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32. Re: Bethesda: No Current Elder Scrolls 5 Plans, MMO? Maybe Aug 16, 2009, 08:27 CJ_Parker
I guess my biggest annoyance with MMORPGs is their labeling. I don't really consider them RPGs at all. Having classes and stats doesn't make an RPG. Open-ended gameplay and lots of meaningful choice and consequence make an RPG.

Well, that's only your problem though if you have a weird definition of what makes an RPG. Why should you not be able to have "open-ended gameplay and lots of meaningful choice and consequence" in any other genre? It would be easy to apply that definition to FPS and RTS and there are in fact games in both genres that have had open-ended gameplay and c&c.
No, Sir. Those are not defining characteristics of an RPG.
What really makes an RPG (and I'm not pulling this out of my ass but it is one of the most common and most widely accepeted definitions) is when character skill (and stats, traits, whatever) begins to matter more than player skill. So classes and stats do in fact play a major role in what makes an RPG because they define who your character is, how strong he/she is, what skills he/she can use and a lot of other things. That's exactly what makes an RPG as you build a character, assign your character a role and then play that role within the rules and the setting of the role-playing world.
Open-ended gameplay and c&c can but don't have to be an ingredient of an RPG. I prefer RPGs with those characteristics but they are most certainly not defining characteristics.

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