Second draft of a best case scenario

A couple of weeks back I was bemoaning the problems of getting together with people in Massively Difficult To Group Up Multiplayer Games, a subject Van Hemlock and Jon covered in their most excellent podcast. The silver lining of that particular cloud was finding a great bunch of people to go Warhammer-ing with, and initial grouping experiences have gone rather well.

A problem with a quest-focused game is that once you get a group of people on the same server, playing the same faction, of vaguely comparable levels, in the same (in-game) location, you need to work out what to do. With a couple of people it’s not so bad, but when you’re up to five or six…
“Let’s do a quest!”
“OK… which one?”
“Have you got ‘Tweaking the Ogre’s Nose’?”
“Can you share it?”
“Sharing… you’re out of range, Geoff, come here… you’re not eligible, Steve… you’ve already done it, Kev”
“What was the pre-req?”
“I can’t remember, maybe ‘Stealing the Vampire’s Biscuits’?”
“No, I haven’t done that but I’ve got the first quest”
“Well let’s go and kill boars for ‘Yet Another Example Of Villagers Being Too Lazy To Go Hunting Themselves'”
“Done that, I need slightly angrier boars for ‘They’ve Got More Boar Meat Than They Can Ever Eat They’re Just Setting These Quests Out Of Porcinephobic Spite Now'”
“Well we’ll set off that way anyway and get onto your bit of the quest next”
“Hey, look over there, the body of a missing village, I need that for ‘It’s Either Going To Be A Corpse Somewhere Or An Escort Mission'”
“Me too!”
“And me!”
“Me as well!”
*Geoff clicks on the corpse, completes the mission, it despawns*

Warhammer has no shortage of the usual go there, take a message to her, find him, kill ten of them quests, more than enough to fill up a quest log, but crucially, in a group, there are two much easier alternatives. Firstly public quests, covered in bags of detail elsewhere, essentially allow anyone in the vague vicinity to pile in and contribute towards something, and don’t require much co-ordination past “everyone to the burning windmill!” Better still, though, are scenarios. Lower levels get a boost, so pretty much anyone of any level can join up. You can join a queue for a scenario from anywhere in a zone, and when the scenario is finished, you end up back where you started. Anybody can sign their entire party up for a scenario, regardless of where everybody else is, so you can give a shout on guild chat to see if anybody fancies a few scenarios, invite pretty much anyone that replies, and click the “join scenario” button. The awesome burden of party leadership is lifted from your shoulders:
“What level do I need to be?”
“Doesn’t matter!”
“Where do I need to go?”
“Anywhere you like, just click ‘Ready’ when the scenario box pops up!”
While queueing, everyone can carry on doing regular quests, training, shopping, anything else they fancy, then hop in for a fearsome Order versus Destruction clash when you get to the front of the queue, then back to whatever else you were up to. Last night we had a party covering all the races, so after a couple of rounds of Nordenwatch, for a bit of a change an Elf signed us up for their scenario, and it was off to the Altar of Khaine, without even needing to fly to another zone. The one area of leadership I might need to slightly work on is tactics within the scenarios, I’m not sure “Err, just run around and kill stuff!” features prominently in Sun Tzu’s Art of War. Still, everyone was laid back enough that I don’t think they minded not being a highly drilled platoon of fearsome death, and even without totally crushing the forces of Destruction under our heels a fun time was had by all.

1 thought on “Second draft of a best case scenario

  1. Taymar

    “Done that, I need slightly angrier boars for ‘They’ve Got More Boar Meat Than They Can Ever Eat They’re Just Setting These Quests Out Of Porcinephobic Spite Now’”

    I laughed aloud at this.

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