There is a lot of news and information concerning Warhammer Online right now, and I’m not quite sure what to comment on. Now that the ‘new game’ shine has worn off, I can’t help but think what WAR will be once Mythic figures out all the moving parts. Lots of parts in their current form are a blast (scenarios, PQs, dungeons, warband on warband RvR), but they don’t quite mesh together just yet. They will, and I believe sooner than most people expect, but right now they don’t.
The layoffs of the QA staff and others can’t help, but exactly what impact they have on the final product is tough to tell. All of the comments about “paying customers as testers” is a bit off base, considering since UO in 97 MMO players have ALWAYS been testers. You have two options, don’t play MMOs, or accept that in a constantly evolving game, things will never go as planned and at times the game will feel like a work in progress. If you think that at some magic point, some company will figure it all out and release a perfect product with perfect content patching after, good luck waiting for that. Still, less people working on the game can’t be good, but given the current economy, this kind of move is to be expected.
Slayers will be announced soon. It’s nice to speculate, but let’s be honest, this might be the most anticipated class in MMO history, and might just be the thing to help balance Order and Destruction. Including the Hammerer over the Slayer would be an NGE-equivalent mistake. Not exaggerating one bit about that either, fans would be crushed. This also allows Mythic to make the Choppa class as cool as possible, since regardless people will focus on the Slayer. Both classes could go a long way to help bring the focus of RvR back to melee classes, and along with stun tuning, could make RvR as a whole even more enjoyable.
Lastly, I’m really hoping the two new classes are not the only thing Mythic has planned for the ‘big news’ coming soon. They need to announce the DarknessFalls-style RvR dungeon, and hopefully the redesign of keeps to include customization and destructible walls. Moving the sole focus of the endgame away from the city siege, and giving guilds some sort of meta-game with the RvR dungeon and keeps would go a long way to keep everyone interested and playing T4.