What a few weeks it’s been. I did some Final Fantasy Beta. I did some Firefall Beta. I did some GW2, and I ended up back in Darkfall (always swore I’d never do that after the way DF1.0 went down).
FF-RR was an ok game. It had some nice things and if you're a FF fan I’m sure you love it. If it was BTP I would pick it up. For the sub, meh, its just not what I’m interested in for an MMO right now. I want an open world, a crafted economy, and lots of consequential pvp. I’m sure FF will have a lot of fans, it’s just not my style of MMO.
Firefall was also ok. It was too FPS for me (I’m old), but I thought it looked great (love cell shading) and played well, I just didn’t get the open world feeling I prefer and other than Star Wars I’m more of a medieval MMOer than a Sci-Fi MMOer (but dont you EVER question my love and desire of all things Star Wars and outer space!).
GW2 continues to pump out content for PVEers. I’m sure the park crowd love it, but its just not my thing. Why have an NPC election? Have a player election. Why have NPC invasions? Have player invasions. The RVR drew me to GW2 and I thought they might make the game more consequential over time but instead they seem content to pump out more meaningless scripted theme park stuff under the guise that it’s a “living story” and it changes via our actions, and it will permanently change the game! No, just no. In UO we could change the game. In GW2, we can pick a or b and ride the rails.
Don’t try that clever marketing stuff on me, I am far far too seasoned for that stuff any more (most of the time ;)! Their main players seem to love it and their Casino model seems to be working (gotta keep those whales) but, again, I’m looking for something different and meaningful again, not scripted. I’ll probably always jump in GW2 when I’m very bored or wanna kill a few minutes, but it will always be my second class MMO until a better freebie comes along. I really enjoy some aspects, but the lack of consequence and meaningful PVP always prevents me from really getting into it.
So far I’m pretty impressed with DF 2.0, especially the variety of crafting and how it overlaps. I also like the way you earn XP then pick which things you want to put the XP into. It’s the closest game to a proper sandbox we have, and it’s pretty fun (given I’m only a week in so I don’t know a lot about the game yet). I’m most impressed by the game world itself. It feels like a giant world to live in. I feel small and insignificant (in a good way) and I dare say it might just be the best MMO game world I’ve ever played in with SWG a close second. I wouldn’t mind CU having a similar world, similar crafting, and a similar leveling system. I think CU could learn a lot from GW2 and DF, take the best of each and make them better. Throw in lessons from DAOC, SWG, and UO and you just might have teh GOAT MMO to save us all! Hype, type, hype, type more, hype more!!! CU WILL BE THE GREATEST SANDBOX OF ALLLLLLLL TIME!!!! CU WILL HAVE THE BEST NPCS OF ALLLLL TIME!!!...
...Sorry about that, I guess I’ve been on the EQN forums too much. I didn’t think an MMO could ever have more hype or zealots than SWTOR, Star Citizen, or CU, but I was wrong. This EQN phenom is like nothing I’ve ever seen before. Its sad that we are all so MMO desperate that we are willing to trust SOE and hype based on 2 insanely over hyped statements! Sad, but true. Even my little black heart is pounding away (or maybe its my iron deficiency acting up) impatiently awaiting the word from SOE, hoping that EQN really is a sandbox, and really is Everquest like, and really does help this genre turn back in the right direction.
Speaking of the right turns, why don't devs make player crafted loot resource drops to chase rather than loot drops to chase? I understand that it’s probably more insta cool to get a phat lewt rather than a phat ingredient to make phat lewt (and the first option requires no socialization) but crafted economies that help suck players in and retain them. I truly believe that even if a game like GW2 went into a craft based economy it would be better for them long term. Sure you would have people on forums complaining about “GW2 isn’t casual anymore, I have to talk to others, I have to know a crafter, I have to be a crafter” etc. but long term I think it works far better for an MMO, its retention, its playability, and it’s fun factor.
Visiting player shops or talking to crafters is something park players claim to hate but I’ve been on forums long enough to know the majority of stories don’t start with “so I was doing a scripted thing” they start with “so me and this guy, or these guys, or this player I was talking to”... Player crafted economies play right into the good kind of social interaction that helps us take away more than a scripted reaction from our MMOs. It helps us form social groups and those groups help retain us. Not to mention it takes crafting and crafter retention to a whole new level. I’m glad CU will have a craft based economy, more MMOs should consider it.