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Paragus Rants

Rants, reviews, and interviews from an MMO veteran and guild leader.

Author: Paragus1

Rant: Potential

Posted by Paragus1 Thursday September 4 2008 at 2:33PM
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Rant: Potential

How many times have you seen a forum post or an article comparing MMO vs MMO.  If you have been around this genre for any length of time you have no doubt seen it time and time again.  One of the most common arguments used to try to justify the failings of an MMO debacle is the argument of potential, which I mentioned in my very first article about Unfinished MMOs.

I wanted to take some time and finally try to put this word to rest once and for all when it comes to this genre.   Potential is defined as the following by

1) possible, as opposed to actual
2) capable of being or becoming
3) a latent excellence or ability that may or may not be developed

All of these definitions have one commonality, a separation from what could be compared to the reality. This is key to countering the potential argument that desperate fanbois will cling to like a life-preserver on a sinking ship.   Am I the only one to notice that when the word potential shows up next to an MMO, that the MMO in question always turns into a debacle?   Look at some of the biggest disasters in the industry and think about it.

Asheron's Call 2 was the sequel to one of the most innovative games, yet Turbine practically threw away everything from AC1 except the names on the world.   Dark and Light had potential to change the way we look at games, and that it did as the accusations of unethical business practices became rampant.   Brad McQuaid "vision" and "next-gen" MMO baby Vanguard culminated with its developers being taken into the parking lot and fired just in time for SoE to come in and rummage through the debris.   Funcom will forever be known to many as Failcom (go to for a laugh) after giving us a game with the best graphics and music, but a side order of mismanagement, poor customer service, Exploits, and Undocumented Patch Notes.



3 Facts about the Fiction

1) Potential swings both ways.  If things have the potential to get better, they also have potential to be a debacle.   The history of this genre has shown us that games will try to justify their subscription to a game on the chance it could get better, when more often then not the potential they cling to favors the chance it will yield copious amounts of fail.

2) Potential comes with a cost.  Most of these games require you to pay money every month to play.  How much are you willing to pay to see the game get where it could be, or should have been at release?  Let's face the facts here folks, potential is a mythical promised land that you hear is out there but nobody has ever found.  It is not a valid argument or a legitimate justification for paying some assclown devs for a hot steaming pile of shit.  It is no more real than the Tooth Fairy, Santa Clause, Brad McQuaids "vision", or Funcom's state of the game letters from the director.

3) Potential also comes with an expiration date.  Look at some of few exceptions where a game actually did pull its act together.  Anarchy Online was so bad when it came out, that the review should have been posted on  Today it remains one of the complex MMO's ever created, but after hitting the expiration date.  The expiration date is when people are tired of paying for hope, and if that hope ever does come, there aren't enough people left playing to matter.  We see the same thing now with Age of Conan.  At a certain point, any headway made will be meaningless when players find themselves standing in empty servers, and with MMO's on the horizon that actually have what is advertised, it may be very soon.

We need to stop using potential as an argument. It is the first nail in a failing game's coffin, and something a fanboi clings to like a life-preserver to try to justify the belly full of bullshit they willingly swallowed. We as subscribers need to stop paying for what simply isn't there. When we stop paying for hope, and start paying with reality, they will be forced to deliver what they promised or fail.

Co-Leader of Inquisition

orionprime writes:

I wish this article alone were enough to convince the fanbois that AoC is a pile of steaming canine excrement. They're too stubborn and proud to admit that they were wrong for supporting a second rate developer. As long as there are idiots in the world, there's a fortune to be made off of them by Failcom or anyone else that comes along.

Thu Sep 04 2008 2:55PM Report
Bruticus_XI writes:

Excellent visual aids as always Paragus. I agree.

Thu Sep 04 2008 3:02PM Report
Mitnal writes:

good read dude keep em coming

Thu Sep 04 2008 3:03PM Report
Hinden writes:

It is sad to see a Fanboi do anything in public, let alone defend crap with invalid arguments. Good read and great pics.

Thu Sep 04 2008 5:19PM Report
Cyrann writes:

I'm reminded of the musicians on the titanic... Anyway I love your rants Paragus, another job well done.  Anyway, betting on potential in an MMO is like betting aginst the house in Vegas, and the house always wins.

Thu Sep 04 2008 6:39PM Report
Ipcryss writes:

So...if you don't like a game, stop paying for it.  And don't bother bitching about other people who like it.  I agree that IMO AoC is just so much dung that I wasted $49 on; but if others like it, wtf does it really matter what I think about it.  When the development of WoW was first announced I thought there was real potential there based on the success of Warcraft II, a game I thought was terrific.  I've played WoW off and on for nearly 4 years now, so, for me, WoW certainly reached it's potential.  Yet, for many others - as you can certainly see from these forums - WoW never did reach the potential they defined for the game.  It may be hard to believe that some people like some of the games that most of us see as crap, but that's their taste, and their money.

Fri Sep 05 2008 6:42AM Report
alakram writes:

this web site you mention... ewl! this web exist, and it is about it is suposed to be! aaaarg!

Fri Sep 05 2008 11:10AM Report writes:
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