Wow… the idea seemed so easy when I first thought about it but it quickly went all over the place. I guess this MMO creating business isn’t quite as easy as I thought! Ok, so here’s what I have been able to throw together so far.
Setting: I would probably have my FrankenMMO be in a Scifi Western setting similar to Firefly. Yeah I know, I’m cheating since there’s no Firefly MMO (yet, or maybe ever) but this is my idea so I can break rules as I see fit. I would love to take the basic story of Rift and adapt it to Scifi. Some giant planet of ancient evil attacks and conquers your world. After mining your planet to the point were massive earthquakes are literally tearing your planet apart, they leave to find another planet to ravage. Just before the world ends, you get sent back 5 years in the past before the evil Unicronians attacked (name subject to change).
Your mission will be to use the time you have to make allies, discover technology, build ships, etc to defend your world before the attack comes.
Races: I’ve never been a big fan of racial abilities in games. I want to play a race because of their background or the way they look, not because using them as a tank will give me an extra 1% chance to block or some other minor stat. While this is a very minor boost, many people assume that if you do not play the “optimal” character with the “optimal” spec that you suck. So to combat that, all races would be equal. Except for elves… they would start with -5 to all stats. I would have to include the Charr from GW2 since they look so different than what I’ve seen elsewhere. And I would also create an undead race that would actually be an undead version of each of the available races for variety (similar to what WoW almost did very early in development).
Space Combat: The space combat would be like Star Trek Onlines, but would allow for more of a Z-Axis for Death from Above type maneuvers. Ship Loadout would be closer to an Eve Online setup though. I have always felt like STO’s ship loadout felt very high level and some of the equipment types are difficult to sort through (I’m looking at you deflector dishes!) Weapons throughout the ship could be configured like turrets or minions to follow orders you set. Fire at will would allow them to target anything around no matter what.
Cloaking devices? Yes please. And while cloaking would break target locks, manually firing weapons would still hit a cloaked ship and do massive damage.
Ground Combat: Semi First Person shooter similar to Star Trek Online but with the Dynamic Event system that GW2 is using. Many planets in the galaxy to explore with a different story on each planet. Explore planets, asteroids, space stations, etc. Maybe even some mech combat for fun. Combat would be vertical up to a point. One of the most fun I’ve had in any MMO was playing a guy that had a power that did a little damage and knocked people back with a gust of wind. I would run up and punch some baddie in the face and then run or super jump up to the top of a building. When the baddie and his friends got up there, I’d blast them with my wind blast and knock them off the building… and they’d take severe damage from the fall. MUST INCLUDE THIS!
Systems to “borrow: Skirmish system from Lord of the Rings Online – fun instanced missions and instead of building of a skirmish soldier, you would be building up your fleet of allies.
Companion system from Star War: The Old Republic could mix in to the skirmish system as well to allow the same companions and their ships to accompany you on other missions. Missions would scale depending on the number of allies you bring.
Lottery System: From Lotro and Dungeons and Dragons online, consider it stolen.
Duty Officer System from STO: However, I would include an app for Android, IPhone, and maybe even a plain webpage interface for accessing parts of the game from work! 🙂
Housing similar to Everquest 2’s housing. I have found it to be the most flexible and well rounded housing system I have seen so far.
Legendary Weapons: Sort of like Lotro… but far less grindy.
Crafting: Crafting is difficult because I’ve rarely seen it done well. Normally by the time you can actually afford to craft something, you are 5-10 levels past it. May instead of swapping gear, all gear will be roughly equal and just look cosmetically different (similar to Guild Wars) but then you craft or obtain gems to add +52 to pointy ear hatred.
Foundry: Player created missions… yes please. Would develop a way to reward people for playing missions better than currently available in STO. I want to play more Foundry missions but it’s hard to take the time when there is no gains for time spent short of a cool story.