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The staff of MMORPG.com gets together to bring you some behind the scenes insights on stories, the industry and the site itself.

Author: staffblog

Contributors: BillMurphy,MikeB,garrett,SBFord,Grakulen,

Community Spotlight: Would You Play a Fully PvE MMOG?

Posted by MikeB Thursday February 18 2010 at 2:37PM
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This week’s Community Spotlight focuses on the thread “Would you play a 100% PVE MMO, No PVP at all?” by user Aguitha. In the original post, Aguitha wonders how viable a fully PvE MMOG would be, and polls the community on whether or not they would play a fully PvE MMOG with no PvP offering whatsoever:

“And please give the reasons for your answers. Personally PVP has never been my cup of tea. It's not that i never tried, i just dont feel any sense of accomplishement fighting others peoples for what really ? Bragging rights ? There is already TONS of pvp game out there, mostly shooters, why does every MMO that comes out MUST have some sort of PVP in it ? Do you think we could have a succesful MMO without the PVP aspect ?”

Shamarou says he would definitely play a fully PvE MMOG, adding that while PvP does encourage some positive behavior, it brings out lots of negative behavior as well:

“For sure i would play PvE only. I don't neccessarily like the attitude that is getting round that pvp is be all and end all of an mmo. While it does encourage interaction of players which is great. It also encourages such things as griefing. The problem i see with some of the games today is that they try to do both and dont really succeed at either. If a game came out that was purely PvE but you need the help of others to complete certain tasks such as healing or even trading it would be better than trying to do both and failing at both. Also the probs with pure PvE is the storyline that runs through a game, they would need to get that right to keep interest as well as reasons for going to raid dungeon X.”

Talthanys presents a very principled stance against fully PvE MMOGs:

“No, I wouldn't.

I was, at first, a very PvE person. My first MMORPG was UO, and I shied from PvP and embraced the PvE. As a roleplayer, I mistakenly believed PvP and RP could not exist together. The formation of Trammel seemed to bear this out, but I was wrong. RP is drama, it is conflict, it is overcoming obstacles. So, I've come to believe that you cannot have true, meaningful RP without the possibility to PvP. Especially in mideval settings/games where very often might indeed make right. Essentially, the two playstyles are married as ideals, though we can all admit that there is no existing ideal.

But, RP philosophies aside, not having PvP in any form (open or instanced, FFA or restricted) seems artifical to me. A little bit of the world dies without competition on that level, without that style of freedom and choice and opportunity. I like pitting my ability against another thinking, breathing person as much as I love hoisting a tankard of ale with clanmates in a RP tavern.

Yes, PvP is a playstyle that attracts a certain type of crowd that are there to do nothing other than grief.

They aren't RPing villains or murderers, not really. They are simply there to grief. But the wonderful part is, it attracts other types as well. Honorable and empathic people (at least in-game). Having a game that is completely PvE denies potential nobility among the refuse, it buries that diamond in the rough, and stifles the world in which the game is set. To some, these pros do not outweigh the cons.

To me, they do.”

Greenie offers some insight on the pitfalls of a fully PvE MMO, at least from the perspective of what MMO PvE resembles today:

“I would not enjoy an MMO that was pve only. At least I don't think I would. PvE just does not bring a huge rush of excitement, although for it's social aspects I do love it. After a while though, it becomes very easy to go into "farm" mode.

When it comes to pve and playing with friends, I think I'll have more fun on a console game with a storyline going and me and a friend trying to work our way through the game, similar to when the Playstation first came out and Resident Evil 1 was released.

When it comes to an MMO I want pvp that feels like I am affecting the environment/world if even only temporarily. My love for DaoC's RvR in it's glory days has not been surpassed yet. Currently I am playing EvE but have not ventured into low sec and started pvp'n yet. When I find a good corp then I'll attempt that avenue. Very much looking forward to Earthrise though.

Basically, without pvp I just don't feel like a game can be entertaining long enough that I can justify paying for it. The storyline/movie footage from a console game is much more entertaining and loot grinds do not interest me.”

Greenie’s comments remind me of the many players who figure out WoW’s content and then put it “on farm.” It eventually simply becomes a matter of going through the motions. Does this discount PvE from being able to stand on its own? No. But I would agree that there would definitely need to be some innovations made to make it interesting and compelling longterm if it were the only thing players could participate in. I don’t think the raid to gear, gear to raid cycle would quite cut it.

Of course, how could we have this discussion without mention of FFXI? Bloodaxes showers Square Enix’s MMOG with praises for its PvE offerings:

“Yes I would because I love games were I don't have to see whinings and kids spaming in chats how hardcore or l33t are they.

FFXI was a great example of a pve mmo with a rich storyline were some of the endgame was getting to know some of the lore of the game with cutscenes it was great imo but I know some wouldn't like them because you don't get fat loots..

Hopefully FFXIV will be a better game then XI. “

FFXI does certainly stand out as an MMOG that has pretty much stood on its own with really only PvE on offer, and given the game’s success, I would say many players would definitely play a fully PvE MMOG. In fact, Square Enix is counting on it! With Final Fantasy XIV set to release this year, the developers at Square have not been shy to admit that like FFXI, FFXIV will focus almost if not completely entirely on PvE. So if you fall into this crowd, keep your ears perked for developments on FFXIV!

Personally, I’m not sure I could play a fully PvE MMOG, as I feel I need a purpose for all my progression whether it be skills or gear etc. That purpose, at least for me, is often using it to triumph against other players, so I admit I am a bit of a PvP junkie. I won’t completely dismiss the possibility, however, as I intend to check out Final Fantasy XIV as well.

Could you see yourself playing a fully PvE MMOG? Let us know in the comments below!