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Issue 198, September 21, 2009
In the news
Flying Lab Software is expanding their studio and their MMO, Pirates of the Burning Sea. "Power and Prestige" is the name of their upcoming piratey expansion pack.

Read more here.
Bethesda wants the MMO rights to their own Fallout intellectual property and they're suing holders Interplay to get them back. Bethesda parent ZeniMax has opened their own MMO division headed by Mythic alum Matt Firor.

Read more here.
NCsoft has seen another MMO bite the dust. Dungeon Runners, the casual experiment from their old Austin studio will be entirely shut down at the end of the year. This is the third game NCsoft has recently shuttered from their North American operations.

Read more here.
Get more news on our site here!
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Stark Trek Online: Hands-On
Our own Carolyn Koh got to finally go where no MMO reporter had gone before (sorry, had to use that joke!) when she got some hands on time with Cryptic's version of Star Trek Online at PAX. A sample:

"The ability to manage your ship in such a manner brought an additional layer of strategy to an otherwise straight forward 3-D space-combat game. "You can micro-manage the game if you wish," explained Craig as he explained the controls and the UI. "There are pre-set power level bars for various distribution of the ship's power." We saw the Attack / Defense / Speed & Balanced presets that distributed power to shields, weapons or movement, and with clicks of the mouse on the UI representation of the ship and its shields, could divert power to shields that were taking a hammering. The UI even at this stage of design was intuitive and the controls easy to grasp and play, with WASD movement and hotbars."

You can read the full article here.

More features can be found on our site here.
Sanya Weathers Wraps Column
For the last five months, has been honored to host a weekly insider column from the former Director of Community Relations of Mythic Entertainment Sanya Weathers. Her "MMO Underbelly" gave fans an inside look at how the industry really works from someone who has been there.

Sadly, all good things must end and now Sanya has moved on to become the Community Manager for QuickHit Football, a start-up by former Turbine CEO Jeff Anderson. So, last Friday, she penned her final column and now we take a look back:

"By the time you read this, I will have been the Director of Community for a game called Quick Hit Football for a few weeks. It's pretty much everything I wanted to do professionally. It's a fun, addictive, casual, free to play, web-based MMO with no elves. (Don't get me wrong - RPGs are still my favorite thing to play, but if I'm ever going to be able to go back to fantasy games professionally, I need a break.) I've been doing stuff for them for a few months now, and I'm crazy about the game, and more importantly, the team behind the game. So when they made me the offer to go exclusive and full time, I grabbed it.

"But that means I've got to say goodbye to the full time column.

"So, what am I hoping you all will remember?"

Check out the full article here.

Visit our archives of her column here.
Pirates of the Burning Sea has been a quiet success since it launched in January 2008. Developer Flying Lab Software may not have made WoW money, but as time has passed, the game has developed a solid community and ensured its future.

With that in mind, they announced a brand new free download expansion last week: Power and Prestige.

This update focuses squarely on player government, something few - if any - MMOs have done very well. Players will be able to run for governor of a port and take on all the things that go right along with that fateful decision.

The update is true to its title, focusing solely on those elements. It comes after a long line of revamps and updates, including most recently an overhaul of their hand to hand combat system, which according to Russell Williams (CEO) has been well received.

The future remains bright for Flying Lab Software, they have a lot of things on the go, even beyond Pirates of the Burning Sea.

PotBS, was originally published under SOE's label, but has largely operated independently of the mega publisher since launch. The game features full land and sea exploration/combat, and a complex PvP system that lets people play as either Pirates, French, English or Spanish.

Learn more about Pirates of the Burning Seahere, or check out our game list here.
The Week that Was
Monday, September 14
Guild Wars 2: PAX Interview

Tuesday, September 15
Five Possible MMO Movies

Wednesday, September 16
DC Universe: AGDC Preview

Thursday, September 17
Star Trek Online: Hands-On Preview

Friday, September 18
Fallen Earth: Hands-On Preview
AGDC Coverage
Last week we took in AGDC and while we've shown off some things, check back all week for more, including exclusive interviews with the brains behind World of Warcraft.
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