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Reader Comments (38)

Posted: Jan 6th 2011 11:48PM CCon99 said

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Hear that? That's the sound of 20 new MMO's getting greenlit. That's also the sound of 19 of them being greenlit for 10% of what it should cost to properly develop and wanting them complete in 2 years time.

Mr. Newell is correct though, the PC is far from dead. There's still far more PC's in homes then all 3 console brands combined.

Posted: Jan 7th 2011 9:37AM Lethality said

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@CCon99 But not all of those PCs are playing games. All of the consoles are.
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Posted: Jan 7th 2011 9:41AM penetraitor said

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@Lethality I haven't turned on my wii in 2 years
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Posted: Jan 7th 2011 11:06AM Lethality said

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@penetraitor Me neither. But that doesn't mean that mainstream america, the people not reading this blog yet buying billions of dollars in games, isn't playing the Wii with their family every night.
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Posted: Jan 7th 2011 12:20AM Abriael said

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Too bad that the MMORPG market is currently the most stagnant and innovation-deprieved between all the gaming markets, with customers purposedly and intensively trained to resist any kind of evolution.

Last innovative MMORPG I've seen that had any degree of success, that is Eve Online, released seven years and a half ago. Quite sad.

Posted: Jan 7th 2011 12:52AM PrimeSynergy said

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@Abriael Can't really argue with that much. There has been some innovative aspects of certain games, but as a whole, I can't think of any recent games.

That said, as I've said time and time again, this market is probably the riskiest market in all of gaming. You can spend a lot and land on a gold mine or spend a lot and get no where. You can also spend 'just enough' and do 'just fine.' There's so many variables and so many things that can happen that it's rarely worth the trouble.

I talked to 4-5 former devs at an indie panel one time. They straight up said that an MMO is usually never a top choice when deciding what type of game to make. People want to make them, but so much time, resources, people, and money has to be poured into them that if it doesn't pay off (which rarely it does enough for it to matter) then a lot of people are going to be in trouble.

Don't get me wrong, I share your distaste for the current 'norm' but when looking at it from the side of the people who have to take that risk...well, I just can't blame them.
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Posted: Jan 7th 2011 1:12AM Abriael said

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@PrimeSynergy the problem is only partially on the developers' side and I definitely don't blame them for not taking excessive risks. Or better, I don't blame them only.
A sizable portion of the blame has to be placed on a large slice of the playerbase, that have let themselves be brainwashed into the most stalwart defenders of the status quo.

Every time a developer tries to stray from those mechanics that have been *done to death* over the last years, they find themselves automatically flooded by criticism.
Every time a new mechanic is implemented to replace one of the "sacred staples of MMORPGs!" the developer ends up under immense pressure to revert to said tired, boring staples that have been done over and over. If the game doesn't fail before they even get to it of course.

No matter if the new mechanics have the potential to work as well or even better than the old ones, all you hear from the playerbase is "don't fix what isn't broken!" "XXXX should be a basic feature in any MMORPG!" "This isn't intuitive!" and so forth.

I have a dream: that one day the vast majority of MMORPG players will finally wake up and finally notice how damn boring MMORPGs have become over the last few years, and will start actually asking for innovation and punishing those forces that row against it.

Of course, it's just a dream, and I'm not exactly holding my breath to see it realized in my lifespan.
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Posted: Jan 7th 2011 1:29AM CCon99 said

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@Abriael

I would have to disagree with you on the customers being resistant to evolution. If you look at the past 5 bigger name MMO launches, pretty much all of them have had successful to very successful launches. Then within 8 months the customers ditch that game whether they've done everything or just didn't like it, they leave in mass exodus because they're tired of the same old song and dance.

Watch, even next week DCUO will launch, they'll likely have a very successful launch selling 500k - 700k boxes, SOE will have a big press release flaunting their launch success, then by weeks 6-8 players will be complaining there isn't enough people playing on their servers to be able to do group content.
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Posted: Jan 7th 2011 1:31AM CCon99 said

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@CCon99

That's supposed to be 8 weeks, not 8 months. Damn you no edit button on a forum in 2011.
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Posted: Jan 7th 2011 1:39AM Abriael said

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@CCon99 that's exactly because the customers are resistant to evolution. This doesn't mean that they won't TRY a new MMORPG, but as soon as they realize that it works differently than the usual, most will quit, going back to the usual, and a large part of those that remain will start clamoring for the old trite mechanics to be implemented back where they (according to them) belong.

That's the whole definition of resistance to evolution.
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Posted: Jan 7th 2011 5:34AM CCon99 said

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@Abriael

What I'm saying is there is nothing evolutionary to try, there hasn't been in over 5+ years. It's been the same old shit over and over with little tweaks to create the illusion that it's different.

I'll use DCUO since it's the big launch and also the one claiming it's so much different then existing MMO's. All the quests and missions are your MMO classic go to x, get item y, and kill 10 z quests. Here and there you get your classic instance mission where you have to fight your way to the "boss", mission complete, ding, get new MMO same old shit skill. Then there's the "action combat", all they did was take pressing a series of numbers that's your best power rotation in other games, then instead give you 2 buttons to press in a certain sequence. It's still button mashing and waiting for timers. The only thing I can really give them credit for is they created a really nice physics system, you'll be totally in awe that first time you see giant balls bouncing around the room, but sadly that's not enough to keep someone to subbing.

I personally think players aren't resistant to evolution, they're want this big change to come, then are disappointed when they find the next big MMO is just the same old shit and ditch it. All my guilds I've been in, the biggest complaints are that the WAR's, Aion's, Vanguard's, STO's, CO's are all the same old shit and weren't what they were expecting.

Anyways, that's my opinion on things, because that's exactly how I feel when disappointed by yet another stale MMO launch. I want this big change that we've been all hoping for to come, but it's just not coming or even on the radar. It's all button combo's, cookie levels, and kill 10 x quests. But hey, we got some nice bouncing ball physics to watch now!
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Posted: Jan 7th 2011 9:40AM Dirame said

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@Abriael

Let me just echo what CCon99 has said and make the claim that let's wait till when GW2 launches, rate the level of "working" innovation and then consider if people are resistant to it.
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Posted: Jan 7th 2011 3:16PM Djinn said

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@Abriael

"that's exactly because the customers are resistant to evolution. This doesn't mean that they won't TRY a new MMORPG, but as soon as they realize that it works differently than the usual, most will quit, going back to the usual, and a large part of those that remain will start clamoring for the old trite mechanics to be implemented back where they (according to them) belong"

I think that most gamers know what they like, and just with anything else (food, cars, etc.) they're not going to switch unless they like the new thing better than the old. You mention previously Eve, but its a poor comparison against older, more popular MMOs. They are fantasy, EVE is scifi. They are PvE, Eve is PvP. Of course the vast majority of players of the "old style" MMOs aren't going to like Eve if Fantasy PvE is what they like. Anytime a new Fantasy PvE MMO comes out, I'm right there to try it. I haven't found anything very new or innovative about any of them. Can you name one?
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Posted: Jan 7th 2011 7:49PM milk steak said

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@Abriael

"Every time a developer tries to stray from those mechanics that have been *done to death* over the last years, they find themselves automatically flooded by criticism."

Any examples you can offer?
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Posted: Jan 7th 2011 11:04PM Valdamar said

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@Abriael
You think the MMO market is stagnant? Look at the FPS and RTS genres.

The console market can get pretty stagnant too until some new tech comes along (like Wii, Kinect, etc) - just look at companies like EA and Activision churning out slightly changed versions of all their games franchises every year.
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Posted: Jan 8th 2011 2:37AM XeroForever said

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@Valdamar Exactly, look at Call of Duty for gods sakes, all that is, is a reskin, hell Black Ops "new" game modes were mods for Cod4. Games in general are lacking any sort of innovation. But hey, with tera coming out 2011 (We hope), MMOs will probably be the most innovative.
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Posted: Jan 7th 2011 1:08AM Graill440 said

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The one thing a large portion of people fail to recognize is that consoles ARE a pc. Albeit a dumbed down version that is so far behind the power curve in terms of tech that they need to be repurchased every year. The console is simply a stripped down, low end version of a pc. From cartridges to harddrives, dvd players, lan connections, keyboard inputs, mouse inputs, its comical, just call the console what it is.

Yes manufacturers of the vaunted "console" will hype and spin till they are blue in the face, touting these programmers do this and that for their precious consoles, when in the end, guess what, Pc users will always have the last laugh.

Posted: Jan 7th 2011 1:16AM Abriael said

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@Graill440 console aren't a PC in the aspect that primarily interests Newell. basically all consoles are, to a degree, a closed system over which full rights belong to the first party manufacturer and all the rules are decided by them.

At the moment the PS3 is the most open of the "big three", and that's why Newell did an U-turn at the last E3 and praised it. But still it features a fairly draconian degree of closure, locks and bolts (the keys of which are only owned by Sony) over any PC.
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Posted: Jan 7th 2011 1:19AM Graill440 said

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@Abriael

And roger.


Console peasants. Grin.
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Posted: Jan 7th 2011 1:25AM SgtBaker1234556 said

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@Graill440

Well no. A personal computer (PC) is any general-purpose computer whose size, capabilities, and original sales price make it useful for individuals, and which is intended to be operated directly by an end-user with no intervening computer operator

A console isn't general purpose computer, so it's not a PC:

If you meant PC - and in IBM PC Compatible - then no again, I believe only the Xbox is using the PC architecture - Wii and PS3 are not.

Anyhow, to your point, yes - when the next gen consoles appear, PC gaming will be behind the curve again. For a while. The consoles are static so given some time PC gaming will catch up and pass them. And then a new gen of consoles will appear and PC will have to catch up again. Or if you're a PC fanboy then you can see it as PC is trailblazing the way for the console drones. But regardless of which side of the fence you are the cycle is roughly 10 years currently, right now we're in the era where PC has passed the consoles and we're waiting for the next gen consoles to be announced (in few years).
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