Tobold's Blog
Thursday, June 18, 2009
Too many games

I'm getting lots of press releases and announcements, especially from smaller MMO companies. And I'm not quite sure what my policy should be. The problem is there are too many games, and too little time to play them all. And then of course I'm already less interested is some types of games, so I'm not likely to find the time to play very twitchy or PvP centric games. So should I post these sort of press releases as being "news", or should I just talk about games I actually played, and the major AAA game releases?

Anyway, Aeria Games announced two betas, one open beta for martial arts PvP MMO Dragon Sky, and a closed beta for the first-person-shooter MMO Wolf Team. Once you start visiting these Free2Play MMO hubs, you're surprised how many of these games there are, and of what a huge variety. It's not as if I really wanted to play a racing MMO, but it is good to know that such a thing even exists. And then I'm probably not aware of half of the MMO hubs and games available out there.

In the MMO pecking order below the Free2Play games, with a client to download, there are the even cheaper to produce browser games. And I swear there must be millions of them, I wouldn't even know where to start covering those.
It all depends on what you want your blog to be. I use mine to share news AND to give my opinion on stuff I've played. If you just want to have your be your opinion or both it's just as fine in my opinion.
You should only write about what you're interested in. As soon as you attempt to cover everything you'll get burned out.
Just passing along press release stuff would seem a bit shallow. I don't think your visitors come here to find general MMO news, they come here for Tobold's take on MMOs.

As for the number of F2P and browser games, it's indeed rather crazy, and makes it very difficult to find the 1-2 decent titles among the hundreds of copy/paste trash ones.
I actually downloaded DragonSky thanks to AeriaGames Twittering about it, and I haven't started yet. One great thing the F2P games do is offer variety enough so that burn-out can easily be avoided while taking breaks from one's "main" game.
I think a little bit of that news here would be a good idea. People who read your blog get information they wouldn't other get because they either don't the press releases you get, or they don't read generic MMO sites like MMORPG.COM.
If it wouldn't be too much trouble, I'd be interested in an occasional "Games received" column. Book reviewers sometimes do this -- just list all the solicitations you've gotten (with links). And a comment saying, "I've been sent an announcement about this, but haven't spent any time reviewing it."
Imo just play the ones that interest you and don't worry about commenting on the ones you don't know.

You don't want to be the second Ed Zitron.
You said it, syncaine. Most of those games are the MMO equivalent of Shovelware. In my esteemed opinion, of course.
Just because they send you stuff shouldn't mean you actually have to do anything with it. You're just a cheap advertisement option for them.
If you just mention them with a brief mention and a ink it's a good investment of an e-mail for them. If you actually devote an article to their product all the better.
It's minimal effort on their part with potentially great results.

You're not a news / press release site and that's not what most of your readers come here for. You're an opinion piece writer and a decent one at that. In the spirit of sticking with what you're good dat I think you should only devote any effort to them if and when you actually have an opinion about them.
One other consideration, and I'm not sure if this is a factor or not, but if you start putting up press release-type stuff, it would only encourage more companies to send you them.

Obviously that would be a good thing for early beta access to games you might care about, but getting 20 F2P game updates daily from Joe's Basement might not...
I'm most interested in your opinions, not in forwarded press releases (which I could get from an RSS feed). Although it's even interesting to hear something like, "I got a bunch of these invites, checked out their websites and decided not to download the games because ..."
Tobold, just to echo the comments that other have made in this thread, and that you have made yourself elsewhere: this is your blog. You are entitled to write about whatever you like. If you want to simply pass along press releases, that's fine. If you only want to write about games you have actually played, that is also fine. You should only do what you actually /want/ to do with /your/ blog.
I tend to post about stuff I find interesting. If I don't play it sometimes I still talk about it simply because I find it interesting. I don't play them though if I'm bot interested. I may do a "glance" at something type of post if I want to give some thoughts on it. If not, I say post what you like!
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