MMO concerts are nothing new, but Phantasy Star Online 2 does them best by adding to the gameplay and becoming part of world history.
The idea of in-game concerts is nothing new as many games have held them and Fantasy Star Online 2 she’s been doing it since about 2013. Now PSO2: New Genesis continues the tradition with the addition of concerts in the big February update. However, PSO2 and PSO2: New Genesis‘s concerts are different from those that online players might be more familiar with from games like Roblox and Fourteen days. They don’t employ real-world artists to put on a show, instead using characters from the game to support the lore and including player participation to make it more engaging.
PSO2 is a much older game than people think as it was first released in Japan in 2012 and content from almost 10 years is finally making its way to the west in 2020. Technically, however, these aren’t the oldest in-game concerts since World of Warcraft’s Tauren Chieftains have been in the game for years. It’s only in the last few years that actual artists have entered the in-game stage, but that doesn’t always align well with a game’s player base.
When games use real-world artists for in-game concerts, it’s really just for profit, to encourage more players to sign up and to attract and hopefully keep new players in the game. An increase in players leads to possible spending on payment items and keeps the number of players in the game high. While it’s a nice event for those interested, most players don’t play online games to see well-known artists perform, and these types of concerts don’t add to the gameplay or storyline in any way. They’re more of a gimmick and a way for the artists to reach people without the expensive venue.
PSO2 and NGS’ Concerts operate more within the game world. The artists are characters from the storyline, mainly Quna in PSO2 and Nadereh in NGSwho have the power of song. While it’s a bit cheesy, the performances are just as spectacular as Fourteen days and Roblox’s, but the content is more related to the game. The songs are related to the lore of the world, and the performances grant players bonuses for participating. These bonuses can include experience gains, increased rare drop rates, and more that help players and go beyond the mere spectacle. There are even some concerts that players can attend by dancing or standing on the stage while watching the performance.
Having in-game concerts related to the game is a much better option for players than just having a big-name concert. Another game that uses concerts, Final Fantasy XIV Online, proves that similar content resonates better with players. The game’s real-life band, The Primals, plays live music from the game and has included music videos that players seem to love. They attract crowds and their online views are high.
Bringing real artists into games is a good idea, but it’s not being used as well or as often as it should. It is quite obvious that gamers prefer events in online games that are related to the game itself. Therefore PSO2 and PSO2:NGS Concerts are welcomed by the community as a fun part of the game and allow players to take advantage of them with boosts. It’s a much better way to integrate online performances than trying to assimilate real-world performances.
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