I was reading a forum...let's not say where. And the person described coming across warhammer onlines first chaos side public quest. And that there was this greater demon and only two players, so they were just gunna die and he doesn't even...
You know, I think commercial mmorpgs will eventually click to never ever have the player die at allllllll. Wow is already shooting for this, from what I've read.
They'll just have them slump a little bit when their health is low (though there will be adverse forum reactions to this as well "Is my toon a looser or sumpting? Dis game makes meh play loosa! Bad gahm!"), but the health will never go any lower and perhaps you get a tiny, tiny bit less loot points (but this is never messaged - only careful scrutiny (the sort the competitive will actually give) would show this)).
And so the player will never have to be faced with their own inadequacies ever again (granted the inadequacy of not having bum on seat for a longer period is one of them), and so they wont then go on forums and put down the game. Because they instantly rationalise how it was the games fault and the game has a problem with it. Never them - it's always something else that's at fault. Which is bad press for the game, of course.
And maybe the commercial mmorpgs will eventually just click and quit trying to present a game and instead just present the toybox that so many really want, ala minecraft. Yup, I said it - "OMG, I feel token threat from monsters - hell, I just have to build a scale model of the starship enterprise to protect myself! That's totally playing to win and I winnar!". Yes, yes, you totally had a reason to build all that shit. No, it does look pretty and interesting. I just think the whole 'game' idea of it is bullshit. Call yourself sculptors and the respect that comes with that, instead of gamers (unless 'gamers' has just come to mean toybox playing people, in which case stay as you are...).