Of all the topics bantered about in blogs – politics, music, media – one seems woefully underrepresented: videogames.
There are some exceptions. Weblogs, Inc dutifully offer blogs such as Joystiq, a site that chronicles game industry goings on and issues, And sites like Gamespot provide blog-like dispatches. But for a subject that inspires such slavish devotion some observers believe the videogame makers are squandering an opportunity by not incorporating blogs into the games themselves.
Into the games themselves? Indeed. Why not place a blog within a massively multiplayer role playing game, the argument goes, where participants can offer fellow players advice, comment on game play, give tips, or spout off on any topic they choose? It seems like a natural extension of the kind of enthusiasm usually found for these games, say proponents, and could help foster a stronger sense of community within the game.
Alas, few are looking into this at the moment, but some observers believe it won’t be long before game players find blogs in the games themselves
“I can see [incorporating blogs into games] happening down the road,” says David Swofford, director of PR for game maker NCSoft North America. “But nothing we have that’s being designed right now incorporates them.”
South Korean NCSoft is arguably one of the most powerful online gaming companies in the world, anchored by its Lineage series, which has several million devoted players. Its North American operations are run by Richard Garriott, maker of Ultima, the first commercially successful massively multiplayer role playing game (MMORPG). NCSoft is also the distributor City of Heroes.
While in-game blogs have been slow to develop from the corporate side, players and fans are certainly open to the idea of blogging about their virtual lives.
“That would be a good idea,” says Tom Zjaba, the man behind the classic videogame and comics blog Tomorrow’s Heroes. “Anything that would make a game more interactive and make users more a part of it would be a good thing. I wish there was something like that.”