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WTF has happened to the genre? Rants of a veteran mmorpg'er

crysentcrysent cedar rapids, IAPosts: 837Member Uncommon

Hello,

After my lastest forray into SWTOR  I've finally had it with the genre.  That is, I can't really comprehend what's happened over the last 10 years or so.  Is this really all a result of WoW?  Is this the result of investors wanting the companies to play it 'safe'?  What has happened?

A little about me:  I started playing mmo's in 98 with Ultima Online, from there I went to Everquest, Asherons call, Shadowbane/DAOC and on and on.  I've played every single AAA mmo to have come out over the years as well as many smaller ones.  I've watched the genre go from extreme hardcore (Everquest 1 death penalty, Ultima online full loot) to theme parks with 3 or 4 battlegrounds.  PvP has clearly taken a 'min-game' type feel to it.  Death penaltys are long gone from most MMOs.  Real challenge is found in the form of raids that take entire days and are made up of min/maxers.

I guess I'm asking how the genre ended up here?  8 years or so ago when Star Wars Galaxies was released it was a full loot, merciless game...2 months ago when TOR was released it was a WoW clone with the Star Wars IP attached.  Even games with successful past as more hardcore games have taken the WoW route..Mythic is a prime example of this: DAOC with 3 factions and a massive end game open world pvp area was replaced by Batrtleground heavy and cartoonish Warhammer.  Lord of the Rings online could have had epic PvP with such a solid storyline, instead we get some strange monster play.

Rift is no different, its a WoW clone with a twist on professions.  Everquest 1 is another prime example, one of the most hardcore PvE games ever made was turned into a cartoony solo-friendly (and far less popular) Everquest 2.

I just don't understand.  It seems the demand is certainly there, and Guild Wars 2 shows lots of promise but why has it taken so long?   I look over the game list at left and all I see are WoW clones with different twists on the unimportant aspects.  The genre hasn't grown stale, it's been stale for the last 10 years.

A company like Bioware should have known better:  In the Star Wars universe which at its core is a story of good vs evil, dark vs light, Jedi vs Sith, we instead are given Huttball and a terrible designed small open world area where there is no death penalty and you can insta spawn and run right back into the fight.

So I guess I leave this with a few questions:  Why did the genre take this route? the route of safety, the route of WoW cloneing?  And more importantly, why do the gamers continue to support this?  (I'm as guilty as anyone)...Seemingly every new AAA game gets super uber hyped by the mmo community (just look at TOR) releases and is a major let-down.  Population tanks and that's that.  Rinse and repeat with the next MMO.

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Comments

  • PuremallacePuremallace Phoenix, AZPosts: 1,856Member

    [mod edit]

    ^ There is the issue with the genre. Noone is willing to stop riding Blizzard nuts and keep praising them as some great dev when they deliver piss poor content for a sub fee.

     

    Also the genre went main stream after Blizzard started raking in record profits. Also the issue is the people playing the game. You people say you can not stand WoW, but like clock work every single damn mmo that comes out you try and turn it into WoW.

     

    Just admit you guys love the WoW model and move on seriously. t is a serious case of denial. GW2 is not immune to this crap either. Watch the request for add ons, arenas, and x-server LFG on the first day.

  • crysentcrysent cedar rapids, IAPosts: 837Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Puremallace

    Dumb ass people can not recognize quality when they see it as proven by your statement about Rift. Call it a WoW clone and go back to paying Blizzard.

     

    ^ There is the issue with the genre. Noone is willing to stop riding Blizzard nuts and keep praising them as some great dev when they deliver piss poor content for a sub fee.

     

    Also the genre went main stream after Blizzard started raking in record profits.

    I don't think I praised Blizzard anywhere in my post.   It would be incredibly naieve and ignorant to ignore the effect Blizzard had on the genre and the domino effect since WoWs release.

     I played Rift and I fail to see how its any different then any other MMO on the market?  It's a theme park with warzones on the side.  Open world PvP is pointless, there is no death penalty, and WZ's are a sidegame to better gear.

     

  • crysentcrysent cedar rapids, IAPosts: 837Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Puremallace

    Dumb ass people can not recognize quality when they see it as proven by your statement about Rift. Call it a WoW clone and go back to paying Blizzard.

     

    ^ There is the issue with the genre. Noone is willing to stop riding Blizzard nuts and keep praising them as some great dev when they deliver piss poor content for a sub fee.

     

    Also the genre went main stream after Blizzard started raking in record profits. Also the issue is the people playing the game. You people say you can not stand WoW, but like clock work every single damn mmo that comes out you try and turn it into WoW.

     

    Just admit you guys love the WoW model and move on seriously. t is a serious case of denial. GW2 is not immune to this crap either. Watch the request for add ons, arenas, and x-server LFG on the first day.

    Also who is "you guys"?  Your not an MMO player? or your exempt from your criticism? 

  • FrostWyrmFrostWyrm Tempe, AZPosts: 1,036Member

    Rift is a total WoW clone.

  • ZekiahZekiah Aurora, COPosts: 2,499Member

    Greed. Period.

    Once gamers stop paying for garbage they'll stop feeding it to us.

    "Censorship is never over for those who have experienced it. It is a brand on the imagination that affects the individual who has suffered it, forever." - Noam Chomsky

  • crysentcrysent cedar rapids, IAPosts: 837Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Zekiah

    Greed. Period.

    Once gamers stop paying for garbage they'll stop feeding it to us.

    But it seems like a chicken or egg arguement to me.  Gamers buy it because its all there really is, companies create it because gamers buy it.

     

    People want to play MMOs and will buy whats on the market, especially with the marketing and hype machine that makes every new MMO to come out look like the second coming of jesus.

     

    Clever marketing, bias reviewers, beta gimmicks and unfulfilled promises by developers have all fueld this as well.

  • mmoguy43mmoguy43 , CAPosts: 2,447Member Uncommon

    I think you know the answer why.

    WoW's fluke of a mass money success told investers how they must make MMOs from now own. Ever since, the design has been altered to the modern MMORPG forumula or has be built around it. Mass appeal = more money

  • HluillHluill Lovingston, VAPosts: 105Member Uncommon

    Great Rant!

    First off: I agree completely.  I have seen the  trend as well.

    What's changed is the market.  MMOs used to only be plated by PnP geeks.  We were looking for the PnP experience without having to drive to someone's house to play.  We even wanted more visually oriented play.  UO and EQ were awesome for this.

    Then Mr. T started making WoW TV adds.  MMOs were no longer some geeky, introverted niche in the gaming community.  I started running into other people who played them.  Populations grew.

    People started seeing dollar signs.  Make the games more inclusive (easier/less frustrating to play), and more will play...

    I know this isn't new information for you.  But popularity, success and mainstreaming, killed the MMO community and the designs. 

    Hluill, a barbarian rogue, and his Warrior-daughter, Leyek
    Playing/Subscribing: TSW, LotRO, EQ2, and SWTOR
    Played: GW2, V:SoH, Neverwinter, ArchAge, EQ, UO, DAoC, WAR, DDO, AoC, MO

  • CastillleCastillle KhobarPosts: 2,703Member Uncommon
    Erm...support indie devs. Like.... Send cuathon some support! Like.. Everyone send some money in chip in!

    I really hated the quest grind but you have to admit it gets players the thing that most people like most about mmos - fastfeeling progression

    ''/\/\'' Posted using Iphone bunni
    ( o.o)
    (")(")
    **This bunny was cloned from bunnies belonging to Gobla and is part of the Quizzical Fanclub and the The Marvelously Meowhead Fan Club**

  • ValkaernValkaern OxfordPosts: 512Member

    Yeah, it's disgusting. I also think that some of the people that are newly introduced to MMOs would actually enjoy the deeper and more challenging environments we used to get, but haven't had the chance to play a modern equivalent. I don't think they're all only capable of understanding the most dumbed down and shallow systems imaginable, yet that's all we get.

    Guaranteed victories in the safest worlds ever populated with monsters. 

     

     

  • jdnewelljdnewell Spring Hill, TNPosts: 2,150Member Uncommon

    Simple really.

    MMO genre became mainstream. And while WoW may have been the catalyst its not to blame really.

    Once companies began to see how much profit could be made off MMO's then the generic mainstreaming began. Why cater to a small niche crowd and make some money when you can cater to everyone and wipe your ass with $100 bills for life?

    Maybe this will make sense. It is my opinion only tho.

    Take the Black Eyed Peas. I remember listening to them  back in the day when their very 1st album was released, and then their 2nd album. These guys put out some really good music then but were hardly known, I introduced alot of my friends to them off the album Bridging the Gap and  Behind the Front. Great music IMO, especially for the time.

    Now they put out generic top 100 pop music. IMO because of their popularity they have changed to suite the masses. Just like the MMO genre.

    I think that I have outgrown the genre. I liked MMOs better when they were niche games with smaller populations, where your name and rep actually meant something, where you actually had to group for content, there was no instant gratification.

    The genre has changed, I have changed. Maybe time to move along and let the next generation have the instant gratification generic MMO's that soloing is the norm.

    I have a few games I am keeping an eye on. But if those dont do it for me then I am done I think. Maybe go back and play some PnP with a few old buddies.

  • ErgloadErgload GV, OHPosts: 374Member

    Originally posted by crysent

    Why did the genre take this route? the route of safety, the route of WoW cloneing?  And more importantly, why do the gamers continue to support this?  (I'm as guilty as anyone)...Seemingly every new AAA game gets super uber hyped by the mmo community (just look at TOR) releases and is a major let-down.  Population tanks and that's that.  Rinse and repeat with the next MMO.

     

    WoW is the "ultimate Diku" game and Diku was a popular genre. If people keep buying it don't fix it. I hate WoW and personally I play games like Achaea because the communities are way better and they're a break from the WoW clone. Definitely not for everyone though, some people love MUDs and some people hate them. I personally think they're a great alternative to the plague of the WoW clone

    image

    Currently playing: Achaea
  • PuremallacePuremallace Phoenix, AZPosts: 1,856Member

    Originally posted by crysent

    I don't think I praised Blizzard anywhere in my post.   It would be incredibly naieve and ignorant to ignore the effect Blizzard had on the genre and the domino effect since WoWs release.

     I played Rift and I fail to see how its any different then any other MMO on the market?  It's a theme park with warzones on the side.  Open world PvP is pointless, there is no death penalty, and WZ's are a sidegame to better gear.

     

     

    [Mod Edit]

    You are criticizing TOR because it was a themepark. Find me a single interview or video where they claimed otherwise. Only thing they did was make grand claims about how great Ilum was and "someone who has played Mmorpgs since 1998" SHOULD HAVE known there would be faction imbalance, gear, and OP/non OP classes.

     

    You are sitting here trying to reason something that makes no sense. In my view I do not understand how Blizzard delivers content once every 6-7 months and keeps a playerbase of 10mil+. They say quality over quantity, but the 3 patches this expansion have been shit and everyone admits that even Blizzard.

     

    There are games coming out trying radically different stuff like GW2 or TSW which is why they are so hyped. Here is a idea maybe next time a Star Wars game comes out instead of saying "zomg give me now" or "zomg take my money Bioware" you do what I did and completely tear the game apart for being too safe.

     

     

    You take the high road now seriously, then wonder why the genre has gone to crap?

  • ValkaernValkaern OxfordPosts: 512Member

    Originally posted by Hluill

    Great Rant!

    First off: I agree completely.  I have seen the  trend as well.

    What's changed is the market.  MMOs used to only be plated by PnP geeks.  We were looking for the PnP experience without having to drive to someone's house to play.  We even wanted more visually oriented play.  UO and EQ were awesome for this.

    Then Mr. T started making WoW TV adds.  MMOs were no longer some geeky, introverted niche in the gaming community.  I started running into other people who played them.  Populations grew.

    People started seeing dollar signs.  Make the games more inclusive (easier/less frustrating to play), and more will play...

    I know this isn't new information for you.  But popularity, success and mainstreaming, killed the MMO community and the designs. 

    All the dumb jocks came over to our D&D table and turned the whole campaign into an endless series of rolls to see if they're getting drunk or scoring with the barmaids.

  • SnoepieSnoepie RotterdamPosts: 470Member

    well if you played games like uo and doac..

     

    How dare you... but not been able to find a decent mmo

     

    *looking around the corner to darkfall online*

  • crysentcrysent cedar rapids, IAPosts: 837Member Uncommon

    But is there that much money being made? I've often considered this myself.  YES WoW has been incredibly popular and profitable..but what about the WoW clones?

     

    WAR?  Empty.

    EQ2? Empty

    Rift?  Not empty, but certainly not raking in the dough

    TOR:  Sold a TON of copies initially, but also bioware has a massive investment in the game (somewhere around 350 Million dollars) and is undenibly losing population only 2 months after release.

    So what seems like an initial infusment of cash (selling lots of copies, like rift did) seems to just result in an empty game 4 or 5 months down the road, or if not empty a massive cut in #of servers and staff.

  • badclownbadclown viennaPosts: 37Member

    I blame the fucking kids nowadays.. some posters called this mainstream, but thats the problem. Thats why new MMOs are easy mode instant win games.. because little kids and 90% of the population anyways dont have the brainpower to play more difficult games.

  • crysentcrysent cedar rapids, IAPosts: 837Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Snoepie

    well if you played games like uo and doac..

     

    How dare you... but not been able to find a decent mmo

     

    *looking around the corner to darkfall online*

    I played Darkfall and Mortal Online.  I liked both, but they were frustrating because the companies lacked the resources to fix certain aspects of the game.

     

    Yes there have been indies that have taken shots at sandboxes, but they simply don't have the resources to run a smooth game like the bigger companies do.

  • PilnkplonkPilnkplonk zagrebPosts: 1,532Member

    Gee, you fell for SWTOR hype.. Well, it's not like nobody told you so.. including Bioware itself.

    Why can it still go on? Well, you paid them for the box, you tell me.

    I've long ago decided that I'm not paying one bloody cent for anything I don't condone. And I don't condone statements like "whoever is not copying wow is crazy."

  • Siris23Siris23 Minneapolis, MNPosts: 217Member Uncommon

    To quote Grandpa Simpson:

     "I used to be with 'it', but then they changed what 'it' was. Now what I'm with isn't 'it', and what's 'it' seems weird and scary to me, and it'll happen to you, too."

     

    The genre has moved on and you haven't, sucks to be you.

  • QuizzicalQuizzical Posts: 14,788Member Uncommon

    So you go out of your way to cherry-pick WoW clones to play, and then you complain that they're WoW-clones?  If you want something different, then go play something different.  Try Uncharted Waters Online.  Try A Tale in the Desert.  Try Spiral Knights.  Try Puzzle Pirates.  Maybe you'll like them or maybe you won't, but if you don't, it won't be because they're WoW clones.

  • just1opinionjust1opinion Kansas City, MOPosts: 4,844Member

    Originally posted by crysent

    But is there that much money being made? I've often considered this myself.  YES WoW has been incredibly popular and profitable..but what about the WoW clones?

     

    WAR?  Empty.

    EQ2? Empty

    Rift?  Not empty, but certainly not raking in the dough

    TOR:  Sold a TON of copies initially, but also bioware has a massive investment in the game (somewhere around 350 Million dollars) and is undenibly losing population only 2 months after release.

    So what seems like an initial infusment of cash (selling lots of copies, like rift did) seems to just result in an empty game 4 or 5 months down the road, or if not empty a massive cut in #of servers and staff.

     

    EQ2 is not a WoW clone.  WoW is an EQ2 clone.  EQ2 was released FIRST and has more features than WoW.  EQ2 is also not empty, unless you're one of those people that thinks they can't play an MMO without a million people or more.  

    President of The Marvelously Meowhead Fan Club

  • crysentcrysent cedar rapids, IAPosts: 837Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Siris23

    To quote Grandpa Simpson:

     "I used to be with 'it', but then they changed what 'it' was. Now what I'm with isn't 'it', and what's 'it' seems weird and scary to me, and it'll happen to you, too."

     

    The genre has moved on and you haven't, sucks to be you.

    Maybe.  Maybe it sucks to be me.  Or maybe it sucks to be one of the people endlessly enjoying games like WoW?  I dunno, maybe your right.  But if the genre moved on, why are there so many empty games and empty servers spread across all the AAA games to have released in the last 5 years or so?

     

    If its me and not the games why am I sitting in a 2 hour warzone que on TOR?  Why is the EQ2 server I played on empty?  Why when I log into Lord of the Rings is there no one around?  Why when I logged into the rift free trial I had to transfer all my old chars off empty servers?

     

    Just curious..

     

     

  • nikoliathnikoliath YPosts: 1,154Member

    oh lord, another sky is falling post. 

     

    The industry grew up into a business.

  • AntariousAntarious Greenville, SCPosts: 2,802Member

    Originally posted by crysent

     

    So I guess I leave this with a few questions:  Why did the genre take this route? the route of safety, the route of WoW cloneing?  And more importantly, why do the gamers continue to support this?  (I'm as guilty as anyone)...

     

    You know how we got here.

     

    EQ did better than UO.   After EQ... most games were more like EQ.. than UO.

     

    WoW did better than EQ... and now most games are more like WoW.

     

    Why do gamers support this?   Well the global market is much larger than it was in 1997 when I started.   Did you ever stop to think maybe the vast majority of those millions of people... actually like WoW and games like it?

     

    Did you ever think that gamers like us are in fact a minority?   That if we took our money and went home the industry wouldn't even notice?

     

    If the gamers supporting it... like it... that's not bad.   Its not like they have some duty to only support games we would like..

     

    I'd love a modern day UO... I have ideas of what I'd like that game to be.   I don't know that I will ever see that game.. but I think about it often enough.

    Moderator's on this site allow certain posters to create endless troll threads. Yet "warn" people for giving recommendations... account *pending* deletion because.. why bother.

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