One of the things I find distressing in MMORPGs today is the lack of that RP part… you know, Role Playing. I suppose that’s why most articles these days are using just MMOG or seeking out new identifiers.
Mostly, when I play, I tend to RP, at least a little. I try not to talk about sports or real world news, I don’t go on and on about the latest movie that I saw. I’m in a world where I am a hunter, and I have been tasked to kill bears, and while I don’t keep things deadly serious, I try to keep things contextual. Lots of people don’t.
It starts with names. From a hundred yards, when I see you running across the field and I target you and see your name is ‘Meattank’ or ‘Roxxingursoxxorz’, I know immediately that you are not playing your role as defined by the game world. Instead, you are likely grinding exp, loot, money or faction. Grouping with you would be a mistake, because you are likely to spend our time talking about the real world, or worse, DPS numbers and quickest routes of progression, boiling the game down into its simplest form. Of course, some ‘bad’ players still have good names.
I find, as I get older, that I’m less tolerant of people. I’m more apt to just pick up my toys and go home rather than put up with someone insisting that not playing a game at its most minimal and purest form is a waste of time. People who demand that levels and stats be maxed, that can only tell you where things are by looking them up on the latest spoiler site. Mostly though, the lack of role playing goes back to the idea I posted about a couple weeks ago. The min/max play style trumps my role playing style. A player playing the stat and loot game can hear me talk about getting a beer down at the pub and just brush it off, but when a group member breaks out with “Okay, lull that mob and will split the pair, cast x, y and z, if we happen to get the second, I’ll offtank until you guys down the first mob. Stay to the back and sides to avoid the ripostes. Max melee range so you don’t push.” well, it just kills the role play.
There is no solution to this. I’m just venting. I’ll still keep trying to role play, but real role playing is probably going to have to stay at the table top game level.