The Daily Grind: What non-combat, non-crafting system do you enjoy in MMOs?


There’s always a lot of stuff to do in MMOs, but most all of it involves punching, slicing, or blasting into oblivion. That’s not what we’re going to talk about today. Nor are we going to get into discussing crafting, because we’ve done that to death.

Instead, I’m curious what non-combat, non-crafting MMO systems do you actually like in your MMOs. Recently I’ve been really getting into the archaeology-themed antiquities system in Elder Scrolls Online, ignoring quests in favor of happily brushing away dirt to find treasures. It’s weirdly fun.

Do you have any systems like this in your game that you like to do when fighting and crafting just aren’t doing it for you?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!

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Turing fail

EVE Online has citizen scientist crowdsourcing app called Project Discovery. The current iteration is for COVID-19 research. Very cool idea, but not always fun.

Oleg Chebeneev

Trashtalks in game chats and on forums.

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Dean Greenhoe

Things like in GW2, map exploration completion, POI visits etcetera. I like to fully explore an area before I move on to the next one. This gives me a true feeling of completion.

Building is another thing I love to do in games. Even though it is quite restrictive as to the area you are allowed to build in when it comes to mmo’s. Sandbox games offer me a glimpse as to where the future may lead. I think in the future mmo’s will allow bands of players to acquire large tracts of land to settle and defend as their own small fantasy world within a world. Give us the tools and we will build a true player driven economy.


I really enjoyed player performed music system in LOTRO. It was easy to create music for its proprietary system using various user-created tools and there were a lot of already created music files by other users. It also had good music sync system when playing it with others as a band. After experiencing it I was really disappointed how bad FFXIV’s player performed music system is compared to LOTRO in every aspect.

I also enjoyed exploring the various systems in EVE, just for fun or to monitor other alliance’s activities when I was in a different alliance. Or doing WH space exploration for profit, by finding NPC sites or finding other player’s abandoned structures or ships. No other MMORPG game gave such amount of space to explore and so many purposes for exploring it, in most games the in-game world is too tiny and can be fully explored in few days once you unlock every zone through mandatory quests or there is just no good reason for exploring.


Idk if some of these count as non combat but here we go…

Thieving in ESO. It could’ve been so much more but like everything else in that game they stopped at a beta level gud enuf. Regardless, it added a non combat dimension that actually made me build a character around it for a bit.

Music in lotro.

Fishing for trophies in lotro.


Exploring zones.

I do enjoy the random non combat minigames most mmos put and festivals and daily quests.

Wardrobes. Making cool looking sets I usually spend more time doing than dungeon running.

Character creation.

Idk the only mmo I played recently was WoW and it is slim on non combat stuff it’s hard to imagine that game taking a hard look at what makes animal crossing so successful and trying to implement stuff from that.

A weird not really but kinda related tangent: travel powers. In games like marvel heroes and dc online I find the travel powers being equally if not more enjoyable than the combat ones. It amazes me more games don’t allow you to manipulate how you move around the world more.

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Jumping puzzles in GW2! The majority of them are a real treat to figure out and explore. I only wish we got more of them regularly.


I am pretty much 100% combat focused, there’s often not a huge amount outside of combat that I enjoy.


1) Fishing – the fishing mechanics usually suck, but I fish in real life so I enjoy seeing what fish are available in game. Definitely improved if there is a way to mount or display the fish somehow.

2) Community Events – some of the community events that are non-combat related can be great fun. Best events I ever attended were chicken races in LotRO! So much fun, and surprisingly intense.


Community Events – some of the community events that are non-combat related can be great fun. Best events I ever attended were chicken races in LotRO! So much fun, and surprisingly intense.

Yea, I agree, community events are enjoyable in any multiplayer games. I wish more game developers provided more tools for players to create these.


I enjoy following (and understanding) the story lines in new MMOs and expansions.

ESO is great for this with every faction in the main game and every new chapter having a long and compelling story line. Even the DLC with zones have new story lines, or continuations of the current chapter story lines.

SWTOR is really great for story lovers as well! I do have to get back into SWTOR for a while this year! :)

David Goodman

Building/housing? Or would that fall under crafting? (since you’d have to craft the parts – but i’m not invested in crafting the parts as much as I am building the base.)

Jon Wax

Base building. Point blank. They could make a game called Outpost where all you do is explore and setup bases and rebuild old Outposts for other players to spawn on and I’d play that relentlessly