Being A Hero – Not All It’s Cracked Up To Be?

Thanks to Syp’s latest /AFK roundup I’ve just added a new blog to my roll. Well actually, I haven’t added it yet: I’ve come straight here to tell you about the post I just read on said new blog which had me at the phrase “Higgs boson particle” in relation to bloody mists of wolf limbs. Oh, and the post happens to be about heroism in MMOs.

Melmoth’s  post veers between hilarious asides and salient points.  He talks about his recent deeds in LoTRO and extrapolates them as how being a hero plays out in any MMO. He says the basic problem is that while you, the player, can see your character gaining power, your character doesn’t feel a hero because as she progresses through the game’s areas the difficulty stays the same.

It’s not that a player can’t feel heroic, but to do so they must step out of the natural flow of the game, and perform quests for NPCs in low-level zones for little to no gain on their own part … One can’t help but feel… it’s a bit like the thirty four year old me of today travelling back in time to punch-in the teeth of the ten year old school bullies who made so much of my life hell during those formative years: easy and deeply satisfying, yes, but it would hardly build me as a character, or give me a heroic reputation.

Melmoth mentions the problem that by the time you’ve outlevelled content it’s so painfully easy to rip baddies apart that there’s no heroic feeling there, either. Just, according to Melmoth, pity for the monsters and the danger of PITA groups surfacing to protect the monsters you’re maligning. No seriously, go read this one.

What do you think – can you ever feel like a hero in game, and is that as a player or a character? Or both?

_Quote taken directly from Melmoth’s post

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