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Where to begin....
For starters, I've been around the MMO block more than once, since 2001 I've played every Major and Minor MMO you can probably bring up that was worth anything at all and a few that should never have been as well. I'm not goin to brag about my accomplishments, because in all actuallity they're all just games, who cares how much you've done in them. The point is, did you have fun while in the game? If so? Then the game did it's job. Some games start out great, only to go really bad, really fast, right after release. There are a few major reasons for this, one of which is usually poor implimintation and design. Mostly it's design though.
MMO ( Especially RPG based MMO's ) and yes there are those out there that I personally feel shouldn't be touting the RPG part of their genre. Anyway, a MMO is a game that has long since been lost, let alone MMORPG's. The idea behind paying a monthly fee to play a game you spent $60 to $150 ( CE's ) to buy to me back in the early days was not something I cared for. But! When I seen that the game was never ending, took you a good six months of hard work just to get to what I call the midway point ( Max Level, as we all know that's generally where the real game begins ). Then you still haven't even come close to doing even 50% of what the game had to offer. You were lucky if you got it all done by the time they did their next paid expansion.
That to me is what a MMORPG should be, you should not complete the game at all even close in the firs few weeks or months. It should be something on such a grand scale that when you get in, you are overwhelmed and kept occupied for the first year at least. Crafting was also something that made things last longer, as in my first MMORPG ( DAoC ) it defined your world. Crafting was a HUGE part of it and that even itself has been lost in todays MMORPG's. Then we come to the last point of my targeted discussion here is everyone wants the next MMO they go to, to be just like the one they just left but with a different skin. They deny this when you say this to them but in actuallity it is what they're demanding. Gaming companies now days go for the quick buck, release things well before the game is ready and end up struggling and caving in to demands of what in fact is the reason games fail lately. Now this brings me to The Elder Scrolls Online....
Let me say this is the one thing I've been really waiting for, that is simply an Online version of Elder Scrolls. I could have been more than happy of just having them add the ability to have 3 others log into a Elder Scrolls game ( Like Skyrim ) and just have the game scale to how many of us were there and let a few of us get together and have a blast going around and exploring. Then again I can't deny I wanted to know what it would be like for a real MMORPG by Bethesda. Now before you go pointing out it's not Bethesda making it? They are overseeing it, they are a part of it still and it is their partner company doing this. So! I'm still excited and having a lot of faith that they will bring back what MMORPG's are supposed to be.
The main issue I see with gaming today, everyone wants to just get in for a short time and get everything they want and get out. Problem is, that is not what a MMO should be, as I've explained. I've read and heard about from my closest friends that frequent here a lot about what some ohave said. All of the "This is why The Elder Scrolls Online will fail" and all that. Well for starters a failed game does not run, does not stay open and is not played by anyone, PERIOD! There are a lot of games still being played to this day ( EQ, EQ2, DAoC, etc.... ) that were out and are responsible for other MMO's coming to life that are in fact still running today. Just because a game has some similarities to another, doesn't make them a Clone to the previous one.
What makes them a clone is when they start down that path of bringing in things to their game that others have based on selfish demands of players that just don't want to put in time and effort to a game. They want the quick fix and get to the end yesterday as apposed to taking their time, play and enjoy the game and explore all of the options. MMORPG's are not single player games, they are not a stand alone, they should take you all year to get even close to completing everything there is in the game from release minus a content addition here and there. This is what The Elder Scrolls is up against and to me that has nothing to do with it being a Clone, it has more to do with todays players wanting it to become just that so they can rush through it.
Now, don't get me wrong, not trying to start no kind of flame wars here, but The Elder Scrolls Online from what I've been seeing is far from being anything like any other game out other than Elder Scrolls itself. It can't possibly be identical 100% to the stand alone version, because there is a lot in those that would not work in the online format of an MMORPG, especially one with PvP in it. I for one love the direction they're going with it so far, except for a few things. I've long gotten over the need to have one dungeon have three of four different playable versions ( Heroic, Nightmare, etc.... ). That I can do without, I'd just like to have a lot more different dungeons than go into the same one again all the time. That's just me though.
This game's combat system is NOT like GW2, it's like their stand alone game more than GW2. GW2's is a weak version of what TESO has. The way the perk system works, the way the attacks can change and so on are far different than that of GW2. So that's not a real fair comparison. The game isn't even out of infancy yet and people are judging purely on speculation and not on facts. Nothing in the game is even written in stone till it's released and even then it's not, we all know this from being in MMO's how they change things all the time. Technically, no game is really ever out of beta, it's just released and everyone that buys it is now the game's beta testers from that time going forward lol!
As far as my hopes for TESO, I'd like it to bring back Adventuring into MMORPG's, that has been a lost element for quite some time. I still play Skyrim, because it really makes me travel all over the realm looking for just anything I may have missed. An NPC that has a quest that I didn't get, a dungeon, cave, fort, anything that I may have missed in my travels. Special items I may have overlooked, all kinds of things because in Skyrim, 98% of it is fully explorable. Every building, house, fort, chest, closet, all of it can be opened or lock picked. There is so much you can be doing on your own like that, it would be hard to be bored.
Dungeons for groups, I've heard that some don't want them instanced. I however would like them to keep them instanced, there is nothing worse than having to compete for a boss, or having a group of people ( Farmers ) that sit at a certain boss and camp it till they get all they want from it, or just come in for harrassment puproses to mess up your encounter because they can. We would like to think people are nice enough to not do that, but lets be realistic here, we know better! Experience with this kind of system has definitely given proof to that. Yeah there are some people out there with that kind of respect, but not as much as there are those that don't.
The other thing is about the Three Realm Split, if they don't allow you to play all three realms? So? Pick the one has what you want most of. I had to do this back in DAoC, but then again, they had more than one server so I do understand the position this puts some of us in. But I do feel for the PvP end of this, it needs to be that way. Just because you have two other realms you can't go into with your character doesn't mean you're getting cheated at all. In DAoC the realms were huge inside their own. Then the PvP ( Frontiers ) was just as big. So I don't see a problem personally with this. I must admit though, I am concerned with the so called "Mega Server" system they're using. I'd liked to of at least had a choice to play one of the other realms on another server. At this point I'd say have three "Mega Servers" so that players can have that option.
My main thing about this post if anything at all, is that I have faith in The Elder Scrolls Online to do their best to bring things in line with what a MMORPG should be and not what everyone right now is currently calling an MMORPG. Lets be serious, if we wanted to keep playing the same game over and over, we'd never left the game that originally gave us all that and or be yerning so much for something new, something GREAT to make it's way out and save us from our constant let downs of recent times. So if anything, don't be backseat developers, let them do their job, we'll do ours and play the game if we like it. If not? Then find one that makes us happy and play that. For me? I've had Skyrim since release and I'm still playing it!
Guild Leader for Order of Sanity
The Order of Sanity