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External News Features, Guides, and more

  • Nudity, Sex, Gore, and other things you won't see in MMOGs
    Just about every week, we pick one lucky writer from each of our community sites and make them- no torture devices involved, yet- all answer one general-interest question in the form of an opinion article. They always do a great job at addressing the topic from their player community's point of view.
    Our question this week: videogame ratings, take 'em or leave 'em?

    News
    Mon, Nov 07, 2005
    Ethec
  • "You guys are still posting Halloween stuff?"
    OK, so we're all a little played out on the Halloween theme, but that doesn't mean we can't download some memories for later. Enter the newest video from Arena.net, celebrating the in-game Halloween hullaballoo

    "We'd like to offer Guild Wars players a little keepsake from the recently-concluded Halloween Event. We have a gameplay movie for you featuring images from throughout Tyria, along with player festivities, The Mad King's visit, and more. "

    New Halloween video from Guild Wars' official site.
    Other links you might enjoy:

    Video, Media
    Mon, Nov 07, 2005
    Ethec
  • Rumble in the Renaissance
    Imaginary Numbers, makes of the late-medieval-period, miniatures-style RPG Tactica Online, bring you a hint at the game's skills system mechanics. The game was originally set to release in late 2005, but since there's been no word on beta yet, I wouldn't hold your breath.

    "This week we reveal the last of the Lore skills, and move one step closer to revealing all of the base skills and enhancements. Thrill of the Hunt is an interesting trade-off, where the benefits gets greater at the same rate the risks do; Bash combines damage and AP manipulation in one painful package; Trick Shot is another example of just how useful a good shooter can be in the right squad; while Strength in Numbers adds to the raw damage output of large squads; Congregation plays a similar role for your healers; and Intuition, last of the Lore skills, is one of those skills that you can't do without when you need it, but just take up space the rest of the time."

    Tactica Online reveals the last of the lore skills at the game's official site.
    Other links you might enjoy:

    News
    Mon, Nov 07, 2005
    Ethec
  • Orcs from Sesame Street?
    The newest trailer from Turbine features an orc voiceover (that really sounds a lot like Grover from the popular, long-lived kids show) daring you to join the battle so he and his friends can beat on ya. The dub might be a bit comical, but the glimpse inside the game the trailer gives is entirely worthwhile.

    "This exclusive DDO trailer is a ~30 meg download and features a look at many of the enemies you'll encounter beneath the player city."

    Head over to GameTrailers.com to enjoy the latest Dungeons & Dragons Online: Stormreach video offering.
    Other links you might enjoy:

    Video, Media
    Mon, Nov 07, 2005
    Ethec
  • A one-year anniversary review.
    GamePlay Monthly has posted a World of Warcraft review just days before the one-year anniversary of the game.

    " It’s November and World of Warcraft has already been out for nearly a year. Although it had a launch that was unstable at best, World of Warcraft has been hailed as one of the greatest Massively Multiplayer Online Games ever created. This may be true, but World of Warcraft stills suffer from many of the same issues that plague the other games of this genre. "

    You can read the World of Warcraft Review at GamePlay Monthly.
    Bagloads of guides, tips and more at the World of Warcraft Community Site at TenTonHammer.com.
    Tired of searching through a dozen sites to find the WoW information you are looking for? Let our World of Warcraft Meta-Search do the work for you.

    Reviews
    Mon, Nov 07, 2005
    Boomjack
  • If the producer's initials are AOK, that counts for something, right?
    The Matrix Online, the troubled brainchild of Warner Bros. Interactive pawned off to SOE 4 months ago, is apparently in transition. Andrew Kaplan, producer, shares his thoughts on the last few months:

    Throughout our transition the story of the Matrix has not skipped a beat. We have delivered three compelling sub-chapters of story missions and cinematics to go with the final event where Morpheus’ killer met his match.

    New content was delivered in the form of an entirely new feature, Pandora’s Box. Players have been progressing through the series of linked missions and mini-events though few if any have been able to defeat the final encounter without a lot of help for fellow players!

    There have also been ongoing tuning and re-balancing. We have adjusted the experience rewards for the introduction missions and for synchronizing hardlines, making progress in the lower levels a bit easier and giving the explorers out there another reason to venture forth.

    Since we're not sure if we're actually in the Matrix or not, we can't deliver content straight into your hear. You'll have to click here for the latest Matrix Online producer's letter.
    Related links:

    News
    Fri, Nov 04, 2005
    Ethec
  • City of Villains first impressions a'plenty
    TTH puts on the tights and practices our best evil laugh as we join the thousands thronging the bad side of town in Cryptic Studios' City of Villains, a standalone sequel to its immensely popular City of Heroes. We bring back a report on what you can expect from the Halloween-released villain-fest if you too want to bring some evil balance to Paragon City.

    The villainous gameplay is compelling, convincing, and enjoyable, but the most fascinating aspects of the game are, as usual, subject to diminishing returns. While I motored through the first five levels, the pace slackened noticeably from level 6 on. Admittedly, part of this was due to my disappointment over the "power pool" abilities granted at the sixth level- supposedly players would be granted abilities like flight, superspeed, teleportation, and the ability to leap tall buildings in a single bound. These power pool abilities turned out to be severely limited teasers for the real thing; flight was replaced by the marginally-cool "hover" defense buff ability, superspeed by an endurance regeneration buff, and so on. Granted, in MMOs what's a curse can also be a long-term blessing, and my fears that CoV would be a flash-in-the-pan "10 level wonder" were allayed now that I'm looking forward to getting superspeed at the casual weeklong goal of level 14. Being able to do a Flash Gordon impression for a city block or two with a long recharge timer on the baseline ability would be pretty cool, yet it doesn't seem to fit the CoV framework where abilities are never truly superceded by better abilities.

    Get the TTH first take on City of Villains.
    Related links:

    Reviews
    Fri, Nov 04, 2005
    Ethec
  • Atari and NCSoft Open Their Books.
    Both Atari and NCSoft have released their 2006 Second Quarter financial reports. .

    "Net revenue for the quarter ended September 30, 2005, was $38.4 million
    versus $68.0 million in the prior year's comparable quarter, reflecting the
    Company's release of fewer titles in this quarter compared to the prior year.
    Publishing net revenue was $22.6 million, compared to $54.6 million in the
    prior year, and was primarily driven by the release of Indigo Prophecy (PS2,
    Xbox and PC), Dragon Ball GT: Transformation (GBA) and Atari Flashback 2
    (Plug-and-Play). Distribution revenue was $15.8 million versus $13.4 million
    in the comparable year-earlier period.
    "

    You can view the Atari Fiscal Report and the NCSoft Fiscal Report just by clicking...go figure.

    News
    Fri, Nov 04, 2005
    Boomjack
  • Sony haXX0rs WoW.
    SecurityFocus is reporting that the Sony BMG content protection software is making it possible for people to hack World of Warcraft and not get caught.

    " World of Warcraft hackers have confirmed that the hiding capabilities of Sony BMG's content protection software can make tools made for cheating in the online world impossible to detect. The software--deemed a "rootkit" by many security experts--is shipped with tens of thousands of the record company's music titles.
    Blizzard Entertainment, the maker of World of Warcraft, has created a controversial program that detects cheaters by scanning the processes that are running at the time the game is played. Called the Warden, the anti-cheating program cannot detect any files that are hidden with Sony BMG's content protection, which only requires that the hacker add the prefix "$sys$" to file names."

    You can read the entire World of Warcraft Hackers Using Sony BMG Rootkit at SecurityFocus.
    Other Interesting Links:

    News
    Fri, Nov 04, 2005
    Boomjack
  • Two fancy new shots, including one of a squirrel. Say that five times fast.
    Turbine has posted two new Lord of the Rings Online: Shadows of Angmar screenshots on the official site.

    " In a time of war, an ancient evil stirs..."

    You can view the Lord of the Rings Online Screenshots at The Official Site.
    Other Interesting Links:

    Images, Media
    Fri, Nov 04, 2005
    Boomjack
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