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A WoW Player's Guide To Warhammer 353

Posted by Soulskill
from the an-orc-by-any-other-name dept.
With Warhammer Online just around the corner, Zonk wrote up a guide which compares it to the current top dog of the MMO market, World of Warcraft. He highlights the fact that despite the appearance of "War" in both names, Warhammer is much more focused on the struggle between factions, in gameplay and artistic style. Warhammer's open beta started on Sunday, doing well in the US but stumbling in Europe. The full version launches on Sept. 18th, but people who pre-order the game will be able to access live servers up to four days before, thanks to Mythic's head-start program. Mythic CEO Mark Jacobs recently launched a blog to answer questions about the game.
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A WoW Player's Guide To Warhammer

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  • by B5_geek (638928) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @03:23PM (#24950951)

    Guild Wars got my money because it works on Linux.
    Savage got my money because it works on Linux.
    Defcon got my money because it works on Linux.
    NeverWinter Night got my money because it works on Linux.

    There are many more but you get the idea.

    If you want my money, make sure it works on Linux!

    • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @03:26PM (#24950993)

      I'm sure they'll mourn the loss of all five of you Linux gamers.

      And all the tens of dollars you bring with you.

      • by JCSoRocks (1142053) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @04:00PM (#24951419)
        Seriously... the cost / benefit ratio there has gotta be something like - Costs a ton / gains us almost nothing. If I'm trying to run a profitable business I'm going to say... don't bother. It's the same reason you don't see the newest WWII FPS's marketed for people over 80. It's a tiny market segment... you won't make enough money to make producing the product worth your time. Sorry!
        • by Trevelyan (535381) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @05:39PM (#24953017)
          That depends where you start from. If you use open*L libraries from the start while targeting Windows, with portability in mind. Then OSX and Linux come at little extra effort.

          However if you build your game with DirectX then yes, it will cost more to port then you'll get in return. Keeping people tied to their platform is no doubt why MS provide DX for free.

          I think with the rise of Ubuntu there could be a market for games on Linux (there probably already is on OSX). But it is still at the chicken and the egg state. No games on Linux means not many gamers using Linux. Not many gamers using Linux means no games for Linux.
          • by lysergic.acid (845423) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @06:46PM (#24954089) Homepage

            this could be a blessing in disguise. the lack of mainstream titles by the big studios means that there is an untapped niche market for smaller studios or independent developers.

            you won't see indie games with the most realistic 3d engine, but huge resources aren't necessarily a prerequisite for quality gameplay. besides, innovation is generally born from the margins of society rather than the mainstream.

            it may not be as profitable a market as other platforms, but surely there are enough potential linux gamers out there for it to be worth the attention of independent game developers. and with the ease of distributing the games yourself over the web, you can bypass publishers and retain all of your profits.

            • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

              The Penny Arcade game came out for PC, Mac, and Linux at the same time. I don't know if they released stats for purchases by OS, though.
    • by RichMan (8097) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @03:28PM (#24951019)

      WoW works on Linux fine.

      Although I have given up WoW for Guild Wars now.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Same message but replace Linux by Mac, and add "real Mac port, not some lame Cider bullshit". I don't care what you think, Cider sucks on low-end Macs (which is half the Macs, all stuck with GMA950 and X3100).

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        don't worry, they don't run much better with a GMA950 under Windows, either. Blame it being a Mac, since Mac picked a sucky video chipset for your system.

        Owning both, I can safely say, for the same money you could have given up a little case polish and OSX for much more powerful hardware.

      • by not already in use (972294) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @04:58PM (#24952349)

        I started reading your post, and the Mac vs PC ad music started playing in my head.

        Then PC guy asks Mac guy what he's playing over there.

        Mac guy responds, "Oregon Trail, it's totally awesome!"

        PC guy says "Oh really? I'm playing all the new 3d games. In spite of your lame attempts to undermine me by beating old perceptions like a dead horse, I still hold a significant market share over you. As such, nobody wants to support you. Sure, you're popular among trendy college students with rich parents, but you'll eventually be sold when they drop out of school because they spend too much time on digg. "

        Mac guy starts crying.

        PC Guy: "I'm sorry, that was a little harsh."

        Mac Guy: "No, it's not you. Alice died of tuberculosis."

        Cue Mac VS PC ending jingle.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by snuf23 (182335)

          There are a surprising amount of Mac native games now. Sure they don't come out first on Mac. Also if you are a Mac owner and you really want access to PC games without hoping or waiting for a port, you can install Windows via bootcamp. Of course Linux users on x86 have the same option.
          If you don't want to dual boot then you have to make do with what's available.

    • by edremy (36408) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @03:31PM (#24951069) Journal
      WoW got 10 million player's money without Linux[1]

      The rest of the MMO market in total doesn't add up to WoW's subscriber numbers. Guild Wars is a distant also-ran to WoW.

      The MMO makers don't care about you.

      [1]; Yes, yes, I know you can run it under Wine. Any guesses as to how many people actually do this?

      • Yep (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @03:47PM (#24951239)

        While there is certainly nothing wrong with developers targeting Linux, Linux heads need to stop pretending like they are a major market. Linux on the desktop isn't all that common, and Linux on the desktop in a gaming situation is extremely rare. Thus this idea that developers really need to be targeting Linux is silly. To me it seems Linux is finding it's stronghold in business type markets. That's wonderful, but not a target for games.

        • Chicken. Egg.
        • The Linux community feels like they get the shaft when it comes to support, but they ask for it. Seriously, what does it mean to "support" linux? You mean, "support the Linux kernel and the million variants of desktop distributions that exist." I couldn't imagine why they wouldn't....

        • by Dan667 (564390)
          Linux is maturing. Ignoring it would be like Microsoft ignoring Firefox, because IE is the most dominant browser. Honestly, when some company starts making money putting out a Linux version, everyone will do it.
      • WoW has got 10 million with the mac and just google for 'wow wine' to see just how active a subject it is.

        Blizzard apparently cares enough to have reversed its stance on Wine as being a hacker tool earlier. If the market is so small they could have simply kept it banned but they didn't. Explain please if they don't care about linux users.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Gewalt (1200451)

      Attention Guild Wars developers: Blizzard got my money for two years cause they support mac.

      Btw- why are you paying the company for ignoring your needs? When you purchase the windows version, then run it on linux in a windows emulation layer, you are effectively telling the company that you support their decision to not support any platform besides windows.

      Civil Disobediance has ALWAYS been the most effective way of making a point. If they don't support your platform, the least you can do

    • For sufficiently variable values of "works on Linux", perhaps. NWN and Defcon have native ports, while Guild Wars doesn't. I assume you're using WINE or Cedega?
  • Thoughts (Score:5, Informative)

    by abigsmurf (919188) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @03:28PM (#24951033)
    I'm in the EU beta.

    The beta launch was handled horribly by GOA, the account activation was opened just a few hours before the servers went live and it completely collapsed. It wasn't just the numbers it seemed to be thoroughly broken. There's a reason you allow a few days before launching to let people sort out their accounts and keys.

    However now that I'm in I'm enjoying it. The public quests are brilliant fun, the scenarios (think WoW BGs) are easy to get into and the classes are varied and have creative play mechanics.

    remains to be seen if I'll still think it's great at level 30 when grind sets in but it's incredibly promising at this stage.

    • I'm not surprised. GOA's handling of Mythic's previous MMORPG, "Dark Age of Camelot" was usually handled horribly, according to most European players I heard from.

  • Warhammer? (Score:5, Funny)

    by peter_gzowski (465076) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @03:33PM (#24951091) Homepage

    More like World of Warhammer... Craft...

  • by leoboiko (462141) <<moc.liamg> <ta> <okioboel>> on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @03:37PM (#24951131) Homepage

    Here's what I want from a medieval MMO:

    • An ecosystem. Doesn't need to have full-featured critters like in Spore or Creatures; just make the monsters eat each other, reproduce, and compete for resources in the obvious way. Come on, it's not difficult.
    • An economic system. Again, nothing fancy, just set a few resource sources and sinks (even invisible) and let the market forces decide the item prices. WoW does it for the player market, why not the in-game market as well?
    • Auto-generated, per-player quests. Gearhead can auto-generate quests, why canâ(TM)t you? I mean, most of WoW quests look the same anyway: talk to someone, find something, kill something, or escort.
    • Allow player actions to affect the world. If I kill all predators from an area I expect the ecology to be ruined. If you donâ(TM)t want players ruining the ecology, make it difficult to genocide.

    Unlike most players I met in WoW, I find no fun in comparing the size of virtual âoeswordsâ or in optimizing numbers in a game of statistics. I want immersion. The way WoWâ(TM)s world is just some immutable scenario ruined immersion to me.

    • by PlatyPaul (690601) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @03:55PM (#24951355) Homepage Journal

      Allow player actions to affect the world. If I kill all predators from an area I expect the ecology to be ruined. If you donÃ(TM)t want players ruining the ecology, make it difficult to genocide.

      As long as it is possible, someone will do it, if only for teh LoLz.

    • by PlatyPaul (690601)

      An economic system. Again, nothing fancy, just set a few resource sources and sinks (even invisible) and let the market forces decide the item prices. WoW does it for the player market, why not the in-game market as well?

      Because item farmers will drive prices through the roof, then undercut the in-game sellers for real-world profit.

    • by Duradin (1261418) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @04:00PM (#24951435)

      UO initially had ecosystems of a sort. Then the players pillaged and burned and plowed salt into the ground.

      Animals? All killed off. Trees? Graphics still there but no lumber generating. Monsters? Hahahahahahahaha. You killed the other players while waiting for the one (1) orc to spawn in the orc fort.

      Ecosystems are cool until they come into contact with players.

      • by genner (694963)

        UO initially had ecosystems of a sort. Then the players pillaged and burned and plowed salt into the ground.

        Animals? All killed off. Trees? Graphics still there but no lumber generating. Monsters? Hahahahahahahaha. You killed the other players while waiting for the one (1) orc to spawn in the orc fort.

        Ecosystems are cool until they come into contact with players.

        I'm surprised there's enough players left on UO to keep the ecosystem from regenerating.

      • by Chris Burke (6130) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @06:53PM (#24954189) Homepage

        UO initially had ecosystems of a sort. Then the players pillaged and burned and plowed salt into the ground.

        Ha, I remember that. I had a Grandmaster Ground-Salter. Those were good times.

        Anyway, I've thought about how cool an "ecosystem" would be, and also the problem of player abuse. It seems like you could get something a lot better than what we have without leaving it open to complete exploitation by the players. UO's problem was that it tried to remain too "pure" which opened the way to player abuse/boredom, while WoW's problem is that it remains completely artificial with only the tiniest nods towards an ecosystem (i.e. a wolf mob will attack a squirrel or bunny mob that's nearby, and sometimes herd animals actually travel in small herds though usually not). Vicious velociraptors will walk right past delicious zebras without taking notice. Because both are waiting to be slain by the players.

        Just add more dynamism. Have the carnivores hunt down the herbivores, and have their respawn rates be relatively related to the number of each. When left alone, the populations will naturally stay in balance. If the players start killing off the carnivores, then the herbivores spawn faster. When the herbivore population rises, then carnivores start to spawn faster too. If the player keeps killing the carnivores, then before you're up to your neck in herbivores, they start to die of starvation. If the player kills lots of herbivores, then carnivores start to die too. But you never have to let the respawn rate reach zero, or even get more than some fraction less than the default spawn rate. Assume, much like you must to imagine Orgrimmar is really a bustling city, that the population that is represented by mobs is really a subset of a much larger one and thus genocide is effectively impossible.

        WoW has done a decent job of making sure respawn rates are such that it takes a fair amount of concerted effort to truly keep an area clear. Put some basic safeguards around an ecosystem, and you could keep players from completely wrecking things while also making it much more interesting. UO didn't do that, and had much too low of a base respawn rate anyway (and a much smaller world and much fewer mobs etc etc). I don't think we need to write off the idea entirely because of UO.

    • I would love an MMORPG with the ability to be a "merchant". The only merchant class I've seen has been in ragnorok and was really more of a "bank character" (if not just "item user" much like the Alchemist from d20 or Rikku from FFX).

      Allowing for multiple coins at rates that are increased and decreased based on the prospects of the players, use of the coins and even GM side interference (i.e. "House Lancaster is putting 10% more gold in their coins, causing a 20% rise in price due to its now high use by
    • simulation != game (Score:5, Insightful)

      by WinPimp2K (301497) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @04:08PM (#24951533)

      And your laundry list of "features" pretty well demonstrates the difference. People play MMOs to have fun with other players. What you would make a good solo game for a micromanager.

      Just consider your "ecology"
      So what happens when a griefer guild shows up and slaughters all the wolves and bears in your forest? How do prevent this or can they even?

      economies: much as I hate to admit it (I like the idea of a player economy as well), player based economies are actually very destructive to game enjoyment. The "Auction Hall" global market with instant results just provides massive encouragement for goldselling services and the resulting rampant inflation. The more resources and money supply is controlled by the publisher, the more the econommy winds up in control of the goldsellers.

      If it is so darn "not difficult", why haven't you written your own game and have a few hundred thousand subscribers already?

      However, the idea of allowing players to have a real impact on the game world is a good one, but once again darn near impossible in an MMO. Making real changes requires that new content be constantly generated to replace that which is no langer valid. Example: THe players have finally ended the zombie chicken infestation at Farmer Brown's. No longer will zombie chickens trouble the farm. Ever. So what new content do you propose for the beginning characters? Perhaps they could work on the rat infestation over at Farmer Smith's? What if someone gives Farmer Smith a pregnant cat(reproducing)? Oh the ecological horrors - plus the destruction of more content intended for beginning players.

      Just ramp up those examples for "end game" content and you get a glimmer of the problem. It just takes too long to come up with new storylines/adventures. So players making real changes in games like this will be best done as solo games.

      Or the games will have to have multiple "sub-games" built into them to keep folks occupied. (See Eve Online) which does have a failry robust and involved (although unfortunately corrupt) economy and PvP system.

      • by leoboiko (462141) <<moc.liamg> <ta> <okioboel>> on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @06:16PM (#24953687) Homepage

        So what happens when a griefer guild shows up and slaughters all the wolves and bears in your forest? How do prevent this or can they even?

        What prevents real-life griefers from doing so? For one thing it's a massive task, not easily accomplished by twenty or thirty people (even if they're expert hunters). Another thing is that they would attract attention from local police, then armed militia, and in most places armed militia is more combat-effective than any civilian organization. Just implement that in-game. And if a faction does manage to overcome armed opposition and the sheer amplitude and execute such an amazing feat, then I want to see the ecology ruin and the local economy plunge. Just make it easy to regenerate scenario procedurally (the nethack approach -- things may die, but then you just play again with new things). If the players managed to ruin the whole world, why not have creator gods come up with a new one? Why not challenge these players to destroy the new one too, patching the game to be less and less exploitable -- wouldn't it be much more rewarding to the griefer guild to be known as destroyers of worlds than "those guys who narf n00bs in the town"? Hire some professional writers to come up with convincing explanations, the possibilities are endless.

        I know, most gamers are power trippers and your level 99 "hero" needs to be the Strongest Creature on Earth and single-handled trample entire societies and gamers would oppose to be less powerful than guards. I for one wouldn't mind less powerful characters in a more immersive world. Hell, I bet I'd feel more powerful if I could somehow affect the world, however slightly.

        If it is so darn "not difficult", why haven't you written your own game and have a few hundred thousand subscribers already?

        Er, because it takes hundreds of people and thousands of dollars to put a 3D MMO online? I did experiment with roguelikes; I hacked a bare-bones ecosystem in a weekend in Ruby, and now I'm (leisurely) playing with fractal terrain in Scheme. By now I'm convinced a simulation-centric (as opposed to stats-growing--centric) MMORPG is feasible; it just wasn't tried yet.

        • by Jack9 (11421) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @08:59PM (#24955553)

          Another thing is that they would attract attention from local police, then armed militia, and in most places armed militia is more combat-effective than any civilian organization.

          If you want players to be forest rangers, how do they keep track of how many of each animal is left and what do they care since they have to go to bed sometime?

          Right, so they better be invincible super-intelligent NPC guards defending those bears to:
          1. Not be kited with a snare or against a sprint
          2. Kill in a single blow
          3. Never miss
          4. Know which animals to protect and adjust their pathing accordingly ... Fuck it, if(bear.isLastBear){ bear.invincible = true; }

          I don't think you have thought this through or played enough MMORPGs. Not sure which.

          If the players managed to ruin the whole world, why not have creator gods come up with a new one?

          Once it's announced or discovered that a world can be reset, there will be entire guilds dedicated to doing it as fast as possible. If you can get hundreds of people playing in Battlegrounds for fun, or 160 ppl for a single epic dragon in WoW, how long would it take for a couple guilds to exterminate every living thing within the majority of zones? (or whatever the reset trigger is) Oops reset! Your base evaporates as the casual players realize their playtime is effectively wasted at random intervals that are ever shortening.

          It's much more fun to think about how other people are doing it wrong, when you don't understand why other ways don't work. No offense.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Zaphod-AVA (471116)

        Just consider your "ecology"
        So what happens when a griefer guild shows up and slaughters all the wolves and bears in your forest? How do prevent this or can they even?

        -Then the game spawns quests to reward players to repopulate the forest. Go capture wolves and bears and release them in the depopulated forest.

        economies: much as I hate to admit it (I like the idea of a player economy as well), player based economies are actually very destructive to game enjoyment. The "Auction Hall" global market with instan

    • by Dutch Gun (899105) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @04:16PM (#24951643)

      Like others have intoned, the real problem with this sort of dynamic and open system is people. A percentage of players in online games feel free to act in ways they would never think about in the real world because there are no real consequences for negative actions (worst that can happen is a ban). As such, they feel free to perform actions which, if done in the real world, would merit anywhere from a punch in the nose to lengthy jailtime.

      Until this fundamental problem is addressed in some manner, online games will and must remain fairly tightly controlled affairs. Otherwise, chaos will reign and the vast majority of gamers will leave for greener and more pleasant pastures. With the enormous cost of developing MMOs, that's just not something most developers are willing to risk.

    • by tnk1 (899206)

      Part of the issue with the WoW ecosystem is that you pretty much found yourself in a world that was sort of selectively shrunken so that you could actually run into people in it, without having to simulate a million npcs and buildings and villages to fill the space.

      I mean did we think that the whole World of Warcraft is supported by what, 24 farmsteads in the entire world?

      The assumption is that the animals reproduce "off camera" and walk into your little world from the bigger real world. So, genocides are

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      Ah, game design from the "Anything I don't understand must be trivial to implement" school.

      These issues have been discussed endlessly by many, many, many people. Inevitably real game designers realize that your suggestions are either far to complex to implement or aren't fun in practice.

    • by esampson (223745)

      I've wanted a game with most of those features as well and I actually don't believe they are as impossible as most of the others have said.

      • Ecosystem: I think this is more difficult than you are making it out to be simply because of the amount of computer power required to handle the decision making of all the creatures. It is far from impossible but I wouldn't say it's "not difficult".
      • I think this is definitely doable. UO's economy failed for a lot of reason but just because that doesn't mean it is impossi
  • by Liquidrage (640463) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @03:41PM (#24951173)
    There's a few things that standout in this game.

    When you kill a person in RvR you get EXP. You get loot (money and items that come from a random pool, not the dead players pockets).

    There are repeatable quests for RvR. You join the RvR scenarios (similar to WoW battlegrounds but a faster pace and with more on the line) simply by clicking an icon on yuor screen from anywehere (though your likely to be in a queue for a few minutes before actually getting into the scenario). You have repeatable quests in those scenarios. You truely can level in this game with just RvR.

    On the PvE side Public Quests are very well done. Open groups are very well done. In both cases you just walk up and your "part" of something. No need for invites. No more "we don't need a tank, we need a healer" rejections.

    Now, the games not perfect, but it's well done. It certainly is linear in many ways (from zones to loot). And it misses the mini-game casual play of WoW. There's no mini-pets or fishing in WAR. Some like that, some dont. But it will have an impact on the total player base.

    Anyways, Massively's got a lot of info on the game that anyone interested should check out so not much more I can really say besides it gets a thumbs up so far.
    • " Open groups are very well done. In both cases you just walk up and your "part" of something. No need for invites. No more "we don't need a tank, we need a healer" rejections"

      Can you explain this in more detail?
      • In games like WoW, usually a group is already formed and only needs one or two more roles filled. They tend to be either a tank or a healer. The problem is when you've got a tank and need a healer you have to reject everyone who wants to also do the quest you're grouping for. In the PQs, everyone in the zone is doing the quest and being rewarded for it. And the more you contribute towards the end (usually killing a boss that spawns after killing two waves of guys) the more likely it will be that you'll
      • by SBacks (1286786)

        There's no invites or instances or anything. So, if you want in on a raid, you just start attacking the mob, or healing people to claim your share of the kill.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by LandDolphin (1202876)
          Does someone else joining in, like throwing you a heal, take away from the EXP, or anything else, that you would have gotten if they did not throw you that heal or help kil lthe mob?
          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by Liquidrage (640463)
            I really haven't noticed much in terms of EXP. In most cases though the Open Groups are not traditional MMO things. For example, the Public Quests are repeatable and start again very quickly after they finish. The game also keep track of something they call influence which is raised for an area by doing public quests in that area. So really, even if the exp is split, it doesn't hurt since more people means they go faster. The other place open groups works very well is in Open-World RvR which is VERY well do
      • by geeknado (1117395)
        Open groups are exactly that-- open. If you enter a zone and are not already in a group, you will see an icon that informs you of the presence of open groups in your area. Clicking it, you can join one of these groups without an invite. This is particularly useful for Public Quests, large scale quests which you may automatically and repeatably participate in just by moving into an area. Now, they can still kick you, and one personal gripe that I have is that /all/ groups start open, which definitely isn't m
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      No more "we don't need a tank, we need a healer" rejections.

      We always just said that because you were a sucky tank and couldn't keep mobs off the casters.

  • by ivan256 (17499) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @03:41PM (#24951175)

    "PvP is a much more important part of..."

    Ok, so they got a focus group together, and looked on the internet, and people said "More, better PvP!"...

    Too bad the niche hardcore players are the only people who speak up in those forums. Here's a big hint to everybody making this type of game: All those casual players that make Warcraft and Diablo crazy, stupid successful.... They play for the co-op and social aspects. They don't PvP. People who post on internet forums and create feature wishlists for these types of games (probably 90+% of the people who read this) aren't representative of the bulk of players no matter how vocal they are, or how important they think they are. If you cater to those players, and "being the next WoW" (in terms of paying playerbase) is your goal, you will fail.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by DeadManCoding (961283)
      Damn, it's been too long since I got mod points, otherwise you'd be +5 Insightful right now... WoW appeals to casuals, hence the reason that it's the biggest MMO out there, and quite possibly ever.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by CogDissident (951207)
        And if warhammer gets all the hardcore players, it will "still" be profitable. And the casuals of WoW will be happy because they don't have to deal with as many "hardcore" jerks.

        You don't have to "beat" WoW to win, you just have to make a game that has a profit margin. And having a devoted fanbase of people who are shown to stick around is a good way to ensure this.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by tnk1 (899206)

          You don't have to "beat" WoW to win, you just have to make a game that has a profit margin.

          Yes and no.

          Do you know why so many MMOs are really getting the green light and are being developed these days? Because the business types think that all they have to do is build an MMO and the money will come.

          For them, a profit that technically indicates "success" does not mean complete success. If they don't get a knockout, they will lose interest, and eventually the game will disappoint everyone, particularly the

      • I get what you're saying. I can point you to a million page thread on the main WAR forum where I bought up WAR is a niche game.

        However, what you're missing is you think Mythic wants to be WoW. Sure, they'd love the WoW numbers, but they, and the high-ups at Mythic have said this very thing, they don't need WoW numbers to make money or to have a great game.

        WAR is not your typical RvR game anyways. It's not the cutthroat gank fest that other games are. It is a little more casual friendly then you might
    • by loom_weaver (527816) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @03:49PM (#24951281)

      You do realize that Mythic is directly targeting those who like to PvP. That percentage of the market is much less than PvE'ers but it exists. Think of all the FPS out there.

      One way to imagine WAR is a FPS MMORPG.

      I played DAoC quite a bit and I think Mythic got the PvE/RvR balance right in that game. I spent most of my time in PvE but when I felt competitive I had a decent PvP game to partake in.

      WAR is not designed to be the next WoW.

      • by CodeBuster (516420) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @04:15PM (#24951625)

        Please MOD the parent up.

        I also played DAoC right up until the ill-fated Trials of Atlantis (TOA) expansion (Mythic made the mistake with TOA of tying PvP success directly to PvE and by the time they realized their mistake and done something to correct it they had lost too many players and now it is only about 50,000 or so really hard core PvP players left) and it really did have some great features and good ideas. For a while there back in 2001-2003 they really had the best game going in the MMORPG space.

        WAR will be more successful if they can successfully differentiate themselves from WoW and Realm vs Realm (RvR) and PvP, which WoW has basically fumbled, is the best way that they can do that. I will probably give WAR a try not because I am huge Warhammer fan, but because I remember the good times in DAoC and hope that Mythic will get it right from the start this time (using the lessons that they learned from DAoC).

        Although, personally I would have preferred a more open ended and generic MMORPG type game where pre-conceived storylines and areas (from the Warhammer world in this case) do not intrude upon the gameplay. It would be far more interesting to start with an original world, drawing upon classic fantasy elements but not completely out in left field (i.e. use classic fantasy gaming elements and memes established by LOTR, D&D, and other popular fantasy novels but in a new setting) and let the actions of the players actually build the world as the game progresses.

        It is not always necessary to have a pre-existing brand tie-in and it can infact hurt more than it helps (by drawing in lots of Warhammer fanbois who are just playing because its Warhammer and not because they are really interested in a good MMORPG experience). Plus, the publishers (EA\Mythic in this case) have to pay licensing fees or cut in the creator for a share of the profits (Games Workshop in this case) for the use of their copyrights. It seems like every MMORPG is a brand tie-in these days (Star Wars, Warhammer, World of Warcraft, etc) and sometimes (most times? WoW being a notable exception) the brand tie-in actually hurts rather than helps the long term viability of the game.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Knara (9377)

          I'd mod you up if I could.

          The only reason I'm giving this game a try (after the requisite MMO release buffer time) is because Mythic did incredibly fun things with regard to PvE and PvP balance in DAoC. I still regard nights playing in Thid as some of my favorite gameplay experiences, hands down.

      • PvP...PvE'ers...FPS...FPS...MMORPG...DAoC...PvE/RvR...PvE...PvP...WoW.

        This post needs more acronyms.

    • by Drakin020 (980931)

      I have to disagree.

      What about Final Fantasy Online? There is little to no PVP in that game, however they just released a patch that allowes you to level down so you can party with others, but still gain experience. If that's not focused on the casual player I don't know what is. Yet why isn't that game a hit?

      • by genner (694963)

        I have to disagree.

        What about Final Fantasy Online? There is little to no PVP in that game, however they just released a patch that allowes you to level down so you can party with others, but still gain experience. If that's not focused on the casual player I don't know what is. Yet why isn't that game a hit?

        Because nothing is soloable.
        You need to group to do even basic quests and level. You may as well put upa big sign that says "Harcore PVE players only"
        Casual players don't want to waste an hour forming a group everytime you play.

    • Right (Score:3, Interesting)

      Tell that to every korean MMORPG that has PvP.

      The problem is that western MMORPG's do PvP wrong, they do open world PvP and that just doesn't belong in a level based game. Warhammer does things different, far closer to Guild Wars. Wether it will work is anybodies guess, but PvP done well with no ganking could easily attract a large enough userbase to make the game succesfull.

      Anyway, it is not like the industry needs another PvE MMORPG.

    • by andrewd18 (989408)
      The PvP system in World of Warcraft is fundamentally broken. It favors people who play for hours at a time over casual players. The people with the uber PvP gear completely wipe the floor with the casual players, and it ruins the casual player's day.

      Guild Wars had a better system, at least. Give everyone access to max-level PvP right away, and give them unfettered access to almost top-of-the-line gear. This, along with the smaller 8-skill skillset, focused the PvP around individual and team strategy, not
      • by ivan256 (17499)

        It doesn't matter if the WoW PvP system is broken or not. Most casual players don't want to PvP. Which is why there are 50% more players on PvE realms than on PvP realms in Warcraft. In other words: There are more players on non-PvP WoW servers than there are in all other MMOs combined.

        Incidentally, PvE servers have majority Alliance populations, and PvP servers have majority Horde populations.

        My prediction for WAR? "Armies vs. Armies" is going to be hard to balance, because the "hardcore players" are going

        • by andrewd18 (989408)

          It doesn't matter if the WoW PvP system is broken or not. Most casual players don't want to PvP.

          That's where you're wrong. It does matter if WoW's PvP system is broken, because that's exactly why casual players dislike PvP.

          Casual players want to log on, make some kind of progress towards a defined goal (usually quests), and log off, without spending their entire evening to do so.

          You say that players prefer PvE versus PvP because there are more players on PvE servers. There's a correlation there, but

    • by AP31R0N (723649)

      If you're looking for grind/twink/farmer free pure PvP... try PlanetSide. It's an MMFPS of 24/7 sci-fi warfare. Strategy, tactics, skill and cooperation win the day.

      As for MRPGs, i'm waiting for NWN meets WoW but without player trade or grinding. i want to play a game, not have a second job (that *costs* money).

      The PvP aspect of WoW was a turn off for me. Spawn, die, spawn, die, spawn, die, log off. Running quests with friends was fun.

      And i totally agree with you, trying to make WoW2 is virtually futil

    • by vertinox (846076)

      They play for the co-op and social aspects. They don't PvP.

      As a WAR beta player I have to say two things:

      1. PvP is completely optional.
      2. PvP is actually fun because its organized into something other than random gankfest.

      There is no inter faction PvP whatsoever in a sense so its kind of very community like as you would find in say capture the flag.

      If you like playing TeamFortress but with an RPG setting and gameplay, you'd probaly like WAR.

  • WoW (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Krneki (1192201)
    People only want to enjoy the game, not get their char ganked by some "PvP elite".
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Hydian (904114)
      I know this is /. but you could try reading the article. You'll only get ganked if you go someplace (well marked) that has RvR active.
    • Sort of. WoW's PvP servers have been a success for people who like the freedom to chop up noobs or start fights in opposite faction towns.

      I got two characters to 60 on a PVP server, and quite honestly, didn't mind the occasional visit from a ganker. It also made going fishing with someone of the opposite faction a real matter of trust. More often than not, people would just be chill. But, by all lore in the game, you are at war with them and should be able to attack if you want.

      People who get their panties

    • by Krater76 (810350)

      People only want to enjoy the game, not get their char ganked by some "PvP elite".

      First, you can't get 'ganked' unless you are flagged, and you only get flagged in RvR areas. You can't enter an RvR area without knowing it, it's quite obvious.

      Second, in both their Core and Open server types (RvR restricted and RvR everywhere, respectively) there is a 'chicken' mechanic that turns you into a chicken if you an upper-level character in a lower-level area trying to gank. You literally become a chicken with 1 hp.

      Really, WoW is the game where gankers will stay. There's really no reason t

  • You know, I played WoW up to 70, and the BG's and isntances were just boring to me.

    How does this game play in relation? Is it just another WoW? If you hated WoW would you hate this?

    I'm holding out before dishing out 50 bucks for something that may not be innovative.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by k_187 (61692)
      If you didn't like WoW's battlegrounds and/or Arena, probably not. The PvE side of the game is fun, but definitely not the focus. I'd argue that the PvE side of WAR is even more grindy than WoW's since it has a definite end. WAR is really the PvP lover's WoW in a lot of ways.

      That said, I think its a blast.
      • by Drakin020 (980931)
        Well I guess the reason I say that was because in WoW I never really had a sense of accomplishment. It was just one BG after another, with no real change in the end game.
  • I'm an active WoW player and am on the fence on picking up WAR. A lot of people I play WoW with are in the same boat.

    The problem is this: We like raiding.

    We may also like PvP. Several of us have 3 regular arena teams and are in full S4. But, still, we like raiding.

    Now, everything I read on WAR trumpets the virtues of their PvP and RvR system while promising us that there is some sort of mythical PvE endgame without really describing it.

    In short, can anyone confirm that there is a PvE endgame where you gr

    • I am not a Warhammer expert... but from what I've read the final battles are all based around huge cities that you siege and attack. Apparently the scale is massive enough that it certainly would make sense for it to be the sort of thing that an entire group of people did together. There were originally going to be a ton of cities but I think they've cut it back to two or something for now just to get the game out... they'll add more as time goes on.

      Like I said, I'm not that interested in it, so someone
      • You've got it pretty right. There are two main cities right now, and the goal is to control points leading to them (think Battlefield), finally unlocking the ability to enter the city. In the city is a bunch of quests and also a king to kill.
      • by tnk1 (899206)

        Actually, I got the idea that what he meant by raiding was beating scripted encounters as that is what WoW has in the endgame, and what they are used to. That's exactly what we had when I was GM of an endgame guild in WoW.

        Fact is that I would be extremely surprised to see the same sort of play in the PvP end game battles in WAR. In WoW raids, you take pride in being a super healer or tank. In PvP/RvR, the other side focus fires down your healing and ignores your tanks until they are all alone, and then t

    • by AioKits (1235070)

      In short, can anyone confirm that there is a PvE endgame where you group up with X friends and fight tough bosses (where X >= the number of fingers you possess)?

      See, I'm just the opposite. I can't stand raiding most the time. Did it in EQ2, did it in WoW, etc. It is fun for the first time through, but after that it becomes glorified farming. Don't get me wrong, I am not trying to pick on you or your preferences. Nothing wrong with liking raiding. Most of the time I play MMORPG games, I am by myself or wish to solo with very little grouping.

      I used to play Dark Age of Camelot religiously (Trials of Atlantis can still kiss my ass) and loved the RvR combat. S

      • by Krater76 (810350)

        The PvP in WoW felt forced. It was (let's be fair here) an after thought.

        You are completely right and maybe even a little understated. WoW tried to tack on world PvP objectives in their expansion and that totally failed. They added 1 battleground, which was fun but just a hybrid of the others, and who gives half a shit about the objectives in Hellfire, Zangarmarsh, or even Nagrand? You get a little PvE boost and tokens for gear and stuff that might have been good when everyone was leveling to 70 but is way underpowered now.

        And don't get me started with the arena system. I

  • Compelling PvP (Score:4, Insightful)

    by nate nice (672391) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @04:16PM (#24951649) Journal

    Compelling PvP cannot exist without these 3 things:

    Conflict, consequence and subjectivity.

    Players must have a struggle and fight for something in the game. This creates a conflict that players will get involved in and fight over.

    Players must feel repercussions for their decisions. Jumping and ganking the wrong people will result in total destruction of everything you and your friends have built by the community you have violated.

    Finally, the sides must not be clearly defined at the beginning of the game. Your allies shouldn't be a gameplay decision based on what side of a coin you flip. Alliances need to be built out of a common desire to survive. You cannot possibly have a real hatred for an enemy just because your predisposed to them. But more importantly, you are forced to ally with those you may not want to because you are on the same side.

    These static gameplay issues are the same reason WAR will be as interesting as WoW in terms of PvP and that is to say it won't be. Well, it will be fun objective based, tactical PvP.

    But the game lacks *real* conflict, any type of consequence and subjectivity.

  • by decipher_saint (72686) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @04:28PM (#24951825) Homepage

    You enter Games Workshop

    You encounter Level 1 Nerd

    Punch Nerd (5 damage)

    Loot Nerd

    Received unpainted minis, bag of dice (commom), potion of asthma healing (inhaler).

    Sorry... what were we talking about again?

  • by Fross (83754) on Wednesday September 10, 2008 @05:17PM (#24952639) Homepage

    I was in the WAR closed beta for a couple of months, and now in the open beta. Much about the game has already been covered so I'll skip it, but I have a few things to say.

    First of all, I do love the game.

    WoW did well with a (relatively) unknown lore and translated it into something sophisticated that touched the whole game. WAR does the same with its great lore set. Architecture, monsters, speech text, the ways the classes play, it all fits very well.

    The graphics in the closed beta were bad, texture wise at least. In the open beta, they're significantly better. Hardly any graphic settings are changeable in game currently, so I figure they had a crappy default on the closed beta, a slightly better one now, and when you can tweak it to use your full system, it will be able to rival AoC.

    The main point about WAR is, it is two games. It is a PvE game - you can do quests, public quests, instances, raids and never even go RvR enabled, if you so choose. It also has a full RvR game - scenarios, RvR enabled areas, RvR quests (from doing PvE activities within RvR areas, so actually killing players as an objective), a beautifully designed tiered RvR hierarchy, the lot. You can sign up for a scenario at Rank 1 and go right into PvP if you so choose, never looking back. Of course, the strength is when you do a little of both and have a lot of fun.

    So far my impression is the RvR stuff is stronger, but the PvE is pretty damn good too.

    Crafting, I've had a play with. I'll need more of a look. It feels a bit limited compared to WoW's "become the best blacksmith and make a fortune" ideal, but both innovative and with a fair element of chance that things won't come out as planned.

    The interface was great in the closed beta, but not much handholding. They've added that in now and it's easy to get around and the early quests seem as graceful a learning curve as WoWs, but perhaps even more fun - more dark humour and some cool ones (shooting ballistas at NPCs etc)

    It's worth mentioning again the classes and the beautiful way some of them work. Bright Wizards and Disciples of Khaine are my favourites. The first is a caster who the more spells they unleash, the more damage and crit they get, but the more chance to blow themselves up (and their teammates) too. The Disciple of Khaine is a healer, but their mana is generated through doing melee damage combos. No more standing at the back spamming Renew. It encourages, nay, requires, strategy rather than tactics.

    Speaking of strategy, tanks intercepting attacks make formation hunting *very* powerful. The healer is hiding behind the tank? You can't hit him, target him, lob a fireball, chances are the tank intercepts it. And you can't just run through him. Finally! :)

    In my second ever scenario, while a large skirmish was going on, a few of us outflanked the enemy and *ripped them apart*. The way it should be.

    Overall the beta launch has been smooth. Even in Europe, where I play. I was in the WoW open beta as well, and it was nowhere near as smooth as this. People do forget that, a couple of years on. It's been playable almost all the time, which hey, is pretty good for a beta.

    Speaking of beta, one thing I was impressed with was during closed beta, the level of interaction required from players. Lots of surveys on performing actions (how was that last quest, last scenario, etc) and looks like the developers have been very good at picking things up.

    Overall, I think it's great. May not be for everyone, but I'm having a lot of fun.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      Great summary!

      Some things I enjoyed:

      1.) There are no utility classes. Healers are still there to heal, but actually have to get involved with attacking skills in order to build up higher and better healing spells.

      This sort of keeps healers and other casters from hiding behind tanks the whole time. They can if they still want to, but if they want more powerful heals, they'll have to actually attack.

      My warrior priest, for instance, had to be in the front-lines, dishing out damage while also being able to heal

  • WoW PvP is a sad, pathetic, unbalanced POS. What's worse is the devs know it and have acknowledged it. They are trying to fix it in the upcoming expansion. Problem is, they let it go on all these months and it's soured a lot of people, including me, to arenas, which is WoW's PvP focus at this point. It reminds me a lot of CMs (combat medics) in SWG and their ridiculous DoTs, turning people off to PvP in that game too.

    As a fire mage, my option if I want to do arenas is respec ice. Bah! If I wanted a pe

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