Planetwide Games has announced today that they will begin the $1,000,000 tournament on July 1, 2005! Details about this skill-based event below:
COSTA MESA, Calif., June 30, 2005 -- Planetwide Games (http://www.RYL.net) announced today that the RYL: Path of the Emperor $1,000,000 Grand Prize Skill-Based Tournament begins July 1, 2005. Online video game players will put on their true game faces to compete worldwide in Player vs. Player battles. The action is anticipated to be fierce, as gamers from the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Finland, Sweden, and India to name a few, will vie for the largest Grand Prize in Video Game History. RYL: Path of the Emperor - a Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game (MMORPG) is now challenging gamers to compete head to head awarding one person $1,000,000. The $1,000,000 Grand Prize will be paid over four years in four installments of $250,000, according to Planetwide Games’ President Kevin Donovan.
“Planetwide Games is empowering gamers worldwide to play RYL: Path of the Emperor for FREE by providing an alternative method to traditional monthly subscription fees that they’re accustomed to paying”, stated Donovan. “Gamers now have the unique opportunity to earn FREE online RYL gameplay by participating in monthly online surveys and also receive their chance to compete to win $1,000,000.”
The RYL: Path of the Emperor $1,000,000 Tournament will begin on July 1, 2005 and end April 30, 2006, culminating in the RYL: Path of the Emperor Grand Finals event to be broadcast live and to take place in conjunction with the E3 Video Game Expo in Los Angeles, CA in May 2006. Interested players can view more details about the tournament rules and regulations at http://www.RYL.net/Tournament.
Effective this morning at 00:00 (GMT+8) A3 launched their first ever P2P English server. People who were previously in their beta program will get one week of free play time before having to begin paying to access the game.
They have posted a very detailed FAQ which should help to answer the questions you might have about this recent change. You can read the FAQ at this link.
New features that you will find in the P2P version:
Hidden away in Atlanta is Kaneva. This company hopes to make the dreams of amateur game developers a reality with their gameless game engine available in a beta state through Kaneva.com. Recently, we toured their offices and today we present our impressions:
| How many million times, on how many million message boards has the thread “I want to make my own MMORPG, want to help?” appeared? Usually these threads meet with scorn and speeches about how the fans will need millions of dollars and a dedicated staff to consider such a project. Last week while in Atlanta I came across a company who has set out to change that: Kaneva. This company has produced a gameless MMORPG engine that they intend to distribute freely to amateur and professional game developers alike. At first glance, it sounds too good to be true, but what they showed definitely has the potential to level the playing field and open up MMORPG creation to practically anyone.
A free game engine? It sounds too good to be true. How do they make money? Kaneva plans to give their game engine to anyone who wants it. Kaneva retains the (non-exclusive) rights to host any content on their website, where they will take care of billing, servers, and the business end of the deal. Developers are free to set their own prices, and then split them down the middle, fifty/fifty with Kaneva. Once again, their business model looks like it might cut away another layer of red tape. It enables the would-be developer to simply worry about their game and actually make some money off their hobby.
You can read the full article here.
The official website for Warhammer Online has been relaunched by Mythic Entertainment. Although very little is available, there is a short FAQ, info on hiring and a chance to sign up for the newsletter.
Perhaps the most noteworthy aspect of the update is the inclusion of a giant piece of concept art on the front page, which may hint at the tone of the upcoming MMORPG.
You can check it all out at WarhammerOnline.com.
The second EverQuest II adventure pack is now available for subscribers to that game. The Splitpaw Saga was officially released yesterday.
- Sony Online Entertainment’s Second Exciting Adventure Pack for EverQuest II Available Now -
SAN DIEGO, CA – June 29, 2005 – Sony Online Entertainment Inc. (SOE), a worldwide leader in massively multiplayer online (MMO) gaming, yesterday released The Splitpaw Saga, the second exciting adventure pack for EverQuest II. Available via digital download for US $7.99, The Splitpaw Saga gives players hours of new story-rich content to explore.
"We enjoy making sure that EverQuest II has new places to explore," said Senior Producer Scott Hartsman. “Adventure packs like The Splitpaw Saga let us bring out high-quality, story-rich content frequently. Whether you're there to follow the story, adventure in new zones that scale to your level, or even to blow up your group members with traps and puzzles, additions like this are a great way to make the world come alive in new and exciting ways."
In The Splitpaw Saga, players will explore the collapsed caverns and twisted tunnels of Sundered Splitpaw. Throughout this adventure, the truth behind the dungeon’s mysterious demise is uncovered by using moveable planks, crates and barrels to work through a series of 12 intriguing event-based zones. A ferocious clan of cannibalistic gnolls will stand in the way as players seek to destroy the greatest threat yet in Norrath's history of late. New and veteran players alike can experience the adventure meeting fresh challenges as they progress and try again as the encounters scale dynamically to match the player’s level.
The Splitpaw Saga adventure pack has an exciting storyline and plenty of action that solo players, groups, and raids can enjoy for months to come. For more information, please visit www.splitpawsaga.com.
About Sony Online Entertainment
Last week, CCP Games talked about their Cold War updade to the popular EVE Online. This week they make it official with the following press release:
CCP Games Announces a Massive Content Upgrade for EVE Online
REYKJAVIK, ICELAND – June 29th, 2005 – CCP Games, an independent developer and publisher of massively multiplayer online games, today announced “EVE Online®: Cold War Edition,” a new massive content upgrade to its highly successful and fast growing Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game (MMORPG) “EVE Online®: Exodus.” The “Cold War Edition” is scheduled to be released the first week of July, and in the tradition of CCP Games, will be provided to subscribers free of charge.
“I expect that players will be pleasantly surprised at how much effect the Cold War Edition will have on gameplay, and how much content they will receive.” said Magnus Bergsson, CMO of CCP Games. “The Cold War Edition is an important chapter in the EVE story, and will set the stage for the next expansion coming out later in the year.”
With nearly 60,000 active subscribers and close to a 13,000 simultaneous user record in a single shard world, “EVE Online” is the largest single shard massively multiplayer game on the market today.
"Apart from being a major content upgrade to EVE Online, this update also represents our focus on the global market for EVE,” says Hilmar Veigar Pétursson, CEO of CCP Games. “Not only does it include a totally reengineered new player experience, but the tutorials will be translated to 9 different languages and include improved Unicode support. This will give the players the chance to communicate and create communities based on their own language.”
EVE Online®: Cold War Edition will put the fragile peace sustaining the Empire territories at risk, as sovereignties secretly vie for advantage over their foes. Empires will unite to form pacts, old superhighways will be changed… a new world order is forming. Dozens of new passageways into the deep space regions will create unprecedented opportunities for both veteran and new pilots alike.
Some of the features of this upgrade include:
About CCP Games
About EVE Online
In-Kyun Hong, the Producer of SUN from Webzen Inc., and Richard Duffek had a chat about the upcoming action packed MMORPG. Here is a snippet:
| MMORPG.com: Can you give us a little more details on how “SUN is the first title to incorporate console-style game mechanics into a classic MMORPG”?
In-Kyun Hong: SUN puts the style of a 3D action/adventure game into an MMORPG. In battle, we are working on move attacks, range attacks and unique skills that let players fight with multiple monsters at one time. Also, missions are not just given as quests. Instead, players will have to pay close attention to the environment where suspicious marks or switches may lead to the next mission. For example, touch a switch and a wall may break down or a trap might be activated. These are the types of things we’re putting into SUN to give it faster and more thrilling gameplay.
You can read the full article here.
LucasArts has passed along details of "Publish 19", the latest update to Star Wars Galaxies. Included in their update are six new screenshots. Here are the details direct from Community Manager Chris Baker:
|Star Wars Galaxies gets a big update on June 29 with quite a few additions going into Publish 19. Some of the more notable ones include a new chapter in the Syren story arc quest, changes to Smuggler slicing, morale-boosting visits from heroes of the Galactic Civil War, and TONS of revisions implemented because of feedback offered at Star Wars Galaxies Fan Fest 2005 in Anaheim earlier this month.
The Syren story arc quest enters its third chapter and definitely promises a surprise or two. Join in and travel the galaxy to environments such as Talus, Naboo and Corellia space. You never know what reward may await…
The Smuggler slicing game sees a facelift, too, with greater rewards awaiting the galaxy’s savviest scoundrels. Smugglers can now upgrade weapons and armor in previously unavailable ways, as they proactively choose to change a weapon’s speed, critical chance and damage. They may also choose to increase their armor’s resilience, deflection, critical save and armor break defense.
And what better way to use your new modified weapons and armor than on a quest supplied to you by an infamous Dark Lord of the Sith or the greatest hero of the Rebellion? At intermittent points in the game at the galaxy’s bigger cities, Imperials might welcome a morale boost from Darth Vader, while Luke Skywalker rallies his Rebel friends. And depending on your allegiance, each also just might have a job for you…
On June 2 and 3 at Star Wars Galaxies Fan Fest 2005, players certainly had their own tasks for the game’s developers. And less than a month later, the dedicated teams at Sony Online Entertainment and LucasArts are delivering. From increasing the damage ranges on cybernetic arms to allowing Jedi to Force choke through an opponent’s armor, nearly 40 fan suggestions have found their way into Galaxies. And that’s only the beginning…
OnNet Co has passed along word that their sport-MMORPG "Shot Online" is now available in North America.
(Sunnyvale, CA - June 28, 2005) - OnNet Co, Ltd, a leader in creative and leading-edge online game development, is pleased to announce the North American online launch of Shot-Online, the immersive, realistic simulation of the game of golf. Shot-Online is distributed online by OnNet Co., Ltd.
Shot-Online is a unique hybrid persistent 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 is already a successful online game in commercial service in Korea and Japan," states Sean Hong, Marketing Director for OnNet Co. Ltd, "and we believe American gamers will also enjoy the uniqueness of this massively accessible and massively enjoyable online golf game."
In addition to the new live, full-featured service, Shot-Online will soon be rolling out the 3rd Shot-Online Global Championship, to be held from July 12th to July 15th at the brand-new and very challenging desert-themed "Rufus Arena" course.
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 3rd Shot-Online Global Championship, please visit the official Shot-Online website. (http://www.shot-online.com).
About OnNet Co., Ltd
Founded in 1996, OnNet Co., Ltd is at the epicenter of the ongoing online revolution, leading with its Internet community services and solutions, and is playing a significant role in helping companies reinforce the value of their online services. OnNet Entertainment is the developer and operator behind the online golfing game, Shot-Online. For more information about OnNet Co., Ltd, visit http://www.onnetusa.com.
Webzen has announced that the highly anticipated MMO All Points Bulletin will be published on the XBox 360. APB is a free form MMORPG from the creator of Grand Theft Auto.
MMORPG.com contacted Webzen regarding this announcement and they let us know that this announcement has no impact on their plans to release the title for the PC.
WITH ALL POINTS BULLETIN FOR XBOX 360
Groundbreaking Game to Bring First Real-World Based, Massively Multiplayer Experience to Forthcoming Console
SEOUL AND LOS ANGELES - June 28, 2005 - WEBZEN Inc. (NASDAQ: WZEN) announced today that its highly anticipated massively multiplayer freeform combat and driving-based game, All Points Bulletin (APB), is in development for the Xbox 360™ video game and entertainment system from Microsoft. APB is being developed by Real Time Worlds Ltd. under the leadership of David Jones, creator of the original Grand Theft Auto franchise. APB will be the first real-world based, massively multiplayer online game (MMOG) for Xbox 360. WEBZEN will publish and operate the game in worldwide markets, with WEBZEN America Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of WEBZEN, launching and operating APB in North America. All Points Bulletin for Xbox 360 will be released in 2008.
"We are thrilled to bring our strengths as a developer and publisher of high-end MMO games for PC users to the Xbox 360 audience," said Nam Ju Kim, CEO, WEBZEN Inc. "We are confident APB will take full advantage of Xbox 360's impressive capabilities and bring fans an unparalleled massively multiplayer experience unlike any other."
“We are very happy to see Webzen’s enthusiasm in creating games such as APB and Huxley for Xbox 360,” said John Smith, Group Manager US & Asia 3rd Party Publishing, Microsoft. “WEBZEN is one of the key developers, publishers and operators of massively multi-player online games in Asia and their commitment to Xbox 360 will no doubt have a huge market impact on our next-generation console. We look forward to working closely with WEBZEN to fully leverage the online and MMOG policy features of our Xbox 360 platform as they build bigger and better games.”
A genre-breaking game unlike any other in the MMO space, All Points Bulletin offers intense game play in a highly volatile world filled with dramatic car chases, shootouts, busts, escapes and arrests. Players can also enjoy a fully customizable gaming experience without leveling-up constraints, allowing them to choose character appearances, attitudes, music preferences and more. In addition, many actions throughout the game will result in cash rewards, enabling players to obtain advanced weaponry, vehicles and other items to further enhance their characters.
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.
Hot on the heels of the first Q&A, Erick Slick has returned to answer more questions in the second part of our bi-weekly Q&A series with Simutronics. The article includes an exclusive screenshot, which we carry each week!
|MMORPG.com: As a small developer working on a AAA quality MMORPG, what are some of the challenges you face and how do you intend to continue to overcome them and make a game of equal or better quality to something from a major development house?
Erick Slick: We’ve spent years developing our unique techniques for building games. These processes are unique to Simutronics, and it seems clear that our productivity is considerably higher than people are use to seeing. I love when people are surprised, but for us it’s business as usual.
As the Director of Development, my biggest challenge is how to do more with less. That requires me to be very creative and work hand-in-hand with my team on a myriad of issues. The fact that we don’t have money to just throw at a problem means we have to be smarter, and we are encouraged to constantly be inventive and take risks to get us where we need to be. This makes Simutronics a unique, challenging and rewarding place to ply one’s craft.
You can read the full interview here.
The second of four Auto Assault Roadhouses has come and gone and our own Laura Genender has written this second preview for our site. This week she hones in on skills. The article also includes several screenshots.
| Skills can be assigned to a hotkey bar that can be used in or out of combat. Hotkeys can be activated using the 1 through 0 keys on the keyboard, and players may have multiple hotkey bars. Another nice, fresh feature in Auto Assault is if you find yourself using one specific skill over and over again (such as a short recast damage skill) you can highlight it and use shift + right click to fire it.
Let’s get a bit more in detail about the races and classes and what kind of skills they get. There are four classes in each race that fulfill the general archetype roles of tanker, support, scout, and summoner. All of the skills were designed to be appropriate to race, class, world and back story; for example, the Mutant skills are mostly Contamination related while Biomek skills use nanites and brute force. To put this into context, Mutant summons are the phaseforming of Contamination to form an animalistic shape while Biomek summons are often robots built on the fly using millions of nanobots.
You can read the full article here.
Thank you to Laura and NetDevil for making these happen!
Thank you to the team for sending these along!
Interadventure has made the following announcement about recent updates to Hostile Space which will make the game entirely free to play:
|INTERADVENTURE ANNOUNCES HOSTILE SPACE: THE BROOD INQUISITION (TM)
Now offering FREE play with no time restrictions
BURLINGTON, Vermont -- JUNE 25th 2005 -- InterAdventure Inc.
1. Players can spectate in same area with Players fighting.
2. Faction/Team based with Red Blades fighting the Blue Syndicate.
3. Attacking faction aligned ships automatically flags you for PvP for 1 minute.
4. All players are required to join one of the two teams by level 10.
5. Players choosing not to join in can safely watch as long as they do not interfere.
For more about Hostile Space, please visit the official site.
Every other Friday we feature a brief Q&A with Luke Carruthers, the head man at Imaginary Numbers and the man behind Tactica Online. This Friday is no different, as we provide you with four more questions and answers! A preview:
To read the full interview, click here.
OnGameNet - a leading online gaming provider based in Australia recently announced that their service will be going live very soon:
Australia Online Gaming Takes a Step Higher
Australia’s first MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role playing game) company OnGameNet released Ragnarok Online in early September 2004. Ragnarok Online is the first ever MMORPG game to be hosted in Australia and, following its success, OnGameNet is preparing to release two other online games into Australia in late June 2005; Shot Online and Cartoon Racer.
Previously all MMORPG games have been hosted overseas in countries such as the US, China, Korea and Taiwan (just to name a few). This has never been an ideal situation for Australians with users having issues with lag and disconnections because of the amount of data needed to be transferred between the host and the client at a stable speed. With OnGameNet growing steadily we will see a bright future for online games here in Australia. This means having online games hosted locally and easier payment facilities for Australian gamers without a credit card. Players using a modem, ADSL or cable connection can play without lag and disconnections commonly experienced playing on overseas servers.
Shot Online is a 3D MMORPG golf game where you can enjoy playing with your friends at anytime. Shot Online is not just an ordinary golf game. The innovative systems have captured the swings and motions of professional golfers and applied directly into the game itself. Shot Online also offers real ball movements that are greatly influenced by all kinds of natural factors and environments (e.g., wind, weather, and temperature). These features, combined with a simple and easy to use interface, make the game great for golf enthusiasts, and easy to learn for those new to the game!
Cartoon Racer is a casual online cart-style racing game with 70+ unique decorative racing cars. Up to 8 players can play and race together in real time. Cartoon Racer has three different modes of play, Racing, Soccer and Battle Bumper, each with different and unique features to make the game more exciting and entertaining. The main objective of the game is to win races (or battles) and gain points which you can use the points decorate and upgrade your car to your liking or even buy a new car or two!
OnGameNet (www.ongamenet.com.au) online games portal website is be due to be released in late June 2005, with information about its upcoming online games being released and the current ones. Cartoon Racer and Shot Online Closed Beta services are set to have their closed beta testing stages in late June as well with an opening beta test following in early July.
CCP has just announced via their newsletter that they are releasing a massive content update code named "The Cold War". From their newsletter:
|The summer solstice fast approaches, and its arrival means that the long, hard Arctic winter is about to enter its slumber. Cold as it was, we worked feverishly on projects so secret that not even their names have been whispered in public - Until now! |
So get ready for a new content patch, a new type of EVE updates from CCP that is much larger in scope than a regular patch and yet smaller than a full expansion. It is our great pleasure to introduce to you the Cold War Edition.
This content patch is an important chapter within EVE and will set the stage for our next expansion - currently codenamed Kali. So get the scoop here on what the Cold War Edition will contain and get ready for some large scale changes.
For a complete list of what this update will entail - visit the newsletter online at this link.
The first in a series of Q&A's with the dev team of Lord of the Rings Online has been posted on the official website. This week the question for the dev team was "Who is your favorite character from The Lord of the Rings or The Hobbit?"
Floon Beetle (Artist):
Jeff Murchie (Concept Artist):
You can read all the answers from the dev team here at the official Lord of the Rings Online website.