Ten Ton Hammer

  • It's that time of the week again. Here's what they're working on for Dungeons & Dragons Online.

    Release note: this is just the third installment in the extremely lengthy list of fixes and changes that we are working on for the Twilight Forge Module. This is just the beginning.

    UI Improvements

    * NEW - The latency meter will be located in the main menu bar. Also, the latency meter will no longer want to be on top of everything (tooltips, for example).
    * NEW - Apostrophes and spaces will once again be allowed in player surnames and guild names.
    * NEW - The player biography panel will be adjusted to allow for more punctuation and printable character types.
    * NEW - The alive/incapacitated/dead state of members of your fellowship will update properly even when your group members are far from you.
    * NEW - The tooltip for feats will display how many times you have acquired the feat if you have acquired it more then once.
    * NEW - The tooltip for "Sneak Attack" will display how much extra damage you cause when performing a sneak attack.
    * NEW - Correcting a text error with the tooltip for Greater Bane items that improperly states that Greater Bane is a +2 bonus instead of a +4 bonus.
    * Alerts for "Missing Spell Component" will now list what the missing component is.

    Click here to find out more.

    Visit our Dungeons & Dragons Online Community!

    Mon, Jun 12, 2006
  • Some lucky players caught David Bowman wandering through the market on the Chaos server. Needless to say, chaos commenced.

    A few days back, David was visiting Chaos and said "Hello" in the Marketplace. Heh, mistake! Or not for those lucky enough to grab his attention and time for a bit. The topic, the upcoming expansion of course! A little clarification here and there. Read on for a little Q&A.

    Starna: David, if you don’t mind answering an expansion question? Are there any plans for 'generic' new-style buildings for current plots to make use of the new furniture/machine code? As opposed to just the new racial buildings (which will need their own plot types)?

    David: Starna: the new racial structures will be able to be built on any plot that doesn't restrict them.

    Starna: Ok, was my understanding that only Dryad and Dwarf were going in racially speaking, and that they needed special plots? Personally, I’m going pixie-tree :) but I’m asking more for the benefit of others, so I understand the plan as it stands.

    You can read the rest here.

    Mon, Jun 12, 2006
  • There have been two very cool interviews posted up over last weekend. One with RPG Vault and one with Gamespot.

    IGN’s RPG Vault have some inside information regarding the launch of RF Online from a development point of view, while Gamespot have an exclusive Q&A with Hook Sun – one of CCR’s game designers – about the GIGA FINAL Update.

    To read the Wrap Up Report at IGN’s RPG Vault please click here!

    To read the exclusive Q&A with Hook Sun at Gamespot please click here!

    Mon, Jun 12, 2006
  • Will there be Wookie sounds? Probably not. However, you can find out more about what will be included.

    ast time (Klick) I explained that the arena creature's impact sounded good, though it is lacking depth and power. There are several ways to get that extra "umpf" into a sound effect and it has been quite a long journey to work out an approach that actually works.

    When I was creating the sounds for our very first end-boss, animator Michael Perdius would constantly say he didn't hear the impact. This was odd as I knew it was in there, as a matter of fact; every time he said it, I would add another type of impact just to make sure. Several explosions, door slamming shut and bodies dropped to the ground all layered together. I tried eq-ing, adding reverbs even bribery at one point but Michael wouldn't budge. What I was adding wasn't what he was listening for.

    After a while, I gave up, working on other creatures instead, promising him to go back to our end-boss one day. I wasn't sure if I would or could get it right at a later time but was sure I wouldn't be able to do so now. Months later, when working on the Walrus' footsteps, I avertedly stumbled across a solution. The walrus was the first creature I did, not to walk on rock/gravel. When creating it's footsteps I noticed there was more punch to them than I would have expected. By mistake I had copy pasted an explosion, thinking it was a breathing sound, to each step. The combination of this quietly played explosion and the sounds surrounding the impact of the steps; the creaking wood boards and a slightly echoed thump, this gave a tremendous sense of weight.

    After each impact, the wood creaked.

    You can read this all here.

    Mon, Jun 12, 2006
  • Blizzard again bans more accounts than some online games have...

    In what's becoming almost a monthly occurence, Blizzard is wiping out massive numbers of EULA-violating gold farmer accounts. This time its 30,000 - the rough equivalent of the Puzzle Pirates community (according to MMOGchart.com). As usual, the target is not so much gold farmers working hand-to-mouth; it's botters who attempt to automate farming chores.

    In keeping with Blizzard's aggressive stance against cheating in World of Warcraft, we banned over 30,000 accounts in the month of May, and with that removed well over 30 million gold from the economy across all realms. The banned accounts were taking part in activities that violate the game's Terms of Use, including using third-party programs to farm gold and items, which severely impacts the economy of a realm and the overall game enjoyment for all players.

    We will continue to aggressively monitor all World of Warcraft realms in order to protect the service and its players from the harmful effects of cheating. Please note that selling World of Warcraft content, such as gold, items, and characters, can result in a permanent ban of the involved accounts from World of Warcraft.

    Read about the Blizzard's massive May bannings at the official World of Warcraft site.

    Mon, Jun 12, 2006
  • No, Ukash is not a former Soviet state that has a good chance to beat the US in World Cup soccer.

    Not that it's difficult, /mourn Team USA. Ukash is a European cash-for-virtual-goods concept that RedBedlam will use to allow Roma Victor players to swap out cash for Sesterces, the in-game virtual currency.

    Ukash is simple to use, and Ukash vouchers are available in over 120,000 stores across Europe. The company has plans to make Ukash available in 12 countries by the end of 2006. As simple to use as mobile top-ups, customers can exchange cash for a Ukash voucher and then spend the value online in an identical way to existing credit card holders.

    “It’s a perfect fit,” said Justin Lunny, Director of Sales for Ukash “We have already worked successfully with other online-based businesses, including MMORPG’s, but we see this particular partnership as a special progression into virtual worlds and their economies.”

    “The Roma Victor commercial test already has a burgeoning economy,” said RedBedlam’s Managing Director, Kerry Fraser-Robinson, “and we recognise that many players do not have or want to use credit cards for online payments: Ukash can offer players the option of using cash instead, with no hidden costs at all.”

    First we have crucifixion from Roma Victor, now you can collect your thirty pieces of silver in real currency. Read the official press release from RedBedlam at ResponseSource.

    Mon, Jun 12, 2006
  • Land Survey

    It's Monday, which means all across our network writers are weighing in on a single topic. This week: what goes into great zone design?

    Everyone knows that location is everything in the real estate market and in MMO's it is no less important. Today Medeor gives us a look into Telon's real estate value.

    The above quote is from the Vanguard: Saga of Heroes website, describing Australia, I mean Qalia. I’m guessing Qalia is not being over-run with tourists unless they are on “Survivor.” While it doesn’t sound like a place for a summer home, the harshest of environments seem to breed some mean-spirited critters (I believe it has something to do with a guy named Darwin). I’ll look forward to counting the numbers of shades of beige that they can create. Mountains always present unique barriers within games (pun intended). Are these mountains that we will be able to scale and find nooks and crannies where bad guys live, or will these mountains be barriers to forbidden lands that we’ll have to go around? Or, will they be both?

    More real estate values at Vanguard - Ten Ton Hammer.

    Mon, Jun 12, 2006
  • The Shire: Peaceful Haven of the Hobbits

    The Shire, pastoral home to the Hobbits of Middle-earth, will undoubtedly be an important zone in Lord of the Rings Online: Shadows of Angmar. Shayalyn takes a moment to explore the Shire, from the Far Downs to the Brandywine Bridge and beyond.

    The Hobbits live a simple life in their rural homeland, which is how they prefer it. Essentially the Hobbits live as farmers, tradesman, and laborers, although a few are well enough off not to have to work at all. There are some poor folk, but their poverty is not extreme. In general, the Shire is agricultural, home to lands that produce mushrooms and pipe-weed. There has not been war in the Shire since the Battle of the Greenfields long ago, and Northfarthing is now better known for its hunting and beer than Goblins and Wolves.

    Discover the Shire at LotRO - Ten Ton Hammer.

    Mon, Jun 12, 2006
  • The autobahns and the potholed dirt roads of Auto Assault's "highway" system...

    The varied landscape that Auto Assault offers has a lot of well designed highways that provide tons of fun and excitment. However, there is one that stands out among the many. That's Hestia's Back Range. Such a well designed tutorial zone that provides an easy glide into the rough world of Auto Assault. We discuss why this zone is so top-notch and exactly what zone isn't up to standards in this week's common content editorial, Location, Location, Explosions!

    The Hestia Back Range is one of the three mini-highways that are designed to introduce new players to the world of Auto Assault. A newbie zone that I find to be the absolute best designed introductory level ever, full of atmosphere and simple mechanics that slowly reveal how the actual game plays out. All before level five out of a full eighty.

    Take a drive through the wastelands over to Location, Location, Explosions! at Auto Assault - TenTonHammer!

    Mon, Jun 12, 2006
  • You asked for a World of Warcraft database alternative. We got one together and into beta testing and let me tell you... you are delivering! A tidal wave of activity has taken our database to 1,815 quests in about a week! I'm thrilled and amazed.
    The database UI Mod has rocketed to the 9th most downloaded UI Mod and may make the top 5 by the end of the week. Amazing!!! A big round of clap for all of you. The good clap, not the STD clap.
    13 fresh new MMO articles, Vin Diesel and even naked women on motorized carts are but a click away.
    Loading... June 12, 2006 (Pants around the ankles edition)

    Mon, Jun 12, 2006
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