Stargate Worlds. Huh?

I’ve been hearing a LOT about Stargate Worlds lately. And speaking as a dedicated geeky SF fan who used to go to every area SF convention when she lived in Northern California, all I can say is… Huh?

I mean, I kinda liked the movie, have it on DVD and watch it occasionally for some hot Kurt Russell action, and yes, I know they made it into a TV series. I watched an episode, once. There was this guy who used to be an alien, but didn’t know it, and the Stargate people turned him human, but when a doctor left a laptop with his complete medical records with him and he turned it on and saw that he was really an alien, he turned into an alien again. And I guess he was a vampire.

I don’t mean to be flip or insult Stargate fans, of which I know there are many. I just didn’t get the show. I guess they eventually also rediscovered Atlantis, which spawned its own show. What I’m getting at here, is, why don’t they make an MMO for a more popular SF TV series, like, say, Battlestar Galactica? Or a world-in-a-spaceship thing like Robert Heinlein’s “Orphans of the Sky” or Gene Wolfe’s “Book of the Long Sun” (excellent series, by the way). That concept was used in an old Canadian TV series starring Kier “David Bowman” Dullea called “The Starlost” that I watched when I was a kid, and any MMO based on it would definitely be better than the series.

But the real issue I have is, this is a show that has such a limited appeal I doubt I know anyone in real life who has even heard of it — how can this possibly succeed? I am actually also a little hopeful. If a niche MMO becomes profitable, that may help open the way for even more niche MMOs in the future. Let’s get away from the place we are now which insists that any game with only 200K subscribers is a failure.

The stats are kinda interesting…

* Unreal 3 Engine and Big World back end – as used by Vanguard. If you liked it there, you’ll like it here.

* Two factions – why just two? It’s be tough to find just two factions ANYWHERE on Earth, unless you limited your sample size to two.

* Classes: Jaffa, Goa’uld, Asgard, human soldier, scientist, archeologist, and commando – I kinda figured out the last four, but wtf are the first three? Asgard — does this class have anything to do with Norse mythology? Which actually would be kinda cool.

* No vehicle combat or player controlled starships – even though the movie didn’t have much to do with space, I guess the series does (I thought the Stargates were used instead of starships — there’s probably a reason a show called “Stargate” uses space ships instead that I don’t know. My guess: space ships look cooler than metal arches.). Anyway, if you have a space ship in your game, why not let people steer? This is one of my big probs with Star Trek Online.

* The MMOG will follow the events from SG1 but feature different stories: Replicator War, the Apophis War, the Tok’ra war with the Goa’uld, etc. — no non-fan knows what this means. Way to draw in new people.

* 15 USD monthly subscription rate — interesting to see if a niche MMO can sustain this.

* Possibility that SG cast members to do voice-overs — I know McGuyver is on the show.

* Evolutionary Combat and Advanced AI — one thing clear about all MMOs is that the enemies are built to DIE. You can EASILY program an AI to be very good at killing the player — the point is not to make them fight better, but to die more entertainingly. I have never played an MMO in which the bosses or normal mobs showed the slightest bit of real intelligence, though the Bane in Tabula Rasa flanked me once, which was cool. Anyway, I would take that with a grain of salt. A mob that is any good at killing players will find itself shunned.

I hope for the best for Stargate MMO. I just can’t help thinking that this fills a space where a Babylon 5 MMO was supposed to be.

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Tipa

Web developer for a Connecticut-based insurance company that's over 200 years old! Also a bicycler, a blogger, a kayaker, and a hunter of bridges.

25 thoughts on “Stargate Worlds. Huh?”

  1. I suspect the hope is that not only is it a genre outside fantasy, it’s sci-fi is not the “flying through space” sci-fi of EVE, etc. The very nature of having the Stargates allows for nearly limitless worlds to explore and adventure in.

    The IP began with the movie, then expanded to two separate tv shows. Galactica and B5 can’t claim that. Cheyenne Mountain (the devs) also collaborates with the tv show for scripts, etc. (Although is Atlantis still on?) Anyway, unlike say LOTRO where they have rights to only the books, not the movies, therefore the movie studio cannot provide music, audio clips, graphics, etc. Cheyenne Mountain has a definite advantage.

    What turned me off (and maybe they’ve changed their track, I haven’t been keeping up on this title) is initially they said they’d have a low level cap and very easy to reach it. They wanted to promote creating alts and re-do the content. Maybe I’m just looking at it the wrong way, but that smacks of superficial game play and a lack of content to begin with.

    And yes, niche MMO’s can absolutely succeed and thrive. EVE is arguable a niche MMO. DDO sure as hell is a niche MMO and not only is it surviving, it’s doubled in content and the audience actually seems to be slowly growing recently.

    As for the classes and races, I’ll fire it back to your EQ2: if you shove EQ2 in front of a new player wouldn’t you expect them to ask “wtf is a Froglok? A Kerran? Huh? Ok what’s this Inquisitor business? This is too confusing, I can’t relate…” No, if the setting, theme or game play is attractive, just as in any new movie or novel, they will immerse themselves in it and learn the characters and the world they live in. Just like you did way back when…

  2. Stargate SG-1 was the longest running and arguably one of the most well received, supported, and loved Sci-Fi series ever. Having SG-Atlantis carry on the story line, characters, and theme of Stargate for now (I think) 4 seasons is a testament to the popularity of the series.

    There are very few Sci-Fi series that have the content to become viable MMORPGs. Star Trek and Stargate are the two that already have the content to sustain a MMO for more than a decade and that is the exact reason they are both in production. Making a Battlestar Galactica or Orphans of the Sky MMO or even a Babylon 5 MMO wouldn’t make sense. Not that they wouldn’t make good MMOs, but they aren’t the obvious picks.

    Stargate truly is a smart choice for a MMO.

  3. The concept of stargates allowing players to access a virtually infinite number of worlds to explore is a very exciting concept, but the limitations of computers and game engines at this point and time will make that number of “infinite” possibilities seem quite small, doncha think?

    I remember a while ago I was participating in a thread over at MMORPG.com about what sci-fi game would make a great MMO. Someone brought up Dr. Who, which has been my favorite sci-fi program since I was in junior high. But as a game devs would be hard pressed to offer the feeling of a world of “infinite” possibilities when on the television shows, the characters are free to explore almost anywhere in time and space. That’s one of the beauties of a show like Dr. Who and even Stargate on a smaller level.

  4. Just FYI. StarGate: SG-1 went on for 10 seasons and was probably one of the longest running sci-fi shows in TV history….even longer than Babylon 5 (…another favorite of mine…). It does have kind of a cult following, much like Firefly, but don’t underestimate the potential power this licence could have in an MMO.

  5. @Talyn — I wouldn’t start a new player on EQ2 at all. I’d start them on WoW, which severely limits your choices in the beginning, introducing complexity as you level. Then once familiar with the genre, show them EQ2. WoW is like a beginner’s tutorial in “what is an MMO?”

    But nothing I learned in WoW or EQ2 (or EvE) would explain what an Asgard is. Though, as I mentioned, if they let you play some sort of minor god, that would be totally cool. The Asgardians back in mythology could die. And definitely would have no hope of winning Armageddon without mortal help.

    @Keen — I had no idea Stargate was that popular, and I am a huge SF fan. To be honest, I hadn’t really heard anything about the series (aside from noting it on the SF Channel program schedule) until the MMO was announced. I can’t imagine comparing it to Star Trek, a show *everyone* has heard of. And look how much trouble they are having with THEIR MMO.

    I guess, unlike Perpetual, which has been working on STO preproduction for years, Cheyenne Mountain is going to take that dangerous next step and actually release a game. And for that they should be thanked :)

  6. Just to follow up on Keen’s comments (pulling from IMDB.com, Wikipedia, TVGuide.com, etc.):

    * – Stargate SG-1 became the longest-running North American science fiction series on television, surpassing the nine seasons and 202 episodes of the The X-Files.

    * – In 2007, after completion of the series run, Stargate SG-1 was named as number 28 on TV Guide’s list of “The 30 Top Cult Shows Ever”.

    * – The character ‘Jack O’Neill’ was ranked #10 in TV Guide’s list of the “25 Greatest Sci-Fi Legends” (1 August 2004 issue).

    * – There are over 30,000,000 entries for the term “stargate” when using Google.

    * – No less than two Stargate films are currently planned, a continuation of the Stargate SG-1 story lines. Executive producer Robert C. Cooper will both write and direct the first film, to be named Stargate: The Ark of Truth. The first movie “has to do with wrapping up the Ori storyline, which is the storyline that has taken prominence for the last two years of the show,” said cast member Michael Shanks. The second movie, called Stargate: Continuum, started shooting June 1, 2007. Executive producer Brad Wright will write the second film, with Martin Wood directing. That story is a time travel story taking SG-1 to the past. “It has something to do with our main villain Ba’al (Cliff Simon) doing something in the past,” Shanks said. “He basically finds a way to lift the Stargate from Earth so the Stargate Program never happens, and I imagine the characters will have to go through some process to reset the clock and fix everything”.

    * – In December, 2006, there were suggestions that a third Stargate series was being developed by the team behind Stargate SG-1 and Stargate Atlantis. The working title of this series is Stargate Universe.

    * – The decade-old show remains popular; in 2004, TV Guide suggested that its popularity may be exceeding that of the Star Trek franchise.

    *- Testifying to its vigor, Stargate SG-1 broke Nielsen Ratings records for the U.S. Sci-Fi Channel throughout its eighth season.

    I realize you may not personally have much knowledge of the show, Tipa, but I’d argue that it’s far less niche than you might realize. Certainly, it may not have wide ranging mass appeal, but compared to “Orphans of the Sky” or “Book of the Long Sun”, I’d argue quite a few more people are aware.

    By the way, when you start talking about niche audiences, I immediately think to my future in-laws. They don’t own any gaming consoles and certainly don’t fire up the computer for much more than email, light web browsing, and eBay. Yet, both of them could describe for you – in detail – every season of SG-1, every member of the Asgard, what it means to be Ascended, and which episodes were their favorites. The series has a lot of fans that don’t already game.

    I don’t know whether or not they’d be likely to fire up any MMO’s. However, I do know that if they ever were to do so, they’d be much, MUCH more likely to fire up a Stargate MMO than they would anything dealing with swords and elves.

  7. Heh, I *know* people don’t read non-media-tie-in SF any more. I just tossed those out in my ongoing initiative to point people toward good SF, not really because there were people clamoring for MMOs set in those worlds. Though, they’d rock. BTW.

    I am frankly amazed that a show could be so popular and I still know almost nothing about it, aside from the movie. But then, I learned about Firefly from the PVP webcomic long after it had gone off the air. Maybe part of the problem with discovering new TV programs is that I don’t watch TV much — usually I only turn it on to watch a specific program and turn it off right after. The only exception being Turner Classic Movies, which I leave on while gaming if I’m not listening to music or something.

    Now I feel really out of date. Par for the course. I only saw Voyager a few months ago when it was on Spike TV, same with Enterprise. Working my way backward — Deep Space 9 if I can find it on anywhere. But I’d *heard* about all these, even if I hadn’t seen them (I did see some episodes of DS9 and Voyager when they were on but stopped watching TV entirely around then).

    Grats, Kendricke, on your future in-laws being SF fans :)

  8. The concept of stargates allowing players to access a virtually infinite number of worlds to explore is a very exciting concept, but the limitations of computers and game engines at this point and time will make that number of “infinite” possibilities seem quite small, doncha think?

    @Lucifrank: How many zones are contained in your EQ or EQ2? WoW? Each new “world” is simply a new zone/map/whatever to load in. Another thing that bothered me about SGW was reading something along the lines of “some of the worlds the players will only be in for maybe 15 minutes.” Huh? Again, I’ll refer back to my original “lack of content” comment. It seems a waste to come up with a “world” that is only a single tiny bit of landscape to enjoy for a few minutes then never see again. Now, what I wouldn’t expect (though I’d guess a great deal many *would* expect) is for each “world” to be a full-blown game world with multiple continents, zones, cities, etc. That is asking way too much of any dev team for a launch title, but I can see them adding “worlds” in much the same way as Tabula Rasa will gradually add new planets that have plenty of content but are still smaller than an Azeroth or Norrath sized “world.”

    I wouldn’t start a new player on EQ2 at all. I’d start them on WoW, which severely limits your choices in the beginning, introducing complexity as you level. Then once familiar with the genre, show them EQ2. WoW is like a beginner’s tutorial in “what is an MMO?”

    @Tipa: This is thread hijack so I’ll just leave it here. You’d take a completely new player and say “here, you have to start with WoW because *in my opinion* it’s a simpler game. Then when you get the hang of it, you have to get [insert EQ2 or other “more complicated” title here]?” I would fully expect the person to wonder why the hell they have pay $50 for a game + subscription, invest all the time then think they’re “required” to do it all over again but this time with “more complexity?” Remember, *we’re* the freaks of nature who punish ourselves trying every MMO out there; I don’t expect anyone normal to be like us nor would I subject them to it. And my same example applies to WoW: “uh, what’s a shaman? What about this warlock, what does it do? Tauren? I’ve never heard of a Tauren before, and I can’t even pronounce Draenei… I think I’ll just stick to Yahoo games.”

  9. @Talyn: lol… I can’t even explain to any one of my three sisters why I’d play an MMO at all. None of them have the slightest interest whatsoever — and definitely Genj has had enough chances to give one a shot. When I started MMOs in EQ1, not knowing anything was part of the charm. It was weeks before I left Toxxulia Forest, but I was an expert at it by then. Handwritten /locs for everything, I could find my way from Erudin to Kerra Isle in the dark, and a normal human was rare enough that it still startled me to see one. But I don’t expect anyone to do that any more.

    I would definitely start people off in WoW. Cartoony, bright colors, lots of humor, easy enough for even little children, it’s basically like Toontown for kids older than 9. If THAT can’t draw someone in to MMOs, nothing can. I’m hoping that by showcasing all the cool things about EQ2 on this blog that I can interest some people in giving EQ2 a try, but for most people, WoW is enough, and that’s fine with me. I don’t work for SOE :)

    I disagree that WoW is at all hard to get into. I went in not knowing the lore or anything about the Warcraft pre-WoW license and had little trouble figuring out what to do. By the time WoW starts adding complicated things like talent trees and battlegrounds into the mix, the player has mastered the basics and has either fallen in love with the game, and hopefully the genre, or have decided MMOs are not for them.

    My fear is that eventually WoW will decline and where is the next noob-friendly MMO? Warhammer won’t be it — new players don’t want to be killed. Hard to find anyone who does, really, but experienced players will better accept it. Pirates of the Burning Sea and Age of Conan *certainly* won’t. Maybe Lord of the Rings will grow to take over, though I think it unlikely right now.

    I actually *don’t* try every MMO that comes out. Because I only have a very limited amount of time to play each night, and because I normally approach a new game with the aim of spending several years playing it as my main game, I choose my games very carefully. I only try the BEST games, or the ones I think will be the best.

  10. Tipa,

    Watch the first 5 seasons of Stargate SG-1 and get back to us seriously. Stargate SG-1 was supposed to end far before their 10 seasons were finished but continued after countless amounts of fan mail urging them to continue with the series. The 10 seasons have a huge amount of content which would be cool to see immersed in an MMO.

    Maybe to shed some light on the different classes/creatures:

    Symbiots – Worm Parasites that live inside humans, one human per one symbiot. These parasites once fully grown can take over the human body and operate it for its own doing. A fully grown Symbiot is called a Goa’uld. Symbiots are born from symbiot queens which have undergone the same process which will be listed below. These queens pass the memories they have onto their young. Symbiots can share thoughts and memories with their hosts and provide immunities and advanced healing beyond that of earth medical science. Once a Symbiot is implanted into a host the host cannot survive without it, since it basically takes over the immune system of the host (though recent episodes proved otherwise with advanced medical techniques).

    Jaffa – Human at birth. The implanted Goa’uld act as their gods, typically named after Egyptian ones, most Jaffa believe that their gods cannot die. At an early age they go through what is called a ritual. This is were a baby symbiot is implanted into a jaffa and the jaffa acts as an incubator until the symbiot is fully grown. When incubation is complete the symbiot either takes over the host or the symbiot is moved to another host predetermined by the jaffa’s god. A jaffa possesses all the healing properties off the symbiot as well as longer life then a typical human. The jaffa is in control of their own body while the Symbiot is young and the 2 can still share thoughts and memories to a smaller degree. A jaffa rebellion is formed shortly after Stargate SG-1 finds that killing a Goa’uld is infact possible since they are mortal.

    Goa’uld – Are humans with fully grown symbiots in them. They thirst for power and enslave humans and jaffa by acting as their gods. They possess the knowledge of anyone who they have enslaved for thousands of years and therefore possess some advanced technologies. Goa’uld possess the knowledge to travel in space, Jaffa can do this also but their ships and technology are usually stolen from uprisings. Goa’uld are able to switch between themselves or their host personalities and even act as their host in attempts to fooling humans of their presence within a specific host. Tyhey can also sense another symbiot in another host.

    Asgard – Historically used to look like humans. However, their race eventually grew to be infertile and they started to used cloning as a means to reproduce. This has changed their appearance over centuries and they look like typical drawings from people who have claimed to have seem aliens on earth aka Marshins. The Asgard do not directly interfere with civilizations as themselves. If a civilization is primitive they will use illusionary figures in efforts to guide or unite people of that civilization. The Asgard take on names and figures that we would find in Norse Mythology (Thor, etc). Their technology is highly advanced even more than the Goa’uld. They possess the ability for mid range teleportation and high speeds through space. The main enemy of the Asgard are the replicators which are machines that consume anything and everything for the soul purpose to reproduce. The replicators are attracted to the Asgard’s level of technology so the Asgard’s often call for the aid of humans to fight the replicators for them.

    There is another race of Goa’uld that are not destructive and that are combating the evil ones. Their symbiots live in harmony with their hosts, they share knowledge, and do not try to take over their hosts for their own purpose both host and symbiot are aware of what is happening at all times. Their race has no means to reproduce themselves unless humans volunteer for implantation. They eventually find a way to live without an implanted symbiot. I forget what these races call themselves.

    Ascended beings are basically the keepers of the universe. They are not allowed to interfere directly with civilizations within it but often do to keep a balance of power in the universe. I am not sure if this race made the stargates or if the ancients were another race. In any case, the ongoing quest for SG-1 in the TV series is to find out the history of the stargates, traveling to new worlds and places, helping combat the Goa’uld with their allies (Jaffa and Asgard). As the team finds out more information about the different races they find out that Earth will have to play an important role to stop various powers from taking over the known universe.

    I am just scratching the surface here. If this isn’t an example of good potiential for diversity and game content. I really don’t know what is. TBH when you compare this show with Battlestar Galactica the latter is really boring in comparison.

    Also, Everquest 2 when it first came out had 4 classes that you started out as. You could be a mage, priest, fighter, or scout. Eventually as players got familiar with the game and progress through it, they had to specialize. These have now been removed since there is probably a larger player base and these classes can be explained by higher level players in the game.

    LORO would be a huge mind boggle also if someone attempted to play it without reading or watching the movies. Everything encountered in the game would have a static appeal. These games are just here to provide us a game to play and live in the world of our favourite books and television shows.

    When I first started playing Everquest 2 I didn’t understand anything about it. I basically picked up the game and started playing it because some of my RL friends were. I immersed myself in the game and began understanding it a lot more after reading lore and speaking to some of my in game friends who have played everquest 1. In my opinion, I think its ridiculous that Everquest 2 is just rewriting Everquest 1 with water between islands and calling it a new game. Its an easy way to make money with little or no imagination. I would like to see an expansion (not a 5 dollar get what you paid for adventure pack) that contains 100 percent new content that no one has seen before. I really hope SOE goes in this direction after the rest of the content is release though, after seeing what their schedule is like with new expansion packs I will probably leave the game before the rerun is over heh.

  11. Edit:

    Jaffa incubate Symbiots in their bellies. Goa’uld wrap themselves around the spine of their host and connect to their nervous system to take control.

  12. I’ll disagree with Faremorei about LOTRO, it is extremely user-friendly and easily learned. I read the books years ago, barely remember any of it other than I was bored to tears throughout most of it, though I enjoyed the movies. As a game, it’s designed so that total “n00bs” can easily get in, and for the Tolkien nerds there are plenty of caches of lore both obvious and hidden waiting to be found.

    EQ2 I also find easy to learn. Why? Because it’s all the same ol’ same ol’ from anything else. It’s no simpler or complicated than anything else I’ve seen in the past four years. What I am having trouble with, and this is just a personal preference, is I’ve thus far been unable to enjoy the experience whatsoever. When I first picked it up a few months ago, I did so because I kept hearing about all the great content, the grand adventures to be had, and so forth. However, the farthest I’ve managed to tolerate it is getting one character to level 9 and off the noob island into Freeport. Originally I thought “well, I’ll just be a trooper and suffer through this stuff to get to whatever great content is waiting for me,” but at this point… why? There are so many choices out there, I’d rather enjoy *all* my game time (that’s what games are for right?) than be a sadomasochist and punish myself through something that obviously just isn’t going to mesh with my personal preferences and play style.

  13. I’ve always been skeptical of MMOs basing their content off another franchise ever since the great failure of Matrix Online. One issue that’s always present is in movies/books, key characters are elevated to a certain ‘superhero’ kind of status and tells the story from their perspective, you can’t reproduce that in an MMO. And if you can’t reproduce that, what kind of unique skills and specialty can you give to the player? Being just another soldier simply isn’t fun.

    As much as I’m a HUGE fan of Stargate, I really can’t say I’m excited about this game at all. I think it’ll be a flop.

  14. Star Wars Galaxies, based on about as “can’t miss” IP as Star Wars, never had the kind of playerbase you’d expect given its popularity. I agree with you about existing-IP-based properties. Even LotRO wasn’t about to let you travel with the Fellowship to Mordor, instead leaving you out of the main action to take care of clearing Middle Earth of bears, pigs, birds and dogs, a heroic enterprise Tolkein somehow left out of the books. I obviously don’t know enough about Stargate to comment on how they might handle their plots and characters, but I’m thinking IP created just for gaming has an upper hand — fewer expectations and more opportunities to deviate from canon.

    Matrix Online could have been great. It had a nice tutorial, but it was tough to figure out how to continue on once leaving the tutorial — my time in MxO was mostly trying to figure out what I was supposed to be doing mixed with being randomly killed by Agents. It was so discouraging that I just abandoned it in beta. So I’m not sure its failure had much to do with the license (weak though it was by then), as just being a fairly tough game.

  15. In large epic stories, there was little chance to delve into the lives of lesser characters. Worlds such as Star Wars or Lord of the Rings (and even Babylon 5 to an extent) were based heavily around the central driving characters being destined to move their worlds. There were opportunities, but by and large, the entire story arcs were based heavily around the actions of a relatively small group of characters who were central to everything.

    You see and feel this to a much lesser extent with Star Trek or Stargate worlds, where there are multiple ship crews or teams which are constantly referenced throughout each of the series. In particular, Stargate seems absolutely built around the concept of an MMO. Truly, I believe that even if there had never been a Stargate movie or series, the MMO could work and work well from a conceptual standpoint.

    Much, much more than Star Trek or Star Wars, I feel that Stargate is a good, solid platform for an MMO design. You’ve got centralized, focused factions which are relatively black and white (but with a goodly amount of fuzzy “grey” thrown into the mix to keep things interesting).

    You have the ability to create multiple worlds which are completely and utterly different from one another with a travel mechanic which is absolutely believable in context to the rest of the setting (seriously, it’s the only real setting I can think of that comes with a built in zoning screen that makes complete sense given the context).

    You’ve got modern day Air Force special forces forming up groups alongside civilian scientists/adventurers, and even the occasional alien (please note, no real in-combat healing class aside from medics or self-regenerating jaffa/go’auld).

    Counting the dozens of individual sub-factions and sub-plots, you’ve got ample room for future expansions.

    Like Star Trek, gameplay can revolve around combat, discovery, and/or both.

    There are very heavy mythological elements and themes to the overall series, effectively opening up all sorts of possible art directions and quest styles. Seriously, throughout the 10 seasons of SG-1, we saw “gods” from every major mythological pantheon (Egyptian, Greek/Roman, Chinese, Japanese, Indian, African, Norse) as well as just figures of legend (Merlin, for example). Designers don’t have to spend time inventing languages or pantheons, when they can simply borrow from the wealth of historical data and series canon to build upon.

    Weapons, gear, and skillsets would be easy enough to incorporate – since the series itself regularly did so (seriously, who else wants the bracelets from the episode “Upgrades” where the team became super strong and fast…).

    Honestly, even if you had no idea what the series was about, I have a feeling that any competent designer could quickly and effectively immerse you into the setting with minimal issue. In other words, I don’t think it would be the IP’s fault if the designers fail to include a tutorial/newbie experience that helps set the stage for those players who may not be as familiar with the background stories.

  16. I would agree that only 2 factions is rather odd given that the who contained so many factions. But as far as “what is the Replicator War, the Tok’ra / Goauld war ” etc that is really no different than any other game. I only played Warcraft I many many years before trying WoW, but it didn’t make me confused or dislike “who are all these factions and groups fighting” it was something that would get introduced.

    So… if they write the quests well those factions and motivations can be introduced to the players who aren’t familiar with it.

    Everyone else already said everything :)

    But I am not so much looking forward to it. It has huge potential but they really have to do a great job to get the potential out of the ideas and into the game. But I think this game is a perfect candidate for player created content, though that has advantages and disadvantages.

  17. Based on all this passion for Stargate, I’d definitely give the game a try. I’m not really into military SF which may be why I never twigged onto the TV show. Though actually, I didn’t like Buffy, Angel, Andromeda, that alien one that Gene Roddenberry did, Alien Nation, later episodes of Farscape (only seen a few anyway); never saw Lex or Cleopatra 2025 (or whatever it was called) or Aeon Flux, or Journeyman, or Quantum Leap… so it could be argued that I am either not a SF fan (which I am) or just don’t have any taste (likely).

    But see what I’m doing here. I’m basing my interest in possible IPs on what I know about their IP. I’d silently decided long ago that Stargate Worlds was for Stargate fans, and since I wasn’t one, it would have no interest for me. I tried TR, which reminded me I don’t really get into SF with guns and commandos. Not a huge David Drake fan. Harry Turtledove cries in despair. David Webber doesn’t like me.

    Then Cheyenne Mountain puts out a press release filled with absolutely incomprehensible gibberish to a non-fan. That pushes non-fans away — they read that and think, ah, this game isn’t meant for me. I only have the movie to go on — and some promos SF channel shows during BSG, which show groups of commandos doing stuff.

    What are they doing to bring the non-fan (but hopefully future fan) into the game?

  18. @Yunk: Well, if the WoW press release had said, “Aid Thrull on his attack on Mount Hyjal, kill Illidan and explore the Emerald Dream” — and you didn’t know anything of Warcraft ahead of time — would you guess the game was assuming knowledge of the IP ahead of time? Blizz didn’t go that direction. They emphasized the game play, art direction, zones and monsters. They hardly talked about the IP at all. Cheyenne seems to be taking a different approach, and that’s what sparked the original post, because I didn’t know wtf they were talking about.

  19. Actually reading your blog has got me into reading SF again. And now that i’m reading better books I find I can’t stand watching shows like SG: Atlantis or Battlestar Galactica (though I watch both, even “talkingheads galactica” which I call it now :) ) Books have more opportunities to delve deeper into issues than TV shows do, and I get frustrated with SciFi on tv which is so formulaic. So thanks for inspiring me to use my brain again, which was atrophying :)

    Though one thing about SG was when they started on Showtime, Showtime bought the 1st two seasons, so the writers had plenty of time to make long arching storylines where they kept you in the dark and revealed the mythos little by little. You could never do that on network tv or even cable if the network only bought the 1st season, especially with these 13 episode seasons on cable nowdays.

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