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Why I like WoW - Part 1

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Having never played a MMORPG until a few days ago, I can honestly say that they never appealed to me. "They" is a fairly blanket term, as MMORPG could mean anything from a glorified chatroom to a fully fledge multi-person adventure game. I used to play a couple of solo RPGs, the most notable being Morrowind, so I felt that World of Warcraft would offer me nothing. Having tried it on the 10 days trial, I immediately went out and bought the boxed copy - it's that good.

The MMO side of it is fairly meaningless to me at present, my interaction with other player characters has been minimal as I'm still in the early character levels. I can, however, say that the game itself has enthralled me. The backstory is detailed and interesting and the quests are excellent so far. Unlike Morrowind, I've found that I can jump into the game and see lots of things, make a fair amount of progress and still have lots more to do - Morrowind always felt empty to me.

When I've levelled up enough, I'm really looking forward to playing some mutli-person quests and instances - this is where I think the game will really shine, with each person having to take a specific role within the game and perform it well to keep the team working. I've never experienced this yet, so when I do I hope it'll be pleasurable. I'm on the RP PvP servers, so human interaction will start being more frequent when I move out of the safety zones - if only because I'll get my n00b ass owned on ;)

What strikes me now more than ever is that the people who jump onto GDNet wanting to make a MMORPG have really got their work cut out for them. I'm not talking about getting the network system, the graphics systems, the person interaction - I imagine that's just fairly 'normal' game stuff to do. What they haven't thought out is the content. With World of Warcraft, Blizzard have got stacks and stacks of the stuff. Content, polish and style oozes out of the entire game - it's this which I think the wannabe MMORPG coders take for granted. It's the same with many other games though, but with the MMORPG games you want people to stay around for a while. And for that, you're gonna need content to keep them there.
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I've never played an MMORPG either (the curse of having a crappy home internet connection), so I don't fully understand what the big attraction is for all the newbies here. I generally have to say to myself "Remember what you thought of FPS games back when you were a teenager playing Doom? That's what MMORPGs are to the kids of today". The main difference was that back then you actually could make a decent FPS if you were a really skilled teenager (example: Ken's Labyrinth).

However I'd like to try one some day to see what the fuss is all about. While I'd like to try World of Warcraft since everyone seems to have played it, I'd also like to try Puzzle Pirates for a more casual look at MMORPGs.

Do people in game actually roleplay to any degree, or do their actions break the immersion of the Warcraft world?

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It depends on the server type. There's 4 in World of Warcraft.

Normal PvE (Player vs Environment)
Role Play (RP) PvE
Normal PvP (Player versus Player)
and RP PvP

Basically, the Role Play server are designed for people to RP and stay in character; these are the ones that I play. The 'normal' and straight (non-RP) PvP will be the servers where people go to 'pwn' people, especially the PvP servers.

I like the Role Play aspect of it, so I stay in those Realms.

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I'm going to use you as my example why NOT to get into MMORPG's [grin]

If you can get sucked in so quickly then I simply have to avoid them - I've already got too many things competing for my spare time!

Back to C&C for me...

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Hey downgraded:

Just wondering how they "enforce" that people "stay in character"? Are there incentives, or does that fact that it's supposed to be for Role-Playing police itself?

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I think there's moderators, but generally people who want to RP go on the RP servers. Anyone else will be recommended other servers. Most people I've seen on the RP servers have been roleplaying somewhat (like me).

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There is some slight enforcement on the RP servers, at least as far as naming policies. While people do create characters with stupid, out-of-character names even on RP servers, it is possible to report idiotic names to GMs and force a name change. I play almost solely on an RP server, and while I never bother complaining about names, I have seen a number of instances of people being forced to change their names.

downgraded, you gotta try the multi-player group stuff, man. Even at low levels, it's still a lot of fun to get in a 5-man dungeon group to melt some monster faces. While solo play can be fun, WoW really shines for me in the coop play. And it only gets better when you hit maximum level and start joining raid groups of 10 or 25 people. (Before the expansion, there were 40-man raid dungeons as well.) Just as 5-mans are a completely different play experience from solo questing, raids are a completely different experience from 5-mans.

And on an RP server, you don't have to worry about being ambushed by enemy faction players. You have to explicitly flag yourself for PvP on an RP server before the enemy can get you. Only on the PvP and RP-PvP servers is PvP mandatory.

If you ever roll a character on the Thorium Brotherhood server, I have a level 70 undead warlock named Gidianhi and a 62 undead mage named Corihor there; stop in and say hi. [grin]

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