vague patch notes

Vague Patch Notes is a meta design column by Eliot Lefebvre. [Follow this column’s RSS feed]


Vague Patch Notes: Having fun in an MMO doesn’t actually mean it’s any good

It appears that Fallout 76 has become the latest in a long line of games that launched too early with ill-defined goals, trying to...
Tell me lies

Vague Patch Notes: Accessibility vs. relevance in MMORPGs

You know that old chestnut about how the greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist? The greatest trick...
I know when I'm not wanted.

Vague Patch Notes: When World of Warcraft breaks off your friendship

I spent a bunch of time post-BlizzCon thinking about why World of Warcraft personally bothered me. Not why its design pitfalls bothered me;...
Such meaning.

Vague Patch Notes: The meaning of ‘meaningful’ in MMORPGs

Ironically, the term "meaningful" has a long history of not meaning much of anything with MMOs. Back in 2015 I did a Perfect Ten...
Well... it's a box, and one of the people in it is probably a skinner?

Vague Patch Notes: There’s more to Skinner boxes in MMOs than mere repetition

As I started watching the latest World of Warcraft video to whip people into a furor, I very nearly turned the thing off...
Strap in, buckos.

Vague Patch Notes: How do you play MMOs when you know humans suffered to make them?

The original Star Wars film was a passion project for a then-young George Lucas, and it was a project that nearly killed Lucas from...
I know when I'm not wanted.

Vague Patch Notes: World of Warcraft, math, and making choices ‘interesting’ in MMOs

So if you somehow managed to miss it, let me recap: World of Warcraft's community manager Lore recently gave some feedback on the many...
I'm important!

Vague Patch Notes: Trickle-down metagames in MMORPGs

A while back, there was an interesting set of data coming out of a discussion about Overwatch. The discussion was about the concept...
Sorry, guy.

Vague Patch Notes: WildStar deserves its shutdown, even though we loved it

Last week, when we heard that WildStar was being shut down, I penned a truthful, heartfelt eulogy for the game as it...
How do I start to say goodbye.

A eulogy for WildStar – a marvelous MMORPG and avoidable tragedy

Friends, readers, genre fans, lend me your eyes; I come to bury WildStar, not to praise it. But just like Marc Antony, I'm...
You may leave school, but it never leaves you.

Vague Patch Notes: Casual no longer means anything in MMOs

Every time I see someone write something about casual players - including me because heavens know I've done it too - I feel a...

Vague Patch Notes: On scaling and meaningful advancement in WoW and other MMORPGs

It seems like pretty much nobody is happy with how scaling is working in World of Warcraft at the moment. The game's scaling...
This seems like more of a half-move.

Vague Patch Notes: On balance and differentiation in MMOs

Do you like fighting games? I don't. Let's talk about fighting games. But bear with me because you'll get where this is going. While I...