I rather liked this thread on the World of Warcraft forums, “Is Raiding always the endgame to MMOs?“. Several players recount the endgames of various MMOGs (bonus: in an intelligent, articulate and non-confrontational manner!) and give their opinions on what was fun and what was definitely not fun.
The original poster, Fappa, level 13 posting alt of the Argent Dawn realm, wrote:
WoW is the first MMO that I’ve ever really played extensively and gotten into, and it’s clear to me after playing the game since 2005 that raiding is and will always be the endgame to WoW. Yes, there’s arena (which occupies like one hour a week), and there’s daily quests, heroics, professions, etc. to do at 70, but really, if you want the best gear and the hardest challenges this game has to offer you have to raid.
Since I haven’t played any other MMOs extensively, I don’t know what their endgames are like. Is the endgame to MMO always raiding (10+ highly coordinated players)?
Reply #8 described DAoC’s endgame:
The endgame of DAOC was entirely PvP based, and still is if you want to play it… Game goes like this:
-Level to 50
-Do some raids and get some gear crafted
-Enter the frontier, an area as big as the leveling areas for the 3 factions, had like 24 captureable keeps, siege weapons, like ballista, catapults, and boiling oil you could dump on people trying to break into a keep you were defending… each faction had a relic that if captured, gave your entire faction a boost to damage, as much as a 20% bonus if you held both relics. Also, there was a whole system of PvP experience points that opened up a whole new progression of abilities that you could get only by PvPing.
I really wish WoW would steal this concept.
Reply #17 recounted old skool Star Wars Galaxies (pre-that mess where they turned everything upside down):
Sadly with the success of world of warcraft, many companies will keep thinking this is the way to go. Before SWG got forked up “endgame” was what you made of it, some of us were content with running our businesses, trying to create items that were better than our competition. Or organizing player cities and keeping them running, things that didn’t always involve scurrying in the same dungeons week after week. However I can’t speak for what everyone else considers fun, just more or less it would be nice if a game offered more options for gameplay than simply tossing instances at us that not everyone wants to do.