Tom Clancy MMO Goes Ahead

Splinter Cell instances in a real-world military espionage MMO?
Just spotted this over on Firing Squad:

CEO Yves Guillemot stated that UbiSoft can now proceed with a MMO game based on the Tom Clancy brand. Guillemot stated that under their previous video game agreement with the techno-thriller author they would have had to pay royalties that would have kept any MMO game based on his name from being made. However now that UbiSoft has a royalty free license on the Tom Clancy brand name, “….we’ve really decided now to go for an MMO on the Clancy name, which is big.”

It seems like there are some really unusual ideas being bounced around for MMOs: APB, a Tom Clancy MMO, a Warhammer 40k MMO, a Fallout MMO… Surely they can’t all be WoW clones?

Related to this Clancy news is the fact that Ubisoft has acquired the rights to slap ol’ Tom’s name on their game boxes forever and ever, after paying out a gigantic lump sum that’s hinted to be in the region of $20m. We’re looking forward to Tom Clancy’s Far Cry 2.


  1. Morte says:

    “Surely they can’t all be WoW clones?”

    Oh, I expect they’ll find a way.

  2. cliffski says:

    I hate to say it, but MMos defeat piracy. Plus they let you milk money on a monthly basis rather than a one-off. The reason there are so many games being designed as MMos is entirely due to money. It has fuck all to do with them making any sense whatsoever in game design terms :(

  3. Jim Rossignol says:

    This is true. However, there are still awesome MMO designs to be invented. I’d wager that CCP’s World Of Darkness MMO will shake things up a bit.

  4. meatpeople says:

    “Oh, I expect they’ll find a way.”

    Indeed. A friend and I got talking about the possibility of a WH40K MMO and the things that could be done with it. (APB style battle matchups for one, with commanders assuming an RTS-style PoV) I found a thread on (I think) the Relic forums which was almost completely of discussion of how it’d fit into the WoW mould. Pretty depressing in its’ own way.

  5. Jim Rossignol says:

    The idea of a WoW-system 40k MMO is truly abhorrent. Hopefully they’ll not be total twats about it and use something akin to the recent pen and paper RPG system.

  6. James says:

    I know it’s not always a popular opinion, but I’ve really loved some of Tom Clancy’s stuff, especially Chaos Theory and the more recent Ghost Recon games. I’m not entirely sure that much of that sort of gameplay is compatible with MMO-style games though, to be honest. Most of the style of the games is so single player focused that I can’t really imagine a way for it to play out in a multiplayer context.

    If they can… I’m not sure. If they can make it work, it might finally break me into paying for a MMO subscription. I have a feeling that it’s one pretty large if, though.

  7. Tak says:

    The problem is, suits sit around and see multi million subs and go ‘do that for this license’. So we get WoW clones and WoW-ified patches in current games. It really, really bites. Anyone who stops to think knows that WoW had *so much* going in it’s favor that that multi million number will not be hit again until we’re all jacked in by the skull to ‘world our masters want us to be in’ like the freaking Matrix. WoW surprised even Blizzard. Designers and Devs need to quit trying to emulate it, and keep a dedicated mid-low hundred thousands, and they’ll be fine.

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  9. Crispy says:

    Hate to burst your bubble, James, but Tom Clancy had almost nothing to do with those games other than writing a few books. In fact, the Splinter Cell book the popular game franchise is based on is supposedly written not by him but by a ghost writer. Effectively, Tom Clancy has sold off his individuality to become a corporate megabrand, so it is hardly surprising that this brand’s next big move is to name an MMO after itself.

  10. James says:

    Well aware of all of that, Crispy. I wasn’t referring to him as having any part of the game dev cycle, just referring to the branding. I’m not naive enough to think he has any part of the production, I just like a fair few of the games with his name of the box.

    In fact, I don’t care much for Tom Clancy as a writer at all, so I’m not exactly disappointed in his lack of involvement.

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    […] on 10 Secrets to … Use an external uni-directional mic like a hand mic, shotgun or lavaliere. …Tom Clancy MMO Goes Ahead | Rock, Paper, ShotgunJust spotted this over on Firing Squad: CEO Yves Guillemot stated that UbiSoft can now proceed with […]