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The Future of MMORPG’s: Key Characteristics

Posted by Dustenbagy Sunday August 17 2008 at 4:56PM
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I am one of many MMO addicts out there jonesing for a really great game, but today no game really hits on all of the characteristics I feel an MMO needs to be great. I have outlined these characteristics below and given examples of games that succeed and fail in each area. Then I examine a few of the soon to be released games with the biggest hype and how they appear to fit in my outline.


Games that are in BOLD are examples of games that stand out as having high achievement in a category and ITALICS are games that have failed in a category.


If games are not mentioned in a category I feel that they do not stand out and are therefore adequate.


Please let me know if you think I’ve missed a category haven’t mentioned a game where I should.



            -Fun factor: Age of Conan, Tabula Rasa

            -Involvement: Eve Online

            -Learning curve: Eve Online


Character Customization

            -Avatar Appearance: Age of Conan, Vanguard

            -Skillset Variation: Everquest II

            -Item Variety: World of Warcraft, Everquest II, Eve Online, Age of Conan


Game interface

            -Options (customizations and mods): World of Warcraft, Age of Conan

            -Learning curve: Age of Conan, Eve Online

            -Player Organizations (Guilds, Corps, ect): Age of Conan



            -PvE (includes lore): Lord of the Rings: Online

            -PvP: Eve Online, Lord of the Rings: Online

            -Character development (Lvl and classes vs sandbox): Eve Online (best sandbox since Ultima Online)

            -Economy: Eve Online, World Of Warcraft, The Burning Seas

            -End Game: World of Warcraft (raiding) Eve Online (PvP)


                        -Involvement: Everquest II, Eve Online, Age of Conan

                        -Learning Curve: Eve Online

                        -Relevance (are the items useful?): Age of Conan, Tabula Rasa

            Game World (degree of instancing): World of Warcraft


Real World Factors

            -Company PR: Age of Conan (Funcom)

            -Web resources (official site, thotbott, ect): World of Warcraft, Lord of the Rings: Online, Everquest II, Eve Online




I have outline below the specific strengths and weaknesses I expect from each game based on information released so far.








Endgame (unlockable raids and opportunities for distinction)


Game interface

            Player Organizations





            Fun factor





Character Customization

            Item Variety







            Fun factor



Character Customization

            Item Variety

            Skill set Variation



PvP: 100% lootable!!!!

Character Development: Sandbox



Game World

            Large Continuous world with only dungeons instanced. Guild cites un-instanced.


Stargate Worlds





            Fun factor




PvE (Lore)


craynlon writes:

i think combat and or pvp should be split into subcategories:
1 vs 1 ,
grp vs grp (teams between 4 and 10 players),
army vs army (at least 30 player on each side, better 200 vs 200)

in the army vs army category lineage2 does a pretty good job providing siegable castles that produce money/items for the faction that posess them

Mon Aug 18 2008 1:51AM Report
b14tch writes:

I would like to suggest you play other MMos before make any stereotype conclusion how good about Everquest2, Eve, WoW or Age of Conan. Seem like your game experiences only up to those games. Purely garbage to me.. True MMos gamer wouldnt limited their game play with those overrated company.

Mon Aug 18 2008 1:55AM Report
HumbleHobo writes: Im confused as to what this has to do with the future of MMOs. It is more a list of what you like and dislike about a few select games. Mon Aug 18 2008 11:46AM Report
Dustenbagy writes:

If you read past the first paragraph you will see that I take the basics of MMOs, apply them to the BEST AND WORST EXAMPLES in the genre, and then list what of these characteristics I expect to stand out in the new MMOs coming out soon. I do not, for the sake of brevity, list every single MMO out there and how they apply.

Mon Aug 18 2008 11:52AM Report
Daelus writes:

I think his point was that you explain none of your points, nor give reasons; it's a purely a list of what you liked or disliked in any given MMO if it's without examples or reasoning to back them.

One thing I have to wonder about is how can you judge how fun the combat is in a game that isn't released?


Mon Aug 18 2008 10:30PM Report
Drazkathan writes:

Good list. I agree with every single thing you put on there. Learning curves on EVE are terrible, but... I love the game. I also think the learning curve is good because it keeps most of the idiots out of the game.

There's no real evidence toward the Future of MMO's. Except what you think of how they're gonna be broke down into categories.

Mon Aug 18 2008 11:51PM Report
Dustenbagy writes:

Ok thanks guys I'll see if I can explain my points better while still keeping it short.

Wed Aug 20 2008 7:50AM Report writes:
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