New-player tutorial world / social hub

Wilbon

Dilettante

Supporting Donator
Dec 20, 2018
77
Oda Zaibatsu
Rank: None
Service Points: 0
Scavy, HBnY, and I discussed the matter of new players a bit today and we were tossing around the following topic:

What if there was a specific world that had no PVP elements but limited PvE and be primarily directed as a tutorial world/social hub (think the APB social hub mixed with the old runescape tutorial island as an example). This would be great for role-players but more importantly, new players could come in and on that world they could learn about the game, potentially find others in-world (rpers, people doing safe social) to ask questions, and get a understanding of the general basics of the game.

Perhaps they could even get access to some/all of the games potential equipment (either through self-producing, market, drops, w/e). The catch is that any of those items from that world get tagged and so when they leave that world, they get destroyed. From this they may find they really want a certain armor set or a certain gun. Then when they leave that world they can go and try to acquire that gear properly and now they have a goal.

You also should not be allowed to storage transfer to this world. This way it's not a safe eco haven or place for safe gearing.
  • Safe environment for new-players to learn the basics without getting ganked and turned off immediately.
  • New players can experiment and see what they can acquire for items in the game and build goals to acquire them proper by earning them.
  • Disconnected from the rest of the game's eco-system.
  • Roleplay/social hub for those who wish to partake.
  • Accessible by everyone so training departments can find new players to teach.
A slight issue that needs to be discussed would be how to prevent say Most Wanted's and other undesirables from just hiding there and being mechanically safe from opposition.
 
Last edited:

Scavy

Dilettante

Bronzed Donator
Alpha Tester
Jan 31, 2019
87
Terran Defense Corps
Rank: Major (R5)
Service Points: 0
Complicated to make, but I think well worth it in easing players into MMOs, Runescape has one, WoW even has tutorials and both of those games are way more approachable for new players because you don't have the threat of being ganked around every single corner.
 

Xdar

Clone

Bronzed Donator
Jul 28, 2017
1
Terran Defense Corps
Rank: None
Service Points: 0
Definitely a good question. My first experience with FoM and what I felt set it apart from what I had played previously was my first day in-game - I didn't have a clue what was going on, but I bumped into a faction leader, he then showed me around and explained key features. Having a real person do that 1-1 was something pretty special and all these years later I still remember it, definitely set it apart from the standard mmo tutorials I'd done. It obviously isn't viable to do that for every newcomer, but I do wonder if there is a way of incorporating what you've said but making them faction-specific areas where a more bespoke 'welcome' lesson could be written and taught by faction training division. And as a side note - could HCs be able to pre-write NPC dialog if no one is online?
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: arav

Wilbon

Dilettante

Supporting Donator
Dec 20, 2018
77
Oda Zaibatsu
Rank: None
Service Points: 0
Definitely a good question. My first experience with FoM and what I felt set it apart from what I had played previously was my first day in-game - I didn't have a clue what was going on, but I bumped into a faction leader, he then showed me around and explained key features. Having a real person do that 1-1 was something pretty special and all these years later I still remember it, definitely set it apart from the standard mmo tutorials I'd done. It obviously isn't viable to do that for every newcomer, but I do wonder if there is a way of incorporating what you've said but making them faction-specific areas where a more bespoke 'welcome' lesson could be written and taught by faction training division. And as a side note - could HCs be able to pre-write NPC dialog if no one is online?
Well one thing for certain is that new players do need to be pushed to interact with actual faction members. I think most of us have had that 1-1 experience with an influential faction member that's given us a fond memory or influenced us to call that faction home.

New members interacting with their faction is also super important to the game, which is why we suggest this concentrated area where new players will go and then have it accessible by all players so that faction members can go (training department or not) and interact with those new faction members.

Additionally, not every concept needs to be taught through tutorial and some teachings are better when done by faction members themselves. For example, you don't necessarily want a tutorial to teach players how the arrest system works or else they may go acquire all the necessary gear and try to make arrests alone, only to wind up getting dropped and losing it all because they tried to do everything on their own. That's where a CPC training department comes in because someone who joins the 'cop faction' presumably wants to know how they can arrest baddies. So where do they get that information? How about asking the more experienced members of the faction.

That in turn signals to training departments/vets that a player is new and that they should reach out and help guide them and teach them some of the factional-specific stuff, like how to effectively arrest baddies. Similarly corporations may do the same, not to teach players how ecoing works, as the basic tutorial can do that, as much as to teach them how to understand economics and how to handle the economic events that they will likely face (undercutting, taxes, transport, contracts, etc).

And that lowers the training department overhead because they may not need to explain all the basics to every one who enters the faction, but rather may only need to teach them the factional-specific stuff and assist them with basics here and there.
 

Chip Lawrie

Lead Game Writer

Staff member
Jun 1, 2017
766
Manhattan
Terran Defense Corps
Rank: Game Master
Service Points: 800813
So NeXeon did this when I was a DSV in later preFotD FoM when they had new players join the civilian faction - it went about as well as you guys can imagine. New players when they finished the 'tutorial' ended up in a special room with some NPCs that would tell people about the factions. DSVs (and I think some people in training depts?) I was a fairly active DSV

In regards to safe-zones I am from a realism/imersion/storyline point of view opposed to them for a variety of reasons, not least because (like the turret mall in brooklyn) it creates an artificial de-liniation in the game that is very jaring. I particularly object to the concept of 'safe-spaces' for people to ice-in-cup (which is what a generally accessable safezone will probably turn into).

That said the complete shitfests that were the various FoM tutorials and the fact that the game dropped you in the deep end is one of the (many) reasons FoM had incredibly poor retention. Some of the problem that FoM had and MR likely will have is that the early levels of most 'cookie-cutter' MMOs are usually solo experiences, in FoM there really was no solo experience and while MR is intending to be slightly better at that the primary focus of the game is still the factions.

We're still in pre-alpha ofc and faction mechanics are not even slightly implemented so it's too early to promise anything in regards to tutorials and the like but how does this sound:

After the character customiser and the faction selection screen the player sees a flash of light and he's in a cloning tube. A voice is heard "Thank-you for choosing Genomics life insurance. As this is your first revival Terran Union Law requires that you undergo a series of tests to ensure your capablity of functioning" The player is directed to look at some lights in a sequence as he is told to use mouse to look. The player's movement is released and he told how to use WASD to move and strafe, he is told to follow the blue line on the floor. The blue line leads into a corridor and after turning two corners the player sees a simple obstacle course. The player is given camera controls and told to use space to jump and ctrl to crouch. After completing the course the player is told to follow the red line this brings him to a range. On this range are several target drones and a series of weapons. The player is told how to aim and fire each weapon as they are given to him and then taken away before being told to follow the green line. The green line leads to a shop behind which is a door that leads to a mining terminal, a production terminal and a world market. The shop is in the style of the player run businesses with a commercial drone the player is instructed to purchase a cheap gun, the only weapon in the store is a Peacekeeper 7, it costs about UC300 of the player's UC3,000. The player is then told how to make ammunition, he is given the pmod for 5 9mm magazines free but he'll have to use the mining terminal, production terminal, and world markets to finish making the basic ammunition (this should cost him UC200) the player is limited in what options for production etc they can make during this time. The player is then told to follow the white line. Doing so leads the player to a quantum gate where they are told about quantum gates and shuttles, they are given a ticket in their inventory and told good luck.

After passing through the QG they arrive in their faction's starter apartment where a pop up/email tells them about apartments and why starter apartments suck. Once they exit their apartment they appear in their faction HQ with a new recruit tag that can only be removed by someone in their faction's training or administrative departments.
 
  • Like
Reactions: arav

Shakespears

Game Writer

Bronzed Donator
Alpha Tester
Jun 14, 2017
764
Virginia, USA
Civil Protection Commission
Rank: None
Service Points: 0
As a prior DSV, I can say that program went pretty bad even with most DSV's being active. A big change we've been exploring is integrating part of the tutorial(TU-tour-ial) straight into the factions' hands just as Chip mentioned.

The problem with a "safe zone" social hub is new players getting too comfortable and not branching out into the rest of the game.

No matter how good of a tutorial we have, it's ultimately up to the players/community to help new players integrate into the game both socially and mechanically.
 
  • Like
Reactions: arav

Ranfre

Citizen

Bronzed Donator
Alpha Tester
Sep 15, 2018
48
Seattle
Avalon Enterprises
Rank: Partner (R6)
Service Points: 0
One thing I think would be good is a like notification to the faction when someone new joins. Maybe a message in faction chat and a mail to faction leaders (allow hc to configure who gets new person mails). I remember having to go through the faction list looking for unfamiliar r1s (time before was r0) when i was leading training dept and it was a pain.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Litheius

Hepopotan

Dweller

Jul 24, 2017
24
ya mum's hut
Civil Protection Commission
Rank: None
Service Points: 0
If you are planning to make a safe environment for new players it should be the cloning facility. Just make that world a place you can vort back to instead of spawning only. You can even make a little tutorial course there. As for most-wanted you can just not let them vort back to the place or interact with the world more than just the vortex gate.