MMORPGs have been among the most popular games in the industry for many years, highlighting how booming the audience is for these titles. Millions of players around the world want to meet up and play in these shared online spaces, and developers are working on ways to make the settings even more immersive.
Virtual reality looks set to play a crucial role in the future of MMORPGs, and it could up the engagement levels tenfold. However, the technology will have to go mainstream first for this to happen.
MMORPGs are the Precursor to VR Gaming
The idea of people putting on VR headsets and entering digital gaming worlds is something that most people can get their heads around these days. In the early days of gaming, this may not have been true. MMORPGs can be thanked for normalizing the concept of creating an avatar and controlling it in an online setting in which other players coinhabit.
In the future, gaming historians may look back at titles like World of Warcraft and view these as the precursors to the VR gaming industry. They allowed players to log on to shared universes from anywhere in the world and led to new forms of playing and socializing. Many people expect VR to offer similar gaming opportunities, with Mark Zuckerberg’s planned metaverse likely to be massive in the 2030s. MMORPGs are some of the best-placed games to make the transition to VR, as they already offer the experiences that the new technology promises.
VR Needs to go Mainstream First
For MMORPGs to enter the next stage of their evolution, they may need VR to go mainstream first. Despite their popularity, the genre doesn’t have the power to push VR to the forefront of popular culture on its own. Instead, MMORPGs will have to rely on the might of other offshoots of gaming to encourage more people to take up VR headsets.
The console industry could play a big part in this, as PlayStation has already developed its own VR headset. Sony clearly envisions a future in which VR is the main form of gaming and wants to be well-placed to take advantage of that. The online bingo industry could be another catalyst for VR. One of the most popular ways of playing is online live bingo, which puts players in touch with real-world dealers from their homes. VR could make that experience even more immersive, and make players feel as if they are sitting in a bingo hall.
A New Era of MMORPGs
With VR on the horizon, it could spell a new era for MMORPGs. Games could be more expansive than ever, spanning sprawling VR worlds like nothing that’s ever been seen before. Developers in the industry are already at a huge advantage over other offshoots of gaming, as the titles will only need minor tweaks to prepare for VR.
VR is set to have a massive impact on almost every facet of gaming. It will doubtlessly lead some genres to become obsolete, while it will improve others. MMORPGs likely fall into the latter category and look like ideal options for VR.