Go Farther: Transform your MMO
Star Trek MMO. Star Wars Old Republic MMO. Plenty of MMO's here and there.
Well, let me suggest another MMO. An MMO that would build on a wel-beloved property with ore 20 years of history. An MMO that would allow for innovations in gaming.
An MMO that would make a TON of money.
I'm talking about an MMO based on the beloved Transformers property. That's right, it's time for people to get together across the world to play sentient, transforming robots.
So why do I think it'd work:
To call Transfomers beloved is an understatement. Transformers has survived over two decades in various incarnations (not all appreciated), produced toys, comic, films, conventions, and more. It has plenty of popularity.
There are many people who are casually acquainted with Transformers. A game could bring them in, and if nothing else the name recognition may get the idea out there.
Here's where the various incarnations don't always help, but Transformers has a lot of source material to draw on it. Some is not as popular as it may be with the fans, but it's there. Creating a continuity, story, or setting somewhere in the Transformers mythos should be doable.
Let's be honest. Transformers is about giant robots. Giant robots are cool. There's going to be a cool factor media-wise.
Potential For Innovative Role-Playing Design:
Transformers is basically a character-driven story, filled with a variety of unique and unusual individuals That's the kind property that will help inspire developers – and players – to create interesting characters.
If implemented properly, I see it going something like this:
- There's a core character type, similar to the basic RPG "class" that people play.
- There's a modifiable "form" of the robot character that can be customizable, much as equipment is customizable in your usual RPG/MMO.
- There's a vehicular "transform" type that players also pick that is, in turn, also customizable, and perhaps exchangeable.
Characters in the Transformers universe are thus really 3 different elements – skill, humanoid form, and vehicle form. In a well-designed game (and the theme would probably be fun enough to design for), you have a huge combination of possible characters. People can play a medic who turns into a big rig that rams through enemy lines to save friends, or a sniper with a sports car form that zooms around to get the right shot, and so on.
If the game released the character creator, and perhaps a "test range" for players early, the publicity would be amazing.
Potential For Innovative Mechanics:
People playing giant robots. There's a chance for the game to come up with innovative mechanics for skills, abilities, and taking damage to make the characters properly "mechanical."
For instance, what about replacing the usual health points with systems damage; characters slow down, loose abilities, etc.
Repairs could be different – maybe as opposed to healing there's jury-rigging.
You get the idea.
So, if anyone out there is listening – we need a Transformers MMO. OK we may not need it, but it'd be cool and make money.
– Steven Savage