Could this be the perfect housing MMO?

Perhaps the perfect way to introduce housing into an MMO is to make a game that’s all about being settled in a single location. Instead of travelling the globe as an itinerant adventurer, the focus could be on building up the player’s house and garden/ lands and playing lord (or lady) of the manor.

This actually reminds me a lot of the original endgame that was envisaged for D&D. In the original game, when your character got past a certain level you had the option to settle down, build a stronghold, and attract some followers.

Fortunately, someone else has already had this idea, and Firefly Games announced this week that they were working on Stronghold Kingdoms, a castle type MMO simulation.

I think the basic concept is brilliant, so I’m hoping they find a publisher and make a go of it. It’ll be an MMO all about the player’s house with some strategy stuff thrown in. What could possibly go wrong …?

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6 thoughts on “Could this be the perfect housing MMO?

  1. Finally! Fantasy Eve. I don’t believe 2010 for a moment but when it eventually rolls along I think I’ll be giving this one a try. Hope it turns out as political as Eve is.

  2. I thoroughly enjoyed the Castle games a decade ago. There’s something very satisfying about running your own little fiefdom, complete with an unassailable fortress.

    …and now I’m reminded of the castle deathtrap in Girl Genius. A game that gave me *that* sort of castle to upgrade and customize, complete with ruffians to attend to, would make me a happy camper indeed.

    That said, they play very well as single player games. Would an insular game like a castle game really work as an MMO? What impetus is there for players to interact beyond tossing Monty Python insults at neighbors, hiding behind their walls? This may especially be a concern if location and space are issues; if you get plunked down next to a couple of jerk neighbors, what then?

    I do think it could be interesting, but there are some very real design concerns I have. I’m curious to see what they will do. Thanks for the link!

  3. Player cities are very cool but impossibly hard to do right. You need a hugely complex gameworld, mechanics and open PvP to make it work and be interesting.

    Still, I love new ideas in MMORPGs and admire their vision! Looking forward to seeing more about it.

  4. I agree, totally. We don’t really know how they’d expect players to interact in a game like this, and the downside to a permanent strategy based world is the risk that the losers eventually are run off because the winners keep getting more and more advantages.

    But I do like that it’s a very different model from the standard DIKU/quest kind of thing, and I’m definitely going to keep an eye on it to see where they’re going.

  5. Sounds an awful lot like The Sims Online – although many would have argued with the ‘G’ part of calling that title a “game”…. But the “house” was, of course, the focus of the game and all its activities (skilling, making money, socializing, etc.). Now, to layer that on top of a more active game like WoW…. hm! sounds intriguing…

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