Ruining MMO IP’s Before Their Time
If you’ve been involved in MMO gaming during the last 10 years you’re undoubtedly aware of the huge leaps in technology since the conception of the online genre. If we compare the early browser-based MMO games with the latest browser titles, there are massive differences across the board. The same can be said for the larger, more in-depth client-based MMO games. Every year a new MMO is released that adds more features, deeper mechanics and more impressive technology.
However, there are some games that have missed those technological leaps, resulting in the waste of potentially huge IPs. The easiest MMO games to come to mind are Star Trek Online and Star Wars Galaxies. Both of these games are supported by franchises that have survived decades, attracted millions of fans and widely considered a financial success in almost every way imaginable.
There are people on Earth that would likely burn me alive for saying this but despite their fan base differences, both Star Wars and Star Trek share many similarities. The massive variations between species, the huge amount of inhabitable planets that each house their own cultures and beliefs, and of course the exciting science-fiction based technology; all of these features have helped define the 2 power house franchises of the science-fiction world.
Despite the fact that both have spawned successful MMO titles, I felt both would have benefited from an advancement in technology currently not available to us. Imagine exploring a dynamically created universe, actually discovering new things that other players have never laid eyes on. There are certain features today that support the very base of this idea, but automatically generated content is usually considered to be dull, unimaginative and lackluster.
Who knows where MMO gaming will take us in the next 10 years. The next-gen consoles could bring a new lease of life to the genre and a whole new generation of developers will be tackling the online world. The Elder Scrolls Online is another title that’s launching before its time. Sadly I cannot discuss further details at the moment but for all intents and purposes, it feels very much like your typical MMO of today.
Making matters worse is the lack of faith developers have in an IP after a failed attempt. It’s probably going to be a while before another Star Trek or Star Wars MMO is released, which leaves many fans disheartened. Maybe someone, someday will be able to do a famous IP justice.