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The Current Problem with Online Gaming – IE MMORPG’s

There is all sorts of chatter going on lately to what should be the future of online gaming. Everyday more games come out and each one is supposed to be the end all be all of games. Currently we have a few areas vying for the top spot and while there are thousands of games out there I am going to group them up into three basic categories. So let’s start with the little guys and work our way up.

First there is the “Free to Play” genre. There is something out there for everyone. You can play a lot of them without even downloading anything. They play through a browser. Sounds good right? That is until you look a little deeper and find that most of these games give either the first X amounts of levels free or they do not give full access to all the parts of the game or to compete in PVP you need to purchase the high powered gear. They normally have an online store that parts you from your money for gear, power ups and in some cases items that allow you to level. Many offer a paid subscription that give you access to those items but any way you look at it they end up charging you and therefore are not truly free to play. So really these are just offering a free trial or limited game experience to see if you want to pay to play. Now, I will say that I have found a few that are true “Free to Play” games with only power ups and consumables however they are few and far between.

Next, we have the multiplayer games. All of you, are at least most of you, have bought a single player game that comes with a multiplayer option. Normally you slog through the same game you already played with friends although in the past decade more developers have heeded the consumer call and created separate stories for multiplayer. Sadly most multiplayer games are first person shooter (FPS) and of those that are role playing games only a handful offer additional content for multiplayer games. There have been a loyal fan base, notably among D&D games that have created massive amounts of player generated content that can be either solo or multiplayer played. This does give a rather enjoyable experience however unless you are able to host your own Vent server (or equivalent) for voice chat you will be fairly limited in doing any sort of role-playing except through typing in chat. This still is more of a small niche in the gaming community. It can be a lot of fun if you enjoy that sort of thing.

Now, you may feel I have left something out here and if so feel free to let me know but I am just doing the broad strokes here. If you found one game in the ether that you love and I overlooked it I will be overjoyed if you show me the way. Now on to the larger than life world of MMORPG’s.

WOW, WAR, EVE, EQ, EQII, DAOC, SWG, COH/COV, AOC, LOTR, MATRIX Online, etc, etc, etc. (If you are into MMO’s you probably do not need any help on those abbreviations. If you don’t then look them up here on MMORPG.com and you can be educated on each of them.) Now, pardon me for a moment as I am going to wax a bit nostalgic here and tell you about my education in my first MMO- EQ.

Back in the day, my brother was playing EQ and told me how great it was to not be able to beat the game in a weekend. At the time we were both playing consoles mostly and we would rent a game and beat it in a few days. So the idea of going into the internet and playing a game that had nearly unlimited content and literally thousands of hours of playtime was intriguing. I made sure I had a computer that would run it and jumped into the game. Here I experienced a level of frustration I had never known before. I lost my body so many times I could have personally fielded a virtual cast for Land of the Dead. I lost all my gear (playing on PVP server) multiple times and had to kill rats with my fists to buy another sword. And I got ganked more in one week than I have been since.

Another new side effect of the MMO was that the game took so much time that I started having arguments in the real world with people about being absent from their lives. I had gone into hermitage before however the console games only lasted a few days and then I was back in the world of the living. In the end I dropped the game having only achieved level 20 on an enchanter. This is the first game that I never finished. I never went back.

Instead I began a nomadic sojourn through just about every game I have listed above. DAOC gave way to SWG then I jumped to COH then onto EVE then WOW then WAR with so many betas and short life MMO’s that there are too many to mention. I do have to say that some very talented people went to a lot of work to make these games enjoyable. In each game I maxed out at least one, sometimes multiple characters. I geared out my characters and had a lot of fun doing it until one day I had an epiphany.

I had spent a lot of time on WOW. Heck, at the time I was a raiding fool. I had sacrificed sleep, time with loved ones, television, sunlight and good health in the pursuit of the full set of MC gear. For the uninitiated that was the top dungeon a few expansions back in WOW. I had a hard core guild that raided twice a week and I did all I could to be there both times. It was after I had the whole set of gear and was kind of burned out on playing that I went away and played Tabula Rosa. (Good game, died too soon in my humble opinion.) WOW had the Burning Crusade expansion come out and I got sucked back in with the promise of the druid bird form that had been in the beta of the original game and was taken out of the first offering. In the first week I got pissed. I ran a few quests and replaced my hard won, EPIC, gear with green drops. That means that if you had skipped the raiding and just bought the expansion you had better gear than those that ground out hundreds of hours of play time. I was so irritated I only played through part of the expansion and left the game.

For me this began introspection on what it was that I wanted from a game.

And do you know what the first on my list was? Simple, it must be fun.

That seems like a no brainer but looking back on a lot of the games I had played only a few of them stand out in my mind as fun. Sure a lot of them were engaging however so is throwing cards into a hat when you are bored.

Second the game must have a good balance of challenge vs. reward.

I have no interest in playing a game that is so hardcore it takes 20 hours to get though the first 10 levels. Nor will I ever again grind away for gear that will only be so much trash when the next expansion comes out. This also means that unless it is a one time or once in a while thing, no raiding. There is little chance of that anyway because even if you are in a guild they have specific gear you normally have to have and in some case achievements before you can even go on raids these days.

Third is must not take over my life.

This last one seems a bit laughable. Until that is you start talking to the average MMO player. As them how many hours they play a week. 20-30 hours or more for the hardcore and at least 10-20 for the casual. That is how much time they play a game. Something designed for amusement and diversion. There have even been stories of people playing games until they died. Seems like we have gotten a bit out of hand on that one.

These rules have served me well. I even gave up MMO’s entirely for awhile in favor of a lot of really good single player games I had missed. Of course it was only a matter of time until one came out that I wanted to play.

So what am I playing now? Warhammer Online.

Why? Because it is fun, and because it has a PVP system that I enjoy.

Do I raid? No.

And as soon as the game stops being fun I will drop it and move on. Not so with many of the MMO players out there. This brings us to our first problem with MMORPG’s. .

MMO’s are designed the way they are because players pay for them to be that way.

Some call them Fanboi’s, others call them martyrs, or in some cases idiots. In any case you will always find people who will play the buggiest of games and sing its praises simply because something about the game speaks to them. Or they are hoping that the game will develop into more of what they envisioned the game to originally be. That latter is true more often than not because a lot of games are shoved out the door unfinished and have to be fixed in motion. So you end up paying to play in a late stage beta more often than not. This is allowed to happen because of the players. They pay the company for this experience. In some cases they pay a premium for a collector’s edition of the game and pay extra to get into the game early. This is odd because very rarely will you find consumers willing to pay to use defective product but in the MMO world this is a staple. Players are also at fault for our second issue.

Stagnant engines. The programs that run the MMO’s of the world have not truly changed that much since EQ. True they have gotten more streamlined and added more bells and whistles but there have been little to no innovations. The exception to the rule could be argued to be EVE Online. However that game takes such a large amount of time to skill up that you will likely never catch those that started playing before you.

Again players are to blame. They keep paying for each new MMO that is only a different flavor of the old one. Developers see this and make small changes and keep making money. Now compare that to single player console and computer games. There have been some significant innovations in those genres because players demand it. Still, as long as people will pay money out for a slight modification of an old standard, MMO developers will push new, little changed games out the door as fast as they can.

Now, there is a lot of discussion going on about where to go next in MMO’s. Some want a sandbox. Others want to have no levels, or no gear or only player made gear, some advance the idea of having no classes, or only 4 classes, just skill based characters, and the list goes on and on. Jump on about any game message board and you will find the different sides vying for the upper hand in the argument. I personally think we need to stop and take a look at what made the old school games fun, before we were awash in all the cool graphics, and see how that can be translated into the current game world.

Back when video games were first starting out, and for sometime after that, graphics sucked. Bits were occasionally different colors and you could sometimes fill in the blanks in your imagination. MUD’s were a good example of having to fill in the blanks in your mind. The storylines however were riveting. To this day some of the oldest games are being remade because the storylines were so solid that developers know they can make a killing by either redoing them or by putting out the next chapter with a better graphics engine. However, somewhere along the line we got way too caught up with shiny items and killer graphics and let the story take a far back seat. I think we can get improved games if we go back to the basics.

Take the old pen and paper games. If you ever played it was about getting together with friends and having an adventure. Well that and a few tons of pizza and gallons of beverage. The games were filled with highs and lows, fun and irritation mixed with anger and joy, all wrapped up in a 3-6 hour game session. Well, sometimes longer if you were like my group who took one day a month to play all day. The idea was the same, whether hero of villain, you were able to live the story of your character. You experienced a living story with friends and triumphed or failed together.

That is not what we have today. With a few minor exceptions called Roleplayer Servers (that normally fail to deliver) or the die hard crews that run AD&D Online together I have seen very little of this. There is some promise in some of the changes coming down the pike. A few developers out there are playing with NPC’s giving out all their info by speaking rather than text. The thought is that you would be more engrossed in the story that way. Now, how that will play out with an entire generation who has learned to auto accept quests and read them later? Who knows? Perhaps if there were bad quests mixed in with good and you had some sort of reputation being tracked that would also cause you to be more engrossed and more careful of what your character did and did not do.

Another way of enriching the experience is to give the character limitations beyond the simple ones currently in place. Yes, use encumbrance, however also use age, weather conditions, reputation, etc and find real ways to give characters motivation to get out there and adventure. Offer the option of truly high level characters being allowed to become part of the game mythos. After all who has not played a single player or PnP (pen and paper) game where you are regaled of stories of daring do of those that came before? Perhaps there is also something to be said for making the character skills more important than the items in the world. Yes, let clothing and the like be as varied as you like so everyone can dress their doll however they want. However in the grand scheme make the gear like armor, even magic armor, only slightly impact the character. A level 20 character should be deadly even when faced with a level 10 character in the best gear available.

Granted this is me giving my opinion but honestly if you have read this far I assume you are waiting for me to give it. I think if someone were to want to break way from the pack they should look for a way to take games back to what they should be. Remember it is a past time, a hobby, and as such should be playable from one hour to twenty hours a week. Do not try to get the time sink crowd. You would have a hard time wresting them away from WOW anyway. Instead design your world to more closely mirror the RPG’s of old. Make a world where player’s actions have actual consequences. Where the main focus for the player is their story and character are for more important than their gear and levels. Where fellowship and having fun is more important than repetitive raiding and item elitism. Where after a long distinguished, or infamous, career a player will have their character retired and be part of the mythos. A figure of story and song that other players will know about based on their deeds. The end product would allow you to make multiple worlds (servers) and allow you to put different genre together. Say one world is Fantasy, another is Sci-Fi, while yet another is Steampunk. By making something that is quality rather than a slight improvement over what is out there you will bring players into the game worlds in droves. Whatever genre they want a world could be built for them. The possibilities would be truly endless. And in my humble opinion it would be fun as hell.

 

 



 

Comments

  • faxnadufaxnadu Member UncommonPosts: 940

     nice opening op, i have to say i agree tho and freedom of choise in games is what i yell at the moment myself,

    out of the forcing raiding grouping bullshit to get best items, theres i other ways to deal with it also.

    every player is unique and therefore needs to be respected so if you only respect those who tend to sacrifice their real life to gear up like you did it leaves no room for those who wants game to be fun in minority hours but then again are skilled what they do in game and ot punished because they dont wanna spend endless hours sitting and pressing couple of buttons in a row.

    cheers, good post.

  • LynxJSALynxJSA Member RarePosts: 3,198

    I think he did add to the discussion. I got a chuckle out of his post, at least. :) 

     

    Look, here's two sentences from your closing, and they define your entire wallotextstuffs:



    "I think if someone were to want to break way from the pack they should look for a way to take games back to what they should be."

    What MMOs should be? I wish you had that line in the first paragraph because it would have saved me the time I wasted reading through that self-righteous essay.

    "Remember it is a past time, a hobby, and as such should be playable from one hour to twenty hours a week."

    You are so absorbed by MMOs that you do not even realize 1) how massive a gap it is between the 1-hr a week player and the 20-hr a week player and 2) that you place 80 hours a month in the 'reasonable play time' category.

     

     

  • Nomad40Nomad40 Member Posts: 76


    I think he did add to the discussion. I got a chuckle out of his post, at least. :) 
     
    Look, here's two sentences from your closing, and they define your entire wallotextstuffs:



    "I think if someone were to want to break way from the pack they should look for a way to take games back to what they should be."
    What MMOs should be? I wish you had that line in the first paragraph because it would have saved me the time I wasted reading through that self-righteous essay.
    "Remember it is a past time, a hobby, and as such should be playable from one hour to twenty hours a week."
    You are so absorbed by MMOs that you do not even realize 1) how massive a gap it is between the 1-hr a week player and the 20-hr a week player and 2) that you place 80 hours a month in the 'reasonable play time' category.
     
     


    Self righteous? Seriously?

     

    It is called an opinion. As I stated before the portion you quoted above. If you disagree try giving a counterpoint. If you were so worried about your time you could have simply not posted a reply. Seems like you had plenty of time for that. As for the last part of you post it doesn't make sense. I am illustrating that you should be able to play as little as an hour or as much as 20 hours in a week. Say if you were on vacation and were so inclined. I have had weeks were I am on the game of my choice for an hour for the entire week and others where I was on for much longer.

     

    So perhaps the world does not need to function simply from your perspective. Now do you have anything constructive to say or did you just come to troll?

  • bonobotheorybonobotheory Member UncommonPosts: 1,007

    So, what is the current problem with online gaming?  I couldn't find it anywhere in that rambling essay.

  • AxehiltAxehilt Member RarePosts: 10,504

    OP's post is really difficult to fish out what he actually feels are problems with MMORPGs. Because of this lack of clarity, and the big text blocks, my replies are disjointed.

    -
    Free-to-play MMORPGs are similar to Trial/Demos of games unless you pay? Well...yeah. Is it automatically evil to want to be paid for work?

    -
    MMORPGs don't mimick the gameplay of tabletop RPGs? Fair enough, but (a) they're not trying to and (b) if you want a tabletop RPG you play a tabletop RPG.

    MMORPGs are not trying to evolve in the direction of tabletop gaming. The direction they're evolving in might have some secondary benefits that make them slightly more similar to a tabletop game (the emphasis on story/choices in Bioware's upcoming game) but it's not the goal of the genre.

    Non-MMO Multiplayer RPGs are the closest you'll get to the tabletop experience.

    -
    MMORPGs are too derivative and not unique enough? Er, wait a sec...didn't you just ask for them to be more derivative of tabletop RPGs?

    -
    Hopefully the OP isn't saying he doesn't find any fun in MMORPGs at all. If that were true, it would be a terrible tragedy that he's stuck through completely un-fun gameplay for all those maxed out characters in each game.

    -
    MMORPGs should have better challenge/reward structure? Definitely agree!

    -
    MMORPGs shouldn't take over my life? Definitely agree! Been musing about creating a very simple browser MMO myself, and that's one of the things I wanted to improve over existing browser MMOs (some of them, like Freesky and Astro Empires, are particularly bad about requiring you to babysit the game almost constantly.)

    "What is truly revealing is his implication that believing something to be true is the same as it being true. [continue]" -John Oliver

  • Nomad40Nomad40 Member Posts: 76
    Originally posted by Axehilt


    OP's post is really difficult to fish out what he actually feels are problems with MMORPGs. Because of this lack of clarity, and the big text blocks, my replies are disjointed.
    -

    Free-to-play MMORPGs are similar to Trial/Demos of games unless you pay? Well...yeah. Is it automatically evil to want to be paid for work?
    -

    MMORPGs don't mimick the gameplay of tabletop RPGs? Fair enough, but (a) they're not trying to and (b) if you want a tabletop RPG you play a tabletop RPG.
    MMORPGs are not trying to evolve in the direction of tabletop gaming. The direction they're evolving in might have some secondary benefits that make them slightly more similar to a tabletop game (the emphasis on story/choices in Bioware's upcoming game) but it's not the goal of the genre.
    Non-MMO Multiplayer RPGs are the closest you'll get to the tabletop experience.
    -

    MMORPGs are too derivative and not unique enough? Er, wait a sec...didn't you just ask for them to be more derivative of tabletop RPGs?
    -

    Hopefully the OP isn't saying he doesn't find any fun in MMORPGs at all. If that were true, it would be a terrible tragedy that he's stuck through completely un-fun gameplay for all those maxed out characters in each game.
    -

    MMORPGs should have better challenge/reward structure? Definitely agree!
    -

    MMORPGs shouldn't take over my life? Definitely agree! Been musing about creating a very simple browser MMO myself, and that's one of the things I wanted to improve over existing browser MMOs (some of them, like Freesky and Astro Empires, are particularly bad about requiring you to babysit the game almost constantly.)

     

    Sorry for the length of the post.  Let me try to quantify what I am saying.

    - Free to Play , Multiplayer and MMOs seem to be the big 3 out there as play options right now. For most people what I wrote is common knowledge and could be skipped over. However I was putting it in there for anyone who might not be as familiar so they could better follow the next part of my post.

     

    - MMORPG's do not really involve a lot of roleplaying.  They have tried and it just doesnt work.  If anyone has any ideas beyond what I mentioned on reputation being a factor  and NPC voicing quest delivery I would love to hear them. Old PnP again was offered as an example because they were story/character driven, the items were normally secondary , and endgame gave characters a chance to retire and become part of the mythos or go out in a blaze of glory.  Another words it would be nice to have an option in end game beyond endless raiding. 

     

    - The players are allowing games to be put out less than finished. In most cases paying extra to pay in these extended betas.  I have been as guilty of this in the past as they next player. Sometimes our excitement to play  a new game overcomes our common sense to have the game work out of the box.

     

    - Players are not demaning much in the way of additional innovation. Comparing Singleplayer game innovations vs MMOs you see a drastic difference.

     

    - People get so caught up in playing , the grinding faction or gear or exp, that they lose sight of the fact that this is supposed to be a hobby. Something done for fun. Players have allowed a lot of timesinks to be left in games that do nothing to enhance the game. They simply artificially prolong the play time. 

     

    - Everything that I have written, if a bit long winded for some, comes from over  two decades of playing these games. From the old Apple IIE bit graphic, through the MUDs and into present day. As games have evolved they have been fun. Obviously as I stated in my post I have had fun playing. Why else would I do it? However at the end of the day it is frustrating to know that there are not any games coming up that are going to leap ahead of where we are at in terms of the engine they use and the gameplay.

  • AxehiltAxehilt Member RarePosts: 10,504


    Originally posted by Nomad40
    MMORPG's do not really involve a lot of roleplaying.

    SW:TOR will be the next step for the genre with extensive quest voiceover work, and decisions which matter (though the latter I'll believe when I see.)

    I worked with some people who worked on Fallout 3 and they made it sound like it was a struggle to get branched quests into the game and have everything ready for ship. That was a 20-30 hour singleplayer RPG.

    Asking for even half as much branching in a 500+ hour MMORPG is a huge request.

    And that's the reason why MMORPGs have simple quests. The alternative is to do less quests per hour and have them be deeper, but that's a tricky road to walk down. Because if you gave players a game with real-world military missions they'd distill them down into a simple complaint: "Great, another kill mission..."


    Sometimes our excitement to play  a new game overcomes our common sense to have the game work out of the box.

    Sure, and it's not really going to change unless you can manage to convince a ridiculously large number of players to hold off on buying new games until they're sure they're working.

    Only the very worst MMORPGs have failed to keep my attention longer than 15-20 hours, and I pay the same ~60 bucks to play non-MMOs for that long. So personally I don't see it as a huge issue.


    Players are not demaning much in the way of additional innovation. Comparing Singleplayer game innovations vs MMOs you see a drastic difference.

    This seems to be underrating a lot of the improvements MMOs have had over the years.


    People get so caught up in playing , the grinding faction or gear or exp, that they lose sight of the fact that this is supposed to be a hobby. Something done for fun. Players have allowed a lot of timesinks to be left in games that do nothing to enhance the game. They simply artificially prolong the play time.

    It's like a sport. You start out playing a game for fun, and then there's a completely optional choice to take it to the major league. In the major league it's serious business, and yes the fun can take a back seat.

    Nothing forces you to play in the majors. People can enjoy playing the game for fun their whole lives.

    "What is truly revealing is his implication that believing something to be true is the same as it being true. [continue]" -John Oliver

  • Cephus404Cephus404 Member CommonPosts: 3,675
    Originally posted by Axehilt


     
    It's like a sport. You start out playing a game for fun, and then there's a completely optional choice to take it to the major league. In the major league it's serious business, and yes the fun can take a back seat.
    Nothing forces you to play in the majors. People can enjoy playing the game for fun their whole lives.

     

    Yeah, but if you go to the majors, you're getting PAID for playing the game.  That's not something that really happens in MMOs, in fact exactly the opposite, you're paying someone else for the pleasure of playing the game.  It's not much of a comparison.

    Played: UO, EQ, WoW, DDO, SWG, AO, CoH, EvE, TR, AoC, GW, GA, Aion, Allods, lots more
    Relatively Recently (Re)Played: HL2 (all), Halo (PC, all), Batman:AA; AC, ME, BS, DA, FO3, DS, Doom (all), LFD1&2, KOTOR, Portal 1&2, Blink, Elder Scrolls (all), lots more
    Now Playing: None
    Hope: None

  • Storm.Storm. Member UncommonPosts: 256

    Not to be terrible here, but:

     

    #1. You spent a lot of time writing that post, and while I appreciate it, realize you could have been outside in the sun or with your friends.  Instead you're here.  I hate reading posts where people complain about games (or even specific quests) taking too much time.  Instead of trying to work on their quest they write a 10 page paper.

    #2.  You rent games and finish them within a few days?  I buy games and they don't necessarily get finished for a long time.  How are these games different than an MMO?  Most games I play are 15-20 hours, so if you can beat them in a few days you're dedicated a lot of your time to them.

    #3.  Two nights of raids a week?  That's nothing.  That's 6-8 hours a week.  You could easily do any hobby more than two nights a week.

    I agree with you on how everything is the same, though.  Instead of moving onto the next game, I stay with my games because there's no point to move on.

  • PhoenixWritePhoenixWrite Member Posts: 33

    The Problem isn't only with the games but with the gamers too. For so many MMO-Gamers a MMO needs to have playerbase as big as WoW or at least around a million.

    Everyone is complaining how terrible MMOs are now a days and act as if Everquest I or II, DAoC, Vanguard and various Sandbox MMOs aren't existing or no longer around but they are still there and there are still people playing this games. Even Ultima Online is still there. So if WoW and all this games which followed and copied WoW are so bad and boring, why aren't you playing those MMOs which are considered to be more indept?

    All I read is how people jump from MMO to another new MMO always searching and demanding but not really staying and giving this companys a hint what you really like to play.

    I'm playing DAoC now nearlly four years and I've seen so many entries by people who once played this MMO and argued they really liked it and think about to return but there isn't anybody left, so they say no real gaming is possible anymore. But just because a MMO is down to 2 or 3 Servers, doesn't mean one can't play it anymore. A MMO doesn't need 11 Million subs to be fun. That said if you feel Everquest or Everquest II offer more exploration and all then by all means play it...afterall both MMOs are still there and still offer all that what you guys miss.

     

    This is something I just don't understand sure one might want some different setting, some newish game but if it bores me and if it doesn't get me as much as my old favourite game did...well then I stop playing and return to my old favourite game. I still get around and reinstall old single player games and try again to get through rather than to wait for a new holy gral.

     

    In case of MMOs it lies even more in the hands of customers, if companies see old MMOs still have subs or they are even rising again then they realise people want something else perhaps. If you however keep buying WoW or any other similar MMOs, don't start complaing if companies still release games which follow WoW rather than Ultima Online.

     

     

  • AxehiltAxehilt Member RarePosts: 10,504


    Originally posted by Cephus404
    Originally posted by Axehilt
    It's like a sport. You start out playing a game for fun, and then there's a completely optional choice to take it to the major league. In the major league it's serious business, and yes the fun can take a back seat.
    Nothing forces you to play in the majors. People can enjoy playing the game for fun their whole lives.
     
    Yeah, but if you go to the majors, you're getting PAID for playing the game.  That's not something that really happens in MMOs, in fact exactly the opposite, you're paying someone else for the pleasure of playing the game.  It's not much of a comparison.

    You're right about the payment thing, but that doesn't change the underlying trend: as players get more competitive in a given activity, things become more serious and fun gets phased out a bit.

    You can bowl completely for fun, or you can be the organized team with a uniform and custom balls/gloves. You're still paying the bowling lane to play in the tournament, but you've taken things to a higher level of play. And somewhere a tiny minority of bowlers actually makes money doing it -- just like the minority of players who win WOW Arena Tournaments.

    "What is truly revealing is his implication that believing something to be true is the same as it being true. [continue]" -John Oliver

  • NadrilNadril Member Posts: 1,276


    Originally posted by Axehilt
    Originally posted by Cephus404
    Originally posted by Axehilt
    It's like a sport. You start out playing a game for fun, and then there's a completely optional choice to take it to the major league. In the major league it's serious business, and yes the fun can take a back seat.
    Nothing forces you to play in the majors. People can enjoy playing the game for fun their whole lives.
     
    Yeah, but if you go to the majors, you're getting PAID for playing the game.  That's not something that really happens in MMOs, in fact exactly the opposite, you're paying someone else for the pleasure of playing the game.  It's not much of a comparison.

    You're right about the payment thing, but that doesn't change the underlying trend: as players get more competitive in a given activity, things become more serious and fun gets phased out a bit.

    You can bowl completely for fun, or you can be the organized team with a uniform and custom balls/gloves. You're still paying the bowling lane to play in the tournament, but you've taken things to a higher level of play. And somewhere a tiny minority of bowlers actually makes money doing it -- just like the minority of players who win WOW Arena Tournaments.


    I think it's a suitable analogy. You can pretty much compare it to just playing a game of basketball with your friends, or then playing it on a school level (competitive but you certainly aren't getting paid) and then moving up on the ladder until you get to the NBA and play for money.


    As far as the OP goes, I tried to honestly read his post but I just couldn't make myself do it. It goes around so much I have no idea what actually is the problem with online gaming.

  • AxehiltAxehilt Member RarePosts: 10,504


    Originally posted by PhoenixWrite
    I'm playing DAoC now nearlly four years and I've seen so many entries by people who once played this MMO and argued they really liked it and think about to return but there isn't anybody left, so they say no real gaming is possible anymore. But just because a MMO is down to 2 or 3 Servers, doesn't mean one can't play it anymore. A MMO doesn't need 11 Million subs to be fun.

    Definitely agree that its gamers' perception which is part of the problem regarding game population. Everyone wants 1+ million population games, even if a single WOW server has a mere fraction of that.

    Companies also can screw things up. When you see max-pop servers your first month it'd be easy to knee-jerk and put up more servers, but that creates problems when 30-50% of your players stop subscribing after that first month (and even the best games have this issue.) It creates ghost town servers.

    As for older games, players stop playing when a game stops offering them new challenges. Games are interesting due to the way our brains are wired to enjoy learning. When a game ceases to have new patterns to latch onto and learn, our interest wanes and we move on. Even the greatest games ever will eventually get old due to pattern fatigue - you'll have "figured it all out" and situations will be completely predictable.

    "What is truly revealing is his implication that believing something to be true is the same as it being true. [continue]" -John Oliver

  • WizardryWizardry Member LegendaryPosts: 17,827

    I think the reason MOST could not understand the OP is because the MAJORITY play games for VERY superficial reasons and he is saying that is why gaming is in the state it is.The more people enjoy this form of satisfaction,the more developers feed off of it.

    Even if a developer goes to great lengths to create a content rich game,nobody will care,all they care about is fast and easy rewards.Every players wants to have the best possible gear in the game,nothing else matters.They only do content because it offers that gear or item they want.They sometimes ONLY play a certain class for that "mount" or "pet",sad really that the actual game has no bearing on why they play that character,just so long as they get their pet or special mount.

    So you see it is very easy to grasp the OP's concept,you just have to be one of the VERY few that actually play games for the fun of it,not because you MUST have that special item or gear,as the OP stated ,he looks back as wasting many hours of his life through raiding for that gear.

    It is extremely common for people in these forums to state they are playing WOW or whatever game ,because it is "FUN",the truth is they are NOT playing for that reason,not unless they think wasting hours of their life for a virtual item is FUN or useful time spent.Personally i like to enjoy the developers creation,sort of the equivalent of watching a movie or your favourite sports team.Yes your sports team is a creation,it is the managers creation of a team he/she was trying to build into a champion,it is fun for many to watch how it unfolds.Some people like watching fights[MMA/boxing]it is still a creation of a fighter,many people like to see how the training unfolds.For many gamers we like to see how the game advances,how it unfolds,we are not all obsessed with getting that next level [DING ! level 40]or that next piece of gear.

    Sure we all sort of like the "Trophy",the reward for our efforts,but we should not let it be the MAIN reason we do anything,in this case gaming.We should feel our own satisfaction,witch is why so many enjoy long tedious grinds or hours setting up a difficult battle,because the satisfaction is part of the "FUN".

    OH...btw in case i was as tough to follow as the OP,the reason is "the gamers" that is the problem.

    Never forget 3 mile Island and never trust a government official or company spokesman.

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