With some hit MMORPGs like Guild Wars 2 and The Secret World finding some headway in 2012 there is much to be excited about heading in to 2013. Many developers are looking to build off the momentum created last year and bring MMORPGs back into the forefront of gamers. Expansive world's and true immersion await us in 2013 and this list gives us a taste of what is coming in the year ahead. While few details from some of these games are available, we are hoping that at least a few of these new MMORPG Games will fall into the free to play category. Even if that is not the case, there's always a reason to play the top MMORPG Games and i'm sure we'll all be coming up with at least a few excuses to dive in to these games.
10. Pathfinder Online
Pathfinder Online is on of those games that is still deeply entrenched in development, but it already sounds like it’s got all the right stuff. Goblinworks is going for a sort of hybrid sandbox/theme park-style MMO
with tons of exploration, development and adventure. The setting might be your fairly standard high fantasy world, with all the typical trappings you’d expect, but the intriguing part about Pathfinder Online is the trading system. This system will allow players to create items, consumables, fortifications, settlements, and even kingdoms. Player-led kingdoms can grow from the ground up; and war against one another and NPC factions in an attempt to be the dominant force in the world. More than just a game, it feels like the Pathfinder development team is creating a world. And this is something we can all appreciate.
9. Blade & Soul
Blade & Soul might have languished in development hell for several years, with information about the project revealed back in 2007, but from what we've been seeing recently, this game will definitely be a force to be reckoned with.. With a freestyle, breakneck-paced combat system and gorgeous graphics built on the Unreal Engine 3, NCsoft looks to be doing a great many things right here. The game will be based off of a high fantasy / martial-arts style and we are just hoping that everything holds up when it finally releases. A few of the things that have been hinted at for this MMORPG are 6 playable classes, four races and a highly customizable character creation system.
8. Age of Wushu/Age of Wulin
We have developed quite a Romanticization of Ancient Asia and their culture here in the Western World. And what better to show off that romance than with an MMORPG? With its beautiful, painstakingly-designed set pieces, Age of Wushu certainly should scratch that itch. But that’s not what makes this martial arts action MMO awesome. First, there’s no typical ‘level up’ system. Your character will progress as you learn skills and seek out martial arts masters. Second, the developers emphasize mobility- something which most MMOs seem to fall short on. Third, they've gone out of their way to create a realistic world- when you log out, your character remains in-game as an NPC, performing a profession of your choosing or just wandering about. Enemy players and factions can actually kidnap your character while they’re in this state, and it’ll fall to your own faction to rescue you. The game has recently finished open and closed beta and should be coming to us shortly.
With Trion World's just announcing a deal with XL Games to bring the big-budget fantasy RPG to Western markets we have yet another open-ended MMO to behold. The entire idea behind ArcheAge (which has been in development since 2006) is free will. Developed by the same folks who developed Lineage, the game’s slated to feature a completely player-run economy, city and housing system, and a world that evolves based on what the players do. ArcheAge promises to remove many of the restrictions that have hampered many a MMORPG in the past. They hope to make a game where players can make their own content instead of just consuming content made by the developer. If this is the case, ArcheAge may just be changing the MMORPG world as we know it.
6. The Repopulation
Hybrid-Sandbox is a continuing trend on this list and it will continue with The Repopulation. Th Repopulation will focus on player created content and the freedom to choose your own path. The game is said to be completely open-ended. There will be no leveling system, and all gameplay is based on the advancement of any of seventy-five different skills. Rather than a typical forcing of players down a road of pre-set paths, you can develop your character in a way that suites you the most. Would you rather pursue non-combative activities? Go for it. Would you like to hone your combat skills to take part in PvP? Sure. That said, while there’s faction-based PVP
, players are by no means forced to join up with one of the factions and fight. They can choose to explore and craft, develop new technologies, design and construct their own cities, or genetically engineer creatures.
The first thing you'll notice about Wildstar is probably it's artistic direction. Many MMORPGs are going for that more 'realistic' look, so while it may not appeal to everyone, it's not so much how the game looks that makes it so interesting, but how it's going to play. Wildstar is a science-fictiony western title
with a little added sense of humor. Another sandboxy RPG, WildStar has a lot of positives going for it, like player housing and interesting environments. At character creation, players are going to be able to choose an “archetype” that literally changes how the game is played. Want to wander around the world building stuff? Become a Settler. Feel like doing some research and developing new technology? Scientist is the path for you. Want to trigger armed assaults on enemy fortifications or locales? Choose soldier. The chance of WildStar being released in 2013 may be a bit iffy, but rumors are that closed beta testing may be coming sooner than later.
4. World of Darkness
The World of Darkness setting’s fairly intriguing on its own, and that’s why it’s so exciting to see that it’s being made into an MMO…particularly given the fact that it’s being done by the developer of Eve Online, Crowd Control Productions – known for their incredibly non-standard MMO design tendencies, and one of the most complex and mature MMOs to date. One of the most striking features of World of Darkness is going to present players with a staggering amount of freedom, and that whoever manages to become the “Prince” of a city can mark any players they don’t like for permanent death. World of Darkness is another game that may or may not see the light (get it?) in 2013, but it's one we should be reading more about as the year goes on.
3. Lineage Eternal
Lineage Eternal (or Lineage 3) will be the next-generation MMORPG from world renowned developer NCsoft. The game will be based on the Lineage franchise and is a direct sequel as the original. Lineage Eternal at first glance looks more like a top-down action RPG
; a dungeon crawler such as Diablo. That’s only at first glance, though. While it certainly does include many of the standard dungeon crawler tropes (massive groups of enemies to dispatch, fast-paced, chaotic combat) it also features an incredibly unique combat system. At this point we'll call it a 'Drag-and-Hold' system, but it will be something we've never seen in other games before. You will be able to drag and hold the mouse in different patterns to perform different skills. They want to make the input from the mouse to actually mean something to the gameplay – and it looks like they might succeed in doing so.
Neverwinter is an MMO that most of us have probably already heard about on several occasions, and there’s a good reason for that- it’s probably going to be the biggest D&D game ever developed. The game will have the classic Dungeons and Dragons
classes forming up groups and following a very strong storyline throughout the game. It's being advertised as different from many MMOs in that there aren't going to be zones with hundreds of people running around and fighting for spawns and quests, but more story-based like a Dragon Age of Oblivion. Neverwinter will be a free to play title
and we are still hoping for a 2013 release.
1. The Elder Scrolls Online
Of course The Elder Scrolls Online was going to make the list, and number one is the right spot for it. It's what Elder Scrolls fans have been wanting for years now, and we don't have to wait much longer. The storyline is indirectly connected with previous Elder Scrolls titles and will be set a millennium before the events of Skyrim. Some of the most intriguing things for the game will be a fresh take on MMORPG combat, a more 'social' take on MMOs where you will be playing with your friends and a very unique PvP system based on three factions warring of Cyrodiil. Beta applications for TESO have just opened up and we are hoping and praying to be able to play this game in 2013.
Thanks for reading out list of the top 10 MMORPGs that we will be seeing in 2013 and beyond! Let us know what your most anticipated MMORPGs are for 2013 below.