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MMORPG.com Staff Blog

The staff of MMORPG.com gets together to bring you some behind the scenes insights on stories, the industry and the site itself.

Author: staffblog

Contributors: BillMurphy,MikeB,garrett,SBFord,Grakulen,

Community Spotlight: The Future of MMOGs

Posted by MikeB Thursday February 4 2010 at 3:55PM
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This week’s Community Spotlight focuses on the thought-provoking thread, “MMORPG’s of the Future. 2030,” by user ImmortalBird. In the thread, ImmortalBird wonders what MMOG’s will be like in the future, specifically, as far out as 2030:

“What kind of major changes do you think we will see?
I think gaming will become even more popular and thus more players for MMORPG's as the years go by and people get wealthier and wealthier and end up having more leisure time with nothing to do.

I think there will be new concepts for how an MMORPG is designed and how it's gameplay is handled, something quite drastically different than the basis of Everquest and games like World of Warcrafts gameplay. Also the action-element based MMORPG's of recent will take some unusual changes too I think.

Me personally, I'll keep a little bit of an eye out on how things are going, but I won't try out any games unless something just miraculousy captures me like how I felt about games when I was a young boy. Which are slim chances heh.”

ImmortalBird’s topic sparked some interesting responses, with generally something for everyone. The thread is replete with conspiracy theories involving the end of the world in 2012 (thus making MMOG’s in 2030 impossible, duh!), plain ol’ funny responses, and of course a few somewhat serious ones.

Let’s start with a conspiracy theory by Lansid. We won’t have any MMOG’s in 2030, we’ll all be dead come December 21st, 2012:

“Trick question.There will be no MMORPG's in 2030. Dec. 21st, 2012 we will all be dead.
However in the unlikely event that we all live... I highly doubt the term MMORPG will be used 20 years from now, either by political correctness of evolution of the genre.

10 years ago, the majority of MMO pioneer people were playing Everquest, Asheron's Call, Ultima Online, or Meridian 59... on their 56k modems, PII cores, 256 Megs of ram and 16 Meg vid cards.

10 years ago, the first Silent HIll on the Playstation came out, Nsync, Backstreet Boys, Ricky Martin and Britney Spears ruled the airwaves... The Force was revealed as a parasitic infection in The Phantom Menace, the term "Bullet-Time" was coined from the Matrix, and there was a movie about a witch with three kids running around in the forest and a chicks runny nose that went on to be the most successful indie movie to date.

That's just TEN years ago... and you're projecting TWENTY?

What exists now will be a laughable shadow of what "once was" idealism followed by teens saying "Oh my god, why the hell did you SIT at your computer for hours, days, weeks, years... on end? Talk about archaic!"

Mark my words and archive them.”

In all seriousness, Lansid does still make a good point. If we do manage to survive 2012, we’ll be mocked by the youngins come 2030 for ever sitting in our computer chairs and playing these games the way we do, perhaps implying that virtual reality or a holodeck style MMOG would be possible by then.

How about another conspiracy theory? This time let’s go with the tried and true monolithic Microsoft concept. NinjaNerf explains how Microsoft will rule the MMOG world:

“Before 2030 Microsoft will buy up the majority of the social networks (facebook, twitter and such) and develop them into a giant social mmo network similiar to Second Life but only 100x bigger.
Indie mmorpg developers will be bought into the Microsoft Online Social Network. These will include a list of popular indie games (e.g runescape) and some defunct games by then (e.g. WAR and AoC), and of course Microsoft will also buy Club Penguins from Disney for an outregeous price to promote their kiddy products.

By 2030, we will have major breakthrough in space technologies or may even discover lifeforms from outerspace. So a lot of mmorpg will be sci-fi instead of fantasy.

Since microsoft will turn mmorpg into a social/marketing tool, in game visual advertisement system will be in desire so dying mmo such as Anarchy may still squeeze out a few bucks from microsoft.

We will also see gambling and porn mmorpg.

And of course, Bill Gates will be the president of the United States.”

There are some positives to NinjaNerf’s future. For example, since we’ll apparently discover lifeforms from outer space, most people will tire of fantasy MMOG’s, and we’ll mostly see sci-fi one’s instead. Here’s hoping!

Disownation is ahead of all of us. He knows what the future is, because, well, he’s developing it:

“In 2030, the term MMO will be a thing of the past.

It will be replaced by VRSRPG (Virtual Reality Simulation Role Playing Game). I know this, because I am developing it.”

Vaske1984 offers a brief description of MMOG’s in the future:

“1.Sit in the chair.
2.Plug-in device in your brain (matrix thing)
3.And your online :D”

I’m surprised we got more conspiracy theories and humorous responses than a huge discussion debating the possibility of The Matrix like virtual reality.

I obviously don’t know what the future holds, but having seen the movie the 13th Floor, I would hope that some day that is essentially what we end up with. For those of you who haven’t seen the movie, it is similar to The Matrix, but it fits this discussion better than the Matrix would, as the worlds are created entirely for the purposes of entertainment. Users can, like the Matrix jack into these worlds and assume an identity, with all the worlds living beings essentially being programs or AI.

I won’t spoil the movie for any of you out there looking to check it out, but there is a pretty mind bending twist in there, and I highly recommend it!

With that said, what do you think the far away future holds for MMOGs? Do you believe in a more practical future where the games evolve from where we are currently at? Or do you subscribe to the theory that things will be radically different, and virtual reality, a’la the Matrix, is a very real possibility?

Let us know in the comments below!

lttexxan writes:

I just want my flying car GodDamnit! How fucking far into the future do we have to speculate before I get my God Damned flying car?

Thu Feb 04 2010 5:03PM Report
sacredfool writes:

Watch the movie "Avalon". Pretty accurate IMHO.

Thu Feb 04 2010 5:08PM Report
Brenelael writes:

All I can think of on this topic is the Popular Mechanics and Popular Science magazines of the 50's and 60's. According to them we would have nuclear reactors in our basements, robotic butlers, vacations to the Moon and yes Ittexxan... flying nuclear powered cars... all by the 1990's. Very little of what was in those magazines ever came to pass in the ways they described them.

I look at people talking about the future with a grain of salt now as I know what people 'think' will happen seldom ever does. I'm sure the future holds wonders we can't even fathom at this point but what those wonders are we'll just have to wait to find out.

 

Bren

Thu Feb 04 2010 5:17PM Report
geograd writes:

You bring up a good and a bad point Brenelael. The reason we aren't near as advanced as the past predicted us to be is because of the dangers that were involved with the beginnings of nuclear science. If any government could overlook a small nuclear disaster and think about the bigger picture then we would have self sustaining power systems and much more I am sure, but governments aren't willing to risk their "disapproval" in case a disaster did happen from something they sanctioned. Therefore, even if the technology is promising they won't pursue it.

The best example of this besides nuclear power is the LHC. Thankfully the swiss and french governments are allowing these experiments to happen and who knows what kind of technology will come from it. Could it destroy the entire world? Maybe. Did they think that nuclear power would destroy the world also? Yes. Did it? No.

Dynamite was discovered and refined after the inventors brother died in an explosion caused by their research, yet look at the technologies and future it has created for us. Sure it is a destructive force, but it also allowed us to mine tons of material instead of chipping away by hand.

The thing is, who is to say whether something is good or bad for our future? The government? I say let people research as long as they aren't harming anyone/thing in the process of researching. If something unpredictable happens to come from the research, like an explosion, then be more cautious, but don't cut the research. If the world is destroyed by someone's research so what? It's not like just you are dying, EVERYONE died, does it matter after that?

Thu Feb 04 2010 6:41PM Report
Morv writes:

The Matrix is a stepping stone away whether it be literally like that or a 'holodeck reality'.

I heard on the grapevine years ago that some *looks over his shoulder* places are already experimenting with holodeck concepts.

I think the real shift will be when a new type of energy is invented that propels computer technology forward at an even more alarming rate than it is now. An energy that can power computers and houses and cities with very little effort.

I'm a hopeless optimistic...

Thu Feb 04 2010 7:12PM Report
Toquio3 writes:

The real world already has flying cars and robot butlers. We just dont know it yet because we are all still in the matrix. But our time will come, one day will be our turn to be freed!

Thu Feb 04 2010 7:30PM Report
Blazz writes:

I'm pretty sure we're about to see a big boom in the porn industry - it's already starting, innocently enough with "relationship" building mmos and chat rooms.

Soon we'll have sexy avatars, with other people's sexy avatars.

Then imagine the virtual prostitution when VR becomes possible?

Thu Feb 04 2010 7:38PM Report
Dwarvish writes:

 Whew!!   I dunno what the future will bring but I suspect it will surprise all of us.

 Especialy the silly NinjaNerf  who thinks Microsoft will rule all. ROFL, sory...not.  Only 35 years ago microsoft came into existance and was given a huge leg-up by IBM ( a comuter king at the time. They gave Bill funding and purchased DOS (who Bill got from a friend for ( i think ) $750) . Originaly the Dirty Operating System.

 IBM isn't what it was and I doubt  Microsoft will maintain thier dominance. Its near impossible to find generations of great leader/visionaries.

I I like Morv's comment: I think the real shift will be when a new type of energy is invented that propels computer technology forward at an even more alarming rate than it is now. An energy that can power computers and houses and cities with very little effort
concepts.

I believe that we will come up with new ways to produce and use energy. It is needed and someone will answer that need.


We always base the future on something we know now...though Holodecks sound like a hoot!!!

 Did you know that multiple CPUs were linked  ( up to 16) as early as the late 1980s by IBM. They also has the ability to put 1GB on a 'single platter' but were certain no one would ever risk that much data on a single drive. 

Who knew

Thu Feb 04 2010 7:47PM Report
tro44_1 writes:

RPGs will never change. Just look at how far we got away from DnD. Only thing new is Sci-fi genre, which again is using the same RPG mechanics, just a different theme

Thu Feb 04 2010 8:04PM Report
EricDanie writes:

Wait Blazz... you never played an asian MMOG or Second Life? :P Not to mention "H" games exist in Japan, though I don't remember hearing of any online one.

My bet is on the "dangers" to current reality brought be a RCE (Real Cash Economy) environment adapted to absorb people from any society segment. Danger is a relative word here, because you can get someone who is unemployed and let him generate something to "live". We have already seen the addictive powers of a MMOG, both from people spending too much time or people spending too little time, along with a failed birth control.

Of course this is only viable if the current governments don't change and decay in another extremist period (*cough* World Wars *cough*), and a lot of other variables such as government actually going AGAINST MMOGs (alienating factor), the world ending in 2012, aliens invading and slaving us to play their MMOGs (or the machines ;)), etc.

Thu Feb 04 2010 8:32PM Report
Otrantor writes:

Putting aside the wishful thinking of Matrixstyle complete immersion games ... I think the one thing where future MMORPGs will trump the current generation is in depth and complexity. With increased storage, computing and broadbandth capabilities, future MMORPGs will have the luxury of developing more complex economical and political systems, and thus shifting the game away from combat towards more RL environments.

Thu Feb 04 2010 9:14PM Report
chinalimit writes:

[url=http://www.ripblurayformac.net/blu-ray-ripper.html]Blu-ray Ripper[/url] i just check if links can be posted. Not a spammer

Fri Feb 05 2010 12:51AM Report
tapeworm00 writes:

 We're gonna be partying like it's 1997

Fri Feb 05 2010 1:01AM Report
Ngeldu5t writes:

gaming in 2030 will be like Avalon,the hardcore will have hard times making the difference between the Virtual world and the real world.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8TTgzumaI0w

Fri Feb 05 2010 2:07AM Report
hogscraper writes:

 There's already a porn MMO. I can't remember what's its called but when I bought DAZ from a third party, advertisements for it were all over that website. The trailer playing in the side bar made it look like the sims or second life with a lot of sex. 

Fri Feb 05 2010 3:50AM Report
Gralyndr writes:

hogscraper, I believe it was called Red Light World.  Fell into that lump of online crap when it beta'ed but it did tap into the new current growing model for MMOs, free to play then buy the "extras".  
 20 years our whole mindest of how MMOs will be different.  No doubt the scifi scene will finally emerge with an aweome game that attracts the masses like WoW does today.  The play system over the years has always evolved so to see it even remain close to what it is today is rather moot.  In that time we will definately see WoW fall from the shelf, Microsoft will probably collapse due to another errant OS "upgrade",  VR will be closer but I don't think it will happen for quite a bit longer.  One of the elements in all of this cash.  Who will still be standing twenty years from now after more economic blunders in our great nation?  Businesses are there for cash, that's it.  That optimism makes me think in later years we'll see some of these gaming giants to merge to stay alive.  Can you see SoE/Blizzard?  *shiver*  A lot can happen in twenty years, so I say just enjoy the ride and play the snot outta every game out there. 

Fri Feb 05 2010 6:31AM Report
Inktomi writes:

 2030? Somewhere between Neuromancer and Halted State. A world where virtual items have real values and can be stored in a bank. Memories can be recorded and drugs will be in the form of microchips.

Unfortunately, the government will now be able to see into your thoughts and track them. Enter a high-tech Orwellian 1984. 

Scary, isn't it?

Fri Feb 05 2010 9:43AM Report
JYCowboy writes:

Just watched the pilot for "Caprica".  The VR world in that kinda had me thinking about this topic.  Sure the sex and debotcher might have an appeal but signing up for a VR Star Wars experiance would be beyond my dreams... probably way after 2030 though.  I figure I will be gone by then.

The new energy mentioned above will probably be the tapping into the brain for VR.

Sat Feb 06 2010 1:53PM Report
Skuz writes:

How about games that utilise real world devices to such an extent that by playing your favourite fantasy hack n slash mmo you can develop an incredible physique that would make you almost as deadly in real ife as in the fantasy on?

Ok though the pace of progress will hit a wall, the economics will be the "braking factor" where technology will become slowed by the fact it becomes beyond affordable, computing technology can progress faster than the mass manufacturing techniques required to build it, unless we get into real far flung tech such as nanotechnological "builders" wherevy you just pay for a blueprint license & your at home nanobots build it for you. Imagine the black market possibilities there...real scary.

Sat Feb 06 2010 4:52PM Report
Mordacai writes:

 

 

This one is easy, it'll start off with military technology and then slowly shift to commercial just like it does now. For instance, Right now the tech is just using the predator drone and those drones are not only being made into planes but also into walking soldiers or mechs capable of doing even the bare minimum of things like a loader for ammunition while remotely protecting the user from any danger. Advance that to now remotely controlling or logging into (like your surrogate) and that mech is now an extension of your thoughts and you are linked (similar to the apache targeting helmet) to this machine and you go fight far off wars against china with it without putting your own troops in jeopardy.

Now that's in the next 10, take that to the next step and start with that technology moving to the commercial environment and not only do we have these surrogates doing our daily work for us while we are remotely logged in from home and connected to it via these brain links but we now have the option of better looking avatars not just bot looking ones, ones that look like people. and we can extend this into virtual environments by extending it to social networks where you're avatar is created virtually in a world and you log in just the same as you would to day in this neural net.

Now not only do you have both virtual and real world enviroments but you can game in them too...run surrogoate warriors around in some advanced game design like a destroyed city and fight against other players in the ultimate FPS and the npc robots are now your enemies to take out while you and you're guild mates go head to head with futuristic weaponry ....or virtualize it login from your couch using your control glove and your neural network interface v2.0 into this simulated fantasy world where you litterally ride upon the back of a dragon...destroy goblin races and discover vast treasures....

Tue Feb 09 2010 2:36PM Report
dar_es_balat writes:

MMORPG?  Dont you mean job?   Entropia Universe and Ebay before it already has proven this is the way things are moving.   When your MMO starts paying you to play it people will start finding ways to increase the size of those paychecks.  Governments will discover how to track and tax those sums as they arrive into bank accounts.   Once this happens MMORPG's cease to become games and start becoming reality.  Then we need to find something else to entertain us.

Tue Feb 09 2010 4:01PM Report

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