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  • Virtual world economies examined

    BusinessWeek Online interviews Edward Castronova, an economist who has become something of an authority of MMO / "virtual world" economies. He touches on World of Warcraft and Second Life, and it's always interesting to see knowledgable folks talk about the blurring line between reality and fantasy.

    As if that's not enough, do you have other concerns about online games?

    I'm also concerned that this commercial impulse could swallow up the separateness of these places. I would hate to see all that lost because of unregulated profit-seeking.

    I would like there to be some kind of provision, like a wilderness preserve sort of law, for these places. We would need to have a law saying that if you promise you will seal off this world so people can't money-launder with it and can't liquidate the returns, we won't come in and tax all the transactions, and we won't subject you to child labor laws.

    Check out this article on the macroeconomics of MMOs at BusinessWeek Online.

    News
    Mon, Apr 24, 2006
    Ethec
  • Cnet notes poor server performance of World of Warcraft

    You saw it first at TenTonHammer, then (oddly enough) the Chinese media picked up the banner. Finally, the mainstream internet media is calling Blizzard to task for poor WoW server performance, including rampant downtime and chronic login problems. This, from Cnet:

    Ito said the server problems have been particularly frustrating for him and his guild members because of the particular flavor of virtual "quests" they often run in WoW.

    "Difficulty logging in (and) servers going down--it's become a normal part of our lives," Ito said. "It really does suck for us because we're running higher-level (quests) where it takes us a few hours to get to the (goal) and sometimes the server suddenly goes down right near the end before we finish. And they are unannounced (and) you just see people on the server--guild list--start dropping off."

    Read the entire "WoW Battles Server Problems" article at Cnet.com.

    News
    Mon, Apr 24, 2006
    Ethec
  • Before you get excited .. it's not with us. However, you still get new information on Stargate Worlds so don't be so blue! You can find the interview here.

    OGaming: Stargate SG-1 is now the longest running Sci-Fi television series in history - it has more than ten seasons plus a successful spin-off series. There's no question you have a lot of universe to build a game around, but what material have you decided to include and exclude thus far into the development process?

    David "Zeb" Cook: Since we are still quite early in the process, there are a lot of unknowns, so getting specific is pretty tough to do. Most of our effort right now is in hammering down just what will make sure the game is Stargate SG-1 - how can we capture the tone of the writing, tell stories that feel right for the world, and give players roles that are Stargate-ish. That's far more important at this stage - the answers to those questions will guide us to the content from the series that best makes the game.

    More Stargate Worlds News.

    News
    Fri, Apr 21, 2006
    Awenyddion
  • I can't tell w hich ones are the new ones. But then again I'm slightly mental right now. You can find them here. The game looks more interesting every shot I see. Of course it could have something to do with those er.. pirate fantasies *cough*

    More news on Pirates of the Burning Sea.

    News
    Fri, Apr 21, 2006
    Awenyddion
  • Not going to E3? It's ok. Don't cry. You're hooked up!

    ArenaNet announces a special competitive opportunity taking place in early May. We want 9 guilds from around the world to compete in the Guild Wars Factions E3 Challenge.

    The selected guilds will challenge The Last Pride [EvIL], the winner of the E3 Appearance Prize, to a quick 20-minute battle. We will keep track of the winner of each battle and how quickly they achieve victory. The guild that wins its match in the shortest amount of time will take home the gold; the second-fasted the silver; the third-fastest the bronze.

    If your guild doesn't win, but manages to go the distance—that is, the guild remains standing for 20 minutes against the Season 1 GWFC Champion—then your guild will earn the Survivors' Prize package instead!

    With two ways to win, what are you waiting for? Sign up today!

    In the meantime hie yourself over to our Guild Wars Community.
    More Guild Wars news.

    News
    Fri, Apr 21, 2006
    Awenyddion
  • Guild Wars: Factions Zboard keyset now available...

    For the truly elite among you Guild Wars players, Ideazon has a new Zboard keyset designed for the GW expansion Factions, due out next Friday, April 28th.

    Master the skills of the Assassin and the arcane spells of the spiritual Ritualist. Activate emotes with the press of a single key. Interact with your guild mates and engage your enemy with speed and control using clearly labeled keys, and key groupings. Conquer and Master the Lands of Cantha and experience Guild Wars Factions™ gameplay like never before!

    • 56 dedicated action keys and labeled commands
    • 12 quick-access emote keys including fist shake, bow and dance
    • Menus intuitively organized for ease of play
    • Stunning official game graphics that immerse you into the action
    • Compatible for use with Guild Wars® and Guild Wars Factions™

    But can I program my /scratch emote? Hmm. "Ethec scratches himself."

    Anyway, check out the new Guild Wars: Factions Zboard keyset at the Zboard site.

    News
    Fri, Apr 21, 2006
    Ethec
  • It's not Vegas, but these slots will take your money.

    NCSoft / ArenaNet announced that, starting this summer, alternate character slots for subscription-free MMO Guild Wars may be purchased for $9.99 / €8.99 / £5.99 a piece. This is a one-time fee. From GamesIndustry.biz:

    As a result, NCsoft presumably believes the facility will enjoy a broader appeal than it would for traditional massively-multiplayer games, and that relatively casual players as well as hardcore Guild Wars fans will find the chance to play as more alternative characters - while retaining access to other unlocked content - worth the extra fee.

    Given that buying the box for $52.99 grants you four character slots, I suppose you could argue that the $9.99 fee gives you a ~$3.25 piecemeal discount. If you love your PvP, this could be a nice way to supplement your collection post-Factions expansion.

    Read the full article at GamesIndustry.biz.

    News
    Fri, Apr 21, 2006
    Ethec
  • Rockdirect produces limited edition DDO laptop

    Be the talk of the LAN party with your new Dungeons & Dragons Online: Stormreach themed laptop from Rockdirect. DDO included. As seen on Hexus.net:

    Rockdirect are releasing a special limited edition of their Pegasus 650 mobile gaming laptop, of which 100 will be sold, with Dungeons and Dragons Online Stormreach themed artwork on the notebook, along with a free copy of the game.

    Wha? You don't have one yet? Well, me either. In game conference press rooms, the "What if the hokey pokey really is what it's all about?" bumper sticker on my laptop subjects me to enough scornful laughter, thanks.

    Check out the DDO limited edition Pegasus 650 laptop from Rockdirect at Hexus.net.

    News
    Fri, Apr 21, 2006
    Ethec
  • Battle the evil lurking below the dangerous city of Stormreach™ when you DOWNLOAD THE 7 DAY FREE TRIAL! Begin your journey into the online world of a roleplaying classic, joining a community of adventurers to explore the exciting mysteries of Eberron® for seven days at no cost!

    You can sign up for the Trial Program at: trial.ddo.com

    PCGamer says that DUNGEONS & DRAGONS ONLINE™: Stormreach™ is the "MMO that changes everything..." Create unique and authentic D&D heroes from five races, nine classes, and hundreds of skills, feats and looks. Survive unforgiving dungeons, fiendish traps and foes that punish the foolish. Sway the course of battle through action combat where skill matters and seconds count. Coordinate party tactics with the integrated voice chat system.

    Ready for a totally unique online game experience? There's only one way to find out: Play DUNGEONS & DRAGONS ONLINE™: Stormreach™ FREE for Seven Days!

    Check out of Dungeons & Dragons Online Community.

    More news on Dungeons & Dragons Online.

    News
    Fri, Apr 21, 2006
    Awenyddion
  • Now that all of the archetypes are out there, the comments have been flying in. Funcom wanted to take the time to comment on your.. er... coments. Here is what they have to say.

    We won't always agree with all the feedback, and opinions are subjective, but we are also very happy to listen to good ideas when we hear them!

    So we sat down and went through all the feedback, decided which we could consider, who had a point, and what we felt we might alter or tweak. It was an interesting debate, raised lots of good points, some gameplay orientated and some on areas where we could be even more loyal to the original world as described by Robert E Howard.

    You want more news on Age of Conan? You're in luck! Cause we got it!

    News
    Fri, Apr 21, 2006
    Awenyddion
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