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Ask Massively: When in doubt, post some giant robots edition

Eliot Lefebvre

Weep not for the sad tale that appears to have been woven of the MechWarrior reboot, ladies and gentlemen. Yes, it promised to be "not your father's MechWarrior," but the fact of the matter is that my father did not have a MechWarrior, and I mostly did because of my fascination with the core setting and tabletop game. On the plus side, it gives me an excuse to post a picture of the Atlas, which is one of those machines that looks either incredibly dorky or really dangerous depending on angle.

Moving on from my dubious walking tank prelude, this week's questions have nothing to do with giant robots. In fact, they concern farming and homesteading in MMOs and getting your significant other to play alongside you. If you'd like to have your question featured in a future edition of Ask Massively, leave it in the comment field or send it along to

cowboyhugbees asked: What current MMOs have the strongest farming/homestead mechanics?

They're a bit rarer these days, but you can still find some games out there with a strong emphasis on making your mark in the world. Wurm Online is built specifically for this, and while I've not played it, Mortal Online seems to also encourage this environment. Fallen Earth seems to be taking a stab in this direction as well with the upcoming progress towns. That's not counting pseudo-MMO Minecraft or of course Second Life. Lord of the Rings Online has a crafting-oriented farming system, and Ultima Online recently introduced a communal gardening feature to spruce up local NPC towns. I've also heard good things about Istaria and Mabinogi in terms of farming and building, and while I'm not sure if Xsyon has proper farming, it allows you to work quite extensively on building a character's home. Free Realms, too, has in recent months begun promoting its own farming feature.

If there's a lone drawback to what you're searching for, it's that most of the games listed aren't graphical powerhouses. Also, be wary of games that promise "farming" in the same sense as Facebook's vicious anti-games. Some of them aren't much above the level of clicking the cow.
ZachDude asked: How do you guys get your significant others to play these games with you?
Well, in my case, I bought Ms. Lady World of Warcraft. She was hooked on MMOs from that point onward.

Honestly, though, the biggest thing is that not everyone is going to be into MMOs. Not everyone is even going to be into video games at all -- there are several Massively staffers whose spouses and partners don't play games, period. There is, unfortunately, no secret formula. (If there were, I might still be playing Star Trek Online at the moment. It's better with a buddy.)
CursedSeishi asked: If Jimmy cracked corn, and we don't care... who in the world wrote the song...? And why did he decide to care?!
Wikipedia proved to me that there is, in fact, an answer to this question. But it's a bit beyond the scope of this article. Let's just move on and assume that no matter who cracked the corn, there's no reason to care, whether or not it was Jimmy's fault. (And it totally was.)
Looking for some advice on which class is best for soloing in Aion? Not sure who this Raph Koster fellow is? Curious about the release date of NCsoft's newest MMO? You've come to the right place! No one knows MMOs like we do. If there's anything you'd like to know about the MMO genre or the site itself, Ask Massively is here to help every Thursday afternoon. Just ask!

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