Play Prime World
Play Prime World
Image of Hardcore VS Theme Park

Practically every area of MMO gaming is rife with competition. Whether it be in the midst of a storm of swords on the PvP battlefield or a forum debate over the best genres, there's always someone with a different opinion to our own. However, the MMO debate world seems to get more passionate about certain subjects, one of those being hardcore MMO games vs theme park MMO games.

If you're not familiar with the terms they basically refer to how much hand holding is involved, although the definition varies depending on who you're talking with. A theme park MMO, most often described as World of Warcraft, is an MMO that generally teaches the player everything they need to know very quickly after starting the game. A hardcore MMO is a term used to describe more difficult MMO titles, most of the time referring to sandbox MMO games.

Personally, I just see them as MMO games in their befitting genre but I do notice some really unnecessary issues with both types. To me, the very definition of a hardcore game means the title has severe issues from the get go. If we compare Darkfall, Mortal Online and other popular sandbox games to regular MMO titles, there's some obvious flaws.

Hardcore MMO games generally include far more features than a theme park title but the lack of any serious tutorial or explanation often leaves players wanting. However, many consider a tutorial to be a defining feature of a theme park game, so in theory introducing a much needed feature to a hardcore game would then make said game a theme park game in the eyes of certain players.

Theme park games on the other hand generally include standard MMO features and casual-friendly PvP. Not really punishing players for death or mistakes, instead opting to focus on providing players with a friendly experience. This is arguably the mainstream approach to MMO games today as the casual player doesn't want to lose all their gear or get ganked and remain dead for hours.

I can see the appeal to both games but in order to create a new type of MMO game, the genres will need to borrow features and ideas from one another. Theme park games need more features and the option for more hardcore PvP, while hardcore MMO games need to do more to allow players to enjoy the entertaining aspects that aren't PvP. Such as incredibly in-depth crafting, trading, or even house and city management.

It seems to me that most of the debate is purely because certain players believe playing a hardcore MMO makes them a better gamer, or a more skilled gamer. When in truth it just comes down to the players personal preference.

What do you think? Should the line between hardcore and theme park MMO remain? Or could we see a new type of MMO appeal with a game that could successfully cross over features from both?



Similar Posts
  • Eight of The Most Memorable MMO Dungeons Ever Designed
    Eight of The Most Memorable MMO Dungeons Ever Designed

    Dungeons are a staple of the MMO genre; large-scale challenges requiring co-operation and co-ordination between anywhere from five to a few hundred players to adequately complete. Of course, not all are created equal, and some stand head and shoulders above their peers. Today, I'd like to tip my hat to those few legends, those instances that'll stick with us for years to come as shining examples of how to do dungeons right.

  • Ten Of The Best MMORPG Songs Ever Heard
    Ten Of The Best MMORPG Songs Ever Heard

    In many ways, an MMO is only as good as its music. Many of the best and most memorable moments in an MMO invariably have a song associated with them; a piece of music which brings the memories flooding back the moment it reaches one's ears. Today, I'd like to pay homage to some of those songs - and some of those moments. Here, for your listening pleasure (and in no particular order, I assure you) is a list of some of the best songs ever heard in an MMO.

  • Facebook's Purchase Of Oculus VR Isn't The End Of The World
    Facebook's Purchase Of Oculus VR Isn't The End Of The World

    For those of you who've been living under a rock, Facebook recently purchased Oculus VR to the tune of $2 billion. Understandably, backers and developers alike were rather unimpressed, calling it a betrayal. As for me? I've never been more excited.

  • Seven Of The Worst Things You Can Say In League
    Seven Of The Worst Things You Can Say In League

    If you've played league, you've probably encountered at least one toxic player. If you haven't, there's a good chance that YOU are the toxic one. Don't believe me? Ask yourself if you've ever said any of the following...

  • Six Reasons You Should Be Playing Dark Souls II
    Six Reasons You Should Be Playing Dark Souls II

    I've been playing a lot of Dark Souls II lately - and you should be too. Say what you will about the game's flaws, it's still arguably one of the best action RPGs released in the past several years. If you're up for a bit of a challenge, it's well worth the buy. Don't believe me? Let's talk, then.

  • Eight Reasons The Elder Scrolls Online Will Be Awesome
    Eight Reasons The Elder Scrolls Online Will Be Awesome

    As you're all no doubt aware, The Elder Scrolls Online - currently in open beta - will be launching in a few months or so. In light of both the new release date and all the hype surfacing around it, I've decided that, over the next two weeks, I'll be looking at all the reasons to look forward to it...and all the reasons we shouldn't.

  • League of Legends or DOTA 2?
    League of Legends or DOTA 2?

    The debate between Dota 2 and League of Legends has been raging almost since the two games were first released. But which game is REALLY the superior of the two?

  • Ten Fictional Settings That'd Make For Awesome MMOs
    Ten Fictional Settings That'd Make For Awesome MMOs

    Let's look at a few settings, worlds, and stories I'd love to see made into MMOs. I'm sure you'll agree, all the entries on this list have the potential to be downright awesome.

  • Life is Feudal
    Life is Feudal

    Life is Feudal (LIF) is a medieval fantasy MMORPG set in a sandbox environment.

  • MMO Year In Review: 5 of 2013's Biggest Dick Moves
    MMO Year In Review: 5 of 2013's Biggest Dick Moves

    People are dicks - particularly on the Internet. While that shouldn't come as any great surprise, occasionally we come across someone whose level of sheer dickery reaches legendary proportions. As we move into 2014, let's take a look at a few such individuals from the previous year.


comments powered by Disqus