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Interview: Jacobs On Ultima Help, WoW Repeatability

In today's main feature, Mythic Entertainment co-founder Mark Jacobs talks exclusively to Gamasutra on the company's acquisition by EA, possible future ties to Ultima, and whether or not his firm's upcoming MMO Warhammer Online can take on <
In today's main feature, Mythic Entertainment co-founder Mark Jacobs talks exclusively to Gamasutra on the company's acquisition by EA, possible future ties to Ultima, and whether or not his firm's upcoming MMO Warhammer Online can take on WoW. When quizzed on what, if anything has happened with regard to Mythic helping out on EA's Ultima Online or even helping to create new titles in the Ultima franchise, Jacob comments: "What has happened to date that I can tell you is that as part of EA, they would like us to talk to these guys and look at the IP, look at Ultima Online and see what the scoop is... Ultima Online was the first MMO to ever have 100,000 subscribers, it was the most successful online game for a number of years, and I think the IP is one that, as an IP that is owned by EA, is one that we should look at, to see what we can do with moving forward." When asked whether World Of Warcraft's success worldwide is in any way repeatable, Jacobs is equally interesting: "Is it repeatable this year? No. Repeatable next year? No. Repeatable down the road a little bit? Absolutely. Almost any success is repeatable. If you go back to when Ultima came out and it had 100,000 subscriptions, I’d talk to publishers and they’d say “Oh my god Mark, nobody can get more than 100,000 subs.” Then EverQuest had 450,000 – but before we were working on Dark Age of Camelot it was only 250,000. They said the same thing to us then. So do I think World of Warcraft’s success is repeatable today, of course not. Is it repeatable in the future? Well every time I hear somebody say, “oh, nobody will ever touch that!” A few years later, somebody touches that." You can now read the full Gamasutra feature on the topic, including plenty more insight from the fascinating Jacobs (no registration required, please feel free to link to this feature from external websites).

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