Am I spoiled for MMOs?

Maybe I have been playing too much Dragon Age over the last few weeks (surely not!!!), but levelling a Death Knight through Dragonblight at the moment is a frustrating experience in comparison.

As Horde, you encounter Koltira the blood elf death knight in Agmar’s Hammer where he has some quests. I thought, “Hey! I saved your life in my origin story, you’re going to recognise me now and we can chill out together and bitch about what a jerk Arthas was and how much better things are now, right?” Nope. He treats you exactly the same as a death knight as any other class.

I should know better than to expect more, but I think the damage has now been done. The bar on my expectations has been raised.

Fellow DAO fans, do you think playing that game is going to change your expectations of MMOs?

15 thoughts on “Am I spoiled for MMOs?

  1. It might have been the last straw that broke the camel’s back, indeed. Trying other games, especially single player games, gives one another perspective on the design of MMOs.

    But I think you are doing the right thing now. You actually did most of what one can possibly do in WoW, you now have a lot of time to play some single player games and try other MMOs. As long as new content is just a new set of instances or daily quests, you are not missing out, you would rather feel even more bored.

  2. Well WoW is no longer massively multiplayer until you hit cap.

    So yup, comparing WoW’s single player game, even the excellent Death Knight starter zone with DA:O is likely to make you wonder why bother?

    I don’t know if it’s spoiled you for MMOs but it may have spoiled you for alting.

    Why level a Death Knight anyway? If it’s just to get to 80 then abandon it then quite possibly another DA:O playthrough or the purchase of any of a number of interesting single player games would be a better way to spend time.

  3. Getting back into single player games – even FPS titles – made me realize how shallow the majority of MMO game play is. DAO is just another bit of proof along the path…. albeit a very delicious one.

  4. Objectively, playing excellent single player games should spoil me for MMOs (such as they are) but it apparently doesn’t. At least Mass Effect didn’t stop me from playing WoW and that experience was also way better than “single player” WoW. It seems I have come to terms with the dullness that is MMO content as a necessary (or is it?) evil that gets me to the good coop parts of the game.

    That said, ME surely raises the bar for my expectations for ToR. Let’s see if Bioware can make MMO content actually good.

  5. “That said, ME surely raises the bar for my expectations for ToR. Let’s see if Bioware can make MMO content actually good.”

    I have no doubt that ToR’s content will be good…. but I wonder how much of it’s “MMO-ness” will be lost in the process. It’ll be interesting to see. =)

  6. Welcome to the reason why I write my blog, Spinks. I’ve never be anything but disappointed by MMOs. Single-player games have done so much more with the medium than MMOs have. MMOs have done almost nothing to harness the possible fun of having thousands of people in a virtual world. MMOs are usually pretty awful games, which drives me away from them within the first month or two (or even week or two).

    Would you play WoW if you didn’t already have an infrastructure of friends and thousands of previous hours invested?

    • There are things I love about MMOs that I don’t get from other genres. The virtual world aspect, the huge world to explore, and being able to interact with hundreds of other players. Those are the things that drew me in when I first started, and they’re still the main reasons I play.

      But increasingly, I can get the interaction outside the game from tools like twitter and blogs (when I started, it was basically MUDs or IRC if you wanted to chat in real time). Which leaves the virtual world, and that’s not something emphasised in current design.

      But on the other side, actual group gameplay has improved a lot and that has been interesting. The quests and storytelling can be fun (and storytelling is an interest of mine), but yes, they’re really not what I got into MMOs for.

  7. I think it’s an unfair comparison. The point you bring up is actually one that bothered me a lot at first too because there was a time last winter when I took a break from WoW and was playing The Witcher. But an MMO isn’t a single player game. It’s just not. And to expect an apple to be like an orange is unfair to both the apple and the orange. One of the things that I had to do early on was put aside my expectations of what WoW should be an enjoy it for what it is. That doesn’t meant that it’s perfect and that I don’t at times QQ.

    Again, I think WoW would be stronger if it added more single player elements to the story. But everything that Blizzard has written about Cataclysm indicates it’s heading in the opposite direction.

  8. I have been on a long hiatus from MMOs as of late and I am loving it. I am really hoping TOR can capture some of the best of both worlds. I like story in my games. I could care less about getting a hundred achievements or getting the best gear. I want to be entertained, not have a second job.

    I really hope that TOR can give an entertaining story while still having that feel of being in a world full of other players. Here’s hoping they can do the job.

  9. Eh, I think it’s probably more that you are pc only and haven’t played that many decent offline RPGs recently. The bloom will wear off in a little bit. After all, it’s not like KoTor sucked or was any less mindblowing at the time of it’s release.

    To me Persona 3 was incredible, but it didn’t make me want to play MMO’s less, because it filled a different need. One is for narrative, the other is for companionship.

  10. Our household is now PS3 enabled actually 🙂 But that’s only been for a few weeks.

    I think in this case, it’s that being a straight-up fantasy setting, DAO is very reminiscent in many ways of single player MMO gameplay. There are quests, the tactics in fights are similar, you level up, get gear, etc etc. So it all ends up mixed up in my head.

    Or maybe just that all RPGs (MMO and otherwise) are trying to simulate a pen and paper game and this just does it better. MMO could easily overtake it if there was any way to have actual players standing in for NPCs.

  11. Some MMO have supported just that. Ultima Online, for example, allowed players to be merchants. Some WoW addons even allow players to be quest givers to other players.

  12. ^_^ Guild Wars mobs already recognise you, and say different things, depending on what you’ve done.

    Not only that, because the world is fully instanced, in some cases (that funeral in nightfall… where you have to help decide which of the kids gets the inheritance), the world changes because of what you’ve done.

    Or appears to anyway.

    What’s an instance, but another box? 😉

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