Is World of Warcraft Causing the MMO Genre to Stagnate?

Given the fact that there is another major MMO release upon us this month (Aion, on September 22), it begs the question once more - will it be a "WoW killer"? Last year, the same question was asked near the release of a few majorly hyped MMO titles such as Warhammer Online and Conan. Neither of those did so hot, to be honest. We've seen MMOs come, claiming to be able to topple, or at least compete with, the king of the hill. Yet, time and again all that big talk is lost in the wind of the WoW-dominated MMO market...

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BROOKLYN N-M-E3046d ago

But it's true. I think it happens in other genres as well. Not to long go Halo was the king of the hill of all FPS, then came along Cod4 MW and the rest was history. Eventually something will come along an crush WoW, but it's anyones guess as how long it will take for something like that to come along.

Baka-akaB3046d ago

I dont think it's true at all .

Before Wow came along actually the genre was stagnating . Asides from some games most people forgot or dont know that most mmo were grind centric and only offered quests as some afterthought ... or had very cumbersome interfaces with only the best parts stolen from EQ .

Now you can go read any new mmo's previews or interviews , it's all about the type and numbers or quests , when it used to be exploration and freedom .

How can the genre be stagnating when even the most rigid and unmoving genres of mmo : the asian ones , are morphing beyond recognition .
Take Ncsoft they star pupil lineage ? A pure grind fest with hardly regulated pvp ... today ? They got their own WoW : aion with still lots of grind , but heavily borrowing from wow and other western mmos in the pve department .

It even forces free mmos to evolve .

People should care less about who's on top . With mmo being such a long process to develop , and with players falling into habits , today's winner will always remains on top for a few years .

EQ's dominance didnt halt the evolution of mmos , nor does WoW... they actually propelled it , along others

Leathersoup3046d ago

World of Warcraft is not causing the genre to stagnate. No other company wants to put the effort and thought into their game design to ensure that it can compete with WoW.
When Blizzard made World of Warcraft they made sure that it was well made, that it's fun to play and that it ran on virtually any computer out there regardless of how powerful it is.
All these new companies putting out games aren't making their games accessible and as such they won't attract as many players as WoW has.
If the genre is stagnating, it's not the fault of WoW. It's because no other company will think things through properly.

iiprotocolii3046d ago

So true in so many ways. There are so many great MMO's out there that have not been recognized because of the overcasting shadow that WoW has on everything else. Games like LOTRO being one of them (although the interface is uglier than Carrot Top).

Baka-akaB3046d ago (Edited 3046d ago )

I'm not convinced ...
Ok it was an hyped game , but AOC didnt suffer much from wow , if at all .

It's undoing was it's own crappy launch , numerous technical issues , lies about promised content etc etc .
And still it stands and even revived .

WoW doesnt affect Guild wars or Eve online neither , among many others

I believe that most games got roughly their peak population without being affected truly by WoW .

Had wow not been there , more than half of it's population wouldnt be playing mmo , at least not yet . An things wouldnt be redistributed like some people seems to believe

iiprotocolii3046d ago

will never lose it's threshold in the MMO market. Just when players begin to experience sheer boredom, Blizzard releases a patch or an expansion that re-inspires players to stay latched on. Look at Cataclysm, for example. New classes; new races; and new areas. Wow isn't going anywhere anytime soon.

BROOKLYN N-M-E3046d ago

That DC Universe online can come close to this juggernaut of a game!

taz80803046d ago

DC looks like fun. But I think it will be more like city of heroes than a WoW killer

Staircase3046d ago

I think this article hits the nail right on the head. However, i think WoW also brings a lot of people into the MMO genre also.

Aion is a very powerful MMO, and the beta was extremely promising. Would defiantly recommend anyone who is a fan of MMORPGs check it out. It can be compared to WoW in some ways, but i think that it really is it's own game, and it's korean roots really show.

Chadness3046d ago (Edited 3046d ago )

I agree that WoW brings a lot of gamers into the MMO market, that definitely was never disputed. But competition does breed innovation, and, whether we should care about what game is on top or not, WoW has next to no competition.

Take player housing, for example. WoW devs have stated that it's on the back burner. If another MMO comes along that has that feature and gets millions of subscribers in the first couple years, you can bet Blizzard will make it a priority. Not that player housing is innovative at this point, it just illustrates the point I was trying to get across.

Baka-akaB3046d ago (Edited 3046d ago )

That's simply not true . Wow has plenty competition , its just that you guys judge a games by it's millions of customers . And even when it does have millions , you dismiss it for some shallow reason like Guild Wars , or lineage .

hell it's _indeed irrelavant when WoW rather created its own fanbase rather than steal from others or suffocate them imo

You gave an example yourself , when a mmo bring something along wow copies it . And it's exactly what happened , plenty features have been copied for various games over the courses of addons and big patches .

Hell right around at Warhammer's release , they were smart enough to implement some of it's features .

I can only smile at the whole stagnation thing ...when WoW itself is hardly the same than it was at it's release .

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