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Sci-Fi Channel Merging TV Show with MMO

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 6 years ago | from the lord-british-unavailable-for-comment dept.

Television 216

Erik J writes "In a fairly bold (and quite possibly stupid) move, the Sci-Fi Channel has announced plans to use missions and campaigns of players in their own developed MMO to shape and guide a new 'ongoing' television show. They hope to have the project up and ready to air by 2010, as they work with game developer Trion World Network to create 'the ultimate merging of the TV and gaming mediums.'"

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Oh, I Can See the Dialog Now ... (5, Funny)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 6 years ago | (#23628807)

"A television show that is on once a week isn't enough. The fans today want the experience to go beyond that. For example, we can tell them that there will be an alien invasion at a certain place in the game, at a certain time, and to be there with all their friends and be ready. The outcome depends on them. And then that battle will be part of the universe in the show."
Director: Ok, now this is the epic part of the battle where the character you play, PigBenis69, thrusts his cyberknife through the aliens throat so be very very passionate with the dialog.
Actor 1: *makes stabbing motions* "Omg j00 g0t wtfpwnedbbq! I am teh quigley dpwn und3r! ..." I'm sorry, I'm having a really hard time pronouncing all of these ... symbols.
Director: No no no, that was brilliant! Now let's get a take of the next line.
Actor 2: "What are you talking about, Pig, I totally out DPS'd you. You act all 1337 but your gear is L7."
Actor 1: "H4xx. Oh, go cry home to your mother, SirWankenstein, this phat lewt is mine!"
Director: Cut, print, that's a wrap! Now everyone prepare for The Barrens chat scene where thousands herald the deeds of PigBenis69. Remember, this scene is crucial as the dialog is a roller coaster ride of intelligence and will earn us our coveted TV-MA rating.

Could be worse I guess, they could have secured Uwe Boll to direct it ...

Re:Oh, I Can See the Dialog Now ... (5, Funny)

weeboo0104 (644849) | more than 6 years ago | (#23628997)

Fat chance. That dialog was far more coherent than anything Boll has ever directed.

Re:Oh, I Can See the Dialog Now ... (0, Troll)

kaizokuace (1082079) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629569)

not only more coherent that Uwe Boll's movies but it's different enuff from normal tv writing that I would watch it maybe.

You left off the griefers. (5, Funny)

khasim (1285) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629079)

During the alien invasion, half of the "defenders" turn and attack the other defenders. Maybe the aliens have mind-control powers?

Meanwhile, other defenders are busy looting their fallen comrades.

Still another group of defenders is busily arranging items to spell out the word "FUCK" on the battlefield.

No. (5, Funny)

eclectro (227083) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629275)

You complicate the dialog to much;

Leeeerrooooy Jenkins!!!

Re:Oh, I Can See the Dialog Now ... (1)

_Sprocket_ (42527) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629521)

Could be worse I guess, they could have secured Uwe Boll to direct it ...
Either this is EXACTLY the kind of material Uwe has been looking for... or he'll take it, produced one of cinema's all-time classics, and drive home the fact that all his other movies were intentionally done just to piss people off (the existance of this movie will send ripples throughout religious and philisophical circles who use it as a proof of the inverse relationship / duality of the natural order of things).

Re:Oh, I Can See the Dialog Now ... (4, Insightful)

Aerynlore (972358) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629607)

Maybe it's just me, but it seems everyone is looking at the show as an extension of the game. RTFAing, it seems they are going for a game that's based on a television series. Is this really much different than making a game from a novel series (ie Lord of the Rings) or from a movie trilogy (ie Matrix Online and Star Wars Galaxies).

And even if there is a reciprocal interaction where the players can give storyline feedback to the writers, there might (*gasp*just might) be some real aspiring writers with some really solid concepts that help feed the TV show storyline.

Hell, even if they just had an advancing time-line in the game, that would go a long way to adding something to the MMO "standard" (why does it take 3 years for the inn in Westfall to get repaired?).

What a great idea! (1)

moogied (1175879) | more than 6 years ago | (#23628811)

After all, we all know how often we fall in love with a games quests...

"Next week on World of Bender! He gathers 9 rabbits while dodging the fearsome White wolf!"

Actually.. when does this show premiere??

Re:What a great idea! (1)

TheP4st (1164315) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629089)

FTA

They hope to have the project up and ready to air by 2010

Re:What a great idea! (4, Funny)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629655)

Shoot, there's any number of comedy forks such a show could take integrating MMORPG activity.

Turning on the Sci-Fi channel at 8pm on a Friday...
Bad Guy Boss: You've failed! Get ready to fire the planet smasher!

Lackey: Yes, my master!

Bad Guy Boss: And now they will feel the wrath of my -- wha?!?!?!?

(In run 12 robots from 12 necromancers robotic specialists. They begin beating on the boss.)

Bad Guy Boss: (Knocking out the first one) Aha! You'll never take me!

(He puts down several robots, only to see more coming in to replace them.)

Bad Guy Boss: (Knocking out the 17th one) Aha! You'll never take me!

(Half an hour later!)

Bad Guy Boss: Argggggh! But how? (Falls dead)

(Twelve robotics specialists peak their heads from around the corner, then run in and filch through his body.)

Robotic Specialist #1: Sweet! He had the remote electro recharger! A passive recharger you carry that will slowly add energy to your robot or any in your group.

Robotic Specialist #2: Awesome! Um, how awesome is it?

Robotic Specialist #1: It's aqua -- Artifact level!

Robotic Specialist #2: AWESOME!

Robotic Specialist #3: How many does he have?

Robotic Specialist #1: Lemme check...(filches thru the robes some more)...Looks like, yep, he's got twelve! One for each of us!

Specialists Crowd: Awesome! Sweet! Cool! "Yey Leroy!"

Or, same scenario:

Bad Guy Boss: You've failed! Get ready to fire the planet smasher!

Lackey: Yes, my master!

Bad Guy Boss: And now they will feel the wrath of my -- wha?!?!?!?

(In runs a huge guy that makes Hulk Hogan look like Pee-Wee Herman.) Huge Brute: (Hits him, wham, a mediocre punch) Hey ugly! Bad Guy Boss: Now you shall feel my wrath! (In runs a much smaller guy and some chick in heels with a green "+" on her bustier. The little guy shoots laser beams out of his eyes.) Bad Guy Boss: Hey! My minions, attack! Huge Brute: Say what, Bozo? Bad Guy Boss: Wait, attack the big guy! Minion #1: (Running in from around the corner along with 3 others.) Yes, my master! (They pound uselessly on him, but the boss breaks the huge guy's arm.) Chick in High Heels: (A wave of green erupts from her hands, some kind of gizmo. The broken arm straightens itself.) Hand in there, Tuffy! Huge Brute: Ahhh, thanks, Green Luv. Minion #1: Fellow minions, go attack the girl first, then the little guy! They must be stopped! (Minions run towards her.) Huge Brute: (To boss) Hey, ugly! Your momma's so fat a Super Star Destroyer can park in her docking bay! Bad Guy Boss: My minions, stop! Go attack this big guy, hurry! Minion #2: But master, we must take her out or she'll keep healing them, and him and the little guy'll wear you down and kill you! Bad Guy Boss: You doubt my intelligence? You doubt my skills? You doubt my ability to analyze a situation on the fly? Now don't ask and don't try to think. I'll do all the thinking for you! GO DO IT NOW! Minions: (Yes, master, yes yes...) Or same scenario yet again: Bad Guy Boss: And now they will feel the wrath of my -- wha?!?!?!? (Huge blast of laser power burns off the back of his costume.) Bad Guy Boss: Ow! I'll get you! (He runs towards the guy who blasted him, who stands there.) (Suddenly, another blast rips him in the back again.) Bad Guy Boss: Owwww! I'll get you, too! (He spins around and runs back, seeing a small chick with basketball-sized hooters with a smoking raygun, and runs at her.) (Yet another blast smashes him in the back from the other guy, again.) Bad Guy Boss: Owww! I'll get you! (Spins around and runs back at the guy again. (Big blast from chick hits him in the back again.) (Half an hour later.) Chick: Nice! What's he got? (Guy flips through the dead boss's robes.) Guy: Sweet! Two aqua focusing crystals! Chick: Yes! I knew there was a good reason to come here! And final of the same scenario: Bad Guy Boss: And now they will feel the wrath of my -- wha?!?!?!? (In runs a lone guy, who starts sliding back and forth sideways as the boss approaches, then does a kind of little zig-zag backward, leaps backward over the beeping machine near the corner, backs into the corner for 3.52 seconds, then takes one and a half steps forward, to about 6 feet from the machine. Bad Guy Boss: And now...! (Boss catches his cloak on the corner of the machine but tries to keep running. Sadly, the machine, though on wheels, seems to be bolted to the floor somehow.) Bad Guy Boss: And now...! (Guy in corner pulls out a ray gun and starts shooting. "Pew!" goes the ray gun. "Pew! Pew!" Over and over!) Bad Guy Boss: (Still struggling to run at the guy in the corner) And now...! (About 2 and 1/2 hours later...) Bad Guy Boss: And now! Gah! Arggggh! But how? (Dies) Guy in Corner: (Puts away raygun, and approaches boss, kneeling down) Cool! An aqua woodcarving kit! YES!

Sounds like a PR stunt (5, Insightful)

Moraelin (679338) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629199)

TBH, this sounds more like a PR stunt for the MMO than anything relevant to the Sci-Fi channel.

I mean, think about it in the context of existing MMOs: sure, the quests are fun, but would you really want to see a TV show about most of them? Let's assume you're a SF fan, in fact a SW fan. (Role-play a bit, if you aren't;) Would you want to see SWG footage on TV?

Or maybe you're into medieval fantasy? Well, exactly which of WoW's (or EQ2's, or whatever) quests would be great fun to watch on TV?

This week we follow the adventures of grunt Horribly Polygonal and his trusty sidekick Tusked Girl, two simple hunter-gatherers, as they slaughter Durotar Tigers by the dozen, unaware (yet) that only 1 in 10 Tigers has a skin. And will they manage to pull voodoo trolls one at a time, while the rest of the tribe wanders obliviously 10 ft away from the fight? Or will Tusked Girl get impatient again and over-aggro? Watch them meet a new group member and enjoy the suspense of finding out: is he a n00b and gonna get them wiped? Is he going to leave the group immediately after he gets the last skin?

And next week we can follow them through the Barrens, as they slaughter about 100 Zebras to get 4 hooves each. (You'd think that being asked to bring 4 hooves, would mean one zebra, right? Shows how much you pampered city-folk know about hunting.)

Or watch Tamriel the wise druid preserve the balance and harmony of nature... by slaughtering bears wholesale and waiting for them to respawn. Then slaughtering them again. 'Cause he just got bored of alchemy and went leatherworking, so now he needs leather to grind it up. (Remember, kids: living in harmony with nature means taking all you want, but not more than that!)

Don't get me wrong. In the game it's fun. But 99% of the stuff I did in MMO's, even _I_ wouldn't want to see it on TV.

On the bright side, as a SF fan, I am looking forward to a new SF MMO. Nothing against medieval fantasy as such, but God knows there's no need for 99% of the market to be medieval fantasy. It's nice to have a choice. So I'll probably buy it anyway. But, still, just saying, I doubt that the whole Sci-Fi channel thing is more than a PR stunt.

There is ONE item you did not cover. (1)

khasim (1285) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629365)

With this model, you NEVER know if the hero is going to be killed or not. Will the boss monster win?

On the other hand, who cares? The hero will get a rez and be back to fight the boss monster next week.

Re:There is ONE item you did not cover. (2, Insightful)

techpawn (969834) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629401)

The hero will get a rez and be back to fight the boss monster next week.
If it's like any MMO I've ever played he'll be back to fight the boss next week. And the week after that and the week after that... until that boss stop giving exp... then on to the next boss... lather, rinse, repeat

Lich farming for fun and profit. (1)

khasim (1285) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629555)

In between boss monster fights, he hangs out at the local graveyard where various undead creatures appear at random for him to slay.

Kind of like "Buffy" crossed with "Dog the Bounty Hunter" and "The Dog Whisperer". For the average skeleton, their appearance is usually preceded by a bone rattling sound. Which gives me enough time to switch weapons to my mace of undead slaying which gives me a +25 against skeletons. Ghosts are preceded by a howling wind type sound so I switch weapons to my silver scimitar of holiness.

Re:Sounds like a PR stunt (1)

LandDolphin (1202876) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629499)

Well,

One could hope that because it is being aired on Sci-Fi that instead of airing the reg. quest / game play stuff, that they will introduce weekly (or more) new content. Meaning that there will be special events happening on a common basis, so you don't have to do the mindless grinding of XP all of the time.

Re:What a great idea! (1)

coleblak (863392) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629353)

This is kind of how Games Workshop runs things, though. They run a summer campaign and that campaign then creates the canon of the story instead of their staff deciding to favor a specific faction. But yea, kinda wanna see this. Like all reality based shows, I'll watch two eps then get bored. Well, aside from Hell's Kitchen. When they cry, it makes me _____* *fill in as you see fit.

What A Waste (3, Insightful)

Atomm (945911) | more than 6 years ago | (#23628825)

I would rather see them take that money and put it into a better Saturday Night SciFi Movie.

Re:What A Waste (2, Insightful)

MBraynard (653724) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629053)

However, the appeal of this kind of programming is that it costs almost no money.

Re:What A Waste (2, Interesting)

bleh-of-the-huns (17740) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629259)

In fact, it would probably make money.. if they charged a monthly fee like the other MMO's

I don't know if I would get involved though.. I managed to kick the MMO habit (after many years of EQ and WoW)... The last thing I need (or rather my wife would kill me) is another MMO to detract from family time... Sure we watch TV together, but there are limits, we prefer to interact with each other rather then with computers .. (that includes mind in gutter activities....)

Tonight on SciFi! (4, Funny)

Tom90deg (1190691) | more than 6 years ago | (#23628829)

A large group kills a big monster. Then, in a shocking twist, goes back to do it again! As their leader said, "He's got a 10% Rare drop rate. Gotta get that full set."

Next week, watch as people complain about the latest changes, and kill 10 of the local wildlife for a trader!

Re:Tonight on SciFi! (5, Funny)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 6 years ago | (#23628983)

Next week, watch as people complain about the latest changes ...
So it'll be like Archie Bunker ...

... and kill 10 of the local wildlife for a trader!
... meets Little House on the Prairie?

This annoys me (3, Insightful)

dj245 (732906) | more than 6 years ago | (#23628835)

about as much as quick and nasty History Channel specials that make liberal use of video game footage. TV and video games are completely different mediums. Trying to shove them together and hope it works out never does.

Re:This annoys me (4, Funny)

Amouth (879122) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629599)

i remember watching the news the day after Columbine - they had an "Expert" showing footage of how Doom was nothing but a murder simulator.. and how games destroy kids.. (all that lovely crap)..

i pointed out to my parents that the eye's on the hud where gold.. meaning the guy was cheating and had godmode turnned on..

they looked at me funny..

Probably Not Stupid. (4, Insightful)

Vectronic (1221470) | more than 6 years ago | (#23628845)

Given that people in general love to feel "famous", and given the popularity of MMO, this could at least be highly lucrative as far as a business goes, however, the quallity of such a combination remains to be seen. Depending on the "plot" of the show and game, I could see this being quite entertaining, especially for those envolved or even if you know someone envolved.

Combining the millions made on MMO's, and the millions made on stuff like 'American Idol'... i'd say the chance of this making money, is pretty high.

Re:Probably Not Stupid. (1)

aztektum (170569) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629165)

You can still do something stupid and make money at the same time.

Re:Probably Not Stupid. (2, Funny)

foobsr (693224) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629557)

You can still do something stupid and make money at the same time.

I might sound overly pessimistic/cynical and my sample might be biased; nevertheless, I have the impression that you have to do something stupid to make money these days.

CC.

Re:Probably Not Stupid. (2, Interesting)

Arccot (1115809) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629463)

Given that people in general love to feel "famous", and given the popularity of MMO, this could at least be highly lucrative as far as a business goes, however, the quallity of such a combination remains to be seen. Depending on the "plot" of the show and game, I could see this being quite entertaining, especially for those envolved or even if you know someone envolved.
Agreed. As long as it's handled well, this could work out great. What is it modern MMOs are lacking?

1. Plot - Actually having real plot writers write quests instead of setting up "Kill X of Y" would be a big help.

2. Affect the game world - I'm sick of "you saved my family!" knowing the next schmuck coming along is going to do the exact same thing and save their family again. How about if I could make a more permanent change on the game world? Perhaps individuals can't, due to programming constraints, but a faction battle could change the world.

3. Changing world - WoW certainly hasn't changed much from day 1, short of changes to stats. Perhaps focusing on a plot would help with that.

I doubt that anything short of a massive budget could actually deliver on all of these, but a MMO combined with a TV show could at least address point #1 pretty easily.

Re:Probably Not Stupid. (1)

zippthorne (748122) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629617)

What they should do in WoW is have a line of sick kids out the back of the hut. So after you kill the beasts to get the organs to bribe the shaman to give you the potion that you mix with the herbs you get from the carnivorous plants...[more stuff]...and finally lift the curse that's making the kid sick, he goes home* and the next kid goes in..

*actually taking a circuitous route back to the end of the line when your back is turned.

Re:Probably Not Stupid. (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629507)

So te only remaining question? Who's gonna get voted off of Kalimdor this week!

Re:Probably Not Stupid. (1)

gad_zuki! (70830) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629541)

Yeah, this could be a good idea. When I was a kid there was a TV show where you could point your spacecraft at the TV and try to shoot it or get shot by it. I think it just read some broadcasted scan code and made sounds. A little googling tells me this toy was from Captain Power. [wikipedia.org]

I could see this concept taken and turned into a sort of fame show and with produced bits that would advanced in-game quests and storyline.

Re:Probably Not Stupid. (1)

LandDolphin (1202876) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629549)

IF roleplaying is strictly enforced, it could be a lot of fun to watch/play

Shadowbane was a ton of fun. The banes between KGB and LK and EB on Vengence were fun to play in, and would probably be enjoyable to rewatch if there was more of a storyline involved.

BUt I'd think the lore of the world, and how strictly enforced roleplaying is are going ot be the main factors on if it is good at all.

Say what you will.... (1)

mlwmohawk (801821) | more than 6 years ago | (#23628865)

Sci-Fi channel has really been inventive with programming. It takes balls to re-do Battlestar Galactica. Bring back "Dr. Who" to the U.S. audience. Eureka is kind of cool too.

With "Big Bang Theory" on NBC, can anyone doubt its the year of the geek?

Re:Say what you will.... (3, Insightful)

nuzak (959558) | more than 6 years ago | (#23628949)

Battlestar Galactica and Dr Who are proof that even a blind squirrel finds the occasional nut -- and notice how those are both remakes.

The rest of the Sci-Fi channel's productions are just abysmal. They make Uwe Boll look like Martin Scorcese.

Re:Say what you will.... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23629123)

"Battlestar Galactica and Dr Who are proof that even a blind squirrel finds the occasional nut -- and notice how those are both remakes."

Not to get all super nerdy on you, but Doctor Who is not a remake, it's a continuation. BSG is a remake. Doctor Who takes place with the history of all the previous shows intact (or, as intact as it's ever been).

Re:Say what you will.... (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629195)

Dr Who is also being produced by it's original production company.

The fact that Sci-Fi channel has the half brain cell required to take
whatever Dr. Who the BBC is offering them is no great achievement.

If Sci-Fi got the classic episodes back on the air then I might be impressed.

My PVR is primed and waiting. Those BBC DVDs are too damn expensive and incomplete
anyways. I can get all of Bab5 for less than what it would cost me to incompletely
re-create Tom Baker's first season.

Re:Say what you will.... (1)

Rolgar (556636) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629359)

The modern Galactica started as a mini-series for NBC. I don't know how much of the work was done by SciFi employees helping NBC out (since NBC and SciFi are both part of NBC Universal), or if this was all put together by NBC people and SciFi just managed to hold it all together during the transition.

Unfortunately, the only programing worth watching on SciFi other than Galactica are A-list movies that they've bought the rights to air.

Re:Say what you will.... (2, Insightful)

Reivec (607341) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629213)

Big bang theory is awful. How can you even clasify that in the catagory of geek? It is just lame.

Re:Say what you will.... (4, Interesting)

mlwmohawk (801821) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629311)

"Big bang theory is awful. "

Well, any show that can make funny jokes based on "The dopler effect, SchrÃdinger's cat, the original time machine, social ineptness of geeks, and so on is not so bad.

I laugh at a lot of the jokes, while my wife just looks and asks "what????"

Re:Say what you will.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23629681)

I laugh at a lot of the jokes, while my wife just looks and asks "what????"


Absolutely true.

My wife watches it (mostly to humor me) and occasionally laughs at some of the jokes when it deals with situational/social humor, but the "geek jokes" just go completely over her head (Doppler Effect, what's wrong with the physics of Superman catching Lois Lane in the first Superman movie, Archimedes, etc.)

I'll admit I was actually explaining Schrödinger's Cat for a bit to my wife but to me that just made it more "geeky" (or at least very intelligently written TV).

I've also been enjoying watching Penny's character grow in our perception from "eye candy" to someone who is bright and intelligent, but with a completely different set of skills and abilities. ("Okay, the cat's alive" certainly shows she grasped the idea, even if she didn't want to :) )

Re:Say what you will.... (2, Informative)

residieu (577863) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629227)

Sci-Fi didn't have the courage to "Bring back" Doctor Who to the US until the new series had already proven to be successful in the UK. Despite large demand from fans, they initally passed on the series.

Re:Say what you will.... (1)

kalirion (728907) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629635)

With "Big Bang Theory" on NBC, can anyone doubt its the year of the geek?

NBC? It's CBS over here.

Still, it's the only current show with a laugh tract that I actually enjoy. Of course it would be tons better without the laugh tract....

Grasphing at straws... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23628873)

The programming on the SciFi channel is already so bad, how can it possibly get any worse? Nonstop reruns of the original Star Trek tv series would be a MAJOR improvement, though still sucky.

Everything NBC touches turns to shit (3, Insightful)

Duncan Blackthorne (1095849) | more than 6 years ago | (#23628879)

OMG, this is such a horrible idea. First they put effing wrestling on SciFi, now this unwatchable crap. Oh the humanity! When will the madness stop?

Re:Everything NBC touches turns to shit (4, Funny)

Necreia (954727) | more than 6 years ago | (#23628931)

... Oh the humanity! When will the madness stop?
Every Tuesday morning for about 6 hours for server maintenance.

Re:Everything NBC touches turns to shit (1)

alexj33 (968322) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629447)

They still haven't learned that sci fi and horror are not the same thing.

Seriously, I thought that the last season of Battlestar Galactica was going to be a three-way Cylon-Colonial-Vampire battle.

Finally! (0, Troll)

neokushan (932374) | more than 6 years ago | (#23628887)

It's about time someone made a show that could tackle issues such as grooming and addictions to pretending to be a hot lesbian, rather than a fat, balding man.

This appeals to me because I happen to be a hot, young lesbians that just loves kids.

have you meta-moderated lately? (2, Interesting)

pha7boy (1242512) | more than 6 years ago | (#23628919)

I say this could be rather cool. You have thousands of people who will be vying for the opportunity to tell their friends - "this was my mission." basically, you tap into an unlimited supply of writers, and all you have to do is cherry pick the best. Depending on who does the moderation, it could be a very inventive show.

Re:have you meta-moderated lately? (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629461)

More like an unlimited supply of idiots.

Develop for Free! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23628925)

Any word yet if Trion World Network is developing this MMO for free (or product placement)? I've heard there's an out-of-this-world job opportunity.

How many? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23628951)

How many episodes can the audience endure with most of the roles shouting "GIEF EPIX!" at each other?

Re:How many? (3, Interesting)

Vectronic (1221470) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629163)

Actually, they should have comedies every tenth episode or something, in-line with Red Vs Blue, etc... "FTW HAX!!!"... people walking through walls, flying... and outtakes, take the best glitches from the game, and re-create them in real-life.

I can't wait for the episode... (1)

hbean (144582) | more than 6 years ago | (#23628953)

...where the star spends 15 hours farming for some rare drops.

Should be absolutely riveting.

Re:I can't wait for the episode... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23629315)

Nah, better will be the series of 300 episodes where the main characters spend their whole time by a door step killing orcs to gain experience, and saying LOL to each other...

Epic lulz (4, Insightful)

stormguard2099 (1177733) | more than 6 years ago | (#23628957)

How many internet groups will get into this just to fuck it up for everyone else? I'm sure anonymous, SA, [insert other internet group] will fill the ranks just so they can make the game and hence the tv show an abomination to play/watch.

I mean come on why would you give the hordes of gamers, who act a fool just to show off to 3 friends the chance to do the same on cable tv? the temptation is just too strong.

  Hell I'll probably do it too if I can sign up fast enough to get the name "Leroy Jenkins"

Re:Epic lulz (4, Interesting)

JustinOpinion (1246824) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629261)

I mean come on why would you give the hordes of gamers, who act a fool just to show off to 3 friends the chance to do the same on cable tv? the temptation is just too strong.
Well, they are not going to just record in-game activity and then play it on TV without edits. That would be stupid (and boring). From TFA, it sounds more like they are going to use the in-game events to alter the storyline of the show. For instance the players in the game enter into an epic battle. Whether they win or lose affects the TV show. (An episode about retreating to the mountains vs. an episode about what to do with all the POWs they have.)

So, in principle even the actions of griefers could be intelligently woven into the storyline. Any GM worth his salt knows how to rationalize the actions of players, and make things fit into the storyline. A really good GM can even move the story in such a way that griefers will genuinely participate (or at least give up).

So for instance disruptions could be attributed to 'rebels' or 'a virus that is making our men go insane' or whatever.

Of course, that doesn't mean that this will be properly done. But I'm just saying it's certainly possible to implement this idea in a way that show-offs and griefers don't ruin the storytelling for everyone else.

Good point ... but .... (1)

khasim (1285) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629479)

Yep, that would be a great way to do it.

The problem is that the most likely players will NOT be interested in furthering the plot in any reasonable fashion. They'll be out to be griefers. There's only so many times that the main objective can be lost because some group of players start attacking the other players.

Lose the main battle because of mind-controlled "slaves" who turn on the rest ...

Retreat to the mountains ...

Where more mind-controlled slaves lead group after group of aliens to the camp ...

Forcing the main party to retreat further into the mountains ...

Until the producers rule out wandering aliens ...

Whereupon more mind-controlled slaves gank one of the stronger members of the group ...

lather, rinse, repeat

Re:Epic lulz (1)

tonyreadsnews (1134939) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629581)

Finally, the first comment where someone actually thought how it could be done without sucking!

This is actually a way to give people a way to interact with the storyline in a way to move engagement to the next level. People who didn't want to play could still just couch potato it.

They could even do some kind of ranking system and popular or interesting MMO characters could get mentioned or pulled into the show. That would make people even more interested in the game side since there are plenty of fame seekers.

Re:Epic lulz (2, Insightful)

Coryoth (254751) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629403)

How many internet groups will get into this just to fuck it up for everyone else? I'm sure anonymous, SA, [insert other internet group] will fill the ranks just so they can make the game and hence the tv show an abomination to play/watch.
If the show producers have even half a clue they can take care of this for the show, the game may suffer though... The key is that the game will "shape and guide" the show; i.e. add texture and events to the show's world. If some griefers come and make a horrible mess of some event then the show can demote it to something that gets a casual mention: e.g. "In other news, there was yet another skirmish with an as yet unidentified alien foe; back to you John" on a T.V. in the background of the show. If things go well, they can make more of a deal of it on the show and have it feature prominently. There's no reason anything from the game world has to make the show unfiltered; the show writers will have plenty of scope to write around events from the game world (many of which will in turn be semi-scripted by those writers to begin with) and pick and choose what they care to bring into the show. The effect of griefers will be in managing to make sure keen players don't get their exploits to feature prominently on the show, which may still attract plenty of griefers, but it will only ruin the game, not the show.

Of course all of this was working on the assumption that the producers have a clue, and this is SciFi we're talking about, so I wouldn't count on it...

Re:Epic lulz (1)

Floritard (1058660) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629431)

Or they could become a pivotal part of the show. I've always thought the GNAA [www.gnaa.us] would make a good supervillain. Might need a small namechange to make it through standards and practices.

Can't wait... (5, Funny)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 6 years ago | (#23628961)

I, for one, would be very interested in watching The Leeroy Jenkins Chronicles. ^_^

Slight error in logic (4, Interesting)

Dachannien (617929) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629003)

I don't see the TV show becoming popular. After all, if you're a MMOG fan, wouldn't you rather be playing a game yourself rather than watching a TV show about other people playing it?

And that brings us to what will make this particular game better than the fifty bazillion other MMOGs on the market now: your character might get to be on TV. Except you won't care, because your character probably won't get to be on TV, and barring that, you'd rather be playing than watching.

Why don't they drop this schtick and give us a sequel to that halfway-decent D&D movie they made a few years back? (And no, I'm not talking about the one with Jeremy Irons.)

Re:Slight error in logic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23629383)

You can have contests that involve watching the show about the MMO, which would entice players to watch and take a break for whatever time the show is. Enter a passcode, get to X location named in the show first, etc.

Re:Slight error in logic (1)

Dachannien (617929) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629393)

Those would be reasons to watch the show if you already play the game. But what are the reasons to play this particular game above all the other choices?

Re:Slight error in logic (1)

Floritard (1058660) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629561)

because your character probably won't get to be on TV
But your clan might. As for playing rather than watching, I'm sure if it was done well enough you'd love to sit down for a 30-60 minute program every week lionizing your otherwise pure time-wasting hours of gameplay. Hell I could see clans getting on teamspeak and watching the show together.

Much like those old television and radio shows that encouraged their listeners to play along with their secret decoder rings, this is really the next evolution of that sort of participation. Hell we have full-grown men and women engaging in activities as ridiculous as cosplay.

If you think people have better things to do, or that the television landscape has something better to offer then you having been paying attention to the near bankruptcy of American culture. Hell I'm surprised there isn't a cosplay reality TV show yet. If this thing's half way decent it could take off.

Re:Slight error in logic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23629715)

Does the fact that almost nobody actually makes it onto TV on American Idol stop people from showing up to the try-outs anyways?

Teabaging (3, Funny)

grassy_knoll (412409) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629009)

Oh great.

44 minutes of teabaging.

Maybe tivo can skip the show and just show the 16 minutes of commercials?

THe Phail Boat Sails (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23629011)

The simple solution to doing a game like this is to start telling the Chinese gold farmers to start playing, We can have WW3 on-line to pvp gold farmers! That would be an event to broad cast.

I hate to be a grammar troll... (4, Funny)

bennomatic (691188) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629015)

...but the plural of "medium" is "media", not "mediums". I think the latter *might* be acceptable in some circles, if you are talking about a group of people who channel the spirits of the dead, but even then. It wouldn't be a big deal, except you'd think that the press person--assuming they were quoted correctly in TFA--for a MEDIA company would know that.

Re:I hate to be a grammar troll... (1)

Irish_Samurai (224931) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629701)

Hrmmm.

I going out on a limb here, but even though you may be correct I think the more common usage (correct or not) of media is to refer to a set as a whole.

The media contains different mediums just as a herd contains cows.

It's a gamble but (2, Interesting)

Dragonshed (206590) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629021)

it could be great, as long as the TV crew and leadership can use the material to create something evocative. A TV show that can frame Leeroy Jenkins (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LkCNJRfSZBU) and Gnome Vasion (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wxD7p0rcBVM) in some sort of context and retain the original humor/drama/etc would absolutely be worthy of note.

We're grinding Commercials today. (3, Funny)

xC0000005 (715810) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629035)

Next week we're going to run the infomercial dungeon. The Saladmaster's a bitch at the end but he tends to drop credit card numbers.

This will not work. (5, Funny)

bistromath007 (1253428) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629057)

When the Internet thinks it can leak into the TV, it will just put penises everywhere.

MMOs and TV show universes (4, Insightful)

davejenkins (99111) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629071)

Fans cannot get enough of their fictional universes. I've seen the wikis for WoW and other MMOs grow larger than the wikipediae of several second-tier languages. The wikis for complex TV shows (BSG, Lost, 24, etc) are almost as big.

Give these fans a place to 'play' inside a universe linked in with a TV show? Oh yeah-- there's nothing "stupid" about this idea at all.

I like the idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23629095)

However it smells like the show that came out mid-eighties that was "interactive" the person would buy certain weapons and they would shoot the screen. I do not remember what it was called..it was about a computer that was pulling all life into it. There was five freedom fighters....

Re:I like the idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23629413)

Were you thinking of Captain Power and the Soldiers of the Future [imdb.com] perhaps?

Re:I like the idea (1)

jandrese (485) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629529)

I think you're thinking of Captain Power [imdb.com] , which would be almost nothing at all like the concept in the TFA.

Frankly, the whole idea is dumb and will never work for several reasons
  1. The game is going to suck. MMOs are hard to make, and tie-in games almost always suck. Trying to do both is a recipe for failure
  2. Even a game with a small playerbase is going to swamp an "alien invasion" site and bring the game to its knees. This happens in all MMOs when the developers decide to make some special event that only happens in one place. That event crushes the servers that were designed for maybe 50% over regular play levels.
  3. Given TV production lead times, unless the events are as lame as "a character mentions it in passing" then the TV show will always be a month or so behind the game events, an eternity in the gaming world.
  4. The script will be spastic if you're constantly asking the writers to redo stuff based on the outcome of a game. Plans they had for the event can't be made until after it happens, since they don't know which way it will go
At best, I see this feature being scaled back such that it doesn't affect the storyline of the show, but does get mentioned every now and again. "Whew, good thing we were able to secure sector 6, now back to our story". Or "Oh, no, sector 6 has fallen, truly a bad day for humanity. Well, we need to forge on with our plans..."

MMO? (1)

PCM2 (4486) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629101)

MMO == Massively Multiplayer Online?

Is that how the kids talk these days? Kinda like "wanna cyber" -- "Hay d00dz, whats ur favorite online?"

Re:MMO? (1)

Hankapobe (1290722) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629191)

MMO == Massively Multiplayer Online? Is that how the kids talk these days? Kinda like "wanna cyber" -- "Hay d00dz, whats ur favorite online?"

I've wondered that myself. So I googled "MMO definition" and this is the best I got: Acronyms [thefreedictionary.com]

How any of those apply to a television show is beyond this old fart. I guess "Massively Multiplayer Online (gaming)" is the only one that applies?

Ah, English, how I miss thee.

Re:MMO? (2, Funny)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629553)

Ah "thee," how we miss you.

Make it more like Temptation Island. (5, Funny)

Ukab the Great (87152) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629121)

They could name the show "Last Virgin Standing"; during epic battles they could have hot babes attempt to seduce top scoring players away from fighting.

big deal (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23629143)

the sci-fi channel sucks anyway.

Too much Sci Fi, not enough STEAMPUNK (1, Troll)

Corky Devereaux (1299435) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629145)

I'm putting together an online petition to start a new STEAMPUNK channel. Watch this space [blogspot.com] for more!

Re:Too much Sci Fi, not enough STEAMPUNK (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23629335)

You have posted 4 /. comments, and all are 1 line with a link to your blog about steampunk.

You had better start mixing it up before the mods get used to seeing your name and you get buried @ -1... Assuming you are posting in the hope of contributing something and not just a spam-bot wannabe.

Re:Too much Sci Fi, not enough STEAMPUNK (1)

Corky Devereaux (1299435) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629643)

OH! I don't just blog about Steampunk! Though it is one of my passions. Read my blog and you'll see! Please! Pay attention to me!

Re:Too much Sci Fi, not enough STEAMPUNK (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23629579)

I said: Stop wanking, Timmay! baaad retard!

Ughhh! (2, Insightful)

sir_eccles (1235902) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629147)

It's bad enough already with dozens of shows which seemingly make no sense unless you've also watched the podcasts, read the magazine, surfed through the website and decoded the clues to unlock secret sections, watched the spin off series where they explain the back plot, played the video game, watched the hidden features in the DVD, used the decoder ring in the special pack of Krusty-Os,... Can't we just have normal tv shows!!!!

Kind of like that EVE commercial? (3, Insightful)

badboy_tw2002 (524611) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629173)

I hit play too quickly while going through the commercials during last week's Battlestar and saw a commercial for EVE where they did it as a faux news cast about some star ship commander ramming a space station. It was a little cheesy but I suspect its the kind of premise they're going for here. The game that's played would have to follow the lines of EVE where the focus is PvP, and the "drama" comes from players attacking each other, coming up with scams, backstabbing, forming alliances, etc. I can't really see some pre-canned dungeon raid content making a good TV show.

new meaning (1)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629203)

Gives new meaning to LCD TV.

Just when you think it couldn't get lower (1)

Etrias (1121031) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629251)

This has epic fail written all over it.

Can you imagine? Instead of concentrating on what will make a good game, they will essentially drive game mechanics to boost ratings, decisions made by some corporate marketing "genius" who thinks they know what makes good TV. Pair this with the hordes of people desperate for their 15 minutes of fame and that's a recipe for one of two things.

One, it could be the worst possible TV stunt ever produced, one that could leave some gamers in a lurch when they pull the plug on the show (which they eventually will do) and shut down the game. Or Two, it could be the biggest sensation this side of American Idol that plays down to the lowest common denominator.

Like a Morning Cartoon (1)

kiehlster (844523) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629305)

I can only see this realized like those "interactive" morning cartoon shows where they try to get the audience involved by showing an outline of a character in the show and pretend to care that the viewer got the character's name right. Like a subtle infomercial where if you act within 30 minutes you can get free loot as long as you hand over your cc#. Or a 3-D kids movie [imdb.com] where the action stops to tell viewers to "put on your dimensional spectacles".

PLEASE tell me it will be "Mansquito: The MMO" (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629327)

Seriously, can anyone name any smart move that the Sci-fi channel has ever made, with the notable exceptions of picking up MST3K and Battlestar Galactica?

Wait! (1)

HyperQuantum (1032422) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629385)

Will this thing work on Linux?

They underestimate the power of creativity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23629389)

Specifically, the number of ways you can represent a penis in-game.

If the game has any form of free-form design, like Second Life, then the flying penises is obvious.

If you can design your own cloth patterns or guild banners by placing preselected images, there's all kinds of ways you can place white dots on a black background to make out a penis pattern.

If you show faction chat on TV, there's always penis ASCII art.

If all else fails, you can trust on simply standing in a penis formation as the overhead camera swoops by. A lot of people with big dark wigs surrounding a lineup of white-haired ones should do it.

Not to miss the opportunity of custom mustaches, either.

I also hope the paid actors will enjoy dealing with a thousand dark skinned characters with afros saying there is AIDS in the pool.

angry geek rants about this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23629435)

http://youtube.com/watch?v=gFx4bJpKLs8

This may be a chance to do something new with MMOs (1)

halcyon1234 (834388) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629467)

This could (though I won't say will) be a chance to do something new and interesting with the genre-- something that is much closer to the "interactive movie" that gets buzzed around so much. It works like this:

Make the game a living world. That is, events in-game end up changing the game world... the landscape, politics, society, etc. Except that MMOs can't seem to have a single server, right? Not a problem.

The devs plan out world-changing quests/events/whatever. Except that they need to be designed to be very open-ended. There should be several ways that the event CAN unfold. It will be up to how the players handle the quest as to determine the exact way it will unfold.

This event gets run over and over in different instances over different servers. At the end of the "event"'s time period, the most popular/interesting/well done/etc version takes effect, and the world changes.

Now, as a player, how can you tell wtf just happened. In your instance, you killed Queen Zxxyrx. Why is it that the world says she escaped and founded a new island off the coast of Grak? How did that happen? What does it mean?

Enter the TV show. You take the framework of the dev's game design as the basis for that week's episode. You flesh it out with the actions of the in-game players. Like any adaptation, some things will change. The dialog will have to be translated from 1337 into English, and edited for content / dramatic effect. It could event be that the character's actions are transposed onto recurring TV show characters. (Instead of luvs2spwg driving off Queen Zxxyrx, Sir Weekly the Recognizable does it)

And that's how you do it. Every week, present a challenge. The players who overcome it in the most impressive / creative / unique / dramatic / any other criteria way that week not only get a chance to change the world, but their deeds will be adapted for TV. Throw in a bunch of in-game references that gamers will get (but non-gamers won't go wtf over), and voila. TV show.

One word: (1)

HTH NE1 (675604) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629471)

Portal [imdb.com] .

How times have changed. (1)

arthurpaliden (939626) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629611)

Way 'back in the day', 1996, a group of us hard core gamers who owned a video production company and software development company, took this idea to the SCI-Fi channel . We put forward the idea of a weekly half hour news cast that would tie together the overall flow and development of the game story line with the exploits of both random and key players within the game. In addition it would explain game play new features and such. We did a sample game and news cast.

They wrote us off as a bunch of flakes, after all the Internet and Internet Gaming was 'just hype and a passing fad at best and the Internet will never be connected to every household' after all Microsoft was not even in the space.

WIll be beyond stupid (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23629621)

They can't even make movies right..

There's a reason we have authors. (3, Insightful)

goodmanj (234846) | more than 6 years ago | (#23629687)

If you've ever seen an "open-ended" MMO with players in charge of creation (say, Second Life), you've probably seen little sparks of creativity in a sea of boring copies of trendy junk. 90% of everything is crap. And the little sparks of creativity don't tie together: one person's perfect recreation of the rebel base on Hoth is right next to another person's gothic revival castle, and they clash horribly.

The same is true of TV shows with a large pool of authors (say, your average sitcom). Some episodes are good, some bad, but none of them mesh up together, and you're left with a mess.

For both MMOs and TV shows, a dictatorial author is the only route to success. The best MMOs (say, World of Warcraft or EVE) allow roleplaying only within the tight rules of the game world. The best TV shows (say, Lost, Battlestar Galactica, or Firefly) have just one or two guys who call the shots for the layout of the whole show, and set firm boundaries for the writers.

An open-ended MMO inspired by a TV show, and an authorless TV show inspired by the MMO? It's the blind leading the blind, a ship without a rudder, drifting off into banality.

And if the show *does* get a visionary author to conduct the show, then the whole MMO / TV connection is pretty much irrelevant, it becomes, first and foremost, the author's story to tell.
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