Massively OP’s Best of 2017 Awards: MMORPG of the Year


Massively Overpowered’s end-of-the-year 2017 awards continue today with our award for MMORPG of the Year, which was awarded to Black Desert last year.

Recall that in 2014, we couldn’t reach consensus on an MMO of the year. In fact, enough of us voted “nothing” that “nothing” is exactly what won. The following year, we took readers’ advice and opened this category up to all live MMOs, regardless of launch year, provided they did something noteworthy this year. We’ve done the same this year. Don’t forget to cast your own vote in the just-for-fun reader poll at the very end, and congratulations to all of this year’s nominees and winners.

The Massively OP staff pick for MMORPG of the Year for 2017 is…


Andrew Ross (@dengarsw): Elder Scrolls Online. The justice system, unique phasing/instanced housing, playable werewolves/vampires, level scaling content, battle bears… I’ve never even finished an Elder Scrolls game and I’m rooting for it again! Runner up: Final Fantasy XIV. Another game with a (largely) happy player base, passionate developers, a good business model and reasonable updates… it may sound like what should be the industry norm, but especially these days, it’s not.

Brendan Drain (@nyphur): Abstain. I know a lot of people will expect me to vote for EVE Online, but it’s really not in a good position this year. Player activity is in a definite slump, even the Lifeblood expansion didn’t make much of a splash, and the community team being axed was just slap in the face to players. Nothing else really impressed me this year, Elder Scrolls Online had some very well-received updates and people seem extremely happy with it right now, but I didn’t play it.

Brianna Royce (@nbrianna): Elder Scrolls Online. In fact I thought Elder Scrolls Online deserved it last year too, but I was outnumbered and Black Desert was a worthy adversary that also deserved it, so I had no cause to be sad. In a way, I’m kind of glad it all shook out as it did because taken holistically, ESO is even better this year than last, adding huge patches like housing, multiple DLC, and the massive Morrowind expansion. It managed to weather its controversies nicely too (I’m thinking of the fuss over chapters vs. DLC). I’m glad to see it getting its due this year, especially since it launched relatively poorly and has come such a long way now.

Eliot Lefebvre (@Eliot_Lefebvre): The Elder Scrolls Online. The big difference, as I see it, is that FFXIV had a great big great expansion halfway through the year. ESO spent the entire year delivering updates that are smaller, but just as good, and coming down off of another spectacular year of development after a really great 2016. The game has never been better than it is right now, and between housing, big content updates, and all of the various system improvements… yeah, it’s time for it to get that of-the-year feather. Runner-up: Final Fantasy XIV

Justin Olivetti (@Sypster): Secret World Legends. As annoyed as I am at Funcom for the long content drought, the retirement of The Secret World, and the apparent inability to transfer characters, I have to admit that SWL has been a shot in the arm for this game. The new combat and better quest flow are welcome improvements, and there’s a lot of excitement over the development of this title. Can’t wait to see what comes next!

Larry Everett (@Shaddoe): Elder Scrolls Online. It just cannot seem to do anything wrong this year, it keeps improving, and the game is just great for new and old players. It’s strange to me that the bar has been set so low: If a studio doesn’t mess things up, then it’s the best. But that’s where we are now. ESO didn’t really do anything wrong.

MJ Guthrie (@MJ_Guthrie): I am always pretty happy when games do well because that’s a good thing for the genre. But I think Elder Scrolls Online has done a great job at steady positive progress. ZeniMax isn’t just doing the minimum to get by; it feels as if the game is on an upward trajectory with plenty of substance being added. This year there’s a whole new area to explore with new stories to play through, a new class, instanced PvP, and –a major bonus in my book — a new housing system. Did I mention it now has housing? And pretty cool housing at that! This feature alone made crafting an even bigger deal as furniture came into play as a new marketable item. I can’t ignore that it also added peripherally a whole new way to experience the Elder Scrolls with The Elder Scrolls Legends collectable card game. It’s all good stuff and made a good game even better.

Tina Lauro Pollock (@purpletinabeans): I’m sad to say that I’m not voting for Guild Wars 2 this year: While I absolutely feel that it is my personal MMO of the Year, it has the best expansion of the year, and I am absolutely enjoying my time spent in-game, I realise that it’s not leading the way the game that gets this title should in terms of audience connection, so it gets a runner-up spot for me. My winning vote has to go to ESO. It blends fabulous, innovative mechanics with heavy player appeal and engagement, so it’s everything the GOTY should be.

The Elder Scrolls Online won our award for MMORPG of the Year for 2017. What’s your pick?

Reader poll: What was the best MMORPG of 2017?

  • Elder Scrolls Online (48%, 1,147 Votes)
  • Final Fantasy XIV (8%, 195 Votes)
  • Secret World Legends (1%, 30 Votes)
  • Black Desert (5%, 108 Votes)
  • Guild Wars 2 (8%, 192 Votes)
  • World of Warcraft (11%, 267 Votes)
  • EVE Online (1%, 20 Votes)
  • Star Wars The Old Republic (1%, 35 Votes)
  • Destiny 2 (1%, 13 Votes)
  • Warframe (1%, 33 Votes)
  • Blade and Soul (0%, 10 Votes)
  • Revelation Online (0%, 1 Votes)
  • Riders of Icarus (0%, 1 Votes)
  • Star Trek Online (0%, 6 Votes)
  • Neverwinter (0%, 9 Votes)
  • Path of Exile (2%, 37 Votes)
  • Albion Online (0%, 11 Votes)
  • ArcheAge (0%, 8 Votes)
  • RIFT (0%, 4 Votes)
  • TERA (0%, 8 Votes)
  • Skyforge (0%, 2 Votes)
  • Lord of the Rings Online (2%, 42 Votes)
  • Dungeons and Dragons Online (1%, 33 Votes)
  • EverQuest II (0%, 10 Votes)
  • WildStar (1%, 24 Votes)
  • DC Universe Online (0%, 2 Votes)
  • RuneScape (1%, 16 Votes)
  • Elite Dangerous (1%, 20 Votes)
  • Nothing (4%, 89 Votes)
  • Something else (tell us in the comments) (1%, 16 Votes)

Total Voters: 2,389

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Poll options include all games nominated plus other games we thought would be worthy.

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