Connected, Yet Alone

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Connected, Yet Alone

Postby Kelerak » Sun Apr 17, 2016 6:11 am

Title's a bit shit, but I think the idea's worth talking about.

Over the past few years, there's been a considerable amount of push towards being constantly connected to a community in games. Not just in the sense of "always-online DRM" (though I suppose that's a considerable part of the equation), but more so that no matter where you go, there's usually a sense of being part of a bigger world than just the one you're playing. With the MMO hybrids being as successful as they are (Destiny, The Division, etc.), it's likely going to become a consideration in the design of many games.

Yet, despite the constant connection to an always-online server with people wandering about, I can't help but feel more isolated than I normally would. I had this big problem when I played Guild Wars 2 where I would never communicate with anyone outside my tightly-knit group of friends that had introduced me to the game in the first place. It kind of defeated the purpose of an MMO, since I never had or ever wanted to make friends over games. Eventually, I stopped playing altogether after the friendship I had with those people utterly collapsed, leaving me wondering why I even bothered playing that game.

I kinda had a similar problem when I played Destiny. On top of a myriad of problems I had with it, I never wanted anything to do with anyone in the game, beating the game entirely by myself. It makes me question what the point of multiplayer design is if I don't want to interact with anyone (and I'm sure many others don't as well).

What do you make of all this?

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