Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.
That’s the new approach I’m taking as I watch Warhammer Online’s development unfold. Taken at face value it sounds very simple, but it’s quite easy to be swept up into innocently believing one little thing will or will not be in the game for the cascade effect to begin. I bought into the “no stealth” and “no capture the flag” information and have been quite set on believing it to be true for over a year now. When beta leaks were surfacing that stealth was in the game I had trouble believing it to be true. I tried to rationalize that it could be nothing more than a shadowmeld type skill or some hide in place ability. When Paul Barnett spoke about there being no “capturing of flags” in the Gamespot preview videos I believed him. Ironically in that very same video players were capturing a flag… but anyway.
At this point I have to believe that anything is possible in Warhammer Online. The last High Elf class could be a pink bunny with laserbeam eyes and exploding hobbit pets. I wouldn’t be surprised. Open RvR could be done away with completely and I wouldn’t be surprised. The game could be sold to Blizzard and I wouldn’t be surprised. The /face and /stuck abilities could be in the game, even though they have been sworn off my Mark Jacobs himself, and I would not be the slightest bit surprised. Yes, I’m being extremely radical with these examples but I’m trying to illustrate a point. What can we believe and what can’t we?
Partial communication between developers and their prospective players is already the standard practice. See: NDA. But I’m having a hard time buying into the idea that a blanket statement can be made, such as “no stealth”, and later be written completely off by stating “As far as sneaking stuff in, well, if us testing a system qualifies as that than anything we beta test would also fall into that category as well wouldnâ€™t it?”. It raises the question as to whether or not anything a dev says can or should be trusted.Â Â If I’m told a game is being developed with no stealth, and I believe that, is it fair that later on stealth is added to the game under the clever guise of semantics? “Oh it’s not WoW or DAOC stealth, that’s what we meant!”.Â Â Before anyone posts a comment telling me “it’s their game they can do what they want” let me save you the time.Â I know this.Â But the underlying issue here is a valid one.
I’ve always been one to play with the hand I’m dealt.Â I can roll with the punches.Â So where do I stand on the stealth and CTF issues?
Stealth – According to the information that has been released, stealth is a non-issue.Â It drains action points while activated allowing for only short bursts of stealth (30 seconds) at a time.Â From what has been reported from the videos there are no huge damage attacks out of stealth for squishies to worry about.Â Stealth is for the Witch Hunter and Witch elf to close the distance.
Again, I’m not worried about this implementation or the mechanics surrounding it.Â It does indeed sound different from WoW and DAOC stealth.Â But, for my thoughts on the seemingly underhanded means of getting it into the game… see above.
CTF – I really never cared about this from the beginning.Â If people want to play CTF they can go right ahead.Â I am personally not interested in it at all.Â I had my fix of MMO CTF in WoW.Â No, it doesn’t fit the lore.Â Yes, it could have been designed better.Â “Capture your enemies commander!” or “Rescue your captive friends!”.Â Those all could have been better implementations.
If my enemies or allies want to spend their hours capturing flags then I bid them good hunting.Â However, I will be out in the open world capturing your keeps, sieging your cities, and participating in true RvR.
Anyone want to play a little game of ‘Guess Which Bomb They’ll Drop Next’?Â I’m sticking with my guess of exploding Hobbits.