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Issue 188, June 13, 2009
In the news
The team at Hi-Rez Studios announced that their first Closed Beta phase would begin on July 24th, 2009. Each test will be held in limited bursts over the course of a weekend.

This upcoming sci-fi MMOFPS took home our Game of the Show Award at E3 2009.

Read more here.
August 6th. Fans can mark that down as the day that Dungeons and Dragons Online undergoes a rebirth. Turbine will relaunch the game with a hybrid free-to-play, subscription and microtransaction business model, they announced last week. They also dropped the NDA from their testing.

Read more here.
What kind of rig will you need to do battle in Cryptic's upcoming super-hero MMORPG? They and publisher Atari let that info out on July 7th. The game will demand a 2.5GHz Single Core or 1.8GHz Dual Core, NVIDIA GeForce 7800 / ATI Radeon X700 or HD / Intel Graphics with Dual Core, and at least a gig of ram.

Read more here.
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NeoSteam:'s Review
Atlus recently dropped this new MMO aimed at a younger audience, but sure to appeal to those who just love them some Steakpunk. Carolyn Koh of reviewed it and checked in with a 6.0 out of 10.

A quote from her article:

"In this reviewer's opinion, Neo Steam: The Shattered Continent does not stand out in the field. Steampunk elements are not enough to make it a Steampunk game and the classes are really just generic fantasy stock - even the Machinist can be compared to a Tinker / Armor / Equipment Smith and uses guns. That said, players that enjoy playing in guilds and team based PvP may certainly enjoy the battlefields in Neo Steam. It is attractive enough in and of itself if you take it for what it is: a fantasy hack and slash, free to play MMO with visual hallmarks of the Steampunk genre and an RvR end game. The machines are certainly cool looking. Very cool if you ask me, especially the animated ones."

You can read the full review here.

More NeoSteam can be found on our site here
Garrett Fuller's Column Debuts
Garrett Fuller,'s newest hire, debuted his new column last Wednesday. Every week, Garrett will take on an MMO issue. In his debut, he asks when the last time was that an MMO made you feel heroic?

A quote:

"Will an MMO ever come out that truly takes the players into a heroic format? I don't know if it could ever capture the feel of a game like Fable or other RPGs where the whole game revolves around your character. I am curious with games like All Points Bulletin and Star Wars: The Old Republic how elements of heroics will work into the system. APB seems to have some serious PvP plans, while Star Wars is looking to take Bioware's story driven formula to the next level in MMO form. It will be fun to watch and see if either system can work. Perhaps a game will come along that will allow players more influence over NPCs like God & Heroes tried to do or set up a diplomatic system for players to elect each other. Some of these methods have been tried in games but never really captured what was needed. The again I don't play games to be popular, I play them to hack monsters and players up."

Check out the full column here.

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Champions Online is in the stretch run, due out on September 1st. It is Cryptic's first full MMO since the launch of City of Heroes (now run by NCsoft) and the first major super-hero launch since they put out City of Villains in 2005.

So what sets it apart from what they did before and what's coming (SOE's DC Universe)?

This is the super-hero MMO for fans of MMOs. While there are plenty of heroic and action elements, Champions Online is firmly in the MMO tradition and should be familiar to fans of the genre in general.

It also boasts top tier character customization, a hallmark of Cryptic games, and clever new features, such as the Nemesis System.

The Nemesis System lets players design their own enemy. Every Superman needs a Lex Luthor, and in Champions Online players will get to create their own rogue cast of characters who will then dynamically show up to thwart them.

Learn more about Champions Online here, or check out our game list here.
The Week that Was
Monday, July 6
Wizard101: Coleman Interview

Tuesday, July 7
Five Studios That Should Make MMOs

Wednesday, July 8
DnD Online Unlimited Explained

Thursday, July 9
NeoSteam Review

Friday, July 10
DC Universe Online Preview
Facebook and Twitter
Last week, we let you know we are on Facebook and Twitter. This week, the links work!

So, for the chronic Tweeters out there, get all the news right in your feed by following us.

For those who just love Facebook, do become a fan!
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