Welcome to the 950th Edition of Loading...

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The Pulse

First, you vote with what you view at Ten Ton Hammer, and the result is the Ten Ton Pulse.

  1. World of Warcraft
  2. EVE Online (UP 7)
  3. Warhammer Online
  4. Age of Conan
  5. Tabula Rasa (UP 5)
  6. Lord of the Rings Online (UP 2)
  7. Atlantica Online
  8. Star Wars: The Old Republic (down 3)
  9. Runes of Magic (down 1)
  10. Stargate Worlds (UP 3)

If the Top 10 isn't enough, we also show the Top 20 and Top 50 lists as well, available to everyone on our homepage. (What is Pulse?)

Daily Column


I hope you had a great weekend. Here in Iceland for EVE FanFest 2008, it was a great weekend for both present and future EVE gamers. The Summer 2009 expansion, with a working title of "True Exploration", will precede the much talked-about Walking in Stations (WIS) expansion. WIS is CCPs initiative to allow players to interact outside their ships with corporate offices and player-owned establishments - shops, bars, tattoo parlors, and Amarrian weight-loss clinics and more, as we learned - but True Exploration is more about EVE core gameplay. If it works as promised, should do much to allevate the pet criticisms EVE has justly accrued in its five year history.

You can learn more about True Exploration from our feature article and two videos from the CCP keynote on True Exploration features and release details, but this is one of those expansions where the most exciting things about the expansion probably aren't the most exciting things to the hardcore player. While the incredibly customizable Tech 3 ships and wormhole exploration features should keep the EVE veterans busy for a while, CCP is finally addressing its new player retention problems (otherwise known as EVE's "steep learning cliff") with a more relevant, more active tutorial and epic mission arcs for solo players (and I would argue that new players are usually solo players in EVE, and vice versa).

It's been a crazy backwards journey for EVE Online. After four years of developing a game almost purely for hardcore players, we saw factional warfare in the Empyrean Age expansion - a PvP gateway drug aimed at post-pubescent noobish types who don't have a strong corporate affiliation. Now, after working on the gap between the moderately enthused and the thoroughly hooked (and, not to mention, shoring up its one shard network infrastructure), CCP is ready and willing to make another push for new players. They'll do so with not just better new player features, but one of the least mentioned but pretty huge announcements of the event: EVE in a box. Traditional retail distribution might not be the best choice for newer games, but for EVE, a game that's well-established, unique, and a proven success yet is absolutely yearning for new players, it makes a whole lot of sense. I'll probably buy it just to get a manual.

I should note that it's not like CCP has been ignoring the plight of new players - this is at least the third tutorial revamp that I can remember. And EVE remains the only game where, from day one (if you have the right friends) you can experience fleet warfare and possibly contribute to the outcome. This is the first time, however, where I feel like CCP could finally connect all the dots, from new to low sec to null sec for achievers, killers, explorers - the whole gamut.

More on EVE FanFest 2008 tomorrow, but for now I've got to catch a plane home! What do you want to hear more about from EVE FanFest? Post your thoughts in the Loading... forum, or just email me with your response to the FanFest announcements.

Ten Ton Hammer Epic Thread of the Day

Sometimes they're funny; sometimes they're foolish; sometimes they're flaming;
sometimes they're cool. Whatever this one happens to be, it's
our Epic Thread of the Day.

From our WoW: General Discussion Forum

Powerleveling scam buyer beware

first post on our forum was filled with angst. It seems our hapless
adventurer wanted to level a World of Warcraft character from 1-70 in
3-7 days...to the tune of $299 US dollars. Alas, things between
Peterpaulmary and the power leveling service he hired didn't go very
well, and what resulted was a cautionary and, if you've never been
thus screwed, funny tale. The copied and pasted conversation
between our friend and a customer service rep, ironically named Smile,
is nothing short of epic. But never fear, Peterpaulmary! Smile can "see
your feelings," and as soon as Smile's mythical boss appears we're sure
you'll get that refund you demanded.

Awesome Quote from the Epic Thread:

"For all the time spent contacting a powerleveling service and getting
the run around you could have leveled to 70 twice on your own

- Rocqu

Do you have a favorite Epic Thread? Let us know!

21 new MMOG hand-crafted articles today! 49 in November! 2846 in 2008!

New MMOG Articles At Ten Ton Hammer Today [Thanks Phil Comeau for links and Real World News]

EVE FanFest 2008







Hot Content - Or, what I took a fancy to:

  1. EVE FanFest 2008
  2. NCSoft's Exteel
  3. Final Fantasy XI: Exclusive Update - A New Beginning
  4. Warhammer Online: Behind the Scenes of Heavy Metal with Mark Davis
  5. Age of Conan: US Community Manager Glen "Famine" Swan
  6. Warhammer Online: The Seven Day Report
  7. Warhammer Online: WAR-Torn - "Kick Ball"
  8. World of Warcraft: The Adventures of Goob & BGegud - "Qualified"
  9. Warhammer Online: PvP - A Carebear Discovers a Taste for Blood

Real World News

Thanks for visiting the Ten Ton Hammer network!

- Jeff "Ethec" Woleslagle and the Ten Ton Hammer Team

To read the latest guides, news, and features you can visit our EVE Online Game Page.

Last Updated: Mar 13, 2016

About The Author

Jeff joined the Ten Ton Hammer team in 2004 covering EverQuest II, and he's had his hands on just about every PC online and multiplayer game he could since.