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Posted: Jun 16th 2010 1:51PM (Unverified) said

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That's something the MMO space has really yet to capitalize on, the forum community. They are a separate but equal community to the one participating in the game's content yet they're on the forums creating the own content so to speak, and not being rewarded for it.

Blizzard tipped the iceberg by having their forum avatars be representative of the user's character level. Other forum systems reward for the number of posts made but there's yet to be a system that merges the two. I think that merged system of post count "leveling" with an upgradeable avatar would be a great system for marketing an MMO and maintaining its community post launch.

The last missing piece of the puzzle I'll touch on is social media integration. I thought Champions online did a great job having this in place at launch and now Blizzard has followed suit as well. There's a problem with it though as all it does is spam an achievement out into the player's news feed. Players need to be able to tailor their social media stream to their idea of when its acceptable as well as what content is going out to their network. You're not creating brand awareness at all when you tell your network that you just spend 6 hours in the game, you're telling them you spend too much time in a video game. Developers need to spin that time played news feed into a little content story driven break down so there's something actually interesting for non involved parties to read and possibly interact with.

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