Your Guide to MMOs - Part 2
First, a list of the most popular existing MMORPG games in the world. This data is probably close to 6–9 months old, but it’s very difficult to gather the numbers in recent-up-to-the-minute format. These are sorted and categorized by the “number of subscribers”, which I tend to agree as being the best indicator of the popularity of an MMO. However, I’m not going to list the number of subscribers because the most “reliable” source I could find was actually in a linear graph form, and I can’t even tell what the numbers are. I can make out the order though, and they make sense to me.
- World of Warcraft
- Lineage/Lineage 2
- Final Fantasy XI
- Dofus (I’ll admit, I’ve never even heard of this game.)
- EVE Online
- Lord of the Rings Online
- Dark Age of Camelot
- Everquest/Everquest 2
- Ultima Online
I also learned that Age of Conan got up to 1 million subscribers in it’s first three months. And then it died. Completely. I guess the game didn’t improve from the time I played it. Sad. I loved the world. Also, I think that perhaps a few new ones are missing that might have made the list. Not sure though, but you get the idea here.
Now, it’s also important to mention that only two of the games in this list are newer than WoW: Dofus and LOTR Online.
And I can’t take it anymore…what the FUCK is Dofus? Let’s just have a google at it and…OH GOD MY EYES! THEY BURN! Okay then. Now I know. Dofus is an interactive cartoon. Now I’m scarred for life. Wonderful.
Moving on. Looking at the list, I agree with the number of subscribers in WoW. I’ve reviewed/seen/played the other games in that list, and it’s my opinion that WoW is certainly the best in terms of just about everything — gameplay, graphics, etc. Most importantly, though, I think it’s the development team that keeps the game where it’s at. The content changes constantly. Not yearly. Not monthly. All the time. Sometimes, I think the game actually moves too fast. But it keeps people interested and it keeps them playing. Obviously.
Now, I do have a more recent list with some of the newer MMOs listed. I’ll list these as honorable mentions:
- Warhammer Online
- City of Heroes / City of Villains
Next, I took a look at a full list of MMOs and found ones released either this year or within the past year. Here is a list of games that potentially could make the top ten list in another six months to a year and are in no particular order:
- Pirates of the Burning Sea
- Age of Conan (I already mentioned this as probably being dead, but it’s relatively new so I’ll list it here.)
- Runes of Magic
- The Chronicles of Spellborn
- Champions Online
And finally, it’s time for the list of MMOs that are not released yet, which I think have the potential for being popular. Again, these are in no particular order.
- DC Universe Online
- Star Trek Online
- Final Fantasy XIV
- The Old Republic
- Guild Wars 2
So there you go, something to chew on for the next few months. One thing that I feel should be taken into consideration, however, is this: Game developers are realizing there’s a really big market out there for MMO games, and you’re going to see more of them than you ever have before. Also, the life-span of your typical MMO is in most cases considerably longer than your average computer game. I don’t know about anyone else, but I’ll play through a shooter or an action game once. Maybe twice. Very few have I played over and over. MMOs are different, because they basically never end and you just keep playing them. For these reasons, the market is only going to continue to get more crowded. Because of that, I don’t think you will ever see any one MMO game reach the number of subscribers that WoW has reached. The market will simply be too saturated to allow this.
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