Ghost Recon and Mods
Report : Rocky | Research/concept : Jester
One of the largest threads,
and one of the most heated discussions at the official RSE
Ghost Recon Forum is with regard to Modding
of Ghost Recon. It starts of with a simple and commonly
asked question "...im curious if we will be able to mod
GR or not ".
Lets start with what this
report is NOT about. It's not about establishing why, or if,
mods are a "Good Thing". Mods provide the creative
gamer with another dimension to explore. They provide the
more passive gamer with a means to extending the life time
of the game through regular new maps or missions. And of course
they provide fan sites like this with regular fodder :o)
The purpose of this report
is to establish what RSE have done to encourage/discourage
modding, whether or not it will satisfy the GR community,
and whether or not in will enhance/restrict the appeal and
saleability of Ghost Recon.
So, what exactly can we expect
when we install GR at Christmas? Will we find a map editor,
or a mission editor or full mod support, or even no mod support
at all? At this time, the only confirmation that RSE have
given is that GR will come with a Mission editor along the
same lines as Rogue Spear, there will be no map editor, no
level building opportunities. This surprises some, as most
mainstream FPS come complete with modding tools. Looking at
Red Storms history, we shouldn't really be surprised though.
It took a community petition started at Pie's Tactics before
RSE released the plug ins necessary for designing and building
new Rogue Spear maps.
So, is a mission editor likely
to satisfy the Ghost Recon community? While there will be
a percentage of gamers who almost "buy to mod",
and even some who have already voiced a strong objection to
the omission of modding tools, it is unlikely to cause mass
revolt. Modding is way down on the list of "must haves"
for Ghost Recon's potential buyers. Look at the results
so far on our Poll. With almost 1000 votes already, Modding
ability is among the three lowest ranking features. In the
RSE forum - which is HARD CORE RSE gamer territory remember,
it looks like a split decision. So while modding games may
be cool, not many are ready to bust a blood vessel over it.
What about the wider picture,
are gamers outside of Red Storms established community looking
at Ghost Recon and saying "Hey can I mod this game -
its important to me!". A new modding
report by 3d Action Planet would indicate that modding
is not exactly a high priority to the massive bulk of gamers.
Lets look at some of the stats they produced.
What percentage of gamers
actually spend time modding rather than playing? How many
gamers get their kicks being creative, rather than destructive?
Where can we look to find relevant statistics to prove the
point one way or another? Well, we have to look at another
FPS to make a fair comparison, and what bigger badder FPS
than Half Life? According to 3d Action Planet only 3% of Half
Life gamers play mods - and they are talking BIG mods like
Counter Striker, not amateur efforts like Rogue Spears "Omaha
Beach", even though Omaha
has over 16,000 downloads! If less than 5% play mods, are
they important to a games sustainability? 3d Action planet
concluded not; "... it's not essential to the success
of a game; games apparently sell quite well without a thriving
However as they point out
in their conclusion, and as I said at the top of this report,
mods "provide ... a means to extending the life time
of the game" Once you start extending the life of a game
- its appeal mushrooms, its value is extended, and we all
go home happy.
In conclusion then, modding
is not required for a games success, but it is one
of the building blocks upon which a gaming community is built.
Having limited modding ability is going to disappoint only
a very small percentage Ghost Recon players who wish to mod.
But there is a larger percentage who want to see the lifespan
and variation extended through freely available community