The 5 Biggest Mistakes No MMO Should Make

In the MMO industry, dead men DO tell tales! What new MMOs should avoid.

2.       If you’re going for a theme, either love it or leave it
This topic is a good jump from the last example (LEGO Universe): they took the theme of creation limited only by imagination, and squashed it into an MMORPG that severely hamstrung what made the theme fun in the first place. And LEGO Universe is hardly the only game to do this: let’s look at the difference between Star Wars Galaxies and Star Wars: The Old Republic. One of the major criticisms even before the ill-fated “CU” patch was that the game didn’t “feel” like Star Wars; even Ralph Koster, ones of the lead designers behind SWG said “immersion does not make a lot of sense in a mobile, interruptible world." SWTOR, for all its other faults, lends itself to a much deeper feeling; the entire game is about immersing the player into his or her role as a member of the Republic or the Empire.
I see this being an issue in the future as well. One of my favorite single-player series is the Elder Scrolls. The greatest part of the games is the giant sandbox of a world and permanent result of your actions. If you slaughter an entire town, they stay dead; you might get their loot, but you miss out on the quests. Any true son of Skyrim knows that you do the quests then murder the town! Oh, but look what’s looming in our future: the Elder Scrolls MMO. Call me cynical, but if you take out the sandbox, actions have lasting consequences feel of the series… what is there left?

3.       Know your buyers and plan ahead
Pay schemes for MMOs seem to be heading in a single direction, and that direction is “free-to-play.”  Sure, some of the big boys like WoW can still get away with a subscription… except that over half of their players are in China, and do not pay monthly subscriptions. Huh. Ok, well, games like Star Wars: The Old Republic can… oh, nuts; they’re free to play now too? Well, what about new games like End of Nations? Oh, free to play from the get-go. Some games will be dragged to F2P kicking and screaming (SWTOR)… others will be forced to do so to keep their players (FFXIV). But the ones that succeed? They saw this coming for a long time and have prepared. Turbine, the studio behind Lord of the Rings Online and Dungeons & Dragons Online has stepped up to embrace the F2P mechanic, and it’s chugging right along with its players happy. It’s common sense: with a huge selection of games and limited time and money, players are going to choose the game that best fits their budget and preferences. Subscription games are becoming a thing of the past. And thank goodness for that, because it makes my job easier when it comes to reviewing new selections; most games with a subscription are likely out of line with the times.

 

Agree or disagree? Leave a comment below?

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You missed this man
# Sep 14 2012 at 1:31 PM Rating: Decent
13 posts
I agree with you on most everything but you missed don't dumb the game down too much. WoW the biggest example of this. Since Uldar World of Warcraft has been dumbed down to the point where it isn't fun anymore. Some people will say this started earlier and yes herb and mining nodes before they sparkled. But Blizzard is dumbed down WoW talent tree to the point where is just no fun and pointless, instance dungeons and raid to the point where they are no fun, and even the social part of the game with the instance and raid finder so you don't have to interact with other players socially which makes no since in a MMO. Developers shouldn't dumb down the game to the point where it is no fun.

Edited, Sep 14th 2012 3:32pm by EGGERS79
You missed this man
# Sep 14 2012 at 5:52 PM Rating: Good
EGGERS79 wrote:
I agree with you on most everything but you missed don't dumb the game down too much. WoW the biggest example of this. Since Uldar World of Warcraft has been dumbed down to the point where it isn't fun anymore. Some people will say this started earlier and yes herb and mining nodes before they sparkled. But Blizzard is dumbed down WoW talent tree to the point where is just no fun and pointless, instance dungeons and raid to the point where they are no fun, and even the social part of the game with the instance and raid finder so you don't have to interact with other players socially which makes no since in a MMO. Developers shouldn't dumb down the game to the point where it is no fun.

Edited, Sep 14th 2012 3:32pm by EGGERS79



But at the same time, Devs have to do something like this "dumbing down" in hoped to gain NEW players. And new as in NEW, never played the game before. If WoW was the same today as it was so many years back, but with all the new stuff, someone new to the game could possibly quit due to there being SO much that they "think" they have to do. Snipping a few corners can be a good thing at the same time.

As to the article, good read. I will support F2P games as long as they can do 1 thing: keep the game fun. If WoW (or even FFXI, I really only play these 2) went F2P I'd be ok with it, more money each month for me. But if the game takes a hit because they now no longer have the funds, don't makeit f2p...
Take my money, give it to your workers, so they can keep the game in top notch shape, and add more fun things for me to do, to keep me around (until I get bored).
____________________________
Sandinmyeye | |Tsukaremash*ta | Dihydrogen Monoxide (it kills)
You missed this man
# Sep 15 2012 at 9:31 AM Rating: Default
*
83 posts
Sandinmygum the Stupendous wrote:
EGGERS79 wrote:
I agree with you on most everything but you missed don't dumb the game down too much. WoW the biggest example of this. Since Uldar World of Warcraft has been dumbed down to the point where it isn't fun anymore. Some people will say this started earlier and yes herb and mining nodes before they sparkled. But Blizzard is dumbed down WoW talent tree to the point where is just no fun and pointless, instance dungeons and raid to the point where they are no fun, and even the social part of the game with the instance and raid finder so you don't have to interact with other players socially which makes no since in a MMO. Developers shouldn't dumb down the game to the point where it is no fun.

Edited, Sep 14th 2012 3:32pm by EGGERS79



But at the same time, Devs have to do something like this "dumbing down" in hoped to gain NEW players. And new as in NEW, never played the game before. If WoW was the same today as it was so many years back, but with all the new stuff, someone new to the game could possibly quit due to there being SO much that they "think" they have to do. Snipping a few corners can be a good thing at the same time.

As to the article, good read. I will support F2P games as long as they can do 1 thing: keep the game fun. If WoW (or even FFXI, I really only play these 2) went F2P I'd be ok with it, more money each month for me. But if the game takes a hit because they now no longer have the funds, don't makeit f2p...
Take my money, give it to your workers, so they can keep the game in top notch shape, and add more fun things for me to do, to keep me around (until I get bored).


I do understand where you are coming from, however if you ignore your long term customer needs and only look for new customers, you are in one heck of a wild ride (player base wise).
Besides new players can always find current players to teach them the ropes if they truly enjoy the game. Once the new players get the ropes and the content becomes too easy/boring they will just leave as well, thus why not make the game require a certain skill level to play and let players PLAY to challenge themselves?
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