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Role Playing (Games)

Warhammer Online Delayed Again 63

Posted by Zonk
from the orcs-are-still-de-bestest dept.
EA Mythic CEO Mark Jacobs, in a new 'State of the Game' address on the Warhammer Herald site, revealed that Warhammer Online has been pushed back to at least April of next year. The game was originally slated for release this fall, and then was pushed to around February of next year. As always, the fearsome demon of polish is what's keeping the team hard at work through the holidays: "When we looked at our options, two paths lay before us: 1) Ship the game on time with fewer features and less polish, or 2) Extend the development cycle and spend the needed time and money to make WAR great. We chose the latter path - to invest additional time and effort in implementation and polish to make WAR great. Fortunately, we have the resources and support of EA behind us to extend our development cycle; time that will be used to make sure the game is everything we want it to be. WAR is coming, and it will be glorious." He notes also that they'll begin a new phase of testing next month, kicking Beta back into high gear.
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Warhammer Online Delayed Again

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  • Admirable. (Score:3, Informative)

    by EchoD (1031614) on Friday November 02, 2007 @08:58AM (#21210367) Homepage

    It's good to see them taking the time to release the best game they possibly can rather than pushing an incomplete project out the door and trying to make money from it with the promise of finishing later. It never happens.

    In my opinion, this is a very good decision.

    • by Necroman (61604)
      Some game companies wait until a project is ready to release before actually releasing it (Blizzard has a good record of doing this). There will be nay-sayers saying that the game must suck *blah blah blah* because they are pushing back the release date. But in reality, the company realizes that they don't want to disappoint their fans and are hoping to make an excellent game.
      • by pthor1231 (885423)
        And thats actually the reason Blizzard never gives hard ship dates. Despite doing this, some people can still get their panties in a wad. People assumed that the WoW expansion would come out around the christmas season, and then around November blizzard came out and said that it would be released after the new year, people were having a shit fit.
    • Agreed, but with corporations, never be sure that's what's going on simply because of the spin they put on the reason. This could as easily be PR speak for "the project was FUBAR the moment it began, no one knows what they are doing and we don't even have something we could PRETEND might be worth selling", as be PR speak for "we really care about making a good game.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by rukidding (931503)
      First, I agree that this is a very good decision on their part. I also like the fact they are being transparent with their explanation to the gaming community.

      But, as someone who is involved in a lot of software development efforts (as a software engineer and as project management) it frustrates me that schedule slips are becoming more and more common and acceptable for software development efforts.

      I blogged about this on http://www.sheeleytech.com/ [sheeleytech.com] ...yes, blatant self-promotion :)
    • by Leptok (1096623)
      mmorpgs are NEVER finished.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Warhammer Online has the most broken PvP/RvR ever, from what I have read on the website and their fansites.

      Picture (for your WoW people) Darnassus, Orgrimmar, and other capitol cities capturable just like Halaa, a city on most realms which is pretty much forever an Alliance town on PvE servers. If the opposing side attempts to capture it, they are driven off by sheer numbers due to population imbalances.

      Mythic is paying zero attention to the fact that people tend to play one faction (similar to how Allianc
  • by meringuoid (568297) on Friday November 02, 2007 @09:00AM (#21210381)
    to invest additional time and effort in implementation and polish to make WAR great

    Polish? No. They ran out of paint.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Enough red paint and they'd be done all ready. Red makes development Go Fasta.
    • by Gravatron (716477)
      Just paint the development tools Red, so they develop faster.
    • Oh c'mon, there's a better joke in that.

      Polish? I don't friggin' care for such a small market, just ship the English version and if you don't speak English, tough luck.
  • by PhilHibbs (4537)

    and, most importantly, the best RvR system in MMORPG gaming
    What's RvR?
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Lust (14189)
      Realm vs. Realm I think
    • Re:RvR? (Score:4, Informative)

      by jeffasselin (566598) <cormacolinde@gmail . c om> on Friday November 02, 2007 @09:22AM (#21210577) Journal
      It's a term from DaoC meaning Realm vs Realm, aka faction PvP. Having never played DaoC, and not really liking WoW PvP myself (which is mostly factional), I never understood the fascination with it.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by BlowHole666 (1152399)
        The fascination with it in DAOC is the high you get when you kill another player other then a computer controlled character. It is like seeing who has the biggest dick. The more kills you have the more respect you get. On top of that you get to retake castles (this sometimes takes hours) and by taking back the castles you get your realm (or faction) things like +5% to experience earned for everyone in the realm. Also when you kill people in RVR you get bounty points. With these points you can gain new abili
        • It is like seeing who has the biggest dick.
          I play WoW, and understand how PvP works in a MMORPG, but this quote of yours is the epitome of what most PvP feels like to me.
          • The thing that turns me off is the gear grind. I can play hardcore until I hit the level cap, but then to have to turn around and hunt individual pieces of gear to progress, just strikes me as worthless. "Oh boy, if I run this bg 150 more times, I can get new pants."

            I miss having real skill-based pvp.

            • by Gta-Klue (643989)
              Have you tried Guild Wars? It's a lower level cap (20), and PVP is seperated from PVE play, so you do not NEED to grind for the good gear (but it doesn't hurt either) :) AND, its strictly skill based.
              • You forgot to mention that You can get the best items and all the skills if you buy them with real cash and you can give them to any PvP character of your choice but you can also grind for your stuff but by level 20-24mobs the best items in the game will be dropping, you just need to take parts from one or the other to make them.

                But yea, Guild wars breaks the mold, it's skill based and requires real team work. Something most MMOs don't.
                • But yea, Guild wars breaks the mold, it's skill based and requires real team work. Something most MMOs don't.
                  Having done quite a few high level dungeons in WoW I can tell you that is simply not true. Perhaps I'm missing something here but team work is what all the dungeons are currently about. Even though it sometimes turns into following some tactic some dude posted on wowwiki by the letter, it does require you have a bunch of skilled players.
        • Re:RvR? (Score:4, Funny)

          by apparently (756613) on Friday November 02, 2007 @09:54AM (#21210949)
          The fascination with it in DAOC is the high you get when you kill another player other then a computer controlled character. It is like seeing who has the biggest dick.

          I don't get it: even if you win, you're still checking out some other dude's junk.

      • Re:RvR? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Andy Dodd (701) <atd7@nOspaM.cornell.edu> on Friday November 02, 2007 @09:38AM (#21210749) Homepage
        For me, what I (and I think a lot of people) liked was the fact that except on special servers, there was a clear delineation between PvE (cooperative) areas and RvR (competitive teamplay) areas.

        Also, while PvP in many games can be to varying degrees a free-for-all with large teams (guilds/alliances) usually forming and becoming successfull, DAoC was definately "large team" based by design. Also, the frontiers had a pretty well designed capture-and-hold objective system, although over time the rewards for killing other people by roaming with a small group became significantly more than cooperating with your realmmates to capture and hold an objective. The balance of the game shifted away from epic battles with large amounts of cooperation to splintered groups of 8 running all over competing for kills.
      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        I played both games and currently play WoW. I'll try to break it down.

        DAOC

        • In DAoC most PVP had a point or purpose... to take some castle, to steal a relic, etc
        • In DAoC PVP had consequences, bonuses for your player and realm, and engaging PVP goals to achieve them
        • In DAoC there was a sense of community
        • In DAoC there was a sense of danger since you had to venture into frontier lands to see the enemy

        WOW

        • In WOW almost all pvp is completely pointless
        • In WOW there are few consequences or bonuses and PvP
      • Re:RvR? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Opportunist (166417) on Friday November 02, 2007 @12:10PM (#21213173)
        Imagine, instead of silly capture-the-flag-like gameplay in small teams without long term effects, a competitive playing style that involves everyone on "your" side against the "other" sides, where you can claim persistant targets (well, persistant until the others claim them back, that is), with 100 vs. 100 people engaging in siege warfare.

        I'm not really a big fan of PvP playing style, but when it starts to gain numbers, it's no longer just "chaaaaaarge" and hope. With people joining and leaving, such a battle can quite literally last days.

        Or could, rather. Unfortunately DAoC is pretty much dead now. What's left of RvR is groups of 8 roaming the lands trying to pick away on stragglers and others that have to go into contested areas to complete a quest or two. It used to be great. But I guess this can be said of any MMORPG. It had its shiny days, it was good, it was a great time, it's over.
    • by Minicle (682844)
      Realm versus Realm - Red vrs Blue - Goblins versus Dwarves - Horde versus Alliance - Good versus Evil - Side-A versus side-B

      From EA Mythic's website...

      RvR combat takes place on three fronts where ancient foes wage an unending war - Dwarfs vs. Greenskins, High Elf vs. Dark Elf, and Empire vs. Chaos. Players begin the game fighting their ancestral enemy, but are free to journey to other fronts to help their allies in their ongoing struggles.
  • by JeremyGNJ (1102465) on Friday November 02, 2007 @09:32AM (#21210691)
    Sounds like the folks over at Warhammer online need to get their story straight.

    Last time they delayed it (and actually shut down the beta!) it was to "refine and polish the games core mechanics". To me there's a big difference between "polishing the game" and "polishing the CORE MECHANICS".
    http://games.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=07/10/08/2120228&from=rss [slashdot.org]

    So which is it? Are they just "adding more features and polish"? or are the core mechanics still in need of work?
    • Considering how much EA has messed up DAOC I bet the game is fubar. (see my other post for my reasoning for that)
  • by sherpajohn (113531) on Friday November 02, 2007 @10:05AM (#21211119) Homepage
    Yeah, the "Duke Nukem Forever" Award. ;)
  • ..."spend the needed time and money to make WAR great"

    So what are they saying? The game sucks now and can't be released so let's put another 6 months and polish it.
    And what if it still sucks next april after putting in the extra polish? Will the EA hype marketing machine save you then?

    I might be in minority, but I don't really care about polish. If you make a good game and the core mechanics work, the players will come and you can do the polish later (and get extra cred from your players because you're actu
  • They'll need it. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Fross (83754) on Friday November 02, 2007 @10:15AM (#21211267) Homepage
    They know they're competing against World of Warcraft, a game that's had 2.5 years to iron out all the bugs, improve the interface, and turn it from an okay to a great experience. This is their core market, they are seeking to take players from WoW (mostly bored ones, of course) so they have to get it absolutely right on launch, or they'll lose momentum.

    WoW is the game that brought MMORPGs into the mainstream - existing MMORPG players from pre-WoW are a small part of their audience. WAR is going to be aiming for that same audience, so they have to actively lure people away from one game into another.

    As one of those WoW players, I am hugely looking forward to WAR and have been for a long time, I'm happy to raid SSC/BT for a couple of extra months to make sure they get everything right.

    And let me into the beta, damnit.
  • by SmallFurryCreature (593017) on Friday November 02, 2007 @10:21AM (#21211337) Journal

    A bug free or complete MMO does NOT exist. Although new standards are being set, quit frankly we can only say that MMO's are improving at the moment because what came before was so god awfull.

    I am not just talking Ultima Online or Everquest or Star Wars Galaxies here. WoW was a bugged piece of crap as well, it is only in comparison with what came before that it seemed okay. Really, go through to patch notes and see just how much had to be fixed.

    Same thing with Lord of the Rings Online, reviewed as the least bugged MMO in history. Does that mean it is bug free? No, it is like how windows users say XP is stable, as in it didn't crash once, during the posting of their comment.

    Now we got an MMO company saying they need more time. Is that good or bad? Frankly no MMO ever launched on time, so it being delayed is about as much news as that the sun came up this morning. Will they really be fixing things that need to be fixed so the forums won't be filled with bugs within a day of launch? It is possible. Unlikely, but it is possible.

    Since MMO companies have a long history of launching with bugs, how serious are the bugs still in the game that force it to be delayed. Game crippling bugs? Why are they still there after all this time? Is it gameplay instead that is flawed? Wouldn't be the first time that an MMO went through years of development only to realize at the last moment the game just didn't work.

    I seen some comments in other forums that the game balancing ain't complete yet, but perhaps, just perhaps this company is finally trying to achieve what nobody has done before. A bug free MMO launch.

    No, I don't believe it either, but hey, it is possible.

    • by brkello (642429)
      You are clearly not a programmer. With a game that size it is impossible to be bug free.
    • by Puls4r (724907)
      Really? The ones that came before sucked? I can think of quite a few MMORPG's that came before WoW that didn't suck. In fact, I'd argue that WoW itself is pretty sucktastic. It's cookie cutter - so they went and stole some from other games, wrapped it in a pretty package, then pushed it out the door. Other games did it better. Asheron's Call had a seamless world. No zones, no pauses in the middle of running to "load", a giant continent, no "con" system to tell you whether you could kill a creature or
  • Damned if you do.... (Score:2, Informative)

    by Hausenwulf (956554)
    damned if you don't. There was no easy answer. Either they put out an unfinished game or they take the time to do it right. Kudos for taking the time to do it right.
  • Stick a fork in them, they're done. They gave it a good effort but they bungled it, and with EA over them they have had to throw out some core mechanics and inject other to satisfy their new overlord. This is not a case of "oh we just want our game to be perfect", it's a case of "we have no idea how to make this work and be competitive so we're going for our SECOND rewrite."

    I really wanted Warhammer to work but their team has collapsed under the new pressure from EA to beat Warcraft. They don't need to beat
    • And you base all this on... what, exactly? Have you ever worked on a software project? Schedules are always overly optimistic, and there is a constant tension between getting things done well and getting something out the door, usually based on some completely arbitrary date set by the higher ups. In a typical case, from a quality-of-product perspective (which is what you should care about as a customer), delaying a few months on a multi-year project to make a good game great by really polishing it is ex
    • by Gridpoet (634171)
      "we have no idea how to make this work and be competitive so we're going for our SECOND rewrite."

      I'm not exactly sure you know what your talking about... this isnt even Mythics FIRST rewrite... this is not the same game first attempted by Climax.

      Having played the beta, i can tell you, that even in its low polished state this was an immensly enjoyable game, and the extra months of polish will really help them to capture the bored WoW market...
    • Extending the development cycle to add extra polish didn't put the "nail in the coffin" for Unreal Tournament. Read the gamasutra postmortem on it. This is a great move, it shows they are doing everything they can to get people to like their game. World of Warcraft is likely to lose a lot of players to this game, so they have to KEEP those people from moving BACK to WoW.

      WoW has almost zero polish anyways, and a lot of people that play it would likely agree :)
    • by orkysoft (93727)
      Warcraft looks like Warhammer, because Games Workshop didn't want to licence their world to Blizzard when they were making Warcraft, so Blizzard made their own fantasy world. And GW published some mediocre video games in the meantime (with some notable exceptions, such as Space Crusade in 1991 and Dawn of War recently).

      This was such a smart business decision by GW that they are currently both shifting from their current lead-free metal to 100% platinum in their metal miniatures AND planning a 90% price decr
  • This is EA we're talking here, ok? The company that has a record of building bananaware. Now they're telling us they push back the release to "polish" the game? They don't even polish their normal games where you more or less expect a "complete" game at release, now they claim the do that for a MMORPG which is kinda supposed to ship half baked?

    Sorry. Either this means "it compiles but we'd drown in support calls if we shipped it now" or something's quite fishy here.
  • > Warhammer Online Delayed Again

    Says the lead developer, "We didn't realize it at first, but it turns out Warhammer sucks."

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