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So, World of Warcraft is another "massively multiplayer online role-playing game". What makes it interesting for meatball is its solution to the traditional problems of MMORPGs, at least according to interviews and demos.

They're going to "cheat", by providing, to what they say is a much greater extent than existing systems, a large number of pre-designed activities ("quests") for players to take part in, rather than relying on spontaneous player-invented structures and tasks. An MMO is a game, not a social experiment. A Gamespy review explained that MMOs shouldn't be about a designer playing god and seeing what all his little ants do in his digital ant farm. Similarly, rather than setting the foundations for a complex player-built economy to arise from the ground up, with prices that vary according to supply and demand, just hack it with lots of [NPC]s to buy and sell to [1].

The logic behind this position is that, yes, CommunitySolutions can work. However, just because you can build a MMORPG by relying heavily on social effects and reputation and suchlike to keep difficult people in check, doesn't mean that you should do. Just because people, left to their own devices, will make their own entertainment, doesn't mean that you shouldn't create lots of entertainment already. Especially given that one person's entertainment is another person's grief.

It might seem that doing all this is bad FeatureKarma... but maybe it isn't. We say "do the simplest thing that could possibly work", and while community solutions are technically simple, they are socially very complex. They're also incomprehensible to those people who are heavily TaskFocus?sed, who make up a sizeable minority of the population. To some extent, the designers are distracting those task-focussed people (and those in a task-focussed mood) with an abundance of pre-existing task-orientated content, which will free up the people-focussed people to get into a community unimpeded.

The other strategy they're following is to EnlargeSpace - "instanced" versions of dungeons, etc, so it's easy to opt-out of the multiplayer aspects of WoW? and treat it as a single player game that just happens to be online. So, if you don't want to deal with a player-based economy, stick to the NPC traders. If you don't care for player-generated quests, stick to the game-provided ones, which will probably be better anyway. If you don't want to talk, turn talk off. If you don't want to adventure in the company of others, go to instanced dungeons.

You can't really run instances alone (for reasonable rewards). Usually, you take the maximum number of people who can share the quests (5 in early instances); I've only once finished an instance with four people. Good thought, though. Also, well-organized questing accounts for half, sometimes more, of most players' experience.

-- AnonymousDonor ( JesseMillikan? )

Welcome AnonymousDonor. I inserted "AnonymousDonor", because MeatballWiki is a community, caring for RealNames. Thank you for your contribution. You would make probably a lot of people more happy, if you signed with your Real Name. For reducing search time of peers, possibly not familiar with your used Acronym, the author inserted an external link into your article. -- FridemarPache

Yeah, I frequently forget the name thing. --JesseMillikan?



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