MMORPGs - 2006 in Review - Part 1 of 4, the Failures
Dec 06, 2006 18:33:11

2006 is drawing to a close. If you were poking around here a year ago, you would have expected to see a slew of new MMORPGs on the scene by this point, but as you're well aware we're still waiting for most of them. Nevertheless, it still has been an eventful year for MMORPGs even it was light on releases. Let us take a brief look at what happened in 2006 in 4 parts. Today, we'll look at those that didn't satisfy all of our hopes and dreams.

Regarded as Failures. No one is surprised:

  • Archlord - First they wanted everyone to pay nearly $40 a month in order to get special in-game bonuses. Then they went to a flat $15 subscription fee. Now it is free to play. One more step and they'll be paying us to play. I still wouldn't bother. If you like mouse driven movement, potion drinking festivals, getting ganked by people 20 levels higher and grindy uninteresting combat this is the game for you. In a MMO scene chock full of games that look just like Archlord and play just like Archlord it may be one of the best of the Lineage clones, sadly.

  • RF Online - Limited game play options and grind like no other game in existence. RFO sells copies on the merits of its attractive player character models which is no surprise considering the source. This is just another paper-thin port from the east that hasn't caught on in the west.

  • Hero Online and Silk Road Online - Grouped together because no one can actually figure out what is different between the two. These two ports had one huge advantage over their peers until recently; they're free to play. Like the rest of the Korean ports these games have fantastic player character models that you can customize to your taste as long as your taste consists of blue spikey hair or red spikey hair.

    Regarded as Failures or Non-events. People are surprised or disappointed:

  • DDO - Even with one of the most popular (though ill suited) IPs in existence this game missed the mark with most players. Turbine sold plenty of boxes to hopeful players, but the lack of a large persistent world and unintuitive innovations to the movement and combat system soured many MMO vets. DDO is expanding rapidly and isn't actually bad in any specific way, but the only area it excels in is the scripted mission content. DDO would have done far better if it had tried to sidestep the MMORPG label. The game pleases Diablo fans more than EverQuest fans.

  • Auto Assault - A great idea. Tons of action. Cool equipment. A well designed world. Also, a total flop. Somehow this well executed game from NetDevil failed to excite MMORPG gamers with it's shiny vision of a post-holocaust world. Many players went looking for Mad Max and came up with Mario Kart with missile launchers.

  • Dark and Light - MMORPG vets across the land had their high hopes dashed by Dark and Light, the ultimate example of what not to do with your MMO. Early marketing and feature lists excited MMO players who wanted a huge world with deep game play. Instead they got a huge world without any game-play and a publisher that doesn't seem bright enough to build a Lego castle much less an epic MMORPG. This is perhaps the most extreme example of extreme hype coupled with poor game design ending in utter disaster

  • Phantasy Star Universe - PSU is still very new and certainly isn't a failure, but most MMO players have dismissed it with a shrug of their shoulders. They've nothing good to say but aren't trashing the game either. Ultimately, the game works and is 'ok' but is regarded as a pedestrian addition to the Phantasy Star brand.

    Continue reading: MMORPGs - 2006 in Review - Part 2 of 4, the Dead and Dying

  • Submitted by Brent on Dec 06, 2006 18:33:11 CST (comments: 2)


    'DDO as a Failure?' by Wilhelm2451
    Submitted on 2006-12-07 21:33:41 CST
    I guess I see what you are getting at. DDO certainlyfailed to meet expectations and it failed to be an MMO. It did make for a good podcast. Episode #22 is one I've listened to a couple of times.

    'Archlord failure ? ' by Dathmar
    Submitted on 2006-12-12 17:15:27 CST
    What do you mean failure... ;)
    Take a look at this -

    Actually in the magazine the game gets a recommended.
    As of this review - I have stopped buying this can they recommend this pile of poo ?

    Do you think the editor of PC Zone is drinking buddies with the owner of Codemasters ?

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