What Happened with… HellGate: London

I still play HellGate and very much enjoy the game play, the game itself has a lot of serious problems.   From the looks of the Game Flagship centered around the core game play (which is a good thing) however they left out much of the interface that would make the game an MMO.   HellGate (at this point) lacks just about every tool possible to make it an MMO.
for a game touted to be a cross between a first person shooter and an MMO paying homage to the Diablo series, HellGate lacks in some of the most basic elements of an MMO.
like none of the developers had ever played an MMO.

This article goes into depth about the negative aspects of HellGate: London and what the developers should have done, or be doing,  in order to make the game the best it could possible be while keeping the ‘feel’ of the game the same.

So let’s start with the interface:

1) Chat Channels:
How it’s done currently:
Players are logged into a low populated channels. (One for Chat, Trade, etc) and the player is free to switch to any channel by using a slash command.
However, channel information is lost between login’s. 

How it should be done:
The hardware and software should be up to the task of allowing 3000 people to chat at once so there should be a global chat and no need for channels of this nature.
there should be ONE chat, ONE trade, etc channels.  Players should have the ability to create their own channels, like a guild chat, to allow players to chat outside the
global chat.  You should, also, have the ability to customize your color coding and the ability to see combat information (just like every other MMO) and there needs
there needs to be an automated system to get rid of the SPAM.  I didn’t pay for an AD supported game.   There also NEEDS to be a way to link your items to the chat so you can show off (or Trade) that really cool yellow wasp core that just dropped.

2) Combat Channel:
How it’s done now:
  it’s not being done.

How it should be done:
  Every MMO on the market has a channel set for showing you the damage done to a MOB and the damage done to you.

3) Item Transfers:
  How it’s done now:
    You must find someone to trust to hold your items until you are able to switch alt’s.

  How it should be Done:
     and in game mail system would work, add in the promised shared vault space would work also, and there’s no way to get off-line messages.  again, another MMO standard.

4) Buying/Selling of Items.
  How it’s done now:
     it’s not.

  How it should be done:
     There needs to be a NPC that will allow you to sell your items to other players.  One for each station at least, perhaps with a way to get items from other stations with a markup.

5) Crafting
  How it’s done now:
     When you enter a station the NPC set up to craft first randomly selects the types of items you can build and then randomly selects like 9 items from that list.
     The crafting window is now apart of the left pane with your inventory on the right.  You must drag and drop the crafting items across the screen in order to create new items.

  How it should be done:
    If you have the components needed to make an item then the system should automatically take the items from  your inventory.  There should be no need to drag and drop (clear
    across the screen) 5 or 6 times just to upgrade your weapon to your current level.  The crafting person also needs to have all the items they are going to have and switch them out
    every like 6 hours.   There’s no reason to have him/her selling shields (when you can’t use them) and the need for you to pop in and out of the hub in order to have them sell
    weapons.    That or have them just sell the recipes themselves.


Game Play:

1) Storyline:
    How it’s done now:
      Once you have completed the game first time you are sent back to the beginning to start over again in ‘Nightmare mode’  and if you beat that then there’s an Elite mode
      that will kill your player permanently should you be killed.

    How it should be done:
       Change things up between normal, nightmare, Elite modes.   All the levels/items are random but the quests aren’t.  Been there done that.. tell me to do something new!
       better yet, just randomize the quests also.   Just like you are doing with the levels.  take a set of quests, random up the amounts and then use some logic to base
       the reward on the amount of work needing to be done.  Unlimited quests!!

2) Single Player mode:
    How it’s done now:
      The Game can be played the same way as in Multi-player.. just minus the multi part.

    How it should be done:
       Why bother with Single player?  This is supposed to be an FSP/MMO.  Even though single player mode will allow you to play the game with out the need for a monthly fee,
       the multi-player is already free, so there really isn’t a point to playing the single player version.  You can’t even transfer your characters between multi and single. 
       save the time and money and drop support for the single player version.

3) Need a way to re-sync your Skill points.
    How it’s done now:
      You can’t remove your skill points in case you made a mistake with your character skills.  But you do have like 30 character slots so play around!

    How it should be done:
      People screw up and you shouldn’t be punished for it.   Why waste a good character because you misspent a couple of skill points? Charge out the ass for it,
      but allow people to remove skills.


4) Give more of a reason to group with people and make it easier.
    How it’s done now:
      No real reason

    How it should be done:
    There’s no mob in the game that can’t be solo’ d, so there’s no point in grouping.  why bother? Either go the MMO route.. or go the Multi-player route.. just pick one
    because the game can’t do both.

5) MISC. Bugs:
    Like not being able to complete a ‘kill this mob’ mission because you already beat the game and the character you where to turn the quest into is dead and therefor
    invisible to you.    

6) Crafting:
    The ability to get better at crafting would be cool also.  The more you make that gun the better at it you should be.    You should be able to take some of the MODS that you
    have in order to create a item with ability’s and something to make more MOD slots. There’s a whole world of crafting wasted in HellGate.. but all those weapons needed to
    come from somewhere.

7) London itself:
    After playing the game a few times though you begin to notice how the levels are setup and the title sets used to create those levels.   This really needs to be changed up.
    even different random Bus types would be helpful.  just Something to show that this street is different from any other street.   Different style of broken cars and busses, 
    stop signs on the street corners, different building layouts (all the buildings are 3 tier flats.. that gets boring after a while)

    The devs have touted the randomness of HellGate.. well make it random!!!


3 thoughts on “What Happened with… HellGate: London

  1. What you have to understand is that this game was not originally going in the direction of an mmo. It was being designed as an action – rpg with an online component, more similar to diablo 2 model than an mmo, and it was doing a damn good job. Unfortunetly, for whatever reason in the last year of developing this game, they decided to turn it into mmo by changing so many core aspects of the game. That is what unfortunely what led to it being what it is today, a bit of a mess, when it had the potential to become a real classic. :/

    Here is a vid from e3 2006 that shows this game how it should have been. Notice Roper saying this is an “action rpg” not an mmo, also how there are not 6 classes (a last minute decision made to cater for an mmo) but rather 3 classes 3 skill trees of the split classes in todays hellgate london.


  2. Yet, I can sight numerious other websites and magazine articles stating that HellGate was a merge of an MMO, and RPG, a shooter, etc.

    but still after seeing the video is just proves my point even more.. what the hell happened?!

  3. Look…The point being was to make a game that broke the mold for RPG, FPS, MMO….to take the best elements of each and blend until we have a tasty paste :}, so…no….it DIDN’T happen. The problem here? trying to do too much with too little.

    Not just the financial difficulties….we had format probs…

    The PROBLEM was: Flagship assumed that since they made Diablo 2 they could make a better product in a FPS variety (take it to the next level).

    Examine the statement they put out on the forum:

    “Hellforge Opens Its Doors

    With the ‘death’ of Hellgate: London and Mythos, the collective staff of Hellgate Guru have shifted our focus to the one game that holds the most promise in all of our hearts and minds: Diablo III.

    With that in mind, we’ve created Hellforge — It is not your average Diablo III fansite. To us it’s all about the community. At Hellforge, you tell us what you want to say and share your views with our innovative blogging system. It’s easier than posting on a forum, and we have those, too!

    You can also share your own videos and images by uploading them for all to see. Writing your own blog, responding to one, or simply posting on a traditional forum? It’s all up to you.

    Be a part of something special and join the Hellforge community.”

    AKA we were part of something great, we blew it, YOU get to pay the cost for OUR fuck-up.

    So now what?

    You want to hear some dumb-shit? I bought the game in the beginning of Sept. ’08….AFTER(!!!) flagship laid off a shit-ton of employees AND after the game was pretty much fucked-off.

    So NOW what?

    You tried and (EPIC) failed. You blew it on MY dime. Bitch, I want my Ca$h back, if you feel like bailing out.

    Where’s MY govt. back bail-out? (fanny mae/freddy mac?)

    Comes down to this…suspend subscriptions? = allow ALL ACCESS!!!! gimme mah GD stonehenge, my shared accounts, my change color titles, blah….blah….blah.


    Jump, Flagship, JUMP!

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