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I wrote a very long and i believe good "article" about this subject and right before posting it i accidentally hit backspace and all my work disappeared...Next time i'll write it in a word document before trying to post it on a forum. Anyway, i'll post here the conclusions that i came to in this article that developers and players alike should consider as we develop/play MMO's in the future:
1) MMO players "live" in their game and as such want a world to inhabit.
2) Graphics are important but performance is more important: The sweet spot in a good MMO is providing the best visuals possible while sacrificing little to no performance (i.e. it needs to have high dps, low lag, little to no bugs, it needs to be responsive, functional and convenient).
3) Raiding and pvp aren't the only things people want in an MMO; gamers play multiple good console games when they want to satisfy their gaming needs individually. MMO's are an immersive life-like experience and as such should attempt to satisfy as many gaming needs as possible while still adhering to the theme of the title.
4) The game needs to have an appropriate challenge vs reward ratio; I think everyone will agree that the overall trend of the industry is toward easier content, but i don't think that's what players want at heart. Players want the content of the game to be accesible and fully functional but not easy. Players want to be rewarded adequately for their efforts and finding that sweet spot is one of the hardest things for developers to do. But as an avid MMO player i know that most people i know (myself included of course) want a game that offers content that scales from very easy to very challenging while remaining totally functional and providing adequate rewards for each.
If you think there is some knowledge in these points i will attempt to write the article again (this time in word document and paste it here) to elaborate on all these points and provide suggestions on what developers and players should do with this knowledge. I'm including a poll to take a vote. Please vote and tell me what you think below about this topic.
Thanks in advance for your input fellow MMO players