Black Desert: New Community Manager

Posted by on December 3, 2015 - No Comments »

bdocmStaff turnovers at a gaming company always spark uncertainty among those who follow a game. At least they do for me. Why is someone leaving? Is it personal choice? If so, is it because a more exciting position elsewhere has opened up, or because they don’t want to be working with the current company in question? There are never any answers to these questions, so I always end up hoping that the staff member in question is embarking on a new and exciting adventure rather than departing an unpleasant land.

Hot on the heels of the closed beta registration announcements, CM_Oli has posted that he will be stepping down next week, and CM_Jouska will be taking his place. Read more…

Video Games in Cuba: Access

Posted by on December 3, 2015 - No Comments »

lh_videogames_in_cuba_handheldsIn December 2014, Barack Obama and Raul Castro gave simultaneous speeches to their countries announcing that the United States of America and Cuba would, after decades, finally be normalizing relations. We jumped at the chance to see how video games exist, if at all, in the island nation that’s been, at least legally, so cut off from American cultural influence. We bring you LoreSabueso.

My expectations of Video Games in Cuba were all over the place in terms of accuracy. The occasional idea was spot on quickly followed by gross inaccuracy. More often than not it was a wash, some aspects of a shred of a thought panned out and the other aspects went sideways. Perhaps the most accurate was the assumption that handhelds, such as 3DS and PS Vita, would be widely used. This was clearly evident in the community piece. Not only were a few of the Cubans I talked to actively playing that night, mostly Monster Hunter Ultimate 4, but it was effectively a unanimous platform. Both of them. Read more…

Black Desert Beta Registration

Posted by on December 3, 2015 - No Comments »

BDOThe page for the closed beta of Black Desert is open! They are now taking applications to join in the fun. There is a limited window to apply, so if you’re interested, head on over and sign in.

As I mentioned previously, the closed beta will be running during the following times:

• Start: Wednesday, December 16th – 07:00 a.m. UTC
• End: Tuesday, December 22nd – 07:00 a.m. UTC Read more…

Video Games in Cuba: Community

Posted by on December 2, 2015 - No Comments »

lh_videogames_in_cuba_fight

True gamers read and play at the same time.

In December 2014, Barack Obama and Raul Castro gave simultaneous speeches to their countries announcing that the United States of America and Cuba would, after decades, finally be normalizing relations. We jumped at the chance to see how video games exist, if at all, in the island nation that’s been, at least legally, so cut off from American cultural influence. We bring you LoreSabueso.

Earlier this week, I speculated on what I would find in Cuba as it pertains to the favored entertainment of this website. Having recently been to a full-fledged third-world country I possessed a grounding in reality that I lacked when I ventured to Italy in 1999. There was a particular aspect around video games in 2015 in a country struggling to leave the 1950s that irked me. It continued to gnaw at my lizard brain while I wrote the Expectations, seeping into a handful of those paragraphs. Read more…

Blade and Soul First Impressions

Posted by on December 1, 2015 - No Comments »

Screenshot_151125_001Normally when I am previewing a game I like to throw up a quickie writeup after my first day of playing. Just an outline of the first things that grab my attention for good or bad. I’m a few days late on this one, however, and it isn’t due to Thanksgiving or health concerns – no, it is simply that I am having a difficult time forming an opinion of this game. I really want to say I’m not enjoying it. That’s what I do say when asked how it is – nope, I’d rather be playing something else.

Six hours in on day 3 of my Thanksgiving marathon play session, not even I believe that even as I’m saying it.  Actually, I have very little that isn’t positive to say about it. So let’s have a more careful look.  Read more…

Black Desert Diary – Beast Tamer!

Posted by on November 26, 2015 - No Comments »

nzgvPNsI have to say, Daum is really starting to impress me. I was randomly flipping through my various gaming reddits today when I saw there was a new post from PM_Belsazar on the Black Desert forums: The project manager y they mentioned as a possibility last week is already up and running! And what a diary entry it is. We have specific dates for the first beta test, screenshots of new faces going in to the game, new skin tones and hair colors – even new beard styles for the men. And even beyond that exciting news – Belsazar delighted many with the unexpected news that they have seen the feedback and have changed their plans and will be introducing the Beast Tamer class at launch due to its popular demand! And not only that, but the class will be playable in the closed betas and it will even be getting its own version of the unique costume being designed for the master founder’s pack.

That is what I call going above and beyond. Read more…

BlizzCon 2015: Hearthstone Game Design Challenges

Posted by on November 26, 2015 - No Comments »

odPdnsKDid you hear the news? Blizzard Entertainment revealed a new Solo Adventure for Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft during BlizzCon! Cool, right? Oh, and it’s coming out on Thursday, November 12. Nuts! A fact that enabled Ben Brode to reveal every single one of the 45 new cards. Craziness! Combine that with the normal secrecy around gameplay elements, save the Temple Run engagement, the design team pre-empted token questions. Fine with us, we hate asking them anyways! We get to the heart of the matter, the meat and potatoes of Hearthstone’s success, the numbers. Forty million people can’t be wrong, can they? Read more…

Black Desert: Interview with PM Balsazar

Posted by on November 24, 2015 - No Comments »

I expressed concerns in my previous post about Black Desert Online, regarding both the cash shop and the state of the game. When I first began watching it, it was aimed at a more challenge-oriented audience than it is now. Some of these concerns have been addressed in a recent forum Q&A with PM_Belsazar, a project manager with Daum, on the Black Desert Online official forums. Much of it was as I expected – they are not addressing concerns regarding the cash shop, for example – due to the nature of the process of bringing a game to the west. In other words: they cannot address certain things as they are still working out the details with Pearl Abyss.

The Vigor System is a discussion in progress. The Cash Shop is a discussion in progress; as are pay to win features, the in game economy, pvp flagging, and the adjustment of in game features. Quite a lot on that list! So what is discussed – primarily the closed betas, the founders packs, issues with megaservers, and serviced territory. Unrelated to the interview – throwing aside any discussions as to the merits or flaws of locked regions, I have to admit that I find locking regions to be rather ridiculous given how easy it is to set up VPNs.

But before I digress onto a rant about my lack of Asian games, let’s move on to the interview! Read more…