So level scaling is somewhat of a hot topic right now, if any of you have been paying attention to the mess WoW has made recently.
Massively Overpowered made this write-up today: Scaling and Meaningful Advancement in WoW and Other MMORPGS.
I was curious as to what the communities thoughts are on this topic as well as potential plans, if any, for similar mechanics in CoT.
Recently, on a different MOP article, I voiced my opinion on the subject and thus will copy/paste below (this was a reply to another user).
I will state, I am NOT against the idea of scaling as a whole.
As with most things, a properly implemented mechanic could sway me.
My main gripe: a lot of entities in most (especially fantasy rpg) settings have some sort of a set “power level”. When you see Skeletal Golem Boss and can determine his power, you decide to either slaughter him with ease, attack with a plan (i.e. a group or strategy), or hold off til you can compete with it.
It ties in to making the world feel persistent, real, alive.
When X player looks at something and says “I’m level 2 thus this mob is level 2 and it takes me 5 seconds to kill it” and then Y player says “I’m level 57 thus this same exact mob is now level 57 and takes me 5 seconds to kill it” it just…ruins the experience for me.
There are ‘scaling’ systems in tabletop RPGs for the DM to make variations of a lower CR mob at higher CR, but usually the DM roleplays it a little bit (in my experience) as to why this specific mob is the same type of mob you fought at level 3, but much stronger.
The types of scaling I have seen implemented into MMOs generally ruins that progression of character, which is (to me) integral to the RP part of MMORPG.
I feel that CoX had a good scaling system, which was stated in the article. Essentially you could mentor down and your numbers would be crunched, but you retain more abilities to hurl at enemies and are therefore objectively stronger.
It's an interesting topic, even more so for superhero MMOs.
For example, I saw a thread on here about open world giant monsters. Many seemed to be on the boat that, similar to CoX, anyone would be able to participate.
I agree with this statement 100%, but I feel there should be more layers to it then just saying "anyone can hurl their blasts at this giant monster".
It feels somewhat inorganic to have mega experienced top level supers dukin' it out with this intergalactic being (or whatever) and then seeing, say, a level two fresh out the gate hero throwing 1 ball of fire at the monster and it being able to do ANYTHING.
Perhaps there could be layered mechanics within an encounter, such as X monster is destroying down town. The top (higher level) supers are going to go fight this thing, but there is more to do then just that. Evacuating of the area, saving people from debris, minions of the monster running rampant down the city blocks and need to be stopped. Completing these tasks could grant buffs to those fighting the monster, or debuffs to it that increase damage taken, etc.
As I stated above with fantasy RPGs, in superhero universes a lot of characters have "power levels".
The term 'street-level' hero comes to mind, which is somewhat nullified in an RPG environment considering you gain power (to an extent) the more your character experiences the world.
I am just spitballing here but I look forward to your responses.
Scaling mechanics - how do they fit in?