Saturday Soapbox: Death of the MMORPG

MMORPGs had a good run. There’s no shame in admitting their time in the sun is over, and that it’s time to package the whole genre into a small cardboard box, label it ‘Fond Memories’, and slide it under the bed with classic adventures and those little dancing flower things that seemed like magic back in the ’80s.

Obviously, yes, plenty of MMORPGs are doing just fine right now. World of Warcraft boasts over 10 million players, and at least a few of them aren’t just there because they can’t be bothered to cancel. Guild Wars 2, Eve Online and several of the games that have just turned F2P are doing fine, and would be crazy to shut themselves down just to help me make my point. It would be nice though, if any of them are listening. Blizzard? Hello?

That’s not the issue though. People still make adventure games, and do well from them. That doesn’t mean it’s still a top-tier genre, and largely for the same reason – people still play them, but the numbers failed to scale along with the industry. Once upon a time, MMORPG numbers were the gold standard for online user-bases, when a million was an impossible number that AAA games dreamed of hitting over time.

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  • This Post originally appeared on:
  • Eurogamer.net
  • Bad puns and video games since 1999.
  • Originally dated as:
  • 17 Nov 2012 08:00:00 +0000