Came across this from years ago…
Development Activities January 14, 2008
Okay, let’s talk about the possibility of an expansion, or a PS3 DL for the PSN.
First thing’s first. The answer given by Clint Worley in that interview was the standard, ie. typical, “official” answer. And he is absolutely right. There is currently no expansion in the works for EQOA. If pressed for an answer, that is it.
Now this brings us to another aspect of this whole issue. Even though EQOA is not CURRENTLY working on an expansion, it does not mean that it will never happen.
I am sure most, if not all, of you know this. But for sake of clarity and to make sure we are all on the same page I am going to reiterate something. Games are very much like making movies. When you see a movie, or a game sell and perfrom well, a sequel is most likey a given. The problem with making this an obvious choice for EQOA is that we don’t have the kind of numbers to justify working on a sequel. However, there are many here that are more than willing to listen and keep an open mind.
Elionia and myself are going to be compiling as much information as possible to re-submit a few proposals for consideration. This is slightly different than the information they previously asked for under my previous boss.
Everyone by now has heard about the expansion that got canceled and how there was supposedly only 10% left to finish. Unfortunately, to anyone that has any familiarity with the development process, should know that that last 10% of a games content is generally the most important. Also, it is only 10% of the “physical” game. There is still the majority of the test cycle, of what would have been at the time, a full QA team. So, that brings us to the options below.
Our options that we are looking into:
Expansion 1: Physical Disc.
Probably the most unlikely of the options. Not only do we have the work described above, but that means adding manufacturing costs and distribution.With the current numbers of EQOA, it is unlikely to sustain the kind of budget needed.
Expansion 2: Non-Physical Disc (download)
This generally refers to a PS3 dl for PSN. Unfortunately, our hands are tied in providing any kind of dl to the PS2 directly without the need of the hard drive. Which not many player have outside of those that purchased FFXI.
The initial problem with a PS3 dl, is twofold.
1. The PS3′s PSN is not currently set up to support PS2 download and to run off the internal hard drive. It is currently only set up for PS1 games. This would mean that in order to do this, we’d have to develop a system to run it on the PS3 directly from the hardrive ourselves. Again, the issue of cost comes up. But, this is also hindered by #2.
2. With Sony’s current direction seeming to be to remove the backwards compatability from future PS3s, that means that the market will only include those systems that have been sold already that have the ability to play PS2 discs. With there being, at least soon, a possible ceiling to any growth among those that have a BC PS3, it limits our ability to push the merits of growth. Not that it cannot be done, only that it makes it more difficult to convince the powers that be that it is worth it.
Expansion 3: Porting EQOA to a PS3 compatible format
Most likely the most expensive. This requires a full team, of not only programmers, but of artists too. At this point, we do not know the timline it would take to port it over and is one of the things we will be working on finding out.
Now, in not so many words. None of this will matter if we cannot show them that we can keep the player levels at least steady. Increases in player population would of course be better, but if we cannot show players are still interested enough to stay. We will be unable to convince anyone to sign over a budget for ANY of the options.
This is something that we will be tracking and part of the information that will be needed for all of the proposals.
So, is an expansion a long-shot? Of course it is. But no more so than any other game that gets proposed on a weekly basis. For every game that gets greenlit into production a dozen more got shot down. It’s just how it goes. Another thing to remember, is that while we are making our proposals for EQOA, other proposals are made for other game expansions, new titles, etc. So we are not only up against our own numbers, but against other possible games too.
Is an EQOA expansion a possibility? Yes. Is it currently in the works? No. That is all I can really say on this for now. But I would like to keep this discussion going if anyone wants to further discuss options, ideas, opinions, etc. I just ask to please keep it civil.
PS: Oh yeah… I have had every assurance that even if EQOA does not get an expansion, its current version is not going any where any time soon. I am still aware of the option of server merges, but we are holding off until we know for sure that an expansion for any of the options is turned down for good. Besides, there are still some issues regarding the option of server merges that we need to work on along with the proposals.
PPS: In case I missed something, or some is not clear, just ask. Thanks