I’m in an interesting position right now in my MMO gaming in that I’m playing two at the moment, one as an old, grizzled veteran and one as a bright, naive newbie. Essentially, I’m in two different stages in these games, which got me thinking about how different our viewpoints are depending on which stage we currently happen to live in. At first, I thought that perhaps these “stages of MMO gameplay” might equate to the stages of grief, but after further reflection decided that that was a rather poor comparison, as those stages are all leading up to the acceptance of the reality of an event while these stages represent your particular feelings toward an MMO depending on a variety of factors, which may in fact never be completely represantative of reality. Experiencing these stages is a personal thing, and while we all experience them to some extent, the intensity of, and length of time in each stage can vary greatly.
Back when the Contains Moderate Peril podcast was a thing, Roger and Brian used to wax nostalgic about how MMO’s seemed to capture a point in your life, a snapshot if you will, where everything just came together perfectly. Time passes, situations change, and it’s unlikely that we’ll ever experience that “first time” MMO feeling again, though we may spend years trying.
In listening to discussions on MMOs over the past several months, I began to notice that when I hear a certain game being discussed, I tend to always have similar reactions to that title, whether they be positive or negative. Considering this, I figured that I must have a ranking in my head of my favorite and least favorite MMO’s, and it might be interesting to try and list those rankings out and decipher why they fall where they do on the list. Of course, thanks to personal taste, you may or may not agree with my rankings or the reasons for those rankings. It’s a fairly diverse list, and now that I’ve ordered them it has become pretty clear what elements I look for in an MMO.