I'd rather have bots

| Friday, January 27, 2012
When I make friends in a game, I want to play with them. If they're not on, but I still want to progress, what should I do?

I could hope that enough people are online on my server so I can form a group. This used to be the method, but was rejected.

I could play with people from other servers who I will never see again. This is the current method.

I could play with bots, which, if we given them a slightly randomized AI and name generation are functionally identical in all positive aspects to the people from other servers. I will never play with them again. I will develop no ties to them, because I will never see them again.

There is a benefit to bots. A social benefit, in fact. Since I likely have no concern for the random players, I am likely to treat them worse than I would friends or same-server players. Not with cruelty, but you cannot expect generosity in this situation. I have every incentive to take all I can, without regard for their needs or desires.

If they are already dehumanized, why not replace them with non-humans and minimize the damage inflicted upon the helpless other?

P.S. I'd rather play with the friends I made from the first scenario.


Syl said...

sad but word! bots have the advantage over random anonymous people of no further consequence.

Salvaenus said...

Nothing to add that you haven't already said and better than I could. Consider this me silently nodding my head in sage wisdom and agreeing wholeheartedly.

Anonymous said...

I would love a "bot" option, especially to run raids that you horribly over gear. Gruul's lair, not totally soloable I believe, add a couple heal bots and a "sub optimal" DPS bot, totally doable. Want slayer of lifeless from Naxx? Same thing, although depending on how they handle the ilevel crunch, it may be soloable with Panda gear. . .

Tesh said...

Cue STO and GW. Being able to tackle group content with 'bots in case you can't find people or are antisocial is a great way to keep players in the game. That's gotta count for something.

Kring said...

I think the real problem is that bots either are not suitable for the more difficult content, like in GW. That reduces their usefulness. Sure, they might be helpful while leveling or for running SFK at level. But they won't solve the "no player for endgame problem" if they are not suitable for heroics.

Or they are suitable for the hardest content, which means they are probably better then human player. That makes them superior and it's likely that a lot of people would stop grouping.

How capable would you design your NPC?

And if they really are superior then human player. What would they need me for? Maybe they would refuse grouping with me. :)

Klepsacovic said...

@Kring: I'd make them only heroic dungeon level, and maybe have some sort of element to even them out with human players, such as an 80% chance to lose all loot rolls.

Kring said...

The Guild Wars henchmen reduce the amount of loot you get. (I've been told they do, I'm not as good in Guild Wars game mechanics)

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