Ten Ton Hammer

  • A Double Shot of Vanguard Pleasure

    First up, Niborea takes a good hard look at classes. From the first 3 basic classes in the original D&D to the many varieties that today's MMOs offer, Mercurie takes a look at these traditional classes compared to Vanguard's unique class structure.

    Naturally, if Vanguard: Saga of Heroes is to be successful, or if it is to be different from other MMOs, it would have to solve this problem of any given class being preferable over others. For that reason, the classes are somewhat interdependent on each other within Vanguard. This can be seen in the way that classes are set up in the game.

    And don't miss Niborea's latest Vanguard fanart! This week at Vanguard - TenTonHammer she presents a halfling bard complete with lute, rolling hills, and windmill!

    Thu, Mar 23, 2006
    Ethec
  • Coyote Meets Death!

    Earlier this week we discussed death in-game and how it effects us all. In keeping with that, Coyote seeks out Death himself for an exclusive interview. Here is an article you've been DIEING to read. Sorry....

    “An icy hand gripping your heart, robbing it of its warmth as you slowly die. Accident, murder…fate. Death. A name we all know – a name once both respected and feared. But who is the man behind the robes? What lays beneath the layers rotted skin and sun bleached bones, and what is he doing now that the very macabre trade he once pedaled is obsolete. This is Coyotee Sharptongue for Ten Ton Hammer news, bringing you this first ever LIVE interview with none other than DEATH – himself.” Coyotee towards a sinister looking skeletal figure dressed in black robes who towers silently beside him

    Read the rest of this great interview at at EQ2 - TenTonHammer.

    Thu, Mar 23, 2006
    Ethec
  • World to license trees.
    Bigworld, the MMO engine company has licensed Speedtree technology. Sometimes these stories just write themselves.

    "FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    March 21st, 2006
     
    BigWorld Technology Suite to Incorporate SpeedTree
     
    (San José, CALIFORNIA) – BigWorld, producers of the industry-leading MMOG development platform today announced that they will be partnering with IDV to integrate the SpeedTree hardware independent foliage solution into the BigWorld Technology Suite.

    BigWorld licensees will now have access to SpeedTree’s advanced content creation options, enabling them to quickly and efficiently populate game environments with highly detailed trees and foliage. SpeedTreeRT delivers low-poly, highly detailed trees and plants, with adjustable wind effects, seamless LOD transitions and a library of hundreds of tree models from more than 100 species. SpeedTreeRT also includes SpeedTree CAD, which will enable BigWorld licensees to quickly and easily create and edit animated trees in real-time. Kevin Meredith, Director of Business Development at IDV said “our integration with BigWorld Technology Suite ensures that customers of this comprehensive game development platform now have the option of easily including real-time’s most advanced tree and plant solution. We look forward to partnering with BigWorld in delivering an outstanding look and feel to the greatest MMOGs of the next generation.”
     
    John De Margheriti, CEO of BigWorld, was excited about the development. “SpeedTree is easily the best of breed procedural foliage system. It makes MMO development faster while also helping game environments look richer and more immersive.”
     
    BigWorld Technology Suite provides operators and studios with a lower total cost of ownership through a seamless, integrated development pipeline that is optimized for the development of next-generation MMOGs. "

    Thu, Mar 23, 2006
    Boomjack
  • Crucifixion returns to Britain.
    The folks at Roma Victor are nailing their fans to the cross. Is there a better way to keep your fans attached to your game?

    "For immediate release: 23rd March - Britain will witness its first crucifixion for almost two millennia later this week, when Cynewulf is nailed to a cross as punishment for ganking other players as they first appear.  Cynewulf,(in real life a 27 year-old electrical engineer from Flint, Michigan, USA) has no need to worry about suffering any permanent pain to his hands or feet, however, as this barbaric sentence is due to be carried out in cyberspace; in the virtual world of Roma Victor ®
    Roma Victor is an online recreation of Britain in Roman times, where players live virtual lives as slaves and citizens of that all-conquering Empire. The world is currently in the final stages of testing and will officially launch on July 1st 2006, after which thousands of players will be able to live out their own virtual lives within ancient Roman-occupied Britannia.
    Cynewulf, who is the first player within Roma Victor to receive this brutal punishment, will be hung on a cross for a full seven days on full public display in the digital reconstruction of the provincial town of Corstopitum (modern day Corbridge in Northumberland, England).
    Kerry Fraser-Robinson, RedBedlam’s CEO says: “Roma Victor has been designed from the outset to offer an historically authentic and realistic virtual world. Although crucifixion is nowadays synonymous with persecution and religious symbolism, in 180CE it was just one of many severe punishments used by the Romans to punish criminals and to send a clear message out to other potential wrong-doers. And since our online world is historically authentic, we feel that applying this punishment to cheats, hackers and other virtual wrongdoers is not only appropriate, but also adds to the gaming experience by resonating with classical history.”
    Crucifixion is to be used as a form of player 'ban' within the virtual world of Roma Victor, with the length of the ban reflecting the severity of the punishment. For cheating by exploiting a bug and advancing his or her character's skills unfairly, for example, a player might typically receive a seven-day ban; multiple or more serious offences will result in a longer (or even permanent) ban.
    Further information on this story and Roma Victor in general can be found online at http://www.roma-victor.com/news"

    Thu, Mar 23, 2006
    Boomjack
  • Loading...


    Will the Unreal Engine allow for more MMOs to be developed? Jeff and Nicole aimed to find out at GDC 2006

    "The latest version of Unreal Engine 3 was demoed at a slick 2560 x 1600 resolution on Renegade XPS PCs - Dell's newest ultra high-end gaming line of computers featuring Intel 965 Extreme Edition processors overclocked at 4.26 Ghz and AGEIA PhysX processors (first-to-market hardware physics accelerators). An Epic rep lauded the sponsorship and ongoing partnership with Dell, saying it was a win-win-win for gamers, designers, and hardware manufacturers when all three maintain close relations and open lines of communication."

    The team at Sigil Online Games has backed the product by licensing the Unreal Engine for Vanguard: Saga of Heroes.
    It is a big day for GDC coverage today including looks at Battlestar Galactica, Richard Garriott and City of Villains. This and more will be posted, of all places, on our GDC webpage.
    After much e-mail harassment I ordered Oblivion yesterday. The local EB Games was sold out, so I went the online route. I'm not in a hurry for it, but I need to play it a bit so I can defend myself against more nasty name-calling in e-mail or admit that I was wrong about a single player game.
    Questions for our GDC Team? Offensive comments for me? Send them in.


    What's New On TenTonHammer.com?
    GDC Coverage

    • Unreal Engine Demo - Keeping It Unreal
      "This is Unreal! And for once, we're not exaggerating! TenTonHammer goes behind the walls of the fortress-like Epic Games booth to see what the latest version of the popular game development suite Unreal Engine 3 has to offer. And, as the folks designing the next-in-line fantasy MMO Vanguard: Saga of Heroes can tell you, it's not just a robust first-person shooter development platform."
    • City of Villains / City of Heroes Issue #7 Preview
      "City of Villains has issues, but in a good way! Cryptic Studios' next free expansion for City of Villains / City of Heroes, Issue 7, contains some of the hottest content we've seen come down the pipeline in at least a year or so! We've steadily shown you Issue 7 screens as Cryptic graciously released them to the press, but nothing could prepare us for what we saw in person. This snippet is just the tip of the iceberg. For those of you craving dynamic (malleable) content as opposed to the static worlds we're used to... well, check out the article! "
    • Battlestar Galactica and MMOs
      "A "Battlestar Galactica" MMO? Nope, but almost as good. Ron Moore, creative force behind the new "Battlestar Galactica" series, was on-hand to deliver some valuable insight into revitalizing older, perhaps worn-out themes. We don't have any tired, old themes in the MMO genre, do we? /cough Kidding aside, how cool is it that MMO developers might have something to learn from Battlestar Gallactica? Ahhh, two of my favorite pastimes in one fun-to-write article."
    • IGF Awards Ceremony
      "Lord British reigns! Few can deny that Richard Garriott is one of the true founding fathers of MMO gaming. He fittingly received the GDC's highest honor in the awards ceremony Wednesday night and received one heck of an ovation from the standing room-only crowd. But that's not all! Several MMOs were nominated for Independent Games Festival / Game Developers' Choice Awards, and one took home the prize. Who? Which? What category? For that, you'll have to check out the article! "





    EQ2 and Vanguard lead the charge today.
    Let us entertain you or at the very least waste some of your time at work.
    03.23.2006

    • Vanguard: Saga of Heroes: New Artwork - Bard
      "You need a description?"
    • Vanguard: Saga of Heroes - A Touch of Class
      "The concept of classes in role-playing games originated with Dungeons and Dragons (D&D), MMOs inherited the concept. Explore what Vanguard will offer with thier class structure."
    • EverQuest 2: Language Guide
      "Need to hear that Aviak insult your mother in English instead of garbled gibberish?  Savanja has updated the TenTonHammer EverQuest 2 language guide to reflect the new Kingdom of Sky Aviak language."
    • EverQuest 2: An Interview With Death
      "Earlier this week we discussed death in-game and how it effects us all. In keeping with that, Coyote seeks out Death himself for an exclusive interview. Here is an article you've been DIEING to read. Sorry...."

    03.22.2006

    • Game Developers Conference Coverage Begins
      "Nicole "Awen" Hamlett and Jeff "Ethec" Woleslagle are live in San Jose, CA for Game Developer's Conference. It's the premier insiders-only event for the gaming industry, and they will be dishing out everything relating to massively multiplayer gaming that we can ferret out. Though things kick-off in earnest tomorrow morning, Nicole and Jeff have a slew of exclusive interviews set up over the next few days. Whet your appetite with this quick preview!"
    • Vanguard: Saga of Heroes: Guild Outside The Game
      "here are certain factors that seem to define a guild, and to determine the chances of that particular guild for success or failure. Of course, nobody sets out to establish an organization, either online or in the real world, with failure as a goal. Still, there are four very basic components of a guild that define the ability of the people gathered under a common name to overcome obstacles and build a strong foundation. These for components include the Guild Structure; Guild Leadership; Guild Membership; and In-Game Support."

    Vin Diesel Fact of the Day: Goliath let David win because he had heard that the winner must fight Vin Diesel.


    Now on to the real world. You can't make this stuff up.

    As always, thanks for visiting TenTonHammer.com,
    -- John "Boomjack" Hoskin

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    Thu, Mar 23, 2006
    Boomjack
  • Lord British reigns!

    Few can deny that Richard Garriott is one of the true founding fathers of MMO gaming. He fittingly received the GDC's highest honor in the awards ceremony Wednesday night and received one heck of an ovation from the standing room-only crowd.

    But that's not all! Several MMOs were nominated for Independent Games Festival / Game Developers' Choice Awards, and one took home the prize. Who? Which? What category? For that, you'll have to check out the article!

    Read MMO Gaming at the GDC / IGF Awards Ceremony, only at TenTonHammer!

    Thu, Mar 23, 2006
    Ethec
  • A "Battlestar Galactica" MMO?

    Nope, but almost as good. Ron Moore, creative force behind the new Battlestar Galactica series, was on-hand to deliver some valuable insight into revitalizing older, perhaps worn-out themes. We don't have any tired, old themes in the MMO genre, do we? /cough

    That many consider Star Wars Galaxies to be a colossal failure reminds us of the pratfalls of licensed content; how attempting to creatively develop subject to the restraints and review of a licensor often leads to a mess as surely as movie sequels seldom live up to the original.

    Though the new Battlestar Galactica series is apparently not subject to these creative constraints (look no farther than the new Starbuck!), Ronald D Moore, the driving creative influence behind the Sci Fi channel's darling hit series, described this recycling as "an industry-spanning challenge." I'll summarize his points below.

    How cool is it that MMO developers might have something to learn from Battlestar Gallactica? Ahhh, two of my favorite pastimes in one fun-to-write article.

    Thu, Mar 23, 2006
    Ethec
  • City of Villains has issues...

    And Cryptic Studios' next free expansion for City of Villains / City of Heroes, Issue 7, contains some of the hottest content we've seen come down the pipeline in at least a year or so! We've steadily shown you Issue 7 screens as Cryptic graciously released them to the press, but nothing could prepare us for what we saw in person...

    Finally, one of my original, comparatively meager complaints against City of Villains was the lack of truly villainous content. All that changes with Mayhem Missions. You used to get a bank or casino heist mission after completing five newspaper (randomly generated) missions. These special missions will go into the regular rotation, and Mayhem Missions will take their place. Basically, you grab a team of villains, enter a special instance, and wreak as much havoc as you can within a given timeframe. Commit federal no-nos like destroying mailboxes, municipal misdemeanors like fire hydrant destruction, and those innocent civilians wandering around... heh. It ain't GTA, and you can't defeat them, but you sure can beat them like a pinata. Discrete thresholds based on how much damage you do award bonus time. Just about everything is destructible, including buildings!

    And that is just the tip of the iceberg. For those of you craving dynamic (malleable) content as opposed to the static worlds we're used to... well, read up! The NCSoft / Cryptic Studios preview of CoV / CoH Issue 7 at TenTonHammer!

    Thu, Mar 23, 2006
    Ethec
  • This is Unreal!

    And for once, we're not exaggerating! TenTonHammer goes behind the walls of the fortress-like Epic Games booth to see what the latest version of the popular game development suite Unreal Engine 3 has to offer. And, as the folks designing the next-in-line fantasy MMO Vanguard: Saga of Heroes can tell you, it's not just a robust first-person shooter development platform.

    The latest version of Unreal Engine 3 was demoed at a slick 2560 x 1600 resolution on Renegade XPS PCs - Dell's newest ultra high-end gaming line of computers featuring Intel 965 Extreme Edition processors overclocked at 4.26 Ghz and AGEIA PhysX processors (first-to-market hardware physics accelerators). An Epic rep lauded the sponsorship and ongoing partnership with Dell, saying it was a win-win-win for gamers, designers, and hardware manufacturers when all three maintain close relations and open lines of communication.

    Check out what we have to say regarding the GDC Unreal Engine Demo, and learn how it all ties in with the next wave of MMO development.

    Thu, Mar 23, 2006
    Ethec
  • From the land that "the" forgot, we bring you Kingdom of Sky.
    GameSpot strapped on their balsa wings, flapped their arms and entered Kingdom of Sky. While they were there they even reviewed the latest expansion to the EverQuest 2 universe.

    "The monsters that live at these altitudes take advantage of the new level range all the way to 70, so only the most advanced characters and groups can ply their skills here. For all the challenging creatures and quests awaiting you on the floating isles, though, it's still possible to take on monsters and other content solo, if you're careful about where and when you pick your fights. While adventuring in Norrath will likely always put an emphasis on group play (and raiding, to a certain extent), it's nice to see that you can still hoof around on your own without too much trouble. In addition to higher levels and better gear, the new achievement system helps make this a little easier, as well."

    You can read the entire review of EverQuest 2: Kingdom of Sky at GameSpot.

    Reviews
    Thu, Mar 23, 2006
    Boomjack
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