A few weeks ago, we looked into ideas that Western MMORPGs would do well to borrow from their Eastern counterparts. Now, it seems only fair to do the reverse, for there are also areas where the East would do well to take some cues from us.
To address an elephant in the room, a lot of people will highlight grinding and overbearing monetization as the chief sins of Eastern MMOs, and I won’t say that’s entirely wrong as those are common problems in games from Asia, but I don’t think it’s a universal truth, and plenty of Western games are grindy or greedy too. I don’t see it as a… Continue reading
Every subculture inevitably develops its own lingo, and the MMORPG community is no exception. For a newcomer just joining the genre, it’s almost like learning an entirely new language, and once you’ve mastered the MMO parlance, it almost feels like being admitted to an elite club.
Albeit an elite club that smells strongly of Cheetos and Gatorade.
If you know the meaning behind all the following terms, you’re a true MMO fan, and if not, take the opportunity to learn and join our prestigious (if cheesy) club.
When most of the world hears the word “ninja,” they think of an ancient Japanese assassin, darting through the shadows and slinging shuriken… Continue reading
MMORPGs have grown to such heights now that they warrant their own category for year end video game awards. However, MMOs evolve to a much greater extent than games from other genres. An MMORPG’s full potential might not be realized until years after launch. It is with this thought in mind, and the fact that hindsight is 20/20, that we’ll be taking a retroactive look at the best MMORPG by year for the past twenty years. We’ll start in 1996, the first time that multiple graphical MMORPGs would release in the same year.
The unfortunate truth is that MMORPGs are not games that are going to be around forever. They’re reliant on developers to continually maintain and support their servers, and eventually there comes a day when that is no longer economically viable and the game is shut down forever.
Short of that, aging and unpopular games can slide into “maintenance mode,” where the servers are still running but new content and updates are no longer produced. Such a game will be abandoned by all but a small core of devoted fans, and even they may not last forever.
This knowledge can be a source of anxiety for MMO players. When wondering whether to invest time into a game, one may wonder how much longer it’s likely to operate and receive… Continue reading
MMORPGs are a genre of game that is not, shall we say, known for wild creativity and endless diversity. That is, if you play a lot of MMOs for any length of time, you’ll notice the same themes just keep coming up. This isn’t half as bad as it was a few years ago, when seemingly everyone was trying to clone World of Warcraft down to the finest detail, but you’ll still notice a lot of common threads through most games.
One of these is use of fantasy settings. The overwhelming majority of MMORPGs feature some sort of secondary world high fantasy setting, from old classics… Continue reading
As MMO players, we take on the role of adventurers and heroes. We fight evil and save the world on a daily basis. But being a hero often means going where others fear to tread, and fighting evil means facing it in its lair. As a result, we sometimes end up in some pretty frightening places.
These are some of the darkest and most disturbing virtual locales found in the MMO genre.
8: Icecrown (World of Warcraft)
World of Warcraft isn’t a game many would think of as particularly scary, but over its many long years of operation, it has occasionally produced some fairly unnerving stuff.