Aggro Me: Ho Ho Ho!
Ho Ho Ho!
No, I'm not Santa. I just want to talk about HO's, or Heroic Opportunities, for a bit. Thanks to Beylanu for giving me the inspiration for this post towards the end of this thread.
When I first started playing EQII, I really enjoyed HO's. Even when soloing, they add some much needed spice to combat. There is an element of chance and it at least makes you feel as if you are doing something strategic.
In groups, it's even better. For one, it's really fun to do something as a team. Sure, we all play our team roles in group, but we kind of do it independently. HO's are something that really requires working together. It is a great feeling when you pull off a Heroic Opp and even better if it is one of the more difficult ones.
What's more, it rewards static groups, something I really enjoy. In my old static group, someone would just say "Fate" and we would immediately pull off the Luminary Fate HO like clockwork. It made me feel like we were a great team and the game was rewarding us for that.
But, like certain other gameplay elements (hello empty Arena how are you today?) I've mentioned in the past, I feel like HO's have suffered a bit from neglect. I have two issues here.
First, I don't feel enough care has ever gone into balancing and rebalancing HO's. I also don't feel as if they scale enough with level. It would be nice to see the super-rare ones just a bit more frequently as well.
Second, and more importantly, a little innovation with the HO's would go a long way. I would love to see HO's change as you level up, not necessarily every level but maybe every ten or twenty levels. When my group is at a higher level, we should be able to pull off different and new HO's. I really think this would keep it fresh and exciting. At the very least there should be new HO's with every new expansion.
As it stands now, I do not see people getting that excited about HO's anymore, though I still use then while soloing and they are still useful in group. To summarize, it's a good mechanic which has the potential to be great with a little work. But I think this point is open to debate so I'd love to hear what you have to say on this subject.A quick note in response to some e-mails I received on my "storyline" post. I realize there is a ton of detailed and excellent lore surrounding Norrath. But even though I personally might like reading it, I don't think the casual player should have to read special forums, lengthy .pdf files or play EQ for years to understand the lore of EQII. It should be integrated into the game naturally. And my point was not to disrespect the lore, which I think is great. But "storyline" and "lore" are not the same thing. I was talking about adding some sort of purpose to day to day doings in EQII - a general storyline that advanced over time which players could feel they had a role in.