MMO-Champion - MMO-Champion acquired by Curse
US Maintenance Update: 03:00PM PDT - The US Maintenance is getting long, time for hourly updates.
Originally Posted by Lylirra (Blue Tracker)
Authentication maintenance is still being performed and we're working to bring realms undergoing normal maintenance back online as soon as possible. We anticipate this process will be complete and that those realms will be live and playable by approximately 3:00 PM PDT.

Update #2 - Most of the questions of comments are concerns I already adressed in my first update of the news. I'll try to reply to all the PMs I got about that and make sure nobody is super-scared.

Ultimately, I just hope that after 3 years my readers trust me enough to know that I wouldn't do anything stupid for the site. The news format will stay the same, the people behind the site will stay the same (but we will get backup), I could probably have decided to not announce the change and nobody would have noticed before ages. The only reason why it was announced is because it's a great thing, and it was worth sharing.


Update - Added a couple of answers at the bottom of the post. If you have (serious) questions or concerns about the sale, just throw me a PM and I'll answer in public.

MMO-Champion acquired by Curse
There we go.

Press Release
San Francisco, CA – July 19, 2010 – Curse, Inc. announced today the purchase of the #1 World of Warcraft news site, MMO-Champion.com. The site was bought from Major League Gaming for an undisclosed amount.

MMO-Champion is a natural fit for Curse which already possesses the largest repository of add-ons available for MMO (Massively Multiplayer Online) games such as World of Warcraft, Warhammer Online and Runes of Magic as well as extremely popular forums for Runescape, Aion and Final Fantasy XIV. The World of Warcraft news site attracts 7 million unique visitors and more than 80 million page views per month (Google Analytics WW, June 2010). The combination makes Curse the #1 MMO destination online.

“The acquisition of MMO-Champion markedly sets Curse apart from the competition,” said Hubert Thieblot, CEO and Founder. “Not only does the addition solidify Curse as the largest MMO destination on the web, but it plays a central role in delivering a complete Curse MMO solution. Curse is now the ultimate resource for MMO news, forums, databases, and add-ons.”

Gamers and advertisers alike will benefit greatly from MMO-Champion’s purchase by Curse. In the next few months, visitors can expect an updated page design and improved user experience. To insure the site’s strong content offering will not be compromised, Fabien Bonte, the site’s founder and administrator, will be joining the Curse staff as a full-time employee. Advertisers can take advantage of Curse’s extended reach into the core MMO market, making MMO gamers easier to connect with than ever. For more information about Curse and MMO-Champion, please visit www.curse.com.


Boubouille's word (That's me!)
NEW OWNERS! WE'RE ALL GOING TO DIE!

No, seriously. This change will hardly affect the users, we will see a lot of improvements on the site over the next few months (not immediately, we still have to move to new servers) and a lot of people will be working hard to make MMO-Champion a wonderful place filled with love and gnomes. Our first goal is obviously to stabilize the current site and fix all the minor bugs you've been experiencing since the migration, then we'll work on the big stuff and eventually come up with a shiny new design and more features.

I would also like to thank Major League Gaming for the 3 years I spent with them. They're the one who gave me a chance to bring MMO-Champion to a much higher level and even if it isn't obvious to everyone, the site probably wouldn't exist today without them. MLG's management and tech teams went through a lot of efforts to keep the site alive during its ridiculously fast growth, we're here today because of them. Curse and Major League Gaming will definitely keep working together in the future and great things will come out of this partnership.

MMO-Champion has been around for 3 years, 4 months, and 19 days. Let's see how much further we can go.


Update - Let's try to address some of the concerns.

0. Me!
For the 3rd time, I'm not going anywhere. I'll still be here to post the news each day, ban you each day because you made fun of Garfield in the forums, and pretend that I know stuff about the codename Titan.


1. Redesign
Redesign means "make the site pretty", not completely change the layout of the page. If you want more details:
  • The site won't change to a fixed width because it sucks to read wall of texts (=80% of my news posts)
  • You will never get "AWESOME NEW STUFF RELEASED! Click the link below to actually see the news", everything will stay on the front page, simple and clean.
  • I want the blue tracker latest posts on the front page.
  • We might add a couple of extra features like a separate box to track new posts in Off-Topic forums, etc ...
  • We have to hunt down all the terrible bugs we have on the design. I mean, did you try to open the current site with IE7? Or did you try to edit your forum preferences without killing yourself because of how bad it looks? That's what I meant by "the current design sucks"
  • Visually, we can probably do much better than that without changing the structure of the site too much.

There is no plan to change the "core" design of the site, news will always be on the front page, high enough to be visible without scrolling down, and always fully expanded without the need to click to see the entire post.


2. Premium
I'm not going to bullshit you, premium might happen but it's really not a top priority for the moment. I would hardly call it premium, more like "Donator/Sponsor" for people who would like to help, I would also like to explore new features through that like user generated blogs or user groups on forums, etc ... But really, I don't see it happening in 2010.

If I ever add a Premium feature to the site, it will be because it can bring something more without penalizing people who don't want to pay, it won't be just because I'm jealous of Ghostcrawler and want to buy a bigger yacht than his. If something is free today, it will stay free. It's that simple.

Doesn't sound attractive or well-thought? Good, that's because we have no immediate plan to do that. Exactly my point.


3. Control over the site
I still take 99% of the decisions on the site, MMO-Champion is the biggest WoW news site out there and it means that the people I now work with know I'm not stupid when it comes to WoW websites. You don't just buy a site that works just fine with a plan to change everything, it's not worth the hassle, the only major change we could do to boost the traffic is to offer Night Elf porn to the users, and I was told I can't do that.


4. Current plans with the site
A lot of people are scared of the future, I'll try to layout the current plan for the next months.
  • Reactivate the search function.
  • Stabilize the site and make sure we stay online on patch days.
  • Clean up the forums, add a moderator application form to the site, recruit more moderators and open a couple of extra forums.
  • Redesign slightly and improve the Blue Tracker. (Search Function, etc ...)
  • Redesign the site to make it good looking, see 1. Redesign
  • Stronger support on all the tools I use to work on news each day, you have no idea how fucked up some of them are. I can't really post all the super secret stuff here but I can assure you that the sale will be a huge relief for me on that point.
  • Possibly go full-scale with db.mmo-champion.com because I'm pretty sure you're all bored of the item pages with just a tooltip and no drop location or screenshot. (But we still have to decide that)

If everything goes well, I will end up having a lot more time to work on news posts and the site will only get better, I think some people just underestimate the technical shitstorm behind each Beta patch or every single news. Having the backup of a WoW-focused company with tons of WoW-focused developers is a pretty huge thing for me.

If you remember the last beta patch, there wasn't anything on the front page for 10 hours. That's the time I currently spend on tech stuff that I could spend on pretty screenshots of mechanic bunnies.
This article was originally published in forum thread: MMO-Champion acquired by Curse started by Boubouille View original post
Comments 591 Comments
  1. Ken_Silver's Avatar
    I just signed up to MMO-Champ and the place gets sold. LOL.

    No matter. Congrats to Boub for the new job. At the least, now you get paid for doing this stuff for us.

    I don't know about the "horrors" of Curse.com, but I'll end up believing them when I see them.
  1. Kaneiac's Avatar
    Yeah, I understand the benefits for you and the site in general, you SERIOUSLY deserve it.

    But really?

    Curse?

    You better not let them put a bunch of bullshit on the site.

    As soon as they took over WoR, I switched to here thanks to the fact it was fucking slow as hell.
  1. Noomz's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by wasniahC View Post
    You have sold your soul, Boubouille. YOUR SOUL.
    If I see any "premium" shit up here I'm going to be damn pissed, as will many others, though I'm fairly confident you won't let that happen

    I share this concern.

    I don't want Curse to infiltrate mmo-champ too much, or this will be a Real ID rebellion all over.

    I will pass final judgement when these changes they have in mind will be announced to us. But I don't like this.
  1. Nangz's Avatar
    I'm sad with this change..... no more live stream of MLG wow 3s tournaments.
  1. Gerend's Avatar
    Brb making worldofraids my home page =(
  1. Kabasue's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Direshadow View Post
    You got acquired by the same people who were accused of gold selling and stealing accounts through malicious software?

    Grats... I guess...
    just quoteing this for no apperent reason, don't ban me.
  1. phenom568's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Katarinae View Post
    I'm going to be pissed if Curse starts trying to make MMO part of their "premium" service.
    As long as i dont have to sift through spamming of addons or links everywhere to curse.com, and of course any kind of paid service Im fine with this. Grats to boub capitalisim is still alive

    For the record i dont trust curse
  1. drsjohnny's Avatar
    hmm some interesting news indeed this be fun
  1. Simca's Avatar
    In this thread, people with no idea how the Curse Client works accuse it of containing malware.

    At least my faith in humanity is intact. Oh, wait.
  1. Trajer's Avatar
    Does this mean you're filthy rich? Can I borrow 30 bucks for HON please!
  1. rhorle's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Gerend View Post
    Brb making worldofraids my home page =(
    That makes no sense. If you are leaving mmo-champion because they are now owned by curse, why would you change to another curse owned site? You would be better of going to a site like wowraid.com even if it isn't as on the pulse of info as mmo-champion or world of raids since wowraid.com isn't owned by curse as of yet.
  1. Squirreludecker's Avatar
    im all for it if it means no more streaming MLG video game crap being posted to the front page bugging to install an addon.
    We should all say goodbye to backwards chainsaw now, since curse premium links will be appearing. but its only $29 a year, so its not bad at all.
  1. EinherjarLucian's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Inhumane View Post
    I will not congratulate you, Boubouille.
    I don't care what kind of financial situation you were in, but submitting yourself to the Curse Empire is not the way to go.
    If your visitors wanted to be apart of a Curse community, they would be visiting World of Raids.

    This will not end well for you Boubouille, this will undoubtedly change MMO-Champion for the worse.
    Way to be unsupportive. Boubouille has been loyal to his readers through a lot of ups and downs, so I really doubt he'd go with this change if he wasn't sure that this was a positive thing. I for one hope he (or MLG or both) got a lot of money for this sale.
  1. Simca's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by plaits View Post
    Accusation != proof.

    Curse has never sold gold. Curse has never "stolen accounts" with "malicious software".

    Fake Curse clients have circulated around, but they're fakes used by hackers to phish.

    Ads on Curse have sometimes maliciously taken advantage of Flash vulnerabilities, but that isn't Curse's fault and nor is it something that is a unique problem for Curse, it can happen on any site.

    Check your facts please!
    Oh wow, somebody with a brain.

    Your faith in humanity has increased by 1.
  1. Ultima's Avatar
    My salary has now been doubled thanks to Curse.

    My approval of this is in no way biased.
  1. Acaleira's Avatar
    ewww gnomes!
  1. isendims's Avatar
    Well.... this sucks.. i hate curse
  1. Xaragoth's Avatar
    Curse? Really? Oh god, no -_-

    As soon as I'm seeing some kind of "Premium Service" bullshit, I'm outta here.

    Lets just hope Bibi can beat stupid ideas out of the head of his new boss.
  1. carlos5577's Avatar
    Alot of you say you hate curse but I bet at the same time you go over there to download the addons lol
  1. Winfernal's Avatar
    I love both Curse Gaming and MMO Champion. The merge is fine by me

    Congratulations

    EDIT:

    Premium services can *ahem* fuck off.

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