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Why (most) MMO developers are insane.

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  • waynejr2waynejr2 West Toluca Lake, CAPosts: 4,471Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Moaky07
    Originally posted by BadSpock
    Originally posted by Nilenya

     

    It is true that wow was inspired - alot- by EQ1, but then again you had 2 developers on Wow, having come straight from the two most successfull raiding guilds in EQ1, namely Furor, and Tigole - and so ofcourse there would be inspiration abound. But that DOES NOT make EQ1 a themepark mmo.

     

    EQ1 in its original form, from 1999 to roughly planes of power, not including the Ldon expansion was a true Sandbox mmo. 

     

    Stop namedropping oldschool mmo's if you cannot put them into context correctly. 

    Umm you must have never played AC or UO if you think EQ was a sandbox.

    Stop namedropping oldschool mmo's if you cannot put them into context correctly.

    Wow man saved me a post. Good job not being rude about it. /salute

     

    EQ had several sanboxy feeling items, but in no way/shape/form was there any doubt it was a themepark.

    It still blows me away when someone tries to claim eq1 as a sandbox.  Worst is when someone claims wow is a sandbox.  What's next?

  • kalsigurkalsigur San Jose, CAPosts: 27Member

    Syllogism

  • UhwopUhwop Wilm, DEPosts: 1,663Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Disdena
    Originally posted by aesperus

    LotRO is definitely not a WoW clone. It plays different, it feels different, it's setup / designed different, and it's also a pretty successful MMO. It's goal was never to 'beat WoW'. It was to make a massive game around Tolkein lore, which, surprise surprise. It did.

    Rather than being brief, I want to paste an entire email that I sent my friends back in March 2007 while playing in the LotRO beta:

    I'm already in the beta, and I gotta say... I will not be surprised in the least if Blizzard actually files a lawsuit for copyright infringement. The game is WoW. It is WoW. It would take less time to list off the differences than to list off the similarities. Everything, everything, is WoW.
     
    Cheap autopilot travel between towns that you've already visited.
    Quest NPCs have an icon over their head.
    Identical quest dialogue window, with selectable quest rewards.
    Quest rewards are Bind on Acquire, everything else is Bind on Equip.
    Quest reminders on the right side of the screen tell you in small text the name of the quest and your 3/8 Boar Ribs status.
    Going into stealth makes you crouch over, go transparent, and makes a "bwooooo" sound.
    Many professions, but each character can only choose a few of them.
    Trade skills require you to find a more advanced trainer after each interval, and they never fail and always give skill points if not too easy.
    New skills are bought at a class trainer every even-numbered level.
    Items and skills with cooldown become dimmed and then fade back in in a clockwise-manner.
    Your portrait, hp and mp bars are on the top left -- people in your group appear below that, slightly smaller.
    Enemy portrait, hp and mp bars are top center, and if the mob is unique then the portrait is encircled in a different color and style.
    No experience lost on death, just your equipment loses durability.
    Auction house... geez, the auction house...
     
    When I say that the auction house is identical, I mean that it would take minutes for an experienced guild, working together, to confidently conclude which game they are in just by looking at the auction house alone.

    I haven't gotten far enough into the game (and don't know enough about WoW, honestly) to see what other parallels there are, but what I've seen so far is practically appalling. Whatever innovations they've managed to fit in are way outshined by the blatant plagiarism. To me, this game looks like what you would get you asked somebody to make a WoW-killer, but that person had never played any other video game ever other than WoW.
     
    I mean, don't let that dissuade you guys from trying it out if you want to... I suppose that if someone is a big fan of WoW then they will probably like this too. But don't expect much more than you would from a WoW expansion, because that is effectively what this feels like.
     
    This probably seems silly given that this is a laundry list things that've become standard MMO UI (and it doesn't help that it's written in my signature overreactive style) but you may not realize that prior to WoW, no MMO had these things, or at most they only had one or two. This beta was shortly after I had ended a long run of FFXI followed by a short stint in vanilla WoW (just before BC). FFXI had zero of the characteristics on this list. EQ had zero. AO had zero. CoH might have had clockwise cooldown buttons, I don't remember... other than that, probably zero.
     
    The point I'm trying to make is that everyone would laugh if you called Rift a WoW clone based on the quest icons and the crouching transparent stealth. Those have become standard among most or all MMOs. LotRO ripped them from WoW back when WoW really was the only game doing them. It set the pace for how much copying developers could get away with. For the time it was released—a little more than 2 years after WoW—it was a shameless clone.

     I thought it was strange that so many people kept saying that LoTRO was nothing like WoW.  I remember playing it when it came out and telling the guys I played WoW with not to bother, they're already playing it. 

    It's really not suprising so many people don't have a problem being offered game after game that's not really any different from the last one they played when you see people stating that LoTRO is nothing like WoW, when it's actually one of the worste offenders, Rift being the other.

    The same people can't seem to see that saying that has no bearing on whether or not he game is actually good.  For example, Rift is very much a copy of WoW, I don't even think Trion themselves would deny that, they're aiming directly for WoW players who are fed up with waiting for new content.  But it's also a good game.  Themepark or not, wow clone or not, Rift is a good game with developers who know exactly what they're doing and who their audience is. 

    WAR a success?  In what reality?  The one were the developers didn't all but come out and say it was a bad game?  The one were they didn't practically abandon it in favor of producing a cut down version that consists of just doing the only part of the game that people actually enjoyed, battlegrounds?  I'm not saying WAR failed, but anyone who thinks this game reached anything resembling the success Mythic expected it to ahieve is willfully ingnoring the truth.  WAR did very, very poorly, and that's a fact.

     

    No MMO goes from using a subscription model to F2P because it does well.  AoC may be doing well now, but it sure wasn't doing well enough to attract enough subs to keep it from having to go F2P.  AoC also plays very much like your typical themepark. 

    LoTRO didn't switch to F2P becaue it was doing well either.  Publishers do not look at a subscription based game and switch to F2P because THEY THINK it will make them more money.  They do it because the subscitions aren't making them enough, and switching is the only alternative to either waiting for more people to quit or shutting down then and there. 

    If F2P was the way to make more money, Blizzard would have switched WoW over a long time ago.  People are acting like these publishers haven't figured out that there is a baseline for the number of subscibers one would have to retain in order to make the subscription model worth more then F2P, and that the shift has something to do with anything other than the fact that the majority of the MMO's released aren't able to compete under the subscription model. 

     

    Could you imagine an automotive industry that builds cars that all look very much like each other, with the only real difference being different colored pinstripes?  Because this is what I see a lot of. 

    WTF are you talking about, they're nothing alike, this one has a different pinstripe!

     

    Wonder why each new MMO is very much like the last?  Look at how many people in this thread said that LoTRO is nothing like WoW.   

     

  • KarahandrasKarahandras Sible HedinghamPosts: 1,673Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by VengeSunsoar
    Originally posted by dotdotdash

    Lord of the Rings Online did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Warhammer Online did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Age of Conan did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Rift did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Star Wars The Old Republic did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    ...

    Guild Wars 2 is doing the WoW formula for the most part.

    The Elder Scrolls Online appears to be doing the WoW formula for the most part.

    ...

    This is why pretty much every Lead Designer at a major studio working on an MMO is totally, stark raving bonkers.

    "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

    Except that LOTRO did very well and made a lot of money and a lot of gamers enjoy it.

    Except that Rift did very well and made a lot of money and a lot of gamers enjoy it.

    Except that SWTOR has done pretty good, made a lot of money and a lot of gamers enjoy it.

     

    So they aren't expecting different results, they are expecting the same reults.  To do very well, make a lot of money, and a lot of gamers will enjoy it.

    Not sure on your definition of 'very well'.  It's no coincidence that lotros p2p timeframe was pretty much the same as the lifetime subs it sold.  i.e. it didn't have enough people paying a monthly sub to keep it going, people seem to forget that with these games(and i like ddo myself) that it's either go f2p or close them down/switch them to life support(1 maybe 2 servers).  It did however manage to sell over 4 or 5 mil copies so even with the license i think it's a given it was profitable.

    Rift seems to be the exception when it comes to the 'clone' mmo's, but i think that's because trion seems to be halfway sensible and keeps putting the client on sale(and at time free) to keep the numbers up.

    Swtor may have made a lot of money, but don't forget it cost so much to develop, market, maintain etc.  It's sales curve seems pretty poor and doesn't look like it will do as well as lotro and cost 5 times as much so seriously unlikely they've made anywhere near their money back yet and if numbers continue to drop the way they have been it may never happen.

     

  • KarahandrasKarahandras Sible HedinghamPosts: 1,673Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by dotdotdash

    Lord of the Rings Online did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Warhammer Online did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Age of Conan did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Rift did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Star Wars The Old Republic did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    ...

    Guild Wars 2 is doing the WoW formula for the most part.

    The Elder Scrolls Online appears to be doing the WoW formula for the most part.

    ...

    This is why pretty much every Lead Designer at a major studio working on an MMO is totally, stark raving bonkers.

    "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

    TBH I wouldn't call it insanity, just the standard 'executive' level of stupidity.

  • SouldrainerSouldrainer Elmer, NJPosts: 1,857Member
    Originally posted by VengeSunsoar
    Originally posted by dotdotdash

    Lord of the Rings Online did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Warhammer Online did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Age of Conan did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Rift did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Star Wars The Old Republic did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    ...

    Guild Wars 2 is doing the WoW formula for the most part.

    The Elder Scrolls Online appears to be doing the WoW formula for the most part.

    ...

    This is why pretty much every Lead Designer at a major studio working on an MMO is totally, stark raving bonkers.

    "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

    Except that LOTRO did very well and made a lot of money and a lot of gamers enjoy it.

    Except that Rift did very well and made a lot of money and a lot of gamers enjoy it.

    Except that SWTOR has done pretty good, made a lot of money and a lot of gamers enjoy it.

     

    So they aren't expecting different results, they are expecting the same reults.  To do very well, make a lot of money, and a lot of gamers will enjoy it.

    Exactly this.  What people fail to realize is that "beating WOW" is not a goal that developers actually have. 

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  • azmundaiazmundai St Louis, MOPosts: 1,417Member


    Originally posted by dotdotdash
    Lord of the Rings Online did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.Warhammer Online did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.Age of Conan did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.Rift did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.Star Wars The Old Republic did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW....Guild Wars 2 is doing the WoW formula for the most part.The Elder Scrolls Online appears to be doing the WoW formula for the most part....This is why pretty much every Lead Designer at a major studio working on an MMO is totally, stark raving bonkers."Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

    I'd say the reason most MMO players are insane is because they think a game has to beat wow. Also your BOLD, underlined, quote is stupid. They aren't expecting different results. If anything they are hoping for similar results.

    I agree that they should maybe be trying to do something different .. but I also know that they are doing fine by their standards. Their investors are making money while the rest of us fight over scraps and dream of something better. Pretty much the human condition atm.

    LFD tools are great for cramming people into content, but quality > quantity.
    I am, usually on the sandbox .. more "hardcore" side of things, but I also do just want to have fun. So lighten up already :)

  • KarahandrasKarahandras Sible HedinghamPosts: 1,673Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Souldrainer
    Originally posted by VengeSunsoar
    Originally posted by dotdotdash

    Lord of the Rings Online did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Warhammer Online did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Age of Conan did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Rift did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Star Wars The Old Republic did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    ...

    Guild Wars 2 is doing the WoW formula for the most part.

    The Elder Scrolls Online appears to be doing the WoW formula for the most part.

    ...

    This is why pretty much every Lead Designer at a major studio working on an MMO is totally, stark raving bonkers.

    "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

    Except that LOTRO did very well and made a lot of money and a lot of gamers enjoy it.

    Except that Rift did very well and made a lot of money and a lot of gamers enjoy it.

    Except that SWTOR has done pretty good, made a lot of money and a lot of gamers enjoy it.

     

    So they aren't expecting different results, they are expecting the same reults.  To do very well, make a lot of money, and a lot of gamers will enjoy it.

    Exactly this.  What people fail to realize is that "beating WOW" is not a goal that developers actually have. 

    Their goal is ultimately to become market leader, i.e. to beat wow.

  • nariusseldonnariusseldon santa clara, CAPosts: 22,441Member
    Originally posted by Karahandras
    Originally posted by Souldrainer
    Originally posted by VengeSunsoar
    Originally posted by dotdotdash

    Lord of the Rings Online did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Warhammer Online did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Age of Conan did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Rift did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    Star Wars The Old Republic did the WoW formula; it failed to beat WoW.

    ...

    Guild Wars 2 is doing the WoW formula for the most part.

    The Elder Scrolls Online appears to be doing the WoW formula for the most part.

    ...

    This is why pretty much every Lead Designer at a major studio working on an MMO is totally, stark raving bonkers.

    "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

    Except that LOTRO did very well and made a lot of money and a lot of gamers enjoy it.

    Except that Rift did very well and made a lot of money and a lot of gamers enjoy it.

    Except that SWTOR has done pretty good, made a lot of money and a lot of gamers enjoy it.

     

    So they aren't expecting different results, they are expecting the same reults.  To do very well, make a lot of money, and a lot of gamers will enjoy it.

    Exactly this.  What people fail to realize is that "beating WOW" is not a goal that developers actually have. 

    Their goal is ultimately to become market leader, i.e. to beat wow.


    How do you know? Are you a developer? May be their ultimate goal is to make a good return on investment .. which is a pretty common goal in business. You do not have to be the market leader to make a good return on investment.

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