So, Magic is going to have an MMO.

No, I’m not really going to go into the typical: “What Magic needs to do to make this game successful.” Look, I’ve been playing MMOs for well over fifteen years. Maplestory, WoW, FFXIV—you name it, I’ve probably played it. But there are a lot of facts and misconceptions about this particular upcoming game, as well as what goes into the design of an MMO that should probably be cleared up before speculation gets too far out of hand.

This isn’t the first MMO Wizards has sought to put out. Neverwinter, which is based off of Dungeons and Dragons, was the first. The exact same companies that spearheaded Neverwinter, Cryptic Studios and Perfect World Entertainment, will be on this one. Having played a number of games from these companies, there are a couple of things that are safe to expect from them.

Likely Free to Play

Almost every MMO they’ve put out has been Free to Play, which also means that it’s safe to expect microtransations as well. This does not mean that it will be Pay to Win, however, as that is an entire conversation to be had another time. That said, you can fully expect a full suite of cosmetics and other niche items available for real life money.

Expect Adventure and Exploration

Neverwinter and Perfect World, probably two of the most notable games they’ve released, have both put a ton of emphasis on the world, and this will fit right into the potential setting(s?) that Magic’s MMO will have to offer.

Instances Could Be a Thing

Now, this is pretty contradictory to the previous point, but it’s pretty easy to be locked into the instance-based system that many MMOs house. One of the most glaring examples of this was Star Wars: The Old Republic. The game advertised these incredibly vast and massive planets, with tons of exploration within them. What actually happened was instanced maps with a lot of fast(ish) travel between dead spots on the map, without much to explore when you weren’t fast traveling, all knitted together with fetch quests.

Now, this isn’t to say that instance-based MMOs are a bad thing. What I am saying is that advertising it as such, when that isn’t what its going to wind up being when everything’s said and done, is a huge mistake. Essentially, if you aren’t trying to do what Black Desert Online is doing, then don’t do it at all.


Some Expectations Won’t Be Met

There will be a whole lot of MTG players that are going to expect things that simply can’t happen within the confines of a video game, and there will be a lot of MMORPG players that have no idea what Magic is outside of the little lore that a commercial or two has shown them. You will likely not be able to wield the power of the Mirari. You will probably not have insane twenty-player raids against Nicol Bolas. You’ll start off crappy, and you’ll have to work your way up.

With all of this said, I’m cautiously optimistic about the game, mostly due to the companies operating it. I think that they’ll do a good enough job to get people to sustain a healthy environment, but I also think that the expectations will be too much for its own good. Time will tell, and so will our patience.

Anthony has been competing in games for the better part of his adult life and is dedicated to improving his game, improving his community, improving himself as a person, and most importantly having fun and enjoying himself while doing so. You can check out his stream to find out which video game is the latest to catch his attention.

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