Game News

General news about specific MassMOGs and the like.

EVE Online: Cold War Edition launches

The Icelandic (?) crew behind the incredibly beautiful EVE Online have launched a huge "content upgrade" to their game, called the EVE Online: Cold War Edition. I'm feeling a bit out of touch, not having tried this incredibly looking game yet... I'm a slacker, what can I say? I'm a big fan of epic-scale, deep-space environments, so I honestly have no excuse. Given this quote about this (free) expansion, I really want to try it out: "This upgrade introduces a whole new beginning player experience and lessens the learning curve for newcomers.” said Magnus Bergsson, CMO of CCP Games. “The Cold War Edition introduces a completely new approach to introducing players to the game, making it very easy for a new player to get started." I'm sure I'll get at least a few email from people proclaiming my doltness for not playing this yet... well, I'll get right on it. Full press release follows...

Mythic puts Imperator development on hold

Big news from Mythic about the development of their largely-anticipated title Imperator Online. That's the official site's main link, which is now forwarded to just display the following press release. They've put the project on hold in order to focus their support efforts on Dark Age of Camelot and their development efforts into Warhammer Online.

The announcement states up-front that they want to focus on the other games, but quotes from Mark Jacobs (CEO) like this sure paint a grim picture for the future of the title: "...in the final analysis it just wasn't great enough to be a Mythic game at this time."

Full release follows...

Asheron's Call Throne of Destiny open preview starts today

I've said it before and here I go again... I'm really itchin' to play Asheron's Call - Throne of Destiny bad! More accurately, I've really been jonesing to go back and play AC1 in any form since I had a lot of time in the early days of that game and I like it a lot. The upcoming expansion (set to launch July 18) sports a new graphics engine, heavily updated art and textures, new quests, a new playable race, new geography to explore, new this, new that, more of other non-new stuff, etc. Me wanna play!

Well.. the wait to try it out is nearing its end for me... roughly 50 minutes to the start of the FilePlanet Asheron's Call: Throne of Destiny Open Preview client download. I don't pay for FP so I have to wait along with all the other cheapskates.

So, I am giddy and finding it hard to concentrate on getting work done today as I wait anxiously for that little download meter to start crankin' along! Good thing is, my Comcast cable connection treated me right yesterday as I was downloading the F.E.A.R. multiplayer beta from the same source at over 4Mbps!! (!!!) Yummy. That's the kind of speeds that make you think you're a part of modern technology (for those of us who don't live in a dorm room with T1 connections coming out of our walls, anyway!)

Aaanyway.. I'll post another note when I get this sucker fired up! Yay!

Irth Online open beta starts today

Running through July 5, 2005, the Irth Online open beta is now fired up. (Direct link to beta signup page in case you have trouble finding it.) Here's a clip from the announcement:
Irth Online’s virtual world is populated by three distinct PvP civilizations -- The Arcadians in the snowy north, The Morbus in the southeastern swamps, and The Mezoteks in the tropical southwest – which have a thousand-year history of battling to capture the resources of the others to ensure survival. This persistent state of war inspired peace-loving pilgrims from all three civilizations to form their own civilization, and this fourth civilization in Irth Online is non-PvP, and survives via commerce in lieu of combat. Players join Irth’s history at a period when a fragile truce exists, and determine the course of history of each civilization. The persistent world environment of Irth Online features an open ended skill system. Players may learn any skill offered in the game without facing limitations of race or class. Irth Online's advancement system has a unique skill-over-time feature, allowing all characters to enjoy adventures together, regardless of experience level. Magic Hat Software’s in-house created engine uses the very latest technology in terms of DirectX9 effect files and vertex and pixel shaders (which include per-pixel lighting and bump/specular environment maps); allows creation of highly detailed characters with animation blending; extended visibility for the player (up to 10 miles in every direction); and unlimited, changeable terrain size with seamless background resource loading. Irth Online is scheduled for release in July, 2005.

"Pirates of the Caribbean" MMOG announced

(from Blue's News): An article at Yahoo! points out Disney Interactive is preparing Pirates of the Caribbean Online as their next adventure into the massively multiplayer space, after their very interesting Toon Town game.

An official Pirates of the Caribbean Online information site has been set up to get us started. This game won't ship 'til next summer (2006), but it gives me a reason to mention Toon Town, which is always good. I really liked what little I played of that game (way back during its beta testing) and need to get my butt back in there lately to see what's been happening.

Asheron's Call 2 contest at WarCry

WarCry started up a contest to mark the upcoming release of the Asheron's Call 2: Legions expansion pack. The big AC2 contest will be set to give away a 10-year subscription (with boxed game) as grand prize, along with 10 other 1-year 'scrips, 10 signed boxed games, 10 t-shirts, 10 fingers, 10 toes, 10 french hens... err, sorry. Some of the last bits may not quite make it into the contest. (I ought to hold my own "10 each of various things" giveaway to compete, eh?)

Aaanyway. I'll stop amusing myself and point you also to their AC2 Legions preview so you can find out more about the expansion.

Knight Online Announces New And Improved Community Website

New Features To Include Community Forum, Auction Site, Fan Site Links, Events Corner and Completely Revamped Customer Support System

K2Network (www.K2Network.net), an online entertainment and community management company, announces today the official launch of new and improved Knight Online website, www.KnightOnlineWorld.com. The completely revamped website now offers its community various new features that enhances the overall user experience. Some of the key features include a new community forum, an items auction corner, fan site links, ranking system, enhanced beginner’s guide, and highlight of various new and upcoming events. The site has also been designed as a tool to offer better customer service and satisfaction through various new sections including a server problem report corner, GM corner, and support area where some of the most commonly raised problem topics are addressed.

“Since the official launch of Knight Online in last December, our registered user base for the North American servers has doubled its growth. We feel that community is something that is the heart of any online game and we are committed to offer the best possible foundation and support to help our community to prosper. We are delivering what our players have been asking us and thus have crafted a carefully designed website to sustain and expand our vibrant Knight Online global community.” said Daniel Ko, Chief Technology Officer of K2 Network.

Knight Online is the critically acclaimed medieval fantasy adventure game with perpetual war servers operating with local language-support in China, Taiwan, Korea, Japan, Malaysia, and North America. Since its first introduction in Korea two and a half years ago, Knight Online has been enjoyed by millions of players from over 50 countries. With the enhanced website, new worlds, and the “Free2Play”, K2 Network expects its current player base to reach over 500,000 in the upcoming months for its North American servers.

World of Warcraft Performance Guide -- AnandTech.com

AnandTech (www.anandtech.com) has posted a great guide for getting the best performance out of your system for World of Warcraft. As is their way, they have a ton of great benchmarks for different video cards (a couple key parts were left out, but they discuss how to read the results relevent to those cards). There are some nice screenshot comparisons and discussion of how to adjust various detail levels to get the best quality/performance ratios for your particular setup. I dig that site, fer sher. Here's a clip:
Much to our surprise, performance was fairly balanced between ATI and NVIDIA at similar product points. The GeForce 6800 Ultra performed very similarly to the Radeon X850 XT, as did the 6800GT and the X800 XL. The major exception being the 6600GT vs. the X700 Pro, where the 6600GT offers significantly better performance.
Here's the link to the WoW Performance Guide.
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