Thursday, May 31, 2012

Outside The Box

A different direction...

Last week I wrote about different directions in MMO games besides combat. This week Chris at Level Capped has a couple of great posts about the topic as well. I really think that we need more creative avenues in or MMO games for new games to really stand out. We don't need more of the same that we've been seeing over the past decade. I don't think I am alone with these feelings, people seem to be growing bored with games before they are even past the six month mark.

I'm not saying combat in MMO games is killing them, we need more interesting aspects on the side though. How many new MMO games come out with housing? Some add it in after a few years but most just skip this and go with the tried and true model. I don't want an MMO with a Facebook game feeling, but what keeps me interested is one that offers many different things to do, different directions to choose from.

More games to dabble with choices?

I've dabbled in a few games over the last few weeks, on the side. Stuff that isn't merely focused on combat. I've not spend large amounts of time in these games but I figured I'd throw a few out there with some thoughts on them. These are nothing new and groundbreaking but merely some fun and refreshing alternatives.

Glitch- Yes, I've already mentioned this in my previous posts. However, I had a chance to play around with it again recently (since some changes recently) and I found that I now have a home. Previously when I played I didn't have one and it, if I am remembering correctly, was a bit expensive to buy one. This time I could go directly to my place and pick a style of my choosing. I really liked that, more accessible in a casual style game. So if you haven't logged in for quite awhile, go check out your new house!

Small Worlds- If you ever played the Sims Social on Facebook you might enjoy this game. If you like the sims you might enjoy it, heh. I liked the FB sims game, but I often got bored from running out of energy and ended up logging in less and less. This game is very similar except you have many different places to explore and many games to play within this world. You start out with your own home which you can decorate, dress your little person and even have a pet. It is free to play with a subscription option as well. It's laid back and fun- Or so it was for me in the brief time I spend puttering around with it. Plus, it is online and you can play with friends if you're looking for a more open 'sim' world.

Kaneva- This one I thought was very cute. It is similar to Second Life but it seems to have less room for customization. The graphics are a bit old school but have their own charm. The upside is that the places you travel load to your computer before you travel, meaning you really have zero lag. When compared to Second Life it is a nice change, I really hate how SL streams everything. It isn't as flashy but it has many games to play, choices of where to go and you are also given a free apartment when you start. You can buy or make clothing and your inventory is extremely easy to access. I played a couple of fun little games and thought it was nice to have lots of activities to choose from in a casual laid back atmosphere. I went ice-skating and found snowflakes for a penguin then I busted some dance moves, thus far.

Blue Mars- This game is another virtual world similar to Second Life, it was developed with the CryEngine 2. You can register as a player or a developer. It offers housing, customization and designing. I don't know how extensive it can get but the world seemed nice, not too laggy and this is another which downloads the files before you travel to your destination. I briefly played this one but it appears to have games, places to explore and a shop for clothing and such. I haven't spent much time in it other than to look around a bit, I have no idea how many people play it but I did see a few. Inventory is pretty smooth and clean, seems to have potential but just not sure how much depth.

Anything Else?

I'll leave you with a few other options I did not have a chance to try yet. Some of them looked interesting but you'll have to decide for yourself. Different players look for different things in their games so some might not be as appealing as others.

Meez- A 3D avatar game which seems to offer games, avatar customization, housing and pets.

Whirled- This is more of a side scroller which offers the chance to play games, make stuff and make friends. It offers housing, fun games and basically you pick a look from many or you can make your own. Sort of different from the others I mentioned but still cute. It reminds me of 'The Palace' a chatroom I messed around with in 1999 or so, where you could customize your own avatars. I sat for hours creating avatars!...Okay, I logged in for two minutes and logged out, not enough time to say I played it, RL called and needed me ;)

Subeta- Another that I am very vague on which focuses on avatars and pets. It seems if you are artistic you can create your own and share with others in forums. There are games to play also. The art looked lovely, could be something interesting. I could be wrong about the direction of the game, it looks lovely though, the art style.

How about you?

Know of a great little game that you'd like to share? Something less mainstream? Please feel free to share in the comments, I'd love to hear about what you like to play or something I've never heard of.

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