It’s The End Of The Line For End Of Nations (Again)

By Nathan Grayson on March 4th, 2014 at 11:00 am.

Checkmate

Oh End of Nations, we hardly knew ye. Except we actually got to know you quite well over multiple iterations and directional shifts that we assumed would ultimately culminate in some sort of release. But Trion doesn’t seem too interested in tryin’ anymore. It has the likes of Defiance and the recently announced voxeltronic spree Trove waiting in the wings, so End of Nations – mo’ MOBA than MMO or not – is now officially “on hold.” But hey, it’s not the end of the world. Just the End of Nations.

Videogamer uncovered the most damning evidence of all right off the bat: Trion has taken EoN’s website offline and removed all mentions of it from its own website. Shortly thereafter, Trion issued the following statement on the matter:

“Internal development on End of Nations was put on hold in late 2013 while we evaluated potential paths forward for the title. We’re currently focusing the company’s energy and creativity on Rift, Defiance, Trove, ArcheAge, and some new projects that we will be revealing soon.”

So, at least in the short term, things sound rather grim. End of Nations still isn’t out-and-out canceled, but it appears to be holding on by the tiniest, twine-iest of threads. I suppose now the question is whether it will go ker-snap or just hang there for all eternity, forlorn and forgotten.

It’s been quite a thing to watch, this one’s development cycle. End of Nations began life as a Petroglyph-developed MMORTS, only to slam on the breaks and transform into a MOBA once Trion asserted complete control. I never played it, but apparently the beta of Petroglyph’s version was fairly middling, unable to reconcile massive ambitions with the finicky nuts and bolts of reality. Is anyone particularly devastated by its (probable) loss?

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15 Comments »

  1. LionsPhil says:

    I think the only interesting thing about this one was that it had some escaped-from-EA Westwood DNA in it. By this point, that’s probably not substantially true or meaningful. So, no great loss?

    • Premium User Badge RedViv says:

      Trion took over development from Petroglyph over a year ago and then attempted to turn it into SAUSAGES, so… that.

      • DatonKallandor says:

        It’s telling that Trions MOBA version (which wasn’t anything like a MOBA, so it’s stupid to even call it that despite the games media persisting to) was still far better than what Petroglyph delivered. Petroglyph are truly one of the worst RTS developers who continued to get funding based on “we used to be part of Westwood once!”.

        • Philomelle says:

          Hey now, let’s not be harsh. Petroglyph were very good back when they actually made RTS games in 2007.

          Problem is, they haven’t actually made anything worthwhile since. Guardians of Graxia was far too sluggish to get anyone to play a second match, while Rise of the Immortals straight-up ganked most of its mechanics from League of Legends. (And before you argue that League cloned DOTA first, no. ROI used specifically the more simplified gameplay mechanics of League, not the more complex DOTA ones.)

          It’s a shame because I really enjoyed Universe at War. No idea why their idea of a bright future was “clone popular genre, make gameplay as sluggish and uninspired as possible”.

          • DatonKallandor says:

            Both Universe at War and Galaxy at War were atrocious crimes against the Genre. They were RTS straight out of the playbook of CnC 1. The controls were utter garbage, the units completely brain dead, the graphics were terrible yet ate (at the time) advanced hardware for breakfast.
            What they have is incredible game design (Universe at Wars races were incredibly well designed), great concept artists and of course great music (which isn’t hard when you’ve got Frank Klepacki on board).

            But when it comes to implementing all of those things they’re good at into a game? They’re bad and their track record suggests CnC was a fluke.

      • Premium User Badge Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

        I endorse this correct usage of the “SAUSAGES” acronym.

  2. razgon says:

    At this point, I’ve given up on Archeage as well. When was that released in Asia? A year ago?

  3. Darth Gangrel says:

    End of Nation’s acronym, EoN, is quite fitting because it felt like we waited for it to be released for an eon. Now we hear that it has probably been executed by Jean Reno’s assassin character Léon.

    • Snafoo says:

      I’m disappointed you didn’t work in “peon”, “Trion” (pronounce: Tree-on) or “Celine Dion”.

  4. malkav11 says:

    The MMORTS they were originally noising about could have been interesting although my hopes were not high. This incarnation? Meh.

  5. thefinn says:

    Man this makes me laugh, I mean who makes a decision of “We’re giving up on this Wargame Air Land Battle crossed with Supreme Commander MMO in order to push forward with our work on Defiance and Trove.”

    Did noone else find that just hysterical ?

    Probably all for the best, because if the best these guys are currently coming up with are those 2 titles then this was likely just plain beyond their grasp.

  6. dorn says:

    And nothing of value was lost. The basic structure of the game was horrible. The people working on it had no experience in mmorts. They even thought it was a new idea.

  7. Premium User Badge Gap Gen says:

    I have this problem with my engaged friends; suddenly they don’t have time for you and are hanging out 24/7 with defiance.

  8. Thrippy says:

    My EoN game save folder has file dates ranging from April to September 2012. I got to try out several scheduled > 24 vs. 24 battles before weekend stress tests went dark never to return. I was impressed, a wee bit excited even, that it was working at all (until it crashed). 4v4 and 8v8 were far more stable. It was a markedly different massive game play experience than something like SupCom offers with fewer players. Of the many rough or sluggish aspects, I suspect the massive part – server scalability and synchronization – were technical obstacles as much as anything else. I don’t believe Trion is a big enough, mature enough concern, Chinese investments aside, to pull something like this off.

    MMORTS is a solid concept waiting to happen with another company. That company will not be Blizzard who is perpetually uninterested in expanding the genre’s scope in new directions like this. People bitterly complain when FPS multiplayer is limited to 16v16. That the same standards should apply to RTS, in exact ways as yet undiscovered, should be self evident. Sooner or later, some wunderkind will crack the synch puzzle in a low level technical way and it will happen.

  9. Rotrum says:

    I’m going to note that my perspective is from someone who’s not a hardcore RTS gamer of any sort.

    I think End of Nations had potential, although a rather awkward intended audience in both versions of the game. I was a part of all of the alpha and beta test periods, and I feel like all in all the game played well and as it was supposed to to start with, but degenerated slowly. After the (unwanted) revamp, almost every update went against the playerbase’s desires and the game crashed into the ground as the balance swayed with no regard for how the actual players did things.

    The actual gameplay was actually quite interesting from a strategic point of view in the original version, something a lot of people underestimate or overestimate. Underestimation because many people only saw things from outside or in the second version (Which invited a wider cross section of people), and overestimation by testers who had seen both versions and were comparing them. The game had a feeling of being an alpha in its limitedness, and even the tests had awful grinds, which were offputting but easily remedied (Though they weren’t remedied, they easily could have been). The gameplay and strategic elements were present, and the larger games introduced a necessity of intimate cooperation on a scale I don’t see in many games. (That said, I remember getting horribly curbstomped due to being unable to pull the team together).

    Something people don’t think about often is the fact that it struck a good balance between people who were experts at controlling many units from, say, SCII, and novices. You had an advantage if you could keep track of all your units and control them in flexible ways, but not one that meant you instantly could dominate everyone else. Strategy meant more than skill.

    I would say it’s a shame that the game’s fallen, but then again, I would say that if Trion picked it back up, it’d be worse to see it mutilated a third time.