Quick thought for the day - do MMORPGs actually need to be unfun to play?
More specifically, do socialised MMORPGS (which perhaps some would say they all are) need to actually be unfun to play and...essentially suck?
The thing is, the whole emphasis on social means player skill can't get you out of suck ville.
No, for a social game, the way out has to be social. That you have more friends, or have a big guild, grants you resources that get you out of suck ville.
So the game has to suck. Not at the most shallow level (thus explaining why gamers seem to fetish graphics), but the heart of the game has to suck. And not suck in a 'your the last starfighter and only pure skill will get you out from the aliens evil grasp, even though it sucks to be put in such a position', because as said, it can't be player skill.
So it just has to be plain, out and out suck. Just in a way that you don't have X and...that's it, you don't have it. No zing, no surprise twist on aquiring it. It takes ages. It's grind. It sucks. Unless you got other players on your side to give resources or make it go faster.
Having socialising first and foremost as a priority of the game necessitates having grinding, sucky gameplay.