Procrastination Amplification: Punditry on MMOs and games in general.


The other day, Bioware posted some information about flashpoints – their take on dungeons. Flashpoints are sets of instanced group content which is apparently highly scripted and non-linear. Your decisions – if we can believe Bioware – will have impact on the development of the story within the flashpoint instance, as well as the enemies your group will have to face.

I like the idea of dungeons that are more than just killing runs. The past has shown us though that scripted events are often fun the first time through a dungeon, but pretty lame when repeated. The Culling of Stratholme comes to mind. Granted, there was no decision making in CoS, but I suppose that even that will quickly be mapped out for maximum rewards.

The video they posted is rather nondescript (Aside from making the combat look bad once again. Sigh.) but you can check that out below for yourself. Quite frankly, one of their developer diaries would have been quite a bit more interesting than this trailer-like clip. Just how much decision making will there be in these flashpoints, and how much story? How will these differ from run to run? Will there be any effect on outside events (and how would that work if you can run a flashpoint more than once?)

Unlike some other things we have seen from The Old Republic, flashpoints don’t look too bad initially. Anything that moves away from the by-now-incredibly-stale dungeon formula has to be worth a second look, and a well crafted story is something that Bioware has excelled at in the past.