Dungeons & Dragons Online going solo

Turbine to turn on lone adventuring in dungeons; experience table adjusted to favor new players.

Dungeons & Dragons Online: Stormreach, developed by Turbine, was the first massively multiplayer online role-playing game with the D&D license when it was launched in late February. However, the game will offer a bit of a change from its group-centric formula, according to the official Stormreach Web site, after feedback from users.

The PC MMORPG will still be massive, online, and a role-playing game, but can now be played with less of the multiplayer portion. Some areas of the game will be playable by solo adventurers, rather than requiring a party. According to a Turbine representative's post in the game's official forums, the update will "be coming soon to live servers."

A new difficulty option will be available to those who want to have a go at some areas alone. The new "solo" difficulty level will scale the beasties and treasure in the area appropriately so that single adventurers won't be torn to bits. The first area to go solo will be The Harbor--The Waterworks, Irestone Inlet, and Kobold Assault dungeons will remain group areas.

Turbine has also adjusted the experience requirements for leveling up. The change heavily favors new players, cutting the necessary experience points to get to level two by half. However, the requirements for levels four and up will only be decreased by 10,000 points. The new leveling system, coupled with the previously announced seven-day free trial, is likely an attempt to bring in new players to the game.

Dungeons & Dragons Online: Stormreach is rated T for Teen and retails for $49.99. For more information on the game, check out GameSpot's review.

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39 comments
elahan
elahan

D&D has always had a difficult time with their franchise, with regard to CRPGs. This "MMO" is plagued with the same problems. NWN was the best interpretation of the game in a digitized environment. I suspect NWN2 will be as successful. D&D is just not D&D without a faithful rendering of the ruleset and most importantly cooperative play with a real DM. Making an MMO was probably a mistake. Using Stormreach, a little known and experienced brand was interesting but not a wise decision, in my opinion. I really wanted this game to be fun, but it just isn't. I think there needs to be radical shift in the way the user experience is designed for MMOs in order for D&D to be successfully translated in that arena.

TheGru
TheGru

DDO is a unique experience. It's gameplay is far from any other MMO. Solo mission is fine, but not for me. As for the community feeling, i know a lot of other adventurer in Stormreach and i don't have plenty of time to spent there neither! Stamndard MMO are too long before experiencing fun play, everything is grinding until you attains X level... In DDO the action is just a minute from the start! Don't Compare what is not the same... Bananas and apples are fruits, but, god knows i hate the B. Fruit!!!

midn8t
midn8t

well GFXS are way better hten wow or guild wars then agin gfxs there is also huge difffrince in gfxs wow is catroonish, so is guild wars. this game is more of relastic look and feel to it. I was kinda hopping they would do AO relese game as free download then chrage people to play it. or chrage 39$ and then chrage 9$ month

bubalu0
bubalu0

This still does not change the fact the game is too short and you cannot explore at all. no open areas this is a short graphical storybook someone else wrote not an amazing adventure you define like UO, EQ2, EQ..... etc. As long as you can only do specific things and not impromptu things it will never take off ... solo dungeon crawling or no solo dungeon crawling.

fivecentfamily
fivecentfamily

I've been playing this game since launch. In fact, it's about the only game I'm playing right now (besides BETAing GameTap). While some of the complaints are valid, this game is still the closest to a true 3.5 rule-set D&D PnP experience as your going to get with ANY game, MMO or not. Whether that's a good or bad thing really depends on the style of the player. This game is NOT a good fit for power gamers and loot farmers (though, as with any game, it's cursed with some of both). It works best with a slower, "gentler" style of play. I joined a guild my first day, after searching for one that sought players who wanted to play the game slow and enjoy it (RPing encouraged but not required). I haven't regretted it. I now have 5 characters at various levels (1-6) and I can find enough of my guild players on every night to play one of my characters, usually in a quest I haven't done before, or have done only once or twice. I've played every night, 2-4 hours a night, for three months, and I'm not CLOSE to being tired of the game. The game WORKS, if you play it just like you would play a regular PnP D&D game, except you don't have to roll the dice yourself. :) Sure, there are issues that still need to be worked out; things that need to be tweaked. But EVERY game, every piece of software, has that. These changes will help introduce new people to the game, but they will still need to learn how to play with others to really enjoy the game. That's just the way it was designed.

jiggily
jiggily

Hmmm.... I have to admit that I enjoy GW because I can solo most of it, and thought that I wouldn't like DDO because I would have to deal with all the losers I usually deal with in GW. BUT, After playing DDO for awhile, I have found that most of the players are actually pretty cool, and it's not a problem. The biggest problem with DDO now is that I usually can't find enough people to do the missions because the player base is so low. I'm hoping that this will increase the player base, without bringing in the idiots so prevailent in other MMOs. Is this a good idea? Hmmmm... I guess only time will tell.

ZebulonPi
ZebulonPi

Yes! YES!!!!! I was in the Beta for DDO, and I TOLD everyone that, in order for that game to survive, that they'd have to allow solo content. I actually ended up leaving the beta in disgust after being ridden by all the fanbois in the Beta forum, telling me that the game was MEANT to be played only in groups, and that they would never change it. I'd like the Karmic Ref to add one point to my score and add three seconds to the clock, please. :)

1SleepyGit
1SleepyGit

@ axia_777 again Just read your second post, my god! All of those races in D&D are based on Tolkien's or other fantasy writers works, and many are based on real-world myths. If you have roleplayed as much as you claim then how do you not realise this? Oh, and I can tell from what you write what kind of roleplayer you are, you learn the system and then powergame without realising that roleplay is about playing a character, not being a munchkin, but whatever. Stay in your little fantasy world and I'll stay in mine.

1SleepyGit
1SleepyGit

@ axia_777 So every fantasy idea and game has been ripped off from D&D? So Lord of the Rings is a rip off of D&D? Wrong!! D&D is actually mostly copied and ripped from Tolkien's work, which in turn is based upon a lot of real world myths. Think before you spew please. The common conception of fantasy stems from Tolkien's work, D&D is merely one of the more popular pen and paper systems based on it.

spenta
spenta

I bought and played this the first day and pretty much stopped playing by the third once I realized that Guild Wars offered a better experience for free. It's not a bad game in any way except for the monthly fee.

Jedi_Osborn
Jedi_Osborn

sounds cool, but I don't have anymore time, between GW and oblivion.....

eckertt001
eckertt001

Now it steps even further away from what D&D is supposed to be. This is just another MMO with a D&D label, nothing more.

ssvegeta555
ssvegeta555

Nothing will beat the true experience of D&D.

matte989
matte989

This is what happens when you make a forced grouping MMP. This is the whole reason behind Microsoft dumping Vanguard from what I can tell. Brad McQuaid doesn't appear to be interested in making money but rather filling a small niche.

majindan
majindan

Hmmm, so D&D invented elves, orcs, trolls, etc...probably not. WOW is a really fun game but server issues are a major complaint. Any new mmorpg coming out should offer at LEAST a 30-60 day trial and $7.50 monthly fee just to compete with WOW, EQ, and FFXI. /7 day trial? stupid.

acidicdot
acidicdot

It does has less than one percent of the MMO subscriber base.

LordGamer0001
LordGamer0001

i could never get into this game. reminds me of dark alliance.

axia_777
axia_777

@LoboSolo: Young? Me? HAHAHAHAHAHA! That is funny fool. I am 31 and have been playing RPG's since I was 6. Yah that right, 6. I started on D&D basic box set way back in the old school days. I've played every RPG know to man. You name it, I've played it. On Computer or Pen and Paper. And I was not reffering to the "System". I reffering to the ideas. Elves? Orcs? Trolls? Dwarves? Oh wait, sounds like a revamped version of D&D with some new concepts tossed in to make it fresh. Nothing wrong with that, but it is thr TRUTH. So sit down and taker yer medicine!! LOL!!!

Rat-Bastard
Rat-Bastard

People pay monthly fees in MMO games for various reasons. I love MMO games, but I prefer solo play. I don't have tons of time to devote to group play and mission play. I like MMO's because they offer something that traditional RPG's don't: deep character customization. There arent too many games where you can create a character you want, the class you want with the skills you want. It's all presets, except with MMOs. DDO is doing the right thing for their game. They will just need to learn to tweak it so that it doesn't unbalance the game

moraala
moraala

They are just trying keep people from leaven the game and have to close the server after only 4 or so month since it was release. This game turn out to be worse than AC2

VONFREYER
VONFREYER

Ditch the monthly fee and me and tons of other people will buy it and play it. shoot even charge 75 for it and no monthly and we'll still buy it. Guildwars has the right idea and look at how well it works. Lead on Ncsoft , Turbine, Blizzard, it's time to follow..........

centinexx
centinexx

So what's the point? Paying montly fee just to do solo missions is ridiculous.

jazztrumpet5
jazztrumpet5

I got to level 3 in DDO before quitting out of boredom. When I was actually able to find a group (as a cleric, no less!!), it was rushrushrush until we cleared the instance. However, I did like the look and the feel of it, and might give the game a chance if they implement more solo opportunities. I think a lot of people would, although I'm not sure it will save the game. The biggest problem, in my opinion, is that the game doesn't feel like a massively multiplayer game. I mean, at least in WOW if feels like there's a community. People seem to know eachother on each server, which is a big turn-on, I think. In DDO everyone's always in instances, gearing up. I can't name one person I grouped with, be it pick-up or guild. With WOW, I can remember people I played with at launch; people I haven't seen in-game for over a year. That's saying something about a community. It is nice that Turbine is listening to the complaints, though, and trying to do something about it. More MMO devs should do that.

LoboSolo
LoboSolo

WoW's graphics were a stylistic choice to be accurate to the feel of the RTS world that came before. And honestly, I love the look of it. And no, for all you really young people out there who think so, not every fantasy adventure game or system has been ripped off from D&D, and to say so is ignorant to the extreme. SSI made games for D&D because they favored litteral translation of the ruleset. It appeals to the smallest minority of gamers now, even hard core ones like myself, its not even funny. Neverwinter 2 is the same way, won't be interesting in the least. Combat should not feel like reading instructions to initiating a nuclear launch protocol. Gameplay should be fun, tactical, exciting and story driven. Something I might add that D&D has been lacking for years since they changed rulesets time and time again. Every game using that ruleset as a base has their own slightly different version of it. Pen and paper RPG's simply do NOT translate well into a real time game environment. Six million and climbing for WoW, if thats not proof enough, then sit down, shut up and take your medication.

Yuck_Too
Yuck_Too

blackIceJoe --I'd love to see Diablo II for the console!

Wyked
Wyked

graphics are sub par compared to WOW? what the heck are you smoking. the only thing that saves wow (extremely low poly count everything) is the cartoon style. the graphics are pretty abysmal truth be told.

blackIceJoe
blackIceJoe

Well what even can make it better. I would so much prefer to see a D&D game for the PS3 or 360.

wedgecorr
wedgecorr

Ohhh solo missions. I was in on the beta for this game to and had a hard time finding people to play so I would solo only to get destroyed. I am glad they are giving the gamers some solo experiences. I might pick up the game, I am more of a solo player anyway and I did have some fun in the beta (when I wasn't dying).

Gamepro2421
Gamepro2421

i knew this game would flop ever since i started playing the beta....the gameplay is choppy and unmanagable, and the graphics are sub par with games like WOW and GW. This new move is just Turbine admiting that their game sucks and so they want to try and milk a few more customers out of $50 +$15/month before the game totally flops.

vaejas
vaejas

D&D promoting isolation? There's a new one.

SaintSadistic
SaintSadistic

I remember playing this game during the beta or whatever it was. It was a somewhat okay playing experience. The only way I'll play again though is if they raise the trial period up.

Yuck_Too
Yuck_Too

I was looking forward to this...until they priced it the same as WoW for monthly fees... Too bad they got greedy because they would have 3x the number of players if they cut the price in half.

aubstud
aubstud

i love guild wars, and wish i could play wow. but i can't see myself paying 50$ for a game then 15 a month to play it. my gaming time is to sporatic anyway to form any sort of alliances. the time that i played guild wars was only with local friends. same with this game.

axia_777
axia_777

I love this game. It rocks. The combat is way batter than both of those other games. WoW is over burden with stupid idiots anyways. Guildwars sucks. DoD rulez. They just need time and more content. @comthitnuong d&d is stupid-- Yah, right. That is why EVERY fantasy game or idea has been ripped off directly from D&D! Even WoW is a huge rip off of D&D. If you like fanatsy games, you own every thing you love to D&D. Get a clue....

comthitnuong
comthitnuong

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

Wyked
Wyked

compared to those two? no.

NeoJedi
NeoJedi

Is this game actually popular compared to WoW & Guild Wars?