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In reading through the most recent "player housing" thread I got to wondering, what sort of features that a MMORPG can have actually encourage players to sub for longer periods of time. (F2P/BTP is a different thing altogether)
Right off the top, slower leveling (or progression) curves would keep people subbed for longer, but its a bit of a two edged sword, I think the falloff of players is almost directly proportional to the leveling curve, the steeper it goes, the more people drop off in frustration. Hard to find the right mix I suppose.
It was mentioned that some players are willing to stay subbed, in order to work/maintain their housing efforts, I recall many of my old clanmates in DAOC/Mordred keeping their subs for quite some time after leaving just so the guild town would be retained.
Of course, EVE's real time training is a solid way to keep people subbed, during leaves of absences to try other games I kept my 3 subs rolling strong because I had endless skills to keep training. Needless to say, this doesn't appeal to everyone though.
So those are few I came up with, and I was wondering what other features might encourage people to stay subbed for longer periods of times than what appears to be the current model of 3 months of subs or less and they're done and moving on.
(Bet there's some Dev teams out there that are struggling with this same idea right now)
In my day MMORPG's were so hard we fought our way through dungeons in the snow, uphill both ways.
I don't play games, I inhabit virtual worlds™
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