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RF Online : Preorder Beta Keys Not Yet Active

Posted Jan 17, 2006 by Jon Wood

Codemasters, and RF Online have sent out a small letter to clear up and misunderstanding about the preorder keys. In short, the keys have not yet been activated and will be as soon as the beta goes live.


Regarding preorder beta keys...
Please note that RF Online beta keys have not yet been activated. This will not happen until the RF Online beta commences. If you attempt to input your beta key on the COG account system you will get a message saying that your beta key is yet to be enabled. Rest assured, all preorder beta keys will be activated once the beta goes live. A news article will be posted when preorder access has been activated for our preorder customers.

For more on RF Online, click here.

Spellborn : Spellborn Scrolls Synopsis Page

Posted Jan 17, 2006 by Jon Wood

The developers of The Chronicles of Spellborn, have presented a new synopsis page for their Spellborn Scrolls. The Spellborn Scrolls are a compilation of official game lore that are presented in a unique, choose-your-own-adventure style.


The Spellborn Scrolls are a collection of interactive lore pieces based in the world of The Chronicles of Spellborn. Within each Scroll you will need to make decisions as to how you would like to proceed in the face of your current situation. We have added a synopses page detailing all the Scrolls for easy reading. Enjoy!

Take a look, here.

Istaria : Additions, Changes and Fixes

Posted Jan 17, 2006 by Jon Wood

Horizons has released the notes on the changes and fixes that are being applied to both the Order and Chaos servers today (Jan. 17/06). As usual, this is a partial list. All of the notes are available at the link below.


The following additions, changes and fixes are being applied to Chaos and Order on Tuesday, January 17, 2006:

Lair and Lairshaping:

  • Crystalline Lattice Forms will now require the Lairshaping Ability and the Crystalshaping Machine.
  • Deleted Lair Chambers that used Primal Essence of Melding will now properly send Novian Primal Essence of Melding into your vault upon deletion.
  • Fixed a bug with Expert and Master Focused Azulyte Crystal formulas which prevented them from recognizing Unfocused Azulyte Crystals.
  • Corrected the minimum skill requirement of a Tier 2 Helian/Lunus Hall from 225 to 200. The optimal skill is 425.
  • Corrected the XP values for applying resources to Tier 4 Helian/Lunus Lairs.
  • Corrected the resource requirements of Tier 6 Helian/Lunus Lair chambers.
  • Corrected the XP values for applying Tier 3 Flowstones and Tier 4 Excoriations to Tier 4 Helian/Lunus Halls.
  • Relstaroth the Lairshaper Trainer now carries the Journeyman Focused Azulyte Crystal formula.

Read it all, here.

Dark Age of Camelot : 1.82a Release Notes

Posted Jan 17, 2006 by Jon Wood

Our good friends over at Mythic's Dark Age of Camelot have released Test Version 1.82a Release Notes. Below, find only a sample of the fixes and changes that are a part of these notes. To get all of the information, click the link below.



  • Reactionary combat styles now provide a 3 second window in which the player may use the style. When a reactionary style is available for use (such as after you block your target and you wish to use a block reactionary style), the reactionary style will register as valid and trigger as long as you use it within 3 seconds. In general, this will make it much easier to successfully perform reactionary styles against enemy targets.
  • With this version, cross server guilds and alliances can now be formed. Guilds created now have a "Home" server which matches the initial leader of the guild's home server. Players from other servers in your cluster will now be able to join your guild, and alliances including guilds from every server in your cluster are now possible. When necessary, the format will be usable, similar to dealing with matching player names.
  • It is now possible to add a guild or player from another server to your house's access permission list. Players and guilds will still only be able to claim homes on their home server.
  • The restrictions on /bg grantcredit where a player less than master level 2 couldn't be granted credit for trial 5, a player less than master level 4 couldn't be granted credit for trial 7, 9 for 9, and 10 for 10, have been removed.
  • /gc note now gives the player feedback on where it's trying to write a note to, and will prompt the note writer if the target of the note is unclear.
  • A /worship emote has been added. (Test note: This animation may not currently work in all clients. It will work in all clients by the time 1.82 goes live.)

Read it all, here.

Shot Online : New Progressive Tournament

Posted Jan 17, 2006 by Jon Wood


New Progressive Tournament Offers Shot-Online Players Chance For Major Winnings

(Sunnyvale, CA – January 17, 2006) – New and varied challenges and tournaments have been frequently offered for all of Shot-Online’s online golf gamers worldwide. Enter Shot-Online’s Progressive Tournament, which offers players a new twist – every player who enters this tournament deposits 100,000 NG (Shot-Online’s in-game currency) which is then entered into a prize pool that is distributed to twenty winners at the end of the tournament. In other words, the more players who enter, the greater the prize.

The Progressive Tournament begins at 04:00 AM January 17th and ends at 11:59 PM January 23rd (CST), and will be played out on the demanding “Forneus” course. Players may enter only with their highest-level character within their account, and can play as often as they like after depositing their fee. The best score taken from all scores will be entered into the final tallies. Additional prizes for the top five winners are rare and much-sought-after in-game golf drivers, to really add fire on shots off the tees.

Kevin Kim, Director for the Game Division of OnNet, added his thoughts about introducing this ground-breaking and community-oriented tournament. “It’s very exciting whenever we introduce a new platform or game play type in Shot-Online for players around the world. Personally, I can not wait to find out how this tournament ends.”

[ expand article ]

Hero's Journey : Q&A #14 and Screens #33

Posted Jan 17, 2006 by Dana Massey

In our latest Q&A, Designer Mike Paddock discusses archery, magic and other major aspects of their upcoming release. We also, as usual, feature two exclusive screenshots. This week, Simutronics shows us a swampy area. Archery is a feature of fantasy that I do not think has ever been that well done. What will archery be like in Hero’s Journey?

Mike Paddock: I agree, however isn't it ironic that the foundation of European fantasy is the Medieval time period, and that archery was an innovation that contributed to that time period's end? :)

Archery will be an important aspect of gameplay in Hero's Journey from a situational standpoint. While Rangers are the master of the bow in HJ, everyone can and should carry a bow. Hero's Journey uses an auto-attack driven system, where a character is on auto-pilot for his most common, basic attacks, which the player interjects the use of other abilities as needed or desired. When auto-attacking with a bow, the player can adjust the style of those attacks according to the tactical situation. So for example, the player could decide to fire less frequently, but with greater precision in a situation where the archer is fighting few opponents from a high vantage point, or very quickly with less precision in a situation where numerous opponents are swarming around him.

And then there's the Ranger abilities, of course, many of which revolve around the use of a bow, and are practically magic-like in their effect. 

You can read the full Q&A and see the images here.

Guild Wars : Ladder Reset

Posted Jan 17, 2006 by Jon Wood

The developers of Guild Wars have now finished the process of resetting the Guild Wars ladder, and are now looking toward another event.


With the reset of the Guild Wars ladder at 3pm PST (11 pm GMT) today, rated competition is back! We are starting a fun ladder event with the reset. So, play, win, and check back Monday for more information on this new ladder event!

For more on Guild Wars, click here.

Dark and Light : Q&A #9

Posted Jan 16, 2006 by Dana Massey

Settlers of Ganareth has been a big controversy for Dark and Light. Today in the first of two Q&As, we concentrate on squarely on the prequel/beta that is currently under way. If our hype-meter is any estimate, Settlers of Ganareth has fallen short of some player’s expectations. Why do you believe this is?

The Dark & Light Team: We feel this is because many of our fans were waiting for Dark and Light, and Settlers of Ganareth is not as deep and complete as Dark and Light will be. Thus, some players may have been disappointed by SoG. We would like to remind players that SoG has been offered for free in order to start “pressing the ground” of Ganareth, that is, exploring this huge world and conquering territories. 

You can read the article here.

General : 2005 Reader's Choice Award Winners

Posted Jan 16, 2006 by Dana Massey

The 2005 Reader's Choice Awards are over and handed out. Today we reveal the winners in all seven categories and the big story is EVE Online who take all four awards they were nominated for.

You can see all the awards by clicking here or on the links below:

This was a lot of fun! We look forward to seeing how things shape up next year!

Spellborn : Community Relations News

Posted Jan 16, 2006 by Jon Wood

The developers of The Chronicles of Spellborn have annoucned that they have filled some positions in Community Relations, relating to the French and German localization of their game.


As our team has evolved throughout development of The Chronicles of Spellborn, we've seen new members come into the picture. Today we've made some adjustments in the Community staff which are of note.

Thee Nailros is a long-time CR member, but has just moved from Forum Moderator to being German Community Representative. Similarily, he will be handling all the issues close to the German-speaking community, as well as those related to translations for the German version of the website.

*Mirage* has recently joined us as French Community Representative. He'll be responsible for seeing to the needs of the French-speaking community members, and making sure that our new French version of the website is up to snuff!

(Note: Both localized versions of the site will up and running in the near future, so if you are a French or German speaker, please be sure to watch out for these changes!)

Abrii Doniger has moved away from her position as Forum Moderator for the French TCoS Forums. She'll be handling the TCoS Volunteer Program, ensuring that all of those who play in the game have as great an experience possible!

Dai-Galean has moved out of Community Relations and will be working more closely with our bug hunting efforts throughout Beta and into the release of TCoS.

For more on TCoS, click here.

Asheron's Call : Letter to Players

Posted Jan 16, 2006 by Jon Wood

Our friends over at Turbine's Asheron's Call have released their January Letter to players. Below, you can find a sample of the letter, click the link below for the full story.


Welcome to the January Letter to the Players!

Last month we saw many changes to Dereth. With the passing of Antius Blackmoor, the people of Dereth quickly came to see that war was coming and that the time for action was upon them. This led to the people of Yanshi finishing their rebuilding process to once again become a vibrant town. But the question still remains... what action will the Queen take against King Varicci?

Last month we also unveiled the new timers for the Temples of Forgetfulness and Enlightenment. Although we were very pleased with the design, it appears there may have been some confusion on how the timers work. So in this letter we have decided to clarify how the timers work for those you who were unclear.

Untraining Skills
The first through fourth gems you can pick up instantly. That means you won't have to wait to pick up your first 4 untrain gems. To pick up your fifth through eighth gem you will have to wait one week per gem. On the ninth through the sixteenth gem, you will need to wait 2 weeks per gem. And everything after the 17th gem will require you to wait for 3 weeks per gem.
1st-4th gems: Instant
5th-8th gems: 1 week timer
9th-16th gems: 2 week timer
17th and above: 3 week timer

Specializing Skills
When specializing a skill, the timers differ from the untraining timers. The first and second gems you can pick up with no timer. The third and fourth gems you must wait one week each to pick up. The fifth through eighth gems are on a two week timer, which means once you are trying to pick one up you must wait 2 weeks to pick up each gem. For the ninth gem and above you will have to wait 3 weeks per gem.
1st-2nd gems: Instant
3rd-4th gems: 1 week timer
5th-8th gems: 2 week timer
9th and above: 3 week timer

Attribute Gems
The Attribute gems seem to be the part of the interaction that causes the most confusion. You can pick up your first eighteen gems, either raising or lowering right away. Not eighteen of each but eighteen in total. Then you must wait one week to pick up your nineteenth through thirty-sixth gem. That means for each gem in this span you must wait a week per gem, not pick up another eighteen gems. For the thirty-seventh gem and above, you will need to wait two weeks per gem.
1st-18th: Instant
19th-36th gems: 1 week timer
37th and above: 2 week timer

I hope this helps to clear things up for those confused about how this system works. Now, onto what is happening in the month of January in Dereth! Please keep in mind that this list does not include new quests, or all of the new content going in to the game in January.bout this amazing group all the way from Japan!

Read the rest, here.

Auto Assault : New Screensaver

Posted Jan 16, 2006 by Jon Wood

Our friends over at Auto Assault have given us a brand new screensaver for all of our viewing and being away from the computetr needs.


Eager to show the apocalypse on your computer when you're not around? Try out our new Auto Assault Screen Saver, available for PCs with the Microsoft Windows operating system. It's very easy to download, install, and set. All of the fansite webkits are also available right here.

For more Auto Assault, click here.

World of Warcraft : New WarCraft Weekly

Posted Jan 16, 2006 by Jon Wood

Blizzard's World of WarCraft has released yet another of their WarCraft Weekly features. WarCraft Weekly keeps players updated on what the WoW developers have been saying on their forums.


Take a moment to read through the information provided in the latest Warcraft Weekly, which provides direct links to threads created and responded to by the World of Warcraft community team. This weekly news archive is a great source of information and a wonderful alternative for those who wish to stay current on all the latest and greatest topics but don't necessarily have time to sift through the forums each day. Check it out here.

For more WoW, click here.

Auto Assault : Beta Weekend Extended!

Posted Jan 14, 2006 by Craig McGregor

NCSoft has just informed us that they will be extending the Auto Assault beta weekend event for an additional 24 hours!  The new end date for this offer is Jan 17 2006 at 3AM EST!

If you have not entered the beta event yet make sure to give it a try!

You can get your key at this link (while they last):

NOTE: You will need to have a free account to get your key.

General : Debate: The Death Penalty

Posted Jan 14, 2006 by Dana Massey

Every Saturday, two of our writers will go at in a debate over one aspect of MMORPGs. This week, Frank Mignone and Garrett Fuller are arguing about the severity of death penalties. Read their thoughts, then give us your feedback in this thread.

It used to be, back in the days when your choice was either Ultima Online or Everquest, that there was one constant between them. They were hard! One of the key factors that made it so was their death penalty. The death penalty made the games exciting! Everything was not a cakewalk; you really had to consider your actions. You could lose all of the stuff that you had in your possession with one false move. This added a lot of tension and a bit of white-knuckle-mousing to the experience. How many of you back in the day found yourself, at some point, running for your life shouting 'REDS!' with your heart pounding? It was good times.

You can read their debate here.

Lineage : NCSoft Subsidiary Opening in Osaka

Posted Jan 13, 2006 by Jon Wood


NCsoft, Establishing a wholly owned subsidiary in Osaka, Japan

Outlooks are for a future Development Studio in Japan

[Jan. 13, 2006] NCsoft Corp. (CEO Tack Jin Kim,, today, announced the establishment of ‘NCsoft Japan KK’, as one hundred percent owned and operated subsidiary, valued at 100 million Yen (850 million Korean Won).

NCsoft Japan’s operations will include development and localizations of their games serviced via PlayNC, NCsoft’s games service platform. Servicing and marketing activities of all NCsoft’s games will be executed under the operations of ‘NC Japan KK’, a joint venture with Softbank Japan.

The establishment of NCsoft Japan is interpreted as NCsoft’s “Global Infrastructure, Local Content” strategy of developing best-of-breed local content that leverages the global infrastructure. Accordingly, NCsoft Japan will expand its horizons onto Japan and Asian markets and will be acting as NCsoft’s Japanese development studio in the future which develops online casual games, MMO games for Japanese and Asian gamers.

Chris Chung, the Vice President of IBU (International Business Unit) at NCsoft commented on this event that, “By joining the industry acknowledged game experts of Japan with know-how’s of global online game publisher, NCsoft, we expect greater synergy effects in near future”.

NCsoft penetrated into Japanese market in 2001 by establishing a joint venture, and now is servicing both Lineage and Lineage II. Guild Wars is lined up for a commercialized service starting from January 27th. During the third quarter of 2005, NCsoft hit the record of 7.6 billion Korean Won in revenue with 3.7 billion in operating profit in Japan due to the consistent demands generated from Lineage and Lineage II. Japanese market contributes 20% of NCsoft's entire overseas sales.

NCsoft currently operates subsidiary offices in US and Europe, and joint ventures in Japan, China, Taiwan, and Thailand.


Lineage 2 : Exclusive Dev Narrated Trailer

Posted Jan 13, 2006 by Dana Massey

As promised, today we're featuring a three minute developer narrated walkthrough video of the Goddard zone; a part of the upcoming Chronicle IV expansion to Lineage II. The video is narrated by an associate producer on the project. He explains the ins and outs of the upcoming add-on.

You can view the entire view by clicking the image above or following this link.

Lineage 2 : Chronicle 4 Week, Day #5

Posted Jan 13, 2006 by Dana Massey

Today we bring you three more screenshots from the upcoming Chronicle IV release of Lineage II. These images show off the Silenos race, who play heavily into the story of this expansion. Later today, we will bring you the exclusive developer-narrated video of the game.

Thank you again to NCSoft for taking the time to share this content.

General : Reader's Choice Voting Closed

Posted Jan 13, 2006 by Dana Massey

The 2005 Reader's Choice Awards voting has officially ended in all categories. Our two run-off categories ended this afternoon with clear-cut winners. I thank all the thousands of people who cast votes and hope you all check in on Monday for full results.

RF Online : New Lore

Posted Jan 13, 2006 by Jon Wood

Codemasters and RF Online have released a new chapter in their continuing lore series. This one is titled, Chapter 9: The beginning of a new civilization.


Chapter 9: The beginning of a new civilization

It was inevitable that the Mutated Virus would find its way to the Novus sector. It’s devastating effects put the Accretia Scientists into a crazed panic. In a bid to protect themselves from this terrible plight, the scientists actively destroyed the transport platform, halted the planetary transport network and ceased all communication. This in essence meant that all interplanetary transport had been cut and that control over the other planets within the system was lost.

The experimental subjects, inhabiting various planets controlled by the Accretia researchers, found themselves in the middle of chaos incarnate. Basic animal instincts were triggered with the onset of the viral plague. Their training and bio-engineered abilities were unleashed on their delegated researchers, destroying the facilities in their wake.

The virus infected the sixteen planets within the Novus sector and all but the Bellato and Cora planets destroyed the human civilisations, forming their own primitive societies. The Bellato and Cora for reasons unknown did not lose their minds as was seen within the system. Though there were pockets of confusion, the planets as a whole lay unaffected. Both planets prepared for the worst as supplies dried up and the inhabitants were left to fend for themselves. Both civilisations worked hard to maintain their survival and produced resources to sustain their societies, utilizing the equipment left by the researchers and previous civilisations.

The inhabitants of each of the remaining planets created new unique civilizations. The Cora built there society based on their unique mental abilities, the Bellato strived to combine their mental and scientific abilities, and the Accretian researchers, left isolated on the planet, had to find a way to maintain their very own survival.

On the Planet Accretia, the fear and uncertainty caused by the onset of the Mutant Strain Arcane Virus left its scar. With the planet’s travel network and platforms destroyed, the lives of the researchers were under constant threat. With no clear support from Earth Association, and no possibility of long distance space travel the researchers had to fend for themselves, unclear as to whether the virus had spread to other areas in the sector.

The hostile planet they were trapped on proved to be dangerous to the researchers. It was clear they had to adapt or die. By using their skills and knowledge, it was a simple task of manipulating their bodies and acclimatizing to their new surroundings. They began to rebuild their human bodies incorporating mechanised implants and nano-technology; all produced using the vast supply of mineral and underground resources.

The Cora, Bellato and Accretia, once a united human race, were now evolving with their new environment and more importantly with their own physical beings. The beginning of three new civilisations was underway, there destiny yet to be written…

For more on Dark Age of Camelot, click here.

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