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Old 03-06-2011, 09:53 PM   #1
Threshold
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Cataclysm Burnout: Gotta love it! :)

My favorite thing about WoW is how every expansion they crank out is just more of the same. It sucks for the first month or two, but when that inevitable burnout hits its so nice to see people flock back.

Anyone else noticing a big surge in users lately? Aside from game specific reasons (we've added a ton of content to Threshold in the last few months), I have a feeling one big reason is the usual WoW-expansion burnout that hits a few months after release.
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Old 03-07-2011, 02:32 AM   #2
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Re: Cataclysm Burnout: Gotta love it! :)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Threshold View Post
Anyone else noticing a big surge in users lately? Aside from game specific reasons (we've added a ton of content to Threshold in the last few months), I have a feeling one big reason is the usual WoW-expansion burnout that hits a few months after release.
I think the main reason (along with the WoW lameness) is the search many gamers have for more intelligent, in depth gaming. In some cases, perhaps simpler gaming.

WoW and other, what I call GORG's or Graphic Only Roleplaying Games, require substantial hardware and screen and sound commitment. You can't multi task well with them and the depth of intensity is peripheral. A big reason I left them back in the hay day of Ultima Online.

This is a bit of a derail, but notice how many people text or twitter now adays. You don't graphically text on your phone nor is twitter a big movie or image plug. Both are hugely text no sound. What are MUDs? Text baby.
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Old 03-07-2011, 08:02 AM   #3
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Re: Cataclysm Burnout: Gotta love it! :)

To be fair, burnout among players is something faced by every mud, regardless of whether it's graphical or text-based. To quote Richard Bartle, "even for the most compelling of virtual worlds, players will eventually leave", and as Raph Koster pointed out a few years ago, "the population distribution across MMOs tends to look like a classic “long tail” graph".

Personally I think Blizzard have done exceptionally well to maintain the top spot for so long, but they won't hold it forever, and when they are finally overtaken I suspect we'll see WoW's popularity plummet as the long tail re-establishes itself.
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Old 03-07-2011, 11:02 AM   #4
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Re: Cataclysm Burnout: Gotta love it! :)

I dont agree with the original comments to be honest. If you think about it logically, whenever any games adds new content its pretty much the same. In a mud you add new locations, and new mobs.. why is WoW any different?

This last expansion actually added a lot, completely new way of approaching zones with massive use of instancing, new races, an underwater area and they completely revamped all the old content. Much bigger health pools led to much more interesting PvP.

WoW will eventually shrink and lose the top slot to be sure, but to me, the killer is going to be highly destructive inbalancing by a dev team who dont seem to listen to anybody, also a complete lack of any real challenge in anything other that PvP. I dont understand the point of having a test realm when nothing is changed due to player feedback.

Also, the complete lack of any need to be polite / courteous of other players due to the dungeon finder etc means the attitudes of the playerbase is degrading at a horrific rate.

A lot of the top players who I follow have moved onto RIFT, which has massive customisability.. even if it steals little bits from every other MMO in existance.

However time will tell, and if MUD numbers do grow a little as people leave WoW this can only be a good thing.
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Old 03-07-2011, 11:15 AM   #5
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Re: Cataclysm Burnout: Gotta love it! :)

I'm not making any editorial comments here on the quality of WoW or its role in the market.

I've just been noticing a huge return of players in the last few weeks. I think some of it is new content that we've added to our game, but I also think another big part is yet another grindy WoW expansion burning itself out. It seems to happen faster every expansion, which is good for all of us!

Anyone else notice the same?
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Old 03-09-2011, 07:16 AM   #6
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Re: Cataclysm Burnout: Gotta love it! :)

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Originally Posted by Threshold View Post
I'm not making any editorial comments here on the quality of WoW or its role in the market.

I've just been noticing a huge return of players in the last few weeks. I think some of it is new content that we've added to our game, but I also think another big part is yet another grindy WoW expansion burning itself out. It seems to happen faster every expansion, which is good for all of us!

Anyone else notice the same?
I have difficulties to see why people that play graphical MMOs would want to go back to text games. Have you asked those players to make sure they actually left WoW for Threshold?
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Old 03-09-2011, 11:43 AM   #7
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Re: Cataclysm Burnout: Gotta love it! :)

I disagree with the general premise that people leave muds for MMOs, or vice versa. Like someone above said, people who really like graphical MMOs don't leave them for muds. They don't get the same things from muds that they would from their favorite MMO. Similarly, people who really like muds don't get their fix from WoW or the other MMOs out there. Some people probably like both kinds of games and play whatever they're in the mood to play at the time.

Muds only complete with MMOs in the sense that there are a limited number of computer game players out there, and a limited number of hours in the day. If I were a gamer, bored with the newest WoW content and intrigued by a new Threshold addition (even if it's not so different from existing Threshold content and I'll get tired of it in a couple of days), it's not some kind of massive shift in my universe to play Threshold for awhile, until I'm bored there and get back into WoW. I'm not crossing any bright lines or changing from the MMO camp to the Mud camp. I have a few hours to kill and want to do something fun. Tomorrow, I might have fun shooting hoops. When I'm sick of shooting hoops, nobody's going to point out how old and tired basketball is and theorize that basketball players are trying out muds now that they're bored with the game.
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Old 03-14-2011, 11:48 AM   #8
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Re: Cataclysm Burnout: Gotta love it! :)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aeran View Post
I have difficulties to see why people that play graphical MMOs would want to go back to text games. Have you asked those players to make sure they actually left WoW for Threshold?
A game is a game, I think, and players take time to play all sorts of games. There's a usage drop when the new Civilization comes out. We had fewer people logging on when Starcraft II hit. You usually see the players back in a few weeks due to burn out. WoW is a little bit more consuming, I think, but Cataclysm burn out seems to be happening much faster than I expected.

For some odd reason, we have people who play Rifts and Threshold simultaneously where that doesn't seem to happen with WoW. I'm not really sure of the difference since I haven't tried Rifts yet due to time concerns.

I don't think people quit WoW for Threshold. They burn out on WoW and return to Threshold. Some, of course, never do. They move on to the next game or stick with WoW. That's probably typical of any game or community.
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Old 03-14-2011, 04:01 PM   #9
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Re: Cataclysm Burnout: Gotta love it! :)

With any game that has accumulated a player base over decades, I imagine it is absolutely normal to see ebbs and flows as major releases of games (RPG or not) come out. That has nothing to do with broad patters in mudding--it's more of a testament to the staying power of a MUD, especially a MUD you've played for such a long time and developed a deep relationship with.

For many reasons, the sense of community is not commonly found in modern MMORPG's. Community, I believe, is the most important factor that will continue to guarantee MUDs' existence and appeal.
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Old 03-15-2011, 02:50 PM   #10
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Re: Cataclysm Burnout: Gotta love it! :)

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Originally Posted by plamzi View Post
With any game that has accumulated a player base over decades, I imagine it is absolutely normal to see ebbs and flows as major releases of games (RPG or not) come out. That has nothing to do with broad patters in mudding--it's more of a testament to the staying power of a MUD, especially a MUD you've played for such a long time and developed a deep relationship with.

For many reasons, the sense of community is not commonly found in modern MMORPG's. Community, I believe, is the most important factor that will continue to guarantee MUDs' existence and appeal.
That is a really great point.

For most modern MMOs or online games, once you quit, you're done.

But old school muds that built a strong community experience frequent returns of people that had been gone for years.

I bet we could postulate all sorts of reasons why, but it definitely seems like new games are not generating anywhere near the social bonds or community that MUDs have in their history.
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Old 03-15-2011, 03:27 PM   #11
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Re: Cataclysm Burnout: Gotta love it! :)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Threshold View Post

For most modern MMOs or online games, once you quit, you're done.

But old school muds that built a strong community experience frequent returns of people that had been gone for years.

I bet we could postulate all sorts of reasons why, but it definitely seems like new games are not generating anywhere near the social bonds or community that MUDs have in their history.
When I was mudding actively and living in Europe, people from across the continent that I only knew from the game would come to visit. Of course, it helped that my friends and I lived on the seaside .

Now, many years later, a sizable chunk of my Facebook contacts are old mud friends with whom I have absolutely nothing else in common.

I can't imagine this kind of thing ever happens in WoW (but maybe it does, super-ultra-mega-rarely).

If I were to speculate about reasons, I'd say community size and game intensity would be at the top of the list. An overpopulated, casual game is not likely to bring people together repeatedly and for long enough periods for bonding to take place.

Also high on that list would be gameplay maturity. Regardless of actual player ages, a well-run and well-moderated MUD is much more likely to inspire people to interact as adults playing together, building a world together, enjoying themselves responsibly, etc. Compare any MUD to modern MMO free-for-all melees of seemingly imbecile and immature little monsters cursing, ego-tripping, and generally rolling over each other... And I know that many older people play WoW. But if I did, I sure as hell would not be making BFF's left and right.
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