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Articles Of Profound Interest

The thoughts and feelings of yours truly, In which my alacritious wit and unbridled creativity may be applied to issues of gaming and the MMORPG genre. Sort of.

Author: RoveMcBurns

MMOFPS: Where's My Game?

Posted by RoveMcBurns Saturday December 8 2007 at 11:45PM
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MMOFPS. Massively Multiplayer Online First Person Shooter. Few of these games exist, and fewer still (if any) are popular. Why?

A first person shooter is all action, action, action. If you've gone longer than twenty-five seconds without shooting something, you've probably just respawned. In my opinion though, this fast, knuckle-whitening gameplay gets tiring after a while. You couldn't sustain it for longer than an hour or so.

Enter the MMORPG. Generally easy to pick up and play, and chatting and sociability is king. In an FPS you rarely have time to get to know the people you're playing with, in the intervals between shooting them and running back into the action after being killed. Making a game persistant and massively mulitplayer changes that somewhat, though.

So what defines an MMOFPS? Is it really just hundreds of people running around with guns, or is it something more RPG than FPS in nature á la Tabula Rasa? I'm firmly in the "Shooting people" camp for this issue; But that shouldn't mean RPG elements can't be blended into a first person shooter. In fact, many player-made modifications exist to make certain online fps games have "RPG" type gameplay features. The only differences I can see between a FPS and an MMOFPS is the number of players, and the social network.

One of the best examples of an MMOFPS is Planetside, a truly awesome game I used to play a while ago not long after it came out. I've got fond memories of it; For some reason, though, it doesn't run on my new pc. And that's a shame, because it's the probably one of the most enjoyable game experiences I've ever had.

I remember on my first day, I joined up with a guild (Called "Outfits" in Planetside) And we defended the control room of a base. I watched as they all sat stock still behind cover with their guns pointed squarely at the doors as I wandered around aimlessly trying to jump on top of air vents and suchlike. A persistant world where a war is always raging; It's a wonderful concept, and a wonderful thing to play. It gained tremendous devotion from it's fans; And rightly so because it was a truly wonderful game.

If it was so good, though, why are there no more MMOFPS's awaiting us on the horizon? Huxley is the only one I know of, but a well-seated distrust of korean MMO's leaves me dubious on this one - Doesn't mean I won't buy it, of course - Anything with the word "MMOFPS" on it's box art almost guarantees a purchase from me.

So what's the reason we don't have as many MMOFPS's as we do RPG's? Probably the reasoning lies in the numbers. Money money and more money - And they don't make enough of it. Is that true, though? We've only had one or two examples of something which is supposedly an entire genre! How do we know if it's unprofitable if no one has done it PROPERLY yet? I suppose we don't. I for one would love to see more MMOFPS's, and I'm sure I'm not the only one.

Thanks for reading, and I'd love to hear your opinions on this. Comment away and maybe we can get a discussion going. Until next time, gentle readers!

On The First Day Of Christmas...

Posted by RoveMcBurns Wednesday December 5 2007 at 10:25PM
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First of all, since this is my new blog's first post, hello and welcome! If you're actually taking the time to read my blog, thanks, I'm honoured. I just created it to discuss things that enter my brain considering the wide world that is video game entertainment and to share it with the adoring masses. That's the plan, and I'm sticking to it. On to the article:

Christmas is-a-coming, and I recently emerged from the fetid warm organically-smelling putrid darkness that is my bedroom for a trip to the game shop. So many new releases, and so little cash! What made it worse was that the bulk of the purchases were to be for other people. I.e, all of the purchases were to be for other people. Confounded holiday! A consolation, at least, was that they too would be buying me games. At least I have that to look forward to, a smug look on my face when I survey their generous bounty and watch with glee as their happy smiles turn to looks of revulsion when they unwrap a copy of some well-meaning but utterly unappealing title such as "Barbie as The Island Princess" or, worse yet, "SingStar." Still, there is a few weeks yet until the fateful day when I will look upon the glory that is the bounty of the festival of greed. It's made all the harder, though, since my brother and two of my friends told me what they're getting me.

Crysis, Call Of Duty 4, Unreal Tournament 3 - Fantastic! Better games could hardly be found, and with three, I'll never be bored! I can go from shooting korean soldiers stealthily in the head to... well, shooting some other kind of soldier stealthily in the head. Awesome! But in the meantime, I'm somewhat doomed. Re-playing Far Cry on maximum difficulty and playing Oblivion through again for the umpteenth time is the only gaming I've got for the next 'couple weeks. It's times like these I question my descision to cancel my EQ2 subscription. This brings me to my main issue - I have no MMORPG.

It was a frightening realisation at first. No MMORPG. Wow. I've cut down from 6-10 hours a day to... well, not very many hours a day. Actually, no hours a day. Since, well, it's hard to measure your MMORPG play time when you don't actually have one to play. In the game shop my eyes pass idly over a copy of Tabula Rasa. Ooh... But I can't buy it. I can't do it. Not yet. Add to this the fact that yet ANOTHER sci-fi shooter is not what I need right now, I need a wholesome, honest-to-goodness, Elves, Dwarves, and "Hail, Friend!" Fantasy MMO. And yet I can't get one. I survey the rack of games with the same attitude as an alcholic surveys the rack of bottles behind the bar. Just out of reach.