There are a lot of similarities and parallels between the two games that occupy most of my playtime (Final Fantasy XIV and World of Warcraft), but the two games have stunningly different approaches to alts. WoW encourages them extensively by making many achievements and collected items account-wide, thus ensuring that I can log on to a new character and face an array of benefits right from level 1. On the other hand, FFXIV doesn’t even let me mail money to my alts; if I want something on a new character, I’m going to have to work my hands to the bone to acquire it on that character, and I’ll need a friend to transfer even a half-dozen gil from one character to another.
To some extent, this makes sense insofar as FFXIV lets you hop between jobs on a single character. But there’s also something to be said for rewarding your progress with, well, progress. If you want to make that climb in Eorzea again, that’s on you. WoW expects you to do so multiple times, and some of the rewards you can pick up are almost exclusively useful for subsequent characters rather than your first one aiming at the level cap.
So which one do you think is right, dear readers? Should MMOs encourage or discourage alts? Which one makes for more healthy games in the long run?