Are they making a comeback?
One way or another, the MMORPG exists since the beginning of the 90s. Certainly, the original titles offered very different environments than the ones we know and love today, but they did indeed launch one of the most popular genres in video game history. For nearly two decades, the MMORPG vertical was strong, widely loved, and diverse, but eventually a huge decline in popularity spread. Now we ask the question about MMORPGs in 2021: are they truly go back ?
Let’s find out.
What Are MMORPG games?
To put it simply, the term means: Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games, and traditionally it depicts fantasy action titles set in huge open worlds. If we had to pull one name out of the hat of MMORPG games that you might recognize more than everyone else, it would be World of warcraft.
This beloved title has been around since 2004, and it easily dominated the MMORPG space. In fact, according to MMO-Population.com, World of Warcraft is, without a doubt, the number one, the most played MMORPG all time. This is the perfect example of a traditional MMORPG: many players online at the same time, in a large and diverse world, progressing to dynamic skill levels.
Technically, the meaning of MMORPG can be taken literally – if there are multiple players taking on a role on the same server at the same time, it is an MMORPG. But, in reality, it goes a little further than that, incorporating various membership options, crafting components, complex combat mechanics, and team play.
Here is a list of some popular MMORPG games, for reference:
- World of warcraft
- Final Fantasy XIV: A Kingdom Reborn
- Destiny 2
- New world
- Elder Scrolls Online
- Fallout 76
Presentation: The Fall
There are many reasons why in recent years there has been a decline in the number of MMORPG players, across the board. First, the game as a whole has become much more accessible, and at present, we estimate about two billion players around the world. To keep up with demand, many games released today feature short learning curves, instant stories, and quick reward mechanics.
For example, Call of Duty – arguably one of the the most popular video game franchises of all time. When playing Call of Duty it is a high energy, high reward experience, it takes very little to grasp the game, and you can get involved in a matter of minutes. Nowadays it is typical of the modern player to do not want spend many hours in an MMORPG learning the ins and outs.
In addition, esports events around the world have increased their popularity tremendously. With this information in mind, many developers have harnessed the potential of esports in their multiplayer titles wherever possible. In the world of MMORPGs, this is almost impossible, as the very nature of the game is not conducive to competitive gameplay.
Although, that being said, World of Warcraft To enjoyed many years of esports entertainment. You can go up to try betting on WoW, but tournaments don’t get the same attendance as a Fortnite or CSGO competition, for example.
These aspects, combined with typical paid subscription models, grinding expectations, and lack of a “modern” aesthetic all led to the downfall of the MMORPG.
But, MMORPGs in 2021 strength to recover.
Push the power into the platform
In 2021, the best MMORPGs are making a comeback. Recently we’ve seen a resurgence of free-to-play MMORPGs like RuneScape, but even Paid MMORPGs are gaining popularity. While slightly older, more traditional MMORPGs like World of Warcraft have seen a decline, newer titles are essentially exploding.
Towards the end of September, Amazon’s MMORPG New World was released, for a very popular welcome. It quickly became one of the most played and watched games already in the history of the game, topping the charts around the world. The player base exploded overnight and within a month it had racked up a consecutive player count of around 1.5 million users.
For MMORPGs in 2021, no title explains the resurgence better than Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn. This platform was opened in 2013, but in 2021 it is considered one of the best MMORPGs in history, and for some reason the number of players continues to increase at a rapid rate. As other MMORPGs such as Fallout 76 and The Elder Scrolls Online attempt to fill in the gaps, a clear fact emerges:
MMORPGs in 2021 are definitely making a comeback.
On the other side of the coin, you can also see how some other games, like PUBG, are dying.
How to get started with MMORPGs
From free-to-play MMORPGs to mobile MMORPGs, there is actually a fairly diverse market. While you can’t participate in esports betting with almost every MMORPG released, you can, of course, get involved by actually play the games yourself.
As developers start to embrace the MMORPG genre a bit more, we might see new titles on the horizon. While the single-player multiplayer verticals, MOBA, and FPS will always be the most popular areas, there’s no reason the MMORPG landscape can’t enjoy a comeback period.
Fortunately, you can dip a toe in the water of the MMORPG without parting with a single penny. Or, in some cases, you can use specific services to keep the cost as low as possible. There are several free MMORPGs in 2021 that you can enjoy at present:
- World of Warcraft (free trial)
- Tibia (free account)
- RuneScape (free account)
- Guild Wars 2 (free account)
- NeverWinter (free account)
If you want to take it up a notch and dive into some of the best MMORPGs in 2021 that require some form of payment, There are :
- Division 2
- Destiny 2
- Fallout 76
- New world
- Elder Scrolls Online
Take this with you
Let’s finish with a few tips that will help you explore the resurgence of MMORPG titles in 2021:
- Be ready to grind for XP, skills, and unlocks – these games are built for the long haul.
- Watch out for subscription fees that come with “premium” subscriptions.
- Be prepared to meet new people, because the very nature of the best MMORPGs means that you will meet strangers on a regular basis.
As MMORPGs return in 2021, where will your journey begin?