The Follower Blues

  • #1
    As we all know, the Followers System was released just yesterday. However, there has already been a lot of chatter amongst the community concerning the system being single player only and the fact that the Followers will really only be viable in the Normal difficulty. As you can see, those restrictions pose some problems. It almost discourages the social experience by forcing players to play alone in order to take advantage of the Followers System, and then leaves us out to dry once we complete Normal.


    Official Blizzard Quote:



    Followers were originally going to be available during co-op, and actually are right now because of a bug in the current build we're playing. And it's crazy. If you're unfortunate enough to also have a witch doctor, it's insanity. Eight characters running around plus all of the potential pets. It's complete chaos. That's the biggest reason they aren't going to be available outside of single player.

    Not wanting the game to be chaotic is completely understandable and is likely one of the contributing factors behind why they initially decreased the maximum party size from eight players [in D2] to four this time around. Going back and doubling the party size would be the last thing they want to do if things truly do become chaotic. However, this begs the question, how will the game feel with a full party of Witch Doctors'? If adding four more potential "summons" turns the game into chaos, how apocalyptic will the game feel with a full set of summons from each of the four WD's? Regardless, if we do want to take advantage of these Followers, we won't be able to with a full party anyway.


    Official Blizzard Quote:



    It encourages co-op by giving people that are going to be playing the game alone from the start many of the thoughts and process that go into playing with another person. Seeing someone else on screen. Thinking about their items and skills. Hearing them talk. That all sounds silly from a lot of our perspectives, because, we all play co-op and who needs a primer? Well, a lot of people, and that's where this encourages co-op. More people playing co-op means more people in a mindset of an online community, and that has many far reaching benefits for all players.

    It seems to me like we have to drop the Mercenary line of thinking from D2 in order to understand this decision. Essentially, Bashiok makes it sound like Followers aren't really supposed to be Mercenaries, but they are supposed to act as party members that replace other real players for those users who refuse to play multiplayer. When you look at the system in that perspective, it makes this functionality great, as it adds some form of cooperation for those who would rather play by themselves, and could even persuade said user to jump online and play with other users, for some real co-op play. This is simply because once you complete Normal by yourself, or rather with the [fake player] Follower, the Follower will become useless.


    Official Blizzard Quote:



    Followers will not stay alive easily past Normal, and if they're not alive you aren't going to be getting their bonuses. I'm sure people will try to game this, and ideally they will fail. If not we will ensure followers are not part of the end-game MF equation. They are not intended to be, and we will take whatever steps are necessary to ensure they cannot be.

    Now you'll be yearning for that co-op play and your only choice will be to jump on Battle.net and find some peers to game with. Blizzard is doing some real funky reverse psychology to promote the social experience, but in the end, they are still promoting the social experience.
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  • #2
    Do people ever just get excited about things? I guess I am a casual gamer because I totally do not look at features in an analytical way. I look at something and think about how it will add to the immersion, story or my gameplay experience. How frustrating life must be when things that are inherently fun and for leisure become points of contention and unrest in the eyes of those that play the games. What is the point? A lot of it also seems to be contrary for the sake of trying to play devil's advocate every single time something is shown.

    From my standpoint I am very much excited to have the followers be added depth to my solo play experience and story of the game.
  • #3
    Quote from St_Spaceship

    Do people ever just get excited about things? I guess I am a casual gamer because I totally do not look at features in an analytical way. I look at something and think about how it will add to the immersion, story or my gameplay experience. How frustrating life must be when things that are inherently fun and for leisure become points of contention and unrest in the eyes of those that play the games. What is the point? A lot of it also seems to be contrary for the sake of trying to play devil's advocate every single time something is shown.

    From my standpoint I am very much excited to have the followers be added depth to my solo play experience and story of the game.


    we are excited about things, eg. diablo 3 overall
    so excited in fact, that we analyse all the material we get
    perhaps if you want more excitement and less of the analytics, you should avoid the information until you get to experience in the game

    awesome writeup Sixen, as usual
  • #4
    Quote from St_Spaceship

    Do people ever just get excited about things? I guess I am a casual gamer because I totally do not look at features in an analytical way. I look at something and think about how it will add to the immersion, story or my gameplay experience. How frustrating life must be when things that are inherently fun and for leisure become points of contention and unrest in the eyes of those that play the games. What is the point? A lot of it also seems to be contrary for the sake of trying to play devil's advocate every single time something is shown.

    From my standpoint I am very much excited to have the followers be added depth to my solo play experience and story of the game.


    I understand what you're saying and I like the Follower system too. However, in a way, it's good to have people be very passionate about something like this because it shows that D3 has a large following, and really, there's nothing wrong with a steadfast opinion.

    I do think it's pretty damn strange that you'll be investing your time in building a "side character" only to have he/she be pointless later on though. That being said, it would be REALLY BAD if Followers were like mercs were in D2 because, like Bash said, there's not enough screen real estate for that many players.
    "All generalizations are false, including this one." -Mark Twain
  • #5
    Well its really because of the way Blizzard releases info. Even though most of us will end up enjoying the game regardless of whether or not we like the follower system, right now it seems like the biggest thing because its the most recent D3 info we've gotten.

    I do think it's pretty damn strange that you'll be investing your time in building a "side character" only to have he/she be pointless later on though.

    Which is why you really don't need to invest all that much time, gear or effort making a follower. They have, what, 4 equipment slots and a whopping total of 12 skills divided into groups of 3? There aren't that many choices involved, and even though its easily useless from our standpoint, if you look at how it will be from the point of view of someone who is just starting to play, it will be an easier transition to multiplayer. I think its a great system, and while I do wish it was usable in higher difficulties its far from the end of the world. Considering the outrage when people thought they would be essential, combined with the outrage now that people know they aren't, Blizzard had to make a choice and I think this is a reasonable compromise.

    Of course, compromises always piss people off though :P


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  • #6
    Yeah, in all reality, the Follower system doesn't change much of anything, except that you can use them solo in Normal difficulty.

    Or, you can choose not to use them. Really it's not a big deal at all.

    Cool system that you use if you want to, but you're not at a disadvantage if you don't.
    "All generalizations are false, including this one." -Mark Twain
  • #7
    I think most of the people are slightly disappointed by the fact that they expected Blizzard to come up with a mercenary system that's both fun and balanced, but instead they couldn't find the right balance and decided to remove the whole system from the online experience. Some people just really like having a follower around, but I admit it's really hard to have a follower system that's not only fun, but also non-essential, balanced and doesn't clutter up the screen (which is nearly impossible).


    Quote from CherubDown

    Cool system that you use if you want to, but you're not at a disadvantage if you don't.


    But what if you want to use it with friends? I plan on playing hardcore with 1 other friend. Can't hurt to have 2 players and 2 followers right?
  • #8
    Very interesting indeed. Not much to say about it though but i support their desition. I disliked and liked the role mercs played in D2 but they were to essential in most builds. Take my hammerdin for example, i pushed all my stats into vitality and bugged the rest of the stats needed to equip the gear i needed then i got a freeze merc with insight so i had infinite mana, without that i wouldnt be able to do much at all. Then ofcourse we have auradins that requires a merc aswell in order to stack up the auras (aura bugg). Im glad that we dont need to rely on them in D3. Anyway, this was good news for me atleast.

    Well written Sixen. Ty DF.
  • #9
    So when im done in normal on single player and advance on to nightmare I wont have the followers anymore? Thats kinda a bummer.
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  • #10
    Well, at least how its been described, is that they'll get less and less useful until they're just dying all the time. So in NM and Hell you can still technically use them but they won't do much. Although if they're useful throughout Normal they'll probably have a place for the early part of NM.


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  • #11
    I would argue locking a bunch of people in a room with each other isn't exactly "promoting" community or co-op.

    Oh, and on the matter of "screen real estate" does it feel like anyone else's (spelling?) field of view and/or screen space it's self is shrinking. The big push is for less people on the screen. But I don't think it's such a big deal that you should be hobbling a great idea just for a reason of screen space. Why not just give us a larger field of view? My main point of focus is my hero first and foremost and yea I do care that there are others with me. But, at the same time my view is centered on my anyway it not like in some other games with a free cam I'm not going to just lose track of myself I'll always be in the center of the screen. My last point on this matter is that while ideally we're all going to be good friend and play along and help each other, that's no guarantee that we will or that I'm going to have 3 others in my field of view. Mind you this isn't strictly held to the followers system.

    lol... I deleted my post by mistake going to change a typo :S

  • #12
    Quote from akainu

    I would argue locking a bunch of people in a room with each other isn't exactly "promoting" community or co-op.

    Oh, and on the matter of "screen real estate" does it feel like anyone else's (spelling?) field of view and/or screen space it's self is shrinking. The big push is for less people on the screen. But I don't think it's such a big deal that you should be hobbling a great idea just for a reason of screen space. Why not just give us a larger field of view? My main point of focus is my hero first and foremost and yea I do care that there are others with me. But, at the same time my view is centered on my anyway it not like in some other games with a free cam I'm not going to just lose track of myself I'll always be in the center of the screen. My last point on this matter is that while ideally we're all going to be good friend and play along and help each other, that's no guarantee that we will or that I'm going to have 3 others in my field of view. Mind you this isn't strictly held to the followers system.

    lol... I deleted my post by mistake going to change a typo :S


    this makes the characters seem insignificant and ends up detracting from the game more
    try using a diablo 2 resolution hack to say 1680*1050 and youll see what i mean
    nb. a working one of those requires older versions of d2
  • #13
    I hate to say it but the best promotion for coop play is the ability to coop. Adding a single player follower that is almost as depth seeking as a real player only steals from the coop experience. I think this whole system should be tossed, all it adds is confusion. Either way the system is completely irrelevant to me.
  • #14
    I understand their reasoning. And I agree with others in the thread - we should try to at least reserve judgement until we see the final product, before we throw any of their (Blizz's) ideas out the door.

    The Follower system is at its core concept right now and as it goes through Beta, changes can and will occur. Keep in mind, that's what Beta is for. So many people get stuck on the idea of Beta being a process that it to just identify errors in the game. Its not.

    The whole of this game is a dynamic, new, complex set of systems. They are bound to go through some significant changes.

    My first gut instinct tells me the Followers may get changed a bit, to last a bit longer through the difficulties....
  • #15
    I think they should crap the idea, it's just not fair having a system only available to single player or only available to multi player, it drove me crazy that certain rune words were only available in Bnet, its different in regards to the Non Ladder but why not single player? also why couldn't there be D Clone in single player, and what about the other Ubers? You could find the keys but they were useless. surely it wouldn't be that difficult to have D Clone spawn at the sale of an SoJ, or a few which would have to be sold in the same Single player game.
    I know were talking about a system thats only available for playing solo. but i believe that if a system cant be utilized in all portions of the game, there is no point of it. especially if its only useful for a certain amount of time,

    i have a question in regards to the follower; they said that if your Follower dies, it will respawn in about 15-20 seconds. so if i;m playing in hell, solo, will my follower keep respawning? or is there a certain amount of times it will respawn consecutively? or is there an option to turn off the Follower?
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  • #16
    I know a lot of this is about the magic find problem. They don't want it to be in the magic find equation end game, but I think there are other ways to solve this. Couldn't they just remove magic find from mercs all together? No items with MF? or just make it not work on them? They don't want people to have extra help doing MF runs outside of multiplayer, can't they just scale back on them in hell then? It just seems like they quickly outlive their usefulness.

    I definitely don't feel like this needs to be an all or nothing situation where they should just scrap the idea if it doesn't work like people want.

    I'm just gonna get attached only to be missing them soon after. Oh well though.

    I wonder if there is an option to keep them in town permanently. I dont want them following me around in hell just to be dying all the time, it'd be annoying.
  • #17
    All I saw was:

    Normal difficulty only.

    What the fuck is your problem, Blizzard? You do -everything- right, and then fuck it up right there in a single strike.

    I'm not playing your fucking coop and your incentive just pisses me off as a single player guy.


    What the fuck is up with today's thinking that playing with players is better, anyway. Seriously? My worse experience in gaming are all related to the shitty communities that comes with them. Don't try to force me into that crap, and give options to everybody.

    I can't take this anymore. What kind of stupid developers do they have. So infuriating.
  • #18
    Quote from SFJake

    All I saw was:

    Normal difficulty only.

    What the fuck is your problem, Blizzard? You do -everything- right, and then fuck it up right there in a single strike.

    I'm not playing your fucking coop and your incentive just pisses me off as a single player guy.


    What the fuck is up with today's thinking that playing with players is better, anyway. Seriously? My worse experience in gaming are all related to the shitty communities that comes with them. Don't try to force me into that crap, and give options to everybody.

    I can't take this anymore. What kind of stupid developers do they have. So infuriating.


    Normally I'd scream at or attempt to troll you, but pretty much this.
    Blizzard took what would have been a nice system to have a second, more simple character by your side throughout the game, then fucked it all up.

    *sighs*
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  • #19
    Quote from SFJake

    All I saw was:

    Normal difficulty only.

    What the fuck is your problem, Blizzard? You do -everything- right, and then fuck it up right there in a single strike.

    I'm not playing your fucking coop and your incentive just pisses me off as a single player guy.


    What the fuck is up with today's thinking that playing with players is better, anyway. Seriously? My worse experience in gaming are all related to the shitty communities that comes with them. Don't try to force me into that crap, and give options to everybody.

    I can't take this anymore. What kind of stupid developers do they have. So infuriating.



    /sign
  • #20
    if you love single play, then without follower you should be still ok since it is just single , right?
    Blizzard had said they promoted coop at the very beginning, and now give you single player a bonus.
    the multiplayer who also like follower should complain.
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