When I initally posted about Perpetual losing the STO licence, Cryptic Studios where floating around as being a potential new home for the battle damaged, but still flying ‘Star Trek Online‘. Now trekmovie.com is reporting it has ‘independently confirmed with sources’ that former City of Heroes/Villians people ‘have the bridge’ of STO.
I like Cryptic, and really liked their work on CoH/V. They seem to have a decent grasp of the MMO genre, so i’m looking forward to see what they bring to Star Trek Online. Whatever the situation, the Star Trek logo on the offical site now has a ‘coming soon’ under it, so hopefully it won’t be too long before we find out offically what’s going on!
There was a big Lord of the Rings Online Event in Birmingham this weekend (which i didn’t make it to unfortunately), however, they did announce the first retail expansion for Lord of the Rings Online. The Mines of Moria! Players will enter the the city of Khazad-dÃ»m (to use it’s Dwarven name) just after the Fellowship has made it through… well… some of them did… It’ll be one continuous area designed for high level adventurers, and is the first time players have had the chance to leave the kingdom of Eriador, and explore more of Middle Earth.
The Mines of Moria expansion starts Volume II of The Lord of the Rings Online epic quest lines, with 6 new books to play through introducing more familiar faces from the Lord of the Rings mythology.
The’s also an increase in the level cap from 50 to 60, and the introduction of 2 new classes. The Rune-keeper and the Warden (although no details on those as yet).
Crafters are getting some new toys as well, with the ability to forge legendary items. This lets players build weapons and class-related equipment that levels-up along with the player, and can be named, evole, be customised and modified, and have the potential to become as legendary as Sting or Glamdring.
The expansion also includes new group instances for 3, 5, 12 or 24 players, monster play enhancements, leaderboards, more dynamic lighting effects, improved AI, and a opportunity to join the Fellowship in Lorien.
Lord of the Rings Online Volume II – The Mines of Moria is due for release in Autumn 08.
6. The Bioware MMO
Okay, so no one actually knows what the hell this is… We’ve talked on the site a number of times about this possibly being a Knights of the Old Republic MMO. The other thought is it could be a Star Wars MMO set around the Clone Wars , which would make sense as well, given there is a new cartoon series launching later this year based in that timeframe. Or, of course, it may not be a Star Wars MMO at all. Maybe a Mass Effect MMO? A Neverwinter Nights MMO? Who knows! The fact remains, it’s an MMORPG, and it’s from Bioware, and that alone get’s it onto the list!
5. Firefly MMORPG
Dave: This is at 5 for 2 reasons. One, we basically know nothing about it… And two, the license is via Fox (the network that canned the show!), not direct from Joss Whedon’s Mutant Enemy which fills me with a sense of foreboding… However, anything with Firefly and MMO in the same sentence is on my WANT list!
On the plus side, Joss is now back at Fox working on Dollhouse, and I can’t see him being overly happy if they trash the memory of Firefly with a bad game, so it’s possible he might be able to get involved… The Firefly universe has the potential to make a great game. However, without Joss’s guidance, I do worry about where it’ll end up… Really too early to tell which way this will go.
Daryl: Both of us would really love to see this MMO happen, the Firefly universe is a diverse one, which has barely been touched upon in the series and movie, leaving huge creative license. I’m a huge fan, a Browncoat if you will, if this MMO happens, I guarantee to be on that beta test and be a subscriber.
4. Star Trek Online
Dave: Obviously being a geek, i’m a big fan of Star Trek, so a Star Trek MMO is always going to make the list. However, since it’s now in the hands of an unknown (or at least unconfirmed) developer, and possibly back the drawing board, it’s hard to place it on the list. Really it’s here because of the massive potential a Star Trek game has (and it get’s to be one place higher than Firefly for not having Fox involved).
Daryl: Well, I enjoy Star Trek like most, I’m not quite a Trekky, but I do appreciate the shows. My main problem with this MMO is that its mere existence is in constant question lately.
(I’d add a link to the developer’s website if we knew who they were!)
3. Age of Conan
Dave: Halfway through the list, and our first tangable MMO! I don’t know Conan’s world very well, so it was hard for me to get excited by the story. However this is potentially the first of the ‘next-gen’ MMOs. One that tries to do something different than being a ‘WoW clone’. It’s aimed firmly at a older playerbase, and has some very interesting work going on with the combat system, and that does grab my attention.
Daryl: Conan, a much loved character of mine, and when I first saw the videos and images from this game I was instantly hooked. A brutally violent combat system and adult content means this game is not aimed towards the “after school” MMO crowd and will carry with it a more stable, even mature gaming community. Trying to distance itself from WOW is admirable, and I hope it works. I just hope 6 months down the line they don’t decide to alter it to the favourable WOW system of control like some MMO’s have in the past.
2. Warhammer Online
Dave: I’m an old school Warhammer Fantasy Battle and RPG player, and i love the Warhammer world. Again, it’s an MMO trying to advance on WoW’s play style. Things like not being able to run though other player characters like they are ghosts like you can in most MMOs… This may not sound like much, but what it means is, in battle, if a bunch of Orc Warriors stand in a line to protect their Mages who are throwning fireballs at you, you’re gonna have to punch through the Warriors to stop yourself dying of 3rd degree burns. All the combat in Warhammer Online is designed up the ante in PvP Battles. Oh, and there are also SQUIGS!.. Any games with squigs gets my vote! (Oh, and if your from EA Mythic reading this, approve my beta request will ya!)
Daryl: Ok, I’ll be straight with this. I don’t have alot of knowledge in regards to the entire Warhammer range… I’ve not played any of the games, and have only ever half painted some of the little metal figures before getting bored and doing something else hehe. I know Dave is very excited about this MMO, and usually our tastes in these matters are similar, so if he says its gonna be good, I’ll believe him… (mostly) lol.
1. Stargate Worlds
Dave: We both love Stargate. Lots. So this really is the most anticipated MMO coming out in the next few years for us. And that universe has so much scope for expansion. The T.V. show only covered SG1 and Atlantis. What were all the other SG teams upto? What were their stories? The Stargate system is a perfect vehicle for an MMO. Gating to new worlds. Squad based combat. Good mix of races and character classes. Plus they’re the possiblity of a space combat system too (even if it’s added in later).
Daryl: Finally, this is the one I want most! I am a huge Stargate fan, I mean HUGE! Rumours are all over the place with this, and I hope all of them are right! With several playable species, classes and even good and bad factions. Set in a time period were all the major action happened in the Stargate universe, during the war with Anubis, it allows major baddies to be in it, G’ould, Replicators and now dead good guys like the Tolan and the Asgard. I’m watching this MMO closely, and will keep track of it on the site as much as possible.
So that’s our list! What are your most anticipated MMOs? Let us know what you think in the comments!
After Obsidian gave us a so-so sequel to Biowares’ genius original Knights of the Old Republic, according to an EA analyist report, Bioware are back at the helm for KotoR 3! This however, IS NOT the MMO they have in development, but another straight RPG. There’s also more Mass Effect on the way, along with the already anounced Dragons Age.
Does this kill off the idea of a KotOR MMO? Well… not necessarily.
It’s still not announced what the MMO is yet, and it’s not been that long in development (in MMO terms). So, it’s not impossible that a KotOR3 RPG could be used to expand the Old Republic world, and then lead on to a KotOR MMO.
Of course… that could just be wishful thinking on my part.
Okay, that’s not totally true (but why ruin the chance for a perfectly good ‘it’s dead jim’ gag!)
It is still in development, but according to Warcry, it’s no longer under development with P2 Entertainment (aka Perpetual Entertainment). The license and the game’s content has been sold on to, if other rumours are to be believed, ex-City of Heroes/Villans Developers, Cryptic Studios.
However, the deal doesn’t include any of the code, so i guess that’s means a pretty huge delay on STO being released. That’s not nessercarily a bad thing though. There where very mixed emotions from Star Trek fans about the way the game was developing, so a fresh start is probably what’s needed. Plus, if Cryptic are the new developers, it’s certainly in good hands.
As we start 2008, we’re going to be compiling the Geektown Top Ten’s of 2007. And first on that list, is our Top Ten Games. The list is multi-format (excluding handhelds), and is compiled of our favourite games that have been released on either PC, XBox 360, Wii, PS3 in 2007. So here goes….
10. Resistance: Fall of Man
Firstly, this game got terrible bad press this year as one of the maps was based upon a cathedral. Now, I understand that a game company should ask permission to use real buildings and people, but the bad press didn’t just stop there. Somehow, the news twisted it into saying that this game was promoting gun crime in the community, by having a raging gun-fight in the cathedral. The truth?.. The said cathedral is being used as a hospital in the game. There are gun fights that break outside, yes, they break out between soldiers… and invading ALIENS! Hardly something that happens everyday…
Anyway, rant over…
Resistance is a fantastic game! It uses the power of the PS3 to make a truely addictive FPS game backed by a story worthy of not just many sequels, but also movies! Set in an alternate past, the free nations of the world are under attack by a growing alien force, pushing out from the remains of the USSR and Europe. You (sadly an American hero) lead a gallant counter-strike against the aggressors on British soil. This game is a must buy, ignore the bad press and go play it yourself, it is great!
Best Moment: Ironically all the bad press has made the Manchester Cathedral fight one of the best moments.
This is one of the most imaginative games to hit the PSNetwork.Â You start the game as a tiny fish, and with each level eat, grow and evolve into more advanced forms.Â The game uses only the Six-Axis system of the PS3 controller and uses it very well!Â Hypnotic music and beautiful visuals make this a stunning game to play, ifÂ a little short.Â Can’t wait for the next game by the makers, Flower.
Best Moment: First time you realise you can eat the fish!
Peggle (for those of you that haven’t played it), is a 2D puzzle game, the object of which is to fire a small balls at coloured pegs to clear the level of all the orange pegs before you run out of balls… and it’s one of the most addictive games on the planet! It’s not so much the basic mechanics of the game, as the brilliant execution of it. It has an adventure mode where you are guided through each level by various cartoon ‘Peggle Masters’ who give you their unique power (like Multiball, or adding Pinball Flippers) when you hit the green pegs. Plus, as your ball comes close to your last orange peg, the screen zooms for a close up. You get an ‘Awww’ from the crowd if you miss, but brilliantly, when you hit, EXTREME FEVER flashes up on screen to a rousing rendition of the Hallelujah Chorus as the ball does it’s last few bounces! Silly and over dramatic, but completely wonderful!
Best Moment: ULTIMATE EXTREME FEVER!! Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallllllelujahhhhh!
If you haven’t heard of Bioshock, then you’ve obviously been living in Rapture, deep beneath the sea.. This fps game was a major hit this year, already making the key baddy in the game “Big Daddy” a well known name in gaming circles (along with their creepy little sister companions). Released on PC and Xbox 360 it really showed off graphical and writing levels usually not associated with the FPS games.
Survival horror games have come a long way, and this must now be considered in the top 3 of its kind, but as a fan of those types of game, no other game except Silent Hill has ever made me lose sleep… yet.
Best Moment: “Don’t be a slowpoke, Mr. B. Angels don’t wait for slowpokes”
6. Lord of the Rings Online
We joined the Beta test for LotRO back in April. It’s a really good MMO. Some interesting ideas nicely implemented. We did find it was lacking a bit of an end game, but it’s still relatively new, and still growing. Most recently, they’ve added in player housing, helping to add the RPG to MMORPG. It’s certainly one to watch, and if your suffering WoW fatigue, and want to stick to the fantasy genre, LotRO is well worth a look.
Best Moment: The Shire pub crawl mission, and running with pies!
5. Call Of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
Call Of Duty 4, the first of the series to not be based during WW2. This game is visually spectacular, but also boasts an amazing story that’ll keep you playing until your thumbs bleed! Following the lives of two soldiers, one a US Marine and the other a newly recruited SAS Officer, you fight against incredible odds to stop all out war.
Available on all formats (except Wii) this game is stunning. Must say, after playing this (alot) I am a little disappointed Call Of Duty 5 (due for release 2008) will return to the WW2 scenario, I really like the Modern combat and weaponary, even so, COD4 is a classic already!
Best Moment: The nuclear explosion after effects cut scene, tragically good!
4. Super Mario Galaxy
This might be the only Wii Game in the list, but then it really is one of the greatest platformers ever made. Like all good Mario games, there’s a kidnapped princess and a bunch of stars to collect. This time the princess is in another galaxy though and you have to guide and shake Mario through 40 Galaxies, each one with it’s own unique challenges. Very clever, diverse, level designs which are consistently brilliant, and graphics that really show off how pretty stuff can look on the Wii. Mario Galaxy is easily the best Wii game of 2007.
Best Moment: Flying round as a Mario-bee.
3. Mass Effect
Well, what can be said about this game. Bioware seem to be gold when it comes to making outstanding sci-fi games, as I’m sure you’ll know, they made the incredible KOTOR series (with rumours of a KOTOR MMO coming). Mass Effect takes place after man, using discovered alien technology, has started spreading out to the stars. We are most certainly not alone out there! Stunning graphics verging on the artistically beautiful designs, enthralling and addictive story-line all go hand in hand to make this one of the biggest games of the year.
If you don’t own an Xbox 360 yet, then this is the game to make you go out and buy one, I did!
Best Moment: Far too many to list, this is a movie, not a game!
2. Richard Garrett’s Tabula Rasa
Tabula Rasa was another MMO we got into the beta test for. What first strikes you is how different it is to other MMOs. Although it isn’t true FPS, it does a remarkable job of feeling more like an online shooter than a traditional MMO. Fast paced combat, and stupidly big guns! Plus… no Orks. It’s so nice to finally get out of the fantasy world in an MMO and into a Sci-fi one. And it’s a clever original story and world, (not a licence from a franchise that has a predetermined history they’re supposed to fit to… but don’t… **coughStarWarsGalaxiescough**). Currently one of the highest rated MMO on MMORPG.com, it seems we’re not the only ones that think this game deserves some praise for standing out in a Warcraft dominated land of fantasy MMOs.
Best Moment: Taking on squads of 10 mobs at a time with a shotgun… and surviving!
1.Valve’s Orange Box
When we were discussing this list, there was no question what was going to be No. 1…
First off, great value. No only Half-Life 2, Episode 1 and Episode 2, but also the brilliant Team Fortress 2, and the work of genius that is Portal. Really, if you put the games in the top 10 separately, they’d all those eligible have got into the chart.
As any regular reader will know, we’re huge MMO fans at Geektown, and usually stick to whichever one we’re playing. However, TF2 has seriously eaten into our MMO time. Wonderful design and superb fun. For me though, Portal is game of the year. Yes it’s not the longest of games, but it really is beautifully made. Some of the cleverest level design in years. Fun, and very funny. If you’ve got a PC or XBox 360, Orange Box really is a ‘must buy’. But remember… The cake is a lie.
Best Moment: Oh, there are just sooo many:
- The first time the penny drops on what your supposed to do on a portal level.
- The ending title song of Portal.
- Flaming 5 unsuspecting Snipers in one go as a Pyro.
- Splattering a Scout into squishy bits at close range with a rocket launcher.
- Sapping a sentry gun, and then backstabbing the engineer as he tries to fix it.
- Wrenching the Spy over the head just before he tries to sap your sentry gun and backstab you!
So that’s it. Agree? Disagree? Leave us your feedback in the comments!