People are lucky I’m too lazy to find my own “told you so” quotes about stuff. You know, stuff like “EA might shut down thanks to SW:TOR”. Because, um… EA might shut down thanks to SW:TOR.
This is the best quote:
“Specifically, initial sales appear to be below expectations, and casual observation of early play is causing us to rethink our churn assumptions,” Mitchell wrote
In other words, even people who just remotely observe the genre can already tell that SW is god-awful in terms of retention. No big deal except that oops, our business model is based on retention.
Sure, certain bloggers told you that in 2010. No big deal. It’s why they make the big bucks (do analysts like that make the big bucks?) and I drive my ‘thanks Darkfall’ Ferrari to attend “how are we going to liquidate Zynga” board meetings, during which meeting I write up posts to entertain the little people (that’s you).
Luckily, EA has figured out, no doubt thanks to a tip from the one Mythic employee still left, that if you disable the ability to cancel an account, it stops people from leaving. I do like the tip to call support to cancel. It keeps with the whole 4th pillar ‘voiced’ content theme all the way to the end. Well played EA, well played.
I’m also amazingly entertained by certain people who, just now, are suggesting that, maybe, sandbox MMO design might work better for long-term retention. Where do people come up with such groundbreaking thinking?
Oh and don’t worry, the think-tank over there has already brought up some very valid, very informed opinions.
Personally, I dont actually like the Skyrim-type games. I find that there is just too much to do and get paralysed by choice.
The fact that I might play two or three characters to level cap in three or four months and consider myself ‘done’ with SW:TOR until the next major expansion is a huge plus from my point of view
Neither EVE nor WoW are actually very good at player interaction, because the range of interactions you can have with another player in these games is so limited compared to real life interactions
I feel like the more we ask “how can we increase the longevity of MMOs” the more we move away from “what is fun?”
They could probably ‘Skyrim-ize’ WoW today with not too much effort.
Personally I don’t think a Skyrim type mmo would be successful at all because there is too much. My friends bought skyrim and liked it but stopped half way story-wise because they got overwhelmed with side quests and such. It would captivate you for a good 40-60 hours playtime and then you’re burned out. while I agree some more variety or alternate leveling paths should be in games, you will need to have some linearity or you’ll lose all your 2million subscribers before the 2nd month
The only way to really make an MMO everlasting is to randomply generate the story of the PC. Not the quests he gets, but the story behind the quests, allowing go’n'kill quests as well as those more complex, both morally challening and epic.
Just think, any of the above might be in your next random dungeon group!