Yes, what a day, Boomer responded to one of those silly 'SO will suck' people over at the SO Zone. It explains some neat stuff, check it out below...
Allow me to restate some reasons why we're delivering Secret Ops via the Internet in the manner we are:
#1, We're convinced there is a convergance of traditional broadcast media and the Internet. Granted, the Internet won't be a substitue for TV or movies anytime soon, but there will be a point in the future where people will look to the Internet for entertainment just as they do for TV/movies now. One compelling element the Internet can deliver (vs TV/Movies) is the ability to deliver *interactive* entertainment.
Now what is so compelling about dramas such as 'ER' or 'Hill Street Blues'? The fact there is a continuing story line, carried over week to week. People become involved with the plot & characters and thereby become 'involved' themselves. Another metaphor is the old time Saturday 'cliff hanger' serial. Before the matinee every Saturday, 'Rocket Man' or 'Lash Larrue' would save the day, only to end up in a situation where all was lost. You couldn't wait to come back next week to see how they got out of that jam. That's entertainment.
#2 Anyway, OSI wanted to repay its fans for contributing to our success. But just giving something away (like on a magazine CD) doesn't make sense... by and large, there is no perceived 'value' in something you get for absolutely nothing. So how could we give something back, but make it worthwhile and *mean* something. Why not deliver it in episodes, like the weekly 'soaps' or old time serials? Allow people to enjoy the experience by delivering it in a manner to (if I may borrow an old entertainment adage) 'leave em wanting more'...
We just feel by offering it in this unique manner it will be enjoyed much more than if you just got some free game on some shareware CD. The intention is to 'draw you in' to the story.. let you 'live vicariously' as Casey, reading his email, his newpapers, etc. on a day to day basis, just as if you really *were* him. You cannot deliver that experience on a CD (because you could read 9 days worth of fiction in an hour ;). This way, you *are* Casey... you just have to live your life, having NO idea what might be happening tomorrow. Will I get a letter from Mom? Or secret communications there are saboteurs onboard... Will my next mission be a 'milkrun'? Or am I going to have to fight for my very life.
#3 One might say OSI is arguably THE industry leader in successful online gaming. But we aren't simply going to take a 'status quo' approach and view online interactive entertainment industry in purely 'conventional thinking' terms. We want to blaze a trail... look for new ways to deliver interactive entertainment online. In short, think 'out of the box'. As I said earlier, right now the Internet isn't ready for 'real time full featured 35mm quality Interactive Entertainment'. One day it will be, but heck, let's be realistic... right now it's difficult to get a grainey lil video bigger than a matchbox delivered. So where do we start if we want to be the 'NBC' of online entertainment in the 21 century? What can we do NOW to get ready for the 'big time'
Episodes. With 'custom' fiction delivered daily, depending on the outcome of last weeks episode (remember the 'cliff hanger'? ;)
Does OSI benefit? sure.. we have the opportunity to experiment, gain knowledge in unknown territory. Do the players benefit? In spades. The more we work on this, the more things 'come together' the more excited & happier everyone involved gets because we just *know* players are gonna have a great.. make that awesome.. experience. Like nothing ever offered before ;)
Sorry if it seems I'm on a soapbox and gotten long winded here (hard to see just how much you've written in this tiny lil window). But the closer this gets, the more convinced I am this falls under the category of being 'visionary' and I'm damn proud to be a part of it ;)