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Dragon Empires Cancelled in 2004

AutemOxAutemOx Fullerton, CAPosts: 1,704Member

Something odd happened to me today, I saw a reference to codemasters for the first time in years.  Codemasters developed partially a MMORPG called Dragon Empires back in 2000-2003, and I fell in love with it.  It was sophisticated and would have been a step forward from the MMORPGs at the time in the right direction, building on aspects of SWG and other MMORPGs out and focusing on economy, clan owned cities (PvP), and player housing.

Heres a way-back machine of the website:

http://web.archive.org/web/20050617080903/http://www.codemasters.com/dragonempires/

I can't help but wonder how the MMORPG scene would be different if it had been completed by 2004 as a sandbox competitor to World of Warcraft.

Play as your fav retro characters: cnd-online.net. My site: www.lysle.net. Blog: creatingaworld.blogspot.com.

Comments

  • Loke666Loke666 MalmöPosts: 18,045Member Uncommon

    Well, it is really hard to say. It might have NGEd itself to death just like SWG after Wow started to take subs..

    Alternate history is really a hard subject, what would have happened if Hitler would have gotten the A-bomb first or if the south would have won the US civil war?

    But it was a shame (not Hitler, Dragon empires ;).

  • Creslin321Creslin321 Baltimore, MDPosts: 5,359Member
    I frequently have the same thoughts about the never-to-be UO2.

    Are you team Azeroth, team Tyria, or team Jacob?

  • waynejr2waynejr2 West Toluca Lake, CAPosts: 4,481Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by wormywyrm

    Something odd happened to me today, I saw a reference to codemasters for the first time in years.  Codemasters developed partially a MMORPG called Dragon Empires back in 2000-2003, and I fell in love with it.  It was sophisticated and would have been a step forward from the MMORPGs at the time in the right direction, building on aspects of SWG and other MMORPGs out and focusing on economy, clan owned cities (PvP), and player housing.

    Heres a way-back machine of the website:

    http://web.archive.org/web/20050617080903/http://www.codemasters.com/dragonempires/

    I can't help but wonder how the MMORPG scene would be different if it had been completed by 2004 as a sandbox competitor to World of Warcraft.

    I was really looking forward to that game but design blunders ultimately killed it.   Some might prefer to say that it was reaching too far for the technology.  There was a fatal design flaw that killed it.

  • AutemOxAutemOx Fullerton, CAPosts: 1,704Member

    Yes I think they were probably reaching too far, which only solidifies the strategy that so many developers have embraced to created linear polished mmos.

    Play as your fav retro characters: cnd-online.net. My site: www.lysle.net. Blog: creatingaworld.blogspot.com.

  • waynejr2waynejr2 West Toluca Lake, CAPosts: 4,481Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by wormywyrm

    Yes I think they were probably reaching too far, which only solidifies the strategy that so many developers have embraced to created linear polished mmos.

    I haven't seen the code so I can't say for certain. But the story was they didn't design it to be scalable.  So it did ok with a small internal group of players it couldn't handle more.  It was a basic design flaw that would have to be thrown out and started over to fix.  I don't know if that is actually true as it could be internet rumor or even smoke screen.  It seems plausable.  Than again, they could have been over reaching.

  • skeeter667skeeter667 holyoke, MAPosts: 55Member Uncommon

    What really torques me with this game was Codemasters waiting till 2 weeks before launch to come out and say they were cancelling the game due to massive server issues.This was something they knew or at least should have known months previous.

    PS Well at least it was close to the release date on mmorpg.com they never did release a date from codemasters it got canned before that happened.

  • waynejr2waynejr2 West Toluca Lake, CAPosts: 4,481Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by skeeter667

    What really torques me with this game was Codemasters waiting till 2 weeks before launch to come out and say they were cancelling the game due to massive server issues.This was something they knew or at least should have known months previous.

    PS Well at least it was close to the release date on mmorpg.com they never did release a date from codemasters it got canned before that happened.

    It is what it is.  I was really looking forward to that game but alas.....

  • skeeter667skeeter667 holyoke, MAPosts: 55Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by waynejr2

    Originally posted by skeeter667

    What really torques me with this game was Codemasters waiting till 2 weeks before launch to come out and say they were cancelling the game due to massive server issues.This was something they knew or at least should have known months previous.

    PS Well at least it was close to the release date on mmorpg.com they never did release a date from codemasters it got canned before that happened.

    It is what it is.  I was really looking forward to that game but alas.....

    Yup thats just how things go sometimes, it's too bad I was really looking forward to it too.

  • saluksaluk seattle, WAPosts: 325Member

    Yeah I was looking forward to this one too. The team was obviously not equipped to handle a game of this scale, and if released, it probably would have been pretty bad. Like a shadowbane or a dark and light.

    Looking back at the game it doesn't look quite as innovative as it seemed at the time, although I'd still love to see clan-owned cities implemented in a similar way one day.

  • JoliustJoliust stoughton, WIPosts: 1,329Member

    Why did you have to remind me of this game. :-p

    Sent me an email if you want me to mail you some pizza rolls.

  • ZylaxxZylaxx Erlanger, KYPosts: 2,574Member

    Originally posted by Creslin321

    I frequently have the same thoughts about the never-to-be UO2.

    You mean Ultima X?

    Everything you need to know about Elder Scrolls Online

    Playing: GW2
    Waiting on: TESO
    Next Flop: Planetside 2
    Best MMO of all time: Asheron's Call - The first company to recreate AC will be the next greatest MMO.

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  • ArunArun GravesendPosts: 52Member

    I too was following this game... so sad it all went wrong!

     

    And UO2? Another one that got away. I think they got to the stage of releasing videos for it?

    Originally posted by shukes33
    Grind is not one of the downfalls of DF it is just a feature.

  • DaakkonDaakkon Deadmonton, ABPosts: 424Member Uncommon

    Anybody remember WISH? I wish that game never got cancelled. :(

    image

  • NadiaNadia Canonsburg, PAPosts: 11,866Member Uncommon

    Microsofts Mythica pulled a similar stunt in 2004

    http://pc.ign.com/articles/492/492182p1.html

  • vanderghastvanderghast cresco, IAPosts: 222Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by skeeter667

    What really torques me with this game was Codemasters waiting till 2 weeks before launch to come out and say they were cancelling the game due to massive server issues.This was something they knew or at least should have known months previous.

    PS Well at least it was close to the release date on mmorpg.com they never did release a date from codemasters it got canned before that happened.

     

     

    I was a beta tester for dragon empires, very early tester.  This game was never at any point with any build ever shown to beta testers remotely not even a millenia away from being 2 weeks from release when it was cancelled.  Any dates that were out there were completely bogus as this game never made it very far at all.

     

    As long as this is the game i'm thinking it is, we never even saw actual mobs in the beta to fight.  It was a big empty world.  I think I was in the test like 2 months before it got cancelled.  If memory serves they only tested a couple days a week.  The entire time in beta we never saw any progress whatsoever, no patches no nothing.  Just these empty world tests and they were laggy and you got kicked constantly which backs up the story that the server code was lacking.

     

    After about awhile in beta, and very little communication from the devs on the beta boards i remember someone posting asking the devs for an update which was met with silence.  The beta community was very small at this point.  I remember making a post saying that my hunch was this game was going to be cancelled in the near future as all signs were pointing to that.  I remember most of the other testers telling me i was nuts and that codemasters had too much money into the game to do that.  Not a week later there was a post on the board and an email to all testers saying that the game was being cancelled.

     

    Don't get all nostalgic over this game, it never made it anywhere and was never even a playable game, at least external beta builds weren't.  There might have been some internal build that had mobs.

  • skeeter667skeeter667 holyoke, MAPosts: 55Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by saluk

    Yeah I was looking forward to this one too. The team was obviously not equipped to handle a game of this scale, and if released, it probably would have been pretty bad. Like a shadowbane or a dark and light.

    Looking back at the game it doesn't look quite as innovative as it seemed at the time, although I'd still love to see clan-owned cities implemented in a similar way one day.

    Shadowbane had its issues but it had its (few) good points, Dark and Light on the other hand was a POS but when I did play it I was in a guild that had some members in it they played the game that D&L was supposed to be before the issues with the dev team happened.

    And to the guy that mentioned Wish that game could have been something if they didn't chicken out and believe the info that they got from a few forum polls told them, they should have stuck it out longer and actaully released that game could have really gone somewhere, UO but 3D all on one server ( I believe thats what they were shotting for anyway its been a long time.

  • Creslin321Creslin321 Baltimore, MDPosts: 5,359Member

    Originally posted by Zylaxx

    Originally posted by Creslin321

    I frequently have the same thoughts about the never-to-be UO2.

    You mean Ultima X?

    Nah Ultima X was the SECOND canceled followup to UO.

    UO2 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultima_Online_2) was in development at around the turn of the century and it was supposed to be awesome.  They hyped the crap out of that game.  They even had Todd McFarlane create a line of custom action figures designed after UO2 characters (http://www.amazon.com/Ultima-Online-II-Figure-Black/dp/B00004TDTF).  And then the stupid thing gets canceled.  

    And just to make it even worse, they tried to do it AGAIN with Ultima X like you mentioned and then THAT got canceled as well!

    Freaking EA...

    Are you team Azeroth, team Tyria, or team Jacob?

  • skeeter667skeeter667 holyoke, MAPosts: 55Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Creslin321

    Originally posted by Zylaxx


    Originally posted by Creslin321

    I frequently have the same thoughts about the never-to-be UO2.

    You mean Ultima X?

    Nah Ultima X was the SECOND canceled followup to UO.

    UO2 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultima_Online_2) was in development at around the turn of the century and it was supposed to be awesome.  They hyped the crap out of that game.  They even had Todd McFarlane create a line of custom action figures designed after UO2 characters (http://www.amazon.com/Ultima-Online-II-Figure-Black/dp/B00004TDTF).  And then the stupid thing gets canceled.  

    And just to make it even worse, they tried to do it AGAIN with Ultima X like you mentioned and then THAT got canceled as well!

    Freaking EA...

    I don't know about UO2 but UOX was cancelled becuase EA didn't want to compete with themselves against UO which was probably a stupid decision on EA's part who wanted a big time MMO of there own since they bought out Origin  to get UO for there own.

  • herculeshercules lancashire,blackpoolPosts: 4,791Member Uncommon

    i had the honor of been able to try the game out and it was just about to go beta proper.the ideas were great ,giving us a complex world but it was 2003 or so and back then many bigshots thought the mmorpg was too saturated (believe it or not ) and there was no room for new mmorpg at that time ,of course less then 2 years later wow proved otherwise!

  • blackcat35blackcat35 Lake Orion, MIPosts: 479Member
    I remember a mmorpg that was so bad people at gamestop where returning. They had no problem accepting the return, because they returned it themselves. Basically the game was unplayable out of the box. The programmer expected me to help them test their ALPHA code and I was like, I'm not getting paid to test. I'm supposed to be having fun playing a game, not struggling to get it to work. The game was kind of cartoony and you controlled alot of characters. It looked interesting, but not being able to play it out of the box at all made the game flop.


    I cannot remember many games that just failed to work at all when buying it retail. Even War of Magic I bought worked a little, even if it was still in beta and was buggy. I remember codemasters, and they made some good games, that were fun. Too bad they couldn't keep with the times.

    ==========================
    The game is dead not, this game is good we make it and Romania Tv give it 5 goat heads, this is good rating for game.

  • herculeshercules lancashire,blackpoolPosts: 4,791Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by blackcat35

    I remember a mmorpg that was so bad people at gamestop where returning. They had no problem accepting the return, because they returned it themselves. Basically the game was unplayable out of the box. The programmer expected me to help them test their ALPHA code and I was like, I'm not getting paid to test. I'm supposed to be having fun playing a game, not struggling to get it to work. The game was kind of cartoony and you controlled alot of characters. It looked interesting, but not being able to play it out of the box at all made the game flop. I cannot remember many games that just failed to work at all when buying it retail. Even War of Magic I bought worked a little, even if it was still in beta and was buggy. I remember codemasters, and they made some good games, that were fun. Too bad they couldn't keep with the times.

    which mmorpg are you talking about?surely not dragons empire as it as never released and was in only a select few beta not even proper beta yet,it got canned few weeks before the real beta started.

  • AutemOxAutemOx Fullerton, CAPosts: 1,704Member

    Originally posted by vanderghast

    I was a beta tester for dragon empires, very early tester.  This game was never at any point with any build ever shown to beta testers remotely not even a millenia away from being 2 weeks from release when it was cancelled.  Any dates that were out there were completely bogus as this game never made it very far at all.

     

    As long as this is the game i'm thinking it is, we never even saw actual mobs in the beta to fight.  It was a big empty world.  I think I was in the test like 2 months before it got cancelled.  If memory serves they only tested a couple days a week.  The entire time in beta we never saw any progress whatsoever, no patches no nothing.  Just these empty world tests and they were laggy and you got kicked constantly which backs up the story that the server code was lacking.

     

    After about awhile in beta, and very little communication from the devs on the beta boards i remember someone posting asking the devs for an update which was met with silence.  The beta community was very small at this point.  I remember making a post saying that my hunch was this game was going to be cancelled in the near future as all signs were pointing to that.  I remember most of the other testers telling me i was nuts and that codemasters had too much money into the game to do that.  Not a week later there was a post on the board and an email to all testers saying that the game was being cancelled.

    Taking your words for truth, this is pretty interesting, thanks.

    It is weird how long ago 2004 is, now we are almost 8 years past it.  The worst part is the state of MMOs hasn't made any proper progression since then, except in graphics theres been a huge improvement.

    Play as your fav retro characters: cnd-online.net. My site: www.lysle.net. Blog: creatingaworld.blogspot.com.

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