To many of you, this acronym has no meaning. But to some of us, it is a large form of entertainment. MMORPG stands for Massive Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game. Basically a bunch of people from all over the world start up a game on their computers or game consoles and log into a whole new world. Some games are mild — something along the lines of the Sims or SecondLife — and some are fantasy-based, like World of Warcraft.
I’ve never personally played any of the Sims games, but have recently ventured into playing World of Warcraft, and I’ve played a little bit in SecondLife. The virtual worlds created by such games is amazing. Especially in SecondLife, where the company that controls the game is ever expanding the world to meet the supply and demand needs of the users in game.
People are actually making a nice living playing, finding items, creating and selling virtual things or ideas in these worlds made up of 1s and 0s.
What’s that? Did I just type what you thought I just typed? People making a real-life living in a non-existant virtual world? You betcha! Go to eBay and do a search for “WoW gold,” and see what you come up with. The currency exchange rate for in-game gold is higher than that of the Hong Kong Dollar or the Russian Rouble.
The draw to these games is the fact that you can interact with other characters from all over the world. Some people use these virtual worlds for socializing and even for business. Instead of taking a prospect out for a drink at the local watering hole, they can be invited to anywhere in the world (virtual, that is). It’s becoming more and more commonplace for these worlds to be a place for colleagues to mingle and corroborate on projects, as in some of the worlds there is text chat and, in some cases, live voice chat. No need to conference call, just log into your game and set a meeting time and place and you’re there from the comfort of your couch or your comfy home office chair.
I predict worlds like this will become a part of our future, whether it’s for gaming or just living. Can you imagine a game, that while playing, you decide you’re hungy, so you walk into a virtual pizza joint, order a pizza and 45 minutes later, one arrives at your door, just as you finish the quest to save the damsel in distress. Or what if you needed a new mouse because that last pack of monsters really wore your current one out? Walk into a virtual store and walk over to the computer accessories aisle and pick one up, who needs Amazon.com anymore? These virtual worlds are where the future will be.