Welcome to the 1,038th Edition of Loading...

Loading... is the premier MMORPG news and commentary daily newsletter from Ten Ton Hammer. Play World of Warcraft? Jay "Medeor" Johnson's weekly WoW newsletter "The Overpull" keeps you entertained and informed on all the latest developments in WoW. Sign up!

The Pulse

You vote with what you view at Ten Ton Hammer, and the result is the Ten Ton Pulse (What is Pulse?). Ten Ton Hammer says happy birthday to EverQuest in our own way, as the Norrath we all knew and loved makes a rare visit to the top ten.

Here's today's top 5 Pulse results for today:

  1. World of Warcraft
  2. EverQuest 2
  3. Warhammer Online
  4. EVE Online
  5. Age of Conan

Biggest Movers in the Top 20 in the past 30 days :

  1. Jumpgate Evolution (UP 19 to #10)
  2. EverQuest (UP 15 to #12)
  3. City of Heroes (UP 14 to #16)

Loading... Daily

Loading... informed like Pravda, but with spuriously fun-loving intentions.

I like to think Ten Ton Hammer is pretty well informed for what we do. We talk to game developers, publishers, and PR houses on the phone each day, travel to events and chat over beers, and in the process we learn lots of things we shouldn't know, or shouldn't know yet. We keep these things under wraps until the appointed time because we can't use the drive-by methods of the mainstream media - it's an intimate (if fairly large) industry, and we don't want to poison the well we'll be returning to drink from. When there are legal or ethical issues involved, that's a completely different story, and we've gotten our fair share of heat for outing below-board schemery when we scope it out. But in a nutshell, that, friends, is how entertainment media works, whether you're small or big.

Nonetheless it was a complete surprise to us that NetDevil, makers of Jumpgate Evolution and Lego Universe, had been bought, and by a publisher that we'd never heard of - Gazillion Entertainment. Ten Ton Hammer's Cody Bye scooped the news yesterday and then tracked down Scott Brown, CEO of NetDevil and one of the most passionate and earnest MMO developers you'd ever meet. You can find his brief interview with Scott here. Obviously, after an acquisition, it's all pictures and smiles, but the real surprise is that this deal has been in place for almost a year. The news really only came to light yesterday because Gazillion announced their work on a new Marvel MMORPG.

In retrospect, it all makes sense. NetDevil, like Turbine and Cryptic, is a proven developer, launching several games that weren't stellar hits but nonetheless proved they had the constant creativity, wherewithal, and long-term focus it takes to be an MMO developer. And like Cryptic (STO) and (probably) Turbine, they found themselves with a major, major license but no obvious source of funding. Cryptic was acquired by Atari, Turbine got a huge infusion of cash mid-way through last year in private investment, and now we find that NetDevil was acquired by Gazillion in what sounds like an idyllic relationship. We like to see our developers concerned with making games, not necessarily financing them, so thanks a gazillion, Gazillion.

Due to the acquisition, NetDevil wasn't able to do the previously scheduled dev chat this week, but fortunately Lord of the Rings Executive Producer Jeffrey Steefel was available to come talk about Book 7. Just us tomorrow night at 7pm EDT in room Ten Ton Events on Voon.

Thoughts, comments, suggestions? The Loading... forum is the bidet for your clinging ideas. Or skip the middleman and email me.

Shayalyn's Epic Thread of
the Day

Will return when Shay unbreaks her Tandy II computer tomorrow.

6 new MMOG hand-crafted articles today! 71 in March! 331 in 2009!

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

  • WoW Celebs: An Interview with Olympic Gold Medalist Matt Grievers

    With 11.5 million players, it comes as no surprise that World of Warcraft has a player base that includes a variety of celebrities including professional athletes, best-selling authors, and Oscar-winning visual effects artists. But how many games, even including single player titles, can include Olympic gold medalists in their player list?
  • Preview: Get your Freak√©mon on in Freaky Creatures

    While most MMOs tend to get lumped into clearly defined genres based on either core gameplay elements or setting, there are those rare few that ultimately defy such easy classifications. This can be due to a myriad of factors such as a unique artistic style, or simply turning the conventional concept of what defines an MMO on its ear.
  • World of Warcraft: Selecting Talents for the Mage

    World of Warcraft: Selecting Talents for the Hunter

    This week at Ten Ton Hammer we are looking at World of Warcraft talent specs and updating them with a level-by-level suggestion for each class and each build on where to spend your talent points. No fuss, no muss. Quick and easy charts are being put into all of our talent guides to help you spec with confidence. Today we hear from David Piner with the Mage Talent Specs, and Stacy Jones with the Hunter.
  • Jumpgate, LEGO Universe, and Gazillion: An Exclusive Interview with Scott Brown

    Yesterday morning, various publications across the Internet (including Ten Ton Hammer) were picking up on the news that Gazillion was emerging as a major publisher of MMOs, with a Marvel Universe MMO clearly in the works. On top of that, NetDevil and their two upcoming games, LEGO Universe and Jumpgate Evolution, would now be a part of Gazillion Entertainment. But what does this mean for the upcoming release of JGE? Ten Ton Hammer sat down with NetDevil's president, Scott Brown, to find out more.
  • geeked: "Call it Karma"

    Ten Ton Hammer's very own satirical webcomic on all things geek-related is back with a peek into the wonder that is Heaven for gamers. If you've never really thought about what will happen to you when you kick the bucket from an aneurysm in the middle of a raid in your favorite MMOG, it's time to start planning.

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

  1. EverQuest 2: 10th Anniversary Q&A with Game Designer Ed Hardin
  2. Warhammer Online: Call to Arms - The Slayer and The Choppa
  3. Preview of Bounty Bay Online
  4. EVE Online: Sins of a Solar Spymaster - "Bad Crazy in Internet Space"
  5. geeked: They Are Everywhere
  6. Building on Success: The Growth of Atlantica Online
  7. Remembering EverQuest: Ten Years of Memories
  8. Loading... Live #8 - EVE Online: Apocrypha Dev Chat Vooncast
  9. Goob & Begud: "Dirty Work"
  10. The Struggle for Acceptance - Is Faction Grinding Necessary?

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 LEGO Universe 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.