Five MMOs I’d be playing if I had all of the time in the world (which I don’t)

eso

I don’t care who you are — there ain’t none of us who have the time to do more than either scratch at the surface of a handful of MMOs or really dig deep into one or two of them. Even if you’re so “fortunate” as to have few responsibilities and copious amounts of free time.

Well, unless you’re this lady from NCIS, who apparently figured out how to beat all MMOs:

“You hold the high score in virtually every massively multiplayer online roleplaying game!”

Man, that clip never fails to crack me up.

While I certainly wouldn’t trade my job and family for something as frivolous as having more time just to game, it doesn’t stop me from creating impossible hypothetical situations in my mind such as, “If I had as much gaming time in a day as I wanted, what other MMOs would I play?”

As it stands now, I’m pretty contained into three games: Star Trek Online, World of Warcraft, and The Secret World. I feel like I have a great balance going and can dip lightly into each of these to pursue various goals. But if I was to add more to the pile without concern for time, here’s what I might tackle:

Elder Scrolls Online

This is probably just because ESO has had a good run of news lately, but I’ll admit to always being attracted to/impressed by MMOs that have fleshed out content offerings, have a thriving community, and are showing signs of future growth. ESO has all of these in spades, and perhaps if I had gobs of time, I could end up liking this game as much as any other MMO. My one and only foray into it was rough and unimpressive, but first impressions aren’t always spot-on.

Fallen Earth

Yeah, Fallen Earth probably doesn’t have many years ahead of it or great amounts of future content, but it’s pretty much the best post-apocalyptic MMO out there and one that I had a great time playing. It’s also a total time gobbler, so that’s kept me from heading back into it. I just miss riding my horse across the irradiated wild west and blasting mutated hermit crabs with my shotgun.

Dungeons and Dragons Online

It’s been a very long time since I played this regularly, but I still haven’t come across an MMO that’s quite like this one. The focus on dungeon runs, the dual campaigns, the free-form character creation, the dungeon master, the passionate community… these are all speak in favor of DDO’s worth. And Turbine keeps adding onto it, too. Probably more content in that game right now than I could get out of it in a couple of years of hardcore playing.

EverQuest 2

I and all of the fortune tellers and industry analysts in the world couldn’t tell you what Daybreak has in store for the EverQuest franchise at this point (if anything). The premature demise of EverQuest Next is still rippling out across the MMO community, sending the impression that the lineage of EverQuest has come to a sad end with Landmark.

Yet there’s still EverQuest 2 and it’s still getting expansions and some dev love. This has always been one of those MMOs that I feel that, in a parallel universe, I would be totally into. It certainly checks all of the boxes of my wish list, has a vibrant playerbase, and is so packed with content at this point that it’s almost intimidating to consider playing. Which is probably why I don’t.

RIFT

I’ve always seen RIFT as a “safety” MMO. If I’m disillusioned or burned out on whatever I’m playing, there’s always RIFT to go back to. Good comfort gaming: lots of features, regular updates, and that sweet, sweet soul system. I think back to the first year or two of playing this game and trigger all sorts of nostalgic love for the fun I had in the game. I never stick around long when I do go back, but I usually have a great time.

So what about you? If time wasn’t a restrictive factor, what additional games would you be playing (if anything)?

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17 thoughts on “Five MMOs I’d be playing if I had all of the time in the world (which I don’t)

  1. Aywren June 17, 2016 / 9:14 am

    ESO and WildStar both remain installed on my PC, even though I haven’t touched them in a year or so. FFXIV and my Free Company keep me too busy to even slide in single player games most the time, much less another MMO. 😦

  2. romeomoon June 17, 2016 / 10:01 am

    Since the closing of CoH, LOTRO and Rift have become my go-to MMOs. Anarchy Online is always installed on at least one of my computers. Although I’ve just finished the Heart of Thorns storyline missions in Guild Wars 2, there’s still plenty of the open world and the personal stories I haven’t experienced. I also just reinstalled WoW, even though all I do is grind open world quests and wander around. I saw the movie this past Tuesday and actually really enjoyed it, although it has it’s flaws.

  3. othnieltcs June 17, 2016 / 10:33 am

    I think my 5 would be:

    1) Neverwinter
    2) The Secret World
    3) The Elder Scrolls Online
    4) Rift
    5) Guild Wars 2

    The fact that I’d need to buy and sub to FFXIV kept it off my list, but needing to buy TESO didn’t… hmmmm.
    What am I playing now? WOW mainly, a bit of SWTOR here and there. Those have really been my only MMOs for about 2 years now

  4. Tyler F.M. Edwards June 17, 2016 / 10:49 am

    I second ESO. Pretty much the only reason I stopped playing was lack of time. Something had to be cut, and ESO basically just drew the short straw. It’s not a brilliant game, but it doesn’t give one much cause for complaint either, and it’s got a nice old school adventure feel. Wander around, explore, find weird and interesting things. Also liked the crafting.

    ST:O and The Division are also games I may add to the line-up if I can find the time.

  5. Sylow June 17, 2016 / 11:12 am

    Your point of view to ESO and Fallen Earth are points on.

    ESO is not bad, just not good enough to warrant the time investment, as long as I have TSW and GW2 available.

    For Fallen Earth I also fully agree, I was in the closed beta and did not buy it afterwards. While it was a good game, it was also such a massive time grave that had to understand that I could never invest as much time as the game demanded while maintaining a life outside of it, so I let it go.

    My next games on the list would be DCU (I spend an evening there every other month or so, but that’s it) and in theory STO, although all the changes they made actually are more likely to drive me out of the game again the moment I log into it, than to pull me back in.

  6. Atheren June 17, 2016 / 12:00 pm

    Currently only playing Wow and Lord of the Rings Online. Installed Neverwinter on my laptop this week, peeked into Secret World, would like to be playing Rift and Guild Wars 2. Thinking of picking ESO up if it’s on the Steam sale.

  7. Ocho June 17, 2016 / 12:15 pm

    I’ve been disappointed in ESO. Probably just a bout of “too high expectations”, but when I came out, I expected it to be more than just a hub-to-hub themepark. BUT with the news of “One Tamriel”, I can see giving it another serious shot come autumn.

    My list, though, is a bit different. Like you, I’m playing TSW and STO fairly seriously (lifetimes will do that), with a helping of Marvel Heroes on the side (still working on my MH spreadsheet to get a better plan going with it)

    1) Guild Wars 2 – always liked the story elements, but the $60 for the expansion, the raids, and the “zerg or die” mentality tend to turn me off.
    2) DDO – same reasons you have. I’m more of a soloer, but DDO doesn’t have an issue with soloing much these days.
    3) Shroud of the Avatar – just waiting for it to be a little more “baked”, really. Then hopefully I can fit it in somewhere.
    4) Defiance – solid shooter. Although Division is finally starting to pique my curiosity now that the game locusts have moved on from it, and the bigger holes are being hammered out.
    5) LOTRO – Always liked LOTRO’s book-style story, but all the times I tried, I just couldn’t push past the Weathertop zone. That’s always where the hub-style made me lose interest.

    And 6)… to write more. Believe it or not, I have… just not on my own site. Been expanding outward, but I still need to write more. Finding the motivation to do so, though, is so tough when A) I’m not a crowd follower, so B) who would be interested in reading about old news, C) if very few come to read, then D) why am I writing if nobody’s going to read it, which makes the E) time investment with little compensation seem futile.

  8. Tesh June 17, 2016 / 12:59 pm

    Guild Wars 2, Wildstar, Star Trek Online, DDO and maybe RIFT. Wizard 101 and Puzzle Pirates get bonus mention. MechWarrior Online too, though it’s a bit of a different animal.

  9. bhagpuss June 17, 2016 / 2:54 pm

    “If time wasn’t a restrictive factor” – ALL of them.

    As far as new MMOs go I do tend to give everything that interests me a try so I can’t think of any fresh titles I know about that I haven’t already looked at. I do hear of new ones quite often though.

    Given just the 24 hour day we have now, the ones I feel like taking another run at right now would be WoW, STO and RIFT. Of MMOs I’ve never played I suppose I might get around to SW:toR eventually, just out of completionism.

    Also, if Turbine would sort themselves out and sell a real max-level character boost in their store I’d buy that and go see all the places I haven’t seen yet. I’m definitely not going to level through them to do that, though – LotRO is the only MMO ever to give me really painful RSI and I’m not risking that again.

    Oh, and I suppose I ought to at least do the free trial for EVE one day although I have an extremely low interest in any kind of internet spaceship games.

  10. Coppertopper June 17, 2016 / 3:28 pm

    @OCHO
    Defiance! I was trying to remember the game that Division reminds me of. If you took away all the large group zone events, removed all zones but one large city, made all npc enemies have the same character model but with different colored skin – you would basically be playing The Division. So yea – save your money is my advice.

  11. Shintar June 17, 2016 / 6:32 pm

    ESO for me too. I actually bought a physical copy off Amazon once the price dropped low enough because I liked what I had seen in the beta, but I never even installed it.

  12. Jeromai June 17, 2016 / 10:01 pm

    I’ve been looking at TESO lately too. It’s almost feeling like the time is here to pick it up. It’s had time to work out some kinks, gone buy-to-play?, and I’m losing the obsessional devotion to my main game so I will have some free time to mess around solo on other games. Maybe during the next good sale.

    If I had all the time in the world, I’d try to make room for The Secret World too, if only for the solo quests. And Path of Exile, which ain’t strictly an MMO, but something I’ll always be happy to play in spurts.

  13. Telwyn June 18, 2016 / 4:42 am

    Hmm, even thinking about this is likely to tempt me back into playing something again 😉

    1) Everquest 2 – always get drawn back in to this game.
    2) ESO – as many have said, it’s a pretty good game that’s getting steadily improved.
    3) STO – I’ve not sunk enough time in this game to get that hooked. But it is Star Trek and the split between ground and space can be refreshing.
    4) Rift – I really should play more Rift, since I love the soul system and my highest character is still trapped in Storm Legion…
    5) Neverwinter – it’s a good fun game to play with friends. I’d like to return someday to see the more recent campaigns.

  14. Dave Andrews (@proceduraldave) June 19, 2016 / 4:07 pm

    If time weren’t an issue, I’d definitely be diving more heavily into World of Warcraft, back into ESO, and I’d check out that Warhammer Online private server I keep hearing about, as well as SWTOR.

    Right now, Eve is nominally the MMO of record for me, but honestly I’m fading back off of it as time is a factor in reality. I’d also really like to seriously check out The Secret World one of these days.

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