Okay, well not the entire thing, but the little corners of it that I frequent, there’s several hot topics to write about right now. I enjoy listening to Colin Cowherd in the mornings, and he does his “spanning the globe” – hitting several hot topics in a short window. So, I decided today, since I was behind as usual, I would do the same.
Everquest II Passport Plan
Yes, its measely. $5 for one weekend of play a month, and only one weekend of play a month. That being said here, I think the expectation is that this will open the floodgates. MMO companies have held too long to the “industry standard” scared to do something else or something new. EQ2 has opened the door with a low ball offer. Someone else will give us a better one. And then someone else, and so on, until one day we wake up with a decent deal. Don’t believe me? Remember that STO survey that Cryptic sent out – the one that gave you some store points? One of the questions on there was about “what was the subscription worth,” and the choices were $10, $15, and $20. Nobody asks that question unless they are testing the waters for a pricing change. Imagine a family plan – $10 per sub for multiple accounts, or say, $15 for the main sub and $5 for each additional account. Its coming, and I’m happy about it. My problem is not that I can’t find a good MMO, its that we have lots of them and I can’t afford to play them all.
Turbine gets Warnered
My first question is why? Turbine’s angle is interesting, and pretty simple – they pulled the “get rich quick” lever. But why does Warner want Turbine? The basic answer would be “to make a game for us.” And so the real question I have here is – what game does Warner want Turbine to make for them? Warner owns the rights to a slew of franchises, and I quickly saw some that would be interesting, and yet, entirely silly: Police Academy, Ocean’s Eleven, National Lampoon, Free Willy.
But then I looked at the rest of the list, and I was in awe. Warner has the potential to put together a lineup of MMO’s the likes of which would bring even Sony down to its knees – and indeed, that might be part of the play in here. Here’s just a few of the franchises that Warner owns:
Harry Potter (OMG – Fanboys and girls everywhere are wetting their pants at the thought)
DC Comics (Wanna bet Sony’s deal on this gets yanked pronto?)
Looney Tunes (Could compete with Free Realms and Club Penguin)
Terminator (Can you smell the PvP action?)
Add those in to Lord of the Rings and you have a solid line up of MMO’s waiting to happen. And that’s not including the ones on that list from Warner that make for intriguing options beyond the obvious ones – TMNT, Mortal Kombat, The Last Starfighter, Willy Wonka, Wizard of Oz, Nightmare/Friday the 13th/Texas Chainsaw. And that list does not include the franchises that Warner has deep ties to and relationships with, including: Sesame Street, Pokemon, and Watership Down. Sony should be very nervous right now people. Very nervous.
EVE Blog Banter #Something.
And for kicks, here’s my unofficial entry to the following question: What could CCP Games do to attract and maintain a higher percentage of women to the game. Will Incarna do the trick? Can anything else be done in the mean time? Can we the players do our part to share the game we love with our counterparts, with our sisters or daughters, with the Ladies in our lives? What could be added to the game to make it more attractive to them? Should anything be changed? Is the game at fault, or its player base to blame?
I’ll answer a question with a question: what is the percentage of female players in EVE? Is it lower than the industry standard? Higher? What the hell is Incarna?
The answers to those shape my answer. If EVE is ahead of the pack when it comes to attracting female gamers, then it should just keep on trucking, because something is working. If its behind the pack, then there’s a few ideas I could offer. One of those would be to let some female artists and designers redesign the ship models, or design new ones. They couldn’t do all the models I know, because its a time consuming process. But you could do several. Then hand pick a team of famous female comic artists, graphic designers, game pros, and maybe even celebrities. Then promote the heck out of it, market it, get it in the news. More than anything, this lets women know you are serious about letting them impact the game. Heck, tie the ships into the Koman foundation and sell them as a charity event. I have no data to back this up, but I think the think that would most encourage female gamers would be to give them tangible, high-visibility evidence that EVE is not a “man’s world.” Allowing a group of all female designers to tinker with your game is one way to do that.