Rockstar creating the next model for MMOs?

Red Dead Redemption 3

With all the rumors surrounding Red Dead Redemption 2, I can’t help but wonder what’s true and what’s false. Rockstar has done great things with GTA Online and has basically created a model for its open world games. The biggest question that bugs me about both franchises are, “Is Rockstar creating the next model for MMOs?”

GTA Online stumbled onto the scene a bit slow, but it now looks vastly different from the days of its inception. The missions you can get, the consequences that some of your actions have, and even the steady updates have made for a new experience outside of the main storyline. Red Dead has a similar online, although with arguably less content, but still gave you a new feeling outside the single player. What both of them had in common was that they took the core of a great game and added an online element to it. Seems simple right?

The MMO genre has been around for a very long time and has seen its share of changes, but the majority of them, at least in my opinion, still feel too similar. Fetch quests have become the norm and the grind to the top all for naught has been the ebb and flow for each MMO that comes out. With Rockstar titles, the blueprint for an MMO is in its single player. Let the players do what they’ve already done for hours, but with live friends and foes online.

Now I know that most MMOs weren’t born from the single player source material, and all they had was the other MMOs to look to, to see what works as a game, but may have been to their detriment. Rockstar is in a unique position where it can borrow small things from MMOs but keep what makes its game fun. I’m not saying that MMOs in their current state aren’t fun, but without change there is no progress.

With the foundation that Rockstar has made with its games, the stage is set for great things. From Red Dead Redemption online to the GTA Online advancements have been made. Adding a live economy, land changing development, and an overall persistent world on top of the core gameplay that makes Rockstar games so much fun could have other developers going back to the drawing board and rethinking the way they make MMOs. Or I could be just wishful thinking.

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