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World War II Online - News

News from the front line. WWII MMO FPS, Play For Free.

Author: XOOM-CRS

Contributor: hyoslvr2

Battleground Europe Invites Fighter Ace Vets With A Special Offer!

Posted by BEMotormouth Thursday April 29 2010 at 9:57AM
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Public and Community Relations Manager, Playnet Inc.


The BATTLEGROUND EUROPE community would like to extend a special invitation to all players of the long running air combat sim, FIGHTER ACE. Come join our tight-knit group of fighter pilots, tankers, sailors and ground pounders in the largest WWII combined arms arena in MMO gaming. FA vets are invited to sign up for 2 months of free play time in WWIIOL:BE and will also be eligible to access a custom designed decal that recognizes their membership in the FA community.



WWIIOL:Battleground Europe not only offers great air-to-air combat against a group of dedicated and hardcore pilots, it also lets you flex your wings with air-to-ground combat, bombing runs and CAS for ground troops, armor and ships slugging it out to conquer towns and defeat the enemy. Take part in organized events like the recreation of the attack on Pearl Harbor, the evacuation of Dunkerque, special memorial services, squad challenges and "Kill A Rat" events (record a kill against a CRS staff member, win a prize!).




Sign up now and be here for the launch of one of our biggest updates in years, version 1.31. This huge update promises to enhance the air-to-air and air-to-ground combat experience with the introduction of dynamic weather. Pilots will be learn new fighting tactics to take advantage of reduced lighting, rain and clouds to gain the upper hand against their enemy. Other improvements coming with the release of 1.31 include:

  • Game engine performance improvements with upgraded shaders, normals and specular mapping
  • SpeedTree upgrade
  • New capture mechanics
  • Upgraded infantry movement, animation & rag doll physics
  • Updated buildings including urbans, barns, bunkers, docks, railroad stations, windmills and many more
  • Updated vehicles including the Spitfire 1a and Spitfire Vb
  • FIGHTER ACE commemorative decal

After you free months have expired, simply pay our monthly subscription fee of $14.99 and also get access to the over 100 vehicles and weapons. Begin a career in the army and you continue your domination of the skies. Pick to fight for the Germans, French or British in our campaigns that last for weeks and months. Climb your way up the rank ladder and become a High Commander and set the battleplan for the thousands of players who struggle for victory every day in WWIIOL:Battleground Europe!


Clicky for movie!

1.31 Production Update April 16, 2010

Posted by BEMotormouth Tuesday April 20 2010 at 10:06AM
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GOPHURWritten by Dana "GOPHUR" Baldwin
Senior Producer, Playnet Inc.

We've had a great week in Beta. One of those weeks where were finally closing more tickets than opening new ones and that is in large part to the help all of you have given us. Thanks. We also had a couple of very nice focus tests this week that exposed a couple of things but mostly allowed us to get the vcache system working. I can go into vcache if anyone is really interested but the bottom line is “it make game work more better”. Something about memory swapping and such.

We've also seen some good work coming on the performance front. We've been messing with reducing state changes and some VBO this or that is coming up. Again, technical stuff that basically means work more better. At the end of the day I look to benchmarks and we are currently in line with our 1.29 and 1.30 benchmarks which is very promising. Especially promising actually when we consider that the guys are really just now rolling up their sleeves and looking under the hood to tune all the freshly installed bits.

An example of the fixes that have already been made are:

  • Adjusted heartbeat and breathing when dying
  • Fixed sheared placed buildings
  • Capture timers adjusted based on number of "cappers"
  • Fixed floating berms, bunkers, trees
  • Fixed mem leak (long flights should no longer crash)
  • Fixed colliders on new pine trees
  • fixed gear jam shudders and sounds
  • Map:Now with buildings

And my personal favorite:

  • Sheep don't freak on corpses (don't ask!)

We also had a Rat Chat in the last week or so and these are always a good chance for you to throw some ideas at us and see which ones stick. Here's a quick update:

On/Off setting for the new breathing and heartbeat feedback sounds for stamina (ATP)

That was pretty much a no brainer. We've ticketed that up.

Look faster with the new slower turn rates

The feedback on the new slower turning while sprinting has gone over very well. There are always a few dissenters naturally but in our play testing we've really seen a difference and we like it. It was suggested in the rat chat that we should try to still allow the torso to have a faster look and just have the legs turn rate reduced. I talked with RAMP about it and he thinks he can work some magic there. We'll see what we can do.

Review the lighting on overcast days

Lighting is always tough because we want to have night and darkened days but not so much that players just fuss with gamma to correct it. For most of us the light levels right now are very playable but we've gotten enough feedback from people who are having issues that we'll take another pass at this.

Eye-height review

With the new combat stance we decided to go in and adjust the eye-heights in the various positions to match first and third person as exact as we can. One of the things this lead to was popping up when you went to aim the rifle. We like it. You could be partially hidden behind the AB wall and then pop up over it to shoot. Well more concealed really. You still need to crouch to be fully concealed. We liked it so much we added it to prone. Popping up is cool right! Meh, maybe not always. The problems were quickly pointed out by the brush lovers among you. You know who you sneaky fellows are. Feedback on this now is pretty mixed and we're going to review it. The plan right now is to leave the third person animations the same, so you'll still benefit in some places from the combat stance and combat stance in third person is very cool. In first person though we're going to review eye heights again with two goals. First, remove most or all of the pop up and second make sure that the eye heights are adjusted to match the terrain first and third person second. This means that we want to make sure that aimed rifles can shoot through openings and over walls and that deployed weapons can actually deploy easily on the many surfaces in game.

As 1.31 Beta testing winds down, we'd like to remind you that if you're an active Premium subscriber before the live release, you'll be eligible to wear the new decal. The '131' decal is a way for players to show that they were a part of the game community that supported the 1.31 development cycle and beyond.

To finish up today I'd again like to thank all of you helping in the Open Test. We couldn't do it without you. I'd also like to ask any of you not participating in beta to give us an afternoon or evening in the coming weeks. We'll be opening the server up more and more as we near release. And to all of you, we need your feedback. In the Open Test Forum there are several stickies for things we are looking for feedback on this week but equally important there is a feedback sticky that list tons of other things we want your feedback on. We take feedback very seriously. Your comments and opinions have always and will continue to shape the future of the game and also point out to us things we might miss in the vast simulation war gaming experience that is Battleground Europe.

See you on the Meuse,



New Subscription Plan Unveiled

Posted by BEMotormouth Thursday April 1 2010 at 9:15AM
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Written by Al "RAFTER" Corey
Executive Producer, Cornered Rat Software

Playnet is pleased to announce new subscription terms for WWII Online: Battelground Europe. Effective April 1st, 2010 the new terms will provide enhanced features and deliver a one-of-a-kind experience in the MMO genre.

The new subscription terms replace the current $14.99 monthly fee immediately with a "per-death" charge. Each time a character is killed or a vehicle is destroyed, a $29.99 charge will be applied to the player's credit card or PayPal account. The new pricing scheme adds an additional realism feature to the game by linking character death with a monetary penalty.


The decision to move to this new subscription was due, in part, to responses from player survey's in which "enhanced realism" was rated as the top feature request/enhancement. In addition, data mining from the Playnet-operated discussion forums found that 189,078 individual threads contained the keywords, "realism", "realistic" or "nerfed". This was a clear signal to Playnet that a change was necessary. The new feature needed to bring a new and never before seen level of realism to gaming.

"Our initial tests in this area happened years ago when we automatically deleted the contents of players' hard disk drives when they installed the game but that was difficult to sustain. A more recent idea was to find a way to deliver a near-fatal electric shock through the keyboard via the Internet each time a player's character died, " said Al 'Rafter Corey- Playnet's Executive Producer. "Once we figured out how to do that, we thought we were on our way to an exciting new feature. Unfortunately, that had to be modified when we realized the bandwidth requirements exceeded our phat pipe capabilities."

The monetary penalty of $29.99 per death was substituted for the electric shock once Playnet's CEO pointed out that live customers paying boatloads of money was a better choice than nearly dead ones paying a measly $14.99 per month. "Frankly, we could use boatloads of money. I mean, who couldn't?" said Jim Mesteller, CEO and Senior Babysitter in Charge of HC Morale.

As an exciting addition to the new realism feature, players who have become members of the elite "WWII Online Builders" group- those that have made a significant monetary commitment towards the long-term development of the game- are eligible to have one of the game's Customer Care staff make a monthly visit to their homes and deliver a crippling blow to a body part of their choice using either a regulation softball bat or a Callaway 9-iron. Corey explained, "We wanted to make sure our Builders were treated as a special group since they're one-time contribution makes it harder for us to bill them for each death. The personal touch by our staff will let them know that we haven't excluded them from the ehanced realism feature."

Intitial focus testing of the feature resulted in sky-rocketing revenue and resulting celebration in the halls of Playnet's development studio, Cornered Rat Software. It was immediately followed by some odd online behavior by players. Logs show that town captures were resulting less from soft caps and camping and more from open and friendly dialog between Axis and Allied players. "It's probably just an anonomly. I'm pretty sure we'll be rolling in dough in no time," concluded Corey.