Most of you are familiar with the feature, and most of you have already likely engaged in discussion regarding proximity (prox) voice chat in Ashes of Creation. I'm here bringing it up yet again, knowing that our esteemed developers and community managers are monitoring this subreddit and taking heed of community sentiment. Come into the comments and agree or disagree.
Some people are averse to the prospect of prox in Ashes, and this typically reduces down to fear or expectation of annoyance by screeching worm-people and/or over-excited younglings. Common were the experiences of feral children howling profanities on the Xbox, and such echoes may still drive you away from voice chat to this day.
For others, prox is a woefully under-utilized feature in many games that would have greatly benefited from it. Your left hand is occupied with wasd movement, your right hand is busy with mouse abilities or the camera, your ass is tending to the chair, and your back is hunched over in a prawn impression, but your voice is sitting idle, unused and atrophied, where it could be allowing for swift and effective communication in the open world or ad-hoc grouping.
Others need not engage, and they should not feel obligated to. Even for those who have no desire to use their own voice to further immerse into the game and lend a part of their true self to their character, they benefit from being able to hear calls of warning, friendly passing greetings, or the faint chatter behind a rock, revealing to them the location of two fellow travellers or would-be bandits.
I again implore Intrepid to put the idea on the table for further consideration. To me and others, it is the one redeeming feature of New World — being able to project yourself into the game and your surroundings to engage with the world with more than your fingers. Hearing commands, pleadings, and banter around you. Reciprocating with it or turning away as you wish. The choice would be yours, as would the ability to easily mute and report foul-mouthed scoundrels who would be similarly actioned against in text chat were there no prox functions.
Opt-in group chat does not fill this need. It only accommodates easy communication in pre-arranged groups taking part of planned content — not the open world with strangers scrambling to cooperate or skirmish.
Consider it, please.
Edit: I am familiar with current and limited prox proposals such as in taverns. For the uninitiated, see this wiki page: https://ashesofcreation.wiki/In_game_chat
Ashes is a deeply social, interactive, player-driven game. Give us the communication tools suitable to this genre. Allow us to communicate without stopping a fight to type, hoping people see the message in time. Allow us to immerse into the game and use a part of ourselves (our voice) unutilized, taking the nuisance of typing and reading off of us when it is impractical. Allow us to easily speak with those around us without forming a party, leaving a current party, or planning it ahead of time. We play with strangers — let us speak with them as well, if they wish to engage. Party/guild/Discord voice does not fill this role, and the feature will already exist in the game via taverns. Let it spill out and enrich the world and our experiences.External link →