NC Soft - Richad Garriott Interview @ GameDaily BIZ
Robert Garriott has been interviewed at GameDaily BIZ about the evolving MMO market. Here's part of an answer:
BIZ: As one of the pioneers of the MMO genre you've witnessed a lot of changes in this space over the last decade or so. How would you assess the evolution of the MMO market?
RG: Ten years ago, when UO came out and Lineage came out it was interesting because... and even until very recently if you put an online game, an MMP, versus a console game and you put those two on a screen... five years ago, you could be across the room and point out which one was the online game and which one was the console game. The visual differences were so striking that everyone enjoyed the depth of the online game, but they thought that the graphics sucked, the interface sucked... it was nothing compared to the ease of getting into and the visual stimulation that a console game provides. That was one of the reasons why the players were so segmented. You had the people who liked the console games, you had people that liked the depth of the online games but they really didn't overlap. I think one of the exciting things is how this has changed over the past 5 years. Today, if you put the top online games, Lineage II or World of Warcraft, on a screen versus the top console games and you go back across the room. Now you can't really tell. The graphic quality of online games have come up to the same sort of level, the user interfaces have come up to... well not quite the same sort of level, but they're getting there where the ease of play is better.