I spotted the news from yesterday via the PCGamesN news website that Funcom is looking at options for the troubled development studio’s future:
surrounding a possible investment, acquisition, merger, or any other available options.
It’s hardly a surprise to anyone who follows MMORPG news. Games in this genre are increasingly competing for player’s gaming time both against direct competitors and against games from similar genres like MOBAs or online card games (e.g. Hearthstone’s runaway success).
My personal interest in this story is the future development of The Secret World, a buy-out or merger of the studio could mean more money available to beef up the development schedule or it could equally mean a decline in the very high standard of content the game has thus far maintained.
The pace of patches (called issues by Funcom) would seem to have slowed down somewhat since the conversion of the game to Buy to Play (subscription optional) – the chart above shows the number of days wait for each of the post launch patches – the mandatory subscription was dropped on the 12th December a week or so before issue 1.6.
If something does happen with this action I’ll be hoping for a positive outcome for the playerbase; new funding might see a faster development cycle which for the game’s current business model is pretty important as Issues are a major revenue stream.