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Lord of the Rings Online : The Delving of Frór

Posted Jan 29, 2008 by Keith Cross

The Delving of Frór is a new area that will be introduced to the Ettenmoors of Lord of the Rings Online with Book 12: The Ashen Wastes.  To help familiarize players with this new area, Turbine has published an introduction to this new region.

In ages long past, dwarves delved throughout the Misty Mountains and there drew forth precious ore from the land. At the foot of those mountains, beneath the shadow of what is now called Mount Gram, is one such delving - The Delving of Frór.

Long before the Men of Rhudaur made the land now called the Ettenmoors their home, the dwarves who lived there carved deep beneath the mountains. The Delving of Frór was mined to exhaustion and abandoned for many years until the Men of Rhudaur arrived and themselves discovered its depths. The Men of Rhudaur eventually fell under the sway of the Witch-king, and Angmar demanded that they build subterranean holdings meant to serve as defenses against the forces of Cardolan and Arthedain. The Rhudauran complied, and built small holdings in the abandoned mines.

Read more here.

D&D Online : Module 6 Screens

Posted Jan 29, 2008 by Jon Wood

Turbine has been kind enough to provide us with these seven screenshots from the upcoming Module 6 update to Dungeons and Dragons Online: Stormreach.

 

Have a look at all of them here.

D&D Online : Module 6 Preview

Posted Jan 29, 2008 by Jon Wood

News Manager Keith Cross recently had the opportunity to take an early look at Module 6: The Thirteenth Eclipse for Turbine's Dungeons and Dragons Online: Stormreach. Today, he files this report on the new module as well as a quick look at the game since launch.

My journey through the world of Dungeons & Dragons Online began with a picture book tour of the game as it stands right now, up to module 5. I was briefly teleported to a number of different regions to see a snapshot of what each previous module added to the game, and how the game has evolved into its current incarnation. When DDO first launched, there were several things that seemed like they were missing. The game had plenty of dungeons, but where were the dragons? ‘Dragons’ is right there in the title, so one would think they should be there. And there’s an ampersand in the title too but I didn’t see any of those running around in the game either.

My guides explained the reasoning for the lack of dragons at first. Dragons are tough. They’re not really a fair challenge to lower level characters unless you water them down a bit. But watering down wasn’t an option for Turbine because they had decided to go with the 3rd Edition D&D philosophy that dragons were special. You won’t meet a dragon in a random encounter, and each dragon is unique, with their own name and powers. Their name is in the title after all, so it makes sense that they’re among the fiercest foes in the game. The first dragons that players could battle were added with module 4. A trio of young chromatic dragons that looked like they’d jumped straight from the pages of the Monster Manual.

Capturing the look and flavor of 3rd Edition D&D is something Turbine has done very well. During the initial tour we ran into several other classic D&D opponents, such as the Marilith and a Beholder with a spectral template, and they each looked exactly like pen and paper counterparts. The artistic devotion to D&D’s core books continues in Module 6, and I was excited to see Gnolls (a personal favorite) and a variety of Devils done in a style so true to the original sources.

Read the whole thing here.

Tabula Rasa : Hybrid Video and Exclusive Q&A

Posted Jan 29, 2008 by Jon Wood

Today, the folks at Tabula Rasa released a video highlighting the new hybrid races that are coming to the action-packed MMORPG, along with a Q&A from Lead Designer Paul Sage.

MMORPG.com:

Can you explain how the concept of hybrids came about? What made you decide to put them in the game?

Paul Sage:

Community feedback had a lot to do with this. Richard felt strongly that the story of Tabula Rasa was a human story. Throughout the history of his games, it has been about the player actually being in the world. So it seemed natural that at launch we told the human story. The internal and external community feedback was that they wanted to play alien races as well. So now it is time to tell the story, still human, but with a twist, or a splice, if you prefer, of alien DNA.

Hybrid Video

NCsoft has released this video featuring the new hybrid race system.

Hybrid Video

Check it all out here.

Dark Age of Camelot : Grab Bag

Posted Jan 28, 2008 by Keith Cross

The Grab Bag returns this week to once again answer a myriad of miscellaneous questions from the Dark Age of Camelot community.

My question is, I have tested this against another character, how come I have not seen an elemental proc? I have however, been getting random debuffs on the bot (ABS, Constitution, Strength, Dexterity, etc) but it is not listed as a delve proc. Is the delve information wrong? Or is the coding for the correct proc on the weapon wrong?

A. The Bearded Wonder looked into this for us, and here's what he discovered: The debuffs are courtesy of the (invisible) Elemental that is summoned. You don't actually see the spirit elemental as it exists on a plane outside of ours, but you can see the effect it has on your target.

Q. How exactly does Camouflage work, and does it totally negate the effects of Mastery of Stealth when it is up towards other archers?

A. Yes, Camouflage blocks the detection range bonus from 'Mastery of Stealth'. Assassins and Archers will rely on innate detection range against an Archer using camouflage. The Balancinator has spoken.

Read more here.

Lord of the Rings Online : Book 12 Screens

Posted Jan 28, 2008 by Jon Wood

Turbine has provided us with screenshots from the upcoming Book 12 Update. The screens show character customization and some housing interiors.

 

Check 'em all out here.

Age of Conan : Press Q&A

Posted Jan 28, 2008 by Keith Cross

Funcom recorded a Q&A session at a recent press event in Oslo and they have made the video available on the Age of Conan official site.

As you may have heard, we did a press event last week and invited selected sites from the community and press to join us here in our headquarters in Oslo.

Part of this event was a long (roughly 2 hours!) Q&A with the developers on Friday and, for this Friday, we’re pleased to release the first installment. This 25 minute video covers stealth, spellweaving and other magical goodies, female characters, and the always touchy subject of loot, answering several of the most-frequently-asked questions from our forums.

Keep in mind, this is just the first installment, and we’ll be releasing more next week, so stay tuned!

Find out more here.

Vanguard : Happy Birthday Vanguard

Posted Jan 28, 2008 by Keith Cross

Vanguard is getting ready to celebrate it's first anniversary, and they have announced gifts for the inhabitants of Telon.

On January 30th, Vanguard: Saga of Heroes is celebrating its one year anniversary! For those of you who have been traveling the world of Telon, you'll be in for a special treat!

All players will be able to choose one of three bags, representing each sphere of the game. Choose wisely, as you will only be able to claim a single bag per account.
Avarem's Messenger Bag
This is the bag of Avarem, famed messenger of Telon. His swift feet made him a legend in the realm of delivery.

Equipping this bag will increase your run speed.

Silius' Enchanted Utility Pouch
A bag used by the master crafter Silius. Said to be a sadist, Silius' insatiable hunger for crafting made him a legend in the world of Telon. Some even say this bag is made from the skin of crafters which is why it seems to enhance the base attributes of the person wearing it.

Equipping this pouch will increase your crafting attributes.

Read more here.

EverQuest II : Sneak Peek of Game Update 42

Posted Jan 28, 2008 by Keith Cross

A look at what's on the way for EverQuest II's Game Update 42 has been posted on the EQ2 official site.

Game Update 42 is looming, and I'm really quite excited about the amount of content that will be released. This is a large chunk of new stuff, and I know you'll find it just as engaging as I do. Here are some of the highlights:

1) We have the deities returning with renewed strength, and additional members…The Tribunal, Karana, and Bertoxxolous. You will find these encounters even more challenging than ever!

2) Also coming in this update are the new mannequins, which will allow you to show off your armor and weapons inside your house. If you're anxious to get one of these, be sure to touch base with your local crafting expert, who will be filling orders soon.

3) Searching for items that you care about on the broker will become much easier, as we have implemented the ability to search for items by the effect name on the item.

4) We've added a new Pet Options window to allow you to set your pet name, hide status and how they'll act around you.

Read more here.

Guild Wars : Bonus Mission Pack Available

Posted Jan 28, 2008 by Keith Cross

ArenaNet has announced that the Bonus Mission Pack is now available.

With the Guild Wars Bonus Mission Pack, you play through four pivotal moments in Guild Wars history and earn rare weapon rewards—some of the best-looking gear in the game!

  • Gather unique rewards as you play a key figure in the Battle of Jahai and go up against Palawa Joko and his undead army.
     
  • Experience Cantha's turbulent past when you bear witness to events in the violent Tengu Wars.
     
  • Learn firsthand how the White Mantle rose to power in Kryta.
     
  • And, finally, discover what became of Gwen after the Charr invaded her home, and the Searing destroyed everything she'd ever known.

Read more here.

WWII Online: Battleground Europe : New Version Notes

Posted Jan 28, 2008 by Keith Cross

The developers responsible for Battleground Europe: World War II Online have released the patch notes for the version 1.28.0.255 update that went live on January 22nd.

 

Unity 1.5 Graphics Engine Update:

  • Frame rate and stutter performance are dramatically improved in this release.
  • Improved terrain loading
  • Reduced memory footprint
  • Improved collision code
  • Improved OpenGL state handling
  • Vehicle hulks now queue for loading

Vehicle Marking:

  • All ground and air vehicles now have historical looking markings
  • These markings are per brigade
  • Each player will also have an identifying mark based on their game name (these are not globally unique)
  • For a complete list see the WWIIOL Wiki

 

Check out all of the notes here.

Lord of the Rings Online : To Russia with Hobbits

Posted Jan 28, 2008 by Keith Cross

Turbine has announced plans to release Lord of the Rings Online in Russia in conjunction with a company called IT Territory LLC.

 

WESTWOOD, MA -- January 28, 2008 -- Turbine, Inc. and IT Territory LLC (ITT) today announced a new relationship for the distribution of The Lord of the Rings Online™: Shadows of Angmar™, the PC Game of the Year 2007. Under the terms of the agreement between Turbine and IT Territory, a leading publisher of online games in Russia and Eastern Europe, will operate and manage publication of The Lord of the Rings Online in the fast-growing Russian market.

“Our vision is to lead the growth of online games in Russia,” said Igor Matsanyuk, President of IT Territory. “We believe that The Lord of the Rings Online is the perfect franchise for us to deliver to our audience as part of this strategy. Our partnership with Turbine underscores the tremendous success, attention to detail, and transparency that our operations bring to the best game developers in the world as they seek to enter the massive Russian market.”

“The Lord of the Rings Online has taken North America and Europe by storm and we are committed to bringing the game to fans around the world,” said Jim Crowley, president and CEO of Turbine, Inc. “ITT is a major player in online gaming and we look forward to partnering with them to bring The Lord of the Rings Online to Russia.”

The Lord of the Rings Online delivers an interactive experience brimming with life and filled with the familiar people, places and monsters from the most beloved fantasy adventure of all time. From the quaint surroundings of the Shire to Angmar, the vile kingdom of the Witch-king, players will experience the world of Middle-earth as never before. The Lord of the Rings Online is currently operating in North America, Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Japan. For more information about The Lord of the Rings Online, please visit www.lotro.com.

 

More on LotRO here.

World of Warcraft : Lich King Bestiary

Posted Jan 28, 2008 by Keith Cross

On Friday, Blizzard released a new "bestiary" page for the upcoming Wrath of the Lich King expansion.

Wrath of the Lich King will introduce a vast new land and many new dungeons to the game. A multitude of strange and terrifying creatures inhabits the frozen continent of Northrend, and you can now catch the first glimpses of the denizens of Northrend on our new Wrath of the Lich King Bestiary page. This page contains a sampling of the many new monsters you will encounter as you venture deep into the forgotten lands and desolate wastes of the Lich King's domain. The Bestiary will be updated regularly, so make sure to check back often!

More on WoW here.

Pirates of the Burning Sea : Blackbeard Server Online

Posted Jan 28, 2008 by Keith Cross

Over the weekend, the Flying Lab Software team fixed the glitches and put the Blackbeard server online.

We believe that we’ve remedied the technical glitches on Blackbeard and the server is now live. We will continue to monitor Blackbeard’s performance throughout the evening.

We thank you for your patience and apologize for the inconvenience.

More on Burning Sea here.

Age of Conan : Art Book Preview: Tortage

Posted Jan 28, 2008 by Jon Wood

While in Norway, MMORPG.com was provided with samples from the Age of Conan Art Book. Today, we look at art representing the disreputable Tortage.

 

 

Check out the images here.

Flyff : Q&A With Joon Kim

Posted Jan 28, 2008 by Jon Wood

MMORPG.com's Joe Iuliani recently had the opportunity to talk to Joon Kim, the Assistant Producer of the MMORPG, Flyff about the upcoming Version 10 of the flight-based game.

MMORPG.com:

Can you describe the process of becoming a Master and Hero?

Joon Kim:

The first step in becoming a Master class is to attain level 120 with a standard job class. Once the user achieves level 120, they can venture into V10’s new area, Volcane Dungeon, to unlock the Master Quest. After completing Mastery, the user can unlock the Hero Quest (also within Volcane Dungeon) and embark on a journey to become a hero of Madrigal.

Read the whole thing here.

General : New Podcast

Posted Jan 27, 2008 by Keith Cross

The latest edition of the MMORPG.com Podcast is now available for your listening pleasure.

This week on the MMORPG.com Podcast, co-hosts Jon Wood and Keith Cross discuss Jon's recent trip to the Funcom offices in Oslo, Norway to take a look at Age of Conan as well as Funcom's other games. They also discuss Rock Band, X-box Live, and micropayments.

You can listen to the Podcast here.

Spellborn : Video Dev Diary

Posted Jan 25, 2008 by Ben Krueger

A new dev diary video has been released this time featuring Romano Molenaar Lead Concept Artist. 

Video Interview Video Dev Diary
The Green District Conception with Romano Molenaar (Lead Concept Artist).

Watch more here.

Zu Online : Challenge a GM

Posted Jan 25, 2008 by Keith Cross

IGG has released information about an upcoming event in Zu Online where players are tasked with challenging the GMs.

This week, the Zu team will offer players a chance to show off their game control by challenging their GMs. Details are as follows:

Event Location:

Ghost Canyon and Blue Mountain

Event Contents:

  1. GMs from opposite factions will appear in Ghost Canyon or Blue Mountain.
  2. GMs will prompt players to find them through the world channel.
  3. GMs will stay in the same place for 10 mins after they tell players where they are, and then they will teleport to another place. If a GM is killed within the 10 minutes, they will also be teleported out.
  4. When players find a GM, the GM won’t attack them until they are attacked first.
  5. GMs will drop some random equipment when they are killed, and any player can pick them up.

Read more here.

Asheron's Call : January Release Notes

Posted Jan 25, 2008 by Keith Cross

Turbine has posted the release notes for Asheron's Call's January Update.

Hello and welcome to the Release Notes for the January 2008 update of Asheron's Call! This month we find that the seasons have once again changed, and a chill is in the air. With this change of seasons, we see the arrival of snow once again across the landscape. This of course means that players may run into a snowman or two in their adventures. Be careful though, as not all snowmen are friendly.

Some adventurers have been reporting that they have been having some problems recalling exactly what happened during some of Dereth's major events. Some feel that Aerbax is involved in this somehow. Perhaps speaking with Asheron could clear things up?

Lets see what else is happening in Dereth this month!

  • Alchemy peas have been added to the game. This will help those who use grenades create their wares in batches now. We suggest all those interested, speak with Janier al-Evv in Xarabydun.
  • With the turning of the seasons, the landscape has once again begun to take on a more winter feel.
  • The events that were started in October, will be turned off this month. This includes the Al-Jalima invasion, the Harvest Reaper spawns, and the the Majestic Pumpkin.
  • Frosthaven has once again become an active area. Make sure to check the area out and help the snowmen.
  • Rumors of a Snowman who is need of assistance have been floating around recently. They say he has been seen most frequently in the mountains to the northeast.

Read more here.

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