Is it the new balance?
For years I have had a love/hate relationship with MMO’s. I don’t have them with ANY other type of game. Just online persistent ones. On one-off games you read the review, buy, it stays the same (for the most part) you play it until it is over, and shelve it. The fact that MMO’s DO change is where the Love/hate comes in. I love the persistent world and perpetual non ending to the game. I hate some of the changes they make that impact my game. I love the community aspects of the MMOsphere. I hate the jerkoff community members of that same sphere (hate is a bad word, but for every 1 person that typically makes a community great, there are two that detract from it). I love that the games forces people of all walks of live to objective based goals. I hate that for the most part I have to rely on those same people I can’t stand to enjoy the game. Love/Hate. Wheeee.
I loved EQ, my personal MMO birthplace for the wonder and exploration. I ended up hating it for the inability to enjoy the game with friends who had more time than I did. I loved WoW for it’s ease of entry, slick gamplay, and fit in my gaming-time-lifestyle. I hated it for their self admitted inflated grind mechanics to tow along their sub fees. I loved DAOC for the RVR gameplay. I hated what they did when they tried to make it into a PVE game with ToA. Each game I have spent significant time in I can list the things I loved – and hated about it. Do you have to hate a game, as much as you love it, to keep playing it? I know that sounds silly to even ask, but why can’t the games just focus on the love, discourage the hate, and be some sort of a success? Have the developer-“geniuses” realized that if things were all good in a game, we wouldn’t play it? Do we design our reality, or “fun”, around misery and suffering? (Shameless Agent Smith Plug!)
Reading blogs and forums would lead me to believe the answer is “Yes”.
We all have the option to vote with our wallets, yet none of us do – although we threaten to often. I am guilty of this myself (not the threatening part, but the voting with my wallet.) In Politics we are apathetic and don’t vote, because we feel that our votes won’t make a difference. Is it the same with our subscription fees? I know that if I pull my $15 that there are 749,000 other people who won’t – meaning it won’t have an impact. So I might as well enjoy the parts of the game I love, and deal with the parts of the game I hate, because no one has given me an option otherwise to date.
Dear MMO developer. Make a game with the Love, leave the Hate out. I’d pay double to play it and I bet other people will too.