Second Open Beta for Ashes of Creation: Apocalypse

Well, since they’ve gone and announced a second open beta for Ashes of Creation: Apocalypse, their battle royale thingamajig, I might as well be bothered to express my opinion about  the idea. I’ve been watching it unfold with a sort of morbid curiosity. It’s 1/24 – 1/27.

They have naturally claimed that it’s merely there to help them test various systems, such as the battle system. I’m sure it even works, to a point. My lingering question though, is how relevant the data generated by a  battle royale is to developing MMO systems. If we’re talking about rendering systems and input processing, yeah, it makes sense.

When it comes to actual combat systems though, I’m not sure the two are compatible. That’s not even considering the other tons of features that would be in the alleged MMO like housing, cities, and economy. Are we going to get a housing tester? An Ashes City Simulator?

On one hand, it seems like they were just far enough along to have something you can log into and kill each other in that they decided to go ahead and pass that along for people to play with. Eh, got a Star Citizen vibe there for a second. On the other, though, they’ve put quite a lot of effort and resources behind the Apocalypse thing for it to just be a cute little toy that happens to generate some data. You would think, given the nature of an MMO, that their time and resources would be better spent working on that instead of a battle royale. Only so much water in the bucket. Putting water in a different bucket means there’s less in the first one.

The other weird thing is how exactly can one have a beta for a product that’s not supposed to be permanent? Seems like it would make more sense to call it a test or a trial. I have a suspicion it’s not all that temporary.

Now, in all fairness, I haven’t actually participated in the open beta, so shame on me. I really really should be trying a thing before I go shooting off at the mouth and judging it. So much so that I should probably make an effort to do so next weekend. Unfortunately, in doing so, I’m almost giving myself full license to be as judgmental about it as I wish, y’know, having tried it.

It wouldn’t be so bad I don’t think, but they have a weird relationship with their community. I guess everyone does, these days. Their supporters are fairly strong in their support and they have some very loud detractors. I’m willing to overlook most of the problems the detractors have, but their concerns have been noted. Unfortunately they’ve all been beating the same drum(s) since the kickstarter a year and a half ago, so it’s getting a little tiresome.

So we’ll see. Maybe I’ll have a different opinion after I’ve given it a try. I’m certainly open to being wrong about it. Wouldn’t be the first time.

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