I realize I'm a little late.

So before the EVE bomb hit, everyone was discussing the announcement of the 300k subs in WAR. I would have said more earlier, but I didn't quite feel like making a one line post consisting of "I fucking told you so!"

Actually, my views have shifted a little, I'm not so down on PvE these days. And arguably, the relative inadequacies of their PvE may have cost them the most. I still stand firmly by the simple truth that you won't get WoW's numbers with a new MMO. And a large part of that is something that I had already put in words sometime around the end of GDC '08. "Any new game will be, on release, a categorically worse game than every other game on the market." Of course, I didn't account for releases within a short period, but basically a new game simply cannot hope to stack up to a mature game in terms of quality and quantity of content, it's impossible.

(By the by, the friend I told that too said that he had been told almost exactly the same thing by Scott Hartsmann while at GDC that year, thus how I know the time frame. Which reminds me, I consider oHai the next big project to watch. The last one, with audio verification to prove I'm not changing my mind in hindsight, that I considered that way was Metaplace, and lately they've completely blown me away. And that also reminds me, there is a beta and I have 10 invite keys if you want in too.)


  1. I gotta chuckle out of that news too... I can't believe they thought they would compete on that level for a new game (buggy, not done), it just wasn't going to happen and I don't think ever will. Personally, I consider them a fluke. Devs should build games for themselves and their fans and forget numbers, course the money men don't like that attitude.

  2. Well, right now it seems like the money men are all after a big instant hit... I was listening to the latest SUWT and they brought this up a bit. The MMO market is all about sustaining your product for the long haul, and planning out two to three years in advance. WAR and AoC both brought true blockbuster hype machines to the game... and more likely than not it cost them quite a bit in the long haul.

    Of course, 300k is respectable, and for anyone else would have been insanely profitable... but they weren't ready to "accept" that number. I suppose for a while there I was thinking maybe the big guys had proven me wrong... but with this news, we're kind of right back where we started. And again, why is it the big companies that are so consistently wrong on this stuff?

    CCP made EVE into the trend-setter it is today with a shittastic launch, and a dev budget made of dreams and bubblegum to begin with. That wasn't a matter of $x in = $y out. It's just the nature of MMOs that sometimes you need to be patient and have faith in your product. I think back to that often with Tabula Rasa... it wasn't a Bad Game, but it wasn't a Great Game, they needed time to repair and with that could have been incredible.

    Heh, maybe I'm just too much of a dreamer.