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First some back round (if not skip to bottom),
Lots of arguing about Blizzard, then I realized the argument is true, EVERYTHING is really about Blizzard. Have you ever noticed if a poster mentions World of Warcraft everyone jumps in and has something to say ?......Good bad or indifferent…. It's always the most Hot Topic. Theirs a reason for that.
Blizzard is in control !
Here's how everything mmoprg went down:
It didn't start with World of Warcraft, but Blizzard "completely" shaped the market into what it is today. Since 2004 every Western mmorpg is World of Warcraft being just shy of copyrights and trademarks.
Blizzard on it's own decided on Family friendly easy, cross realm everything, pretty cosmetic cash shop items the list goes on. They didn't invent everything, Asian developers did most of the work. Blizzard "forced it" to be the standard here in the west…. All followed.
It's a fact, as of late mmorpg's are not popular in gamming as they once were….It's Blizzards fault !!
Here is EXACTLY why:
mmorpg's by themselves are "Dull and Lifeless". Everyone of them from Ultima Online, EverQuest, Vanilla World of Warcraft, Vanguard, more recent Final Fantasy 14 and Elder Scrolls Online, EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM.
But if you take the "Dull and Lifeless" game and add community it's 100% different, one hundred and eighty degrees different !!
Community was the hallmark in the very early days. It was the spark of something new, it was the twinkle in one's eye. Classic Vanilla World of Warcraft came along and totally enhanced the early version and became #1.
Ok so what happened ?
Blizzard CHANGED DIRECTION and all others followed down the rabbit hole. They invented the solo experience with easy family and extremely accessible Looking for group tool.
Being king, it was a mistake Blizzard could afford however they went from 11 million to 6 million. And they refuse to embrace the cause….. Others following their formula and brought mmorpg's to a "dull and Lifeless" state of solo. Do people still play mmorpg's ?.... Sure you'll have that when we have 7.5 Billion people on this planet.
By lucky coincidence, Blizzard was able to make unfortunate mistakes, cause it's competitors to follow, yet they them selfs were able to recover..... Blizzard is actually that strong !