Blizzad's latest move to introduce open world PVP combat to World of Warcraft is "absolutely a reaction to Warhammer," according to Mark Jacobs, CEO of Mythic.
Speaking to GamesIndustry.biz, Jacobs talked about the latest PVP features to be included in the World of Warcraft expansion, Wrath of the Lich King, many of which, he claims, are based on Warhammer Online.
"Oh absolutely," responded Jacobs, when asked if this was a move by Blizzard to position World of Warcraft against Warhammer Online. "I think imitation is the sincerest form of flattery."
"You have a game that's been out for four years, they've never put in world PVP like ours, they've never been able to level through PVP like in ours. I think it's absolutely a reaction to Warhammer," Jacobs added. "It wasn't like all of a sudden the idea of open world PVP or levelling through PVP came into their heads and went 'nobody's ever done this before'."
"I don't think it was accidental that they're talking about doing it when Warhammer comes out. Four years and suddenly, miraculously, at the same time Warhammer comes out that's when they start talking about these things... I think it was Jeff Kaplan who said they like to look at other games and learn from them - well, I'm flattered."
Mythic's CEO, went on to discuss the uncertainty involved in predicting how many of the currently registered users will be converted into paying subscribers, following the end of the 30 day free trial that comes packaged with the boxed product.
"If we're successful, we'll have a high conversion rate and we'll keep the vast majority of our subs," he explained, adding: "No one has been billed yet, so we won't know this really for at least several months, in terms of how well we're doing, unless we start off horribly."
"Everything we've done internally, in terms of looking at internal polls, people posting on forums, emails from people, all we've seen so far is that we're well on track."
Mark Jacob's full interview with GamesIndustry.biz can be found here.