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Alternative end-game content: PvP and Guilds

Maplestory 2 Rep: 5,535
Posts: 299
edited 9:29AM June 8, 2018 in Suggestions and Feedback
This thread is about Maplestory 2's core issue with relying too much on it's dungeon progression system, instead of the massive amount of other content in the game that kind of just gets pushed to the side. My thread yesterday was about how they could restructure crafting materials and upgrades as well as add pathways between skills to make other stuff besides dungeons worth doing. This thread today is going to be about how I think they should expand the scope of end-game content to include things that aren't just PvE grinding. I don't have a problem with people doing PvE, never been a fan of raid progressions myself, so I'm not even going to touch on dungeons at all in this thread. Your giant angry loot pinatas are safe, for now.

PvP progression and balance

So as it stands now, in both live versions of Maplestory 2 that currently exist, PvP is very much a neglected side mode you can only really participate in after maxing out in PvE in one way or another. In my opinion, this is a pretty huge problem. The people that like PvE and the people that PvP are generally two different crowds. Forcing PvPers to grind through PvE content to do what they want is, at it's core, a really terrible idea. So the first idea is to make PvP more accessible, but without cutting into the PvE crowd by disrupting their progression.

To do this, I think making gear irrelevant and scaling all of the stats to the activity being performed is the best idea. 10v10s might call for different balance to 1v1 Arenas or Shadow Lands PKing. This will kill build variety in a way, but if everyone is on a level playing field, this allows you to actually balance the classes based on their raw performance in PvP. I know that skills can be changed between PvP and PvE, a few skills already have tooltips to reflect this, so keeping PvP and PvE balance separate is already possible. This is a tentative first step in the right direction.

Step two would be to have a cap on the limit of SP/AP you can use in PvP and to give that to people regardless of their in-game level, through a separate tab or toggle for PvP skills. Bonus SP is fine in PvE because balance doesn't really matter when you're whacking a loot pinata. For PvP having more control over what skills people can comfortably grab is an important part of being able to balance the classes. If everyone has the same amount of resources, it's easier to find the outliers in terms of balancing and bring them in-line instead of fighting against that raid progression/gear crystal/overabundance of SP.

Step three would then be to not actually make gear completely irrelevant. The attributes/potentials on gear should be enabled for PvP. Part of the progression of PvP should be having specific attributes/potentials on your gear, to complement your build or counter other builds, etc. These items wouldn't have to be upgraded or anything for you to play in PvP, but with systems in place to transfer and upgrade the attributes/potentials on your gear already I think people having hybrid PvE/PvP gear wouldn't be too uncommon as opposed to pure PvP and pure PvE sets. I think having outright PvP stats would be too strong in conjunction with a properly thought out system for scaling and balancing, since you'd have to do everything to account for them, but the regular ones and set-items are cool and should stay.

The materials need to transfer or upgrade the attributes/potentials on your gear could be given as PvP rewards, as well as having nice PvP sets with basic but decently powerful attributes already that might be better for PvP than PvE. They wouldn't be upgraded, so it wouldn't interefere with the progression of PvE too much, but the upside is it gives PvP players a pathway into PvE, if they want to take it.

PvP Activities and Modes

With everything above taken into account, it's time to talk about the actual things that can be done about the current activities of PvP, at least in GMS where you have really only got a few ways to do things.

I think it's a mistake to not have a queue for the 10v10 Battlegrounds. Team-based objective PvP is always a nice option to have for people to jump into with friends and just have some fun and just in general. All of the biggest PvP games have the option to do it, the maps are already in the game just as half hourly mini-games, just make them queueable instead.
The mini-game PvP options could be replaced by more fun modes, stuff like Vs Saxton Hale where it's one big guy Vs all the other players or Humans vs Zombies where two teams, one of humans and one of zombies, face off to win. The humans win if they survive until the end of the round, the zombies win if they turn all of the humans. Something like URF where ability cooldowns are turned off and people just go crazy spamming stuff in Arenas. Silly, fast modes where even though its still PvP and you're fighting other players, it's not really traditional or hyper competitive. It feels like a mini-game.

The Shadowlands I think should be merged into single channel zones. The safe spots are kinda pointless because you can just swap channels and never meet anyone. The rewards here need to be better and I think the incentive is to put world bosses that have great drops in there, to turn them into the PvPvE zone they're meant to be. It would be great to have zones like that for Guilds and organized groups to jump into and just battle it out for drops while fighting tough monsters. There should also be deep shadowlands where there are no alliances or guilds and you go full rogue, with even greater rewards. No names, full friendly fire and big rewards. The safe zones in the different maps could be banks for the Shadowlands specific drops you get, kind of like how the Dark Zone works in the Division. So even if your guild secures that boss kill you've gotta fight your way back into the safe zone to keep it. Deeper areas being further away from safe zones and being even riskier. Of course the rewards would have to be worth it but I think that would be some fun 'high stakes' PvP without costing people stuff they already own or anything.

Speaking of Guilds, a Guild vs Guild battle system would be very cool. PvP guilds could initiate wars on other guilds, which would flag each Guild's Members to be able to PK each other. Each kill granting a point for your guild and when the time is up whoever has the most points wins. Or if you're getting beat too bad you could surrender to the other guild early. I always found systems like that fun, since some game areas are just great spots to PvP in. Not sure what rewards you could offer for this either, I didn't really think about the rewards of PvP too much. But I think Guild specific perks would be nice. Maybe having certain amounts of wins could unlock buffs for your guild. Leaderboard rankings for wins maybe as well.

Arenas are fine, as long as the way gear and stuff works is changed. A team arena would be cool and I believe it's already in the game overseas, so adding it shouldn't be much of a problem, but I think it would be nice for people that don't like 1v1s but still want a bit more of a traditional PvP experience over BGs.

The Battle Royale mode seems cool, I know everything has a BR mode these days and it's getting kind of tired out, but at the same time, it's nice to have more options. I believe it's meant to be a limited time mode in Korea but even as a limited time mode it would be nice to get that occasionally for events and such.

Guilds and collaborative content

With Guilds as they are now, there isn't really a huge amount of functionality. There's no big reasons to join a Guild aside from just being in one and there's also not a lot of content you can do as a group with a guild aside from 10-man raids. PvP helps this a bit, but I think adding things for guilds to collaborate on would be great. Adding some functionality to the Guild Hall, so that people can portal to it from the menu bar as well as letting people collaboratively build from the Guild Coffers would be a nice start. Making the four and five block sized housing plots guild hall plots would be a good gold sink for larger guilds too.

Having there be Guild Specific decorations only guilds can have, that could give buffs or other perks would be nice too. Perhaps a Guild Research station, where people could add their crafting materials to research blueprints for items to craft, kind of like Warframe. Or the scrapped player-made Dungeons becoming Guild Treasuries which you would have to build and protect from rival guilds, as a competitive PvE kind of thing. Maybe guild specific trophies people could work together on for guild-wide rewards. There's a lot of things that could be done here that kind of aren't right now, which is a bit of a missed opportunity. Maplestory 2 is being billed as a social game and there's not really much reason to be social.

I was going to talk about this more, but I feel like a lot of where future content for guilds could go depends a lot on where the GMS2 team is planning to take it or if they're planning to take it anywhere at all.

Anyway that was the ideas. I feel like implementing changes like these to help take that burden away from the raid progression stuff, will really help cementing a playerbase in the game. It is a big issue and giving people more things to do and more reasons to do them is generally a better idea than just funneling everyone into doing raids. If combined with the ideas from my other thread, what I thought were some major issues (at least in the CBT) will go away or be a lot less pronounced. Though it'd be a lot of work.

Thanks for not reading this, all of the people that want a tl;dr. I wrote this especially for you.
For everyone else, you're alright.


  • DanDKDanDK
    Maplestory 2 Rep: 33,475
    Posts: 2,569
    Excellent suggestions for one of the more overlooked areas of the game (PvP). Again, I feel you are mostly avoiding the largest issues of the current game, but I think your detailed thoughts are extremely useful nonetheless and I hope we'll see some of them carried out sooner or later. When speaking about guild collaborative content, I think it'd be obvious to bring back something reminiscent of the MS1 Guild Quest which provides a lot of challenges currently missing in the game (Jump Quests, puzzles/logical thinking, and diverse class contribution). As far as I know, current 'Guild Quests' in MS2 is only about killing (like with ... literally everything else in the game).
    So yeah, I definitely support your ideas in making PvP more enticing. Really sad to hear that you won't be speaking out for PvE since you have little interest in it though. But I guess I can understand you, since I'm not that much into PvP myself. If we all work hard together we might be able to get a few decent ideas through to Nexon's thick skulls to improve the game as a whole a little bit.
  • JetUppercutJetUppercut
    Maplestory 2 Rep: 5,535
    Posts: 299
    PvE to me, isn't a major problem in the game. It's kind of the only content the game has and it's obviously managed to keep it afloat in Korea and China, so it can't be that terrible. I haven't played anything that wasn't inside the CBT as well, which there wasn't really all that much of, so my opinion on it wouldn't really be very informed anyway. I'm mostly just going off of what I've seen and played and I'm planning on updating or making threads as I get to see more of the end-game content. I think it's better that people who know what they're talking about do all the PvE side suggestions until then.