Stargate Worlds - first look

“We believe our combat system is challenging and different enough to attract the hardcore gamers, but we also know that we have to build a game that is accessible to Stargate fans who may have never played an MMO before. Our minigame integration and our respect for the Stargate IP will make these gamers feel at home in the universe of their favourite sci-fi TV series.” They’re also in talks with the series’ actors, to get them to appear as NPCs.

Hellgate suffered from a lack of serious PvP at launch, and Elggren is keen to point out that Stargate won’t fall into the same trap. There’ll be good and evil teams to pick, and classes available willinclude Archaeologists, Soldiers, Commandos and Scientists. Good guys can also play Asgard or Free Jaffa, whereas the bad lot gets to play Goa’Uld or Loyal Jaffa.

This is a break from magic, with technology boosting the physically frailer races such as the weedy Asgard. But it’s the description of the Archaeologist that makes us raise our eyebrows: “Archeologists are an integral part of many Stargate teams who act as translators and advisors on dealing with other civilizations. They will work with their allies to translate Ancient texts and puzzles and communicate with alien civilizations.” The idea that there is a puzzle-solving, communicating class is intriguing. How this will work, how challenging the puzzles will be, and how popular the class will be when you can play as an awesome symbiote dude - all this hovers unseen in a fog of PR.

Stargate Worlds sounds like the spawn of WoW and Puzzle Pirates. Cheyenne Mountain have got some funny ideas about their evolution of the MMO, and we’re feeling a bewildering cocktail of curiosity, scepticism and bemusement. The problem is, when it’s difficult to imagine how a game will work, it’s just as hard for the people creating it to make it good.

Mar 19, 2008