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Daily Blogroll 6/25 — A Valiant Effort edition

Posted by on June 25, 2009

Mark Jacobs leaves behind a tearful Mythic

Hey, didja hear the news? Mark Jacobs is leaving Mythic and Mythic is being merged into Bioware! Jacobs was the public face of Mythic for so long, I can’t think of one without the other, and I can’t think of an upside to his leaving for the game I once loved, Dark Age of Camelot.

Keen thought EA was past absorbing studios for their properties and then squeezing out the help. Snazfg urges people not to pillory either EA or Jacobs until more is known. Heartless_ said he knew it all along (I guess he did!). Ardwulf wonders if this means Mythic will be getting some Bioware resources (don’t count on it). Tobold suspects the merge came because Warhammer did not meet the goals Jacobs promised. Stropps agrees. Abalieno at Cesspit would have preferred this ended differently, with more learning and caring. Werit detects an air of schadenfreud among some of the commentators. And Scott Jennings reminisces about Mark and happier days at Mythic.

I don’t know anything about Mark or Mythic or EA, but I have been working in IT for thirty years and I know quite a lot about mergers. When a big company buys a smaller company, the executives of that smaller company either embrace change and become big dogs in the new company, or conflict with the new bosses and leave (always to seek out new opportunities). This news says to me that regardless of how Warhammer did or does, Jacobs almost certainly didn’t mesh well with EA, and now the big bosses are gonna do things THEIR way. Bioware is the new golden boy studio, so they get to raid Mythic, and they’ll be top dog until they slip up.

I just wonder what will happen to Dark Age of Camelot when the dust settles?

Speaking of Ages of Things Beginning With the Letter ‘C’, Age of Conan had an update yesterday and things went … pretty well, says Openedge1. So more power to them.

WAR and AoC came out around the same time. Both aimed to be the choice for WoW players who wanted better graphics and more PvP. Both were crushed when Blizzard released the Wrath of the Lich King expansion for World of Warcraft. While WAR has kept steady on course with being the “WoW PvP alternative”, AoC has scaled back and focused on incremental improvements to their game play and growing their customer base gradually — the EVE Online model. No longer looking at WoW’s millions but just working on making a good game for its players, it might yet win where WAR has not.

In Darkfall news, looks like if you’re playing Darkfall now and want to restart on the new North American server when it opens, you’ll have to buy the game all over again. Keen is flabbergasted, and vows not to play DF at all, where he’d planned to give it a shot on the new server. Beau Turkey says hey, Aventurine is an indie developer and they need the money. What’s the big deal? Tobold lifts his rule against commenting on Darkfall by noting that Aventurine is the one company that takes their hardcore rep right into the “Company vs Player” realm.

So, you know, lots of stuff went down yesterday. At least we have WoW as the steady rock upon which we can stand and watch the turmoil swirl below.

Or can we? Spinks notes that Blizzard is trying to use social engineering to balance WoW’s tank classes. Trying to discourage guilds from using warriors to tank raids? Is that something a company should really be manipulating?

Lastly, Suzina at Kill Ten Rats takes Lord of the Rings Online’s summer festival maze as a metaphor for these sorts of games themselves. Players as the rats, and a grind of pointless accomplishments as the reward. Did I say pointless? Hey, she “… could get a new wall-paper for my house or a new fish-slap emote!”

The path to uberness, folks, is paved with cheese.

I have added a plugin that makes this blog look better on the iPhone, so if you ARE reading this on the iPhone — it looks better, and that’s why :)

Enjoy your Thursday and keep on gaming!

7 Responses to Daily Blogroll 6/25 — A Valiant Effort edition

  1. Openedge1

    This has probably been one of the biggest weeks in MMO news…especially in regards to changes I have seen in quite a while.
    AoC’s overhaul is pretty amazing, and seems very NGE, yet has gone the opposite way and is a major improvement.
    The WAR changes really make people stand up and take notice…Big Companies really do not care about the product, but instead the bottom line. Makes me think twice about playing any titles from the large firms anymore.
    But, then when you look at Darkfall and it’s Indie developers and how it wishes to mess around with the customer…well…that one really confuses me.

    Then hiding in the wings, and ready to take the MMO world by storm come September…Aion. I wonder how that will change the market leaders?

    Whew…almost Friday…about time. I am getting wore out.

  2. KillTrash

    I got back to AoC about a month ago to expect the new 1.05 patch. I played for a few hours last night and I’m so glad things turned out to be very good actually. The whole Attribute and Stats system overhaul makes so much more sense now! I’ll keep playing AoC and maybe this time I will hit level cap. The game seems very solid now, we only need more content and maybe an expansion announcement.

  3. Openedge1

    @Killtrash
    Well, content exists from level 1-80 now…so that is not an issue. Level 80 raids have been an issue, and needs some revamp.
    Luckily there is such a variety of stuff to do now once you do hit 80, I can play all that until the new raids come.
    I also am new at the raids anyways, so, they are not a dead end for me…yet.
    I think AoC is going the right way, unlike another PvP based title we should not mention…who lost an employee this week.
    Cheers

  4. Anjin

    Love the comic today.

    There has been a lot of talk and speculation about Mythic and Mark Jacobs, but I’ve stayed out of it since there’s so little real information available. It will be interested to see what eventually happens, but I don’t think this is an event to anyone but Mark Jacobs.

  5. Thallian

    Nice comic, did you make it yourself?

  6. Tipa

    I wrote the text, but the comic itself is from a recent Prince Valiant, which you can see the original of here (go to the May 3rd comic) –> http://www.kingfeatures.com/features/comics/pvaliant/about.htm