The turn of a new year is a time for reflection, and this week we did just that in our Best of 2011 Awards and The Perfect Ten, in which we took a stroll back through 2011's most exciting MMO stories and plucked out our favorite games of the last 365 days. After all, it's been a gigantic year for the MMO industry -- RIFT and Star Wars: The Old Republic launched, Star Wars Galaxies closed, World of Warcraft announced Mists of Pandaria, CCP Games ticked a whole bunch of people off, and at least a zillion games went free-to-play.
The new year is also a time to look into the future, so naturally we furbished up our crystal balls and made predictions (some more serious than others) about how the genre will fare in the coming year. Will Pandaria sink WoW? Will browser-based and mobile MMOs continue their rise to prominence? Will TOR crash and burn? Will The Secret World be a hit? Bring it on, 2012!
Join us past the break for a look at this week's top MMO stories.
BioWare's docs: Free-to-play can't invest and create at our level
Muzyka and Zeschuk banter about the quality of F2P and sub games.
Gamer drops $16,000 on Age of Wulin virtual sword
Does this count as pay-to-win in real life?
Reid on Reddit: SWTOR fans ask him anything and everything
SWTOR's community manager talked about ability delay and more.
Videos document player battle with ArcheAge's Kraken
Check out the XLGAMES' incoming sandbox sea-combat.
Analyst claims that SWTOR points to a healthy MMO market
MMO industry: Not dead yet!
The Guild Counsel: Does SWTOR need a better LFG tool?
Karen wonders whether dungeon finders are bad for communities.
Not So Massively: Free Steam games and promotional gifts
Brendan scoped out the new Doctor Who MMO and more.
Ask Massively: Further answers to the same questions edition
Will we or won't we host a "TOR Insider" blog?
Newest patch notes Star Wars: The Old Republic highlight bug fixes
A million slicers cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.
Flameseeker Chronicles: High achievers
Rubi discusses the proposed Guild Wars 2 achievement system.
The Soapbox: Adding story to SWTOR
Jef asks, how will BioWare move TOR's story forward?
Hyperspace Beacon: Force reflection
Larry highlights his spot-on and way-off SWTOR predictions.
- The Best of WoW Insider -- Monthly retrospective for 2011
- How to level up using the Dungeon Finder
- Burning Crusade weapon models 'mogged the most
- Big stakes and the end of an expansion