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Richard Aihoshi: FreeStyle & GSTAR

Posted Sep 28, 2009 by Dana Massey

Richard Aihoshi: FreeStyle & GSTAR

A big game show and a new sports MMORPG. Richard covers two topics at once this week. Each Monday, Richard focuses in on the free to play genre in a column he calls "The Free Zone."

Richard Aihoshi

FreeStyle Street Basketball is a sports MMOG I first saw around five years ago when I attended the GSTAR show in Korea. Developed by one of that country's "big five" publishers, JCE Corp, at its Tech Tree studio, it's built around instanced three on three play, with persistent characters that have a variety of stats. Some readers might recall that Vivendi released it here in North America in the spring of 2006.

The service was shut down about a year ago. All I could do on my own was to speculate why, but I had the chance to ask JCE Senior VP David Kim, he provided one reason, saying that it was a timing issue. Speaking in retrospect, he felt it was too early to compete effectively against more conventional console titles. I'm not sure the situation was so simple. For instance, while it might not have made a big difference, do you remember a strong marketing and PR effort for the game?

Read it all here.