July 6: Spud Rants

I just checked out a new browser mmorts and was greeted with the phrase, “Conquer the World”.  I thought it interesting yet annoying since I have never once seen, heard, nor smellt anyone who has conquered all of anything in any mmorts!

When was the last time you saw something that read, “Alpha Spud eliminates all players, claims all lands in Evony III: just like the last one?

If you read something like that, then 24-hours later you should also have seen, Evony III: just like the last one loses 80% of player base, shuts down operation”

*’Evony III: just like the last one’ is not a real game, just to illustrate a point

I think that by now, game makers and marketers would admit to everyone the fact that they never meant any single person or group of persons to “conquer” anything close to “the World.”  Also, when mmorts players see that phrase, do they think, “Yeah, this time I’m gonna win it all!”, or do they think, “Jeez, should I or shouldn’t I?…” while pulling dandelion petals one by one?  Alpha Spud thinks the latter applies to many gamers tired of delusional rhetoric aimed at capturing a majority of gullible, non-rts gamers, while dumbing down what should be a great gaming experience for a cool genre.

“Now wait, Spud! This is a free game and companies that provide the Evonies and Caesaries out there are trying to increase their player populations, thus raising the chances of getting paying players.  Players are still players regardless of play experience! They couldn’t have the game at all unless they use corny yet effective one-liners like that, and if they didn’t, there’d be no f2p or p2p games.”  is what you might say.

Screw that.

If I’m going to devote time to an endless cycle of “build, get raided, attack, get repelled, repeat” then I want the game to tell me that’s exactly what will happen, but also that they will deliver that experience in a unique and engaging way.

Also, I don’t care that the game developers and publishers need to make a buck to justify development and (poorly) marketing a game.  If they don’t start respecting their community of core gamers, who might as well be vegging out on the couch reading terrible blogs like this one, then they shouldn’t be in the business.

It’s no wonder console games, retail computer games and Facebook games are so huge — the first two actually bust their behinds to make a good product and they market it just like that; while the third makes no effort hide the fact that the games are brightly colored wastes of time.

OK, deep breath…heee…phoo.   Alpha Spud respects the fact that some quality games are available for cheap/free and that developers and publishers alike need to cover dev./licensing costs via subscriptions or micro-payments.  But when push comes to shove, Spud demands that games get better in terms of uniqueness, stickiness, and intangible value in order for players like myself to justify my commitment of time.  Being put in the same barrel of players who don’t play seriously and being told I can win it all when that is impossible, is a pretty big gear grinder.

As always, Spud invites you disagree.


~ by Red 5 Standing By on July 6, 2010.

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