by Azaroth | December 30th, 2011
It’s been an amazing year. Not just for IPY, but for gaming in general.
Most especially the second half of 2011 has been full of great game releases. We don’t personally remember a time in recent history that there have been so many large budget, highly anticipated games thrust out into a sea desperately clawing nerd hands at the same time.
As a result, in a lot of ways, the second half of the year has been a bit of a slow time for UO – where the first half was perhaps the most exciting time Ultima Online has had in a half decade or more.
Though, even if a lot people are playing the newest, shiniest shooter or the latest massive budget diku MMO, we think there’s still a lot of life left in UO for 2012. UO will never die, of course. The free server community has assured that. But how many large population shards do you have left? Was IPY 2 the last big launch, even?
… What level of survival are you prepared to accept?
Us? We’re not prepared to accept anything short of the outstanding, as In Por Ylem has always been.
Even though things have slowed down on IPY in comparison to our incredibly massive, groundbreaking start with over 2,300 players online at a time daily earlier this year, I’m absolutely confident that we can regain a strong amount of our success.
A large portion of our lost numbers can be chalked up to players finished macroing their characters and banned accounts (and there are literally thousands of those). But we do also need to face reality.
The shine has worn off, IPY is not brand new anymore.
Beyond that, we’re not doing everything as well as we could be. Our attention to detail has fallen down, we need to pull it back.
IPY’s launch was fantastic, though perhaps a bit early. Obviously after launch, we have less time to work on things as our days become wrapped up in live server administration, bugs, community and customer service. Through 2010 we worked day and night, having none of those responsibilities. Our time was spent simply adding new content, concentrating on the game itself.
Much of IPY 2’s success came from casual gamers and long since ex-UO players that, very simply, didn’t all get stuck long term because UO isn’t as sticky as new games. In a day and age where starting a character in an MMO is nothing short of a firmly hand held experience, Ultima Online can feel confusing and frustrating to get back in to, or especially to get in to for the very first time.
Going forward, we can give EVERY UO fan a reason to log in to IPY. We can make it easier and more fun to get started, even more rewarding to excel and progress to the endgame.
We can give IPY veterans and PvPers a reason to log back in by listening and improving the game. We can reinvigorate our loyal userbase and give them just what they want.
We can step back and create a plan, get the attention to detail fine tuned and have our services and customer service bang on.
We can, and we will.
Our plans for 2012 include a full fledged relaunch of IPY 2 after collecting data from users via polls and surveys. We are going to reorganize our services, web presence, and customer service. We’re going to fix old bugs and finish up old promises. We’re going to add new and exciting features to get your UO juices flowing again.
Our passion for Ultima Online never died, just like yours hasn’t. In 2012, IPY is back and going to be stronger than ever.
Please keep an eye on azaroth.org for development blogs through the early part of the year, and www.inporylem.com for official updates.
You’ll know when it’s time.
Until then, please have a great time on IPY, and watch our for our new “10 in 10 for 2.5″ development blog feature on www.azaroth.org.
This time, we launch complete.
Are you with us?ikoni