by

Words from TEH FUTURE

As seen here (which I came across while confirming image file moves), now you can tell exactly how bad a prognosticator I really am!

World of Warcraft will continue to be an unholy juggernaut of a cultural phenomenon. Burning Crusade will launch, people will burn through it in a couple of months and crusade for more content patches, which Blizzard will dribble out in a fashion quick for the rest of the industry, and not nearly fast enough for the players. At some point, they will announce breaking the 8 million user mark world wide, but won’t talk about their NA/Europe numbers. (Traditionally expansion packs help with retaining current customers but do little to attract new blood.)

PASS, but only because I was really Master of the Obvious on this one. (Actually they went over 9 million in July.)

Vanguard will attract the most dramatic forum drama for 2007 as the launch community turns out to be entirely different from the beta community, and the two sides implode into violent hellfire.

FAIL, SORT OF. Vanguard had lots of drama, just not on the forums.

Second Life’s torrid affair with the media will end. As they attract more users they’ll run into scaling issues (this is a safe prediction because it’s happening already) and will adapt or die.

PASS, and again another Master of the Obvious prediction, since it was already happening when I wrote that. The bloom is definitely off the rose for Linden Lab, and 2008 will see the first SL competitors, I’d wager.

Raph Koster’s Areae will go public with what they’re doing. I haven’t the foggiest over what it actually is; based on their employment ads it’s something very web-centric and based on Raph’s oft-stated beliefs it’s something very virtual worldy. It will attract violently passionate fans immediately despite not having anything even vaguely playable on the horizon.

PASS as of yesterday, and it looks like I nailed it pretty well, they’re even getting the passionate fans already.

Bioware Austin will finally reveal what they’ve been working on, and everyone will go “oh, is THAT what you wouldn’t tell us?” (Note: I don’t actually know, I just know it’ll have to be anticlimactic)

I DUNNO. Doesn’t look good for this year, though.

Warhammer Online will ship near the end of 2007 and the geek forum wars between “Dude, this game totally ripped off World of Warcraft” and “Dude, World of Warcraft totally ripped off Warhammer” will begin in all-too-earnest. Sanya Weathers will roll her eyes a lot (which is a neat trick when you do it online).

FAIL, as the game’s been pushed back to 2008 and Sanya Weathers don’ work there no’ mo’ (but may well roll her eyes anyway).

The media will fall on an RMT story (either involving defrauding a lot of kids or some organized crime involvement — or both) and an American politician will get involved, to appear relevant and net-wise.

FAIL, for now, anyway. And a good thing that is.

Very, very few gamers upgrade to Windows Vista.

PASS, adoption rates for Windows Vista are somewhere around 15% last time I saw estimates.

Assuming all goes well, I’ll actually be able to go public a bit with what I’ve been working on. Some of you will like it. Some won’t.

FAIL, we’re still keeping it tightly under wraps for now. Hey, that’s fewer broken promises! But still, when you fail a prognostication about YOUR OWN PROJECT, you may want to work on the whole industry analysis thing…