When does leveling become grind? Part 1 of 2

by manylaughs on October 7, 2012

Image courtesy of openclipart.org

A wise player once said, “One person’s grind is another person’s leveling.” It’s a simple truth, but profound. What you find tedious, is fun for someone else.

Grind isn’t an absolute. There’s no set-in-stone definition clearly delineating the line between questing and grind.The former Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart, unable to adequately define pornography, once said, “I know it when I see it.” Grind’s like that, too. It’s hard to define, but you know it when you see it.

Here’s what every player knows: When you bet bored with questing in an MMO, any MMO, it becomes a grind. The faster you reach the boredom critical point, the sooner a game becomes grindy. Whether it’s grindy or not, as that wise player stated, depends on you. Some people are happy to kill one mob after the next with no need for any variation. Perhaps they’re like Tai Chi masters, deriving their inner contentment from the process of going through the same motions over and over.

Most players need more than that. Everyone has their own personal grind point, the point where a game becomes grindy. That grind point depends on lots of factors, but once you reach it there’s no going back. When you hit your grind point an MMO just gets tiresome.

Tomorrow, part 2. How MMO developers try to avoid your grind point.


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