A while back I tried an MMOFirefall.

I really didn’t like it. Reading people talking about other MMOs really puts me off, as it happens. There’s talk of “instances”, “dungeons”, “raids”, and lots of other meta vocabulary. How immersing.

The notion of an MMO to me is a living online world. A place to be explored with other people. A form of guided escapism.

From the way people talk about them the way players treat them is a combination of IRC and spreadsheets. There’s no “magic” to it, for want of a better term, just a set of mechanics for players to hammer against. To me that sounds about as fun as chess.

Sure, chess is loved by many, but to me it has such a narrow set of defined moves as to be uninteresting. The amount of skill and forethought needed to play lends itself to a very pared-down game driven by finesse. Perhaps that’s fun to some people. To me it might as well be playing Rock Paper Scissors with a random number generator for all the fun I have.

Similarly the notion of an MMO to me is an emotion-fuelled game driven more by the feeling it creates than the way the numbers work. A truly living world thanks to the fact that one isn’t alone in it.

At least EVE Online makes the numbers matter due to the fact that it’s effectively an unregulated economy. It’s hard to have a stake in items found in the world when the numbers are the only thing players care about.

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