The Daily Grind: What are the most obvious vestigial organs in MMO design?


I found myself in a heated discussion a week or so ago about Guild Wars 2’s leveling system because in my estimation, Guild Wars 2’s leveling system is essentially a vestigial organ. It’s nice to have, and it probably trains newbies at a decent clip, but for anyone who’s played the game more than a few hours, it’s entirely forgettable because that’s just not the point – the vast majority of the game is not about leveling and indeed can be played at 80. I’d even argue one of the reasons it makes such a great game for non-hardcore players is that leveling is trivial and then you can group with pretty much everyone you want, anywhere you want, and your goals after that are more sandboxy than in most themeparks.

I bet our MMO readers can think of more such technically unnecessary systems in MMO design that games just see no need to let go of. What are the most obvious vestigial organs in MMO design?

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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