Loading... Massively Mini

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Welcome to the 1,367th edition of Loading...

Mini-games have long been a part of the MMOG scene to varying degrees. While most tend to remain in the realm of interesting diversions from the core focus of combat, plenty of others offer wholly separate forms of character advancement. Some titles, such as SOE's wildly popular Free Realms have taken the mini-game concept and applied it to nearly all aspects of gameplay to great success. As it turns out, mini-games (or Activities as ArenaNet has chosen to call them) are also one of the latest features revealed for upcoming Guild Wars 2. We'll take a closer look at the awesome power of the pint-sized gameplay package today in Loading... Massively Mini.

E3 2010

The Pulse

You vote with what you view at Ten Ton Hammer, and the result is the Ten Ton Pulse (What is The Pulse?).

Today's top 5 Pulse results this week:

  1. World of Warcraft
  2. EverQuest II
  3. Age of Conan
  4. EVE Online
  5. Dungeons and Dragons Online

Biggest movers today:

  1. City of Heroes
    - UP 14 to #13
  2. EverQuest
    UP 11 to #11
  3. Free Realms
    - UP 10 to #19
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Long ago in a Norrath far, far away, there was a little game called Gems that I used to play once my necro finished up his task of summoning corpses and rezzing clerics after a raid wipe. You see, back then getting a full raid of people rezzed, rebuffed and regrouped to take a second crack at our target was a long and arduous process. Once my role of getting all the corpses gathered in a massive pile was complete all I really had to do until the raid was up and running again was act as a mana battery for one of the clerics which amounted to sitting on my butt and casting a spell every minute or two. I remember being thankful that there was this silly little mini-game I could muck around with in the meantime, and I've been a fan of mini-games in massively multiplayer worlds ever since.

Over the years, we've seen any number of oddball activities pop up in popular titles which, much like typing /gems in EverQuest, have no real consequence on anything relating to character advancement. More than a few of them are pretty stumpy while others such as the playable instruments in Lord of the Rings Online can help provide a much more immersive overall experience for players. Some developers have even attempted to bring the mini-game into the realm of core gameplay features such as Vanguard's crafting and diplomacy systems. And let's not forget Free Realms which is essentially just a massive mini-game buffet that lets you pick and choose which gameplay flavor you enjoy best.

It's no secret which MMO mini-game is my absolute favorite of all time though. I'm speaking of course about the awesome high-speed insect action known as Rollerbeetle Racing in the original Guild Wars. While many Americans will be having cookouts and shooting off illegal fireworks this weekend to celebrate Independence Day, I will be whiling away the hours zipping around the track during the latest Dragon Festival which runs from today until this coming Sunday. I'll mostly likely be dusting off one of my older characters, the mighty Sardu X for the event so if you see me racing around the rollerbeetle track this weekend be sure to say hello!

Speaking of the developers of my favorite mini-game of all time, in a recent interview ArenaNet discussed some of it's plans for Activities in Guild Wars 2 which are various mini-games you'll be able to play in each of the game's major cities. I'm actually pretty hyped that, rather than being linked to the holiday events like they are in the original, activities in Guild Wars 2 sound as though they'll be available to players all year round. I've always loved taking part in things like the above mentioned rollerbeetle races or the PvP snowball fights during the Wintersday event in GW, so you can bet that I'll be first in line to get in on the action once the GW2 mothership has landed.

Do you have any favorite MMO mini-games that you can't get enough of? Are you as excited as I am to see that they'll be a staple in the cities of Guild Wars 2? Race your favorite rollerbeetle over to the Loading... forum and let us know!

Shayalyn's Epic Thread of the Day

From our Articles, News & Events Discussion

Criminals and Enforcers Take to the Streets with APB Launch

We all played cops and robbers as kids. Now we can play cops and criminals in a virtual world designed strictly for that purpose...and for our amusement. APB has launched, and players are flooding into the mean streets to make things happen. Whether you're upholding the law or breaking it, we want to know how you're liking APB. Join the others in this thread discussing the MMOG world's latest launch.

Awesome Quotes from the Epic Thread

"I've bought the game and have had a blast so far. The game isn't without its faults, but it's honestly the most fun I've had playing an MMO in a long time. I love the Grand Theft Auto series though, so if you don't, then this game might not be for you."

- Randem

Have you spotted an Epic Thread on our forums? Tell us!

New and Exclusive Content Today at Ten Ton Hammer

4 Ten Ton Hammer features today! 4 Ten Ton Hammer features in July! 722 in 2010!


APB: Spotlight on the Symbol Designer

One of the best parts of APB, the new urban shooter MMOG from Realtime Worlds, is the vast amount of customization possibilities in the way characters look and dress, and the cars they drive. The crown jewel at the heart of this robust, multilayered customization system is the Symbol Designer, a surprisingly powerful in-game utility for creating logos and custom symbols. Art created in the symbol designer can then be used for tattoos, vehicle decals, and even graffiti. Mattlow presents a tutorial on how to use this robust in game tool.

Suicide Ganking The Primae In EVE Online

The Primae sure is a pretty class of ship. Too bad each player only got one, per account. Too bad Ten Ton Hammer Contributing Writer, Space Junkie, wrote this guide about how to suicide gank them in high-security space.

The Races of Guild Wars 2: Humans

Humans are an integral part to most RPG stories and the Guild Wars universe is no exception. Humans will be playing a big part in Guild Wars 2 even though other races have moved onto the main stage. What happens to the Human race in Guild Wars 2? Our look at Humanity in Guild Wars 2 answers this question and many more.

WoW Gold through Gathering

You've got your startup gold, epic flying, and if need be a steady stream of gold through daily quests. It's not enough, you want more. The next step up the gold making ladder is the resource gatherer. These players pick up tradeskills like Herbalism, Mining, and less commonly Skinning and traverse the world picking up items that are useful to other tradeskills.

Today's Hottest Articles, Guides, and Features

  1. Sock! Pow! Bam! DC Universe Online – An Interview with Senior Producer Wes Yanagi
  2. The Races of Guild Wars 2: Humans
  3. DC Universe Online's Senior Producer Wes Yanagi on Ten Ton Hammer Live Episode 13
  4. APB: Spotlight on the Symbol Designer
  5. Exclusive Interview With Creator of Sherwood Dungeon
  6. Introducing Company of Heroes Online - A Video Q&A with Producer Greg Wilson
  7. WoW Ruby Sanctum Guide
  8. APB for Dummies - 10 Tips & Tricks to Help Get You Started
  9. Star Wars: The Old Republic - Q&A with James Ohlen
  10. Exclusive Guild Wars 2 Warrior and Traits Q&A with Lead Designer Eric Flannum

Thanks for visiting the Ten Ton Hammer network!

- Reuben "Sardu" Waters and the Ten Ton Hammer Team.

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