Another WoW article KT? I am disappointed (WoW is a good example shut up). But this is directed at the media more than users. The infamous WoW killer! This is a label given to any MMORPG which may release while WoW is open. And you know what never happens? Blizzard feels threatened by them. Another phrase is XYZ is a WoW Clone, you can read here on why I think it’s not but no point rewriting something I’ve already written although it will be the same.
WoW will never loose it’s subscribers the same way most games do, although they’re feeling the heat. By making trials longer and restricting the level they’re opening up their world to new players. Whether this is do to falling subscriber numbers or the financial struggle or both is debatable. However WoW is always updating, opening locked content until you finish other content. If you want people to play your game, especially your MMO update regularly and tell people what’s coming. For example Minecraft, Notch has been teasing 1.8 and telling us what will be included but before, he had to be DDOS‘d and loose money before he even though out updates and the BETA. Maybe it’s because I’m not a huge supprise fan, but I like my updates and I like to look forward to them. Yeah post some pictures but give me an idea of what will happen. Hardly any smaller game studios can afford to do as much patch and maintenance WoW does. It’s about 20GB of space and uses a P2P system just because there are so many and loads of people are downloading on patch day.
As I said before you can’t play two MMO’s at a time, it can’t be done. They are designed to take up all your time and pull you towards the game. World of Warcraft is so big- there’s so much content to explore, quests to do, friends to make. There’s a huge open world. How can you play another when you’re only this much closer to level 60, then it’s only 25 more levels to go. Many smaller developers just can’t reach that same open worldness WoW has. Global Agenda a shooter MMO has a small city with one freeroam quest area which after level 20 becomes useless. Unless you can put in the PvP hours to level up, after level 20 there’s no point playing traditionally. However I don’t think this is GA’s fault. “You can make a make a good movie out of anything” – Moviebob. And I think it runs true for games and defiantly for MMOs. A shooter MMO is hard to make, and GA does a good job without making a MMO version of borderlands but well thought out shooters are hard- that’s why there’s so many crappy ones which are just “Point gun at anything not on your team then stick bullets in their brain”. It’s boring a repetitive, there’s no real sense of moving forward. Although now GA is free to play, it’s worth a shot and a pretty neat game to play.
MMORPG’s are not the only kind of MMO’s and other forms of MMO’s are always looked over in the media. You can make a game out of anything, one of the best games is about Ayn Rand‘s ideas, underwater, with drug references (Bioshock). So why should it be different for MMO’s. I mean you can play social games- yes they count, like farmville or anything else Zyga make. If you can make a game about farming which people of Facebook are stunned by like a moth to a flame, you can make something compelling about a WoW clone.
The real WoW killer will have, amazing narrative, expansive gameworld, loads of creates to explore, more than just one way to play, an amazing aesthetic and have a real social feel. Which may end up being WoW it’s self. In the short run, however, we’ll see small developers making small MMO’s of every genre and not just MMORPGs. The will lack features, but as long as they have a story to tell they’ll have a big thumbs up from me.