the main thing that is "killing" JKO besides Raven's inability to properly finish/tweak the game is...
The game is perfectly acceptable as it is. 1.02 was superior to 1.04... POSSIBLY, but the fact remains that 1.04 is fairly bugless, easily playable and it's quite easy to dispatch other players with the whole range of weaponry.
The game has no depth because it is geared toward the same old DM, TDM, Dueling and has a very poor CTF model and that gets awfully boring after about 20 minutes even with the SW characters.
The game is the game. The game has more depth than Quake 3, but what more can you ask than that? Sounds to me like you wanted Star Wars Galaxies, not Jedi Outcast. Those of us who played JK1 in the olden days appreciate the subtle differences between Jedi Outcast and the rest of the FPS gaming crop. JO is superior for those who can appreciate its advantages. For those who can't, there are other games.
Add Raven's continual nerfing of the game which turns it into a one-stance/skill spam game (red stance) and this all adds up to a very boring and shallow experience.
In case you've forgotten, people... REAMS of people were whining and venting bile about how "Red stance is too powerf0l!!!111" back when 1.02 was the default. It wasn't true then, and it isn't true now. Show me a Jedi who can't change his stances, and I'll show you a grease stain on the floor.
when a game lacks depth and skill it loses players.
The game doesn't lack skill. At the beginning, there were a select few who could always triumph. Now, there are a select few who can always triumph. This is because they have innate skill, and have practiced to hone their skill. There is skill in spreading butter on toast.
There is skill involved in the most mundane of actions. The question isn't whether the game contains some sort of magic elixir to allow people to develop skills, the question is who is willing to PRACTICE to develop skills.
Most people who play Jedi Outcast play it because they want to bibble about waving their sabres and doing their own thing. They like the IDEA of JO.
I on the other hand, and others like me, like JO ITSELF. This means we become better at it than other people, who immediately accuse us of being "Ch33ting sp@mming hax0r aimb0t0rz!!!11" or something like that.
We like the game. They want to BE Jedi. That's why there are less people playing the game now than there were: Serious gamers have gone back to Quake 3 and UT because that's where the big contests are... And SW fanboy hobbyists have given up playing because they aren't willing to gain the skill to survive... yet they hate losing. That's why.
But the game is far from dead. People like me, who enjoy the game for what it is, still play.
What JKO needs in terms of its Mods is its version of Counter-Strike.
What did Counter-Strike ever do for Half-Life?
"Boosted sales, increased popularity" I hear you cry. WRONG. Counter-Strike improved the lot of two groups:
1. The Counter-Strike team, it made them famous and successful.
2. Sierra n' Valve. It sold more copies of Half-Life, making them money.
But is Half-Life ITSELF, its deathmatch, its game modes, more popular because of Counter-Strike? Not likely. Do people play Half-Life original deathmatch in big international tournaments? No. Do they play CS in big international tournaments? Yes.
Why? Because CS was so different. It was its OWN game. If a mod like that is released for Jedi Outcast, and becomes a big hit, what will that do for JO? Nothing. Sure, a lot of people will own the JO CD, and they may try it out even. But the mod, the "CS for JO" will be the real success. JO is what we play NOW. The CTF, the DM, the Duel. If a "CS for JO" is released, by definition, all that will survive of JO in it, is the engine.
Frankly I like JO. Doesn't sound to me as if you like JO. Sounds to me like you like the idea
of JO, or more specifically, your
idea of JO. And good luck to you, make your mod, realise your dream... but don't call it JO.
JO is what we play now. Is Pro-mod JO? Debatable. Would this "CS for JO" really be JO? No.
JO is alive and well... but if it dies, if it IS dying, there's NOTHING that can be done. More mods, more differences, more splits in the community... none of these things will save it. Actually, they'll damage it. Just sit back and enjoy JO while it lasts.
There are two defining characteristics that "successful" games possess in my view.
Games like UT, Quake 3 and HL TFC and CS fit these requirements BTW.
1. A large community. JO has a relatively small-to-medium community.
2. A thriving competitive scene. JO has no competitions going on to speak of anymore.
So JO isn't successful. Big deal! I like it anyway. Just because it's not the next Q3, doesn't mean it's dying. People still play JK1 for god's sake. JO will be around for ages, with more maps, more players, more SP missions and more mods... and more hare-brained schemes to "save" the game that's "obviously dying." Well who cares. I'm off to play it. That's my method of keeping it alive. Playing it.