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Five MMOs that Changed the Genre - Page 5

Updated Fri, Nov 30, 2012 by jeffprime

City of Heroes

City of Heroes may be drawing the curtain, with servers going dark this Friday (November 30th), but its impact will remain. City of Heroes broke the mold to show that a non-fantasy game could be commercially successful. Up until its release in 2004, most MMOs were fantasy-based, with a smattering of sci-fi thrown in. City of Heroes brought the vivid four-color world of comic book superheroes to online gaming in a big way. Now you could fight like Wolverine, stalk bad guys like Batman, and fly through the sky like Superman. What gamer didn't love that?

five mmos that changed the genre
Superheroes are just damn cool.


Another aspect of City of Heroes that really hit home was their character creator. For years, no other character creation system even remotely came close to providing the same level of customization (until Champions Online). While most MMOs had the appearance of your character change due to the gear you wore, City of Heroes let you create your own unique look at the very beginning, fulfilling one of the most important aspects of any superhero's identity--his costume. No self-respecting hero wants to grind countless dungeons to get a cool looking pair of boots. Spiderman and Superman didn't change their look (I'm not counting Venom!) over time to reflect the latest loot drop.



Like most other products, MMOs build on what came before. Many aspects of online gaming that we consider standard today (instances, realm-versus-realm, raiding), not to mention the fact that MMOs are big business, came from contributions introduced by earlier games. Which aspects are considered positive or negative depends on each individual gamer's point of view, but you cannot deny the impact that the five games listed above had upon our own little slice of gaming heaven.

Which games do you think have been influential in the MMORPG genre? Login, and share your thoughts in the comments below.

How the hell can you write an article about MMOs that "changed the genre" without even mentioning WoW. Some say it wasn't revolutionary and devolved the genre, but come on. It's one of a handful of games to ever break 1 million subscribers, much less 10 million. It brought the MMO from the neckbeared, basement dweller to the mainstream gamer. It has received incredible commercial success. Your list is bad and you should feel bad.

More then agree. At least 5th position should be wow, otherwise they should change article tittle to 6 greatest ....

Hah! Somehow I knew that the first person to respond to this would be a butthurt WoW fanboy.

If you're looking at the list, it's a list of games that each brought something new to the table like RvR and instancing and advanced character customization, etc. Getting millions of subscribers isn't revolutionary, it's just luck and timing. WoW didn't do anything that anyone else hadn't done first, they just did it at the right time with the right IP.

I'd say this list is a good start. And, by the way, nowhere does it say "The ONLY Five Games to Change the Genre."

Really wondering if nothing new why become more popular then all other put together. Maybe that "new" was it redefined mmo and set criteria and new standards? :-) Wipe your tears, wow is most succesfull mmo game with reason.

very good list.. i would sign it everyday.
maybe lineage 1 from 1998 would fit into that list too.

oh and btw.. dear wow guys.. wow isnt the mmo with the most players of all time.. lineage 1 = 43 mio players only in asia... so stop complaining.. wow did nothing new.. well they couldnt anyways because everything were right there to that date.

tho they did a good job to bring mmo´s to the mass market in NA/EU.

Man, UO... What a great game, and what awesome memories. EQ too, but what made UO so awesome were all the free shards with cool rulesets and changes to the game. That game was so genre-defining, and after seeing the pic of the house, I'm really craving it again. lol

and RE: WoW belonging on the list, oh please. Not that WoW wasn't a good game or that it didn't have a sound business model, but it wasn't defining in any way other than easy. It's MMO dumbed down to be accessible to the masses. WoW changed the landscape of gaming by bringing people into the community who would likely have never played them otherwise, but it brought nothing specific to MMOs that other games hadn't done first or better. It just made that stuff easier.

Wow did do something, their Auction House. No one thinks about it but would you play a MMO without one? Even the Asian MMO that don't like them add them in these days.

You mean like the Bazaar in EQ? A massive searchable auction house with a unique setup, I actually perfered it over WoWs AH because it wasn't a stupidly crowded mess.

...or EC-Mart before that? How many hours did we spend sitting in that damn tunnel in the East Common Lands shouting our wares to players passing through? =)

I purposely didn't highlight WoW so as to focus some love on perhaps some forgotten gems that newer players wouldn't realize had an impact upon MMOs today. I think WoW is an extremely solid game and you can't argue with its success. Honestly, the more MMOs there are, the better the gaming world we're living in is. I just wish that someone would create a Wild West MMO. I want to have showdowns at high noon!

This is basically a list of games that made me the MMORPG fan that I am. I absolutely loved UO, although I'm not sure I'd have the patience to play a game like that again. It was one of the few games that made me rage quit on a regular basis, which I guess was kind of the beauty of it.

Nice walk down memory lane!

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