So, it finally happened

No, I didn’t wake up and realize that I’ve been frittering my life away playing video games. That mid-life crisis is yet to strike.

No, I’m speaking of another relatively meaningless in-game achievement. Burhhelm has become a Master Supreme Weaponsmith. Now, this isn’t just a brag post, I really do have something of substance to say.

One thing that MMO developers have begun to realize is that the age demographic of their audiences have begun to shift. Every year, another news story reports that the median age for your average gamer is getting older. When your audience is older, however, you have to deal with the fact that they will have less time available for playing. Work, family, studies, and life in general do not always co-operate with a gaming schedule. Thus, game develops have to adjust their content accordingly. Going on a six-hour raid might be cool, once. Doing it every week? Please, people have other things to do. And so the developers, recognizing where their bread is buttered, have adjusted their content so that it can be tackled in bite-sized chunks. The crafting is a prime example. There are little sub-quests for each crafting skill in LotRO, but there is no grand mastery quest at the end, no huge instance that you must complete in order to be granted your final skill level and coveted title. It’s almost a shame, but there you have it: raiding is no longer the focus.

That doesn’t mean an instance now and then isn’t cool. I rather enjoy a 3-man instance (half-group instances are one of LotRO’s better inventions). It’s the icing on the cake, however. If you do nothing but run instances non-stop, as was required in WoW, then all of the surprises and excitement are quickly gone. So, I suppose I approve of the current trend. Let’s see how they write the games when we’re another 20 years older, and our hands shake when we hold a mouse.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: