Long ago, I used to live for player-run MMO events. In old-school MMORPGs, people judged a guild’s quality as much on what it did for the community as how well it fared in PvP and PvE — maybe even more. We hung out in taverns in Ultima Online, held overwatch/buffing nights for server newbies in EverQuest, told stories in Dark Age of Camelot, performed plays in Star Wars Galaxies. We even ran roleplaying events in World of Warcraft for a year or so — on a PvP server.
But nowadays? I don’t run them. They were work, so very much work, work that requires management and networking skills that everyone else seems to take for granted or look down upon unless it’s in the service of an endgame raid. MMOs don’t reward them at all; any time you spend on events for your fellow players is time away from whatever grind the devs have set up as the “real game.”
I know that they still exist. MJ went to a lot of trouble recently to chronicle some of the amazing community happenings in The Secret World, and Lord of the Rings Online is famous for its server events. But somehow, back in the early days of MMOs, I thought that running events would only become easier and more rewarding as the genre wore on, and instead, for me it’s been the opposite, so I find myself in comment threads having to defend community-planner types from raiders who are confident that managing a guild or a festival or an auction is casual-friendly easysauce not worthy of comparable reward. It kinda makes me rage.
How about you? Have you ever run an event in an MMO? Do you still run them?