While I would argue vigorously against those who would say that MMOs are dead or dying, I won’t deny that the industry is in a different place right now than it was even three years ago.
I mean, it really wasn’t that long ago that we had some big budget power-hitters heading our way — games like WildStar, SWTOR, GW2, ESO, and the like. There have always been smaller games in the works, but those big, full-featured, mostly traditional (if with a twist) MMOs had our attention.
And now that they’ve come out, there’s been little changing of the guard. There simply aren’t many major traditional MMOs coming. Instead, the industry’s shifted to the crowdfunded titles, the sandbox MMOs, and the quasi-MMOs (like Star Citizen). It’s not bad in the least that these games are being made — I for one am celebrating that we seem to be past the era of the WoW clone and are seeing developers free to make the games they want to instead of trying to ape a very specific formula.
I think there’s a lot of excitement to be found in the promise of games like Crowfall, Shroud of the Avatar, and Camelot Unchained. I’m bowled over that extremely small development teams are able to pull off ridiculously full-featured indie titles like Ascent and Project Gorgon. And it’s not as if the existing crop of MMOs are all going to suddenly stop coming out with updates, expansions, and events.
But still… it would be cool if tomorrow there were two or three really big projects announced. I don’t know where from — only Cryptic and Daybreak have unannounced projects that I know about. There’s EverQuest Next, but saying that you’re looking forward to that game is like claiming a deep belief in the chocolatey power of the Easter Bunny. I deeply hope that game is being made and will be released but… yeah, I’ll believe it when I see it.
Any of you miss the big upcoming games, the big hype, the big press, and the big anticipation? What would you love to wake up and find out is being made? For me, I wouldn’t mind a Fallout Online, although that’ll probably never happen.