In Eliot’s open letter to new players and vets of Final Fantasy XIV last month, he noted that Final Fantasy XIV’s endgame is not like the endgames of many other MMOs, specifically because it “begins as it means to go on.”
“The endgame is not where the game starts; level 1 is where the game starts, and it begins as it means to go on. When you hit level 50 is going to be the one time in the entire game when you get introduced to a new style of content in the form of 8-person Trials and 24-player Alliance Raids, both of which you’ll need to do to advance the story, but past that, you will have seen the game’s tricks. And those players at level 80? They will be joining you.”
This kind of game design is Bree-nip; you folks know how I love to rant about MMOs that act as one kind of game and then suddenly become a totally different game when you max out your character. I like games that play pretty much the same on day one as they do on day 30 as they do on day 365. I don’t want to grind through a soloing ladder to get to a raiding endgame or a PvE grind to get to the PvP endgame.
I thought it would be fun to discuss some of the games that do this properly. Which MMOs begin as they mean to go on?