OnNet has sent word of their first ever Guild Tournament for the golf MMORPG "Shot Online". Here are the details:
Registration for the tournament has begun July 27th and ends on August 3rd. Preliminary match dates are from August 8th to the 10th, followed by final selection play on August 13th, where five selected guild members will duel with another guild's members for supremecy on the links. Preliminary matches will be carried out on the challenging but dazzlingly tropical "Forneus" course, while final selection play will be engaged on the even more demanding desert-themed "Rufus Arena" course.
Prizes include a whopping 10,000,000 NG, the in-game currency, and 500,000 guild experience points for the winning guild; 3,000,000 NG and 200,000 guild points for the second-placed guild and a million NG; and for a lucky randomly selected guild, 1,000,000 NG and 50,000 guild points.
Shot-Online, developed by OnNet Co., Ltd., is a hybrid massively multiplayer online game, a golfing simulation incorporating elements of traditional role-playing, enhanced by a proprietary physics engine for golf ball dynamics and interaction with eight challenging, varied golf courses. Detailed 3D graphics and smooth-as-silk animation enhance the realism of Shot-Online as a simulation. On the role-playing side of Shot-Online, characters can level and grow in skill and capability through training, while team and solo competitions allow players a chance to win game currency to buy skill-enhancing items, and quests and other community events are offered for even more depth.
Shot-Online, for Windows/PC systems, is available online for free download at the official website (http://www.shot-online.com). Shot-Online offers absolutely FREE play without time or play limits; however, with a Gold Membership for the entertainment-packed, high-value rate of $9.99 a month, a 50% discount on the greens fee; a 30% discount on items purchased with in-game currency; the locker fee is free; and trade between users is free, and other benefits are offered. For the Gold Plus Membership of just $14.99 monthly, along with the other benefits of regular membership, the greens fees are free and a friend's green free can be discounted 50% and a one million monthly allotment of the in-game currency is given to the player, along with other benefits.
To find out more details about Shot-Online and all the latest news about the game and the 1st Shot-Online Guild Tournament and the rules, please visit the official Shot-Online website. (http://www.shot-online.com).
About OnNet Co., Ltd
Thank you to Webzen for sending these along. It definitely looks interesting.
The official website for "Battleground Europe" has opened. Here are the details:
|The web site for World War II Online: Battleground Europe launched. http://www.battleground-europe.com/. Battleground Europe is the first retail add-on for World War II Online, which originally sold in 2001. It is currently scheduled for release this September and will be free to existing players.|
Frank Ross, the President of Black Masque Games, sat down to answer some questions from Staff Writer Jon Wood recently. Within, Wood probes to find out more about this unique looking MMORPG.
| MMORPG.com: Your game is being presented in 2.5D. What does this mean?
Frank Ross: With most of the gaming world trying to outdo each other with their wide variety of 3D looks, we chose to return to the “classic” look made famous in some of the Disney epics. We wanted our graphics positioned somewhere between cartoons and photo-realistic. We think we have achieved that goal, and from the early critiques, it appears we have appealed to a broad spectrum of players.
By definition there is no actual 2.5D, but we differentiate in that the scenes are all rendered in “vanishing point perspective” as opposed to the more common isometric perspective. This means that characters, objects, critters, and landscape are scaled dependent on the distance from the foreground and they use the correct perspective for accurate portrayal. Landscape items and other permanent objects can be walked around and behind. The game is room based and the camera view is always 3rd person.
We suspect that if successful, someone will come out with a 2.6D version. :)
Take a look at the full Q&A here.
Over the next few weeks you will notice a great influx of guides and other submissions. If you want to contribute, please click on the link in the appropriate game's "resources" tab.
MMORPG.com is proud to announce yet another contest for our members! We are holding a first-ever double header contest sponsored by PlanetWide Games. The details of each contest is below
CONTEST #1: Win 1 of 10 Copies of RYL: Path of the Emperor
This contest will be a random drawing for 1 of 10 copies of RYL: Path of the Emperor. You will receive a box version of the game via mail delivery. This contest will end on August 25, 2005 @ 9PM EST!
CONTEST #2: Win 1 of 100 Beta Accounts For "Battle Lohan"
PlanetWide Games is developing a new expansion for RYL titled "Battle Lohan". This new update will instantly drop players into the PvP action without the normal wait. This prize will grant you access to the early "invite only" beta phase! We will randomly select 100 winners from entries. This contest ends August 15, 2005 @ 9PM EST!
As with all of our contests, the more you login to MMORPG.com - the greater your chances of winning (see contest rules for more details). Good luck to you all!
| MMORPG.com: In any game that relies heavily on instanced missions, keeping up with the demand is often an issue. How many GMs do you have producing content at this time and how many missions do you think you’ll have at launch?
Melissa Meyer: Actually, even a game without instances missions has the same issue: quantity of content! Whether it’s quests, hunting areas, creatures to hunt, or whatever. The thing that makes Hero’s Journey different is that we use a large team of GameMasters and give them the tools to constantly enhance and expand the content of the game.
We are currently working with a core team of 30 GMs. In the next few weeks we’ll be expanding the team to about 50. Then over the next year we’ll be hiring at a rapid rate to well over 100 development GameMasters. We are hiring; so if you have level design experience or programming experience and you would like to get your foot in the door of the gaming industry, send in an application. Applications are available at: http://www.play.net/hj/info/apply/home.asp.
Our unique and innovated GameMaster system, as well as our ability to update game content dynamically will enable us to update the game on a daily basis with new content and additional Quests. Hero’s Journey development does not stop when the game goes live. It’s only the beginning!
You can read the full Q&A here.
The official website for Magic Hat Software has been the victim of some cyber crime this afternoon as someone calling themselves "muie" - with the help of "shadow - defaced the site with several profanity laced tirades, pornography and other unwanted changes. The site has since been taken down by the company.
"I have to laugh to be honest," said Alan Chipura of Magic Hat Software. "Some people do not have enough better things to do than deface a public website."
The game's website was not impacted by the hacker who proclaimed a possible motivation, on the site itself, to be: "I HATE YOU ALL THE MOMENT I SAW THIS".
The official Star Trek Online website carries two new developer blogs from Daron Stinnett of Perpetual Entertainment. In the two posts he discusses the general progress of the game and an upcoming Star Trek convention they plan to attend.
|Though we're still early in development, I have to say that we're starting to make some exciting progress. One of the keys to that progress has been the addition of Ian Pieragostini, our Client Lead. Ian comes to us from EA where he headed up the XBOX 360 graphics team on Godfather, and before that Microsoft working on Combat Flight Sim among other titles. Ian's graphics background and experience with large scale development methodologies are a perfect match for STO. He's getting our tech effort up and running so we can start trying out some of our ideas on screen. Moreover, Ian is a big Star Trek fan and a dedicated MMO player. I really can't imagine a better addition to the team.
We're also making solid progress on the design front. Glen (STO Lead Designer) has put much of the design into focus - at least most of the major pieces. We've been running the key design points through our internal review process and the feedback has been largely positive. Two of the most difficult and important design tent-poles remain though: combat and player ships. We've been doing a lot of thinking on both of these topics, but I can't say that we've gotten either to a stable place yet. The debate boils down to how much action to put into away mission combat vs. more traditional turn/rules based models. And on the ship front: how and when we give players access to ships, including the issue of supporting both solo and group oriented players. Though I think we're close to solving the ship issue and I'm hoping that we can start sharing some of our ideas with the community soon.
You can read them all here.
Funcom has sent word that a new era for advertisement in-game has begun in Anarchy Online. Here are the details:
Durham, USA — July 25, 2005— Funcom, developer and publisher of top video game titles like Anarchy Online and The Longest Journey, has once again broken away from the pack to bring a bold new direction for advertisement in videogames. By working in conjunction with Massive Incorporated, creator of the world’s first video game advertising network, Funcom is now offering dynamically delivered video ads in Anarchy Online. The new advertising elements accompany the dynamic billboard ads introduced earlier this spring.
In Anarchy Online the video and audio ads start playing on billboards or other appropriate locations when gamers enter select areas or zones within the game. This ground-breaking new advertising element has two distinct applications; it can be used to dynamically deliver television equivalent 15-second advertising spots, as well as audio messaging. The advertisements, using a combination of code created by Massive Incorporated and Funcom coders and utilizing technology licensed from RAD Game tools, do not increase latency, interrupt gameplay or gather personal information from players. Like the prior advertisements, those opting for the entirely free version of Anarchy Online will see the videos as a natural part of the city environments, while paying subscribers may opt in to view the content. The first video ads were unveiled to players at the four year anniversary for Anarchy Online in June, and brought fictional video advertisements from the warring factions in the game. Now the first paid video advertisements are in, with Panasonic and Channel 4 being the first companies to kick-start the new era for advertising in games.
“The visions we have had for Anarchy Online have been given a boost by this technology and the years ahead are now looking more promising than ever before.” said Trond Aas, CEO of Funcom. “We are once again first in bringing a great new innovation to the market, and by combining what players desire with what we need and what advertisers are requesting we are opening more doors of opportunity for us all. The high professionalism of Massive Incorporated, mixed with our own unique design and technology implementation, have made the advertisements a hit with the Anarchy Online population. Now we set our eyes towards the next ad evolution and Funcom is naturally pleased to be a driving force behind this innovation.”
No stranger to innovation, Funcom’s Anarchy Online has introduced numerous design and marketing innovations, including the 7 day free trial and the instanced dungeon / mission on demand system, while also being the first graphical MMO in the western world to be offered at no fee. Morten Byom, Game Director for Anarchy Online stated, “Ever since we started working with Massive we have seen how positive our players have been about the free subscription and the way the ads have created life in many areas of the game. I now believe that advertisements and games may form a perfect symbiosis in the years to come as long as it’s tastefully implemented.”
This new ability to bring exciting video advertisement to players from across the globe does not only open the door for advertisers, it also enables developers like Funcom to toy around with a wide variety of new design and marketing opportunities. Someday games like Anarchy Online might stage live concerts and live appearances, show the latest music videos in the clubs and even deliver in-character newscasts to entertain and inform players. The technology gives numerous possibilities and expands the opportunities for creative game developers.
ABOUT FUNCOM - Funcom is an independent developer and publisher of computer and console games with a focus on action adventure and subscription based online games. Funcom has provided outstanding entertainment since 1993 and continues to expand its track-record of 24 released games to date. Recent successes include ‘The Longest Journey’ and ‘Anarchy Online’. For corporate information please visit http://www.funcom.com. For information about Funcom games visit http://www.anarchy-online.com , http://www.dreamfall.com or http://www.ageofconan.com . Funcom is backed by Northzone Ventures, Stelt Holding and Teknoinvest.
ABOUT MASSIVE INCORPORATED - Massive Incorporated has created the world's first video game network across all platforms. With its patent-pending technology, Massive dynamically serves advertising across the largest aggregated network of premier video game titles and delivers measured results on consumer interaction with this brand messaging. Massive has partnerships with 20 leading game publishers, over 30 blue-chip advertisers, and has served over six million game sessions, to date. Massive allows publishers and advertisers to capitalize on the largest cultural and economic entertainment force in the world. Massive was selected to AlwaysOn’s 2005 list of top 100 private companies. Massive is backed by DFJ Gotham, DFJ New England, RRE Ventures, NeoCarta, Tobat Capital, and Newlight Associates. http://www.massiveincorporated.com.
Our series of developer pofile Q&As continues today with one of the most polarizing figures in this genre: David Bowman. The lead creative force behind Horizons answers some questions on his past, present and future.
|MMORPG.com: David, you are a well known name in the industry and obviously quite controversial in some circles. What reaction do you have to those who react strongly against you?
David Bowman: Critics exist in every entertainment industry. I personally listen to them but do not let them sway me from what I need to do in order to make entertaining worlds happen. I have made mistakes, and I'm sure I will make mistakes again in the future. Every decision that I have made has been based on a desire to build these worlds with a talented team. I have successfully launched these worlds while others have tried and failed. My contributions to them have made them more entertaining. I have often had people who did not know who I was mention their favorite experience in Horizons or Asheron's Call and they were elements that would not have existed if I had not kept moving forward. One lesson that I'm still working on, is to not prematurely share my excitement about some aspect of Horizons until it has had enough testing to make sure it will reach the audience.
You can read the full article here.
On the Camelot Herald, DAoC Executive Producer Jeff Hickman has introduced an upcoming addition to their Realm vs. Realm combat system that they hope players will enjoy. They call it "the island", as it will be a central location that physically connects the three RvR zones.
|Q: Will the Island be connected to the “regular” game?
A: No and yes. This is supposed to be a fun, central point where people can fight for the heck of it. There are no keeps, control of the island doesn’t count on a scoreboard, and no targets to fight over. It’s like a battleground, but with one key difference: if your realm should come under attack, you’re only a run/swim away from defending it, and it will take very little coordination to switch from informal play on the island to serious siege warfare on the frontier. We wanted to leave the keep warfare immediately accessible, but as we all know, some nights it’s hard to coordinate a war and you’d just rather kill people.
You can read about it here.
"Floon Beetle", the Lead Production Artist and UI Designer on Lord of the Rings Online, has penned the company's latest developer journal on the official website where he examines "RP vs. G".
|It's odd how "role-playing games" will have "normal" and "role-playing" servers: it's an admission that there is a fundamental tension between the "RP" and the "G" in the genre. Being a game means that there are a priori rules that govern success and failure within the game environment. Conversely, there are no rules governing what makes for good role-playing: role-playing takes place entirely between players, who determine for themselves the quality of the role-playing experience. Without formal rules, role-playing is essentially not a game: it is performance, and the world and systems we design need to recognize that distinction.
Should a game attempt to cater to role-players via dedicated game rules or systems? I am of the opinion that games should not. For one thing, any game distinction between "role-players" and "typical players" is often a magnet for griefers. RP chat channels, visual indicators of RP or Non-RP players, RP "ranking" systems, and RP banning policies all introduce more problems than they solve for RPers, for they are all accessible to people who like to disrupt them. Even RP servers generally fulfill their roles with mixed success: many players join them solely to interfere with the serious role-players, or often simply for network latency or server population reasons.
Give it a read over on their official website.
Blizzard crept closer to one-hundred North American realms (or servers) today with the introduction of Moonrunner, a PvE realm, and Kelecgos, a PvP realm.
|We're pleased to announce the launch of two new US realms: Moonrunner (PvE) and Kelecgos (PvP)! The addition of Moonrunner and Kelecgos increases the total number of US realms to 99. We hope you enjoy these two new opportunities for a fresh start on Azeroth. On the realm-selection list, the two new realms will be tagged with a "New" label to make them easy to spot. Happy adventuring, and see you online!|
You can read about it and more on their community site.
Webzen has joined forced with Sony to develop and publish Endless Saga, an MMORPG for the PlayStation 3.
Global Online Games Leader Joins Ranks of Top Game Companies to Publish for Next-Gen Console
TOKYO – July 22, 2005 – WEBZEN Inc. (NASDAQ: WZEN), a leading global online entertainment developer, publisher and operator, today announced the company has started development of Endless Saga™, a new massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) for the PlayStation®3 (PS3) computer entertainment system. WEBZEN unveiled a first look at the colorful new MMORPG at the Annual PlayStation Meeting hosted by Sony Computer Entertainment Japan (SCEJ). Produced by WEBZEN’s D-Studio, Endless Saga is slated for release in 2007 for both PS3 Online and PC Online.
“WEBZEN is honored to be among the select group of third-party publishers invited to participate at this year’s Annual PlayStation Meeting,” said Nam Ju Kim, CEO, WEBZEN, Inc. “We’re excited about being one of the first publishers to bring a new online game to the PS3. We look forward to working closely with Sony Computer Entertainment Japan throughout the development cycle to ensure this new fantasy game appeals to MMORPG and PS3 fans everywhere.”
On the event floor, SCEJ provided attendees with a sneak preview of Endless Saga. The crowd was treated to a glimpse of screen shots and a movie trailer highlighting the MMORPG’s innovative gameplay, graphics and creative story and characters.
More details about Endless Saga will be unveiled in future announcements.
About WEBZEN Inc.
Based in Seoul, Korea, WEBZEN Inc. has become a global leader in the MMOG market, and has developed some of the world’s top online game and client/server technologies. Already having achieved critical mass in Asian markets with publishing arms in Taiwan, China, Japan, Philippines, and Thailand, WEBZEN Inc. has established WEBZEN America, a wholly owned US subsidiary based in Los Angeles. WEBZEN America leverages WEBZEN technology and partners with some of the most well-known names in the video games industry to deliver some of the most compelling, visually stunning graphics available in persistent world games. WEBZEN and WEBZEN America are poised to launch a diverse portfolio of online products and services, beginning with the highly anticipated fantasy MMORPG SUN, the Unreal 3.0 engine-based MMOFPS HUXLEY, and the original action MMOG All Points Bulletin (APB).
For more information about WEBZEN products and services, go to www.webzengames.com.
About Sony Computer Entertainment Japan
Sony Computer Entertainment Japan, a division of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. based in Japan, distributes and markets the PlayStation® game console, the PlayStation® 2 computer entertainment system and the PlayStation® Portable handheld entertainment system, and also develops, publishes, markets and distributes software, and manages the third party licensing program for these two platforms.
The seventh installment of our Tactica Online Q&A series runs today with four more questions and answers from Luke Carruthers, the head of Imaginary Numbers, which develops the title. Tactica Online mixes RPG and turn based tactical PvP combat into one unique title and is poised to take the shelves by storm this winter.
| MMORPG.com Since most of Tactica’s content revolves around player vs. player encounters, how will you deal with issues like people quitting or timing out at key moments?
Luke Carruthers: Disconnects are the bane of every online game, and that’s even more true for one that revolves around direct competition between players. You have to allow for them, because sometimes people do legitimately have network problems, but there’s no real way to distinguish between a legitimate disconnect and a player deliberately trying to avoid a loss.
The only real solution is to allow those who have been disconnected a few minutes in which they can reconnect without penalty. If they don’t reconnect within that time, then they automatically lose the match.
You may read the entire article at this link.
Runestone, the developers of "Seed", have announced that the official website for their upcoming MMORPG product has officially launched at SeedTheGame.com.
|Runestone Launches Seed Website
The website for the upcoming massive multiplayer online role-playing game Seed is now online at www.seedthegame.com.
Seed is being developed by Runestone Game Development and is estimated for release next year. The game will feature interactive stories and advanced artificial intelligence techniques to create a unique gaming experience. Furthermore, the game is presented in a comic book-like graphical style.
"The graphical style from the game is reflected in the website. We want to give people a taste of the visual theme and atmosphere," Jan Roed, art director on Seed, says.
Seed takes place in a distant future in a colony tower on a planet far from Earth. The colony should have expanded to the planet surface long ago, but the terraforming process has come to a halt. The players take the roles of colonists and it is up to them to decide the future and fate of the colony.
The new website holds information of game features and game play elements. Later, a story section will go in details with the setting and background story.
"We will frequently add sections and subsections to the site. We are looking forward to presenting much more detailed information about the game than we have been able to on our forums so far," community manager Morten Juul says.
The website also holds a press section containing answers to frequently asked questions by the media.
MMORPG.com is proud to present another contest just for our great community! As many of you are already aware, Turbine Entertainment unveiled the latest expansion for Asheron's Call title "Throne of Destiny" - we are helping celebrate this with a giveaway contest! We are giving away the following prizes in our latest Asheron's Call: Throne of Destiny Giveaway:
Registered members of MMORPG.com can enter this contest at this link.
Laura Genender took part in the fourth Roadhouse session for Auto Assault earlier this week. Her in game tour left her with the following article to close out the series:
| After three weeks of teleconferences and a week of play testing, the final AutoAssault roadhouse, an in game tour, was a bitter sweet occasion — on one hand, I was getting an awesome tour by the makers of the game… but on the other, this was the last of the roadhouse sessions.
The NetDevil team split into three groups, one of each race, and met us to convoy up at the exits of our race’s starting towns. As a Biomek Agent I started out in Fort Logan, the militaristic Biomek starter town. Here I met up with Hanlin, Lead Content Designer for the Biomeks and Booker, Lead Systems Designer and “crafting prince.”
You can read her entire article here.
NetDevil has released a new "recon" for their upcoming MMORPG Auto Assault. This week they focus on currency.
|As the world plummeted to chaos, the various monetary systems that fueled national economies crumbled as quickly as the countries that used them. Then came the Genesis Solution, which made any semblance of currency obsolete.
However, the wasteland survivors continued to hoard bits and pieces of their past, and fights over old-world remnants were not uncommon. Over time, these things acquired value in the minds of the survivors of the apocalypse, and INC helped standardize the currency trade by accepting the items in exchange for various services such as storage facilities and airlifts. Hence the new post-apocalyptic currency system was born.
Check it out on their website.