AGDC: BioWare’s Gordon Walton on WoW Lessons

A great summary from what looks to have been a great talk: BioWare’s Gordon Walton Gives 12 Lessons from WoW. I agree with most of it, except this: “…He didn’t think it was relevant that WoW doesn’t delete inactive characters — the ‘namespace’ freed by deleting characters makes them worth deleting.” Never delete a character that someone cares about, no matter how long ago they played it. If you have to delete characters, only remove low level characters that haven’t been played in a long time. If you must go further, remove the names of long-unplayed characters, but leave the characters intact and let the returning player rename them.

I’ll use just one of the several examples in my MMO career: A while back, a good dozen of me and my friends wanted to go back to Final Fantasy XI. That is, until we realized that our characters we had spent months playing were completely gone. They lost a good chunk of change from us, and I know of others who have done the same. You simply cannot delete a character that a player has invested a lot of time and effort in, or you will lose a lot of goodwill and a lot of potential money.

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