Blizzard's World of Warcraft has announced an EverLAN event that will not only enable players to play World of Warcraft and engage in WoW themed contests and activities, but will also include a Warcraft III tournament.
EverLAN will be holding a massive 600-PC LAN winter event on January 20-22, 2006 in Denver, CO. The event will be World of Warcraft-enabled, so all attendees can enjoy playing online.
Among the features of this event will be a Warcraft III tournament and several World of Warcraft-related contests and activities. There will also be fun competitions such as scavenger hunts and other in-game challenges. In addition to thousands of dollars in cold, hard tournament cash, some of the contest prizes available at the winter EverLAN event will be Blizzard T-shirts, posters, action figures, and more. For additional information, please visit:
For more on WoW, click here.
Runestone Game Development has unveiled a new MMORPG, Seed. The game is being touted as different from other games, asking players to rely on their wits rather than brute strength and brawn. The setting is an alien world of the future. The game is slated for an April 2006 release, with beta sign-ups happening in January.
Runestone Game Development Announces Seed
Aarhus, Denmark – December 20, 2005 – Runestone Game Development is pleased to unveil Seed, a new and genre-shattering massively multiplayer game slated for release in April 2006, with beta test sign ups starting in January 2006.
On an alien world in the far future, desperate human settlers must work together to ensure the survival of their colony and the whole human race. In Seed you will…
Use your intellect rather than your brawn.
“By trading in weapons for wit, we’ve truly created a simulated society and developed a game that engages you on an entirely different level than any MMG before,” said Lars Kroll, CEO of Runestone. “We have really taken the simulated society idea a big step further, where players can ascend to great political heights within the Seed world, but only if NPCs and players alike allow it through a robust democratic system.”
Interact with believable NPCs.
“NPCs play a significant part in Seed,” added Kroll. “We have focused on making the NPCs varied and interesting to work with. All NPCs in Seed have their own behaviors, motivations and goals, powered by a sophisticated AI engine with distinct emotion, knowledge, and event response systems. They remember, and they judge.”
Experience stories suited for your playing style.
“Seed uses a unique story template system to create stories according to the playing style and role of each player, whether that be searching for a mono-wrapper for a construction project or greasing a scientist for his vote,” continued Kroll. “You are free to choose how you fulfill your objectives, and no matter how you pull it of, the story will follow your lead, good or bad.”
Decide the fate of the colony.
“Seed is built as an evolving game world, and expanding the game world is an integrated part of the Seed design,” explained Kroll. “When Seed launches, the players find themselves in a colony on the distant planet Da Vinci. The terraforming process has ground to a halt, the space elevator to the orbiting space station has broken, and contact with Earth was ended long ago. What happens from there will entirely depend on the choices of the players. Should the terraforming process be restarted at all cost, or is it wiser to admit defeat and use the limited resources to extend the living areas of the tower? Is contact with Earth all-important or unimportant? The players will decide, all the while permanently shaping the environment around them, voting in their leaders and working together as they choose.
With groundbreaking gameplay powered by next-generation artificial intelligence poured into a rich, comic-book-style 3D world, Seed is like nothing else on Earth. Beta signups will begin January 9th, 2006 with the Beta starting February 1st. Learn more about this revolutionary MMG and get ready for beta test sign ups at www.seedthegame.com.
About Runestone Game Development
Runestone Game Development is a Danish computer game developer specializing in innovative, story-based massively multiplayer online games. Seed is the first title from the company, which is owned partly by the employees, partly by business angel investors.
For more on Seed, click here.
The Consumer Electronics Show, upcoming in las Vegas, will have representation from the MMORPG community in the form of Richard Garriott, currently from NCSoft, and founder of the Ultima series. Garriott will be sharing the stage with Michael Dell at the show. There, Garriott will showcase NCSoft's upcomign title, Auto Assault.
Michael Dell to share CES stage with NCsoft’s Richard Garriott
Leaders of the world’s top PC manufacturer and online game publishing companies will share the same stage in January when Richard Garriott, executive producer at NCsoft North America and pioneer of the massively multiplayer online (MMO) games market, will discuss PC gaming as part of Michael Dell’s “Industry Insider” address at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
Michael Dell, founder and chairman of Dell Inc., the largest PC manufacturer in the world, will address the CES audience on Jan. 5 at 2:30 p.m. at the Sands Hotel. Garriott was invited by Dell to make a short presentation during Dell’s “Industry Insider” address on how MMO gamers have chosen the PC as the preferred platform for gaming.
Garriott, who, along with Michael Dell, shares Austin, Texas, as his base of operations, will demonstrate soon-to-be-released NCsoft title, Auto Assault. Auto Assault is a PC-based MMO game featuring vehicle combat and destructible environments in a post-apocalyptic setting.
Auto Assault, set for release in the first half of 2006 comes on the heels of successful NCsoft MMO launches in 2005 of Guild Wars and City of Villains.
Garriott was the creator of the first commercially successful MMO, Ultima Online, and co-founder of Origin Systems. The Ultima series set the standard for all MMO games that followed, and Garriott is currently developing a new MMO for NCsoft called Tabula Rasa that is scheduled for release in late-2006. Garriott, known by online gamers as “Lord British,” has a worldwide following and is considered one of the creators of online PC gaming.
For more on Auto Assault, click here.
Daron Stinnett is the Executive Producer of Star Trek Online, currently in development at the San Francisco-based Perpetual Entertainment. In our first developer profile Q&A in a while we ask how he got there, what he does and how you can get there. We also snuck in an update on the progress of the game itself.
Daron Stinnett: I’ve been making games professionally for 25 years starting in High School at a time when the typical team size was one. My focus for the first half of my career was on programming but the nature of small teams gave me the opportunity to become involved in most aspects of development. In 1990 I moved to the Bay Area to join Spectrum HoloByte where I Executive Produced the Simulations group responsible for Falcon 3.0 and other flight sims. About 12 years ago I joined LucasArts as a Project Leader/Director leading the development of several titles including Dark Forces, Outlaws, Starfighter, and most recently, Republic Commando.
MMOs are the new frontier for both game players and developers. They offer an opportunity for innovation that has all but vanished from the traditional games market. So after several years on the console side of the business, I decided to jump into MMO development by joining Perpetual Entertainment to head-up Star Trek Online.
The entire Q&A is available here.
Laura Genender has filed her report on the second weekly Auto Assault Happy Hour session. This week she deals largely with backstory in this lengthy article.
| Last Monday I once again attended the AutoAssault Roadhouse: Happy Hour. This time, the topic of the teleconference was the races and the classes, and we were joined by NetDevil’s three lead game designers: Chris “Ombwah” Hulkworf (Human Lead), Adam “Snipe Hunter” Maxwell (Mutant Lead), and Hal “Maraider” Hamlin (Biomek Lead) as well as Ryan Seabury (Design Director) and NCSoft’s Valerie “Pann” Massey.
We started the hour off with back stories. Each of the developers shared their race’s point of view on the events that led up to present day AutoAssault. It was an extremely enjoyable and extremely entertaining hour; the three lead designers certainly know how to get into character, and there was plenty of name calling (all in good spirits, of course) between the three races.
You may read the full report here.
Sanya Thomas has posted some more "New Things and Bug Fixes" for Mythic's Dark Age of Camelot. Sanya, the Internet Relations Manager at Mythic, will be joining us on MMORPG.com's next Game/On podcast.
Can you tell we're trying to knock everything out before people go home for the holidays this weekend? This round of hot fixes includes the NPCs for the subscriber rewards we mentioned in test version 1.81e.
NEW THINGS AND BUG FIXES
To read the rest of this article, click here.
Guild Wars has announced a few changes to the rules for their Guild Wars World Championships. The amendment to the rules was put in place to facilitate travel to Taipei, Taiwan.
In order to ease the challenge of obtaining visa in advance of the Regional Playoffs, we have amended the Guild Wars 2006 World Championship Rules, as follows:
"Player must be able to travel without restriction to Taipei, Taiwan. Players will be required to deliver proof of possession of a passport and satisfaction of all other requirements for entering the country. Proof must be sent to ArenaNet by expedited mail, fax or scanned image on or before 08:00 (a.m.) GMT January 4, 2006. Costs associated with obtaining a passport are the sole responsibility of the individual player."
After the Regional Round has been completed, ArenaNet will work with the invited Guilds to help expedite the visa process.
For more on Guild Wars, click here.
Blizzard's World of Warcraft has released another "Warcraft Weekly", a feature that allows players to keep up with the ever-changing face of Azeroth. Warcraft Weekly brings together threads from the WoW forums that the developers have responded to.
Due to the ever-evolving nature of Azeroth, it can be difficult to stay current on its surrounding news and information, which is why we've created the Warcraft Weekly. A frequently updated news archive which consists of links to threads on our forums that were created and responded to by the World of Warcraft community team. This news archive serves as a great source of information and a wonderful alternative for those wishing to stay current on all the latest and greatest topics but don't have time to sift through the forums each day. Check it out here.
For more on WoW, click here.
Rekkator, the developers of Neocron 2 have announced that they have expanded the Neocron Online Shop.
|After the successful launch of the free arcade shooter Neocron Arcade: The N.M.E. Project, Reakktor has now expanded the Neocron Online Shop by a "No more Elves" product line. Also available are new products with the Neocron Evolution 2.1 design.|
For more on Neocron 2, click here.
It's that time again, Mythic Entertainment has released their second newsletter for the upcoming MMORPG, Warhammer Online. We are going to bring you an outline of the newsletter that gives more and more information about this highly anticipated franchise game:
The WAR beta test is still a long way off, but now is your chance to secure a spot for when it does go live. Each month we’ll randomly select 5 names from the newsletter subscriber database for entry into the beta test.* If you have already created and confirmed a Warhammer newsletter account, then you’re automatically entered into the drawing every month. If you haven’t set up a password protected account yet, click here to register
Read on for even more info...
Ten thousand pages. That's my best guess at the amount of final documentation that our content team will produce before the launch of WAR. We should start an office pool, or a printing press. Ten thousand pages for a game based on an existing property rich with detail. I can only imagine the number of pages we'd be writing if we were coming up with a world of our own!
What in Sigmar's name are we writing about in ten thousand pages? Well, way back in the beginning of May 2005 after the signing of the deal with Games Workshop at E3, we started with the basics. You see, pre-production documentation serves several purposes... Read all of Production Diary #1 >>
Are you a long-time Warhammer player who's dying to know what's in and what's out? Are you an experienced MMORPGer who wants to know what crafting will be like? Are you a total newbie who doesn't know what "newbie" means? Send us your questions and you might just see them answered in our all-new Fan Q&A!
Greg Grimsby, Art Director - Read the developer profile
Colin Shannon, Lead Programmer - Read the developer profile
To get the whole newsletter online, click here.
There's a new contest in town over at Shadowbane. This time around, it's a Player vs. Player movie contest, and the winner will walk away with an ATI Radeon X800 XL or a Logitech X-230 2.1 Speaker System:
Gamers Grove and Guild vs. Guild have teamed up to bring you a Shadowbane Movie Contest! What are we looking for? Great Shadowbane Player vs. Player videos! What do you get out of it? Well, aside from some great videos to watch, you can potentially win a ATI Radeon X800 XL or a Logitech X-230 2.1 Speaker System as well as other prizes! To learn more, click here.
For more on Shadowbane, click here.
Nevrax, the developers of The Saga of Ryzom, have announced that they have released a new battle system, known as "Outposts". As the name would suggest, the new battle system has players fighting over outposts which hold valuable resources.
Paris, FRANCE – December 20, 2005 - Nevrax, the developer and publisher of the massively-multiplayer science fantasy game, The Saga of Ryzom, announced today the launch of the Outposts.
This new battle system offers unprecedented gameplay which gives a real meaning to PvP. The players will fight to gain the control of an Outpost, which hold rare raw materials indispensable to craft new powerful items, and will have to keep its control during epic guild vs. guild wars. Guilds have to strategically control their squads of NPCs if they want to treasure their Outpost!
With this new feature, Nevrax demonstrates once again its strong commitment to develop an innovative game that fulfills players’ desires.
About Nevrax SARL
Founded in early 2000, Paris-based NEVRAX is an online game and software development company that specializes in MMORPG engine and production tool technologies and products. Utilizing NeL, its open source platform, Nevrax’s team of over 50 engineers and designers have completed their first MMORPG, a Science Fantasy game entitled The Saga of Ryzom. For further information, visit www.nevrax.com.
About The Saga of Ryzom
Three generations ago, the proud civilizations of Atys perished in the Great Swarming, when hordes of Kitins swept from the Prime Roots and wrought war and genocide. Now it is time to reclaim your heritage. Join forces with thousands of others, master the arts of sorcery, war, and tradecraft, and re-forge the destiny of your people. The secrets of the past have been lost, but The Saga of Ryzom has just begun. For more information please visit www.ryzom.com.
About The Ryzom Ring
The Ryzom Ring is the innovative extension for Nevrax's online roleplaying game, The Saga of Ryzom. It provides tools that allow the players to access Ryzom's creatures, buildings, maps and missions to create their own events and scenarios, giving them unprecedented power to shape the game. Thousands of other players can experience one person’s handiwork, or kept as a private sanctuary only accessible to a select few. For more information please visit www.ryzom-ring.com.
For more The Saga of Ryzom, click here.
Mythic Entertainment's Dark Age of Camelot has announced a new set of "bug fixes and new things" for our reading pleasure.
NEW THINGS AND BUG FIXES
For more DAoC, click here.
It seems as though the recent launch of Blizzard's wildly popular MMORPG, World of Warcraft in Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau has paid dividends for the company. Today, Blizzard announced that their subscriber base had reached the 5 million worldwide mark:
Following World of Warcraft's launch last month in the regions of Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau, we're proud to announce that Azeroth is now the stomping ground of choice for more than five million customers worldwide. Click here to see our new press release detailing the game's latest achievement. We sincerely thank all of the players around the world who have helped us bring each individual World of Warcraft realm to life over the past year.
For more WoW, click here.
The developers of Turbine's Dungeons and Dragons Online: Stormreach, have released the 27th in their series of Monster Profiles. This time around, it's the ever hot Fire Elemental. Would you like to see a very short movie, showing this creature in all its glory? You need only click here.
The fire elemental is an admirably simple creature. It just wants to burn it all down. Burn the buildings, burn the people, burn the stones, and even burn the water. To be honest, young adventurer, sometimes as I wander the stinking sewers beneath our rotting seaside city, filled with its greed, corruption, and monsters pretending to be civilized, I share the fire elemental's sentiment. Burn it all down, yeah. Especially the quarters of House Kundarak and the Twelve, those scheming twits who cast me out. Now before you show up on my door accusing me of arson, let's move on to discussion just how you can deal with these summoned creatures when you encounter them upon the travails.
First, the obvious. The creature is made of flame. If you go looking for something material beneath that halo of heat, you're not going to find anything. So it goes without saying that arcane spellcasters should put away their fireballs and scorching rays. Using such fire attacks on the fire elemental won't be so disastrous as, say, using them on an iron golem (which actually heals in the heat), but it still will have no effect. The preferred elemental energy to unleash on the fire elemental is, again as you'd expect, cold-based attacks. That includes sleet storms, ice storms, and, most optimally, cone of cold. An important note to wizards and sorcerers: chill touch, despite its name, does not deal cold damage! Poor Severinius never did learn that lesson, though I suppose he is now reflecting on it in Dolurrh. Well, come to think of it, he probably isn't, considering that the shades of the dead there quickly lose their memory of life... but now I ramble.
When attempting to deal with the fire elemental's own attacks, fire resistance is of paramount importance. With a protection from fire spell, or even resist fire, you can ignore more than half of the fire elemental's damage output. But for a melee fighting attempting to go toe-to-toe with this creature, be aware that the creature is surprisingly difficult to hit. Nimble and wreathed in protective flame, only the truest struck of blows will land on this near mindless entity. So now's not the time for Power Attack.
For more DDO, click here.
The good developers over at Blizzard Entertainment's World of Warcraft, have given us a new movie with which to entertain ourselves. This movie highlights the setting of Arathi Basin and encourages players to jump into the game and try it for themselves.
The powerful Defilers and the mighty League of Arathor are fighting for control over the resources found in the Arathi Basin. Do you have what it takes to claim these resources for the good of your faction? Check out this new Arathi Basin movie, then log in to World of Warcraft and go participate in this epic struggle!
For more World of Warcraft, click here.
On December the 15th, Guild Wars released some rules for the upcoming Guild Wars World Championship. This contest will see prizes totaling $100,000. So, if you are a member of a participating guild, or if you're just interested, have a read:
We are pleased to alert all guilds seeking a spot in the Guild Wars World Championship that we have posted two sets of official rules today. The rules include exciting details on the prizes and a sure-to-please change in the age restrictions for GWWC participants. Find the specific GWWC Rules on this link, and be sure to also read the Universal Guild Wars Tournament Rules on this link.
For more Guild Wars, click here.
This week, Sanya Thomas, Mythic Entertainment's Internet Relations Manager, gives us another grab bag of information from the popular title, Dark Age of Camelot. Speaking of Sanya, she and her colleague Walt Yarborough (Producer of DAoC) will be joining Matt McLean and Jon Wood for an interview in the December edition of Game/On, MMORPG.com's official podcast.
Someday, I shall leave this frozen land and move to a place where I do not need earmuffs. But until then, I will write this column. Ah, who am I kidding, I couldn't leave you people:
Q: "Mezmerization and Stun spells are now calculated when determining Realm point distribution. The spells are looked at as if they were damage spells cast upon a player."--per your recent patch notes, does this mean that multiple cast mez spells will be looked at as attacks and break any mez that may already be on a character and set the immunity timer? Groups running with 'spammable' or multiple CC characters often hit cast these spells in the attempt to mez everyone even if resisted. These spells, now being considered attacks, would reasonably set an immunity timer if resisted, and break the current mez if this character was attacked yet again by another spell.
A: I sent this to the Code Warrior. He replied: "No, the realm point calculation for crowd control spells is entirely separate from the system that determines crowd control immunity timers."
Read it all, here!
RF Online has released a new piece of concept art (pictured below) and a breand new lore story, titled, "Chapter 6: Novus, Novus". Below, you will find the first page of a 4 page story. If you like what you see, even if you are not a player, click on the link at the bottom and give the whole thing a read.
“For thirty three years myself and my colleagues have travelled around the deep cold of space, looking for our Utopia, looking for traces of human life. Twenty-six of my fellow colleagues and personal friends have passed away leaving but myself to live on and tell our story. We have risked and sacrificed our lives in this journey to discover other planets that lay host to human life, and in the Novus Sector that journey finally ended. With my two fellow colleagues, all of us reaching the end of our own mental limits, we were finally appeased to be able to speak about the Herodian’s plot to terminate mankind throughout the universe.”
“However, this populated land that we had discovered teeming with human life, completely shattered our hopes. What we witnessed here disgusted us. The crimes and violence we saw was a cruel reminder of events seen earlier in our very own species’ development. Under the guise of the ‘Evolution of Mankind’ we bore witness to the new sins and shameful situations that bore fruition under this new project. Was this the true plan for these people?”
“Upon arrival to the Planet Novus, my two colleagues fell victim to this ‘New Breed’ of mankind. Both died at the hands of these humans after years of surviving the Arcane Virus and Herodian attacks. These humans, through experimentation and scientific “improvement”, were victims of the Earth’s artificial evolution procedure which exaggerated their violent tendencies.”
Read it all, here!
The developers of The Chronicles of Spellborn have released information on all 9 classes. The nine different classes are divided into 3 distinct categories, warriors, spellcasters and rogues. The game itself runs on the Unreal 2.5 engine and "will bring gamers to a fantasy world rife with hidden secrets and adventures".
ALL NINE CLASSES REVEALED!
At long last we are pleased to present to you the full lineup of classes for The Chronicles of Spellborn. The classes have been divided into three groups: Warriors, Spellcasters, and Rogues. Within the game, each character must choose a group during creation, and this determines which of the following three classes they may select from once they have gained some experience in the world. The basic three classes are distinguished in the types of skills they are generally proficient in. As you develop preferences in your skills, you are able to then choose the more specialized class in which to continue your development. A good mix of classes will ensure some extremely varied tactics during your adventures, and will add depth to the competitive aspects of the game as well.
For more on The Chronicles of Spellborn, click here.