Wednesday, February 17, 2016
By their nature, MMOs are among the most ambitious games ever created, featuring massive online communities, drawing scores and scores of players into a virtual world of adventure where content isn't just compelling and attractive, it always has to be plentiful as well. Once upon a time, proper MMOs were rare but the players' thirst for more and more legendary drops, ever fancier armor and weapon sets and more and more intricate and enthralling quests was met with a seemingly endless supply on the part of game creators. Needless to say, not all available titles have lived up to expectations, but there are always a few which end up defining the genre every year. What exactly are we looking forward to in this respect in 2016? Here's a small countdown of promising titles, some of which are already established games while others are still caught up in the throes of creation.
Blade and Soul is one of the MMOs that already has the ball rolling. Armed with a vibrant community and a definite East-Asian taste, Blade and Soul has already racked up a massive following in the West. Its unique combat style - straight out of a special-effect-heavy martial arts movie - and the vast character-customization options it brings to the table, make it one of the potential winners, even if in other ways, it doesn't much deviate from the proven and therefore quite run-of-the-mill MMO recipe. More significantly though, Blade and Soul's success in the West may translate into a future trend that will see other such specifically Asian titles make the move towards Western audiences too (and by that we obviously mean Lost Ark - after all one can indeed hope...)
Warhammer 40,000: Eternal Crusade is another promising title. The richness of the lore the game is reportedly drawing on and the sheer appeal of the whole game-universe for fans of unbridled virtual violence make this title a potential winner indeed. The game features four playable races (with the obvious possibility of many more being added later - considering the pool the game could draw on in this respect). For now, we're looking at Space Marines, Chaos Space Marines, Orks and Eldar, with several sub-classes and with combat that - as it's expected from a Warhammer game - knows no bounds. Players will slaughter each-other in ranged, melee and vehicular combat...What more is there left to be said about this but "Moar Dakka!"
Last but definitely not least, Pantheon: Rise of the Fallen seeks to impose its presence in this rather saturated market through a not-exactly-original yet very appealing selling-point: it is looking to bring back the old ways of group-focused combat and adventure, by featuring quests, dungeons and bosses that simply cannot be conquered alone. Players will be more or less compelled to interact for a variety of other reasons too, so this game will definitely call upon one's social skills quite a bit.
Philip Thalberg has been working for Gosugamers, the top destination for everything eSport, since 2004.