaeum right at 100, lion king's castle at 115, fantasy theme world at 120, korean folk town at 125, golden temple at 130, crimsonheart castle at 130 as well(used more as the stepping stone into commerci and gollux), kerning tower(formerly square) at 145, stone colossus at 150, omega sector at 165 and fox valley at 185. And while you can't just daisy chain yourself from one to the next as easily as the sub-100 ones, they're still breaks from the grind.

    Once you hit 200, the arcane river opens up and I'm not even going to try to defend that miserable slog of grinding.
    Fuhreak
  • PirateIzzyPirateIzzy
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    edited May 2019
    Aggraphine wrote: »

    That being said, you still ought to give things a chance. Have you actually done anything in the game yet since coming back? Seen all there is to see beyond level 100? There are theme dungeons above 100 too, if you didn't already know. There's the grand athenaeum right at 100, lion king's castle at 115, fantasy theme world at 120, korean folk town at 125, golden temple at 130, crimsonheart castle at 130 as well(used more as the stepping stone into commerci and gollux), kerning tower(formerly square) at 145, stone colossus at 150, omega sector at 165 and fox valley at 185. And while you can't just daisy chain yourself from one to the next as easily as the sub-100 ones, they're still breaks from the grind.

    To add to this, there's Commerci at 140 (Crimsonheart Castle is no longer required for Commerci), Shaolin Temple at 145, and Savage Terminal at 175.
    Fuhreak
  • CheryonCheryon
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    edited May 2019
    Aggraphine wrote: »
    Party quests are dead, partying to grind is dead. Most people only care about getting where they're going quickly. You may not like it, and there's nothing wrong with that, but to say that they ought to "fix" the game is pretty much just "I don't like this, make the game how I want it" wearing Groucho Marx glasses. It's fine to dislike the direction the game has gone, and you would be far from the first to walk away from it for that reason, and no one would blame you.

    That being said, you still ought to give things a chance. Have you actually done anything in the game yet since coming back? Seen all there is to see beyond level 100? There are theme dungeons above 100 too, if you didn't already know. There's the grand athenaeum right at 100, lion king's castle at 115, fantasy theme world at 120, korean folk town at 125, golden temple at 130, crimsonheart castle at 130 as well(used more as the stepping stone into commerci and gollux), kerning tower(formerly square) at 145, stone colossus at 150, omega sector at 165 and fox valley at 185. And while you can't just daisy chain yourself from one to the next as easily as the sub-100 ones, they're still breaks from the grind.

    Once you hit 200, the arcane river opens up and I'm not even going to try to defend that miserable slog of grinding.

    Thank you for such a detailed and informative response. It's encouraging to hear that people are still enjoying the current iteration of the game. Obviously it's just my opinion and I don't expect everything to be changed according to that, but judging by the lack of players I assumed that a lot of people aren't happy with these changes. I admit that they're more in live with most current games and there probably isn't much room for players like me who enjoy a more traditional, slow-paced style of gaming in this day and age. I hadn't even imagined that Big Bang wasn't fast enough.

    MapleStory has always been goal-oriented to me, even back during the endless slog before Big Bang. Having the job advancement over your head felt like a worthy goal. Even when I reached the 4th job I was excited to do so on my other characters. Now I struggle with motivating myself to keep playing even for the few hours or days it would take to get up to the +100 content, because there's no sense of immersion in the game or ownership of the character that comes from struggling through the low levels. I was actually looking forward to starting again from scratch and going through the leveling process at a relaxed pace, but as the game is now it's simply isn't for me anymore. Maybe if I hadn't lost all my 100+ characters in the move from EMS I'd give the higher level content a shot.
  • Its2Sharp4UIts2Sharp4U
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    edited May 2019
    Cheryon wrote: »
    Thank you for such a detailed and informative response. It's encouraging to hear that people are still enjoying the current iteration of the game. Obviously it's just my opinion and I don't expect everything to be changed according to that, but judging by the lack of players I assumed that a lot of people aren't happy with these changes. I admit that they're more in live with most current games and there probably isn't much room for players like me who enjoy a more traditional, slow-paced style of gaming in this day and age. I hadn't even imagined that Big Bang wasn't fast enough.

    MapleStory has always been goal-oriented to me, even back during the endless slog before Big Bang. Having the job advancement over your head felt like a worthy goal. Even when I reached the 4th job I was excited to do so on my other characters. Now I struggle with motivating myself to keep playing even for the few hours or days it would take to get up to the +100 content, because there's no sense of immersion in the game or ownership of the character that comes from struggling through the low levels. I was actually looking forward to starting again from scratch and going through the leveling process at a relaxed pace, but as the game is now it's simply isn't for me anymore. Maybe if I hadn't lost all my 100+ characters in the move from EMS I'd give the higher level content a shot.

    Not everyone is up for the mindless grind to 5th job and I can completely understand where you're coming from. I've played this game since 3rd Job came out and there was a lot of slow paced gameplay where you can enjoy the content outside of the grind finding quests, hidden streets, and enjoying the overall atmosphere of each map. If there was one thing I can bring back from Pre-Big Bang is all the original maps from Victoria Island and re-introduce that into an real Old Maple Event, not the other one where it was partial splices of maps that can be warped to here and there.

    The lack of players is not just because MapleStory has moved away from it's original design, but because MMOs are on the decline. There are many newer titles that people can enjoy with near instant gratification with little effort, many others boasting matchmaking with PvP, and the occasional zombie modes. There are a few here and there that missed the traditional MapleStory, but I haven't seen a huge front for a movement to bring it back. But if there was it wouldn't be here in terms of legacy servers because of certain individuals who flooded the forums who failed to provide sufficient evidence for their claims, but decided to push forward with little to no backing that said controversial topic that is now indefinitely banned.

    There is one misconception that I can point out. The great balance was not eliminated but it was shifted towards past Level 200. The highest level that is possible as of now is level 275 and by no means is it an easy climb. But there is content there too along the way from Level 200, 210, 220, 225, 230, 235, 245, 250, and 255. There is also Maple Accomplishments with many goals that one could never possibly finish altogether. There is Legion where people are rewarded for their hard efforts the more high level characters they have. There are events to enjoy for both the dialogue, atmosphere and rewards. So much content continues to be pushed out it may be endless to explain without this comment to start becoming a great wall of text.

    I think the your vision seems to both blurred yet sharp. You can still enjoy the game at your own pace. There's no need to rush out of content into the next unless you're willing to reach whatever is next. There are several Theme Dungeons, Blockbusters and thousands of quests that can be done that Aggraphine and PirateIzzy has mentioned. People may not do party quests anymore but you can still make new friends and join a community such as a guild or Discord.

    A lot of things can happen in 15 years and the game has shifted gears with many Quality of Life updates that were needed, job class overhauls which most if not all of them benefit from, and more content that can be experienced like never before. Sure the traditional views may be blurred with all the EXP bonuses, EXP curving for faster leveling and Burning Projects but there is still room to enjoy the game. I've been through many of the quests which are things most people don't do because it may not be their end goal.

    As an old player I like to welcome you back to MapleStory, but please don't confuse the game for being more easier. The great balance of burdens has shifted to many other contents and yes it is indeed a grind. However people can still enjoy the game and I'm proof as one of those players along with many other players that still play to this day.

    Sometimes it's nice to see the overall content because games are meant to be enjoyed. If it's not fun, why bother? There's a lot of games out there with assortments of genres because one game can't cater everyone and I understand that from trying out many other online games in the dozens within the years. I decided at the end to stick with MapleStory.
    Fuhreak
  • BeefBeef
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    edited May 2019
    Tthe game shift from social grinding to solo grinding, the core of the game is still grinding, just at a faster pace due to everyone having better mobility than before. If you want to see slower pace just don't play meta. The game ain't forcing you to take the best training route after all
    Fuhreak
  • CheryonCheryon
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    edited May 2019
    Beef wrote: »
    Tthe game shift from social grinding to solo grinding, the core of the game is still grinding, just at a faster pace due to everyone having better mobility than before. If you want to see slower pace just don't play meta. The game ain't forcing you to take the best training route after all

    My point is that the increased leveling speed destroyed the balance between content and leveling that made it enjoyable. The game mechanics have changed. There's nothing I as a player can do about that.
    The great balance was not eliminated but it was shifted towards past Level 200.

    This strategy of trivializing the early content in order to focus entirely on end game seems to be popular in revamping old MMOs and it's something I completely disagree with. It's the core of my issue with the changes that have been made. But you make a lot of good points and it's good to hear that many continue to play and enjoy the game that has given me so many happy memories in the past.

    That's just my five cents on the matter as an old player who sadly won't be returning to MapleStory this time.

    Its2Sharp4U
  • OccireOccire
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    edited May 2019
    Cheryon wrote: »
    This strategy of trivializing the early content in order to focus entirely on end game seems to be popular in revamping old MMOs and it's something I completely disagree with. It's the core of my issue with the changes that have been made. But you make a lot of good points and it's good to hear that many continue to play and enjoy the game that has given me so many happy memories in the past.

    I can't speak for the other games, but Maple also incentivizes leveling multiple characters now, like one of each class, so by the 3rd or 4th out of 40+ characters, re-doing the low level story content is just a bore.
  • FuhreakFuhreak
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    edited May 2019
    Cheryon wrote: »
    This strategy of trivializing the early content in order to focus entirely on end game seems to be popular in revamping old MMOs and it's something I completely disagree with.

    I hate to tell you, but this is the only way an MMO survives.
    Powercreep is real and if you don't give new players an easy way to catch up to those who have been playing for years on end, then your MMO will die.
    If your end-game takes several years to reach, even AFTER trivializing it, then why on earth would anyone join a game where it hasn't been?
    It does kind of suck, yes. But such is the way of an MMO. It's a requirement, not a choice.
    If you want early levels to feel hard just stat your secondary stat instead of main or something.
  • BeefBeef
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    edited May 2019
    Bad reward is what keep people from not doing theme dungeon. Look at Monad/Masteria through Time/(CWKPQ rip), people do those for Best in Slot Title/Medal/rewards beside temporary event . If these theme dungeon/content gave out better reward, people would do em more. Also most content are 200+ because thats where most players are.
  • AggraphineAggraphine
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    edited May 2019
    Beef wrote: »
    Bad reward is what keep people from not doing theme dungeon. Look at Monad/Masteria through Time/(CWKPQ rip), people do those for Best in Slot Title/Medal/rewards beside temporary event . If these theme dungeon/content gave out better reward, people would do em more. Also most content are 200+ because thats where most players are.

    That's the biggest thing here. Party quest rewards, other than experience maybe, have gone wholly unchanged since they were introduced so many years ago. Outside of becoming anvil fodder* the equip item rewards simply have no place in the current state of the game.

    If they want people to play party quests more often, they need to rework the rewards to make them worthwhile to get. They were well worth it in the past because there simply were not a lot of accessory-slot items, even fewer with attractive innate stats. How many face/eye accessories were there back in the old days? How many earrings? How many of those had pre-existing stat bonuses on them?

    I don't believe that party quest items should be made to be on-par with endgame gear(superior gollux, cra/abso, etc), but perhaps adjusting them, as well as their set effect, to be an alternative to the boss accessory set could be a good direction to go.


    (*Anvils allow you to put the appearance of item <x> over that of item <y>, meaning you can have the eye accessory from zakum with the appearance of the broken glasses from the ludi maze pq but otherwise retaining all stats of the zakum accessory.)