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Egad, the Massive Multiplayer Online Real Time Strategy games are coming! First there was Saga, which we long-ago decided was a bit flimsy and without the detail, colour, or bombast to really grip us. (Contemporary experience may differ.) Now two more strategies claiming to be "massive" have appeared on the RPS radar, and they looking quite different in both tone and execution.

First up is Beyond Protocol, which sets you up in the stars with armies of glowing ships which will make war on your enemies, apparently whether you're there to oversee them or not. I've not had a chance to play with it yet, but it claims that "players will be able to wage wars in real-time, form alliances with other players, explore the universe, exploit the mineral wealth of thousands of planets, launch espionage missions and gather intelligence and engage in an unlimited number of activities in an ever evolving online experience." Sounds promising, presuming they can get enough players in there. Anyone had a go? Report in comments if so.

Then there's the free-to-play fantasy-lookin' MMORTS Dreamlords, which is apparently "a massively multiplayer game that combines the accessibility of a web game with RPG character development, RTS battles and long term tactical strategy." The dreamlords, of which players play the part, are apparently "magical entities that spawn from the nightmares of the Dreamer himself." Not only that but "the Dreamer is the centre core of the universe, fuelling all things with the power of life, the gnosis, the focused attention of the Dreamer." It sure looks like Mr Dreamer likes his magic knights and special battle horses. He also seems to like his three races, roughly analogous to human/elf/orc variations seen in other popular fantasy gameworlds. Still, I'm downloading it right now from here and I've also created an account here. Will I have time to play it this week? Probably not! And the game launches for real on Wednesday too. Exciting times... Anyone able to report back with more information, please do so in comments.

And here's a punchline: who remembers Sovereign, eh? It's never worked this MMORTS stuff...

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Jim Rossignol