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General : Video Competition: Win An XBox 360!

Posted Oct 02, 2008 by Craig McGregor has teamed up with - a new video competition website to bring a cool new contest to our community. From now until the end of the year you can submit a MMORPG "spoof" video - and if your video gets the most votes you win!

You can get details about this promotion at our contest page at this link.

NOTE: is not operating this contest.  For questions about rules or the contest please visit the contest page at

General : Otherland Screens: Lambda Mall

Posted Oct 01, 2008 by Keith Cross

Today, RealU announced that they were developing an MMO based on the Otherland novel series by Tad Williams. Today we present the first screenshots to come out of their labor. The images depict Lambda Mall, a main social hub in the game, and various modes of transportation in this space.

See all of the screenshots here.

Warhammer Online : A Guide for the Fresh New Player

Posted Oct 01, 2008 by Jon Wood

Warhammer Online Correspondent John Lisenby Writes this guide that introduces the early mechanics of the game to new players who might ot be too familair with them.

What do you do when you log on? Where do you go? Who do you talk to? What does that green circle over that NPC's head mean? Don't look any further. Here are the answers you seek. This short guide goes over a number of elements that should help you get started if you're a first time player.

When you first log in to this new game world you will find many things to do. What do you do first? Me, I found out all I could about the controls, interface, and the chat. It's really pretty simple, and I've laid out a quick overview of each below:

Read the guide here.

Vanguard : More Accounts Reactivated

Posted Oct 01, 2008 by Keith Cross

SOE has announced that all former Vanguard accounts have been reactivated until October 18th.

Due to popular demand, we have expanded the recent account reactivation promotion that was sent out to former players who had opted-in for promotional emails. Now all Vanguard accounts that have been inactive for more than 60 days have been reactivated for free play through October 18th.

With the new Isle of Dawn starting area and over 1000 bug fixes in our most recent update, there's never been a better time to revisit Vanguard.

If you still have Vanguard installed, just log in and start playing. If you've misplaced your disks, you can reinstall the game through Station Launcher, our simple one-click application that delivers all your Station games, friends, and community news right to your desktop.

Read more here.

General : New MMO Based on Otherland Novel Pt. 1

Posted Oct 01, 2008 by Jon Wood news Manager keith Cross traveled recently to Singapore to learn more about a new MMO being developed by Real U Studios based on the Otherland novel series by author Tad Williams. Today, Keith begins with part one of our introduction to this new game.

Recently, a group of European and North American game journalists were invited to Singapore to visit Real U studios, where we were promised a first look at a previously unannounced MMO project. Today, the embargo on the information has been lifted and we can freely talk about Otherland, a game based on the novel series of the same name by Tad Williams. Tad was the surprise guest of honor for the trip, and was at the main presentation along with Kevin Buckner, the Senior Producer on Otherland, and Andrew Carter, CEO of Real U.

Otherland is currently about 75% through the pre-production phase, and about 15% complete according to Real U. The game is being developed with a special version of the Unreal Engine 3, and is currently scheduled for release in 2010.

Read the article here.

General : Otherland MMO Announced

Posted Oct 01, 2008 by Keith Cross

dtp Entertainment and RealU have announced that they are developing an MMO based on the Otherland novels by Tad Williams.

Hamburg, Germany, 01 October 2008 – dtp entertainment and the development studio RealU, based in Singapore, today announced the MMOG (Massively Multiplayer Online Game) Otherland. Otherland, based on the best-selling novels by fantasy author Tad Williams, will appear for the PC in 2010.

Game fans can expect a completely new MMOG experience with Otherland. Based on the Unreal Engine 3, Otherland will set new technical standards for the MMOG genre. ‘Unreal Engine 3 is the basis for our client side game and graphics engine. To push it over the top our developers have also made countless additions to ensure outstanding graphics quality over huge environments. At the same time our artists and engineers are exploring the boundaries of Unreal Engine 3 to create fresh new visual styles for the game. At Real U we are developing completely new architecture that allows us to build a groundbreaking MMO game with Unreal Engine 3 at its core,’ says Andrew Carter,
CEO RealU.

MMO fans can also expect a fascinating gameplay experience. Based on the globally successful novels, the Otherland gameplay is distinguished by a unique narrative structure. Rather than retelling the story, players will experience their own individual stories within the Otherland universe and will encounter many of the familiar characters from the books. The game world will change dynamically around them during the course of the game.

Starting from the player lobby Lambda Mall, an Entertainment, Meeting and Communication centre, players will teleport into a wide variety of game worlds. As in the books, virtual reality is a central topic of the game. Nothing is what it appears to be at first glance in this futuristic vision from the pen of Tad Williams, who played an important role in the development of the game.
‘Tad Williams visited us during the conception phase and was very actively involved in the realisation of this project from the beginning,’ comments Andrew Carter. ‘Because this is a MMOG, a linear storyline would not be feasible. Therefore, we had to find an alternative way of telling a story. I think we have found a terrific combination of innovative narration and faithfulness to the books,’ Carter continues.

Andrew Carter is the leader of a development team, now consisting of 80 people, based in Singapore. The international team is composed of game experts with years of experience in the gaming industry. The core team had previously worked at Melbourne House, EA, THQ and other major international studios. RealU is a 100 % subsidiary of dtp entertainment AG.

Read more here.

Warhammer Online : Cross Pairing Queuing Now Available

Posted Oct 01, 2008 by Keith Cross

The folks at Warhammer have announced the that players can now queue for all scenarios that are available in a player's current tier, eliminating some pesky travel time.


Your feedback is very important to us and it’s always our goal to make your play experience an even more enjoyable one.

In response to popular demand, you’ll now be able to queue for all of the scenarios available in your current tier, across all three pairings. For instance, if you’re in Nordland, you can queue for the Nordenwatch scenario as usual. You can also queue up for Khaine’s Embrace (the Tier 1 scenario in the High Elf vs. Dark Elf pairing) and the Gates of Ekrund (the Tier 1 scenario on the Dwarf vs. Greenskin pairing), all without leaving Nordland. No travel is required at all; just click the WAR symbol on your interface as you normally would, and use the arrows at the top of the window to scroll through the different scenarios.

We know many have been waiting for this feature and we have a lot more great additions coming on the horizon. We look forward to your continued feedback as we work to take WAR to the next level…WAAAGH!!!

Read more here.

World of Warcraft : Guide To Farming on the Sunwell Plateau

Posted Oct 01, 2008 by Jon Wood World of Warcraft Correspondent Deborah Dietrich writes this guide to getting the most out of farming on the Sunwell Plateau in Blizzard`s World of Warcraft.

Farming on the ole’ Sunwell Plateau with an Ei, Ei Oh

So, you want to make a little gold? You’d like to get some epic gems at bargain prices? You need sunmotes to have a pattern made or to trade in an item, or you are after some of the most epic items currently available within World of Warcraft, items that just happen to be available to any half organized pug? If you answered yes to any of these questions, you’ll definitely want to start farmin’ the Sunwell Plateau, McDonald.

You see the spam throughout the day and evening in Trade chat: SWP LFM, or even more likely SWP LF 2 mages. But what are these Sunwell Plateau pick-up groups all about and would you want to join one?

Read the guide here.

Pirates of the Burning Sea : Port Battle Changes

Posted Oct 01, 2008 by Keith Cross

The folks at Pirates of the Burning Sea have announced that they will be extending the amount of time between port flips and port battles, as well as removing random scheduling of port battles.

After reviewing community feedback, we have decided to extend the time span between port flips and port battles from 22 to 46 hours. We are making this change in order to give players extra time to build contention, and we believe this adjustment will give players more time to organize for pending battles.

This adjustment will be introduced, along with the removal of the random scheduling of port battles, this Tuesday, October 7th, during the normal server maintenance window.

Read more here.

Zu Online : Bead Fairy Guide

Posted Oct 01, 2008 by Keith Cross

The folks at Zu Online have prepared a guide full of tips on playing a Bead Fairy in Zu Online.

Bead Fairies in Zu Online ( are quite popular with players for their enchanting appearance and exclusive abilities. Now let’s look at them more in depth.

Class Feature:

First, Bead Fairies can cast beneficial effects and healing spells. But the other classes must use certain reagents to restore their own health.

Second, Bead Fairies have a relatively short spell casting time.

Third, Bead Fairies can use shapeshifting spells to improve attacks.

Two important spells:

Circle of Healing: It instantly heals the Bead Fairy and any allies nearby (+6000 HP). It is one of the most important spells of the Bead Fairies.

Formation of Taipai: It increases defense for all friendly players in the formation. It is very effective in group fighting.

Tips on actual combat:

While fighting common monsters, using Shapeshifting Spells and Bead Strike spells means fast kills. Bead Strike spells are the main source of damage. It does not deal much damage but it can be cast continually. Bead Fairies formation abilities are very effective while fighting multiple monsters.

While fighting a tough enemy, a Bead Fairy should use the Mighty Force spell (Increases the target’s attack and defense by 20% for 20 seconds) and Hibernate to stun the enemy, then hit them with a damage spell. If a Bead Fairy’s health gets low, use Circle of Healing to heal. After doing this several times, most enemies will be defeated.

Bead Fairies can cast beneficial effects and heal themselves and their allies. This gives them a crucial role to play in group action.

Read more here.

Star Trek Online : Meet The Team: Matt Highison

Posted Oct 01, 2008 by Keith Cross

Cryptic Studios has posted an introduction to Star Trek Online character artist, Matt Highison.

Q: Explain what you do on Star Trek Online.
A: My job is to turn the Awesome up to 11 on the Star Trek Online characters, creatures, and ships. With the rest of the Character team, I am building upon the amazingly robust costume creator in Champions Online, reworking it for the Star Trek universe, and adding in loads of new customization options designed especially for STO. Any one day could consist of modeling characters, painting textures, creating shaders, and implementing new tech.

Q: How long have you worked in gaming, and what did you do before working on Star Trek Online?
A: I started at Cryptic a bit over a year and a half ago working on Champions Online before moving over to STO. Before that I had various stints of contract work while attending the Art Institute of California, San Francisco.

Read more here.

Fiesta : Correspondent: In-Game Weddings

Posted Sep 30, 2008 by Jon Wood Fiesta Online Correspondent THomas Watson writes this feature looking at the ability to get married in-game in Outspark's F2P title.

There are many MMORPGs out there that have attempted to bring out features to the online gaming community that puts reality into a very high priority. These features have no doubt brought online players much closer together. Players who live far away from each other in real life come to meet in the game and learn about each other. Players who never knew each other become best friends. In Fiesta Online, players aim to be the best on the game servers they play on. To be the best means to be able to overcome the most treacherous of monsters and to have the best stats of all players. Oftentimes, to achieve this, one must have a loyal partner to adventure alongside with. It can be a guild mate, a best friend, a staff member, etc. It comes down to some point along the journey that one might ask themselves how they feel about their partner. Do they want to be next to their partner through the rest of their adventure? Not many online games allow its players to marry each other, allowing them to be loving partners for the rest of their gaming experience. One person might ask "will there ever be a chance that I can be able to marry this person in game?" Not many MMORPGs can answer this question, however Outspark's Fiesta Online can. With their newest in-game wedding feature already released, many players are thrilled to take part in this traditional real-life event that is now finally implemented into the game.

Read it all here.

Warhammer Online : Hickman - Addressing the Cut Classes

Posted Sep 30, 2008 by Jon Wood

In the first part of our post-launch interview with Mythic Entertainment's Jeff Hickman, Managing Editor Jon Wood asks a couple of questions about the four classes that were cut from the game pre-launch, when we can expect to see them in-game, whether or not they are affecting game balance and more.

When and how are you going to implement the careers and cities that were cut prior to launch?

Jeff's Answer:

Sorry folks, there’s not set date for this just yet, but Jeff had some interesting things to say on the topic and assured us that they hadn’t been forgotten and that they would be in the game:

“We desperately want to do some of these things that we’ve pulled out of the game… We do have plans. We’ve been talking about it for months and it’s very important to us to do the right things with the game. I don’t mean to sound wishy-washy about it. We’re going to [get the classes in]. It’s just a matter of how long it takes us to do the right things to those classes. We pulled them away for a reason and that’s because they weren’t as good as they needed to be. So we’re looking at those classes hard now and we’re looking at how long it’s going to take us to make them to the point where they feel as good as the other 20 classes in the game.”

“I firmly believe,” he said “that our classes… each one feels cool and unique in and of themselves.” He doesn’t however, want everyone to like every class. He told us that his goal was to evoke emotion from players about the classes. Players should love some and hate others.”

“We’re going to launch those classes when they’re absolutely ready,” he continued, answering the original question, “hopefully it will be fairly soon., but don’t look for it in the next couple of weeks. That’s just not going to happen. We have to make these things perfect or at least as perfect as they can be.”

Read the interview here.

Perfect World International : Story Trailer

Posted Sep 30, 2008 by Keith Cross

Story Trailer Perfect World Entertainment has released an all-new trailer which provides gamers with an in-depth look at the story behind Perfect World International.

Watch the trailer here


EverQuest II : Guk Preview

Posted Sep 30, 2008 by Keith Cross

The folks at EverQuest II have prepared a preview of Lower Guk and Guk Stronghold zones which are coming in The Shadow Odyssey, EQ2's next expansion.

Long ago, in the Elder Age, Warlord Ykesha removed himself from the public eye. He was nowhere to be found, yet, he never left the halls of Guk...

During his absence, Clan Ykesha fell to the might of the Clan Broken Skull. After the carnage, the froglok army entered Guk and captured the fortress city.

The Stronghold of Ykesha is the secret district of the fortress city of Guk. Warlord Ykesha, fearing assassination and the theft of his treasure, built the Stronghold to hide himself and the powerful artifact known as the Grozmok Stone.

During the fighting, the stone would be stolen by Clan Broken Skull, but found its way back to Ykesha during the Age of War. It was also in the Stronghold that the curse which would overtake all of Guk was spawned.

Read more here.

EVE Online : StacklessIO DevBlog

Posted Sep 30, 2008 by Keith Cross

The folks at EVE have posted a dev blog detailing the virtues of their StacklessIO technology which improves performance and reduces latency in high population situations.

For the past two years we have been developing new technology, called StacklessIO, to increase the performance of our network communication infrastructure in EVE. This new network layer reduces network latency and improves performance in high-volume situations, e.g., in fleet-fights and market hubs such as Jita.

On 16 September we successfully deployed StacklessIO to Tranquility. We noticed an astounding, yet expected, measurable difference.

Normally Jita reaches a maximum of about 800-900 pilots on Sundays. On the Friday following the deployment of StacklessIO there were close to 1,000 concurrent pilots in Jita and on Saturday the maximum number reached 1,400. This is more than have ever been in Jita at the same time. Jita could become rather unresponsive at 800-900 pilots but on Sunday it was quite playable and very responsive with 800 pilots. It should continue to be snappier and more responsive in the future.

Read more here.

Lord of the Rings Online : Guide to the Hollin Gate

Posted Sep 30, 2008 by Keith Cross

Turbine has posted a guide to the Hollin Gate, the western entrance to the Mines of Moria.

For generations, the Dwarves of Middle-earth have dreamt of returning to the great mansions of Khazad-dûm, reopening the mines of Moria, and reclaiming their majestic, ancestral homes—and the mithril buried below them—beneath the Misty Mountains.

In the Third Age, more than one expedition has dared to brave the depths of Moria, from the doomed kin of brave Balin to the desperate Fellowship of the Ring. Some have entered Moria with plans of taming the place, others in hopes merely of passing through it alive, but all have suffered dreadful losses along the way. Now, a new expedition of hopeful Dwarves has set out to brave the deep places of the mine and its mansions and conquer the evil within. Its leaders hope to enter the legendary halls via the fabled Hollin Gate hidden amidst the cliffs and holly trees where Eregion meets the mountains, and set in the Walls of Moria.

Read more here.

Pirates of the Burning Sea : 14 Day Free Trial

Posted Sep 30, 2008 by Keith Cross

Flying Lab Software has announced that they are now offering a 14 day free trial for Pirates of The Burning Sea.

(Seattle, WA) September 29th, 2008 – Flying Lab Software invites you to play the award winning, swashbuckling, seafaring MMO with a free 14-Day Trial Key for Pirates of the Burning Sea, available at!

“Our 14-day free trial program is an effort to give everyone a taste of Pirates of the Burning Sea game-play,” said Russell Williams, CEO of Flying Lab Software. “People are really going to enjoy their experience with us, and I’m excited to welcome these new members into our community!”
Key Features

* Join one of the four loyalties French, Spanish, English or Pirate
* Battle other players to control more than 80 conquerable ports in the Caribbean
* Explore the world and make a name for yourself in more than 1,000 missions
* Vie for power and wealth with the fully player-driven economy
* Build, capture, and customize 158 historical ships
* Design your own personal flags and customize sail decals
* Choose from 3 different styles of combat – deadly and formal Fencing, flashy, dual wielding Florentine or rowdy and treacherous Dirty Fighting

Read more here.

Wizard101 : Family Pricing Plan

Posted Sep 30, 2008 by Keith Cross

The folks at Wizard 101 have announced that hey are offering a family subscription plan to their MMO for young wizards.

Plano, TX -- Sep 30, 2008 -- A magical new virtual world game designed especially for tweens, Wizard101 is fast becoming an online hotspot where the elementary and junior high set play with friends and family after their homework is done. In response to an enthusiastic audience of kids to grandmas already playing the game, online entertainment company KingsIsle Entertainment, Inc. today introduced a family subscription plan for Wizard101 ( The $6.95 per month family subscription rate will make it more economical for siblings or (grand)parents and their (grand)children to adventure, play and chat together, each with their own customized wizard characters.

"I live 1500 miles from my grandchildren... and now this is the game we play. They both think it's great that their grandma plays with them and like to brag about it to all their friends," posted 'Olivia Jadeflower' (her in-game name) on the Wizard101 message boards.

"...of all the games out there for kids, this is the best one by far! The chat is safe, it's exciting, and great fun for parents to play with their children," wrote mom 'Donna Mythcaster' who likes to play Wizard101 with her daughter.
Wizard101 is free-to-play, with advanced play content and features available at the general subscription rate of $9.95 per month. The new family subscription plan enables family members to purchase multiple accounts charged to the same credit card at the rate of $6.95 per month for each account. Discounts to the general subscription plan are also available for six-month and one-year subscriptions. Additions to both the free-to-play and subscription game environments are planned on an ongoing basis.

Read more here.

Shot Online : GNGWC Winners Announced

Posted Sep 30, 2008 by Keith Cross

Gamescampus has announced the winners of the Shot-Online Challenge at the 2008 Regional Game and Game World Championship, who will get to compete in the Grand Final Championships in Korea.

San Jose, Calif. (September 30, 2008) - San Jose-based online game publisher, (, run by OnNet USA), announced today the official winners of the Shot-Online Challenge at the 2008 Regional GNGWC (Game and Game World Championship) Finals which were recently held in Los Angeles, CA.

The talented winners of the Shot-Online Championship include:

Christopher Rea (in-game character name 8ballxpress) - 1st prize winner

Robert Alexander (in-game character name Slosh) - 2nd prize winner

Cheyne Last (in-game character name cadaviar) - 3rd prize winner will graciously send each of these lucky winners to Korea to tee off against other top gamers on an all-expenses paid trip to compete in the Grand Final Championships. The finals are to be held on November 16, 2008.

The 2008 Tournament marks the 3rd annual GNGWC. A total of six countries have each held local contests with the final global match being held in Korea in November. The final global competition will be hosted by KIPA (Korean Industry Promotion Agency) and sponsored by KT Corporation.

Read more here.

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