Over at Bio Break, Syp wrote today about how he’s never been a fan of end-game content, finding it repetitive and entirely different from the journey to the level-cap. He goes on to say that after finally hitting the level-cap with his Agent in SWTOR, he’s ready to re-roll with a new character and start over, stating, “The alt itch is so strong that it’s almost irresistible, and I’m giddy at the prospect of trying a different class, storyline, and faction”
I, however, am the exact opposite; having never re-rolled an alt, and the very prospect of having to do so, sends shivers down my spine. To me, the end-game is the game. Although, I will admit that it is repetitive, and needs an update in the biggest way.
The way I look at it is everyone starts off as a child. As you level and grow-up, you learn new things, then one day you hit the level cap and are finally able to do everything you have itched to do such as: drive a car, vote, pay taxes, work, and buy a drink.
Think of games like League of Legends or Modern Warfare. They both have a leveling system and repetitive gameplay; but millions of people absolutely love it and play for years. So what’s the secret to their success? It’s the competitiveness of playing against other players. Today’s MMORPG, even on the PvP servers, are really co-op oriented games. SWTOR just took this to the next level, and basically turned it into a single-player experience. You group with friends and fight NPCs all day. How fun would either MW or LoL possibly be, if you played against bots all day? Zero. Neither of those games would be around today if that was the case.
It’s the people who make games fun, and over the last decade MMORPGs have been slowly separating players from each other in-turn for more NPC interaction in the form of collecting points and badges through group quests, raids, and PvP zones.
I do agree with Syp on one point: that end-game content should’t be different from the content that comes before it. End-game content should be a continuation of the game where skill becomes the dominant means to victory.