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Jennings: Morality, Controversy & Games

Posted Nov 25, 2009 by Dana Massey

Jennings: Morality, Controversy & Games

Scott Jennings takes a lesson from Modern Warfare 2 and looks at how MMOs handle (or don't handle as the case may be) controversy.

Scott Jennings

The argument over whether an MMORPG is “just a game” or “more than a game” has raged for years – essentially, since they were invented. From a design aspect, this usually hinges on whether a given MMORPG is a theme park, like EverQuest, World of Warcraft, and the many games that play similarly, with a straight line to the “cheese”, or a virtual world, such as Ultima Online, EVE, or to a greater degree Second Life, that give you no goals save that which you make. And from a market perspective, the theme park has won, overwhelmingly. World of Warcraft’s position in the market alone sees to that, if nothing else.

Yet among the players of games, the argument rages, and even in wholly “theme park” games such as World of Warcraft. Players of these games can take them very seriously indeed, and they have every right to given the amount of time that character development can entail. “Guild drama,” after all, can be far more riveting to experience first-hand than any canned quest.

Read it all here.