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News & Features Discussion  » General: Beam Me Up, Please

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Novice Member

Joined: 12/01/10
Posts: 405

Healing Over Time since 2004

12/29/11 4:49:19 PM#21

Loved reading it as usual, but you cant be serious about the Elves?? To whom you will be giving the pointy ears in future mmos?? You cant have an mmo without pointy ears!!!!

Minus 1 point to Mr. Coyote for that remark

So a 8/10 to you :)


Novice Member

Joined: 7/16/11
Posts: 5

12/29/11 5:36:42 PM#22

How about a real old school property like a Logan's Run MMO... lots of Runners, lots of Sandmen, a blasterific good time.



Hard Core Member

Joined: 7/18/04
Posts: 808

Do you want to improve the world? I don't think it can be done. -Lao Tzu

12/29/11 6:31:49 PM#23

Nice read, as always.

Don't forget to check out Vendetta Online, a premier space combat MMO available on Android:

"To be what you are not, experience what you are not." -Saint John of the Cross
Authored 110 missions in Vendetta Online
Check it out on Steam


Elite Member

Joined: 10/29/07
Posts: 17358

12/29/11 8:20:01 PM#24

" Or worse yet, we risk making it so mainstream that it loses that special place in our hearts that we’ve always held for it as it is becomes dumbed down in order to generate mass appeal".

I think this happened ages ago...

One of the better howlings even if there are other things besides space and fantasy. If all games suddenly became space games instead we would tire of them fast as well.

There are so many possible historical MMOs we could play as well, from the stone age to the Vietnam war. Not to mention genres like Cyberpunk and steam punk.

MMOs easily get stuck on some ideas, all mechanics must be the same and you can only have a few types of setting, all combat must have a healer and so on. Those things are as annoying as elves.


Advanced Member

Joined: 4/06/10
Posts: 472

12/29/11 9:53:05 PM#25

i think your wrong op!! its not either space or fantasy we need!!! i say we need 10 years of realism in our mmo's!! im not saying  lots of spread sheets or really complex game mechanics, im talking seemless transition truely inovative imaginitive development!! we need a games developer to think for them selves and stop copying what aready works MONEY WISE!!!! we gamers do not care how much money a games developer makes or how many people play a certain game, these things are not the be all and end all of an mmo and it does not define our choice in what we play!!!


hang on!!! do we really play games because every one else is playing them !! or do we have our own minds ? 

we have no choices we either have to play mmo fantasy games or well mmo fantasy games, there are a few exceptions such as eve online as an example  and mortal online.  i mean come on !! whats actually diffrent about these games in comparison to games such as wow and lotro. its as the op said!! no bloody elves !!! mortal may have dragons but i havnt found any yet. but mortal does have a slight realistic feel about it and so does eve online.  ive played the whole wow thing and lotro thing ive been an elf and slew a few dragons too. cast magic spells and ran instances and raids and its really really really samey and boreing!! im fed up with it!! so i started to play eve!!! ........ 6 years later with eve as my only game that i play :) ive started to realise that the games available to people are not even half the games they should be and could be!! im not useing eve as a bench mark but the freedom eve offers to the player!! the sheer scope of the play style customisation that the game gives to the player is just astonishing.  unlike other games, in eve your not restricted to a single class and you dont have to grind through a tedious quest chain following a somewhat long dull and boreing story  that doesnt allways make sence!! no no in eve you get to make your own story!! its just like living in the game!! sure some people take it a bit to seriously and end up treating it like a job while others have managed to find the fine line between work and play in eve!!


i think all games should strive to bring a fuller and more complete and open ended experience to the players.


there is nothing more disgusting in an massive multiplayer online game!!!  than an mmo that isnt persistant and has an ending!! mmo's should not have end game!! they never used to have!!   its the children from the console era thats brought around the end game scenario within mmo's and its definately ruined the industry!!  the developers today are too young to know any diffrent and all they have to go on are the games they have available and what their bosses use as their companies bench marks!! and thats exactly why all games play feel look and mimic wow.


people have no idea that wow is sub par and not really a good game!! its just the best game available to them at present, namely because developers are more interested in a fast profit than they are in a qaulity lasting product!! the last great game to leave the mmo genre was starwars galaxies. it was huge deep emersive and envolving. it was complex enough to make you think and challangeing enough to make you group with other people !! and the world was pretty and fairly persistant. well in terms of player houseing and planetary events. 


to improve on swg and to truely create an epic game they must be of the following stats -






seemless transitions

no loading screens



full of new and old ideas

no main quest chain or story arc driving you

no hand holding quests

truely exploreable game world with things worth finding

an active ingame dev team which constantly changes things in the game to give a feeling of world life (we pay to play, so they should earn the money we pay them)

no help screens or ticket systems! ( must be ingame mods with the power to fix and solve issues)


interactable objects

player vehicles houses towns shops and cities completely free form type control.


a vibrant and living economy ( not the silly auction houses you are all accustom too)


and effort with some imagination!! no more of this copy paste bullshit we are seeing.


we ahve allplayed wow lots of people like it because they havnt experienced better!!! but many people dont like it that have played better and know wow is just a marketing ploy!  its meant to take your money and trick you ento enjoyment and it does just that!!  games like wow are rushed out the door to turn a quick buck!! once the game starts to do bad!! as we have all seen it gets revamped and rereleased just like wow and lotro and sto have been!! again just examples of fail games that have managed to get a second chance and in wows case a third and fourth chance!!.  

im going to bring you back to eve online again!! this game gives you expansions and updates and maintence and ingame help round the clock ! and all you have to do is pay a one off monthly fee!! if you know how to play eve the game is designed to be free. i play eve for nothing because i know how to make the game work for me.  eve also offers far far far more than the wow and its clones too.  im very surprised it doesnt have a huge population!! infact i know why :) its because eve isnt over advertised like wow. eve doesnt ram its self down your throat and eve doesnt miss sell itself.  again eve is just an example and one that i know pretty well. people will argue that eve and wow are not compairable !!! but they are!! its the style. one style is incredibly lazy and used to lure in unsuspecting players who dont know any better and one isnt. ill let you work out which is which.


i vote no !!!!!! to more wow clones.. for me that genre of mmo is dead and buried i will never ever play another wow clone and that puts swtor directly off my list as thats just another wow clone. same idea same plan same style same game type.. its a sure thing and developers know it!! you all will pay through your arses untill your bored and then you will stop!! just like you did with wow. the game offers nothing new or inventive there is no ingenuity and if we really want the fourth pillar lol!!!! we can go play icewind dale or baldurs gate for that!! or even kotor 1 and 2.  swtor is just an embarresment to bioware forced upon them by a bad decision when they sided with EA. the result is yet another wow clone.  all that hype and anticipation for another dissapointment. 5 years of it too lol. such a waste of time.


bring back swg please!!!


Novice Member

Joined: 7/03/04
Posts: 3618

12/29/11 10:15:09 PM#26

Really fun read and several good one liners.  


Novice Member

Joined: 4/19/09
Posts: 5064

The Dude abides

12/29/11 10:49:16 PM#27

Lol...I think that was one of your best works.  So many priceless lines.

Nice job.

/thumbs up

1. For god's sake mmo gamers, enough with the analogies. They're unnecessary and your comparisons are terrible, dissimilar, and illogical.

2. To posters feeling the need to state how f2p really isn't f2p: Players understand the concept. You aren't privy to some secret the rest are missing. You're embarrassing yourself.

3. Yes, Cpt. Obvious, we're not industry experts. Now run along and let the big people use the forums for their purpose.


Novice Member

Joined: 12/24/06
Posts: 59

Awaiting Star Citizen & Elite Dangerous

12/30/11 4:15:10 AM#28

Originally posted by Adamai

 " Plenty of good stuff "


+10 Internets

Pay-to-Win / F2P will be the death of real gaming, Boycott it !!


Novice Member

Joined: 2/01/04
Posts: 68

12/30/11 4:59:18 AM#29

Usually I enjoy this column.

 What comes up sour with this is that seem to be bound by contract to mention at least once in any article a game I don't play, not want to play and really really annoys the sh*t our of me beause of its ubiquity.


And I don't mean WoW.


Elite Member

Joined: 2/27/07
Posts: 7066

12/30/11 6:30:51 AM#30

You completely missed it with this diatribe Coyote.  It is not space or fantasy or steampunk or whatever, it is the themeparks that hold your hand every step of the way.  There is no challenge in any of these games anymore.  No wonder everyone gets bored with them with just a month or two to play.   Players should never be hitting end game within a few weeks of purchasing the game.  There is no journey anymore.

Just because a developer uses a space theme instead of a fantasy theme will not fix your problem.


  User Deleted
12/30/11 7:07:38 AM#31

Hey! Now I have to worry about keeping my phone in my pocket. :D

Great column and thanks for the laughs.


  User Deleted
12/30/11 7:11:57 AM#32

I'm with Oz on this one.

I think you've missed the mark on this article, Wolf. I agree with the problem (MMOs becoming watered down). I disagree with your suggestion of what the problem is (too many dragons, not enough laser blasters).

You talk about needing something to save us from watered down MMOs and then offer up Sci-Fi as the solution.

The two aren't mutually exclusive. There's no such thing as "it's either Sci-Fi, or it's watered-down". One has no relation to the other.

Sci-Fi is a genre. Not a gameplay design or playstyle. You can have a watered-down Sci-Fi MMO every bit as much as you can have a watered-down Fantasy MMO. 

What's going to save the MMO scene from watered-down MMOs is for developers to stop developing them, and return to making them larger, grander, more complex, detailed and many-layered virtual _worlds_ rather than just _games_. 

They have to cut back on the hand-holding, stop spelling everything out for the player so all that's left to do is connect the brightly colored and clearly marked dots, and put the player back into the equation. Let the player actually become part of the experience again. In their search to create the ultimate "accessible" MMO, developers have all but removed the player from the equation.

In these newer MMOs, you're not treated as an actual inhabitant of the world anymore. The world is practically superficial in many newer MMOs. It's just a backdrop against which to hoard "loot" and "levels". You're not an active participant. You're a tourist following a virtual tour-guide from point to point, NPC to NPC, quest hub to quest hub. I'm not saying they should remove all indicators or make things vague so players are left aimlessly wandering the landscape... but at least let them be involved beyond pressing 'W' on their keyboard, steering with their mouse, killing the occasional creature and clicking on an item.

Frankly, there will always be people using online guides to spell out and walk them through every task, fight or quest regardless. But at least it's not the game doing it, and those of us who want to actually feel like active participants in these worlds can do so without feeling like we're fighting the will of the designers every step of the way.

I say, regardless of the genre, what the MMO scene *really* needs is a return to creating virtual worlds containing a series of activities players can choose to participate in, or not participate in... Stop designing them as just "games". 

And FFS, stop treating every player like a fragile little child that has to be coddled, hand-held and guided every damn step of the way. Stop feeling compelled to reward the player for every damn little thing they do. Don't be afraid to require players to earn their rewards.

Here's something to ponder: Why is it that older MMOs could keep players engaged and playing for years, easily, meanwhile most newer MMOs can barely keep players for more than a few months? What gives those older MMOs so much more longevity for their players?

It has nothing to do with "the scarcity of MMOs back then", so I hope no one tries that argument. People don't stick around for years in MMOs they don't like, and there was always the option to not play any MMO at all. 

Being someone who has gotten to experience MMOs from both "eras" and seen the differences between them, I can say that it - at least in part - definitely has to do with older MMOs sticking closer to what I described above. They were worlds, not just games. They kept the players more involved in solving their own problems, finding their own paths and accomplishing their own goals; they didn't spell everything out and guide you every step of the way.

Give players more meaningful choice. Now, I don't mean "meaningful" in terms of how they affect the game world around them, etc. etc. That's been tried and, frankly, I just don't think it's truly achievable in MMOs without negatively affecting some other aspect of it. When I say "meaningful choices", I mean meaningful in how they choose to develop their character, and not only in stats, but in reputation, in which paths they choose to take through the world - stop making the games linear. Give players multiple options to choose from and let them decide which one to take.  And so on.


As I said above, put the players back into the equation.



Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/13/04
Posts: 832

Oops - looks like I'm an internet dog who somehow learned how to type. What has the world come to?

12/30/11 7:40:44 AM#33

Hilarious article.


However, I don't think the problem is fantasy being overdone in general. I think the problem is that it's the same subgenre of fantasy (Tolkien inspired) being done in the same way (WoW style themepark) ad nauseam.


The fantasy genre is full of interesting settings that are devoid of elves and dragons. Heck, Star Wars is really just a fantasy setting dressed up to look like scifi.


Still, even if we take a setting that does include elves and other such Tolkien trappings, putting a new gameplay spin on it would make it seem fresh IMHO. Imagine an MMO based on the old Birthright D&D setting. Still pretty much traditional fantasy, but it would feature completely different gameplay where you would rule domains and lead armies against other players. It could basically be a fantasy EVE on stereoids with strong strategy elements with big battles taking place like they do in the Total War series of games. There would still be elves and such, but I bet that would feel completely different from any of the current fantasy MMOs around.

I'm a big ol' fluffy carewolf. Be afraid. Be very afraid.


Novice Member

Joined: 12/10/08
Posts: 2586

12/30/11 12:52:11 PM#34

I'd like nothing more than to see a really great space-based MMO, but there's nothing out there that does it for me.  Aside from Star Trek, which is pretty lame and EVE, which while damned good at what it does, doesn't do what I want it to do, there's nothing else out there really.  Somebody make Traveler Online and I'll be all over it.  Too bad Mechwarrior will be limited to a tactical simulator instead of a full blown MMO.  The Battletech universe would be a perfect backdrop for a good and proper MMORPG.


Novice Member

Joined: 9/18/08
Posts: 212

"What I have shown you is reality. What you remember, that is the illusion."

12/30/11 11:44:25 PM#35

Elves have not died yet. Period


Hard Core Member

Joined: 6/13/07
Posts: 1291

12/31/11 1:15:49 AM#36

More snarky blowhard irreverance!


This one was as difficult as the classic 'shooting fish in a barrel'.   Yet you missed.  Missed by identifying the trappings as what was important, not the substance.   Starship yes, dragon no.  Vulcans yes, elves no.


Many games just don't build a good world, one with internal consistancy, good story, mystery, something worthwhile to do, etc.    Short an already established player base, failing at building an interesting place to be will end up with lack of being there.


Of course, lots of folks like different aspects, so there's room for a lot of different takes on things in the modern MMOsphere.   But essentially replacing character skins does not suddenly improve a lackluster game.   Bad world building and game design knows no such puny limits.  



If you are holding out for the perfect game, the only game you play will be the waiting one.


Novice Member

Joined: 10/04/03
Posts: 148

12/31/11 9:04:01 AM#37

Great article.  Still love the humor.

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Advanced Member

Joined: 4/30/06
Posts: 619

12/31/11 1:34:23 PM#38

Droids are the new elves.

  User Deleted
1/01/12 10:35:50 AM#39

Originally posted by Arglebargle

This one was as difficult as the classic 'shooting fish in a barrel'.   Yet you missed.  Missed by identifying the trappings as what was important, not the substance.   Starship yes, dragon no.  Vulcans yes, elves no.

Many games just don't build a good world, one with internal consistancy, good story, mystery, something worthwhile to do, etc.    Short an already established player base, failing at building an interesting place to be will end up with lack of being there.

Of course, lots of folks like different aspects, so there's room for a lot of different takes on things in the modern MMOsphere.   But essentially replacing character skins does not suddenly improve a lackluster game.   Bad world building and game design knows no such puny limits.  

Excellent points. Much of what you said (particularly regarding internally consistent world design, etc) are things I've noticed and pointed out for some time now as well. Quite cool to see it echoed by others.

And I agree... that is part of what is making some of these newer MMOs less compelling in the long term. As I noted in my previous post here, the worlds themselves are little more than pretty backdrops for people to level and loot against.

Many MMO worlds don't feel very "world-like" these days.



Novice Member

Joined: 10/22/07
Posts: 23

1/01/12 1:08:52 PM#40

I miss THAC0 *sob*

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