It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!
Ladies and Gentlemen,
I have been playing MMOs since Everquest and I have noticed a disturbing trend. Prior to EQ, those of us that loved the fantasy genre played roleplaying games with dice, paper, pencil and a group of friends. The game was best enjoyed with a group, all contributing both through their charaacters skills but probably even more importantly through their wit and roleplaying. The memories of those years of paper and pencil gaming will last me a lifetime and I think of them fondly.
Of course, as technology allowed our paper and pencil games to move to computer (i.e., Bards Tale, Ultima and Wizardry) and ultimately the internet (Everquest) the games at the beginning of the computer version of the fantasy genre were very similar to paper and pencil gaming as they placed a huge emphasis on grouping for EVERYTHING. I have played every major MMO since EQ1 and while the game play and graphics are always improving, the PvE part of the games is not in my opinion. Quests in EQ were hard and long. EQOA had questlines that took weeks to complete and you needed a group for basically every part of the quest. EQ2 came out and added a solo-element to the game. While for me at first this was a welcomed change and allowed me to enjoy the genre without the time sink necessary to have a regular group, I didn’t realize until Guild Wars 2 how much I have missed grouping as a requirement and how much MMOs have changed, negatively in my opinion, since EQ1.
I will give GW2 great applause for a very polished gameplay experience but what is missing in mind (and RIFT had the same problem) is the community. No one really chats and there is very little reason to group. As an old paper and pencil fuddy-duddy from the 1970s what is missing from GW2 (and it is missing from RIFT, WOW, SWTOR, LOTRO and others) is the need to group for more than just raids or dungeons. Grouping for regular grinding or epic quests creates lots of opportunities for meaningful and prolonged interaction, banter, which lead to meaningful in-game friendships.With the elimination of a standalone healer class this downward slide away from grouping was the last straw for me.
So, to those that I have played with online (Dairith, Qen, Nicci, Windbear, Xerios, Windbear, and Maxpain) thank you for the memories from the EQ and WoW franchise. As of an hour ago, I have decided that GW2 was the last MMO I will ever play. I have deleted the game from the computer and actually pulled out my paper and pencil PATHFINDER books and am forming a local group of adults (have 4 so far) and we are going to have the interaction that we hoped could have been achieved from videogames. So my departure from GW2 (and retirement from MMOs) should not be taken as a reflection on the gameplay, but instead a fundamental flaw in the MMO market--- the lost art of meaningful and longer term interaction with other players. Prior to my retirement, I choose to play MMOs over Single-player RPG because I desired the company of other individuals to create shared memories, experiences, and friendships. I have been playing GW2 since beta and found that there is very minimal chatting…. People are just too busy smashing buttons. Quests are short and travel distances are short… it seems that others who are playing this game just don’t have the same need that I do for the connection with other players. So farewell MMOs….. I will be slaying my dragons with 4 friends in the same room, a number of cold beers, plastic dice, metal miniatures and graph paper.