The Daily Grind: What MMO content is perfect for short gaming sessions?


Lately I’ve been exploring Lord of the Rings Online’s new(ish) mission system, which is essentially a smaller version of skirmishes that scale to a player’s level. While these missions aren’t anything mind-blowing in terms of activities or lore, I do appreciate that they offer the option to get something meaningful done in 10 to 15 minutes.

Some days, that’s the only time you get for gaming, and it’s nice to have options in MMO that are suited to short sessions when that happens (or when you’re trying to juggle games). What MMO content do you think is perfect for short (30 minutes or less) gaming sessions?

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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ESO for me. No matter how little time you have, you can accomplish something. A short quest, a part of a quest chain, or even just riding off in a random direction and seeing what cool places you stumble upon.


Sometimes if I want to “play game” and can’t decide what to do I’ll play Warframe. I can finish most missions in less than 20 minutes. (Other people can do it in like five, I try to find all the things because Ayatan Statues are placed at random if one shows up, and are kind of worth having.)

Realistically though, a lot of the time I’ll sit there arguing with myself over what I want to do “Be productive, try to build That Thing you’re working on in Ark! Or in Conan Exiles. Or in “Oxygen Not Included.” Or in Factorio. Or in Dyson Sphere Program. Or in Kerbal Space Program. Or in Space Engineers. Or maybe stop wasting time in pretend engineering games and work on painting your Tyranids, or Night Goblins, or Skaven. Or the giant that you got because it looked neat. Or finish cutting and scoring that cardstock cut-and-assemble spaceship you’re going to finish ‘any day now.’ Or spend time practicing drawing. Or… oh wait, we’re out of time. Well aren’t YOU so productive! Good job!”

Sometimes I think that little voice in my mind doesn’t actually like me very much.
( >.< )

Turing fail
Turing fail

EVE Online has Abyssal Deadspace– basically instanced dungeons you run solo or with up to two other players. You must finish in 20 minutes or be killed as the Abyss collapses.


Auction house and tradeskills/professions.


Will say the only thing that I have found was working on older relics in XIV or I can run a quick dungeon in a daily queue as well as I am a Tank Main.


Depends a *lot* on what you enjoy doing. But a fair number of MMOs have longer-term goals you can make some progress on in bite-sized chunks.

GW2 (just to pick one I’m real familiar with) has a bunch of those. You can hop on and see if the daily has three things you want to do that are quick – often you can, and that’s a couple gold which is nice.

Or you can make progress on a map for the 100% map achievement – or any of the myriad other achievements in the game if you like chasing those.

Or if you want the Skyscale mount, you can do some of the quick hearts on the various maps to get the currencies to complete it – much better than beating yourself up trying to get it as fast as possible.

Or just do some open world hearts for the heck of it. Pick up any events that start while you’re doing so – if you’ve no particular goals in mind there’s plenty of “stuff to do” in the world which you might not have seen before.

Most MMOs have achievements you can knock some progress off of, or you can play the market in games where that’s a thing, or craft some stuff, or just pick an area you haven’t seen all of and go sightseeing.

The narrower your interests in any given MMO are, the less there’s going to be “to do” in it, and the less stuff you’ll find to do in short bursts.


Whatever the game has good matchmaking for. Good, in this case, means it assembles groups capable of tackling the content without issues, does it quickly, and provides a handy teleport to the content.

Solo content done through a LFD-like interface, and that includes teleporting to and from the content, is also a good choice.

Apart from this, not much. Group content that isn’t based on matchmaking tends to take longer than that just to get a group and have everyone meet where the content will be played, whereas open world solo content often lacks any indication of how long it will take and wastes too much time with travel; neither are appropriate for short gaming sessions.

(Incidentally, this is the main reason I rarely play MMOs nowadays; most of my play time is in short gaming sessions, and gaming sessions I can’t predict how long will last beforehand to boot. This isn’t an issue with offline games because I can always pause them, even if it’s by using Resource Monitor to suspend the process, so I can string any number of short sessions into a large one, but with games that can’t be paused — including MMOs — I’m restricted to either the short sessions or waiting for one or two longer weekly sessions.)

Hikari Kenzaki

Takes a moment to think about what she does the first 15 minutes logging into a game

Look at character.
Look at new cosmetics.
Futz with inventory.
Take a screenshot (this alone could take 15 minutes).
Log off.


ESO daily dungeons are usually pretty quick. I often log in and do one,even if Im not really playing that game that week.

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Paragon Lost

Was going to post that I’d found ESO pretty easy on the quick in and out routine. I’ve been doing that pretty much for the past few days with the event going on and doing a daily dungeon or so.

I’ve just not been in the mood to spend a bunch of time in game. My free time has been spent reading the Savage Worlds Pathfinder beta pdf document.

Rick Mills

Seasonal activities in Lotro/ESO, a daily delve in ESO, Renown dailies in Wow.