Ten Ton Hammer is reporting on a recent uproar on the Vanguard: Saga of Heroes forums surrounding many MMO players' least favorite subject: death. Few like to contemplate their own demise, and even those who do would agree that penalties for dying in an online game are annoying. The current controversy surrounds a certain Producer's Letter written by game producer Thom Terrazas wherein he mentioned the possibility of reducing the severity of the death penalties in Vanguard.
Now Dalmarus makes a valid point about all of this. Removing the loss of experience mechanic from death means removing the excitement. Essentially, the developers would be eliminating that extra thrill you get from tackling dangers and taking on challenges that might be a bit much for you; the thrill you get knowing you survived and saved your precious experience points. I would agree that a death penalty gives players a consequence, albeit a small one, for reckless actions in-game, and removing that penalty means changing the game experience for better or worse. My feeling is that the Vanguard team might be looking at their competition, titles like WoW, and noticing that the loss of experience might deter the casual player from sticking with the game. But then again, it doesn't deter Dalmarus, so should they really be worried?