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E3 2005 Preview

Reed Hubbard Posted:
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The RYL smart card will allow users to earn cash

Associate Producer Kyle Kessenich shows off RYL

The RYL girls attracted lots of attention!

Live from E3 – Friday, May 20

Kentia Hall is more brightly lit than the other halls that E3 exhibitors inhabit. It’s where the less flashy displays may be found. Here is where Planetwide Games is set up to display their MMORPG, Risk Your Life.

RYL, as it is more commonly known, made headlines recently for announcing a top prize of $1,000,000 to be awarded at next year’s E3. Sixty-four players will earn a spot and be flown to LA to compete in a tournament, culminating in the winner being given a check for a million bucks. It’s certainly incentive to get in there and practice your skills.

RYL is not intended to be as deep as other MMOs, nor is it designed so that players must spend months leveling. It’s more of an action-oriented game, explains associate producer Kyle Kessenich . Players start out on a basic map known as Almighty Ground. The pure PvP map of Caernarvon is also available in the game. Within the next month, Planetwide plans to release a third map of the Underworld. They also plan to increase the maximum level from 95 to 150, so players will have plenty of opportunity to get ready for the big contest.

The graphics are nice enough, but the real appeal of RYL lies in other areas, such as the political intrigue that comes from guilds clamoring to attain the status of Emperor. A player can only achieve that title by being the leader of a guild that holds 5 major keeps within the game. Three of the keeps are already up in Caernarvon with the other two coming online when the Underworld map goes live. Kessenich explains that holding all five keeps will be an overwhelming task for one guild, requiring alliances. Once the Emperor is established, he may levy taxes against all players, so the position will be one that will be in high demand.

Also within the next month, Planetwide plans to include the ability for guild fortresses to mine materials. The maps of Caernarvon and the Underworld will contain rich areas of raw materials and the guild that establishes its fortress next to a rich mine will find itself the object of many an assault.

Planetwide is exploring some interesting options beyond merely the gameplay. They are putting the finishing touches on a utility that will allows players to import their screens into a comic book format and add touches such as speech bubbles, effect words, and the like. There will even be the option to send the comic to Kinko’s and have them print, bind and ship it to you for a fee. Planetwide has also struck a deal with a survey company called GMI that will allow players to pay for their subscription in a novel way. Players who choose to answer four surveys a month will not have to pay a subscription fee, and those who answer more may even be compensated for their time. Support for smart card readers and RYL smart cards will allow Planetwide to distribute things such as gift certificates to retailers to players by crediting their smart cards.

The game is available now for download, so hurry up and get practicing. If the million dollar prize isn’t enough, then a chance to come to E3 and hang out with the RYL booth babes should certainly be a proper incentive! Check out the game at http://www.ryl.net.


Reed Hubbard