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MMORPG.com Newsletter Issue 27, May 22nd, 2006
In the News Visit Library
On May 15th, we first learned that Shadowbane, as a game, was not dead. Wolfpack Studios, the company that had been making the game, announced previously that it would close its doors on May 15th. While the studio did indeed close, we learned later that the game would continue under the company, Stray Bullet Games, a company comprised of a number of former Wolfpack employees.

Read the Article, here.

On May 16th, MMORPG.com added a new game to the games list. This one comes from an Australian company, and is titled “Fury”, a fantasy MMORPG that bills itself as, “the ultimate competitive online RPG. It takes the best elements of an MMO - combat, advancement and teamwork - and blends them with the best elements of an FPS - instant action, fast pacing and diverse game types.”

More on this game can be found, here.

Read our E3 preview, here.

Also on May 16th, we added a new NCSoft title to our games list. Currently being developed for both the Korean and North American markets simultaneously, the game pits creates a good vs. evil dynamic through PvPvE gameplay, a term created for this game.

More on this game can be found, here.

Read our E3 preview, here.

MMORPG.com Awards More Reviews

MMORPG.com E3 2006 Awards

This week, we released the winners of our E3 Awards. The categories involved were: Game of the Show, Most Surprising, Best Booth, Best Graphics, Best Use of a License, Most Innovative (Concept), and Best Expansion Pack. The decisions on the winners were made by the seven staff members that attended the event, and after much debate and argument, we selected our winners:

  • Game of the Show: Gods and Heroes
  • Best Graphics: Gods and Heroes
  • Best Expansion: World of WarCraft: The Burning Crusade
  • Best Use of a License: Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning
  • Most Innovative (Concept): Africa
  • Most Surprising: Fury
  • Best Booth: NCSoft

As you might expect, the voting was close in many categories. Along with the winners, each category was also considered for runners up. You can view all of the decisions, by visiting our awards feature, here.

From the Library Visit Boards

Over the last two weeks, MMORPG.com has offered its readers an unbelievable number of previews, reviews and interviews that were garnered during our recent trip to Los Angeles for E3.

One of the more highly anticipated interviews that we conducted at E3 was with Bioware Austin, the branch of the successful video game company that was created with MMOs in mind. Our own Senior Editor, Dana Massey, conducted the interview.

Here are some highlights:

  • “[We] can’t discuss what we’re doing,” said Richard Vogel, BioWare Austin’s Studio Director of Operations.
  • The primary high-level goal of BioWare Austin’s project is to apply that brand of storytelling to an MMORPG. They want NPCs to be more than “pez dispensers” and players to feel “epic”. Whatever they produce, it will be a story driven game.
  • “[MMORPGs are] too MUD driven,” said Vogel, who was part of the original Ultima Online design team. “MMOs publish people way too much… I think MMOs are too hardcore.”
  • Vogel and Walton believe that the BioWare brand, combined with the quality of products they produce, can continue to expand the MMORPG market. Talking to the two, they seem to firmly believe that they have all the pieces in place to achieve mass-market success.
  • The big story of E3 was the consoles. Both men seemed excited by all three major offerings. “[We’re] extremely open,” they said to the idea of offering their games on consoles. However, they stressed that a simple port of their game won’t work.
  • The major asset MMORPGs have, according to both men, are their communities.

Read Dana's entire article, here.

Game of the Week

Game of the week

This week’s Game of the Week comes straight out of our E3 2006 Awards. This game got the nod for Best Use of a License, and we believe that, from hat we’ve seen, it does just that. We are of course talking about Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning, or simply WAR. Based on the extremely popular tabletop game by Games Workshop, the new MMORPG seems to be keeping faithful to its roots.

The game, being developed by Dark Age of Camelot makers Mythic Entertainment, has a look that stays very true to the art that Warhammer fans have become so familiar with over the years. The style isn't the only thing that appears to have made it over, as the lore from the tabletop is directly incorporated into the game's design, and they have the added innovation of the "Tome of Knowledge".

Aiming for a 2007 release, Mythic is trying hard to create a game that is not only true to its IP roots, but also entertaining for MMORPG players as a whole.

You can read Garrett Fuller's E3 Preview of WAR, here.

More Games
The Week That Was
15 Monday
EverQuest II: Expansion Preview
16 Tuesday
Tabula Rasa: E3 Preview
17 Wednesday
Gods and Heroes: E3 Preview
18 Thursday
Lord of the Rings Online: E3 Preview
19 Friday
Themis Group Interview
20 Saturday
Lineage II: E3 Look Forward
Gamer to English
Term: www.PurePwnage.com

Definition: “Pure Pwnage is an Internet sitcom, or “webisode”, by “ROFLMAO Productions”. The show portrays aspects of “the life of a pro gamer,” featuring a Canadian self-proclaimed pro video game player named Jeremy.” - Wikipedia

Jeremy Self-Definition: “pwn noobs liek hard rite n my roomate has dis camera rite so hes all liek 'we can make a show lol' n im liek dats teh pwnage n stuf n hes liek i no lol so im liek ok film me noob n hes liek ok so we did lololol
thne we lukd at it rite n were liek 'omfg stfu dats pure pwnage lol' so we made dis site n stuf rite n now were gonna b famose!!!!

Hear Michael Hampden's E3 interview with Jeremy and Kyle on Friday's Game/On podcast, and a preview in the current podcast, here.

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