I started playing Final Fantasy 14 in 2019. It was for my undergraduate senior thesis in which I compared communities of two Massive Multiplayer online roleplaying games (MMORPG). It was fun. I ran around on my first character getting invited to a guild (called a Free Company), talking amongst other new players in the new players’ channel, and even did a few dungeons. I got my research done after about 2 months of playing the free trial of the game, but I liked it so much that I have been playing ever since. My best friend invited me to her Free Company on another character and I really hit it off with the lovely members hailing from all across North America.
This kind of community and friendship can grow from all sorts of online games, from Overwatch to World of Warcraft to Fortnite. Communities can be built outside of the game (forums, discord servers) as well as inside the game. These community building efforts inside game worlds is the focus of a new show on the Serious Play Twitch called Massive Multiplayer Mondays. The show seeks to highlight the features that programmers design and implement to encourage sociality. Simple examples of these features could be an in-game text chat box or it could be more complicated like designing dungeons that require multiple players to complete.
Massive Multiplayer Mondays is (surprising no one) every Monday from 4pm to 6pm on our Twitch channel. We will play around with mostly MMORPGs but could expand in the future. Each week we will pick a game, perhaps one new to us or one that we’ve played before. We’ll make a new character and chat while we experience the world. So, join us on our adventure through fantastical realms and online games!