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Survivor of Romulus
Join Date: Jun 2012
07-15-2013, 10:44 PM
I personally don't AFK, but I think everyone is completely missing the core of the issue. They problem isn't that players AFK, but the reason why they AFK.
The entirety of end game content in STO is based around a constant endless grind. You can max a new character from level 1-50 in a matter of 5 days or less, and once you do all you're faced with is the same grind based gameplay. Games like Freelancer knew that in order to keep players engaged and wanting to continue playing the game for long periods that the gameplay had to be much more dynamic.
Continuing using Freelancer as an example that game came out in 2003, and even a little of ten years later there are still players that play the game. Why are people still playing it all these years later? The simple answer is because one day you can be a trader, the next a pirate, an explorer, and the next day turn around and be a soldier fighting pirates and confiscating contraband. It's not designed solely around specific classes or professions and in combination with the dynamic gameplay that's why it has such lasting power.
If Cryptic truly wants to diminish or completely solve the AFK population, then the first step in that would be to really reconsider a lot of the fundamentals of the game that just simply don't work. When a game feels like a job more than entertainment people are going to come and go, find ways to put reward over play, and in the end when it doesn't change they will eventually leave. Right now Cryptic seems perfectly happy with players coming and going and eventually leaving for good, but eventually they're going to run out of new players.
The longer a player is with a game the more probability they will end up spending money on the game, and that amount to increase over time. But in order for that to happen you have to have content and dynamic gameplay for players to want to stay and enjoy.