Wizards of the Coast Opens a New Digital Game Studio

Wizards of the Coast Opens a New Digital Game Studio

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The company behind Dungeons & Dragons and Magic: the Gathering has a new digital game studio division.

If you've ever sat back and wondered why Wizards of the Coast doesn't do more with video games for its huge brands, you are not alone. I've often thought that there are huge opportunities being missed by the tabletop publisher. It looks like Wizards must have been thinking that too, if a new blog post from its president, Chris Cocks, is any indication. In that post, he announces that the company has formed a new "Digital Games Studio" headed by industry veteran Jeffrey Steefel.

Steefel's background includes a stint as Vice President of Programming and Production at Sony Online Entertainment, as well as serving as the Executive Producer of Turbine's Lord of the Rings Online. According to Cocks' post, the team Steefel now heads includes veterans from a number of popular studios, including Activision, Bioware, and others. It also includes the team responsible for Magic Online. The new Digital Games Studio is working on "reimagining" the digital versions of Magic and other Wizards games.

The blog post also announces that Wizards has hired David Schwartz, who has led projects at EA, THQ, and Microsoft, among others. Schwartz is said to be creating a publishing team at Wizards that will "explore partnerships and collaborations that will bring Magic and D&D to unexpected settings, genres, and platforms."

Obviously, there's no word on exactly what Wizards has in mind for its digital future, but "reimagining" Wizards games could mean new Magic and D&D titles at an absolute minimum. As Cocks writes, "What would it be like to throw fireballs as a Planeswalker in an MMO, or quest for treasure with your friends in a D&D augmented-reality game? We want to play games like this too."

We do too.

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Cool! I've always wanted to get into DnD but I just don't have enough friends who are interested in investing that much time and effort into it. The way I say it is the more quality games in that vein the better.

I'm interested if there is any movement with their "Magic Next" that was mentioned in a shareholders presentation a few years back.

If they scrap the F2P Duels, and go back to a pay model for digital cards, I just may drop MtG again.

Just make a virtual DnD. Like, straight up take the rule set from the books, and sell that as a game. Give Roll20 a run for your own money. Just ya know, follow the rules in the books. All the default races, all the default classes, etc. Give us a DM toolset. Fucking hell just rip off everything you can from Neverwinter Nights, the greatest DnD video game ever because it was the closest to real DnD in game format. (You cant make your own stuff in Baldur's Gate, and making your own stuff as DM is most of DnD)

Steefel. Also known as the IRL Sauron to LotRO players.

madwarper:
I'm interested if there is any movement with their "Magic Next" that was mentioned in a shareholders presentation a few years back.

If they scrap the F2P Duels, and go back to a pay model for digital cards, I just may drop MtG again.

The pay model never went away, though.

That said, MTGO is in dire need of some fixes, it's a bloated, buggy mess.

Davroth:

madwarper:
I'm interested if there is any movement with their "Magic Next" that was mentioned in a shareholders presentation a few years back.

If they scrap the F2P Duels, and go back to a pay model for digital cards, I just may drop MtG again.

The pay model never went away, though.

That said, MTGO is in dire need of some fixes, it's a bloated, buggy mess.

More like their entire card game is a bloated buggy mess. They have the worst secondary market of any game except possibly the Games Workshop repertoire and have stubbornly refused up to this point to do anything about it, let alone try to fix MTGO in a meaningful way. At least now they MAY fix MTGO via a better game, but looking at their roadmap they intend to keep MTGO around regardless of digital next.

Saelune:
Fucking hell just rip off everything you can from Neverwinter Nights, the greatest DnD video game ever because it was the closest to real DnD in game format.

image

Although we DID get Sword Coast Legends very recently and it kinda sucked. Not really but compared to NWN, it did. Really hoping they won't be making the same mistakes. Oh, and they're gonna have to compete with the behemoth that is becoming Divinity: Original Sin 2

Arnoxthe1:

Saelune:
Fucking hell just rip off everything you can from Neverwinter Nights, the greatest DnD video game ever because it was the closest to real DnD in game format.

image

Although we DID get Sword Coast Legends very recently and it kinda sucked. Not really but compared to NWN, it did. Really hoping they won't be making the same mistakes. Oh, and they're gonna have to compete with the behemoth that is becoming Divinity: Original Sin 2

That game did not follow all the rules of the books and have all the things from it.

And Divinity doesnt let you make your own games. I dont want a single player experience, I want to play real DnD virtually. Like Roll20 but ya know, better.

Saelune:
And Divinity doesnt let you make your own games. I dont want a single player experience, I want to play real DnD virtually. Like Roll20 but ya know, better.

Not currently no. But one of Divinity: Original Sin 2's main goals is to ship with a full DM client and editor. So actually you will be able to make your own experiences.

Colt47:

Davroth:

madwarper:
I'm interested if there is any movement with their "Magic Next" that was mentioned in a shareholders presentation a few years back.

If they scrap the F2P Duels, and go back to a pay model for digital cards, I just may drop MtG again.

The pay model never went away, though.

That said, MTGO is in dire need of some fixes, it's a bloated, buggy mess.

More like their entire card game is a bloated buggy mess. They have the worst secondary market of any game except possibly the Games Workshop repertoire and have stubbornly refused up to this point to do anything about it, let alone try to fix MTGO in a meaningful way. At least now they MAY fix MTGO via a better game, but looking at their roadmap they intend to keep MTGO around regardless of digital next.

Someone has a bone to pick with Wizards.. there's tons of formats of magic you can play without breaking the bank, a bad secondary market doesn't have much to do with the quality of the game, and say what you like, it has stood the test of time in a very competitive market. Saying the game itself is a bloated buggy mess is beyond ridiculous. It's got maybe the tightest and ironclad rule book of any tcg I ever played, and I played several dozens.

Davroth:

Colt47:

Davroth:

The pay model never went away, though.

That said, MTGO is in dire need of some fixes, it's a bloated, buggy mess.

More like their entire card game is a bloated buggy mess. They have the worst secondary market of any game except possibly the Games Workshop repertoire and have stubbornly refused up to this point to do anything about it, let alone try to fix MTGO in a meaningful way. At least now they MAY fix MTGO via a better game, but looking at their roadmap they intend to keep MTGO around regardless of digital next.

Someone has a bone to pick with Wizards.. there's tons of formats of magic you can play without breaking the bank, a bad secondary market doesn't have much to do with the quality of the game, and say what you like, it has stood the test of time in a very competitive market. Saying the game itself is a bloated buggy mess is beyond ridiculous. It's got maybe the tightest and ironclad rule book of any tcg I ever played, and I played several dozens.

Their limited environment is great and EDH is a blast, it's that they aren't supporting Modern constructed play as they should be largely due to the sets pre-dating Return to Ravnica needing a major reprinting and the lack of good answers coming in from standard. Standard constructed has been problematic the last year and a half. We've had our first standard bannings in years because of bad set design for BFZ / kaladesh standard.

Colt47:

Davroth:

Colt47:

More like their entire card game is a bloated buggy mess. They have the worst secondary market of any game except possibly the Games Workshop repertoire and have stubbornly refused up to this point to do anything about it, let alone try to fix MTGO in a meaningful way. At least now they MAY fix MTGO via a better game, but looking at their roadmap they intend to keep MTGO around regardless of digital next.

Someone has a bone to pick with Wizards.. there's tons of formats of magic you can play without breaking the bank, a bad secondary market doesn't have much to do with the quality of the game, and say what you like, it has stood the test of time in a very competitive market. Saying the game itself is a bloated buggy mess is beyond ridiculous. It's got maybe the tightest and ironclad rule book of any tcg I ever played, and I played several dozens.

Their limited environment is great and EDH is a blast, it's that they aren't supporting Modern constructed play as they should be largely due to the sets pre-dating Return to Ravnica needing a major reprinting and the lack of good answers coming in from standard. Standard constructed has been problematic the last year and a half. We've had our first standard bannings in years because of bad set design for BFZ / kaladesh standard.

Sounds to me as if your gripes are more with their corporate decision rather then the game itself. The last 4 sets had a great limited environments, so the designs of those sets can't be complete failures, for one. Standard has gone through a big change in the last 6 sets with the loss of core sets, I'm not surprised that the transition isn't seamless. But these standard bans are nothing compared to the affinity winter. And they even showed the willingness to dip their toes into making expensive reprints, as we saw with Vintage Masters.

Davroth:

Colt47:

Davroth:

Someone has a bone to pick with Wizards.. there's tons of formats of magic you can play without breaking the bank, a bad secondary market doesn't have much to do with the quality of the game, and say what you like, it has stood the test of time in a very competitive market. Saying the game itself is a bloated buggy mess is beyond ridiculous. It's got maybe the tightest and ironclad rule book of any tcg I ever played, and I played several dozens.

Their limited environment is great and EDH is a blast, it's that they aren't supporting Modern constructed play as they should be largely due to the sets pre-dating Return to Ravnica needing a major reprinting and the lack of good answers coming in from standard. Standard constructed has been problematic the last year and a half. We've had our first standard bannings in years because of bad set design for BFZ / kaladesh standard.

Sounds to me as if your gripes are more with their corporate decision rather then the game itself. The last 4 sets had a great limited environments, so the designs of those sets can't be complete failures, for one. Standard has gone through a big change in the last 6 sets with the loss of core sets, I'm not surprised that the transition isn't seamless. But these standard bans are nothing compared to the affinity winter. And they even showed the willingness to dip their toes into making expensive reprints, as we saw with Vintage Masters.

Again, I said limited was fine. The problem is constructed has had some major issues as of late from mistakes like Felidar Guardian to overpowered end game cards that aren't fun to play against such as Emerakul. Someone can like MtG limited and still have problems with the more competitive constructed environments, and modern has been having a major printing issue for a while in the older sets that had limited runs.

Colt47:

Davroth:

Colt47:

Their limited environment is great and EDH is a blast, it's that they aren't supporting Modern constructed play as they should be largely due to the sets pre-dating Return to Ravnica needing a major reprinting and the lack of good answers coming in from standard. Standard constructed has been problematic the last year and a half. We've had our first standard bannings in years because of bad set design for BFZ / kaladesh standard.

Sounds to me as if your gripes are more with their corporate decision rather then the game itself. The last 4 sets had a great limited environments, so the designs of those sets can't be complete failures, for one. Standard has gone through a big change in the last 6 sets with the loss of core sets, I'm not surprised that the transition isn't seamless. But these standard bans are nothing compared to the affinity winter. And they even showed the willingness to dip their toes into making expensive reprints, as we saw with Vintage Masters.

Again, I said limited was fine. The problem is constructed has had some major issues as of late from mistakes like Felidar Guardian to overpowered end game cards that aren't fun to play against such as Emerakul. Someone can like MtG limited and still have problems with the more competitive constructed environments, and modern has been having a major printing issue for a while in the older sets that had limited runs.

The initial assessment was that MTG as a whole is a bloated buggy mess, something I don't think it's true. Just because certain formats are broken doesn't mean that MTG is a broken game as a whole. Which is why I try to work out the nuances. It's also far too soon to assess that the recent prints are mistakes, seeing how they have been barely out.

 

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