IGG has released new information on their Black Market System in Tales of Pirates, where shrewd players can find rare items at low prices.
Grab FREE iPod Touch to click here (http://top.igg.com/triple) and paste the code (mmorpgcom). Tales of Pirates (http://top.igg.com) brings surprises to its “pirate community”, and the new coming Mysterious feature Black Market is just another one.
With the opening up of the Black Market, players will be able to obtain rare items at extremely favorable prices, as long as they are good at judging the real values of some ordinary-looked items.
How does the Black Market system works? Well, basically there are two options for the players.
Option 1: players could go find an NPC at the frozen Icicle Castle and exchange for rare items with the items required by the NPC, the items for exchange refreshes every once in a while, and so are the required items.
Option 2: players could buy some unknown items from NPC first, then “brush” them to know what exactly they are. What they could get totally depends on their luck then.
For more details about the interesting systems that ToP contains, you could head over to its official website at http://top.igg.com to dig them out yourself.
Read more about Tales of Pirates here.
MMORPG.com is pleased to announce the listing of Shadow of Legend, a game that is playable on both your home PC and your Cell Phone.
Want to take your favorite MMORPG anywhere you go and never have to leave the fantasy world behind? Shadow of Legend is the answer for you. Shadow of Legend is the world's first high-performance, cross-platform 2D MMORPG targeting both PC and mobile devices. Your adventures will no longer be restricted to your PC, but can be taken with you on your mobile device and played right in the palm of your hand!
- Seamlessly shared MMORPG experience on PDAs, Smartphones, and PCs
- Multiple races, classes, and professions across a vast virtual fantasy world
- A beautiful and rich environment coupled with an engrossing storyline
- Adventure, quest, mount, trade, auction, banking, crafting
- Live chat, grouping, and guild activities
- Free to download and free to play
Shadow of Legend takes you into the mythical Land of Agnes, a once beautiful and lush world, full of creatures and inhabitants that lived side-by-side in peace and harmony. It wasn’t until Chaos, the Bringer of Death and Destruction, began his eternal war against Harmorris, the Great God of Creation, which resulted in the burning and desecration of the lands. The constant warring left the fate of the inhabitants of Agnes at the hands of the gods, and gave them a choice to either join Harmorris and protect the land or join Chaos and conquer the land. You, as a player, get to choose
Read more here.
Hype the game here.
The Chronicles of Spellborn official site has been updated with another edition of their continuing developer journal series. In this week's Tech Journal, Maurits Fassaert writes about organic programming and emergent AI behavior.
So far my dev journals have concerned the process of game development. The intention is to explain something about the human side of making games. As representative of the tech department I should really be talking about technical stuff. Boring stuff. Well of course I don't find it boring, but for you, the gamer, it usually has little relevance. Art, content and sound are the aspects of a game that need to be noticeable. Tech is at its best when it is not noticeable. Tech needs to make sure the art, content and sound is delivered without glitches, without delays and without obvious trickery that breaks the suspension of disbelief. Finding out how it is done can be like finding out the trick behind a magician's performance. A programmer is cursed when playing games, because he'll see through the tricks faster. Explaining here how we are going to trick you with spellborn is something I'd like to avoid. Luckily there's a class of trickery, which is so mysterious that I'll make an exception for it.
Images, music, stories. These things are thoroughly ingrained in our culture. Since the dawn of mankind, experts have honed these arts to trick our senses. Modern game developers apply samples and polygons where pigskin drums and dirty lines on a cave wall used to be the height of entertainment. Likewise programming can be said to come from mathematics, an advanced form of counting beads on rope, but the application of mathematics as entertainment is a more recent development, unless you think dividing by zero is fun. Because of this there is still a lot of catching up to do. A lot of processing power is spent in modern operating systems trying to make the interface feel more natural, more human centered. In games a similar process is happening. We're still shooting monsters as we were in Doom, but they are no longer facing only 8 directions. When we kill them they no longer frag in the same over the top animation, but they fly away from the grenade's impact, shrapnel sticking from the exact places where it pierced the body.
Read the full developer journal here.
MMORPG.com is pleased to announce that, due to popular demand, we are now listing HellGate: London on our Game List.
A post-apocalyptic London has been overrun by hordes of terrifying demons, leaving the city desolate and scorched by hellfire. Those who were unlucky enough to survive now gather in the only sanctuary left, the Underground, banding together in order to gain a foothold against the minions of darkness and ultimately save the bloodline of humanity.
It is no surprise that these sole survivors come from three of society's most elite factions, each of whom are masters of a robust number of skills and weapons essential to demon-thrashing.
- The RPG Authority - Flagship Studios was founded by the core creators of Diablo, one of the biggest PC gaming franchises in history with over 13 million units sold worldwide - they are the first, last and only voice in the world of action RPGs.
- Beyond RPG - Experience new layers to the traditional hack-and-slash forumla by experiencing the action RPG from the first-person perspective and through nontraditional character classes and playstyles.
- Have it your way - Three unique factions with their own visual and gameplay style, offering something for every type of gamer, whether they prefer the longer-range blasts of the Hunter or want to get up close and personal with the Templar.
- Infinite Replayability - Dynamically generated levels, chance events and massive quantities of randomly created items makes for infinite replayability -- no two experiences will ever be the same and every game will be it's own unique event.
- Mad Skills - Each faction has three character classes that contain a wide variety of skills and spells that are fully customizable.
- London Calling - Explore post-apocalyptic London, even darker and gloomier than usual. From shattered cathedrals and landmarks to the ancient ruins buried beneath the shell of a once-great city, players will need to scour all of London in search of the unknown.
- Misery Loves Company - Don't be a glory hog - fight online. Gather with friends or recruit strangers in Underground stations and venture out into mean streets of London together to erase the Demonic threat.
- Hell Never Looked Better - HellGate: London features all of the latest next-generation technology to deliver a true, DX10 experience, while being fully scalable for optimal performance on older PCs.
More on HellGate: London here.
Hype this game here.
The Vanguard: Saga of Heroes official site has been updated with an interview with one of their game designers. Myka Kairs recently worked on the Ksaravi Gulch quests and is currently working on the flying mount quest.
So what do you do on the Vanguard team? Or maybe I should ask, what are you currently working on?
Right now I'm working on implementing the flying mount quest. I do lots of content implementation, mainly of quests and population.
You worked on some of the new Ksaravi Gulch quests, right?
Yup, I was part of the group there designed the quests for the Ksaravi Gulch Dungeon. And I implemented the (minor) population changes tot he dungeon, and all of the quest, that is, the quest in the dungeon. The changes outside the dungeon were made by Gary Fisher.
I know players are eagerly anticipating the flying mount quest, are you willing to give away any tiny spoilers?
Ummm, it has wings? ~chuckles~
It's certainly not a soloable quest, that's for sure. There are parts that are soloable, but definitely not all of it.
Read the full interview here.
Each week, MMORPG.com writer Joe Iuliani gives us his thoughts on what's going on in WoW. Recently, he's been examining some of the things that keep players entertained in-game even after years of playing. This week, he looks at seasonal questing.
I know most of the readers out there are aware of the seasonal quests, and I know that most folks will think this is beneath MMORPG’s quality of content. With that out of the way, I still think that the seasonal quests deserve special attention.
Amongst the leveling of characters, raiding high level instances and PvPing there are the understated and often times taken for granted seasonal quests. Too many times players are in a rush to level up and get gear that they overlook the content of the game. The seasonal quests in WoW are a testament to Blizzard’s commitment to keeping this game fun. These quests are great for folks who want to just log in for a few and have some fun. The higher you move up in WoW, the more it seems like a part-time job rather than a game. Almost every raid takes well over an hour, and depending on what side and what server you are on an Alterac Valley run takes much longer than that. Most importantly, they can be enjoyed by players of all levels.
Read it all here.
It's official. Reports earlier in the evening had Perpetual Entertainment ending production of Gods & Heros: Rome Rising. This evening, a post on their official web page has confirmed it, as Perpetual puts it on "indefinite hold".
Loyal and faithful community members and Beta testers, thank you for your support, help, and understanding during the Gods & Heroes: Rome Rising development process.
The development team established some very lofty and ambitious goals when the initial work was started on Gods & Heroes. Recently, we took a step back to evaluate the competitive landscape, the game's current state, and the overall goals for our organization. And while we are truly proud of and pleased with what we have created in Gods & Heroes, we also realize that achieving the level of quality and polish that we are committed to will take a significant investment.
The Perpetual team is faced with a unique challenge of simultaneously developing both Gods & Heroes and Star Trek Online in addition to growing our Online Game Platform business. After assessing all of Perpetual's opportunities, we have made the decision to put the development of Gods & Heroes on indefinite hold.
I want to express my overwhelming gratitude to the community, engineers, designers, artists, animators, and the game services team for the support and effort that has gone into Gods & Heroes.
Moving forward, we're shifting our collective focus, resources and development efforts to Perpetual's Platform Services division and Star Trek Online, thereby ensuring that the game lives up to the high level of expectation set by the dedicated Star Trek fan base.
Again, I would personally like to thank all of the Gods & Heroes supporters who have been with us from the beginning. Hopefully, your continued support will be as valuable to our future endeavors as it was with Gods & Heroes..
Vade in pace,
Check it out for yourself here.
MMORPG.com will continue to follow this story as it develops.
Well it's over and with almost 500 people in attendance our Dev Chat with the WAR dev team rocked! In case you missed it we've posted the transcript of the event.
MMORPG.com: Sinkael :asks: My question is this, when DAoC came out and for some time afterward, there was a feeling of realm pride that slowly faded as time went on and people started realm hopping between realms. This realm pride was one of my favorite "features" of DAoC and I want to know what you are doing to folster this, if anything at all.
[WAR]EAMythic_Josh: So an underpopulated realm will always have a good chance at defending and attacking in RvR due to the balancing that scenarios can offer.
[WAR]EAMythic_Josh: Eek. Another question!
[WAR]EAMythic_Josh: Okay. My slow reading skills have now caught up.
[WAR]EAMythic_Josh: And, to be honest, not necessarily a bad thing in all cases.
[WAR]EAMythic_Josh: But one of the major ways we intend to foster that sense of pride and place and belonging is via the guild system.
[WAR]EAMythic_Josh: We're aiming to build into the guild experience a sense of purpose and direction that will make it worthwhile to stick with a guild long-term.
[WAR]EAMythic_Josh: That said, we certainly hope people try lots of things out in-game.
[WAR]EAMythic_Josh: Since... well... we love the whole thing and want people to see what we've been building. MMORPG.com: Godban :asks: how big will the groups/party/raids will be
[WAR]EAMythic_Gersh: Looks like I'm up
[WAR]EAMythic_Gersh: Groups currently at 6 people, we are supporting larger raid or "battlegroups" for RvR scenerios etc however the final size is YTB
[WAR]EAMythic_Gersh: We'll be locking that down after we get a good feel for the needs of a large scale event
Read the whole enchilada here.
Warcry is running a story that Perpetual Entertainment, the company developing both Star Trek Online and Gods & Heroes: Rome Rising, has new investors and that this brings the future of Gods & Heroes into question. The article asserts that the game has been canceled.
Neither the Gods & Heroes site, nor the Perpetual Entertainment website currently reflect any change or closure. MMORPG.com was unable to reach Perpetual Entertainment for confirmation of this story. We will, of course, follow this story as it develops.
Read the original story here.
The Star Trek Online official site has been updated with the third installment of their DevLog series. DevLog 3.0 focuses on the process of taking concept art and seeing the vision realized in the game.
Welcome back to the STO DevLog, a recurring glimpse into the planning, plotting and production of Star Trek Online, the game so big it takes half the galaxy to tell it.
For this installment we'd like to mix things up a bit. For the past couple of months we've closed out the DevLog with stunning pieces of concept art, showing off the elite skills of our concept team.
This time around, we'd like to start with one of these boffo images, and take everyone on a whirlwind tour of how they're broken into increasingly tiny pieces.
Let's start with the snazzy "Vulcan Village" concept by Ryan Dening that we shared in last months' DevLog:
That's darned pretty, but if we're going to build more than one Vulcan-style village in Star Trek Online (and we are), this beautiful drawing will have to be broken down into its component parts, so that our modelers and texture artists can create dozens of bits and pieces that can be easily be re-assembled into a nigh-infinite variety of combinations. This process is usually handed off to a member of the concept team, who has "ownership" of the concept breakdown.
Read more here.
NCsoft has announced that they will be holding a special Halloween event in Tabula Rasa during the 3 day pre order head start, where players can collect special Halloween goodies and masks.
Join us in-game on October 31st during our 3 day Pre-Order headstart to celebrate that special spooky time of year, Halloween! Players will run missions spreading Halloween goodies and receive special Halloween masks as a treat from the Dev Team. There are 9 special masks to collect and keep, but you can only get them if you are in-game on Halloween day as part of our Pre-Order Headstart. Pick up your Tabula Rasa Pre-Order Bonus pack today and join us in game on Halloween to get your treats!
And be certain to check out our screen shot of the week to sneak a peek at one of your Halloween treats!!!
Read more here.
The Pirates of the Burning Sea official site has been updated with part two of their treatise on Tuning, where they take a detailed behind the scenes look at what makes a ship a ship.
Ship tuning is all about the details and numbers. We define ships in text INI files. Each INI file is a long series of values, amounting to nearly 500 lines in length for the biggest ships (many of those are blank lines). There is also a 100-line base file that's included in all ships. A good chunk of the values are set once and left alone for a long time, and many of them are used for the ship art. Once those are stripped out, there are about 150 values (not lines) used in tuning ships. Obviously, we cannot show players every single one of those values in the UI.
Setting the values on ships is often more complex than the output that players see in game. For example, players see the speed and best wind angle for ships. Those two stats are the key values out of the 24 values that are used to set a ship's speed. On top of that, there are numerous values to determine how fast a ship turns, how fast it accelerates and decelerates, how much speed it loses when it turns, how quickly it accelerates into a turn and how well it turns at different speeds. All of those values come together to determine how the ship handles in combat, and I use the data to make simple charts. Here's a chart that compares the acceleration over 30 seconds for the Cerberus, Stralsund, Defiant, Capricieux, Lexington, Mediator, Invincible and Oliphant.
Read the full article here.
The Guild wars official site has been updated with another edition of their State of the Game series of articles. This week's article is the third part to last week's article titled "NPCs, Splits, and you" which focuses on split team tactics.
Some of the quirkier guild halls--Burning Isle, Isle of Weeping Stone, Isle of Wurms, and Isle of Meditation--do have unique options for splitting, but the same split tactics that work on other maps also work well here.
Well-executed split maneuvers share several key characteristics. Successful split squads move in to the enemy base and act quickly to eliminate NPCs and then escape before opposing players arrive. Good splits also create mismatches, allowing a team to collapse on outnumbered opponents for quick, easy kills. Lastly, split teams maintain control of key areas of the map to prevent opponents from establishing a strong position in one place unless they give up ground at another.
Split characters often bring a speed boost or Shadow Step for rapid travel, though some teams simply dispatch a Ranger with Natural Stride or even Escape to gank enemy NPCs while the main battle takes place at the flag stand. Other teams might use an Aura of Displacement (AoD) Assassin who Shadow Steps to a foe, marking a Shadow Step anchor, and infiltrates far behind enemy lines. If the Assassin gets into trouble, he simply cancels the elite Enchantment and Shadow Steps to safety.
Read the full article here.
Blizzard has posted an in-depth guide to macros in World of Warcraft, starting with the basics of what they are and how to make one, then moving on into more specific detail.
In a game with the size, complexity, and depth of World of Warcraft, many features can be overlooked by players, including longtime veterans who have been playing for years. Even the game's familiar features often have additional layers of complexity that many players may not use or be aware of.
Thus, we come to the macro. Essentially macros are lines of script that execute in-game commands. They allow you to combine multiple actions into one user-customized button that you can use just like a spell or ability. For example, you can take a string of commands that you would ordinarily press one after the other, and combine them into one button that executes them all in sequence. These helpful tools have the ability to improve and streamline your entire play experience.
Read more about macros here.
Community Manager, Laura Genender was in San Francisco recently, to attend Sony Online Entertainment's "Step Into Fall" event where she had the chance to take a guided tour of Pirates of the Burning Sea.
I first saw Pirates of the Burning Sea two years ago at E3 - in a genre so inundated with fantasy repeats, the historical piratey theme was intriguing. This past Thursday I got to meet with the POTBS team at SOE's 'Step into Fall' event. Expecting to release on January 22nd of 2008 (with preorders on October 23rd), the developers have been hard at work adding new game-play opportunities like avatar combat, user-created content, and more.
My guides for the tour were Flying Lab Software's Russell Williams (CEO) and Jess Lebow (Content Director). To start the tour out, they showed me avatar combat, where players fight on foot instead of in their ships.
Avatars can train in one of three combat styles: Florentine, a duel wielding style that is generally more defensive; Dirty Fighting, which specializes in immobilization; or Fencing, which is the fastest of the styles. Players are able to respec from one style to another - for a cost, of course.
Read the full article here.
Managing Editor Jon Wood recently had a gaming experience that left a bad taste in his mouth, and he has chosen to share that flavor with us in this week's Beyond the MMORPG.
This week in Beyond the MMORPG, I wanted to take a quick look at what I consider to be the single worst game that I've ever played for a console, and how that might effect the production of an upcoming MMORPG. Don't think it's possible? You just wait and see.
Okay, the game in question, I should say, is the first and only game that I have ever, ever played for only two hours and then took back to EB Games. I couldn't get a full refund on it, but I did trade it in. The game was so bad, in fact, that I didn't wait until there was something out that I wanted, and I currently have a gift card for EB with the price of the trade-in on it.
After a lead up like that, I suppose I should just out and tell you the name of the game. It's Star Trek: Legacy. On the surface (and from the boc), this game looked like it was going to be a winner. It billed itself as "The quintessential Trek experience", included storylines written by Trek mainstay D.C. Fontana and used the voices of all five captains.
Read the full article here.
The Lord of the Rings Online official site has been updated with another look at some of the creatures that populate Middle Earth. This time around it's everyone's favourite fire breathing lizard: the Salamander. Well, maybe second favourite. They're definitely in the top 5.
Since the days of the Great Dragons – such as Ancalagon the Black, Scatha the Worm, or even Smaug the Golden – dragon-kind has been in a deep decline, spawning weaker and simpler breeds. Drakes are strong and semi-intelligent, while worms are nearly mindless and lack the physical might of their elders. Salamanders, however, while not nearly as intelligent as drakes or as stupid as worms, still hold some vestige of the old fire within their bellies.
These beasts, also called efts by some of the more learned, are fearsome and share their forebears’ lust for treasure. Fortunately, they are also not very proliferative and are only found in out-of-the-way places, such as the nearly uninhabited region of Evendim. Regardless, adventurers would do well to beware their breath.
In keeping with J.R.R. Tolkien’s devices, the concept for the salamanders was drawn from English folklore. While the original salamanders were classical in origin, the draconic version presented in the game is an English adaptation, as is the alternate name “eft.”
Read more here.