You know how in most MMOs they use the standard trinity for player roles (Damage, Tank, Healer), strictly enforced or not?
Someone brought that up today, and asked why we see so little good MMOs that deviate from this “holy trinity” and most games just stick to it. Interesting point. There’s a thing I want to note first though. These three roles stem from the very core elements of combat: having health that can be lost (Tank) and regained (Healer), and being able to deal damage to others. That is at the very core of most every combat system you’ll encounter. (Let’s leave the HP vs abstract health issue for a later post.)
Another person chimed in and remarked how he may want to play as a stealthy medic instead of just your average back-line healer. Often times games force you to choose a class, and you’ll then be stuck with it for the rest of your character’s lifetime. Some do allow combining skill trees, or using special equipment to imitate abilities from other classes but ultimately you’re still limited by the class you chose.
I haven’t played enough MMOs and RPGs with class systems though, but in most cooperative play you can usually see the three roles I mentioned above become de-facto standards. Is that the best setup? Do people not want to change? Do games not want to change?
How can I know, I’m no expert.