Ending My Early Entry to MMO’s

I’ve been writing a post about Crowfall lately and outlining the parts I liked in the initial pitch, and it does have a lot of really interesting elements that appeal to me. It was while writing this though that I realised I was trying to justify my own purchase in advance, like i need the idea to be this awesome to cross that certain threshold. I’m guessing that was exactly the plan too. Unfortunately it was here too that made me swear to the great gaming gods, and of course RNGesus that I’m no longer supporting any more of these early access mmo’s, whether they be just an idea or something that will be soon releasing. Not going to happen anymore.

It has been a rather disappointing couple years of mmo’s overall, there have been some great experiences and quite a few games with the potential but nothing that really satisfied my burgeoning mmo interests. It’s no secret to those interested in the pvp that it has been rather slim pickings as well; we can have whatever shit the most recent mmo is dishing out and that lasts a good month or so or, we can go over to the unfinished, unpolished indie games like Darkfall. Yeh, not great options really.

This is precisely why I probably should be excited about Crowfall, and honestly I am. Great concept for constant, but semi persistent battlefields. It’s not the rich, complex virtual world I’m looking for but it will be a game i come back to consistently for some play, much like lobby shooter really. I could pay into that early, and I probably have the money for it but then it’s gotten to the stage where I just can’t be assed even playing these alpha mmo’s. I haven’t touched Repopulation in a long time now. Camelot Unchained is going into it’s alpha soon, which I have access to but I don’t see myself jumping in. I almost got the cheap pack for Skyforge too but it’s all just utterly pointless.

At least for those small indie titles they give you a working game and the development cycle for those that aren’t seems a lot less. Coming back now and then to play around with the new updates and such doesn’t really hurt the experience either, in fact, that’s the optimal style of play there. MMO’s just don’t work like that, they require a bit more focus and dedication, even in these alpha states and to put that much time into something that is terrible unfinished and incomplete kills all the enjoyment for me from then and into the future. I’m done ruining my excitement for games that way. I’m wasting all that time to have it all wiped away. I’m done paying for these mmo’s I’m unlikely to play in a reasonable state for the next few years. And I’m definitely done spending my money on it.

So no Crowfall for me, at least not until it hypothetically releases in the next 2 or more years.


15 thoughts on “Ending My Early Entry to MMO’s

  1. I don’t have any issues with the Early Access model from a buyer’s perspective. I don;t see it as any different from any other purchase – you look at what’s being offered, check the price, estimate whether it seems worth it to you and then buy or don’t buy. It’s not like we don’t all constantly buy things we don’t actually use – I have in excess of 50 unwatched DVDs for example, most of which are still in their sealed packs. Buying things is a form of entertainment and amusement in itself.

    What I do have issues with, however, is the medium and long term damage Early Access is doing both to game development and to my personal interest in the games that use it. It very much looks as though games will be staying in some form of Early Access not just for months but for years. It seems highly unlikely that people will sustain interest in any of them for that long and I do wonder both how many will ever reach an official launch and of those that do how many people will be left to play them by then.

    Given that MMOs have been on a cycle of three-month tourism for years it seems highly unlikely the market will change to one where people buy into a game in a very unfinished state and then stick with it not only until it’s “finished” but indefinitely afterwards. More likely we will just get a cycle of Early Access 3-monthers instead. Doesn’t look like a sustainable business model to me.

    I am going to try and stick to finished MMOs from now on, or at least ones in late Closed Beta or short pre-launch Open Beta. Not to say I won;t drop the odd $20 here and there to satisfy curiosity now and again. I did look at Skyforge for example but although the buy-in price is very reasonable it’s another action combat thing and I am not playing any more of those unless I have a very good reason (like an IP I have a strong interest in).

    • That’s a big issue as well, we went from 3 Monthers to, 3 months during beta. Not really the same experience at all and like you said, rather damaging in the end.

      The only impulse purchase I seem to have is, early access and kickstarter indies…( although i do research them and are pretty happy with my purchases so far) and steam sale games. And in both these cases it is that same cost analysis. I don’t think I’ll ever buy in for more than a retail again during these stages, unless there’s a sweet art book

  2. Yep I just caught wind of the Repopulation EA sale on Steam and I had to fight off the urge to splurge. Welcome back to the Light Side, anyway, hehe.

  3. I am trying to play more OLD MMOs instead of alpha state new ones. As Bhagpuss has said (often) there is an excitement to the new games, and as someone who beta tested 30+ MMOs/games since the 1990s (when it was free..) there is something really fun and cool of being part of the early access group. This is why I am often willing to plunk down on early access titles. Still, of the 30ish that I did test very few I stuck with post launch – so at the end of it all I am just changing WHEN I access the game.. not how!

    Still, EQ (the original) is actually fun right now. As are a few others. I never did play EQ2 much and recently reloaded it up. There is definitely no shortage of games to play, old OR new. Just have to find where you are comfortable and what is fun.

    • There is somethign really cool about it I know, hence why while writing this I had the shakes…. need ma next hit of beta… mmmm. .. beta.

      I’m thinking about going back to a few others too. ESO should be going btp soon so that will be some.. want to do tsw again as well. PLus I just have so many other games I’m playing.

  4. I decided against pitching in to the Crowfall Kickstarter because I’m convinced that they’re going to run into massive issues with several of their core design choices and I don’t want to be caught in the fallout with any sort of emotional and/or monetary investment.

    So I’ve just mentally filed it under the same heading as Skyforge and EQN atm. Games I’m totally ignoring until something concrete like a closed beta rolls around that I can apply to.

    • what sort of issues and where do you think? seems like a solid enough plan but connecting the worlds will eb difficulty and the question of how many and what types will be hard to get right.
      skyforge seems like it will actually release soon so, it’s got that against the others haha.

      • The way I read their pitch is that they’re going to have multiple instances of 4 different kinds of maps all running at once: 3 faction, 12 faction, Guild v Guild, and FFA.

        Right off the bat I question the need for the 12 faction game type. It doesn’t seem to offer anything unique.

        Secondly, if players can hop maps at will and the winners get the most loot, then how the bloody hell are they going to keep people from jumping ship at the first side that their originally chosen side is losing? And if they do have a method for discouraging that, whats to keep people from sitting out of the early parts of the campaign to wait for one side to establish a lead and then all join up with them to really just dogpile the fuck out of the opposition?

        Thirdly, if resources and the game economy is so bloody important, then how are they going to prevent super large guilds from exploiting the ever living hell out of their size to gain as much cash as possible? Whats to stop a handful of mega-guilds from divvying up the campaigns in advance? Are the devs going to enforce an anti-trust policy?

        Basically, how are the developers going to prevent people from ruining the game for other players?

        And that’s not even going into confidence issues with the developers. Stuff like: how do I know that the game mode I like will receive significant developer attention?

        If I only like the 3 faction campaigns, then how do I know that the devs won’t, officially or not, say “Right, our main focal point of development resources going forward will be the Guild v Guild game type and the other modes will gain only cursory attention” or vice versa?

        At least with games like Camelot Unchained I bloody well know that development resources will go towards the game play I enjoy because it only has that one type of play. With Crowfall everything is totally up in the air.

      • I agree that having all these different rules eds is risky, and will probably take a lot more work to balance and develop for. Personally I’m glad they are creating options for play.

        As for the first question about balance, there was an interview about it but can’t find it now lol. Anyway they kind of said that they will have a few balancing mechanics for the servers. First I think are certain underdog mechanics and second is that rewards will be given based on your time and effort within that realm. Those playing from the start will get a lot more than those jumping in at the end. I believe The rewards you get are also based on what you personally bank as well. Obviously those jumping in at the end won’t have time to save it up

      • Yeah, but every developer says those things and they never really end up making much of a difference in the grand scheme of things.

        Because, in the end, you’re talking about incentivizing what is, by the games only rules and logic, losing.

        I mean, it can work decently well for some people. I vividly recall my friends and I in WAR seeking out the underdog buff for being horribly outnumbered because it made the intensely tedious RR grind less so, but that only really worked because we: A) cared more about our personal advancement than what was good for the in-game objectives and B) had a group of people that could really abuse the hell out of the underdog mechanics.

      • Nothing will really incentivise losing and it seems a lot of their mechanics punishing I. But I think the reason it works is that campaigns end and you can begin again. In essence it’s a table flip moment

  5. I am with you. I’ve been writing/rewriting and will probably trash my post on the matter. I want to support the game and I definitely want to play it, but I don’t see the real benefit of doing either early.

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