Game expansions and those left behind

This week, in which I’m away some days and have next to no gaming time for the rest, happens to be one of potentially exciting gaming news.

For instance the latest and last part of Flame and Frost launches today. The dungeon that finishes the story is only available until May 12th. This may sound like ages but with my schedule + a guild full of equally sporadic players, I’ll be very lucky if I manage to get even one date that works for a full team. The combat is so chaotic in this game, especially combat in dungeons, that I’d rather miss the content altogether than actually have to PUG it.

Neverwinter¬†has its ‘soft launch’ today – open beta for all-comers. That’s more exciting as it is a new game launch an offers the chance of new content to explore without a mandatory “grind to level X first” ¬†gateway.

EQ2 has the Scars of the Awakened update out today as well. That’s an easy one to ignore for me, there’s nothing obviously of relevance to someone not at or near the level cap – so no point getting excited about this one.

LOTRO’s recent announcement of the Helm’s Deep expansion later in the year has the same issue for me as EQ2 above. In games where my main character is miles away from the level cap, why should I care or put money down for an expansion? This can even cause a sort of downward spiral of my general interest in a game (it certainly did with LOTRO).

At least with SWTOR I did reach the level cap on at least one character, so Rise of the Hutt Cartel would offer me new stuff to do if I bought it.

So the question is then what could/should developers do about those who fall behind (or who started late)?

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One Response to Game expansions and those left behind

  1. couillon says:

    In the Helm’s Deep announcement, there’s a blurb about how players “Fight to defend Helm’s Deep starting at level 10, as your character enlists as a soldier in the Battle of the Hornburg,..” So that does indicate there’s something for folks NOT at level cap. Where the rubber hits the road is how this will actually play out and Turbine is keeping it’s mouth shut on that, forum is in hissy fit with speculation, all good though!

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