by Mike Masnick

It Ain't Easy To Create The Next EverCrack

from the so-so-difficult dept

A few years ago, all anyone in the gaming industry could talk about was how multi-player online games were the next generation of games. There were all the success stories about EverQuest and Ultima Online, and the greed factor set in: players had to first buy the game. Then, they needed to pay a monthly subscription fee to keep playing the game. It's no surprise that everyone wanted to offer such games: upfront fees plus recurring fees. However, the other side of that equation is that it's costly to keep those games running. There's the technical side, of course, but also the customer support issues. Plus, with so many multi-player games out there, the market started to get a bit saturated. These days, many companies are slowly backing away from the space, including EA who dumped the latest version of Ultima Online, in favor of improving the existing version. The space isn't dead, of course. There are still quite a few success stories that continue to do well. It's just that it's pretty difficult to create new multi-player games that will get people addicted.

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  • identicon
    Dmitry, 16 Jul 2004 @ 12:46pm

    Here to stay

    These games are here to stay, and the market will figure itself out. Space is far from dead, but i do think there is room for every type of settings for MMPOG's.

    Iv played online games since duke nukem on TEN, Warcraft on Kali, Warcraft 2, 3 on, subspace, Call of Duty, Earth and Beyond, Starwars Galaxies, and even City of Heros... Oh and im just a casual gamer :).

    So who else is waiting on Jump to Lightspeed expansion or World of Warcraft?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      thecaptain, 17 Jul 2004 @ 6:38am

      Re: Here to stay

      Count me in for WoW...if I can convince my gf to join me. We are both hooked on Neverwinter Nights but I've never been able to convince her to join an MMORPG (she has a philosophical stance against having to pay a subscription for a game...I'm hoping to wear her down enough to at least try it)

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Mark, 17 Jul 2004 @ 8:54am

    Online RPGs

    It's a tricky development space. With a standard game, if it turns out to be a disappointment the developers can just roll on to the next project, but if it's a persistent-world game they're left holding the bag, supporting a crappy title for months or years. I was pretty close to the development of "Asheron's Call 2," and it was like a massive ship slowly sinking: the game just didn't work, everyone knew it, and yet every week and every month there was a huge effort to roll out new content and support for the community. In the end a whole lot of money was thrown down a very big hole.

    Ultimately it's like playing in Vegas. Every game development project is a gamble, but which sort of gamble do you prefer? Do you bet a little here and a little there, or do you like to put everything on one big play? If that big gamble pays off, you might find yourself with the next EverQuest, but if it doesn't you'll be left wondering what happened.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 19 Jul 2004 @ 11:04pm

    nice fuzzy entry

    Of course if this blog knew what it was actually talking about, it would include some nice jucy statistics:

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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