The word “massive” is commonplace in today’s gaming landscape, but what does it really mean?
The definition of the word is simple enough – really freakin’ big – but while what it meant in relation to gaming was once clear, that’s certainly no longer the case. A massively multiplayer online game may be large in scope, but light on actual players, while a game not considered to be massive might have legions of online players. And as Brendan Main points out in Issue 223 of The Escapist, size isn’t the only factor that makes a game “massive”:
Where games once operated in isolation, today they support cultures in their own right. Through the omnipresence of the internet, “massive” becomes a matter of course: Any game, so long as it is played, shared, discussed and critiqued, maintains a sort of persistence – only now, the world that they persist in is our own. Put another way: We have reached a point at which any game may be massive.
Is he right? Or does “massive” refer to a specific genre of videogames and everything else is just big? Read the rest of M is for Massive and let us know what you think.