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After playing MMOs for 16 years now I have experienced 2 MMOs that really stand out from the rest and made an impact on the market.
First was EverQuest - the first Grand Scale MMO to be in 3d and to really make an impact in the market. Back in the day during the first few expansions, Kunark, Vellious there were news articles of babies dying due to neglect...THAT sort of thing. EQ was HUGE there's no denying it.
Then came World of Warcraft - the first Grand Scale mass appeal MMO. Not much needs to be said here since WoW is still the current MMO Champion regardless of personal feelings, the #s speak for themselves.
I wonder what the next "Big Game" will be and what it will bring to the table. To determine to the future I study the past and IMHO EQ and WOW are very similar in that they share a lot of the same kind of classes, are medieval genre and have an emphasis on end game bosses. It would only seem logical then that the next big game will be a newer version of just that. However, several have tried and all have failed to be the next Big MMO. Are we waiting for the right one to come along or does the "Next Big Thing" need to be completely different than what we've been playing?
Played: M59, UO, EQ, Runescape, DAOC, SB, EQ2, WoW, EVE, Darkfall, AoC, FFXI, FFXIV, WAR, SWTOR