Ya I said it, where is the fun?
I am asking this question because I often think about what would make MMOs better. So here is my take on what is fun in MMOs....
1. Customization - Something WoW lacks tremendously and other MMOs get about 50% right. Making your character your own is all part of the game and one of the biggest things MMOs lack. Thank god for APB and what they will be showing to the world soon. Because MMOs are in serious need of giving players the tools to stand out in a crowd.
2. PvP - Ok this is not for everyone, but this is for me. Fun PvP areas are critical but there also needs to be a reason to PvP. DAOC had its realm pride, something the players created. They had a good system with Relics for players to steal and fight over. They even added in Darkness Falls as a great place to level characters and the end game fights determined who controlled the zone for lower level players...simple question...WHY HASN'T ANYONE BEEN ABLE TO DO THIS AGAIN?
PS: EVE has awesome PVP even if it is relentless, at least you know it is out there. Fear is missing from MMOs. Fear leads to teamwork, teamwork leads to guilds, guilds lead to player pride, and that is a sense of accomplishment better than loot. at least it is for me.
3. FUN quests and boss fights - Progression is important in any RPG. However, progression for the sake of watching a bar move from left to right is painful. The grind that MMOs have adopted can easily be solved by adding in some quests that have purpose. Also, boss fights rock. Everyone loves boss fights. If MMOs would put wandering bosses in around the world that actually dropped decent loot...COOL! The gathering and kill quests of MMO's past should in turn give way to some more depth. Star Wars: The Old Republic has some of this, from what we saw in the demos. Lets hope they get it right.
4. Socialization - Chat, Guilds, whatever, Yay! Ok great....give something to players that encourage them to help other players. Faction reputation should not be for NPCs....give it to players who help characters lower than them, who help a solo player who is about to die because they took on too many NPCs. These games are epic, heroic, REWARD GOOD DEEDS for God sake. If you gave loot for a faction system that was in the code for helping other players and not something players controlled, that would be so cool. Or, what about evil. Ultima could do it. You were branded a criminal....FUN! You hung out with other criminals. Even more fun! APB does this...why cannot a fantasy MMO do it?
Hope you enjoyed these few ideas. To me if an MMO could implement these concepts the fun factor might be there....instead of just charging players for healing potions...which is where we are going apparently...