The Weekly Raid: Do MMORPGs Still Have Room For Elite Content?

For years now there has been a trend among games in general and MMORPGs in particular to make them more accessible by lowering the difficulty of their content. A recent game launch and a patch highlight this trend.

With the release of Patch 4.1, Final Fantasy XIV unveiled a new dungeon. This new 24 man raid was not meant to be particularly difficult, so some players were surprised to learn that several best-in-slot gear would drop.

Perhaps a worse offender is the blockbuster MMOFPS Destiny 2 which removed difficulty modes in its Campaign and severely reduced the overall difficulty. Players are complaining that the content is braindead easy and severely detracts from the experience. Youtuber BdobbinsFTW put it best in an 11 minute video which I highly recommend.

With such a clear trend across genres of dumbing down content, is there still any room for Elite content in MMORPGs today? Check out the podcast for our thoughts and share yours below!

Lifelong gamer always looking for the next virtual adventure. I'm still waiting for the next big MMORPG. Until then, you can find me hopping between multiple games.

  • EazyMakaveli

    elite content IS A MUST in mmorpgs imo. there has to be something to work towards. btw, Warframe > Destiny

  • Yea Right

    In my opinion this has more to do with the population of the MMO rather than should it exist at all. In Age of Conan (which has a low population sadly) about 80% of the playerbase is incapable of doing the end game raids. There are 2 raids called T5 and T6, and they are the highest end raids in the game, but the bulk of the playerbase is so shit that they have to focus on doing T3 and T4 and consider being full T4 fully geared, since they aren't good enough to do the higher end raids. So when the population of a game is healthy have all the elite content you want, but when it dies down, start nerfing it.

  • Kelborne

    Listening to that obnoxious clown ramble about participation trophies and digital dick-measuring contests was painful enough the first time I stumbled across the video. Not sitting through it again. Just your cookie cutter "hardcore gamer" getting his panties up his ass because a game isn't catering solely to him.

    At the end of the day, if there's an audience for it then "elite" (picture air quotes and eye-rolling please) content is fine. "Dumbed down" (see above) is fine too if that's what the players want. Not everything has to be about stroking your little ego and jerking off to leaderboards. Most people don't give a crap and just want to have a good time. You mention that FFXIV got a new raid that was easy, but left out that in the same patch it's also getting the Unending Coil of Bahamut, a dungeon made solely for the super hardcore players. The game has stuff for both sides of the coin.

    • YouAreAClosetClopper

      Sounds like the tears of the retard crew getting salty that their incredibly skilled walking simulator is beyond the measure of the everyday man. Keep patting your dick on the back there.

      • Kelborne

        Triggered a baby and hurt his little ego, I see. Don't worry. When CoD comes out I'm sure it will have plenty of stat tracking for you and all the other brats to stroke your epeens to. Assuming your underdeveloped brain can handle going from jetpacks to WWII.

    • As far as Destiny 2 is concerned, don't you at least think the removal of difficulty settings for the campaign was a mistake? I'm all for making games accessible, but as you said there should be content for everyone. Difficulty settings seem like such an easy way to placate everyone.

  • High end content isn't entirely mandatory, but if you want your playerbase to work towards a rewarding goal or achievement then this stuff should be taken into account. Players have the most fun in a game when there's a challenge, even if there isn't a reward at the end of it, but the effort put into it alone is what makes elite content worth it.

  • Boltonsquad

    I prefer the making of hard content, I remember back in the WoW hard-mode days constantly wiping to the same boss night after night until will finally got it down.

    Easy content means that developers have to roll out content at a much faster rate to keep the player base entertained if it can be cleared with relative ease.

    Harder content mean's the player base then have something to work towards, obviously there's always achievements and exploration and things but that isn't for everyone.

  • siamesedads

    There's no actual discussion when Omer spends the majority of the Podcast whining. He was factually inaccurate with his qualms concerning FFXIV. Best in slot is not entirely obtainable through his supposedly "face-roll" content. There's a weapon that's a higher item level for only the most difficult content, in addition to that, there's an exclusive mount. I have enjoyed these Podcasts in the past where it was a bit more tame, a civil discussion between altay and remotay but this turned to a tirade on "if they get easier than me, it diminishes my gameplay" which is always a pain to watch.

    • YouAreAClosetClopper

      Not the first time he got triggered and derails the whole deal. Probably the worst I've seen of him though. Though this reminds me of the Altay "if my fun is griefing others then I should be able to do so." deal. if you see this I'll say that I'm with Altay on this one, the market is geared for retards.

      • Glad you're with me on this one, though I still stand by my griefing position. As long as you're not using 3rd party programs (hacks) or making out-of-game threats, everything should be permitted.

  • This is actually a topic I'm currently learning about in University. Challenge is, in essence, the core of playing any video game. Perhaps losing sight of that is what's bringing players out of the MMORPG worlds and leading to their decline. I understand it can't quite be as one-dimensional as that and that we must accommodate for all kinds of players without alienating others. But in these large-scale fantasy worlds, there has to be something to always strive for. Whether you're a casual or elitist player. This means we can't simply just cater for one or the other - and if a game's content wants to be easy and they're profiting from that they can. However, the worlds that MMORPG's are built around need to constantly have something powerful that players need to overcome - there needs to be a seemingly impossible end goal to allow players to strive for more, or atleast something challenging, even if it's something minor. I don't think anyone, casual or elitist, wants to play in a world where they're already as powerful as possible. As Sheldon writes in his book "Character Development and Storytelling for Games": "As our player-characters and other party members rise in levels, we must boost the power of their antagonists. This is not simply a question of game balance, but of story balance as well. If we just keep leveling our characters up, we risk losing the empathy even if we continue to provide danger." In other words, it's not as simplistic as just providing something hard, rather a goal for those playing.