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MMORPG.com Newsletter Issue 39, August 12th, 2006
In the News Visit Library
BioWare announced this week that they have selected HeroEngine for their unannounced MMORPG project. Developer Simutronics created the HeroEngine for their MMORPG Hero's Journey. BioWare is the first company outside the St. Louis developer known to have picked up these tools, which were pushed heavily at GDC last year.

Read the news item here.

On August 8th, MMORPG.com added 2Moons to our games list. This new project from Acclaim and legendary developer David Perry joined the list along with an audio and print article. 2Moons promises a free advertising-based revenue model and violent, adult gameplay.

Get the news here, then check out the article here or the audio interview here.

August 11th marked another milestone for SOE’s popular MMORPG, EverQuest II. Update #26 and its many features and changes serve as a prelude to the release of the game’s third and latest expansion, Echoes of Faydwer. SOE was kind enough to share a full detailed list of the update’s features: Maps, PvP, Quests, Items, etc.

You can read about it here.

MMORPG.com Reviews More Reviews

Guild Wars: Library Review

Guild Wars is a constantly-growing franchise for ArenaNet and NCsoft. With one sequel released and one in development (Factions and Nightfall respectively), the series shows no signs of slowing down.

The popularity of Guild Wars can be traced back to a number of factors, not the least of which being that they offered a quality MMORPG experience without the industry-standard monthly fee. While detractors of the game are quick to point out the highly instanced nature of the game, the game has nonetheless become a best-seller.

Back in June of 2005, David Souza sat down and penned a review of the original game. Souza ranked the game at 8.1, that’s two tenths lower than our current user rating which stands at 8.3.

Below, find a few excerpts from Souza’s review:

  • While the environment for roleplaying between characters is somewhat limited the storyline is the most in-depth and immersive I’ve encountered in an MMO.
  • Character customization is very limited, and this is one of my few gripes with the game.
  • The combat in Guild Wars starts out somewhat pedestrian, as many games do, but this changes at a steady pace as the game progresses forward and a character becomes more powerful and gains access to more skills, gear and attribute points.
  • Guild Wars rewards players who apply the right ability at the right time.
  • The party system in Guild Wars is a prime example of the best the game has to offer.
  • In Guild Wars quests are the bread and butter of the game.
  • In the end Guild Wars is one of the best games, MMO or otherwise, to hit the shelves in a long while. It provides gripping combat, artfully told story and brilliant visuals as only a top notch contender can do.

Souza scored Guild Wars the highest in the categories of Performance (9), Value (9) and Graphics (9) while taking a hit in the lowest-scoring category, Community (6).

You can Souza's review, here.

On-Site. Visit Boards

Podcast and Debate

This week, Garrett Fuller and Jon Wood return to discuss the cancellation of E3 and the effect that it is going to have on the gaming industry. The pair also talk about BioWare and their decision to license the Hero Engine from Simutronics. Finally, for the first time, Jon and Garrett answer a few pieces of listener mail.

Listen to the Podcast here.

Saturday marked the continuance of MMORPG.com’s Saturday Debate feature. Every Saturday, two or more MMORPG writers come together to engage in a friendly debate about one of the many pressing issues in the MMORPG industry today. This week’s debate sees Kevin Tierney face off with Carolyn Koh in a debate about power leveling services.

Read the debate here

Game of the Week

Game of the week

This week’s Game of the Week debuted on the MMORPG.com games list this Tuesday. 2Moons is directed by David Perry, whose game credits range from Earthworm Jim to Enter the Matrix.

Built off the Asian MMORPG Dekaron, 2Moons promises to be the most violent MMORPG ever made. In our exclusive interview, Perry noted that the title will carry an “M” rating.

Violence isn’t this game’s only claim to fame. Publisher Acclaim has created a unique business model for the product. Rather than paying a monthly fee, the game will be supported entirely on advertising revenue. What's more, these advertisements are entirely optional for the user. Players can turn them off. However, those that do leave them on receive gameplay bonuses.

Visit the game's website here.

Read our first interview with David Perry here.

Find our Podcast Interview here.

More Games
The Week That Was
7 Monday
Interview: Matt Firor
8 Tuesday
2Moons: Interview
9 Wednesday
Lineage II: Interview
10 Thursday
9Dragons: Dev Journal
11 Friday
Pirates of the Burning Sea: Screens
12 Saturday
Debate: Power Leveling Services
6 Sunday

Greetings All!

What’s all the fuss about keeping video games out of the hands of kids? It seems like this should be a no-brainer in terms of what needs to be done, and quite frankly, banning violent games isn’t going to help much when it comes to stemming the tide of youth violence.

We have a perfectly good rating system in place for games that should serve to inform parents as to whether or not they should be buying the game for their child. The problem doesn’t lie with sneaky kids, or with crooked game store employees. Instead, it lies in the fact that many parents are either unaware of or unfamiliar with the rating system as it exists or even more disturbingly, what their children are doing. In my opinion, if we educate the parents as to how the system works, we could make this complex problem rather simple.

/rant off.

- Jon "Stradden" Wood, News Editor

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