In an interview with MMORPG.com, Mythic Vice President and General Manager Mark Jacobs revealed the game would be undergoing serious changes as a result of "issues" with the current state of the game and the looming launch schedule. The planned six capital cities in the game, one for each race, has been cut to two, while four of the game's character classes have also been removed.
"A number of months ago we sat down and looked at where we were with our Capital Cities and we looked at what we were doing with (Imperial capital) Altdorf and (Chaos capital) Inevitable City, we looked at the Greenskin home, the Dwarf home and we went, 'There's an awful lot to do here and there are some issues,'" Jacobs said. "We decided to focus our energies on two capital cities; one for Order and one for Destruction, and make them fabulous. Not good, not great, but fabulous."
As a result, each city will now be polished as much as possible, and Jacobs said that players won't be "distracted or divided" by the cities, instead focusing their collective efforts on a single position. "By only starting with two, we can really focus the community, focus the player base, focus the guilds, the teams, that are all working to sack the city," he said.
While Jacobs attempted to spin the city changes as a positive, he was forced to admit the missing classes are a greater loss, saying, "This isn't something that I can say that it is really a good thing for the player." The four classes being cut are the Greenskin Choppa, the Dwarf Hammerer, the Dark Elf Blackguard and the Empire's Knight of the Blazing Sun.
"I wish we didn't have to do it," Jacobs said. "I really do. Unlike the capital cities, I can honestly say that I really wish we didn't have to cut them out, but it's better for them to be cut out than to have classes that aren't great and that we would spend more time trying to make them great post-launch than we should have to."
Jacobs claimed that Mythic Entertainment owner Electronic Arts had "nothing to do" with the decision, but also revealed the studio had changed its name from EA Mythic back to its original moniker of Mythic Entertainment.
Based on the Games Workshop Warhammer fantasy setting, Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning is currently targeted for release in fall 2008. MMORPG.com's complete interview with Mark Jacobs is available here.