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Role Playing (Games)

Raph Koster's New Studio Unveiled 29

Gamasutra reports on veteran MMOG designer (and sometimes Slashdot Games commenter) Raph Koster's new studio. The company, called Areae, is gearing up for a new title in the Massive space. Raph's comments in the article are overly coy, and despite his statements that 'you can find some tidbits if you look on the site', there's not a whole lot of details yet on what exactly they'll be doing. From the article: "We're going to run quiet for a little while and finish building out the platform so we can actually start talking about what it is that we're going to put out there. I would guess that you'll be hearing from us again in three months or so.'"
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Raph Koster's New Studio Unveiled

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  • sounds like... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by AliasTheRoot ( 171859 ) on Saturday December 16, 2006 @09:41AM (#17268014)
    ...some kind of middleware, world building platform. Kosters games have consistently been sandboxes, and don't see that he will change focus on this. There were some quotes on the site about having a a couple of worlds on the back burner, and also about making frontier spaces available for players to colonize. A more game orientated second-life?

    The graphic on the site certainly indicates a genre neutral social MMO.
  • Re:RAPH KOSTER (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 16, 2006 @12:46PM (#17269138)
    The design of SWG from day one was actually quite good. Blame goes to SOE/LA for rushing it to live before it was ready, taking him off the project, then dumbing it down as much as they did. The new target demo they're aiming for doesn't like reading or creating anything for themselves or being anything but a cookie cutter:

    Nancy McIntyre to NYT:

    "There was lots of reading, much too much, in the game. There was a lot of wandering around learning about different abilities. We really needed to give people the experience of being Han Solo or Luke Skywalker rather than being Uncle Owen, the moisture farmer. We wanted more instant gratification: kill, get treasure, repeat. We needed to give people more of an opportunity to be a part of what they have seen in the movies rather than something they had created themselves."
  • Re:RAPH KOSTER (Score:4, Interesting)

    by UnknownSoldier ( 67820 ) on Saturday December 16, 2006 @09:06PM (#17272982)
    You know, I used to think that too -- he sucked. After UO, and then the SWG fiasco, one really has to wonder if he knows what the hell he is doing as a designer. But I've been reading his "Theory of Fun", and I'm starting to change my mind. Maybe mis-management was just as much part of the problem -- seen it happen in the games industry too many times.

    Have to wait and see. The proof is in the pudding, or game play, as they say.
  • Re:sounds like... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by RaphKoster ( 603840 ) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:11PM (#17278768) Homepage
    I was the original lead, but Trammel was AFTER my time. I left in late 98 or early 99. Second Age was mine and about the year after that, but not Renaissance.

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