August – Try A New MMO Month

Star Trek 25th Anniversary

Star Trek Online has some pretty cutting edge graphics

In my younger days I used to pounce on new MMOs like a fat boy onto cake but recently I’ve not only become much more hesitant to get caught up in hype but I’ve also had a lot less time on my hands (oh how I lament the days of student hood when pumping 6 hours into Everquest was something I considered a productive day). I think the last new MMO I tried was either Aion or Champions Online (whichever came out last, I can’t remember) and they were fun albeit brief distractions. Since then I’ve been sticking with old familiars like World of Warcraft, EVE Online and even enjoyed returning to Warhammer Online and Age of Conan. However it’s time to dust off my online downloading skills as I’m now getting that itch to try something completely new again. Therefore, with all of the pathetic power invested in me, I declare August to be try a new MMO month.

Even though it’s easy to become cynical of the MMO genre, especially when we see very predictable copies of you-know-what come out, I still think it’s important to keep abreast of all of the games in the industry. After all, how can we truly appreciate a MMORPG without being able to compare it against other similar products? Good or bad, checking out the competition and other games on the market helps give us perspective on the genre and, you never know, sometimes you might find a hidden gem that we weren’t expecting. Trying new MMOs is also not only something I just plain enjoy but also something that I think is important to my blogging. I love the whole darn industry so much and I want to be able to discuss it all with a fair degree of knowledge and chutzpah. I liken it to the concept of being a food critic: you gotta eat in all of the restaurants in order to know when something’s good and when something’s bad.

The downside to this though is that you can easily end up being a permanent altoholic that never manages to achieve anything substantial in your games. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m definitely affected by this and there been plenty of periods through my MMO ‘career’ that I’ve constantly chain-hopped from one MMO bed to another like a sluttly himbo and never formed a long lasting relationship with a game. I recognise this now and try to keep things balanced and usually have a single main game and one or two on the side that I can dip into.

So with all of this in mind, I’m declaring August my try a new MMO month and the only problem I’m faced with is figuring out what MMO to check out. I’ve narrowed it down a choice of three: Star Trek Online, D&D Online and Allods Online. I’ve never played any of them so they will all offer a new experience and, I’m sure, will be lots of fun. The question is which to try? I haven’t come to a decision yet but I’m leaning towards STO.

Of course then there’s some old favourites that keep coming back to me too and I’m pondering checking out Lord of the Rings Online and Star Wars Galaxies again although I’m not sure if they count as being “new” to me as I’ve played them both before. Well, maybe I could sneak them in anyway.

-Gordon

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30 Comments

  1. Longasc says:

    I personally play STO despite Cryptic’s C-Store, bugs and slow content delivery. I did not get really into DDO despite all positive feedback and Turbine being a very fair company in general, but Allods… now that is just WoW, just worse!

  2. Tesh says:

    I’d suggest DDO, but that’s only because I haven’t played STO and Allods, as cool as some parts of it are, just doesn’t quite measure up. (Though I do find it interesting that new WoW Paladin mechanics look curiously similar to Allods mechanics.)

    Oh, and that 25th Anniversary Star Trek game was awesome. It’s one of the better classic adventure games.

  3. Bootae says:

    STO all the way.

    Allods really is just so WoWish that you really are better off playing WoW. DDO I gave a bit of a try but it just didn’t grab me at all.

    STO while far from perfect, at least held my attention enough to get up to the last tier of ships. Looks nice too and has lots of character.

  4. Carson says:

    Out of those three, I certainly wouldn’t recommend Allods. You say “they will all offer a new experience” but really, Allods won’t. It will offer you an inferior, but free, WoW.

  5. Rhii says:

    Ooh, I want to try a new MMO this month. I’ve tried Allods and didn’t like it… I currently play WoW and LOTRO and W101.

    *think think* I hated WAR.

    I wonder what I should try.

  6. Scott says:

    Allods lasted less than 30 minutes on my hard drive. If you’re looking for a “new experience” you won’t get it with Allods. Or any other Diku-MMO either, for that matter.

    Ironically, I haven’t had a chance to play DDO since its Freemium conversion but it’s a very deep and action-packed game *if* you have people to play with. Again, I haven’t played since the business model shift, which tripled the population, but when I did play it was on a low-pop server and not many people during the times I typically play and most groups were for higher level content. It may not be as big a deal now that it has more players, but since the whole game is group content (solo difficult selection or not, playing it solo just isn’t the same) it’s best to have a group of friends.

    I just started STO about a week and a half or so ago, and I’ve gotta say I’ve really been impressed by how different it is overall. After so many years of dev studious churning out Diku clone after Diku clone, STO is refreshing. For a Cryptic game, it seems (so far) to have a fair amount of depth to it, and because it’s so different from everything else, I am finding the learning curve to be much higher than I was expecting. Or perhaps it’s just that I want to know *everything* and I want to know it *right now!*

  7. RanknVile says:

    Allods = blah
    DDO = Blah

    STO….never tried, looks wonderful and is something beyond the norm we associate with MMO’s…at least from what I have seen and read..

    Doooo eeeeeetttttttttttttt…

    Me? Sorry, but NO new MMO entices me, and I am going on my 7th month of WAR, so I will stick that out, seeing I am not even close to scratching the surface (MUST UNLOCK ALL TOME ENTRIES…)

    Good luck

  8. My vote is with STO. Never tried DDO, and I had a go with Allods and it was fun while it lasted…I enjoyed it while it was still new, but I couldn’t see myself playing it in the long run. That and it apparently gets more and more annoying the more you progress.

    STO on the other hand, while not perfect, at least has very entertaining space combat, and though I canceled my sub a while back, it has brought me back…to me that says something. Yeah, the new content of Season 2 was a draw, but I also missed the space gameplay.

  9. Magson says:

    I di a bit of Allods when it 1st came out, but deleted it before long. If you’re simply looking for something to “try” then it’s not bad, but I can’t say I’d expect you to stick with it.

    DDO can be a lot of fun, but as the prior person said — it’s FAR more fun in a dedicated group than it is solo or pugging. I’m in a slow advancing group (we’re all level 8-9 now, but started back in March. . . . ) due to only meeting 1x per week, but it’s quite fun. and on the additional upside, it doesn’t have to cost anything.

    Never played STO, so have no idea about it. Tipa over at westkarana makes it look like fun, but I’m sticking with EVE for now, especially since I just joined a nullsec corp. Time for more pew pew!

  10. amcl says:

    An MMO that runs on Mac and I’ll explore the world with you. Your my Hit-girl to my Big-daddy.

  11. Bhagpuss says:

    Not played STO. I have about as much interest in Star Trek as I have in pocket lint.

    DDO I just started last week and it’s very good fun. I did the original beta and absolutely loathed it so I never bothered with it when it went live. It’s unrecognizeable from the horrible, claustrophobic borefest that it was then.

    Allods I played during open beta and thoroughly enjoyed. Great art design, fun combat, well-written quests, attractive, open world. All round good fun. I would have played it when it went Live if the huge fuss over the way they messed up the cash shop hadn’t put me off. To a degree that still hasn’t settled down. When they finally get their act together on monetizing the game without driving customers away I might try again.

    The best new MMO I’ve played recently is Zentia, currently in “closed” beta although anyone can get a key. It’s so good that I have already stopped playing until it goes into Open Beta and I can make a character that won’t be wiped. Give it a try, it’s very funny, very well translated, the world is quite beautiful and the gameplay is both simple and absorbing.

    On the general theme of how many MMOs to play, I currently have around two dozen on my desktop, around 8 to 10 of which I would log into once a week or more and the rest every now and again or when something new gets added. I don’t have a current “main” MMO and I play as many hours now as I did ten years ago, which is quite a lot :)

  12. Leah says:

    joining my voice with “allods are free WoW” crowd. sure some mechanics are different and Russian everywhere cracks me up (but I grew up in former USSR, so some of the nostalgia comes into play here), but generally, it plays very much like wow.

    DDO is great. its fun, community is lovely and you can solo or group through pretty much anything depending on the difficulty (<3 varying dungeon difficulty levels and being able to play practically in any size group), but everyone pretty much looks and moves the same, there's barely any playable character variety, and personaly? color scheme gets me down. its too brown :/

    haven't played STO yet, heard it was pretty fun at first, but gets old fast.

  13. Westen says:

    Currently have WoW, STO, and 5 EvE accounts (skilling) active.

    Played DDO before and after the F2P switch. It was okay, but is very WoW like in the fact that you need a group for most if not all content.

    Never played Allods.

    STO lifetime Subscriber here. While I really haven’t played much since the first month, I have patched a few times and logged in just to see what has changed. STO was fun, but the content was lacking at higher levels, not sure if that is still the case. I think the update includes some episodes for Klingons now, so I may have to try that out. STO is very casual, log on due an episode or two then log out. There are some episodes that will make the game even more fun if you have knowledge of some of the TOS episodes.

    I am waiting for LOTR to switch to F2P. I purchases a copy when it was released and had fun, but didn’t want to pay for that, WoW, and EvE.

    BTW the screenshot is from one of my most loved games of all time. I remember playing that my dad’s 386 when I was 1st or 2nd grade. Think I still have 5 1/4 floppies around somewhere.

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  15. Oakstout says:

    I’ve tried Lotro, City of Heroes, WAR, and Champions to break my World of Warcraft addiction. Eventually, after watching Scott and Longasc banter back and forth on Twitter about STO I also decided to give it a try. I’m not saying it will break my WoW addiction, but right now, it has it on hold and I’m loving it.

    I wanted to try EVE, but I just don’t have the cutthroat in me for some reason. I love a good PvP, but EVE Onliine just makes normal PvP look like a stroll in the sunny afternoon park.

    This should hold me till Cataclysm comes out or at least till something new comes along that I have my eye on, like DCUO or SWOTOR. Both look increasingly great. Who knows, this time next year I could be blogging about STO or WAR 40K online

  16. amcl says:

    … Or Pocket Legends??

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