Life after Hellgate?

As most of us know, Flagship Studios bombed.  Personally, I believe they bit off more then they could chew a little to quickly..   Anyway, looks like Phil Shenk (Co-founder of Flagship) has found a few more supports and is planning to open an new start up studio by the name of ‘Gravity Bear’ and will become it’s CEO.   Kevin Klemmick has signed on to become the start ups Technical direction.  You might know Mr. Klemmick from such games as Hellgate: London.


We’re not dead yet…I think I’ll go for a walk now…

Well this is a turn of events.  Even though FlagShip studios has been reported to have closed it’s doors for the past 3-4 days, NOW Bill Roper (CEO to Flagship) has come out saying, We’re not dead yet.. we only needed to layoff most of our workforce.

Though the good news of this story is if you paid for the game; you’re now playing for free, but Flagship is no longer taking new subscribers.

Now what this is telling me is, like I said before, that Flagship bite off more then it could chew.  Promising the world and only delivering about 30% of it.  The game concept was flawed, the execution of the game play was very flawed and the lack of people signing up said that.   Though 1 million subscribers also states that the game was starting to come into its own. 

But the bottom line is all investors know and care about.  they don’t understand how long it can take to make a good game these days because all of us want flashy graphics, real-time Internet support and all these bells and whistles that really don’t mean much of anything but we’ve been programmed to expect it.  Gone are the days where 3 people can make a game to earn enough money to buy a Ferrari.. in a different color.. one for each day of the week.  (yeah Romano.. )

But even with the best game, if you can’t turn around a profit in time in the numbers you’ve promised your investors your game goes down the tube.

So I guess the real question here is what killed Flagship?  Bad Games?  Bad management?  Investors that just didn’t believe in their product anymore?


7/21/08 update:
I’ve not been able to test this yet, but from the reports coming from around the net, the Mythos servers have gone offline…  So not dead yet.. just dying..

Hellgate: London Patch 2.0 and 2.1 information.

[HellgateGuru] is reporting some information about what’s in store for Patch 2.0 and 2.1.  an official forum posts states:

Discover that which awaits you in the Abyss, brave Hellgaters! The Abyss Chronicles (Patch 2) is rapidly taking shape and form and we’re ready to share some of its most exciting offerings with you. As Hellgate: London’s second major content update, the Abyss Chronicles boasts an impressive and lengthy list of new features including a major class rebalance, new environments, new enemies, new skills, new bosses, and new inventory slots . Then there’s the Consignment House, Attribute Respec Vendor, item linking, achievement rewards, and lots more. Suffice to say, the Abyss Chronicle is big. Very big.

Plans are already underway for the patches beyond the Abyss Chronicles. A small content summary for Patch 2.1 has been included as well. This update will open up an entirely new side to Hellgate: London in the form of ranked player versus player (PvP) gameplay. Originally slated for release with the Abyss Chronicles, the decision to release new PvP content as part of a supplemental patch was brought about by a desire to introduce five cohesive elements of PvP in a single update: ranking, matchmaking, rewards, achievements, and Capture The Flag. Together, these features will provide a robust PvP experience within the Hellgate: London universe.

We are hoping to get a Patch 2.0 build into Test Center next week, but we will see what happens.

Hellgate: London v1.0 patch notes.

You there in the back; stop that snickering! Here are the Stonehendge patch (version 1.0) notes in case you were curious. Grats on losing the beta tag (oh, just kidding). The update should be out this week.

In other HGL news, Flagship has announced that Jan. 31st is the deadline to become a founder’s club member for Hellgate London should you want to be a premium member for life without paying a monthly fee.

In an effort to provide Hellgaters who would like to subscribe to Hellgate: London but can’t use our current payment methods, subscribing via PayPal and PayByCash is now possible. While this was mentioned in our recent press release about the launch of Stonehenge, we wanted to also mention that the Founder’s Offer will be coming to an end on January 31st.This is to allow those who couldn’t use our original payment options a window of time to select it. The Founder’s Offer is a one-time payment which grants a lifetime subscription to Hellgate: London and is made available to those players who pre-ordered the game.

Our upcoming content update, the Stonehenge Chronicles, features new environments, monsters, and items exclusively for Hellgate: London subscribers.

Thanks Blue’s News.

[Via VE3D]

What Happened with… HellGate: London

I still play HellGate and very much enjoy the game play, the game itself has a lot of serious problems.   From the looks of the Game Flagship centered around the core game play (which is a good thing) however they left out much of the interface that would make the game an MMO.   HellGate (at this point) lacks just about every tool possible to make it an MMO.
for a game touted to be a cross between a first person shooter and an MMO paying homage to the Diablo series, HellGate lacks in some of the most basic elements of an MMO.
like none of the developers had ever played an MMO.

This article goes into depth about the negative aspects of HellGate: London and what the developers should have done, or be doing,  in order to make the game the best it could possible be while keeping the ‘feel’ of the game the same.

Continue reading

HellGate: London Evoker Skill list.

While starting up a FAQ system for games I ran across a post from hellgatepalladium describing in detail the Evoker skills per level and I thought that it would make a great edition to the the games FAQ.    So with a note back to HellGatePalladium on each of the pages, I’ve broken down the list into separate lists based on level and posted them up all on web pages.

it’s a work in progress.. so bare with me as things change and get moved around. =)

[HellGate: London – Evoker Skills]

2008 Predictions…

Orginal Post on 12/27/07

Every year I like to think up (and this year post) my predictions for the next year.

1) BioShock will turn into an MMO.
    Think about it.  Being able to run around killing splicer’s while earning enough money to buy better plasmids?  All the while picking up bits and pieces of items to craft them into new weapons, armor and ammo?   All in an underwater city that was seemingly built as an MMO in the first place?   The ability to explore areas shut off from you the first time around? It would be sweet.  Could even do the game like HellGate: London (only done right.. see #9)

2) Blizzard will announce that the next Gen MMO game they are making will be the ‘World of Starcraft’
    The only big sci-fi MMO out there is EVE.  Of course there’s Star Wars Galaxies and Tabula Rasa, but that’s not saying much.  So the world is in need of a good Sci-Fi MMO to take the place of Earth and Beyond. (..!.,   EA)
    Starcraft has just as much or more of a following then the Warcraft series and has just as deep of a story and background.  WoW has already has and continues to embrace Diablo like a brother (sockets?  come on) and has some cross over story lines between the Diablo and StarCraft games; Blizzard is also readying up Starcraft II to enter the market.   So, to me, it makes total sense to have a World of StarCraft.

    Now what would REALLY be cool is the ability to merge the three games together so that WoW is the beginning  WoD (that’s World of Diablo) is the middle and WoS is the ending and your character can port back and forth between times.

    Of course, the announcement could be nothing more then the release of Diablo 3 (wasn’t that HellGate?) But the World of StarCraft would be MUCH cooler.
    Update: 06/28/08
    Well Blizzard has annouced Diablo 3 about 3 odd hours ago.  This is the major announcement for this year
    however there’s still that top-secret project they are working on…


3) Nintendo will continue not to be able to create enough Wii’s for demand and within 6 to 8 month it won’t matter.  People will finally give up paying extremely high prices for a system that has very few good games when they can buy an Xbox 360 for cheaper then some of the package deals and get a library of better games.

4) I call 3 ‘hot’ titles for the Wii this year, the rest will suck.

5) Sony will continue to lie to their customers and survive on the fanboys throwing huge amounts of money at the feet of their God.  But no one will care because the PS3 has RIDGE RACER!!

6) The Xbox360 will continue to dominate the online play aspect of console gaming.  The PC will continue to mock LIVE.

7) The industry will begin to understand that most gamers don’t care that they can show off their photos on their console.  We want to play games.

8) Mobile gamers will finally realize that Cell phones are NOT good gaming platform.  PDA users will continue to look around clueless.

9) HellGate: London will be used as a model to teach new game developers how NOT to just concentrate on the game play and worry about the interface aspects of a game also.  (GREAT game.. Horrible interface..)

10) Some Jerk somewhere will kill someone over something and blame it on a video game. 

11) Rock Band will completely take over and destroy the Guitar Hero market.


Want to hear my prediction on a specific game coming out? 
    Just comment to this thread and ask! (all posts are moderated)

[EDIT – Cleaned up some grammar and did a rewrite in a few places to clear things up]  (Never said I was a good writer. 😛  )