Independence Day

World of Warmachine Online

For this weeks topic I was asked to write about my ideal MMORPG as a sort of a sidetrack from the usual MMO discussion we have for Common Content Articles. Let me start by saying that I believe my choice here may get me some admiration from readers, or some genuine hatemail, but either way I think it will be funny nonetheless… so on we go!

Aside from being an avid fan of the Warhammer World, I spend my time playing other games; the main one being Privateer Press’ Warmachine. It is my belief that Warmachine would make an ideal MMORPG world, and is the basis for several MMO based features that I don’t think have been adequately explored by past MMOs. The prime difference I find between Warhammer and Warmachine is that Warmachine emphasizes "playing like you’ve got a pair" where Warhammer rewards patience and the ability to hold back and in some cases ‘turtle’. Since I am a fan of fast paced games (what can I say, I’m a twitch kid) I think Warmachine as a world would cater more to this. There are several factors as to why Warmachine COULD be an equal or superior MMO world to the upcoming rendition of Warhammer in some respects.

Currently in the Warmachine world there are four major factions fighting for control, and I see four factions being a good number of factions on any server. My main problem with current MMOs is the fact that the "massive" portion of the game is often left out, and even in games like WoW I find that large scale battle is only possible in instanced locations with player count never reaching over a hundred players. With four definite factions, an MMO would have more of a reason to support more players on a single realm, and still have variety of faction choices. Instead of choosing the ‘good faction’ or the ‘ugly faction’ players would have a much larger choice of what they could play as. Since most MMOs are dependant on the basis of having 2-3 factions, I think going a bit over the top and going with four factions would be the best to sustain any real interest in an MMO environment.

Another major thing any MMO needs is a ‘unique’ quality that sets it aside from other games on the market. For some MMOs a unique quality is a mechanical approach such as a game being PvP centric or having no PvP at all. Recent games such as Darkfall are prime examples of what single focused games can accomplish if there is a suitable player base for them. Since Warmachine is based around combat I think it would be PvP centric, but that would not be what makes the game ‘unique’. I think if I were to use Warmachine as an MMO, much like Warhammer it is set in a unique technological timeframe and in itself is reminiscent of the Steampunk genre. Since Warmachine is filled with steampowered bipedal tanks known as Warjacks it already has its own unique attraction. Warhammer of course has things such as muskets and steamtanks but they are much less of an attraction and more of a background element to the setting.

The next thing any good MMO needs is an intuitive user interface. I find nowadays with most MMOs it is almost required to download user made modules to improve the quality of gameplay, and this is clearly something that could be cut down on in development. Every MMO should have the option for an advanced user interface system that would allow for maximum customization by the player, and this should be matched by the level of interface requirements the game has. I think since Warmachine is a very direct world (unlike the advanced intricacies of Warhammer) there should be an accompanying user interface system that is simple and not overbearing on new players, but allows for maximum customization. I’ve always been a fan of the term, “simple to use, hard to master”.

Graphics are always a high priority for any MMO and the world of the Iron Kingdoms (the setting Warmachine takes place in) would be a graphic artists dream. While not nearly as visually detailed as Warhammer, the world of Warmachine still begs to be rendered in CGI with various interesting landmarks and zones already detailed and ready to go. Much like Warhammer, there is certainly an abundance of darkness and fog of war in Warmachine, so this could easily be brought over to the game in a very World War I / World War II feel. If anything there would be so many graphical opportunities in Warmachine that they in themselves could be the sole reason for purchasing a game of its caliber.

Since I’ve ranted about my views on how Warmachine would make a good MMO, don’t get me wrong in thinking I’ve done this to down Warhammer. Personally I think at its current stage of development Warhammer is a much better choice to be made into an MMO, but since it is already in development it’s sort of hard for me to discuss it on a “clean slate” style. I wanted to use Warmachine as an example of a miniature/gaming world that could easily be converted into an MMO and already has existing elements that make it unique and a near dream to work with, much like Warhammer does. I could have just as easily chosen something like Dungeons & Dragons new Eberron campaign setting or the like, but instead I wanted something a bit closer to home. So even if you don’t agree that Warmachine would make a good MMO, I’m sure you can all appreciate the opportunities developers have at even considering to make a tabletop game with such a rich background into an MMO.

-Ratboy Done for the Day!

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Last Updated: Mar 29, 2016