Massively OP’s 2017 Blooper Awards: Sneakiest MMO soft launch


Massively OP’s not-so-serious end-of-the-year awards continue today with our blooper award for Sneakiest MMO soft launch. And the winner is…


A couple of months ago, we’re sitting in work chat when someone – I think it was MJ – suddenly asks whether anybody knows when exactly Warframe launched. I laughed because everybody knows Warframe has been launched for years, right? Only… no. Open beta launched March 25, 2013, and that was it. It’s never technically left open beta, in spite of being in a basically done state for four and a half years, launching multiple expansions, winning awards, and even hosting fan conventions.

Soft launched. It’s time. We’re calling it.

Want to nominate another winner? Let us know in the comments, and don’t forget to check out our serious MMO awards while you’re at it.


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John Mynard

Makes me sad that something as good as Warframe only wins joke awards.

Loyal Patron

That’s because any detractors to the game can simply be pointed to the fact that it’s still in “beta”.

peor togs

Lots of good options. I will say Ark.

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Patreon Donor

When you guys first said Warframe never officially launched I thought that can’t be right. Then I looked and just went WTF that’s a beta still!? That s like FFXI’s maitence mode.

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Patreon Donor

I’ll say Shroud of the Avatar. They don’t want it to be released, because everyone hates it, but it is released and it’s as good as it will ever get.

But official launch day will be fun as Garriott’s biggest flop to date.

TotalCowage .

And they’re only going with an “official” launch in March so they can avoid saying they had to close the game before they’d even “launched” it.

Because the money is running out yet again, and they’ve exhausted every last avenue by now to get any more. Deliberately weakening pledges, then artificially expiring them to pressure people to upgrade right now; fundraising for charity but only paying half or less of the money to the actual good cause; turning to SeedInvest and claiming backers were now investors; turning seasonal telethons into monthly ones; signing contracts with the Publishers they Kickstarted to supposedly avoid, and promising future revenue for a quick hail mary cash investment now; selling their own blood; selling their deceased mother’s artwork; going Free to Play… None of it has worked. A “launch” and advertising blitz is the only chance they have left.

Actual Soft Launch was July 2016 though, when they stopped wiping the server; and they can’t go back on that now because Real Money Trading is legal, and the scale of money involved is colossal; a single Golden Castle cost $30,000. Player Owned Towns cost $750 upwards. And all of these and more have been transferred between players since July 2016. Wiping the server, no matter how bad the bug or how imbalanced the economy or how poor the core gameplay mechanic, would mean wiping out every one of those in game transfers, but not the real money exchange that purchased it. So they can’t go back now.

They are, even if they use soft words, deceptive words… launched.

The eventual bone-breaking crash back down to earth is going to be glorious, and gloriously well deserved however.


Isn’t it supposed to be free to play after it launches?

Perhaps it’s more profitable to keep it as early access and keep charging twenty quid for the privilege of ‘testing’ than it is to release it and go FTP and hope people buy their lockboxes.