Vote for the MMORPG you are most looking forward to!
Bar-none, the toughest category to narrow down has been "Most Anticipated". Unlike our Editorial Awards - which are coming soon - we did not limit selection to games that we 'think' will launch in 2005. As such we could only narrow the field to 12. Here you pick the game you are most stoked to see. Here are the nominees:
Age of Conan, Funcom
With Age of Conan, Funcom is hard at work on a second product vastly different from their debut Anarchy Online. The game sports the license for the Conan-universe, offers a full 20-level single-player campaign before the MMO begins, promises breath-taking visuals and a unique, interactive hand-to-hand combat system.
Auto Assault, NetDevil / NCSoft
In this post-apocalyptic world, NetDevil's sophomore title Auto Assault - the company previously produced Jumpgate - take shape. Players play as mutants, humans or biomechs and drive some really interesting vehicles in a 100% destructible environment.
Dark and Light, NPCube / Farlan
It seemed as if Dark and Light would never leave the top of our hype-meter, yet in recent weeks it has taken a slide. Now NPCube and Farlan seek to rebound as their prequel - a six-month beta called 'Settlers of Ganareth' - gains steam in advance of their ultimate launch. Dark and Light promises PvP, one giant world, huge view-distances and live content.
Dungeons and Dragons Online, Turbine Entertainment
Turbine Entertainment has been around for a while and has two massive licenses in production. The first down the pipe promises to be Dungeons and Dragons Online. A seemingly 'can't miss' license, Turbine needs to live up to expectations from hardcore fans of the pen and paper game. The game is currently in the later stages of beta.
Hero's Journey, Simutronics
This game blew us away at E3 2005 and won our award for best of show. Simutronics is hardly new to the industry. They are veterans of the online MUD genre, but Hero's Journey marks their second attempt to break into the MMORPG genre (a previous attempt under the same name was cancelled). Stunning graphics, unbelievable character customization, interactive environments and team-combat moves are among the highlights from this title.
Representing the MMORPG/FPS genre is Huxley, one of several titles in production at Webzen. Huxley is set in a post-apocalyptic world and offers frantic FPS gameplay in an Unreal-powered world. It also contains character advancement, vehicles and instanced missions.
Lord of the Rings Online, Turbine Entertainment
Hot on the heels of DDO, Turbine has the only license that could possibly trump it on the box for Lord of the Rings Online. The game offers amazing visuals, a rich world, quests and the chance to be a Hobbit! At a glance, of the two Turbine games at E3 2005 Lord of the Rings Online looked to be more fun, despite its much later scheduled release.
Pirates of the Burning Sea, Flying Lab
YAR! What else is there to say about this title? It lets players be Pirates! In Pirates of the Burning Sea Flying Lab places players in the role of sea captains at both sea and land. The game offers some stunning graphics, a unique PvP concept and did we mention the chance to be a pirate? This setting has long been overlooked by the MMORPG genre and if they can deliver on their promises, Pirates of the Burning Sea may soon change that.
RF Online, Codemasters
This one caught us off guard. Codemasters, a British company who is also publishing DDO in Europe, hopes that this import MMORPG will catch the North American and European markets in much the same way. To date, we've heard nothing to make us think this game will not be anything less than solid. It offers a sci-fi/fantasy anime style and RvR gameplay.
Star Trek Online, Perpetual Entertainment
Maybe there is one license that can trump those in production at Turbine. If there is, Perpetual Entertainment has it with Star Trek Online. Honestly, it is almost not fair to nominate this title before it even joins our game-list. There are no screenshots. No solid design revealed. Really, all we have are some interviews, some dev blogs and the knowledge that soon we will be able to board a ship and travel the stars.
Vanguard: Saga of Heroes, Sigil Online Games
These are the guys who made the original EverQuest. Finally, after more than half a decade they're hard at work bringing their second MMORPG to market as Sigil releases Vanguard: Saga of Heroes. The game hopes to revolutionize the way players see crafting, gathering, combat and a number of features. Combined with their all-star development team and solid graphics, the game is one to watch in 2006.
Warhammer Online, Mythic Entertainment
Much like STO, Warhammer Online really only exists in name - and that may yet change. Still, with a license like Warhammer and Mythic Entertainment at the helm, good things are expected as information begins to trickle out on this game that was announced at E3 2005 in a not-so-surprise announcement from Mythic President Mark Jacobs.