After reading several blogs from my blogroll about the copying/tweaking issue risen by the Tigole post in WoW Forums, a thought surfaced. Just like a slowly growing irritation in the back of the mind, the thought had formed itself into a solid being after I quit my lunch. And -like all good reasons to write- it compelled me to hear it's call and write about it.
Being the newcomer to the MMO's and especially blogging, and generally being one of the followers of trends rather than the trendsetters, I'm a bit slow and late. I rather am late and safe than early and apologetic. And I take my time to consider things before making a decision.
But it seems to me that majority of the active bloggers aren't. People seem to make their decisions pretty fast, take their stand and defend it with fervour rarely seen in real life. When Age of Conan was about to be launched after so and so many delays, it was the flavour of the month: each, every and then some bloggers readily discarded their other chores and booked a trip to sunny Hyborea. Only to return later 'in the wait of the next gen mmo'.
Weeks before the Open Beta of Warhammer: The Age of Reconing launched, the buzz was already there, and as the early entry started, the blogosphere was full of entries of WAR, it's mechanics and how fun it was to bash real player characters in the scenarios. Well, honestly speaking this is still going on, even though there are some reports already that this may have been just the initial rush to the new, greener pastures.
And here I am. Newcomer to the MMO's, befuddled by the buzz and hype on the next great shiny MMO, hearing how the game I'm just now playing is 'old news' and 'so passé'.
Of course, the buzz before the launch of AoC or WAR was mainly due great marketing, but the voice of the blogosphere -especially in the small niche of MMO players- turns the tide for better or worse. The enthusiastic reviews of the game and it's mechanics are sure to suck players who have nothing to complain in their current game to the next big hype.
The sad part is the fact that no-one seems to remember that there are still newcomers to the older game. Especially in this case, where WoW has been around for 4 long years and the ones who have been burned out by overdoing the content have gotten their friends, spouses, siblings and youth interested. The bloggers -the über-gamers- show clearly that the newcomers are noobs because they do not understand how inadequeate the game of their choice is. And the newcomers clearly feel it as the MMO of their choice -if it's not the current flavour of the month- is void and empty, without the MM part of the whole definition.
I have played, on and off, for a bit over two years, mainly WoW. From the beginning I witnessed the terrible urge of people to level up the content to the cap, to 'enter the game'. And all the while I have been wondering the reason to that, as I have not had the possibility to participate in the 'end game grind'.
Instead, I started to enjoy the game the instance I started to play the content. When I decided I want to read the stories and find the longer story lines.
The more I'm wondering the terrible rush to the cap currently, because I'm encountering more of the newcomers to whom the basic concepts of the game are completely lost. But they are convinced that they have to level up as fast as possible, nevermind the content or the scenery.
Sure, the great majority of the players have their toons capped and are at the top of the pecking order when the WotLK launches. The more the newcomers to WoW will feel obliged to level up as fast as possible, and the less they will understand their class or playing in groups when they reach the cap someday.
During that time the bloggers who have overplayed and burned out by WoW will blog about WAR, their accomplishments and bewildering thoughts on how much better their gaming experience is than what it was in the earlier game.
Till the next flavour of the month comes with a bang and boom.
Fallout MMO? Starcraft MMO?
Who knows, but the next one is lurking already.
Are you ready?