Thursday, August 30, 2012

Death of MMOs?

EQ2Wire: What George Smokejumper said about the MMO industry


SmokeJumper on Taking Risks in the MMO Industry
Written by Feldon on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 11:46 pm

In response to a thread asking the perennial question “Is the MMO Genre Dying?“, SmokeJumper had some comments that may resonate with readers who have tried, or plan to try some of the new concept MMOs on the near horizon:
I think the main problem with most MMOs today is lack of imagination and fear of failure.
Individual developers at any given company have slews of good, innovative ideas. However, what matters is what the person that signs the check will authorize…and that involves risk assessment.
So yeah, we have a few models out there of “chase loot, get check” that work really well. So everyone starts making their games do exactly that as the only main goal. Thus, we’ve trained our own players to do only one thing.

Well, bad on us. But we’re reaping what we sowed.
That being said, the reverse is true. Once you start playing a game, you don’t really want it to morph into another completely different game over time, because you fell in love with the original game…not this new one. (And yes, we’ve done our share of that morphing ourselves. We’re changing that approach to our games now.)
So, MMOs are not dying. However, players that have played those MMOs many times over many years are…surprise, surprise…tired of playing that particular game model. They want something new.
So, enter the new breed. Things like Tera and GW2. They’re trying new ideas. Maybe they work, maybe they don’t, but no one has hit it out of the park yet. We all know…feel in our bones…that change has to occur and we’re all working toward new ways of doing things.
Part of that is gameplay. Part of it is business. And part is something no one has seen yet. EQN is where we take our theories and practice and combine them into the form of something new.
But no way is the genre dead. That’s like the rumors of “the PC is a dying platform”. It’s just not true. We do nothing but grow because people like being around other people.
Georgeson also made a point of reiterating that while EQNext will be different from EQ2, it will not be “simpler”.

TL;DR version:
Bottom line is MMO's are changing into something new out of the gate instead of changing what is already out.

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