Let’s talk about rested experience in online games this morning. MMOs call them all sorts of things, but World of Warcraft’s has stuck the best in my brain, even if it wasn’t at all “first”: It’s basically a way of granting boosted experience for a certain chunk of future experience, usually based on some factor like how long you’ve been logged out or whether you pay a sub. When you use it up, your experience gain goes back to normal.
I remember not paying much attention at all to rested exp back in my early WoW days; I’d just play characters straight on through. But the last few years, when I’ve been playing City of Heroes and now LOTRO, I most definitely do. In fact, I find I plan my playtime around whether or not I’m getting the best bang for my buck in terms of experience. In CoH, for example, I keep a chart of my toons and when I last burned all their patrol experience so I know when to log them in and do it again. In LOTRO, the experience is a set amount every day, meaning the wisest way to play is to circle through each character, playing 20 minutes or so and then moving on. I’m not quite sure whether I actually like dancing around like this just yet. It definitely breaks up my play rythym.
Do you play MMOs with the equivalent of rested experience in mind? Is this a mechanic that exists in your favorite MMO, and if so, is it valuable enough to you that you work around it – or do you just ignore it?