I Miss Story in My MMOs

I'm having a strong tendency lately to lean toward single player RPGs.  MMOs simply don't tell a story as well as single player games which have been created around a story.  MMOs feel like the leveling system is central and the story is tacked on.  Single player RPGs feel like the story is center and the leveling system is tacked on.

The secondary aspect (whatever has been tacked on) isn't necessarily bad.  But, it is secondary and I can definitely tell while playing the different types of games.

It makes sense from a business standpoint for MMO devs to concentrate on the leveling, since this is what will determine how long it takes before a player reaches endgame.  Unfortunately for them, I am sick of the grind without any reason.  Reading text and hitting the accept quest button is no longer enough for me.  I am burned out on it.

Compare that to Mass Effect 2.  I am absolutely in love with this game at the moment.  I haven't had as much time to play it as I want, but whenever I have gaming time I pick up ME2.  The story is superb and the leveling grind is almost entirely streamlined (accept for scanning).  I can't wait to beat it and start a new game to play Renegade instead of Paragon.  The story is that engrossing.  I want to see what changes when I play the game in a new way.  When I start a second playthrough I will also change the sex and class of the main character, which will affect the story as well.  None of that happens in an MMO.

I really really hope that Bioware can break this trend when The Old Republic comes out.  If anyone can inject story back into the MMO genre it will be them.


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