Discussion in the comments section on Massively posts often deviates from the original topic, leading to some of our favorite discussions. Last week was no exception in Jeremy's Runes of Magic column. BulldozerFTW included some thoughts on CCP in his discussion of developer decisions:
Even a smart company like CCP knows this. Seriously, anyone who thinks CCP made a bad move releasing its action shooter on the console is wrong. From a business point of view, it's a smart decision.
Anyone who argues he doesn't want to buy a PS3 to play it, well tough for him. But at the same time I'm sure a lot of PC users drop anywhere from $600-1500 on their PC upgrades every three years.
I like the idea of being able to release an upgrade to a game universe and just drop it further down the line when there are not enough people to support it. Make up a story that the worlds were destroyed and release another title later to replace it that still ties into the EVE world. The company makes its quick release sales, and the consumer gets new content.
On the topic of developer decisions, DarkWalker
has an extensive and well-considered list of things that he finds needful for an MMO in a recent Daily Grind
For me, in the "absolutely essential, won't play without" category:
Unlimited respecs that are fairly easy to get, unless there aren't really specs, like in Free Realms, or if there is no real limit to how many skills the player can have and how high they can get, like in EVE.
Fairly fast travel options. If I'm forced to spend over 10 minutes of (uneventful) travel time in a conventional 60-minute play session, or if I ever have to take 10 or more minutes of travel to do whatever I want to do, I'm most likely on my way out of the game.
Soloable to max level, and enough endgame solo activities to keep me entertained. While I like group play, I don't like depending on other players to be able to play. If I start needing to schedule my play sessions with other players in order to have something to do, I'm on my way out. Caveat: A matching system like World of Warcraft's LFD tool can supply the endgame solo content, as long as I like the content and both queue and the content are fast enough that I can actually get something done in a 30-minute gaming stop.
Lastly, a very low death penalty. I like being reckless when playing solo in games.
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