Read an interesting paper by a guy in the gaming industry. He specifically specializes in MMOs - especially how in-game economies work (or more usually don't) as well as the problems MMOs currently have these days with retaining players past a few months beyond a small, dedicated fandom.
Anyway what he said had me wondering if within the next 3-4 years we will enter a period where no more Western dev'd MMOs will be made and it will only be ports/localizations of Asian MMOs. He specifically mentioned 2011 investor numbers in games.
Here was the 2011 industry break down for investing in new game IPs for various platforms.
- 57% of all investor money went into social networking games (ex: Facebook, etc)
- 30% went into mobile games (cellphones, tablet)
- the remainder was divided up among everything else - traditional console games and traditional style MMOs
- MMOs post-2004 (outside a handful) have a troubled history with the subscription model of supporting the games made.
Basically MMOs and traditional single-player/co-op PC/Console games are fighting for the remaining scraps of investor dollars (13%) that are left over from the other two categories for anything new. Current stuff in development won't be affected but anything actually NEW (as in the idea was being pitched to investors in 2011/2012 for the first time) is fighting over that remaining 13%.
I wonder if MMO fans post 2014 are in for a long draught of new MMO IPs (assuming if what he states is true). If it is - and we are in for a long draught - are there any current western-dev'd MMOs you would reconsider playing? He doesn't mention Asian MMOs in his article and I'm assuming Asian MMOs during this "draught" would continue to be ported/translated into Western markets.
Here's another one he wrote posted to Gamasutra
on the errors he saw made in SWTOR. Both this article and the comments by game developers (and his replies to them) are also worth checking out.