It has been over a month since i stopped playing World of Warcraft and frankly I’m not missing it. I miss playing with other people but the game itself wasn’t fun anymore, for me anyway. What is odd is that technically the game is now the best it has ever been, however over the years it has lost its charm and spirit, in my eyes at least.
Since its launch the game has slowly been refined and brood down and streamlined. Each of these changes on paper was a step forward but together they have done damage. In essence they have stripped back the world and now the mechanics of the game itself are too visible to me and the majority of players. It’s hardly surprising that a large fan base the size of WoW’s rips every little detail apart to see what makes it tick . I liken this to Morrowind and Oblivion, Autoleveling and Fast Travel are great ideas on paper but they end up killing the feeling of a living world. Something which the Blizzard is well aware of and they have been fighting against this for a long time.
I am not done with MMORPGs in general, well at least not with ones that work outside the WoW formula. I couldn’t give a fig about Starwars Republic of the doodad , like Rift it is a WoW style mmo refined to the N’th degree. I’ve had enough of that thanks, I want something fresher.
I’ve been playing Age of Empires Online since closed beta which is very good blend of traditional RTS gameplay and MMO style gear collecting. It can get a bit repetitive if you play it for several hours at a time but to is good for a few hours a day. I cannot say how it will cope in the long run however as there isn’t much in the way of end game content at the moment but we shall soon see. It’s also free to play so you have no excuses not to play!
My point of light somewhere off in the distance is Guild Wars 2. It promises several features that aren’t currently being done to death in other MMORPGs. They are saying there will be very little in the way of leveling quests, most of the game will revolve around events which randomly spark up around the world, these will of course will repeat eventually but it will definitely be more dynamic. You would never know what was ahead of you each time you log in. Combat should be fresh due to the lack of tanks and healers, everyone has to look after themselves. There are no tanks, everyone has to avoid taking damage, if you do take damage you are the only one who can effectively heal yourself. There are other heals but none of them allow you to target a friendly party member. We will see over the coming months if this pans out according to plan or ends up being a pile of broken dreams. These guys have been ambitions, but that comes with big risks.
I’ve enjoyed my time playing world of Warcraft and I’m not going to start being bitter about it. I still have very high regard for blizzard and await more details on project titan. Whatever it may be I know that they know they cannot create a WoW killer. They have to cut a new niche just like Guild Wars 2 is trying to do.