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Since the late 90s I've always been dragged to the idea of MMORPGs and I was lucky enough to attend a Uni who had free internet in the dorm rooms that didn't block everything, so I got to try Ultima Online when it was released. It was a fantastic experience, and even though it looked rough and was slow the entire "everyone is controlled by another human somewhere in the world" thing was very exciting to me. Later on I got hooked on Phantasy Star Online and then Anarchy Online which blew my mind and did stuff than no other game has attempted since. The main problem with these games was that the learning curve was steep and as games the average MMO would require a lot of time investment from its players. I enjoyed about a year of Final Fantasy XI Online before I was beginning to think that MMOs was a bit too niche for the majority of players but that changed with WoW. What felt like an overnight success for Blizzard, players were pouring in from all corners of the world and before long there was a massive community and everyone was eager to help one and another. I stuck with WoW for years and a lot of the online friends became real life friends, some of which I've visited in other countries. Due to real life taking up more and more of my time I had to step down as a Guild Master, after being one for nearly 8 years, then I just found less time to play and ultimately I quit. WoW as a game and community lived on and over the following years I returned briefly for each of the expansions only to learn that I struggled to get back into it. Gone were my online friends, all the places I knew and loved had been made almost redundant as new continents had been introduced, I didn't get to grips with the new class talents and skills which had changed since the early days etc. Fast forward to the year 2020, circa April, and lockdown had me spending a lot more time at home so I bought the latest expansion of WoW and decided to start a new, guildless character. The first few levels were fine, I was back in the good old starter zones and knew every nook and cranny of the big cities. But as soon as I progressed past unlocking the Dungeon Finder, things started to go askew. Every group I joined to do a dungeon were either dead silent and just rushed through the places, or they were really hostile. I was hoping that I'd been unlucky with the groups I'd been matched with but when I started to take the good old manual approach to set up a group I was met with the same kind of hostility and elitism. I was scoffed at because my item level was too low, or I didn't have the right enchants on my gear, or I had the wrong class build etc. No matter what I tried there was hostility. I stopped subbing after three months, I couldn't take it anymore as the community made the game really bad for me. I still had the itch, though so I started to do some research on WoW Pirvate Servers and after trying a few buggy ones I found a Blizz like server that runs an older version of the game, but it's nigh on perfect in terms of scripting and being as close to the retail game as one could expect from an unofficial host. The big kicker, though, was to find out that the community was really lovely. Everywhere I turned there were friendly and helpful souls, strangers threw gold and massive bags at me with instructions to pay it forward when I got good enough. About 6 months ago, Blizz released a new expansion and I felt I had to give it a chance. To no surprise it quickly boiled down to the same thing I'd seen before, hostile players who all know best, with so much money in their pockets they can simply buy whatever they want with loads to spare. After a few weeks I was back to the private server and there I am still, having a great time with lovely people. Almost every week, though, I find articles who all report the same thing. All MMO games are seeing massive losses of playerbase and new games never hits a trend status meaning they fail to attract new players. It's sad to see that that the official version of WoW is nothing but a shadow of it former self, both in terms of actual content and community, it's also sad to see that the entire genre seems to be dying rather quickly. Has the time of MMOs come and gone or should we expect to see a new king entering the arena to fight for the throne in which WoW has been sitting for a decade and a half?
Hello rllmuk Gamers! Dani here, from R2Games. I wanted to let you guys know about our newest game, League of Angels, and the Committee has been kind enough to let me spread the word here. It’s a turn-based fantasy MMORPG/strategy game in which players embark on engaging quests, compete in massive PvP battles, and conquer challenging events and minigames – all with the aid of the mighty Angels. To celebrate the launch we’ve teamed up with great cosplayers to represent the Angels. Maridah did a beautiful job with her portrayal of Loralei, and more are soon to come! If you’d like to receive exclusive cosplay photos (and free gift codes!), just sign up to our League of Angels newsletter. To check out the game go to loa.r2games.com, and let me know what you think