13 April, 2007
So, based on one of my comments in my last post, this challenge will be about licenses for MMOs. What makes a good license? Oh, let’s also talk about the potential trainwrecks since those are fun to laugh at. :)
I think few licenses are truly beyond redemption for making an online game. The trick is that some will require more work than others.
Scott Jennings showed this when he wrote a blog entry on making Battlestar Galactica Online and called it “doing the undoable”. Some licenses, especially Battlestar Galactica at its prime, are so huge that trying to make a game can be a daunting proposition. I think Scott shows that you can go off in interesting directions and still have a good game based on a license. But, you still have the problem I discussed in my last article where you either alienate the casual people or piss off the hardcore for not being hardcore enough.
I talked about another license in a previous design challenge that would fit well in an MMO setting, but would require a lot of work: Cowboy Bebop. The problem is, as I said before, you would have to write so many different types of engines and design so many different types of gameplay to give the full experience of the setting. And, it’s the full package that makes the whole game so appealing, IMHO.
So, what is your thought about licenses for MMOs? What would make a good one? Why? Or, focus on the negative and talk about why a particular license would be a trainwreck. :)