Skills Week / Paul Mayze and Alan O'Dea / MMOs are a Service not a Game

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Alan O'Dea and Paul Mayze, from Monumental Games, talked extensively on the nature of MMOs.

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Skills Week / Paul Mayze and Alan O'Dea / MMOs are a Service not a Game

  1. 1. A TALK AND Q&A SESSION FROM ALAN O’DEA AND PAUL MAYZE © MONUMENTAL GAMES 2007 An MMO is a service, not a game.
  2. 2. A Bit About Monumental <ul><li>Formed in 2005 </li></ul><ul><li>Monumental Technology Suite in development since 2000. </li></ul><ul><li>Current Projects: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Football Superstars (Sports MMO) in conjunction with CyberSports. Enters Beta next month. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Production has started on a 2 nd (undisclosed) game. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Presently hiring! </li></ul>
  3. 3. The State of Development <ul><li>Number of Independent Developers: </li></ul><ul><li>160 45% fall since 2000 </li></ul><ul><li>Only 11 have over 100 staff </li></ul><ul><li>46 universities now offer a total of 81 games-specific courses… </li></ul><ul><li>… only 4 of which have been accredited by SkillSet. </li></ul>Source: UKTI Games Report 2007
  4. 4. The State of Development <ul><li>There will be 1400 game course graduates in 2007 alone. </li></ul><ul><li>Only 25-30% of these will find work in games companies. </li></ul><ul><li>There are only 8000 games industry jobs in the country. </li></ul>
  5. 5. So… … why is an MMO a service, and not a game?
  6. 6. A Quick Comparison <ul><li>A ‘Typical’ Game </li></ul><ul><li>Developed behind closed doors </li></ul><ul><li>Big marketing launch </li></ul><ul><li>Basic support/servers </li></ul><ul><li>Typically serves a single client/publisher </li></ul><ul><li>END OF STORY </li></ul><ul><li>An MMOG </li></ul><ul><li>Developed in constant communication with the community </li></ul><ul><li>Continuous marketing </li></ul><ul><li>Constant in-depth support, incl. billing, in-game, technical, account, network, etc., etc… </li></ul><ul><li>Serves many masters </li></ul><ul><li>JUST THE START </li></ul>
  7. 7. A Comparison over Time
  8. 8. What gets added for an MMO? <ul><li>Customer Support </li></ul><ul><li>Technical Support </li></ul><ul><li>Billing </li></ul><ul><li>Games Mastering/In-Game Support </li></ul><ul><li>Community/Events/Web /Dev Diaries </li></ul><ul><li>Real World Events/Expos </li></ul><ul><li>Advertising </li></ul><ul><li>Content Development </li></ul>
  9. 9. A Comparison over Time
  10. 10. Typical Game – TCQ Trade-off =
  11. 11. MMO – TCQ Trade-off =
  12. 12. MMOs - Virtual Worlds, Real Careers <ul><li>Employee numbers grow over time </li></ul><ul><li>MMOs, if they last, last a loooong time </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ultima Online – 10 years old, and with 25% of their original audience </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Investment continually accumulates </li></ul><ul><li>Going beyond just ‘games’ </li></ul><ul><ul><li>80% of Fortune 500 companies will have a virtual world presence by 2011 (Source: Gartner Group) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Even Google… </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Will people in this room be setting up the next Facebook? </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Where are you coming from? <ul><li>You don’t have to have a background in games… </li></ul><ul><li>Transferable Skills </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Marketing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Customer Service </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Project Management </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>General Management </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Web Development </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Virtual Skills (!) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Guild leadership (IBM – Virtual Worlds, Real Leaders) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Blogs, Forums, Communities – get your name out there </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Where are you coming from? <ul><li>So is my Games Degree worthless? </li></ul><ul><li>Clearly not, but… </li></ul><ul><li>Consider your strengths in the market </li></ul><ul><li>Supplementing your degree could be a good move </li></ul><ul><ul><li>MBA </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Project Management Certification </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>CIM (Marketing) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Sharpen the Axe! </li></ul>
  15. 15. What are ‘we’ looking for? <ul><li>Specialists – require outstanding skills in a specific area </li></ul><ul><ul><li>‘ Artist’ is not enough – be a character artist, environmental artist, etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>‘ Programmer’ is not enough – be a tools programmer, GUI specialist, AI expert, network programmer </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Generalists – </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Community Managers – lots of social networking experience, commentary and group-forming </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Web Managers – need a range of web development skills and strong awareness of what’s coming up </li></ul></ul>
  16. 16. What are ‘we’ looking for? <ul><li>Cross-Over Potential – you define the offering, and sell it to the company </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Mobile technology, Musicians, Film/T.V., whatever! </li></ul></ul><ul><li>With virtual worlds (of which MMOs are just a part), we still don’t know what skills are needed </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Consider Football Superstars vs. World of Warcraft </li></ul></ul>
  17. 17. A TALK AND Q&A SESSION FROM ALAN O’DEA AND PAUL MAYZE © MONUMENTAL GAMES 2007 An MMO is a service, not a game.

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