Massively OP’s 2019 Awards: Best MMO Player Housing


Massively Overpowered’s end-of-the-year 2019 awards continue today with our award for Best MMO Player Housing, which was awarded to EverQuest II and RIFT last year. MMORPGs eligible for this award may have launched in any year as long as they are still alive (and legal) and still offer player housing; nominees should be judged based on the quality and depth of that feature and that feature alone. Don’t forget to cast your own vote in the just-for-fun reader poll at the very end!

And the MassivelyOP staff pick for the Best MMO Player Housing of 2019 is…


Andy McAdams: I actually voted for both ESO and EQ2, but overall I still think EQ2’s housing is better than ESO’s housing, but only marginally better. In EQ2 I got really into decorating and I loved my house with all its crap I’d collected in my adventures. ESO has a similar feel just not as friendly, and as much as I love this game, they are way too into the grungy, muddied, dank motif like … everywhere. I would best describe it as “Moist Goth”-esque.

Brendan Drain: If we’re considering No Man’s Sky to be an MMO, then it gets my vote this year thanks to the complete overhaul of the base-building system and new power mechanics it uses, and the community spotlight the developers place on very creative bases. Otherwise, my vote has to go to EverQuest II again with its player housing and guild hall systems. The variety of items and creative freedom it gives are still best-in-class for the genre.

Brianna Royce: As I argued to our team, the only games that can honestly beat EverQuest II in a housing fight are all dead, making this the right choice, regardless of your thoughts on Daybreak. Hat tip to RIFT, too, though as the game’s forgotten, so I fear will be its housing. I understand why so many people have chosen Elder Scrolls Online, as its housing is drop-dead gorgeous, but it’s also relatively useless and and overly monetized to drain the wallets of housing fans to fund other elements of the game, so I can’t say I’m a huge fan.

Chris Neal: ESO. I kind of wish the best houses weren’t cash shop houses, but I also love the amount of style and substance ESO’s houses offer. And if you’re awful at interior design (like me), there’s pre-furnished choices that don’t look horrid as well! So convenient!

Colin Henry: The Elder Scrolls Online’s housing is pretty good. There are a staggering number of of craftable and buyable furnishing items to put in your house. There are a lot of really gorgeous houses available, even the ones available for in-game gold, not just the $100+ cash shop monstrosities. My main problem with ESO’s housing is its placement controls. I really miss WildStar’s 3D modeling-style placement controls that allowed players to move and rotate items along the X/Y/Z axes. ESO has you positioning items like you’re shooting an arrow in first person, and it can take a lot of fiddling to get an item just so. And if you want an item to hang in the air, positioning it becomes even more of a chore. Still, it’s hard to argue with the sheer volume crafting recipes that find their way into players’ inventories, and the creativity displayed by the game’s housing community.

Eliot Lefebvre: I guess The Elder Scrolls Online wins it by accessibility? I prefer Final Fantasy XIV’s housing, but I play that more. I also prefer WildStar’s housing, but that’s not eligible. I do not prefer my own house, it is covered in cat hair.

Justin Olivetti: From what we have left on the active playing field, RIFT still fields an incredibly impressive and flexible player housing system. It’s one of that game’s crown jewels and spawned a passionate sub-community of creators.

MJ Guthrie: Will anyone ever dethrone EverQuest II? I highly doubt it. Sorry, but EQII has the most variety in housing types, most furnishings, and best freedom with placement system in MMOs. You have NPCs you can dress up and give commands to. But I am also totally giving a nod to Path of Exile even though it isn’t an MMO (and therefore doesn’t qualify here) because even if the decorations available are not as prolific, it has the best placement system. One, every housing item is located in a housing inventory — not clogging bags and vaults everywhere. You can also see what items are in each and every hideout you own with that interface. You place them form this interface which keeps a tally of how many of what items you own. Also, many of the items have multiple looks! For instance, one single candelabrum has six variations that can be shown such as lit, unlit, different look, or even broken. A statue can be multiple types of statues, and a pile of books can be stacked and scattered different ways — including crushing an unfortunate person-now-skeleton. What a fantastic display of efficient item management. Moving and repositioning is also easy. I just wish I could change the size of the items or move on the z access (both features EQII has).

Tyler Edwards: Surprised ESO won this, but then there seems to be a huge disconnect between me and fans of player housing. My vote was for Star Wars: The Old Republic. Yes, the hook system is a bit limited, but it’s not as bad as people make it out to be, and unlike ESO and far too many other games, it actually gives me reasons to visit my in-game homes with things like auction access and gathering nodes. It’s actually a home, not just place to hang pretty stuff on the walls.

Elder Scrolls Online won our award for Best MMO Player Housing of 2019. What’s your pick?

Reader poll: Which living MMO offered the best housing in 2019?

  • Elder Scrolls Online (17%, 191 Votes)
  • EverQuest II (10%, 112 Votes)
  • SWTOR (4%, 46 Votes)
  • Final Fantasy XIV (8%, 84 Votes)
  • No Man's Sky (3%, 35 Votes)
  • Black Desert (2%, 25 Votes)
  • ArcheAge (3%, 32 Votes)
  • LOTRO (3%, 28 Votes)
  • RIFT (3%, 36 Votes)
  • Ultima Online (2%, 21 Votes)
  • Wurm Online (37%, 413 Votes)
  • MapleStory 2 (1%, 10 Votes)
  • Legends of Aria (0%, 2 Votes)
  • Trove (1%, 9 Votes)
  • Aion (0%, 5 Votes)
  • Shroud of the Avatar (1%, 13 Votes)
  • Path of Exile (1%, 12 Votes)
  • Villagers and Heroes (0%, 0 Votes)
  • Albion Online (1%, 9 Votes)
  • Something else (tell us in the comments!) (3%, 30 Votes)

Total Voters: 1,020

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How does MassivelyOP choose the winner?
Our team gathers together over the course of a few weeks to nominate and discuss candidates and ideally settle on a consensus winner. We don’t have a hard vote, but we do include written commentary from every writer who submitted it on time so that you can see where some of us differed, what our secondary picks were, and why we personally nominated what we did (or didn’t). The site’s award goes to the staff selection, but we’ll include both it and the community’s top nomination in our debrief in January.
How does MassivelyOP populate this poll?
Poll options include all games nominated plus other games we thought should and would be in the running.
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