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The Warhammer Online Team Responds 220

Posted by Zonk
from the lovable-orcs dept.
Last month we asked you for questions for the makers of Warhammer Online. The tone of the response made it obvious that many readers were concerned about where the company was taking the Warhammer world. Their responses should, at least somewhat, put those of you frustrated by what you've seen so far at ease. The makers of the upcoming MMOG from Mythic have responded with detail and good humour to the insightful queries you put to them. They were also considerate enough to label their responses, so you know exactly who has answered each question. So, please, read on for the responses from Mythic's Warhammer Online team.
1.) What's in for the crafters? by Opportunist (166417)
I'm a crafter at heart, in fact, I play MMORPGs to craft gear. So what do we loonies get? How do you want to avoid the two pitfalls "Making it so easy that everyone is some sort of crafter (see WoW)" and "Making it so hard that you'd rather go with the once-in-a-lifetime-drop (see DAoC)"? Can I sustain myself crafting, or is it at best a hobby for people who have too much money already? Will crafted gear be, economically, be at least on par with drop-only gear? Oh, only one question. Ok: Is being a crafter a choice that can keep you entertained and sustained by itself?

Steve Marvin, Senior Design: I hate to disappoint Slashdot readers here (I'm one myself, albeit just a lurker), and I don't think for a second that I can get away with a song and dance with you guys, either. ;-) So I'll come straight out and admit that we're dodging this question. We just aren't talking about crafting yet beyond the promise that it will be present and fun. Ask us again in six months, and we will be ready to give you some juicy details.

2.) Why not a tabletop port? by randalx (659791)
When I first heard of Warhammer Online I had a slight hope that the designers were going to create an online version of the table top game, something akin to what Wizards of the Coast did with Magic The Gathering Online. That doesn't seem to be the case. Just the same, judging by the people I've talked to, this game would be of great interest to current and former battlegamers. I'd like to know, besides the Warhammer universe, why should this game appeal to a Warhammer battlegamer?

Steve Marvin, Senior Design: Why didn't we do a straight port? Well, as Paul (Paul Barnett, our Design Manager) likes to say, it's kind of like Batman. Batman comes in a multitude of flavors, from big screen to books, cartoons to games, action figures to a million other successful (and unsuccessful) incarnations. Each modifies the base concept to suit the market in which it will be operating, so as to appeal to the current fans, but just as important, to create new fans in a medium in which there were few or none previously. With luck, the new aspect will be a big success, and those new fans will go looking for the other flavors. We really like the folks at Games Workshop (they've been fantastic to work with), and we love the Warhammer universe, and so we hope our game can help expand interest in both.

But we work in the MMO medium. More specifically, MMORPG's. That means that a dominant characteristic of the tabletop experience has already been set aside: the impersonal aspect. Tabletop Warhammer is about the control of lots of individuals at a time by a single person. MMORPG's are about lots of individuals controlling one character at a time.

A better comparison would probably be to compare us to the Warhammer Fantasy Role Playing Game. There you do carry an individual through the Warhammer universe, acquiring power, wealth and experience. The unit types found on the tabletop are recreated in WFRP careers where possible, and new but IP-consistent careers are created to fill out the expectations of a robust FRP game. Of course, WFRP doesn't let you play the "bad guys", and we do.

But even that comparison breaks down, since we aren't a paper and dice game any more than we are a miniatures game. The fact is that we have taken everything that we liked best about the IP, combined it with what we like best about MMO's, and created something we think plays to the strengths of the IP, the genre, and our own strengths as a developer, especially player versus player (PvP) combat and its larger counterpart, Realm versus Realm (RvR). At its heart, RvR online play is the obvious and perfect way to recreate Warhammer as an MMORPG. War on a grand scale, carried out on the personal level.

And coming full circle, that's what the Warhammer tabletop player will enjoy about WAR. We have been working with the folks at GW not so much to make an MMO based on Warhammer, as to translate the core concepts of Warhammer into an MMO. Not as the trappings of it, but the essence of it. Certainly we have Ironbreakers and Squigs and Warrior Priests and Bright Wizards and runes and banners and choppas and Dwarfs and Orcs and Dark Elves and the Empire and Karaz-a-Karak and thousands of other things lifted directly from the source material. But that's the easy bit. We want fans of Warhammer to recognize the kinds of choices we've made as Warhammer choices. Epic, heroic conflict. The same principles of number and mood. The sense of endless struggle against (or for!) the encroaching darkness. Perhaps most of all, the humor and the sense of fun. When you get into WAR, you will recognize it as Warhammer. We're working very hard to get that right, and we hope you'll enjoy it as much as we do.

3.)Removing the grind by Bugmaster (227959)
What are you going to do in order to prevent the repetitive grind that most MMOs are [in]famous for? How many quests in your game follow ye olde template of "kill 20 goblins and bring me their noses... but a goblin only has a 30% chance to drop a nose"?

Destin Bales, Content Director: Time commitment will always be a factor in WAR just as it is in other successful MMO's. That is because the more time you are able to put into the game, the more you'll experience and see of the world, and the more fun you will have. However, I look to three key features within WAR to make time spent online exciting rather than repetitive:

1. Realm vs Realm (RvR) Game play. Warhammer Online allows you to level your character entirely through RvR game play, just as you can through PvE, if you choose to do so. You are able to earn experience, gain access to items and gather valuable coin through this form of PvP combat. This style of play is not only unpredictable, but ever-changing. The community dictates the pace ensuring that each battle is unique from the last.

We also have four different varieties of RvR combat and each offers a unique player experience. In Skirmishes, it's a random encounter with an opponent (or group of opponents!) that leads to battle in the game world. In Battlefields, you are fighting for control of a landmark or resource for the benefit of your army. It could be just you against twenty enemies or a more even fight, depending on the importance placed on the objective at that time by each army. In Scenarios, you'll be able to jump into a "fair" fight of balanced sides (augmented by NPC's if need be). Finally, in the Campaign, you'll be taking land and sacking cities in the RvR endgame.

2. Truckloads of Carrots: Warhammer Online's unique career advancement system awards players several times per rank, rather than once every (or every other) level. Gaining unique abilities, tactics, morale options and more all occur at various times within a single rank. This means that you are never far away from earning your next new enhancement for your character. Additionally, the Tome of Knowledge serves as a game-wide scavenger hunt in which most actions you complete in game will yield results that not only can affect your character but give you further insight into the wondrous inner workings of the Warhammer world and the story of the Age of Reckoning.

3. Content Variety: WAR provides players with many different ways to have fun while growing their characters online. Some examples include community driven, area-based public quests; our deep and enticing RvR game play; solo-able quests, Tome of Knowledge entry unlocking, crafting and more. As MMO's continue to evolve, developers discover new and compelling ways to ensure players are actively having a good time. WAR is filled to the brim with not only industry staples, but new things that I guarantee you've not seen before.

The answer to the second part of the question - "How many quests in your game follow ye olde template of 'kill 20 goblins and bring me their noses... but a goblin only has a 30% chance to drop a nose'?" - is simple: None! When we present players with a quest to gather goblin noses, you'll find that every goblin with a nose on his face is willing to part with it after death. From the first day that we began defining our quest design principles, we made it a priority to avoid this type of quest in WAR altogether. Furthermore, collection style quests make up a very small portion of the quests we have to offer. Our quests are all tied closely to the ongoing war, so most have you infiltrating an enemy compound, assassinating da big boss, or capturing a strategic location wot holds beer!

4.) What makes WAR special? / Why Is It For Me? by Gerad (86818) and eldavojohn (898314)
On a site like Slashdot, a lot of us are caught up in online RPG games and console wars. I read the overview of your game on your site but--like a lot of people--I'm not sold. What's unique about Warhammer Online, other than the universe that its set in? This could be anything, really: design philosophy, new innovations in game play, new technical accomplishments. It appears to have a lot of 'war' involved in it but is there any social aspects to your online game? Is there diplomacy in Warhammer? Put slightly more bluntly, tell me why I should chose Warhammer Online over World of Warcraft.

Josh Drescher, Associate Producer: Fundamentally, Warhammer Online is about real, meaningful conflict. When we say "war is everywhere," we mean it. From the earliest portions of the game straight on through to the high-end invasion campaigns, players will have the chance to take part in robust, meaningful PvP. The options that exist on the market at the moment really treat PvP like a dangerously "extreme" element of the MMO experience and go to great lengths to make it appeal only to a limited percentage of players. Part of this is out of necessity - poorly conceived PvP can be devastatingly off-putting to new players who set one foot out into the world and get murdered on the spot by griefers. So we see some games that restrict PvP to specialized servers or to high level characters in remote areas or that force players to queue up for an hour to go and play through "safe" content that exists outside of the persistent world entirely. It's no surprise that most MMO players eschew PvP for the traditionally more well-implemented PvE experience.

So, at its core, Warhammer Online seeks to address THAT problem. Our solution is what we call Realm vs. Realm content. Unlike our noble competitors, we really want to give players a reason to go out and experience the excitement of battling real, live players without restricting them to countless replays of the same "seize the windmill" content. When you create your character, you aren't just starting a solo journey in the Warhammer world. You're joining an ARMY. And that army is engaged in an epic conflict that can (and likely WILL) bring the war directly to your front door. That grand, enormous capital city you're running around in today could be a ruined tomb tomorrow if you and your fellows do not defend it tooth and nail. To do so, you'll be given the chance to push deeper and deeper into enemy territory until you finally reach THEIR capital, at which point you'll lay siege to it and - if successful - do things that... well, Slashdot is a FAMILY FRIENDLY place, so let's just say that you'll do terrible, terrible things to the huddled, whimpering survivors of the siege.

Now, you may be wondering how we're going to turn the average PvE-loving "kill ten squirrels and collect some magic daisies" player into a wild-eyed, combat-lusting RvR fanatic. Our game is laid out in such a way that players will have the chance to jump right into the fray if they so desire, but it also offers (through specific lines of quests) a chance for more cautious players to slowly get accustomed to the added danger and excitement of facing off against something other than NPC's. Some early quests will simply ask you to enter an RvR-flagged region of the world to hunt for a specific NPC or accomplish some task. Later, you'll be asked to enter an actual contested battlefield area and contribute to your army's efforts. Eventually, you'll be asked to go out and hunt down an actual player. By that point, we're confident that players will be enjoying themselves so much that they'll be 100% ready to go out and take part in the larger-scale RvR content in Warhammer Online.

In terms of socialization, it's this larger-scale RvR content that will drive much of it. Players will find themselves needing to monitor the advancement of the enemy at all times. To be successful, you'll have to do more than plan guild-only events day after day. Players will find it necessary to communicate and cooperate constantly in order to have a chance of surviving. This is because they will find themselves pressed into defending their homes, their friends and their neighbors at any moment and when things REALLY start to hit the fan, EVERYONE has a part to play. Newer characters will be able to get together and - as a group - take on a significantly more powerful enemy and WIN. A wall of tanks outside the city gates WILL be able to halt the advance of enemy forces. The days of "über guilds" ignoring everyone else and dominating the game are over.

As a quick final note, seeing the words "diplomacy" and "Warhammer" in the same sentence brought a smile to my face. If, by "diplomacy," you mean the pillaging, desecration and slaughter of your hated foes, their homes and their belongings, then yes, it's a VERY diplomatic game. If you meant it in any other way, then no, diplomacy isn't really part of the equation.

5.) EA by llchao (969631)
What game design, content, or production decisions (if any) have been affected by the EA take-over of Mythic?

Jeff Hickman, Senior Producer: Game Design, Content, Art and Production of the game were all well underway before the acquisition took place. Since then, we have received an immense amount of feedback on the game from within EA, and are using this feedback to make the game even better. In general though, they leave us to make the game and the decisions surrounding it. They acquired Mythic for it's MMO expertise, and they are letting us apply that expertise as we think best.

Overall, the purchase of Mythic by EA this year has been a great thing for us and for WAR. Don't get me wrong, there have been bumps along the way, but these are simply growing pains as we at Mythic get used to working within the EA organization. Overall, it has been a great experience and has only lead to positive things for WAR. We have more opportunity to ensure that our production quality is as high as it can possibly be, with a level of polish unprecedented on any Mythic title. To put it simply, EA has supplied us with increased resources, and we are applying those resources to WAR to make the best MMO ever. EA has not changed the focus for WAR in any regard. It has simply enabled us to make it better.

6.) End-Game by milspec74 (472052) and Gerad (86818)
Will the end-game of Warhammer Online focus on Player vs. Player/Realm vs. Realm style play, or be aimed more at the Player vs. Environment experience? As a follow up question, how do you plan on balancing the endgame experience of casual players vs. the endgame experience of hardcores?

Jeff Hickman, Senior Producer: WAR's "end-game" (though I hate to call it that, for there really is no "end"), is a mix of PvE and RvR. The focus is primarily on RvR and the never ending struggle between the Realm of Order and Realm of Destruction, but there is definitely high end PvE content to be had by those who desire it. This PvE content is various and spread throughout the world in quests, large-group boss encounters and massive dungeons that will test the wits and skills of any player or groups of players.

The entire game actually works this way, with a mix of PvE and RvR choices and possibilities throughout the world. Of course the thing that really sets WAR apart is the RvR campaign game, so we are focusing a massive amount of production time and assets on RvR Skirmish, Battlefields, Scenarios and Campaigns. Specifically the Campaign, City Sieges and Sacking is something that we see engaging and holding our players attention for years to come. Being able to capture enemy zones and drive your enemy before you to the gates of their own capital city is going to be such a great experience! But then top that off with the actual capture, looting and pillaging of the city itself, and we have a formula for amazing amounts of long term fun.

The "casual" versus "hardcore" question comes up in regards to everything that we do within the game, and we are developing the game with accessibility and fun built in for all types of players. We are making sure that if a player only has an hour to play, then they will be able to participate in either RvR or PvE or both, and have a rewarding experience doing so. We are also ensuring that there is a deep and compelling experience for those players who desire longer play sessions or who play more often. We are applying many different types of balancing measures to help with everything from population between the realms to how a casual gamer gets access to the best items in the game. No stone is being left unturned in our efforts to make WAR fun for all.

7.) User introduced art? by RingDev (879105)
One of the most entertaining aspects of Warhammer (IMO) next to strategy, planning, and decimating our enemies is the craft and care of the miniatures. And one of the enjoyable parts of playing MMOs is the mod community, whether sanctioned or not. With DAoC there was a definite progression between Mythic and the Mod community. What started out as a non-existent link slowly became a collaboration between Mythic and the modders. Mythic introduced a tool (or information about the tool) to allow modders to implement custom GUI solutions (an idea that has since been used widely in the MMO field). Are there currently any plans to have a similar system that would allow for the introduction of player contributed art to the game? Banners, skins, assorted textures, and the like? Such a system would allow players to not only take pride in their victories, but also in their craftsmanship.

Jeff Hickman, Senior Producer: Currently we do have plans for a fully functional and modifiable User Interface that we will be coordinating with the modding community to use. Our UI will be completely customizable and able to look and feel exactly as a player may want. In regards to other types of art within the game, we do not currently have any plans to allow players to modify the in-game art (characters, world, etc...).

8.) Nay-Sayers by Zonk (12082) Despite the obvious debt that the Warcraft setting owes to Warhammer (and D&D, and Tolkien) there have been several comparisons drawn between Warhammer Online and World of Warcraft. It's obvious that any modern fantasy MMOG will have similarities to what has come before; Everquest owes a great deal to MUDs, for example. That said, how would you respond to onlookers who look at your game, look at WoW, and say that you are trying to capitalize on the success of World of Warcraft by aping many elements of Blizzard's title?

Jeff Hickman, Senior Producer: Hmm, this is always a tough question to answer, mainly because the answer is so simple that people don't like it, but here goes: Look at how long Warhammer has been around (almost 25 years), and at the art, look and feel of our game. You will find that WAR is true to the look of WARHAMMER not any other game. If some other game wants to look like WARHAMMER, then that is their prerogative. What is important to us is that WE stay true to the Warhammer look, which we have.

As for game play elements and comparisons, the MMO industry is an ever evolving place and each game grows successively off of its predecessors. Each game raises the bar of what is "standard" in an MMO and what the players will expect. WAR includes many of what players today would call "expected features" - things like overall movement control, a fully fleshed out guild system or the inclusion of crafting, just to name a few. We especially want to make sure that there is a familiarity with controls, movement and other primary functions. Really, our biggest influence was our own game "Dark Age of Camelot". If you want a taste of how RvR and general game play will feel in WAR, compare us to DAoC, not anyone else. We choose to set ourselves apart with features like our deep and compelling RvR system and our Public Quest system. These are the types of things that will make our game shine.

9.) Mac/Linux versions by BMonger (68213)
Has any thought been given to Mac OS X and/or Linux versions of the game?

There are no plans for a MAC or Linux version of the game at this time.

This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

The Warhammer Online Team Responds

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  • Has me excited. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by The Living Fractal (162153) <banantarr&hotmail,com> on Monday November 27, 2006 @03:05PM (#17005128) Homepage
    When I first heard of WoW I pictured Warcraft on the MMO scale. World PvP. City raids. Realm vs. Realm. Epic PvP.

    That never materialized. And I think when I say this that I speak for many people: The prospect of it finally arriving (in WAR) has me very excited.

    TLF
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward
      The trouble with wars in a MMO is that you can't win. You can kill all your enemies but they just keep respawning...

      I would probably play an MMO wargame that kicked dead players out of the war and allowed one side to win, then reset the server.
      • by yulek (202118)
        years of air warrior, warbirds, and aces high showed how it can be done (captured territories, limited resources for the losing side, eventual arena reset, etc.)
    • by mmalove (919245)
      Wow. I wish that I had mod points to spend, for the simple fact that you managed to make a statement about WOW without resorting to invoking "WE", "EVERYONE", or "CASUAL GAMERS" - and actually showed the nuts to state this as your own opinion. Kudos.

      That said, /signed. I'd really like to see how Warhammer implements PVP objectives and style gaming differently than Warcraft, and makes it such that lower level players can enjoy pvp alongside higher level players. PVP servers in WOW currently seem to repre
    • by eison (56778)
      Meh. Once again, it will never materialize. For all the same reasons - griefers aren't fun, lack of any lasting impact, difficulty with network code for handling hundreds of players, etc.
    • What I wonder is what they'll do to avoid the tipping problem? That is, if one side is thought to be stronger than the other, more people will sign up on that side until such time as it IS stronger--very much so.

      At that point, well, I can see lots of slaughtering and such, but won't one side end up being the poor oft-ganked loser team? Until such point as it's essentially hopeless to play on that side? Or will they try to balance things out by assigning carrots (or penalties) when one side becomes too su
  • by overbom (461949) <overbom@ya h o o.com> on Monday November 27, 2006 @03:07PM (#17005146)
    Good luck dragging the guild away from Warcraft. It's not going to happen without a Mac port. Too bad, your game sounds fun and my group is a big fan of Warhammer Fantasy Roleplaying -- I could stand to kill some more Slaanesh.
    • by 99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) on Monday November 27, 2006 @03:16PM (#17005300)

      Good luck dragging the guild away from Warcraft.

      Yeah, I'm not a WoW addict, but of my friends who play 8 now use Macs. That probably accounts for at least thirty people total that take part in their weekly gaming night that won't be even trying Warhammer.

    • by Wylfing (144940)

      I could stand to kill some more Slaanesh.

      Maybe you'd be disappointed on multiple levels then. It looks like Chaos is only about Tzeentch right now.

    • by Onan (25162)

      Any group ignorant enough to apparently believe that "Mac" is an acronym is probably beyond all hope.

      (I'm always grateful when people expressing negative opinions about Apple or Macs feel compelled to spell it as "MAC". It clarifies right away that they have no idea about what they're talking, so their opinions can safely be ignored without any further examination.)

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by SupremoMan (912191)
      I hear Macs run Windows now...
  • Oh, great. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Lemmy Caution (8378)
    you'll be given the chance to push deeper and deeper into enemy territory until you finally reach THEIR capital, at which point you'll lay siege to it and - if successful - do things that... well, Slashdot is a FAMILY FRIENDLY place, so let's just say that you'll do terrible, terrible things to the huddled, whimpering survivors of the siege.

    You don't think that the media might respond somewhat critically to the idea of an MMO that makes the opportunity for war-rape one of its attractive features, do you? Na
    • You don't think that the media might respond somewhat critically to the idea of an MMO that makes the opportunity for war-rape one of its attractive features, do you? Naww....

      You don't think gamers will listen to what the traditional media thinks do you? That's probably why GTA was such a flop.
    • "You don't think that the media might respond somewhat critically to the idea of an MMO that makes the opportunity for war-rape one of its attractive features, do you? Naww...."

      Maybe. And if it happens it will be a wonderful free marketing campaign for WAR.
    • you'll be given the chance to push deeper and deeper into enemy territory until you finally reach THEIR capital, at which point you'll lay siege to it and - if successful - do things that... well, Slashdot is a FAMILY FRIENDLY place, so let's just say that you'll do terrible, terrible things to the huddled, whimpering survivors of the siege.

      You don't think that the media might respond somewhat critically to the idea of an MMO that makes the opportunity for war-rape one of its attractive features, do you?

      • by dave562 (969951)
        Who mentioned rape? Personally, I was thinking more of taking the survivors and flaying them alive, and pouring out their blood for the glory of Khorne. And taking their children away into slavery, to grow up as corrupted and mutated abominations of Chaos. Rape is just too mundane.

        Blood for the Blood God! Skulls for the Skull Throne!!!

  • This may actually get me interested in MMOs. I can get slightly addicted to things, which is why I have been trying to avoid them ever since I first tried some out.
  • by astrotek (132325) on Monday November 27, 2006 @03:14PM (#17005272) Homepage
    World of Warcraft has a horrible PVP system because Blizzard never approached Realm vs Realm in a way that made you want to help out your side because it was fun. Add in instanced PVP and the randomness that makes world PVP will always be dead.

    Warhammer on the other hand seems to get this somewhat. The only problem I see is that they are asking me to invest what probably amounts to 3-5 games worth of money into their game over a year. Why will this epic combat still be epic down the line when I'm fighting the same people over the same land I've been looking at for a year. Why cant the scenarios take place on the larger battlefield. Instanced Combat is such a cop out.

    "Don't worry we will have EPIC combat with predictable balanced encounters"
    • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

      by james_orr (574634)
      Where does it say WAR will have instanced PvP combat? My impression from reading the above is that it won't, or if it does it will not be exclusively instanced.

      I do agree that instanced PvP sucks. Even in Guild Wars I do not care for the PvP, but I do like the PvE.

      DAoC is 5 years old now and people still play that. Not everybody will play for 5 years of course, but I think that shows it is possible for Mythic to create an RvR game with long-lasting appeal.
      • "In Scenarios, you'll be able to jump into a "fair" fight of balanced sides (augmented by NPC's if need be)." This sounds a lot like WoW's instanced battlegrounds. It's only one of 4 types of pvp. Of the others "Campaign, and Skirmishes" don't sound instanced. "In Battlefields, you are fighting for control of a landmark or resource for the benefit of your army. It could be just you against twenty enemies or a more even fight, depending on the importance placed on the objective at that time by each army
    • by tknd (979052) on Monday November 27, 2006 @03:51PM (#17005854)

      World of Warcraft has a horrible PVP system because Blizzard never approached Realm vs Realm in a way that made you want to help out your side because it was fun. Add in instanced PVP and the randomness that makes world PVP will always be dead.

      Warhammer on the other hand seems to get this somewhat. The only problem I see is that they are asking me to invest what probably amounts to 3-5 games worth of money into their game over a year. Why will this epic combat still be epic down the line when I'm fighting the same people over the same land I've been looking at for a year. Why cant the scenarios take place on the larger battlefield. Instanced Combat is such a cop out.

      Other games like Shadowbane and Daoc (also owned and developed by EA Mythic) have already been done in this style. I still play Daoc to this day and you have a point, it does more or less work out if you throw enough rules at it. Other games like Shadowbane failed miserably because there were no rules. When there are no rules, and you give players a choice to choose a side, eventually one side wins and becomes a massive zerg. The remaining players are always outnumbered and can never put up a fight against the overwhelming numbers.

      The only reason daoc survives is because of a set number of teams, certain tools and group setups that make zerg "busting" possible, and the community's own recognition of the problem. Now, it's no longer small groups whining about zergs or the underpopulated realm whining about being outnumbered (though it still happens to a certain degree). The players have learned to deal with the problem and construct their own communities to keep the game fun and somewhat balanced. For this reason, there exists different types of RvR in daoc: solo, small group, 8v8, and zerg. You're free to participate in all of them and EA/Mythic doesn't even put any rules to say that they exist. The player community has more or less developed these rules. While there's still nothing stopping a full group from killing solos or a zerg killing a small group, there's still a good portion of people willing to respect other fights. Only the solo players suffer because they're pretty much getting hunted by everyone and anyone and a majority of the targets are bigger fish (groups) trying to kill solos.

      Anytime I hear about WoW I hear about how it's PvE is great and its PvP is terrible. But the daoc community has given up on PvE and focuses on RvR. The only time we whine about PvE is when EA/Mythic comes even close to introducing a new grind or make the grind harder. We only touch PvE as necessary and most players spend most of their time in RvR.

  • Please... (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    No more fantasy, let's have a 40k MMO instead :(
  • by bigdady92 (635263) on Monday November 27, 2006 @03:20PM (#17005356) Homepage
    Did a search for Skaven. Nothing. No mention of the ratmen. How can you have a game without ratmen and still call it Warhammer?

    They call themselves evil? Break out the deathmaster, start throwing in some epic underground areas in which players are fighting tooth and nail trying to get through places intead of wide open areas. Cut off movement, bring back stealth and light effects, and make it count.

    That's the issue I have with WoW. Everything is so vast and huge and open. I like the challenge and difficulty that is running up the tunnel in WSG carrying the flag and that total chaos that erupts from 10v10 in a small area and having the victor roll out with the flag and carry it home.

    Warhammer has a rich underground history with the dwarves and skaven. Use it to their advantage. Build on it, deploy the ratmen with the goblins and you'll see my money flow from WoW to WAR in a heartbeat.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by saethone (1032546)
      Skaven are in the game, they've already posted some great concept art for them. They are not a playable race at release though...but Mythic has hinted that they would like to add them in an expansion at a later date.
    • by the_raptor (652941) on Monday November 27, 2006 @06:00PM (#17007888)
      If you where a real Warhammer fan you would know that skaven are supposed to be so secretive that most people don't believe in them. The frequency of armies fighting on the table top has nothing to do with the frequency of those battles occurring in the background fluff (eg most battles would be between humans and orcs). Skaven openly attacking a city is some what less frequent then a full scale Chaos invasion.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by geekoid (135745)
      "...deploy the ratmen with the goblins and you'll see my money flow from WoW to WAR in a heartbeat."

      Don't get caught up in the "If I think it would be neat, then every else must think so too" trap.

      Most WoW players are not 'gamers'. They are there because the game is pretty, expansive, easy and fun.

      The family demographic generally doesn't like dark, tunnel and confined.

      I think you make an excellent suggestion, and I would like to see it as well, but don't kid yourself about market realities.
  • Follow-Up Question (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Tom (822) on Monday November 27, 2006 @03:23PM (#17005396) Homepage Journal
    9.) Mac/Linux versions by BMonger (68213)
    Has any thought been given to Mac OS X and/or Linux versions of the game?

    There are no plans for a MAC or Linux version of the game at this time.


    What has to happen so that you'll make a Mac version? What has to happen for a Linux version?
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Sqwubbsy (723014)
      What has to happen so that you'll make a Mac version? What has to happen for a Linux version?

      I'm guessing that either OS would have to attain more than 5% market share.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        I'm guessing that either OS would have to attain more than 5% market share.

        Take a look at the top 10 games of last year. Notice anything about their Mac support? 9/10 support the mac today. 5/10 supported the mac with the initial release, including all of the top 3. Whether this is causative or simply correlative to some other factor, it does not bode well for this Warhammer game. A lot of people look at the mac and dismiss said market as insignificant. If you think "5% of sales why bother?" maybe you ne

      • by Tom (822)
        I'm guessing that either OS would have to attain more than 5% market share.

        Excellent, then it should be out simultaneously.

        If you've been living under a rock: The Mac market is still small, but it's growing strong. The MacBook Pro was the best-selling notebook this season. There's definitely more than 5% share right now, and if Vista is as bad as every evidence indicates, there'll be well over 10% by the time WAR ships.
    • by realmolo (574068)
      What has to happen?

      There would have to be enough cash-up-front pre-orders for the Mac and Linux version to completely cover the cost of development. Plus %10 profit.

      No one cares about the Mac and Linux game markets. They're too small. Hell, a lot of developers don't even care about the *Windows* game market, because it's too small compared to the the console market.

      There a reason so many MMORPGs are being made for the PC. It's the only "genre" that can't be done well on consoles (no keyboard), and it's the
      • There would have to be enough cash-up-front pre-orders for the Mac and Linux version to completely cover the cost of development. Plus %10 profit.

        Or EA, who owns Mythic, could tell them to do it since it is good business.

        No one cares about the Mac and Linux game markets. They're too small.

        Umm, that's why 9 of the top 10 selling games of 2005 have a Mac version?

        Hell, a lot of developers don't even care about the *Windows* game market, because it's too small compared to the the console market.

        Oh, w

      • I would be very curious to see the breakdown of WoW subscribers by operating system. Does anyone know if Blizzard has released those sort of numbers?
  • ...like it did for Air Warrior. EA bought and systematically killed what was arguably the best MMO WWII combat flight simulator... It was really sad. Hope they don't fuck this one up too.
  • by Soul-Burn666 (574119) on Monday November 27, 2006 @03:26PM (#17005432) Journal
    here [google.com]

    If you could find the Gamespot E3 feature with the game devs, you MUST watch it. These guys are totally mad ;)
  • I must say that an epic battle between armies actual players sound like the game I've been looking for. However, I've never played an MMORPG. I'm a bit apprehensive about investing in one because I do have a lot of other things going on. All I hear about is that PvP in these games suck because people with nothing else to do become too strong. And that's among the other complaints of being a time/money pit.

    Can anyone suggest why this game would be a good one to try out? The gameplay sounds quite cool,

    • by jfodale (1032534)
      If you were to jump into an MMORPG (probably ill-advised), this sounds as if it may be a good one for you since (1) they are claiming that it will be accessible to casual players and (2) it seems to have content you enjoy.

      Although, the beta is not yet available so no one can really tell you that for sure right now.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by SatanicPuppy (611928) *
      There was a brief period where Planetside was an excellent all-combat MMO, with massive player vs player battles. I remember some early fights that were truly epic, far and away the best combat experiences I've ever had in a game. Didn't last though...Everything devolved into zergdom, and it ceased to be interesting to me.
  • Chaos (Score:5, Interesting)

    by jfodale (1032534) on Monday November 27, 2006 @03:27PM (#17005454) Homepage
    Although I'm a bit bummed it isn't 40K, I read that this basically sums up one of the first quests for the Chaos race: "You start off attacking a mostly unarmed Empire village. You kill everyone there (some pitifully try to defend themselves). Then you mutilate the bodies. Then you load the mutilated body parts into a cannon. Finally, you fire the cannon into a nearby Empire fort that is under siege to demoralize them." Ok, I'm psyched. I'll gladly take that over killing 10 desert beetles.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by meringuoid (568297)
      "You start off attacking a mostly unarmed Empire village. You kill everyone there (some pitifully try to defend themselves). Then you mutilate the bodies. Then you load the mutilated body parts into a cannon. Finally, you fire the cannon into a nearby Empire fort that is under siege to demoralize them."

      Oh hell yeah. Proper. Evil. Content. I haven't felt this good since I set Zaalbar on Mission.

      BLOOD FOR THE BLOOD GOD!

  • This does sound intriguing and a slight improvement on the MMO... if you like PvP.

    I suffered through the first three years of UO with rampant player killing (not consenual PvP).

    I quit DAoC not only because it quickly became a tedious grind but also because the heart of the content dealt with RvR play.

    I've beta tested numerous MMOG's, but I completely avoided Guild Wars because it sounds similar to WAR - all PvP all the time.

    I play characters on normal and PvP realms in WoW. I see the same stereotypical

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by AlphaDecay (150156)
      'To me it always boils down to "ruin someone else's day."'

      To be honest, your approach to the PvP server is wrong. When you start a character on your server you should think - "at any point in my character's existence I may run into other players that have the sole objective of stopping me from doing what I want to do." If you can get past that statement then you are ready for a PvP server. Thats it.

      When I run into a situation where I'm stopped from my immediate objective either I try and find a solut
      • by Avatar8 (748465)
        It took me a long time just to get past "I hate dieing." :-) WoW minimized that greatly, and PvP death in WoW is one of the best I've seen implemented.

        This is what truly bothers me about PvP. I should not have to alter my gameplay just because someone feels like interfering with me. This is a game that I play (and pay) for a limited time some days to enjoy not be fouled up by someone else. For constant interference in my projects and goals, I can always go back to work.

        In your example, what if your only

        • by drsquare (530038)
          I should not have to alter my gameplay just because someone feels like interfering with me.

          Why would you want to play a multi-player game if other players cannot interfere with you? If you're playing monopoly do you whine because a griefer put a hotel on Mayfair?
    • PvP servers just have more NPC's with a little better AI :). Unfortunately in most implementations they don't drop loot ...
      • While the "NPCs" in PvP have better tactical AI, their natural language processing and generation often leaves a lot to be desired.

        I remember when the best conversation I had in an irc channel was with its bot...
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by slartibart (669913)
      I don't know that it's even possible to implement a PvP system that's bears any resemblance to actual war, and is also fun.
      The problem is that it's a zero sum game. The joy people get from being on the winning side is reflected by equal suffering on the losing side. When you try to scale up the joy (say, by creating month-long campaigns), you scale up the suffering for half your subscribers and they end up quitting. Games are supposed to be fun, after all. After 3 iterations of this, you only have 12%
    • Guild Wars (Score:2, Informative)

      by dbug78 (151961)
      While PvP is a prominent feature of GW, it's really not required. I advanced through the entire game (chapter 1) while only participating in a few PvP matches. There's only one point where you're required to play PvP and that's to complete the 'tutorial' section.

      Some may argue that playing GW without playing PvP is missing the point, but that's an opinion that will vary with players. Certainly the focus in GW is on matching skills against another team in a complex rock-paper-scissors game, but I still fo
    • I have yet to hear a valid reason of why people like PvP: "Challenge of a human opponent," "Unpredictable," "Fair chance," or "Dispense justice" are the most frequent comments I hear from PvPers (not to be confused with PKers). To me it always boils down to "ruin someone else's day."

      Huh? NPCs are predictable. Once you learn the pattern there is no challenge. If games had an AI that learned as it went then things might be different, but the state (and processing power required to implement) of current AI
      • If games had an AI that learned as it went then things might be different, but the state (and processing power required to implement) of current AI is lacking.

        I'll disagree with you here, it is pretty easy to make an AI that will wipe the floor of all but the VERY best human players. The problem is that no one would play against it. Most AIs are criminally crippled in the types of decisions that they can make - and therefor will tend to play bad, specifically so they can be beaten.

        For example - is th

        • For example - is there any particular reason that an AI would every miss in an FPS combat... They know exactly where they are, exactly where you are, what your direction and rate of movement is, how fast the projectile flys - heck they can even pick up tendencies in your movement patterns. Now they should be able to place a round pretty much exactly where you will be (given your current tendencies) each and every time. Ok, that is FPS games.

          The developers could also give the computer more health and armor,
    • by Obyron (615547)
      I have yet to hear a valid reason of why people like PvP: "Challenge of a human opponent," "Unpredictable," "Fair chance," or "Dispense justice"

      You just named four pretty good ones. The problem is that no one is neutral about PvP. You either enjoy the challenge and the dynamics of it, or you cry about the big bad bullies who are obviously deranged serial killers in real life. If I want a PvE experience I'll play console games offline. MMOs are all about interacting with other people. You trade with them
      • by Avatar8 (748465)

        You just named four pretty good ones.

        Those aren't reasons; those are validations that I hear from the PvPers. It still comes down to "I like to ruin someone else's day."

        You either enjoy the challenge and the dynamics of it, or you cry about the big bad bullies who are obviously deranged serial killers in real life.

        Spoken like a hardcore PKer that disconnects the people behind the characters. I think quite the opposite of the PKers I've encountered. (Again, not to be confused with PvPers.) PKers are peop

        • by walnutmon (988223)
          Do you ever look at what you are writing, and while you are writing it, you realize that you are a fucking wuss bag faggot? Play super hello kitty suprise you overly emotional cunt and stop analyzing the motives behind a level60 warlock who has killed you eight times. You are playing a game where you are in a war against eachother, he is a mother fucking orc, he is fucking killing you, WHY THE FUCK ARE YOU SUPRISED?!

          Leave your pussy elitist "high level brain" bullshit to the real world. Games are fucking
          • by tm2b (42473)
            Somehow the "real man" above still manages to come across as being about 13 years old ("No, I'm not!" I can see him responding, "I'm 15!").

            Real men and other mature adults don't speak to each other that way, child. Even if they are losing their bladder contorl internally over how terrified they are of homosexuality, as you seem to be.
          • by Avatar8 (748465)
            I'll agree with tm2b on this one.

            I see that you have major issues and that you applied a number of your issues to what you read within what I wrote.

            It's these sort of extremist attitudes about games and the inability to discuss differences intelligently and calmly that end up providing poor images for gaming in general.

            Since you made many assumptions and personally attacked me and my opinions, I'll return the favor.

            Please, take your Ritalin, go back to school and let the adults talk.

        • by Obyron (615547)
          This kind of response is actually my problem with people who are avidly non-PK, and unlike you I don't make a PK/PvP distinction. It is what it is, and all the semantic wrangling isn't going to change that. How can you honestly draw parallels between PvP on a game and real life crime? You claim that you don't think PvPers are sociopathic murderers, but then you turn around and compare it stealing people's purses. On a game that I've played for about 9 years, and am actually an admin on (it's an old-school M
          • by Avatar8 (748465)
            All excellent points, and I agree with you to some extent.

            I'm getting a laugh how so many of these replies point back at me and state "if you get emotionally attached..." I guess I was too general. When I first played UO (my first MMO), I did get upset about getting killed by a player. The idea that another player would kill me for no reason at all never occurred to me. I had the (naive) ideal that we'd all play the game cooperatively. That was nine years ago. Death, loss, defeat do not bother me any more

    • by Jaeph (710098)
      I've read rants like yours in forums across the internet. They always are confused, and miss a key point.

      Part of the maturation process is learning to deal with winning and losing. The people who can't handle winning or losing are the immature ones. It has little to do with the boasting/whining - you can always /ignore in any of these games - it's the people who can't handle winning or losing.

      I'm not saying that's *your* problem. But let's keep our eye on the ball here: it's about people who can't handl
    • If you don't want to PvP, play Zelda. It's World of WARcraft. Or just play on a carebear server and never flag.
      • by tm2b (42473)
        I keep hearing PvPers say, "just never flag." I can't tell whether they're being deliberately disingenuous, or simply lack the experience (or imagination) to understand that not flagging doesn't cut it.

        "Never flagging" would be great if there weren't PvPers who like to wait until PvEers are in combat, then flag and jump into the combat area, hoping to get hit by an AoE. Either the PvEer has to avoid AoEs (which really sucks for some classes), or he gets ganked by the griefer.

        It's particularly thrill
      • by Avatar8 (748465)
        Re-read my post. I do play on a normal server. I never flag. I don't duel.

        I was suggesting that because Warhammer is so PvP centric, it's not going to survive long because of the typical actions of the majority of PvPers I've ever encountered in all the different MMO's I've played or tested.

        As tm2b stated, even removing the PvP factor, their are still griefers. Regardless of how many mechanical, technical or logical safeguards are within the game, the griefers will find some way to ruin the game for some

    • by _Sprocket_ (42527)

      I have yet to hear a valid reason of why people like PvP: "Challenge of a human opponent," "Unpredictable," "Fair chance," or "Dispense justice" are the most frequent comments I hear from PvPers (not to be confused with PKers). To me it always boils down to "ruin someone else's day."

      Its an interesting behavior. When presented with complete anarchy - the ability to do whatever you want to do... what do you do? It seems many choose to destroy. Its interesting so few choose to build.

      My WoW guild is on a R

      • by Avatar8 (748465)
        This sounds very familiar. We did something quite similar in UO. We built a town and defended it not only from the monsters but from players who would come attack our town and our "citizens."

        Defending attackers is definitely within my realm of "justice;" corpse camping, however, I feel is dishonorable, but it is a game mechanic and a way to deter future attacks (maybe).

        Back to my theme of "why PvP at all?" Do you enjoy watching the alarm channel? Isn't there something more enjoyable that you'd rather be

        • by _Sprocket_ (42527)

          Back to my theme of "why PvP at all?" Do you enjoy watching the alarm channel? Isn't there something more enjoyable that you'd rather be doing? Why are the actions of the griefers allowed to control what players do? I'd rather not spend my time reacting to a griefer or have my game altered or interrupted because a player feels it is entertaining to watch me struggle or worse, when I do kill them, they simply come back because to them killing or being killed is the sum of the game.

          I suppose at the most bas

    • by drsquare (530038)

      I have yet to hear a valid reason of why people like PvP

      I've yet to hear a valid reason why people like killing mindless NPCs over and over again. Like manual labour except you ain't getting paid.

      To me it always boils down to "ruin someone else's day."

      Here's a tip: never play Counterstrike, or Quake, or Monopoly, or any sport. Horrible people will be out to beat you and ruin your stay.

      Regardless of how balanced the playing field, someone has to lose

      Oh nose! Let's eliminate losing, lest someone's feelings me

  • ...this game will fade into obscurity. There's no way to manage real-time PVP in a 24-hour real world where there are players connecting from all over the planet. My uberguild captures your capital at 6pm GMT. Your uberguild retakes it and captures our capital at 6:00am GMT. Wash, rinse, repeat.
  • I wish I had gotten this in there for original questioning, but with a little luck, I may still get some insight...

    What if you don't like PvP? What does WAR have to offer?

    I have had many, many bad experiences with PvP in multiple games (MMO, FPS, and Live RPGs) that have left a very bad taste in my mouth. Over all, I have found that PvP simply brings out the worst in people. Even if half of the team you are on, or against, are good sports, the rest are not, and things get nasty. Unless you have the choi
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by jfodale (1032534)
      One of the new things on the PvE scene of WAR that I've heard about is public quests. Quests where you walk into an area and everyone on your side is automatically given the same quest whether they are grouped or not. Everyone on your team collectively works on this quest together, so when someone does something to forward your objective, everyone benefits.

      There were a couple of examples of this that I read about with varying degrees of PvE-ness.

      1) PvE - A giant is having his heels nipped at by a pa
  • EA sucks (Score:3, Interesting)

    by boarder (41071) on Monday November 27, 2006 @04:53PM (#17006804) Homepage
    As I was reading this I started getting a little excited. I quit WoW not too long ago for many reasons, and some of the stuff mentioned in this interview seemed to address some of those reasons.

    Then I got to the part about EA being involved and I pretty much stopped reading.

    I will not buy anything from EA again. I don't like their business practices and feel they are very bad for the gaming industry in the long term.

    So grats to Mythic selling out to EA... I'm sure they made a lot of money in the deal. It's just too bad I'll never consider their product now.
    • by startled (144833)
      Then I got to the part about EA being involved and I pretty much stopped reading.

      I will not buy anything from EA again. I don't like their business practices and feel they are very bad for the gaming industry in the long term.


      I have a less principled opposition. I've just been burned too many times by EA's buggy, unsupported titles. Compare any title EA's ever released with Blizzard's Starcraft, Warcraft, or Diablo. I have occasional complaints about WoW's support, but I can't think of any conceivable wa
  • by Thrymm (662097)
    The one thing about Dark Age of Camelot that kept me playing for a few years was RvR.... Sure I would level up in PvE areas, and sometimes use the Battlegrounds. But the adrenaline rush of being in the RvR areas even to xp off npc mobs was fun since you didnt know you were being hunted until too late. You would know the risks, and if you didnt like it, you didnt need to go into those areas and then could stay in the PvE zones. Had a little bit of everything for everyone. The sieges were especially fun as we
  • by Jonah Hex (651948) <hexdotms.gmail@com> on Monday November 27, 2006 @05:49PM (#17007690) Homepage Journal
    Disclaimer: I come from a history of Ultima Online, Chesapeake shard, pre-everything.

    How are the political boundaries going to be maintained? Player run towns in UO were not territories, even when they brought in the Faction wars for territory it still didn't mean a particular faction was actually currently holding any land with bodies. (Abyss factions were much better) I've been through the days when someone would get their key looted and you'd come home to an empty house. (and even earlier when it meant they now owned your house) I've had wars with PKs and griefers on my doorstep, and cursed them every time. I've solo'd Faction sigils with GM hiding and not much else, half the time they were totally undefended. I miss fighting against an intelligent enemy, damn Trammel to hell.

    So how do you gain and keep territory? Who gives the marching orders for the entire world? Who determines where the border is from day to day and minute to minute, and how does the player find out it needs to be patrolled or their side will lose territory? How can I be part of a world changing side in this fight? And if it's on my doorstep, will I want to give up playing because it's unbalanced?

    this has been a rant from the former Mayor of Oberon Pass, DogMeat [MoO]
  • I didn't see this question asked, but... why Warhammer as opposed to Wahammer 40k? Wouldn't a more Sci-Fi oriented game instead of a Fantasy one helped to stake out a new market?
  • Seriously.... if one side can lay siege to, invade and destroy the other side's capital, what happens then? Is it up to the players on the losing side to rebuild the city? Do naked fairies show up and put everything back together? Also, when your capital is destroyed, I suppose that you have to zip to a different area to buy supplies, etc... Or maybe you have to fight your way out of the city. Urgh.
    Well, it is a moot point for me anyway. It sounded interesting until they mentioned tha
  • After I quit WoW I started looking around for "The Next Big Thing" and while Vanguard seemed nice, Warhammer Online really got me interested because it looked like WoW+PvP. I devoured everything I could online, from fansites to videos to E3 demos downloaded through some shady sites. I loved it. Unfortunately, I then discovered that they were being published by EA. I am on a self-imposed EA boycott because of several reasons including their Battlefield 2142 Spyware fiasco, their policing of EA torrent si
  • It seems to me like WAR is promising one thing that hasn't ever really been done all that well, and that is the ability to actually influence the game world with your actions. When I first started playing WoW and I saw Stormwind my thought was, "This place is cool. When do I get to fight off the hordes of horde invaders?" Alas, such a thing will never happen. Rationally, I understand why from a game point of view... some people, the majority of players actually need to have a "safe" area to play in, oth

  • By far this is the best set of corporate entity responses. Ever.

    What really made this actually enjoyable to read was the fact the responders didn't put any BS out there or try to overshadow questions by pumping themselves up on other points or simply responding without actually answering the question (looking at you Dean Hachamovitch). Bonus points for the one instance where they didn't answer by being straight-forward and saying they didn't know yet instead of something like "it'll be a surprise".

    I wi

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