Turbine's Dungeons and Dragons Online: Stormreach yesterday posted their Weekly Forum Roundup feature. The Roundup takes threads from the boards, and posts them on the website to help players stay current and up-to-date:
Every Tuesday we will highlight certain threads from our forums. They will be helpful, positive threads started by our team or by our community that we feel the players would benefit from reading.
For more on DDO, click here.
World of WarCraft has announced the availability of out-of-game items for their wildly popular MMORPG, World of WarCraft, the first are bronze figurines depicting every race and class in WoW. The second, is a map from the game. Side one is a map of Azeroth, side 2, gives different info:
The new World of Warcraft World Map from BradyGames is a perfect blend of form and function. Whether you put the detailed artwork on display or use it to make your way through Azeroth, this two-sided poster makes a great addition to your game room or World of Warcraft collection.
Side 1 shows a map of Azeroth, unfettered - with a clear view of the topography of the continents. Side 2 includes all flight paths, as well as labeled cities, dungeons, and regions. The full-color, large-format design fits standard 36" x 48" poster frames, and it ships rolled in a tube to prevent fold marks. This exclusive map is only available at BradyGames.com.
For more on WoW, click here.
Farlan, the publisher of the new MMORPG, Dark and Light, has announced how they will be handling events and quests for the game now that it has launched. They are telling us that "Every time they log on, DnL players will find changes and additions that keep the story fresh and exciting.”
Farlan Entertainment, publisher of Dark and Light, The Largest MMORPG You’ve Ever Seen!, today provides details on how quests and other daily events will be handled for players of this huge, imaginative and immersive fantasy game.
“Now that Dark and Light is launched and in full operation, players have the opportunity to explore, develop their characters, and engage in a variety of challenges,” said Frederic Caille, CEO of Farlan Entertainment. “Every time they log on, DnL players will find changes and additions that keep the story fresh and exciting.”
Upon the worldwide grand opening of the game on June 5th, players were greeted with a selection of 500 available quests upon which to embark. While most of these quests are relatively simple to complete, more complicated quests are being added on a regular basis—some with as many as 50 stages. These new and more complex challenges, guaranteed to add to the intricacy and intrigue of DnL, will require smart reflexes and quick minds. Some quests will depend on daily news that has been announced, or on in-game events. Many will directly impact the world of Ganareth and its inhabitants.
Moreover, several events will be available on a daily basis, in 5 languages. Some of these events will be announced, scheduled and located on the world map, while others will only be hinted at in the gazette. In all cases, entertainment is available to everyone, without distinction of character level, language or gaming preferences.
To learn about the latest developments, players will soon be able to read the Ganareth Gazette, Dark and Light’s daily online news publication. In addition to current news, the Ganareth Gazette will provide details about last-minute additions and even secret surprises!
Dark and Light’s events management and quests writing are handled by Alchemic Dream Inc., occidental leader in MMOG services.
For more on DnL, click here.
Eudemons Online has announced that they have opened a brand new server for our playing and enjoying needs. The server's name is NewYork, and it became available last night at 11:00 PDT:
We are excited to announce the opening of a new server: NewYork. This server will be available for playing on June 13, 2006 at 11:00 PM PDT.
We warmly welcome all newcomers and veterans to begin their journey in this fresh server. We hope you have a good time, and see you soon in game!
For more on Eudemons, click here.
The copmpany, Shattered Reality Interactive, has announced a rather innovative approach to taking a game from paper to reality. The game that they are making is called, Kaos War: Rise of the Fallen, and its development will be followed by a "reality-tv" style crew on games.net.
You can check out the website for this game, here.
The Daedalus Project, an interesting website that takes surveys of MMORPG players, and then compiles the statistics and creates stories, has released another new batch of information for our reading enjoyment. This time around, the info tells us about MMORPG player role-playing habits:
The Daedalus Project (http://www.nickyee.com/daedalus) is an ongoing online survey study of MMORPG players that has surveyed over 35,000 players. Some highlights of the current issue's findings:
Read up on this interesting project, here.
CCP Games, the company responsible for the popular sci-fi MMORPG, EVE Online, have announced that they have had an excellent turnour for the first day of their open beta phase in China.
EVE ONLINE'S OPEN BETA IN CHINA IS AN IMMEDIATE SUCCESS
Shanghai, China – June 13, 2006 – The first day of EVE Online’s open Beta in China resulted in a new world record for the number of simultaneous users playing in the same game world, as more than 30,000 users logged into the game server just hours after opening. CCP Games, an independent producer of massively multiplayer online games and producer of EVE Online, also announced that over 200,000 players from China registered for the game during the first day of the of the open Beta.
“It was quite amazing to see the population of EVE China exceed the population of Iceland in the second day of open Beta testing.” said Hilmar Veigar Pétursson, CEO of CCP Games. “EVE China has been an exciting collaboration project and continues to be so, as we continue to refine the experience to accommodate for the steep growth rate of both our English and Chinese worlds.”
Optic Communications—the licensing partner of CCP Games in China—is operating the fully localized cluster, which runs separately from the Western variant of EVE Online. CCP Games states that maintaining two independent clusters is necessary because of the unique operating environment in China and the steep growth trends of both gaming markets. EVE Online continues to maintain exceptional growth in the United States and Europe, where the combined regional demand forecasts emphasize the strategic need for cluster isolation.
“The enthusiastic response of the Chinese player community to EVE Online is rewarding,” said Kjartan Pierre Emilsson, Managing Director of CCP Asia. “We believe that our unique ‘one world’ design, great flexibility in character advancement, and social game play are a perfect fit for the highly dedicated and knowledgeable Chinese player base.”
For more on EVE Online, click here.
Codemasters, and RF Online has announced that the "spring cleaning" of their servers of cheaters and botters is underway, with an announced number of banned accounts at over 2060:
Within the last 24 hours we banned more than 500 additional accounts mainly involved in Botting.
The total number of botters are trial abusers banned in the last 20 days is above 2060, including several accounts of the ones utilizing the trial accounts for their "business".
Rest assured we just started the server spring cleaning...
For more on RF Online, click here.
Our friends over at SOE's EverQuest II have released a new Newsletter for the month of June. This newsletter includes informaiton on: Behind the Scenes, What's New?, E3, Community Corner, and more!
You can read the whole thing, here.
The Saga of Ryzom has relesed the newest and third Ryzom Ring teaser. You can get it from any of the sies below:
The third R² teaser is out today on the web! This time we let you live for an instant in the sweet atmosphere of the lakes to witness the creation of a truly bewitching place. Big thanks to Sylk and Istari for this teaser. :)
TVG (UK site)
Gamona (German site)
Jeuxvideo.com (French site)
The previous teasers can be found here.
For more on The Saga of Ryzom, click here.
Lots going on over at the official website for Horizons. First, they're asking for contributions to the Confectioner Revamp, they also answer some questions on Settlements, and finally, they talk about a recent update to Blight. We can't give it all to you, but you can click hte link below for the whole scoop:
Read it all, here.
Mythic's Dark Age of Camelot is advertising two new jobs in their CS department. They have also announced a new event, or at least the second time around on an old event, as PWN Missy 2 is announced:
Got leet CS skills? Do you spend a lot of time playing Camelot? Would you like to wear jeans to work? We've got two available jobs in the CS Pit: http://www.mythicentertainment.com/jobs/csreps7-30-04.html
Just a side note - the jobs are open because their former occupants have been promoted to the development team. There are many ways into game design and development, and working your way up from the CS team is one of the oldest and best methods of getting your foot in the door.
For more DAoC, click here.
Pirates of the Burning Sea have released another new Dev Log. This one comes from Woodrodius, and is a change of pace as he relays a real-life tale of a near-death experience. As usual, it's too long to print here. Follow the link below for the whole thing:
Upping the Steaks!
Webster defines the word steak as “a slice of meat cut from a fleshy part of a beef carcass”. Up until 6/6/06, I defined steak in that exact manner. However, the events of that day have eternally changed the way I think about this delicious, yet deadly, yet delicious morsel, and I now realize that this meal needs to be given the same respect we grant locomotives, enraged panthers, and anything else that can snuff our life out in instant.
We all love steak. (Except Mat the animator, whose body can only process intravenously-delivered shots of V8.) And, if you’re anything like me, you want to eat as much steak as you can in as little time as possible. In the fast paced world of game development, every second counts, and maintaining steak chunk sizes just isn’t on the schedule. Did I mention I’m a game developer? I make ship environments and I’ve just started to create avatar towns as well. You can ask me about that later. Anyways, being a lover of steak, I naturally accepted when I was mysteriously invited along with some recent interns to a fancy dinner at one of Seattle’s finer steakhouses. Our host and CEO, Rusty is somewhat of a restaurant connoisseur, so wherever he was taking us was bound to be a pleasant break from boiling hot dogs in my apartment. As is customary with these intern dinners, our art director Bruce Sharp, (That’s BSharp to you forumonauts) was also to attend. This was extremely fortunate for your friend and narrator, as his presence and actions were to save my life that night.
Read it all, here.
Guild Wars has released another of their State of the Game articles.
Today brings you another State of the Game article, and this one with a focus on balanced builds, the major proponent of most GvG play. Learn some of the general tactics and quite a few specific counters that such a build offers, in this week's article.
For more on Guild Wars, click here.
It seems as though another top Asian game is making its way into the English markets. Cabal Online has announced that they are launching an English Beta across Europe this month:
CABAL, one of Asia’s most successful RPG games is launching its English beta across Europe this month. Based around the wasted continent of Navereth, destroyed by the laws of nature, CABAL is more than a mindless hack and slash action game as teamwork, which, involving a captivating mix of puzzles, battles and quests - are key to defeating the second rising of evil and win the world war.
CABAL’s clever use of combined weaponry action and slick, smooth game play has propelled it to the top of the play charts in Korea and the closed Beta launch in Europe is scheduled for 26th June 2006. The action involves combination moves and battle modes unseen in MMORPGs, which makes it easy to play but will take a lifetime to master. The game combines the best in console game action moves with online game community features. In addition, unlike many other MMORPGs, it also has an end to the months of battle at which time you can choose where you stand in the world war and mass guild warfare. This great action setting is further enhanced by awesome graphics and has a westernized feel to the game unseen in many Korean MMORPGs. Over 300 dungeons offer players a choice of solo and party dungeons and a wide variety of entertaining action including abundant quests and challenges to flex your brain power! Outside the high action content there is familiar crafting, in-game markets (with an unusual twist) and in-game lottery!
Chris Nettleton, Chief Technical Officer of Games-Masters.com said, “This game will blow you away, it’s as simple as that. The levels of detail are sensational and it is a privilege to publish this title. In addition to all the high action focus of the game the style has a westernized console feel and look- you really have to try this game!” Ian Powell, Chief Executive Officer of Games-Masters.com commented, “It is our ambition to be the leading European publisher of MMO games. The initial blockbuster title CABAL demonstrates how serious this intent is”.
ESTsoft Corp. the developers of CABAL have done a truly awesome job on optimizing the game so that even low level PCs can enjoy all the high end action – all you need as a minimum to play the game is a Pentium 3 800 MHz.
To sign up for free downloads and the chance to play in beta, visit www.cabalonline.com. The closed beta starts 26th June 2006, so be sure to be amongst the first to register as places are limited!
For more on Cabal Online, click here.
Along with the announcement that Hero Online is looking for Beta Testers, they have also provided us with a number of new screenshots for your viewing pleasure. The screenshots can be found in our Hero Online Gallery, here.
Hero Online has announced that they are currently looking for participants for their Closed Beta phase. Not only that, but they have provided a set of instructions for just that purpose, check it out!
We are currently looking for Hero Online closed beta participants and we look forward to seeing you in your dynamic adventures in the world of the Martial Arts!
So here are the details regarding this event :
Closed Beta launches on June 15, 2006 (11:00 AM U.S. Pacific Time GMT -8:00)
2. How to participate in Closed Beta
Step 1. Receive a digital key from one of the following partners:
Step 2. Create an Account
Step 3. Activate the digital key
3. Important Notice
We are currently in the process of preparation to provide the best service to you in the best martial art action MMORPG! Please check our announcements frequently for upcoming updates!
For more on Hero Online, click here.
As anyone who visits our boards knows, the Star Wars Galaxies community has been vocally speaking out against the NGE and other changes to that game over the last year. Kevin Tierney jumps in to examine the alienation of that community in this editorial.
| There probably has been no MMORPG that has caused more controversy than Sony Online Entertainment’s (SOE) Star Wars Galaxies. It’s core game has been fundamentally altered twice, and debate has still been very intense, even six months after the latest revision, the “New Game Enhancements.” (NGE) While one can look for varying reasons as to why such changes were made, one is obvious: people, from LucasArts representatives Nancy Macintyre and Julio Torres, to numerous developers, all the way to the head of SOE John Smedley himself have argued that the changes were necessary to truly attract a crowd worthy of Star Wars. I believe this approach is flawed for numerous reasons.
One problem the MMO market is that it is currently experiencing what I call “The WoW effect.” When World of Warcraft was released to stunning success, it redefined what a successful MMO was. Before this, 500,000 customers of an MMO was a very respectable number. Right before the first changes (i.e. Combat Upgrade) SWG reportedly floated at around 300-350,000, again quite respectable pre-WoW. The release of WoW caused SOE/LucasArts to radically alter the originally planned “rebalance” to an “upgrade” that not only incorporated many of Blizzard’s features, but also added a ton of bugs to boot. SWG was simply not compatible with a linear style WoW gameplay. Those who wanted WoW’s features were already playing WoW, without the bugs. While the CU had overall mixed results, one thing was clear, subscriptions were down.
You can read his full opinion here.
Rand Miller, CEO of Cyan Worlds, talks to us about how URU Live was reborn. Originally developed a few years ago, the online portion of this Myst sequel was canceled by UBISoft before it ever got off the ground. Recently, Miller and his company announced a partnership with Turner and GameTap to bring it back.
In addition to our interview, we just re-added URU Live to our game list. To hype it click here.
| MMORPG.com: What are your plans for a launch date? Will there be a beta?
Rand Miller: All we know now is that we will launch during the 2006 holiday season, and there will be a beta.
MMORPG.com: Can you give us some history on the D’ni civilization and how they will play a part in the game?
Rand Miller: The D'ni arrived at earth 10,000 years ago and set up shop deep underground. It was their contact with a woman from the surface that altered their history and destroyed their civilization. That woman was the grandmother of Atrus - the main character in the Myst series. Atrus learned from the D'ni and his entire family was affected. Now the D'ni are gone, but their grand underground city remains - haunted with the legacy of their power and their destruction - and ready to be rediscovered.
The full interview is available here.