Amid Controversy, 38 Studios Releases "Copernicus" Trailer

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Amid Controversy, 38 Studios Releases "Copernicus" Trailer

The "fly-through" video shows no gameplay, but the world of Amalur sure looks purty.

You may have been following the massive pile of poo former Red Sox pitcher Curt Shilling and his games company has been wading through the last week. Quick recap: 38 Studios received a massive $75 million loan from the state of Rhode Island to move main studio to Providence. Last week, the company of 379 full-time employees defaulted on its first loan payment of $1.125 million and Governor Chafee swooped in to see what was rotten in the state of Schilling. Despite a moderate success with the single-player RPG Kingdoms of Amalur, 38 Studios is out of money, and given that the next planned release is an MMO called "Project Copernicus" which won't come out till summer 2013 - the date leaked by Chafee - Rhode Island taxpayers are concerned state officials made a bad call backing Schilling's company. Perhaps to alleviate some of concern, 38 Studios quietly rolled out a "trailer" showing off the landscape of "Project Copernicus".

What's evident in the video is a far cry from a real trailer displaying what will set the "Copernicus" MMO apart in a tough market. Granted, the beautiful vistas designed by Spawn-creator Todd MacFarlane look just as superb as they did in Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning.

But a pretty face doesn't always mean there's a great personality behind it. There's no hint of how the combat works or any neat world-building details. "Copernicus" will have a difficult time finding subscribers in a world where an MMO with a great license and an experienced studio behind it struggle to keep population numbers up. The Old Republic anyone?

Sadly, with 38 Studios' financial woes, this trailer might be the only thing we see of the MMO version of Amalur. I wanted to explore that world further, and bask in the weird fantasy dreamed up by R.A. Salvatore. Here's hoping Rhode Island and Schilling get everything sorted out and "Copernicus" gets finished.

Source: YouTube

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You said it well. It looks pretty but looks only take you so far. If they make it like a standard Wow-like RPG i doubt it'll do well. Maybe if the combat is like kingdoms of amalur: reckoning.

That would be amazing. The best feature of that game was the great combat. If they can actually fit that into an MMO i think it would do well.

Wow, the air sure is thick with vapor in here.

Does Rhode Island count as a publisher at all in a case like this? Because if ever there was a time for justified executive meddling it's when a studio says "Let's make an MMO!" Or, more accurately, "Let's make an MMO in the exact same genre as WOW without even a non-fantasy theme to differentiate us!"

As much as sequels rankle some people, I think 38 should be taking the cheap (as in money-light) way out and doing something with the engine they already paid for. Or Rhode Island already paid for.

They should use knows environments and just make a Reckoning 2 or something. Rathir looks a hell of a lot bigger in that trailer than it was in Reckoning.

A bit too geocentric for my taste.

Formica Archonis:

As much as sequels rankle some people, I think 38 should be taking the cheap (as in money-light) way out and doing something with the engine they already paid for. Or Rhode Island already paid for.

Or perhaps that was just their intention from the start? Shilling made a decent game and he wanted to turn that into an MMO, like ya do.

It's nice, but as a KOA player I feel I've seen it all before.

Greg Tito:
"Copernicus" will have a difficult time finding subscribers in a world where an MMO with a great license and an experienced studio behind it struggle to keep population numbers up. The Old Republic anyone?

To be fair, their numbers are mostly an issue because they spent like 6 trillion dollars promoting the thing, aren't they?

Lethos:
They should use knows environments and just make a Reckoning 2 or something. Rathir looks a hell of a lot bigger in that trailer than it was in Reckoning.

I'd rather see Reckoning 2 than an MMO I probably won't play.

DVS BSTrD:
A bit too geocentric for my taste.

Formica Archonis:

As much as sequels rankle some people, I think 38 should be taking the cheap (as in money-light) way out and doing something with the engine they already paid for. Or Rhode Island already paid for.

Or perhaps that was just their intention from the start? Shilling made a decent game and he wanted to turn that into an MMO, like ya do.

The MMO was planned (and openly so) before KOA even was announced. It was like, the whole point here. Shilling is a huge WoW fan or something.

So if 38 Studios is "out of money" How do they intend to even stay afloat until next summer, much less continue working on this game?

it's ridiculous how they just blew all that cash though, it is just so much waste and it was too big a risk on behalf of the state

In spite of everything, those were some ridiculously gorgeous environments.

Was mildly intrigued, until I read MMO.

Another developer down the drain.

Back to exam study.

Crazy idea: instead of Making and MMORPG... just make an MORPG that can steadily and sustainably grow massive.

I don't like MMO's in their very concept: They demand a very high investment of TIME and MONEY! $10 a month is $120 per year just for subscription and with how cheeky some games charge $60 for a new PC release, that's $180 just to try it on and off for a year. And you NEED to invest a lot of time as almsot every freaking MMOP justifies its price by hours of play.

Except those hours of play inevitably are spent grinding, grinding and grinding. And the gameplay is so detached, with so little strategy or manoeuvres, Sun Tzu's art of war doesn't apply her. And then of course everything you do has zero consequence on the game world otherwise if the Lich King was killed only once then only one raiding party would ever kill it. And everyone else would be cheated out of the game.

Then there is the whole "massive" part of massively multiplayer online. What is the actual appeal of being in a server with so many other human players? Most of the interaction is with the AI controlled environment. Yes, an RPG with a large group of friends is fun but that isn't "massive".

How about this: Just as RPG where you can go on raids with friends.

Oh hey. Until now I was under the impression that KoA was their MMO. They're in worse shape than I thought

Treblaine:
Crazy idea: instead of Making and MMORPG... just make an MORPG that can steadily and sustainably grow massive.

I don't like MMO's in their very concept: They demand a very high investment of TIME and MONEY! $10 a month is $120 per year just for subscription and with how cheeky some games charge $60 for a new PC release, that's $180 just to try it on and off for a year. And you NEED to invest a lot of time as almsot every freaking MMOP justifies its price by hours of play.

Except those hours of play inevitably are spent grinding, grinding and grinding. And the gameplay is so detached, with so little strategy or manoeuvres, Sun Tzu's art of war doesn't apply her. And then of course everything you do has zero consequence on the game world otherwise if the Lich King was killed only once then only one raiding party would ever kill it. And everyone else would be cheated out of the game.

Then there is the whole "massive" part of massively multiplayer online. What is the actual appeal of being in a server with so many other human players? Most of the interaction is with the AI controlled environment. Yes, an RPG with a large group of friends is fun but that isn't "massive".

How about this: Just as RPG where you can go on raids with friends.

Because every mmo is the same right?
You know i hate people like you who make assumptions about entire genre's or game series without knowing anything about them.
because if one game is like that all of them are like that ?[sarcasm]

Zachary Amaranth:
I'd rather see Reckoning 2 than an MMO I probably won't play.

Same. Use the environments in the trailer, improve the camera angle a bit and maybe add some new skills to the trees.

But I would imagine they are too far into the development phrase to suddenly shift it to a single player RPG now.

rolfwesselius:

Treblaine:
Crazy idea: instead of Making and MMORPG... just make an MORPG that can steadily and sustainably grow massive.

I don't like MMO's in their very concept: They demand a very high investment of TIME and MONEY! $10 a month is $120 per year just for subscription and with how cheeky some games charge $60 for a new PC release, that's $180 just to try it on and off for a year. And you NEED to invest a lot of time as almsot every freaking MMOP justifies its price by hours of play.

Except those hours of play inevitably are spent grinding, grinding and grinding. And the gameplay is so detached, with so little strategy or manoeuvres, Sun Tzu's art of war doesn't apply her. And then of course everything you do has zero consequence on the game world otherwise if the Lich King was killed only once then only one raiding party would ever kill it. And everyone else would be cheated out of the game.

Then there is the whole "massive" part of massively multiplayer online. What is the actual appeal of being in a server with so many other human players? Most of the interaction is with the AI controlled environment. Yes, an RPG with a large group of friends is fun but that isn't "massive".

How about this: Just as RPG where you can go on raids with friends.

Because every mmo is the same right?
You know i hate people like you who make assumptions about entire genre's or game series without knowing anything about them.
because if one game is like that all of them are like that ?[sarcasm]

OK, then please DO enlighten me to the MMO in existence where:

-your actions on the world have persistent effect
-it has deep gameplay controls (more than EVE's space sim)
-Your interaction with the millions of players online it truly significant, not just the dozen or so in your party of PvP instance.
-No subscription fee greater than $2 per month.
-No excessive grinding for progress

rolfwesselius:

Because every mmo is the same right?
You know i hate people like you who make assumptions about entire genre's or game series without knowing anything about them.
because if one game is like that all of them are like that ?[sarcasm]

If that was sarcastic, are you agreeing with him?

Anyway. I do hope 38 pulls through, but only because if they don't it'll make this state's economy worse than it already was. The idea to get them in RI was sound enough, and it was definitely a high risk-high reward type deal.

Not that I'll feel terribly bad if 38 does plunge. They shouldn't have attempted the MMO thing this early into their life cycle. At least go for a sequel to their hit before moving on.

OK, then please DO enlighten me to the MMO in existence where:

-your actions on the world have persistent effect
-it has deep gameplay controls (more than EVE's space sim)
-Your interaction with the millions of players online it truly significant, not just the dozen or so in your party of PvP instance.
-No subscription fee greater than $2 per month.
-No excessive grinding for progress[/quote]

As an nitpick your significant interactions with millions of others is almost impossible, depending how you define significant. Because if millions of people are having significant actions then, everyones actions basically have 1/1 000 000 significance, because everyone else is doing them too. I think EVE level interaction is pretty near the peak really, maybe actual worldbuilding could added but not much more without screwing over gameplay.

That's a theoretical thing though, not really commenting on your MMO thing and well naturally EVE level of interaction is possible which is pretty good, and EVE doesn't have some of the other things you mentioned. Tho I thought EVEs game controls had problems with clunkiness and lack of usability as opposed to depth

Treblaine:

rolfwesselius:

Treblaine:
Crazy idea: instead of Making and MMORPG... just make an MORPG that can steadily and sustainably grow massive.

I don't like MMO's in their very concept: They demand a very high investment of TIME and MONEY! $10 a month is $120 per year just for subscription and with how cheeky some games charge $60 for a new PC release, that's $180 just to try it on and off for a year. And you NEED to invest a lot of time as almsot every freaking MMOP justifies its price by hours of play.

Except those hours of play inevitably are spent grinding, grinding and grinding. And the gameplay is so detached, with so little strategy or manoeuvres, Sun Tzu's art of war doesn't apply her. And then of course everything you do has zero consequence on the game world otherwise if the Lich King was killed only once then only one raiding party would ever kill it. And everyone else would be cheated out of the game.

Then there is the whole "massive" part of massively multiplayer online. What is the actual appeal of being in a server with so many other human players? Most of the interaction is with the AI controlled environment. Yes, an RPG with a large group of friends is fun but that isn't "massive".

How about this: Just as RPG where you can go on raids with friends.

Because every mmo is the same right?
You know i hate people like you who make assumptions about entire genre's or game series without knowing anything about them.
because if one game is like that all of them are like that ?[sarcasm]

OK, then please DO enlighten me to the MMO in existence where:

-your actions on the world have persistent effect
-it has deep gameplay controls (more than EVE's space sim)
-Your interaction with the millions of players online is truly significant, not just the dozen or so in your party of PvP instance.
-No subscription fee greater than $2 per month.
-No excessive grinding for progress

A game like that is im-freaking possible what else do you want? megan fox materializing and giving you a boob job?

I never understood with MMOs where grinding actually became fun. I mean, repeating the same monotonous task ad nauseam is something I try and avoid in my education/working life - why would I want it in my entertainment for goodness sake?

I'm also confused - I thought KoA started out life as an MMO, then they ran out of money, so they made it an RPG. Now they're making an MMO and they ran out of money even after releasing KoA? And the MMO isn't even close to release?

rolfwesselius:

Treblaine:

OK, then please DO enlighten me to the MMO in existence where:

-your actions on the world have persistent effect
-it has deep gameplay controls (more than EVE's space sim)
-Your interaction with the millions of players online is truly significant, not just the dozen or so in your party of PvP instance.
-No subscription fee greater than $2 per month.
-No excessive grinding for progress

A game like that is im-freaking possible what else do you want? megan fox materializing and giving you a boob job?

Uhh, other games can do it.

Bioshock:
-persistent effect - characters you kill stay that way
-the deep controls in ability to aim, jump, sprint, arc grenades, use plasmids and hack etc
-No subscription fee
-No grinding, but engaging stuff like Hunting Big Daddies and other weird sploicers

And same for Skyrim and so on. But if it were to be an MMO then that could be kept intact and the massive aspect of MMO be really exploited with your interaction with million of players being absolutely pivotal in how they do things that no computer can do: reason with them, have deep intelligence and abstract original thought of interaction.

My original point what not that all MMOs are the same, but they all have the same limitations.

BrotherRool:

Treblaine:

OK, then please DO enlighten me to the MMO in existence where:

-your actions on the world have persistent effect
-it has deep gameplay controls (more than EVE's space sim)
-Your interaction with the millions of players online it truly significant, not just the dozen or so in your party of PvP instance.
-No subscription fee greater than $2 per month.
-No excessive grinding for progress

As an nitpick your significant interactions with millions of others is almost impossible, depending how you define significant. Because if millions of people are having significant actions then, everyones actions basically have 1/1 000 000 significance, because everyone else is doing them too. I think EVE level interaction is pretty near the peak really, maybe actual worldbuilding could added but not much more without screwing over gameplay.

That's a theoretical thing though, not really commenting on your MMO thing and well naturally EVE level of interaction is possible which is pretty good, and EVE doesn't have some of the other things you mentioned. Tho I thought EVEs game controls had problems with clunkiness and lack of usability as opposed to depth

If you don't significantly interact with millions or even thousands then the "massive" part is worthless. It's not really different from Call of Duty where dozens interact in a particular instance. The "million Play MMO" is therefore a gimmick, it sounds good but could be removed without affecting gameplay.

That's the thing, in a regular RPG or other game when I kill Diablo, he is dead... or at least until very specific circumstances bring him back in a sequel. Not simply me leaving the dungeon for 5 minutes and another raiding party coming in after me. The only way I can fight him again (in the same game) is to rewind the clock, go back to an earlier save or start a new game.

I would pay such a large amount of money to have such an insignificant role in the world. I understand the MMOs sacrifice tactical control (ability to manoeuvre and aim to deal more damage and avoid more damage yourself) for more strategic control but that is compromised for how I am making so little progress in the environment. Enemy scaling is inevitable which makes most weapon upgrades pointless except for being permissible to access other areas.

Other games the difficulty scaling is not in your character attributes but your own knowledge and mastery. The RPG aspect should be used to EXPAND your your repertoire of abilities for increased variety of gameplay, not just increase damage by 50% to only see all enemy health increase by 50%.

Just make a big MMO like Skyrim and have a well implemented multiplayer aspect. No need to be "massively multiplayer" with all the huge costs and conflict of interests with subscription fee. Yes, there is a huge conflict of interest in a subscription fee to drag out the game with grinding and fluff just so that people keep paying for more months.

Begun, the off-topic "What's so great about MMOs" forum war, has.

Susurrus:
I'm also confused - I thought KoA started out life as an MMO, then they ran out of money, so they made it an RPG. Now they're making an MMO and they ran out of money even after releasing KoA? And the MMO isn't even close to release?

The Kingdom's of Amalur IP itself was created for the sake of this MMO. Kingdom's of Amalur: Reckoning was originally an unrelated single-player RPG that was in the early stages of development by Big Huge Games when they were bought out by 38 Studios, and the game was subsequently retooled to fit within the Amalur universe.

It's sort of confusing; I understand.

Treblaine:
snip

Those are single player games that doesn't transition to mmo's because of technical limitation.

I do hope they pull through this, as they definitely have some great vision and art direction from what i can tell, and i actually very much enjoyed Amalur. Perhaps with a pricing model like Guild Wars 2, and the combat from Amalur, they can really get people invested in their game. But if they go for a subscription fee, hotkey-based MMO, i think they'd be digging their own grave.

I hate the fact that I have no interest in this. I'm so burnt out with the fantasy environments.

Still, it'll suck to see the studio crash. We need more new IPs.

...But not more MMOs.

rolfwesselius:

Treblaine:
snip

Those are single player games that doesn't transition to mmo's because of technical limitation.

But really, what limitations?

If that is the case, I will sacrifice graphical fidelity so it looks just like Minecraft or Quake 1 to allow this.

If it really is insurmountable then I will have to reiterate that I cannot buy into any MMO as it sacrifices so much I like about games for a feature that is more for bragging rights than anything else. I mean what is the ACTUAL point in there being millions of people in a game and thousands of people on the same server?

I like RPGs with deep gameplay in tactics AND strategy. That is having to move and aim quick and time explosions and lead shot, but also the strategy in managing health, buffs, damage multipliers, status effects and so on.

Actually, technical limitations, shmeptical limitation's... Moore's Law biatch! We can power through these problems, what was impossible in 2007 should be inevitable in 2017. I like my multiplayer interaction with things like Team Fortress 2, Tribes Ascend or DOTA. Why can't that be scaled up?

"I know we seem like a bunch of firebugs who have just set fire to an enormous stack of money, but I think you'll really like our next project! Picture if you will: an enormous pool of kerosene..."

Burst6:
You said it well. It looks pretty but looks only take you so far. If they make it like a standard Wow-like RPG i doubt it'll do well. Maybe if the combat is like kingdoms of amalur: reckoning.

That would be amazing. The best feature of that game was the great combat. If they can actually fit that into an MMO i think it would do well.

this, and the combat is simple enough in Amalur it could work easily. long as the don't try and copy WoWs combat, we have enough 'WoW wanna be's'

Lvl 64 Klutz:
So if 38 Studios is "out of money" How do they intend to even stay afloat until next summer, much less continue working on this game?

Black magic....?

Other than that, I have no idea and I was wondering about that too. I'm surprised Rhode Island hasn't kicked them out yet, and I really question why they wanted them there in the first place.

It looks pretty, but while listening to that beautiful music I couldn't help but think of it as a majestic ship slowly sinking.

Okay guys, now you have some pretty sweet graphical resources, do yourself a favour. Chop them up and make single player games.

One day WoW will die and the world will be better off for it, certainly many people's dietary health will be better off for it, but considering that WoW already exists, making it again will not make you any money.

Cash-strapped 38 Studios... Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning - $59.99 on Steam. Here's an idea...but I bet you can guess what it is without me spelling it out ;->.

Well, it looked pretty, I guess? I liked the environments, but that doesn't mean I'd want to play it, necessarily.

woah woah woah, really? They got a $75 Million loan from the state? Aka tax payer money?...A gaming company....? HOW did that get worked out?!?! I can just see some crotchedy old citizen going "WHAT?!?! MY TAXES ARE PAYIN FOR SOME DARN VIDJA GAMES FOR HOOLIGANS?!"

._. No really, someone explain to me how that went down other than the obvious "clearly not well by the looks of it"

Callate:
"I know we seem like a bunch of firebugs who have just set fire to an enormous stack of money, but I think you'll really like our next project! Picture if you will: an enormous pool of kerosene..."

Please go on, I am intrigued.

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