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In-Development Indie MMORPGs

franciscourantfranciscourant Registered User regular
edited February 2021 in MMO Extravaganza
Gloria Victis [Beta]
Setting: Medieval Realistic || Focus: PvP || Budget: ~$5M* || Engine: Unity 5
  • Skill-based combat mechanics à la Mount and Blade
  • Class-less system with diversified equipment
  • Open world housing, territory control and sieges
  • Complex crafting system: leatherworking, armoursmithing, weapon forging

Pantheon: Rise of the Fallen [Pre-Alpha]
Setting: Medieval Fantasy || Focus: PvE || Budget: $? || Engine: Unity 5
  • Spiritual successor to EverQuest
  • Deeply social: dungeons require teamwork and group strategy
  • Thrilling climbing system
  • Perception system: the world reveals its secrets through the environment

Dual Universe [Beta]
Setting: Science-Fiction || Focus: PvP || Budget: ~$25M* || Engine: Unigine 2
  • Single shard persistent universe shared by all the players
  • Voxel-based universe: player-made cities, stations and warships
  • Space warfare: pirate ships, coordinated attacks, skirmishes
  • Player-controlled global economy: mine, craft, build, optimize, barter and trade

Ashes of Creation [Alpha]
Setting: Medieval Fantasy || Focus: PvP/PvE || Budget: ~$30M* || Engine: Unreal 4
  • Nodes system: player participation influences the type of content in the surrounding areas
  • Open world housing: players have the ability to survey and develop land anywhere in the world
  • Castle sieges with hundreds of players with many moving parts
  • Harsh, unforgiving and stunning environment

Crowfall [Beta]
Setting: Medieval Fantasy || Focus: PvP || Budget: $38M || Engine: Unity 5
  • Spiritual successor to Shadowbane
  • Player-created worlds with parcels of terrain and pre-fab building pieces
  • GvG/RvR time-limited campaigns that guilds or factions can win
  • Deep crafting system inspired by Star Wars: Galaxies

Camelot Unchained [Beta]
Setting: Medieval Fantasy || Focus: RvR || Budget: ~$20M* || Engine: Unchained
  • Spiritual successor to Dark Age of Camelot
  • Large-scale RvR battles and sieges with more than a thousand players
  • Open world with islands that players can move to strategically reshape the world
  • Block-by-block construction with server-side stability and destruction

Saga of Lucimia [Alpha]
Setting: Medieval Fantasy || Focus: PvE || Budget: $? || Engine: Unity 5
  • Sandbox environment: no quests and no minimap
  • Tabletop gaming: all about team-based gameplay and friendship
  • Progression system based on skill selection rather than generic classes
  • Inspiring lore, myths and legends

Star Citizen [Alpha]
Setting: Science-Fiction || Focus: PvE/PvP || Budget: $348M || Engine: Lumberyard
  • Spiritual successor to Freelancer
  • Procedurally generated and handcrafted stunning worlds
  • Open world PvP with high speed dog fights with multi-crew ships or intense FPS warfare
  • Exploration: hidden outpost, abandoned ships and beautiful sunsets

The Repopulation [Alpha]
Setting: Science-Fiction || Focus: PvE/PvP || Budget: +$2M || Engine: Hero Engine
  • Spiritual successor to Star Wars: Galaxies
  • Be a hero, villain, thief, diplomat, home builder, tamer, crafter or entertainer
  • Housing options: instanced housing, persistent world housing and player city housing
  • Mission system: complex multi-stage missions tailored specifically for a character

Project Gorgon [Beta]
Setting: Medieval Fantasy || Focus: PvE || Budget: +$1M || Engine: Unity 5
  • Exploration: many hidden secrets awaiting discovery
  • Ambitious skill-based leveling system allowing the player to combine skills
  • Old-school MMO with innovative ideas, such as morphing into animals
  • 16 combat skills, 71 trade skills, 11 beasts skills

*Personal estimate, probably inaccurate

Crosspost. Feel free to propose improvements to this post!

franciscourant on

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    DocshiftyDocshifty Registered User regular
    edited February 2021
    I wanna talk about Crowfall for a minute. Shadowbane was released on Steam this month, and after about 80 hours playing it again, it helped to solidify the shortcomings I found in Crowfall.

    I think they would be better served dropping all reference to Shadowbane. Simply put, everything that made Shadowbane fun and unique has been removed from Crowfall.

    Sure, you can build your own parcel of land or a big guild hall in an Eternal Kingdom, but moving it off of the world map into a private instance takes away a lot of the investment into the game and world. Shadowbane cities became fucking server landmarks, hubs and targets of war. Crowfall has absolutely nothing like it.

    Then we get to classes. Shadowbane was one of the most free form class-based game. The options were dependent on race, but you had a dozen plus to choose from in all but a few circumstances. The most restrictive was minotaur, with 3 classes to choose from.

    In Crowfal, the least restrictive race is Elken, with 5 classes to choose from, everything else is either 3 or 4. Gone as well is the ability to choose which of your abilities you actually leveled, creating the exact character you want. Now there is a simply talent tree, with a number of mandatory talents you must take whether they are bottleneck nodes you need to get through to reach the rest of the tree, or talents you have to take to unlock disciplines. It ends in a small split where you choose from three specializations, like classic WoW but condensed. There's little in the way of variation in builds until you reach these, and instead of making very specific characters in Shadowbane, like a nigh invisible, high stamina, super fast thief that could rob people blindand outrun anyone that wasnt a scout, in Crowfall they are instead Ranged rogue guy, or Melee rogue guy, or Stealthy rogue guy.

    The freedom of armor and weapons is gone, the disciplines in Crowfall are not character defining like Shadowbane, and there is no investment in any world or any risk to trying to make your mark on the world (cause it is temporary, and you actually can't, anyways)

    Thay isn't to say Crowfall is bad, but it is such a drastic departure from every positive that Shadowbane has that 'spiritual successor' is misleading at best and they would be better served dropping that line from their marketing altogether.

    Docshifty on
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    franciscourantfranciscourant Registered User regular
    I haven't played Shadowbane for more than an hour, and played Crowfall only in the Hunger Dome / Siege Perilous days, so I'm not really knowledgeable about all the systems and character progression.

    There's this interview they have made in 2020, where Todd talks about Shadowbane-inspired class redesign (transcript from MassivelyOP):
    "The marching orders I had for the design team were – I literally told them – go back and look at Shadowbane. I want that level of customization and configuration of our races and our classes and our disciplines,” he says. “It’s one of the things I’m proudest of; it was unique in that it was a completely open-ended character build system. You could build a centaur gladiator warlord hunter bounty hunter scout – this ridiculous list that made up your class. And if you were like, I’m all those different things, except instead of scout I’m a werewolf, that was a totally different character build. So we’re gonna go back to that now, and I think you guys are gonna see it. It’s a little bit risky because it means the game is gonna get even more deep.”

    He also promises that the game’s revamped class design will be a massive change for players, saying it’ll be as big a change as when the game deviated from its original MOBA-esque design and split apart races and classes. “The explosion of build possibilities that are going to come out of this is going to be in the six or seven figures of difference,” he vows. “It’s giant.”"

    Also if I'm correct the gameplay of SB shares some similarities with the one of Crowfall (sieges, bane trees / tree of life, GvG, territory conquest, etc.).

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    DocshiftyDocshifty Registered User regular
    I haven't played Shadowbane for more than an hour, and played Crowfall only in the Hunger Dome / Siege Perilous days, so I'm not really knowledgeable about all the systems and character progression.

    There's this interview they have made in 2020, where Todd talks about Shadowbane-inspired class redesign (transcript from MassivelyOP):
    "The marching orders I had for the design team were – I literally told them – go back and look at Shadowbane. I want that level of customization and configuration of our races and our classes and our disciplines,” he says. “It’s one of the things I’m proudest of; it was unique in that it was a completely open-ended character build system. You could build a centaur gladiator warlord hunter bounty hunter scout – this ridiculous list that made up your class. And if you were like, I’m all those different things, except instead of scout I’m a werewolf, that was a totally different character build. So we’re gonna go back to that now, and I think you guys are gonna see it. It’s a little bit risky because it means the game is gonna get even more deep.”

    He also promises that the game’s revamped class design will be a massive change for players, saying it’ll be as big a change as when the game deviated from its original MOBA-esque design and split apart races and classes. “The explosion of build possibilities that are going to come out of this is going to be in the six or seven figures of difference,” he vows. “It’s giant.”"

    Also if I'm correct the gameplay of SB shares some similarities with the one of Crowfall (sieges, bane trees / tree of life, GvG, territory conquest, etc.).

    Yeah, I've heard that a few times. I also remember when I first bought in about two years ago the talent trees for disciplines were "coming soon". I dunno if those are in, but it doesn't make a difference, I suppose. A shift to Shadowbane's freedom mean changing basically the game as far as character's are concerned. Not that I'm opposed, mind you, but I'm worried about such a shift after, what, 7 years of development?

    The sieges and 'banes', along with the conquest that Crowfall talks about pale in comparison to Shadowbane. I mean, Shadowbane was essentially a predecessor of EVE Online, with regards to politics and intrigue. With Shadowbane you didn't have a safe spot if you weren't careful. Entire player cities were razed to the ground for slights real and imagined. Everything about territory and player involvement in the world in Shadowbane is almost entirely absent with Crowfall. I say almost because what is there is a shadow of the importance guilds had, a flicker of the impact players could make. Like, if Shadowbane let you build and run your own Orgrimmar and raze Stormwind to the ground, forever, Crowfall lets you 'own' Alterac Valley and get some sweet lumber from the place for a month. There's some similarities there, but that's not really something that can be compared.

    Again, all of this isn't to say that Crowfall is bad, but that it is so far removed from Shadowbane that the developers should lay off the comparisons, because pulling people into backer packs now with those promises will help with immediate funds, but it is absolutely not the experience they will get and they won't stay.
    This is also, to some extent, down to the fact that they still don't have the actual game nailed down mechanically. I hope the end result more resembles a modern take on Shadowbane. As it is at the moment, they're trying to evoke a pvp focused sandbox mmo with a, being generous, incomplete sandpark framework.

    All this talk of Crowfall is making me wanna play again. It can be fun, it just needs to get there.

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    franciscourantfranciscourant Registered User regular
    I appreciate all the information you're sharing, thank you.

    Regarding the mentions of SB by ACE to supposedly appeal to nostalgic ex-SB players:
    Docshifty wrote: »
    Again, all of this isn't to say that Crowfall is bad, but that it is so far removed from Shadowbane that the developers should lay off the comparisons, because pulling people into backer packs now with those promises will help with immediate funds, but it is absolutely not the experience they will get and they won't stay.

    I think that considering SB wasn't a huge commercial success (it was even pretty niche) I doubt that they are referring to this game to bring more backers into Crowfall. Even during Kickstarter, I think they didn't mention SB often, comparing instead the game more often to EVE Online / GoT.

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    DocshiftyDocshifty Registered User regular
    I appreciate all the information you're sharing, thank you.

    Regarding the mentions of SB by ACE to supposedly appeal to nostalgic ex-SB players:
    Docshifty wrote: »
    Again, all of this isn't to say that Crowfall is bad, but that it is so far removed from Shadowbane that the developers should lay off the comparisons, because pulling people into backer packs now with those promises will help with immediate funds, but it is absolutely not the experience they will get and they won't stay.

    I think that considering SB wasn't a huge commercial success (it was even pretty niche) I doubt that they are referring to this game to bring more backers into Crowfall. Even during Kickstarter, I think they didn't mention SB often, comparing instead the game more often to EVE Online / GoT.

    I think that's fair. It has legit been years since I bought in, and a big part of that was the Shadowbane/SWG connection, but it has been so long, I cant remember how much of that came from Arc and how much came from outlets and streamers.
    I do know they have Shadowbane specific stuff in game (like weapons with names mentioning the Irekei) so it is there.

    I will say I hopped in yesterday after posting and got a character to 13. They've redone the talent tree nicely. Talents are gated only by if you have at least one of the preceding talents leading to it, as opposed to before where the next tier required total talent points spent as well. So you'd have incremental things like "gain 1% healing power" that you would put five points into to move on. Those are gone, now every talent gives you an active power or passive power, and stat boosts on many. They are far more varied now it feels, as there is less similarity between characters (before the only real big difference was the last 5 talents). It is a far cry from what they're talking about in that interview, but a good step forward.

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    StericaSterica Yes Registered User, Moderator mod
    Are ANY of these games actually finished? Crowfall is in beta, and has a thread nearly six years old. We all know Star Citizen is never releasing unless you consider “fund Chris Roberts’s retirement fund” the actual product. Most of them are in alpha or pre-alpha, missing even conservative Kickstarter goals by literal years.

    I’d go as far to say that “indie MMO” is an oxymoron. The funding required to develop an MMO that is going to last and compete in the market is significantly higher than what an indie studio can bring in on their own, or what a kickstarter can yield. And even if it does (see Star Citizen), it gets mired in feature creep and generally incompetent management and still languishes in development.

    Follow the golden rule, kids: never back kickstarter MMOs. Even among the poor track records of video game crowdfunding, their record is literally zero success stories.

    YL9WnCY.png
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    DocshiftyDocshifty Registered User regular
    Nope, but some are much 'closer' than others (Crowfall has been inviting beta players for like the last year, whereas I dont think Pantheon is available for even backers to play). You can go to YouTube and look at like Nerdslayer and Gameranx and they'll have "Top 10 upcoming MMOs in [Year]" and the last five years are all like the same 8 every time.

    It is the early years after WoW, but instead of big producer companies throwing money at the idea, it is people.

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    franciscourantfranciscourant Registered User regular
    edited March 2021
    Sterica wrote: »
    Are ANY of these games actually finished? Crowfall is in beta, and has a thread nearly six years old. We all know Star Citizen is never releasing unless you consider “fund Chris Roberts’s retirement fund” the actual product. Most of them are in alpha or pre-alpha, missing even conservative Kickstarter goals by literal years.

    I’d go as far to say that “indie MMO” is an oxymoron. The funding required to develop an MMO that is going to last and compete in the market is significantly higher than what an indie studio can bring in on their own, or what a kickstarter can yield. And even if it does (see Star Citizen), it gets mired in feature creep and generally incompetent management and still languishes in development.

    Follow the golden rule, kids: never back kickstarter MMOs. Even among the poor track records of video game crowdfunding, their record is literally zero success stories.

    It's a thread specifically about in-development indie MMOs, so none of them have launched, as Docshifty has pointed out. And yea, probably all of those game missed (sometimes by years) their initial KS goal for launch.

    Some of those titles have $30-40 million budget and it should be enough (hopefully) to fund the game through release and have enough content to have a successful launch.

    As for the zero success stories, there's Albion Online that did well, and Elite: Dangerous (considered by some people as a MMO). Legends of Aria and Boundless did also launch, but aren't very popular.

    franciscourant on
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    YougottawannaYougottawanna Registered User regular
    Camelot Unchained, more like Camelot Unreleased. I just wish one of these things would finally come out!

    All that money spent on the big swanky MMOs, and it was all themepark/hotbar stuff. I always thought that EVE Online in particular was a road not taken for the genre, maybe one of these indie ones will create an environment some kind of metagame can emerge from.

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    Kai_SanKai_San Commonly known as Klineshrike! Registered User regular
    I mean, Crowfall "came out"

    That is about the only thing it accomplished though.

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