Speaking of death (see post below), one thing I noticed while reading everyone’s 2010 predictions is that no one (that I saw) predicted an MMO would launch or be announced with perma-death. While MUDs exist or existed with perma-death, we have yet to see an MMO try the concept, and I’m starting to wonder if we ever will.
I don’t want to get into exactly how perma-death would work in an MMO, which is a topic in itself that I’ve talked about here, but more about the fact that today, with the genre expanding and new takes on the genre finally being seen (Fallen Earth and DarkFall among others), this concept still has not been attempted. With all the talk about innovation vs polish, and with titles seeming too familiar, would an MMO based around perma-death not be a stand-out title in the crowd? If someone today announced an upcoming MMO based around perma-death, would it at least not peak your interest? I know I would at least look into it.
We know games outside of the MMO genre feature perma-death, be it hardcore mode in Diablo or Torchlight, or characters dying and not coming back in countless turn-based strategy titles, so it’s not like the idea is one that instantly turns people away. Diablo 2 in particular has/had a very healthy population that enjoyed hardcore mode and what it offered. We also know that in today’s market, with self-publishing and lower start-up costs (if you play it smart), smaller niche titles can exist and turn a profit for their dedicated teams. So again, why have we not seen perma-death at least attempted yet? Is the concept just too different? Has it been tried internally and ultimately found lacking? Is it just too difficult/complex to implement?