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United Mining Exploration Commission: A group of friends playing JumpGate-- "a MMORPG that launched smoothly, breaks from fantasy character setting, emphasizes PvP, and is the first persistent world space simulator that nobody talks about." ~Scorch
 
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A very cool post. Almost good enough for a review article

 
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MajorFreak
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 29, 2001 4:50 pm    Post subject: A very cool post. Almost good enough for a review article Reply with quote

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First of all, I really don't buy into conspiracy theories when it comes to how a company handles a game like JumpGate. Simply put, the game is too new for anyone to say anything just yet. I just bought it last week and it was the first time I ever even saw the game in a store. Mind you, I frequently visit my local CompUSA so I was quite surprised to see JumpGate for the first time.

Now, being as it may seem, you have to remember that the game hasn't been out long and the retail boxes are limited to 30,000 copies. That number is probably based on how many players 3DO can reasonably support without overloading their servers. I think once they sell all of those copies you'll probably see a big boost in the number of players. However, some of you are right when you say that 3DO hasn't exactly promoted the hell out of it but then again maybe it's a good idea that they haven't. Consider how other online games have faired upon the initial release:

Ultima Online had numerous problems, including bugs and bandwidth problems due to the overwhelming number of players that wanted to play. Little by little all problems were fixed and the servers were upgraded. Ultima Online is still one of the most played MMPOG's around.

The same could be said about EverQuest as well. I remember a friend of mine telling about how EverQuest was when it was first released. Due to the popularity of Ultima, EverQuest had even bigger problems on their hands, thus they were equally if not more overwhelmed than the Ultima guys were.

And what can we say about Anarchy Online? Oh boy, I could go all day on this one! I used to play it and now I have jumped ship to play JumpGate instead! Why? Because FunCom simply can't get their act together, that's why!! AO was promoted pretty well. . . almost too well! Plagued by an overwhelming response of users, FunCom had alot of lag/latency problems from the very beginning. . . which is still a BIG problem for them even to this day! Worse is the numerous bugs that exist in AO. . . lots of them being related to gameplay, some are graphic bugs, others deal with compatibility with certain hardware and drivers. Many players who recently upgraded to Windows XP have had alot of problems with NVidia drivers and AO, which FunCom suggests that you use older Nvidia drivers that simply do not solve the problem. Simply put. . . FunCom released the game prematurely, promoted the hell out of it, and basically has brought way too much attention on themselves as a result.

Now, enter NetDevil, 3DO, and JumpGate. So far, I have had no problems running JumpGate on XP. Can't say that about AO! Nor have I had many problems with gameplay as I did in AO. . . which means that I'm actually enjoying the game and not getting as frustrated as I did with AO.

I think 3DO's plan is to promote JumpGate in a more smooth manner that will allow them to get it going more smoothly than others have had in the past. . . namely Anarchy Online! Both Anarchy Online and WWII Online received ALOT of flack due to the problems they were having. 3DO appears to want to avoid this with the way they are handling things. . . which so far I'm quite impressed with. I'm glad there aren't over 30,000 to 50,000 users online with this right now! If there were, then 3DO might just fall flat on their face! Little by little, which is the best approach in my opinion, I think we will see JumpGate flurish in a way where other games fail. It appeals to both the young kids and older adults alike, especially adults (like me) who used to play Elite on an old Commodore 64. Word of mouth is the best publicity a company can get and 3DO knows this. If you like the game and you know someone who will like it too, suggest it to them and invite them into your squad. That is but one way we can all do our part to help 3DO promote this game better without overdoing it and causing alot of overkill on 3DO's part.

Consider this. . . the game has only been out on the retail shelves for about 2 months now. In that 2 months, they now have sold roughly between 2000-2400 copies based on the statistics in this thread. When I think about that, I think that's pretty darn good for the most part! Hell, if it keeps up like that for the next year then we'll end up having at least over 10,000 - 15,000 players in the next year alone! Not too bad when you think about it! By then, I think 3DO and NetDevil will have a solid playground complete with better patches and a more robust network in that time. Seems to me that 3DO might be on to something. . . JumpGate could very well be the next EverQuest when it comes to online space sim games.

Well, that's my 2 cents. Hope this gives everyone a little to think about before they open their mouth again.

Have a good night and enjoy the game!

Bravado
bravado@horizoninnovations.com

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