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Reader Comments (19)

Posted: Oct 4th 2011 12:40PM FrostPaw said

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cue WAR hate and DAOC praise, entirely down to this man who had all the good ideas and then all the bad ones.

Posted: Oct 4th 2011 12:44PM Ehra said

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@FrostPaw

It's like how John Smedley is personally responsible for every bad decision made in every SoE game.
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Posted: Oct 4th 2011 11:15PM (Unverified) said

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@FrostPaw Well the thing about Mr Jacobs is how two-faced he seemed. Before EA bought Mythic, he had come out and said that there was no buyout attempt and Mythic would remain an independent developer, to a chorus of internet cheers. Then not even 2 months later he happily announces that EA has acquired Mythic.

So many people feel EA just increased the numbers on the buyout check and Mr Jacobs folded. Shortly after many long term public members of Mythic suddenly left the company. Doesn't bode well.

Then Bioware comes along and well he's the Odd Man Out, since DAoC is losing subs due to no advertising or development. The former EA-Mythic Division of MMO's is now the EA-Bioware Division of MMO's so Bye Bye Mr Jacob your services, or lack thereof, are no longer needed.

He had a great company with Mythic that communicated well with the players, developed their own MMO with a unique twist on pvp and he threw is away for a fat paycheck.

THAT is why so many people dislike him.
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Posted: Oct 4th 2011 12:43PM nimzy said

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Do I smell a non-disparagement clause? Nah, that's only for CEOs. Got to respect a civil departure experience, though. The industry is too small for grudges... even if he probably raged every day for a year thanks to the non-compete clause in his contract that kept him out of the market.

Posted: Oct 4th 2011 4:32PM Utakata said

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@nimzy

Do you mean the clause that prevents both parties from saying bad things about each other after a severance package was agreed upon? Because that's what it reads like to me. I'm not sure Jacobs and EA truely feel that way about each other in reality.
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Posted: Oct 5th 2011 5:49AM Space Cobra said

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@nimzy

Sorta thinking this too: It is part of most such contracts that end this way; not only does it involve non-competition, but you can't talk about the break up, especially in detail, and can't bad-mouth either party.

It would go to explain why he's making Mobile games (not too much competition with EA there), but I would think, since Mobile gaming is pretty "new" in the sense of none of the restrictions that have slowly creeped upon the online/MMO world, either overt or subtlety.
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Posted: Oct 4th 2011 12:44PM Ehra said

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I wish him luck with whatever he's got going on. WAR was a mess, but DAoC still holds a special place in my shriveled, black heart. Don't really care what the rabid haters say, an artist's later screwups don't undo their past triumphs. He (and the rest of the guys at Mythic way back when) made something great.

Posted: Oct 4th 2011 1:29PM rotcafnogaw said

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@Ehra i agree 100%. DAoC was an absolute treasure. it captured my imagination, heart, mind, soul, whatever in ways that no other video game has ever even come close to. i also enjoyed WAR but not nearly as much as DAoC

Posted: Oct 4th 2011 1:36PM Khal said

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What perplexes me is that these guys, in my opinion, capture lightning in a bottle. Then for their next effort they completely step away from what got them recognition.

Did they hate their first effort that much?

Did they not notice how popular it was with the fans?

I enjoyed the heck out of DAoC. And Asheron's Call. Yet both companies for their sophmore efforts stepped far away from the Freshman push that got them established.

Is the desire to "do something different" so strong, so tempting that you'll look past success in the eye and then go 180 degrees?

Posted: Oct 4th 2011 2:25PM real65rcncom said

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not sure why he can't move on from talking about WAR..

everyone else did.



. badum bump!

Posted: Oct 4th 2011 3:16PM Seffrid said

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""They made a decision on a direction they wanted to go and obviously, as we put out in our joint statement, that wasn't a direction that had a role for me, or at least the role that I wanted. It really is as simple as that. Or at least publicly. Whatever went on behind the scenes, whatever we talked about, I have no intention of sharing that," he said."

In other words, there's nothing new here and this isn't a news story.

Posted: Oct 4th 2011 3:26PM Gaugamela said

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I wonder if EA gave him the chance to try and fix Warhammer if the game would have a better chance. At least with him directing the game Mythic managed to release a significant content update for WAR... Afterwards it was always down hill.

Posted: Oct 4th 2011 5:13PM SKYeXile said

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social and mobile games? so hes joining richard garriot? * giggles*

Posted: Oct 4th 2011 7:28PM Khal said

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@SKYeXile

As I said above, going away from the thing that made his name in this industry. With as many folks clamoring for an experience akin to what they got in DAoC across ALL these MMO gaming sites, and knowing that they are represenatative of a larger population, I'm willing to bet he could head another team and recreate that type of success or even more.

Yet, he takes off into a very different direction, one that probably won't touch the lives of many of his past fans (we game on our computers, not our phones) and those fans are even still left without the kind of game they desire.

So many other companies in other industries continue to stick with their award winning formulas and provide value and entertainment to their loyal customers. They don't reinvent the wheel. They just add a little chrome, a little more polish and refine techniques to make the rubber more durable.

Why can't they do the same in this industry?
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Posted: Oct 4th 2011 9:25PM Ehra said

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@Khal

I'd imagine it's because the industry has changed without them. When MJ and Garriot got into MMOs you tended to find much more tight knit communities. Players had pride in their realms in DAoC; PvE raids would intentionally wipe and rush to the frontiers once a call to arms was raised with no questions asked. Roleplaying wasn't as openly disdained as it is now then (at least not on roleplaying servers). The very mechanics of the game encouraged people to be social; today you join a group (depending on the game, you might just be randomly assigned group members with an automated system) and rush to the end of the instance, barely saying a word. In DAoC you picked up whoever was in the area, found a fast spawning camp, and farmed it for hours straight. And in between pulls when you were resting there wasn't anything to do BUT talk to eachother and get to know the people you were grouped with.

I absolutely think MMOs have improved, but when it comes to community I do feel that things have gotten worse. And considering where these guys are moving onto (social gaming), it wouldn't surprise me if they felt the same. I don't blame these guys at all of they feel they don't belong in the industry anymore.
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Posted: Oct 5th 2011 1:29AM Khal said

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@Ehra

Well, I'm of the camp that believes that if one of these guys would recreate those past experiences, polishing up the bugs and so forth that were there, they might just be surprised at how many of us oldies are still around waiting for it.

Include those harsh mechanics and "tedious" time sinks that the majority of the newer MMO gamers complain about and that many of us who grew up with them miss. That would just further define who the game is for and who it is not. Give it a subscription, heck, charge $18-20 for it. We'll sub.

Vanguard's early development is proof there is a substantial desire for that type game. The thing that hurt Vanguard came late in its beta, and that was SOE picking up publishing rights. People just didn't trust them and so close to the NGE thing, SOE=bad was fresh in their minds.

But the concepts drew in over half a million plus pre-beta community. So, yeah, the ideas can still be profitable. Just do them well and don't associate with a company with a checkered past.
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Posted: Oct 4th 2011 9:53PM Darkmoone said

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Oh look another failed developer looking for the quick buck in mobile gaming.

Posted: Oct 5th 2011 5:10AM MMORPGrind said

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We really need to stop overly encouraging developers to do casual, social mobile stuff. I understand that each of those words just spells "yeeeey, less work for more money!" In a couple years though everyone has forgotten how to make REAL games.

Posted: Oct 28th 2011 12:37PM gylnne said

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It has always amazed me how folks who play games can display so much hate who have no idea the work involved to create a game.

I for one do not dislike, hate, etc. Mark. On the contrary I applaud his vision when Dark Age of Camelot came out. The game was and still is one of the most original pvp concepts every created.

Does that mean it was or is perfect? By no means, but if you are looking for a perfect game you will be searching all your life.

Everyone likes a certain style of game play and unfortunately that can't all be found in the same game for the most part.

So I am glad I found this article, if for no other reason than to say "Thank you Mark for your contribution to the MMO industry", and wishing you tremendous success in your new company.


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