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Over the years some people have asked for a true sandbox game with FFA PVP in a fantasy setting, these PVPers want to gank how they please they want to wreck havoc without any form punishment, and the same people ask why these games cant grow and flurish.
Well I hate to say it, you need the PVE crowd to get this rocket of the ground, if the game is mostly PVP based well then you get same kind of people you are, and the game turns into a somewhat hardcore niche PVP battleground MMO with low population.
This chewed old mantra that these game developers of these games says " the gameworld is open for you, do what you like, build, craft, explore,war," yadda yadda yadda, always turns out to be a big fat gankfest.
A good and solid PVE system with PVP rules pretty much like IRL makes the PVEer stay, look at EVE true It's still niche but IMO It's beacuse It's set in space wich alot of people dont like but CCP made a good balance.
A good and sound PVE foundation with plenty of things to do as a PVEr will make a good and fun FFA PVP game, Ultima Online started it but sadly along the way, something happend and the game developers forgot the foundation of a good balanced game.
PVE crowd are the key for this not the problem.
Just my 2 cents on the matter, just needed to get this down
If it's not broken, you are not innovating.