Game progress succumbs to apperance in Warcraft

Graham C. Wheat
October 21, 2009
Filed under Opinion

Blizzard Entertainment has created the scourge of internet video games. If World of Warcraft (WoW) doesn’t ring a bell, consider yourself lucky. This Massive Multiplayer Online video game has become one of the most popular games in history.

Besides polluting the proverbial MMO gene pool, I fear it has polluted many gamers as well.

In early 1994 when the small Irvine based company created the first Warcraft game they had no idea the heights they would reach. After creating subsequent titles and one of my favorite games, Diablo (one of the first successful MMO’s), Blizzard decided to venture into the at the time small world of internet gaming.

When Blizzard released Diablo in 1997, video games were in their metaphorical teen years and the internet was still wet behind the ears. Diablo introduced radical ideas of questing with friends, virtual marketplaces where real money could be traded for in-game goods and services, gigantic dungeons with thousands of perils, and this was just at the first few levels. Diablo would change the face, the industry and the internet as well.

The ideas presented in Diablo have just been repackaged and re-tooled with a new name, years later when video games should have advanced.

It didn’t help that in 2004, high speed-internet was booming and terrible ideas were disseminating ever quicker.

On Nov. 23 2004 Blizzard released World of Warcraft, a juggernaut that is still crushing better ideas and sounder game play today. The game relies on tedious fighting bordering on work masked by asinine items that never seem to help all that much.

The only draw to the game is the monstrous community of players, which no other video game has because WoW has taken them.

It has even invaded the sacred realm of the printed word and comic books, thank you very much DC.

The community that plays World of Warcraft (I’ve seen them as old as 50) is awash with gamers who demand some cheap trinket or worthless skill to quench their over indulgent desires. It doesn’t matter if it actually benefits your character or enriches your experience playing; as long as there is some superficial change they are happy.

They bring this dogma with them to every game they play, diluting the population of competent gamers who can recognize a good game. Instead of rating a video game by its own merit, they inevitably parallel WoW to the game they are playing.

As World of Warcraft grew, its problems infected MMO’s releasing for years to come. Video games are a multi-million dollar industry and when making millions you go with what works, whether it is high-quality or not.

If you play WoW, stop. If you play any video game at all, boycott it. If you don’t take video games seriously (you should) be waiting for a creeping giant to snatch your little brother into a realm of run of the mill gameplay he will never escape.

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