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Ultima franchise has its own producer, over UO as well

Discussion in 'UHall' started by Woodsman, Sep 14, 2011.

  1. Woodsman

    Woodsman Guest

    Is Jeff Skalski the New Ultima Online Producer? (Updated) | UOJournal.com

    Twitter
     
  2. Ahuaeyjnkxs

    Ahuaeyjnkxs stranger diamond

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    That sounds almost too good to be true, and again I'm not surprised woodman ! Coming from the ever orgazmix you of the last days :hug:

    Well... it almost lets us hope he won't be so tied down by EA...

    Welcome Mr. Skalski ! I will gladly have you introduce yourself before brigning my hopes up too much :D
     
  3. Salivern_Diago

    Salivern_Diago Lore Master
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    I like the way it was worded.. Ultima Francise... Looks like we definately have some stuff to look forward too...

    Maybe we havent been forgotten afterall and UO2 is finally being developed??
     
  4. Woodsman

    Woodsman Guest

    You can thank my RSS reader for that one.

    I don't really care about any of the games he did, but at least somebody is publicly claiming ownership of UO :lol:
     
  5. Woodsman

    Woodsman Guest

    I think it's Paul Barnett's Ultima thing that's also being developed. The Ultima4Ever facebook thing. He said he's been trying to shop it around to executives, and that he had the support of BioWare leaders. Not to be confused with Richard Garriott's Lord British facebook thing, where he was refused permission to use Ultima lore.
     
  6. Salivern_Diago

    Salivern_Diago Lore Master
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    Actually having just done some research and asked a few peeps... He's been working on a 'secret' project since the begining of last year... I wonder if he's been working with Paul Barnnet?

    Hmm working on a secret project, then becomes producer of the Ultima Francise (Which on its own is looking like a major promotion for UO). Paul is also working on a secret project (and he has been seen with a high res Britannia map behind him,... one we've never seen before). Dare I say that this can only be a good thing?
     
  7. Ahuaeyjnkxs

    Ahuaeyjnkxs stranger diamond

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    You guys make it sound almost too good...
     
  8. Woodsman

    Woodsman Guest

    Barnett has been shopping the Ultima facebook stuff around for a long time, but I don't know about last year. How long has Warhammer arena been in development?

    Barnett must have finally found somebody at the corporate level to actually fund him, because in the past few months he claimed he flew out to California and to London to show his Ultima4Ever thing off to executives, and that sounds like somebody who was have a hard time getting funding.
     
  9. Korik Bloodguard

    Korik Bloodguard Lore Keeper
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    While I welcome a new UO producer, I dread what kind of schlock EA might want to put out under the name of "Ultima".
     
  10. Dermott of LS

    Dermott of LS UOEC Modder
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    ...

    I'll wait and see if this is a good thing or not. If there's one thing that the MMOG world has taught me over the past 13 years, it's that you can NOT let yourself get too excited over something that hasn't happened yet.

    I've seen too many people become True Believers in some form of Vapourware or another only to have it pulled out from under them (i.e. being cancelled: see: UO2, UX:O, Dawn, Wish, etc) or to have the finished product be a lot less than expected (Shadowbane, Darkfall, etc).

    Beyond that I do welcome our new Producer Overlord, now don't screw it up!
     
  11. Salivern_Diago

    Salivern_Diago Lore Master
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    I really hope they dont do anything for Facebook, So sick and tired of the same format different frosting on those games.

    I dont know much about War or DoaC as I only really play UO. Jeff left as the Francise Producer of War in Jan 10 and began to work on a secret project. Now he's head of the UO Francise it does make me wonder if it was something Ulitma related. Now it would be an online game as he along with the rest of the studio seem to make online games rather than localised games. Also a facebook game dosnt take in excess of 21 months to design and program so... Are we looking at a major revival? Maybe Cal has moved on to this 'secret' project?

    I have to say that it looks promising and I cant wait to see what the secret project is!
     
  12. yars

    yars Lore Keeper
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    /signed
     
  13. enderz

    enderz Journeyman

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    This is a great opportunity to welcome our new producer and also a great opportunity to reset communications here on stratics forums.

    Lets make sure not to shoot our own foot out the gate if this is the case.

    Looking forward btw to reading his first letter to the community and also about him, has he played, what's his general vision of what he would like to do etc..
     
  14. Tina Small

    Tina Small Stratics Legend
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    UO in 3D....
     
  15. Dermott of LS

    Dermott of LS UOEC Modder
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    ...

    UO in 3D

    *Cue the meltdown*
     
  16. yars

    yars Lore Keeper
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    looks like this producer actually plays the games he's involved in.
     
  17. Woodsman

    Woodsman Guest

    Prepare to be disappointed, Barnett has never denied it was web or Facebook-based and he's all about social networking. EA is going kind of crazy over Facebook and social gaming stuff, and after the success of the Sims Online facebook game this past month (30 million registers, 9 million playing it daily), it makes me wonder if Barnett was able to use Sims Online as some kind of justification to finally get funding. Even when he was shopping his secret project around, he was still working on/with Warhammer.
    Their players are just as angry and pissed off as UO players. They've been run into the ground as badly as UO. How much of that is due to Mythic/EA management and how much is not, I dunno, but the mass layoffs after Warhammer tanked in subs within a few months of launch pretty much crippled Warhammer and things that were promised at launch or shortly after were never able to be implemented. Warhammer and Camelot are not on their deathbed, but they need love.
    In all of that, the Warhammer Arena game was being developed. There was very little time from the moment they announced the arena game until it was taking beta testers, so the arena game has been in development for at least part of this year and it's being done in the same location. They kept it very secret.

    Like I said, Barnett was flying around to meet with executives, including to London a few weeks ago, to show his project. Having worked for a large tech company, that is the sign of somebody who is having problems getting funding. EA gets their first solid numbers about Sims Online, and shortly after the Ultima series gets a producer, don't think it's a coincidence.

    I don't think they'd do a new UO though, because it might conflict with Dragon Age or Kingdoms of Amalur. If they did, they wouldn't keep UO around and wouldn't be working on stuff for its future.
     
  18. Tina Small

    Tina Small Stratics Legend
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    Well, Netdragon Websoft still had "a new version of Ultima Online" listed in their August 25, 2011 2nd Quarter results report as one of their "online games currently in development."

    For all we know, Calvin went to China.
     
  19. Korik Bloodguard

    Korik Bloodguard Lore Keeper
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    Let's hope not :D
     
  20. Dermott of LS

    Dermott of LS UOEC Modder
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    ...

    Tina, we've already dealt with this in a couple of hijacked threads already. Please also see my first post in this thread as well.

    Mainly I was commenting on the reaction from the "You can NEVER change UO's graphics EVER or I quit!!!1!!1!!eleventy!!!" crowd. :p
     
  21. GalenKnighthawke

    GalenKnighthawke Grand Poobah
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    I will wait to welcome him aboard until we've had an official announcement. (Just a policy of mine I made up awhile ago.)

    Here is his work experience:

    Producer
    BioWare Mythic
    Public Company; ERTS; Computer Games industry
    February 2002 – Present (9 years 8 months)
    Unannounced Project - Producer Jan 10 – current
    - Empower and inspire a team of talented individuals to innovate in the online space

    Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning - Franchise Producer May 09 – Jan 10
    - Manage and lead a staff of 117 employees expanding and running the WAR franchise
    - Responsible for product vision and hitting financial targets in all global markets

    Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning - Producer Feb 08 – May 09
    - Lead a team of 25 developers made up of artists, engineers, writers and designers
    - Responsible for one of the core game elements in WAR, Realm vs Realm combat
    - Responsible for both capital cities in the game, the city of Altdorf and the Inevitable City
    - Responsible for the creation of WAR’s first expansion content, Land of the Dead

    Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning - Art Outsourcing Director Mar 06 – Feb 08
    - Setup the outsourcing pipeline with external developers in China and India
    - Worked abroad in China for 6 months to train, hire, and educate a team of 20+
    - Created foundation for a new development division at EA China to grow from

    Unannounced Project - Art Director Jun 05 – Mar 06
    - Research and Development for next-gen console platforms

    Mass Effect Jun 05 – Dec 05
    - Modeled both high and low poly props for environments

    Imperator Online - Art Director Jan 04 – Jun 05
    - Managed and hired a group of over 30 artists
    - Responsible for overall visual style and direction of the project

    Lead World Artist Apr 03 – Jan 04
    Dark Age of Camelot: Frontiers & Trials of Atlantis
    - Led a team of 8 World artists
    - Concepted and constructed several dungeon sets

    World Artist Feb 02 – Apr 03
    Dark Age of Camelot: Foundations, Shrouded Isles and Live
    - Player Housing for Hibernia and Albion Realms
    - Concepted and constructed all SI dungeon sets
    - Completed new shields and weapons for DF, assisted with Epic Armors and Monsters
    3D Artist and Co-founder
    XI Interactive
    Computer Software industry
    March 2001 – October 2001 (8 months)
    Remission
    - Prototyped and created high and low poly assets to demonstrate project concept and look
    - Developed corporate logo and website
    Level Designer
    MicroProse
    Privately Held; Computer Games industry
    May 1997 – March 2001 (3 years 11 months)
    X-Com: Enforcer - Level Designer Aug 99 – Mar 01
    - Designed and built 3D environments
    - Established look and feel of assigned levels (creature placement, lighting, textures)

    X-Com: Alliance - Level Designer Nov 98 – Aug 99
    - Designed and built 3D environments
    - Responsible for creature placement, puzzle placement, and lightning

    Civilization II: Test of Time - 3D Artist Sep 98 – Nov 98
    - Created 3D rendered images for the game’s civilopedia

    Klingon Honor Guard - Level Designer Jun 97 – Sep 98
    - Designed and built 3D environments
    - Responsible for creature placement, puzzle placement, and lightning
    - Responsible for the development of all twelve of the game’s deathmatch levels
    - Developed animations for enemy characters and construction of pickup items

    And here is his education:

    The Maryland Institute College of Art
    Illustration
    1996 – 2000

    Many of you have found this already, I suspect.

    -Galen's player
     
  22. Kojak

    Kojak Lore Master
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    yeah, but he's coming from that amazingly successful game warhammer :) (I'm worried - hehe)
     
  23. Gidge

    Gidge Sage
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    Let's hope he loves(or falls in love with) UO and is just not here to steal our good name and run.


    *crosses arms*

    Seeing is believing.
     
  24. Tina Small

    Tina Small Stratics Legend
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    Interesting....
     
  25. Ahuaeyjnkxs

    Ahuaeyjnkxs stranger diamond

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    I hadn't seen it that way... :gee:
     
  26. Woodsman

    Woodsman Guest

    Not really, the answer is there in the last line you quoted - EA China. Under EA China, EA owns their own large art group in China (Shanghai Art Solutions) that supports EA's North American studios, and has for the last 5 years. They are probably responsible for the ridiculous ***** of a headgear on the new Swordmaster artwork because something had to have been lost in translation there.

    Besides, if that wasn't an actual EA studio and you were trying to link that to NetDragon, that would mean NetDragon is making a Warhammer Online :)
     
  27. Woodsman

    Woodsman Guest

    Like I said in another thread, I dread somebody outside of UO coming in and trying to make their mark on the way to a bigger project, but he now has at least two games under his control which is the makings of a mini-studio, so it's in his interest to grow things. If UO performs poorly on his watch, it'll hurt his career, if it increases subscriptions, it'll help.

    Warhammer is obviously not tainting anybody's career, or else EA wiped the slate clean when they fired Mark Jacobs, but creating a "new" franchise, even if it's one new game and one old game, and if it doesn't work out, that could hurt since he'd get the blame. They pretty much put the entire blame on Jacobs. PB and CG and others have all kept their jobs and are even involved in the new Warhammer arena game, even though many Warhammer players hate their guts.

    I'd be a lot happier if UO were getting some new hires though.
     
  28. yars

    yars Lore Keeper
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    what the hell is that on there heads? are they popes or warrior?
     
  29. Woodsman

    Woodsman Guest

    It's a toy used between open-minded adults.

    Or something lost in translation, which I think is what had to have happened.

    You want something crazy, Games Workshop signed off on that.

    But I digress. Ultima is now a "franchise" whatever that means, and UO is now a part of that.
     
  30. Ahuaeyjnkxs

    Ahuaeyjnkxs stranger diamond

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    Usually means that if you have the ressources and a team, that you can probably negociate with them to start your own server or ultima themed game...
     
  31. Lady Storm

    Lady Storm Crazed Zealot
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    Dont count your chickens (Battle or greater) before they hatch kiddo's.... This is EA remember.

    What can go wrong- Will.
     
  32. Ahuaeyjnkxs

    Ahuaeyjnkxs stranger diamond

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    I kind of enjoyed that... mother.

    *censored due to OTNHB nutritional defisciency*

    This had to happen, remember avatar !

    You had to feel that pure negativity to enjoy what is coming, inevitably it will be great ; now the fun will be to see WHO encouraged the whole shenanigans and when the obnoxious unconscious collective will cease to cause mass internet addiction of the human specie.

    It's a fine balance, in untold worlds it exists as dreams of stewardship. Nothing is beyond your grasp avatar, as long as you remember the goal of ascension.
     
  33. Nok

    Nok Lore Master
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    Hmm. Only going to say what I can, what is already public, and only mention one name.

    • More than one Ultima project is in the works.
    • Barnett and a handful of current & former BioWare, BioWare Mythic, and EA devs will be in Los Angeles this weekend (not suggesting that they will be together or in the same location for the same reasons).
    • Barnett is looking into the possibility of reproducing cloth maps from each IP in the Ultima franchise.
    Anything anyone derives from beyond that is purely speculation. I've got nothing else to add, even you if know me personally and ask privately.

    *slips back into lurk mode*
     
  34. Ahuaeyjnkxs

    Ahuaeyjnkxs stranger diamond

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    I am asking publicly... rofl

    is the secret project... cloth maps ?*¿
     
  35. Are you familiar with the term/s: pointy headed and/or pinheaded?

    :gee:
     
  36. Ahuaeyjnkxs

    Ahuaeyjnkxs stranger diamond

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    :next:
     
  37. G.v.P

    G.v.P Stratics Legend
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    Wow, so he had a hand in the demise of the X-Com Franchise. Maybe UO will turn into a FPS, except, not even Richard Garriott could pull that one off.

    In all seriousness I hope for the best. I would have liked it more if he worked on X-Com: UFO Defense, but what ya going to do, heh.
     
  38. Aurelius

    Aurelius Babbling Loonie
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    So he's good on graphics, a bit shaky on English ;)


    Interesting news though, although which parts of the 'franchise' are the ones he will be most actively involved with remains to be seen.

    And regarding the 'hats' -

    I fear you may overestimate some of Games Workshop's genuine, own and official 'artwork'..... they do some really nice stuff, but just occasionally things like this turn up

    [​IMG]
     
  39. Woodsman

    Woodsman Guest

    Point taken.
    It's something that Barnett has rambled about on Twitter. Sometimes he's scary.

    I'm just glad that Barnett got some funding from somebody, but I question whether it will trickle down to UO.

    UO gets to become part of a franchise, Warhammer gets an arena game to attract players, and Camelot gets a
     
  40. HD2300

    HD2300 Certifiable
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    That would be the Kiss of Death for NetDragon. Factions pvp revamp, Classic Shard, anti-cheating, arenas, EC graphics revamp, 100mb client, new player quests, Magincia = 1/8 success rate.
     
  41. GalenKnighthawke

    GalenKnighthawke Grand Poobah
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    I wonder why there has not been an actual announcement.

    -Galen's player
     
  42. Salivern_Diago

    Salivern_Diago Lore Master
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    Most likely becuase while he now has the job he probably hasnt started 'offically' yet. I'm sure once he starts the job we'll be hearing from him. I'ld say late next week at a guess!
     
  43. Sevin0oo0

    Sevin0oo0 Guest

    I thought the "franchise" is the browser based stuff?
     
  44. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

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    Draconi liked fire, perhaps this guy likes lightning?
     
  45. Ahuaeyjnkxs

    Ahuaeyjnkxs stranger diamond

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    The Nikola Tesla of online gaming :bowdown:

    Ohhhhh...
     
  46. Jirel of Joiry

    Jirel of Joiry Certifiable
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    ROTFLMAO!!!!

    I clicked on your link Woody, OMG I can't stop laughing. That is without a

    doubt the UGLIEST headgear I have ever seen! Oh please GOD don't ever let

    let them put weird crap like that in UO. I swear it looks like a demented toliet plunger!
     
  47. It Lives

    It Lives Lore Master
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    ...

    Could.... not... resist, I needed to comment. "Enhanced Client or nothing / prevent all haxxors or I quit!!" !11!1Microwavety crowd.

    It is 2011 Derrmott of LS, we can have both.:D
     
  48. Ahuaeyjnkxs

    Ahuaeyjnkxs stranger diamond

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    back in 2000 I offered a definite solution to hacking in UO... but since my EA contact person has been fired and since I was part of the seer team...

    they fired us all and put us all on ignore ; many that know me know how I fought to get it considered again... some good ways and some bad ways...

    I was a bad boy, what can I say.
     
  49. jskalski

    jskalski Franchise Producer
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    Just wanted to stop by and say hi to everyone. I got a lot of catching up to do as you can imagine with getting reacquainted with UO. It's been over 10 years since I've played and a lot has changed since then as many of you know. Regardless, the team has run me through what they have planned for the next couple of publishes and cool things are coming. Right now I'm focused on doing everything I can with getting us through the remaining migration issues. I know it hasn't been as seamless of an experience as we originally hoped for some people, but we have more fixes in the works.

    See you online,

    Jeff

    p.s. Aurelius, thanks for calling out my resume spelling mistakes. =P Just corrected.
     
  50. olduofan

    olduofan Guest



    Welcome and best of luck :D