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Mytheon, New Free-To-Play MMOG, Announced

Posted by haunt506e on December 2, 2008

Earlier today Petroglyph, makers of RTS games such as Star Wars: Empire at War and Universe at War: Earth Assault, announced their development of a brand new MMOG called “Mytheon.”  With a release date set during the third quarter of 2009, Petroglyph hopes to make this RTS/RPG/MMO hybrid game available for free, making their profits off of paid micro-transactions within the game.  A teaser site has a bit of info up, but not a whole lot, and I’ve only managed to find a few screenshots of the game, all of which are concept art, and I’m too lazy to post those up at this moment.

Players collect orbs in the game and use these orbs to do different things, carry out attacks, summon monsters, etc.  Using their game store, you will be able to purchase new orbs for cash, and can use these special orbs to bolster your collection and gain the edge on your opponents.  The game is slated to include all the basic forms of play that is common in most MMOs today, including PvP, Raids, Parties, Dungeons, and more.  There’s not a lot of information on it’s “hybrid” game play mechanics, but it sounds like it could be interesting and it definitely has potential.

We’re starting to see this micro-transaction market structure more and more often in free games, and Mytheos seems to be the first one developed in the U.S. using this strategy.  I kind of like it, in a way, but I don’t ever see myself actually paying for ingame items, and therefore it is doubtful that I’ll get into this game.  I know a lot of people like being able to buy items or equipment for real world money, but the way I see it, if I’m playing a game for “free,” I don’t want to be paying money for it, even if it’s almost a necessity to keep up with the rest of the game.

Sorry for the short post lacking pictures, but it’s late tonight and good pictures are almost impossible to find for the game at the moment.  In addition, I’d also like to apologize for not having a lot of posts up lately, but I’ve been a little busy setting up things for future additions to the blog, including The Update’s podcast, simply called “Update This,” which will be airing hopefully this Friday (we’ll record tomorrow).  Come back and check out the podcast when its up, and be sure to check back regularly for blog posts.  Thanks.

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Battlefield Heroes Moved to 2009

Posted by haunt506e on November 15, 2008

Battlefield Heroes Moved to 2009

If you’ve been keeping up with EA-DICE at all, you’ll have probably heard of their new free-to-play version of the hit game, Battlefield. Dubbed Battlefield Heroes, this version of the game runs similarly to previous installments in the series, the key difference being that now the graphics have taken on a cartoony, cell-shaded look.  The graphics, while basic, look nice, and while I haven’t done too much research into the game (it’s not really on my top games list or anything), it still looks like one of the best free games that will soon be available for download. Now for the actual news.

DICE has just posted on the Battlefield Heroes website that unfortunately, their estimated release of later this fall has been pushed back again to early 2009, the Beta closing up November 14th (yesterday).  It’s really a shame though, since EA had expected the game to be out this summer, and it has since been delayed by DICE twice now due to incomplete “backend” programming, or something of that nature. Creating a game is a lot of work, and creating a free game, especially one that’s as deep as Battlefield Heroes, is just as much, if not more, work, especially considering that the devs in a sense/”theoretically” wouldn’t be getting money for their work (we all know this isn’t true). What I mean by this is that, from a developer’s standpoint, it’s just kind of weird to put a ton of work in the game and just set it up for free downloads.

Taken from the post, James Salt, Senior Producer on the project, gives us more insight into the so-called, “backend” of a program.

Salt: “You know the old saying about icebergs being 10% above water, and 90% below? Heroes is a little like that. There’s the 10% game part you can see, and the hiding 90% is what we call the ‘backend’. The backend does a lot of things. From running the website’s features and looking after the items you have, to collecting the results from each Heroes game and matchmaking players into games.

We have received lots of great feedback from our beta testers. So much so that we are now ready to enter our next phase. On Friday evening (6pm CET) we will be closing down the current Closed Beta and moving our focus to polishing the backend. So for a while there will be no closed beta available to play. We expect to re-open the beta early next year.”

And there you have it.  Sorry Battlefield Heroes fans, you’ll have to wait several more months before you can finally get your hands on this free title.  It’s a PC exclusive (for now) and will be released free sometime next year.

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Orange Box for $29.99

Posted by haunt506e on November 14, 2008

Orange Box is Now $29.99

Now that’s a hell of a deal.

The Orange Box came out last year in October, and features 3 different games, including Half Life (all the way to Episode 2), Team Fortress 2, and Portal.  The game won numerous awards last year for being such a great deal, and for having some great games included in the title.  The Orange Box isn’t just quantity, it’s quality as well, and that is what makes the box so great.  I never picked it up, so I can’t divulge any details from a reviewer’s perspective, but it’s current $29.99 price tag makes it a “why-don’t-you-have-this-yet?” buy.  

Half Life 2, as you all should know, is one of the greatest first person shooters ever created (I’m ashamed that I haven’t yet played it…), and the additional games add more variety to the whole package.  Portal is incredibly unique and addictive in its own right, allowing players to create holes in walls in order to solve puzzles and progress through the game, etc.  Team Fortress 2 is the newest version of Team Fortress, and is pretty much a multiplayer-only game in which players choose a class and take part in various team-based gametypes.  Once again it’s a heck of a deal, and if I don’t scrounge up enough money for Left 4 Dead, I might have to settle for the Orange Box.

It’s not really current news, but I’m starved as far as new news goes, so I have to post something.  More games will be coming out soon enough though, so I’ll be able to post more stuff soon enough.

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