Archive for June, 2007

Your Guild: High School All Over….

Posted: June 28, 2007 by Kendricke in Guilds

Divide and rule, a sound motto. Unite and lead, a better one. 

-Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

 

If you’ve been a member of a guild for any significant amount of time, you’ve come across the dreaded “clique”.  Maybe a few members joined your guild at the same time.  Perhaps you have a group of real-world friends who play with each other.  Maybe you’ve had a guild merger along the way.  Couples or family members can be just as exclusive with their online time.

So, how do you fight cliques within your guild?

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The art of leadership is saying no, not yes. It is very easy to say yes.

-Tony Blair  

I’ve lead my guild for over more than 8 years now.  Through that time, over 3,000 players have called the Legion of the White Rose “home”. 

That’s a lot of recruiting. 

To be fair, I never realized how much time and effort recruiting can take when I founded my guild back in October of ’98.  We were just 6 friends looking for a way to form up in the beta version of an early web based MMO called “Archmage:  Reincarnation from the Hell” (now defunct). 

We sat around my living room coming up with names and eventually landed on one that no one in the room outright hated.  We threw down some quick guild rules, and damn near drew straws to determine who would be the leader.  I honestly think I won out because I seemed to care more about it – everyone else just wanted to play and not worry about administration.

So, there we were, six players on a server of 8,000.  We had a name.  We had a rough idea of what our rules and organization were.  So, now what?

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Well, Blow Me Down!

Posted: June 26, 2007 by Kendricke in SOE, The Gaming Industry

This little news flash courtesty of Scott Jennings over at Broken Toys:

SOE has signed on to publish Pirates of the Burning Seas.  YARRR!

The quick summary points:

  • It’s SOE Platform Publishing
  • Flying Labs retains all rights to the title, the game, design, community, server ops, customer support.
  • SOE only handles distribution channels, billing, launcher, and localization issues.
  • Pirates of the Burning Sea will be added to All Access Pass.
  • Pirates will be at FanFaire.

In the FAQ, they address concerns about whether or not SOE will be able to pull an NGE on Pirates, whether or not SOE will buy out Flying Labs as they did with Sigil, and whether or not SOE are really a bunch of aliens in disguise looking to take control of the world one MMO developer at a time.

Overall, it looks like a good deal all around.  I’m pretty excited about seeing Pirates on Access Pass myself. 

Mano e Mano

Posted: June 26, 2007 by Kendricke in Everquest 2

I thoroughly disapprove of duels. If a man should challenge me, I would take him kindly and forgivingly by the hand and lead him to a quiet place and kill him.

-Mark Twain

I typically try not to get too involved in PVP discussions, because I don’t play much PVP in MMO’s these days.  I’ve got a couple characters on an off account on Nagafen and Vox in Everquest 2, and I’ve put in a good deal of time in World of Warcraft on my Rogue, but in general, I’ve come to realize that PVP (or at least MMO PVP) simply isn’t my bag. 

So, when Darren made a new discussion about the subject over at Common Sense Gamer, I respectfully bowed out of the conversation since I didn’t think I had much to add. 

Then I came across this gem hidden away in one of the comments

The REAL PvPers out there are the ones playing online FPS games like Battlefield, or RTS games like the Age of Empires series. The players start on a fairly level field, and its down to their skill as players to determine victory or defeat. MMO PvPers who rely on superior levels and gear to determine victory are jokes in comparison.

-Eric, via “Common Sense Gamer

This really struck a chord with me. 

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38 Meets with Microsoft?

Posted: June 25, 2007 by Kendricke in 38 Studios, The Gaming Industry

Per Curt Schilling at 38 Pitches:

Had a great meeting with Microsoft this morning as well. 38 Studios is rapidly picking up steam and things are moving much faster on some fronts than we ever anticipated. Stay tuned for news there as well.

At this point, there’s no confirmation on what the meeting was about, so I’ll withhold speculations for the time being. 

All News is Local

Posted: June 25, 2007 by Kendricke in General Game Concepts

We are advertis’d by our loving friends.

-William Shakespeare

I’m a major proponent of social networking services online.  However, we’ve come to think of these networks as global, when in fact many connections are still quite local.  And just as all news is local, so too are MMO’s.  Strip out all the grand features and mechanics, and we’re all looking to play with our friends a few quests at a time. 

In the context of MMO’s, the community itself may pull from geographically diverse locations around the globe, but the community itself is not terribly distant – the internet keeps the world small, and we’re all only as far away as a keyboard.

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This is….SPARTERRRRRRRRR!

Posted: June 24, 2007 by Kendricke in The Gaming Industry

People are willing to trade money for something that they can touch, not ones and zereos.

-John Gruber, SXSW 2006  

What is Sparter?  Why are there implications for it to have a significant impact on the MMO RMT market?

Here’s the 1up article you need to read:  What is Sparter and Why It Matters for MMOs.

The summary?  Sparter is a different way to buy and sell characters and gold.  Instead of relying upon a business to customer model (like IGE, Peons4hire, and GMworker) where companies are involved as a middle man broker between players, Sparter is a direct peer to peer (or “gamer2gamer”, as they put it) business model. 

Back up a few years, and it’s similar to (but not exactly the same as) the difference between Napster and Kazaa/Morpheus.  Instead of involving itself directly in player trades, Sparter claims to only seek to enable players to make the connections themselves, facillitating an online marketplace, as opposed to directly selling the gold themselves. 

It’s an interesting read, and I recommend anyone even remotely concerned with RMT take a peek.