MOST SURPRISING DEBUT – HearthStone: Heroes of Warcraft
Most of us certainly weren’t expecting HearthStone: Heroes of Warcraft to be more than a curiosity, a game that only the most die-hard World of Warcraft fans would enjoy. But it turned out that HearthStone is once again proof that Blizzard puts extreme care into everything they do, and they have this secret that makes their games incredibly addictive. If everyone and their moms is now developing an online collectible card game, it is mostly due to the success of HearthStone – it’s pretty much the League of Legends and MOBA games story, only with cards instead of champions.
BIGGEST MESS IN AN MMO – ArcheAge
Well, talk about messy launches. ArcheAge is a game so sprawling, with so much potential that we were willing to forgive the initial server issues, DDOS attacks and 9-hour queues. But when we thought that things would calm down and Trion Worlds would get the game straight, more stuff happened, like server shut downs, economy exploits and so on. It’s like there’s this beautiful game that could be so immersive and the destination of millions of players, but what we’re seeing mostly is chaos and anarchy in ArcheAge. We’re still hoping that things calm down and ArcheAge realizes its true potential, but hey, time is doing no favors to it.
MOST INVENTIVE MMO – Robocraft
What do you get when you mix World of Tanks with Lego? The answer is the inventive Robocraft. A small studio came up with this concept where you build your vehicles (land or air) with cubes and several add-ons and then enter the arena to show your skills. There’s no game quite like it and the fact that it’s a work in progress, original but not over-encumbered idea validates even more the quality of the game. Pure, simple, unadulterated fun with a nice twist.
BEST MMO THAT MAKES FUN OF MMOs – Goat MMO Simulator
Goat Simulator is one of the most famous ‘simulator’ games. You know, the ones where you get to take control of the most unlikely of things. If you don’t believe us, there’s even a Bread Simulator going on and apparently it’s pretty decent. But the Goat MMO Simulator expansion was just something of a big joke that caught most players by surprise – it’s not a true MMO, but a simulation of an MMO. The trick is in the title: it’s not Goat Simulator MMO, but Goat MMO Simulator. Get it? So it’s just a single player game set in an MMO world populated with false players, a false and funny chat box, quests, elves, classes (including a microwave) and the option to level up by ramming into shit. Literally.
The best thing about Goat MMO Simulator is that it proves just how old and stale some of the MMORPG conventions are, while making fun of them at the same time. There’s a lesson to be learned in this game for all MMO developers.
MOST WTF MMO – Velvet Sundown
Velvet Sundown is a game where a bunch of guys and girls are in a boat. They talk to each other, do stuff, walk around, but mostly you can just forget all about the objectives and go stupid all the way. The voices help a lot to the fun factor and in the end this is one of those games that you’ll play because it’s just weird and occasionally fun. There’s plenty of drama as advertised, but the game is at its best when you create your own adventure.
MOST “CLOSE BUT NO CIGAR” – Sword Art Online: Code Register
We’ve lost count of how many times we have seen comments in our YouTube channel asking for a Sword Art Online MMORPG. We agree that the series is still a really hot IP and a Sword Art Online MMORPG would drive gazillions of money trucks to whoever made a decent work out of it. However, one more game was announced and it’s still not an MMO. In fact, it’s just a mobile game with turn-based battles, collectible card elements and chibi characters. It’s just… not what fans wanted. Can’t everybody agree for once and just make the damn MMO before the series is over? Or no one likes money?
And that’s the end of our FreeMMOStation.com awards 2014-2015. We hope you had fun picking your favorites and don’t forget to discuss in the comments which games we didn’t mention, either because we forgot them or didn’t think they should be included. Let us hear from you and happy 2015!