bioware-mythic posts

BioWare CEOs respond to anonymous "EA Louse" blog

Last month an anonymous blog posted by a person who claimed to be close to being laid off from BioWare Mythic went off on a tirade with claims of mismanagement not just of the studio's handling of its MMO Warhammer Online but with BioWare's upcoming MMO game Star Wars: The Old Republic. The author, "EA Louse", has yet to be officially identified. The blog post claimed that "... the game is a joke. EA knows it and so does George Lucas, they're panicking."

Eurogamer got BioWare's co-founders Ray Muzyka and Greg Zeschuk to respond to the blog with Zeschuk stating, "It was sad to read that kind of stuff." While the two would not go into into the specifics of the claims of "EA Louse" Muzyka supported what BioWare was doing with Star Wars: The Old Republic, stating, "It's a great BioWare type experience in a massively multiplayer space in a Star Wars setting. Those seem to be some pretty good factors that have set us up for massive success. Beyond that, we just build the best game we can."

Wing Commander released for free via DOSbox? Maybe

The Wing Commander series of space-based action game were some of the most popular of the 1990s (hey, it even got a crappy movie adaptation so you know it must be good). However there hasn't been a new game in the Chris Roberts-created series since 1998 (that awful 2007 arcade shooter Wing Commander Arena on Xbox Live Arcade doesn't count).

While publisher Electronic Arts doesn't seem to be interested in making new games in the franchise, the creative director at EA's BioWare Mythic is trying to get the original 1990 Wing Commander to be released for free and without DRM. Paul Barnett is using his Twitter web site to, as he states, "shame ea legal into letting me Do it". Apparently he and other team members have already gotten the game to run on the PC emulator DOSBox and will be pitching their re-release plans to BioWare co-founder Dr. Ray Muzyka later today.

[Via Blue's News]

Warhammer Online celebrates second anniversary with in-game items

Two years ago, developer Mythic Entertainment and publisher Electronic Arts finally launched Warhammer Online. The fantasy-themed MMO based on the Games Workshop table top war game had tons of hype before its launch but in the end the game didn't live up to its expectations in terms of subscribers.

However the game has retained a loyal following and is now celebrating its two year anniversary by offering its veteran players some new in-game items. Those items include a Celebratory Cloak (shown above), a Regenerating Firework Launcher and a WAR Double Aegis. In terms of the future of the game, a recent Producer's Letter revealed that Warhammer Online won't be going the "free-to-play" route like many other established MMOs are doing. Instead, the letter states, "What we do plan on introducing is paid services such as server transfers, character renames and other commonly found services."

LucasArts confirms layoffs at internal development studio

It's unfortunately time to report on more layoffs at a game development studio. This time its for LucasArts who confirmed with IndustryGamers that it is "reorganizing its teams" at its internal game development studio. It added, "Unfortunately, this means adjusting staffing." LucasArts would not state how much "adjusting" would take place but a post on Kotaku, using unnamed sources, claims as many as 30 percent of the development team will be let go today.

LucasArts' latest in-house game, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II, is due for release for the PC and other platforms in late October. There's no official word yet on what remains of the development team will work on next but in its official statement LucasArts states it "continues to be committed to creating a first-class internal studio."

EA: Warhammer Online is profitable

The launch of Warhammer Online nearly two years ago was highly anticipated for the time. However the fantasy MMO from developer Mythic Entertainment (now called BioWare Mythic) and publisher Electronic Arts failed to meet its high expectations as subscribers left the game in droves just months after its September 2008 launch. The development team has also had to deal with a series of layoffs.

However, in a new chat at Eurogamer, BioWare Mythic general manager Eugene Evans is optimistic on the future of Warhammer Online, saying, "We're still running it. The game is profitable. We have a team that's engaged in it. We're seeing a great response from the community as they rediscover the game." While the developer will not comment on the game's current subscriber numbners, Evans did say "tens of thousands of players" each month are discovering the game since the launch of the "Endless Trial" version which allows gamers to play the game for free up to a point.

Warhammer Online in Europe transfers publishing from GOA to EA

While Electronic Arts has handled publishing Warhammer Online in the US, its been a different matter in Europe as GOA has been in charge of publishing and operating the fantasy MMO from developer BioWare Mythic. This week the game is in the middler of a transition as GOA transfers control over the game in Europe directly to EA.

The Warhammer Online European web site has all the details about the transfer and what it means to the game's players on the other side of the pond. The game's servers will be hosted in Germany when they are fully back online. The game will also no longer support pre-paid cards and GOA's three or six month subscriptions in Europe will shut down. Players with such subscriptions will have their money refunded. The nice bit? European players will get two free weeks of play time online under the new EA/BioWare Mythic reign.

Mythic Entertainment changes name (again) to BioWare Mythic

Developer Mythic Entertainment, the creators of the fantasy MMO Warhammer Online, are changing their name once again. When the Virginia-based company got bought by Electronic Arts several years ago it was renamed as EA Mythic. It went back to Mythic Entertainment just before the launch of Warhammer Online in 2008.

Now, in a case of "burying the lead" in the latest producer's letter on the Warhammer Online community site, it was mentioned that the developer has changed its name yet again to BioWare Mythic. The newest change is most likely due to the decision made in June 2009 to put all of EA's MMO and RPG development studios under one division to be headed up by BioWare co-founder Ray Muzyka. Mythic continues to support Warhammer Online as it launched an "endless trial" of the game as well as a Mac port in 2009.

[Via Massively]
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