I blogged about this over at Suvudu, so head there for the details, but I just wanted to chime in here with some more detailed and persnickity thoughts about the recently announced MMORPG based on George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire.
The gist, from Venturebeat:
Martin and HBO spilled the news about the game last year, but Bigpoint hasn’t had a chance to show off its work until now. Bigpoint’s new web site for the game offers you the chance to sign up and “die for your house.”
Bigpoint grew big as a browser-based game publisher in Hamburg, Germany, but in the past couple of years it has expanded into the U.S. and moved its headquarters to San Francisco. The company will show a sneak peek of the game, a browser-based massively multiplayer online role-playing game (an MMORPG that doesn’t require a long download) at the upcoming Game Developers Conference next week in San Francisco.
The game will be set in the fictional medieval world of Westeros and its Seven Kingdoms, where summers can last for decades and winters can last a lifetime.
First of all, it’s nice to see Martin’s series continuing to get recognition and attention from the videogame world, but doesn’t he deserve better? The MMORPG is being developed by BigPoint, the illustrious developer of such legendary titles as Drakensang Online, Lord of Ultima and, most convincing of all, Zoomumba. Now, I know George has to eat, but wouldn’t it behoove him and Bantam Spectra to do a bit of quality control before licensing out the IP to just anyone? Is a browser-based MMORPG really the best fit for the series? And does this move to (probably) free-to-play browser-based model suggest that the Game of Thrones MMORPG will be adopting a more socially-driven nature (as seen in many of BigPoint’s other games), as opposed to a more solid, deeply considered structure like the other MMORPGs that gamers actually give a damn about? Why not look towards Turbine’s successful MMORPG adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings for inspiration? At least BigPoint’s other browser-based MMORPGs look good, regardless of how they might play.