Archive for June, 2010

World of Red Dead

Monday, June 21st, 2010

When I began this blog last year, I was essentially unemployed. With plenty of spare time on my hands, my MMO addiction could blossom unfettered by pesky time constraints.

Fast-forward two new jobs and eight months later, where I now find myself perpetually sleep-deprived and temporally challenged. I was recently hired by a local game developer to work on an MMO that has something to do with light sabers and Jedi. Or, at least, that’s what they tell me. I’m too busy writing acceptance criteria for hydra events to know for sure – which isn’t nearly as sexy as it sounds.

I’ve quickly discovered that working for an MMO developer is a bit like becoming a prostitute: What was once your hobby is now your job. It’s still enjoyable, but you’re doing it for completely different reasons. Sure, I still play occasionally, but my enthusiasm for playing/mocking (plocking?) the more esoteric games has sadly diminished. I will continue to write to this blog when time allows, but it will be sporadic. My apologies, dear reader.

I know I’ve discussed the topic before, so I’ll try to refrain from abusing a deceased equine. But how can a gal control herself when she gets email invitations to games like this. Oh, look – I’m a big-boobed, half-dressed little girl in some generic approximation of ancient China. Yawn. I suppose I should have known better, since Kingdom Heroes was created by the same people who brought us this mess. But US game developers seem equally unwilling to stray too far from the high-fantasy WoW formula. Former baseball star Curt Schilling is even getting into the MMO business with his project Copernicus, but with a description that includes “…truly evolving fantasy world that is both warmly familiar and intriguingly unique.” I doubt the game will be about alien space marines.

Recently I had the opportunity to play Red Dead Redemption on my friend’s XBox. Despite the fact that my skills with any console controller rivals that of a blind quadriplegic, I had a lot of fun. Which got me to thinking: Why doesn’t anyone develop a Wild West-themed MMO? There is a lot of untapped potential in that particular genre. If it worked for Rockstar Games in a single-player game, why not massive multiplayer? Who wouldn’t want to shoot cows and herd bank robbers? Instigate a saloon fight, or an ambush a wagon train? Think of the possibilities!

I want to be Annie Oakley, dammit. Not another night elf.