Starr Long, who is producer of the science fiction MMO Tabula Rasa, has released a statement responding to recent speculation about the game's performance on the NCsoft
website. Long said: "the game has not taken off as quickly as we had hoped," although he reassured players that the company will offer new content for the game. Long said that "NCsoft has committed a lot of money and resources
into continuing post-launch development of Tabula Rasa." He presented a number of new features and content updates that are in the works, including dynamic mission flashpoints, the ability to command squads of upgradeable AI soldiers and Personal Armour Units.
Tabula Rasa was the subject of a controversial article
in the Korea Times, two weeks ago, where it was claimed that the game lost 100 million dollars and that layoffs were a direct consequence of this. At the time, Ncsoft claimed that the story was fake. Long is the first insider that clearly states that the game has not performed as well as it could have. He offered a few possible reasons, saying that: "We also launched in an insanely competitive time frame, with several well-known intellectual properties launching follow up products at the same time".
However, Long then went on to explain that the downsizing of the development team was a "standard" cut down from the team that builds a game, to the team that only helps run a game. "The fact of the matter is that we are transitioning from a pre-launch crunch-mode development team to a live service team," he said. The existence of such a live team is further proof that the game will get new updates and new features.
He also said that Tabula Rasa creator Richard Garriott, who will fly to the International Space Station somewhere in the fall, is still very much a part of Tabula Rasa's development team, even though there were some press reports about his taking a backseat.