I don’t want to push the “IMMERSION” button too hard with this statement, but sometimes mine is bent a little too far when I see my lightly clad character romping through what’s supposed to be a harsh environment. If I allow myself to notice, I find it jarring that the weather and biome has absolutely no effect on my character. It’s all just offering different attractive level designs for the same type of activities.
To be fair, the idea of an environment adversely affecting you is not that attractive. If I had to nursemaid my character through snow, desert, or toxic landfills, I’d probably be whining about it. Yet every now and then I see developers try to bring in a deeper sense of immersion by having the environment be more than eye candy: wind blows us around, breath runs out underwater, campfires are direly needed or else we will freeze to death.
Should MMOs do more with environmental effects? If so, how could they do this to make the game more interesting instead of irritating?