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Reader Comments (96)

Posted: Jul 19th 2011 2:37PM Popplewell said

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Your problem here is you're asking other people to gamble their money on producing a game you might decide you don't like enough to pay for because of other reasons.

All that costs you is the box price and a lament about potential, while it costs them a whole lot more.

Posted: Jul 19th 2011 2:50PM antagonistyahoocom said

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"There are dozens of games on the market tailored to players such as yourself, but only a select handful tailored to players such as myself"

You seem to clearly understand that you are in the minority. Why would any business market to the minority, considering the enormous cost and risk to produce an MMO?

I'm all in favor of "hardcore" servers with harsher penalties though.
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Posted: Jul 19th 2011 2:52PM j1083 said

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@Popplewell Pretty much.

The fact of the matter is that, taken as a whole, most people are seemingly not crazy about dire consequences being a major component of their relaxing passtimes. The call for consequence demands developers take a huge risk in trying to cater to an admitted minority.

It seems like a Catch-22 to me. I can certainly accept that a marked group is not getting what they want, there's theoretically profit to be made by trying to pinpoint that market (Wizardry Online, to my understanding, may be exactly what Matt is looking for). But why take a chance in trying to enthrall a disenfranchised minority when you can appeal to the masses for more assured success and greater potential revenue?

Aside from people making their own pet projects (not AAA titles), I just don't see "hardcore" MMOs really taking off in the forseeable future. Business goes where the money is and big businesses want/need big money.
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Posted: Jul 19th 2011 4:41PM Issmir said

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@antagonistyahoocom

"You seem to clearly understand that you are in the minority. Why would any business market to the minority, considering the enormous cost and risk to produce an MMO?"

I would suggest that the current over-saturation of the market in terms of games that cater to the majority make producing a newer MMO that caters to that same majority in the same way a MUCH riskier proposition than aiming for a niche market.

Where there is a need to be met, there is money to be made.
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Posted: Jul 19th 2011 4:44PM Skyydragonn said

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@antagonistyahoocom

MMO gamers were the Minority when WoW launched....sometimes catering to that small hardcore minority pays off huge dividends. I'm not saying that happens every other day, only reminding that the potential exists.
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Posted: Jul 19th 2011 4:56PM j1083 said

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@Skyydragonn Except WoW was not catering to the hardcore minority, but instead actively reduced consequences and focused on accessability in order to win mass appeal.
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Posted: Jul 19th 2011 7:19PM Fabius Bile said

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@Skyydragonn MMO gamers were a minority back when MMOs where as the article points. if anything WoW is a textbook example of how removing consecuentes is the way to go if you intend to make some cash...
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Posted: Jul 19th 2011 8:59PM antagonistyahoocom said

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@Skyydragonn

We're not talking about MMO gamers at large. We're talking about a minority WITHIN mmo gamers, and that is likely to be very small indeed.
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Posted: Jul 19th 2011 9:04PM antagonistyahoocom said

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@Issmir

I don't disagree about your logic *in general*, but as it relates to harsh death penalties it is utter nonsense. Even EVE's death penalties are a step removed from the premise described in this article.

If there was a viable market to support this type of gameplay, the game would already exist.
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Posted: Jul 19th 2011 2:41PM (Unverified) said

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100% with what you're saying Matt! I long for good old MMOs like Asheron's Call and Anarchy Online where there were no quests (or not much) and you had to figure out by yourself what to do. I totally hate the current WoW-type quest model that every MMO uses now. It is devoid of thinking and no one ever reads the quest texts.

Bring back good MMOs devs! Death to quests!

Posted: Jul 20th 2011 12:27AM ShivanSwordsman said

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@(Unverified)

So you're a fan of mindless grinding? I played FFXI and do not consider it to be a "glory in RPGs". No, before quests all we did was stand in a field of monsters and kill the same freaking thing al day. That's it. It got old fast, especially with MMOs, where a single fight can take 20 - 30 seconds.

Hunching over a keyboard watching a health bar slowly wittle down is not enjoyable, at least for me, and if we went back to the "old days", it'd take forever, people would aimlessly wander around, and end-game wouldn't even be a word.
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Posted: Jul 20th 2011 10:21AM Transientmind said

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@(Unverified) Yeah, I remember Anarchy Online VERY well. And yes, it was quest-heavy. Or rather... Randomly-generated mission at the highest possible difficulty setting heavy. Whilst buffed into aburdity by high-level friends. And yes, grinding for hours on the perfect set of mobs for the optimum drop or optimum effort : xp ratio (adjusted if someone was already camping it). And you may recall that with the launch if Shadowlands and Alien Invasion, they moved more and more toward Questing. Years before WoW. And no, there was no 'player choice' any more than there is now. Sure you could have gone wandering around until you found orange mobs to kill then play out intricate scenarios with them with friends, but no-one ever did that.

They did exactly what they do now. Except Instead of getting directed to a new zone by breadcrumbs quests by NPCs, what happened instead was that n00bs would ask, "Where do I go for best exp/loot at my level?" And every man and his dog, including pro SirL33t new that this meant going to The Temple of the Three Winds to get your robes.

You are mistaking the reality of things because of your nostalgia. It's OK. It's a human thing to do. Just try to be aware of it.
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Posted: Jul 19th 2011 2:42PM HiroProtagonist7 said

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Excellent, excellent article! It is great hearing a dissenting opinion.

Just one thing I'd correct:
" a huge part of taking MMOs from generally mindless games to true persistent worlds"
to
" a huge part of *returning* MMOs from generally mindless games to true persistent worlds"
there!
Love your writing!

Posted: Jul 20th 2011 7:35AM nomoredroids said

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@HiroProtagonist7

Nah. I liked it better before. MMOs have never been very persistent.
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Posted: Jul 19th 2011 2:48PM Zenethian said

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You need to play Eve Online. Serious consequences for PvP (or PvE) death.

Posted: Jul 19th 2011 3:26PM (Unverified) said

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@Zenethian
Actually, the cost in EVE is no greater than the cost in WoW for the most part. Most PVPers only end up with a bit of a dent in their pocketbook and a bit of travel to get back into the action. PvEers, a larger dent.

It could be worse, but that's a rather rare scenario. That's really about it.
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Posted: Jul 19th 2011 4:25PM Digestivo said

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Great article.

What risk-avoiders need to understand is that the balance between Risk and Consequence isn't a goal per se, but a way to boost the overall experience.

I'm the paradigm of the carebear-ism. I'm a risk-avoider and a peaceful farmer, but I need the adrenaline rush of knowing that there's a risk in my peaceful industrial business.

Fool loot is a good start. Permadeath just need a few tweaks in the character progression we're used to et voilĂ .
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Posted: Jul 19th 2011 4:33PM DarkWalker said

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@Zenethian

And still, even though I loved EVE, I can't bring myself to play it again due to the risk of losing my ship.

It's not even the PvP anywhere bit. I actually like how EVE implemented consequences for PvP in high sec space. But I won't play a MMO where I can lose my gear for dying. Heck, I don't usually play single player games where I can lose gear by dying, unless I can cheat to avoid that.
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Posted: Jul 19th 2011 5:42PM Kamokazi said

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@DarkWalker

You just outed yourself as having either a) only played EVE for a ridiculously short amount of time, or b) never actually played, and just read enough on Massively to sound competent.

With the exception of a few 'pimp ships' people keep around, losing a ship is not a big deal...far from it. Anyone who has played EVE more than a month or two has come to realize that your items in EVE are consumables. When you buy a missile launcher, you don't go to some nullsec plex and hit some boss over and over and finally get awarded your launcher, you go to the market and buy a dozen of them, just like they were a healing potion in a fantasy MMO. The game is not designed like other MMOs in that your time invested is your equipment on your character.

I live in hisec, so I'm not a rediculously wealthy player with billions of ISK. But my corp regularly runs small gang roams into nullsec, and usually I take either a 45 mil battlecruiser (fitted) or 120 mil T2 cruiser and only expect about a 60-75% chance of bringing it back in one piece.

If I lose it, no big deal, I have a couple dozen fully-fitted ships in reserve, and I'll make it back up through a combination of lowsec exploration, L4 missions, and PI within a day or two.

Anyone who says "OMG you lose everything when you die in EVE!" really has no clue what they are talking about.
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Posted: Jul 19th 2011 7:33PM Space Cobra said

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@Kamokazi

Keep folks informed, because even I learned something from your post. ;)
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