SOE: Star Wars fans will feel “at home” in the new MMO

It was possible, despite the increased security. After all, if Orgrim Doomhammer could escape from the Undercity, in the very heart of the palace, Thrall could escape from Durnholde.

John Smedley, president of SOE, SOE online games next project will be a “sandbox element” Star Wars galaxy similar characteristics.

In the past few years, the most painful collapse can be said that a MMO Star Wars galaxy. Everything Although the game is not always beloved, it successfully accumulated a considerable and dedicated fan base, this is grief, when Sony Online Entertainment announced that it will close that case in 2011, John SOE president special foam history Levin recently revealed that the company has to say, according to his statement, the “committed” the title of the Star Wars galaxy fans work unannounced.

According to Smedley, a new online game would be “a game, a lot of old [Star Wars] players will feel like at home.” In the “home” will obviously appeal from the freedom-based mechanisms of the new game. “It has, it is the weight of what makes SWG sandbox elements, explained:” Smedley. Sadly, Smedley also able to confirm that the new MMO is “not a Star Wars game.

This is not to say that we want it to be one. It is not so long ago, of course, that Electronic Arts has signed a long-term contract with Disney to give it the exclusive right to operate, so that Star Wars video games. Shortly put, it will take part in state-owned enterprises, some intense finagling get in the universe based on the need to make a new network game required permissions. The fact added, EA is still trying to make money in their luxurious expensive Star Wars MMORPG, we feel safe to say, a Star Wars 2 will never happen, even if the state-owned enterprises want it. That is, if there is no pre-existing license almost let this new game is more interesting because it’s creative choices, it can be said to be more extensive. In turn, we will wait to see what Smedley and friends have their own sleeves.

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Evaluating Crowfall’s Recent Siege Concepts

Crowfall has given me plenty of reason to pause and question. Everything from temporary battleground experience to arcade matches, and then the idea of fragmenting communities (the foundation of group pvp) by creating FFA campaigns, guild vs. guild campaigns, etc.

I’m finding a few more issues with Crowfall’s proposed PvP mechanics that were recently shown in a video. Take a look.

Vulnerability Windows – “For the next two hours the city can be attacked.” That’s a mistake.

Scripted Events – (Bloodstone telling players to go here, go there) This essentially states that players should zerg. The bloodstone says to go to X,Y? Okay, everyone go to X,Y. That’s a mistake.

Expecting true Emergent Gameplay within a ‘Battleground’ – You can’t expect emergent gameplay when you create victory scenarios centered around timed capture the flag mechanics and vulnerability windows. You’ll only create an arcade experience. Basing your entire PvP campaign system around it… That’s a mistake.

There needs to be a long-term drive or a purpose, which I have yet to see explained. There must be a ‘reason’ to keep fighting. PvP for the sake of PvP will not last in 2015+. Games like that are a dime a dozen. This is why when people start to lose, I expect they’ll simply stop playing.

Now I’ll be constructive and offer advice.

Let’s assume they did stick with this. There are a few key points they’ll have to consider. First, to make this scenario work (which I realize is just one example of many “emergent” gameplay opportunities) the map has to be huge. Any map where players can realistically turn back to defend after committing to going after a Bloodstone will fail. Second, the reward for this Bloodstone thing has to be incredible. Third, the Bloodstone reward has to be diametrically opposed to the Keep reward so that players are actually having to choose which reward they want rather than simply choosing to double down. Fourth, they have to remove those vulnerability windows. That keep should be vulnerable 24/7; if it’s worth defending and not designed to fall in 30 seconds to a zerg then it will be defended.

It’s not impossible to make such a system like this fun, but it will be incredibly difficult to make it fun for long.

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Earlier this week, Justin asked what gives you hope for the future of the MMOs. As you might expect, the responses were many and varied, with some people naming a far off game or two while a few said that current titles are all they need from MMOs. Still others said — and I quote — abandon hope all ye who enter here because the genre has strayed so far from its original identity that it now serves an entirely different playerbase.

If you’d asked me this question a year or so ago, I’d have fallen firmly into that last camp. The genre has inarguably changed, and arguably for the worse, especially if you are a fan of sandboxes, grouping, virtual world gameplay in general and non-combat gameplay in particular. But as I said in my own comment, better days are ahead, thanks in my opinion to a handful of independent MMOs.

Retaliator_HeaderStar Citizen
Discourse surrounding Star Citizen never fails to crack me up, and I’m not just talking about Derek Smart’s absurdities or the many faces of Manzes. There’s a sizable contingent of people who seemingly want this game to fail, and I’m not sure whether that’s because they’re just uninformed or because they have a vested interest in some sort of competing title. I’ll go with the former supposition, given how frequently these armchair critics call for government oversight of crowdfunding and similarly shortsighted demands.

Really, though, “competing title” is a misnomer because there is no title, MMO or otherwise, that can compete with Star Citizen’s feature set.

Marine1Yes, yes, you’re a project manager or a developer or you know someone who is, and you don’t think there’s any way that Cloud Imperium can deliver what they’ve said they’ll deliver. Except they’ve been doing it. Sure, they’re late more often than not, but still, how can you continue to argue with easily verifiable reality?

And what if, a couple of years from now, the full game launches and it is in fact an incredibly polished and feature-rich virtual world? Stranger things have happened. The opposing view typically boils down to “the devs I’ve talked to said it can’t be done with the money CIG has raised.” To which my response is “perhaps the devs saying it can’t be done for X amount of money are overpaid because it is in fact being done.”

It saddens me that just about every Star Citizen mention devolves into this sort of farcical flame war because the fact of the matter is that everyone with an interest in MMOs, space sim fan or not, should be rooting for the title to succeed. The game’s success can only help the MMO genre, both by proving that there is a (very large) demand for immersive, involving gameplay that’s more than a progression grind and by raising the bar in terms of project scope and visuals.

The-Repopulation-screenshot-2The Repopulation
I’ve been keeping The Repopulation at arm’s length, both because I think it needs more time in the oven and because I’m anticipating playing it quite a bit when it finally launches. My preview sessions earlier this year were more than enough to vault the sci-fi sandbox near the top of my watch list, though, and the fact that such a deep and ambitious game is being made by a tiny dev team only adds to the flavor.

Did I mention that Above & Beyond Technologies has admitted to being inspired by the late great Star Wars Galaxies on multiple occasions? Enough said, frankly.

wp_SnowDragon_1920x1200Camelot Unchained
Camelot Unchained is a bit outside my personal wheelhouse, since I’ve never been much for RvR or really PvP in general. It has its place, granted, and I’m keen to craft my way through City State’s fantasy sandbox and hopefully supply my more bloodthirsty comrades with the tools necessary to achieve their goals.

More importantly, though, Mark Jacobs and company are a refreshing departure from the tired and erroneous notion of the MMORPG as mass market entertainment. Camelot Unchained embraces its niche and its niche audience in a way that every MMO should. This is a game by fans, for fans, and while many a PR person has used that phrase to hype derivative themepark #1,138, CU lives and breathes the mantra by sticking to its PvP (and its subscription) guns instead of selling out for more players.

The MMO space desperately needs more titles and more dev teams like that.

WindowsPlayer 2015-08-06 16-34-44-58Project Gorgon
Project Gorgon’s commanded a lot of attention here lately, and rightfully so. It’s a throwback in all of the right ways, and much like Camelot Unchained, it’s being developed by a firm that doesn’t particularly care about hitting it big as much as it cares about making the game that it wants to make and the game that bigger studios are afraid to make.

Yeah, it could use a visual upgrade — and that’s purportedly going to happen now that Elder Game is flush with some well-deserved Kickstarter cash — but even without the graphical bells and whistles, Gorgon is one of those titles that reminds old-schoolers why they liked this genre in the first place.

Revival is something of an x-factor, and while you can actually play portions of the other titles on today’s list, this one is completely theoretical. The theory’s pretty fascinating, though, and I encourage anyone who’s even remotely interested in non-linear virtual world gameplay to read through Revival’s various dev blogs and forum posts in order to see what the team at Illfonic has up its sleeve.

revival_05The game has of course made headlines for its use of sex, but thinking of it as that MMO with funking really does it a disservice. Instead, consider this excerpt from Illfonic’s mission statement and realize that it’s just one of the ways in which Revival purports to reclaim the MMORPG for immersionists.

“Gone are the days of poring over walkthrough websites featuring a lengthy description of the process that you will then undertake to defeat the Dreadlord Ignominious Thrax, just like everyone else at your level, only to leave him alive for the next group in line,” the statement says. “Finally behind us are endless runs through the same content, only to get a chance at receiving a purple bit of gear that all of the others of your class on the server already have. Items in Revival are as individual as the players, and building your personal kit is a reflection of your individual playstyle, not the rote completion of a template.”

So yeah, I’m pretty hopeful about the future of MMOs, thanks to these titles and others like Shroud of the Avatar, Shards Online, and even smaller-scale multiplayer joints with MMO features like ARK: Survival Evolved. All of these projects are unapologetic in their presentation of deep, immersive, and feature-rich titles that are worlds first and games second, which is a welcome departure from the grind-to-get-gear-to-grind-to-get-gear nonsense that World of Warcraft and all of its unfortunate offspring have visited on the virtual world space for the past dozen years.

Everyone has opinions, and The Soapbox is how we indulge ours. Join the Massively OP writers as we take turns atop our very own soapbox to deliver unfettered editorials a bit outside our normal purviews (and not necessarily shared across the staff). Think we’re spot on — or out of our minds? Let us know in the comments!

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If you’re curious about Dean Hall’s new Ion project that was recently announced at E3, a new interview at Polygon might be worth reading.

Hall explains how the sci-fi space sandbox is straddling the fence between indie and triple-A, primarily due to the dev talent involved which includes Fallout 3 and Skyrim veterans as well as the concept artist from Alfonso Cuaron’s Gravity.

Hall firmly states that Ion is an MMO, despite negative feedback from his marketing team and Polygon’s interviewer. “We had a lot of marketing people saying, don’t call it an MMO. Everyone will think it’s orcs and wizards running around,” Hall explains. “It’s stale [the MMO genre]. My point is, that’s exactly why we have to own it as an MMO. It is. It’s inspired by EVE Online and Space Station 13. I’m hoping that we can show there are so many areas you can innovate in terms of MMOs.”

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A Not-Much-Gaming Week

Unlike most weeks I have, this one has been lacking the usual passion I exude for video games. I work night shift (midnight to 8am) and once that’s done I do my daily chores and by the time THAT is done it’s noon and I only have a bit of time before I’m headed back to bed so I can get up again for work. A typical work week for anyone, right? Needless to say, I just haven’t had the energy to play much of anything. I have been taking care of my farms and crops in Wurm Online, as well as logging into WoW to do some garrison work, but aside from that my evenings have been filled with books and soft blankets (my preferred method of relaxing). After creating my character in Dragon Age and playing through the opening scenes, I haven’t managed to go back to it yet. I’m hoping when I have more time over the weekend I’ll find my gaming vim again and play more.

My priest is still 97, her garrison is going well. My warlock is 92 and I’m hoping to level up the rest of my alts to 92 and unlock their garrisons over the weekend. In Wurm my deed is practically done which leaves me with plenty of time to work on my skills, though I’m not sure which one I want to work on next, it will probably be weapons. I also have my Vynora and Fo priest subscribed at the moment, and while I’m sure I’ll keep up with the Vynora, I’m not sure I need a Fo. I’m still playing WildStar, too but this week I haven’t had much time to do anything more than open boom boxes. I still have so many more to open!

Then there’s my adventures in Minecraft, which have been on hold the past two weeks due to lack of time. I severely need more time in the day to play! Hopefully I’ll have some more exciting posts to make here before too long.

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