EQOA Expansion

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.

Thanks

 

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

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About Stonee

EQOA blogger
This entry was posted in EQOA, Everquest, Video Games. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to EQOA Expansion

  1. BoomstickSaint says:

    If you read Clint Worley’s LinkedIn profile he says the game was headed into testing when it was canceled, meaning the disc assets were nearly wholly complete, not as this response indicates.

    • Stonee says:

      I’ve looked up his profile several times over the last year and while it says they were in testing, I have a hard time believing that means they were truly 90% complete. Testing probably means debugging which could easily take 50%+ of the development time. Plus, he can post whatever he wants about an unreleased project since there’s no way to validate the accomplishments.

      • BoomstickSaint says:

        i woul think that conceptualizing and then assets creation and coding would take 90% ofyour time. if you think about it, games are usually in production for minimum of 1-2 years before release. the testing phase is usually only last 2-6 months, depending on the type of game, amount of content, and theplanned time table for production. with an eqoa expansion all your looking at really is testing afew new zones/quests/abilities, and making sure the skins/graphics load and look proper. all in all the production of Underfoot was probably about 8 months with an additional 2month required to test and debug.

  2. Irris says:

    I read about this a few years ago as well. The part that upset me the most was that they could port it to the PS3 system but decided not to. I think the biggest issue wasn’t the monthly fee, or even the lack of content updates. Because lets face it, to a new player, what the game had was plenty, those of us who were there to the bitter end weren’t there for the content updates. I think the biggest issue was that in order to play the game, you needed to still own or go back and purchase a PS2. Why would anyone buy a PS2 over a PS3? If the game was accessable on the PSN, though slim, numbers would have doubled maybe even tripled. You can’t tell me it’s the graphics, gameplay or storyline. That makes me think it was the system

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