The developers over at Dark and Light have released a brand new piece of Apostles lore. This short story centers around Pilhey, a gnomish bard:
PILHEY, THE BARD GNOME by Elhavius
Pilhey, the Bard Gnome (By Pildor, Bard Gnome, author of Dr’ Nichtgutwestrollzeehochbaumacher (the rainbow-maker of the bad Western ocean), compendium of 8712 pages, available at Zut Geld Editions, Armstallmenchgutloch, for a cheap price).
Everyone knows that Gnomes are the best Bards one can find. Only they know how to present lies with this oh so beautiful aspect of truth, that makes it so even non-believers stop chatting and lay their Ravage-Bowel goblets on the table, with their eyes wet and their lips dribbling. Now this is poetry!
For example - who but a Gnome will know how to express the magnificent greatness of a gluttonous Jarzlub extracting one of his eight legs from the marsh’s loam? A human would talk about slimy mud, an Elf would pinch his nostrils with contempt, a Dwarf would shake with fear, I’m sure of that... But a Gnome would know how to depict the atmosphere, the greenish light, the very smells, with such a force that you will think you are actually in that place! And for those who are still doubtful, let me direct you towards my last work; you will be enlightened.
Pilhey was one of those. The great Circeliane herself was dazzled by his talent. "Philey", she used to say, "I am really flabbergasted!" And to thank her, in all his modesty, he would tell her a poem. She was mad for his poems. He could have done anything he wanted with her; but us Gnomes, we never developed any taste for women taller than 1 meter and 80 centimeters, so he ended up dumping her. He had learned everything from her at that point anyway.
He ran across the world, appeasing his foes with his words, while others still believed in the power of the bludgeon. He was the best. Well, he was the best of his time... Since then, we made some progress. By the way, I cordially invite the audience to read my last book.
A lot of Elliak and Vuuar’s adepts are still looking for the secrets of his knowledge. Are they looking for it at "Pilhey’s Sand" (or Pilhey Zand)? May they seek, those who need it. As for me, I do not need such accessories. My pure talent is enough.
Wife, please bring my slippers - my ankles have swollen again. I really wonder why.
For more on Dark and Light, click here.
With Halloween and the game's celebrations behind us, the good people over at Guild Wars are offering players some visual memories of the good times. Available now at the official website, is a gameplay movie of the event:
We'd like to offer Guild Wars players a little keepsake from the recently-concluded Halloween Event. We have a gameplay movie for you featuring images from throughout Tyria, along with player festivities, The Mad King's visit, and more. Halloween Memories is available on this link.
For more on Guild Wars, click here.
Tabula Rasa Art Director, J.P. Targete provides fans and readers with a glimpse into himself and his job as he responds to an official Q&A on the game's website.
Using his love of Sci-Fi and Fantasy art and his knowledge of the Old Masters, Targete got his first professional commission from Avon books at age twenty. Though it wasn't sci-fi or fantasy, it opened the door to an ongoing fourteen year art career. Sought after by publishers for its meticulous rendering and dynamic colors, Targete's art can be found on book covers for Avon books, Berkley/Ace Ballantine, Bantam, Tor and a host of others.
He has also currently finished a fantasy collector's plate series for the Bradford Exchange. His Art has been displayed in the Spectrum annuals, "The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art." In 1999, his painting "Wrapt in Crystal," for the book by Sharon Shinn, was nominated for a Chesley Award and in 2000 his book cover painting "Circle at Center" for the book by Douglas Niles won a Chesley Award for best paperback cover.
J. P. Targete has been with NCsoft since 2004 and is currently the Art Director for creature concepts in our Santa Monica studio.
To read the Q&A, click here.
The Shot-Online United Cup Tournament Swings For Worldwide Competition
Unique Shot-Online Tournament Unifies Gamers From Around the World in Headed Online Golf Competition
(Sunnyvale, CA – November 4, 2005) – United States, South Korea, France, Brazil – online golf players from every corner of the globe can participate in the Shot-Online United Cup Tournament. Gamers will have a chance to be among the best players from their nations and represent their country as the tournament progresses. Of the many community tournaments rolled out for Shot-Online, the unique massively multiplayer online PC golf game developed by OnNet Co, Ltd., this tournament is the first to include players of every level and capability worldwide.
The Shot-Online United Cup Tournament begins on November 8 at midnight and will be drawn to its exciting conclusion on November 13 at 11:59 (CST). All Shot-Online members are eligible to participate with their highest-level character. The preliminary rounds will be played at the tricky “Fensair” 18-hole course. The top finisher from eight countries in the preliminary rounds will advance to 9-holes of quarter-final match play on the challenging “Forneus” course. The semi-finals will take place with four challengers at the desceptively peaceful “Hela” course, through 9-holes. The finals will conclude the tournament with 18-hole match play at the intimidating “Rufus Arena”.
Prizes are cash with a net total of $1000 to be given away to the top four finishers. Every participant will be given a box of 30 in-game gold balls just for playing.
Shot-Online, developed by OnNet Co., Ltd., is a hybrid massively multiplayer 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, 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 Shot-Online United Cup Tournament and the rules, 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.
The developers of EverQuest II have announced some new character models. The SOGA models will go live in "Live Update #16", scheduled to debut on November 9th, 2005. To get a look at the models, click here.
Coming soon to a server near you... SOGA models! The long-awaited SOGA models are almost here, and we have the scoop. In Live Update #16, scheduled to go out on November 9, you will be able to use either the new SOGA models or the original character models. Earlier this year, rumors of these mysterious models spread through the EverQuest II community. Many of you expressed an interest in using these models, so we decided to make them available to you!
A little more background on the SOGA models: These character models were created as part of the EverQuest II East project, in which Sony Online Entertainment partnered with Gamania to form SOGA and truly localize EQII for the Asian market. Not only did we create new character models, but user interface modifications have been made (such as click to move) along with other changes to make EQII East appeal to the markets in China, Korea, and Taiwan.
Back to the new character models themselves... As we said before, you will have the choice to use either the new SOGA models or the original character models soon in EverQuest II. To select which race-gender combinations you would like to use the new models for, make your choices in "Options > SOGA Models." Your choices determine which models you see on your screen. Other players will see your character in whichever model they have chosen to display themselves. Note: You must have the Additional Live Game Content box checked in the Preferences window of the EverQuest II Launchpad in order to download the optional SOGA character models.
The SOGA version of your character may not look quite like you want it to right off the bat, so we're also giving you the ability to customize a SOGA appearance for any of your existing characters that have a corresponding SOGA model. To do so, select the character you wish to customize and click the "Set SOGA Appearance" button. You can use this option even if you don't intend to use the SOGA character models yourself. Other players using the SOGA models will see the appearance that you customize. Currently, you can only set your SOGA appearance once, so make sure you have everything set the way you like it before saving.
The following races have new SOGA appearances: Barbarian, Dark Elf, Dwarf, Erudite, Gnome, Half Elf, Halfling, High Elf, Human, Ogre, Wood Elf. Additionally in Live Update #16, two new scale patterns will be available for both male and female Iksar characters. These new skin patterns will allow for a much wider range of colors for your character.
For more on EverQuest II, click here.
Staff Writer Laura Genender could not resist the Austin Game Conference Secondary Market panel discussion. Featuring Daniel James, Puzzle Pirates; Ed Castronova, professor and MMO-economics expert; Jeff Anderson, President of Turbine; and Steve Salyer, President of IGE, this panel is sure to set off some debate. Laura filed this mixed report/commentary on the event.
| I’m not a fan of the secondary market. In fact, that’s putting it lightly; I’d feel comfortable saying that, could I change any single aspect of the MMO world, I’d flush IGE down the toilet in a matter of seconds. Thus I could not resist attending the panel on secondary markets: “I’m Bid Four Quatloos for the One Ring; Do I Hear Five?”
The panel consisted of four members: Edward Castronova, Associated Professor of Telecommunications at Indiana University; Daniel James, Designer & CEO, Three Rings; Steve Salyer, President, IGE; and Jeff Anderson, President & CEO, Turbine. Castronova was vehemently against the secondary market and Salyer, as one might expect, was entirely pro-secondary market. James and Anderson were somewhere in the middle.
You can read her full commentary and report on this panel here.
We promised a major announcement from a big MMORPG company (or two) on Saturday afternoon. We are pleased to present to you the announcement that Codemasters Online Gaming has signed on to do the European operations of Dungeons and Dragons Online. Included in this announcement are two screenshots. Here is the letter from Sam Russell of Codemasters:
Hot on the heels of Codemasters Online Gaming’s first big acquisition; RF Online, I bring you another huge announcement, an exclusive scoop to www.mmorpg.com! I am absolutely delighted to announce that Turbine has selected Codemasters to provide the European operation, (servers, billing and customer support) of Dungeons & Dragons® Online: Stormreach™ (DDO).
Many of you will have already seen the exclusive DDO Q&A series that MMORPG.com have been bringing to you over the past months and following with great interest, as have we! It’s a fantastic license and the game is shaping up to be something really special - we’re thrilled to be able to play our part in bringing you this awesome title!
I’m also very pleased to say that I will be the Codemasters community manager looking after our European players, although of course I’ll be working very closely with all the great guys and gals over at Turbine; Calandryll, Sporkfire, Xundau and Samera. It’s our full intention to ensure that you are all very well looked after.
Shortly we’ll be launching our brand new Dungeons & Dragons Online website so check the Codemasters site frequently for the latest news! This consolidated portal will serve as the central hub for the entire Dungeons & Dragons Online community and will be your primary source of all things DDO!
In the meantime get your caps of discussion +3 on and give us your feedback in our brand new DDO forums when they open on Monday!
See you there!
Sam 'Satine' Russell
Many thanks to Codemasters for breaking this news exclusively with MMORPG.com.
Staff Writer Laura Genender spoke to Andrew Tepper of eGenesis about A Tale in the Desert II, the game which the man otherwise known as "Teppy" created. The article also serves as a sort of preview for "A Tale in the Desert III".
| While at the Austin Gaming Conference I met with Andrew Tepper, the mastermind behind A Tale in the Desert (ATITD) and upcoming Alvin Maker, based on the books by Orson Scott Card. “Teppy” and I talked about the present condition of ATITD and what was in store for the game in the near future.
A Tale in the Desert is one of the few MMOs that has a start and an end. The game can be won — or lost, depending on the actions of the players. Players must work together to complete the Monument of Architecture, Art, Body, Conflict, Leadership, Thought, and Worship. Each monument requires the help of many people of varying ranks in their respected discipline. If all the monuments are not constructed before time is up, players lose.
You may read her full article here.
Thanks to Michael at Codemasters for sharing these with us.
The makers of Neocron 2 have announced a date for the release of Neocron Evolution 2.1. This free upgrade package will become available on December 01, 2005.
Neocron Evolution 2.1 Release Date
Neocron Evolution 2.1 is a free upgrade package for the action-oriented cyberpunk MMORPG Neocron 2. It updates many of the models used in the game, including the complete vegetation of the game world and many weapons. Several features of the graphics engine have also been updated for better performance and improved visuals. In addition, new content will be added in form of quests and a new dungeon to explore. The free Neocron Evolution 2.1 upgrade will be released on December 01, 2005. It will be available as a (large) patch, but a new client containing all patches and the upgrade can also be downloaded from the Neocron 2 website.
Neocron is the world's only MMORPG that immerses you into a dense FPS-like combat/action cyberpunk atmosphere. Become a citizen of one of the last mega cities on the postapocalyptic Earth of the 28th century. Live exciting adventures with thousands of other players or just lead a normal life in this virtual world.
For more on Neocron 2, click here.
The good folks over at RF Online have been kind enough to share with us a day-by-day account of hteir time at the London MCM Expo. Unfortunately, today's journal entry recounts the events of the last day of that event:
After a hearty breakfast we set off once again to the trenches.
The machines were booted and again and re-organised so that we could display multiple movies across all rigs, plus have the Exclusive Screenshot gallery playing through the big plasma screens. I have to say, they did look awesome on the big screen.
So with the screens set-up, we were ready for the doors to open. I didn’t expect a ninja to come and attack us though.
Actually he's the winner of the Cosplay event, which was sponsored by us out of interest. Didn't enter myself much to everyone's delight.
The day brought us many more interested members of the community and “new” guys to the stand. We even had a link to the homepage set-up do people could take a look at the background to the game and sign up to the newsletter for some interesting news coming soon (ahem Beta)
There was a lot of interest from Lineage fans and guilds, so we hope those guys in particular will keep a close eye on RF in the up coming months. I see that already Deviation and and his compadre, Beast, have been making themselves at home on the forums.
To read the rest of this report, click here.
Mythic Developers over at Dark Age of Camelot have posted the 1.80q Release notes which are scheduled to go live on November the 9th, but can be tried on Pendragon.
CHARACTER ABILITY SYSTEM CHANGES
In order to fix a bug causing some characters to hit ability caps, which then prevented those characters from earning any new abilities, we have made changes to the structure of the ability and spell systems. For the most part, these changes will be unnoticeable to the average player. However, since these changes are to major systems in the game, thorough testing will be necessary to ensure there are no unwanted side effects. For our Pendragon testers, please be sure and report any issues you see with any of your character abilities as soon as possible.
NEW THINGS AND BUG FIXES
For more from the Camelot Herlad, click here.
To clear up any confusion that there may be, the staff at Turbine's Dungeons and Dragons Online: Stormreach, have posted a FAQ at their official website to try to help organize and inform the large number of potential Beta-testers for this highly anticipated new game.
When is the beta? Where can I sign up?
Beta began on November 1st. You can sign up for Beta by visiting http://www.fileplanet.com/promotions/ddo_stormreach/ and following the instructions.
I won a Beta slot at either E3 or PAX. When will I get into Beta?
Everyone who won entry into Beta at E3 or PAX will be invited within the first few weeks of Beta provided they meet our requirements (i.e., they meet the system specs, they are over 18, etc.)
If I already signed up through the beta.turbine.com site do I have to sign up through IGN?
No. The accounts registered through IGN will be added to our existing database. Those who signed up through beta.turbine.com are automatically still eligible for the Beta.
Does DDO.COM forum registration still increase my chance to get into the Beta?
Yes it does. You can register here.
I'm a member of the Turbine Beta Rewards Program! When do I get in?
Being a Beta Rewards Member gives you an increased chance of being selected for Beta, however it does not guarantee you a slot. To read more about the Beta Rewards Program click here.
Do I have to be a subscriber to Fileplanet to signup for the Beta?
No. You need to create a Fileplanet account however, you do not need to subscribe. We may do some special promotions that require a Fileplanet subscription, but for general access to the Beta you do not need to be a Fileplanet subscriber.
Once I sign up through IGN how do I get chosen for the Beta?
Turbine will continue to select people for the Beta.
Once selected, how will I get the Beta client?
Those who are selected for the Beta will be able to get the Beta client from IGN.
I went to the Fileplanet website and it told me only subscribers could register! Do I need to be a subscriber?
No. The first 5,000 people to register have to be Fileplanet subscribers, but after that brief period of exclusivity registration will be open for all!
I'm still confused. Do I need to pay to get into your Beta?
No. You do not need to pay. Our Public Beta is free for those people who are selected.
I just saw that a Beta account sold on Ebay for $300! Is this a good way to obtain an account?
While $300 might seem like a bargain, please understand that per the Terms of Service, selling or transfering accounts is strictly forbidden and Turbine will be disabling any accounts that are sold or transferred.
For more on DDO, click here.
Blizzard Entertainment, the developers of the massively popular World of Warcraft, recently held a convention honoring all of the games in their library. Fans from all over gathered to take part in the many events that were planned throughout the weekend, and the event was heralded as a huge success.
Now, Blizzard is looking for personal photographs of the event to decorate their website:
Have a fantastic photo from your crazy BlizzCon weekend? We want to see it! Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. While we'd like to see all your best shots, we're definitely looking for any costumes you captured.We'll collect the finest of your submissions and post them on the site for all to see. Thanks!
For more on World of Warcraft, click here.
On November 2nd, David "Zeb" Cook, Senior Designer at Cryptic Studios (the developers of City of Heroes and City of Villains) and Jack Emmert, Creative Director at Cryptic, sat down to talk to press and fans about theuir game on Xfire. The official transcript of the chat can be found at the Xfire website.
Jack Emmert. Creative Director at Cryptic Studios and David "Zeb" Cook, Senior Designer at Cryptic Studios
[Xfire]Frederic: Also, shameless personal plug, I am looking for a SuperGroup! I play on the Liberty server and my Global name is Eloim. :-)
[Xfire]Frederic: I would like to thank you all for participating in this chat with Cryptic Studios! Pour les Francais, merci de votre participation. Fur die Deutschen, 'Danke!' :-) etc. We hope you will enjoy this exclusive moment with the developers of smash hits City of Heroes and City of Villains!
[Xfire]Frederic: For those interested in e-sports, CS, CS Source and winning a free Belkin Nostromo, don’t forget to participate in our next event with Team 3D on the 12th! http://www.xfire.com/xf/modules.php?name=XFire&file=cmspage&body=xf_team3d_belkin
[Xfire]Frederic: Hi, Hallo, Bonjour, Hola! This is Frederic from Xfire! Thanks to you all for being with us today for this very exclusive chat with Cryptic Studios, the developers of City of Heroes and City of Villains! Please, join me in welcoming the good folks from Cryptic Studios!
We are going to give you the green light for your questions in a few seconds, after the Cryptic people introduce themselves. :-)
[Xfire]Frederic: Meanwhile, if you haven’t checked out the trailer for City of Villains, you can redeem yourself here:
If you haven’t created your Villains, you are a n00b but Cryptic, NCSoft and Xfire are here to help you help yourself:
We will be raffling five copies of City of Heroes and five copies of City of Villains!
statesman: I'm Jack Emmert. Creative Director at Cryptic Studios. I led the Design of both City of Heroes and City of Villains.
lordrecluse: Hello all. I'm David "Zeb" Cook, Senior Designer here at Cryptic Studios (also known as Lord Recluse). I did the design work on City of Villians.
Flyff has come to the English-speaking community. Gala-Net has announced that, as of today, the game's Beta servers will be opened.
Gala-Net Announces Live Servers for English Flyff
Flyff is Flipping the Switch on its Gaming Servers!
San Jose - November 3, 2005 - It's happening today. The most anticipated MMORPG (Massively Multi Player Online Role Playing Game) Open Beta Flyff is opening its game servers and will be delivering a unique experience to MMORPG fans of all ages. Flyff is the first flying MMORPG game in the world; and while others will attempt to duplicate the unique game play characteristics of Flyff, no other MMORPG will fill the sky with thousands of users engaging in air based assault, land based assault and Private Island PVP.
As of 5:00 PM PST on November 3, 2005, Flyff will officially begin its second open beta test and all game servers will be live! For those of you who downloaded the game during the pre-launch download; you will one of the first to take to the sky; but everyone cane be one of the first to experience this revolutionary event in the world of online gaming!
Get to flyff.gpotato.com and download Flyff for free, then play Flyff for fun!
For more on Flyff, click here.
MMORPG.com is proud to announce our latest exclusive contest for our community! On Dec 1, 2005 we will be giving away 15 "citizenship" accounts for MMOLands.com - which will give you access to Endless Ages, Race Worlds and all of their other online products, free for 6 months!
As with all of our contests, the more days you login to MMORPG.com the more chances you will have to win! (see official rules for details).
Ready to enter? Click here!
Someone we all know... at least in passing, is turning 1 soon. EverQuest has announced plans to celebrate their first anniversary with prizes and rewards for their loyal player base.
EverQuest II celebrates its 1st birthday on November 9, 2005. A lot has happened in EQII's first year with much to celebrate. But for this party, it's you who will get the gifts! Whether you've been with us for one day or one year, we'd like to extend a huge "thank you" and present you with some awesome in-game items to mark the occasion.
Your reward is based on the number of days that you've been an active EQII subscriber. Here's a breakdown of the rewards:
If you have been subscribed for at least one day, you will receive…
If you have been subscribed for at least one week, you will receive…
If you have been subscribed for at least one month, you will receive…
If you have been subscribed for at least three months, you will receive…
If you have been subscribed for at least six months, you will receive…
If you have been subscribed for at least 12 months, you will receive…
Keep on playing... because these great rewards still lie ahead:
If you have been subscribed for at least 18 months, you will receive…
If you have been subscribed for at least 24 months, you will receive…
To receive your gift, log into your account on November 9th after Live Update #16 and enter the /claim command! Happy 1st birthday EverQuest II!
For more information on EverQuest II, click here.
The makers of the much-anticipated "Dark and Light", have released a small sampling of heir game's music. This piece has been inspired by the lovable dodo. Extinct in our own world, but a faithful pet in Ganareth.
The Dodo is a flightless bird that supposedly originated from the Mauritius island. Although the species is extinct since the end of the 17th Century, they nevertheless play an important role in Dark and Light’s lore. They will be your most faithful and docile pets during your stay in Ganareth. These animals seem to have inspired the composers of the game’s music who are granting us with a lyrical and entrancing track.
Please judge by yourselves by downloading this new extract from the Dark and Light original soundtrack!
For more information on Dark and Light, click here.
As promised, RF Online developers have continued with their day-by-day account of the London MCM Expo. Today's installment takes us through their second day at the popular event.
A beautiful morning at the docklands awaits us at 7am.
We head down to breakfast and take in a good old fashioned full English breakfast to set us on our way. We decide to get to the show an hour early to set-up the PC’s and ensure our characters are loaded up with as many potions and items that we can put on them.
The walk to the show shows that there is a keen interest in the London MCM Expo with one or two people queuing up outside the main doors.
We get to the stand and boot up the PCs. All is looking well. Click the RF Online executable and the game launcher engages, but wait, what is this? Seems that we are having a couple of problems with the ports that we use, and the security with the centre’s net connection. A couple of calls later and we are able to see the game servers and have an internet connection…well to some degree. It is at this point the panic sets in as we find that we are having a few issues connecting to the Internet with the PCs. Not a pleasant feeling admittedly, but we do what we can to ensure that the PCs can play the game.
To read the rest of this entry, click here.