Last weekend me and the hubby had a day looking around at a big selection of display homes. There was quite a few and they were the newest and fanciest models available to be built with some being very affordable, I love having a look at all this new stuff but usually it just makes you long to have one. Your home will never be able to compare to these in any way as they usually have the biggest and best things, there is usually a shift in design to accompany the new model that better reflects the zeitgeist as well. It makes you look at your own home as a big steamy pile of….inadequacy.
In a way this is a very similar phenomenon to our mmo gaming lives, the newest and greatest games always manage to make our own look like crap. It could have updated graphics, an interesting I.P, or maybe better mechanics. They usually tend to have design approaches that reflect the players evolving interests, it is enough to make even the newest of games feel dated in a way. But there is one big difference between these two analogies and that is the ability to enact change, to make my current residence into a home.
Building a home is about changing the environment to suit you and your evolving interests. Looking around those new houses while sad in a way can help as it gives you valuable ideas into your likes, and interests. It better articulates that impression you have in your head of the home you want to live in but what’s important is being able to put these ideas into practice. I can change my house accordingly, small things like moving things around it adding a couple of set pieces, then maybe changing the colour scheme or new furniture, to the big changes of making extensions and maybe even knocking down walls. While limited in a way by budget there is always some sort of change you can make, it feels good and turns a house into a home.
This can never occur in your mmo of choice as change is completely out of the players hands. You have a limited say in the direction as there will be thousands of other people with their own interests to contend with, then there is developers getting the final decision. We all have particular nuances in the way we like our mmo’s and certain combinations of mechanics but finding an mmo to mirror these interests would be next to impossible. they always seemed to be spread enough that an mmo will never fulfill your complete checklist but seeing others that do have these missing pieces makes you feel worse about your mmo, it makes them feel lacking in a way.
In this regards I don’t think it is very appropriate to even search for an mmo “home” as such a thing will never really exist, you can’t make one and there is always something missing. I know some out there hold nothing but contempt for those that flit between games and blame them for the way the market has come around with games going for a more casual short term appeal but I am beginning to think that this is a good thing in a way. While I can never make a home out of one mmo maybe we can out of multiple parts, playing between many to fulfill every little mmo itch.. I have a pvp environment nearly accounted for in GW2 which may just be complete with PS2, I have a TSW for story, and there are now just a few niggly things and maybe a proper open world pvp environment. It all comes down to just being happy with and making the best of what we got rather than getting depressed at things not being perfect in one mmo, forget about whining and forum rage at unfulfilled promises or direction.. just relax and enjoy what we have. Although I am looking forward to the huge expansion in the mmo market as there are so many options available and maybe eventually my online gaming will be closer to complete… that is as long as I don’t get held up looking for the “one”.