Browsing through forums recently on many different sites, I've noticed something quite striking. Of course, people having strong opinions about the things and the Internet being this perfect place where they can anonymously pull out their soapboxes, stand tall, and spout their sermons on how their opinions are so right and important and should be taken as irrefutable proof of their intelligence, enlightenment, and expertise in their spoken subject is nothing new. However, in my experience, I have never witnessed this more potently than on the subject of MMO's.
Caption: Had to add this picture to the list. It was the first MMO I truly played. :D
The discussions for each game always seem to follow this particular pattern. Those that like it will produce every bit of evidence to prove their point, sometimes pointing out it's faults, sometimes not. These individuals-to me this is unfortunate-have been given the demeaning title of "fanboy" or "fanboi" (I've seen both spellings) by those that simply don't like the game in question, and those very people find every point or aspect of a game that might be either a flaw or simply something they don't like and bash the game and its fans to pieces. Why is this? I don't seem to understand why most of these people can't simply give their opinions without downright trashing the subject of their hatred and those that support it. The example that drove me to discuss this topic was a thread I read about Star Wars: The Old Republic, and whether or not it could "recover" from the subscriptions it lost after the first four to six months along with its other few problems. I have never seen more of an overwhelming display of downright disgust and hatred for a game in my life. Most likely it was because so many had so many different (which is part of the problem) high hopes for what the game "should have been" according to them. Now, did their statements have no merit whatsoever? No. I don't know the specifics or tech of the new engine the developers used for the game, but having played the game so long myself, I have to agree that it has some flaws, some major. Though some have gotten better, frame rate issues, loading screen times, and the crazy lag in highly populated areas are some of the issues most everyone has noticed since the game's launched. However, the other complaints were about it going f2p, the f2p and premium restrictions, the cash shop were just laced with disdain and downright hatred for the game, the developers, and the publisher. While I'm not big fan of EA myself, and my own opinion of Bioware as a company that's lost some of its magic is something I'll readily say, I'm not about to speak doom toward the game, hoping it will fail, and demonizing and degrading those that still play and enjoy the game for what it is. I still play myself, and there is still a thriving community, though of course not as much as launch, but can many MMO's claim the same numbers they had at launch, disregarding WoW as an exception of course? If you know any, let me know.
Anyway, my point is this. I can understand the frustration of expecting a certain thing out of a game and not having said expectations met and all your anticipation ending in disappointment. But why can't that be all that's said? And who has ever been totally satisfied with any particular MMO? I can't think of one, which I've played, that has met all my expectations and kept me satisfied where I want to play it everyday, for hours, along an extended period of years. I mean, even with SWTOR, I was hugely disappointed with their space game (which I hope will be remedied with the new Galactic Starfighter),
was not a fan of the original open world PvP on Ilum which was, in truth, broken, was bummed by no passage of time on planets, no ship customization, and a lack of open world exploration, a lack of social aspect such as players interacting in cantinas and such, but as I remember correctly, none of those things were specifically promised prior to launch (again, correct me if I'm wrong.) Yet, on the other hand, there are so many things that I love about it, the solid combat (even if it is borrowed from WoW), the immersive story with codex full of lore for each specific class, the different ways to play the classes regardless of faction, the way a story can change drastically from the decisions you make, which are all hallmarks of what Bioware has always excelled in. So as a fan myself, I think that those who do like the game and defend it should not be criticized for doing so. Is there any motivation besides flexing your muscles of your own supposed "elitism" in this type of behavior in posting the nasty entries I read on a regular basis? Bottom line, if you don't like the game, don't play it. And if anyone can shed any light on why it seems that MMO's are the biggest target for this type of rhetoric, I'd be really interested to read your thoughts.