MMO Week in Review: Where Blizzard goes, the MMO genre follows?

    
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Well, it's just a phase.

Hear that rumble off in the distance? It’s WoW Classic, and it’s only two weeks out now, as all the infodumps and server plans and promos and new models and character boosts and server types indicate. We got Blizzard’s quarterly financials this week too, and no surprise – WoW subs are up in anticipation. We’re thinking it’ll be awfully interesting if WoW Classic prods the rest of the genre to turn another page the way the original game did.

Meanwhile, No Man’s Sky is prepping its next big thing, DCUO hit the Switch, Legends of Aria hit Steam early access, City of Heroes’ rogue servers took steps toward legitimacy, video games were once again unjustly blamed for spurring on violence, and the ESA’s backtrack on lockboxes feels like a bit of a hollow victory.

Read on to catch up with the very best of this week’s MMO news and opinions today as every Sunday in Massively Overpowered’s Week in Review!

THIS WEEK’S TOP STORIES

Perfect Ten: MMOs of the apocalypse - It's the end of the world as we know it -- and for some reason, we are still gaming. I guess that your investment in that electromagnetically shielded internet cable…

THIS WEEK’S CASTS & STREAMS

Every week, get caught up on the MMO genre’s latest news and Massively OP’s best content in our MMO Week in Review! Want more roundups of content? Try Friday’s Betawatch for MMO testing highlights, Saturday’s Make My MMO for MMO crowdfunding updates, and Sunday’s The MOP Up, which mops up all the bits of news we didn’t cover anywhere else.
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Adam Russell

Donated to Camelot Unchained then realized its not combination pvp and pve, but PVP with a tiny bit of pve thrown in.

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bakkahentai2600 .

Yoshi-P: Nightmare

kjempff
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kjempff

I guess in some sense, as last in the parade other companies follow. Blizzard never invented anything themselves, they are a copy developer who observe and take the good(profitable) ideas and refine them.
That is why it is so silly to copy Blizzard … when you do that you are already generations behind the initial idea.

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Kickstarter Donor
Sargonnax

One of the big problems with the MMO genre in general is that companies spent years trying to follow WoW and i dont think that was a positive thing for the industry.

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Dawn

I have to disagree, I had a lot of fun in a handful of other MMO’s that followed that template. Rift, LotRO, SWTOR, GW2, and STO as personal examples. I also really enjoy ESO & some friends really enjoy FFXIV… and there are so many others I’ve played since 2004. And yes I’ve reserved my names on a Classic WoW server today. =P

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IronSalamander8 .

Out of all this, the thing I’m most interested in is the CoX negotiations. Not that I’m confident they’ll go anywhere but I hope it does. I find it highly interesting that WoW is bringing classic and I can play CoX again, much like in 2004 when I could play CoX or WoW and I easily chose CoX. I’m not playing it a lot but it’s much more enjoyable than WoW ever was.

Over the weekend a mix of old SWTOR guildies and other MMO friends were discussing their WoW classic plans in the separate server we made for them. Some of them are looking forward to it, some are going along despite their dislike of the game just to play with some friends that do. I did play a little in the earlier stress test and I recall exactly why I never liked the game very much and live isn’t that much fun either.

I’m more curious about it as an experiment. How will it fare vs. retail? How will the population pan out over time? How it will perform at meeting player expectations? All things I find interesting from the sidelines while I play other games I find more enjoyable.

Mordyjuice
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Mordyjuice

Blizzard hasn’t set any trends since the WoW Clone Wars, if anything Blizzard has adopted other people’s ideas and poorly implemented them in WoW at least, hell to suggest that Blizzard would set the trend of putting out Classic would negate every single Progression Server that’s been implemented the past couple years.

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Randy Savage

If the genre follows where Blizzard goes, then it follows it down the drain

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Robert Mann

Yes and No. Well this has certainly been a long time factor with newer games, in cases where it is features, ideas, innovations, or options it tends to be the reverse: When the MMO genre finds something that people like, WoW copies.

MurderHobo
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MurderHobo

I honestly doubt anyone is looking to Blizzard for inspiration. They’re playing out their best possible move (No small thanks to Mike Morhaime) but that situation doesn’t seem applicable to the rest of whatever you want to call the AAA MMO ‘industry’.

I do think everyone in the know is well aware of the situation. What happens to ActiBlizz will certainly inform their decisions.

Also, shout out for Andy’s money laundering article above. It’s worth a read if you passed it by.

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Eamil

If anything, I think Blizzard finally caving to the classic crowd is a cheap and easy response to the market demand shown by the millions of dollars being thrown at games that try something different. They can’t actually make a whole new MMO, but they can release Classic which is “different enough” compared to the current game.

Eliot Lefebvre
Staff
Eliot Lefebvre

The funny thing is that all of the things that it does badly are things that the current game also does badly (aside from heterogeneity in race selection, I suppose), and all of the things it does well are things that the current game still does badly. That doesn’t spell success or failure, but it certainly is an interesting contrast.

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Eamil

I’m kind of grateful for the timing of it, really. If they’d done it later it might have actually drawn attention away from the release of one of the crowdfunded projects. Now people who realize there are some good things about older design sensibilities will have time for the newness to wear off and for something else actually new to potentially catch their interest.

“Hey, do you like group content and a challenging overworld? Try Pantheon. Fell in love with old-school AV? Maybe look at Camelot or Crowfall. Want something completely different? I dunno maybe Ashes will be good!”