Friday, July 31, 2009

Chauncey DeVega's World of Ghetto Nerds: The Day Hip Hop Died Again...A Hip Hop Themed Massively Multiplayer Online Roleplaying Game is in Development

World of Warcraft now meets crappy "commercial" hip hop. Again, art has long descended into self-parody. For those of you who play WOW, what would the parallel character classes be? Would TI be a mage? Would Gucci Mane be a troll? Is Rick Ross an elf? Are there Elder Gods such as Rakim, Big, Pun, Nas, 'Pac, Jay, Ghostface, Rae and others?

Help me figure this out.

So, the minstrel-hopppers and southcraptastic rappers will now be character classes in a new MMORG...and the semi-literate ign't autotune fans will now be signing up for accounts to play their favorite characters via cellphone--ign'ts don't tend to be on the PC or MAC thing.

As one of the comments on the story so wonderfully summed up:

"Lemme guess how this game runs... you earn fame by either performing a typical crappy backtracked rap concert, make a mixtape of rapping over ripped off radio beats or supermanning Dat Ho'... and earn money to buy 30 bathroom mansions, expensive brand Clothes made in sweatshops, fuel eating SUV's, Diamond Chains gathered from sierra leone and show them off as achievements!... sounds fun!. Im expecting an item mall element as well... ill be surprised if you can rap off in pvp, since most of todays commercial rappers dodge radio freestyles/rap battles just to keep their endorsements intact in the likely case they mess up through their tacky 'skill'."

Courtesy of Gamespot:

T.I. Headlining Hip-hop Themed MMORG

Incarcerated hip-hop star first act to sign onto Platinum Life, a new free-to-play multiplatform massively multiplayer game which will incorporate role-playing and rhythm elements.

On May 26, hip-hop artist T.I. began serving a 366-day prison sentence for federal weapons charges. But being behind bars isn't stopping the Atlanta-based rapper from expanding into new media--games, specifically. This morning, Austin, Texas-based independent developer Heatwave Interactive announced it is working on a hip-hop massively multiplayer game starring the rapper, born Clifford Harris Jr.

Called Platinum Life, the microtransactions-based title will take standard free-to-play role-playing game mechanics and adapt them to a hip-hop music-scene setting. Players will take the role of an aspiring musician who must earn "fame," the game's version of experience points. This is accomplished primarily by playing shows in the game, where players will perform existing hip-hop hits by engaging in Guitar Hero-like, pattern-matching rhythm minigames and more traditional RPG actions.

Platinum Life will also incorporate other RPG elements, such as non-player characters. NPCs can also be used as back-up musicians or DJs during shows, although Heatwave CEO Anthony Castoro, a former Ultima Online developer, said that players will be encouraged to form their own groups. These groups will be able to take advantage of a certain level of music-creation tools, but will act more like a party in a traditional RPG, using spell-like special abilities to move the virtual crowd.

Performing more and more successful shows will put players on the path to follow an in-game "icon"--a real-life musician who offers a career path for players to emulate. T.I. will be the first such icon, with Castoro saying the game will feature "around a dozen" major real-life musicians as icons, whom players can eventually open up for at major venues. These icons will also determine character classes, which will include rappers, R&B singers, DJs, and other musicians.

As a player becomes more famous, the size of his NPC entourage will increase--as will the "drama" the NPCs in said entourage creates. This drama system will task the player with missions, such as helping out an entourage member who is in a troubled relationship or in trouble with the law.

Speaking of legal troubles, Castoro was emphatic that Platinum Life would not be as violent as other hip-hop themed games, such as Def Jam Icon or 50 Cent: Blood in the Sand. Though players can get into scuffles with rival crews, there won't be any shooting or killing. However, the game's open-world setting will allow for some Grand Theft Auto-style gameplay, with the paparazzi hounding players much like the police did in GTAIV.

Heatwave is aiming to release Platinum Life on the PC and other undefined platforms in 2011 or 2012. However, the company will begin building up to the final game's launch with a series of social media initiatives, the first two of which are expected to arrive this fall.


Paul Ervin said...

The apocalypse is truly upon us...

gordon gartrelle said...

TI can actually rap, even though his lyrics suck for the most part.

Your narrow 90s east-coast bias is showing.

karinova said...

Sure, there "won't be any shooting or killing"... but you may have to help out a friend "who is in a troubled relationship or in trouble with the law." Because, you know: "drama".

Ah, blurring the line between hip-hop the-music, and hip-hop-the-lifestyle! (Because some of these people— the artists included— have no idea there is a line.) Awesome.

Sure to be a big hit in middle America.

MilesEllison said...

This looks beyond stupid.