OutSpark announced last week on December 10, 2010 that Divine Souls would will be launching into open beta on December 14. For those curious – Divine Souls is an action MMORPG that is supposed to play a bit like Vindictus from Nexon. The funny though about Divine Souls is that it began its closed beta test phase nearly 5 months ago and is FINALLY getting around to actually launching into open beta. OutSpark is probably best known for Fiesta Online and Fists of Fu, but the company is also known for delaying MMORPGs numerous times. Just look at Erebus: Travia Reborn – the game still hasn’t been released. Hopefully their upcoming MMORPG Luvinia Online isn’t delayed too much – as that game looks pretty neat. I think OutSpark is focusing on their three core games right now – Fiesta Online, Secret of the Solstice, and Fists of Fu. Hopefully they don’t totally ignore Divine Souls, as I think the game still has some potential. I say so because Nexon’s competitor to Divine Souls – Vindictus, has IP blocks for Europe. I hope Divine Souls will launch world-wide without any IP restrictions.
Don’t even get me started about MMORPG IP blocks. I think Genesis A.D from ijji did a swell job in deciding their IP blocks. The sci-fi MMO shooter has ZERO IP Blocks. Zilch, Nada. Anyone from anywhere in the world can log in and play Genesis A.D without issue. Too bad other popular free MMORPGs like Dungeon Fighter Online, Perfect World, and Priston Tale 2 couldn’t make the same decision. Martial Empries from Gamigo is the exact same way. Luckily Gamigo’s newest MMORPGs Loong: The Power of the Dragon and Black Prophecy decided not to have IP blocks in place. War of Angels and CardMon Hero are the exact same way – which is good for players. IP Blocks are horrible for gamers, but great for game developers. I say great for game developers, because Korean developers can sell licenses to their games to different companies – and charge each one for the right to run their games. Personally, I think having one global publisher for a game is the best way to go – as that way EVERYONE in the world has access to the game. 4Story, League of Legends and King of Kings 3 are probably the best examples of games that can be accessed world-wide.
So. Back to Divine Souls. I think the game can be successful, provided it doesn’t screw itself by launching with all these restrictive IP blocks. Don’t do what Vindictus did. It’s not a good idea. Instead – do what Gravity Interactive is doing and make sure the game works world-wide. Zentia, I think, is also available in both EU and USA.