MMORPGs or online role-playing video games where a large number of people participate simultaneously are definitely some of the most successful and addictive video games; the reason for their popularity is the same behind the success of social networks – the human brain is captivated by novelty, and an ever-changing universe where you always find something new each time you enter it is very hard to resist. So let’s see what those games that have made history after captivating thousands and thousands of users are:
1. World of Warcraft
Released in 2004 by Blizzard Entertainment, this massively multiplayer online role-playing game has been followed by six expansion sets, the last one released in August 2016 (Legion). World of Warcraft is known as the world’s most-subscribed MMORPG with the following statistics: a peak of 12 million subscriptions in October 2010, 5.5 million subscriptions in October 2015, and more than 100 million accounts created over the game’s lifetime as of January 2014. Gamers control a character avatar who fights monsters, explores the landscape, completes quests, and as the game progresses, gains multiple skills and talents.
2. Dungeon Fighter Online
This game is more popular in Asia, having reached 3 million players just in China. Dungeon Fighter is free to play and has been discontinued in West because of lack of player base. The game’s original run dates from 2009, when a South Korean company called Neople had published several games on a game portal site. The game was more successful than expected and Dungeon Fighter Online was expanded after three closed testing periods. The game’s peak activity was registered in 2012, and the total gross as of March 2012 exceeded $2 billion. Dungeon Fighter has inspired an anime adaption of the game, a manga, and anime music.
3. Final Fantasy XIV
This MMORPG is part of the Final Fantasy series and the second game of this type after Final Fantasy XI. Developed by Sqaure Enix and released in September 2010, the Japanese game is set in a fantasy space called Eorzea, where players control an avatar they can customize and take to explore the land. Strengths of Final Fantasy XIV include the impressive landscape, being accessible to a large base of players, featuring customizable content, and coming with a fascinating story. The player’s level is increased after reaching a certain EXP threshold by defeating monsters, creating items, and completing quests. The first reviews were rather negative, but after multiple patches and overhauls, Final Fantasy XIV was considered more playable and eventually reached a peak of 6 million accounts. The game, however, was closed in November 2012.
4. The Lord of the Rings Online
Based on J. R. R. Tolkien’s writings, the game takes place during the time period of The Lord of the Rings. Although it required a subscription in the beginning, LOTRO became free-to-play, and a paid VIP subscription option was created for those interested in game perks. The game was released in 2007 and it will continue, as in December 2016 it was announced that LOTRO will be developed and maintained by a new company created by members of the LOTRO team, Standing Stone Games. LOTRO was considered the third most played MMORPG in 2010 and so far, it has received wide universal acclaim. In terms of storytelling, the game starts when Frodo and his friends leave The Shire and there are 25 different regions that players have access to. In each region, players need to complete quests to increase their level. Gamers can choose between five playable races: dwarf, elf, hobbit, beorn, and man. Characters in the game have professions like gathering and crafting and can advance their skills by adding armour, weapons, and other equipment.
Released more recently, in July 2015, Skyforge has been in development since 2010. Currently there are two servers available, in Europe and North America. The game attracts players with a fascinating universe and instantly-captivating early game. Instead of re-levelling for hundreds of hours, players can switch play style immediately as long as they go to areas they have already unlocked. The game is placed in the fictional world of Aelion, containing three areas: the Divine Observatory, the Research Center, and the Park. The planet of Aelion used to be protected by the greater god Aeli, who has disappeared to leave followers protected just by Immortals and several lesser gods. Now, followers need to stand the attacks of hostile gods, and players of Skyforge take over the role of Immortals. Skyforge has a science-fiction touch to it, as old-fashioned weapons meet cutting edge technology. Currently, Skyforge is free-to-play, but an optional premium subscription will be introduced for players who want to purchase additional items and perks.
Which of these 5 MMORPGs have you played and which is your favourite? What games would you add to the list? We’re looking forward to hearing your opinion!