Take the MMORPG and RTS genres for instance. While there are a few exceptions - which still fail to captivate me - they are as cookie cutter as it gets and basically it is going to be red vs. blue, or there will be balance issues within the game. I'm fine with balance issues actually. So long as it's KNOWN by the player base and there is a way to defeat the imbalance then it's fine. And actually, if side A had an advantage with 'x' and side b has an advantage with 'y', so long as those advantages are equal in importance then it can actually add much flavor to the whole game.
I do not recall the last RTS I played that made me say, "Wow, that's really neat... I've never though of that angle before!" Nor have I run across a MMORPG (except WoW for about 1 year) that just made my jaw drop with the level of content and originality. Hack, slash, cast, repeat.
Battleground Europe (WWIIOL) is the except to that rule because of their continual improvement both with gameplay and content. Cornered Rats really have done an impressive job. Regretably because of the nature of my work I've been unable to consistantly play and my account has gone inactive a few times too many for my liking. Many people will not WWIIOL because it is set, as one might imagine, in WWII Europe during The Blitz. 'Level Progression' isn't really so important, though it will permit you take out higher tier equipment, but you can still get along quite well as a private with only a rifle and your wits.
With the RTS genre it has been a long time coming for new concepts. All they do it switch the genre, or use a 'new theme' froma movie or book series and act like it's a cutting-edge piece of software. It's just not true. Whether producing peons, tanks, or marines, the genre has pretty much become static and lacks creativity. That being said I've been playing the World in Conflict demo and have been enjoying myself but the question remains: Will Ilike this game in a week let alone a month from now?
I'm not ADD or anything, I just like my mind to be challenged and most games do not keep that challenge alive for me. And no, I'm not talking about, "Well Prather32, I don't see you in the top 10 of World of Conflict so there's stillc hallenge left for you tough guy!" I'm talking about can the game simply hold my attention and thoughts while not playing it to think about it and WANT to play it at those times. While I'm not rich I do have enough money to look to many different forms of entertainment and as such they all compete for my dollars and I know I'm not alone with this.
So I look to WiC and other games and I question the 'staying power' for those of us who have tired of the genres, but at the same time we also recall the great amount of fun we had playing those types. I guess I'll just keep playing the demos and betas and seeing if I can find the game that keeps me hooked like I did for over a year with WoW, and for about 5 years with WWIIOL.