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General: The List: 5 Interesting Launches of 2009

DanaDana Halifax, NSPosts: 2,415Member

Today we count down the five most interesting MMOs to launch so far in 2009 (from January 1st until today). This is not a ranking of the best, but rather the most interesting and noteworthy, at least as decided by Managing Editor Jon Wood. Check back each Tuesday for another list.

Jon Wood

A few weeks ago, I took a look into the future to see what the top games of 2012 might be. This week, I thought I’d ground myself firmly in the present and take a look at the five most interesting MMOs to launch this year, at least so far. In order to qualify for consideration, a game need only have launched some time between the 1st of January 2009 and today.

So far this year, we’ve had a grand total of 27 MMO launches. They have spanned the genre, from hardcore to children’s titles, subscription and item shop (and in at least one case, both), sports to fantasy. Of all of them, I’ve narrowed it down to five games that I have found, for one reason or another, interesting.

Read it all here.

Dana Massey
Formerly of MMORPG.com
Currently Lead Designer for Bit Trap Studios

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Comments

  • LynxJSALynxJSA Sarasota, FLPosts: 2,601Member

    What are the other 22?

    I thought it was great that we saw a lot of diversity in the MMO releases this year.

    Dragonica, Atlantica Online, Florensia, NeoSteam and several others expanded the markets they were in and offered something new in one or more ways.

    Over the past year we saw Crossfire, Combat Arms, Sudden Attack and Wolf Team - a collection of persistent character FPS's - cross over to new markets with what seemed like reasonable success.

    I don't quite get the attraction of Runes of Magic but that's very possibly because I'm simply not the target market so it isn't 'my thing.'

    TCoS and Darkfall featured manual targeting, and both Mortal Online and Fallen Earth look to be offering that as well. I'm very anxious to see how that is received over time.

    All in all, I think it was a great year for diversity in both the styles of games offered and the business models surrounding them.

     

    (Yes, I know he said 'this year' and not 'the past year' but it seemed on-topic enough to post this here.)

     

    EVE Online: 'Dominion' Trailer Now on YouTube
    "...if there is a fair fight happening in new eden, both fcs did something wrong." - batolemaeus

  • finnmacool1finnmacool1 Corona, CAPosts: 453Member

    What a joke. Why dont you stop the charade and just declare this the darkfall #1 fansite?

    Seriously, the game is a niche game with a very small following. Most gamers outside this site have never even heard of the game and those that visit this site wouldnt have either if you didnt insist on plastering crap about it on the front page on a daily basis.

  • StraddenStradden Managing Editor Halifax, NSPosts: 6,696Member
    Originally posted by finnmacool1


    What a joke. Why dont you stop the charade and just declare this the darkfall #1 fansite?
    Seriously, the game is a niche game with a very small following. Most gamers outside this site have never even heard of the game and those that visit this site wouldnt have either if you didnt insist on plastering crap about it on the front page on a daily basis.

     

    It was still the most interesting of all of the games. I don't suppose you actually took the time to read the description and the rationale behind the choice before flying off the handle? If you didn't, then shame on you and I suggest you go re-read it and see f you still feel it's fanish. If you did, then I just don't know what to say... I wouldn't call what was said overly positive.

    Cheers,
    Jon Wood
    Managing Editor
    MMORPG.com

  • metalhead980metalhead980 Queens, NYPosts: 2,658Member

    Good list, nice read. Thanks for the article.

     

     

    PLaying: EvE, Ryzom

    Waiting For: Earthrise, Perpetuum

  • SnarlingWolfSnarlingWolf Thereiam, ARPosts: 2,697Member

    This list shows the sad state of MMOs today.

     

    Yes I've heard Runes of Magic is very nice and is a quality MMO in a f2p package, so that is the bright spot on the list.

     

    The rest of the list is filled with games that either aren't doing well or are so utterly casual (and f2p) that they aren't really that interesting at all.

     

    I'm really starting to wonder if my MMO days are over, as the qualtiy games get old enough to start closing down and all the new games are so unintersting and so simple a caveman could beat them in a month, maybe it's time to step out of this genre.

  • metalhead980metalhead980 Queens, NYPosts: 2,658Member
    Originally posted by SnarlingWolf


    This list shows the sad state of MMOs today.
     
    Yes I've heard Runes of Magic is very nice and is a quality MMO in a f2p package, so that is the bright spot on the list.
     
    The rest of the list is filled with games that either aren't doing well or are so utterly casual (and f2p) that they aren't really that interesting at all.
     
    I'm really starting to wonder if my MMO days are over, as the qualtiy games get old enough to start closing down and all the new games are so unintersting and so simple a caveman could beat them in a month, maybe it's time to step out of this genre.

    People talk of the fall of the mmo genre all the time. I disagree however.

    THe best thing about this genre is all of the games that started this wonderful genre up are still going. You could complain the the new mmos aren't that great but whats stopping a player from playing UO, EQ or AO again? don't say population because every one of the older games has atleast one full server with a busy community.

    This is the greatest genre ever, I've recently gone back to UO and can;t believe how awesome it is with actually active players filling the majority of the shards.

    With the exception of a couple games like E&B, Pre-CU and SB the genre is still totally intact with older much more satisfying games.

    I could never walk away from this genre its older games are freaking epic.

     

    PLaying: EvE, Ryzom

    Waiting For: Earthrise, Perpetuum

  • AnofalyeAnofalye Quebec, QCPosts: 7,433Member

    There is a point where you just have to let's it go.  Will I play a MMO in the next years?  Perhaps, perhaps not.  How can I say?  My life can change a lot, I may have more or less time, I may enjoy other games.

     

     

    I didn't start playing games with MMOs, and my last game won't be a MMO.  Of that, I am sure.  How many more MMOs will be tried, I have no idea, could be none or dozen.  Right now, I am playing games on Facebook, they kinda remind me old BBS games...and guess what, there are more players in my "main game" than in all MMOs combined together.  MMOs are a neat and nice dream, and I would definitely enjoy dreaming about 1 again...not just anyone!  Afterall, I did write a complain letter to Zynga about some gameplays issues in their Facebook game, I guess you won't change the monkey!

     

    I will most likely try Champion Online, not in the near future however.  The other?  I wish them the best...

    - "If I understand you well, you are telling me until next time. " - Ren

  • TrashcantoyTrashcantoy DragonstonePosts: 827Member
    Originally posted by Stradden

    Originally posted by finnmacool1


    What a joke. Why dont you stop the charade and just declare this the darkfall #1 fansite?
    Seriously, the game is a niche game with a very small following. Most gamers outside this site have never even heard of the game and those that visit this site wouldnt have either if you didnt insist on plastering crap about it on the front page on a daily basis.

     

    It was still the most interesting of all of the games. I don't suppose you actually took the time to read the description and the rationale behind the choice before flying off the handle? If you didn't, then shame on you and I suggest you go re-read it and see f you still feel it's fanish. If you did, then I just don't know what to say... I wouldn't call what was said overly positive.

    it was only interesting cause of the garbage community and the fact that the game was in developement for ages... and now its released its laughable that they delivered a game that isnt all that special, and received negative reviews when it came out.

    MMOs currently playing: -
    About to play: Lord of the Rings Online
    Played: Anarchy Online (alltime favorite) and lots of f2p titles (honorable mentions: 9Dragons, Martial Heroes, Dekaron, Atlantica Online)

  • JacobinJacobin Toronto, ONPosts: 697Member Uncommon

    Have to agree with Darkfall on #1, what a crazy ride that was. You had to be hardcore just to get a spot in the game.

     

  • tazmanyaktazmanyak PerpignanPosts: 77Member

    nice article, i totally agree those 5 games (eve if they really didnt all work good) can change face of future mmorpg ...

    Lets wait and see ^^

    Thank you for the article ;)

  • xpiherxpiher Indianapolis, INPosts: 3,311Member
    Originally posted by 3on1

    Originally posted by Stradden

    Originally posted by finnmacool1


    What a joke. Why dont you stop the charade and just declare this the darkfall #1 fansite?
    Seriously, the game is a niche game with a very small following. Most gamers outside this site have never even heard of the game and those that visit this site wouldnt have either if you didnt insist on plastering crap about it on the front page on a daily basis.

     

    It was still the most interesting of all of the games. I don't suppose you actually took the time to read the description and the rationale behind the choice before flying off the handle? If you didn't, then shame on you and I suggest you go re-read it and see f you still feel it's fanish. If you did, then I just don't know what to say... I wouldn't call what was said overly positive.

    it was only interesting cause of the garbage community and the fact that the game was in developement for ages... and now its released its laughable that they delivered a game that isnt all that special, and received negative reviews when it came out.

     

    Oh yea darkfall is crap but game like Aion, WAR, Runes of Magic, etc are the best games ever! :rolleyes:

    Darkfall does somethings right and some things wrong. All that matters is this. The game is out and even though some people say the game is utter shit, it did prove that you can make profit off of a sandbox game even one that is medicore (I don't think its all that bad. it needs more fluff and its getting it. Then again all I care about in a game is PvP). You can love or hate the game, but that much is true.

    Now I'm looking forward to MO, but the way that beta is going sigh

    image
    Games:
    Currently playing:Nothing
    Will play: Darkfall: Unholy Wars
    Past games:
    Guild Wars 2 - Xpiher Duminous
    Xpiher's GW2
    GW 1 - Xpiher Duminous
    Darkfall - Xpiher Duminous (NA) retired
    AoC - Xpiher (Tyranny) retired
    Warhammer - Xpiher

  • KyleranKyleran Tampa, FLPosts: 19,995Member Uncommon

    I have to agree, DF was defintiely one of the most interesting games of 2009, whether you love or hate it.

    But calling MMORPG.com DF's number one fansite, ROFL, that's going to have some DF supporters laughing out loud today.

    In my day MMORPG's were so hard we fought our way through dungeons in the snow, uphill both ways.
    "I don't have one life, I have many lives" - Grunty
    Still currently "subscribed" to EVE, and only EVE!!!
    "This is the most intelligent, well qualified and articulate response to a post I have ever seen on these forums. It's a shame most people here won't have the attention span to read past the second line." - Anon

  • ThrawlThrawl Carrollton, TXPosts: 271Member

     Darkfall was definitely the most 'interesting'. Whether you consider Adventurine to be famous or infamous is in the eye of the beholder I suppose. I played EU for a couple months and let my sub run out right before NA launch. I think Adventurine is a bunch of weazles and won't throw another penny at them.

    I give them credit though, they peaked my interest up until now. But now I'm looking forward to Mortal Online. Starvault already stated they will start out with at least one server in europe (sweden, i believe) and that noone will be charged extra when servers open up in their area of the globe (i.e., NA servers). This is a hell of a lot better than what Adventurine did, which is why they no longer get my money.

    Our spirit was here long before you

    Long before us

    And long will it be after your pride brings you to your end

  • KainisKainis Jacksonville, FLPosts: 436Member

    I have to agree with John on the list, especially with putting DF as number one. Only by actually reading the article can one understand WHY he put it as number one. This being that it did in fact, garner the strongest feelings of 2009 about a single game. Now for most, including myself, those feelings were more of disgust than anything else; it garnered them all the same. Stradden recognized this, and thusly put it number 1.

    Very well done John, here is to hoping for pleasant memories with the class of 2010.

    -----------------------
    Tried- L2, Ryzom, WAR, DDO, PWI, Tab Rasa, Requiem, Champs, AA, JD, PWI, SUN, Dawntide

    Played- SWG (pre-cu), AoC, VG, WoW, LoTRO,CoX, EQ2, DAOC, GW, PotBS, Aion, MO,APB, NASA, Fallen Earth, DCUO, Rift

    Playing- EVE, Black Prophecy, TOR

    Waiting for- Tera, Jumpgate Evo, WH40K, WWE, WOD, TSW
    --
    --
    "Hey, if Activision liked it, then they should have put a ring on it," Double Fine President Tim Schafer said. "Oh great, now Beyonce is going to sue me too."

  • brenthbrenth rock island, WAPosts: 288Member

     

    CHAMPIONS:  I was very dissapointed with champions (what little I saw of it)  It had very little in common with the champions PnP game  using  pre caned powers (like COH) instead of the option to be able to roll your own powers

    yes it did have a complex charactor creation  but suprisingly I found it lacking in the several charactors I tried to make (they never came out the way I imagined them)  it remains to be seen if this title  will become something some day  but it was just another  skin job  in my mind  that has been produced for 15-20 years  even the   generic spawn generators from at least as far back as EQ era  was a yawn  for me  but like I said I have very limited exposure only a few hours in the "open,open beta"  (and oposed to the "open,closed beta"

     

    cant anyone come up with a game that does not follow this  tired  arcade  kill grind  idiot AI  theme?  if i didnt know any better  its like theres this construction machine  that  developers bought 20 years ago  they everyone uses to produce slightly different versions of the same crap.  as a veteran player   its  alot of "been there done that"

    dont get me wrong there is alot of room in these games for improvement  without throwing the entire book out the window.

    some suglobal sugestions:

    more drama

    more player bonding with the game and other players to build loyalty

    smarter AI  its out there..  percieve, advance, attack  just is boring for the defacto brain

    more diverse quests   instead of vending machine quest givers  have them more organic,, have more than a single path to the goal besides brute force.

    definatly more player choice freedom,,  lord of the rings put in  costume clothing  so that players could "choose" how they wanted to appear  this addition alone gave them  +2 in my book   though they still cant seem to have resizeable UI windows  and their fishing addition was an insult!  overall  lotro is one of the few games I would fully recomend for the casual player

    now if they can only get slippery ice!  its odd to have whole zones of snow and ice and none of it slippery!  its like white dirt.

    they also have a terrible aversion to boats and water  they finally put a taxi boat on their lake zone  but its a simple teleport :(

     

    still better than FALLEN EARTH  which is  prety much a run of the mill  SWG era  generic construct    (quite a decent harvest and crafting system)  actually quite a boring and bland world  especially at the upper levels   I recomend avoiding this title for 6 months to a year  then see  if they added   (vehicle physics engine,, grenade physics engine,, water physics engine, and lastly a method of long distance fast travel  better than horses or vehicles)  they dont even have  things like the shotgun guages in the corect order  so much for quality control.

     

    make a world, not a game, we dont want another game.

  • brenthbrenth rock island, WAPosts: 288Member

    I got an idea for  a story for you  why not   do a feature on a "dream game"   set up some postings  about building  player dream games.

    have 2 foundations  1  casual  and 1 PVP (try to set up votes so they can be double or cross voted)

    ask players to sugest different thems then  vote/decide  which will be used

    then  have discussions/ sugestions  about what features should be left in or out

    ending up with a 2-3 page description  of this player dream game

    when I say dream game  im not talking  impossible content or nonexistant interfaces  just if players had the ability  what would their  game look like.

     

     

    make a world, not a game, we dont want another game.

  • Einstein-DFEinstein-DF New York, NYPosts: 752Member

    Darkfall #1

     

  • OzmodanOzmodan Hilliard, OHPosts: 7,187Member Uncommon

    Good article Jon.  I have to agree on your choices, it has been an interesting year.  I will say that I don't think many adults will play Free Realms very long, I just found it way too childish for my tastes.  I do know some kids that enjoy it though.

    As to Darkfall, they just tried to be too many things.  Far too many features poorly implemented.  If they had just cut down the feature list and concentrated on those select features I think the game would have been much better.  But they have a following, they might still get it right yet.

    I think Darkfall and Spellborn are both very good examples of how not to market a game.

  • AlienovrlordAlienovrlord San Antonio, TXPosts: 1,525Member

    Not exactly the definition of 'interesting' I would choose.

    That definition would make Paris Hilton and the Swing Flu 'interesting' as well.   

  • PbangahPbangah Prov, RIPosts: 2Member

    crap there is a new strand??? the "swing flu"? /palms face

  • RealmLordsRealmLords Chicago, ILPosts: 358Member

    RE: Darkfall "I just know that its progress over the last few months has been entertaining to say the least."

     

    When it comes to Darkfall, I'd say it's been entertaining over the last DECADE.  ~grin~

    I am glad they finally got released and wish them tons of success.

     

    Ken

    www.ActionMMORPG.com
    One man, a small pile of money, and the screwball idea of a DIY Indie MMORPG? Yep, that's him. ~sigh~

  • badgererbadgerer ChchPosts: 90Member

    "...entertaining to say the least."

    Yes, never have I come to know a game so intimately without having actually played it. I wonder how many games in the future will elicit such hope of deliverance from dross. I also wonder if any will actually deliver it.

  • ericbelserericbelser buffalo, NYPosts: 783Member

    Okay, so maybe 2 of the titles count as "interesting" in the sense of watching a train-wreck...(darkfall and champions)...but the reast? More stuff no one really cared about.

    The list hammers home that 2009 has sucked as a year for new MMOs; let's face it, the market is taking a serious deep breath after AoC and WAR.

    Secondly, the list is reinforcing my opinion that this site is increasingly interested in covering things that I have zero interest whatsoever in reading about...so perhaps it's more than time to go elsewhere.

  • Dante1313Dante1313 BrisbanePosts: 11Member
    Originally posted by ericbelser


    Okay, so maybe 2 of the titles count as "interesting" in the sense of watching a train-wreck...(darkfall and champions)...but the reast? More stuff no one really cared about.
    The list hammers home that 2009 has sucked as a year for new MMOs; let's face it, the market is taking a serious deep breath after AoC and WAR.
    Secondly, the list is reinforcing my opinion that this site is increasingly interested in covering things that I have zero interest whatsoever in reading about...so perhaps it's more than time to go elsewhere.

     

    Depends on your tastes..

    You do realize MMORPG isn't designed solely for you right? You know they cover MMO's in general all MMO's not just the ones you like?

    I personally love Runes of Magic and F2P games and hate P2P so half the list to me is Crap or a Griefer fest but hey you like being all He-Man in a Video Game Grats to You ... You guys are welcome to throw your Egos/Epeens at one another in Darkfall.

    Enjoy

    Crown the Wise, Harness the Talented, and Cherish the Lucky......
    The Dragon Lofwyr.

  • ScotScot UKPosts: 5,762Member Uncommon

    The games chosen reflect the unwillingness of MMO companies to try anything new as much as they do the games themselves. But I think the list is spot on in identifying those companies that have tried something a bit different.

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