The Daily Grind: What are the minimum criteria for an online game?

We deserve this.

It’s pretty definite that Second Life is not a game in the strictest sense of the word, and by “the strictest” I of course mean “basically any.” It’s more of a toolbox in which you can make a game, sort of. But then, so is Landmark, and I don’t think anyone would argue that isn’t a game. You might argue whether it succeeds at its goals as a game, but that’s a different discussion.

Of course, Landmark has built-in combat… but Glitch did not, and if you’d like to argue that that wasn’t a game, you’ll have angry fans at your doorstep faster than any Amazon shipment. Clearly, there’s a cut-off point. But where is it? Why is one thing a game while the other is not? What’s the minimum criteria that you use for when something is an online game instead fo just another online tool or chat client or the like?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!
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