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Could a Realistic Historical MMORPG Work?

45074507 Member Posts: 168 Uncommon
edited April 19 in The Pub at MMORPG.COM
I've always found it interesting how culturally popular many historical periods are (ancient Greece and Rome, the Viking golden age, the Napoleonic Wars, the wild west, Victorian Britain, etc), but the vast majority of MMOs are science fiction or medieval high fantasy. I'm wondering if this is because over the top, ridiculous things like dragons and laser guns are necessary for an MMO to succeed.

So, I'm asking if you think that an MMO set in history based on real events with true realism (no magic, prayers, mythical beasts, bullet sponge enemies, etc) could actually become significantly popular (>100,000 regular players), or would the lack of 'cool' mobs to fight and mundanity of most progression (oh, this longsword is the best in the game? Where's the glowing fire coming out of it?) bore too many people?

I know that there are historical MMOs out there, but I'm not aware of any with a significant population, although please do correct me if I'm wrong and there's one I've never heard of.

Could a Realistic Historical MMORPG Work? 56 votes

Yes
67%
cameltosisSovrathPrecusorAmatheKaisen_DexxAlomarkrulerAgent_JosephExcessiont0nydKonfesstanastiaTheocritusSEANMCADcraftseekerStormsoneStainless72laseritSid_ViciousZigZags 38 votes
No
32%
PhrySpottyGekkotawessHorusraLynxJSANanfoodlewandericacheyaneAngier2758kitaradwaynejr2GorwethunderCnyxxeeNLScottyNoxiasBestinnaThoth_Moshe 18 votes
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Comments

  • Angier2758Angier2758 Mt. Prospect, ILMember Posts: 1,016 Uncommon
    No
    Saying no due to too many downsides.  That and MMORPG fans are still in a bad mindset of expecting every game to be their perfect game... so all the downsides would scare people away.
  • t0nydt0nyd Evansville, INMember Posts: 270 Uncommon
    Yes
    I could imagine a survival  style mmo where it's mostly players vs the environment. Trying to grow food and hunt in a harsh world could be fun. Imagine trying to fight a bear with crude weaponry. Armor doesn't really stand up to the power of a bear. 
  • Jill52Jill52 pittsburgh, PAMember Posts: 72 Uncommon
    edited April 21
    Yes
    Maybe something like this...

    Oregon Trail Online! ...I can see the advertising for it now:
    "Do you have what it takes to make it to California or will you die a horrible death along the way? Work with other players to survive! Craft everything you need from food to a raft to get your wagon across a river. Be ready to fight off wolves, bear attacks and even angry natives! Pre-order now to claim your limited edition founder's straw hat for when you begin the most epic hardcore co-op massive multiplayer journey of all time!..." 

    Seriously though, I think there would be a market for a massive multiplayer survival style game. Survival games out now only allow small groups on a server. It would be interesting to see how guild sized groups work for this kind of game.

    Imagine a MMO community trying to survive together. Let's use Oregon Trail for an example. A single wagon would be a party. A wagon train would be a guild with the wagon master being the guild leader. When players are offline their characters stay in the game as NPCs so they won't fall behind or leave the rest of the wagon train waiting for everyone to be online. When you die you start over at the beginning. This would be different from most MMO games since there is no 'endgame'. Instead it would focus on the journey and group survival.

    It is an interesting concept and something I'd be willing to try if it is done right.
  • SEANMCADSEANMCAD Houston, TXMember Posts: 13,324 Epic
    Yes
    absolutely can.

    That said, hitting the right demographic might end up being slightly older than what many target which for some reasons seems to be around the age of 13 despite the average age of gamers being much higher

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  • francis_baudfrancis_baud Member Posts: 161 Uncommon
    edited April 21
    "You're about to enter one of the most realistic and challenging MMORPGs of your gaming career. [...] you'll be nothing but a humble peasant living in the Middle Ages."



    400k copies of Your Own sold on Steam, and the MMORPG version of LiF is currently in CBT. We'll see if this one gets really popular, it seems to be the best hope right now for a realistic / historical MMORPG.
  • SEANMCADSEANMCAD Houston, TXMember Posts: 13,324 Epic
    Yes


    "You're about to enter one of the most realistic and challenging MMORPGs of your gaming career. [...] you'll be nothing but a humble peasant living in the Middle Ages."



    400k copies sold of Your Own sold on Steam, the MMORPG version of LiF is currently in CBT.


    yup...

    and its an awesome game best I can tell and of some I have played. I wish I had more time

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  • Thoth_MosheThoth_Moshe Member Posts: 79 Uncommon
    No
    No because a "realistic" mmorpg would go against what they teach in majority of academics/schools, especially if its based on Europe in the dark ages before the rebirth aka renaissance
  • SEANMCADSEANMCAD Houston, TXMember Posts: 13,324 Epic
    Yes


    No because a "realistic" mmorpg would go against what they teach in majority of academics/schools, especially if its based on Europe in the dark ages before the rebirth aka renaissance


    I dont think the majority of players are going to run off to the library and check out the latest book on the dark ages to look up and make sure the game has all the right features.

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  • GorweGorwe Ald'RuhnMember Posts: 3,702 Rare
    No
    The "realistic" part swayed me over to the NO side. I simply don't think people want realism + history. Now, if you asked whether a historic mmo could work(not necessarily realistic)...then hell yes!
  • VengeSunsoarVengeSunsoar Member Posts: 6,115 Rare
    edited April 22
    Hmm I don't think so. Parts of it yes. But overall I think a realistic historical game would offend far too many people and get far too much bad press to survive.

    Hmm on second thought. It could work provided you made those parts of history that are considered bad/racist/ sexist today as kind of a spoof. Thinking John Candy in Canadian Bacon where they just poked fun at Canada and U.S. stereotypes.
  • DMKanoDMKano Gamercentral, AKMember Posts: 15,412 Legendary
    As long as it wasnt realistic and not very historically accurate, maybe.

    Most likely no due to mass playerbase not really liking this. Western playerbase is all about fantasy RPG as the most preferred setting.


  • RidelynnRidelynn Fresno, CAMember Posts: 5,708 Epic
    Yes
    Games have less to do with what they are about, and more to do with being a good game or not.
  • TheScavengerTheScavenger Matrix, NYMember Posts: 1,608 Rare
    Yes
    It would offend two groups of people if it was to be the most realistic historic MMO/game possible

    Liberals because if the game included any part of Africa, they'd have a bitch fit seeing that those of color also owned as many if not more slaves than white people did in north america and treated them even worse. And they even shipped them to north america for slavery

    Republicans because it would show religion (especially that in the papacy) as a barbaric religion full of pedophiles, and brutal killings in the name of god. It would also show that christians stole most of their stuff from pagans (holidays and what not) and their brutal treatment of pagans

    My adult gaming and mods website (various games, adult mods, screenshots, stories and other games I play(ed) 

    http://nsfwgaming.wixsite.com/adultgamingandmods


  • WizardryWizardry Ontario, CanadaMember Posts: 12,334 Epic
    It would NEVER work because to be historic means you would actually be making a SINGLE player game and not a MMO.
    When you want to create a MMO,EACH and every player should be creating their OWN life/activities role playing,they should NEVER be following the same path as every other player.
    So could it work as a single player game,yep for sure and already has,i played several and enjoyed most of them.

    Never forget 3 mile Island and never trust a government official or company spokesman.

  • MendelMendel Marietta, GAMember Posts: 1,583 Uncommon
    Yes
    Could a realistic historical game work?  Certainly.  Could it work as an MMORPG and not a single player game?  Possibly, depending on the period and how the developers approached certain subjects.  But, it would be difficult.

    The game would almost have to avoid certain topics, like religion or races to keep from offending well-meaning people with too much time and money on their hands.  Most every civilized country has historically had some form of laws that prohibit murder, so combat becomes extremely restricted by the PC crowd and historical accuracy (countries make war, not people).  Certainly, it might be possible to make a crafting game (1900-1920: become a car manufacturer) but that is going to have limited appeal, and history will pretty much declare who built Ford Motors and when, so there's no "firsts".  The limits of the developers will dictate what can be made and how it can be decorated, eroding the boundaries of innovation.

    After all the limitations are added in, it wouldn't be very historically accurate, and the creativity might be severely hampered by the design choices.  It probably wouldn't make it as an MMORPG, and certainly would struggle to find an audience of 2,000, much less the 100,000 + the OP wants.  For the most, such a game probably wouldn't be very appealing.

    Logic, my dear, merely enables one to be wrong with great authority.

  • tawesstawess LkpgMember Posts: 3,708 Rare
    No
    Mostly it would fail due to people having a very romantic idea of what history is... 

    But also it would be boring as dirt. 

    Sounds much more like an idea for a co-op survival or sandbox game. 

    Tawess gaming

    Tawess soapbox

    This have been a good conversation

  • NanfoodleNanfoodle Member Posts: 7,356 Epic
    No
    Problem is history is not globally a standard. Like in the USA the history about war of 1812 talks nothing of Canadian forces kicking butt right down into Washington DC. Depending on where you live in the world that fact can be very upsetting or exciting. So who's history do you base it off of? Who's view point matters? IMO fiction is the best option. 



  • Agent_JosephAgent_Joseph Member Posts: 1,229 Uncommon
    Yes
    yes , I am waiting for this one ;http://store.steampowered.com/app/381620/

    only EVE is real MMO...but I am impressive with TSW

  • PhryPhry OxfordshireMember Posts: 8,520 Epic
    No
    Just some historical reproduction isn't really all that interesting, for an MMO to have any kind of longevity you need the 'fantasy' element, without having magic or mythological monsters of some description, all you are left with is a drab era of history where you are more likely to die from various diseases, than combat. :o
  • NanfoodleNanfoodle Member Posts: 7,356 Epic
    No

    Phry said:

    Just some historical reproduction isn't really all that interesting, for an MMO to have any kind of longevity you need the 'fantasy' element, without having magic or mythological monsters of some description, all you are left with is a drab era of history where you are more likely to die from various diseases, than combat. :o


    Thats the other side of it for me. Why be joe in a history game. Living out the story of what happened in RL. I get enough RL in RL lol. I play games to become something that does not remind me of the bad things going on here in RL.  



  • wandericawanderica clayton, NCMember Posts: 237 Uncommon
    No
    Historical, yes.  I envision a Viking MMO with sort of a hybrid survival / traditional game system (don't judge. I just watched a Viking documentary on Netflix).  Anyway, I imagine an MMO with a massive world.  Europe Including the Brittish Isles, Iceland, and Scandinavia would all be there.  Expansions would include the New World and Greenland since the Vikings settled as far west as eastern Canada and as far south as Newfoundland. 

    The survival elements would include ship building as a community effort along with hunting, cooking, and construction of longhouses and forges.  Known Viking settlements would exist, however, which brings me to the traditional MMO part.  Going to a town full of NPCs and getting permission, through a quest, to put together a raid, or set out for new lands via exploration would all be a part of it.

    In the end, I had to vote no though because realism just isn't feasible.  All female characters are limited to cooking as a profession.  Their sword skill and strength is capped at 250 / 500 while their perception, charisma, and Dexterity gets a +100 bonus.  Women will randomly be affected by the debuff "With Child" which can randomly effect stats by up to plus or minus 200 and cause hunger to occur 100% more often.  Additionally, random NPC mobs in Europe will cause the debuff "Plague" which will decay one's maximum health at an exponential rate.  This process takes roughly 2 weeks of in-game time (2 Days real time).  This debuff cannot be removed by any known means.  All death is permanent, and all head shots result in immediate death.  PvP is free for all with community defined penalties in settlements and will result in penalties in accordance with predefined laws within NPC controlled town and cities.

    For some, the realism elements might sound amazing, bad parts and all, but for most, it would end up extreme niche.  Again, I think history has provided us some amazing settings for sandbox style MMOs, but you'll have to leave the realism out of it for it to be successful. 


  • krulerkruler PerthMember Posts: 444 Uncommon
    Yes
    Historical, hmmmm Ok I want one set in the 1980's where you could club an elephant to death with your mobile phone, and where err oh hang on nope I was pretty much wasted all through the 80"S cant actually remember anything Historical.....Other than I got wasted and annoyed one weekend and ended up joining the Armed forces, spent over 20 years on that silly idea.

  • craftseekercraftseeker kynetonMember Posts: 1,504 Rare
    Yes
    Voted yes, then read the comments and I am inclined to think no. Oh and BTW the uber weapon would be a spear and not a sword.
  • zenomexzenomex ApeldoornMember Posts: 138 Uncommon
    edited April 23
    Yes
    you should rewrite your question into a more specific one. "could" implies in the future, and who knows how trending history can be in 2025. 
  • SpottyGekkoSpottyGekko JohannesburgMember Posts: 6,299 Epic
    No
    The idea of "realism" in games is usually fairly unrealistic when implemented. It has to be, else the game pace will be too slow and boring.

    A "realistic" game based on the Vikings would only have raids in the summer months, for instance, because navigating the North Sea in winter in open boats is simply suicidal.

    What is usually done is the game is given a reasonably accurate historical setting, but everything else is done on "alternate history" lines with large allowances for "enjoyable game play".

    That said, there's an audience for almost any game imaginable, it just may be a very small audience. A game like "Tale in the Desert" survived for many years with around 1000 players...
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