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Teala's Wickedly Cool MMORPG.com Blog For The Masses

Just my thoughts on MMO's, roleplaying, game companies, and the people that play these games.

Author: Teala

The argument against "No Point" ideology - in previous MMORPG's.

Posted by Teala Thursday June 3 2010 at 3:32PM
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So a developer from BioWare believes that there was "no point" in previous MMORPG's because they were not story driven.   As if there must be a set story to make an MMORPG legit?   Does he honestly believe this?   How many story arcs will we players have to choose from in SW:ToR?  Will there be thousands of different story arcs for us to choose from and from those thousands will they branch to a myriad of other story arcs that will give us players a feeling that our characters have a unique game experience that others are not privy of? 

From what we've been told there will be a story our characters will follow and depending on the four choices given per flashpoint this will determine our characters path and final place in this version of the Star Wars verse.

OK...sounds cool.   But won't that mean that every 4th player will in the end have played the same game I played?   What is or will be in the game that will allow me to experience or have a unique game experience and how will my character be unique to the thousands that play the game?

In games like EvE, and old school SWG pre-NGE and even to some extant WoW, DAoC and such we did not have to follow some predetermined path...we were free to choose where to go and what quest to take and whether we participated in certain aspects of the game and this provides a unique game play experience that maybe only I had.

How is SW:ToR going to give us a "point" to play the game?  If from what we've read is true so far, it looks like the only point to playing SW:ToR will be to experience a story that is all ready laid out for us.   Where is the uniqueness in this?  Where is my characters story?   When does she get the chance to make her own destiny and her own story?   How much freedom will SW:ToR actually give us to do just that - that other MMORPG's of the past gave us?  Look at the open ended game play we had in such games as UO, AC, SWG pre-NGE and EvE.   If the developer thinks there is no point to those games it makes me wonder if he ever played a pen and paper game in his life.

Story driven RPG's are good on the single player game level, but we're talking MMO here and I dunno about the rest of you, but I do not wish to pay to play a game that in the end will be nothing more than a co-OP online single player game.   Because based on the info we're getting it looks like that is what SW:ToR is heavily leaning towards.

If we look though at those games I mention, they allowed us players to create a unique game experience that maybe totally different than anything other players may have experienced.   Some of the games even went further and allowed us a great many ways to create unique characters due to the nature of the character progression mechanics that were built into the game.   What will SW:ToR do to provide this amount of freedom and what is the point to play an MMORPG if in the end my Bounty Hunter looks and plays like the thousands of others that are in the game? 

In my opinion when you place a player in a game that is guided by rails, such as story driven content, you are confining that player to more of a "NO POINT" game than if you say here, here is a game world rich with things you can do - find your place in the world and help make it come alive - find the dragon in the distant land that is terrorizing the village and destroy it.  Go and be a crafter and provide weapons and armor to others.  Here are the tools in game for you to build a trading guild that will allow you to gather resources to sell to crafters who in turn will sell their wares to others.    Story driven quest are cool, they help fill out the game and give us some direction - ala such games as WoW, EvE, DAoC...but there has to be other options to give us players a richer game experience in the long run that is unique to us - the things that make us wish to continue to play and continue to contribute to the games community in ways other than to be shoved into a predetermined, story driven style of game play that every other Jill and Joe gamer will experience - and I ask, where is the "point" in that?