Beau Hindman of Massively fame wrote a brief twitter thinking that Tera will suffer the same fate as Aion. I don’t think so, and my reasons why are way too long to tweet, so here they are.
Aion’s systems were never planned well. Two player factions simply cannot work in a game, because one side will dominate. Open world PvP from level 25 up is fine, but you can’t also force people to endure a very long PvE grind while getting ganked and interrupted while doing it. You also can’t release a game with very dull PvE content and boring character abilities.
The systems not being planned well led to the population drying up and unbalancing itself. A lot of people left the game at many points. I left at 32, because I couldn’t see grinding 18 more levels while being unable to defend myself from twinks. Some people get defeated by the grind way before then. Others reach 50 and give up in disgust because the endgame content is just a grind with little fun. This winnowed a lot of people out.
The PvP and rifting for those who remained wound up being unbalanced because people on the losing faction (usually Asmodean) either left the game or rerolled. And when it came time to move servers after a merge? All the Asmos went to one server, with the others being one faction servers. PvP dried up.
NC Soft West is either clueless or powerless. They could have fixed it. They could have tried to balance the game better to avoid bleeding players out, and redistributed population to healthier levels. They have done nothing.
For Tera to have that same fate they need to repeat many of these mistakes. I don’t think its possible to. Aion was bad at a systemic level from launch: time just showed the flaws. I don’t know if Tera is.