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News & Features Discussion  » General: The Real Top 10 MMOs of 2012

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Associate Editor - News Manager

Joined: 6/28/10
Posts: 16278

OP  8/22/11 3:08:04 PM#1

It's hard to accurately predict what will be popular in the MMO-space these days. Last week, we took a look at a 2009 piece predicting the success of certain MMOs in 2012 that...ain't gonna make it. In The List today, Managing Editor dons the swami's hat and prognosticates about 2012 and what he believes will be the real success stories of the year. Read on!

Last week we checked out a List Jon Wood wrote in 2009 all about his projected top ten MMOs of 2012. Jon’s crystal ball was a little foggy though, and things didn’t quite turn out like he had hoped. I’m going to take a stab at the prognostications this week, and admittedly I have a better chance than Jon based simply on the fact that well… it’s almost 2012 now. Still, this gives us a good chance to take a look at the current landscape of the MMO and think realistically about which games are “doing the best”, at least from my point of view.

Read more of Bill Murphy's The List: The Real Top 10 MMOs of 2012.

Associate Editor:
Follow me on Twitter: @MMORPGMom


Novice Member

Joined: 2/10/06
Posts: 1693

8/23/11 8:10:38 AM#2

I agree, on the whole with the list. But I don't know if your criteria matches mine.


I think the list ranks the MMOs accurately based on the score and acclaim they will receive, however I believe based on number of players, you're still going to have WoW at 1, SWTOR at 2 and GW2 at 3, which maybe EVE at 4 and everything else being pathetically low in comparison.

And at the end of the day, for MMOs, number of players seems to matter the most to everyone.


Advanced Member

Joined: 6/10/05
Posts: 262

8/23/11 8:12:54 AM#3
What about the warhammer:40k mmo? Thats to be releases in 2012 aswell+ the free 2 play version of WAR.


Apprentice Member

Joined: 12/27/10
Posts: 577

8/23/11 8:14:41 AM#4

If we see in terms of sheer popularity i would still keep WOW on top. It will always be the most talked about and most popular MMO.


Novice Member

Joined: 1/04/11
Posts: 1984

Minister of Propaganda for GW2 Fascist-Capitalist Party

8/23/11 8:16:26 AM#5
Originally posted by Montaronx
What about the warhammer:40k mmo? Thats to be releases in 2012 aswell+ the free 2 play version of WAR.

Apparantly, it's 2013.



Joined: 8/14/07
Posts: 4933

8/23/11 8:20:25 AM#6
Originally posted by Chilliesauce

If we see in terms of sheer popularity i would still keep WOW on top. It will always be the most talked about and most popular MMO.


This will only remain true if no other company spends the prime time advertising dollars that Blizzard spent and spends.  Now....that is possible, since they spent multiple fortunes on advertising, soon as another GOOD game spends that kind of advertising will be talked about just as much as WoW is now, if not as much as it used to be.

President of The Marvelously Meowhead Fan Club


Advanced Member

Joined: 1/29/06
Posts: 635

8/23/11 8:21:21 AM#7

Most of the list looks decent, but I wouldn't put Aion in the top 10 at all, and I'd move Lotro up to at least 6th place. 


Expansion next month, that will add monster play for freemium players

Hobbit movie part 1

Announcement of next expansion



Not sure why there would be any impression that Aion had continued to Westernize.  Last I heard they sacked the only CM who actually communicated with the player base.

Still no idea how to resolve faction imbalance or ganking of newbs by twinks afraid to face anyone within 15 levels of themselves.

Still no western dev team, and the eastern team has western players on the bottom of their list. Painfully slow translations of patches and infrequent attempts to translate events for the western servers.  

Terrible support/CM team


Aion could be a great game.  I think with a western dev team it could have reached the top 4 and stayed there until Swtor + GW2.  The fundamentals are there, just not the support or interest from the home base.  Western subs are just a little icing on the cake and not the real source of income.

In place of Aion I would include Neverwinter.  Sounds like the new owners have the money and desire to make a big impression on the western market.


Novice Member

Joined: 5/01/11
Posts: 225

8/23/11 8:21:30 AM#8

This list does look like a good possbility, with the only things being switched up being that suprise mmo not talked about taking one of the spots.  One of the succssful MMOs that suprised me was Rift.  I hadn't heard of the game until it was about a month from release.  Though after seeing the launch and how stable it was, as well as them constantly adding content, I was hoping the game would be a success, even if I don't play it anymore. 

I think SWToR and GW2 can be hit or miss.  SWToR might be the next Warhammer at worst, with lots of expectations, and falling flat on its face, but I'm thinking that won't be the case this time.  GW2 could be the next EQ2, where it had a successful predecessor, and a medicore sequal.  Again though, it looks like it good be a pretty big deal as well.


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Joined: 12/27/10
Posts: 577

8/23/11 8:22:32 AM#9
Originally posted by just1opinion
Originally posted by Chilliesauce

If we see in terms of sheer popularity i would still keep WOW on top. It will always be the most talked about and most popular MMO.


This will only remain true if no other company spends the prime time advertising dollars that Blizzard spent and spends.  Now....that is possible, since they spent multiple fortunes on advertising, soon as another GOOD game spends that kind of advertising will be talked about just as much as WoW is now, if not as much as it used to be.

That is a big 'IF' that is why i said that in terms of sheer popularity WOW will always be number one.


Hard Core Member

Joined: 6/15/09
Posts: 449

8/23/11 8:33:30 AM#10

Basing the top 10 list on current hype... not good imo. For all the talk and hype, I don't believe GW2 or SWTOR will come even close to the hype they have generated. GW2 is doing a great job at teasing people, specially since this would be the main way for it to make money... after all, just buy it once and you own and play it forever right? Just make people curious enough and they will buy anything. Less than 6 months after release, and you can quote me on this, it will have lost well over half its population.

SWTOR... nothing can really make the world people have in their heads come to life, and this will be the fall of this IP: Too much expectations from the player base.

My order for the list would be more like this: 1) WoW, 2) GW2 (Just because of initial sales), SWTOR, 4) Rift, 5) EvE and the rest. Not hating, just being a realist (in as much as assumptions can be called realist.)

  User Deleted
8/23/11 8:43:05 AM#11

List looks about right. WoW is losing subs now without any real competition except Rift. Nothing lasts forever.


Novice Member

Joined: 2/02/11
Posts: 1929

8/23/11 8:46:31 AM#12

Mike B give this guy a raise. This list is actually reasonable and makes since and looks at reality. I mean holy crap whoever put FF14 in the top 10 COME ON MANNNN!!


I am not sure the sub numbers will line up in that order. I mean even if WoW loses 3 million people that is still 8 MILLION lol..I think it will go WoW...GW2....SWToR...Rift wil maintain 4th



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Joined: 12/27/10
Posts: 577

8/23/11 8:51:13 AM#13

Originally posted by Puremallace

Mike B give this guy a raise. This list is actually reasonable and makes since and looks at reality. I mean holy crap whoever put FF14 in the top 10 COME ON MANNNN!!


I am not sure the sub numbers will line up in that order. I mean even if WoW loses 3 million people that is still 8 MILLION lol..I think it will go WoW...GW2....SWToR...Rift wil maintain 4th



FF14? what is that lol. I hardly doubt FF14 will even make a blip on popularity radar in 2012.


Novice Member

Joined: 4/28/09
Posts: 150

8/23/11 8:53:34 AM#14

I will bet you right now that Archeage and Planetside 2 (if you consider than an MMO) will be well in that top 10 of 2012, with AoC (great game) and Aion losing their spots. 


Novice Member

Joined: 8/14/11
Posts: 27

8/23/11 8:56:56 AM#15

I like the list and I have to link WoW may fall further, all my friends who were hard core raiders like myself cancelled their subs this year, and haven't looked back.   We are waiting on the GW2 and STOR... until then ... WoW (More of the same) just does not seem appealing anymore, doing dungeons endlessly, raids and then getting all your gear nerfed, rince and repeat has gotten really really old....   need something new and exciting !!  I don't think another expansion will save wow, I mean I don't see it going away, but just see it as a top dog when really anticipated MMO's come out in 2012.


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Joined: 7/03/06
Posts: 1641

"Have fun storming the castle!"

8/23/11 8:59:29 AM#16

I think this is a good list. Loving Rift and AOC

Been really impressed with GW2 so far, after just a passing interest in it since they have shown it I now think it can be something really special. The community worries me though.  Zero interest in TOR


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Joined: 9/19/07
Posts: 481

Forum ranks are useless.

8/23/11 9:06:44 AM#17

Nice list, very accurate imo, keep it on.


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Joined: 2/05/11
Posts: 1593

8/23/11 9:13:00 AM#18
Good list. Thinking Archeage will break the top 10 though.

Novice Member

Joined: 8/17/11
Posts: 38

8/23/11 9:18:14 AM#19

Not a bad list I think. Only points I would add my 2 cents on are.

Rift is not really that "dynamic" been playing since launch and when "dynamic" events happen like say a rift opens and invasion comes out and takes over a spot... 10-15 min later the enemies disappear and everything is back to normal.. that just doesn't feel dynamic to me. And the game world is TINY! (I still think Rift has been successful though)

In GW2 if enemies take over a spot, it will remain taken over for months if players don't take it back... THAT is dynamic.

My prediction is it will be GW2 + meaning since GW2 charges no subscription to play many people will be doing GW2 + another mmo they pay for. I think that is a good combination.

My wife and I plan on doing GW2 + TSW

- I have played Everquest, DAOC, Shadowbane, WoW, Aion, Rift, SW Galaxies, Planetside and Guild Wars (all expacs)


Advanced Member

Joined: 5/10/09
Posts: 77

8/23/11 9:20:52 AM#20
It's sad that games like Rift make the list while TRUE MMORPGs such as Vanguard are ignored by people who think WoW was the first MMO ever made.

The market is flooded with press 1,2,3 > solo to max games like really is a disgrace to the genre.
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