Thinking: MMOs and time-waste

Yes, another MMO-post. I’ve been playing some World of Warcraft again this holiday, and I quickly got back to what I saw as the big downsides of the genre – the grinding, which I’ve already covered, and the amount of time you plough down in stuff like transportation or finding groups.

For instance, you get a quest to kill some bears right outside town. Now, this town is on the top of a mountain, and the bears are down in the alley, so you’ve got to get down that mountain to kill bears and then back up. Sure, this sounds like a small thing, and it is. It is when traveling includes flying all over the world back and forth taking several minutes for nothing that it, in my opinion, gets bigger. Or when I have to run down that same mountain the tenth time. Why can’t I just teleport around, moving to the target instantly? It’s not like I won’t have to know where I’m heading to make a precise estimation of where I’m about to teleport.

The second thing is when you level up and have to get back to town to get to some trainer to buy some spells from a menu to then run back again to keep going. Why am I running all over the place? Why can’t I just open the menu right where I am, buy those freak’n spells and get on with it? Sure, it might not fit a fantasy-setting that doesn’t have Internet, but they’ve got magic! And this counts for more then just the spells, even though that’s the most obvious use (and the only one I feel like giving away to the Internet).

The last thing is finding groups. This can take a long, long, time if you’re unlucky, and then when you’re set someone has to run off. Apart from making more people being able to fill the essential “tank” or “heal” roles, there’s not much you can do with a class-based system. I won’t say more – again, I don’t wanna give the Internet too much.

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2 Responses to Thinking: MMOs and time-waste

  1. tobbas says:

    Teleport around?

    This is not oblivion, you play with other players (MMO HELLO). It wouldn’t be the same if people just popped out of nowhere, it would just be wrong to let people in an MMORPG to teleport around where they want to.
    They implemented mounts for a reason, if you could teleport around they would be almost completely useless except for the role playing part.

    buying spells (and other things) on the spot?

    lol? this is a fucking MMORPG, they have villages, camps, towns with merchants that sells potions / bullets /food / water. What would the purpose of those be if you could stay out in the wild the whole time.

    Finding groups?

    I never found it hard to find groups since I had a guild, one of the big things in MMORPG is guilds, The guild helps you to get a group to an instance or they might find someone who asked them to join an instance, you got a friendlists for a reason also. There is a chat for “looking for group” that you can join. How hard can it be if your not a lvl 24 looking for black fathom deeps.

    Grinding may be boring, but how else are you going to keep everyone busy. You don’t want a game where everyone hits the highest lvl in 1 day and stands around in the main towns and does nothing, thats not how you keep getting paying customers.

    It seems to me like you want to play something completely different to an MMORPG, thats fine, but don’t complain on it just because you don’t want to play that kind of game.

  2. johannessmidelov says:

    Don’t mix up World of Warcraft with MMOs in particular. What I am talking about accounts are more rule then exception in the whole genre, not one game in particular.

    But, I have asked myself the very same questions as you are asking in your comment. And I think I have answers for most of them. Not all, but most – I’m still thinking about the others. There probably are reasons, and they will pop up. I just have to look for them.

    And, yes, I got to the same conclusion as you did, that I didn’t want to play. So I quit WoW and haven’t picked up any MMO since (except the 10-day trail I’m currently on).

    Oh, and unless you noticed – I basically question everything with this blog, and intentionally. Questioning is, I believe, the first step on the road of innovation and, in turn, progression.

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