A Stargate Worlds Interview

By Jim Rossignol on February 27th, 2008 at 8:49 am.

So Stargate Worlds is going to be an instance-heavy shooty MMO with a level based structure, and just a teensy bit of grinding. Perhaps not all that surprising: the fiction could have been invented for instancing, and, well no one is making an MMO that isn’t level based in some way. Of course all this is also a little reminiscent of another MMO that turned up a few months ago. Stargate Worlds’ awesomely named tech director Demetrius Comes says that they’re “shooting for less grinding” but that there will “always be kill missions”. Hmm.



GameTrailers, you have an instance of our thanks.

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19 Comments »

  1. martin says:

    yet another wow clone

  2. Phil says:

    Demetrius-Comes will now be the name of my forty second child.

  3. Tim says:

    Why clone a clone ?

  4. Lu-Tze says:

    All I have to say is… Featured Media : Boob Shadow. GameTrailers; what have you become?

  5. Meat Circus says:

    instance-heavy

    Ugh

    with a level based structure

    Retards

    and just a teensy bit of grinding

    Ding, we have a loser.

    It’s as if all these idiot MMO devs *want* to fail AGAIN and AGAIN and AGAIN, yet they never learn. Just think, instead of allowing these poor saps to waste years developing another sub-standard WoW clone to sink beneath the waves and be played by nobody, we could burn them instead as an alternative source of fuel.

    The Garriott brothers, when set on fire, could power Cleethorpes for a few minutes. That’s surely more use than Tabula Rasa or this pile of shit will ever be to anybody.

  6. Babs says:

    Not a fan of the current batch of MMOs then?

    Perhaps the reason they keep on being developed is that making them is more fun than actually playing them. And the desire for money hats of course.

  7. Meat Circus says:

    @Babs:

    Yes, but apart from WoW, they all fail and end up losing big wodges of cashes.

    (I play EVE at the moment, having abandoned WoW last year.)

    I can only assume that publishers are staffed by people even more uncomplicated than we usually assume. That’s the only way to explain their support of a seemingly endless parade of doomed identikit sub-WoW grindfests.

  8. Kieron Gillen says:

    I found it fascinating that there was literally one idea in there I hadn’t heard before – the random AI stuff, which I’m not entirely convinced is a good one – and otherwise it was really as banal as a MMO features list gets.

    KG

  9. Myros says:

    @Meat Circus

    Well, I guess it depends how you define “fail”. Only a couple of MMO’s have actualy failed. Many more are maintained with a niche audience and will probably continue like that for years. Of course if your definition of failing is to not reach WoW heights … then every MMO has ‘failed’, even EVE ;)

  10. Dinger says:

    How about this:
    Q: How do you make a small fortune in the MMO industry?
    A: Start with a large fortune

    You don’t need to have $1B/year in revenues, but in order to be a “success” of any sort, I would think you’d need to recoup costs.
    There are plenty of MMOs that are still in existence because maintenance costs are less than revenue, but that doesn’t mean they’ve covered their development.

    So they don’t all “fail”, but most of them do, even if they eke out an existence for a decade after the fact.

    By the way, in that trailer, did anyone notice how much he used the word “story”? He seemed to be saying:

    “The point of the game is the story, but we recognize that people don’t like to play the game for the story, so you can skip most of it.”

    (Translation: if you don’t have an <a priori interest in the story, skip this title.)

    Of course, it’s easy to rag on stuff, especially stuff you haven’t seen. But he didn’t exactly set the world on fire with his interview, did he?

  11. Meat Circus says:

    The astonishing lack of creativity amongst developers of forthcoming failed MMOs might be seen to be creating a self-fulfilling prophecy.

    Oh, but Champions is not level-based, at least not if it plays like the tabletop game. I should be very surprised if World of Darkness is. Also, you mentioned an upcoming Sci-fi MMO that’s level-free last month too what I don’t remember.

  12. Okami says:

    The only MMO I’d be interested in playing would be “Middle Country” from Otherland. All current MMOs are just fancily dressed up Excel spreadsheets..

  13. iamseb says:

    Stargate fans (of which there are ravening hordes) have been waiting for a game title for a long time. In previous attempts, SG1: The Alliance got canned, and MGM set their lawyers on many of the modders who were working on their own TCs.

    I’d imagine that unless CME screw this up entirely, this might be one of the more popular MMOs, regardless of the lack of diversity in gameplay mechanics.

    Jim mentioned previously that one thing that sets WoW apart is its sense of place. With 14 seasons of backstory, Stargate might be able to provide the same thing.

  14. Meat Circus says:

    @iamseb:

    What sets WoW apart is that it is WoW. This thing won’t be, and will fail.

    Ravening Hordes, btw, is that code for a niche audience of obsessive geeks, people who invariably will have played far better MMOs and will see right through this in seconds?

    If you’re counting on your setting blinding your dimwit audience to the game’s being tedious you’ve already lost. Geeks are the people least likely to do that.

    If you want that technique to succeed, try a Hollyoaks MMO or some such.

  15. Jerkops says:

    The “everything else except WoW will fail” exhorting doesn’t really seem to jive with the fact that plenty of MMOs are doing fine without being WoW. Just because some games aren’t making billions of dollars doesn’t mean they’re all failures.

    I can’t see myself playing this game, but those screaming about its inevitable failure a year before it’s even released seem a little premature.

  16. Tak says:

    I don’t agree with the ‘it’ll fail because it’s not WoW’ mindset. While I do agree that no MMO (honestly, I don’t even think SGW will) reach WoW’s numbers, a *lot* worked in Blizzard’s favor on their release. Any developer/designer/executive who thinks they can put up WoW’s numbers on a traditional MMO ever again are either stupid or bent under the will of their higher-ups.

    It’s not hard to see this game becoming the next EQII: rocky start with strong (but slow) growth, leveling out in the low-to-mid hundred-thousands.

    WoW had a large fan base and name recognition. SG arguably has a much larger fan base (at least casually, between the movie and the shows) and better name recognition (it’s simply more mainstream, even if you don’t like it personally).

    Budget. I can’t see any reason why the studio wouldn’t pour money into the game if they felt they needed to, just like Blizzard does. Even break here.

    Sense of place and existing material. Stargate has umpteen years of it, official and otherwise. Warcraft has umpteen years of it, official and otherwise.

    WoW is easy to play, from the ‘gameplay’ sense and with regards to system-requirements. Most any office PC will run WoW. With SGW this remains to be seen on both counts, but right now that’s a huge plus in WoW’s favor.

    What WoW (more precisely, Blizzard) had that SGW might not is years of experience developing for quality and playability. Even if you don’t like the game, you have to admit that WoW is a finely polished collection of code and art assets. The game was delayed several times until things were *just* right for release, and even now the updates continue with a generally happy player base. See sub numbers for supporting evidence.

    The only thing that would utterly kill SGW is if they screw up on this front. If they have a Vanguard flavored launch with poor optimizations, crash problems, glaringly obvious bugs and glitches, and a slow patch process, it wouldn’t be hard to see the game falling flat.

  17. Shawny D says:

    I would consider playing this but I’m not gonna dish out 15 bones a month to play, just isn’t going to happen. This is the first problem. I mean, you have all these people playing WoW, myself included, paying a monthly fee, there’s just no way the majority of the existing MMO base is going to dish out another monthly payment just to play another game, that’s insane. How many people do you all know that pay for more than one monthly MMO fee? I don’t know any personally.

    As for the “potential untapped MMO fanbase”, that the suits keep trying to target, that isn’t playing/paying for WoW, I think these companies have to go another route, similar to what Requiem Bloodymare is doing, the micro-transaction model. Or how about an ad-based model, or a combination?

    These publishers see the success Blizzard has, but what they don’t understand is that Blizzard is capable of making stellar games that people are more than happy to pay for on a monthly basis. If the LOTRO world couldn’t manage to grab more than 200,000 players to date, I think this is a sign to change things up a bit. I think Warhammer is going to suffer the same fate, despite the rabid fanbase.

  18. Seth Tipps says:

    Was that guy trying to convince me that I should not buy his game? I really think he was. I mean, not just because he was totally honest (not a bad thing) but because he seemed that he was already disappointed in the project.

  19. Cyriel says:

    I’ve played Stargate Worlds beta. It is like any MMO that requires you to grind/farm experience levels, manage invetory, collect items, interact with limited social/sanbox tools and made you wish for time back after playing it.

    MMO’s do need a change from the “standard” level grind system.

    I admit I’m biased. I’ve been playing EvE for almost four years now. Adapt or die.