It’s not every day that I stop what I am doing to mentally clap for a poster on Reddit, but user Rolling-in-the-Meeps prompted just that response from me back in August thanks to his post disambiguating “tab-target vs. action combat” and “rotational vs. reactionary.” Essentially, he’s arguing that what makes a game feel active isn’t really about whether the combat is organized around tab-target or “action” twitch; rather, it’s a focus on reactive gameplay instead of rotational gameplay (which you can still achieve with tab-targeting).
“I know there is absolutely skill involved with perfecting and maintaining your rotation, but I like games that have more reactive elements to them,” he says.
Days later and I’m still thinking about the argument. I think he’s right to break down the argument into these component bits, but I think I personally prefer a mix of both rotational and reactive. I don’t love, for example, the reactive avoidance gameplay in Guild Wars 2, but I loved proactive and reactive healing in Guild Wars 1.
How about you? Do you prefer combat rotations or reactive gameplay in your MMOs?