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With the Failure of New AAA Titles, Why Not Just Re-Skin. Re-Boot One of the Classics?

SerignuadSerignuad Gorham, MEPosts: 87Member

With the failure (relative to their expectations) of several recent AAA titles where companies have invested hundreds of millions of dollars into brand new and untested products, when will someone finally have the gumption to try re-skinning and re-leasing one of the first generation of MMO classics?

 

1. Asherons Call

2. EQ

3. DAOC

4. UO

5. AO

6. Others

 

I for one would pay the usual AAA prices for re-skinned versions of 1-3 and I fully believe there are probably millions of people that would do likewise.

 

Yes, re-skinning the first-generation of hard-coded games would involve new engines and a lot of work, but I also remain convinced it can be done much quicker and cheaper than starting up a new MMO.

 

Sure, maybe we first generation MMOers are remembering the trials and tribulations of our first loves through rose-colored glasses (or bulky CRTs if you want to be literal:) but that doesn't mean that we wouldn't flock to hand over our money to find out the hardway that our expectations have moved on. But I actually think that membership retention would be far greater than the current generation(s) of water-treading MMO titles despite reality not living up to nostalgia.

 

Everyone has their Lottery dream, I buy a Power Ball ticket every week in the hopes of calling up Turbine and asking how much they would sell me Asherons Call for. I'd be glad to put my as-of-yet unwon money where my mouth is ;)

 

 

EDIT:  By re-skin I also include updating animations to modern expectations (or beyond). Even AAA titles seem to put a strange lack of emphasis on animations, TSW for example.

 

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Comments

  • Ren128Ren128 BrisbanePosts: 68Member Uncommon

    AO is getting a new graphics engine, but its been comming soon for a few years now :(. Hopefully not too long now.

     

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eitkIC6r3Dk

     

     

  • logicwarlogicwar nottsPosts: 68Member Uncommon
    you had me at 1.
  • SerignuadSerignuad Gorham, MEPosts: 87Member

    I just read that EA spent (estimated) 500 million dollars in royalty payments, marketing and development costs for SWTOR.

    I'm guessing for 50 million they could simply have done a re-skinned "reboot" of SWG* and been wildly successful.

     

    * I never played, but I'd guess a reboot of SWG pre CU or NGE, which-ever of the two caused the mass exodus.

     

  • Loke666Loke666 MalmöPosts: 18,041Member Uncommon

    It wouldnt work. We are not really the same people as we were back then and frankly do I think they could do all those games a lot better.

    I think a lot of old players are wearing rose colored glasses when they think about those old games. Sure, I had a great deal of fun back then and I loved the sense of community but just reskinning them would not be good.

    If you on the other way took one of those gams (like AC) and thought how you would improve it and make it more fun you might get a winner. Stop looking just on what everyone else are doing right now and actually think out new fun mechanics for yourself.

    Those games were so great because they all did their own thing. Reskinning old stuff would be the opposite of what needs to be done.

    I would go further back and start where CCP is right now: back to translating a P&P game to a MMO (and not just stealing a little of the world but implementing mechanics as well). 

    The genre started with new thinking devs, reskinning old stuff is so far from what made games like M59, UO and AC great as you can get.

  • firefly2003firefly2003 Los Angeles, CAPosts: 2,555Member
    I would like to see a reboot of Star Wars Galaxies with updated graphics and none of the features removed that made it great.

    image

  • SerignuadSerignuad Gorham, MEPosts: 87Member
    Originally posted by Loke666

    It wouldnt work. We are not really the same people as we were back then and frankly do I think they could do all those games a lot better.

     

    I obviously, disagree. :)

     

    I realize we aren't the same people we were back then, but that's where the magic of nostalgia comes in. I dont think it can be over-estimated.

    That and half the attraction of the idea is the (comparatively) low risk versus spending 200 million plus on an untested title.

     

    Gog.com is making a decent living off making old computer games playable on modern machines. There is a reason for that. Great games + Nostalgia = still a lot of fun.

    The same can be said for why people collect old toys or restore classic cars.

     

    Take Sophia Loren, Brigette Bardot, Raquel Welch or Audrey Hepburn. Give then new graphic engines and the world would fall in love with them all over again. ;)

     

  • PurutzilPurutzil East Stroudsburg, PAPosts: 2,925Member Uncommon
    Because, if that happened, even if they were brand new today they would fail. None of the classics would do any good today, heck, I'd bet a lot of them would be considered failures no matter how much we loved them. 
  • SerignuadSerignuad Gorham, MEPosts: 87Member
    Originally posted by Purutzil
    Because, if that happened, even if they were brand new today they would fail. None of the classics would do any good today, heck, I'd bet a lot of them would be considered failures no matter how much we loved them. 

    And yet people are still playing them 13 years later.

  • DemandmanDemandman BergenPosts: 57Member
    Originally posted by firefly2003
    I would like to see a reboot of Star Wars Galaxies with updated graphics and none of the features removed that made it great.

    Unfortunately SWG has some inherent flaws which need some gamebreaking changes to approach.

    The jedi system was an inevitable doom to the pre-CU experience, and any relaunch would have to be done without jedi as an attainable class. By the time NGE launched, the jedi population, with it's low maintenance cost, and it's significance in pvp had pretty much turned the economy stale and phased out other combat classes (beyond 1v1s). If SOE hadn't dealt the killing blow (NGE) to the game, we would most likely have had more negative memories today.

    SWG just didn't function as a "permanent" playground, but the journey from A to Z was definitely cool.

  • VarkingVarking Winston-Salem, NCPosts: 433Member

    Wasn't Age of Conan sort of a glorified reskin of AO? I remember when the game came out they had tooltips for skills and abilities that were direct rips from AO.

     

    http://forums.ageofconan.com/showthread.php?t=137978

     

    Also, the report system was a direct rip from AO as well among other things. 

  • PurutzilPurutzil East Stroudsburg, PAPosts: 2,925Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Serignuad
    Originally posted by Purutzil
    Because, if that happened, even if they were brand new today they would fail. None of the classics would do any good today, heck, I'd bet a lot of them would be considered failures no matter how much we loved them. 

    And yet people are still playing them 13 years later.

    Its called Nostalgia. It allows us to come back and play even the worst game just since when we use to play it, we found such joy in playing it. Its something humans have that will make us come back to watching movies over and over. 

     

    Take a look at the movies. So many remakes have come out over time. I'll bet you someone who had seen the original will likely find preference in the original, while another who never was around for the original will claim the newer version was better in most cases.

     

    Take a look at silent films. With sound being around, do you really feel like you can like a silent movie so much more then one with sound? 

  • SerignuadSerignuad Gorham, MEPosts: 87Member
    Originally posted by Demandman
    Originally posted by firefly2003
    I would like to see a reboot of Star Wars Galaxies with updated graphics and none of the features removed that made it great.

    Unfortunately SWG has some inherent flaws which need some gamebreaking changes to approach.

    The jedi system was an inevitable doom to the pre-CU experience, and any relaunch would have to be done without jedi as an attainable class. By the time NGE launched, the jedi population, with it's low maintenance cost, and it's significance in pvp had pretty much turned the economy stale and phased out other combat classes (beyond 1v1s). If SOE hadn't dealt the killing blow (NGE) to the game, we would most likely have had more negative memories today.

    SWG just didn't function as a "permanent" playground, but the journey from A to Z was definitely cool.

    I didn't play SWG so I can't comment on any of the specifics (and hence why I forgot to incude it in the list of class MMOs.

    I don't think any specific case of adding, adjusting or removing a feature for balance purposes (or adjusting balance for that matter) would kill the nostalgia and sellability of any reboot.

    For example if we were to reboot Asherons Call. Some pretty hefty decisions would have to be made about what features to include and at what point in the AC timeline do you begin the reboot.

    The same with EQ. I believe people enjoy EQ's progression servers and accept as a matter of course, the differences the Devs are forced to introducce out of necessity (or lack of funding to be sure) to those servers as compared to the original.

     

  • rissiesrissies aurora, COPosts: 161Member
    I think re-skins would only hold niche appeal. At least I hope so because I'd hate to see mmorpgs go the CoD route.
  • alexanys1982alexanys1982 naples, FLPosts: 276Member
    Originally posted by Serignuad

    I just read that EA spent (estimated) 500 million dollars in royalty payments, marketing and development costs for SWTOR.

    I'm guessing for 50 million they could simply have done a re-skinned "reboot" of SWG* and been wildly successful.

     

    * I never played, but I'd guess a reboot of SWG pre CU or NGE, which-ever of the two caused the mass exodus.

     

    Your common sense if offensive. They are too proud.

    image
  • alexanys1982alexanys1982 naples, FLPosts: 276Member
    Originally posted by Serignuad
    Originally posted by Loke666

    It wouldnt work. We are not really the same people as we were back then and frankly do I think they could do all those games a lot better.

     

    I obviously, disagree. :)

     

    I realize we aren't the same people we were back then, but that's where the magic of nostalgia comes in. I dont think it can be over-estimated.

    That and half the attraction of the idea is the (comparatively) low risk versus spending 200 million plus on an untested title.

     

    Gog.com is making a decent living off making old computer games playable on modern machines. There is a reason for that. Great games + Nostalgia = still a lot of fun.

    The same can be said for why people collect old toys or restore classic cars.

     

    Take Sophia Loren, Brigette Bardot, Raquel Welch or Audrey Hepburn. Give then new graphic engines and the world would fall in love with them all over again. ;)

     

    Dogs compared to my Marylin Monroe......dogs.

    image
  • grimfallgrimfall Missouri City, TXPosts: 1,155Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by alexanys1982
    Originally posted by Serignuad
    Originally posted by Loke666

    It wouldnt work. We are not really the same people as we were back then and frankly do I think they could do all those games a lot better.

     

    I obviously, disagree. :)

     

    I realize we aren't the same people we were back then, but that's where the magic of nostalgia comes in. I dont think it can be over-estimated.

    That and half the attraction of the idea is the (comparatively) low risk versus spending 200 million plus on an untested title.

     

    Gog.com is making a decent living off making old computer games playable on modern machines. There is a reason for that. Great games + Nostalgia = still a lot of fun.

    The same can be said for why people collect old toys or restore classic cars.

     

    Take Sophia Loren, Brigette Bardot, Raquel Welch or Audrey Hepburn. Give then new graphic engines and the world would fall in love with them all over again. ;)

     

    Dogs compared to my Marylin Monroe......dogs.

    I went back last summer and played Everquest on one of the new progression servers, and it had me more addicted to any MMO since I first picked up WoW.   Unfortunately hackagon ruined it for me, but I was really enjoying my time there.

  • DrunkWolfDrunkWolf Posts: 1,180Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by logicwar
    you had me at 1.

     This ^^^^^

  • DrunkWolfDrunkWolf Posts: 1,180Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Purutzil
    Originally posted by Serignuad
    Originally posted by Purutzil
    Because, if that happened, even if they were brand new today they would fail. None of the classics would do any good today, heck, I'd bet a lot of them would be considered failures no matter how much we loved them. 

    And yet people are still playing them 13 years later.

    Its called Nostalgia. It allows us to come back and play even the worst game just since when we use to play it, we found such joy in playing it. Its something humans have that will make us come back to watching movies over and over. 

     

    Take a look at the movies. So many remakes have come out over time. I'll bet you someone who had seen the original will likely find preference in the original, while another who never was around for the original will claim the newer version was better in most cases.

     

    Take a look at silent films. With sound being around, do you really feel like you can like a silent movie so much more then one with sound? 

     Nostalgia my arse, i play Asherons Call still because its hands down better than anything else i have tried.

    sure the graphics arnt as good as all these new games, but the game play dominates all these carebear themparks that have come out the last 10 years.

  • SerignuadSerignuad Gorham, MEPosts: 87Member
    Originally posted by Purutzil
    Originally posted by Serignuad
    Originally posted by Purutzil
    Because, if that happened, even if they were brand new today they would fail. None of the classics would do any good today, heck, I'd bet a lot of them would be considered failures no matter how much we loved them. 

    And yet people are still playing them 13 years later.

    Its called Nostalgia. It allows us to come back and play even the worst game just since when we use to play it, we found such joy in playing it. Its something humans have that will make us come back to watching movies over and over. 

     

    Take a look at the movies. So many remakes have come out over time. I'll bet you someone who had seen the original will likely find preference in the original, while another who never was around for the original will claim the newer version was better in most cases.

     

    Take a look at silent films. With sound being around, do you really feel like you can like a silent movie so much more then one with sound? 

     

    I absolutely loved the remake of True Grit and 3:10 to Yuma and I payed Box Office prices and bought popcorn and a soda at their cash shop, I mean the  concession stand.

     

    The fact that Hollywood has made a lot of money off remaking movies that whole generations have already seen (I had already watched the original True Grit and 3:10 to Yuma) seems like a bit of proof that there is real merit to the idea that people would pay to have these games re-skinned.

     

    And at a fraction of the cost to develop, the "risk" would be corespondingly fractional.

     

  • SethiusXSethiusX Toronto, ONPosts: 171Member
    Originally posted by Serignuad
    Originally posted by Purutzil
    Originally posted by Serignuad
    Originally posted by Purutzil
    Because, if that happened, even if they were brand new today they would fail. None of the classics would do any good today, heck, I'd bet a lot of them would be considered failures no matter how much we loved them. 

    And yet people are still playing them 13 years later.

    Its called Nostalgia. It allows us to come back and play even the worst game just since when we use to play it, we found such joy in playing it. Its something humans have that will make us come back to watching movies over and over. 

     

    Take a look at the movies. So many remakes have come out over time. I'll bet you someone who had seen the original will likely find preference in the original, while another who never was around for the original will claim the newer version was better in most cases.

     

    Take a look at silent films. With sound being around, do you really feel like you can like a silent movie so much more then one with sound? 

    I absolutely loved the remake of True Grit and 3:10 to Yuma and I payed Box Office prices and bought popcorn and a soda at  concession stand prices ;)

    The fact that Hollywood thinks that it can make money off remaking movies that whole generations have already seen, seems like a bit of proof that there would be merit to the idea of re-skinning and re-booting one of these classic MMOs.

     

     

    I think re-makes like they do in hollywood would work well, which is that they take the original and attempt to improve upon it (this doesn't always work in hollywood either).

    Re-skins, which would be just upgrading the graphics and nothing else would probably not work. One reason is because those games are actually better in our memories than they actually were.

    Another reason is because the mmo market is much bigger today than it used to be and nostalgia alone would only apply to a smallish percentage of current mmo players, which would be a very small number compared to what companies want to achieve now days.

    Remember, players like us that played and loved the old classics are not the mmo makers main target. We are the minority. MMO companies that hope to get millions and millions of players are looking at attracting the post-WoW crowd more than us, simply because their isn't millions and millions of us that played the classics. And frankly, you can't blame them, they are companies and making money is their primary reason for existence, regardless of what they say.

    EQ1 had around 450k subs at its peak, so if they re-skinned EQ1 for example, nostalgia would only apply to those players, and even then many of them might not want to replay the same game for long. I believe this is a risk game makers don't want to take. It's a sad world for mmo players that long for the old days.

  • KyleranKyleran Tampa, FLPosts: 20,008Member Uncommon

    I missed most of the classic MMO's, joining in time to catch DAOC in its prime and missing out on the rest.

    I'd gladly pay to play them all in a more modern setting, but I suspect I'm in the niche market once again.

     

    In my day MMORPG's were so hard we fought our way through dungeons in the snow, uphill both ways.
    "I don't have one life, I have many lives" - Grunty
    Still currently "subscribed" to EVE, and only EVE!!!
    "This is the most intelligent, well qualified and articulate response to a post I have ever seen on these forums. It's a shame most people here won't have the attention span to read past the second line." - Anon

  • SerignuadSerignuad Gorham, MEPosts: 87Member

    I definitely agree with the idea of making improvements. It's why I use the phrase re-boot as well. There are a lot of features that MMO players, including myself, just have come to expect as standard.

     

    Still, you don't want to be completely innovative and "improve" everything, else you are just be making the next Asherons Call 2 or Everquest 2... not necessarily a bad thing, but too much and you aren't re-making the original, you are writing the sequel. 

     

  • HodoHodo Raeford, NCPosts: 542Member
    Originally posted by firefly2003
    I would like to see a reboot of Star Wars Galaxies with updated graphics and none of the features removed that made it great.

    Wont happen because the title is still out there and being run by another group of individuals.   I cant talk about it here becuase they have rules against mentioning it.   But if you cant figure it out you shouldnt be playing online anyway. 

     

    To the OP, there is no point in reskinning old games and rereleasing them.   EA did that with UO a few years ago and its been trundling along poorly for the past few years, other versions of the game pre-tramel are doing well but EA doesnt own those. 

     

    IF you want to play an old game then all you have to do is look most of the hugely successful ones ended up being run on indipendant servers around the world.   Most are bugged to no end and barely have anyone who play but they are out there.  

     

    The best thing that can happen to the MMO market right now is that 95% of these fly by night games die, and we see some developers with some balls step up and start taking chances again.  

     

    Everquest, Asherons Call, and Ultima Online were all gambles, and they worked.  

    So much crap, so little quality.

  • Ice-QueenIce-Queen USA, GAPosts: 2,451Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Serignuad

    With the failure (relative to their expectations) of several recent AAA titles where companies have invested hundreds of millions of dollars into brand new and untested products, when will someone finally have the gumption to try re-skinning and re-leasing one of the first generation of MMO classics?

     

    1. Asherons Call

    2. EQ

    3. DAOC

    4. UO

    5. AO

    6. Others

     

    I for one would pay the usual AAA prices for re-skinned versions of 1-3 and I fully believe there are probably millions of people that would do likewise.

     

    Yes, re-skinning the first-generation of hard-coded games would involve new engines and a lot of work, but I also remain convinced it can be done much quicker and cheaper than starting up a new MMO.

     

    Sure, maybe we first generation MMOers are remembering the trials and tribulations of our first loves through rose-colored glasses (or bulky CRTs if you want to be literal:) but that doesn't mean that we wouldn't flock to hand over our money to find out the hardway that our expectations have moved on. But I actually think that membership retention would be far greater than the current generation(s) of water-treading MMO titles despite reality not living up to nostalgia.

     

    Everyone has their Lottery dream, I buy a Power Ball ticket every week in the hopes of calling up Turbine and asking how much they would sell me Asherons Call for. I'd be glad to put my as-of-yet unwon money where my mouth is ;)

     

     

    EDIT:  By re-skin I also include updating animations to modern expectations (or beyond). Even AAA titles seem to put a strange lack of emphasis on animations, TSW for example.

     

    I'd love a reskin of UO, if they could do it right. They tried once with 3d and it was so terrible. AC1 would be another dream. These two would definately be good if they were redone.

    image

    What happens when you log off your characters????.....
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GFQhfhnjYMk
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  • trenshodtrenshod charlotte, MIPosts: 128Member
    I don't think making a old game look prettier is a solution. There is a reason why people left the game and to just push out the same game but nicier looking isn't going to change that. WoW is living proof that a game is based more on content than looks alone.
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