EA dev: 'Nintendo first to crack console MMO problems'

The MMO genre has never really taken off on consoles in the same way as on PC. It's a puzzle for developers, but if anyone can figure it out, Nintendo can, says EA Mythic creative director, Paul Barnett.

The huge influence of World of Warcraft is the first creative problem for console MMOs, says Barnett, who's currently busy working on Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning.

"The number-one problem of a developer of an MMO these days is it's very hard to be creative and keep your eye on the target when almost everyone has only ever played one of these games and it dominates their thinking," Barnett tells our buddies at CVG.

A successful console MMO would have to bedifferent, he says. "You would have to build something very console centric from the get-go. I think probably the best chance of someone doing something like that is Nintendo - doing
something crazy that no one expects."

He went on to say that the secret to a good console MMO lies somewhere within Rock Band. "The best example I can find for a perpetual online console game is Rock Band, with its Xbox Live community store. It's somewhere in there. I don't know what it is, but that's perhaps the closest I've seen to convincing console people to do things together, to do things online, to do things that cost money, to earn income."

Why doesn't he give it a go? Simple: "I wouldn't know how to do it," admits Barnett.

Courtesy of CVG.

May 19, 2008