The problem is this: at the moment, I’m not finding MMO-style gameplay very compelling. It’s not necessarily a failing of the genre. It’s more of a personal preference. In fact, I’ve been trying to put my finger on it for quite some time and ultimately I just don’t think I’m feeling it at the moment. I’m not even certain it’s a gameplay issue, but a combination of content, effort, and social expectations.
When it first became noticeable it reminded me of how I felt when I stopped gaming entirely. It is similar in the sense that time and study are contributing factors to both situations. In the original sense, though, I had convinced myself that gaming held nothing of tangible value. I don’t agree with that now, as I better understand the value that it has.
The extra time afforded by lack of work and class transition allowed me to work on some of the games in my backlog, and I rather enjoyed that. So this is not the same. Those games were largely single-player, which led me to believe that the problem was something specific to the MMOs I would normally play. My first thought was time, but if I have time to play the single-player game, I have time to play the MMO, so that doesn’t really add up.
As recently as yesterday I thought it was related to the social commitment that MMOs represent. Most gameplay involves some manner of instanced content and it’s a bit of a dick move to just up and leave or afk in the middle of it. The in and out nature of house cleaning and project work seemed much more suited to the games that I could simply pause at will and the idea of being “on the hook” for any length of time was… not ideal. Still, there are plenty of MMOs with solo style content and lax enough death penalties that getting up and walking off is of little consequence, so that doesn’t seem quite right either.
At the moment, this has led me to believe that I simply don’t find it compelling enough to be bothered. My FFXIV social group is effectively disbanded for the time being, and without the shared experience I find that I don’t care. In theory, I could find a different social group to engage with, but I… don’t want to. I’d rather get caught up on the backlog and write blog posts. I find that the shared experience of 2-3 player co-op gameplay with people I already know much more interesting than PUGing away.
Of course, that could just be the impact of the “new shiny” also. Time will tell, I suppose. These things ebb and flow and it’s just odd to me that I find myself somewhat estranged from my go-to genre. There are some related thoughts that I’m not going to get into here like research and larger industry trends. Those can wait for another post. They’re tangential at best.
Today’s Plan: Clean my desk off so I can set my HOTAS back up. Maybe fire up Elite and double-check my keybinds if I have time and my brother is busy.
Y’all take care and stay safe.
Hey, it’s Blapril time! The goal is to simply promote and stimulate the blogging community by encouraging people of all skill levels and backgrounds to post. The official post can be found here and it’s never too late to start.