Warhammer 40000: Dark Millenium – If A MMO Falls in Pre-Production And No-One Cares…

A picture of some space orks from Warhammer 40K: Dark Millenium.

“Cancelled? Damn it. Okay boys, time to polish up your resumes for the next WoW expansion.”

Hey, remember that Warhammer 40K MMO that was going to be published by THQ and was being developed by Vigil Games? No? That’s okay, few people do.

The Warhammer 40K MMO was barely mentioned during the discussion around Vigil Games failing to find a new home after THQ collapsed. Vigil’s published titles of Darksiders and even Dante’s Inferno were referenced, but this was a project that first appeared back in 2007 that everyone seemed to have forgotten about.

It had been announced in mid-2012 that maybe it had been cancelled or maybe it had been morphed into a single player title (or maybe both – no-one seemed to know) but that’s still a lot of time invested in a title. W40K:DM was in development so long people started making up fake launch dates that seemed believable.

It’s a title to remember as it was one of the factors that helped bring down THQ. W40K:DM had an indicative budget of US$50m and it’s very possible most of that money (or perhaps even more) was spent for no good outcome – former THQ President Jason Rubin named the “massive wasted capital in the unpublished MMO that was cancelled” as a contributing factor to the destruction of THQ’s financial viability.

Not much was known about the actual mechanics of gameplay, but the trailers certainly make it look very third person shooter-y, which is a type of MMO that’s got a very chequered past.

With Vigil unsold and SEGA buying out all of THQ’s Warhammer rights, it’s most likely that this MMO is completely dead. A few years ago there may have been some interested parties that would have swooped in and picked up a heavily-developed MMO at fire sale prices, but new MMOs just don’t have the financial legs they once did. THQ couldn’t find organisations interested in buying into W40K:DM back when it was still part of an operational company; now that it is unfinished code and assets on a server somewhere there’s even less likelihood of a resurrection, even at this time of year.

Hmm, now that I think about it, Warhammer MMOs don’t have a particularly good history anyway. Perhaps Warhammer and its variants are an IP that should be kept apart from the massively multiplayer arena.

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