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You realize that the article is only taking about the Chinese MMO market; and its MMOs in that region. It may indeed be some cause for concern down the road, but the article itself doesn't talk about what's occuring with PWE or the Western MMO aspect of their business (be it good or bad.)
WStill considering they still seem to be doing as good or better then a lot of other Asian area MMO developers (like NCSoft); and haven't yet had to close any MMOs or lay off staff, I wouldn't be too worried.
The situation in China may be what drove them to acquire Runic Games and Cryptic, so they could get revenue from both sides of the pond directly; and start gaining recognition and players in teh Western MMO market (they probably have high hopes for NeverWinter; and are investing heavily in it and STO <--- which appears to still be doing well for them overall.
But it's hardly like it was with Atari, where Atari was still coming out of bankruptcy; and trying to keep numerous creditors from just taking control and selling the profitable assets of the company piecemeal <--- And this was the situation when Atari originally purchased Cryptic in 2008; and Cryptic kept them afloat for two years, and eventually netted them $50 million in Cryptic's sale to PWE and allowed Atari to throw $39 million of that in a lump sum payment to their creditors. (Still, Atari corporate in France must really be screwing the pooch still as its U.S. based office has filled bankruptcy in an attempt to separate itself from the French home office.
But still, getting back to the article, it doesn't paint a totally bleak picture per se; and even shows that PWI is aware of the actions it took that caused some of this (like actively going after hackers and banning them from their games.) It appears PWI is doing a lot of re-investing atm in hopes of netting a better return down the road (and their acquisition of Runic Games and Cryptic and having a bigger stake in the Western MMO market seems to be part of that strategy.)
Still, as with any major international corporation, things can change quickly.
Formerly known as Armsman from June 2008 to June 20, 2012
PWE Drone says, "Your STO community as you have known it is ended...Display names are irrelevant...Any further sense of community is irrelevant...Resistance is futile...You will be assimilated..."
The item-based game model is still a barely tapped market in the west. Blizzard hasn't even embraced it, despite being the biggest name on the block. It'll be a few years before the pay2win strategy starts burning through all the pockets of western gamers like it's doing to gamers in the east.
I'm sure if the worst happens, Cryptic will get sold off to an awesome company like Tencent, NetEase, Shanda Games, ChangYou or Giant Interactive Group.
And this made me lol:
growing popularity of casual online games such as Farmville and Cityville could limit the growth potential of MMORPGs.
The popularity of the Zynga model is in the toilet. The write of the article doesn't even know what he's talking about.
Last edited by emacsheadroom; 02-21-2013 at 12:54 AM.