Posts Tagged ‘Perfect World’

Neverwinter Is Looking Orcward

After my time spent on the beta weekend with Neverwinter, I’ve been itching in my chair to get back to the game. It certainly wasn’t perfect, but then it’s a beta and they’re not meant to be, but a couple of days in Cryptic’s envisioning of the D&D realms captured a purity of both fantasy and the MMO that made me want to carry on. In the meantime, I’m applying trailer patches to my arms, the latest introducing the Orcs.

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Hands On: Neverwinter Beta

Cryptic’s Neverwinter had its first beta weekend these last couple of days. I jumped in, rolled a young half-elf, and had a look around for a couple of days. With the game still without a fixed release date, there’s clearly still a lot of time for change. But as it stands, here are my hands-on impressions of the game so far.

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Siege It: Neverwinter’s First Beta Weekend Tomorrow

They're staring in confusion at Perfect World's website.

I’ve kept Neverwinter at arm’s length. I don’t know what to think about it. I loved NWN2, and while the series more immediately lends itself to the shared world of an MMO than other BioWare properties, I’ve got those fan-nerves of seeing a completely separate studio take it on. But then that studio is Cryptic, they of the glorious City Of Heroes, so… I get in a muddle. The good news is, the first beta weekend is coming up tomorrow, so minds can start to be made.

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Could Being A Neverwinter Founder Make You Drow-sy?


I spent some time typing experimentally into the headline bar “…Wants You To Founder Its Beta Weekend… Founders Keepers… Beta Found Than Neverwintered” and so on. But none of it made any sense. And that is what I came up with. You know. Because drow. Sorry. My powers are gone. Fortunately, by returning to a nest made of shredded RPGs, held together with mucus and bad dreams, those powers can be regenerated. I’ll retreat there, probably around February 8-10, March 8-10, and March 22-24, which is when Neverwinter‘s beta will take place. With its user-generated content and D&D trappings, it should be a healing sort of environment for discombobulated old nerd-wraiths like me. The more excitable among our kind – and those with wallets full of platinum – will like invest in Founders Packs, which are fashionable pre-order garments of the online-gaming catwalk. Or something.

Trailer can be found in the Underdark below! Giant armoured spider mounts from Menzoberranzan! Look over there! *vanishes*
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The MMOnster Mash: Hands On With RaiderZ

Alright, we'll call the staring contest a draw. Prepare to be turned into a seafood buffet!

RaiderZ is the latest free-to-play MMO from Korea, and those… well, aren’t the most enticing words in gaming right now. This one promises to be a bit different though, with its arcade style combat, and big bad monsters in need of a kick up the first available orifice. We sent Richard to find out if its beta has a chance against the big names, or earns that big Z.

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Hot Water Tank: Neverwinter’s Class Profiles Begin

Sword! Sword! That's the noise swords make.
It’s been a little while since we caught up with Neverwinter – the last glimpse being the Blackdagger Keep trailer at the start of this month – but things are continuing to tick along towards the game’s “early 2013” release. D&D types will know what to expect from the Guardian Fighter class, which appears below as the first part of Neverwinter’s class profiles series. He is, pleasingly, a tanky bastard.

Look below!
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It Doesn’t Look That Summery: Neverwinter’s Latest Trailer

There’s eventually some nice in-game footage of the combat in Neverwinter in the new trailer, revealed via PAX this weekend. The game is set for release early next year, but in the meantime you can find out more about skull-faced pirate, Blackdagger, below.

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Winter Is Coming… Eventually: Neverwinter Delayed

The alt text has also been delayed - to 2014, actually. These things take more work than you'd think.

I came here to tell you about something pertaining to Cryptic’s Neverwinter MMO-that-nearly-wasn’t, but then – at the 11th hour – my post got delayed into 2013. The news is, of course, disappointing for many of you, but we’re confident that we can use the extra development time to bring you a more polished, visceral post with double the number of guns and sextuple the number of puns. In the meantime, though, I can discuss the delay of another, entirely unrelated game. Let’s call it Neverminter. And imagine that the N is upside-down.

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War Of The Humans In Tanks: Blacklight’s Siege Mode

This is, of course, exactly what Johnny Cash was talking about when he wrote that one song. He's the robot, obviously.

Blacklight: Retribution is a bit like a surprise birthday party. For the longest time, I thought nothing of it and went on with my daily business. Then, one day, it crept into my home, turned out the lights, and shouted “SURPRISE!” so loud that I dropped my groceries and grabbed a lamp to brandish in a threatening fashion. I continue to be shocked by how enjoyable Zombie Studios’ follow-up to the rather uninspired Tango Down is, though. Certainly, it’s got roots in traditional multiplayer weapons, upgrades, and other such standbys, but X-ray vision’s a game-changer, and everything feels great. And now, another pleasant surprise: the tank-centric siege mode.

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Neverwinter Invites You To Look At Its Dungeons

That sure is D&D.

If you can ignore the bizarre choice to spend 30 seconds showing the faces of a crowd looking at a screen showing Neverwinter footage you can’t see, then the video below will eventually show some “pre-alpha” (which I always thought meant drawings on a whiteboard) in-game content for the Cryptic MMO.

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Creatures, Pets: Torchlight 2

Is that a skeleton that has been killed, a skeleton that doesn't need to be killed or a skeleton that's waiting to spring to life and then be killed?

The year they call 2012 will be full of dungeon crawling and loot hauling. Thousands of people probably descended on the Path of Exile for the first time this weekend and there’s the not inconsequential matter of Diablo III’s mid-May arrival. But what of Torchlight II? I feel like it hasn’t been clamouring for my attention as loudly as perhaps it should and a short video showing animated animals is hardly the most clamorous display. Still, that is one cute bulldog.

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Unforgotten: Neverwinter Free, Delayed


It’s not quite clear what IGN’s source is for this, but according to them the Dungeons & Dragons online-RPG Neverwinter, which Cryptic said originally was “an old-school tactical Western RPG”, but online, is apparently an now MMO more “closer to a game like Nexon’s Vindictus”. So a free-to-play one where action dominates. Quite how this contrasts against what Cryptic’s Jack Emmert told us previously is detailed in part through the link (and mainly consists of learning the lessons of Star Trek and Champions going free), but it doesn’t actually seem like that a big a change to me.

Nevertheless, word is that the game has been delayed to the end of 2012 to make the necessary changes. It would seem that these changes might have come about thanks to Cryptic’s acquisition by expanding F2P giant Perfect World, who also bagged Runic, and are planning to make a Torchlight MMO at some point.

Prospering? Star Trek Online F2P This Year

Screw you guys! I wanted to be in Babylon 5.
The unstoppable march of free-to-playification continues! Cryptic’s Star Trek Online – which is published by Perfect World – will be free-to-play by the end of the year. According to this report on Perfect World’s exciting Q2 earnings call, chief financial officer Kelvin Lau told investors: “Cryptic is working on the free-to-play model for Star Trek Online. This is going to be launched by the end of this year.”

This feels like a transitional period to me. All these MMOs that launched with subscription models reconfiguring themselves to F2P, while much better contenders – such as forthcoming Tribes-but-WoW offering Firefall – wait in the wings to prove that they can do F2P from the off. Nonetheless, I expect we’re a long, long way from this all being normalised in any fashion. What “free” actually means for these games is still very much up for definition.

Torchlight II Will be $20, Final Class Reveal

Runic: still unable to release decent screenshots.
An announcement on the Torchlight II site confirms that the game will ship for $20. Here’s the kind of statement that you would think more company bosses releasing PC games would include in their press release: “It’s always been our goal to provide exceptional value for the price,” says Max Schaefer, CEO of Runic Games. “Everyone who wants to play Torchlight II will be able to comfortably afford to do so, and they’ll be able to play with their friend online or via a LAN, or play single player offline, all with no further purchases.” Ha.

The Embermage page (the final class to be revealed and inevitable ranged spellcaster) is here.

Blacklight: Retribution Contains Guns, Men

A Man Fires a Gun

The signup for Blacklight: Retribution‘s closed beta is ongoing and another trailer has emerged for your viewing pleasure. It shows off some shooting, some explosions, some vehicles and a mech with strangely chubby legs. But don’t take my word for it – see below and attempt to spot all those things for yourself! Perhaps make some form of checklist. That way the trailer is a game in itself.

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Seedy Looking: Blacklight Retribution Trailer

Volumetric rebuffered polyvinyl lighting!

Blacklight Retribution is a strange name for a game. Is it about some creepy serial killer who was caught when his semen showed up in a victim’s basement under the investigator’s blacklight, and now – having escaped from prison – he plans to destroy every last ultraviolet bulb in the world? No – insanely it is not. It is in fact the sequel to Blacklight: Tango Down, the futuristic shooter that didn’t warm our cockles. But interestingly, this one is to be free-to-play – the buzzphrase of today. Perfect World, publishers of half of the free things in the universe, have released a trailer showing off its DX11 features, which I’ve kindly placed below.

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Incandescent: Torchlight II Hands-On


Torchlight II fell into our hands at E3 2011. This is what happened.

We’ve been looking for the bandit camp for ten minutes. ‘We’ being me, a berserker, producer Brock as a cannon-equipped Outlander, Brock’s wolf, Doggy, and my ferret, Marmot. “It’s north!” cries, Marsh Lefler, VP of Runic Games. We head north. We kill massed enemies, skeletons, great halberd-wielding beastthings, endless wolf-like things. Almost every thing we kill drops loot and before long we’re laden like junk pedlars. Our pets run back to town with the vendor junk and return laden with gold.
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Blacklight Retribution Is Foxtrot Two Papa


Zombie Studio’s shooter Blacklight Tango Down didn’t go down particularly well with us. We did shrugging and said “s’ahright, spose…”, but our indifference has not defeated it because it’s back, BACK this year with a fresh incarnation of Unreal-powered near-future gun action: Blacklight Retribution. And there are robots! Slidey rocket-propelled crazybots, if this trailer is to be believed, which is should be, as it is footage from the game. The game will be free-to-play and will be part of Perfect World’s increasingly impressive-looking line-up of free online titles. Go take a look at this and then make that quiet “ahrm” noise you make when you are considering whether something will actually be any good.

That’s it, yeah.
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Cryptic Now In A Perfect World

Logos!
Perfect World, the MMO company behind, er Perfect World, and also more recently Forsaken World, seem to be gradually expanding away from their Chinese MMO remit. Last year we heard they were publishing Torchlight 2 and the as-yet-unrevealed Torchlight MMO, and yesterday it was revealed that they have acquired Cryptic from Atari. Perfect World have stated that they expect things to be business as usual for Cryptics operations as a result of the purchase. Right now Cryptic are still working on the Nevewinter MMO, but it’ll be particularly interesting to see what Perfect World have them do once that is complete.

Making Torchlight II’s Levels And Stuff


Torchlight II is due in July. That’s only ten minutes from now! Quickly, we must read as much as we can about the creation of its randomized worlds! Oh God, if only there was something to hand… but maybe there is, because Runic have published this piece on the creation of Torchlight II’s world, and this Q&A on level design. It contains gems such as this: “We do have random events! A few examples of these are, maybe you run into a injured person on the road with a broken down wagon that asks you to do something for him/her in the immediate area. Or you could be out exploring and find a campfire with bandits that have tied up hostages that you can rescue for a reward. We are still working on these, and coming up with new ideas to keep them exciting for players.” Cor!