While considering our choices for Best PvP Game of the Decade, we
really had to go back to the roots of PvP. Ultima Online
certainly offered unregulated PvP but by today's standards, that's very
little fun for everyone but the top gankers. Conversely, the
introduction of Battlegrounds and Scenarios as seen in many of today's
MMOGs do offer quick match-up fun, but they lack the true spirit of
PvP, in our opinion, which should be a constant struggle for power. The
pendulum should swing hard, and it should swing often. Players should
always feel a need to defend or attack in a well-developed PvP game.
Perhaps PvP isn't the right term, after all. Perhaps the ultimate PvP
experience isn't PvP at all, but rather a game that pits several
factions against each other. Perhaps this type of combat is better
referred to Realm vs. Realm, or RvR.
That certainly narrows the options, and leaves us with an obvious
Dark Age of Camelot
was a brilliant success in the PvP, or RvR market. Having launched in
October of 2001, nine years later it's still considered by many to be
the ultimate player versus player combat of any MMO game. This was no
mistake. It was a careful consideration by the BioWare Mythic team (at
the time known as Mythic Entertainment) and the secret of its success
may have very well been a simple addition of a third faction.
When a game only has two factions battling against each other,
balancing becomes very difficult without imposing artificial rules and
enticements, like bonus experience for the underdog, to try to lure
more players to that faction. With three factions though, the entire
community becomes self-policing. If one faction becomes too powerful,
they'll have a much more difficult time fending off two opposing
factions instead of holding their ground against one.
An aging game, but one well deserving of Best PvP Game of the Decade.
Well done, Mythic!