Nov 12, 2012

[Do MMOs Really Need to Be Saved?]

via Tadhg Kelly at What Games Are; a rebuttal to the idea that modern games need to be 'saved':
"It's a rite-of-passage thing. Also an age thing. You're probably around 25, have jumped, slaughtered and strategised your way through at least 1000 games, and found them amazing and entertaining. Then something happens.

  You start to get bothered by the sameness. You start to notice that games recycle the same ideas on a generational timeline, that every 5-7 years or so game developers repackage the same concepts for new platforms. And also keep making the same mistakes. Over time, you start to think that games need to be saved.

  Your attention span shortens. You struggle to remember the last time you had a gaming all-nighter and you look on Skyrim not as a challenge, but rather as a task. A drudge, even. You wonder just how long games can get away with that sort of thing. You also start to be much less tolerant of the first hour of a game: if it doesn't absorb you then you dump it."
  Sound familiar to anyone? =P

  I think the fact that many of the current MMO bloggers fit squarely into this description explains a lot about the tone many have towards the games today. For example the whole '3-monther' label being used by many as proof of the genre's failings rather than a hint that something has changed in the player.  I also agree with Tadhg that perhaps we 'old timers' may be able to get games more in line with our desires by focusing on indies rather than the mainstream gaming industry, since the mainstream studios don't really seem to be serving our demographic.

Related Reading:
The Dark Side of Happy Memories

1 comment:

Bhagpuss said...

I definitely think the fact that I was about 40 when I played my first MMO is one reason why I still enjoy them as much, if not more, than I did well over a decade ago. Prior to that I'd already played video games for twenty years, but not heavily enough to get jaded.

When you get to my age you are well aware that all forms of entertainment go in cycles. I've seen some come round four or five times now. The thing that has changed since I was a teenager is that back then each cycle would push the previous one out and we'd mostly have one dominant form and a lot of also-rans, whereas since the 90s things tend to stack and nothing ever really seems to go away.