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Massively multiplayer online role-playing game

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A massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) is a video game that combines aspects of a role-playing video game and a massively multiplayer online game.

As in role-playing games (RPGs), the player assumes the role of a character (often in a fantasy world or science-fiction world) and takes control over many of that character's actions. MMORPGs are distinguished from single-player or small multi-player online RPGs by the number of players able to interact together, and by the game's persistent world (usually hosted by the game's publisher), which continues to exist and evolve while the player is offline and away from the game.

MMORPGs are played throughout the world. Worldwide revenues for MMORPGs exceeded half a billion dollars in 2005,[1] and Western revenues exceeded a billion dollars in 2006.[2] In 2008, the spending on subscription MMORPGs by consumers in North America and Europe grew to $1.4 billion.[3] World of Warcraft, a popular MMORPG, had over 10 million subscribers as of November 2014.[4] World of Warcraft's total revenue was $1.04 billion US dollars in 2014.[5] Star Wars: The Old Republic, released in 2011, became the world's 'Fastest-Growing MMO Ever' after gaining more than 1 million subscribers within the first three days of its launch.[6][7]

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Video game

Video game

Video games, also known as computer games, are electronic games that involve interaction with a user interface or input device – such as a joystick, controller, keyboard, or motion sensing device – to generate audiovisual feedback. This feedback is most commonly shown on a video display device, such as a TV set, monitor, touchscreen, or virtual reality headset. Some computer games do not always depend on a graphics display; for example, text adventure games and computer chess can be played through teletype printers. Video games are often augmented with audio feedback delivered through speakers or headphones, and sometimes with other types of feedback, including haptic technology.

Role-playing video game

Role-playing video game

A role-playing video game, commonly referred to as a role-playing game (RPG) or computer role-playing game (CRPG), is a video game genre where the player controls the actions of a character immersed in some well-defined world, usually involving some form of character development by way of recording statistics. Many role-playing video games have origins in tabletop role-playing games and use much of the same terminology, settings and game mechanics. Other major similarities with pen-and-paper games include developed story-telling and narrative elements, player character development, complexity, as well as replay value and immersion. The electronic medium removes the necessity for a gamemaster and increases combat resolution speed. RPGs have evolved from simple text-based console-window games into visually rich 3D experiences.

Massively multiplayer online game

Massively multiplayer online game

A massively multiplayer online game is an online video game with a large number of players, often hundreds or thousands, on the same server. MMOs usually feature a huge, persistent open world, although there are games that differ. These games can be found for most network-capable platforms, including the personal computer, video game console, or smartphones and other mobile devices.

Player character

Player character

A player character is a fictional character in a video game or tabletop role-playing game whose actions are controlled by a player rather than the rules of the game. The characters that are not controlled by a player are called non-player characters (NPCs). The actions of non-player characters are typically handled by the game itself in video games, or according to rules followed by a gamemaster refereeing tabletop role-playing games. The player character functions as a fictional, alternate body for the player controlling the character.

Fantasy world

Fantasy world

A fantasy world is a world created for/from fictional media, such as literature, film or games. Typical fantasy worlds involve magic or magical abilities, nonexistent technology and, sometimes, either a historical or futuristic theme. Some worlds may be a parallel world connected to Earth via magical portals or items ; an imaginary universe hidden within ours ; a fictional Earth set in the remote past or future ; an alternative version of our History ; or an entirely independent world set in another part of the universe.

Online game

Online game

An online game is a video game that is either partially or primarily played through the Internet or any other computer network available. Online games are ubiquitous on modern gaming platforms, including PCs, consoles and mobile devices, and span many genres, including first-person shooters, strategy games, and massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPG). In 2019, revenue in the online games segment reached $16.9 billion, with $4.2 billion generated by China and $3.5 billion in the United States. Since 2010s, a common trend among online games has been operating them as games as a service, using monetization schemes such as loot boxes and battle passes as purchasable items atop freely-offered games. Unlike purchased retail games, online games have the problem of not being permanently playable, as they require special servers in order to function.

Persistent world

Persistent world

A persistent world or persistent state world (PSW) is a virtual world which, by the definition by Richard Bartle, "continues to exist and develop internally even when there are no people interacting with it". The first virtual worlds were text-based and often called MUDs, but the term is frequently used in relation to massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs) and pervasive games. Examples of persistent worlds that exist in video games include Battle Dawn, EVE Online, and Realms of Trinity.

Video game publisher

Video game publisher

A video game publisher is a company that publishes video games that have been developed either internally by the publisher or externally by a video game developer.

World of Warcraft

World of Warcraft

World of Warcraft (WoW) is a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) released in 2004 by Blizzard Entertainment. Set in the Warcraft fantasy universe, World of Warcraft takes place within the world of Azeroth, approximately four years after the events of the previous game in the series, Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne. The game was announced in 2001, and was released for the 10th anniversary of the Warcraft franchise on November 23, 2004. Since launch, World of Warcraft has had nine major expansion packs: The Burning Crusade (2007), Wrath of the Lich King (2008), Cataclysm (2010), Mists of Pandaria (2012), Warlords of Draenor (2014), Legion (2016), Battle for Azeroth (2018), Shadowlands (2020), and Dragonflight (2022).

Star Wars: The Old Republic

Star Wars: The Old Republic

Star Wars: The Old Republic is a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) based in the Star Wars universe. Developed by BioWare Austin and a supplemental team at BioWare Edmonton, the game was announced on October 21, 2008. The video game was released for the Microsoft Windows platform on December 20, 2011 in North America and part of Europe. It was released in Oceania and Asia on March 1, 2012.

Common features

Although modern MMORPGs sometimes differ dramatically from their predecessors, many of them share the same basic characteristics. These include several common features: persistent game environment, some form of level progression, social interaction within the game, in-game culture, system architecture, membership in a group, and character customization.

Themes

The majority of popular MMORPGs are based on traditional fantasy themes, often occurring in an in-game universe comparable to that of Dungeons & Dragons. Some employ hybrid themes that either merge or replace fantasy elements with those of science fiction, sword and sorcery, or crime fiction. Others draw thematic material from American comic books, the occult, and other genres. These elements are often developed using similar tasks and scenarios involving quests, monsters, and loot.

Progression

In nearly all MMORPGs, the development of the player's character is the primary goal. Nearly all MMORPGs feature a character progression system, in which players earn experience points for their actions and use those points to reach character "levels", which makes them better at whatever they do.[8] Traditionally, combat with monsters and completing quests for non-player characters, either alone or in groups, are the primary ways to earn experience points. The accumulation of wealth (including combat-useful items) is also a way to progress in many MMORPGs. This is traditionally best accomplished via combat. The cycle produced by these conditions, combat leading to new items allowing for more combat with no change in gameplay, is sometimes pejoratively referred to as the level treadmill, or "grinding". The role-playing game Progress Quest was created as a parody of this trend. Eve Online, a space-based MMORPG, uses an alternative method of progression where users train skills in real-time rather than using experience points as a measure of progression.

In some MMORPGs, there is no limit to a player's level, allowing the grinding experience to continue indefinitely. MMORPGs that use this model often glorify top ranked players by displaying their avatars on the game's website or posting their stats on a high score screen. Another common practice is to enforce a maximum reachable level for all players, often referred to as a level cap. Once reached, the definition of a player's progression changes. Instead of being awarded primarily with experience for completing quests and dungeons, the player's motivation to continue playing will be replaced with collecting money and equipment.

Often, the widened range of equipment available at the maximum level will have increased aesthetic value to distinguish high ranking players in game between lower ranked players. Colloquially known as endgame gear, this set of empowered weapons and armor adds a competitive edge to both scripted boss encounters as well as player vs player combat. Player motivation to outperform others is fueled by acquiring such items and is a significant determining factor in their success or failure in combat-related situations.

Social interaction

MMORPGs almost always have tools to facilitate communication between players. Many MMORPGs offer support for in-game guilds or clans, though these will usually form whether the game supports them or not.

In addition, most MMOGs require some degree of teamwork in parts of the game. These tasks usually require players to take on roles in the group, such as protecting other players from damage (called tanking), "healing" damage done to other players or damaging enemies.

MMORPGs generally have Game Moderators or Game Masters (frequently referred to as GMs or "mods"), who may be paid employees or unpaid volunteers who attempt to supervise the world. Some GMs may have additional access to features and information related to the game that are not available to other players and roles.[9]

Relationships formed in MMORPGs can often be just as intense as relationships formed between friends or partners met outside the game, and often involve elements of collaboration and trust between players.[10]

Roleplaying

Most MMORPGs provide different types of classes that players can choose. Among those classes, a small portion of players choose to roleplay their characters, and there are rules that provide functionality and content to those who do. Community resources such as forums and guides exist in support of this play style.

For example, if a player wants to play a priest role in his MMORPG world, he might buy a cope from a shop and learn priestly skills, proceeding to speak, act, and interact with others as their character would. This may or may not include pursuing other goals such as wealth or experience. Guilds or similar groups with a focus on roleplaying may develop extended in-depth narratives using the setting and resources similar to those in the game world.[11]

Culture

Over time, the MMORPG community has developed a sub-culture with its own slang and metaphors, as well as an unwritten list of social rules and taboos. Players will often complain about 'grind' (a slang term for any repetitive, time-consuming activity in an MMORPG), or talk about 'buffs' and 'nerfs' (respectively an upgrade or downgrade of a particular game mechanic).

As with all such cultures, social rules exist for such things as invitations to join an adventuring party, the proper division of treasure, and how a player is expected to behave while grouped with other players.[11]

System architecture

Most MMORPGs are deployed using a client–server system architecture. The server software generates a persistent instance of the virtual world that runs continuously, and players connect to it via a client software. The client software may provide access to the entire playing world, or further 'expansions' may be required to be purchased to allow access to certain areas of the game. EverQuest and Guild Wars are two examples of games that use such a format. Players generally must purchase the client software for a one-time fee, although an increasing trend is for MMORPGs to work using pre-existing "thin" clients, such as a web browser.

Depending on the number of players and the system architecture, an MMORPG might be run on multiple separate servers, each representing an independent world, where players from one server cannot interact with those from another; World of Warcraft is a prominent example, with each separate server housing several thousand players. In many MMORPGs the number of players in one world is often limited to around a few thousand, but a notable example of the opposite is EVE Online, which accommodates several hundred thousand players on the same server, with over 60,000 playing simultaneously (June 2010[12]) at certain times. Some games allow characters to appear on any world, but not simultaneously (such as Seal Online: Evolution or Kolossium competition in Dofus); others limit each character to the world in which it was created. World of Warcraft has experimented with "cross-realm" (i.e. cross-server) interaction in player vs player "battlegrounds", using server clusters or "battlegroups" to co-ordinate players looking to participate in structured player vs player content such as the Warsong Gulch or Alterac Valley battlegrounds.[13] Additionally, patch 3.3, released on December 8, 2009, introduced a cross-realm "looking for group" system to help players form groups for instanced content (though not for open-world questing) from a larger pool of characters than their home server can necessarily provide.[14]

Business models

MMORPGs today use a wide range of business models, from free of charge, free with microtransactions, advertise funded, to various kinds of payment plans. Some MMORPGs require payment or a monthly subscription to play. By definition, "massively multiplayer" games are always online, and most require some sort of continuous revenue (such as monthly subscriptions and advertisements) for maintenance and development purposes. Some games, such as Guild Wars, have disposed of the 'monthly fee' model entirely, and recover costs directly through sales of the software and associated expansion packs. Still others adopt a micropayment model where the core content is free, but players are given the option to purchase additional content, such as equipment, aesthetic items, or pets. Games that make use of this model often have originated in Korea, such as Flyff and MapleStory. This business model is alternately called "pay for perks" or "freemium", and games using it often describe themselves with the term "free-to-play".

  • Free-to-play (F2P) means that there is no cost to purchase the software and there is no subscription charge. Variably applies to traditionally bought and forever available games (see Buy-to-play below). Most newer MMOs that fall under this category now includes microtransactions however, which causes them to overlap with the Freemium model.
  • Freemium (a portmanteau of free-to-play and premium) means that the majority or all of the game's content is available for free but players can pay for extra content, character customization, added perks or faster advancement into the game via microtransactions. Freemium thus overlaps with both the free-to-play and pay-to-play models.
  • Buy-to-play (B2P) means that the MMO can only be played by purchasing the game, but there is no subsequent subscription fee for playing the game. These games may or may not include additional microtransactions, or may sell additional content in the form of expansions instead of asking for an ongoing subscription fee.
  • Pay-to-play (P2P) means that the MMO requires a monthly subscription fee or other ongoing fee in order to continue playing the game. It may also require an up-front purchase of the game in addition to the monthly subscription fee, though many of these up-front purchases include a month of game time. This was once the most common way for MMOs to finance themselves, but has fallen out of favor in recent years as an increasing number of games have switched to other business models due to difficulty in retaining a stable playerbase.

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Fantasy

Fantasy

Fantasy is a genre of speculative fiction involving magical elements, typically set in a fictional universe and sometimes inspired by mythology and folklore. Its roots are in oral traditions, which then became fantasy literature and drama. From the twentieth century, it has expanded further into various media, including film, television, graphic novels, manga, animations and video games.

Dungeons & Dragons

Dungeons & Dragons

Dungeons & Dragons is a fantasy tabletop role-playing game (RPG) originally designed by Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson. The game was first published in 1974 by Tactical Studies Rules, Inc. (TSR). It has been published by Wizards of the Coast since 1997. The game was derived from miniature wargames, with a variation of the 1971 game Chainmail serving as the initial rule system. D&D's publication is commonly recognized as the beginning of modern role-playing games and the role-playing game industry, and also deeply influenced video games, especially the role-playing video game genre.

Science fiction

Science fiction

Science fiction is a genre of speculative fiction, which typically deals with imaginative and futuristic concepts such as advanced science and technology, space exploration, time travel, parallel universes, and extraterrestrial life. Science fiction can trace its roots to ancient mythology. It is related to fantasy, horror, and superhero fiction and contains many subgenres. Its exact definition has long been disputed among authors, critics, scholars, and readers.

Sword and sorcery

Sword and sorcery

Sword and sorcery (S&S) is a subgenre of fantasy characterized by sword-wielding heroes engaged in exciting and violent adventures. Elements of romance, magic, and the supernatural are also often present. Unlike works of high fantasy, the tales, though dramatic, focus on personal battles rather than world-endangering matters. Sword and sorcery commonly overlaps with heroic fantasy.

Crime fiction

Crime fiction

Crime fiction, detective story, murder mystery, mystery novel, and police novel are terms used to describe narratives that centre on criminal acts and especially on the investigation, either by an amateur or a professional detective, of a crime, often a murder. It is usually distinguished from mainstream fiction and other genres such as historical fiction or science fiction, but the boundaries are indistinct. Crime fiction has multiple subgenres, including detective fiction, courtroom drama, hard-boiled fiction, and legal thrillers. Most crime drama focuses on crime investigation and does not feature the courtroom. Suspense and mystery are key elements that are nearly ubiquitous to the genre.

Occult

Occult

The occult, in the broadest sense, is a category of esoteric supernatural beliefs and practices which generally fall outside the scope of religion and science, encompassing phenomena involving otherworldly agency, such as magic and mysticism and their varied spells. It can also refer to supernatural ideas like extra-sensory perception and parapsychology.

Genre

Genre

Genre is any form or type of communication in any mode with socially-agreed-upon conventions developed over time. In popular usage, it normally describes a category of literature, music, or other forms of art or entertainment, whether written or spoken, audio or visual, based on some set of stylistic criteria, yet genres can be aesthetic, rhetorical, communicative, or functional. Genres form by conventions that change over time as cultures invent new genres and discontinue the use of old ones. Often, works fit into multiple genres by way of borrowing and recombining these conventions. Stand-alone texts, works, or pieces of communication may have individual styles, but genres are amalgams of these texts based on agreed-upon or socially inferred conventions. Some genres may have rigid, strictly adhered-to guidelines, while others may show great flexibility.

Player character

Player character

A player character is a fictional character in a video game or tabletop role-playing game whose actions are controlled by a player rather than the rules of the game. The characters that are not controlled by a player are called non-player characters (NPCs). The actions of non-player characters are typically handled by the game itself in video games, or according to rules followed by a gamemaster refereeing tabletop role-playing games. The player character functions as a fictional, alternate body for the player controlling the character.

Non-player character

Non-player character

A non-player character (NPC), or non-playable character, is any character in a game that is not controlled by a player. The term originated in traditional tabletop role-playing games where it applies to characters controlled by the gamemaster or referee rather than by another player. In video games, this usually means a character controlled by the computer that has a predetermined set of behaviors that potentially will impact gameplay, but will not necessarily be the product of true artificial intelligence.

Progress Quest

Progress Quest

Progress Quest is a video game developed by Eric Fredricksen as a parody of EverQuest and other massively multiplayer online role-playing games. It is loosely considered a zero-player game, in the sense that once the player has set up their artificial character, there is no user interaction at all; the game "plays" itself, with the human player as spectator. The game's source code was released in 2011.

Eve Online

Eve Online

Eve Online is a space-based, persistent world massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) developed and published by CCP Games. Players of Eve Online can participate in a number of in-game professions and activities, including mining, piracy, manufacturing, trading, exploration, and combat. The game contains a total of 7,800 star systems that can be visited by players.

History

MUD1, an early multi-user game
MUD1, an early multi-user game

MMORPG is a term coined by Richard Garriott to refer to massive multiplayer online role-playing games and their social communities.[11][15] Previous to this and related coinages, these games were generally called graphical MUDs; the history of MMORPGs traces back directly through the MUD genre.[16][17] Through this connection, MMORPGs can be seen to have roots in the earliest multi-user games such as Mazewar (1974) and MUD1 (1978). 1985 saw the release of a roguelike (pseudo-graphical) MUD called Island of Kesmai on CompuServe[18] and Lucasfilm's graphical MUD Habitat.[19] The first fully graphical multi-user RPG was Neverwinter Nights, which was delivered through America Online in 1991 and was personally championed by AOL President Steve Case.[20] Other early proprietary graphical online RPGs include three on The Sierra Network: The Shadow of Yserbius in 1992, The Fates of Twinion in 1993, and The Ruins of Cawdor in 1995. Another milestone came in 1995 as NSFNET restrictions were lifted, opening the Internet up for game developers, which allowed for the first truly "massively"-scoped titles. Finally, MMORPGs as defined today began with Meridian 59 in 1996, innovative both in its scope and in offering first-person 3D graphics, with The Realm Online appearing nearly simultaneously.[20] Ultima Online, released in 1997, is often credited with first popularizing the genre,[20] though more mainstream attention was garnered by 1999's EverQuest and Asheron's Call in the West[20] and 1996's Nexus: The Kingdom of the Winds in South Korea.

The financial success of these early titles has ensured competition in the genre since that time. MMORPG titles now exist on consoles and in new settings. In 2008, the market for MMORPGs had Blizzard Entertainment's World of Warcraft dominating as the largest MMORPG,[21] alongside other titles such as Final Fantasy XIV and Guild Wars 2, though an additional market exists for free-to-play MMORPGs, which are supported by advertising and purchases of in-game items. This free-to-play model is particularly common in South Korea such as MapleStory, Rohan: Blood Feud, Atlantica Online and Lost Ark. Also, there are some free-to-play games, such as RuneScape and Tibia, where the game is free, but one would have to pay monthly to play the game with more features. Guild Wars and its sequel avoid some degree of competition with other MMORPGs by only requiring the initial purchase of the game to play.

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MUD1

MUD1

Multi-User Dungeon, or MUD, is the first MUD.

History of massively multiplayer online games

History of massively multiplayer online games

The history of massively multiplayer online games spans over thirty years and hundreds of massively multiplayer online games (MMOG) titles. The origin and influence on MMO games stems from MUDs, Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) and earlier social games.

Richard Garriott

Richard Garriott

Richard Allen Garriott de Cayeux is an American video game developer, entrepreneur and private astronaut. Although both his parents were American, he maintains dual British and American citizenship by birth.

MUD

MUD

A MUD is a multiplayer real-time virtual world, usually text-based or storyboarded. MUDs combine elements of role-playing games, hack and slash, player versus player, interactive fiction, and online chat. Players can read or view descriptions of rooms, objects, other players, non-player characters, and actions performed in the virtual world. Players typically interact with each other and the world by typing commands that resemble a natural language.

Roguelike

Roguelike

Roguelike is a subgenre of role-playing computer games traditionally characterized by a dungeon crawl through procedurally generated levels, turn-based gameplay, grid-based movement, and permanent death of the player character. Most roguelikes are based on a high fantasy narrative, reflecting their influence from tabletop role playing games such as Dungeons & Dragons.

Island of Kesmai

Island of Kesmai

Island of Kesmai was an early commercial online game in the multi-user dungeon (MUD) genre, innovative in its use of roguelike pseudo-graphics. It is considered a major forerunner of modern massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs).

CompuServe

CompuServe

CompuServe was an American online service provider, the first major commercial one in the world – described in 1994 as "the oldest of the Big Three information services ."

Habitat (video game)

Habitat (video game)

Habitat is a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) developed by LucasArts. It is the first attempt at a large-scale commercial virtual community that was graphic based. Initially created in 1985 by Randy Farmer, Chip Morningstar, Aric Wilmunder and Janet Hunter the game was made available as a beta test in 1986 by Quantum Link, an online service for the Commodore 64 computer and the corporate progenitor to AOL. Both Farmer and Morningstar were given a First Penguin Award at the 2001 Game Developers Choice Awards for their innovative work on Habitat. As a graphical MUD it is considered a forerunner of modern MMORPGs unlike other online communities of the time. Habitat had a GUI and large user base of consumer-oriented users, and those elements in particular have made Habitat a much-cited project and acknowledged benchmark for the design of today's online communities that incorporate accelerated 3D computer graphics and immersive elements into their environments.

Steve Case

Steve Case

Stephen McConnell Case is an American businessman, investor, and philanthropist best known as the former chief executive officer and chairman of America Online (AOL). Case joined AOL's predecessor company, Quantum Computer Services, as a marketing vice-president in 1985, became CEO of the company in 1991, and, at the height of the dot-com bubble in 2000, orchestrated with Gerald M. Levin the merger that created AOL Time Warner, described as "the biggest train wreck in the history of corporate America."

The Shadow of Yserbius

The Shadow of Yserbius

The Shadow of Yserbius, originally published by Sierra On-Line and developed by Joe Ybarra of Ybarra Productions, was the first of three graphical MUDs for the online community. The Shadow of Yserbius and its successors remained online until 1996, when America Online purchased the rights from AT&T for an undisclosed price. AOL soon abandoned The Shadow of Yserbius, which was a competitor to its existing online RPG Neverwinter Nights.

National Science Foundation Network

National Science Foundation Network

The National Science Foundation Network (NSFNET) was a program of coordinated, evolving projects sponsored by the National Science Foundation (NSF) from 1985 to 1995 to promote advanced research and education networking in the United States. The program created several nationwide backbone computer networks in support of these initiatives. Initially created to link researchers to the NSF-funded supercomputing centers, through further public funding and private industry partnerships it developed into a major part of the Internet backbone.

Meridian 59

Meridian 59

Meridian 59 is a 1996 video game developed by Archetype Interactive and published by The 3DO Company. It was the first 3D graphical massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) and one of the longest running original online role-playing games. The development team included John Hanke, who later founded Niantic, Inc. and codeveloped Google Earth and Pokémon Go.

Development

The cost of developing a competitive commercial MMORPG title often exceeded $10 million in 2003.[22] These projects require multiple disciplines within game design and development such as 3D modeling, 2D art, animation, user interfaces, client/server engineering, database architecture, and network infrastructure.[23]

The front-end (or client) component of a commercial, modern MMORPG features 3D graphics. As with other modern 3D games, the front-end requires expertise with implementing 3D engines, real-time shader techniques and physics simulation. The actual visual content (areas, creatures, characters, weapons, spaceships and so forth) is developed by artists who typically begin with two-dimensional concept art, and later convert these concepts into animated 3D scenes, models and texture maps.[24]

Developing an MMOG server requires expertise with client/server architecture, network protocols, security, and database design. MMORPGs include reliable systems for a number of vital tasks. The server must be able to handle and verify a large number of connections, prevent cheating, and apply changes (bug fixes or added content) to the game. A system for recording the games data at regular intervals, without stopping the game, is also important.[25]

Maintenance requires sufficient servers and bandwidth, and a dedicated support staff. Insufficient resources for maintenance lead to lag and frustration for the players, and can severely damage the reputation of a game, especially at launch. Care must also be taken to ensure that player population remains at an acceptable level by adding or removing servers. Peer-to-peer MMORPGs could theoretically work cheaply and efficiently in regulating server load, but practical issues such as asymmetrical network bandwidth, CPU-hungry rendering engines, unreliability of individual nodes, and inherent lack of security (opening fertile new grounds for cheating) can make them a difficult proposition. The hosted infrastructure for a commercial-grade MMORPG requires the deployment of hundreds (or even thousands) of servers. Developing an affordable infrastructure for an online game requires developers to scale large numbers of players with less hardware and network investment.[26]

In addition, the development team will need to have expertise with the fundamentals of game design: world-building, lore and game mechanics,[27] as well as what makes games fun.[28]

Non-corporate development

Screenshot of an event in the MMORPG Ryzom, an open source and free content game (2014).[29][30]
Screenshot of an event in the MMORPG Ryzom, an open source and free content game (2014).[29][30]

Though the vast majority of MMORPGs are produced by companies, many small teams of programmers and artists have contributed to the genre. As shown above, the average MMORPG development project requires enormous investments of time and money, and running the game can be a long-term commitment. As a result, non-corporate (or independent, or "indie") development of MMORPGs is less common compared to other genres. Still, many independent MMORPGs do exist, representing a wide spectrum of genres, gameplay types, and revenue systems.

Some independent MMORPG projects are completely open source, while others feature proprietary content made with an open-source game engine. The WorldForge project has been active since 1998 and formed a community of independent developers who are working on creating framework for a number of open-source MMORPGs. The Multiverse Foundation has also created a platform specifically for independent MMOG developers.[31]

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Shader

Shader

In computer graphics, a shader is a computer program that calculates the appropriate levels of light, darkness, and color during the rendering of a 3D scene - a process known as shading. Shaders have evolved to perform a variety of specialized functions in computer graphics special effects and video post-processing, as well as general-purpose computing on graphics processing units.

Cheating in online games

Cheating in online games

Cheating in online games is the subversion of the rules or mechanics of online video games to gain an unfair advantage over other players, generally with the use of third-party software. What constitutes cheating is dependent on the game in question, its rules, and consensus opinion as to whether a particular activity is considered to be cheating.

Server (computing)

Server (computing)

In computing, a server is a piece of computer hardware or software that provides functionality for other programs or devices, called "clients". This architecture is called the client–server model. Servers can provide various functionalities, often called "services", such as sharing data or resources among multiple clients, or performing computation for a client. A single server can serve multiple clients, and a single client can use multiple servers. A client process may run on the same device or may connect over a network to a server on a different device. Typical servers are database servers, file servers, mail servers, print servers, web servers, game servers, and application servers.

Bandwidth (computing)

Bandwidth (computing)

Arjun pandey

Lag (video games)

Lag (video games)

In computers, lag is delay (latency) between the action of the user (input) and the reaction of the server supporting the task, which has to be sent back to the client.

Peer-to-peer

Peer-to-peer

Peer-to-peer (P2P) computing or networking is a distributed application architecture that partitions tasks or workloads between peers. Peers are equally privileged, equipotent participants in the network. They are said to form a peer-to-peer network of nodes.

Online game

Online game

An online game is a video game that is either partially or primarily played through the Internet or any other computer network available. Online games are ubiquitous on modern gaming platforms, including PCs, consoles and mobile devices, and span many genres, including first-person shooters, strategy games, and massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPG). In 2019, revenue in the online games segment reached $16.9 billion, with $4.2 billion generated by China and $3.5 billion in the United States. Since 2010s, a common trend among online games has been operating them as games as a service, using monetization schemes such as loot boxes and battle passes as purchasable items atop freely-offered games. Unlike purchased retail games, online games have the problem of not being permanently playable, as they require special servers in order to function.

Ryzom

Ryzom

Ryzom, also known as The Saga of Ryzom, is a free and open source massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) developed by Nevrax for Microsoft Windows, OS X, and Linux.

Open-source software

Open-source software

Open-source software (OSS) is computer software that is released under a license in which the copyright holder grants users the rights to use, study, change, and distribute the software and its source code to anyone and for any purpose. Open-source software may be developed in a collaborative public manner. Open-source software is a prominent example of open collaboration, meaning any capable user is able to participate online in development, making the number of possible contributors indefinite. The ability to examine the code facilitates public trust in the software.

Free content

Free content

Free content, libre content, libre information, or free information, is any kind of functional work, work of art, or other creative content that meets the definition of a free cultural work.

WorldForge

WorldForge

The WorldForge project is producing an open source framework for massively multiplayer online role-playing games. The intent lies in creating a widely used development framework and set of libraries by motivating interested developers to improve on the original source code.

Multiverse Foundation

Multiverse Foundation

The Multiverse Software Foundation is a non-profit organization that was formed by volunteers in November 2011 to take over and manage the assets of the now-defunct Multiverse Network. The Foundation maintains the Multiverse MMO Development Platform, which is a collection of open-source software used to create online games. The platform and assets are made available under the MIT License.

Trends

As there are a number of wildly different titles within the genre, and since the genre develops so rapidly, it is difficult to definitively state that the genre is heading in one direction or another. Still, there are a few obvious developments. One of these developments is the raid group quest, or "raid",[32] which is an adventure designed for large groups of players (often twenty or more).

Instance dungeons

Instance dungeons, sometimes shortened to "instances", are game areas that are "copied" for individual players or groups, which keeps those in the instance separated from the rest of the game world. This reduces competition, and also reducing the amount of data that needs to be sent to and from the server, reducing lag. The Realm Online was the first MMORPG to begin to use a rudimentary form of this technique and Anarchy Online would develop it further, using instances as a key element of gameplay. Since then, instancing has become increasingly common. The "raids", as mentioned above, often involve instance dungeons. Examples of games which feature instances are World of Warcraft, The Lord of the Rings Online, EverQuest, EverQuest II, Aion, Final Fantasy XIV, Guild Wars, Rift, RuneScape, Star Trek Online, Star Wars: The Old Republic, and DC Universe Online.

Player-created content

Increased amounts of "player-created content" is another trend.[33]

Use of licenses

The use of intellectual property licensing common in other video game genres has also appeared in MMORPGs. 2007 saw the release of The Lord of the Rings Online, based on J. R. R. Tolkien's Middle-earth. Other licensed MMORPGs include The Matrix Online, based on the Matrix trilogy of films, Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning, based on Games Workshop's table top game, Star Wars Galaxies, Star Wars The Old Republic, Champions Online and Age of Conan.

Additionally, several licenses from television have been optioned for MMORPGs, for example Star Trek Online and Stargate Worlds (which was later canceled).

Console-based MMORPGs

The first console-based MMORPG was Phantasy Star Online for the Sega Dreamcast.[34] The first console-based open-world MMORPG was Final Fantasy XI for the PlayStation 2. EverQuest Online Adventures, also on the PlayStation 2, was the first console MMORPG in North America. Although console-based MMORPGs are considered more difficult to produce,[35] the platform is gaining more attention.

Browser-based MMORPGs

With the popularization of Facebook and microtransactions has come a new wave of Flash and HTML5 based MMORPGs that use the free to play model. They require no download outside of a browser and usually have heavily integrated social media sharing features.

Smartphone-based MMORPGs

Smartphones with their GPS capabilities (amongst others) enable augmented reality in games such as Ingress and Pokémon Go. The games are enhanced by location and distance based tracking, bench marking goals or facilitating trade between players.

Discover more about Trends related topics

The Realm Online

The Realm Online

The Realm Online, originally known as The Realm, is a massively multiplayer online role playing game (MMORPG) launched in December 1996 for Windows PC. It was designed in the tradition of graphical MUDs, before the usage of the terms "massively multiplayer" and "MMORPG".

Anarchy Online

Anarchy Online

Anarchy Online is a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) published and developed by Norwegian video game development company Funcom. Released in June 2001, the game was the first in the genre to include a science-fiction setting, dynamic quests, instancing, free trials, and in-game advertising. The game's ongoing storyline revolves around the fictional desert planet "Rubi-Ka", the source of a valuable mineral known as "Notum". Players assume the role of a new colonist to Rubi-Ka. With no specific objective to win Anarchy Online, the player advances the game through the improvement of a character's skills over time. After more than 20 years, Anarchy Online has become one of the oldest surviving games in the genre.

The Lord of the Rings Online

The Lord of the Rings Online

The Lord of the Rings Online is a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) for Microsoft Windows and OS X set in J. R. R. Tolkien's Middle-earth, taking place during the time period of The Lord of the Rings. Originally developed by Turbine, the game launched in North America, Australia, Japan, and Europe in April 2007 as The Lord of the Rings Online: Shadows of Angmar. Players could create characters of four races and seven classes and adventure throughout the region of Eriador. In November 2008, Mines of Moria expansion was released, adding the region of Moria and two new playable classes. It was followed by the Siege of Mirkwood in December 2009. In 2010 the game underwent a shift from its original subscription-based payment model to being free-to-play.

EverQuest

EverQuest

EverQuest is a 3D fantasy-themed massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) originally developed by Verant Interactive and 989 Studios for Windows PCs. It was released by Sony Online Entertainment in March 1999 in North America, and by Ubisoft in Europe in April 2000. A dedicated version for macOS was released in June 2003, which operated for ten years before being shut down in November 2013. In June 2000, Verant Interactive was absorbed into Sony Online Entertainment, who took over full development and publishing duties of the title. Later, in February 2015, SOE's parent corporation, Sony Computer Entertainment, sold the studio to investment company Columbus Nova and it was rebranded as Daybreak Game Company, which continues to develop and publish EverQuest.

EverQuest II

EverQuest II

EverQuest II is a 3D fantasy massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) originally developed and published by Sony Online Entertainment for Microsoft Windows PCs and released in November 2004. It is the sequel to the original EverQuest, released five years earlier, and features updated graphics and more streamlined gameplay compared to the previous entry, as well as an abundance of voice acting with contributions from actors such as Christopher Lee and Heather Graham. In February 2015, Sony Online Entertainment's parent corporation Sony Computer Entertainment sold it to investment company Inception Acquisitions, where it continues to develop and publish the game under its new name, Daybreak Game Company.

Final Fantasy XIV (2010 video game)

Final Fantasy XIV (2010 video game)

Final Fantasy XIV was a 2010 massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) for Microsoft Windows, developed and published by Square Enix. It was the original version of the fourteenth entry in the main Final Fantasy series and the second MMORPG in the series after Final Fantasy XI. Set in the fantasy realm of Eorzea, players took control of a customized avatar as they explore the land and were caught up in both an invasion by the hostile Garlean Empire and the threat of the primals, the deities of the land's beastmen tribes. Eventually, they were embroiled in a plot by a Garlean Legatus to destroy the primals by bringing one of the planet's moons down on Eorzea.

Rift (video game)

Rift (video game)

Rift is a fantasy free-to-play massively multiplayer online role-playing game developed by Trion Worlds. Rift takes place within the fantasy world of Telara. Two competing factions, composed of a selection of races and classes, battle each other and the enemies who emerge from dynamic "rifts". The game was released in March 2011.

RuneScape

RuneScape

RuneScape is a fantasy massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) developed and published by Jagex, released in January 2001. RuneScape was originally a browser game built with the Java programming language; it was largely replaced by a standalone C++ client in 2016. The game has had over 300 million accounts created and was recognised by the Guinness World Records as the largest and most-updated free MMORPG.

Star Trek Online

Star Trek Online

Star Trek Online is a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) developed by Cryptic Studios based on the Star Trek franchise. The game is set in the 25th century, 30 years after the events of Star Trek: Nemesis. Star Trek Online is the first massively multiplayer online role-playing game within the Star Trek franchise and was released for Microsoft Windows in February 2010. At launch, the game required a game purchase and a recurring monthly fee. In January 2012, it relaunched with a tier of free-to-play access available. After a public beta testing period, a version of the game was released for OS X in March 2014. Due to technical issues with the port, support for OS X ended in February 2016. It was later released on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in September 2016.

Star Wars: The Old Republic

Star Wars: The Old Republic

Star Wars: The Old Republic is a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) based in the Star Wars universe. Developed by BioWare Austin and a supplemental team at BioWare Edmonton, the game was announced on October 21, 2008. The video game was released for the Microsoft Windows platform on December 20, 2011 in North America and part of Europe. It was released in Oceania and Asia on March 1, 2012.

DC Universe Online

DC Universe Online

DC Universe Online (DCUO) is a free-to-play action combat massively multiplayer online game set in the fictional universe of DC Comics. Developed by Dimensional Ink Games and co-published by Daybreak Game Company and WB Games, the game was released on January 11, 2011 for the PlayStation 3, November 15, 2013 for the PlayStation 4 on its launch day, April 29, 2016 for the Xbox One, and August 6, 2019 for the Nintendo Switch.

J. R. R. Tolkien

J. R. R. Tolkien

John Ronald Reuel Tolkien was an English writer and philologist. He was the author of the high fantasy works The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.

In society and culture

Psychological effects

Since the interactions between MMORPG players are real, even if the environments are virtual, psychologists and sociologists are able to use MMORPGs as tools for academic research. Sherry Turkle has found that many people have expanded their emotional range by exploring the many different roles (including gender identities) that MMORPGs allow a person to explore.[36]

Nick Yee has surveyed more than 35,000 MMORPG players over the past several years, focusing on psychological and sociological aspects of these games. Recent findings included that 15% of players become a guild-leader at one time or another, but most generally find the job tough and thankless;[37] and that players spend a considerable amount of time (often a third of their total time investment) doing things that are external to gameplay but part of the metagame.[38]

Many players report that the emotions they feel while playing an MMORPG are very strong, to the extent that 8.7% of male and 23.2% of female players in a statistical study have had an online wedding.[39] Other researchers have found that the enjoyment of a game is directly related to the social organization of a game, ranging from brief encounters between players to highly organized play in structured groups.[40]

In a study by Zaheer Hussain and Mark D. Griffiths, it was found that just over one in five gamers (21%) said they preferred socializing online to offline. Significantly more male gamers than female gamers said that they found it easier to converse online than offline. It was also found that 57% of gamers had created a character of the opposite gender, and it is suggested that the online female persona has a number of positive social attributes.[41]

A German fMRT-study conducted by researchers of the Central Institute of Mental Health points towards impairments in social, emotional and physical aspects of the self-concept and a higher degree in avatar identification in addicted MMORPG players, compared to non-addicted and naive (nonexperienced) people.[42] These findings generally support Davis' cognitive behavioral model of Internet addiction, which postulates that dysfunctional self-related cognitions represent central factors contributing towards the development and maintenance of MMORPG addiction.[43] The high degree of avatar identification found by Leménager et al. in the addicted group of this study indicates that MMORPG playing may represent an attempt to compensate for impairments in self-concept. Psychotherapeutic interventions should therefore focus on the development of coping strategies for real-life situations in which addicted players tend to experience themselves as incompetent and inferior.[42]

Richard Bartle, author of Designing Virtual Worlds, classified multiplayer RPG-players into four primary psychological groups. His classifications were then expanded upon by Erwin Andreasen, who developed the concept into the thirty-question Bartle Test that helps players determine which category they are associated with. With over 650,000 test responses as of 2011, this is perhaps the largest ongoing survey of multiplayer game players.[44] Based on Bartle and Yee's research, Jon Radoff has published an updated model of player motivation that focuses on immersion, competition, cooperation and achievement.[45][46] These elements may be found not only in MMORPGs, but many other types of games and within the emerging field of gamification.

There has been numerous discussions and evaluations by various scholarly institutions regarding the long term effects of video game overuse. Many news agencies have criticized video games as promoting violent tendencies in its player base and encouraging anti-social behaviors. Ultimately this would culminate in the World Health Organization classifying the overuse of video games as "Technological Addiction" in May 2019.[47]

Disease research

In World of Warcraft, a temporary design glitch attracted the attention of psychologists and epidemiologists across North America, when the "Corrupted Blood" disease of a monster began to spread unintentionally—and uncontrollably—into the wider game world. The Centers for Disease Control intended to use the incident as a research model to chart both the progression of a disease, and the potential human response to large-scale epidemic infection. However, due to Blizzard Entertainments failure to keep statistical records of the event, the 2005 Corrupted Blood Outbreak would ultimately fail to produce any results. Nevertheless, the CDC has continued to express interest in the use of MMORPGs for disease research.[48][49]

Education

It has been suggested by the Springer University in Germany that MMORPGs encourage and provide opportunities to study and improve in economic theory by providing a controlled environment for the natural development of economic practices between players including professions, trade, and services.[50]

Research has shown that for the positive learner, game-based interaction could inhibition was reduced as well as enhances the enjoyment and motivation of second language learning, but appears to be more suitable for learners of intermediate and higher levels of proficiency than language beginners.[51]

Therapeutic applications

The Division of Autism and developmental disabilities has published a significant report detailing the value of MMORPGs for the treatment of individuals with Autism Spectrum disorder. The report suggests that individuals with autism spectrum disorder could benefit from MMORPGs by being provided a space to freely develop social skills and communication skills without the stress of face-to-face contact. This in turn opens new pathways for social therapy for individuals with developmental disabilities.[52]

Economics

A user browsing the market for items in Eve Online
A user browsing the market for items in Eve Online

Many MMORPGs feature living economies. Virtual items and currency have to be gained through play and have definite value for players.[53] Such a virtual economy can be analyzed (using data logged by the game)[53] and has value in economic research. More significantly, these "virtual" economies can affect the economies of the real world.

One of the early researchers of MMORPGs was Edward Castronova, who demonstrated that a supply-and-demand market exists for virtual items and that it crosses over with the real world.[54] This crossover has some requirements of the game:

  • The ability for players to sell an item to each other for in-game (virtual) currency.
  • Bartering for items between players for items of similar value.
  • The purchase of in-game items for real-world currency.
  • Exchanges of real-world currencies for virtual currencies.
  • The invention of user-created meta-currencies such as Dragon kill points to distribute in-game rewards.[55]

The idea of attaching real-world value to "virtual" items has had a profound effect on players and the game industry, and even the courts.[56] The virtual currency selling pioneer IGE received a lawsuit from a World of Warcraft player for interfering in the economics and intended use of the game by selling WoW gold.[57] Castronova's first study in 2002 found that a highly liquid (if illegal) currency market existed, with the value of Everquest's in-game currency exceeding that of the Japanese yen.[58] Some people even make a living by working these virtual economies; these people are often referred to as gold farmers, and may be employed in game sweatshops.[59]

Game publishers usually prohibit the exchange of real-world money for virtual goods, but others actively promote the idea of linking (and directly profiting from) an exchange. In Second Life and Entropia Universe, the virtual economy and the real-world economy are directly linked. This means that real money can be deposited for game money and vice versa. Real-world items have also been sold for game money in Entropia, and some players of Second Life have generated revenues in excess of $100,000.[60]

Bots spamming a communication channel in RuneScape to advertise illegitimate market websites.
Bots spamming a communication channel in RuneScape to advertise illegitimate market websites.

Some of the issues confronting online economies include:

  • The use of "bots" or automated programs, that assist some players in accumulating in-game wealth to the disadvantage of other players.[61]
  • The use of unsanctioned auction sites, which has led publishers to seek legal remedies to prevent their use based on intellectual-property claims.[62]
  • The emergence of virtual crime, which can take the form of both fraud against the player or publisher of an online game, and even real-life acts of violence stemming from in-game transactions.[63]

Linking real-world and virtual economies was rare in MMORPGs as of 2008, as it is generally believed to be detrimental to gameplay. If real-world wealth can be used to obtain greater, more immediate rewards than skillful gameplay, the incentive for strategic roleplay and real game involvement is diminished. It could also easily lead to a skewed hierarchy where richer players gain better items, allowing them to take on stronger opponents and level up more quickly than less wealthy but more committed players.[64]

Discover more about In society and culture related topics

Psychologist

Psychologist

A psychologist is a professional who practices psychology and studies mental states, perceptual, cognitive, emotional, and social processes and behavior. Their work often involves the experimentation, observation, and interpretation of how individuals relate to each other and to their environments.

Nick Yee

Nick Yee

Nick Yee is an American researcher who studies self-representation and social interaction in virtual environments.

Mark D. Griffiths

Mark D. Griffiths

Mark D. Griffiths is an English chartered psychologist focusing in the field of behavioural addictions, namely gambling disorder, gaming addiction, Internet addiction, sex addiction, and work addiction. He is a Professor of Behavioural Addiction at Nottingham Trent University and director of the International Gaming Research Unit. He is the author of five books including Gambling Addiction and its Treatment Within the NHS, Gambling and Gaming Addictions in Adolescence, and Adolescent Gambling. He has also authored over 600 refereed papers, 140+ book chapters and more than 1,500 articles, and has won 15 awards for his research, including a Lifetime Achievement Award For Contributions to the Field of Youth Gambling in 2006 and International Excellence Award For Gambling Research in 2003 and a Lifetime Research Award For Gambling Research in 2013. Griffiths has recently encountered criticisms on his publication record, with scholars raising a number of concerns including the lack of data sharing/transparency and self-plagiarism found across a number of his papers.

Richard Bartle

Richard Bartle

Richard Allan Bartle FBCS FRSA is a British writer, professor and game researcher in the massively multiplayer online game industry. He co-created MUD1 in 1978, and is the author of the 2003 book Designing Virtual Worlds.

Designing Virtual Worlds

Designing Virtual Worlds

Designing Virtual Worlds is a book about the practice of virtual world development by Richard Bartle. It has been noted as an authoritative source regarding the history of world-based online games. College courses have been taught using it.

Motivation

Motivation

Motivation is the reason for which humans and other animals initiate, continue, or terminate a behavior at a given time. Motivational states are commonly understood as forces acting within the agent that create a disposition to engage in goal-directed behavior. It is often held that different mental states compete with each other and that only the strongest state determines behavior. This means that we can be motivated to do something without actually doing it. The paradigmatic mental state providing motivation is desire. But various other states, such as beliefs about what one ought to do or intentions, may also provide motivation. Motivation is derived from the word 'motive', which denotes a person's needs, desires, wants, or urges. It is the process of motivating individuals to take action in order to achieve a goal. The psychological elements fueling people's behavior in the context of job goals might include a desire for money.

Gamification

Gamification

Gamification is the strategic attempt to enhance systems, services, organizations, and activities by creating similar experiences to those experienced when playing games in order to motivate and engage users. This is generally accomplished through the application of game-design elements and game principles in non-game contexts.

Corrupted Blood incident

Corrupted Blood incident

The Corrupted Blood incident took place between September 13 and October 8, 2005, in World of Warcraft, a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) developed by Blizzard Entertainment. When participating in a boss battle at the end of a raid, player characters would become infected with a debuff that was transmitted between characters in close proximity. While developers intended to keep the effects of the debuff in the boss's game region, a programming oversight soon led to an in-game pandemic throughout the fictional world of Azeroth.

Eve Online

Eve Online

Eve Online is a space-based, persistent world massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) developed and published by CCP Games. Players of Eve Online can participate in a number of in-game professions and activities, including mining, piracy, manufacturing, trading, exploration, and combat. The game contains a total of 7,800 star systems that can be visited by players.

Edward Castronova

Edward Castronova

Edward "Ted" Castronova is a professor of media at Indiana University Bloomington. He is known in particular for his work on the economies of synthetic worlds.

Dragon kill points

Dragon kill points

Dragon kill points or DKP are a semi-formal score-keeping system used by guilds in massively multiplayer online games. Players in these games are faced with large scale challenges, or raids, which may only be surmounted through the concerted effort of dozens of players at a time. While many players may be involved in defeating a boss, the boss will reward the group with only a small number of items desired by the players. Faced with this scarcity, some system of fairly distributing the items must be established. Used originally in the massively multiplayer online role-playing game EverQuest, dragon kill points are points that are awarded to players for defeating bosses and redeemed for items that those bosses would "drop". At the time, most of the bosses faced by the players were dragons, hence the name.

IGE

IGE

IGE is a company that trades in virtual currency and accounts for MMORPGs. The company sold virtual goods for real money in more than a dozen popular games. Members of the gaming community were often critical of IGE, as its services were against the rules of the games.

Source: "Massively multiplayer online role-playing game", Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, (2023, January 25th), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Massively_multiplayer_online_role-playing_game.

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See also
References
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Further reading
  • Jøn, A. Asbjørn (2010). "The Development of MMORPG Culture and The Guild". Australian Folklore: A Yearly Journal of Folklore Studies. 25: 97–112.
  • Dyer-Witheford, Nick; de Peuter, Greig (2009). Games of empire: Global capitalism and video games. University of Minnesota Press.
  • Jenkins, Henry (2004). "Game Design as Narrative Architecture". First Person: New Media as Story, Performance, and Game. MIT Press: 118–30.
  • Tekinbaş, Katie Salen; Zimmerman, Eric (2006). The game design reader: a Rules of play anthology. MIT Press.

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