This was the generation where MMO gaming was supposed to break onto consoles… but it hasn’t really happened.
There are a few exceptions, of course, such as Final Fantasy XI and Phantasy Star Universe on Xbox 360. And it could very well be argued that the levelling-up elements found in titles such as Black Ops and MAG are every bit as MMO as World of Warcraft or FarmVille.
Nonetheless, it’s certainly fair to say that MMOs have not made the console waves that we’d all been lead to believe.
But World of Warcraft developer Blizzard believes that all hope might not yet be lost.
“A few years ago everyone said the FPS couldn't be done on consoles and clearly Microsoft has been able to pull that off with Halo and other games,” the studios’ Greg Street told CVG. “Hopefully someone will be able to do the same for an MMO on a console.”
Fellow Blizzard dev David Kosak added: “It's a real design challenge because you have to throw out a lot of what you've learned on a PC.
“On PC you're sitting right in front of a screen, you can have a lot of dense information displayed and very complex control schemes. If you're playing on a couch from a distance with a controller, it requires very different design.
“I'm sure someone will solve that problem. I'm amazed it hasn't been solved yet but someone has to put a lot of thought into it and it has to be the right game for that medium.
“I think we'll see something in the next few years. I said that a few years ago but I'm pretty sure someone will solve that problem! It's tricky but someone has got to be able to find an answer to that.”