May 5, 2011

Wishing for a different type of MMO…..

I have played World of Warcraft. I play (once PSN comes back to life) D.C. Universe. I have tried EVE Online. As much as I like DCU (I hear the moans, it’s not that bad), it really does not hit nor represent what I want in a MMO, and nothing out there does. I love fantasy settings, WoW has a great setting but the combat doesn’t do it for me and the art style (while there are times I love it) looks like a Hanna Barbera cartoon. I want a MMO to make an alternate life in a world that I could never visit (no not Second Life), to be a world where every players actions affect the next player and so on and so forth. The idea I have in my head for my perfect MMO, is just that; an idea that once I sit and think about it, would be a perfect game but highly exploitable.

I know this craftsmanship…..

In my dream MMO there would a world that was supported by the players. The economy, monarchy, and peasantry would all be player controlled. If you wanted, for instance, to be a blacksmith in a small town and forge weapons and sell them to your town and hero’s passing through, so be it. If you wanted to climb the monarchy tower and become king of this world, you could, however, backstab and kill your way there and rebellion could end your reign prematurely. If you do make it as king and you keep all the other players happy, you would have a certain time to rule and your progress as ruler would be marked for future players to see your successful rein. The economy would be handled by the players, your shop charges too much for goods, it folds and your character falls on hard times. If the ruler taxes too much, rebellion will ensue. There would have to be some sort of initial frame work, but once the world was underway the players would have to sustain that world like it was their own. Have enough players, what could be one large kingdom could divide into several smaller ones, wars could develop, and treaties could be issued. There are games like Elder Scrolls and Fable that offer and always promise choices and freedom but not to this extent where this game could take them.

“Hello, my name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die”…..

One thing that has always bothered me about MMO’s is the combat, I loathe it. I hate pointing and clicking on something till it is dead. The stiff controls of walking up to something and ever so often it looks like you hit something, but you really only crack it’s hit boxes one in five times. DCU is a bit different, its button mashing but I feel the hit every time my character (Night Venture, yes he’s a Batman knock off, sorry) punches or kicks something. Combat needs to be an integral part of the game just as much as the RPG elements. If I swing a sword I want it to hit and have some feed back to what I am doing. I am not asking for blood and gore abound, I just want a solid combat experience and I have yet to find this. Dragon Age 2s combat would be ideal at least to get things heading in the right direction. While I’m on the thought of combat, it wouldn’t be a terrible thing if the armor you collected and bought didn’t make you look like a bag of Skittles threw up on you. (Sorry WoW players, my character look like he had no color coordination what so ever and it was out of my hands on what color my armor and clothes were, don’t know if it has changed since I played the game last) DCU has different armor pieces but also has an appearance tab so that if you do not like the way new armor looks but its stats improve on what you’re wearing, you can keep the same look and keep the numbers; it’s a win, win situation.

Thank you George R.R. Martin, for putting these ideas in my head…..

I know fantasy settings have been used to death but I would want a more mature take for my ideal MMO. Forget goofy looking Orcs and funny looking caricatures of dragons and griffins, I want realism. I want something along the lines of Dragon Age, The Witcher, and Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion (minus the craptastic Gamebryo engine). Yes, I know there are MMO’s out there that have a darker, mature look to them, but we could minus the mythical creatures and just leave a straight fantasy setting. I would love to see a setting as seen in Game of Thrones (an amazing show if you haven’t seen it, order HBO right now! Watch and love). As much as I love technology, some days I could just do without it. I would love to escape to a place where weapon and armor crafting is my trade, I have to ride a horse to get anywhere, I smell due to the time periods lack of hygiene, my clothes weigh almost as much as I do, and the only way someone from outside my village could get a hold of me is through carrier pigeon or messenger (I hate my phone and only have one to access the internet when I am not at home).

Anyone looking for the next big MMO designer, my number is…..

I am not saying I have the next WoW or the greatest MMORPG in my head, this is just what I would like to see come from this genre, and how I think it could evolve into something greater. In a RPG you play a role but most of the time you are playing a pre-determined one that is based on the design of the game, I want that erased and to play a role not determined by design but to be how I want it to be. If I want to spend my monthly fee on being a shop owner and never know life outside the town where I have my shop then so be it. We talk about “open world games” and games that have “choice and consequence” but how much of those aspects are already set in place for us by the designers? I just want to have a game give me real choice, real options, not a list of things that I can and cannot do, give me free reign over my virtual life, but that is where the exploits would come in because let’s face it, there is no game out there that people do not cheat in or find design holes that land in their favor. If my ideal MMO could be built it would take years to do so but could turn the MMO world on its head or completely flop, that’s one of the risk you take in this industry. Until my desires are met, I shall spend my time in DCU (when Sony decides to get its online act together, but WOOT for free stuff out of this debacle) and plan to play the ever loving crap out of Skyrim this fall (thank you Bioware for delaying Mass Effect 3, take all the time you need) as well as finally finishing Dragon Age 2 which I have sunk a great deal of time into, and watching Game of Thrones (as well as reading The Song of Ice and Fire series, which I can’t recommend enough). One day I hope to see Crylan the blacksmith come to life and live a great one at that.


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  4. JorV101 - May 11, 2011 7:25 am

    I’m not in defense of WoW, and I can understand you not liking the “cartoon” look, but what didn’t you like about the combat system?

    The player vs player feel in end game arenas and battlegrounds is by far one of the best feeling combat systems i’ve seen in an MMO. It requires a lot of skill and coordination, to be honest.

    Now maybe you didn’t play it long enough to jump into the end game content. Maybe you got bored in the leveling process. (A lot of people do) I would suggest giving it a retry.

  5. AiR - May 6, 2011 8:45 am

    well i dont know about spock and such but i have been following A Certain game for a time now and it looks to be the most interactive game i have heard of. The combat is interactive and so are al the events and such in the game. Guild Wars 2. I played the first and am looking forward to this one. Check out this gameplay video on youtube

  6. ScrotusKilmystr - May 6, 2011 8:31 am

    1st of all Kirk and Spock are pimps and can never be called an early beta haha
    but I think to completely pull this off you would need people playing that are well, were willing to be simple folk lower/middle class ie farmers, shop keeps, chimney sweeps, jesters etc…etc oh yeah and the medevil janitor
    while I think a totally open experiance would be awesome the devil is in the details and pulling it of would be an epic undertaking
    it would be cool to have an evolving enviroment as well that would change due to the majority social standing good, bad, neutral hero, anti-hero the list goes on i guess
    add a working 3d visual and Kinect support and yes people would never leave hello holo-deck!!!!
    I would be one of them…..

  7. zero_19 - May 6, 2011 8:27 am

    This sounds like the best game ever. I would play the hell out of a game that had those as the core design.

  8. Kamiki - May 5, 2011 11:44 pm

    If that sort of interactive MMO came out, I would play it in a heartbeat. And I would be one of those who neglected all else in my life to play…. =(

    And yes, WoW armor still looks like a back of skittles gone wrong…but they have improved.

  9. shapeoverlord - May 5, 2011 11:19 pm

    Also in reply to CharcoalCoyote, I remember my father almost getting a divorce because of Ultima Online. HA HA, good times…

  10. shapeoverlord - May 5, 2011 11:14 pm

    “In my dream MMO there would a world that was sup­ported by the play­ers. The econ­omy, monar­chy, and peas­antry would all be player con­trolled.” – I whole-heartedly agree, really good idea. It seems that mmos make the social institutions and rules and not so much the players. And (for me) MMOs are all about the social interaction.

    The best MMO (and first) game I’ve ever played was Ultima Online back in 1999 (I was in third grade then 😛 ) I think it was because there was nothing like it before and it gave everyone freedom to do whatever (new mmos bar people from doing things like not allowing player killing just to be nice to the majority of players.) Another reason was because this was back in the days of dial-up where there was this small place of escape from the real world, and today we have to fight to stay focused with real life.

  11. CABXYZ - May 5, 2011 10:34 pm

    I am sorry, I have corrected it. I wrote this early this morning and my coffee had yet to kick in to my proof reading skills. Thanks for catching it.

  12. CharcoalCoyote - May 5, 2011 8:00 pm

    *ahem* It’s INIGO Montoya. No “D”. Do NOT misquote that movie.

    Also, your idea would be an amazing game. The problem is, you’ve created an addict’s miracle drug. Take it from someone who struggled with this kind of thing for years, an MMO of that magnitude would cause people of lesser social status to just drop off the face of the Earth, shirking their jobs or schoolwork, and ultimately ending in disaster. Would it be a good game? Yes. It would be TOO good. It’s sort of like a “Frankenstein” type scenario. Something that great is too much for our poor human selves. Much like Victor Frankenstein attempted to create life, what you’ve proposed is a sort of “alternate life” that would cause hundreds, possibly thousands, to do all sorts of extreme neglecting. Not saying the average Joe couldn’t handle it, but I can name at least twenty people that this game would be responsible for the death, divorce, or drop-out of.


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