This is a little “side project” of WAAAGH! to keep track of momentous dates in WAR history (not the history inside the game, the history OF the game), particularly for those in the future who want to look back on it all.
Note: Because this timeline is incomplete and subject to errors, please help out by contributing (via comments) any corrections or additional dates. Please include links to sources as well. Thanks!
1983: Warhammer Fantasy Battle is created by Games Workshop.
1995: Mythic Entertainment is formed, which will later develop and release Dark Age of Camelot (2001) and Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning (2008), as well as developing the defunct Imperator Online (2005).
2000: Climax eyes the Warhammer IP for a possible MMO project.
2001: Scott “Lum the Mad” Jennings is hired to work at Mythic as a database programmer.
2001?: Climax aquires the Warhammer fantasy license from Games Workshop, starts work on Warhammer Online.
2002: Climax partners up with GW and publisher SEGA to form “Warhammer Online Ltd.”
March 2003: TA Associates invest $32 million in Mythic, the largest investment in an independent game developer to that date.
May 2003: At E3, Warhammer Online is shown to great fanfare.
May 25, 2004: Mythic sues Microsoft over the name “Mythica” and wins a settlement.
May 2004: Climax struggles to come up with a decent E3 demo, a sign the development team was struggling.
June 2004: Climax announces that due to funding issues, they are ceasing work on Warhammer Online.
May 18, 2005: Mythic acquires the Warhammer license, begins production on Warhammer: Age of Reckoning.
February 17, 2006: Scott “Lum the Mad” Jennings leaves Mythic.
March 16, 2006: Mythic formally announces Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning (WAR). First announced release window: Q3 2007.
May 2006: Mythic showcases WAR at E3, nets seven awards (including “Best of Show”).
June 20, 2006: Electronic Arts buys Mythic Entertainment, which becomes EA Mythic.
April 2007: Guilds are encouraged to sign up for the upcoming guild beta.
April 27, 2007: First delay announced. New release date is put at “Q1 2008”.
May 2007: War-Europe (dot com) goes live.
May 1, 2007: Sanya Thomas, director of community relations, parts with Mythic.
May 2007: WAR at E3 garners another six awards, including “Best of Show” and “Most Anticipated”.
May 31, 2007: The closed beta is announced (“Beta One”) and signups are opened.
June 13, 2007: Over 200,000 people sign up for the beta in the first ten days.
July 23, 2007: Beta sign-ups cross 300,000.
August 22, 2007: EA enters into a partnership with GOA to publish and run WAR in Europe. High Elves and Dark Elves are revealed.
September 5, 2007: Beta signups cross the 400,000 threshold for WAR.
October 10, 2007: Beta 1 is taken down for two months to return to the alpha stage.
December 2007: The closed beta revs back up.
January 18, 2008: WAR wins the “When It’s Done” Award from GameSpy.
January 31, 2008: EA enters into an agreement to publish WAR in Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau.
February 2008: Beta 2 begins.
February 6, 2008: Warhammer will be published in Taiwan by GigaMedia.
March 26, 2008: The WAR Collector’s Edition is announced and goes on sale across the world. Second delay announced. New release window is put at “Fall 2008”.
April 23, 2008: The WAR CE sells out in Germany.
May 15, 2008: Mythic announces that there will be Australian (Oceanic) servers for WAR, and that WAR will ship simultaneously in North America, Europe, Australia and New Zealand.
May 30, 2008: Warhammer’s final class is revealed — the High Elf White Lion. The crafting system is also unveiled.
June 15, 2008: Mythic admits that they’re already in pre-production for the expansion pack.
June 2008: The closed beta ends its second phase and preps for “Beta 3”.
June 30, 2008: June newsletter — guild beta, Bastion Stairs dungeon, guild features.
July 2, 2008: WAR is announced to be coming to Russia in January 2009.
July 3, 2008: The beta ticker crosses 750,000 beta signups.
July 10, 2008: Mark Jacobs announces that they are changing the name of the company back to Mythic Entertainment (although still under the EA umbrella).
July 11, 2008: The Guild Beta begins (Beta 3). Four capital cities and four classes are announced as being cut from the launch (to be added back later).
July 15-17, 2008: EA and Mythic appear at E3, the “Open Grouping” system is announced. WAR is gets five awards (including “Most Anticipated”, “Best of E3: PC”).
July 30, 2008: Warhammer’s System Requirements are revealed. Road to War, a marketing web browser game promoting WAR, is released.
August 6, 2008: Launch date is announced — September 18, 2008 — as well as pricing options (which turn out to be standard for the current industry).
August 19, 2008: The Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) is lifted; beta players may freely share their in-game experiences.
August 22-25, 2008: Preview Weekend event – closed beta testers, CE pre-orders and some SE pre-orders are invited to test the beta client. 50,000-100,000 new players try out the game.
August 26, 2008: Warhammer Online officially goes “gold”, and the product is assembled to be shipped to store shelves.
September 5, 2008: Preview Weekend+ begins, and patch 4.1 (which includes personal vaults, guild vaults and the auction house) is released.
September 7, 2008: The open beta begins in NA and EU. Mark Jacobs reports 47,000 concurrent users in NA alone. Meanwhile, GOA drops the ball and many of the 200,000 EU players are left unable to register or log in.
September 11, 2008: Patch 4.1.1 – Performance tweaks, Open Server ruleset change to allow players to fight one tier below them, RvR itemization, crafting update, help interface.
September 14, 2008: Head start for folks who pre-ordered the Collector’s Edition.
September 16, 2008: Head start for folks who pre-ordered the Standard Edition.
September 18, 2008: Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning launches!
September 20, 2008: The first character hits rank 40 on Skull Throne (US).
September 26, 2008: Warhammer gains 500,000 players in its first week.
September 30, 2008: Due to high player demand, Mythic implements cross-pairing queuing for scenarios.
October 1, 2008: Game Update 1.0.1 (UI improvements, autoloot, pet fixes, tab-targeting). The first city siege occurs against Altdorf on Karak Eight Peaks (EU).
October 9, 2008: Game Update 1.0.2 (Join All scenario button, faction underpopulation incentive bonus, chat window fixes, gold spammer attack)
October 10, 2008: Mythic announces that WAR has over 750,000 subscribers.
October 12, 2008: The first legitimate city siege sees Destruction capturing Altdorf on the Averheim server (US)
October 15, 2008: Game Update 1.0.3 (Regional chat, new mail icon, /rg command, apothecary/cultivation changes, open world RvR updates)
October 29, 2008: Game Update 1.0.4 (Guild teleport scrolls, city capture changes, pet pathing) Witching Night, WAR’s first live event, begins.
November 2, 2008: Witching Night ends.