Ok, Order of the Stick wins mad points for amusing me greatly. If you haven’t read it, go do so now.
Things that don’t amuse me? Right now, it has to be Dave Perry’s Super secret project and 38 Studios.
Having more than 20,000 people “sign up” to “develop” a “MMO” doesn’t really mean jack. Honestly, can you guys *really* say you have a 20k+ strong development team? Second, how much signal is really going to rise above the noise here…hell, I can see it now…how many of these people are going to stick a design credit on their resume and try to get a job with it? Finally, I have a problem with this being called a massively multiplayer game. I was all excited about the concept here, until details were released. I mean honestly, a multiplayer racing game? Heavily microtransaction based? This sounds like nothing more than Mario Kart online with a matchmaking lobby. Maybe some gunbound style “gameplay” where you can customize your avatar and vehicle. Is it really going to take 20,000 people to “develop” this? From my point of view (limited obviously, I didn’t sign up), I get the feeling that most of this game is already planned out and a core team is going to be making it. The whole secret project just reeks of a marketing ploy for attention.
Yeah, I said it. Thumbsdown.
Come on people! Curt Shilling is a great athlete, Todd McFarlane is a great artist, and of course R.A. Salvatore is a great fantasy author. Individually, each of these people have worked hard and had extraordinarily successful careers. But why change the name from Green Monster Games (great name!) to 38 Studios? Their reasoning (based on this press release) is that it stands for “excellence, integrity, and achievement”…and it is Curt Shilling’s number. Well, that’s nice, but what about the other two founders? How about everyone else on staff? If the name wasn’t 38 Studios, would consumers automatically assume that they don’t stand for excellence, integrity, or achievement? Is this an ego play? Most “celebrity” startups usually start out well and get loads and loads of investors, but tend to implode when strong egos clash. Rocket Science Games and There.com (the early days) come to mind.
I think that 38 Studios certainly has some killer star power behind it, but I don’t know if they are going to be able to execute a MMORPG well (if at all). I hope they prove me wrong…I rather like the founders, but I am not getting a good gut feeling here.
This is so cool, I must have one, like RIGHT NOW. Maybe I wouldn’t be so cranky about the game industry. Damn, if I had one of these, I would totally pay a programmer to hack it and animate it with some pac man. Yeah. Or maybe just Ghosts on the keypad. That would be awesome.