In this day and age it seems like there is no greater video game risk than launching an MMO. While many do find success in one form or another (free-to-play or subscription), there are even more MMOs that fail right out of the gate. Still, there is a strong belief that with the right concept and the right business model — and maybe the right company behind it — that an MMO can concede.
One of the latest titles hoping to break that mold on the back of a similar idea is Armored Warfare, a recently announced MMO from developer Obsidian Entertainment. The title was officially unveiled at the Game Developers Choice Awards earlier this week alongside the trailer above.
While many MMOs have taken a more fantastical approach to their worlds (e.g. The Old Republic, WoW), Armored Warfare is headed in a completely different direction, putting gamers in control of some of the most incredible, modern destructive machines to grace a battlefield: tanks. Yes, the folks that brought us Fallout: New Vegas are now working on an MMO featuring tanks.
However, although that idea might sound, on its face, fairly simple — and precariously close to World of Tanks — Armored Warfare apparently offers players a fair bit of depth. For starters, players will be able to level their vehicles — anything from standard combat vehicles to hulking modern tanks.
The game also offers players the option of customizing their own military base, from which they will create new strategies for tackling enemies. So rather than just mindlessly meandering around the various destructible environments in the game, players can actually get together and form strategies, like a clan or guild would in a proper MMO.
At this point Obsidian and publisher My.com are only talking general gameplay mechanics, but so far Armored Warfare looks like it could offer something unique to the average MMO player. Moreover, the game could be the bridge by which gamers who prefer modern military shooters make their way into the MMO space. We can’t guarantee that, but it’s hard to deny Armored Warfare is marching to the beat of its own drum. This might also be the key to stealing some of the market share from World of Warcraft, or at least pulling in enough new gamers for Armored Warfare to stake its own claim.
The one big question mark surrounding the game is its “free-to-compete” business model and what exactly that entails. If this is a game where the biggest and the strongest tanks win out most of the time, but those tanks actually cost real money — or getting to them faster does — then that would be disappointing. We’ll have to wait and see when the game hits PCs later this year.
What do you think of Armored Warfare? Does it sound like an intriguing MMO?