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Why No Mini-Games in MMO's??

davidcronedavidcrone Louisville, KYPosts: 9Member

I am not really playing any MMO's currently. I dabble in Eve, which is silly, because it is far too in-depth for a dabbler to get anywhere. I played WoW for a bit, but lost interest. The only MMO I ever truly played intensely was UO, which is an experience I have never been able to duplicate.

For me, the key to a great MMO is creating an experience which players will want to play long term. Crafting, housing, allowing players the freedom to build houses, cities, and nations are all things that I think are hugely important in creating the ultimate sandbox MMO experience. That stuff is all incredibly difficult to build, I would imagine.

But, why do developers completely ignore adding mini-games to MMO's? Wouldn't this be a simple way to create engaging content, and allow players a break from endless grinding? How hard could it be to add blackjack, yahtzee, etc.?

I am no genius, but it seems to me like putting things like casino's in major cities, or even allowing players to build their own casino's could be incredibly cool. My guild or corp could build a giant casino at the heart of our city, allow players to play against the house in games like roulette and blackjack and we could make or lose thousands of gold, isk, or whatever other currency may be used. You could also set up tables to play poker, have five card draw, stud, hold 'em etc. and allow players to play those games against each other. Really, if an MMO included this try to tell me your guild wouldn't hold a weekly poker night? If you claim you wouldn't, you are lying.

It doesn't have to end there. You could also have arenas where you could fight monsters that players breed or enchant. I have NEVER played as a character that uses animals in an MMO, but if I could go out and enchant monsters, and then train them, that would be amazing. You could level up breeding and training abilities and use these monsters for fighting in dungeons, or for entering into fights. You could have pick-up matches or enter massive tournaments. Not every player is into PvP, but creating an opportunity to raise and train monsters to fight could be a great addition. Top notch trainers and breeders could even sell their monsters to other players. This is all kind of similar to raising/racing chocobo's in FF VII.

I've thought of other type of games that could be included, but these are two of my favorites. Players wouldn't have to partake in any of this, but, it would create a completely new element to MMO's and give them a ton of longevity. These games could be huge in creating more community engagement and involvement, and also would add an insane amount of basically never-ending content to keep MMO players engaged....so....

WHY DOESN'T ANY GAME DO THIS??

Comments

  • worldalphaworldalpha Milton, ONPosts: 403Member
    I added a sniper game to mine, and was going to add a tank and artillery game as well, but the response to the sniper minigame was tepid, so I've abandoned the tank and artillery ones for now.  Thing is MMO players and minigame players are 2 different beasts, and there crossover is not as much as you might think.

    Thanks,
    Mike
    Working on Social Strategy MMORTS (now Launched!) http://www.worldalpha.com

  • MuruganMurugan D, COPosts: 1,494Member
    ARR is getting the golden saucer with mini games.
  • AxehiltAxehilt San Francisco, CAPosts: 8,724Member Uncommon

    It's hard to say there are no minigames in MMOs, given that WOW alone probably has a good 25 different types of games (from Plants vs Zombies to FarmVille to Bomberman to any quest where you drive a tank or pilot a bomber.)

    For most other MMOs, every type of activity is a minigame, including some sub-features of activities.  Your rotation is a minigame and the threat game is a minigame and the healing game is a minigame.

    Between all of these minigames which do exist, adding more is mostly just a problem of time and polish.  Most games struggle to have enjoyable core mechanics, so if they haven't put enough time into making their original features fun enough minigames, it's actually a bad idea to add even more unpolished minigames to the mix.

    "Joe stated his case logically and passionately, but his perceived effeminate voice only drew big gales of stupid laughter..." -Idiocracy
    "There is only one good, knowledge, and one evil, ignorance." -Socrates

  • tharkthark FalunPosts: 1,147Member Uncommon

    A question I have been given myself lately aswell..:)

    There is mini games in a few games..The newly released Defiance has several mini games of arcadish nature , drive cars , shoot chickens etc etc. EQ2 after being released a few years added a collecible card game that could be played from ingame menu and well SWTOR has the space shooting arcade game.

    Pirate 101 and Wizard 101 has ALOT of minigames , and so does SOE FREE REALMS infact this entire game is built around small minigames, all from mining to getting seeds ..

    It makes these games better and should be implemented in every new game..

  • maplestonemaplestone Ottawa, ONPosts: 3,099Member

    *reads first paragraph of player history* / *checks mirror to make sure I'm not the OP*

    But seriously ... I see "minigame" differently.  To me, everything in an MMO is a minigame - fishing, crafting, every verb of the game is really a game onto itself.  It's just that some minigames are more walled-off from the rest of play than others.  So I don't think that MMOs do lack for minigames - they just aren't always clearly marked..

  • xpowderxxpowderx Radcliff, KYPosts: 2,131Member Uncommon
    EQ, EQII, Vanguard, Pirate101, Wizard101 all have minigames. Rift has mini quests which are puzzles to solve. I think there are many mmos that have a mini game. Just perhaps not the kind you want.
  • MuruganMurugan D, COPosts: 1,494Member
    Originally posted by xpowderx
    EQ, EQII, Vanguard, Pirate101, Wizard101 all have minigames. Rift has mini quests which are puzzles to solve. I think there are many mmos that have a mini game. Just perhaps not the kind you want.

    What is a mini game in Vanguard?  Diplomacy?

     

    I dont' think that is what the OP means by mini-games.  Diplomacy is a game system, it has useful benefits to players and is integrated into the character's progression.  Mini-games are stand alone experiences within games, usually that aren't necessary to the game itself but a distraction.  Diplomacy buffs were very useful and a part of how many people simply played the game and progressed their characters no different from crafting/gathering.

  • centkincentkin Asbury, NJPosts: 943Member Uncommon

    Free Realms was (and probably still is) a game that had tons of minigames.  And yes I loved vanguard diplomacy.  Really I do not understand why they do not have that sort of thing as well.

     

    I mean even something like ogre football or elven golf might be cute in a major MMO. 

  • IncomparableIncomparable KuwaitPosts: 872Member
    Originally posted by worldalpha
    I added a sniper game to mine, and was going to add a tank and artillery game as well, but the response to the sniper minigame was tepid, so I've abandoned the tank and artillery ones for now.  Thing is MMO players and minigame players are 2 different beasts, and there crossover is not as much as you might think.

     

    Based on one game you form this opinion? Which game is that? And it also depends on what kind of mini games, and the quality of them.

    Mini games are something that can be a great part of the game, especially for end game. 

    Repeating quests ad inifinitum is essentially a mini game that is not developed in a more in depth way. So if people are willing to do end game dailies for simple rewards, then that is proof if the rewards are good for mini games, then mini games would be better.

    Also a key point for mini games, is that they should be pvp, and sometimes with pvp, the reward is in the challenge with other players.

    Also even if mini games are not as popular as other aspects of the game, including mini games like a card game that is specific to a faction adds a lot of atmosphere. It makes the whole game much more immersive that there is an actual social life to the game, and not just exp.

    “Write bad things that are done to you in sand, but write the good things that happen to you on a piece of marble”

  • ozmonoozmono Not tellingPosts: 1,211Member
    I'd like to see some good crafting mini games personally.
  • AxehiltAxehilt San Francisco, CAPosts: 8,724Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by ozmono
    I'd like to see some good crafting mini games personally.

    While it's not necessarily true to say you have a choice between WOW crafting (barely a game) and EQ2 crafting (a pretty lousy minigame,) it's not too unlikely that a mediocre-quality minigame is what you'd end up with.  Mostly on account of companies rarely having enough time to dedicate to making each minigame fun and interesting.

    I do feel like the right designer with the right idea could blaze in and really make a genuinely fun crafting minigame.  But it would be rare for the stars to align on that one.

    "Joe stated his case logically and passionately, but his perceived effeminate voice only drew big gales of stupid laughter..." -Idiocracy
    "There is only one good, knowledge, and one evil, ignorance." -Socrates

  • ozmonoozmono Not tellingPosts: 1,211Member
    Originally posted by Axehilt
    Originally posted by ozmono
    I'd like to see some good crafting mini games personally.

    While it's not necessarily true to say you have a choice between WOW crafting (barely a game) and EQ2 crafting (a pretty lousy minigame,) it's not too unlikely that a mediocre-quality minigame is what you'd end up with.  Mostly on account of companies rarely having enough time to dedicate to making each minigame fun and interesting.

    I do feel like the right designer with the right idea could blaze in and really make a genuinely fun crafting minigame.  But it would be rare for the stars to align on that one.

    I agree that the right designer could make genuinely fun crafting minigames but I'm not sure how unlikely it would be. I'm not saying your sentiment is wrong but there is alot of room for improvement on games like EQ2 or even final fantasy and they are generally better than the standard in that regard.

     

    I played a basic flash game that was all about crafting and although it wasn't great it was a huge improvement over any crafting mini game that I've seen in a MMO with the possible exception of puzzle pirates. Anyway I think it  is something that would add alot of value to the game and I don't think it's exceptionally difficult to design, atleast not to be a considerable improvement over standard MMO crafting.

  • davidcronedavidcrone Louisville, KYPosts: 9Member

    More crafting mini-games would be great. From what I read ATitD had some pretty serious crafting mini-games that directly affected the quality of the item crafted. That sounds awesome to me, it's just a shame that the game seems to have such a sparse population.

    But, I am referring to basically games that have almost nothing to do with the game itself. Going back to a casino type of idea, there is no reason you need a casino in 99% of MMO games, BUT it would be a lot of fun to walk into a casino and play poker with other players. Or, like I said before, to be able to have a poker night with your guild once a month. Some people could make their money on the game by mining, other people could make their money playing poker.

    Recent RPG's like Fallout: New Vegas have included casino's. But, it seems like older RPG's used to include somewhat stand-alone minigames with even more success. Chocobo breeding in FFVII was an amazing distraction. Being able to breed and race chocobos was something I spent hours doing, even though it had nothing to do with the actual storyline.

    I am all for adding useful crafting minigames. Having a fully fleshed out farming system, or mining/smithing system would obviously be amazing. Having a better fishing system could be very cool. But, I think you could even add simple games like checkers, chess, poker, blackjack, etc. These games are incredibly simple, they shouldn't require any fancy graphics or any creative ideas. But, I think players would really enjoy it. They wouldn't have anything to do with player development (aside from winning or losing money), they would simply be there to build community and to increase the overall game experience. At the end of the day, it's about having fun. I think being able to set up a large scale chess tournament within a game, or poker, or pool, or any other type of game, could be a really cool addition.

  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,659Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by centkin

    Free Realms was (and probably still is) a game that had tons of minigames.  And yes I loved vanguard diplomacy.  Really I do not understand why they do not have that sort of thing as well.

     

    I mean even something like ogre football or elven golf might be cute in a major MMO. 

    This has me wondering what the OP's definition of minigames is. LOTRO has them, GW2 has them, Puzzle Pirates is built around them. UO used the classics. In L2 you type /minigame to start the one there.

    In AC, would the OP consider the lifesize chess board a minigame? How about the fishing system?

    Minigames seem rather common to me, so I think I'm just going on a broader definition than the OP is. 

    There isn't a "right" or "wrong" way to play, if you want to use a screwdriver to put nails into wood, have at it, simply don't complain when the guy next to you with the hammer is doing it much better and easier. - Allein
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  • BathnorBathnor Standish, MEPosts: 136Member
    Runescape has a ton of different mini games. They even have servers dedicated to different mini games.
  • IcewhiteIcewhite Elmhurst, ILPosts: 6,403Member

    Profiteering is always available. Don't think I'd touch a game that had no economy at all.

    Peggle doesn't hold a candle to Economic Domination of the Universe (mwuhahaha).

    Self-pity imprisons us in the walls of our own self-absorption. The whole world shrinks down to the size of our problem, and the more we dwell on it, the smaller we are and the larger the problem seems to grow.

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