Latest in Gaming

Image credit:

Leaderboard: Level-based vs. skill-based


When you think about it, the concept of "levels" in MMOs is downright strange -- and contrary to how we live life. I mean, do you suddenly "ding" to a new, arbitrary level after gaining a whole bunch of generic XP for killing spiders because your spouse/roommate/sibling is too scared to do so? Or do you increase your skills and abilities separately through training, learning and practice?

And yet level-based gameplay continues to dominate the MMORPG field, since along the way game designers thought we were too dumb to comprehend anything other than "Big number good. Small number bad." Although, to be fair, level-based gameplay has widespread recognition going for it, a quick and simple way to gauge your status versus an enemy's, and a long and storied tradition in video game history.

Then again, there are a few MMOs that have said, no, we're going to give skill-based gameplay a try. These are the titles that allow you to focus on some abilities above others, deepening your character's growth at the cost of increased complexity (not to mention increased difficulty for devs to balance!). Whether it's accumulating a collection of skills or simply choosing which ones to improve, this type of system allows for more individual choice.

Ultimately, the choice is yours as it is today. Which do you prefer: MMOs that go the level-based route or the skill-based one? Vote after the jump!


Ever wish that you could put to rest a long-standing MMO debate once and for all? Then welcome to the battle royal of Massively's Leaderboard, where two sides enter the pit o' judgment -- and only one leaves. Vote to make your opinion known, and see whether your choice tops the Leaderboard!

From around the web

ear iconeye icontext filevr