World War II Online Preview, Interview
9:17 AM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story
As summer approaches, more information on the massively multiplayer online war sim World War II Online is becoming available -- helped along by the desire to generate hype for E3 next week. The game is being developed for Mac and PC by Cornered Rat Software and will be published by Strategy First. It will be not only the first 3D MMO game on the Mac, it will also be the first FPS MMO on the market at all. World War II Online is currently in closed beta, though rumors are beginning to surface that the open beta could begin very soon. When asked about the status of the open beta, a Cornered Rat employee dropped a large hint last week in their forums about adding 25 new servers to the system. While it's unsure whether a Mac client will be available simultaneously with the PC version, we've contacted them and will bring you any information we receive.
An interview with Chris "Mo" Sherland, producer for the game, has been posted at Playnet. This lengthy chat discusses a number of issues surrounding the game. Sherland describes their inspiration and planning for WWII Online, as well as giving many details about its current state. Here's an excerpt about the Mac version:
Playnet.com: PC and Mac platforms will interact in the same environment, too. Has producing a game for two systems proven difficult? Those looking forward to the title should definitely head over and have a look at the rest of the interview.
Mo: Not really. There are some challenges in how to approach dual platform development, but as a port for the Mac, WWII Online has gone fairly well. Once the basic systems were finalized on the Mac, things got a LOT easier for those guys.
Playnet.com: What differences, if any, will there be between the two in terms of gaming?
Mo: There will be no difference between the two systems as far as how the app looks, runs, and plays.
Another great source was also posted recently in the form of a new preview at GameSpot. They were lucky enough to play through some of the closed beta and give a few initial impressions of the game. One of the biggest challenges for the team will be to ensure the mission system works well (so that the game doesn't degrade into chaos of a normal FPS). The preview covers this, as well as the game's vehicles, 'choke points,' and more. Here's a clip:
The assignment of such missions will be up to players who have gained sufficient rank (through achieving missions set by others) to start assigning missions on their own. Missions will have various priorities, and assigning a high-priority mission will cost more "mission points" than a low-priority one. You will have only a certain number of mission points to assign, so working in tandem with fellow officers will be crucial to your side's success. Targets will also have a point value based on their identity and how many missions they have assigned to them, and the most points for successfully completing a mission will come from those that are high priority and executed against high-value targets. As you rise in rank, you'll gain the ability to assign more and more missions.The rest of the preview contains some very cool screen shots as well as good information, so be sure to head over and have a read through it. Currently only the PC version is available for pre-order (with a release date of June 6), though we're inquiring about the Mac's status at this time. Stay tuned for much more info as E3 approaches.
World War II Online Web Site
Playnet Interview with Chris "Mo" Sherland
World War II Online Preview at GameSpot
Cornered Rat Software
World War II Online
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