It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!
Now I feel I have played enough MMOs and played them for long enough; sat on the forums and really looked at the major threads of the pros and cons repeatedly raised, it has become clear that no one MMO really 'gets it' completely.
I think this is because of one major failing.
A lack of understanding of the MMO community as a whole and no significant realisation that a truly holistic approach might be something worth trying.
Ask any MMO fan 'the things that make a great MMO' and you will expect to get the 'themepark' fans and the 'sandbox' fans, with some treading between the two.
This has created a set of polarised desires and expectations made worse by, frankly, the collective laziness of forums posters when referring to these positions with these very labels.
Faced with this 'either/or' appearance to their prospective customer base, it isn't really surprising game developers go one way or the other and face criticism if they try to shoehorn in some of the 'other side' into their game to hopefully capture a few more players.
What no-one seems to have seriously considered is making an MMO which caters for each 'side' by integrating both elements fully into an MMO.
I think this has been a mistake.
I think the first MMO to do it will run off wth 10+ million players who happily subscribe each month and make the owners of the game an ungodly amount of profit.
I think this should happen - I mean why not!?
There are two big fat flies in the ointment here however.
1. The investment necessary to make a massive themepark/sandbox game would be breathtaking and risky.
2. The integration of the two main MMO themes would take a paradigm shift in MMO design.
Investors don't tend to like either....
.... more fool them really - Blizzard are laughing all the way to the bank and have been for years because no-one has stepped up to the plate, broken the mold and taken the crown from them..... a crown they earned by being the first big thing to come along after the first generation MMOs started running out of steam.
A crown they hold on to by default - not by deserving it through an ever-evolving innovative approach they had when they started.
What I would like to do with this thread is collect from each repsondent the top 6 things they would highly prioritise in 'THEIR PERFECT MMO', without using the words 'sandbox' or 'themepark' to describe them.
I think there are patterns here, and I think they can be collated and collectively catered for.