james ohlen

BioWare Says the MMO Market Has Never Been Bigger

Are people still playing MMOs? The director of Star Wars: The Old Republic insists that the MMO market has never been bigger. While some of the biggest hitters in the industry, like Blizz’s World of Warcraft, are seeing declining numbers, James Ohlen says it’s a good time to be in the MMO business. “The MMO genre is much bigger than it ever has been before – it’s just that people misunderstand what the genre actually consists of now,” James Ohlen said in an interview with MCV. He goes on to talk about how people once thought MMOs were just for hardcore PC games but the genre has expanded. We see MMO games that don’t call themselves that in the traditional sense. We also see MMOs on different platforms, which wasn’t so common in the past. When you look at things from this perspective, it’s easy to see why one would say the MMO…

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SWTOR Celebrating Our Five Year Saga

Director of Design at Bioware, James Ohlen, has posted a new blogpost containing an infographic celebrating 5 years of SWTOR. Star Wars™: The Old Republic™ celebrates its fifth year, December 20, 2016 – thanks to you, our fans. We started on this journey ten years ago. Our vision was to build a game that would give gamers, who are Star Wars™ fans, the experience of stepping into the Star Wars universe at the center of their own saga. And it did. We built the largest Star Wars universe ever and then brought it to life online. We wanted to give fans the chance to become a Jedi, a dark and deadly Sith Lord or a snarky Smuggler. We wanted to bring our love of this great IP to life in a way that let players shape their own story making meaningful choices along the way that made the experience your…

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MMORPG Interview with James Ohlen

It has been an amazing year for Star Wars fans. With the new movie release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens arriving late this year and the new Star Wars: Battlefront game launching around the same time, it couldn’t get any better. Also, the latest expansion for Star Wars: The Old Republic Knights of the Fallen Empire, will open on October 27th. Once the expansion launches, players will have nine new chapters of new episodic content to dig their teeth into and even more updates are planned after the holiday season. Gareth Harmer from mmorpg.com, caught up with James Ohlen, the Game Director on SWTOR over on Gamescom, to talk about more information on the new expansion. But, before we dig into that information, let’s talk about what has already been discovered. During the event in Cologne, he was shown content from Chapter 3, and this includes the Carbonite defrosting…

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SWTOR Climbing Since Going Free to Play

So has changing their game model to free to play had any impact on SWTOR for BioWare? , creative director on Star Wars: The Old Republic says yes at GDC. He revealed that the number of players has now increased to 4.5 million, up from 2 million, which makes it a rate of 10,000 new players each day. This switch to F2P has been a real game-changer for SWTOR, that was losing its player base. Ohlen goes on to explain how SWTOR had more problems on launch than just its subscription model (ya, think?) He explains that the lack of a group finder was a major downside to the game and also the poor implementation of the Public Test Realm (PTS). No group finder meant it was hard to players to get together to experience much of the content in the game and the poor PTS meant there were a…

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James Ohlen at Game Developers Conference 2013: TOR is one of the largest micro-transaction money-makers for EA

Following our recent post about Bioware’s Creative Director James Ohlen and his speech on the Game Developer’s  Conference (GDC), additional details have emerged over at Massively. Bioware’s Creative Director James Ohlen  The site has posted a detailed account of Ohlen’s presentation at the event where the latter covered the challenges Bioware faced during launch, its conversion to Free to Play (F2P) and the concerns the Austin-based developer had about Guild Wars 2 and Mists of Panderia. He also went into details about what the studio went through when the game started losing subscribers and how they managed to turn it around with F2P. You can read more about Ohlen’s presentation at GDC here.

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Game Developers Conference 2013: James Ohlen talks about SWToR’s woes during launch

BioWare’s Creative Director James Ohlen recently spoke at the Game Developer’s Convention about SWToR’s launch and provided a plethora of details about the game’s launch. Among other things, he mentioned that Bioware significantly underestimated how quickly players can burn through content and found itself in a difficult spot. The development team originally expected that story lines would keep gamers engaged for at least five months – an expectation that as we all know didn’t prove to be true. Bioware’s creative director James Ohlen During launch, subscribers spent an average of 40 hours per week playing SWToR, while in some cases they would reach 80-120 hours on average per week. These extended gaming sessions lead to having close to half a million players at endgame content within a month’s period since launch. You can read additional details here

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Game Update 1.4: Terror from Beyond developer blog and launch trailer

With all the excitement around game update 1.4 , we forgot to update you about a new Developer Blog by James Ohlen and a new laucnhed trailer for  Terror From Beyond just released. In the Developer Blog James Ohlen writesabout the release schedule for new content going forward for Star Wars: The Old Republic. This Game Update is also the start of a new release cadence. Our strategy so far has been to release big updates every few months. But this leaves long periods of time where you, our fans, don’t have anything new. So we’re moving to a model where we release Game Updates on a much more regular cadence. Our initial aim is for something as close to every six weeks as we can get. I’d promise an exact schedule, but in a live game we need some flexibility as the stability of the service trumps the release of an…

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James Ohlen Interview about fans, free to play and more

In a fascinating 2,500 word interview, James Ohlen tells Games Industry all about SWTOR fans, the subscriptions and free to play to level 15. We’ve seen interviews with James before but this one is really a lot of fun. It comes across like two pals chatting and you’re really learn a lot more about James and SWTOR from this interview. Here is a snippet from the very thorough interview: Q: You’ve worked on so many epic, single-player games for Bioware where you’ve had almost free reign to produce entire worlds – switching to an MMO in one of the best known universes out there must have been a huge change, and a huge challenge. James Ohlen: Well the great thing is that I had experience of working in the Star Wars universe before, when I worked on the Old Republic. So I’ve had worked in the Old Republic era too. I…

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James Ohlen want’s your Feedback on story

It’s been a while since James Ohlen been active on twitter, but today he asks  Star Wars: The old republic players  for feedback regarding the story elements the game. Here is the question: So I took a break from Twitter, but now I’m back with more questions. What is your favorite type of storytelling in #SWTOR? Flash points, class stories or world story arcs (i.e. Revanite story on Dromund Kaas). Interesting question really. Also remember to let us know in the comments below if you are plan on answering. YOu can Check out James Twitter profile here.

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