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Conversation with Mark Jacobs

Interviews By Dana Massey on July 13, 2006

A Conversation with Mark Jacobs

In advance of tomorrow's Game/On Interview, we reveal some highlights

Editor's Note: Since this article was published, the full podcast has been made available here.

In the Game/On Interview which airs tomorrow, I spoke to Mythic Co-Founder Mark Jacobs about the Electronic Arts deal and what the deal means for the future of Warhammer, Dark Age of Camelot and Mythic Entertainment as a whole.

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“In the short term, really very little [will change]”, Jacobs told me. “Mythic is still going to be based in Virginia, we’re staying intact as a company, we’re going to be adding staff to work on the various projects.”

He added that the deal will help the company penetrate new markets and provide better logistical support around the world.

The biggest concern for fans of Mythic is that the deal will somehow undermine Warhammer Online. Before the news of EA purchasing Mythic broke, Warhammer Online was far and a away the most hyped game on MMORPG.com with an average rating of 7.7/10. Today, they’re tied with Age of Conan at 7.2. Obviously, the news was not met with joy on all fronts.

“Nothing is going to change,” Mark said of Warhammer. “It’s going to be the game that Mythic wanted to make, that GW wanted us to make and if anything it’s probably going to be a better game.”

Jacobs also spoke of how the people at Electronic Arts who drove the deal were all big fans of Dark Age of Camelot. According to Jacobs, the deal will do nothing but help their flagship MMORPG.

“We were certainly hamstrung by the fact that we were a small company funded totally by ourselves,” explained Jacobs. He added that the deal will allow them to put more resources into the improvement of Dark Age of Camelot.

Jacobs also told us that no one would be fired, forced out or laid off as a result of the acquisition and added that despite some people’s worries – such as the way Origin was essentially closed down – he sees the deal with Electronic Arts as a good thing for the stability of Mythic.

“You’re going to have hits and misses,” he said. “If we miss with one of our titles, I don’t think EA is going to immediately come in and shut down the studio. That’s not what they do.

“If we were an independent and had a big miss, we probably would have been shut down,” he noted.

The interview contains one big surprise. He had explained what the deal meant for Warhammer and Dark Age of Camelot, but what does it mean for the “indefinitely delayed” and presumed cancelled sci-fi MMORPG Imperator Online?

“We have a very large company with a lot of resources to pitch to them bringing back Imperator. Will it happen? Dunno.”

Mark and I covered these issues and more in great detail during the interview. Check back tomorrow to hear the full conversation and much more as part of Game/On.


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