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The challenges of early-stage MMO development

Michael Zenke

Brian "Psychochild" Green has up a post to his personal site discussing some of the steps massively multiplayer games take on their way to market. His article was based partially on a post to Elder Game we discussed here on the site early this week. Brian notes that the earlier post took the right tone: actual game development can be a sometimes-haphazard and often-confusing process. Roles are blurred, important steps can get lost in the shuffle.

Mr. Green lays out the different disciplines that are involved in bringing an MMO to fruition. He moves on from there to describe a 'blue sky' version of milestones for a game in this genre. Over00's Dave Toulouse points out how similar these milestones are to your average software project's. For anyone interested in software development or getting into the games industry, the post is an interesting insight into the process. It is, of course, important to remember that the list is an idealized version of reality; SOE's Grimwell notes that putting 'Feature Complete' before the 'Beta' phase could be seen as a note of humor. "I'm not sure we've ever seen that goal accomplished," he states.

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