World Eternal Online bizarrely claims it ‘decoupled from the blockchain’ as it launches early access on Epic

Yes, 'decoupled' is doing a lot of heavy-lifting here


Back in February we reported on the existence of World Eternal Online, an MMORPG under development by Core Loop Games that had previously raked in $22M specifically to create a blockchain title. At the time, the game’s website and clever PR wordplay maintained that the blockchain and P2E components of the game were entirely optional, which didn’t make sense even then, and it was because of that Web3 association that we left our coverage as a PSA for gamers.

So when we received another press release this week that claimed the studio and game had “decoupled from the blockchain,” we gave it another look. Indeed, if you thumb through the game’s public-facing web store, FAQ, and news site, there are no clear references to crypto or Web3 tricks apart from benign Coinbase payment integration. Most of the game’s latest noise is about its fourth season that added combat updates, gear revamps, a battle pass, and a split of the map that makes it PvE-only for level 1-45 and PvP-only for levels 45-50. The game also entered early access in September as well as landed on the Epic Games Store as a free-to-play title.

However, the game’s Discord and Twitter suggest that “decoupling” is just more wordplay.

For starters, just two months ago the WEO Twitter account retweeted a recording from Elixir Games announcing that Core Loop had signed an exclusivity deal with Elixir to publish WEO. Elixir Games is marketed as a “PC game launcher powering the next-gen of web3 games to onboard traditional gamers” allowing them to “monetize [their] time spent on games and own [their] assets for ever [sic]” – in other words, it’s a platform designed specifically to get skeptical or normie gamers wrapped up in a P2E ecosystem – exactly the sort of trickery we called out the last time.

And then there’s the game’s Discord, which has no notice that we could find about any “decoupling” from the blockchain or the implication therein that the game is no longer a P2E lure, which you’d think would be a pretty big announcement given that the company describes itself as a “startup focused on making MMOs with blockchain components.” While we found one mention of a dev in August stating the game won’t sell NFTs or land, the official Discord FAQ from less than three months ago (significantly more detailed than the thin one on the website) is basically making the exact same pitch as before: that while you can technically play the game without engaging in P2E activities, it’s all still there, baked right into the game. If anything’s changed, it’s a slight nudge to the way it’s being marketed to gamers not already captured by P2E ecosystems.

Regardless, early access doesn’t have any specific end date beyond an “it’s ready when it’s ready” style timetable, though Core Loop does say it will make major updates roughly every two months and push out fixing patches every one to two weeks. Even if “decoupling” weren’t just sleight-of-hand, early access caveats as always still apply.


sources: press release, official site, Discord, Epic Games Store
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