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Monday, February 5, 2001

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Shadowbane Enters Beta
4:18 PM | Michael Eilers | Comment on this story

Wolfpack Studio's massively-multiplayer RPG Shadowbane has reached the first phase of beta testing, signifying that the development of the title is nearing an end and the game is in the refinement stage. It is unknown at this time if there will be a Mac beta test (Shadowbane is a cross-platform release) but we'll be sure to investigate the issue for you. A public beta test is also expected at some point, to test client-server issues and the stability of the overall world. Here are excerpts from the press release:

Online game developer Wolfpack Studios, Inc. announced today that the company has entered the first phase of beta testing for their flagship title, Shadowbane. Shadowbane is the culmination of two years development effort and is designed to allow tens of thousands of gamers to play concurrently in a single game session. Hailed as one of the most anticipated titles in the burgeoning Massively-Multiuser Online Gaming marketplace, Shadowbane offers players the unique opportunity to cooperatively and competitively vie for political and economic control of a virtual world. 

"This is a huge leap forward for our team," said Josef Hall, founder and president of WolfPack Studios, Inc. "Today marks a unique turning point on our journey from 'development house' to 'entertainment provider'."

In Shadowbane, players are challenged to carve out their destiny in a world blanketed by political unrest and torn apart by storms, disease, starvation and an endless war. Players can assume the roles of warlords, kings and powerful wizards and interact with each other in a dynamic, fully interactive 3D environment. 

Similar in many ways to a large-scale 3D Chat system, Shadowbane will allow players to connect via the Internet in order to unite, form armies, build kingdoms and conquer virtual territories. "It's not like a typical computer game," explains J. Todd Coleman, Wolfpack's Vice President of Sales Marketing, "Most games top out at a few dozen concurrent players. With potentially hundreds of thousands of subscribers, this will end up looking more like a living simulation of feudal Europe." 

This beta test follows an arduous three month period of internal alpha testing of both the client and the server codebases. "We'll be executing the beta test in multiple stages," explains Keith Brewer, Director of Production Rollout for the Shadowbane title. "The first phase will consist of around fifty users, testing the character creation and advancement systems. From there we'll continue adding more testers as necessary to achieve the specific goals we have for each phase."

We're sure many PC news sites will be in on the beta test and will be releasing many more details and screen shots of this game in the near future. For more information on this tite, visit the Shadowbane web site. Shadowbane will be published by Gathering of Developers for Mac and PC later this year.

Shadowbane Public Beta Press Release
Shadowbane Web Site
Wolfpack Studios

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