A final trip into the mind of a WoW tourist

It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these posts, but I always have fun with them. This should (but won’t) also conclude the whole “who is a WoW tourist” thing. Once again this comes from WoW tourist representative Ixobelle (I elected you, congrats)

There’s a lot of people on the fence about Darkfall, and even more willing to play it just because it isn’t WoW. I think this is an unexplored genre in the MMO department that needs to be fully tapped. If you could make a game cheaply enough, with few enough people on the dev team to just implement a character creator and maybe one town and one dungeon, you could probably sell a few hundred thousand copies of the box alone to the ‘at least it’s not WoW demographic’. You wouldn’t even need to set up a billing department, since no one would actually SUBSCRIBE to your game, they’d just buy the box, spend a week with it, then move back to whatever they were playing before.

This is a different take on the WoW tourist population. It’s actually not a bad idea really, as I’m sure enough of the tourists WOULD drop $50 on something if you made it seem WoW-enough to get there attention (hell you get it from them even when you outright tell them to stay away). It’s amazing that no one has thought of this before, to make shovelware games and sell them cheaply at a store like Walmart. Man, I bet you could make a fortune on that, right THQ? In other news, the internet is coming, is your 14.4 ready?

Darkfall and Age of Conan fit that description perfectly, and Warhammer got maybe one month out of me.

Yes, all three of the games above are just shovelware, that brought nothing new to the genre, and their sole business plan was based around how many WoW tourists they could fool to sign up. They ‘failed’ because the silly devs could not figure out how to make their game WoW-enough to lure away all those true MMO gamers.

LotRO is probably the only other game I really respect out of the ‘non-WoW’ batch of MMOs I’ve played (but I never subscribed to LotRO, so there you go), and I have yet to actually even make it to the character creator in Coh/CoV. I signed up for a trial, and the downloader was so fucking slow that my free trial ran out before I ever actually got the game installed. Don’t even get me started on EVE. Hoo boy.

No please, do elaborate on EVE, it would be priceless. Warning though, the game does not contain NPCs with ! in bright yellow, so right off the bat it’s not as ‘polished’ as WoW. LoTRO thanks you for your respect, all 10 days or less of it. I am curious though what exactly you are looking for in an MMO if LoTRO was not WoW-enough for you?

Dear industry, please see exibit A above as to why WoW player != MMO player. Adjust budgets/expectations accordingly, or just wait for the current fad to pass.

People in Darkfall are doing the same thing I saw people doing in AoC, and it won’t be the last time I see people do this. They’re punishing themselves, and forcing themselves to play a sub par game, BUT AT LEAST THEY AREN’T PLAYING WOW. They repeat this mantra over and over on the game’s official forums, in the game’s public chat channels, and somehow decide this makes it all worth while.

I’m glad the WoW tourists have such a deep understanding of the MMO genre. Anyone not playing WoW is clearly just punishing themselves. Why in the world would I do anything described in the post below when I could be experiencing the utter joy of grinding dailies, afk-rep grinding a BG, or ‘raiding’ Nax while watching TV? BECAUSE I LOVE THE PAIN! I can’t think of anything better to do with my free time then log into a not-WoW MMO and just SUFFER through its content, because I’m gaining the all-important Interwebz rep! Look at me, I play DarkFall only because it’s not WoW, do you respect me yet?

Dear Industry, consider exhibit B above when designing future products, and just clone WoW so we don’t have to SUFFER through any form of innovation or change in the MMO genre. Clearly WoW is little baby Jesus for all mankind, lets not mess with perfection.

It won’t be a shocking revelation to anyone who reads this blog with any regularity, when I say I’m going back to WoW, because WoW doesn’t really bother me. :)

But it might come as a shocking revelation when I say please stay in WoW, and don’t venture back out. The genre thanks you for not flooding servers or posting “more like WoW” idiocy on forums. You do bother us :) (but the smiley makes it ok)

Insert rambling about how the Jews were so silly and could have avoided the Holocaust if they had just lied to the Nazi’s and said “nope, I’m not a Jew”.

ANYWAY, this all had a point, and here it is!

Oh but you have already made so many brilliant points already, solving the Holocaust and all, how could you possibly enlighten us any more?

Why suffer through BAD MMOs, for the sake of upholding your MMO MORALS?

Interwebz blogger street cred yo!

Every time I try a new MMO, I come into it with an open mind.

HAHAHAHAHA… oh wait you are serious about that? Please, continue.

There’s no magical force keeping me bound to WoW, and if I ever find a game that’s better, I’ll happily abandon WoW and move on. It’s just that, so far, there hasn’t been any game that’s horribly compelling. Darkfall (which is what this post started abaout, before it entered the Jesus Double Agent realm) is just not a good game. The combat is horrifically shallow, the supposed “freedom of being a PK” is flawed, and the game has very little going for it.

Allow me to translate this WoW tourist talk into something a MMO player understands. DarkFall was not WoW-enough for me. The mobs/players did not stand still and allow me to spam 2-3-4-2-3-4 until they burst with epix, and hence I find the combat ‘shallow’. Please add depth by removing the skill factor, and re-introduce item/level dependency. Being a PK was also too hard, yet at the same time only played by stupid 13yr olds. Somehow my personal vision of being a badass did not work out, and players held me accountable for my actions, therefore ruining my fun. Just because this is an MMO does not mean I want to interact with others!

I can’t really comment on “the game has very little going for it”, as I’ve only played for a few weeks now, which is nothing compared to the depth Ixobelle dove into. I’m assuming everything I wrote in the post below though is still before I get to that ‘very little going for it’ part. Maybe I’m not at that level or zone yet?

By removing classes, they just lump EVERYONE into the same mold. Everyone uses polearms and trains earth magic. Every single person shoots arrows at you from a distance, and wears plate.

Where to start… Dear Ixobelle, how many sets of plate did you acquire in DF? It should have been easy, what with EVERYONE running around in plate at all times. I’m also confused why my guild mates trained in non-earth magic, I’ll inform them of the mistake and have them respec to fit the current FOTM build. While I’m at it, I’ll also ask them to only shoot arrows at people point blank, rather than from a distance. I’ll also delete my own character now, as clearly my sword/board built is ‘wrong’. I’ll be sure to pass this along to the DF community, as I’ve noticed a large amount of players who missed the FOTM memo you got. Or I guess we will just continue as is, it means we are suffering more, so we get more interwebz cred, right?

The ‘big dangerous world’ mechanic is totally ruined when they have mining and timber resources located inside city walls. People aren’t dicouraged from macroing to upgrade certain skills, as long as they’re physically present at the keyboard while they do so. So people watch reruns of Frasier in a window while they pew pew pew their wand straight into the sky, thereby ‘leveling their magic’.

Because you know, they need to reach max level so they can start playing the awesome end-game in DarkFall. Odd that the ‘big dangerous world’ mechanic is TOTALLY ruined and yet you had so much trouble with it. Again, which one is it, too hard or too easy? (The skill system has issues, as I’ve written about, but connecting that with the world not being big or dangerous is dumbfounding, not to mention town resources have already been fixed, much to the dismay of the remaining tourists)

Darkfall, from what I saw, had exactly three things going for it:

Fear of death. The ability to wear armor you find (no “I’m only able to wear cloth”). One character per server.

Two of those even have downsides: Everyone wears plate

Yes, because plate rains from the sky and as soon as you lose a set, you just magically shit out another one. Even if you just outright suck at the game and get yourself killed to no end, you still just squat and shit out some plate. Exactly, and this goes RIGHT along with the fear of death. Everyone fears death so much, because the endless rain of plate, arrows, and polearms only comes around once a day…

and you can’t enagage in different playstyles to match your mood. Sometimes I want to DPS, sometimes I want to heal.

Sometimes I want to play a druid, sometimes I want to play a rogue. WoW -> that way.

I guess you *could* do that in Darkfall, but it’d be like having a druid specced 24-23-24. Sometimes I want to go 51+ points deep into a tree, and to do that (and subsequently undo that) takes way too much time. Some people love locking themselves into that one distinct playstyle, but I play these games to HAVE FUN. Darkfall isn’t very fun.

No no no, we play DarkFall to SUFFER, remember? I love being locked into only being able to wear all armor, use all weapons, and the ability to pick which magic schools to skill up regardless of any other choices. If only I had the freedom to play something as unique as a healbot Pali, loved by my guild for my leet spamming of a single ability in all raids. Sure I lost my raid spot when I said I wanted to DPS, but man, I love being able to do subpar (or is it OP this month?) DPS against afk players in a battleground, or Wintergrasp when they reenable it!

That’s what it always comes back to for me, and I feel like enough people are familiar enough with my stance on it. The more I spout it, the more I just feel like I’m just typing the same post over and over again.

Yes, next time an MMO is released, all you need to write is “I tried X, it was not WoW, everyone playing it are a bunch of suffering idiots, and I’m back to happily farming gear/rep/tokens/rainbows.”

I won’t suffer through a game that isn’t fun, and at this point WoW is still much more fun than Darkfall. This doesn’t make me a WoW fanfoi, it makes me a FuN fanboi. I just don’t care to punish myself in my liesure time, so sue me.

Not only are you not a WoW fanfoi, or even a FuN fanboi, you’re just a WoW tourist. So again, please don’t flood the servers the first month of launch and the forums the week after you ragequit. Just stay in candyland, enjoy the rides, and move on to the next fad when it hits. The MMO genre thanks you.

Now the bonus section, comments from the WoW tourist peanut gallery!

Kyir said:

I’m always going to be playing WoW if any MMO just because I’ve always figured I shouldn’t mess with what I’m good at.

Of course, it’s not that hard to be good at WoW, but whatever,

Thank you Kyir, if only more WoW players followed your example. Be like Kyir people!

Tragedyx said…

People hate WoW for one of three reasons: They’re bad at it, or they hate what it has become, or they’ve lost a friend and/or family member and/or all of their friends and family as a result of it. Then they go all emo rage and play terrible games because of it. I don’t bash WoW and play other games to spite it. I actually see my nephews playing and am happy they enjoy it. I just don’t find that same sense of satisfaction anymore.

@HP – If you’re a girl, good for you that you’re actually spending time with your b/f by doing something he enjoys. There aren’t enough female gamers because most women take everything for granted and expect shit to be handed to them. If you’re a guy and you have a b/f…um…hrm. Awkward.

The gays, so awkward…

Also, if you’re bad at WoW, I would suggest putting the padded helmet back on, clearly you can’t afford any more damage. Stick to tic-tac-toe. This is news to me that WoW actually kills your family/friends. It must be a really awesome game to still have 11 million subs if it can replace all the deceased players. But at least I got out in time, had my emo rage quit moment (I took my guild with me too!), and now I get to play terrible games all day!

Random Poster said…

@the WoW hate specifically

I think a lot of the “blogosphere” thinks it somehow builds their credibility if they start screaming “WoW sucks I hate it now…even though I played it for 4 years” because it makes them “cool” because they aren’t following the crowd. It’s the same thing you see with teenagers and the various cliques that form in school. “Yeah man I am so anti establishment look at me look at me look at me”.

Yes, I blog to be considered ‘cool’ amount people who read blogs. Please accept me into your secret society!

Syncaine is a good example of this to me. I used to enjoy the blog he writes but lately he has gone beyond disagreeing voiceferously with people over how much WoW sucks to immediately going into “OMG you don’t like Darkfall you fucking Newb die iun a fucking fire with your whole family while I piss on your corpse” and throwing out insults. It IMO undermines any point he is trying to get across as it makes him appear juvenille. His choice obviously.

I’m guessing this post won’t convince you to come back then huh? Now who will fill the void left behind by Random Poster? At least in his/her place, I can put all the street cred this post will earn me!

Bonedead said…

Something beyond a one liner…

Clearly someone hacked into Bonedead’s account. We here are not fooled however, as we know all about the man with the one-line comments!

Tesh said…

You’ll see this a lot in those who trash WoW after “falling out of love” with it. Instead of just realizing that they themselves have changed and moving on, they try to demonize their spurned love. That way, it’s not their fault, it’s someone else’s. (And it’s funny to assume there’s any fault at all, come to think of it. Sometimes it’s OK to have different preferences from someone else.)

There’s also the “street cred” psychology. Someone who wants to build their reputation might do so by taking a stance “against” rather than “for”. It’s easy; just look at political grandstanding. Standing for something is much more difficult, you have to intelligently articulate a position and defend it well. (It’s easier to be a Player Killer than a Pacifist?)

Running a slight tangent, that sort of street cred thing extends to those who see being at the level cap in Tier 8 armor as a badge of personal worth. Who cares? It’s a game, either you’re having fun or you’re not. (This also extends to any time that people complain about how *other* people play. This is seen in anything from the “you’re not specced properly” to “RMT is devil spawn”.)

Of course, for some people, life isn’t fun unless they are trying to make someone else miserable. For those people, they have Darkfall.

Dear lost love WoW, please take me back into your rep-grinding arms, and allow me to lay in your daily-grind bosom. I’m so tired of suffering while playing DarkFall, and long for your recycled  ezmod Nax content. I also miss your bastardized lore, your failure to balance classes after all these years, and lastly, your amazing use of neon colors. Take me back, please? Oh, and I want my ‘street cred’ too, yo!

Bonedead said…

More hacked account Bonedead posting…

And now he is making sense and bringing up good points. Come on buddy, if you are going to try and be an imposter, do your homework!

oshin said…

Spot on about the whole “omg dis is so much better dan wow guysh” spam every new wannabe mmo is spammed with.

Its funny how one sided the mmo market truly is at the moment, are blizzard really the only ones who can make a decent mmo, or is nobody really trying ?

So WoW is the true MMO, and the rest are wannabes? And yes, the ‘MMO’ market is truly one sided, with 11 million people playing for fun, and the rest of us idiots suffering to prove a point. But damnit, eventually our suffering will bear fruit, and we will get WoW 2 from the only company still trying!

Random poster said…

@bonedead

“What would happen if I went onto a WoW server and started saying this game needs player cities and full loot and close down the BGs because Darkfall does it? The same thing that syncaine is saying except probably at least 5 times more juvenile because we all know regional chat in WoW is pretty friggin stupid”

I think you would get a fair amount of agreement actually at least on the Player Housing. But yeah you’d get a lot of the same asshattedness Syn is spouting..it doesn’t make it any better that he is doing it. The people who resort to that in WoW tend ot be ignored. When you are trying to make a point or have a discussion actually stating those points without devolving in to personal insults is much more effective.

It is his blog and he can post whatever he wants but as I said it’s made me not like it all that much anymore. Does me not liking the style in anyway effect him, no but hey I can have my opinion to :P

It makes my ‘asshattedness’ better because I’m suffering while MMO gaming, and you are just having fun carebear. Not to mention my niche voice easily overpowers the voice of those 11 million players, so it’s really a non-issue. It’s not like if 1% of WoW players try something and then spam a forum that it’s not WoW is noticeable, while when 1% of all other MMO players bitch about WoW they are drastically changing WoW with their overwhelming spam on the WoW forums. Glad we cleared that up!

Hatch said…

Examples of things that are “toil” rather than “challenging”:

1) Having to walk everywhere (no hearthstone or mount)
2) No mail system
3) Having to use chat to do trading that could be done more conveniently on an AH
4) A shitty interface that gives no information and little flexibility
5) Overly harsh death penalties

Stay in WoW and never leave, PLEASE! The above is enough content to fill an entire blog for months.

Ixobelle said…

“If you want people to be more afraid of death and make it mean something, why not implement it in such a way that you gain renown when you win fights and lose it when you die, or by some other risk/reward mechanic. Being completely disabled every time you rez means that players can no longer have meaningful, interesting challenge (they can’t participate in any actual battles), and instead are dropped into a toiling mini-game of getting back to their corpse. Punish them for losses another way, while still letting them participate in the real game.”

agh, hatch! nail. head. hit. pow.

THIS sums up why I prefer WoW, I think, more elegantly than my ramblings could have. The INSTANT you die in Darkfall you become worhtless. Imagine a city siege with 40 on 40.

5 minutes into the siege, half the people are going to be running around naked. They won’t ‘go home’, they’ll just continue to throw themselves on your sword over and over wearing underwear and weilding a level 1 grey sword.

how is that fun for ANYONE but the person that still has their armor on? and how does that persom still have their armor on, except by sheer luck that they weren’t chosen by the zerg?

In the above example, you could argue ‘well, I took up a defensive position on the ramparts, and blah blah blah’, but nobody PLAYS these games like that. It’s a zerg. period. If 20 naked people jump on you with underwear and level 1 swords, you will eventually die.

Or instead of playing in the land of make believe, you could actually come to a city siege (you don’t even have to hit max level and gear up before you can come!) and see what it’s like. Players surviving a siege are just as lucky as poker pros who somehow manage to finish higher on average than regular players. It’s not skill, they just get lucky more often, right? Plus plate armor rains from the sky, so why worry? Oh, and can you please tell the defending guild in the last city siege that no one plays by taking up a defensive position, and to just come out and die randomly? It would have made our job as a zerg so much easier…

Also, the first part is another awesome example of “this does not work, and I don’t know a solution, but clearly ANYTHING would be better than this”. That’s grade A game design buddy.

Ixobelle said…

bringing it back to darkfall (which was what this post began as), I guess they play gritty ghetto ball. an elbow in the face is just part of the game, and nobody at Rucker Park in Manhattan is going to call a timeout for a foul, they just play differently.

I guess I’m a bitch, because I prefer the WoW ruleset. it’s not *better*, just different… and the one I prefer. : /

How does the above line up with the whole “if you don’t play WoW you are just playing MMOs to suffer” reasoning? And because a league decides to move beyond “we don’t keep score, everyone is a winner in our mind”, that somehow makes it ghetto gritty? I hate to tell you, some people do things in life because they enjoy a challenge, whether at work or on their off time. Those same people might not like 11 million tourists yelling at the league to stop keeping score and start handing out neon ribbons, even though they know they won’t sign up for the league anyway.

(The above is intended to be over the top.  I don’t have anything personal against Ixobelle, your writting just sums up the general feelings of most WoW tourists and makes a good example. Plus this is what happens when you find an increased amount of time at work to blog (new job in two weeks))

90 Responses to A final trip into the mind of a WoW tourist

  1. Bonedead says:

    I bet it was Beau who hacked my account!

  2. Angry Raider says:

    Her comments about Nazis and Jews made her seem so unbelievably stupid.

  3. Simaril says:

    Yay! Give em hell :)

  4. Bojan says:

    So much anger…
    Wau..

  5. Werit says:

    This isn’t the Highlander. There can be more than one. WoW is what it is, so is Darkfall.

    I do like how how Ix diminished gamers as a whole saying they’d buy a game just because it wasn’t WoW. Pretty condescending. There were games before WoW and there will be games after WoW, no need to make it a deity.

    LoTRO is not Wow-like? Odd, seemed very WoW-like to me.

  6. Ysharros says:

    “There aren’t enough female gamers because most women take everything for granted and expect shit to be handed to them.”

    Ah man, I am so busted. This totally encapsulates what women are like and why they don’t play. Dammit, now nobody will give me phat lewtz anymore and I might actually have to dance nekkid on a mailbox. Which, being female, I of course enjoy and do at every opportunity.

    Excuse me while I go vomit.

    Oh, and maybe read the rest of the post. :D

  7. Hirvox says:

    I guess this guy wasn’t kidding:

  8. Ysharros says:

    I should attribute the above quote, I guess. Tragedyx, your insight into women is just staggering.

  9. Zensun says:

    Great post. God, I love this blog. Keep it coming!

  10. Haha nice post. One of these days I’ll get around to putting my thoughts on Darkfall vs. WoW, risk vs. reward on paper. Just haven’t had any free time to put it together, since what little free time I have I am playing DF!

  11. Thallian says:

    “I’m back to happily farming gear/rep/tokens/rainbows.” rofl, dude you’ve been away from WoW for a long time it amazes me you can even remember this stuff. “DPS against afk players in a battleground, or Wintergrasp when they reenable it!” It’s like you left wow but cant leave it alone in your head, oh no wait.. that’s the WoW tourists. :P

  12. But what if I like purple glowing trees? I’m afraid that if I don’t see enough purple glowing trees I might get really sad. :(

  13. Centuri says:

    I do agree on many of your points, but still seems like you are comparing WoW of a few years ago to Darkfall of today. If only there was a way for game companies to release games up to the WoW (of today) polish level, without trying to Xerox the gameplay itself.

    Sadly, the only loosers to the WoW tourists are the players that are left behind with empty servers and dying guilds. The game companies made the money off of the box sales. The tourists make it back to WoW before the next raid.

  14. The instant you die in Darkfall you become worthless

    As opposed to the instant you create your level 1 character in WoW to play with your level 80 friends?

    If you never played UO, or even AC-DT, then it’s hard to understand why we like full loot immersive game-play.

    I’m glad you write these post, Syncaine, you sum up how I’ve felt since theme park MMOs have taken over!

  15. rulez says:

    The web would most likely be a very boring place without all that emoness about MMOs :P

  16. Marchosias says:

    That was one hella-good WoW Luv-In on Ix’s part – ugh. I’ve been WoW Clean for nearly 3 years now (since just after BC). Thanks in no small part due to “don’t even get me started on” EVE, LOTRO (which she didn’t even bother to play – how can you respect something you never even played?), CoH (again, she missed out on the best part, the character maker, LOL), and Warhammer, can’t remember what she didn’t like there, probably ‘cuz she wandered into an ORvR area to pick flowers or something and got summarily ganked.

    And all this angst against WoW “haters.” I don’t -hate- WoW, but I did find it more than a little boring – even compared to much older games like Anarchy Online, DAoC, or Asheron’s Call. Oh hey, all those game have at least some kind of decent PvP element, hmmmm. WoW = Everquest = Boring in my book. PvP in WoW is kind of like the Land of Make-Believe from Mr. Rogers. Let’s all take a trolley to Warsong Gultch – YAY!!!

  17. Tallon says:

    well written, the shallowness of the ‘pve crowd’ arguments are so apparent and yet they are so confident they are right.

    “Ganking is just for 13 year olds, and gets old after 5 minutes”

    yea sure, even though in poker there is literally nothing to do but gank and it is wildly popular.

  18. Jason says:

    Not to push a man when he’s down, but my favorite is this comment from Ixo:

    “even baseball takes 22 people to play, so let’s say three on three basketball to even slim it down further”

    Epic basic baseball knowledge fail.

    Jason (resident drunken idiot of Channel Massive who likes to sign his comments because it makes them 10x more valid)

  19. Chappo says:

    That was incredible….just incredible

  20. Dickie says:

    Just gotta say great post, extremely entertaining. I’m not always 100% on board with you, but you’ve always got great materail.

    And as for that commenter TragedyX: he’s one of the many reasons I don’t like WoW players. Is it really that awkward that I like other boys? I was so frakin’ tired of hearing about how “gay” everything was! I’ve rarely run into that problem in other games.

  21. Anjin says:

    I just don’t get it. Every time I read something like this, I have to wonder why it’s not good enough for people like their own games. You don’t have to put down other games to have fun! Syn, as much as I hate (HATE!) when you carry on about WoW, I hate all the non-WoW hate everyone else seems to spew.

    You know what? Darkfall looks like a fun game. People seem to be enjoying it. On the other hand, I’m not going to play it because I’m a unrepentant carebear. I’ve got my game and I don’t need to spoil it for everyone else.

    As much as I loved Guild Wars, there was a game that went a weird direction because the players forced it to be a different game than the developers intended. If you want to play a WoW-like game, play WoW or one of the WoW imitators. Don’t try to hammer every other game to fit that mold.

  22. Wilhelm2451 says:

    Is it Friday already? That was a short week.

    I thought Godwin’s law meant the argument was over, with Ixobelle the loser for invoking Nazis. Couldn’t it just have ended with that?

    And is there a similar law for sports knowledge failure?

    Wilhelm2451 (Who is jumping on the comment signing bandwagon!)

  23. Bonedead says:

    Man these comments are all over the place.

    I know I broke my one line rule and for that I apologize.

    But I just had to say two things:

    1) Awesome funneh post, it was great.
    2) @Thallon – You gotta know your enemy or else you’ll lose.

    Alright, back to Diablo 2 single player for me.

  24. syncaine says:

    @Whilhelm: No joke, the original title for the post was going to include something like “Sorry it’s not friday” in it. (Plus, this still leaves Friday open for me to jump on something else, but I can’t really tear you down for your cat dying or some guy buying your light missiles, right?)

  25. Wilhelm2451 says:

    I’m going to be up at GDC on Thursday, so my Friday post will probably be pretty light. Why don’t you go after Ardwulf? Or Kilgore Trout? One is bouncing around games and the other is just posting pictures. There is an obvious agenda in there somewhere, if I could just figure it out.

    Seriously though, use a Nazi metaphor… even worse, a Holocauts metaphor… in reference to a game, you lose. Syncaine wins by default.

  26. Sir Digby Chicken Ceasar says:

    Basically most of these wow-tourists have been previously casual single player / co-operative multiplayer gamers, who don’t really care about the “massively” aspect of their mmo game at all.

    (Now if somebody is going to say that 25 ppl raid is “massively multiplayer”, then I guess you could easily consider Counter Strike or Team Fortress to be massively multiplayer games as well – and hey, they are even pvp, and quite successfull at that!)

    These gamers want to play just with their friends (or even better, they would prefer to solo the multiplayer game – yes, it boggles the mind) without any interaction with any other people. They consider the mmo game to be ‘theirs’ and if they have to interact with somebody else in the game, they are quite likely to consider that interaction to be some kind of harassment. (Stop stealing my mobs! Don’t heal me because I lose xp! You’re digging up my ore!)

    (And yeah, spamming text in the common chat channel isn’t interacting with somebody in the game, it’s using IRC client inside the game.)

    When they visit a game that at least tries to be massively multiplayer, which forces you to play with the other people – and with a lot of other people, not just your current 24 best friends who are helping you to collect your epics in your game – these old-casual-gamer-people don’t like it and consider their dislike to be the games fault. Which is like a real-time strategy gamer trying an first person shooter and telling everybody that the fps game is crap because it’s not like the rts game he likes so much.

    Now, clearly there’s more demand for these modern mmo-lite this-is-a-multiplayer-you-can-play-alone-by-yourself-if-you-want games. That shouldn’t mean that no other type of mmo games should be created or played, or that those other type of games would be any worse than those mmo-wannabes. Hell, there’s more demand for Nintendo Wii but no one is yelling that it’s much better console than 360 or PS3 and if somebody plays with their Sony or Xbox they are doing that just to punish themselves so that they can say that at least they’re not playing with their Wii.

  27. Wickidd says:

    So…only masaquists play Darkfall, and I no longer play WoW because I do not like to have fun… Good to know. I guess the first step to recovery is admitting that I have a problem. Where do I send the check, Dr. Ixobelle? Wait a sec…show me your PhD in psychology, Ixo, or stfu.

  28. Melf_Himself says:

    Honestly, I think Ixo is acting like a WoW tourist on this one. I still think his blog is well worth reading though, because he also posts good game design ideas.

    This blog, on the other hand, is brimming with nerd rage (which I can handle) but never offers up anything useful. Which is why I don’t read it.

    (I was pointed here by a friend who is lol-ing at all the drama)

    So, like, QQ less and think more plz.

  29. Solidstate says:

    Very amusing post, highly entertaining. Thanks Syncaine :)

    I admit though to some slight curiosity on the subject of character death + full-loot in Darkfall and how players deal with it. Since you’re obviously feeling talkative (it *was* a rather long post ;p), I wonder if you could take the time to clear up this issue for outsiders not playing Darkfall?

    * How much of a setback is it to lose all your equipped gear+gold+mount?

    * How much space do you have back in the city (bank?) to store backups, e.g. a backup gear set?

    * How hard is it to gear up if you don’t have a backup set? Is it possible to go out naked into the world and do anything?

    * What sources of gear do you have available? Crafting? Random mobs?

    * Is there any point in time that loosing all your equipped gear would be just too annoying for you (Syncaine) personally? What if your corpse was full looted 2 days in a row? 3 days?

    Just curious :)

  30. pitrelli says:

    Hahahaha ‘nerd rage’

    To be honest I wish all gamers would just stfu and enjoy whatever game they are playing at the moment. Why does there have to be this comparison between games? Each to their own and all that.

  31. Ginger says:

    @Sir Digby Chicken Ceasar Quick, sir, I think the porters have worked out we’re not using this alcohol-based antibacterial handwash for cleaning purposes!

    Dundundundundunddundundunddundundudundundun DA DA DA DAAAAA!

    In a lonely gameworld spinning its way around the broken servers of damnation, who is left to fight for the little man who just wants to play an online game for a bit after finishing off any cans of cider they can find down the park? Yes, it’s the surprising adventures of me, Sir Digby Chicken-Caesar!

  32. syncaine says:

    @SolidState: Sure, plenty of time this week, so here goes.

    Dying: It depends what you are doing. If I’m just out harvesting and some PK gets me, at worst I lose 30-40 minutes of harvesting and my tool. If I’m out in full scale (plate is too expensive to be worth it right now), good weapons, etc, and I die, it sucks more. But the only time I pull out the scale is when we are out as a group, either for PvE or PvP (and even then only when our group is fairly large). For smaller (2-4) man stuff, I usually wear cheaper armor/weapons. Mounts cost 300ish gold if bought from a player, and are a rare drop when harvesting herbs. Annoying to lose, yes, but again something you can get back solo just farming a bit.

    Bank: As far as I can tell, you have an unlimited amount of space, and banking is global (all linked). Unlike most MMOs, you store a TON of stuff in your bank, and visit it frequently to switch up gear.

    Gearing up: From day one you should be working on having multiple backup sets. That said, I always harvest without gear, and I can farm the easier mob camps in throw-away gear. It takes about 1-2 hours of mining metal to get enough ore for a full banded set (one step below scale), less for chain, more for scale, a lot more for plate. Even if you take a string of bad deaths, it’s not like you will ever hit the point of not being able to do anything due to a lack of gear. Sure scale makes tougher mob camps a bit easier, but you could still go naked and help your group out just swinging your newbie weapon.

    Gear availability: Crafting is the best source, both in actual stats and because you know X amount of materials gets you a full set (set here just means every slot, there are no set bonuses or anything like that in DF). Mobs also drop armor/weapons, obviously the harder the mob the better the loot, but each mob has a specific loot table, so you can’t just farm goblins and expect a full set of armor. You can always take extra pieces and sell them to an NPC for a small bit of gold, and convert that into more usable gear. Options always exist, be it solo, small group, or going out with 10+. Obviously looting someone in PvP can also be a great source of gear.

    Losing gear: I have 10+ decent armor sets in the bank, plus 3-4 full banded/scale sets, along with 5 rank 20+ weapons, and 15ish sub rank 20 ones, and I’ve yet to really focus on getting gear. Part of that is I have a good guild that supports me, so if a PK is chasing me anywhere near our town (which is where I’m usually at) my guild comes running and we either kill him or chase him away. When I do die, it’s rare that I’m wearing my best stuff. The few deaths I’ve had in full banded/scale have been worth it, as they have always been great fights against skill opponents. I don’t mind that kind of death.

    The overall point about gear in DF is that it’s just not a big deal if you play smart. If you are skilled at PvP, that’s a far greater weapon than any mob drop, and above all that is having a solid guild behind you.

  33. Centuri says:

    How is it that we blame the WoW players for games copying off of WoW? Shouldn’t that be the game developers who are all after a peice of the WoW-pie?

    Game Company XYZ gets greedy and changes their ruleset to attract another 200,000 players, at the expense of the current community who like the current ruleset. WoW players are blamed. I don’t get the connection.

  34. syncaine says:

    It’s a very easy connection: Who asked for ruleset change XYZ?

  35. SleepySam says:

    Holy wall of text Batman! Well done, sir. Well done, indeed. I will enjoy trying to finish all of it sometime today.

  36. Tobold says:

    I can’t understand what you have against WoW tourists. Isn’t a game company much better off with 300,000 dedicated subscribers PLUS 1 million WoW tourists than just with the 300,000 dedicated subscribers? I’m pretty sure most game companies are quite happy to sell all those extra boxes. And the more money the game company makes, the longer it can keep their game afloat, so it should make the players happy as well.

  37. syncaine says:

    Yes, what could I possibly have against empty servers a month after release because the tourists packed up again. What could I have against login queues because the tourists have yet to figure out game X is not WoW. What could I have against the forums being a “QQ this is not WoW” shitshow the first month + one week before they move on to another title.

    When the tourist interfere with the core player base, and that core is weakened because of them, the company is not better off in the long run. Sacrificing your core for the initial spike of tourists is not good business if you have a solid MMO product, EVE has shown us that. If WAR had not been swarmed by tourists, would as many core players have quit because of the constant server mergers and other tourist-related issues? Since that core actually enjoys the non-solo aspect of an MMO, community is important, and when that community is getting ripped up left and right in the first month, it’s a problem.

    It’s not a coincidence that DarkFall has as much going on politically already as it does with its limited release. If more than half the players were solo gamers running around trying to collect epix, would the world have the same draw?

  38. Solidstate says:

    Mounts… are a rare drop when harvesting herbs

    Which reminds me of that joke, how do you hide an elephant in cherry tree? Paint it pink and attach it to a branch… drum-roll, ty ty, I’ll be here all week :)

    @syncaine,
    Thanks for the detailed answer. I’ve read details of DF gameplay here and there on some blogs but details of gear replacement and banking were missing (e.g. I knew of global banks, didn’t know about the unlimited space).

    It sure does sound as if the main penalty of dying in DF is mostly some time and gold lost – not that much different from WoW. The mechanics are different (and create a different play style) but the end result sounds very similar.

  39. syncaine says:

    Well you don’t actually get a mount from the herb bush, you get steedgrass, which a crafter with the right skill can convert into a mount.

    Death in actual combat is an ego hit. If your guild group gets rolled by another guild, they will think you are easy pickings and come by more often. If you wipe the floor with a guild, they won’t be as likely to come back looking for another fight.

    Another difference is that when you lose gear, someone else gets it, so it’s a bit different in that regard than other MMOs without full looting. People are going to remember killing you a bit more if they dropped you while you were wearing full plate/scale, or if you had something of real value on you (chest key, mount, ect).

    The feeling is just different. When I kill someone in WAR, it’s one less body between me and the objective or keep. In DF, when you kill someone, you feel more connected to it, you don’t just chop and move on as quickly. And since death is harsher, you can relate a bit more when you kill someone, because you know exactly what they are feeling at that moment. In WAR, you know they just hit respawn and will be running back in 10-20 seconds.

  40. Longasc says:

    I prefer to read the views of a Wow tourist to that of a supposed hardcore player that excels at saying nothing but blaming Wow tourists for… what actually? You are just insulting Ixobelle and belittling your “WoW tourists” group. I think WoW had a negative impact on the development of the genre, but nerd rage is not the answer to that.

    Darkfall would have still have issues, actually would still suck even if there would not be WoW or WoW players/tourists around. Cursing others makes the game not better, you unfortunately had little else to comment on Ixobelle’s final impression than cursing him/her.

  41. Solidstate says:

    what could I possibly have against empty servers a month after release because the tourists packed up again

    Sounds like a problem with the game company opening up too many servers.

    What could I have against login queues because the tourists have yet to figure out game X is not WoW

    Sounds like a problem with the game company selling too many boxes vs. the amount of servers available.

    What could I have against the forums being a “QQ this is not WoW” shitshow the first month + one week before they move on to another title

    You can actually choose *not* to read the forums! Or at least not the posts which annoy you.

    Sacrificing your core for the initial spike of tourists is not good business

    If a company chooses to make what is (in your view) a business mistake, why not blame the company?

    If WAR had not been swarmed by tourists, would as many core players have quit because of the constant server mergers and other tourist-related issues?

    If Mythic mis-managed the game launch and first month, that’s Mythic’s mistake. Not that of anybody else.

    Since that core actually enjoys the non-solo aspect of an MMO, community is important, and when that community is getting ripped up left and right in the first month, it’s a problem

    When a wave rolls over your head, you take a deep breath, keep your head down and keep your mouth shut. You don’t lose patience after 2 seconds and start opening your mouth to yell at the sea to cut it out. That’s a good way to swallow water…
    People should have the patience to ride-out the (always) bumpy launch of an MMO. If the game company makes mistakes which exacerbate the problem or even kill the game, well then you should take it up with them.

    It’s not a coincidence that DarkFall has as much going on politically already as it does with its limited release.

    Which just proves the point, when properly managed by the game company your “wow tourist” problem proves to be much less of a headache, doesn’t it?

    Well you don’t actually get a mount from the herb bush, you get steedgrass, which a crafter with the right skill can convert into a mount.

    The image of an elephant or horse dropping from a tree or bush though like some sort of exotic fruit is more amusing IMHO :)

    What kind of mount can be crafted in DF? Only horses or are there more kinds? If more than one type are they limited by race?

    In DF, when you kill someone, you feel more connected to it, you don’t just chop and move on as quickly.

    Well I read in another blog that there is no auto-loot therefore yes I assume that having to stop and loot items one-by-one precludes moving on quickly. But…

    And since death is harsher

    … but I’m now not sure I understand, why is death harsher? Let me explain. In WoW, a PvE death costs you 10% of your item durability, which translates to a between one to a few gold, depending on your gear quality and type. There is also the runtime to your body, and as we all know time is money :)
    Now this may on the surface seem to be a lot less than the potential loss in DF. But if as you say bank-space is unlimited in DF, I would assume that after a few weeks of playing any except the most incompetent players would have enough spare sets to make the cost of a single death+loot trivial. In effect, it sounds as if the low-cost of death in WoW (a fraction usually of the gold awarded by a daily quest) is reflect in DF by the availability of an unlimited storage area, making the accumulation of alternative gear sets a given, over a long enough time frame, thus bringing the effective cost of a single DF death also close to zero.

    But maybe I’m under-estimating the hardship of getting full replacement gear sets in DF :)

    In any case Syncaine it sounds a lot like you have found a game you like so it will be nice to hear of further adventures from DF-land :)

  42. syncaine says:

    You point out the problem yourself Solid. Even with TOO MANY servers, WAR still had queues. Was the solution less server (and more queues) to establish better community, or even more servers to remove queues, resulting in more mergers? DarkFall has the advantage of being a small indie title, so they can afford to limit availability. That’s simply impossible for a mass market title that has all that advertising/distribution behind it.

    It comes down to this, the WoW player base is 11 million, the MMO player base is a fraction of that. Keeping the WoW base out of an MMO is going to be a major problem for all games going forward, short of simply making it difficulty for WoW players to get in (like DF did/does). Having to come up with creative ways to deal with the WoW tourists the first month is a new problem in MMO land, both for MMO players and for the companies trying to run them.

    Back to DF, the look of the mount crafted out of steedgrass depends on the crafters race. Each race has a different looking mount. Functionality is identical, and all races can ride all mounts.

    In WoW gold is truly trivial, especailly on the repair cost level. Time to get back to a corpse is also trivial compared to travel in DF. Lets also not confusing losing junk gear to a set of scale or banded. Sure most people will have pieces of junk gear around, but I doubt it will ever get to the point that losing a set of scale or plate is a non-issue. Also consider that if you get ganked out at a mob camp, you have likely been farming the mobs for some time, so not only did you just lose whatever you brought to kill the mobs, but also all the loot you got from farming as well. The higher the challenge, the higher the cost of failure (you can’t walk into a tough dungeon in junk gear unless you bring more players than needed, which just divides the loot further)

  43. mm says:

    Wow.

    Next game I comment on, I’m going to have to find some way to reference gay, Nazi, holocaust-denying child molesters. Like, “Anybody who stays in this game is obviously a gay, Nazi, holocaust-denying child molester.”

    I’ll pack it with so much hyperbole that nobody can stand up to the brilliance of my logic. =P

    MM

  44. Topknot says:

    At one point you played WoW and moved on.

    Do you consider yourself a WoW tourist because you played the game aswell?

    Or are you the one exception?

    I just ask because you constantly talk as though EVERY wow player is a tourist and not a ‘true’ mmo fan. You stink of elitism and snobbery to be honest. Run your blog however you want but you look like an ass beating this ‘WoW tourist’ meme to death in every_single_post you make.

    Just remember you were once part of the WoW community aswell and perhaps dont tar the ENTIRE wow playerbase the way you have been doing. Everyone is entitled to their opinions. You dont like wow for ‘x’ reasons but others do for ‘y’ reasons. Neither point of view is any less valid you know?

  45. Pierre says:

    lol you’re taking this anti-wow stuff a weeee bit to serious.

    maybe go out and get some fresh air?

  46. Kyir says:

    People are talking about me on the Internet I hear.

  47. [...] ACLU challenges Cleveland Heights-University Heights schools over removal of magazine from library Epic “WoW Tourist” Post by Syncaine SOE’s G.I.R.L. Scholarship Program – Hey SOE.  How about you up the ante a bit? [...]

  48. Noah says:

    Hey… I think I love you

    Excellent post. You cracked me up and, well, with my limited exposure to Darkfall I’m just going to side with the funnier side of sarcasm because it made sense to me… Raining plate, shitting more out! Everyone’s only wearing plate and shooting arrows, please shoot only at point blank… And best of all: “you do bother us :) (but the smiley makes it okay)”

    Not that I’m going to play WoW or Darkfall… I’ll stick with Warhammer for now. Everybody loses!

  49. Einherjer says:

    I will try to explain.

    Mettalica was once a great band. They made Kill ‘em All, Ride The Lightning (ok, and And Justice For All…) and then they recorded that piece of sh…erm…music called black album.

    All of a sudden Metal was in! And lots of people thought they liked Metal. Starting to go to metal gigs they found out that they didn’t liked metal after all. They liked Metallica. And, of course, the problem was with ALL THE OTHER BANDS that were not as good as Metallica. I actually had people saying to me that Slayer sucked or that Cannibal Corpse cannot play when compared to Metallica…

    WoW is the same thing. In my opinion, the biggest part of the 11 million don’t like MMO’s. They like WoW, period. So they will try the new MMO’s for a while, jump on the bandwagon, buy the boxes (which is good). But then after the month included they will go to the foruns saying how much the game sucks. And along with thought out criticisms or simply “played for a month and didn’t wanted to play again” there are those who simply blow things out of proportion because… I don’t know why but it happens.

    And that negativity I bet harms more a game than 1 million boxes sold. I have brought friends into WAR that didn’t wanted to come due to the “bug fest” that the game was. They were very surprised with the quality and all 3 of them subscribed to the game.

    And then when you read the opinions of people who don’t have a fucking idea of how software development works or simply repeat ad stupidity that the game has problems that were solved in the first month, of course you will react.

    How many people were put off trying WAR because of all the negativity around. Most of that unfounded or no longer true?

    If the only blog i followed was Broken Toys I would think that only convicted rapists and murderers played Darkfall and that Warhammer is absolutely unplayable and peeps who do try to play it do so out of love for suffering.

  50. Andrew says:

    “Do you consider yourself a WoW tourist because you played the game as well?

    Or are you the one exception?”

    ^^^^^ this.

    Waiting for response.

  51. syncaine says:

    If you think the definition of a WoW tourist is someone who has played WoW and also tried other MMOs, I suggest you read a few more blog posts about the subject here, it’s been well covered.

  52. Bonedead says:

    Oh please, everyone has played WoW, that doesn’t mean they like it. Shit, I played 50+ hours of Knight Online, but it is a horrible game.

    A WoW tourist is someone who is either playing WoW or trying a brand new game for the first week or two before going back to WoW. Hence the word, TOURIST.

  53. Bonedead says:

    So many of these youngsters are so spoiled! If WoW was your first MMO, just know that there’s a lot of people who hate you.

  54. *vlad* says:

    Your post is out of order. Seriously, hammering Ixobelle to death and going through his post like some sort of Secret Policeman looking for evidence to hang him with does you no favours.
    So you hate WOW. Fine. Don’t hate the world as well.

    You want to know hard-core? Shit, the average game I used to play on the Spectrum 48k sounds more hard-core than Darkfall.

    For example, Magic Knight. You had to explore a building and help people get home/be happy/whatever.
    Now this meant a lot of work, collecting items, feeding people, keeping them happy, going up and down the building in the lift, figuring out puzzles etc etc.
    What’s so hard-core about it? Well, there were things like pits in the floor, rooms full of gas, and all sorts of shit like that, and if you got it wrong once, you died. Game Over. Start again.
    No save points in this game, no extra lives. You could have played for 2 hours and end up back at square one because you weren’t pixel perfect one time.

    Does this mean I hate all Care Bear games and people who play them? Of course not. Lighten up, mate.

  55. ixobelle says:

    just for giggles, I’ll quote myself here, from one of the other Darkfall pieces I wrote (http://www.ixobelle.com/2009/03/darkfall-second-impressions.html) that Syn didn’t take an electron microscope to:

    The problem is that I just keep coming back to how awesome it would be if WoW was licensable like the Unreal engine, and the Darkfall team had made a WoW mod based on this premise. Full looting of corpses, the need to drag and drop items from corpses to your own bags one at a time. Even the need to sheathe your weapon before doing so isn’t BAD, it’s just poorly implemented in Darkfall. Remove the entire BoP / BoE aspect on equipment. You could even keep the PvE game instanced… Go run SFK for some blues, but if someone tags you by the Sepulcher, they can loot all that shit off you. Make the bank have an actual purpose instead of just being ‘that one big bag you can’t carry around’. Remove nameplates, and blur faction lines. Orc on orc ganking should be an option, even if frowned on. Some mechanics would obviously need to be tuned… stealth shouldn’t be AS stealthy as it is now, or casters would just be fucked by rogues. I also like the idea that in Darkfall there ARE no classes, or even levels. You just skill up abilities as you use them, and a mage could train kidney shot after enough melee practice eventually. There’s no magical bullshit reason why I can’t put this breastplate that I just found on my character right now.

    THAT will be the next big thing. When all of this comes together in one big package. It wouldn’t need to be on every server, but having WoW “Darkfall” servers would be awesome. I just think the WoW combat engine (and art style) are top tier, and the Darkfall design team would be better served just designing, instead of mucking around with a wonky UI and clunky animations.

    This big thing I’m trying to get across here is that I think some of the IDEAS behind darkfall are good, and would make a great game, but darkfall itself isn’t that game. I won’t sit here and try to convince you you’re wrong, I’m simply stating that I tried it and found it lacking. Have fun in there, and unclench the anus, man. That’s how you get hemorrhoids, I hear. Or is that when you try to hard to shit…? I forget…

  56. syncaine says:

    Hi,

    http://syncaine.wordpress.com/2009/03/18/if-wow-tourists-ran-darkfall/

    There you go.

    (for some reason your site does not accept pingbacks, so you might have missed the earlier links if you don’t check traffic sources)

  57. ixobelle says:

    lol, damn… the paragraph i chose was already ‘featured’ a week back. I stand corrected. Didn’t realize I had my own recurring column here. :/

    I honestly don’t even know what a pingback is or whatever, but I guess I could look into it? I just write shit, and don’t really obsess over traffic control panels or whatever.

  58. syncaine says:

    I just mentioned pingbacks because usually when a blog gets one, it lets the person know someone linked them. It saves the person creating the link the trouble of going on the linked blog and saying “I was going to comment, but instead I wrote a post”. Hence I assumed you were at least aware of the previous post. It’s not about traffic, but more so you can have a back and forth with a blog and have both authors aware of it.

  59. Jason says:

    So now that you two are properly acquainted, I’d like to welcome you both to this weeks special edition of Channel Massive’s Blog-O-Steria where we stick you guys in a steel cage. Anyone up for some Thunderdome?

    Either that, or we’ll just hand you a couple of pine bats and you can beat each other until one of you is reduced to a bloody pulp.

    Bat Fight!

    Jason (resident drunken idiot of Channel Massive who likes to sign his comments because it makes them 10x more valid)

  60. Pierre says:

    When Mortal Online comes out can all you fucking Darkfall-Tourists stay out from that game please? kthxby

  61. Hatch says:

    Quoting syncaine:
    “Also, the first part is another awesome example of “this does not work, and I don’t know a solution, but clearly ANYTHING would be better than this”. That’s grade A game design buddy.”

    Actually in that “first part” I offer a solution.

    But then again, I like WoW and didn’t enjoy warhammer/lotro/eve/everquest/muds/swg and haven’t tried darkfall, so clearly I’m an idiot who only likes things because they are popular, and clearly too stupid to see the light about how these other games are clearly better (they are better because they are different from wow, obviously!), despite less polish, less content, broken game design, etc. But hey, at least those games aren’t wow!

    I fail to see the difference between this strawman “wow tourist” you keep trying to cram other people into, and the wow-hater that fills up ooc/general chat in other games by talking about how great it is that this game isn’t wow. You and the strawman you attack are two sides of the same coin, except you actually exist.

    Or is it just that you and I have different preferences that are both equally valid, and you should go have fun in your games and I in mine, with no reason for us to fight? No, that can’t possibly be it…

  62. syncaine says:

    This is what so many people are missing (or just ignoring because it makes it easier to support their point), this is not about WoW players in WoW, I could honestly care less, and that has nothing to do with the WoW tourists.

    The problem in a nutshell is that for many (again not ALL) people playing WoW, they don’t actually like the MMO genre, they just like WoW, and want only WoW or very WoW-like games. Now this again would be fine if there was not 11 million of them, and X thousand MMO players. When you get a community of 11 million flooding a new game, only to find it’s not WoW and then trying to change it into WoW, that’s a problem.

    It’s not about different preferences, it’s about a community of 11 million trying to force THEIR preference onto an entire genre, along with the more general problem of having X number of players you KNOW won’t like the game flooding it the first (very crucial) month.

  63. Mike Darga says:

    In case you miss it on the Tobold’s thread:

    @ syncaine: “Which is more profitable in the long run Tobold, 1.2m boxes and 300k subs with the market thinking you ‘failed’, or 700k boxes and 400k subs with positive buzz? (Hint: EVE)”

    Yes, this

    It hasn’t been officially announced, but I strongly suspect that EVE now has more players than WAR, as well as a better reputation. You can check my numbers and let me know if I’m wrong.

  64. syncaine says:

    Better rep for sure.

    I don’t know about the numbers, as it’s always tough to judge with free accounts and all that, plus like EVE, WAR has improved a great deal since launch as well. But it’s bad rep and false accusation (WAR is still a scenario grind and other 1st-month stories) certainly continue to hurt it.

  65. Bonedead says:

    On a side note: My one liners are no longer accepted at Broken Toys! :(

  66. syncaine says:

    Wha, why? Did he block you?

  67. Bonedead says:

    Well he deleted my comment that said “It’s because Steve Jobs has butt cancer!”

    Then I said “I still stand by my original comment” which was also deleted.

    Now I’m just gonna wait for a new post so maybe I can sneak one by (maybe I can make his jollyness chuckle).

  68. Holy Ghost says:

    So how does DarkFall compare to old Everquest Rallos Zek pvp?

    Before all the crap hacking, warping, insta-gating.

    How bad is the hacking in Darkfall or since it is relatively new you don’t see it quite yet?

    I would still be playing EQ1 pvp if not for hacking and people hiding in instaces.

  69. Mike Darga says:

    Right, I don’t think it’s necessarily that WAR is as bad as people say, or that EVE is perfect, it’s just that EVE had the benefit of all their terrible launch mistakes being visible to only a very few hardcore players who weren’t going to quit anyway.

    WAR’s terrible launch mistakes happened in front of 2millionish players, and those 2million basically told everyone else on earth how much it sucked.

  70. Nico says:

    So, because I have been playing WoW for the last 4 years and enjoying it means I can’t try another game?

  71. Pierre says:

    @Nico

    The argument presented by this blog is more like:

    “You may not come from WoW, try Darkfall and say ‘darkfall sucks, i want it to be like wow in every aspect.'”

    The “Wow Tourist” term brings to mind some fat midwestern american in a hawaiian shirt going to Paris on holiday loudly complaining about “they don’t serve french fries here, this country sucks.”

  72. Bonedead says:

    That whole “they don’t serve french fries here” argument is exactly what WoW players who dislike Darkfall and/or any other MMO do. Except they think they can talk to the manager of the restaurant and convince them to put them on the menu.

  73. HP says:

    You wrote a lot of crap but basically what you’re saying is “WAH WAH” “WoW tourists ruin my games because I’m the only one smart/special/insert adj here to appreciate ”

    Whatever. Calm the hell down and go play your game.

    Maybe if you had fun in your game, you would stop bitching about other people not liking your game or about how people seem to like their own games.

    Seriously. Go. Play.

  74. The Rev says:

    [Background info: I played WoW for about 5 months back in 2005. Reached ~ lvl 40 (with massive alt-itis) and quit due to boredom.]

    I think the biggest problem with WoW Tourists is that they just can’t seem to view other MMOs as a different game. For many of them WoW was their first MMO, and thus they have the “first true MMO love” symptoms clouding their judgment. Maybe Syncaine is right, and they aren’t MMO enthusiasts, simply WoW players.

    For me, SWG was my first MMO, and many of the MMOs I tried after that were compared to it. But I don’t bitch how they aren’t like SWG constantly, and I’ve come to learn to judge each MMO as its own game. Otherwise you set yourself up to be let down.

    Sure there are always going to be some comparisons, but if we want any kind of variety and new ideas in the MMO genre, we have to allow for games to be different. I love that there’s games like EVE and Darkfall that are different, and not the same level/class fantasy clone.

    And it’s unfair to compare any MMO to WoW 4 years after release. Of course WoW will have more content and polish. Even comparing WoW to LotRO doesn’t work, as LotRO hasn’t even been out that long (but is still a very good game).

    Basically, the WoW Tourists need to step back and judge games by what they are, and not by how the other MMOs aren’t like WoW in every respect.

    My two cents.

  75. Hirvox says:

    And it’s unfair to compare any MMO to WoW 4 years after release. Of course WoW will have more content and polish.
    It may be unfair from the developer’s point of view, but they are competing with WoW as it is now, no matter how futile it may be. Customers are not going to base their decision on how WoW was 4 years ago, they’re basing their decision on the current situation.

    Also, there is a phenomenon called content churn that negates a lot of WoW’s head start in content. Who is going to go to Stratholme or Molten Core when one can go to Outland? Who’s going to go to Arcatraz and Black Temple when one can go to Northrend? WoW may have a lot of content on paper, but the content that the majority of players care about gets smaller with every expansion (and to a lesser extent, every level).

    Conversely, EvE (and hopefully Darkfall) doesn’t have that problem, because it’s expansions are horizontal in nature. Frigates are still useful and the most popular ore is Veldspar. Content is rarely made obsolete.

  76. JR says:

    There’s just so much wrong with this argumentation.
    First, it assumes that War would have a better reputation if it hadn’t been for WoW tourists. It would’ve been just like Eve.
    Problem is that Warhammer had a sh*tload of quality problems when it came out, and it still does. The interface is clumsy and bugged as hell. The “class balance” is a wreck in Warhammer, and a total gamble in the long run (eg.: BWs going from massively overpowered single damage killers to a useless class because of resists to AoE-Keep-defenders who can’t be targeted because of LOS-Bugs – a development over 3 patches). The crafting system and economy is mostly useless. Little end-game content. A lacking reward system for open rvr (fixed now). Slow performance on older computers. Pathing problems from mobs. Clumsy combat feel – you can’t tell exactly whether your spell is done or not. Etc. And I don’t even want to start on the quality problems and lack of content AoC had when it came out.
    When a game has a couple of years to develop, you can smooth out those bugs and develop a steady playerbase. If you hit the market with a big merchandising campaign to set up high expectations, but lack quality, you get people leaving and a bad reputation. WoW tourists or not. Eve had the advantage of starting much earlier than War, when expectations weren’t so high.

    Second, the argumentation assumes that there are two kinds of people in War/DF, apparently determined by genetics or something: ‘Real’ core MMO-lovers and WoW tourists, who don’t really like MMOs, just WoW. I’m the best counter-example to this. I was happily plowing through BT/MH when War came out, then played War for a while, then ran two WoW-chars to level 80, didn’t find a fun guild I liked, so I stopped WoW again and am now back to War. Despite all those quality problems, I like the orvr-brawl-type gameplay and have my fun as ultracasual. I was set up to be a typical WoW-tourist in War, but ended up sticking with War instead of WoW. So in the end, you can’t always tell at the start whether somebody is just a “tourist” or will stick to the game longer. Everybody is looking for quality and fun. If they find it at the new game, they stick with it.

    Thirdly, the argument that “WoW-players just want WoW, nothing else” is horsecr*p. See how many people complain on the WoW-forums how boring WoW has become and that they are looking for the next WoW-killer? They’ve been looking for the last 4 years. The problem is not that the new games are not WoW, but that they don’t offer more fun than WoW. Easeness of use, a good interface and simplicity are fun for a lot of people. If a game offers less fun, people leave. WoW just did a lot of things right. As I said, I still have fun with War.

    Fourth, the argument discounts the economic impact of sold boxes for the game. Tobold touched on that. If 800k people buy a box and then leave, that’s quite a few million dollars that can be spent on developing the game, polishing it and adding features. That polish and those features offer something for the “real core” of the players. As for the server fluctuation problem: Maybe the game developer should come up with a good solution on how to handle the fluctuation smoothly and with minimum frustration “before” the game comes out. The “On launch day, the server is overcrowded, two weeks later, it’s empty”-phenomenon is incredibly old. Admittedly, for me, personally, the server shutdown and merge of Warhammer was a blessing, because I get more action, and I’m happy they did it.

    All in all, I don’t buy the “the game is great, the other people are stupid and ruin my fun”-argument.

  77. Bonedead says:

    Don’t you guys get it? Every new MMO has to be released without bugs and work perfectly if it wants to stand any chance of competing with WoW!

    /sarcasm

    Never gonna happen, nothing can compete (or will compete) with WoW until Blizzard releases it.

    To WoW players: Don’t play games Blizzard doesn’t make.

    Devs: Don’t release new MMOs until right after a WoW expansion is released.

  78. Swift Voyager says:

    The WoW tourist problem is a real economic/business problem for any business that expects an initial surge of consumers then a falloff later. There’s always increased cost and reduced quality of service as a result of a customer surge. You can see it in many businesses besides MMO’s (a new restaurant is one example).

    As with most things business, it really comes down to decisions made by the business owner, and there are solutions to any problem in business. Business isn’t anything new. We humans have been doing this for a couple years before WoW came out, I’m sure. When you open up a niche business and then get drive-by customers who try to compare you to your mainstream competitors, you should expect it. You should plan for it. You could have a business plan that effectively works this to your advantage.

    If you want to stem the WoW tourist flood in your new MMO, there are solutions. For example, how different would the launch of WAR have been if they announced that monthly subs would start at a much higher price like $25 per month, then reduce them slowly over time. Call it a “head start” program for enthusiasts who want to be early adopters who want “exclusive access” to the newest game in town. Everyone wins then, because those enthusiasts are the people who are most likely to be tollerant of bugs and downtime too.

    Just like opening a niche restaurant, or an upscale countryclub, you can chage extra for your unique product or charge extra just to keep the service exclusive. If you really aren’t prepared for 500k subscribers, or you think that your game will die when they all leave, there are ways to limit this. Ways that are tried and true, and have been tested and used for many centuries of business in the real world.

    The failure of MMO’s due to surges of people after launch is just bad planning by the game publisher and their marketing people. It’s a big secret, so don’t tell anyone I said this, but the video game industry really sucks at business planning and customer service.

  79. Tragedyx says:

    When i’m done with you i’m gonna wipe my dick on your teddy bear. Seriously, you’re so hardcore, you’d probably enjoy it.

    I can’t even begin to argue because it would serve no point. To compare, it would be explaining physics to an infant. Plus it’s over the internet, and 14 year old boys can act as men as long as their grammar and sentence structure isn’t terrible.

    If your blog exists solely to promote how awesome you are and incite hatred towards oneself in order to better promote, such an achievement you have accomplished. However, if you’re attempting to give yourself merit and prove you’re a decent human being, unfortunately you aren’t worth the air you breathe.

  80. Sara Pickell says:

    Since it isn’t showing a trackback. This post fed into my making my latest post.

    http://soagcure.blogspot.com/2009/03/news-flash.html

  81. [...] the MMO blogosphere at all recently, you’ll notice there’s been some banter back and forth between Syncaine and Tobold in regards to what Syncaine calls “WoW Tourism”. If you’re not familiar with the [...]

  82. None says:

    This blog sucks. Syncaine: your post makes so little sense that I’m thinking Ixobelle half trolled you here.

  83. Neoblade7 says:

    I understand that everyone has an opinion and that some hate on WoW and some love WoW and there are those in between but I honestly do not understand why people can’t just decide that’s its a game made for FUN, if WoW is fun for you for whatever reason, then play it, if it’s not your thing and you prefer Darkfall/WAR/EVE/etc. then why, in all honest must we fight over things that have little relavence outside of a computer?

    Opinions clash all the time, and I suppose this is the internet so people will bash the hell out of each other but why not just leave each to their own?

    *calmly awaits flames or other results but hopes that people act calm and intelligent, as I know 99.9% of society is*

  84. [...] have begun to examine why they perceive there to be so many failing MMOs. (Everything from “WoW Tourists” to “Ghetto Scum” is to blame).  They have even begun to question whether another MMO might [...]

  85. [...] seem to be just raining down from the heavens. Hell, it’s almost of if full plate armor is falling from the sky. In all seriousness though, it’s a huge step in the right direction, and I really hope it can [...]

  86. [...] I will sit through the first month. One of the reasons for this is, as syncaine, would put it the WoW tourists . Having played Champions I know that already it is niche game and alot wont like it, hell most of [...]

  87. [...] has driven me over that proverbial edge making me a long-term player vice simply one of the “WoW Tourists” that Syncaine likes to speak about.  I’ve always identified strongly with my [...]

  88. Wonderful blog site below! Furthermore your website tons upward quick! Just what exactly sponsor are you the usage of? Can I get those internet marketer link in your coordinator? If only my own internet site rich as rapidly since your own hahah

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