Sunday, May 17, 2009

Does every online shooter honestly need an experience system?

In the wake of 2005's Battlefield 2, Infinity Ward capitalized on DICE's experience system with Call of Duty 4, and to great effect. So much so that this sort of carrot-stick incentive-based system has gone rampant. Games that trailed off of Call of Duty 4's explosive success are Lost Planet 2, Gears of War 2, Battlefield: Bad Company and Battlefield Heroes (although it's arguable whether or not Bad Company and Heroes' inclusion of the experience system was a reaction to Call of Duty 4 or it was fully intentional from the start of development of each game), Far Cry 2, Crysis Warhead, Resistance 2, Killzone 2, and Fear 2. Do you ever feel overwhelmed by how much you might have to earn to play at a reasonable level these days, especially if you're playing multiple shooters at once? And do you imagine yourself dividing your time between shooters given the time-consuming nature of the RPG-like experience system that is seemingly duck-taped in most modern online shooters? Personally, I find the ranking systems in some games truly unecessary, but then again, I'm certainly not someone who can plow through all the ranks in a few days, which is something that may color my opinion.

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