Here’s something we don’t talk about much here on Massively OP: sports games. When we think of “MMOs,” we tend to run right toward fantasy RPGs (or to a lesser extent, science fiction counterparts). But as we’ve seen, there are MMOs of pretty much every video game genre, from puzzle games to real-time strategy battlers. So why not sports?
In fact, there are plenty of sports-themed MMOs on the market, although these seem to be vastly more popular in the east than they are here in the west. Considering that the Olympics have been delayed and pretty much all sporting events put on hold for the next month or so, I thought I’d direct your attention toward a place that you can get your competitive fix.
For this list, I’m going to restrict myself to listing one game per sport to see if we can get to 10 MMO sports titles. What do you think? Let’s go for the goal!
Soccer: FIFA Online 4
Soccer — or, as it more widely known in the rest of the world, DribblyBall — is a pretty Big Deal to its diehard fans. And when they’re not getting into riots in stadiums, they can engage in EA’s online experience… provided that they live in Asia. The title has been going since 2018, using a modified version of the traditional FIFA games. FIFA Online 4 is a sequel to FIFA Online 3, which was running in Korea since 2012.
Fishing: World of Fishing
This may be the one sports MMO that we’ve reported the most on, probably because fishing and MMOs seem to go hand-in-hand. You know, despite fishing being a famously solo activity. So gear up, friends, for the pulse-pounding action of hooking that giant fish and (presumably) gutting it until its hit points go down to zero. No lie: I actually played this. Once. And I caught a fish thiiiiiiis big!
Golf: Shot Online
Formerly called Winning Putt, Shot Online gives players the ability to get their golf fix amid a community. It sounds as if there’s a variety of activities, too: “Choose your own way to play, whether in straight-up 1v1 matches or in tournaments against dozens of opponents, and begin your path to becoming a pro.” As a bonus, the graphics are very pretty!
Winter sports: Snow
Here’s a three-in-one deal! Snow offers players the ability to explore all sorts of winter environments with skiing, snowboarding, and snowmobiling. I’m a little disappointed that snow tubing isn’t part of the package, because I totally excel in that, but you take what you can get. Fun bonus: You can create your own mountain slope to run or share!
Car racing: The Crew
Ah, forget what I said about World of Fishing, because we’ve certainly covered The Crew and The Crew 2 a lot here on MOP. It’s the perfect outlet for cross-country racing in a variety of different vehicles, from souped-up cars to high-powered speedboats. Chris seemed to have some fun with it!
Baseball: Cal Ripken’s Real Baseball
While it’s no longer around, Real Baseball had a good run from 2003 to 2008, with a fan-created rogue server called Big League Online coming out a few years after that. The idea here was to let full teams of player-controlled characters to participate in virtual baseball games, versus one or two players controlling entire teams.
Basketball: Freestyle 2
Getting away from licensed NBA properties, Freestyle 2 has more fun in a street basketball setting. Players can create their teams with a variety of looks, genders, and apparently goofy-as-anything fashion before going head-to-head with others in casual games or leagues. It not only looks good — Freestyle 2 has pretty good reviews, too!
Equestrian competition: Riding Club Championships
There are probably (and weirdly) enough horse-based MMOs to populate its own listicle, but Riding Club Championships belongs here due to its competitive nature. “Compete in show jumping, barrel racing, pole bending, agility and jump agility,” its studio said. “You can play alone, against friends, in ranked games against random players, or in our weekly tournament. You can even create your own courses.”
Kart Racing: KartRider Drift
Those who grew up on Mario Kart and other go-kart video games will feel right at home in Nexon’s KartRider. This title is just part of a huge franchise that boasts over 300 million players and gives its players a fun, light-hearted racing experience with loads of customization and a variety of tracks. It’s still being actively developed even today, so why not check it out?
Dancing: Super Dancer Online Xtreme
Remember back when Dance Dance Revolution machines briefly brought people back to video arcades? Remember video arcades? Wow, we’re all really old here. Anyway, those who mastered and loved DDR games can still get their competitive fix with Super Dancer Online Xtreme, which might be in maintenance mode — but it’s still jamming out those beats! Remember beats? Seriously, how young ARE you?