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MMO Building Under WoW’s Shadow

April 29, 2014

Since I’ve been doing a lot of ruminating on Twitter recently, I decided to use Storify to compile some of my recent tweets about MMO endgame and WoW’s dominance of the market, in large part due to its superior raiding game. Below are a few preview tweets, and the full story is available here.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. May 1, 2014 6:18 am

    I know it’s derailing the subject a bit, but in how many different MMOs have you actually spent time raiding? Or else, where does this idea of WoW’s raiding being superior to everything else come from? Especially when Blizzard can leave you doing nothing but the same raid for a whole year?

    I’ve heard some great things about RIFT’s and FFXIV’s raids, and personally I got hooked on SWTOR’s raid game after I had quit WoW thinking that I would never want to raid again, based on how disappointed I was in Blizzard’s handling of the endgame at the time.

    I disagree with the premise that new MMOs should stop making raids because they can’t be better than WoW. I feel the opposite: that all these MMOs with good raid games coming out have finally given people more viable alternatives to WoW, and that it’s a good thing.

  2. May 1, 2014 3:56 pm

    I guess, as much as I’d like to see an endgame that doesn’t revolve around raiding, I see a couple hurdles that would need to be overcome for it to happen. For one, I think the game would have to be built from the ground up with something other than combat as their main mechanic. If the main way in which you challenge your player is by making them fight tougher baddies, then a boss-type encounter seems inevitable. This, coupled with the social component of MMOs, make raids a no-brainer.
    The second one is the notion of character progression and content longevity. Right now, beyond the social aspect, the way in which most MMOs keep us coming back is by offering us increases in character power as a reward for taking on challenges, which then makes it easier for us to take on even harder challenges. This, coupled with the RNG component, results in people engaging with the same content for months. Character advancement isn’t as straightforward if you start building on stuff like story, exploration or puzzle-solving (in the more traditional sense), nor do these feel like they have as high a replayability value.
    I don’t know; obviously, there’s always the Sandbox/PvP approach that EVE took, but I think this caters to a very different audience than WoW and wouldn’t really be much competition, as EVE ostensibly isn’t.

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