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2-14-2011 @ 8:11PM
This...sounds like complete and utter idiocy to me, and really knocks my respect down for Bioware a few notches. The MMOs I am most looking forward to are TERA and Guild Wars 2, both games that are almost nothing like WoW.Conversely, the MMO I've recently found most dull is Rift, which is nothing but the same old same old with an admittedly much, much better class system. Now, don't get me wrong. WoW does a lot of things right, and a lot of things that developers would do well to implement in their games. But this idea that it is the be-all end-all of the genre is extremely short-sighted and makes me really not look forward to TOR much anymore.
2-14-2011 @ 8:17PM
He didn't really say what you're objecting to, though. He's saying that there are MILLIONS of consumers out there whose expectations are based on WoW, and that failing to deliver basic expectations of how these games work -- as opposed to specific gameplay elements -- is a dumb idea that will hurt your product.It's hard to argue that he's wrong. The things that kill highly touted MMOs are the things they don't do that WoW had conditioned people to expect: content at every level, the ability to play in short bursts, an availability of both hardcore and casual content, a lack of show-stopping bugs, the ability to play it on a wide variety of games.The reasons that Age of Conan, Warhammer and every other "WoW-killer" didn't is because of a failure to live up to these minimum expectations.People don't want every MMO to be WoW. They just want, realistically or not, for every game to treat the player at least as well as Blizzard does, in return for their dollar.
2-14-2011 @ 8:26PM
I really look forward to both of those also. We already have wow, and wow is actually a pretty old game. MMOs need some new ideas and I applaud games that take a new direction.
2-14-2011 @ 8:33PM
"It's hard to argue that he's wrong. The things that kill highly touted MMOs are the things they don't do that WoW had conditioned people to expect: content at every level, the ability to play in short bursts, an availability of both hardcore and casual content, a lack of show-stopping bugs, the ability to play it on a wide variety of games."That's kind of criteria for any game, not just an mmo and wow wasn't even the first to do that. Many of the games like Aion, Warhammer, the upcoming Rift, City of Heroes, etc... all meet those criteria. Giving people what they expect I guess is one way to win some people over but I'm not sure how many people really want to play Star Wars themed wow, when they already have so much invested in wow itself.
2-14-2011 @ 8:58PM
reading comprehension, you missed the point entirely
2-14-2011 @ 9:58PM
I don't think the OP missed the point at all. According to the version of this story over on Massively, Zeschuk was asked whether SWTOR is a WoW clone. This has become a increasing concern in the MMO blogosphere, not because Bioware simply embraces Blizzard's high quality standards and populist approach to game design, but because SWTOR's gameplay seems entirely WoW-derivative to a lot of folks who have played it. People are questioning whether Bioware's focus on story and voiceover will be enough if the gameplay itself offers little or no innovation.That's why he was asked about it. If that's not what his answer was meant to address, he should've been more clear. As it stands, "established standards" including "how you play an MMO" could mean just about anything.
2-14-2011 @ 10:59PM
@Loopy GarouI read this when it first popped up on Massively, and a lot of the comments thought that Massively took the quote out of context. There's a more in-depth summary of it than Massively posted on Gamespot, which I'll quote:"Zeschuk began by noting that World of Warcraft remains the touchstone in the industry, and it proves that big games still work. He also said that because of WOW's influence, it is important to maintain the standards that the game established.That said, Zeschuk noted that anyone who plays Star Wars: The Old Republic will see that it is a BioWare game."http://www.gamespot.com/events/dice2011/story.html?sid=6298424&tag=latestheadlines;title;1
2-15-2011 @ 12:48AM
The problem with this argument is that Blizzard has had six years to understand and polish their game. There's six years of development here, driven by player feedback. If you make a game which is very much like WoW, and release it, you're not going to be as polished by definition. WoW was very shaky out of the gate, itself. I want to emphasise: the MMOs people are holding up as the Great White Hope -- Rift, TELA, TOR, Guild Wars 2 -- all of these games are going to have issues of some kind when they come out. It's part and parcel of building an MMO.And so everyone's going to go "this is terrible" and WoW is still there, not going anywhere, with the network effects that come from having lots of players. Launch is the time when you have the best chance to make a good impression, and being a less-good version of WoW is not the way to go about it.The only way a new MMO can possibly have a chance is to be *different* from WoW. It may not be as polished a game, players will think, but it offers something I can't get anywhere else. That way, players are likely to stick around for long enough for the development team to shore up the most glaring weaknesses, and, if they quit in disgust, more likely to give the game another go later on.
2-15-2011 @ 2:22AM
Let's face it: to sit up there on that panel, next to Morhaime, and say anything other than what he said would have been total lunacy.All due respect.
2-15-2011 @ 9:09AM
I know what you're saying but it's not what its meant to be understood from this. The main topic here is quality. Everyone knows how polished and top quality WoW is, even WoW haters know this, and most of them hate the fact that very few companies can keep up with the level of quality WoW has and everyone now expects.Like the author says: "he discussed how players expect a set of established standards that WoW has provided. Be it a sense of completion of polish, a game mechanic, core concepts, or even art direction and fluidity of art theme, World of Warcraft set the bar very high for other game developers and even Blizzard itself."The big problem is, like you said, when these standards lead to cloning WoW (Runes of Magic and RIFT comes to mind), even if they have their unique systems (like RIFT's Soul System). THAT is not a good a idea, and this is where I think NCSoft stands apart with Guildwars 2. NCSoft is a smaller company than Blizzard, but they have pretty high standars too and a great degree of polish. Their storytelling is pretty good and character design is amazing. They can not only live to the high standards established by WoW, but they're also bringing in (so far) something completely new. THIS is a good idea, and NOT cloning WoW.Every site out there (except this one, thank god) is reporting "BioWare admits that TOR is a WoW Clone"... that's not a good idea either.
2-15-2011 @ 10:01AM
@Oteo - Thanks for the link. It does give a little more context to the conversation. If he's really just talking about quality standards and broad design philosophy, I certainly agree with him on that subject. But ... the growing perception that SWTOR is too WoW-derivative isn't just coming from this quote, it's mostly coming from people who have played the game at shows and such. I just wish Bioware would do something to address that concern. Seems like a lot of people are gradually losing interest in SWTOR as time goes on, and I think this is the main reason.
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