Yeah but weren't we talking about MMOs. The more I think about it the more the line between a bad game and a good MMO blur. It seems to me that what most people consider to be good MMOs would be incredibly bad games otherwise.By showing that there are exceptions to the rule. A successful game is not always good. My initial point was that devs should focus on "good", not "successful", when designing a game. Trying to make money is hugely limiting to creativity and innovation, and probably strikes down so many good ideas that never see the light of day. I'm p. sure the makers of SotC were not necessarily in it for massive sales. It's far from a crowd pleaser. If I wasn't an art buff I'd probably think it was 70% boring.
But let me get back to my original point here which got lost in your musings. An MMORPG has to be successful in order to bother existing by its very nature. This assumes the game is actually designed with the word massively in mind, because otherwise why bother making it an mmo in the first place.
Also this is somewhat off topic but relevant. I hate the idea that companies trying to make money is considered a bad thing by entitled customers. Its just such a weird stigma that makes no sense when you think about it for even a minute. I used to have a friend that would constantly say, "They're just doing that to make money!" Yes! Yes they are as such is the point of their existence.