EVE Online‘s Incarna update was supposed to deliver a world where you could stroll around on not just your ship, but on space stations as well, interacting with all the other players, dancing on tables and doing all the sorts of things that MMO players normally do when they see each others avatars. So what happened? Ned Coker from CCP explained that it was all turning out to be a bit too hard.
“When we introduced the idea, we had grand visions of what it might be and we’d expressed that in various ways throughout the year. Then technology and complications became hard realities for us. We aimed pretty high and we met many of our goals, but not many of our gameplay goals. It really became more of a single player experience.”
“As a platform it still works out really well for us,” said Ned, “but based off player feedback we took a step back from our Incarna full development plans. We’ve had a team doing prototyping work on what Incarna gameplay might look like in the context of EVE‘s gameplay. They’ve done a couple of iterations on what that might be, with the ‘EVE-ness’ of it in mind.”
“Incarna and avatar gameplay is definitely not shelved indefinitely, it’s just not being worked on actively in full production right now.”