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Reader Comments (25)

Posted: Aug 17th 2011 7:52AM HiroProtagonist7 said

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Great article Jeremy!
I've also dropped back to playing the older games for the worlds and feature sets. With the types of games coming out it looks like I'll be inhabiting Telon for some time to come.

Posted: Aug 17th 2011 7:55AM HiroProtagonist7 said

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To your point on the changing feature sets - MMORPG has a games list of everything they've covered in a chart. It includes payment model, release date, and if there's PvP or not. It'd be cool to build the same sort of chart that contains MMO features like housing, crafting, item shop, etc so we can quickly sort out the money grabs and look for the features we'd like.

Posted: Aug 17th 2011 8:27AM AceSteveC said

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"An MMO should be a fun virtual world to live in" true, but I think that also an MMO should be a fun virtual world to progress in.

There's a balance to be sought between content for progressing and end-content, but it's not a balance that necessarily involves a compromise. City of Heroes has recently started adding new powers that can be acquired at level 50 with new content required to get the new powers. Admittedly they need more new content, but they're producing it pretty quickly. Also they are and have been putting a lot of work into adding more early and mid-game content and producing new power sets to encourage existing players to make new characters, as however high they set the bar on "the end" there's a lot of players out there who will get their characters there. They understand and cater to the fact that the game has to be fun regardless of how far your character has progressed. Maybe the entire industry won't change tomorrow, but City of Heroes is changing today.

Posted: Aug 17th 2011 2:06PM (Unverified) said

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Part of problem is how risky and difficult it is to put intangible rewards that appeal to a broad and ever changing audience. Anyone who has read game forums can see how contentious a lot players are and the wide range of play styles that games have to try to accommodate if they want to be seen as responsive to their players. The strident voices get results, sadly, but I often think they aren't the ones who enjoy some of the more intangible rewards to gaming.

Another part of the problem is making a game that can last for a long time. This means making it re-playable without the replay being too boring.

There must be rewards in any game. They have to be goals and things that people are trying to achieve. And games have to be able to not only compete with each other, but with real life jobs, chores, and activities that we fill our free time doing. A lot of the people who pay the bills for games have to juggle many other responsibilities in an increasingly smaller amount of free time, i.e. we aren't kids anymore or we don't want our kids spending their lives online. This means that forward progress can't be TOO slow or it becomes frustrating to people who have to budget their game time.

Posted: Aug 17th 2011 2:26PM Ocho said

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I was discussing slot machines with a friend today, real slot machines in casinos, and his side of the argument was that you should only play them with the highest chances of winning with the least amount of money spent and that is the only way you should play them.

My theory is that if you're going to be doing something like playing a slot machine, where you KNOW you're odds of winning are less than 50/50, and even perfecting the math will only net your return to 90-95%, then there better be something intrinsic to make up for that loss, and that is FUN. If you're not having fun while doing it, then its a complete loss. My fun when playing slot machines is playing low bets, multiple lines, and seeing how my friends are doing on their machines. That, to me, is more fun than just playing the numbers. If you just play the numbers with no fun involved, you're still going to lose. Fun and enjoyment go a long way. If I break even or lost a small amount, but still had fun while playing, and possibly got a free drink, its a win in my book and I'll come back again.

Thats how I feel about MMO's, and that seems very similar to this article. If they don't make the ENTIRE experience enjoyable and fun, then no amount of "phat loot" will make me feel like I really won anything or was worth my time.

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