Looking Back: Ethic’s 2005 MMORPG Predictions

Let’s go back and take a look at my 2005 MMORPG predictions and see how close I was.

World of Warcraft: Will continue to dominate the casual playerbase. Hardcores will move on. Will become the number one MMOG in the USA.

Looks pretty good, but perhaps that one was too easy.

Asheron’s Call 2: Won’t make it to 2006.

Ouch. Dead on.

Everquest 2: Completely gives up on the casual player market and focuses on the powergamers, thus raping Everquest.

Wrong. It appears that EQ2 has been trying to lure the casuals over to the SOE camp. I got this game as a gift for Christmas, perhaps I’ll give it a try.

The Matrix Online: I’d be shocked if this one ever gets released.

Wrong again.

City of Heroes: Will continue to be strong. City of Villians will be very big for them.

Looks pretty good to me.

Guild Wars: I hate to call this an MMORPG, but what else can I call it. Will be rather popular but will not be able to remain free of monthly charges. I predict they will find a way to charge people other than the planned “expansion” idea.

So far, they are proving me wrong.

Wish: I wish this one would go away, and I may see my wish come true.

Ding! Ouch again. Sorry to have been so harsh, but reality bites.

Dungeons & Dragons Online: This one has good potential except for one thing: Turbine. Can they erase the stain of AC2?

Really not much to say here since it was pushed back to 2006.

Middle Earth Online: Same problem as DDO, but this one is already getting the rumors of cancellation (again). As much as I’d like to see this one and give it a try, I’m not hopeful. Turbine, what went wrong?

Still not cancelled, but still not released.

Tabula Rasa: Square Enix and Richard Garriott. That’s two pretty good things going for you. Won’t be out in 2005 however.

What happened to this game? *cricket chirps*

Final Fantasy XI: Will remain strong outside of the USA.

Seems to be holding strong everywhere.

Lineage 2: Suckage will continue.

Doing strong, but not in the USA. I guess I was half right.

Asheron’s Call: Will remain a soft spot in many players heart’s, but most will refuse to play it unless they update the graphics.

Well, this one might actually go back up some with AC2 being cancelled. We shall see.

Anarchy Online: Free game play can be good for the exposure, but it does not help the bottom line. Was one of my favorites and I hope it can get more players. It will hang around for another year.

Yep, hanging in there.

EVE Online: Will remain popular with math geeks and scam artists.

Ha! I am really enjoying this game. I’m going to take back the math geek comment (I’m only a half-math geek so it must be wrong). The scam artist comment was dead-on. Keep in mind, it is an approved method of play so they have that going for ’em.

Star Wars Galaxies: Space expansion a little too little, a little too late. Will hang around but it’s chance for glory is long gone.

Who would have seen this one coming? The NGE was a big suprise. I don’t think it helped save the game in any way.

Everquest, Ultima Online, Horizons, Shadowbane: Meh, I just don’t care. Go to hell.

None of them currently residing in hell, but I still don’t care.

What am I forgettting? Planetside. Yes, I forgot Planetside. Thankfully.

I’m sorry, did you say something? Anyway, I’ll have my predictions for 2006 after the Carnival of Gamers leaves town.

– Ethic

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I own this little MMO gaming blog but I hardly ever write on it any more. I'm more of a bloglord or something. Thankfully I have several minions to keep things rolling along.

5 thoughts on “Looking Back: Ethic’s 2005 MMORPG Predictions”

  1. There is debate about whether some of those are residing in hell. Or perhaps whether their players are.

  2. I still have a soft spot in my heart for Horizons. I loved my dragon.

    I think they can only go up, especially now that they’ve signed up Peter S. Beagle to write for them. The biggest problems I had with the game were that (a) their customer service was nonexistent and (b) the game ended up being an obvious succession of tougher grinding. That said, they had a reasonably consistent backstory (and most importantly, a reason why the mobs were where they were), and they really did involve the players in changing the world–not to the same extent as the original premise, but still impressive and recently imitated by EQ2.

    In 2004, I bought and played CoH, Lineage 2, AC2, EQ2, WoW, and DAOC: Catacombs. In 2005, I played WoW, EQ2, a couple days of DAOC, tried some indie games, and bought GW and CoV–all in all, a really bad years for new MMOs. I’m looking forward to 2006, with plans to check out Tabula Rasa, MEO, and DDO, and maybe even Auto Assault if it turns out to be a fun and innovative game.

  3. Any predictions on WW2OL? It’s getting re-released in North America as Battleground Europe (now with deployment and sniper scopes). Though the obivious answer is the same one for SB/UO/EQ1 etc I supose.

  4. Just to give a bit of trivia, Wish was sort of resurrected by Magic Hat Software as Irth Online (www.irthonline.com).

    Perhaps you’ll recall that several reasons, one or all, were cited by various people for Wish’s demise: point-n-click movement, a single shard/server for all players, and, the big one, no PvP. Irth Online addresses all three: WASD & mouse movement, multiple servers (if they get the players), and heavy focus on PvP.

    It’s too bad all those people were wrong about the reasons for Wish’s demise. The reactions to Irth Online have been … poor. Much more so than Wish at the time of its cancellation.

    There’s a lesson here somewhere.

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