Tree of Savior Forum

Let's talk Korean MMOs and System Bloat

I’ve often discussed this with my friends about why Korean MMOs never take off after initial launch, something that plagues Tree of Savior as well. The amount of game systems that gets added to the game through content patches to enrich the experience for concurrent players are being layered upon each other without much thought and when newer players get introduced the sheer amount of power progression and in-game features overwhelms you.

What ends up happening is that the developers digs a deeper and deeper hole by adding more and more features and unless you spend a large amount of effort or get friends to help you learn the bloated game people will just quit before they even reach current content. Naturally what this leads to is a stagnating playerbase that gets smaller as time goes on, because while you are pleasing the current playerbase there will be a natural fall off of players slowly leaving for other games, further discouraging newer players when activity is a big selling point these days.

There are catch-up rewards for new or returning players but done in a very ham-fisted way, trivializing leveling by giving you a max level card upon your first login takes away the players ability to naturally learn the game and it’s mechanics through level progression further adding to the confusion of the already abundance of game mechanics.

I wanted to make a list of things that the players have to learn just to get going in this game, before you read this list I want you to know that I don’t want to remove all of these features, just reduce them or merge them with other features.

In-game Features

  • Assister
  • Fishing
  • Achievements
  • Housing
  • Companions
  • Exploration

World PvE

  • Bounties
  • Reputation

Instances

  • Challenge Mode
  • Field Challenge Mode
  • Assister Challenge Mode
  • Singularity
  • Dimensional Collapse Point
  • Uphill Defense
  • Level Dungeons
  • Legend Raid
  • Weekly Boss
  • Heroic Tale
  • Blockade
  • Joint Strike
  • Entry Vouchers
  • Additional Reward & Multiply Tokens

PvP

  • Team Battle League
  • Guild Territory Wars

Class and Skills

  • 3 classes per character
  • Vendor Classes
  • Class synergy
  • Secondary Stats
  • Attributes
  • Common Attributes
  • Arts
  • Mystic Tomes
  • Skill Gems
  • Attack Properties
  • Hidden Classes

Items

  • Crafting
  • Cards
  • Gems
  • TP Shop
  • Exchange Shop
  • Beauty Shop
  • Vaivora Coin Shop
  • Boruta Medals
  • Mercenary Badges
  • Gabija Coins
  • Popo Shop
  • Market
  • Item Dismantlement

Gear and Power Progression

  • Item Enhancement
  • Item Transcendance
  • Item Evolution
  • Item Enchantment
  • Item Awakening
  • Head Accessory Enchantment
  • Ichors
  • Ichor Registration
  • Item Sets
  • Goddess/Demon God Fixed Ichors
  • Accessory Registration
  • Weapon Ichors (Vaivora Vision)
  • Stat Re-rolls
  • Ark
  • Seal
  • Giltine Crown, Gems, Breath of Power
  • Socket Management
  • Aether Gems
  • Cards, Album, Upgrades
  • Legendary Cards
  • Goddess Cards

I left some out because they didn’t fit any of the categories but you get the idea. For us who have played the game before and at the moment we all know these features and we’re used to them. What I want you to imagine is if you’re a new player and you want to learn how to play this game this is way too much and this is all ontop of a game that has incomplete or wrong translations, classes that doesn’t work, bugs since day 1 and no QA team.

I want to like this game, it has a certain charm to it and it’s like no MMO out there. But the amount of things wrong with the game makes it impossible to speak admirably about it and suggest it to friends, there is so much untapped potential but the priorities are all wrong. Simplify the game, remove or merge features and make the game friendly for newer players.

Edit: Fixed the list a little

2 Likes

Idk about you but this isn’t too much, I played many mmo with even more complexity
Though what differs is how fun the complexity is and the ability for you to catching up
And to be honest some already grouped, with same purposes like enhancement as we call it includes enhance, enchant, awaken, evolve, Ichoring, set stat etc
Also the more feature the more purpose, the problem with tos is things are developed sorta half baked, leaving features potential at its lowest
And if you said grouping it just to minimize it and even call it bloater you should understand what they try to achieve like many other mmo dev does which is to expand multiple power source to keep the player thirst for more damage and to keep them busy with tons of mats needed and rng to keep them in a loop and give them some time before they complain for another new content, like tos latest earring
And if you are new, things are gonna overloaded sure, that’s also probably why Imc giveaway tons of freebies and makes stuffs obsolete like old gem, by make the max level of it very affordable even for newbie just so they can release another gem called aether gem
if you been around since cbt, being a p2w or just happen to be a diligent player, you can get to the point of nothing left to power up except for the giltine crown lv 20 that haven’t yet to unlock here in itos
Again, at the very core the overwhelming feel redeemable with how fun the grind is and the ability for you to catching up
And I gotta say, personally, tos grinds are bleak
Sorry to say toslover
Like crafting for example, There’s no sense of crafting gear complexity at all rn. The latest era of craft was interesting would be around skiaclipse unique era and before that where mob drop mats. I will rate tos crafting E
another example about non battling related feature like fishing. fishing in tos compare to fishing in many other mmo is so boring. It’s not even better compare to fishing feature in some old mmo around 90s, tos fishing is just boring afk filler. I would rate it F.
And maybe last housing, despite we have hundreds of map, houses across maps, we access house in town. No attempt to use geographical advantage of maps. C.
There’s more but I’m lazy.
In the end most games are almost the same, if you are overwhelmed because your situation of new player, is common thing, but for veteran they probably have nothing to do left
So just enjoy the game with your pace or you gonna get sick and feel overwhelmed

Tldr it’s as simple as playing game freely vs playing game by reading a walkthrough and follow every step and try to max out everything

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Like I mentioned in the opening post the actively playing users won’t feel like the system is bloated since we’ve all been playing it, we’re used to it and we know what to do. I do agree with you that instead of adding new systems that they can further improve and develop the ones that are already in the game, at least then you’re familiar with what you’re doing if it’s contained in a single active interface.

One of the biggest problems right now is the dwindling amount of players in the game and I feel like dealing with the system bloat is the first step in attracting new players.

1 Like

I do agree with the bloat point but that certainly isn’t the core issue. The game lacks a solid foundation since launch, and it became way more noticeable over the years. Every game needs a gameplay loop that feels fun and satisfying, ToS doesn’t has that and the best content is time gated. Add that to the fact that class diversity is minimal for a game with 15+ classes per tree that should be combined to get disappointment. A good bloated game can still reach people as long as the experience is fun (specially when you aren’t forced to interact with most of them), ToS just asks you to learn a lot of stuff to do the basics and doesn’t even do anything that interesting with it (the ability to use a customized equipment set was removed at some point past velcoffer).

One could say that the game has a lot of complexity where it should be simple and a is too simplistic in the aspects that should be more complex.

4 Likes

To add on, a total lack of respect for the player’s investment and time.

4 Likes

It’s deserved to be called bloaters when it’s useless or unwanted

These contents could’ve been better but majority of them feels like having no further development plan at all, feels like stucked, by rng, huge amount of mats to “complete” or just simply ignored

Most of old features discontinued like it’s having no future plan to begin with, it’s just destined to be obsolete, and little of it occasionally get some niche touch up

in tos case, their development pace is slow as they are deals with skill rebalance so much and in the end the actual development of game content become lacking

These contents has its purpose and it’s not gonna feel unwanted and feels like bloater if it’s actually good

I said this recently somewhere else but tos clearly has to be free of this endless rebalancing that should be not this intense from a game with alpha state. In short tos in actuality is still in beta, early access, or even worse and it should create a better core before they can progress for the actual fun contents.

I can agree in a lot of things. As a member of a Guild that receives new players constantly (with the majority leaving the game weeks after), the problem is that horrible learning of all the millions of enhance mechanics and content and different types of things to improve just to be able to access the “fun” content. A new player with willingness to learn smells from miles away that this game is going to drain their time, and when assessing if that’s worth or not, most of the time the answer is no, and they leave.

The endgame Gear and content doesn’t feel as a fun luxury to have, or a challenge, they’re seen as an obligation, as a “must have or you do no damage”. Most of the content isn’t seen as something fun to do, just something to get stronger, to catch up with the top Players in Weekly Boss or Joint Strike. If you’re not interested in any of that, there’s no point on grinding this game, just get the Episode Rewards and there, you have everything to make any content with the exception of Party ver. Vasilisa.

The problem isn’t on the endgame, tho. Every MMORPG has the same problem, less notorious because that endgame content is more “fun”. The problem lies on the early/mid game. This game doesn’t have any fun/meaningful content on the early/mid levels, and the way of avoiding that of the devs is just avoid that part of the game and give every new player a lv. 460 card.

If this game could find a way of making the leveling process from 1 to 450 fun, and don’t make lv. 460 an OBLIGATION to do 90% of your meaningful content, it would be on a much better place.

It’s the first MMO I played where the max level is a requirement for everything, and not a goal or achievement.

Seeing these stuffs as bloater or goodies really depend on your in game state

But if the solution you offer is simply removal of features to me it’s like a disgrace to what already exist

Instead of making stuffs irrelevant because they plan to add another (same) thing (only different gimmick) I would rather spice thing up

Like gems, card or gear type or recently earring.

What applies to earring could’ve been something to spice up what already exist
But as developer they need to create “the illusion of something brand new” so they can pretend they made some groundbreaking addition to the game while in reality they are not

Skill level add could’ve implemented to spice up skill gem, even involving rng in it. stat add been applied in many stuff, the extra stats could’ve been use to spice up collection stat boost which is ridiculously low compare to current player endgame stat and make collecting fun again especially for new player ( sadly instead of increasing them evenly they just made a single collection that so op with 2k dmg adds and call it a day for collection)

An example I figured weeks ago when I login is gem. Instead of spice up old gem they creating aether gem and thus disrespect old gem, making it endgame state lvl 10 gem almost like freebies, for all content.
They could’ve use development of aether gem to spice up old gem like more level, more rarity, more unique effect, even their favorite addition, rng.
This way it won’t disrespect old players effort who worked hard or pay so much for the old gem. It became linear improvement.

But yeah again, they need to create “the illusion of something brand new” to bait people and to give veteran another “looks-different-but-its-actually-the-same” goals because they have nothing left to power up.

There seems to be a lot of different opinions on what the game needs, whether it’s the lack of new players, improving on existing game mechanics or class improvements.

Again I’d like to reiterate that I don’t want to remove all the features, just simplify them or aggregate them to be more intuitive for newer players, the Goddess interface is a step in the right direction in my opinion.

1 Like

Having so many complex systems in an era of over-simplicity is a breath of fresh air. However, a lot of them need trimming and fixing as they no longer serve a purpose. Alchemist workshop is one example of a system IMC completely forgot about.

But no, I think it’s one of the game’s strengths to have so many systems. New players who get turned off by this aren’t the right demographic anyway, most likely.

I actually think that IMC shifting progression to horizontal in the last level of the game is a good step in the right direction. Guild Wars 2 does this concept really well. How long it’ll stay horizontal for, who knows…they seem to intend to increase the level cap to at least 500 according to the new earrings.

Yeah but to simplify them can also means reducing whats already exist bcause as the people here already mentioned, the features had its purpose but due to no further development plan it’s just becoming a gimmick and obsolete
Plus the features are actually so simple to begin with that further simplifying means just to remove it
For example gem roast,
They already made old gems obsoletes by giving freebies to reach its max level, gives access to high level abrasives easily, free gem everyday, lower rank of LV 10 abrasive in premium cubes simply cause it’s not that worth anymore even if they bulge the amounts in a pack it’s not worth rank up
This making gem roast, which served it’s purpose feels more becoming a gimmick(when it’s already is) because the gem itself is not further developed, but only replaced by such gem like aether gem or relic gem, another same kind of thing only with different gimmick
Gem roast and gem negative value can be simplify by removing it because it’s now served only as gimmick but it’s also a history or memory of old good time
I personally don’t really care that much they remove it or many other obsolete stuffs since they are good at removing things, they pretty much expert at it. Not because the features sucks but because it’s being ignored for too long.

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