Personally, I've never found MMORPGs all that addictive. Instead, I find them to be one of the most lacking and boring video game genres out there. There's so much grinding and hardly any content to go along with it. I grew up on SNES RPGs, and let me tell you, grinding is not necessary and not why people played the games. They were good for character interaction, plot, strategy, and non-linear exploration and sidequests.
And with MMORPGs, it's just this long, overly drawn out grind with no content. Grinding isn't content, heck, fighting isn't content. The best fights in RPGs tend to be the ones that advance the plot. They're just something to pass the time and prepare you for bosses or the next plot development, they aren't supposed to be the central part of any game at all.
It's a little improved by having crafting. But that can only go so far. In MMORPGs, general, there's a terrible lack of NPCs, and the ones that do exist are incredibly static. And the players don't make it any better. Most players talk in terrible internet speak, and talk like they're players, not members of a fictional world. Unless you find a good roleplayers guild, I find that most players detract from the gaming experience, not add to it. And roleplayers seem to be a minority fading thinner and thinner everyday, it's sad. Greater seem to be the griefers who forgot the name of the genre they're playing. It's a role-playing game, people. Role-playing is in the name, it's main appeal is supposed to be it's roleplaying content. But MMORPGs have almost none. It's hardly even worth of the name "role playing game".
Unlike other RPG games, offline RPGs, you tend not to have a family, a specific place in society, a impact on a maco-story that affects the world at large. Nothing. You're just out in that field doing boring fighting of the same monsters until you reach a level that you move elsewhere, and for what? Again, the content to grind ratio is stark. I don't even like wRPGs and I must say the the gameplay in MMORPGs is far behind wRPGs. They gameplay should be about them giving you weighty decision, you know, a role. Not a darn field to mindlessly fight on.
And then there's the fact that gaming companies tend to differ so much and not work on the things that aren't a friendly GUI, "balanced fighting", or generally related to the grind. Again, essentially making them sandboxes with not a speck of content. World of Warcraft has little things like being able to go grab a drink and get drunk. Little things like that are immersion creating. Other games, tend to not. Because since it's a "little thing", is all seen as non-essential and no group is ever bothered to make it. I hate World of Warcraft, but I have to say at least that was a very good idea. And then there's houses, some MMORPGs have the nice feature of a house, but do most of them? Nope. You know, all of the nice little immersive things like that which are a great tool for roleplayers, what everyone who plays the games should be doing.
What is addictive about these games? I've tried to get into them, and I'm not trying to rain on the parade of this section and those who play them. But I've tried and tried playing them, and I've never played one yet that I've never gotten past level 34 on any of them. They're just too boring. The grind is long and unrewarding. What's the reward of being a high level in a game with no content? I keep trying new ones and playing them, hoping it'll get better, but I keep getting disappointed. I want to like MMORPGs, I really do, but they're making it hard. I struggle to keep myself interested by telling myself of all the potential involved, but about 70 hours later and being sick of grinding, I find myself putting down the game and never picking it back up. I really wish MMORPGs could become a game genre I could become addicted to, but they really haven't been able to manage to so far.
I mean, there's like no character development, no interaction, no plot, no backstory, no content, nothing.
Sorry, please don't take too much offense to this post. I'm just frustrated. I'm tired, I wish I could get addicted to these games. I wish I understood the appeal. I wish I would stop trying to play and love them.