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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
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    Convenience or Necessity: Store Purchases and T2C Raids

    My drive to raid has all but disappeared, but I'm curious.

    Obviously, in raids like FLM T2C or SarumanF&F in ToO, store buffs were not a necessity, in that even if every person in the group were using all of them, the encounters still would have been nigh impossible (pre-nerf)...

    But I have to wonder how raids are being balanced with all these huge buffs purchasable with real money. Or, rather, intended to be balanced (since we recently learned that they pretty much just guess as to whether or not we'll be able to complete them).

    If the trend in the rest of the game is to make everything too easy to fail, and if only 10% of the population raids, what is their motivation for spending those extra development dollars to make a version of the raid that can only be beaten by 1% of the population? Sure, it will keep those few players around, but those subscriptions cannot possibly make up the cost of actually developing special challenges for raids. Do you think that they count on players who intend to complete these challenges to spend money on store buffs?

    I'm not saying the challenges should not be there. I'm wondering if the buffs should be.

    +5% damage, -10% incoming damage, universal potions on independent cooldowns, and now a potion that gives a morale bubble on yet another independent cooldown.

    Can a raid really be created that will be difficult without buffs, and still difficult *with* them? 100+ HPS just from store pots, 300+ DPS for DPS classes, 10% less damage taken for the entire raid, not to mention all the other tiny buffs to morale, mitigations, hope, etc...

    It would be one thing if raids were designed to be completed 100% without store purchases, and if they were content with people spending money to make them easier. But that doesn't seem to be the case with a few of their encounters.

    If their excuse for releasing raids that have never been beaten in testing is that if they can be beaten by a pug on Bullroarer, they're too easy, why not tweak it so that it can be beaten by Bullroarer *with all the store buffs*? That way, if they are correct that Live kinships are that much more dedicated, it should be very likely that they can complete them without buffs.

    Anyway, those are my thoughts on all these pay-to-win buffs. It seems like they're intentionally making specific encounters too difficult in an attempt to make people think that they'll be able to complete them with store buffs. As they say, "any sufficiently advanced incompetence is indistinguishable from malice".
    [color=red]Work like no one is watching, dance like you don't need the money...[/color]

  2. #2
    I think you underestimate some of the raid teams they put together on Bullroarer.
    [charsig=http://lotrosigs.level3.turbine.com/0b20c00000005f578/01000/signature.png]Karaoke[/charsig]

  3. #3
    I doubt that they are balancing the raids to include the store buffs. Honestly though, I don't think they are really play testing the raids much at all. Not since Ost Dunhoth at least. Three of the last nine fights are now acknowledged as being "impossible" upon release and one other ("Acid") was broken such that the core mechanic could be completely bypassed.

    It seems like JW Barry is just modeling these things out with equations (which is reasonable) and then releasing. Or maybe he's modeling it out with equations, some n00bs at Turbine are beating them in play tests with all mechanics known, and then he tunes it up another 10-15% because he knows the Turbine players are mostly casuals and that it needs to be challenging for raiders.

    Sapience has stated publicly that play testing raids is one of the most expensive services that they employ. I wouldn't be surprised if they've just cut it out altogether.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
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    449
    Quote Originally Posted by Frisco View Post
    As they say, "any sufficiently advanced incompetence is indistinguishable from malice".
    I'm stealing that for my new prog-rock band name and its first album title.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    7,583
    Quote Originally Posted by bastiat1 View Post
    Sapience has stated publicly that play testing raids is one of the most expensive services that they employ. I wouldn't be surprised if they've just cut it out altogether.
    Where and When?

    Its not a surprising thought that it'd be expensive, I've just never seen the statement.
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  6. #6
    That 1% is the source of at least 10% of their in-come. I know I have no hard numbers, but I've been in a raiding guild and nearly all of us would spend a good deal of money on turbine points every month or so (+ of course vip)

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    402
    I think It is clear that turbine has had difficulty fine tuning the challenge levels of many recent raids. To nuance it to the point that store buffs would be mandatory is somewhat laughable.

    Having said that...there have been fights where destiny perks were highly relevant...hope for the Balrog and LT come to mind.

    But all things considered...I do not see them as required.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
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    2,301
    Quote Originally Posted by bastiat1 View Post
    I doubt that they are balancing the raids to include the store buffs. Honestly though, I don't think they are really play testing the raids much at all. Not since Ost Dunhoth at least. Three of the last nine fights are now acknowledged as being "impossible" upon release and one other ("Acid") was broken such that the core mechanic could be completely bypassed.

    It seems like JW Barry is just modeling these things out with equations (which is reasonable) and then releasing. Or maybe he's modeling it out with equations, some n00bs at Turbine are beating them in play tests with all mechanics known, and then he tunes it up another 10-15% because he knows the Turbine players are mostly casuals and that it needs to be challenging for raiders.

    Sapience has stated publicly that play testing raids is one of the most expensive services that they employ. I wouldn't be surprised if they've just cut it out altogether.
    Yes, in the last 20 Questions they confirmed that the raids can be and are released without anyone beating T2C challenges all through various stages of testing. That being said, I can't imagine Store buffs playing a significant role
    in this. Most of those buffs are minor, it's knowledge of mechanics and First Age LIs which make T2C doable.
    [charsig=http://lotrosigs.level3.turbine.com/1321300000000704a/01002/signature.png]undefined[/charsig]

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by Malachi108 View Post
    Yes, in the last 20 Questions they confirmed that the raids can be and are released without anyone beating T2C challenges all through various stages of testing. That being said, I can't imagine Store buffs playing a significant role
    in this. Most of those buffs are minor, it's knowledge of mechanics and First Age LIs which make T2C doable.
    Funny you should mention First Age LIs.

    The jump from 2nd Age to 1st Age DPS is 5%. Store-bought buff is 5%. How does a 1st Age play a significant role, while store buffs don't? Especially when we've seen encounters where even 1st Ages aren't enough to be victorious--would another 5% buff make the same difference as the bump from 2nd Age DPS to 1st?

    To me, at this point in the life of the Store, it seems like a lot to hope for for them to resist the temptation of increasing revenue by merely tweaking difficulty up a notch here and there. Especially when you consider that in the life of the Store, raids have gotten more and more about gear. Challenge is often about doing slightly more DPS and taking less damage. Convenient, then, that these mechanics become more and more of a focus as they become a point of revenue.
    [color=red]Work like no one is watching, dance like you don't need the money...[/color]

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    San Antonio, TX
    Posts
    921
    saw this coming with the creation of stat tomes. between that, the "making everything else too easy to fail" bit, and idiotic mechanics stolen from other games (seriously. if I wanted to play those other games, i'd be playing those other games. enough already) like open tapping and remote looting, and soon skill trees, i'm less and less sure i'll still be around come the next xpac.

  11. #11
    Never thought about the Store bought win being necessary in raids before. I know a lot of players use it in the Moors. I just don't want to spend my money or TP on "win in a can," I want to use it for other stuff.

 

 

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