Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Random Shots: The Game Ends At Max Level

  • After reading about Leelu Butterfly's triumphant climb to the apex of LotRO leveling, I decided to take an inventory of MMOs where I've reached the level cap.

    • World of Warcraft - Ashlynh (TBC 70, WotLK 80, & Cata 85) & Kyralahn (TBC 70 & WotLK 80)

    • Champions Online - Arcfire (40)

  • Huh. That can't be right, can it? I'll right back.

  • Well, I just went over to Bio Break to read his MMO Timeline and I was right. There is not a single other game on that list where I've even approached the level cap. Unless you could Guild Wars. I don't count Guild Wars.

  • Once upon a time, I expended a lot of effort to decry the state of the solo endgame in MMOs. Now, I wonder what all the fuss was about. There is no endgame worry about if you still have several levels ahead of you. I just went back to Rift recently. My first time through, I only ever saw three zones. How many more were available at launch? And then there's Ember Isles, which was added later? And how much of Everquest 2 is there to see? I've never even been to Freeport, the most iconic zone in the game.

  • Am I alone in this? I need some insight, folks. And not just from my commenters. Everyone. I put a poll in the right hand column. I want to know how often you reach the level cap in your games. No, this is not a ploy to get blog hits. (Yes, it is.)

© 2012 Marty Runyon. All rights reserved.


  1. I haven't been very good at level cap either.

    I hit level cap in TorilMUD, WoW through the various expansions, and just recently in Rift.

    I hit the level cap in trade skills in EQ2, but was always a couple levels shy of the adventure cap when I was more serious.

    In EVE Online... what is the level cap? I have 80 million skill points, does that count?

    And I have a few "close, but no cigar" characters.

    Basically, I like to make alts and I like the first 20-30 levels of most games, but tend to become distracted at that point either by more alts or another game.

    It does make one feel odd, looking at all the MMOs I have played at realizing how few I have hit level cap in.

  2. I rarely hit level caps, sadly. :(

  3. You're not alone. I used to be like that, until I decided I wanted to change. It was a conscious decision too, which is why I enjoyed reading this post to see that other people have asked the same questions. The only games I don't reach level cap are the ones I know I just want to dabble in, like for the free month or free to play. But if I'm to make the commitment to subscribe, I usually push for level cap. Initially I think I wanted it to help me stop buying games on impulse, and only get those I know I will like enough to be in for the full X levels. But now I think I've become addicted to collecting a stable of capped characters. I have done it for five or six MMOs I think.

  4. I pretty much echo TAGN's comments but have even less to show for it. I hit level cap in Rift last month and that was my first in a long while. Once upon a time I had a few in WoW but no more. I'm getting close in LotRO now (closing in on 73) and that will be it.

  5. I never used to hit level cap, but I do now, and fairly regularly. It's much faster to reach the cap now (meaning the last few years) and how much more solo-friendly, not really anything different on my part. LotRO was the first game where I hit the cap, but since then Champs, STO, Rift, an SWTOR all immediately come to mind.

    The thing is, with the exception of STO, once I hit the level cap I rarely play any more. LotRO I've gone back to a few times when expansions raise the cap, Rift will be the same way. I faltered in SWTOR when I hit the cap and didn't even finish the class quest line which was (I thought) why I was actually playing.

  6. Yes, hitting 75 in LotRO was great, a big fat box to tick that desperately needed ticking. To have only reached max level in Wow just didn't feel right. Particularly as it's no longer a game that I would heartily recommend. Wilhelm Arcturus (The Agent Gaming Noob) has a good point though, with games like EVE and now The Secret World, how do we even measure max level? It's definitely something I've been asking myself.

    It's good to see by your post and the commentors that I'm not the only gaming butterfly around :)

  7. I finally hit level cap in WoW a month or so ago. Kinda strange, really. I did also cap two characters (one per faction) in STO. None of those were something I did "on purpose", though; they just sorta happened while I was doing my solo questing exploring thing.

    Most of my gaming time is spent away from the level cap, though. There's too much stuff to do elsewhere for me to really care about the "endgame".

  8. I've capped in WoW (three times with three different caps), LoTRO (also multiple caps), and SWTOR. Also Phantasy Star Online if you count that as a MMO.

    The thing is, I value breadth of experience over depth of experience. I play any given MMO until my interest runs out. For some games that gets me to the cap. In most others that gets me 1/3 of the way there at best. Save for a few exceptional MMOs, once I get down the basic systems (combat, how the classes play, how crafting works, the basic storyline/ setting, ect.) I get bored.

    However, time learning a new set of basics is fun to me, just so I can understand various designers's takes on them. When I played PnP I was constantly trying out new games, just to see how the mechanics played out (and tinker with them). MMOs let me see new sets of mechanics without having to convince my friends they should come along.

  9. Ironically, I was just writing a post like this for my blog. When I hit 50 in SWTOR, that will be the seventh game in which I have capped a character (five of which will still be current).

  10. The only game (I will not count GW either) where I hit the lvl cap was Vanguard. At that time it was 50, and I had a lot of time to play, which is usually not the case.
    Now I see a chance to do the same in Rift, bc. somehow leveling there seems to be very quick.