MOST LIKELY TO TURN FREE-TO-PLAY
This category could also be called “most ‘why did they make it subscription-based in the first place?'”. It looks like your money is on the MMORPG based on one of the most famous and profitable franchises ever, The Elder Scrolls Online. The fact that Zenimax recently removed the longer subscription option (6-month) was considered by a lot of players as the first hint that the transition to free-to-play is in the works. Wildstar comes in a very close second, another subscription-based MMO game that is going through a lot of turmoil, including layoffs at Carbine Studios and an overall idea that the studio is having serious internal issues between the staff. In third place comes Final Fantasy XIV, a game that surprisingly managed to be reborn from some truly messed-up ashes, truth be said. How long will it hold its playerbase, however, is a completely different question.
MOST UNLIKELY TO REACH THE WEST
While a lot of the cool MMORPGs are coming from Korea and possibly staying there, we’re a bit baffled at how the Eastern publishers manage to grab the exclusive rights to some of the West’s biggest franchises. For example, what sense is there in having Call of Duty Online as a China exclusive, and with Chris Evans aka Captain America promoting it, to add insult to injury? Or Borderlands Online only for China too, a series that is extremely popular in North America and an MMO was something that many players were hoping to get? And what about Monster Hunter Online, a series that originated in Japan but has worldwide appeal, and yet this awesome-looking MMO is getting a China release only, so far? Anyway, all of these were beaten by the stunning martial arts MMORPG Blade & Soul, a game that is already becoming a pain in the neck – either announce a date or cancel it altogether, dammit!
MOST REGRETTED SHUTDOWN OR CANCELLATION
Everything must come to an end. Sometimes it is games that have been around for a while, others it’s games that are canceled during development. You mostly regretted that CCP, EVE Online developer, decided to cease development on World of Darkness, the ‘ultimate vampire simulator’, as they promoted it. With the lack of vampire MMO games and a strong license behind it, it’s easy to understand why you chose World of Darkness as your favorite. In second place comes Blizzard’s Project Titan, a game that had few to none information released, but coming from the studio that pretty much set the path for MMOs with World of Warcraft, the hype was huge. In third place comes Dawngate, Electronic Art’s new MOBA that didn’t even get past open beta. Harry Potter Online got the fourth place and we believe the reason for this was that the game was a very low profile affair, developed by fans, and without any proper teaser revealed so far. A true, big-budget Harry Potter MMO would make so much money, it’s crazy!
MOST OVER-SATURATED GENRE
As expected, you’re all a bit tired of MOBA games. With a few great ones taking everyone’s time (you know, League of Legends, Dota 2 and SMITE), why are so many studios insisting in new MOBAs that clearly won’t have anyone playing them? Sure, we don’t mind having a few more contenders such as Blizzard’s Heroes of the Storm, but for each one of those there’s a dozen bland offerings that no one cares about. Give us a break with the MOBAs and try to create something original – the pie just isn’t big enough for everyone to get a piece.
And that wraps the results of our FreeMMOStation Free MMO Game Awards 2014~2015. Let’s hope that 2015 brings a lot of good games and that this will make your choice even more difficult than it was this time. Stick around for great news and announcements and don’t forget to follow our updates via Facebook, YouTube, Google+ and Twitter, and sign up for our daily newsletter, it’s all completely free and fluffy!