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Default MMOs without character persistency

November 16th, 2010, 10:52
I wonder….

Would you ever play an MMO without character persistency?

I mean, let's say your character is wiped out each week.

I say this, because I think it's inevitable that your characters WILL die eventually. Even WoW will close servers one day.

So, your characters WILL NOT LAST - and as such, there's really no persistency - and the game doesn't end - so you can't say you actually completed the game.

So, with the most fantastic and brilliant gameplay and the most fantastic content: If the MMO wouldn't keep your character and you wouldn't ever "get through" all content - would you play?
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November 16th, 2010, 11:39
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
So, with the most fantastic and brilliant gameplay and the most fantastic content: If the MMO wouldn't keep your character and you wouldn't ever "get through" all content - would you play?
No.

It's a complete waste of time because you'd never get anywhere, or at least not for long. MMOs have a long lifespan and due to that the progression is more "relative". No one's really that impressed that you did Molten Core during WotLK, but doing ICC25 Hard Mode (Or whatever it's called now) is still quite impressive. In EQ2, no one would really be bothered that you did the first expansion's content because the game's on a much higher expansion level.

MMOs are no less a waste of time than, say, Divinity 2 or Dragon Age. You might get attached to your character, but what's to say you'll be playing those games in 5-10 years? If my HDD fails, there go my characters. Again, there's no real persistence for them. In 10-15 years, a certain game might not be compatible with the latest OS, so my characters, again, would be null and void.

Either way, I don't think it would do too well, just as a perma-death situation wouldn't be well received in a good number of MMOs (At least by the majority). There's security in knowing that whether you leave for a week, a month or a year, your character will still be there waiting for you (As long as the MMO stays active) and a major feature of MMOs is progression - A frequent wipe wouldn't allow for any meaningful progression.
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November 16th, 2010, 11:47
Originally Posted by Dwagginz View Post
MMOs are no less a waste of time than, say, Divinity 2 or Dragon Age. You might get attached to your character, but what's to say you'll be playing those games in 5-10 years? If my HDD fails, there go my characters. Again, there's no real persistence for them. In 10-15 years, a certain game might not be compatible with the latest OS, so my characters, again, would be null and void.
A waste of time is obviously subjective.

But the gigantic difference between MMOs and games like Dragon Age is that the latter ENDS - and the former doesn't.

Dragon Age is a self-contained story that has a beginning and an end, and the typical MMO has no such thing, and even if it does - they don't really end - because they keep adding more and more. Also, the story presentation of MMOs haven't, as of yet, even approached that of a solid presentation of a self-contained game like Dragon Age.

Either way, I don't think it would do too well, just as a perma-death situation wouldn't be well received in a good number of MMOs (At least by the majority). There's security in knowing that whether you leave for a week, a month or a year, your character will still be there waiting for you (As long as the MMO stays active) and a major feature of MMOs is progression - A frequent wipe wouldn't allow for any meaningful progression.
No, and I agree.

Which is basically why I have trouble understanding why people (including myself) ever play MMOs, because I actually see them as prolonged experiences of having no conclusion or sense of persistency if you think about it.
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November 16th, 2010, 12:11
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
Which is basically why I have trouble understanding why people (including myself) ever play MMOs, because I actually see them as prolonged experiences of having no conclusion or sense of persistency if you think about it.
So why do people play Bejewelled, Zuma and a good number of other casual games? They have an ambiguous end, one either created by the player's skill or one where the game's difficulty rises to the point of being impossible to complete.

A game doesn't need an end. Look at the countless games children play with each other - Tag/Tig, football (Sorry, soccer) and so forth. Where's the actual end? There isn't one. If they didn't tire or get bored, those games can go on ad nauseam.

MMOs have end points, but as you noted, they move over time. A new expansion, a new patch - They move the goal posts further away. But the main focus of an MMO isn't to have a story, nor to have a goal. It's to progress and tackle challenges as they appear. Even the MMOs with the stronger stories often forsake the story/lore to allow for gameplay (Non-MMOs do that, too).

Story will, whether it's an MMO or not, always take a back seat to gameplay. There doesn't need to be an end-point in an MMO, and they're created with that in mind.
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November 16th, 2010, 12:19
Originally Posted by Dwagginz View Post
So why do people play Bejewelled, Zuma and a good number of other casual games? They have an ambiguous end, one either created by the player's skill or one where the game's difficulty rises to the point of being impossible to complete.
I couldn't tell you why others play, but I can tell you why I don't: they bore me and the skill-set they provide means nothing to me.

A game doesn't need an end. Look at the countless games children play with each other - Tag/Tig, football (Sorry, soccer) and so forth. Where's the actual end? There isn't one. If they didn't tire or get bored, those games can go on ad nauseam.
Oh, some games don't need an end for me - but those games need to not last for long.

But that's me, and I get bored very easily.

MMOs have end points, but as you noted, they move over time. A new expansion, a new patch - They move the goal posts further away. But the main focus of an MMO isn't to have a story, nor to have a goal. It's to progress and tackle challenges as they appear. Even the MMOs with the stronger stories often forsake the story/lore to allow for gameplay (Non-MMOs do that, too).
I'm not trying to tell other people what they should enjoy, I'm trying to understand why. I'm curious as to how people work and how they motivate themselves.

The thing about MMOs, is that the goals mean nothing to me. They don't provide an experience that I feel I can "take with me", like other games do.

Maybe in a small way, but not a good way when I think of time spent versus reward.

Story will, whether it's an MMO or not, always take a back seat to gameplay. There doesn't need to be an end-point in an MMO, and they're created with that in mind.
That's another subjective aspect.

I'm a gameplay man, but I can't really enjoy an RPG without a story to provide underpinning and meaning to the gameplay. Most MMOs fail miserably in that regard.

LOTRO is an exception, but the gameplay is rather dull….
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November 17th, 2010, 13:44
I've always wanted an MMO with a resetting server. But much more than a week. My idea is more like once a year.
My problem with MMOs and why I only play MMOs when they are released, is that I like the 'freshness' of the game. When everybody is low level and not playing their 8th alt (with their other 7 characters at max level already). So, I would definitely play in a server that starts fresh every year. Hopefully, the server is somehow randomly generated, so you don't already know the server if you explored it the last time.
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November 20th, 2010, 23:10
Interesting question but for me no. One appeal for me in the MMO is the persistency - its one of the major appeals. I am one of those people who would like to port my Warden from one sequel of DA to another or through out the NWN, Fallout, etc. games.

Although I understand the point they seldom end. But I have a fairly vivid imagination and I pretty much make my own game within the MMO game world. I sometimes wonder if the current generation of gamers (console), who grew up with more advanced games, sometimes prefer the more cinematic style games with action because they are used to games filling in all the parts. Seems like sandbox games (which MMO are in many ways) are for those who don't mind filling in things in their own head .. but thats another subject I suppose

So for me I like knowing I can logon at any point and continue my character. Not indefinitely … I lack the stamina for that. But a really good MMO can hold me for years. Most SRPG games will only hold me for 3-6 months on average, unless really, really good. Expansions also help (but DLC not so much as they are to short).

I don't play MMO like most folks (or maybe I do and don't know it) though. I am very casual, I hate raiding with a passion, and I hate powergaming. That doesn't work in well with most groups. I do like chatting with folks and some light RP so I tend to join social guilds where I can chat, do some fun guild stuff, and avoid the stress and hassle of raids and competition.

The more time I invest in a character the less happy I would be to see him go. So it is the persistent nature of an MMO, combined with all the dynamic content and changes that are made, that make it appealing to me.

In an SRPG I don't mind it ending although I prefer a nebulous ending to my character. In DAO, for example, I never took the option to kill my character - although if I knew the "out" was evil I would have - sometimes RP trumps my desire to let my character live. But it was vague enough I was okay with it.

I never see all the content in an MMO (since I don't raid and dislike grouping) and seldom see it in a SRPG either as I seldom play all sides - I dislike being evil and always play male. So I am no stranger to missed content. But I also don't want my character being killed every week - that would suck. I would have no connection to the game or any desire to play. My character is me in the game and what I enjoy playing. All things end but if it is to quick it becomes pointless IMO.
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