The book moves logically through the life span of an MMO development project, beginning with the planning phase. Authors Hall and Novak explore the constraints that influence design decisions for online multiplayer games, and discuss methodologies for working within constraints to enhance players' experiences. Moving on to design and initial marketing, the book delves into such considerations as core mechanics, mechanical themes and social elements, tying the technical requirements into marketing considerations. Particularly insightful are the succeeding chapters dedicated to the pre- and post-launch phases of development, including the Alpha and Beta stages, as well as continuous content development throughout the life of the game.
Anyone aspiring to enter the world of MMO development can gain from reading Online Game Development. Since the book covers such a wide range of information, it is not intended to provide an exhaustive discussion of all topics. Rather, it gives you an idea of exactly what to focus on as you continue a quest for knowledge and mastery of the MMO development process.