Guild Wars 2 logoTo mark the beginning of the Lunar New Year, ArenaNet have made an announcement that will surely set MMO gamers everywhere trembling with squeeish delight.

The latest post on the Guilds Wars 2 blog confirms that the waiting game is nearly over, confirming a full release for their eagerly awaited title some time in 2012. They also say that after a press-only beta next month, future testing events will be “aggressively ramped up” from March onwards. Cor! After five years of anticipation, it’s all starting to kick off!

Best get to polishing those applications, folks. It’s going to be one of the hottest tickets of the year…

Stumbling upon PC Gamer‘s Big 10 of 2011 list of the games they’re anticipating for this year, I was rather surprised. PCG is one of, if not the most respected gaming magazine in the industry, and I’m sure there’s more than a little bit of insider knowledge going into this particular article of theirs.

PC Gamer logoThat said, the reason for my surprise was twofold. They think that both Diablo 3 and Guild Wars 2 are going to be out this year! Whoooooaaa there, Nelly. As much as I’d be in RPG heaven were this to happen, I just really can’t see it… though of course there’s that leaked release schedule document which was all over the interwebz last month suggesting 2011 might be the year after all. Perhaps a combination of waiting this long and being generally cynical about everything has made me over-patient.

Anyhow, as I switched my brain into “lurk” mode in work today, I got to thinking about what games I’d like to play – if elephants could fly – this year. Daydreaming is fun! Keep reading after the jump to find out what I came up with.

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Just hours ago, an entire corner of EVE‘s universe was plunged into confusion when GoonSwarm – a dominant force for several years and one of the game’s longest standing alliances – started disbanding. Judging by the frenzied activity on the game’s official corp and alliance EVE Corporation, Alliance and Organisation discussion forum discussion forum, it seems they have now dissolved completely and will not be returning.

GoonSwarm were founded by members of the Something Awful community and achieved notoriety for being one of the least restrictive groups to inhabit the outer reaches of space, operating under the philosophy that anyone, regardless of skill, should be able to get a taste of what life can be like in 0.0 territory. Their sudden departure from the region leaves a massive vacuum that may well trigger a widescale conflict for control of valuable resources.

No official explanation has yet been given for why the alliance has broken up in this way, but whatever the reason, it’s definitely a pivotal moment in EVE‘s history.

Since there are only a couple of days left until the Assemblee voting closes there’s one particular entry I really think you should play. I wouldn’t have reached it within vote-time had I not skipped ahead a little – that’s my excuse, anyway! Anyhow, it’s time to venture into the…

Realm of the Mad God by Wild Shadow Studios TIGForum thread Wild Shadow Studios forum Play Realm of the Mad God
In the most literal sense of the phrase, I can’t help but believe that the duo behind RotMG have created a monster. More than just one, in fact; we’re talking tens of thousands of the blighters, each one of them alive with primitive sentience and ready to kill you as soon as they set their pixelly eyes upon your feeble mortal frame. Even if you win victory against even a split fraction of their legions and claim the shiny loot they carry, more will come, until eventually they will fulfil their master’s wish: to kill and eat you. :twisted:

Realm of the Mad God - interrupting a party of the gods is a bad ideaRealm of the Mad God - someone call GhostbustersRealm of the Mad God - alas, poor Oryx, I knew him well

The Mad God’s realm is a multiplayer Flash RPG where you explore a massive map and kill things with swords and sorcery depending on which of the four basic classes you pick. So far, so yawn-worthy, you may be thinking. But soon you will find yourself succumbing to the fiendishly addictive nature of the beast. Combat is fast and fluid and grouping with other players during your travels is silky-smooth. No party invites – just wander close by and you’ll start to share XP fairly. Roguelike-style permadeath actually encourages and rewards such cooperation between players. And finally, when you’ve defeated enough of the horde, alone or with friends, Oryx the Mad God himself comes out to play for a grand finale!

Yes, it has flaws – starting out can be tough, on occasions it’s a bit tricky to find monsters that aren’t stupidly easy or frighteningly hard, and the chatbox gets cluttered quickly when it’s busy. Some may feel the gameplay just doesn’t have enough depth. But me personally? I think there’s something fundamentally, undeniably fun here – and surely, for any game, that’s all you need to worry about.

That, and being killed and eaten, of course… 93%

Thanks to Captain_404 on the TIGForum and the Wild Shadow team for some of the screenshots!

You might want to go grab yourself a cup of tea to sip on while you read today’s epic collection – I surely consumed a few myself while putting this random tangle of words together… :roll:

Today we have:

  • Have Adventures
  • Higher Still
  • Hubris Quest Online
  • Labyrinth
  • Led’s Get Shooting
  • Mechwar (Battle for Narita)
  • Mr. Kitty’s Quest
  • Mulder’s Totally Bogus (Rabbit) Journey

Off we go, then!

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One of the Guild Wars 2 homepage Guild Wars 2 developers recently chimed in on a Guild Wars 2 Guru Forum - Footsteps and Sounds forum thread dicussing the sound effects of the game. They went into the details of exactly how they’re going about the job, and revealed that several effects such as footsteps and armor noise are generated procedurally. If you play with sound enabled (especially if you use headphones a lot like me), one of the things that can break the immersion of a game is listening to the same two or three footstep sounds over and over and over again… so it’s good to know that GW2 hopefully won’t have this problem!

They also linked to a selection of photos capturing their sound-recording men in the field. They look like they’re having a great time – I’d love to have their job… :)

For more Guild Wars 2 news, check out its Guild Wars 2 news website.

They said they were out of white emulsion and could I try and prevent myself from using any more?…

Yeah… I think it’s possibly a tiny bit uninspiring around here at the moment. It feels a bit like hospital decor, trying to be cheery in a way that isn’t forced, scary or mind-melting boring. And completely uncontroversial. :-|

I’m wringing every single drop of creative juice from all of my 2.5 brain cells to attempt to remedy this situation! It’ll take some time. Meanwhile, some posts that have interesting content are just around the corner too, I promise.

While you wait, play Realm of the Mad God Realm of the Mad God from Wild Shadow Studios (and post feedback on the TIGForums: Realm of the Mad God [Flash MMO] TIGForums), ‘cos it’s fantastic. You may even see me there later when I’ve had enough of tinkering here for the evening…

ArenaNet have released another trailer for Guild Wars 2, and this time it shows off a few tasty clips of what seem to be in-game combat. Without too many more words, check it out here!

Guild Wars 2: An Asuran and her golem

The more I see of the diminutive Asurans, the more I’m convinced that’ll be the race I’ll start out with. A friend of mine in work considers them to be “vicious, pointy-teeth midgets with a serious attitude problem” – ha, but he’s so wrong! They’re a bit prickly on the outside, I’ll admit that, but if I were the only one able to build dirty great stompy war golems to sort my problems out for me, I’d probably rub that in other people’s faces too. And what’s wrong with a nice toothy smile from time to time? :roll:

Anyhow, seriously, it’s a very cool trailer, and Jeremy Soule‘s superb music complements it perfectly. Watch it now! And if you can’t get enough, you might want to read Massively.com’s analysis for some extra commentary.