Blizzard testing a real money cash shop in WOW

8 07 2013

Since 2004 World of Warcraft has been the king of the MMO hill.

Challengers have tried to emulate it’s success and have come and gone, many of them have vanished without a trace and those that are left have slipped into the murky realm of Free to Play.

For a mighty nine years now Blizzard have been gorging on the millions of monthly subscriptions that it’s cash cow has generated.

However those days seem to be coming to an end. As the postponement of Project Titan has suggested even the mighty Blizz has to tighten it’s belt on occasion.

Whilst this by itself doesnt imply that the end is nigh for WOW’s subscription model there are other signs that change is afoot in the World of Azeroth.

Sharp eyed dataminers have come across links to real-money items – for instance, a 100 percent XP boost called the Enduring Elixir of Wisdom – while trawling through test server updates.

Rather than crush the rumour or just ignore Blizzard have actually come forward with an explanation on the official forums:

“We are currently exploring the possibility of adding a way for players in certain regions to make purchases directly within the game. As part of this process, elements related to this will be appearing on the PTR. We’ll provide additional updates on our plans as development progresses.”

Does this mean that Blizzard have hit the free to play panic button? Of course not. However it does suggest that this isn’t as ridiculous a suggestion as it would have seemed 12/18 months ago.

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Discworld reading order

11 06 2013

I was having a discussion with a colleague at work this morning about Terry Pratchett’s wonderful Discworld series.

He has only just stumbled upon Discworld and was wondering what order to read the books in.

I was busy drawing up a little flow chart when I realised that someone, somewhere on the internet had probably beaten me to it.

Lo and behold the good people at lspace.org have indeed created such a chart which is really very good.

the-discworld-reading-order-guide-20

Suffice to say I am very, very impressed!

 





RIft is going Free to Play

15 05 2013

Image

Well it is finally official. Rift is going free to play.

Trion Worlds have announced that as of June 12th 2013 anyone will be able to experience the fun of exploring Telara without having to stump up their hard earned cash.

The change in pricing model will go live at the same time as patch 2.3 – Empyreal Assault launches and will see a number of changes including a cash shop and a tiered model which will see subscribers rebranded as “Patrons”

Patrons will benefit from a number of different perks which will set them apart from their non paying brethren:

Image

On top of the above rewards people who purchased the original game or the Storm Legion expansion will receive access to additional character slots, starting bag slots and access to the expansion souls (Storm Legion purchasers only)

I guess it was inevitable that Trion would take this approach with Rift at some point but personally after the success of Storm Legion I didn’t think it would be quite this soon.

I am not typically a big fan of F2P as a model and I am especially wary of cash shops, probably as a result of way too many hours spent playing PWI when I was younger.

That said I like what Turbine have done with Lord Of The Rings Online and have to admit that going F2P was probably the best thing which could have happened to the game.

Likewise I am really enjoying the Beta of NeverWinter so maybe there is hope after all.





The Dark Knight Rises

11 07 2012

Only 9 more sleeps until Batman is back yay!!

Am I excited about the Dark Knight Rises? Hell yes I am! I have always found Batman to be one of my favourite superheroes, probably because he is semi-plausible.

He isn’t from Krypton, he wasn”t bitten by a spider or zapped with gamma rays.

Nope he is just a rich dude with a grudge against lowlife scum who uses his money to buy awesome gadgets with which to mess their collective shit up. Don’t tell me that isn”t what you would do with a lottery win. I know I would.

That some of the film and TV adaptations of the caped crusader have been a little crap is ok. From the days of Adam West and his overly camp escapades through to Arnie as a wise cracking Mr. Freeze I have enjoyed them all.

But the new Batman, the darker,edgier, nastier Batman. Well he is just pretty damn awesome.

Batman Begins was a great film and really served to relaunch a franchise which a lot of people kinda looked down upon. Dark Knight was the perfect follow-up, I defy anyone not to have found Heath Ledger’s Joker to be the perfect counter point to Bale’s Batman.

That is why I am so frigging excited about Dark Knight Rises. The artwork looks great, the trailers have been amazing and I think that Tom Hardy as Bane is a great choice.

Bring on the 20th





Hunt

6 07 2012

A flash of white catches the eye.
A ripple of movement passes through the scrub.

Rising, drawing, aiming in one fluid movement,
Head turning, eyes tracking,
Release!

Barely breathing, daring not to hope,
The World blurs. All that exists is the arrow,
So slow, as it bridges the gap between hunter and prey.

A tidal rush of emotion fills the void;
Pride, elation… relief,
We eat today.

Just a little something I wrote yesterday evening when I was trying to get a few more pages of my novel knocked. Guess I got a little distracted, again.





DREDD trailer….

4 07 2012

Dredd Poster

In a quiet moment during my otherwise hectic day,I have just taken a brief moment of respite to check out the trailer for the new Judge Dredd film; Dredd.

Yeah I know, I know for a self confessed nerd like me this is a little bit like saying I haven’t watched Starwars but cut me some slack here. I’m a busy guy with wayyyyy too many conflicting interests!

So what did I think of it? Well on first glance things look quite promising, for starters there isn’t hide nor hair of Sylvester Stallone, this of course is a massive plus!

If I had to pick two things the really, really destroyed the 1995 film adaptation for me it would have to be Sly and his oh so irritating comedy sidekick Rob Schneider, what the fuck was that shit about, seriously?!?!

Douche bag

I happen to think that on first glance the new, improved Judge Dredd looks to be far more in keeping with the old stony face that we know and love from 2000AD.
Karl Urban seems like a far better casting for Dredd himself and everything that has been shown of Mega City One so far just seems to have a more gritty, edgy feel to it.

Have a look below and make up your own mind perps….

 





Gamer Girl, Country Boy

12 06 2012

Just woke up to one of the kids peeing himself….yay!

Still every cloud has a silver lining, in this case it was catching up on a little bit of work that has been lingering like a bad smell.

Whilst slaving away I stuck Youtube on in the background and and saw the new song from the always adorable Felicia Day and Godhead lead singer Jason Charles Miller…. Gamer Girl, Country Boy.

 Now I will stick my neck out here and say I liked it.

Not only does Felicia look very cute in Lara Croft cosplay, but then when does she not look cute? But the girl can carry a tune.
The song is catchy and made me laugh, not bad for 6.30 on a Tuesday morning.

The thing I don’t quite get though is all the hate from 4Chan about this…apparently it would seem that Miss Day has destroyed gaming and spat on it’s still warm corpse.

One would wonder if maybe they should climb down from their ivory tower of internet superiority and join me in enjoying those Tetris tights ,)








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