Let me tell you, I have been in such a RUT when it comes to MMOs as of late. I have found that the things I really want out of an MMO, as a whole, is hard to find.
What I am looking for:
-Dynamic story that keeps me enthralled
-Plenty of options of things to do besides grind/typical end game
-In depth crafting system
-Tons of activities to do where leveling isn’t the only thing to do pre-end game
-Active role play community
-Sandbox-esque that will support me if I just want to be a baker
As you can see, it’s a little all over the place; wanting story and ‘theme park’ like set up and a sandbox at the same time. I think a big part of it is game depth for me. I have played my fair share of MMOs and bounced around between them. Hell, I have 7 MMOs downloaded on my computer [yeah. I know. I have a problem]. I play one for a bit and it doesn’t grab my attention like the it used to and I find myself drifting. Now, I know a big part of that is the fact that I have high level characters that have done most of the content in all of those MMOs, minus the few I just can’t get in to. Just this past week, I have logged in and played 5 different MMOs and just haven’t felt that connection. As I am writing this, my husband is downloading number 8 onto my computer for me to try out. So far, the ones I have downloaded are as follows.
Final Fantasy XIV:
Let me just say, I love this game. So much. I currently am not actively subscribed to the game, but I love it none-the-less. From that love, I can honestly say it is not enough to hold my attention. When Stormblood came out, we gave it a couple weeks to see if we got the itch to pick it back up. Inevitably, we did :P. We played through the story and I busted butt to get geared on my Paladin. From there I joined back up with my old static to fill a tank hole they still had. After doing some primals, I ended up power leveling a Warrior to better fill our limit break bar [we already had 1 paladin]. We started working on savage immediately once it came out. It was a lot of fun. Sadly, my anxiety took hold and I started having panic attacks during raid. I was stressed by the static and the need for the tanks to up our DPS to make checks. I downloaded ACT and spent most of my time in game standing in front of the training dummy at the FC house parsing my numbers or going into Sky to test against various primals and raid boss dummies.
All that aside, once I got 2 level 70’s and just shy of max ilevel fro the time, I couldn’t find anything else to do. I grew tired of running my roulettes every day, hunts weren’t keeping my interest, trying to get back into crafting deflated my gil income/kept getting held back by not having solid crafting gear and I had no drive to start leveling other classes. I’m really sad that I reached that point so quickly in FFXIV. I really love the game, the combat, the story, pretty much all of it. The fact that after a couple months of not playing, I started to burn out saddened me.
Black Desert Online:
On pen and paper, this should be my favorite MMO out there. Action combat that requires skill and focus, indepth crafting/worker system, theme park elements with some questing, sandbox elements that allow you to play how you want, etc. It really is a stunning game. But I do have issues with it. I have a couple issues with it that holds me back from playing more. First, is the lack of things to do if you don’t want to craft/build a worker empire. I have found that once my main character hit soft bap and got her awakened weapon, experience slowed to a crawl and I didn’t have much to do. Yeah, there are daily and weekly chests, boss scrolls, pila scrolls, world bosses, crafting, etc., but it feels all gated. I don’t have a high enough gear score to move into the newer things [Valencia/Kamasylvia]. I could buy the gear, but that requires a ridiculous amount of coinage to attempt. I could updgrade it myself, but that would also take a fair amount of money unless I spent hours trying to grind for the basic gear to drop. That also requires a fair amount of knowledge of fail stacking and downgrading gear. The major way to get money in the game is grind spots like Pirates which are heavily contested with people. I have no problem with open world PvP, but after the 100th time being forced off a spot that I had been at for hours with no problem is really annoying. The workers and crafting system is really nice. My only issue with it is not having enough energy when I’m out gathering [butchering in particular] and having enough contribution points to have substantial bank space for all the things the workers are gathering. Now questing does help that a lot, so I know if I just did more quests fro the Contribution XP, I could lessen that issue a bit. So overall, I have logged in a couple times the past few days, killed some stuff, butchered some wolves, and waited around in various cities waiting on my workers to finish some rounds of gathering so I could start making beer, hot tea, etc.
I’ll admit, I’ve maybe played 5 or 6 hours of this game. It intrigued me when Noro mentioned last weekend that it was a isometric MMO with turn-based combat. I am not usually a huge fan of that, but I have been playing Divinity Original Sin 2 and loving it, so I figured I would download it and give it a shot. I was shocked in myself that I kept going logging back in and playing some more. The combat felt fun enough and the graphics were cute. Overall it seemed really nice… until I got to the first “major city.” Then I was trying to figure things out and it seemed pretty empty except for a few places. General/world chat was about what I expected for an MMO that is probably filled with 12 year olds, but it wasn’t awful as it could have been. After stumbling around and trying to make sense of everything, I eventually gave up. There was very little that I could find explained even with the tutorials on. I will probably give it a shot at some later date, but right now, I have kind of written it off.
This I downloaded because I saw some very interesting discussion on whether you should play Wakfu or Dofus. Most people seemed to say it really depended on your place style and which you preferred, but there was an overwhelming amount of people that said that Dofus was more populated with people and still pretty active all things considered. So I downloaded it and gave it an honest try. Like Wakfu, it’s okay. I wasn’t immediately smitten with the game, but it did feel nice and look good. There did seem to be a lot more activity and chatter going on in the game, which makes me think that it is still somewhat active. I did bump into a few people which just made me cringe about what seemed to be the age of everyone that I was playing with. I don’t know why that matters to me, but it does. I just have grown tired of the younger crowd in MMOs as of late, so it’s always on my mind. Similar to Wakfu, there were a lot of things that didn’t feel really well explained. I ended up getting pretty annoyed and decided to shelf that game as well. Maybe in a different mindset it would be more enjoyable, but it’s not what I’m looking for right now.
God I want to love this game. There is so much about it that I love, even though I’ve never gotten a character past level 25. The crafting system, the quests and sandbox aspect, non-instanced housing, class system, combat, open world pvp, crime system, ships and ship combat, mounts, ugh the list goes on and on. But I just can’t seem to play it. I get going and things look great, but then when I try to find a community, there is none. Yes, there are still a bunch of people playing the game, but they’re not easy to find welcoming. Not to mention the HUGE amount of cash-shop issues and pay-to-win aspects in the game. To be competitive and stand a chance in open world combat, you would need hundreds if not thousands of dollars to sink into the game. Or, you know, eternity of time to play the game to grind to that point. For me, the lack of community and the general “dead-ness” of the game paired with the massive pay-to-win set up of the game…. I just can’t play it. I want to though and probably from now until I find that one MMO that I can really sink time into, I’ll probably redownload it every couple months to try again.
Guild Wars 2:
This is my baby. It was my first introduction into MMOs when I was an adult [even though I played the shit out of some Runescape classic back when it was the only runescape and was played in a browser]. I seem to always have this game downloaded no matter what. It is so easy to drop in and drop out of this game. The collection system makes it really easy to jump back in. I will say there were a lot of changes from the last time I logged in [i.e. fractals, raids, pvp structures, etc.]. The part that stops me from loving it so much is the fact that I have all characters to level 80 with all the available crafting classes to max level as well. We came back right before Path of Fire, and honestly, I haven’t even finished it yet. I just can’t find my motivation. We did join an RP guild and that has been really fun, but it’s been hard to log in and figure out what I want to do when I’m not at an RP event. I’ll keep it downloaded for when the mood strikes to play, but it won’t be my main MMO.
World of Warcraft:
This game and I have a weird relationship. I have several higher level characters but haven’t really played the game. When I did play, we used dungeons to level through to try and get to certain ranges to do things with various RP guilds. This last time, I downloaded it and started a brand new character with no artifact gear with the hopes of doing the zone quests and really delving into the game. It honestly didn’t last long. Whether it is the people, the graphics, the gameplay, the community… I don’t know, but this is one game that I just can’t bring myself to play no matter how much I feel like I want to. I might try again in the future, but we’ll see. For now, it’s just going to have to be a game that I love the lore from and read the books on, but don’t play.
Those are the games that I currently have downloaded on my computer. I have another one downloading right now, so I’ll definitely have to take a look and see how that shapes up. It’s been a trying year for MMOs and I, for one, cannot wait until some of the new ones on the horizon come out, provided they deliver on what they’re promising that is.
Any one else stuck in an MMO rut or have any suggestions to MMOs to try out? Let me know!!