The more jaded section of MMO veterans have an unspoken “3 month” rule for any new MMO, in that they wait until the early bugs are squashed before they buy and start playing. The first few months of any new MMO are always filled with patches, hot fixes, tweaks, and changes. Depending on how bad the MMO was at launch, the game 3 months later might be completely different, and entire classes might have been revamped. If you liked the original, and hate the revamp, that’s going to burn you hard.
But while in most MMO games being 3 months behind is fine, I wonder how that will play out in Warhammer Online. In 3 months tier 4 will be alive and active, and the intended ‘end game’ will be in full swing. The earlier tiers, while I’m guessing they will still be populated, assuming WAR continues on it’s early success and new players continue to sign up, will be viewed as the build up to the end game, rather than the actual focus like they are now. Currently, with the majority of the population still in tiers 1 and 2, the war in Warhammer is still focused on those earlier areas.
Skipping an MMO launch you naturally miss all of the ‘oh that’s new’ moments that happen in the first month or so, when everyone is new and still trying to get a feel for the game. Unique to WAR however is the buildup to tier 4, the feeling that you know at some point, city sieges will occur somewhat frequently and the focus of the game will dramatically shift from random Keep raids and scenarios to a focused, realm wide battle. For those leveling right now, going through the buildup, it’s similar to waiting for an MMO release. The closer you are the higher the excitement level, until that excitement turns to release and you finally ‘get in’.
For me, the minor bugs in Warhammer are nothing compared to the buildup, the feeling that at some point, on my server and all others, the real war in Warhammer will truly begin, and I can’t wait to be a peon on the front line, ready to die (often) for a chance to burn down Aldorf.