Gidday all. I’ve seem to have slipped into a “once a week” kind of blogger. Oh well. Winter is on its way and soon there will be actual MMOs to talk about. Oh…right…DCUO rained on that little parade. /grumble.
Allllll righty then. If other MMOs aren’t going to play ball, then WoW certainly will. First up is that patch 4.01 is dropping right now and will be thrown out to the “We will never be satisfied” MMO masses. Check out the patch notes here. Of course, this is the patch that paves the way for Cataclysm. It introduces sweeping new changes to character development as well as many class and game mechanic changes. Yes…the long awaited WoW reset button is about to be pushed again, but this one smells a bit different than the last. I’m very curious as to how extensive the changes are going to be to the world. I’m planning on starting a new character and what I’m really hoping is that Cataclysm reinvigorates the whole experience for me. We’ll see.
Next up is a great article over at Massively which takes a look at why WoW is the whipping boy for the current state of the industry:
If you ask a remarkably high number of players, World of Warcraft is a negative influence on the face of MMOs. Not necessarily for the reasons that many players, current and former, will claim; the complaints of this group have nothing to do with content or overarching design philosophy. No, World of Warcraft has ruined things just by virtue of its very existence.
It’s WoW’s fault that we’ve seen a flood of games that are, essentially, the same game with a slight twist (WoW in space, WoW with more PvP, WoW in the mind of Derek Smart, and so forth). It’s WoW’s fault that these games have failed, and it’s even more WoW’s fault when other games fail. And despite everything, these claims aren’t seen as ridiculous. They’re often taken very seriously. But really, WoW isn’t to blame for its clones or the failures of other games. The fault for those lies exactly where logic would imply.
It’s a great article and I recommend you give it a thorough read through.
Here’s my two cents. Blaming WoW for the failure of other games and even the state of the current industry is the typical North American attitude that drives me crazy: my failure is always someone else’s fault. All WoW is responsible for is WoW. The shifting of blame clearly takes away the pain necessary to learn from one’s mistakes. The lesson being, of course, that lightning never strikes the same place twice. Sure, WoW has had a tremendous influence on gaming, but that influence is hardly a call to action that says “spend hundreds of millions and create that again…”. Imitation is the best form of flattery, but in gaming, repetition is a sign of a spent and exhausted imagination, and that’s where we’re at now. A tired, spent and exhausted MMO industry that is trying the same things over and over and really not getting anywhere. Oh wait…there’s Facebook…maybe that can save us! Not…bloody….likely.
Really, the whole industry needs to scale down in a very big way. It’s gotten to the point where creating games requires the GDP of a small country in order to create. This is why MMO luminaries are looking to shitty and “What have you done for me lately” platforms like Facebook….they’re cheap and require little or no effort to create. Of course, the old tech adage of “garbage in, garbage out” comes into play and then they’re sitting there wondering what bus just hit them. No fellas. It’s not the tech that is killing you here, it’s your expectations.