Tuesday, March 27, 2007

FIRE!!!!

Well...not really...but I think the blog-o-sphere is the only place left where you can say "fire!" and not have the black helicopters come and drag you away. Plus, I'm starting to run out of titles for some strange reason. Carrying on then....

Actually, before I do carry on I had an interesting comment from my last article. I did one of those visual writing comments regarding the amount of MMO "goodness" coming out in 2007. One of my readers and fellow blogger Cuppycake seems to feel that there is a lot of "MMO mediocrity" coming out in 2007 and she got me thinking...way to go Cuppy :) 2006, I think we all can agree, was a very dry year for MMOs with the only new thing really launching was DDO. For 2007 we have 5 or 7 high profile MMOs launching, most of which are fantasy based. Cuppy is not the only person really feeling "meh" about the offerings for 2007, the MOG Army guys Garry and Ryan are kinda projecting that vibe as well. Personally, I don't think it's going to be that bad of a year...actually, I think 2007 will be the year that the MMO reaches a maturing point. I think the MMO genre is now reaching a point where it is establishing standards for itself, i.e. UI layout, death penalties, exp curves, quest expectations, PvP etc. All the MMO companies are putting all of these expected standards into their games and choosing a handful of new features and innovations to excel on. I think this is a good thing and after 2007 we'll start seeing the real innovations coming out of the industry, with even more standard features included from the 2007 games. It's the great circle of MMO life we're seeing here.

Switching gears completely, Spellborn is starting to make a bit of a ruckus right now. A couple of really good features that are being introduced in this one:
  • No stats for armor. Actually, you can add stat increases to your armor by adding modifications called sigils. This is kind of like the slotting feature that BC brought to WoW. There whole drop system and crafting of new armor looks really interesting.
  • No big raids...thank Zeus!! Presently, no MMO has broken away from this end game grind for gear we call raids. It's starting to become a relic and this whole raiding concept needs to be revisited. Looks like Spellborn is first up to bat with this reevaluation of the raiding end game.
  • Combat is more action oriented than other MMO offerings right now. Their system kind of reminds me of Guild Wars, so there is a certain strategy to setting up your skills.
Damnit! Due to the way they're approaching this game, I'm going to have to put this one on my radar.

Lastly, for those that are interested, here is the current schedule for the LoTR beta. I unfortunately missed the end of beta event yesterday and as of today, the beta servers are dark and won't be up again until the Open Beta starts. Hope to see everyone in there on the 30th.

D out.

5 comments:

Cuppycake said...

I guess you're right, hehe. I tend to be a little melodramatic at times. Nothing could really get worse than 2006 anyway...I guess 2007 is a step-up =)

Anywho, I agree with you about Spellborn! I had been ignoring it thinking it was just vaporware, but a lot of these features really appeal to people who are either casual players or who play multiple games (I fit into both categories). I'm keeping my eye open for new Spellborn news as well =)

-Wearfannypacks- said...

I love the guys at MogArmy, but they're complainers. They talk more about what sucks than they do about what's good.

That being said, I think we have a lot to look forward to. I'm expecting an announcment from Blizzard at least by Dec. about the next expansion, probably some announcements for other big titles as well, all the new games coming out... I mean it's not that bad. Maybe some of these titles are using convention.. but you're right in that it signifies the upcoming renaissance of MMO features.

Well written D.

darrenl said...

Well Fanny, they do complain, yes, but I wouldn't discount any of Garry or Ryan's concerns. I honestly think they do represent a sector of the MMO community that, like Cuppy, want to see something fresh.

You'll notice that both Garry and Ryan talk about console gaming just as much as MMOs now-a-days...perhaps more so. It's interesting to ponder why that is.

wilhelm2451 said...

Sorry, I cannot put anything else on my "watch" list until something comes off. Time, money, and my wife simply won't allow it.

2007 is likely to be the first year where MMOs crashing and burning becomes a common sight. And I do not mean that just relative to WoW. Okay, maybe 2008, as some of the games will need a bit of time to really get into a power dive.

I am not going to say that the MMO market is only n players big, we know where that leads, but anything that doesn't have something fresh to differentiate itself from the established market is going to have a rough time breaking out of the pack of also-rans. There is already a lot of competition out there and there will be a lot more by the end of the year.

Bildo said...

I've been hip to Spellborn since 12/05, where you guys been? :p

Seriously the game shows a lot of promise, but there's one thing that rubs me wrong... FPS controls for melee combat and spellcasting. Seems to me like it's just not going to work, or if it does, no one will like it.

I'm hoping I'm wrong. Because the artwork, solo-instances, no raids, unique skill deck system, progressive story that people will actually take part in shaping the world, the statues of Players who make a name for themselves (PvP or PvE wise)... it all sounds too good to be true.

It's coming out apparently in EU 1st, with a US release later this year. Definitely one to keep our eyes on.