SOE Turns Independent, Eyes Xbox Support


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Sony Online Entertainment, the company responsible for MMOs such as Planetside 2, H1Z1, and DC Universe Online, has broken away from Sony and is now operating as an independent company.

The extraordinary transition was made possible after Columbus Nova, an investment management firm based in New York, had bought out the company for an undisclosed sum.

"This means that effective immediately SOE will operate as an independent game development studio where we will continue to focus on creating exceptional online games for players around the world, and now as a multiplatform gaming company," the studio wrote.

"Yes, that means PlayStation and Xbox, mobile, and more!"

Jon Smedley, the president of the company, has already stated his intent to make Xbox One games.

can't wait to make Xbox One games!

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So i guess they own the h1z1\ever quest\planetside ip?

Sounds like it, expect xbox versions coming in the future.  Sony ditching on the MMO biz and a few days ago the news that they're firing 1k workers from the smartphone division, just shows how hard it is for them.

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Niiiice.  Someone who might actually give the PC platform some respect.

 

...I'll continue doubting it until it happens.

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So i guess they own the h1z1\ever quest\planetside ip?

Daybreak keeps the IP that SOE already owned (including the DCUO, EverQuest/EQN/LandMark, PlanetSide, and H1Z1 franchises).

 

TheExperiment - define "respect".  Until very recently, PlanetSide2 was PC-exclusive.  Even DCUO (my daily game - as in I play it every day) is one of the better MMOs out there (which can't be said for World of Warcraft, in my humble opinion).  All of their IP is on Steam as well (so that isn't it).  So what is your beef with Daybreak,  TheExperiment?

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TheExperiment - define "respect".  Until very recently, PlanetSide2 was PC-exclusive.  Even DCUO (my daily game - as in I play it every day) is one of the better MMOs out there (which can't be said for World of Warcraft, in my humble opinion).  All of their IP is on Steam as well (so that isn't it).  So what is your beef with Daybreak,  TheExperiment?

I have no beef with Daybreak.  I had a beef with SOE, and you already know what it was if you've read anything I said in the last several years.

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I have no beef with Daybreak.  I had a beef with SOE, and you already know what it was if you've read anything I said in the last several years.

In short, you want more PC-exclusive content in terms of MMOs?

 

Right now, the only company still publishing any is Blizzard - and even that is now limited to World of Warcraft.

 

AllAccess (the revamped Membership plan) is now $15USD per month, and can be purchased (in multiple ways - including via SOE GameTime cards, as well as credit and debit cards. Said plan includes all of their content on  PC - the only exceptions, for now, are EQN/Landmark and H1Z1, which are still in beta; that revamp was last calendar year).

 

Or is the issue relating to the recently-unwound EU-only issues with ProSieben?  (I'm in the US - not Europe - and was not affected by that; from what I have read on the forums, a large part of that falls on ProSieben and Sony corporate - not SOE.  Sony corporate DOES have some 'plaining to do - and not just about the SOE issues, but other issues involving other Sony subsidiaries/divisions.)

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In short, you want more PC-exclusive content in terms of MMOs?

No, I simply want them to support modern computing environments instead of XP era garbage.

 

They already mentioned they were working on DX11 support for Planetside 2 IIRC so it was coming eventually.

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A pre-cu SWG vet such as myself hopes and dreams that this means releasing the server client for pre-cu, or running a server for old times sake. I know it wont happen, but I wish it could.

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No, I simply want them to support modern computing environments instead of XP era garbage.

 

They already mentioned they were working on DX11 support for Planetside 2 IIRC so it was coming eventually.

The hard part would be updating the older engines (such as those of EQ and the Unreal Engine that DCUO uses) to support more DX11 features) - the LithTech Engine (which they own outright, and is used for PlanetSide 2) SHOULD be easier.

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the Unreal Engine that DCUO uses

that one that several other games have used with DX11?  Yeah, not buying it.

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The hard part would be updating the older engines (such as those of EQ and the Unreal Engine that DCUO uses) to support more DX11 features) - the LithTech Engine (which they own outright, and is used for PlanetSide 2) SHOULD be easier.

I have no idea what engine EQ uses and if it's old and custom they probably won't bother updating it.  A lot of people probably still play it because they have low spec PCs that can't run bleeding edge graphics anyway and updating the game for newer graphics could very well make it unplayable for them.

 

The Unreal Engine would be the EASIEST to update though because Epic does most of the work for them.  While it's not automatic it would be much easier to move from one version of Unreal to the next then it would be for them to write a DX11 renderer themselves for LithTech.

 

Any new game that hasn't launched yet should be using DX11+ level graphics by now though.  Last gen console limitations should not be holding back current/future games still.  The Xbox One and PS4 both have DX11+ level graphics capabilities as well as > 4GB RAM for 64bit support.  PC gamers who still have 32bit systems, < DX11 video cards, and/or < 4GB of RAM should really consider upgrading if they want to play new AAA games.  The time has come for the industry to move beyond those specs.

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that one that several other games have used with DX11?  Yeah, not buying it.

TheExperiment - DCUO does support DX11; in fact, the support was improved as part of the core-game rewrite that added PS4 support.  (I have run the game ONLY with DX11 hardware - AMD HD5450 originally, and NVidia GTX550Ti today; if anything, despite the older engine, it has better DX11 support than World of Warcraft.) Part of the issue is, in fact, the same one that faces MMOs in general - if anything, World of Warcraft is largely to blame for it.  World of Warcraft has the lowest hardware requirements of any MMO (F2P or otherwise) out there.  If you want to pilfer customers away from WoW, you can't have higher hardware requirements than it.

 

Also, do you remember the blowup over Crysis 3 NOT supporting either DX10 or DX9c? (I would certainly wager that the DCUO devs do.)  Still, I manage to run it "completely firewalled" (every graphical setting maxed) on a mere GTX550Ti/Q6600 tag-team - sounds wrong as heck.  However, I blame Blizzard more than SOE/Daybreak for this - they are the "defending champion", and when was the last time they changed the minimum requirements for World of Warcraft - or have they?

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I have no idea what engine EQ uses and if it's old and custom they probably won't bother updating it.  A lot of people probably still play it because they have low spec PCs that can't run bleeding edge graphics anyway and updating the game for newer graphics could very well make it unplayable for them.

 

The Unreal Engine would be the EASIEST to update though because Epic does most of the work for them.  While it's not automatic it would be much easier to move from one version of Unreal to the next then it would be for them to write a DX11 renderer themselves for LithTech.

 

Any new game that hasn't launched yet should be using DX11+ level graphics by now though.  Last gen console limitations should not be holding back current/future games still.  The Xbox One and PS4 both have DX11+ level graphics capabilities as well as > 4GB RAM for 64bit support.  PC gamers who still have 32bit systems, < DX11 video cards, and/or < 4GB of RAM should really consider upgrading if they want to play new AAA games.  The time has come for the industry to move beyond those specs.

It's not last-gen hardware requirements - it is (if anything) Steam and World of Warcraft (more the latter).

Steam for PC (and Mac) have similar hardware requirements - with XP getting the gold watch, it, not XP, is the new floor.

World of Warcraft STILL has XP as an officially-supported (by Blizzard) OS - worse, WoW still has a rather large lead (by subscriber count).  That, in and of itself, set a floor for all games in the space - despite being dead, XP is STILL acting like a sea-anchor on the PC-gaming space.

 

I reminded TheExperiment about the blowup over Crysis 3 NOT supporting either DX10 or DX9c - in fact, I caught a lot of heat in the Crysis 3 forums over daring to defend the decision.

 

I'm not mad at TheExperiment - I agree with his position! (Except the 4 GB floor for x64,)

 

Still any developer that has such a floor gets a ton of heat for it.  (Crytek.  Respawn Entertainment,   Ghost Games.  Etc.)

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It's not last-gen hardware requirements - it is (if anything) Steam and World of Warcraft (more the latter).

Steam for PC (and Mac) have similar hardware requirements - with XP getting the gold watch, it, not XP, is the new floor.

World of Warcraft STILL has XP as an officially-supported (by Blizzard) OS - worse, WoW still has a rather large lead (by subscriber count).  That, in and of itself, set a floor for all games in the space - despite being dead, XP is STILL acting like a sea-anchor on the PC-gaming space.

I don't have a problem with Steam or WoW supporting XP. As noted in my comment about EQ I don't think it's a good idea to go back and upgrade existing games to raise their system requirements. If people are happily playing the games today they shouldn't have to buy new hardware to keep playing it. My point is that NEW AAA releases should have a much higher bar for entry (64-bit only, 4+GB of RAM, etc.) instead of being held back by really old systems (largely defined by last gen console specs).

I reminded TheExperiment about the blowup over Crysis 3 NOT supporting either DX10 or DX9c - in fact, I caught a lot of heat in the Crysis 3 forums over daring to defend the decision.

I think that was wrong of Crytek myself. The reason I think it was wrong is because there were Xbox 360 and PS3 versions of the game and they only have DX9c level gfx cards. That being the case clearly Crytek had a DX9c level rendering path. Any game that supports Xbox 360 or PS3 and is released for PC should have a minimum requirement as low as DX9c. If it's DX11 only then it shouldn't be able to run on the Xbox 360 or PS3 because they aren't capable of DX10+ level gfx.

My argument is that new AAA games shouldn't support Xbox 360 or PS3 anymore either. Instead they should target Xbox One and PS4 for console releases and since they have DX11+ level graphics 4+GB of RAM and 64bit CPUs the NEW PC minimum requirements should be moved up to that as well.

According the Steams Hardware Survey:

Over 80% of Steam users run a 64bit OS.

Almost 74% of Steam users have 4GB of RAM or above (with 8GB being the most common amount of RAM)

So again, I don't think Steam itself should upgrade it's requirements. If you want to run Steam on XP and play older games or indies that's fine. You should be able to keep playing the games you already have (EQ, WoW, whatever). But I think NEW AAA titles should have a minimum requirement of 64bit only, 4+GB of RAM, and DX10+ and stop being held back what the last gen consoles were capable of. You can create a game completely different if you don't have to support 32bit, or fixed function DX9, or < 4GB of RAM.

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I wouldn't expect ports anytime soon, or at least, not quality ones. It's taken long enough to get PS beta on PS4, never mind starting from scratch on an X1 version.

 

And as expected, the first round of layoffs hit 2 teams today since the merge. Believe it was EQ and H1Z1 teams.

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I don't have a problem with Steam or WoW supporting XP. As noted in my comment about EQ I don't think it's a good idea to go back and upgrade existing games to raise their system requirements. If people are happily playing the games today they shouldn't have to buy new hardware to keep playing it. My point is that NEW AAA releases should have a much higher bar for entry (64-bit only, 4+GB of RAM, etc.) instead of being held back by really old systems (largely defined by last gen console specs).

I think that was wrong of Crytek myself. The reason I think it was wrong is because there were Xbox 360 and PS3 versions of the game and they only have DX9c level gfx cards. That being the case clearly Crytek had a DX9c level rendering path. Any game that supports Xbox 360 or PS3 and is released for PC should have a minimum requirement as low as DX9c. If it's DX11 only then it shouldn't be able to run on the Xbox 360 or PS3 because they aren't capable of DX10+ level gfx.

My argument is that new AAA games shouldn't support Xbox 360 or PS3 anymore either. Instead they should target Xbox One and PS4 for console releases and since they have DX11+ level graphics 4+GB of RAM and 64bit CPUs the NEW PC minimum requirements should be moved up to that as well.

According the Steams Hardware Survey:

Over 80% of Steam users run a 64bit OS.

Almost 74% of Steam users have 4GB of RAM or above (with 8GB being the most common amount of RAM)

So again, I don't think Steam itself should upgrade it's requirements. If you want to run Steam on XP and play older games or indies that's fine. You should be able to keep playing the games you already have (EQ, WoW, whatever). But I think NEW AAA titles should have a minimum requirement of 64bit only, 4+GB of RAM, and DX10+ and stop being held back what the last gen consoles were capable of. You can create a game completely different if you don't have to support 32bit, or fixed function DX9, or < 4GB of RAM.

Nobody is asking that.  The problem is that the "cheapskates" will use Steam's floor as almost a mandatory CEILING - no game on Steam should have a floor HIGHER than that of Steam (which was very much the case for XP while it lived) - basically, any game hosted by, or sold on, Steam MUST support both DX9c and XP.  (That is, in fact, the REAL reason why Crysis 3 isn't on Steam today.)

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PS2 needs a lot of old blood to be removed if it's going to survive, at the moment it's a pretty sub mediocre shooter with bad vehicle mechanics whose only selling points is "free" and MMO...

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