Online games keep on appearing out of nowhere as the gold rush mentality continues to thrive in this part of the game industry. Today, GoldFire Studios announced today its BC Wars browser-based massively multiplayer online game.
The Oklahoma City,Okla.-based company is launching a beta test of the game today, targeting role-playing game fans from around the world who might have an interest in a prehistoric-themed game. It is certainly a different kind of game genre, as most MMOs have you killing Orcs and dragons. In that sense, it’s original. But the category is also unproven, meaning the company will need a lot of good word of mouth about the game. In the game, you can build and design caves, battle ancient monsters and dinosaurs, fight other players, join tribes and participate in big tribal wars, and explore the ancient world.
James Simpson, chief executive of GoldFire, said that the game has been in development since June, 2008, and Goldfire itself has been around since ealry 2005. The game is free to start playing, but you can buy virtual currency and use it inside the game to buy things. You can also withdraw the virtual currency you earn and cash it out through PayPay, check or bank transfers.
The company has 12 employees and competes with the likes of Artix Entertainment, Bigpoint, GameForge, and xs-software. Simpson, a 21-year-old game entrepreneur, funded the company himself. At age 14, he created a virtual pet game called SchooglePets, but he closed it after it hit 5,000 users because of hackers. He sharpened his programming and security skills and then launched a virtual pet game, Venetopia, which was acquired by Carriere Entertainment. He also worked on Apex Web Gaming, Free Image Upload, and Eternal Kingdoms. In 2006, Goldfire launched PokerRPG, a role-playing online poker game.
This game is an example of how a small team can launch a browser-based online game with relatively small resources. But it’s a crowded market, so we’ll see how it work out.