I’m reading this more and more about how certain mechanics in a MMO won’t work or how a certain type of game wouldn’t work today because it wouldn’t attract large number of players. “That would be a niche game and just wouldn’t work”.
In yesterday’s entry smthin comments exactly how I feel.
“It is hilarious that people still think that making big $$ WoW clones is good business. This formula failed and failed and failed and.. 10000 fail. Last few years are filled with corpses of MMOs that thought they could copy Blizzard and make quick buck.
I also think there is a lot of ignorance about economics and investment in such projects. Audience you expect to attract with 5 mil investment is not same as with 80 mil.. Stupidity comes from people not gettign that you can make great cash from cheap projects and smaller audience. That is how original DAOC and EQ worked both were dirt cheap(especially DAOC that was purely ghetto) and made investors good return.”
Anyone want to contest that the past couple years have been full of developers trying to make mass-appeal non-niche MMO’s that are each failing? Even the Asian market attempted to mimic a WoW feel and release in NA and failed.
I hate analogies, but I gotta do it.
There’s this amazing Mexican food chain where I live that is only present in the three surrounding cities. It’s a restaurant that started locally and has decided to stay local. Every day their lines are long and there isn’t a single resident in these cities that doesn’t know this awesome food.
They’ve been successful and started their own ‘finer’ dining experience. However, they’ve still decided to keep it local and keep the quality high.
Then there’s the major fast food chains like McDonalds, Burger King, etc. Their food isn’t terrible (although I don’t care for it) and millions of people eat it, it’s worldwide, it’s cheaper, etc. However, there’s a big difference in quality.
No question about it, McDonalds makes more money and has more customers. Does that mean this local place shouldn’t bother anymore? Does that mean they shouldn’t have expanded or that they should stop opening new locations?
See what I’m getting at? MMO’s don’t need a million subs to be a success. MMO’s don’t need mechanics that will attract a million subs. It’s no different from my analogy. There can be the smaller businesses that do just fine with amazing quality and exactly what people want. I’ve never eaten food anywhere that tastes like this local mexican food — their burritos are 100% unique.
So when someone tells me that I’m out of touch when I say that a company can bring back what worked in EQ and have a successful MMO today, I say it’s they who are out of touch.
You can make a MMO using the exact same model as EQ and it would be a success today if it was polished and finished. Vanguard is proof of that. Look at the following that game had before launch and the initial response it had. It was only because the game was half finished and lacked polish that it failed.
Designing games to be the next big thing or designing them with the mindset that you want 10 million subs is destroying them. It’s not helping the games or the industry to only allow McMMO’s the right to exist.
You do not make a 10 million subscriptions game. You make a great game and 10 million people subscribe. This is why EQ and DAOC did so well.
My next blog entry is going to look at what type of game we would have if EQ was modernized for today’s audience and lacked some of the harsher penalties.