Online multiplayer games are almost defined by a constant state of change. Since their inception, the rise and fall of different genres, the constant patching, and the eventual creation of things like metagames has meant the only real certainty in developing online games is that—well, nothing is certain.
But even if nothing is certain or fixed in online game development, that doesn’t mean past trends don’t matter, and two trends that have taken over online multiplayer are the introduction of progression systems and events.
Progression systems, in case the name itself isn’t clear, are means of tracking player progress across multiple matches. Depending on the game, this may not directly affect the choices and opportunities for players in the game itself, but it generally offers some way for players who’ve invested hundreds of hours into a multiplayer title from those who’ve just started.
Event systems, on the other hand, fall under the live-operations side of game operations. They’re focused on keeping players interested in a live game, and sometimes bridge the gap between adding new content and not having any new content at all.
Both are such an essential part of online games production that even single-player games will often have …read more
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