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IADaveMark

1st, 2nd, 3rd generation MMORPG?

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Really just the times they come out.

Typically, a technology comes out in waves: There were a bunch of 1st gen DVD players (for example) that were expensive and sucked (ugh. Remember the video/audio sync problems?), sometime later, 2nd gen that were cheaper but still sucked, and now 3rd gen and 4th that are finally starting to get it right.

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Rube    122
Personally,

I consider the MUD, MUSH, MUCK, DikuMUD, etc programs First Generation to MMORPG, but usually that''s now what they talk about it and instead go based on how one game concept captures users (never seen a MUD with over 100,000 users) =(

Then there are the first graphical online systems, like the D&D one (what was its name?) and Meridian54(graphical, right? Never played it personally). I would consider these 2nd Generation.

3rd Generation I would place on UO, EQ, DAoC, AO, etc. I really don''t see anything that technically interesting between them all (except that UO->EQ was a much improved jump in performance and stability, if not in gameplay).

But, usually when you hear First gen, Second gen, it''s spouted by the Marketing departments and they seem to usually speak this way:

First Generation = UO
Second Generation = EQ
Third Generation = AO, DAoC, Shadows of Luclin

To be honest, it''s all marketing talk, since most consumers respond well to the latest-greatest, everyone wants to be Generation X+1 =).

I''ll stick to my list:

First Generation = Text based RPGs
Second Generation = Early online graphical RPG games
Third Generation = The new 3D crop with in the last few years

I don''t think we''ll see fourth generation until someone comes up with some new paradigm in gameplay, technical specs, or graphical system (VR games?). Personally, while I love Online games, I''m starting to find the gameplay for the newer MMORPGs very repititious and similar to past games, just different graphics, different class names, and slightly different spells.

I did hear something about a RPG-FPS that might come out of the makers of EQ (was it them?) that might be a fourth-gen MMORPG, but haven''t heard much else since then. Personally, I think it might be doable with a good concept, but it''s probably going to hvae a very imbalanced player base. Hope not though.

R.

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ajoling    202
First Generation = Text based RPGs
Second Generation = Early online graphical RPG games
Third Generation = The new 3D crop with in the last few years

I think that''s about correct, I''m not sure about the 2nd Gen. It could have been text, with some graphical additions (like ''clothing'' your character, and it will become something like "xx has big sword and a dark sunglasses"

I tried to search on google for soem information, but couldn''t find anything actually (not that I searched _that_ thouroughly)

Alternatively, it could also be like Rube says, marketing.

eg...
Dune2 - 1st gen RTS
C&C - 2nd gen RTS
C&C:TS - 3rd gen

I could go on with FPS like this (Wolfenstein, Doom, Quake, UT, etc)..

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ajoling    202
First Generation = Text based RPGs
Second Generation = Early online graphical RPG games
Third Generation = The new 3D crop with in the last few years

I think that''s about correct, I''m not sure about the 2nd Gen. It could have been text, with some graphical additions (like ''clothing'' your character, and it will become something like "xx has big sword and a dark sunglasses"

I tried to search on google for soem information, but couldn''t find anything actually (not that I searched _that_ thouroughly)

Alternatively, it could also be like Rube says, marketing.

eg...
Dune2 - 1st gen RTS
C&C - 2nd gen RTS
C&C:TS - 3rd gen

I could go on with FPS like this (Wolfenstein, Doom, Quake, UT, etc)..

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core    106
quote:
Original post by Rube
I did hear something about a RPG-FPS that might come out of the makers of EQ (was it them?) that might be a fourth-gen MMORPG, but haven''t heard much else since then. Personally, I think it might be doable with a good concept, but it''s probably going to hvae a very imbalanced player base. Hope not though.



I know of a certain FPS MMORPG called Neocron. It''s being developed in Germany I believe, so I doubt it''s by the same people as EQ. A friend of mine is a beta tester, and he says the game''s pretty good but has its problems like any game does during testing.


"If people are good only because they fear punishment and hope for reward, then we are a sorry lot indeed." - Albert Einstein

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Dak Lozar    122
quote:
Original post by InnocuousFox
I recently saw a reference to "3rd gen" MMORPGs. What are considered the definitions that set them apart... perhaps some examples?

<SNIP>



I''m not sure what can be considered the 3rd generation of MMORPG''s - For one, ALIMHO, I don''t think that any of the "in development" MMORPG''s are pushing the envelope in terms of game play. When I look at the games that are currently available for us to play I place them all on the same level. What I mean is that UO (not the first but the first marketed with success) came along and then EQ. EQ, did bump the level in terms of 3D graphics but as far as the game play it really didn''t have any advances over UO.

After EQ came AC and again there really were not any advances. In fact both EQ and AC had less to offer in terms of player interaction than UO and in my opinion were a step back in that regard - the technology they used, UDP and 3D, were a step forward.

Following AC we have AO (the only game that I did not play). AO was more of the same; the futuristic time period that the game chose was a welcome change and the 3D graphics were a step forward but the network layer (TCP/IP) that they tried to use made the game virtually unplayable.

DAoC arrives. We rushed to the stores to buy this game... bought five copies of the game and started playing immediately. For me, being an avid UO player for four years, DAoC was the game that would let me slowly move away from UO, or so I thought. Don''t get me wrong, DAoC was a fantastic game and the 3D graphics engine that they utilized was amazing but the elements of game play that I thought would help sever my ties to UO were missing.

Now, what is the next generation of MMORPGs? I think the next evolutionary step in this genre is to give players more ownership in the content of the game and to allow for larger groups of players to interact and give them ways in which to do so. Actually I shouldn’t continue much further than this, as I would be giving away what we, at Elysian, are planning.


GLOSSARY
UO - Ultima Online
EQ - Everquest
AC - Asheron''s Call
AO - Anarchy Online
DAoC - Dark Ages of Camelot



Dave "Dak Lozar" Loeser

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Galshin    106
I would say that UO, EQ, AC, AO, DAOC, etc... are all 1st generation MMPOGs. (excluding any pre-existing online games, such as MUDs, etc... for simplicity)

I don''t think any of the ones on the horizon are 2nd generation yet, at least not that I know of. There are some that are taking the concept to different genres, such as planetside, but these are merely 1st generation MMPOGs in that particular genre.

As far as the RPG genre is concerned, I think in order to be a 2nd generation online RPG you need to throw away the current model. Take UO, EQ, etc... flush them down the toilet and start over. Consider these games a learning exercise, add them to your sum knowledge and experience, then proceed to rewrite the genre from scratch. Too many pending online RPG''s are trying to take Everquest and "evolve" it in one way or another, I think these games need to be revolutionized.

Remember, Everquest only has 350,000 (or there abouts) subscribers. This is a lot, but when compared to the # or people that play Diablo 2 on Battle Net it''s chump change. The point I am trying to make here is that MMPOG have yet to hit their peak success levels...

Enough rambling,
Galshin

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TheFez    151
1st gen: MUDS
2nd gen: EQ, AC, UO (the big three, well what use to be the big three)
3rd gen: AO, DAoC, Shadowbane, WW2O, Horizons, Star Wars Galaxies, Planetside, World of WarCraft, Asheron''s Call 2, Atriarch, hmm theres a bunch more just can''t think of their names. (dark majesty and Luclin don''t fall under this as they are only addons to older games)

Basically 3rd gen games are the newer ones. All the ones out thus far have been, well, terrible. AO, DAoC, WW2O were pushed out the door VERY buggy (heck, DAoC wouldn''t even run on my machine). They''re good games, just not exactly well thought out. Some of the other ones like SB, Horizon,SW:G,etc. aren''t out yet but they are still considered in the same catagory. And hopefully they will be better, seeing as how some of them have been in beta for about a year and a half now. Where as the others were in testing for maybe 5 months.

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fingh    142
Generally the industry considers MMORPGs of the first generation to be EQ and AC. You could say that UO and Meridian59 were precursors and even argue that they are part of the 1st gen of true MMORPGs. At the tail end of 1st gen would be AO and DAoC. Second generation MMORPGs are those that are currently far along in development, such as StarWars Galaxies. Graphically stunning. If you haven't seen the trailer yet go to their website and take a look. Gameplay looks like it will be quite different from traditional "MUD-based" MMORPGs. One could argue that DAoC is second generation, because it's graphics are (a little) nicer, and some new gameplay ideas were introduced (or old ones expanded?). But so far the lack of content seems to be hurting it as a wide success. (Yes, they are fairly successful, but competing against several years worth of content development in EQ prevents them from making real headway).

Third generation is a term that some people are throwing around in an attempt to make themselves sound cool. To call yourself 3rd Gen, you better be hot. If you're making it in your garage, you're probably not going to be 3rd Gen. I would think if there is a follow up to Everquest, it would be 3rd Gen. Based on the amount of content and the length of dev cycle, it would be quite advanced in comparison to what we see now. Sadly, Blizzards attempt into this MMORPG arena will probably be released alongside 3rd gen MMORPGs, while still relying on 2nd Gen technology. They are ALWAYS late. This is what happened with D2, and I really hope they get it together for WoWC. They are the only name in gaming that I could see denting the EQ strong tower. And that only if they release before their technology is ancient.

I hope this helps the original poster. You would probably get a better answer on one of the MUD development forums.

Don't get me wrong, text MUDs are obviously in the lineage of the modern MMORPG, but they are not true MMORPG so I wouldn't even consider them "1st gen". Text MUDs rock, I still visit some from time to time....

MMORPG / FPS = Planetside from Sony Online Entertainment (think Verant Interactive/EQ)
They also have StarWars Galaxies, and a MMORTS called Sovereign. Check out their websites. They have some other stuff going on too.

Fingh
I represent me, myself and I.

Edited by - fingh on January 14, 2002 11:10:40 PM

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IADaveMark    3731
The interesting point in all of this is that we have all identified different criteria that determine what an additional generation entails. For some, it''s the graphical representation. For others, it''s the technical network capabilities. Even level of gameplay immersion has woven itself into a "generation"... although that should just be considered a factor of the quality of the game. Anyway, that pretty much answers my question... I appreciate the feedback!

Dave Mark
Intrinsic Algorithm Development

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Rube    122
If I''m in marketing, I would go by date released =)

If I was an online RPG fan, I stand by my earlier idea. Even though MUDs aren''t graphical and don''t support very large numbers, I still argue they were the first multi-player online game experience outside of 4 people. They are also the first to provide an immersive environment (also criteria for MMORPG) where you have character development.

Interesting topic though =) All depends on what criteria ya use =)

R.

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krez    443
i think labeling anything as any generation is simply a marketing scam (well, "simply marketing" i guess, but i consider any form of marketing a scam)... there are no "generations" in computer games, as between any two games that someone defines as a "generation" apart there is at least one other game that has some of the features of both.

--- krez (krezisback@aol.com)

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IADaveMark    3731
quote:
Original post by krez
i think labeling anything as any generation is simply a marketing scam (well, "simply marketing" i guess, but i consider any form of marketing a scam)... there are no "generations" in computer games, as between any two games that someone defines as a "generation" apart there is at least one other game that has some of the features of both.

--- krez (krezisback@aol.com)



You''re a bitter, cynical little cuss, aren''t you?


Dave Mark
Intrinsic Algorithm Development

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krez    443
quote:
Original post by InnocuousFox
You''re a bitter, cynical little cuss, aren''t you?


not especially, but i have a feeling that you either work in marketing, or have a relative that does
think about it: the purpose of marketing is to sell things. the methods used are hardly based on anything logical or humanitarian; mainly they use buzz-words and other language/graphics meant specifically to influence the consumers, regardless of their validity.
the important thing is not to be truthful or fair or valid; they want to SELL. they use any means they can to do so. why do you think there is so much fine print in the world today? because marketing people cannot be trusted on their word!
while i am sometimes cynical, i am hardly bitter... and in any case, this is not an example of that; this is straight fact.
it is this "buzz-word nature" of the whole "generation" thing that makes it so hard to define (hence the different criteria in all these posts); "next generation" is just a great phrase to use when you want to sell your new game.

--- krez (krezisback@aol.com)

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IADaveMark    3731
So, to interpret your phrase: "but i consider any form of marketing a scam..."

If I tell you I have a candy bar for sale at 50 cents... exactly what I paid for it out of the vending machine... I am marketing the candy bar to you. Please circle the implied scam in red ink for us all to see.

My only point was that you took your distrust of marketing (which I believe is partially justified) to a ludicrous extreme and threw out a very large blanket from which nothing escaped. It just seems that every time I am annoyed by a post lately, I look up and see the kewl little skull thingy next to your name.

Anyway, we digress...

Dave Mark
Intrinsic Algorithm Development

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krez    443
quote:
Original post by InnocuousFox
So, to interpret your phrase: "but i consider any form of marketing a scam..."
If I tell you I have a candy bar for sale at 50 cents... exactly what I paid for it out of the vending machine... I am marketing the candy bar to you. Please circle the implied scam in red ink for us all to see.

perhaps technically you are "marketing the candy bar to me," but i meant "marketing" in the common usage way... i.e. sales departments and those people that think up commercials and billboards.
quote:
My only point was that you took your distrust of marketing (which I believe is partially justified) to a ludicrous extreme and threw out a very large blanket from which nothing escaped.

yah, it is fun to generalize. this does not mean what i actually said isn''t true, though; it''s just an extreme point of view. i think most people got my point though... if my wording bothers you that much, pretend i just said, "let the buyer beware!"
quote:
It just seems that every time I am annoyed by a post lately, I look up and see the kewl little skull thingy next to your name.

this would seem to indicate that i am not the bitter one.

--- krez (krezisback@aol.com)

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IADaveMark    3731
quote:
Original post by krez
perhaps technically you are "marketing the candy bar to me," but i meant "marketing" in the common usage way... i.e. sales departments and those people that think up commercials and billboards.

And yet, not ALL of those commercials and billboards are misleading and/or incorrect.
quote:
yah, it is fun to generalize. this does not mean what i actually said isn''t true, though; it''s just an extreme point of view. i think most people got my point though... if my wording bothers you that much, pretend i just said, "let the buyer beware!"

Of course, if someone were to browse through and see someone saying "all marketing is crap" and believed it... wouldn''t that have been horribly misleading on your part? Tsk Tsk!
quote:
this would seem to indicate that i am not the bitter one.


I am not bitter... just annoyed.

Now... back to the original topic, please.

Dave Mark
Intrinsic Algorithm Development

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krez    443
quote:
Original post by InnocuousFox
And yet, not ALL of those commercials and billboards are misleading and/or incorrect.

ok, fine... i admit it... not EACH AND EVERY marketing person is a liar. but, generally speaking (for the most part / usually / add in your own qualifier here) their goal is sales not honesty.
quote:
Of course, if someone were to browse through and see someone saying "all marketing is crap" and believed it... wouldn''t that have been horribly misleading on your part? Tsk Tsk!

now now, i''m not saying that to make money, or for any personal gain at all; it is simply my opinion about a part of business.
quote:
Now... back to the original topic, please.

ok...
quote:
I recently saw a reference to "3rd gen" MMORPGs. What are considered the definitions that set them apart... perhaps some examples?

a rephrasing of what i said earlier should count as "on topic": i consider there to be no definition, as they are fuzzy undefinable words used to add pizazz to a marketing scheme. the only thing that sets them apart is how "new and improved" the advertising people think they can get away with before someone realizes that it is the same old thing, with slightly better graphics.

--- krez (krezisback@aol.com)

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EvilCrap    134
I know that there is some game in development where the players and ncps can make/destroy cities and stuff, and the players exist with properties derived from genetic algorithms depending on their parents. this i think might be next gen if they pull it off.
i forget the name of it, ill have to try and find it.


personally, i have found the mmorpgs to be somewhat dull. i would like to see one based in the world of diablo, where your your char would start somewhere, and diablo would pop up, and convert you and a ton of cities into minions and stuff -- and then theres big wars and everything. mmorpgs should not necessariy let a player be how he wants - instead, he starts how he wants, and then can be effected by uncontrollable forces, like Diablo, or govornments, or talents or learning defeciencies.

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IADaveMark    3731
quote:
Original post by krez
a rephrasing of what i said earlier should count as "on topic": i consider there to be no definition, as they are fuzzy undefinable words used to add pizazz to a marketing scheme. the only thing that sets them apart is how "new and improved" the advertising people think they can get away with before someone realizes that it is the same old thing, with slightly better graphics.


I agree that many marketing people might spin stuff as being something it is not... i.e. the "latest and greatest". I also agree that a lot of groupings are not granular enough and neglect the more subtle differences between different titles. However, since I was on a technical related board, I was hoping for the technical definitions of what those divisions may be. I think I have accumulated quite a number of different ways to slice it.

Thanks,

Dave Mark
Intrinsic Algorithm Development

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