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Thursday, October 22, 2009

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StarCraft II: Fourth Battle Report Released
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 4 comments

Blizzard Entertainment has released a fourth battle report for the upcoming StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty. The new video features a battle between two Blizzard employees on the Lost Temple map, a recreation of a popular map from the original game. The game showcases some of the units and abilities available to Terran and Protoss players.

We’ve got a great game for you today, a Battle Report between Yeon-ho Lee playing as the Blue Protoss versus David Kim playing as the Red Terran. They will be playing on Lost Temple. Yes, it has been re-done for StarCraft II. This is a classic map from the original game that we have done a few changes on for StarCraft II. We have David Kim on the right side as the Red Terran, and the players are very close together by air. A few of the map features are the narrow choke point leading out of your base, a great place to defend. There is also a natural expansion where you can get some additional resources, followed by a wider choke point to defend that natural expansion. There is some high ground as well to use against your enemy one way or another. There are also Xel’naga watch towers to help establish map control and understand what is going on around the map.
Click over to the link below to view the new video

StarCraft II: Fourth Battle Report
Blizzard Entertainment
StarCraft II: Wings Of Liberty
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Torchlight Developer Q&A Video Available
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

GameSpot is now offering a new video interview with Runic Games' co-founder Max Schaefer about the company's upcoming action RPG, Torchlight. In the interview Schaefer answered questions about the game's storyline, item collecting mechanics, and level randomization.

Word of Ember blazed across the land, and the town of Torchlight flared to life.

Ember is the essence of magic and the keystone of alchemy; it lures the restless with promises of power and riches. Miners burrowed deep beneath the dirt streets of Torchlight, discovering veins of the ore richer than any found in living memory- but they were not the first to covet these mines. The miners broke through into the buried past, a dangerous labyrinth of caverns and ruined civilizations, twisted creatures and the bones of those who came before. Evil bubbles up from the depths and threatens to overrun this town as it has so many others. The heart of a villain has infused the Ember, and his darkness seeps through the veins. To survive, the townspeople must break the cycle of destruction; they need a champion who can destroy the evil at its root. Removing the source of the rot may purify the Ember, but it is a long and perilous journey. The champion must battle through rock and fire, through lost cities and ancient tombs, into the palace of the villain himself.

The adventure is set in the mining settlement of Torchlight, a boomtown founded on the discovery of rich veins of Ember – a rare and mysterious ore with the power to enchant or corrupt all that it contacts. This corruptive power may have dire consequences however, and players set out into the nearby mountains and depths below to discover the full extent of Ember’s influence on the civilizations that have come before.

Players will choose from among three character classes, and venture from the safety of the town of Torchlight into randomly generated dungeon levels, with a huge variety of creepy monsters, endless variations of loot to find, and quests to complete. The endless randomization ensures a long-lived gameplay experience.

Part of an ancient order dedicated to justice and bringing balance to the world, the Vanquisher was sent out to Torchlight to investigate the mysterious slayings and missing town folks. Unknown to her, the darkness below the small town of Torchlight runs far deeper than the mines beneath. As an expert marksman, the Vanquisher is able to take enemies from afar as well as use traps to confuse and deliberate her foes from all directions.
The flow of Ember and the darkness below will test the Vanquisher’s skill and conviction to the fullest.

  • Randomization – Our level layouts are randomly created, so each adventure is unique. Monsters, treasures, puzzles, and items are also different each time you embark on an adventure.
  • Easy, approachable interface – Torchlight is designed to be easy to play right from the beginning. The intuitive interface gives players easy access to a rich and varied world.
  • Retirement System – Once characters are sufficiently leveled up, they can “retire” and bestow specific benefits and perks to new characters.
    Pets – Players will choose a pet to accompany them. Pets can level up along with the player, and will help in battle, carry items, and perform a variety of helpful services.
  • Character Classes – Players will create and customize a character and choose an animal companion. Through cosmetic choices, skill path decisions, and the treasures they acquire, each character will be custom-tailored and different.
  • Fishing – Players can take a break from the high-energy pace of adventuring to visit one of the fishing holes and relax and see what they can catch. Fish have interesting benefits for the player and pet, and other rewards can also be discovered
Head over to the page below to view the video.

GameSpot: Torchlight Q&A Vid
Runic Games
Buy Torchlight

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WoW: The Negative Impact Of Buying Gold
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 12 comments

Blizzard Entertainment has published an article on the topic of gold purchasing in its popular MMO, World of Warcraft. The feature explores some of the dangers for purchasers of gold, as well as the negative impact on other players and server stability.

What many people don't realize when buying gold is the large impact it has on the game economy, and also how the companies selling gold obtain it. Our developers, in-game support, and anti-hack teams work diligently to stop the exploits these companies use and help players who have become victims of their services. We regularly track the source of the gold these companies sell, and find that an alarmingly high amount comes from hacked accounts. These are the friends, relatives, and guildmates you may know who have gone through the experience of having characters, gold, and items stripped from them after visiting a website or opening a file containing a trojan virus. Our teams work to educate players and assist them in avoiding account compromise, but the fact remains that the players themselves are often these companies' largest target as a source for gold, which the companies then turn around and sell to other players.

Through our normal support processes and the assistance of players, we also find that many accounts that have been shared with power-leveling services are then hacked into months later, and all of the items on the account are stripped and sold off. Basically, players have paid money to these companies, sometimes large amounts, and they're then targeted by these same companies down the road. We come across stories every week of the aftereffects of players using these services, and some players now have to deal with long-term repercussions -- in addition to consequences such as possible account suspension or closure, in many cases the companies they paid use their personal information to perpetrate identity theft and credit card fraud. These are long-lasting effects on players' personal lives that can take years to recover from.
Read the full article at the page listed below.

World of Warcraft: Negative Effects Of Gold Purchasing
Blizzard Entertainment
World of Warcraft
Buy World of Warcraft

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Balancing Faction Ships In EVE Online
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

A recent developer's blog offered explanations for changes to faction ships in the upcoming Dominion expansion for CCP Games' sci-fi MMO, EVE Online. The post focused on the reasoning behind the changes and offered answers to questions asked during the initial feedback process.

When (faction ships) were first designed, it was believed they would be high in the food chain as they boasted improved performance over standard hulls at that time. However, as expansions passed, new vessels were introduced, mostly tech 2, but also higher tiers in the case of battleships, all of this turning faction ships into vessels nobody wants to fly because of their antiquited attributes next to their acquistion tag.

However here, we don't want you to upgrade to other ships or pay taxes by flying them (you are already going to do that by staying in some rookie corporations, remember?). We want you to keep using them, to reverse that obsolescence course, and that is why, with Dominion's release, most of your faction ships are going back to the factory for an instant, free-delivery-under-warranty upgrade package (batteries not included).
Visit the site below to read more.

EVE Online Blog: Faction Ship Changes
CCP Games
EVE Online

Mac Games News for Wednesday, October 21, 2009

IMG Reviews Pipe Mania8:03 AM
Adventuring In Machinarium6:00 AM
Din's Curse: The Dangers Of Explosions In Unstable Caves6:00 AM
Scrabble Plus Reviewed6:00 AM
The Lore Of Diablo III6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Wednesday, October 21, 2009 on one page

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