6 Killer Reasons Why MMO Quests Suck Big Time
Who doesn’t love pulse-pounding and immersive MMO gaming action?
Who doesn’t crave the max excitement experience that only a killer online quest delivers?
Who doesn’t go batshit crazy at the thought of booking a week off work to trailblaze the ultimate MMO thrash sesh with like-minded gamer zealots?
Turns out the answer is so often … game developers.
It’s true that most games are mostly good most of the time.
But so many games make the same fatal mistakes over and over — mistakes that compel gamers to shake fists and hurl pizza at random as they scream, “why do you game dev deviants insist on pulling the same 6 lame stunts that ruin my gaming experience every time?”
You’ve screamed these words, over and over.
You’ve beaten your fists against the walls in desperation.
You’ve howled, gamepad in hand, hoping against hope that some faraway angel or demon heeds your call and subsequently fixes a deal with the game developer guys to make these 6 thrill-sapping MMO nightmares GO AWAY.
And yet … in your frenzy … you’ve blotted it all out.
You’ve erased from your memory the blood-curdling truth that sometimes … MMO quests suck!
That’s why you rise from the mattress you call home to do battle with the forces of evil only to discover — once again — that the LAMEST MMO GAME PLOT EVER still lives!
But it’s too late now!
Your fate is sealed!
OMG! It’s happening AGAAAAAAIIINNN … !!!
When MMO Quests Suck … Nightmare Scenario #1
Protect the Infinitely Hapless NPC
When I accompanied Vlangoor the Mighty through the Catacombs of Spidery Malign, I realised instantly that I was on an NPC escort mission.
For a King, the guy was uncannily clueless, and he seemed more interested in dispensing backstory legend than interacting with me in a meaningful or constructive capacity.
But, credit to him, when the spiders finally spiralled down upon us from the gloom, he whipped out his axe and got stuck in, his efforts accompanied by five different battle roar sound effects.
Not bad going, I thought.
But most NPCs who require burly heroes to hold their hand aren’t like this.
Most NPCs on escort quests demand you hold up their nappies as you merrily forge through the relentless mayhem with your shield arm disabled and your armoured boots overflowing with unwanted urine from an even more unwanted NPC bladder.
Meanwhile, dragons trash your homeland, demons spring from the depths and make away with all the knowne treasure in all the knowne worldes, and you miss the latest installment of Celebrity Bearded Dwarven Dancing Gal Kitchen Disasters.
Why let the world you treasure go to ruin for the sake of an overneedy bit player with less than nothing to offer?
Ditch this loser scenario!
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When MMO Quests Suck … Nightmare Scenario #2
We Have Magic, We Have Nukes — We Just Haven’t Figured Out The Comms Deal Yet
Without sorcery or tech smarts, most game worlds would resemble a plague-ravaged barbarian paradise.
Through the tumbleweed and tangled heath, all you’d see is weird-looking mammals and insects, their pelts and innards in much demand by the Neanderthals from the plains.
Here’s how a typical “night at home round the campfire” scenario might look …
1st Neanderthal — Odd to think, isn’t it, that if we had teleportation magic or beam-me-up tech — essentially the same deal imho — we could reach out to other scabrous lowlifes and exchange dinosaur skin lasagne recipes.
2nd Neanderthal — Yes, and if any of these other lowlifes anywhere in the kind of integrated cosmos you suggest should turn out to be confirmed evildoers of the very worst kind, our impressive nuclear arsenal would afford us the luxury of wiping out their assembled ass at a stroke.
In fantasy MMO worlds bursting at the seams with teleporters, flying carpets, and superspeed sorcery, why is it that a party of adventurers hellbent on adventuring all to often gets to roleplay … glorified carrier pigeons?
Is there a GUILD that caters SPECIFICALLY for heroes full of BLOODLUST for HELPING NEIGHBOURING FARMHANDS TO CHAT ABOUT THEIR LIVESTOCK?
This is why it pays to remember always …
YOU’RE AN ADVENTURER, NOT AN ENSLAVED BIRD.
Messenger quests are for losers!
Ditch ‘em now!
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When MMO Quests Suck … Nightmare Scenario #3
20 Scalps = 20 Measly XP … And NO FUN
It’s no surprise that the Golden Rule of most combat-based MMOs is … KILLS = XP.
Without this hardcore edict, we’d all be dependent on chatting, piking or resting for XP — all of which sounds uncomfortably day job.
And it goes without saying that games with post-quest kill tallies offer their own special comfort to zerg psychopaths battling personal confidence issues.
When opportunities to wrest the Archdeacon’s chalice from the clutches of the Wargmaster Brood
kill 20 goblins
the shimmering world of wonder we love to call FANTASY morphs with a soul-sapping poof into yet more tedious drudgery to fill out our mortal hours like picking up household cleaning products from the store or returning the same household cleaning products to the store because they turn out to be faulty, but when we get to the store we discover it’s midnight and we have to wait six hours in the car park till someone shows up to unlock the doors.
It’s true that when Mama Dwarf learned me to count, she had my father supply orcs for me to whack with my dummy — but that’s baby stuff, not the heart and soul of adult adventuring.
If I’m called upon to slay evil in Troorgoor (or its neighbouring luxury apartment area) I demand a more sophisticated plot than “kill 20 goblins” — or saving the forces of good becomes mere genocide allied to a passion for mathematics.
Arithmetic quests suck the life from the Cosmos!
Ditch ‘em now!
When MMO Quests Suck … Nightmare Scenario #4
20 Scalps = 20 Measly XP … And NO FUN
Sorry guys, slight problem here.
It’s great that you’ve returned to the quest giver after slaughtering your 20 allotted goblins, but don’t forget this is an MMO world where comms lag way behind other social and technological advancements.
So while you were killing the goblins, you were also supposed to be collecting their scalps.
Only … the quest giver forgot to tell you that part.
This means you’ll have to re-enter the quest and kill the 20 goblins all over again in order to bag their 20 scalps and claim the 20 XP you missed out on the first time.
But in a way, that’s no bad deal, right?
Because a KILL 20 GOBLINS TO RECEIVE 20 LOUSY XP scenario is not the sort of quest you’d ever countenance completing a second time unless your brain had leapt out of your skull and crept around on its synapses because it was SO DESPERATELY BORED it was PREPARED TO DO ANYTHING — so think of this kind of scenario as a killer opportunity to earn 20 bonus XP you’d otherwise have missed.
Then fire off an angry tweet lambasting the game developers for WASTING YOUR PRECIOUS TIME.
We do not need identical scenarios reworked unimaginatively in order to generate faux variety!
Ditch this nonsense now!
When MMO Quests Suck … Nightmare Scenario #5
The Brain-bending Puzzle For Which No Solution Exists — Even On Google
Here’s how puzzles work …
Two people sit opposite one another and move an assortment of black or white objects around a modest black & white grid till either one of them wins according to the rules of the game or both of them die according to the rules of life.
Or maybe …
Millions of people twist and turn a multicoloured cube to zero effect while the guy with the patent sits back and rakes in billions.
Call me an axe-wielding skeptic, but I see no place for this TOMFOOLERY in the world of fantasy and adventure.
The only puzzles I wish to encounter in my lust for blood and glory are cool flavour text scripts (for which we have wizards), locked doors and chests (for which we have a variety of scoundrels), and the occasional lever to yank on before I arrive almost immediately at the secret sliding wall it operates.
I do not appreciate it when time STOPS while adventuring is stashed away in the refrigerator!
The last thing I want to hear from SlashThroat the Slayer as he stands before me, muscles rippling like he swallowed a dozen bodybuilders, is “just give me a sec I’ll Google the answer” — especially if that answer is so cunningly cryptic that it exists on no hardcore gamer forum anywhere in cyberspace.
So, game developers — kindly desist from overloading your MMOs with painfully irritating puzzles.
It’s not that we’re STUPID or LAZY — merely that we loooooove to adventure.
Additionally, we’re choosy about where we splash out our gold — which is why we will always choose to play Legends of CromGarth over the similarly titled (yet bitterly disappointing) Legends of CromGarth (Brainfrazzling Timesink Puzzle Edition).
Brain-bending Puzzle Overload stinks!
Ditch this craziness immediately!
When MMO Quests Suck … Nightmare Scenario #6
Instant Death by Boss Mob Steroid Overload
Like dwarven beard-clipping techniques, every MMO quest or quest arc starts out easy before ramping up the challenge as the story unfolds.
It’s the natural way of narrative, reflected in movies, fiction, sport — and beyond.
But for the challenge tide to rise effectively, there has to be an incremental slope.
Throw in the Lifesucker Lich Swarm encounter immediately after the Weaponless Kobold Twins with Stomach Cramp and no Will To Live scenario … and you’re in big trouble.
Ditto when the Lifesucker Lich Swarm on Steroids (with Demon Donkey Minions in Tow) scenario wipes out your entire party in milliseconds after you’ve spent twelve agonizing hours battling your way through the treacherous story arc to reach the evil Boss Death chamber where all the killer treasure resides.
All that effort … trashed in an instant!
All that gutsy teamwork … humbled in a flash!
All that beer and pizza … wasted on a scenario that mocks the essential rules of fairness!
No one loves to be obliterated without a hope — especially when they’ve gamed diligently for hours upon end.
So … away with Instant Death by Boss Mob Steroid Overload!
Ditch this nightmare scenario before it destroys you!
When MMO Quests Suck
MMO Dwarf’s Rock Solid Conclusion
There comes a time when certain quests become a chore.
Either they’re so intrinsically boring and pointless you’d rather feed your brain to a duck, or a swift demise allied to puzzles more complex than a Professor Stephen Hawking equation illuminates every warning light on your To-Hell-With-This-ometer.
These lame scenarios are bad for gaming, bad for your health — and probably bad for kittens.
If they were films, you wouldn’t watch them.
If they were books, you wouldn’t read them.
If they were songs, you wouldn’t gyrate around your bedroom in your underpants like a gazelle on a bed of nails.
So why play them?
When you enter into these fun-sucking quests, you commit yourself to a LOSE:LOSE situation.
Hours of your precious life are wasted, and game devs remain unrepentant in their desire to pump out more MMO vanilla.
So take a stand and sit these loser scenarios out.
By your resolute protest shall ye prosper!
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