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General : Community Blog Spotlight: RFS

Posted Oct 08, 2007 by Jon Wood

Each week, Community Manager Laura Genender takes a look at one of the MMORPG.com blogs. This week, she looks as a mock-ad about Restless Finger Syndrome.

While browsing the blogs this week, I came across Jesad’s entry in his popular blog “In My Understanding.”  While Jesad has often featured a great sense of humor, I felt that this week’s blog entry took it to a whole new level.  Hats off to you, Jesad.

This week’s entry was written in a serious tone – it’s an advertisement for the Zen of Standing Still, a cure to the Restless Fingers Syndrome.  “Do your fingers bother you?” The mock ad begins, “Do you find it hard to keep from pressing the movement keys?  Maybe you just can’t help yourself when that stray mob passes by while you are supposed to be waiting for the rest of your group to assemble to enter a dungeon.  If you have ever experienced any of these symptoms you may be suffering from Restless Finger Syndrome.”

Following the introduction is a mock player testimonial given by Newton and Hardcore, the two personas Jesad uses to express his points in his blog.

Read it all here.

EverQuest : Hands-On Secrets of Faydwer

Posted Oct 08, 2007 by Jon Wood

Recently, Community Manager Laura Genender attended a press event for Sony Online Entertainment. While there, she had a hands-on demonstration of EQ's latest expansion, Secrets of Faydwer.

Last Thursday at the SOE “Step into Fall” event, I spoke with EverQuest’s senior game designer Ryan Barker about the upcoming EQ expansion, Secrets of Faydwer. This expansion brings 30 new raids, 5 new levels, new areas, and so much more to the massive world of Norrath.

The expansion is based in Faydwer, where an evil gnomish necromancer named Meldrath the Malignant has shattered the earth by raising his air fortress Mechanotus. Players can visit the floating fortress itself – or delve into the newly exposed areas of Faydwer.

To start the interview, Ryan gave me a tour of these areas. Our first stop was Mechanotus, the floating city – and to get there, we had to take a catapult! Clicking on the catapult launched our character into the air and into a zoneline – though by the scattering of bodies on the far wall, I could see a few unlucky players had not made the zone in time!

Read the whole thing here.

Vanguard : New Ksaravi Gulch Quests

Posted Oct 08, 2007 by Keith Cross

The official site for Vanguard: Saga of Heroes has been updated with a look at some of the new quests in the Ksaravi Gulch region, where players can expect to find new monsters carrying rare treasures.

Everyone is really excited about the arrival of raiding in Vanguard via the Ancient Port Warehouse, but level 50's aren't the only ones getting to have all the fun. There's a lot more in store for Game Update 3, including the beefing up of some areas in Telon that many of you may already be familiar with! Game Update 3 - Phase 1 is bringing a few new and exciting quest lines to the game!

"In the war between Khal and the Ksaravi, it has become apparent to both sides that force of arms is not enough. To this end, the Ksaravi have turned to the creation of vile magical toxins and diseases with which they plan to afflict the good people of Khal.

In the aftermath, they intend to claim the city as their own. In order to put an end to the Ksaravi taint, you will need the aid of Curate Sabha and Brumdul Svat, priests of the White Coronaria, a sect that worships Sahari Jeddai, the Qaliathari aspect of Gloriann."

Read more here.

Dark Age of Camelot : Grab Bag

Posted Oct 08, 2007 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.

Q. On the classic cluster, Druids that do the Dragonslayer armor quest now are receiving the ToA version of the chest. Was this intended as a change after 1.90, and are other classes also getting access to the ToA chest pieces on classic? Thank you.

A. Actually this wasn’t by design, it was a bug that we already fixed earlier this week: - Because some Druids on the Classic ruleset might have been able to receive the chestpiece reward for the Normal ruleset, we need to remove the reward that is specific to the Normal Ruleset. This needs to be done as that reward has bonuses introduced with the Trials of Atlantis (TOA) expansion that should not be available on the Classic ruleset. Players with the Normal ruleset reward on the Classic ruleset will find that the item in question will delete itself from their inventory when they login and be replaced by the proper Classic ruleset version of the item.

Q. I have been using the Arcanium Astral Plaguebringer for about 2 weeks constantly in RvR but not once has the elemental proc gone off for me. I've seen this proc go off for other people using ml10 weapons with this proc is this specific weapon just bugged or stubborn.

A. Nothing appears patently wrong with the item upon cursory examination. There don't appear to be any weapons that share the same exact proc either. If you feel it is not working, feel free to send in a bug report and add data to support your claim and we'll have our QA folks test it out. If you want to include the exact item name and proc name of the item you say that is similar, that would be helpful as well. Thanks, Bearded Wonder.

Read the Grab Bag here.

EverQuest II : Rise of Kunark Preview

Posted Oct 07, 2007 by Craig McGregor

We are proud to present you a bonus feature this Sunday.  Our own Laura Genender has returned from a trip to SOE headquarters to bring you a special preview of the new EQ2 expansion: Rise of Kunark.

Yesterday I attended SOE's "Step into Fall" event in San Francisco, where I got to meet and speak with Akil "Lyndro" Hooper, lead designer of EverQuest II and one of the minds behind upcoming expansion Rise of Kunark.

If you're an EverQuest player, the name "Kunark" is familiar; Kunark previously appeared in EverQuest I, both as the first expansion (Ruins of Kunark) and the 4th continent. The EQII Kunark is home to many familiar zones and raid targets, but much of it is changed by the effects of the cataclysm and time.

Read the full preview at this link.

Fury : New Screenshots

Posted Oct 05, 2007 by Keith Cross

Four new images have been uploaded to our Fury screenshot gallery.

To view the full size images, and to see the rest of the new screens, visit our gallery here.

Godswar : Gear System Overview

Posted Oct 05, 2007 by Keith Cross

IGG has released new information describing the Gear System and detailing what kind of gear a player can expect to find in their Greek mythology inspired MMO, Godswar Online.

The automatically-generated gear system of GodsWar Online http://gw.igg.com

is its major feature. The players can obtain a wide range of gears in the course of adventure and upgrade them with various stones. As the complement and support to the Gear system, there is also strong Avatar clothes-transfer system. However, it is not easy to get a senior gear. You need spend more time and energy on continuous gaming and even you need luck sometimes.

Overview:
Gears are not only used for changing the characters’ appearance, but also add all kinds of attributes, special effects and functions to the characters, which will strengthen the power of characters and bring more fun to the players. They individualize the characters and present the feature of the game.

There are many ways to obtain the gears. You can get them through completing quests, killing monsters and manufacturing etc. Some gears have level limitation and class division. You can choose your beloved gear according to the class you belonged and your current level. Also the gears applied to all classes are available.

Divisions of Gear

Since there are varieties of gears in GodsWar Online, according to their different functions, they can be divided into two categories: offensive gears and defensive gears

Offensive gears: Sword, Axe, Hammer, Spear, Javelin, Bow and Wand etc.

Defensive gears: Heavy and light Armor, Helm, Gloves, Boots, Shields, Masks and Rings etc.

Attributes of Gear
In addition to the basic attributes such as attack, defense, immunes, level, and stamina, there are more additional attributes to enhance your character.

GodsWar Online provides a variety of items and more details about them will be coming in next section.

Visit the Godswar official site here.

Gods and Heroes : Beta Code Giveaway

Posted Oct 05, 2007 by Keith Cross

Perpetual Entertainment has announced that they are giving out a limited number of beta codes as they will need more people to conduct stability testing over the weekend.

We are going to put up a limited number of beta codes on our distribution page to help push for stability testing this weekend. You'll find the beta key distribution page here: http://community.godsandheroes.com/closedbetacodes/.

Please note that you'll need to have either registered for closed beta or have a forum account to receive a beta key. You can register for beta here: http://community.godsandheroes.com/betasignup/.

There are a limited number of keys so get yours soon!

Find out more here.

Age of Conan : Lore Master Developer Profile

Posted Oct 05, 2007 by Keith Cross

The Age of Conan official site has been updated with a developer profile on Elliot Kingdon, one of their Quest Designer and Lore Master.

Where can they be found? Is it true they roam dusty, forgotten libraries in search of forgotten manuscripts? Meet Elliot Kingdon, a Quest Designer and Lore Master for Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures.

Tell us a bit about yourself. Who are you and what do you do for Funcom?

I’m an Information Systems graduate from the UK and Quest Designer and Lore Master for the Conan project.

My Dungeons and Dragons experience helped get me my job here at Funcom. I’ve been running D&D games for twenty-five years and I currently run a 3.5 campaign here at Funcom.

I started playing computer games on a 16K ZX Spectrum, then the 48K version and then a Commodore 64. I’m one of those guys who still talks about Elite. I got my first PC just so I could play X-Wing and I still love playing computer games.

Read more here.

Star Wars Galaxies : Player Profile

Posted Oct 05, 2007 by Keith Cross

The Star Wars Galaxies official site has been updated with a player profile on CeigeMaraj, who has been playing the game since beta 3.

Forum Handle: CeigeMaraj
Main Character Name: Ceige
Server: Starsider
Player Association: The Protectorate

Where in the real life world do you live? I live in the United States.

How long have you played Star Wars Galaxies? I have been playing since beta 3.

What other MMOs have you played? I have played Earth & Beyond, PlanetSide, EVE Online, and Final Fantasy XI Online. Star Wars Galaxies is the only MMO I have played continuously.

What type of work do you do? Technical.

How long is your typical gaming session when playing Star Wars Galaxies? A typical session lasts about 3-4 hours.

What does a typical Star Wars Galaxies day consist of for you? Restocking my vendor, checking e-mails, setting up or checking on harvesters. I’m a mayor of a city, and spend time week to week space mining, maintaining GCW rank, and helping friends with their adventures.

Read more here.

World of Warcraft : 4th Annual Pumpkin-Carving Contest

Posted Oct 05, 2007 by Keith Cross

Blizzard has announced that they will be holding their 4th annual pumpkin-carving contest, where the creators of the most original, creative, and well-designed pumpkins from Warcraft, StarCraft, or Diablo could win the top prize of a Logitech 51 Surround Sound Speaker System. So put all of that sword play you've learned in WoW to good use and get carving.

The Royal Photographic Society of Azeroth is renewing its competition in celebration of Halloween. In a longstanding Blizzard tradition, this year we are proud to announce our fifth annual pumpkin-carving contest.

Between 12:00 a.m. PDT on October 5 and 12:00 a.m. PDT on October 29, the RPSA will be accepting submissions for the World of Warcraft Pumpkin Contest. The shutterbugs who submit the most outstanding photos of their work will have their pictures proudly displayed on WorldofWarcraft.com and Blizzard.com on Halloween. In addition, the ten most interesting, original, and well-carved pumpkin designs will be recognized for their merits with a pair of Logitech 51 Surround Sound Speaker System designed specifically for gamers. Special thanks go out to Logitech for these prizes!

If you want to view some past pumpkin-carving contest winners, you can see them here: [2003], [2004], [2005], [2006]. Check out the contest page for additional details, including the official rules and submission form. Good luck!

Get the contest details here.

Pirates of the Burning Sea : Exclusive Screenshots, Week Two

Posted Oct 05, 2007 by Keith Cross

MMORPG.com is pleased to bring you week two of our exclusive screenshot series from Flying Lab Software's Pirates of the Burning Sea.

Read more about Pirates of the Burning Sea here.

Fury : Big Changes on the Way

Posted Oct 05, 2007 by Keith Cross

Tony Hilliam, CEO of Auran, has announced that they will soon be making significant changes to game-play in Fury as a result of player feedback. The changes are intended to make the game more fun and accessible, ant to relieve the imbalance between new and experienced players.

An even game is a fun game

We have watched, we have played, we have listened, and we've decided to make some changes - some BIG changes. Our whole design mantra has been that evenly matched battles are more fun, yet Fury Challenge has shown us that 2 in 3 players who try Fury do not even make it to the fun stage. We believe the biggest issue has been the imbalance between new players and experienced players and the difficulty in getting to grips with a new combat system. Throughout beta we have tweaked things and modified things. The time has come to be brave and make some far reaching changes to ensure Fury is fun all players.

In a nutshell, the core essence of Fury is player skill. To truly recognize this, we're making changes to emphasize this aspect out even more. We've decided to start everyone with 1,000 Equip points and offer a UAA option from Day One. In addition, we're bringing everyone onto a single Realm and teaching the Matchmaker to understand that Premades don't like playing against PUGs. We're also giving new players a Training Ground where they can learn the game against other new players and bots. In addition to all this, we're continuing to listen to the community regarding balance changes and fix bugs that impact your enjoyment of the game.

Read more about the changes here.

City of Heroes : Issue 11 Interview with Matt Miller

Posted Oct 05, 2007 by Keith Cross

Managing Editor Jon Wood recently had the chance to speak to Matt “Positron” Miller, the Lead Designer on City of Heroes and City of Villains, to get the latest details on their upcoming content expansion, Issue 11: A Stitch in Time.

Yesterday, I had the opportunity to sit down and talk to Matt "Positron" Miller, the Lead Designer on Cryptic Studios' City of Heroes and City of Villains to talk about the upcoming Issue 11: A Stitch in Time as well as some of the other things going on lately.

Obviously, the biggest feature of this new issue (for those who don't know, CoX releases free major updates called Issues... like comic books. It's clever) is the ability to travel through time. It isn't terribly surprising that CoX is going this route, after all time travel is a staple of comic books and sci-fi.

Oroboros Missions

Missions that allow characters to travel through time are called Oroboros Missions. Naturally, the first question I was what Oroboros meant. To be honest, it sounded to me like one of these silly fantasy-style names that really don't have any meaning. Matt set me straight, informing me that it is actually the proper name for that classic image of a serpent eating its own tail. He told me that the symbol represents infinity. There's more info available on this symbol on Wikipedia. Matt told me that this was the perfect name for the Menders of Oroboros, as it represents the classic time paradox of the end creating the beginning. "Like if someone went back in time and became his own father."

Read the full interview here.

Pirates of the Burning Sea : Launch Date Announced

Posted Oct 05, 2007 by Keith Cross

Flying Lab Software has announced that the much anticipated Pirates of the Burning Sea will raise anchor and set sail on January 22, 2008.

Here it is: January 22nd, 2008!

That’s our launch date. For Real.

It’s been a very long trip. We started this project in the fall of 2002, so by the time we launch, Pirates of the Burning Sea will have been in development for more than five years. Even our closed beta program has been running since December of 2005, so that’s coming up on its two-year anniversary.

During that time we have grown from a handful of people to more than seventy full-time staff. The scale of the project has grown as well. When we started, there weren’t even going to be human avatars! Ports were just a menu where you clicked options. The whole game was much, much smaller and a lot less interesting.

At this point, we have a big fat slab of game: a giant, player-driven economy; incredible ship combat; swashbuckling swordfighting; a thousand missions; eighty towns; a conquerable world; and more adventure than we ever expected. Behind the scenes, we are working really hard to fix bugs, adjust gameplay, balance and tune the numbers, and generally get the game ready for launch. There’s still a ton of work to do and we’re hard at it.

Read the full announcement here.

General : Turbine Explains Corporate Changes

Posted Oct 05, 2007 by Keith Cross

As promised, Turbine has sent out a press release going into more detail about the company's recent corporate shake-up that saw Jim Crowley installed as their new CEO and President. Turbine says that the reason for the change was to set up the company for long term growth, although no specifics were given on how the personnel change would better help them meet this goal. Update: Former CEO and President Jeff Anderson's is said to have been involved with theses decisions and is still involved with the company.

TURBINE'S MANAGEMENT TEAM POISED FOR LONG-TERM GROWTH

WESTWOOD, MA - October 5, 2007 - Turbine, Inc., one of the largest privately-held online game companies in North America, announced today changes in its management team designed to position the company for long-term growth. Jim Crowley has been named president and CEO. The move is one of many that Turbine has recently made to invest in new talent that will drive the next wave of the company's growth including the addition of industry veterans Craig Alexander as Vice President of Product Development and Walt Yarbrough as Executive Producer.

Founded in 1994, Turbine is one of the first companies dedicated to creating massively multiplayer online role playing games (MMORPG). Over its 13 year history the company has grown from a small contract developer offering one of the first 3D online role playing games to an industry powerhouse operating three successful franchises. Crowley had been working with Turbine's management team for a number of months on a long-term strategic plan designed to build on the success of the company's most recent hit The Lord of the Rings Online™ before being named president and CEO. He will lead the efforts to maximize opportunities for Turbine's roster of franchises, as well as seek new revenue streams through a range of strategic initiatives already underway.

Crowley brings a wealth of operational experience to Turbine. As Chief Operating Officer of m-Qube, Crowley helped turn m-Qube into one of North America's largest mobile media companies. Prior to m- Qube, Crowley was Chief Operating Officer of Network Plus, Inc., one of the country's largest publicly traded competitive telecommunications and data providers. Crowley is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania Law School and Connecticut College.

Read the full release here.

General : Carbine Studios Joins NCsoft

Posted Oct 04, 2007 by Keith Cross

NCsoft has announced Carbine Studios, a new online game development studio which is working on a currently unannounced massively multiplayer game project.

Austin, Texas, Oct. 4, 2007—NCsoft® Corporation, the world’s leading developer and publisher of online computer games, today formally unveiled Carbine Studios™, the latest member of its growing family of online game development studios. Carbine Studios is located in Aliso Viejo, California, in Orange County.

Carbine Studios is currently working on an unannounced project that promises to break new ground in massively multiplayer gaming. The studio, comprised of 17 former Blizzard employees including lead and senior developers from the World of Warcraft team, is led by industry veterans Kevin Beardslee, Tim Cain and Jeremy Gaffney. Kevin Beardslee, Carbine’s vice president of design, was a lead developer on Blizzard Entertainment’s World of Warcraft. Tim Cain, Carbine’s programming director, was the producer, lead programmer and designer on the award winning Fallout, and co-founder of Troika Games. Carbine’s Executive Producer Jeremy Gaffney previously worked as executive producer on NCsoft’s City of Heroes®, and established the product development group at NCsoft’s Austin headquarters as VP of development. He was also a co-founder of Turbine, Inc., where he spearheaded development on Asheron’s Call.

“This is a dev team made in heaven,” said Robert Garriott, CEO for NCsoft’s North American business. “This group is as experienced as they come in the area of computer role playing and multiplayer game design. Making successful games is second nature to them. They are a very welcome addition to the NCsoft family. The gaming community should be excited to see what great things come out of Carbine Studios in the coming years.”

“NCSoft’s established global infrastructure, commitment to their development studios and passion for online gaming makes them an ideal partner,” says Carbine co-founder Kevin Beardslee. “In the coming months Carbine Studios will continue to grow and we look forward to bringing many more talented industry professionals into our fold.”

Read more about Carbine Studios here.

World of Warcraft : Brewfest Screenshots

Posted Oct 04, 2007 by Keith Cross

16 new images depicting scenes from Brewfest, the event which began yesterday and is currently being held in World of Warcraft, have been added to our WoW screenshot gallery.

To view the full size images, and to see the rest of the new screens, visit our gallery here.

EverQuest II : Tim Granich Interview

Posted Oct 04, 2007 by Keith Cross

The EverQuest II official site has been updated with an interview with Tim Granich, their Senior Global Brand Manager.

Tim, where are you from?
I was born in Chicago.

How long have you lived in San Diego?
I moved to Carlsbad with my family in 1978, grew up there and now live there with my wife Jennifer, our 2 children and our dog – Mimi.

How do you like living here in San Diego?
I have been really lucky in my job to get to travel to many places in the United States and some internationally. There are some really beautiful places to visit IF you catch them on the right day. San Diego is the RIGHT day nearly everyday. There is no place that I'd rather live.

How long have you been with SOE?
I started at SOE at the end of April of this year. I spent the previous seven years working at Midway and prior to that I was at 989 Studios.

Read the full interview here.

World of Warcraft : Fan Site Listings

Posted Oct 04, 2007 by Keith Cross

The folks over at Blizzard have compiled a list of fan sites for World of Warcraft and posted them on their site for the convenience of the game's fans.

Fan sites enrich any online community, offering a mix of humor, entertainment, information, and news. To further promote and support the members of our official fan site program, we've listed and linked them on a new page.

Please visit the fan site listing page to check out some of the fun sites from around the community.

Visit the WoW Fansites Page here.

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