Funcom's financial report for the third quarter of 2008 has been released, and it contains a lot of interesting information about company's financial situation, their plans for Age of Conan (such as introduction to Russian, Polish and Korean markets), and the status of the upcoming MMORPG title, The Secret World. I'll just outline a few things I found interesting.
First of all, Funcom reported an $18 million revenue this quarter. Their EBIT (Earnings Before Interest & Tax) and EAT (Earnings After Tax) were positive ($5.3 and $2.7 million respectively), as opposed to the Q2 2008 figures. Now, I'm no financial expert - it would be fair to say that I'm pretty much clueless - but I as far as I understand, if Funcom made millions of dollars in net earnings during past 3 months things must be going decently for them despite all the doomsayers on the forums. Too bad they didn't reveal Age of Conan's subscriber count this time, and I can't really guess it from the figures given, since box sales and income from Anarchy Online are also counted into that $18 million revenue. They do say that "Increase in Funcom revenues is mainly due to subscription revenues from the Age of Conan game", however.
But let's return to Age of Conan now. Here's a very cool picture of the status of AoC; apparently the game is only one checkmark away from having all MMO success criteria achieved! :) The only thing that separates AoC from global MMORPG market domination is "An RPG rule set that keeps the majority of players engaged for hundreds of hours"; of course that simply means that Age of Conan doesn't keep the players interested for as long as Funcom would like it to.
And here we have the focus areas for the game and the Age of Conan roadmap all the way up to the expansion coming out in Q4 2009. In another page, they promise the loyalty rewards system in Q1 2009; basically the same thing as Powerpoints, only they aren't called powerpoints anymore.
Finally, just before the dry financial figures start, we have this status report and a piece of concept art from company's upcoming MMO game, The Secret World. They have 70 people working on it apparently, and they will start hyping it up in early 2009. TSW will still use DreamWorld, the same graphics engine that AoC and Anarchy Online runs on. I have mixed feelings about this fact, and I hope they can polish the technical side enough since it's no secret that both games had a lot of performance problems.
I must say I'm particularly interested in what they mean by the "MMO gaming combined with Alternate Reality Gaming and social networking" statement. At any rate, TSW seems like it's going to be an original and unique MMORPG, although I'm going to be very careful about any "amazing" features that Funcom promises.
You can download the full report in .pdf format here.