This week’s Community Spotlight focuses on the thread “Why do you play MMORPGs?” by user Snakes. Snakes offers a simple, but important question:
“Why do you play MMORPGS or simply MMOs in general?
Let me explain - this is very open ended and its bound to have a large amount of responses to it. I'm not choosing a specific game here, its just in general - why do you choose to play the MMOs that you play? What brings you back to them and what keeps your attention?
Like I said, there's hundreds of answers based on this - choose any game or just speak in general.
Here's a couple of examples. Some people play mmorpgs for the community, others for the pvp, others for other things. Personally a lot of the time I would go back to an MMORPG because I met a number of awesome people, and being an Role-player at heart, I loved anything based around Role-playing. To be something else for example but that wouldn't base everything on my gaming experience, of course content was very important to me to but it was the community that brought me back.”
User metalhead980 kicks things off with his response:
“…today I play Eve because in my mind it feels like the only game that truely is a Sci-fi life simulation.
Communities are what MMOs are about to me, not instances and queues. If a community doesn't play a role in my MMO it isnt one.
In short, Communities that effect the game world is the reason I started and try to continue playing MMOs.”
Azareal offers an enumerated list of all the reasons he plays MMOGs:
“I play mmorpg's because :
1. I'm simply too lazy to keep going out once a month to pick up another stand-alone game;
2. The community and my friends from all parts of the world; It's kinda hard to meet up for drinks and catch up once a week if you live in Australia and they live in Kansas, or somewhere like that. Unless of course you all have way too much money and too much time, much like a certain lady who's named after a french city.
3. Content; It's always incredibly fun for me to see what some creative people are able to do with a few lines of code and turn something in a book or comic, or their imagination into virtual life.
4. Alternative; Like a previous poster, yeah, I'm a little sick and tired of the crap we get on tv these days. E.g. like I 'Really' need to know how jon and kate are doing in rl. Or some really dumb idiots go "yeah, like, uhmm..yeah", "really, like about tonight...", "like uh huh, ", "and then, they like, y'know.."; There's no need for waterboarding, just force the criminals to watch some of these "movies/series" and I swear they will tell you everything within 5 minutes.
5. Escapism; After a hard day/week at work, I will do just about anything to avoid thinking about work and mmorpg's are the most cost effective way to go.”
Sanguinelust outlines the joys of grouping, as well as the pitfalls of grouping:
“For me the attraction to MMO's I have is because I find they have a lot of meat and potatoes to them. Theres more than just some linear map to explore for 10 minutes or so then on the the next one, there's a whole world to explore and in the case of SWG worlds. Then theres the whole thing of building your character up. Choose a class and go master it. All the teamwork was awesome. You could kill something and find something you, or your buddies could use on the corpse, which led to go kill another to see what it has. Which led to go kill another wait, what was that, I leveled?!?! Awesome!!! Now go kill hundreds more to level again and again.
Somewhere along the line playing in groups kinda fell by the wayside though. Especially when you have to work and when you got home your leveling buddies didn't wait for you and went ahead and did the tough missions while you weren't there and now are on to the next tough ones while you struggle to find someone else who has to do that mission to try to complete it with. So now I look for MMO's that are solo friendly but also have enough group content that you need to have friends to be able to play with. I love being in a guild, even if I don't use them to their potential I know there's someone there to chat with, ask for help from or I can help out. “
I’m not sure if acidworm is serious or not, but we couldn’t have a spotlight like this without one of the following posts:
“The inevitable emo drama. It beats any soap or reality show by a landslide.
Also, I like pwning noobz. It makes me feel better about myself.”
Abyss610 offers a slightly more economical take on why he plays MMOGs:
“honestly its the cheapest form of entertainment around by far. i deffinitly don't have the fun playing mmos like i use to, but still an enjoyable way to pass the time when i'm bored. got into mmos years ago when i played PSO noticed i got ALOT more for my money from them. prior to that i would buy a new game have it beat within a week tops, trade it in and buy a new one. was getting expensive buying a new game every week only getting like maybe $14 back from the trade-ins. so even if i buy one of these new mmos that turn out to suck they do usually last long enough to be cheaper than me buying new console game every week.”
I have to play favorites here and highlight one of our moderators (before she was a moderator here with us) who, like Paul, plays MMOGs for the chicks. I kid, I kid! Here is why our very own Chirugai plays MMOGs:
“I'm kidding. I play MMOs because it's live. Things change, update, etc. I get to somewhat customise my avatar instead of playing a pre-made one. I get to play with other human beings who aren't as predictable as AI is. It's the over all experience of live interaction.”
Finally, the always insightful Teala shares her views on why she plays MMOGs, and what she’s hoping to see come from the genre going forward:
“Well what drove me to this was the stories and the ability to create my own stories as my character went on adventures in these virtual worlds. Sorta like reading a book and following the character. In an MMORPG my character is the main character and she allows me to play out a book in virtual form. Nowadays thoughm the stories are all pre-written and you must follow them in order to get any where. I mean it is cool and all, but it has lost something. In the older games I would just travel and adventure and make up my story as I went along. Sure their were quest I could do now and then if I so desired, but it wasn't required. Just exploring and looking for treasure was good enough. I now it was kinda archaic and there is so much more that can be done with these games now, it is just so said that their all going the way of theme parks.
It is sad that even a lot of the indie games are just not cutting it. They are half-arsed done and are sold on promises that they cannot deliver and you end up getting a game that has 1/4 of the features that they promised and then a lot that the game has is broken and does not work. ::cough:: MO - DF ::cough::
Some day a group of people will come together with like minds and make a good MMORPG again...the way the old Turbine crew created Asheron's Call. That was truly a good MMORPG for it's time. We need that kind of team to come together and make a new game for this day that was as innovative and massive as that game was during it's time.”
Snake's thread offered a pretty simple question to the community, whose responses have turned out to be quite revealing. I have come to observe that the reason we play MMORPGs appear to really vary from person to person, which is definitely in contrast to the reasons most people play traditional games. If you asked a bunch of people why they played Pac-Man or Tetris, you probably wouldn’t get too many different responses, but gamers seem to get all sorts of different things from, and in turn, look for different things, in their MMOGs.
However, the recurring theme in Snakes’ thread seemed to be community. While this isn’t important to everyone, it seems to be an important reason for many of our users, and I must admit, important to myself as well. I know. What a surprise! The Community Manager is interested in community! D’uh.
Communities do exist surrounding other games, but there is nothing is like a tight-knit MMOG community. There have been tons of good (and bad) examples over the years of what can come out of MMOG communities, but suffice it to say, people can make connections and friendships that last the test of time and span many games through these little things called MMORPGs and I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t one of the most, if not the most important reasons I play these games.
Why do you play MMOGs? Let us know in the comments below!