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style="font-style: italic;">Test Drive Unlimited 2
heads into closed beta and Ben reminisces about his href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/events/e3/2010/tdu2-preview">hands
on experience with the game at
E3. What made the game so memorable for him is a fundamental factor
which, when ignored, makes other MMOGs bland and lifeless. Join us as
we talk all about immersion today in href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/loading/2010/sep/14">Loading...
Full Frontal Immersion.

cellspacing="0" width="100%">


You vote with what you
view at Ten Ton Hammer, and the
is the Ten Ton Pulse ( href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/thepulse/">What
is The Pulse?).

top 5 Pulse results:

  1. href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/wow">World
    of Warcraft
  2. href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/gw2">Guild Wars 2 
  3. href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/eq2">Everquest
  4. href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/lotro">Lord of the
    Rings Online (UP 1)
  5. href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/eve/">EVE Online
    (down 1)

movers today

  1. href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/ffxiv">Final
    Fantasy XIV

    - UP 8
  2. href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/taxonomy/term/2035">Rift:
    Planes of Telara

    - down 7
    style="text-decoration: underline;">
  3. style="text-decoration: underline;"> href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/ddo">Dungeons and
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size="-1">Recent Releases
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    - href="http://everquest2.com/free_to_play">EverQuest
    II Extended (release)
  • size="-1"> style="font-weight: bold;">9/7
    - size="-1"> href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/aion">Aion:
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  • size="-1">September
    30, 2010
    - href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/ffxiv" target="_blank">Final
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  • size="-1"> style="font-weight: bold;">October
    26, 2010
    - href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/taxonomy/term/170">LEGO
    Universe (release)

  • size="-1"> style="font-weight: bold;">November
    2, 2010
    - href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/taxonomy/term/1407">DC
    Universe Online (release)


  • size="-1"> style="font-weight: bold;">10/5 -
    10/8 - href="http://www.gdconline.com/">GDC
  • size="-1"> style="font-weight: bold;">10/8 -
    10/10 - href="http://www.newyorkcomiccon.com/">New
    York Comic Con
  • size="-1"> style="font-weight: bold;">10/22 -
    10/23 - href="http://us.blizzard.com/blizzcon/?rhtml=y" target="_blank">BlizzCon
  • size="-1"> style="font-weight: bold;"> 3/24
    3/26 (2011) - href="http://fanfest.eveonline.com/" target="_blank">CCP

href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/playerscore/scoreboards"> style="border: 0px solid ; width: 525px; height: 220px;"
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your PlayerScore?
World of
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Loading... wondering how much
Godzilla insurance costs in Tokyo.

in June of this year I almost missed an appointment or two because I
didn't want to leave the style="font-style: italic;">Test Drive Unlimited 2
demo room. I was having way too much fun playing the game. What made
the experience so completely spectacular was the attention to detail
found within the game world. Without rambling on about what you can
read in my href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/events/e3/2010/tdu2-preview"> style="font-style: italic;">Test Drive Unlimited 2
preview from E3, I will say that
it is the small things that make this game what it is: a truly and
completely immersive online experience.

Detail is all too often ignored in many of the MMOGs we see today. So
much attention is put on gimmicky mechanics or balancing issues that
sometimes I think a large portion of the market has forgotten one of
the key ingredients in making a world in which people want to play.
Good friends and good gameplay are certainly elements that will keep
players logging in over time, but a rich world stuffed with detail and
"the little things" is what gets players to log in even when they don't
have anyone online waiting for them to join a raid or group.

Even if I wasn't remotely interested in online racing, I would still
want to play style="font-style: italic;">Test Drive Unlimited 2.
It's not just a racer; it's a world. The ability to seamlessly walk
around a car, get into your car, and look around, seeing every detail
you would expect to be there, and some that you wouldn't expect, make
the experience a winning one. What is between the front seats of a
Gumpert Apollo besides the stick shift? Where are the door locks
located on an Aston Martin One-77? You'll see once you get into one in
the game and turn your head.

Sure, the ability to get out of your car, walk around on the road and
check out your opponents vehicles may not sound like something that
will make or break a game. But it does make you feel like you're a real
part of the world, and that the world itself is very real. These sorts
of things are what separates games I want to play and games I want to
live in.

of Conan
is another great
example. Even before Funcom turned the game around with the href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/aoc/review/rise-of-the-godslayer"> style="font-style: italic;">Rise of the Godslayer
expansion I enjoyed every session in which I logged in. Even when all
my friends quit the game and the world was largely void of players, I
still enjoyed logging in. I didn't have to quest or kill mobs to find
my enjoyment of that game. For me, it was the richly detailed beautiful
world. I would spend hours walking around the game just to look at the
environments. I would follow wandering NPCs for miles just to see where
they were going, and who they were talking to. I would climb to a perch
and stare at the screen motionless for a great deal of time just taking
in the scenery. With that game, I really felt as if I was in another
world, and I loved it.

Even Vanguard:
Saga of Heroes
had enough
detail to keep me interested for nine months. With the broken state of
that game at launch the rich visual world was the only thing that kept
me going. Ultimately in the end though, it was also its lack of detail
that helped in propelling me to cancellation. Areas that had a lot of
attention from the designers were extraordinary, but the world was
simply too big to have that level of detail everywhere, so the "dead"
areas were really quite dull.

I'm not at all saying that if a developing company has spent a lot of
time to focus on detail it will make their game a guaranteed success.
Obviously if the game isn't fun and if no one is playing it won't last.
What I am saying, though, is that if you want me to stay logged in
whether or not I have any friends online to play with, and if you want
me to log in even when I'm not in the mood to play the core features of
the game, whether it be racing, raiding, or questing, you can keep me
entranced by making the experience filled to the brim with detail. It's
the immersion factor. The more I can visually take in, the more I'm
going to want to live in your world.

How important is immersion in the games you play? Let us know on the

Shayalyn's Epic Thread of the

From our href="http://forums.tentonhammer.com/forumdisplay.php?f=6">Articles,
News & Events Discussion forum

Gamers Movement Wants Better Free Games

all for better free-to-play games, and I don't know any gamer who
isn't. But gamer Luis Paulo Dobreira has some pretty
specific demands for developers. He founded the href="http://www.f2pmovement.com/" target="_blank">Free-to-Play
Gamer Movement
to encourage more publishers to join the free-to-play market, and to
define which games are labeled free-to-play. He's got some interesting
ideas, but I have to wonder whether his "movement" can really affect an
entire industry. href="http://forums.tentonhammer.com/showthread.php?t=53441">What's
your take?


Quotes from the Epic Thread

like this are the ones that encourage the snake oil salesmen of the
world. All those F2P servers and support are obviously run by hamsters
that exist on love and sunshine.

- href="http://forums.tentonhammer.com/showpost.php?p=441455&postcount=12">Oldcarebear


and Exclusive Content
Today at Ten Ton Hammer

4 new Ten Ton Hammer
features today! 42 Ten Ton
Hammer features in September! 997 in 2010!


Worlds' End - A Hands-On Look at End of Nations


There is no denying that this year’s href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/events/paxprime/2010">PAX
was an altogether richer experience than previous years, especially for
the MMOG enthusiast. And while we recently had the opportunity to
experience the frenetic gameplay of Trion Worlds’ upcoming
genre-bending MMORTS hybrid title href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/taxonomy/term/2503">End
of Nations,
we were eager to get our hands on the game during the event. In our
updated look at the game, Managing Editor Reuben
“Sardu” Waters shares
his show floor experiences and wonders why it took so long for a
developer to build such an awesomely two-headed gaming beast.

A Preview of the Forbidden Valley in LEGO Universe



Forbidden Valley is a shadowy, mysterious zone in LEGO Universe that is
reputed to be the home of ninjas. What secrets can be found there? What
rewards to tempt our greed? To answer those questions, our intrepid
Jeffprime ventured forth from Nimbus Station to provide a brief preview
of this mist-shrouded realm.


Weekly Report - Cataclysm Previews Galore: Professions, Stonecore,


WoW Weekly Report is our newsletter dedicated to giving you a
wrap-up of the previous week in news, stories, and more. This week we
serve up some great World of Warcraft: Cataclysm Previews including a
look at the instance located in Deepholm called The Stonecore, the zone
of Azshara, and all the changes to professions coming in the expansion.
We also covered the new server events to take back Gnomergan and the
Echo Isles. In addition to all that great onsite content, check out all
the news regarding World of Warcraft so you don't miss a thing.


Online - Business Models: Producing Robotics With Planets


no longer a borderline exploit, as when planetary interaction was first
introduced in EVE Online's Tyrannis expansion, producing robotics still
rakes in ISK hand over fist. Space Junkie tells us how.

Top 10

  1. href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/gw2/features/interviews/story-and-progression">The
    Heart of Tyria - An Exclusive Interview on Personal Story and
    Progression in style="font-weight: bold;">Guild Wars 2
  2. href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/rift/videos/pax10"> style="font-weight: bold;">
    Planes of Telara Class
    & Invasions Video Feature with
    Russ Brown
  3. href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/eon/features/previews/pax-hands-on">At
    Worlds' End - A Hands-On Look at style="font-weight: bold;">End of Nations
  4. href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/gw2/features/interviews/pax-combat">Skills,
    Traits and Builds - An Exclusive Guild
    Wars 2
    Combat Interview
  5. href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/rift/videos/pax10">Rift:
    Planes of Telara
    Class & Invasions Video Feature with Russ Brown
  6. href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/gw2/previews/pax2010/hands-on-part-two"> style="font-weight: bold;">Guild
    Wars 2 - Hands-On at PAX
    Part 2
  7. href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/gw2/previews/pax2010/hands-on-part-one"> style="font-weight: bold;">Guild Wars 2
    Hands-On at PAX Prime Part 1
  8. href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/lego/forbidden-valley-preview">Ninjas!
    A Preview of the Forbidden Valley in style="font-weight: bold;">LEGO Universe
  9. href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/tera/previews/pax-hands-on">A
    Tale of Two TERAs
    A Hands-On Look at style="font-weight: bold;">TERA's
    Group Play
  10. href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/wow/newsletter/issue84"> style="font-weight: bold;">WoW
    Weekly Report - Cataclysm Previews Galore: Professions, Stonecore,

for visiting the Ten Ton Hammer network!

- Benjamin J. de la Durantaye
and the Ten Ton Hammer team

To read the latest guides, news, and features you can visit our Age of Conan: Unchained Game Page.

Last Updated: Mar 13, 2016