Gamasutra Articles

Gamasutra recently posted a few OSG related articles.

First and foremost is a new interview with the lead designer of Civilization V. They cover a range of topics, from the art style and music of the game, to the popularity of the genre itself. They use the same screen shots that have been available fors several months though.

Next is another article about EVE online and describing their single-shard approach to the MMO. The article again emphasizes the game’s strategy to solve technology shortcomings, in this case the inability to host too many players in a single game space, with design decisions.

Finally, there’s this article: “Zynga, Ngmoco and Evony debate whether mobile, social networking, and dedicated websites are the right moves — and each has its own answer to the question.” I think especially interesting is that Evony was included in the discussion, out of all the OSG companies that could have been chosen. I think that speaks volumes both to the current blindspot that the majority of American gamers still have to OSG’s, and the success of Evony’s risky martketing.

Cheers,
Oliver

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Mid-Week Links

Just a couple of quick links here.

To follow the previous post about EVE Online, Gamasutra has an interview with CCP discussing EVE Online’s steep learning curve (described as “vertical”). This is definitely an issue with OSG’s, as a new player can easily be discouraged if he either doesn’t know what he’s doing or has to sit through a long tutorial before actually getting to play the game.

Might and Magic Heroes Kingdoms now has an iPad client, even though they’ve still yet to release in the States…

Cheers,
Oliver

EVE Online

Gamasutra posted an article about EVE Online, comparing its content strategy with those of traditional MMO’s (ie World of Warcraft, etc). For those that don’t know, EVE Online is one of the most successful space-themed MMOs. It was released in 2003 by Iceland based CCP. The article suggests that what makes EVE so successful is meaningful in-game interaction between players, something found in OSG’s.

Most MMO’s rely on new content (dungeons, raids, etc) to generate gameplay. In fact, World of Warcraft recently released another content pack, “Cataclysm”. The problem is that players will eventually finish the content, regarless of how much there is, and it is very expensive to create more. Instead of creating linear content EVE Online, and OSG’s, focus on creating a system for players to interact, and let the players create the content. If my Ikariam alliance goes to war again, that’s fluid player-driven content that I don’t have to wait for the developers to release.

Also, purusing the article’s comments revealed this gem: a music video made by the EVE Online Team. It may not be safe for work due to crass language, but it’s very interesting to get a look at the people behind the game. It’s nice to see a game that’s made by actual people, instead of a faceless corporation. The Travian Crewchats accomplish this to an extent, but it would be cool to see a video of them at work.

Cheers,
Oliver