Starcraft 2 Beta Offline Starting May 31

Posted by on May 18, 2010 - No Comments »

Starcraft 2Do you have your Starcraft 2 beta key yet? If you are itching for a chance to try out the redesigned races, you might want to jump on it: the current phase of the beta ends on May 31st, and the beta won’t be back for several weeks.

The downtime is likely to have time to polish up the game and install more hardware for an open beta and launch environment. Nethaera broke the news on the forums:

We’d like to let all of our StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty beta test participants know that the first phase of the beta test will be coming to an end in all regions on Monday, May 31. The beta test will be unavailable for several weeks while we make some hardware and software configuration changes in preparation for the final phase of the beta test and the release of the game. We plan to bring the beta test back online for a couple of weeks prior to the game’s launch to complete our testing. We’ll have more details to share about when this final beta-testing phase will begin at a later date.

We’d like to thank all of our beta-test participants for your enthusiasm, dedication, and valuable feedback during the beta test, and we look forward to hearing more of your thoughts on the StarCraft II beta test as the game’s July 27 launch approaches.

You can do some fancy footwork to hack the game to play offline AI, but we at Lore Hound of course do not endorse this kind of behavior. However, if its between breaking the ToS and suffering physical withdrawal effects, I can’t say I blame you.

Dragons in Gaming Lore: A Retrospective

Posted by on May 18, 2010 - 6 Comments »

They’re arguably the most feared and respected mythical creature known around the world. Dragons. They’ve pervaded tales  and folklore  in numerous cultures for thousands of years and have become the ultimate villain faced by heroes in fantasy settings. So it’s not surprising that the dragon also has become  a staple character in games, which are known for drawing inspiration from sources that already have a proven draw to audiences.

One such game that has successfully transplanted dragons into its own brand of lore is World of Warcraft. In the upcoming WoW Magazine, the role of the dragons is explored with a 16-page feature introducing each Dragonflight and their connections — from Nozdormu to Deathwing himself. The feature can be previewed online, and looking at it reminded me a bit of just how much dragons have influenced gaming culture.

From MMOs to action and adventure games to micro-games played on a mobile device, dragons have been seen in an incredible number of variations in games. The constant reinvention of their charismatic yet terrifying demeanor keeps their appearance in games fresh and relevant, and you’ll never see me shying away from a shot to slay a dragon. Although almost always respected, we also see the other side of dragons in folklore — wise, empathetic and deadly protective of what they hold dear.

After the cut, let’s take a look at a few of the standout games in which dragons have played a significant role:

Read more…

BlizzCon Tickets Available June 2 and 5

Posted by on May 18, 2010 - 2 Comments »

Blizzard announced via press release that ticket sales for BlizzCon 2010 will again be in two batches. This year, ticket sales are on Wednesday June 2 at 7:00 pm PDT and Saturday June 5 at 10:00 am PDT, the earlier of which is just two weeks away. As has been the case in previous years, tickets will be available on Blizzard’s online store, and prices have again been raised as they are now $150 each.

As in previous years, both a DIRECTV pay per view event and an internet stream will be available for $39.95, and all users who purchase either will get the yet to be named in-game item. Different from last year, the internet stream will have multiple channels so that users can switch between panels, getting whatever news they may be interested in. In another change, anyone who orders the DIRECTV pay per view event will receive the internet stream for no extra charge.

If you can’t afford either the flight to California plus tickets option or the online stream option, some of the events, including the opening ceremony, will have limited free streams available online.

As previously announced, BlizzCon will take place at the Anaheim Convention Center on October 22 and 23. If you still don’t have a account and are interested in tickets, make sure to register for one before tickets go on sale.

We’re looking forward to what Blizzard has to offer at this year’s BlizzCon, and hopefully we’ll see some of you there as well.

Guild Wars 2: The Fashion Behind the Game

Posted by on May 18, 2010 - No Comments »

Guild Wars 2 character artist Kristen Perry sat down for an interview to talk about the game’s fashion and character customization which was posted on ArenaNet’s blog.

Perry discussed NPC clothing choices, why the team went with the particular style they did, the re-envisioning of the character clothes designs for Guild Wars 2, what you can do to your character clothing-wise and much more centered around Guild Wars 2’s fashion designs .

For the full article, click here.

World of Warcraft: Blizzcon Tickets go on Sale in June

Posted by on May 18, 2010 - No Comments »

Blizzcon will be held at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, CA on October 22 and 23 of this year. Blizzcon tickets go on sale June 2nd, 2010 at 7PM Pacific and June 5th, 2010 at 10AM Pacific. Tickets are $150 a piece.

For those of you who can’t be there you’ll be able to catch it on Pay Per View (DIRECTV only) for $39.95 in full HD. Both days of the show will be broadcast, and the PPV event will include exclusive interviews, demos and more. Just like the previous year, World of Warcraft players who order the DIRECTV pay-per-view will get an exclusive in-game item which will be revealed at a later date.

Tickets can be purchased through the Blizzcon website.

Check out the official announcement from Blizzard here.

Perfect World Entertainment Loves Torchlight

Posted by on May 18, 2010 - No Comments »

Torchlight, the freshman entry from Runic Games, excited many PC gamers.  Developed by the minds behind Diablo, Diablo II, Fate and Mythos, the game caters to the dungeon crawler, loot collector in all of us.  Featuring the best aspects of the past gems, and numerous tweaks and refinements, a pet that sells your loot for you, the budget title has sold like hotcakes.

From day one, Runic Games stated its intention to expand Torchlight from a then upcoming single-player title to an MMOG.  Perfect World Entertainment, a free-to-play publisher we’ve discussed previously, believed in the company’s idea and agreed to publish the MMOG.  After the rapid success, numerous awards and over 500,000 sales of Torchlight, Perfect World Entertainment has upped the ante.  The publisher is now a majority stakeholder in Runic Games after sinking $8.4 million into the company.

Interested in seeing what the company may produce?  You can grab Torchlight for the budget price of $19.99 from Amazon (tag team with Fate for free shipping), or hope it goes on sale on Steam again.

Fists of Fu – New MMORPG from Outspark

Posted by on May 18, 2010 - No Comments »

Outspark, a publisher best known for hit MMORPG’s like Fiesta Online and Project Powder, has announced Fist of Fu, a 2.5D martial arts MMORPG with stylish graphics. The game will offer you light gameplay, great anime style, 0 skills to master for each of the three classes (Fighter, Archer, Mage), and over 4000 items to acquire. Outspark is also accepting Closed Beta registration right now, and the game’s official release is scheduled for later this summer.

MLB Dugout Heroes Launches Pre-Season Update

Posted by on May 18, 2010 - No Comments »

Baseball season is approaching fast, and MLB Dugout Heroes is launching its pre-season content update. The update will include the full 2010 MLB roster for all 30 Major League Baseball teams, as well as archived players from the 1990s. A new Home Run Derby contest has also been added for players testing their new roster. Additionally, a lot of the older cash shop items from the last season are now available for NUTs(in-game currency), and new and fresh items will take their place.