So where do I go from here?

For the last few gaming sessions I have opted to play CS:Source over anything else. I did try and load up LOTRO on Sunday due to the free weekend, however, the Turbine Download Manager sure is a piece of crap. I have up to Mines of Moria installed and won Siege of Mirkwood (along with Mines of Moria :p) from Kill Ten Rats, so I can play a lot of shit I’ve not experienced. Honestly, I think this post may be pointless now that I think on LOTRO. Anyways, let’s avoid thinking of LOTRO and move on to the point, which is that I haven’t been into an MMO in quite some time.

I recently had a discussion with a friend regarding SW:TOR and their needed 1 million subscriber mark in order to break even. We wished we knew exactly how long they would need 1 million subs to actually break even. What the debate turned into was whether EA spending that much friggin money on an MMO would help or hurt the genre as a whole. I argued that it would hurt the genre and he said it would help. His standpoint was that it was business and that the behavior makes sense from a business point of view. He said that the game could introduce new potential customers to the MMO market by way of Bioware singleplayer game fans. Obviously most of our argument was based on speculation and we did not come to an agreement really.

My thoughts are similar to Mr. Jennings’ in that when that much money is involved there are less risks taken and thus the games will not stray very far if at all from the “normal MMO path” (read: WoW). Not to mention that if the game with a lot of money thrown at it fails (see: Tabula Rasa) then what does that say to potential MMO investors? I’ll tell you what it says, STAY THE HELL AWAY, that’s what it says. It seems like once or twice a year I remember something else from the times before WoW that I had forgotten post-WoW. For instance, when there wasn’t a WoW, there were no blatant copies of entire games. Which means that people took risks and actually TRIED to make something different.

Now let me ask you this: what is SW:TOR bringing to the MMO genre that is new? A lot of voiced work? Hmm, EQ2 did that if I recall correctly. EQ2 didn’t have it as in depth as SW:TOR will have it with different dialog trees and such, but really, I don’t think that by itself is a very big deal. Now maybe that added element of “singleplayer” when added with some of the multiplayer elements will really make the experience feel as if you are the hero. I know that in Borderlands, which is mostly a singleplayer game, that those singleplayer talking to the NPCs with a side of cutscenes really added to the experience in a positive manner. Maybe it will do the same here, in fact it probably will, but I’m trying to not get my hopes up.

I mean, how much MMO, excuse me, I mean multiplayer experience does Bioware even have? As far as I can tell Neverwinter Nights is about it and that was a remake of someone else’s game. I’ve not played NWN or NWN2, but I know it is similar to Diablo/Baldur’s Gate/Dungeon Siege type games which while some of those games can be compared to MMOs in my mind, they are mainly singleplayer games imo. If there is one thing I’ve learned from MMOs is to not get my hopes up. Maybe that is where all of this negativity is coming from.

Part of me feels like SW:TOR could make or break the genre for me. What I mean by that is that if they are successful and make their 1 million sub mark and hold it however long they need or shit, even if it grows, I just have a hard time seeing that as bringing anything positive to the genre. I mean, sure, maybe it will bring in new people just as WoW did but we all know how that went. They won’t want to play anything else and if they ever do decide to, years later I’m sure, they will be complaining left and right about how it isn’t like WoW or SW:TOR. Then we will have two games full of people who think that their game is the definition of MMO. Which would lead to even more people shooting down original ideas because they can’t see passed the purples, oranges, dungeons, and battlegrounds.

Now I know someone will probably want to say how WoW hasn’t stopped new ideas and change in the genre because of games like Fallen Earth and Darkfall. Well Darkfall, for one, was coming before WoW released, so that doesn’t count. Fallen Earth however, sure, it is a bit different. It is a FPS in which everyone can use both Ranged and Melee attacks, bravo I say. However, that is about all that was brought imo and some could argue that SWG’s facelift had this before Fallen Earth (though I believe there is an “enable autoaim” checkbox in the SWG options somewhere). The post-apocalyptic setting wasn’t really a change imo because it was basically just the graphics and textures that changed. If anything it justified the game’s mechanics more by saying oh well since it was the future and now that future is destroyed, we have this technology where you come back to life immediately after you die.

I mean come on, where is the new stuff? How long have we been waiting for new stuff? Let’s go down the list and see what we can think of as new stuff. Let me check a wiki for MMOs or something, hrrm, kinda found something but meh.
AoC
Aion
Darkfall
LOTRO
POTBS
STO
Vanguard
Warhammer

Age of Conan made shit pretty and made people’s computers crash. I don’t have any experience with the endgame but from what I heard in Murder Herd it was pretty fun. From what I can tell there isn’t much originality in the game to be honest, except for Tortage and the Day/Night quests, but is a singleplayer/multiplayer toggle really that new?

Aion gave everyone wings and the ability to glide. I must say that gliding is pretty fuckin cool but the actual flying is just like a flying mount in WoW except for the flight time. Sure there is aerial combat which yeah, was new, but it’s one tiny thing in the game.

Darkfall didn’t really bring anything new imo, it just used a lot of the tools most developers automatically threw in the trash such as a seemless world (of course with instanced dungeons), full loot, fps, skills, etc. The combination of these tools was new as shit, but the tools themselves had been around for some time.

LOTRO didn’t bring much imo except the monster play, which really hasn’t taken off lol. I’ve yet to check out these new skirmishes I’ve heard about though I believe they may be battlegrounds? I don’t know. But again, there wasn’t a whole lot of new besides the graphics, scenery, and setting.

POTBS aka the boat game everyone tried in beta and quickly quit in beta. This game seemed promising for a while and it did bring in new stuff. Naval combat was pretty new (unless you boated into another boat in UO and fought/bugged to fight someone). But, the majority of the game was the same old shit.

STO I know pretty much nothing about except that I don’t need to know much about it.

Vanguard didn’t bring anything new really, unless you want to consider the diplomacy as new, though I believe other games had similar card games already. The crafting was different and interesting, I will give it that. The rest? SSDD.

Warhammer felt like it brought in the most new stuff. From the Tome of Knowledge to Public Quests, I have to hand it to them, they introduced the most new stuff. Shit, when WoW steals your new idea, you did something right.

I’d like to say that CoH/V with the architect stuff was definitely pretty cool.

So how many things is that? Around 6 from what I can tell. Are any of them really game changing? Maybe the POTBS boating would be considered game changing as that game seems quite a bit different from your standard MMO, though there is a large portion of ground quests.

My point is, if the focus is on getting the big money by spending the big money, where is the change going to come from? When you’re paid a shit ton of money to make a game that is like this one but a little different cus it’s Star Wars and not Elves and shit, are you going to risk your large paycheck to say that maybe we should try something new? Of course you’re not, because people have been getting fired for shit like that recently, shit, people have been getting fired for just about nothing recently. So as Mr. Jennings’ said, I will say it as well, where is the new stuff gonna come from if it isn’t from the people with the money to publish a game?

Oh and what the fuck am I going to play? I need an MMO fix, maybe lotro but, redownloading the whole thing sounds gay, maybe some SWG? Meh, DAOC? Meh, who knows!

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14 thoughts on “So where do I go from here?

  1. better watch and not game hop Moj will pull you up about it 😉

    Ach I’d spend some time on the free trials mate, hell WAR teir 1 is free these days. Dungeons and Dragons could also be a change of pace for you

  2. As if Pit, nothing wrong with game hopping. You took my comment on Kal’s blog entirely the wrong way. I posted a response, which may or may not be up yet since Kal moderates his responses.

    In a nutshell, I was just questioning/wondering why the rinse and repeat cycle is so prevalent amongst WoW players. Sorry you guys mistook me as accusing you of having ADD or something.

    • It isn’t just WoW players imo. I change games all the damn time and it took me like 5 years to get max level in WoW. Prior to WoW I never reached max level in anything, and then only DAoC with the Catacombs expansion (dungeon tasks ftw!), plus SWG as a crafter (macros ftw!). I know for me, I change because I don’t have a group of people to play with. Sometimes I’ll have one person I know irl playing with me and it’s just not enough. I don’t think there is really one MMO that is always fun, I think a lot of them have the potential to always be fun, but you’re going to need a group to keep you interested in the game. I actually think the more RL friends I play with the quicker I’ll quit, so for me I have to make new friends in every game, and since I’m pretty abrasive when I’m actually myself that just doesn’t happen often especially since I don’t act like someone I’m not just to fit in.

  3. I guess I’m just pulling my opinion from the short list of blogs that I normally read (I should probably expand my list).
    Anyway, just about all of these blogs are turning out to be quasi-Wow blogs with a little “other gaming” sprinkled in so they can call themselves “general gaming blogs”. Fine, I have no issues with that.

    Among these blogs though, I find a recurring theme:

    – they play WoW, get tired of it, go play something else, decide it’s not as good as WoW, trash it
    – go back to playing WoW, get tired of it, try something else decide it’s not as good as WoW, trash it
    – and then rinse and repeat on and on and on…

    All I did was ask how this was fun, and now I find myself being tattled on by one blogger (Kal) to the other blogger (Pit), then being the subject of about half of the responses on the one blogger’s (Pit’s) lastest post.

    And btw, what’s wrong with single player games? 😉

    • Single player games are like PvE servers, and imo fat chicks. You can do it, but you don’t wanna tell your friends about it.

      To address how switching is fun, the reason the switch takes place is because it is no longer fun, probably because of the amount of time us “switchers” are able to invest weekly.

    • yeah last thing i wanted was to create a ‘witch hunt’ as I stated your entitled to your opinion but it doesnt marry up to my own.

      I enjoy single player games like Arkham Asylum but do have a short attention span with them and miss the social aspect of MMOs. Good to have a few around when Im bored or feeling unsociable

      Oh and bonedead Mount and blade is shit

  4. Mount and Blade: Warband
    Multiplayer medieval battles and deathmatch play. Single player rpg style goodness. Good retreat from MMO’s whenever you need one.

  5. I was just where you are awhile back. I left WoW, went back to EQ with Guild Wars on the side. I still wasn’t too content for some reason. EQ2 has been a pretty good fix, I am very content with it now. It’s hard to find something with lasting power these days.

    I even tried LoRTO for a day last week. I think I spent more time downloading it than playing it. I just couldn’t get into it for some reason.

    • Right now I’m leaning towards Darkfall, LOTRO, really I have no idea. I feel like I’ve played everything. Maybe I’ll get Star Trek. Decisions decisions.

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