There are well over 150 Free to play MMORPGs out there and unfortunately only a handful of them are updated regularly. Popular games like MapleStory, Perfect World, Jade Dynasty and Shaiya usually undergo at least one major content update a year and many smaller ones which is more than enough to keep players occupied. My complaint is with mid tier MMO publishers like TQ Digital and Netgame. Conquer Online and EuDemons Online for example are rarely updated (EuDemons received the demon’s rising expansion pack just recently). These games are enormously popular but are for some reason neglected by their developers. One thing I like about browser games is that they’re updated much more regularly than client based games. This is likely due to the fact that these games are much easier to add content to.
As a big free MMORPG gamer, one of the most important aspects of a game is regular content updates – because it shows that developers still care. Plus, it helps keep things fresh. Odds are most people never even complete all of the content in a game – but just having a lot of content makes people want to play / try a game out. One reason I love gPotato’s Fly for Fun is updated regularly. I’d like to see gPotato do the same for Luna Online, but that game’s still new so who knows which direction it’ll go. Dragon Oath, a new free to play MMORPG by ChangYou just came out in the United States and is already going well – and that’s because the game is being constantly improved.
MMO Shooters are pretty big offenders. They are rarely updated and when they are gamers only get one or two new guns and maybe a new map and that’s it. Games like GunZ, Operation 7 and S4 League are rarely updated. I’ve been playing GunZ on and off for the last 3 years now and in this time frame GunZ hasn’t changed much at all except for maybe a few tiny bug fixes. I guess my point is, game developers need to keep updating their games to keep players hooked – otherwise we’ll (us players) will just go off and find a newer MMORPG to play.