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First, the Ten Ton Pulse, your finger on the beating heart of the MMOG industry.
- Age of Conan - 200 BPM
- World of Warcraft - 45 BPM
- Lord of the Rings Online - 17 BPM
- EverQuest 2 - 16 BPM
- Warhammer Online - 10 BPM
- EVE Online - 9 BPM
- Lineage 2 - 8 BPM
- Vanguard - 8 BPM
- Guild Wars - 8 BPM
- Tabula Rasa - 7 BPM
Robert Kotick, the CEO of Activision recently took time away from sniping at the EA management to make this bold statement,
"...If we put hundreds of millions of dollars of capital towards [developing an MMO] and had the very best intellectual property, we would still likely be unsuccessful. So the merger is really our mechanism to get access to Blizzard's talent, capability and infrastructure." - Next-Gen.biz
Some other bright light thinks that Blizzard is sending you subliminal messages to get you to pay them. Of course he is playing on an illegal server and quite frankly the spirit healer sounds more like they are saying, "Chivas is funny". You tell me.
Other funny goings on include the following comment by Geoff Heath, the CEO of NCSoft after dismal first quarter financial results were reported.
"With the online games business, it's all about growing your subscriber base. If you can do that by improving on your existing products, you don't necessarily have the pressure of getting a product out to market to make your revenue for the year." - GamesIndustry.biz
Fair enough and given that they took a write-off on the Spacetime Studios deal, profits weren't as bad as they appear, but I don't think anyone in the industry believes that NCSoft is going to flourish living off new subscribers to Lineage 2, Tabula Rasa and box sales of Guild Wars.
The best humour of the day though goes to Beckett Massive Online Gamer who put their neck on the line to list the Top 20 Influential People in Massively Multiplayer Video Games of 2007.
The list is a joke...really. It has to be a joke!
Given that this is people who influenced the industry in 2007 it is somewhat of a strange list, but still, it makes it much easier to narrow down the group of people to choose from.
Notably absent from the list, remember, these are people who influenced the industry, got in the press and made waves.
- Curt Schilling of 38 Studios
- Anyone from Funcom. This company, the one that pushed the industry into a frenzy in 2007 wasn't even given a single spot on the list.
- Jeff Hickman or his other head Paul Barnett of EA-Mythic. Mark Jacobs made the list, but still, one of both of these guys should have been on it.
- Anyone from Perpetual Entertainment. Nobody said this was a list of people you have to love. Perpetual certainly influenced the industry in 2007 by canceling Gods and Heroes and selling off the rights to Star Trek Online.
- How about a member of the ESA for destroying E3? They influenced the industry to the point where nobody wants to attend what was the biggest show available.
- The list could go on...
Now... How in the name of all that is holy did Sanya Weathers make the list? She is listed as Director of Community at GuildCafe. Remember that site? The one that nobody uses because Guild Portal already exists and does a better job. The one that went into brand 'reformation' as GamerDNA to raise more money? That's the site. To be fair, Sanya probably has nothing to do with the financial side of things, but how exactly did she influence anyone in 2007? Cripes, if you want a person who deals in community on your list then it should be April Burba of NCSoft or Val Massey of CCP or Katie Postma of Cheyenne Mountain. They have influence. Heck, if you want a person who can turn a crowd for or against a game in a sentence I nominate Coyote. He may be unorthodox, but you'd be surprised how many developers read his daily humour and run with it.
If you want to see who influences MMOG players then hit Alexa.com and compare the reach of sites like GuildPortal.com, GuildCafe.com, TenTonHammer.com and WarCry.com. Reach is the number of people that visit the site. The larger the reach, the more readers and the more influence.
Here's another one for you, Cory Ondrejka, Formerly CTO, Linden Labs is on the list. I'm going to let a gaming magazine in on a little secret. Second Life isn't a game and though it gets in the news a lot, how much influence does SL have on the gaming industry, at least the portion of it that is a success?
On the bright side, Min Kim of Nexon, Scott Hartsman of no fixed address, Jeffrey Steefel of Turbine and Raph Koster of Areae made the list.
Let's see your Top 20 list. It's hard to come up with one, but I'll go out on a limb and suggest that you will do a better job than Beckett did.
[A big thanks to Phil Comeau for putting together the links, headlines and taglines today. ]
12 new MMOG hand-crafted articles today! 260 in May! 1279 in 2008!
New MMOG Articles At Ten Ton Hammer Today
- Age of Conan: Bear Shaman Spells/Combos Lvl 1-20
- Age of Conan: Demonologist Spells/Combos Lvl 21-40
- Age of Conan: Barbarian Class Portal
- Age of Conan: Acheronian Ruins Daytime Quests
- World of Warcraft: Chain Trapping 101
- World of Warcraft: Howling Fjord Overview
- Vanguard: Disciple Spell List Lvl 1-25
Hot Content - Or, what I took a fancy to
- Age of Conan: Post-Launch with Erling Ellingsen
- Champions Online: Associate Producer Dennis Adams
- Top 10 Free-to-Play Games - Week 6
- Warhammer Online: The Rules of Launch-gagement
- Age of Conan: Exclusive Keep Building Video
- Age of Conan: Rated M for... What?
- Age of Conan: Reshaping MMOG Combat?
Real World News
Man too fat for jail
Family, friends smuggled in cake hidden in hacksaws
Seamen discharged following gas leak
They say it happens to all men, eventually
Deadly snake bites man's penis
There's a joke about removing the venom in here somewhere, I know it
Thanks as always for visiting TenTonHammer.com. Thanks to Phil Comeau for doing the heavy lifting with the links.
- John "Boomjack" Hoskin and the Ten Ton Hammer Team