With a sigh, I realized I had just installed WoW, downloaded a truckload of patches, merged my existing account with Battle Net and started playing that MMO again. Generally, when it comes to MMO games I play ferociously from anywhere from a month up to a year and the entire time I am thinking to myself Ďwhat the hell am I doing?í Therefore, instead of killing a forest full of creatures to be rewarded a spoon I sat down and came up with five reasons to why MMOís are so addictive.
The draw of most games is the fun factor. Companies tout that their game has a great combat system, good online co-op, a board peripheral that loosely controls the game etc but in the end, you are getting a product to keep yourself entertained.
To begin with, at least, an MMO works the same way. No one is looking at the box thinking ďman I canít wait to slay 10 bunny rabbits for a spoonĒ Most online games shout that you can take part in an epic world full of wonder, intrigue and cutlery and despite the repetitive nature of these games they are fun if only for a short time.
A no doubt expensive and in depth test was run using 100 college students to produce this small chart. Four groups were given different types of game and told to play them for at least one hour per week. Sucks to be them.
I know how confusing charts can be but trust me, the MMO group spent more time playing then the other groups so even after the novelty wears down people still play on regardless by why!
How was that for a seaway! Every time you complete a quest, youíre rewarded with the quest giver babbling on about some nonsense you soon skip. As well as a story you donít care for, you receive a small amount of xp getting you closer to that shiny new number.
Normally, starting areas have everything in an easy accessible area. Quest givers, monsters, basic vendors and annoying n00bs are all close by and itís easy to level up to that magical max level we all hear bout. Soon after things get progressively harder and more effort is needed the get the same satisfaction but why go to all this effort? Look down 3 cm
Arguably, the most popular sport in the world is football (soccer) but since I know next to nothing about the game, Iím turning to the lesser known but still excellent sport of lawn bowls.
Lawn Bowls is the most played and watched sport in the world drawing hundreds of millions of spectators to this trilling and exciting sport each year. A non contact sport where two teams battle for the most amount of points and in the end the winning team goes to the pub and gets into a bar fight and the loosing team does whatever it is they do. No one knows or cares, they lost after all.
Despite the fact that this sport follows the same rules and the end goal is the same does not stop people from watching it over and over.
The reason why the sport of Lawn Bowls, and to a lesser extent football, is hugely popular is fan devotion to their teams. People argue endlessly how one team is greater then the other. Why this player sucks because he keeps getting red cards or why the coach of their team of choice is superior to another. Itís the competition between fans that drive the game forward.
In an MMO setting once the fun has worn off slaying that re spawning donkey repeatedly with your blunt implement you look around to see someone riding a huge beast with weapons set on fire and thatís when you realise youíre a weakling, even the donkey thinks so. Joining in PvP also reminds you how scrawny you are and you soon find yourself grinding your way to higher levels.
I was lucky, or unlucky depending how you look at it, to join a good guild full of nice people who donít mind helping out. Having a good team, you can rely on keeps you more involved with the game even after youíve grown sick of the game play. If you have encouraging people around you who are happy to run off to raids or dungeons then youíre more likely to stick around and help out, or do what I do and stick to the back of the group and pretend to help out.
Real Time Goals
You canít pause an ever-evolving world, which is a annoying when youíre in a middle of a fight and the phone rings. Unlike single player games where you fit the goals around your time, MMOís force you to fit your time around its goals.
If there is an event then you need to be online at a cretin time otherwise, you will miss out. Guilds often schedule things to do and can pressure members to attend this virtual event rather then doing something in real land.
This is what I see are the five major reasons why people continually sink their time into one game. There are probably more but Iíve just noticed that my character is being surrounded by walking fish gtg.