Karen Hertzberg writes "Since MMORPGs became a mainstream medium, players have debated the two primary methods of advancement. Which is better? Is it the level-based system that is so dominant in today's MMORPGs, or the lesser-used skill-based system? This has been a strong subject of debate on many forums, blogs, and gaming sites for as long as the genre has existed. Ten Ton Hammer's Cody 'Micajah' Bye investigates the two concepts and gathers input from some of the brightest minds in the gaming industry about their thoughts on the two systems of advancement." Relatedly, I've seen a growing trend of players saying that such games don't really take much skill at all. The standard argument is that it just boils down to "knowing how to move" or "knowing when to hit your buttons." In the MMO community, people often make references to FPS or RTS games, saying they have a higher skill cap. However, the same complaints also come from within those communities, with comments like "you just need to know the map," or "it's all about a good build order." At what point does intimate knowledge of a game's mechanics make a player skilled?
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