Magna Mundi started as a mod, began the transition to commercial game and has now stopped somewhat short of that goal. Aiming to harness the complexity and scope of the Europa Universalis 3 mod into a glorious grand strategy game that would be as much about the internal wranglings of leadership as expansion, whether of the smallest state or the mightiest empire, Magna Mundi was certainly ambitious and Paradox' announcement of the cancellation suggests progress has not matched the lofty targets.
"We have seen this project drag on and the code we have gotten has not shown significant improvement for many months. Some old and known problems persists and new ones appear with each delivery."
There's more from Paradox and, stories having at least two sides, the Magna Mundi team have responded.
Mattias Lilja of Paradox, who was acting as executive producer for Magna Mundi, followed up the statement about progress, above, by describing two other factors in the decision:
Lack of trust; the leadership of [Magna Mundi developers] Universo Virtual has given a sunshine version of the project to Paradox and reacted with irritation and anger when we have pointed out obvious problems with the deliveries. It has come to a point where they claim the project is done, and the game is ready for release – despite the many critical issues found and reported on our end.
Internal strife within the MM team; we have gotten information from members within the MM team desperate to save the project whom report to us that the project lacks active leadership. Key personnel in the project see what Paradox sees but instead gets silenced by the UV leadership.
All in all, these are not circumstances under which we can work with a team and it will now stop. At this point we have no more news than the above.
Yikes. It's a fairly damning picture and I'm sure at least one wag will be compelled to point out that Paradox haven't always deserved the best reputation for ironing out issues before or even after release. If there's a silver lining to here though, perhaps it's that this strict policy, following the rapid patching and overall stability of Crusader Kings II, heralds a more robust and stringent approach to quality control.
Silver lining or not it's a massive cloud, heavy with the potential for all sorts of stormy weather. The first dark speckling and obscuring of the light comes with a response from Universo Virtual; a response that promises a response.
Greetings Magna Mundi fans,
I am just writing this post to let you know that Universo Virtual and myself will answer in the proper legal forum to the weird "cancellation" of the game. I'd also like to make it known the "cancellation" issue is just a detail on everything that's going to be settled there.
I am not going to allow that my name and my credibility are to be placed in jeopardy as they have been for some time now. I intend to come out of this with a big smile in my face and my name clean.
In the following days Universo Virtual legal team will make a public statement about this issue.
Thank you for your support,
Carlos Gustavo Benavente
I'll keep an eye out for that public statement and hope that some amicability can be salvaged, although it's not looking good. The cancellation is a shame in itself as the mod was a work of incredible scope. Europa Universalis 3 is a rather portly fellow even for a grand strategy game, taking in a huge swathe of history and all the assorted nations and territories that sought to spread their flags across the globe throughout it.
The Magna Mundi mod saw the world Paradox had crafted and thought to itself, "not big enough, not big enough by half". Then it added so much complexity to the game that dedicated students of virtual maps, like me, sunk more hours into the modded version than the base game. Creating an entire game was always going to be a different challenge but the mod did create reason to believe great things might be created.
There is a possibility that the project might continue, given the wording of the Paradox statement: "It will not see the light of day under the current set up." Time shall tell.