WoW and DDO

Had a very relaxed weekend, mostly away from MMOs as spent the weekend running my longstanding Eberron campaign (D&D 3.5). I was reminded that CRPGs and MMORPGs will probably (hopefully!) never replace pen and paper RPGs completely. The sheer delight of the freedom and imagination of P&P gaming is still as strong as when I first started playing these games 20+ years ago.

After we’d finished all we could cram into that I’d prepared we were left with an afternoon free, naturally we turned to MMOs for something to do together but what? We’ve reached an all-time low of enthusiasm for WoW, the news over threat changes hasn’t helped. In the end, and very surprising to me, DDO was the chosen game to play.

I have a bit of a love-hate relationship with Turbine’s vision of Eberron and D&D online gaming. The system is great, it deals with the realtime conversion of turn-based rules pretty well. It also makes dungeon-running fast and exciting with some excellent rare additions to MMO style gaming. There are traps (which can be deadly!), there are locks to pick, secret doors to find and puzzles to solve.

The big negative is the blatant grind. So you’ve done explored the cave with the dragon, now go do it again only a bit harder! So done that? Now do it again twice more each time a bit harder! Of course repeat runs on dungeons is pretty standard in all MMOs for gearing up. But with the added favor mechanism in DDO you literally have to repeat dungeons on lots of different difficulty settings. Add on top the limited content due to F2P restrictions. I think DDO will be an occasional game to while away a few hours, it’ll never be my main game as it’s simply too shallow.

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