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The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts?

Rich Vogel has left BioWare, where he was serving as executive producer on Star Wars: The Old Republic, reports Gamasutra, where they say their attempts to get a comment from BioWare or EA on the reasons for this have so far been unsuccessful. They also say this news comes amid rumors of layoffs at BioWare Austin, but it is not clear whether these reports of job losses at the developer of the Star Wars MMORPG are related to the cuts announced in May, though Gamasutra adds it "understands that Vogel's departure preceded the purported layoffs." Thanks Joao.

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47. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 18, 2012, 09:34 nin
 
So, if TOR is truly "WoW in Space", why did it not grow to 14+ million subscribers? Because Carcifier is right, for the most part... Most people are unwilling to pay a monthly fee for the same old shit, with different paint.... especially for the long term.

That's pretty much it, in a nutshell. TOR ended up being like a lot of other cookie cutter MMOs that people have seen many times before. And as a result, they quickly left.

 
http://www.nin.com/pub/tension/
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46. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 18, 2012, 09:27 wtf_man
 
PropheT wrote on Jul 17, 2012, 22:57:
There's millions of people playing WoW, still over a million in TOR last I heard, Rift has a large playerbase, EVE has subscriptions, TERA, The Secret World, and a lot of the games people talk about being free to play have them too.

I believe the original quote from Carcifier was:
You aren't going to get people to sign up for 15 bucks a month unless it's a new game that absolutely revolutionizes the genre and blows away WOW.

And for the most part I have to agree with that. We're talking NEW MMOs in a saturated market that has a fairly stale and copied platform.

Established games are able to keep their subscriptions, for the most part, if they are good games and have a customer base that has invested a lot of time on their characters. New MMO's do not have this luxury, and I would have to say a large majority have played MMOs before, and are sick of the same old shit... and are unwilling to pay a fee for the same old shit. So, Carcifier was correct, for the most part... there needs to be a paradigm shift in the genre before mass amounts of people are willing to pay a sustained fee in this day and age. (Key word being sustained)

Now, back to TOR. Yes, it HAD a million subscribers... but Bioware and EA have been doing everything they can to fudge the numbers to make it look like they have sustained that. They just consolidated 140 servers down to about 12. I highly doubt they have anywhere near 1 million subscribers anymore, given that kind of drop in their server numbers.

So, if TOR is truly "WoW in Space", why did it not grow to 14+ million subscribers? Because Carcifier is right, for the most part... Most people are unwilling to pay a monthly fee for the same old shit, with different paint.... especially for the long term. MMOs NEED long term subscribers to survive, if they are going to use the subscription model. TOR hasn't broken even, and that is with the most conservative "rumored numbers" out there for their development costs, marketing, and operational costs. It is bleeding cash and subscription numbers. All of the games you mentioned will go F2P in the near future or die, except maybe Eve... but again... that's an established indie MMO.

This comment was edited on Jul 18, 2012, 09:35.
 
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45. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 17, 2012, 22:57 PropheT
 
Sir Graves wrote on Jul 17, 2012, 22:52:
PropheT wrote on Jul 17, 2012, 15:54:
The MMO market is fine, and there's still plenty of people paying for subscriptions.
In this day and people still do that?? Who are these suckers of which you speak?

There's millions of people playing WoW, still over a million in TOR last I heard, Rift has a large playerbase, EVE has subscriptions, TERA, The Secret World, and a lot of the games people talk about being free to play have them too.

Hell, how many people have Xbox Live subscriptions? 10 million? Not a lot of difference there, either.

I realize it wasn't a serious question, but the idea that free to play is everything is like saying people only buy iPhones. They're popular as hell and all anyone talks about, but it isn't the whole market or even close to it... and most of those free to play games aren't free anyway.
 
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44. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 17, 2012, 22:52 Sir Graves
 
PropheT wrote on Jul 17, 2012, 15:54:
The MMO market is fine, and there's still plenty of people paying for subscriptions.
In this day and age people are still doing that?? Who are these suckers of which you speak?
 
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43. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 17, 2012, 22:48 PropheT
 
Fion wrote on Jul 17, 2012, 17:12:
The problem with the MMOG market is the monthly fee. It encourages exclusivity as the vast majority of people don't play more than one because for one reason or another they feel they won't get their moneys worth if they cant put in dozens of hours into the game over the course of said month. While this is great for those big name MMOGs with millions of subscribers, it's deadly for the Genre as a whole.

Hopefully GW2 will push the F2P/B2P market by offering an amazing AAA game with a non p2w microtransactions system. If the game is successful, if Arenanet is able to pull in substantial amounts of money on a quarterly bases from box sales and microtransactions combined it may well push the genre towards dropping that monthly fee. Once nobody has to pay a subscription fee folks should have no problem playing multiple MMOGs and the market can expand and we can have a market with not just one or two MMOGs of any quality but potentially dozens of fantastic games to chose from.

I don't see that there's any evidence to support any of that, really.

Subscription MMO's are still alive and healthy. Old ones are still alive and healthy. Hell, even some of the best examples of free to play games out there right now still have subscriptions available...or are making more money per person off of cash shops than they were by subscription fees. People are paying to play these games, even the "free" ones. That's why everyone wants to make them anymore.

People don't have to play multiple MMO's for the market to be healthy, and it's not just the big name MMO's with millions of subscribers driving the market. Aside from WoW in North America, is there even another one here? The closest I know of is the game we're talking about here (TOR). Some of the other largest ones out there are run by Turbine, CCP, Funcom, and Trion...none of which are big-time companies or packing multi-million subscriber games. The MMO market hasn't been about one or two quality games for more than ten years, and it's arguable it was then (AC, DaoC, EQ, and UO were all around - and still are).

The push toward free to play isn't a push toward getting more people to play the games to strengthen the market as much as it's a push to get more people to spend money on microtransactions that potentially produce more revenue than subscriptions alone.
 
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42. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 17, 2012, 21:33 Jivaro
 
I hope they do go F2P....I dig quite a bit of the game.

My issue is giving them money. Not because I feel like I should get the game for free, but because I feel like that would be positive reinforcement. They have made so many horrible and short-sighted decisions during beta and after release. I will be the first one to admit that 1.2 and 1.3 were improvements, but the priorities of the developers are not the same as the player base. They were improvements in areas that needed improvement...but not the ones that the vast majority of customers seemed to be asking for. If you are going to improve areas of the game that aren't exactly at the top of the customer wish list, then they better be "stand out, blow my fucking socks off, holy shit this is better then a blow job!!" type of stuff. We got Sith Jedi.

To really turn the dagger...the server merging has been handled as if chimps are making the decisions using darts and labeled balloons. When your pre-order customers who are being "asked" to transfer lose their character names to some level 10 "trial" customer, you are doing it wrong.
 
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41. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 17, 2012, 21:30 HorrorScope
 
Pyloff wrote on Jul 17, 2012, 20:21:
That said I have zero hope for GW2, the original was boiler plate. Instances are the death of modern day gaming.

Ah, they went pretty much from an instance game (GW1) to mostly non-instanced PvE (GW2).

That said, whatever to instances the death of modern gaming. Most games are instanced mmo or non-mmo anymore. And the all non-instanced mmo's have their issues being such. To me there always needs to be a smart balance between the two.
 
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40. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 17, 2012, 21:16 NKD
 
Icewind wrote on Jul 17, 2012, 20:46:
I love how all the white knights were laughing at those of us who said this game would be F2P soon after launch.

Don't ever underestimate EA's ability to fail.

It's not even really about white-knighting. What reason did anyone have to assume it would go free to play? Warhammer flopped worse than SWTOR and years later it still isn't free to play.

Only in the last month or so have they given any indication that their approach to SWTOR regarding F2P might be different than Warhammer.
 
Avatar 43041
 
If you don't like where gaming is heading, stop giving your money to the people who are taking it in that direction.
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39. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 17, 2012, 20:46 Icewind
 
I love how all the white knights were laughing at those of us who said this game would be F2P soon after launch.

Don't ever underestimate EA's ability to fail.
 
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38. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 17, 2012, 20:28 RailWizard
 
Buuuurn. Buuuuurrrrrrrrrrrrn! Muah ha ha ha...BUUUUUUUUUUUUUUURRRRRRRRRRRRRRNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN!!!!!!!!!!
Popcorn
 
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37. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 17, 2012, 20:23 Closed Betas
 
EA latest announcement subliminally states F2P with their statement, new ways to play SWTOR coming soon.. Of course, all of us analysts knew that F2P was the goal of SWTOR back in beta before launch... somehow the fans are behind the company and happy to see the upcoming change to F2P?!??!! They just ripped you off for over $100 bucks to cover their dev expenses, you clowns need to wake up and stop buying EA games. This was intended! I even had a MMORPG post estimating this exact timeframe (before they mysteriously deleted that post :/


DID WE ALL FORGET ABOUT THE MASSIVE CONTENT REMOVED IN BETA, GUESS WHAT< NOW YOU GET TO PAY FOR WHAT WAS ALREADY THERE!
 
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36. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 17, 2012, 20:23 ColoradoHoudini
 
Beelzebud wrote on Jul 17, 2012, 15:57:
Interplay all but dead, taking down Black Isle Studios with it.

id Software sells to Zenimax/Bethesda and releases a console game with a sloppy PC port.

Epic totally whored out to the dude-bro console crowd on Xbox Live.

Bioware swallowed up by EA, now putting out nothing but watered down crap.

Blizzard merges with Activision and puts out Diablo 3: RMAH

I miss the late 90's. It's not hard to see why independent developers are where the good games are coming from.

Well said
 
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35. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 17, 2012, 20:21 Pyloff
 
Another tab target game bites the dust. So long massive waste of money game.

I'm tired of every service thinking it can charge me yearly or monthly, or monetize every moment of interaction.

That said I have zero hope for GW2, the original was boiler plate. Instances are the death of modern day gaming.
 
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34. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 17, 2012, 20:01 Closed Betas
 
hopefully left into retirement, hate to see another project run by the clown that made this badawful game.  
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33. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 17, 2012, 19:53 HorrorScope
 
RollinThundr wrote on Jul 17, 2012, 18:35:
Oh I see, so because you're not forced to grind skills all day long the game sucks. Glad you cleared that up.

I don't understand the words you write.
 
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32. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 17, 2012, 19:51 HorrorScope
 
Axis wrote on Jul 17, 2012, 18:23:
GW2 isnt Guildwars. You can't make a "sequel" and gut every gameplay mechanic and character customization that made the original... Original!

I can't help but agree with that.
 
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31. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 17, 2012, 19:48 HorrorScope
 
Beelzebud wrote on Jul 17, 2012, 17:47:
I don't really disagree with any of that RollinThundr. Bioware was starting to produce watered down stuff before the buyout. My only point of contention with what you said about Blizzard is that the relaxed management style from their early parent company is what empowered them to produced those classic games, and turned Blizzard into a billion dollar company.

Since the merger, they don't seem to have that same mindset. Look no further than Diablo 3. Issues with the RMAH aside, they were showing off the PVP section of the game years ago, and always said it was in the game. The old Blizzard never would have released Diablo 3 until all of the parts were ready to go. Hell they used to throw out entire games because they weren't living up to the quality of their brand, one of those throw aways being a version of Diablo 3.

It's no coincidence that these companies are all stagnating after selling out to large corporate interests, when Valve is humming right along with a relaxed management attitude, and still putting out classics.

If a game company has management with no real passion for games, you get shit.

Yup to all of that.
 
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30. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 17, 2012, 19:19 Veterator
 
If the key to being a successful developer is listening to your testers for game suggestions.....you're going to end up with a lot of counter-logic decisions.


Hell there are testers out there who change their opinion on something nearly daily. And when asked to describe a "perfect game" can't even answer simple questions posed against what they come up with.

Point is, most of them don't put a whole hell of a lot of thought into games but would like to pretend otherwise.

Something as simple as Tribes:Ascend in concept has people at each other throats on projectile speed......I doubt there's a single person out there whose got no complaints about Tribes:Ascend...even if you just look at one single aspect of it. Like.....should generators be in the game?

I am not saying you need Verant/SOEs "The Vision" with EQ and EQ2, but you definitely need an overall direction. You need some flexibility, but obviously once decisions are made they can affect more than just what you think they do. "The Vision" approach sounds really great, but it creates an inflexible idealized model that doesn't actually take into account if something is actually enjoyable instead of monotonous and torturous.


As for SWTOR........found the game rather boring. The game has too much single player stuff, like companions end up being single player only material. They generally added nothing to the game in it's multiplayer aspect. Seems like a waste of effort to have something like that in a multiplayer game when the majority of the content was designed for single play. Now if they would let you use your companions in a full group, and designed it that way...that would have been interesting to see.

But, I just feel like SWTOR tried to cover too many check boxes and didn't do anything particularly well.....I think they tried to hit all the major player "draws" in the game and just fell on their face.
 
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29. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 17, 2012, 18:35 RollinThundr
 
Axis wrote on Jul 17, 2012, 18:23:
RollinThundr wrote on Jul 17, 2012, 17:48:
Axis wrote on Jul 17, 2012, 17:34:
Here's my opinion - don't listen to testers then please go ahead and die.

We won't miss you plenty of other developers DO listen.

THATS the big difference these days, developers think they know WTF is up when in fact they're a bunch of snub noses without the balls to stand up to anyone including publishers or themselves when it's obvious to many something is wrong.

SWTOR, D3, and up-comming GW2 all suffer this same problem - people in droves give good solid feedback on the problems, and they are ignored because the devs think they know better.

Die off, goodbye. Tired of being nice about this piss on them we don't need your game.


I'm not sure what your beef is with GW2 but from what I've played of it so far during BWE's it's actually above and beyond most pay monthly MMO's. Dynamic events, World events where everyone who contributes get's rewarded rather than just a couple lucky dice rollers. Great graphics, skills that change depending on equipment.

Sure it doesn't follow the same exact systems along the lines of skills as GW 1 did but honestly I actually prefer how 2 handles skills to be honest.

I posted plenty of constructive feedbacks in their forum which have been likely ignored (almost all their feedbacks have been ignored). I don't care to prove points -- right now the game is destined for an early death. About 2 months after it's release come on back here and read my comments.

GW2 is a shallow game. Faddy crap people expect to see - stuff that will make the gameplay semi-enjoyable for a month, bearable for the 2nd, then dead.

GW2 isnt Guildwars. You can't make a "sequel" and gut every gameplay mechanic and character customization that made the original... Original!

GW1 - character specialization pve for hardcore pvp
GW2 - Faddy mmo pve with silly pvp.

Dead. that is all. Don't need to agree it's fact, and arenanet won't be listening so count on it.

Oh I see, so because you're not forced to grind skills all day long the game sucks. Glad you cleared that up.
 
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28. Re: The Old Republic EP Leaves; Other Staff Cuts? Jul 17, 2012, 18:23 Axis
 
RollinThundr wrote on Jul 17, 2012, 17:48:
Axis wrote on Jul 17, 2012, 17:34:
Here's my opinion - don't listen to testers then please go ahead and die.

We won't miss you plenty of other developers DO listen.

THATS the big difference these days, developers think they know WTF is up when in fact they're a bunch of snub noses without the balls to stand up to anyone including publishers or themselves when it's obvious to many something is wrong.

SWTOR, D3, and up-comming GW2 all suffer this same problem - people in droves give good solid feedback on the problems, and they are ignored because the devs think they know better.

Die off, goodbye. Tired of being nice about this piss on them we don't need your game.


I'm not sure what your beef is with GW2 but from what I've played of it so far during BWE's it's actually above and beyond most pay monthly MMO's. Dynamic events, World events where everyone who contributes get's rewarded rather than just a couple lucky dice rollers. Great graphics, skills that change depending on equipment.

Sure it doesn't follow the same exact systems along the lines of skills as GW 1 did but honestly I actually prefer how 2 handles skills to be honest.

I posted plenty of constructive feedbacks in their forum which have been likely ignored (almost all their feedbacks have been ignored). I don't care to prove points -- right now the game is destined for an early death. About 2 months after it's release come on back here and read my comments.

GW2 is a shallow game. Faddy crap people expect to see - stuff that will make the gameplay semi-enjoyable for a month, bearable for the 2nd, then dead.

GW2 isnt Guildwars. You can't make a "sequel" and gut every gameplay mechanic and character customization that made the original... Original!

GW1 - character specialization pve for hardcore pvp
GW2 - Faddy mmo pve with silly pvp.

Dead. that is all. Don't need to agree it's fact, and arenanet won't be listening so count on it.
 
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Yours truly,

Axis
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