How Did The Division Become One Of The Hottest New IPs Ever?
This isn't a rhetorical question, though I do have a theory.
It's true that when Ubisoft originally unveiled Tom Clancy's The Division, there were plenty of interested gamers out there. But even the developer didn't predict the popularity the closed and open beta tests enjoyed, and now this new IP is primed to be one of the biggest new franchises we've seen in years.
What's interesting about this is the timeline, the progression of the hype, so-to-speak. There was a long period of time with little in the way of exact details, and many gamers started to become suspicious of the title's promise. Even so, when you heard about it from other designers and insiders, you heard nothing but widespread praise. It was as if anyone who had touched the game, or had seen more than the general public, was suitably impressed.
Then the betas came out and - it seems to me - everything just exploded. Yes, such tests are invaluable resources for developers, especially in regards to online-oriented games, but these also serve to give gamers a taste of the action. In some cases, we get more than a taste. And with the closed and open beta tests for The Division, one saw an immediate and decidedly positive response. Ubisoft had to extend the closed beta to let more players in, the open beta saw a ridiculous 6.4 million players, and our community loved it.
All of this translates to a blockbuster title and frankly, I'm not sure everyone would've predicted such a mammoth product until these beta tests kicked in. I know people hoped it'd be big but I'm not sure anyone thought it'd be this big. Some games take different paths to superstardom; they require different boosts at varying times in order to reach into the upper stratosphere of industry hype. In this particular case, I think The Division started on a promising note, went dark for a little while, started to gain steam in late 2015, and blasted through the roof in 2016.
A good reason to run beta tests for promising multiplayer games, well beyond the practical reasons. Yes?
Related Game(s): The Division
3/6/2016 8:59:59 PM Ben Dutka