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Issue 274, February 28, 2011
In the news
The Rift: Planes of Telara Head Start program kicked off this week, allowing gamers who pre-ordered the game a leg up before the game officially goes live on March 1st.

Read more here.
Employees were laid off at NetDevil this week leaving the fate of the sci-fi space MMO Jumpgate: Evolution uncertain.

Read more here.
ArenaNet rounded out the Guild Wars 2 Norn Week with a new fly-through video of the Norn starting area and a short Q&A.

Read more here.
Get more news on our site here!
Earthrise: The Review
Many players have been seeking a great futuristic sandbox MMO to play. Into this frenzied community launched Earthrise in early February. Does it fulfill the hopes of its fans? Find out in Adam Tingle's review of Earthrise.

So the real question to this all is: should I buy this game? The well-publicized performance issues aside, Earthrise itself is just actually a rather bland game. There is nothing on offer here that we haven't seen a thousand times before but done with more inspiration and ambition. Masthead have created something which harkens back to the past and does just that; there is no nod to refinement within the genre or even progressing the sandbox their game purports to be. Personally I wish that we will see a small-time developer with the desire to make something 50% old and 50% new and do away with this full-loot PvP nonsense that bogs most games down.

You can read the full article here.

More reviews can be found on our site here.
GDC 2011: Cinco Barnes Talks Mobile MMOs Community Manager recently had the opportunity to sit down and chat with industry veteran and Spacetime Studios developer, Cinco Barnes. Barnes will be speaking at next week's GDC about brining MMOs to the mobile gaming space. Mike and Cinco covered the hows and whys of MMO gaming on the mobile platform in this new interview.

Yeah, the nature of my talk out at GDC is gonna be about how we essentially adapted our favorite large scale pc game type for mobile devices. First for the iOS and then later for Android and I'll be talking about some of the major design challenges that we ran into, dealing with crushing something of large scale down to something that's ultimately pretty small and portable, and some of the stuff we've discovered, A. about how MMO audiences are really the same whether they're playing on PC or whether they're playing on mobile in some ways. And then some of the key differences, some really key differences about how to approach this that we found after developing Pocket Legends that may not be obvious to folks who are just starting down the path of building multiplayer content on the new mobile devices, so that's sort of the high level, I guess.

Check out the interview here.

Visit our boards today!
Guild Wars 2 is the upcoming sequel to Guild Wars. Currently in development at ArenaNet, Guild Wars 2 will offer the same free to play model as the original game series while introducing a host of graphical and mechanics upgrades.

Guild Wars players will find only their character names and achievements carry over, as everything else is planned to be completely new. Where characters could only move with mouse clicks, now there will be a full range of motion in 3-D for each character, destructible environments, a mentoring system to let higher and lower level players join forces, and additional layers to PvP.

The Mists, a new area, will offer large-scale world versus world battles in addition to the much-loved solo or guild versus guild PvP. PvP and RP characters will no longer be distinguished from each other, and the level cap will be higher than the original game's 20.

Notably, the land of Tyria itself will undergo shifts in terrain and structure following large-scale destruction vital to the game's plot. The plot is set 250 years after the Eye of the North expansion, and concerns the awakening of dragons long believed to have been defeated and rendered powerless in slumber. Their awakening not only causes panic but flooding and massive destruction as others rise up to try and stop this ancient force. A release date is yet to be announced.

Learn more about Guild Wars 2 here, or check out our game list here.
The Week that Was
Monday, February 21
Guild Wars 2: The PAX East Demo

Tuesday, February 22
Star Trek Online: First Anniversary Interview

Wednesday, February 23
Star Wars: The Old Republic: Work in Progress

Thursday, February 24
Bill Murphy: Enough Hyperbole

Friday, February 25
Rift: Head Start Journal
Did You Know?
The network is looking for experienced and / or enthusiastic freelance writers as we get set to launch our new site: As the name implies, RTSGuru will operate in much the same way as does, but with a focus on the Real Time Strategy genre.
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