Again, we're all paying to play. Do you rent a movie only to see 80% of it?
Having lofty content that is unreachable for casual players is an important draw of MMOs. I never once thought "Yeah, I should get a Relic" in FFXI. I didn't have the time or commitment. But I didn't stomp my feet and hold my breath until Tanaka made it easy, I went on with my life.
Yep, we all "pay the same price" but why is that new MMOs are generally sucking? The whole "everyone is equal" and "access to everything by everyone" makes the MMO boring as @#%^ quick and unbalanced as hell. The reason people liked/hated CoP was because of level caps, but also it took work to unlock certain end-game content, like any FF game, but MMOs these days? Everything is there for you after you run in a straight line of quests that mean nothing but EXP and Gil.
No, and it's completely asinine to think so. Do you know why they fail? They have wonky combat systems, miniscule or flat out uninteresting endgame activities, a story you can't get into, a division of the playerbase because of factions (which results in unbalanced server sizes and eliminates a lot of chances of finding people to play with), the game runs poorly on the majority of the systems, and/or the look of the game itself is just dull. Rift had a lot of things going right, except the story's really bleh, the engine they use makes combat floaty and not as responsive as it could be, and their initial pacing of endgame fights were horrendous (second boss of a raid instance being harder than any other in there is very poor judgement). SWTOR.... had story going for it and that's it.
People hated CoP because the missions were level capped for no reason outside of an artificial stretching out of content. They tried to pass it off as a "side along" story to RoZ.... except CoP came afterwards so that doesn't really work. Mission difficulty is a moot point as there were items that could be used to eliminate any thought process needed if players wished (pre-Tenzen BCNMs that is). Level capped meant you *NEEDED* find a group, which meant seeking in Jueno forever to find people, which meant hoping they were on the right step and weren't just assuming they could enter the BCNM, etc. The entire structure from the fetch quests sending you all across the world and numerous and pointless "WAIT UNTIL JP MIDNIGHT FOR GREAT BARANSU!" made the entire story not worth going after for the populace no matter how great Rajas Ring was or how good the story is (which I personally don't find all that great compared to WotG). Rise of Zilart had some running around but it was nowhere near the sheer amount of wasted time you spent on getting around just to see "Cutscene #317" that's barely 45 seconds long (not to mention RoZ's points of interest for missions were always near telepoints or outpost warps).
"Look! We sent you to Carpenter's Landing so you ... can.... notice how badly designed of a zone it is and no one will ever want to level here... or really Miseraux Coast... or Lufaise Meadows.... But hey! Here's some missions to send you to go through Movalpolis..... still terrible to try to group in but at least the music's catchy! You know what, just go back to Sky and kill weapons because it'll be faster!" By putting every single zone (with the exception of Carpenter's Landing, Bibiki Bay, and Purgonorgo Isle) behind mission gates it ruined any chance of appealing to the players and all of those zones' potential were wasted. They learned their lesson well when it came to ToAU and everything except for Salvage only required Mog Locker access.
People didn't do it because it wasn't personally worth their time. Sea? Gorgets could be low manned in a group at the time, the weapons from the jailors were really bad, and only a few of the class neck/torques were worth it. Limbus was the only reason to ever bother actually striving for Sea access and that's really sad. And that's not even going into the whole Absolute Flustercuck debacle...
It sounds bad to say, but there should be a separation of Casual and "hardcore" content and casual players shouldn't have immediate access or even quick access to that content. Striving for something out of reach is one of the biggest draws of an MMO, joining an MMO to play 3 hours a week shouldn't get you the same benefits in any reality.
Again, completely asinine.
I play an MMO going after goals I can achieve to have fun, not strive for something I'm never going to get. I sure as hell didn't play FFXI so I could pine away wistfully while knowing I'm never going to get a Kogarasumaru on my SAM and to suggest I did so is idiotic, stupid, and ignorant. I played because I had friends I enjoyed playing with and we did what we could. If we couldn't get it ourselves and it wasn't something we could easily PUG with a few people we put it out of our heads because the goals weren't realistic and it in no way somehow mysteriously became that which we played for hoping it would fall into our lap.
Edited, Jun 25th 2013 7:00pm by Viertel