Haha, this one is really fun.
SirBruce’s E3 report was linked on Vanguard’s forums beside other places and it got the attention of Brad. The result is great.
Both with their usual shortcomings. SirBruce desperately attempting to defend his credibility with the result of ridiculizing himself more than what everyone thought possible and Brad continuing to use EQ1 as a quality standard (combat more action oriented than EQ1, beta longer than EQ1).
Two noteworthy passages, because I’m mean:
Actually with the gamespace growing my estimate has grown too. I said in the past that we’d likely do 250k-500k. I think now we could on the more optimistic side go north of 500k.
Along with Turbine with MEO and Bioware with the undisclosed project, they are the third company now to consider the 500k at arm’s reach. Fun how WoW is feeding silly dreams. Everyone wants a slice of that pie.
heck, I took back Lum to see everything and his report was pretty positive
That’s just because Lum is now always nice and optimist :)
EDIT: More from Brad:
We do need enough subscribers such that Vanguard is a profitable venture such that Sigil can go on, making expansions and the like, as well as achieve meaningful profit sharing with our employees.
As I’ve said, however, to achieve that requires around 200k. I think given the appeal of the game, it’s design and focus on immersion, long term gameplay and retention, freedom, etc., the size of the audience we are targeting, how much the gamespace has grown, the assertion that a significant number of people for whom WoW was their first game will find themselves wanting a game like Vanguard for their next MMOG, and the fact that because of our pedigree that we will attract a significant number of EQ 1 and EQ 2 players (and I don’t mean just existing subscribers — EQ 1, for example, while it peaked at between 450-500k subscribers, also has sold 2-3 million boxes — so there are a huge number of people who played EQ 1, for example, over the last 7 years that while they aren’t currently subscribers, were at one time, and are likely to be looking for the ‘next’ EQ)… I think if you consider all of that, a very conservative number for Vanguard is between 250k and 500k, a likely number 500k+, and a more bullish number one that approaches a million.
And from Lum:
More to the point, Vanguard is a game aimed at a very specific market: people who played Everquest 1 and wanted “more Everquest”. I don’t think it’ll make the 500k+ numbers that Brad McQuaid’s talked about, but it will make enough to carve out a respectable niche, much like Eve. There’s easily 100-200k ex-EQ players out there who miss Vox raids. (Most of them post on FOH’s boards, I think.)
Honestly, niches are where you’re likely to see originality and new design ideas, not in World of Warcraft version 2.4.
I did warn the Sigil guys at E3 that the people who post on beta forums are not the people who are going to be playing when the game goes live, more often than not. I’ve yet to see an MMO where the message board traffic didn’t drastically change as the game transitions from beta to live. Expectations change, massively. The game is no longer a dream or an ideal, it’s a service.