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Final Fantasy XI : Developer Roundtable Q&A, Part Three

Posted Dec 23, 2008 by Jon Wood's Carolyn Koh presents this first part of a developer roundtable interview that she conducted while attending the recent Fan Festival. Today, we present Part Three, she tackles Game Systems & World Questions

This Developer Roundtable Q&A report combines a group session as well as exchanges I had with members of the media from other groups and a public Q&A session. Developers in attendance:

* Final Fantasy Team – Producer
* Kouichi Ogawa – Director
* Akihiko Matsui – Battle Director
* Yoji Fujito – Planner
* Mizuki Ito – Planner
* Mitsutoshi Gondai – Planner
* Sage Sundi – Global Onine Producer (Community)

Read the Developer Roundtable Q&A, Part Three

Warhammer Online : Recruit-A-Friend Program

Posted Dec 22, 2008 by Keith Cross

Mythic Entertainment has announced a Recruit-A-Friend program for Warhammer Online where players can earn game time by bringing a friend into the fold.

Recruit-A-Friend To Join the Armies of WAR

The Realm War continues to rage and the armies of Order and Destruction are always on the lookout for new recruits. Do you know a brave warrior that could bolster the ranks? You could earn 30 days of free game time when you recruit family and friends to join the battle in Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning!

Here’s how it works:

* When you become a paying subscriber to Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning, you’ll receive 3 recruitment notices to share with friends or family. For each month you continue to subscribe, you’ll receive another recruitment notice (for a maximum of 6 at any time).
* Send a recruitment email to a friend or family member from the Account Center. This will allow your recruit to create a trial account for seven days of free play. Unused referrals expire after 30 days and will revert back to your pool of available referrals.
* When your recruit becomes a paying subscriber to WAR, you will receive a credit for 30 days of free game time. Stay tuned for more exciting recruitment rewards in the future!

Read more here.

Spellborn : The Consanguineous Vaults

Posted Dec 22, 2008 by Keith Cross

The folks at The Chronicles of Spellborn have posted a look at the Consanguineous Vaults, a series of instances in the game.

The Chronicles of Spellborn offers group content, but it also possible for the players to experience instances on their own.

One of these challenges is waiting on the fragment of The Athenaeum located in the tempestuous Deadspell Storm. Accessible at level 10 after players have successfully left the starting regions behind, one of their tasks will be to go to the Athenaeum to experience the unique solo instances available in the massive dungeon.

These instances are called the Consanguineous Vaults are ruled by the Veridan faction, the followers of the Oracle and its teachings.

The first Vault, called Vault of Foes, features enemies of ancient times, prisoner from the Undying Ice. After interacting with an NPC telling more about the purpose of the Vault and the lore behind the encounter, players will thaw the foes from the Ice and use their skills to defeat them.

Read more here.

Tales of Pirates : Christmas Events

Posted Dec 22, 2008 by Keith Cross

IGG has announced a series of Christmas events to be held in Tales of Pirates.

The Christmas is quickly approaching as well as the coming of New Year, so Tales of Pirates ( will be providing a grand Christmas Carnival to give something back to their warmhearted players.

Event I: Daily Christmas Fun

Marriam, the Innkeeper in Argent City, has a flourishing business during the holiday season. She is busy preparing gifts for guests, but she is all alone in the inn. Players who can help her to collect the required materials will obtain generous rewards, 100,000 gold and 2 Level 3 Sand Bags!

Event II: Summoning Santa

This being season of giving, Wynne at Icicle Castle has kept herself busy delivering Christmas presents for Santa Claus, but she’s been so busy that she forgot to set one aside for herself. She is a girl as kind as Santa Claus who always brings us joy and happiness. Players, who want to help her, can go to find Wynne at Icicle Castle and take the quest. You will obtain 8000 EXP and a Santa Clause summoning scroll as rewards.

Event III: Christmas Wishing Tree

It is said that Adam and Eve erected a beautiful tree in the Eden long time ago. The tree has a magic that when kind people make a wish under the tree, their wishes may come true. It only appears at Christmas holiday every year. If you come across the magic tree, don’t miss your chance to make a wish for yourself!

Players can buy the Christmas Greeting Card in the Item Mall and go to find NPC at Deep Blue (1220, 550) to take the quest. Click the Christmas tree to send out the wishes in the system announcements, also they will see the Xmas Carnival Fireworks above the tree. Players who are Level 40+ will also have a chance to choose one wish from among the wish list.

Read more here.

Runescape : Avoiding Scammers

Posted Dec 22, 2008 by Jon Wood Runescape Correspondent Fasail Baig has written this informative piece letting the game's players know how to avoid being the victim of a scam in-game.

Do you ever get the feeling that you are being cheated out of your money? Have you ever thought a deal was too good to be true? If you have, it probably is. Scamming is a big problem in the Runescape world. Greedy and lazy players will usually do anything to get money without actually doing any work. Don't be fooled by high levels acting nice. For almost all of us we have been scammed at least once, and if you haven't been yet - give it time. This guide will tell you how to avoid some of the common Runescape scams. First off, never rush trades. Scammers will always try to rush through the trading screens so that an inexperienced player will miss some very important points. Take your time check both screens. Whenever you make a trade for gold, always keep a few things in mind. When you sell something for, let's say 20k, which is 20,000gp it should say 20k as the trade window (20,000 gold). What a lot of people will do is put up 1000k which is a million GP then they will take off 900k. This makes 100k look like 1000k, now if you were rushing through trade screens you might overlook the missing zero. Another thing to look for is Runescape players trying to scam you by adding a 4 at the end of the number which looks almost like k. This is not used very much anymore, but again, if you were rushing through your trade you might miss it and get scammed. Now just remember to never rush through trade screens.

Read Avoiding Scammers

Tabula Rasa : TR Now Free to Play

Posted Dec 22, 2008 by Keith Cross

NCsoft has announced that Tabula Rasa has now gone free to play, and they have released a series of new content in the game.

We've released all new content - Earth, PvP Wargames, Epic Caves of Donn and more, and we want to remind you that Tabula Rasa is free to play, right now!

If you're a former player looking to return and check out the new content, just log into your PlayNC master account at and visit Account Management to reactivate your account. It's as easy as clicking a button!

If you're a new player who has never tried Tabula Rasa, you can get a Tabula Rasa Serial Code by visiting our Support site and submitting a request for a new code. Use that code at to create a new account!
You'll need to activate your new account with a credit card number, but don't worry - that's just so we know who you are. We will not charge your card for Tabula Rasa gameplay.

Read more here.

EVE Online : Starbase Exploit Update

Posted Dec 22, 2008 by Keith Cross

CCP has posted an update to their investigation into the recently discovered starbase exploitin EVE Online, saying they have confirmed that the banned players have been using this bug since at least January of this year, and that no links have been found to any CCP staff or members of the CSM. The investigation is ongoing and CCP says it may be several weeks before it is resolved.

1. CCP has confirmed that this bug has been exploitable since February 2007. Changes to the Starbases code from launch until February 2007 are minimal and very unlikely to have caused the bug. So at this point we are working on the assumption that this bug has been exploitable since the release of player owned structures on November 24th, 2004. We will therefore focus solely on looking at Starbases data in order to determine who has been using this exploit, and for how long.

2. CCP has been able to restore older databases that show us that the bug has been exploited since at least January this year, but at a lower scale than in the last few months. The players involved then were the same ones that we found and banned recently. We are now working on restoring data from 2006 which will take us several days. It is uncertain if we will be able to have answers on that before holiday vacations.

3. CCP has been able to access data from our old petition system. We have been unable to confirm that a petition was filed in 2004, 2005 or 2006 pointing out this bug with Starbases. We urge anyone with information on who and when a petition on this issue was filed to contact us directly through the petition system under the Exploit Category. Alternatively, an email sent to with details on the matter would be much appreciated.

4. The full investigation will take several weeks. CCP will be in direct contact with the CSM to discuss this issue and we will provide information to the community as it becomes available.

5. We have done a thorough investigation on our staff members and CSM members and found no links to this exploit.

6. Our actions so far have included the eradication of 178 starbases that were exploiting this issue. Some had multiple reactors running in the bugged state. We have also banned all those we have found directly involved and all accounts we have found to be connected to those players. The investigation is still under way and will take a while to conclude.

Read more here.

DOFUS : Tailoring Guide

Posted Dec 22, 2008 by Jon Wood Dofus Correspondent nathan Swanson writes this guide to the tailoring craft in Ankama's Dofus.

Before we begin, I would like to first state that by becoming a tailor, you are starting down a long, long, long road. The tailor profession is considered by many to be the hardest (but most profitable) profession in the game. In other words, the light at the end of this tunnel will be very bright, but the time it takes to get there will be very long, and the amount of Kamas that you invest … well, you probably don’t want to know.

Secondly, if you are f2p (free-to-play) and plan to stay that way, don’t even bother. You really don’t make any money as a tailor until level 40, and it’s a HUGE Kamas investment until then – much more than what a f2p can bring in. In mean, you can’t even get a tailor manual unless a p2p (pay-to-play) gets one for you – small hint there.

Read the Tailoring Guide

Final Fantasy XI : Developer Roundtable Q&A, Part Two

Posted Dec 22, 2008 by Jon Wood's Carolyn Koh presents this first part of a developer roundtable interview that she conducted while attending the recent Fan Festival. Today, we present Part Two, she tackles Job Specific Questions and Items, Spells and the like.

Final Fantasy XI Screenshot

This Developer Roundtable Q&A report combines a group session as well as exchanges I had with members of the media from other groups and a public Q&A session. Developers in attendance:

  • Final Fantasy Team – Producer
  • Kouichi Ogawa – Director
  • Akihiko Matsui – Battle Director
  • Yoji Fujito – Planner
  • Mizuki Ito – Planner
  • Mitsutoshi Gondai – Planner
  • Sage Sundi – Global Onine Producer (Community)

Read Developer Roundtable Q&A, Part Two

Runescape : Avoiding and Resolving Account Issues

Posted Dec 19, 2008 by Jon Wood Correspondent Faisal Baig writes this article on avoiding and dealing with account disputes in Jagex's MMORPG, Runescape

We’ve all been here before, or will be here eventually. There comes a time in most players’ lives, that they receive a black mark, a mute, or even a permanent ban. While this may be the player’s fault, or someone else on the character, Jagex needs to know. This simple guide goes through the different scenarios of a ban, and how to appeal Jagex’s descisions. With it, you will hopefully be able to recover your account from sure doom and be able to play like a good citizen once again. It shall cover all cases of appealing bans, from apology to evidence.

Read Avoiding and Resolving Account Issues

World of Warcraft : Mountains-o-Mounts

Posted Dec 19, 2008 by Jon Wood World of Warcraft Correspondent Robert Duckworth writes this informative article on post- Wrath of the Lich King mount collecting in Blizzard's hit MMO.

If you haven't heard it yet, here's some news. Your Albino Drake? Not so special anymore. Sure it was fun while it lasted, but it was never really that rare of a special mount. The Proto-drake mounts are harder to come by. Not to mention those drop only mounts that are based completely on luck. So what is the rarest of the rare? Yep, a new mount. Dragonhawk. It appears that two colors will be available, red and blue. There's a possibility that they are color coordinated towards faction, but hopefully they aren't. The Dragonhawk mounts look extremely unique, there's no other mount type like it in the game.

Read Mountains-o-Mounts

Age of Conan : Christmas Gift

Posted Dec 19, 2008 by Keith Cross

Funcom has announced that Age of Conan players will each receive a Christmas gift of a Kosalan talisman of clarity which boosts a character's stamina and mana reserves, and also increase the regeneration rate of those attributes.

To celebrate the season, we are happy to unveil that as of today all active accounts have been given a never before seen virtual item: The Kosalan talisman of clarity.

In addition to both boosting both the stamina and mana reserves of its wearer, the talisman also features strong regeneration of both these values. Although better items are found deeper inside the game, this item is great for any new characters.

This talisman is available to all your characters, both existing and future. To retrieve your holiday gift in-game, simply type “/claim” and it’s all yours!

Read more here.

Warhammer Online : Crashes Decreased, Leveling Increased

Posted Dec 19, 2008 by Keith Cross

Mark Jacobs has sent out a letter to the Warhammer Online community informing them of recent efforts to reduce crashes, and announcing that for the next few weeks characters will be able to level 10 to 20 percent faster as a holiday bonus.

As we head into the holiday season, here’s a quick update on where we stand plus a little bit of holiday cheer.

As the community knows, our engineering team has been focusing on a number of key issues that have been affecting WAR over the last few weeks. These issues include crashes-to-desktop (CTDs), fortress crashes, and lockup issues when exiting scenarios and at certain loading screens. I’ve got some great news to report on all of these fronts. Over the last few weeks, we’ve gone a bit overboard in the number of patches that we have been making to both the client and servers in order to resolve these issues quickly, especially before the end of the year. Sometimes we have announced these patches, but sometimes these patches were done quietly while we tested out some of them on individual servers. The results of these efforts by the team and these patches have been quite wonderful and I’m happy to be able to talk about them now.

Our client crashes (CTDs), are now at their lowest point at any time during development or since we’ve gone LIVE. Over the last couple of weeks, we cut the number of CTDs down by 75% across all players in North America. In terms of fortress takes and their affect on server stability, we have had only one server that has crashed due to a fortress take in North America since Monday (and that was on a server that had the older code). While this is not a guarantee that we have solved all the issues, the fact is that the fixes we have made have resulted in numerous fortress assaults and lots of exciting open RvR action. Finally, in terms of client lockups, we have fixed the problems that came about after the 1.1 patch and we will continue to work on this issue with additional patches today and tomorrow. While I know that this has resulted in a bit more patching during the week than is usual for us, the results have been well worth it. All of these improvements have and/or are being sent to our partner GOA for rapid deployment for our European players.

Read more here.

General : Aurora Blade: Newbie Fund, Holiday Event

Posted Dec 19, 2008 by Keith Cross

IGG has announced two new events in their new browser based MMO, Aurora Blade.

Aurora Blade ( is like a friendly, harmonious family, a close knit community of dedicated players. In order to help novice level up fast, the Aurora Blade team is preparing to release the Aurora Newbie Fund! From December 18th to December 31st, all players have a chance to obtain part of the Newbie Fund if they create a new character and work hard to reach Level 10 in the game.

The Newbie Fund contains 1 Gold Coin (1 Gold Coin is equal to 100 Silver Coins and 1 Silver Coin is equal to 100 Copper Coins) and a Big Bag from the Aurora Blade Item Mall. With the help of the Newbie Fund, players can buy skill scrolls to enhance their abilities and enlarge the capacity of their bags (in order to hold more items).

What’s more, Santa Claus in Aurora Blade is ready with his sleigh for his annual gift giving flights! Just like in the past, Santa silently climbs into houses through the chimney at night, putting gifts into our Christmas Stockings and under the tree. Players have a chance to obtain a Christmas stocking by defeating monsters! The event period lasts from Dec 21st till Dec 31st. Only during this event period can players obtain Christmas stockings from any monsters they defeat. These can be opened to obtain abundant rewards such as Rainbow Mood, Christmas Exp Ticket, Christmas Candy and Purple Stats Equipment.

Read more about the Newbie Fund and the Christmas Event.

EverQuest II : Holiday Fixes

Posted Dec 19, 2008 by Keith Cross

The folks at EverQuest II have posted a list of game improvements that they have made just in time for the holidays.

Because of all the great feedback that we’ve received from you, our community, the team has fixed some of the issues that you were most vocal about.

Quest Journal - Collection Quests

* The collections section of your quest journal can now be sorted based on the following:
o Ready to turn in status
o Name
o Level
o Category
o Progress
* Additionally your collection quest journal will no longer reset to the top of the page when you add a new item! It will now stay on the collection to which you are adding.

Roomier Harvesting Depots

* The harvesting depot capacity has been increased from 100 to 150! Your guild's crafters will now have more space!

Desert of Flames Drop Rates

* The drop rate for Master level spells in DoF has been slightly increased to be more in line with the drop rates in the rest of the game.

Read more here.

Star Trek Online : The Path to 2409: 2383

Posted Dec 19, 2008 by Keith Cross

Cryptic Studios continues to map out the future history of the Star Trek Universe, detailing the events of 2383 as they work their way up to 2409 when the story of Star Trek Online takes place.

Starfleet Intelligence continues to gather reports of unrest on Romulus. Praetor Tal’aura enacts food rationing and strict limits on replicator use on the homeworld, saying that the empire’s resources must be reserved to support the military’s campaign against Donatra and the breakaway Imperial Romulan State.

The shortages spark rioting in the capitol of Ki Baratan, and the struggle goes on for two days before the praetor orders troops to intervene. Observers on Romulus suggest that as many as 2,000 people could have died either in the initial riots or at the hands of Romulan troops.

The civil unrest and resistance from Romulan nobles strain Tal’aura’s command of the empire. She calls upon her allies in the Senate to help in stabilizing the government, and they respond by voting to expand the praetor’s powers, giving Tal’aura the power to grant or remove noble titles, which previously was a privilege that only the emperor enjoyed. She also is granted the ability to declare war without Senate approval.

Read more here.

CABAL Online : Lord of War Movie

Posted Dec 19, 2008 by Jon Wood

Lord of War Movie Check out this Cabal video featuring the latest update, Lord of War.

Watch the Lord of War Movie


CABAL Online : Christmas Video

Posted Dec 19, 2008 by Jon Wood

Christmas VideoThe folks from Cabal Online have provided us with this new video to spice up our holiday seasons.

Watch the video here


Pirates of the Burning Sea : Avatar Combat Revamp Screenshots

Posted Dec 19, 2008 by Jon Wood

The folks at Flying Lab Software have provided us with these seven avatar combat screenshots.

Earthrise Screenshot

Check out the Avatar Combat Revamp Screenshots

Pirates of the Burning Sea : Avatar Combat Revamp Interview

Posted Dec 19, 2008 by Jon Wood's Carolyn Koh recently visited Flying Lab Studios' new offices in Seattle to talk to the team about the upcoming Avatar Combat Revamp for their nautical MMORPG, Pirates of the Burning Sea.

The imminent launch of Pirates of the Burning Sea’s Avatar Combat Revamp seemed to me to be a good excuse to visit Flying Lab Software in their new digs in downtown Seattle. After a quick tour of the new offices with Community Manager Troy Hewitt and exchanging greetings with many familiar faces, I was seated in CEO Russell “Rusty” Williams’ corner office.

“You must be meeting goals,” I said to Rusty and Producer Misha Williams as I looked around the office. Rusty smiled and spread his hands. “What can I say? New digs, larger staff, new projects…” indeed, it speaks for itself.

“We’ve had wonderful retention numbers with the free trial,” he said. Pirates of the Burning Sea is Russell Williams’ first MMO and as such, some of the performance metrics expected of an MMOs of this scale are not familiar territory for him. “We asked SoE if we were doing alright and although I can’t mention numbers, it’s far better than SoE had expected.” The number of returning players was also far greater than expected.

Read the Avatar Combat Revamp Interview

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