[MUD-Dev] Removing the Massively from MMOG (long)

Damion Schubert dschubert at gmail.com
Thu Nov 24 06:49:44 New Zealand Daylight Time 2005


On 11/21/05, Jean, Yannick <yannick.jean at cgi.com> wrote:
> On November 18th, Lachek Butalek wrote:

>> One of the selling points of WoW, for example, was that it was
>> balanced and polished enough that you could solo without any
>> major issues - indeed, some reviewers claimed it was "playable as
>> a single player game", and made it sound like a good thing. My
>> question was, why am I paying $14.95/month for a single player
>> game, which only differs majorly from Morrowind in that it
>> features annoying twits running around speaking in l33t?

> How many wildly successful games will be necessary before soloing
> gain the right to be a valid play style in MMORPG ?

I gave a speech that touched upon this issue at AGD this year.  A
summation of my theory is that there is a huge group of people who
don't play MMOs to group with other people, they play MMOs because
other people are there.  Other people are inherently interesting -
it might be a train wreck of interesting, but you know, Beavis and
Butthead can be pretty entertaining as well.

My general conclusions were that people should be able to play solo,
but you should never make the player feel alone.  There needs to be
a constant stream of chatter around the player to make it feel like
a socially engaging space.

Of course, the talk also discussed the design decisions behind the
common everyday potato peeler, so it's entirely possible the whole
thing was on crack.

--d
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